Icelandic producer Yagya’s approach to dub techno is far more sentimental than this austere subgenre of electronic music usually requires. 2002′s Rhythm of Snow is self-explanatory: choppy rhythms, dense digital sleet, and lonesome chords that seem to have echoed for miles through the mountains of his home country before he bottled them into his computer. Yagya has no doubt spent a lot of time staring wistfully out his windows at blizzards; put Rhythm of Snow on and you can almost see flakes.
The experimental and highly collaborative Ran Cap Duoi collective is one of Vietnam’s few prominent avant-electronic ensembles. Their debut, Ngu Ngay Ngay Ngay Tan The, is hermetic and cosmopolitan at once, cribbing from both Vietnamese folk music and the coiling body-horror electronica of American artists like Chino Amobi and Elysia Crampton. Its title translates as “sleeping through the apocalypse,” which is as good a summation of its scorched, seething, somehow lush landscape as any.
Eyelids are something like Portland’s indie-rock illuminati, and their forthcoming Dubble Live set (Oct. 22) showcases the depth of both their repertoire and their connections. Recorded over two nights at Mississippi Studios, this sprawling two-disc set includes guest turns by Hedwig & the Angry Inch scribe John Cameron Mitchell, R.E.M.’s Peter Buck, local hero Scott McCaughey, and Camper Van Beethoven’s Jonathan Segel, who appears on first single, “(I Will) Leave With You.”
Mike Cooper cut his teeth in the original British blues-rock bloom almost 60 years ago, but in his 70s he’s moved toward an idiosyncratic style, defined by harsh, piercing electronics and Hawaiian slack-key guitar. An island traveler and ardent leftist, Cooper deconstructs the perception of Pacific islands as paradises and visualizes the ravages of global warming and colonialism therein. His best and most frightening album is last year’s Playing With Water, which in this context can be read as “playing with fire.”