My second studio album of tracks ranging from playful and cinematic to crunchy and beat-driven.
The concept behind the album is primarily one of playful childlike adventures (hence the name) but with a few darker elements that underlie much of today’s childhood experience.
Tracks such as Grace and Dorothy’s Song combine warm electronic sounds and playful nursery rhyme melodies with intricate stuttering beats, while I Don’t Kvetch, Keiji’s Dream, Aquarius and Shoes Too Big for Her Feet frame the melodies melodies within a heavier, more IDM and electro-inflected style, with euphoric synth lines, soaring string pads and crunchy drums.
Personal Spaces and Tricycle Days exhibit a more nostalgic bent through the use of vintage keyboard tones and evocative childlike melodies. System Cost and Dead Pixel are darker tracks with a brooding, melancholic feel. Musicbox Skit provides an exquisite interlude of chiming music box samples and vinyl crackle, and closing track Whispering Gallery explores a more cinematic, beatless side of Mint’s production style with a delicious slice of widescreen atmospheric ambience, gently floating strings, softly pulsing chords and arpeggios, and twinkling melodies. Also included is a remix of Shine by Ulrich Schnauss.
“.. melodies purposefully constructed in an almost homemade way”
Now Like Photographs
Record of the week
“Is it oddly danceable dark ambient? Is it infectious bubblegummy IDM? Yes to both. Experimental? Occasionally. Cardboard Rocketships is the ninth release from Londoner Murray Fisher aka Mint, and we must admit, we have no idea how this wildly talented and ecclectic electronica artist has evaded our gaze for so long. Glitchy beats weave through melodic synth. Although the rhythms will keep your head bopping as you walk through the rain, some of the most memorable snippets lurk in the background of the tracks. This is an album for repeated close listens. So repeatedly listen to the Nowlikephotographs podcast here.”
“Very solid album in general, very intrepid and refreshing, definitively showing that not everything is doom and gloom but there is also opportunities for our inner child to show up. Thumbs up!”
Read the whole review
Translated from original French Review
“Not content with simply opening a testament to his own quality compositions, the Londoner proves here that he can also improve upon the work of others.”
Translated from original French Review
“Apart from a naive optimism perspiring from each one of his compositions, you can feel, when you listen to Cardboard Rocketships, a certain freshness blowing in your ears. Cardboard Rocketships is a disc which offers enough to chew on, and for one moment in space, to give yourself to a state of pure happiness.”
“Murray Fisher’s MINT project…emerges with another well-produced and wide range of moods and atmospheres”
Translated from original French Review
“Cardboard Rocketships manages with disconcerting ease to transport the listener to a land of dreams”
“Musicbox Skit, Keiji’s Dream and Dorothy’s Song are sublime.”
“abundantly melodic, high-pitched tones flexing playfully over stuttering beats”
“… a work of incredibly soothing melodic electronica with sweeping synths, cyclic chiming bits, glitchy flickers & unthreatening beatmastery. By ‘System Cost’, things are getting a little more eerie & electroid, like some spooky old Toytronic release but not for long is he stuck in a tunnel of creepy ghosties, ‘Keiji’s Dream’ is built around that kind of euphoric, symphonic home listening techno that seems like an old friend – roaring along brandishing sparkling, glacial synth washes, skittery electro beats & stately bass thrums with loads of easy-on-the-ear twinkling melodies that will just delight fans of Digitonal & Wisp for instance. A journey through many shades & moods but with an above average ear for detail, a rich tuneful tapestry of hugely accessible & atmospheric songs. First 50 copies come with a numbered bonus DVD but be quick if you require one of those!!! A superb release that includes a Mint remix of Ulrich Schnauss’s ‘Shine’!”
“As co-boss of Boltfish along with Cheju, Mint has been responsible for putting out an awful lot of good electronica in the past. So I’m pleased to be able to bring you this cracking release from the man himself. Cardboard Rocketships wears its heart on its sleeve from the very beginning. Mint has a way with chunky, catchy melodic elements and as he combines them with a selection of crunched out, classically electronic rhythms you end up with a surprisingly upbeat tone from time to time. It’s balanced, of course, by a gentler, more downbeat feel where the chords and basslines really shine through. Robust, yet gentle, refined, yet groovy…. this album covers all of these territories with style and grace. And, lest I forget to mention, it also comes with the rather superb Mint remix of Ulrich Schnauss’s ‘Shine’. Quality stuff indeed!”
The Silent Ballet
“..one half .. bubblegum beatnik.. the other.. foreboding industrial”
Themilkfactory – 4.4/5
“Only weeks after Cheju, one half of the team heading Boltfish Record released his latest album, it is the turn of London-based Murray Fisher, AKA Mint, the other half, to deliver a collection of fine electronic music. Infused with the rich evolving melodic and textures that have been at the heart of the Boltfish ethic ever since the label was first established, five years ago, Cardboard Rocketships concentrates in twelve tracks, plus a reworking of Ulrich Schnauss’s Shine, what Fisher has been developing over the course of countless EPs, released not only on his own imprint, but also through U-Cover, Kahvi Collective, Rednetic or Lacedmilk Technologies.
Even more so than that of Cheju, Fisher’s music is characterised by strong, evocative, almost naïve, melodies and sweeping cinematic orchestrations, which heavily contribute to create deeply dramatic and effective pieces. All the way through, he develops beautiful themes for just long enough, reaching a point where each composition seems to progress almost by itself, but carefully bringing them to an end before they start losing focus. This means that the vast majority of the tracks are kept under the five minute mark here, which, while occasionally leaving a slight feeling of frustration as the mind remains set on a particular pattern long after it has vanished, also works toward intensifying the cadence of the record itself. Pieces such as the slightly kaleidoscopic Keiji’s Dream, Aquarius or Dead Pixels for instance appear to progressively gather momentum as more layers of sound appear caught up in powerful swirls, while, on the more melancholic Grace, Personal Spaces or Dorothy’s Song, the restraint with which the melodies progress through more delicate sound formations is heightened by the feeling that anything could come to break the piece at any time.
Right at the heart of this album is Mint’s dreamy remix of Ulrich Schnauss’s Shine, from his 2007 album Goodbye. Stripping the original of its moody overtones and shaded vocals, Fisher renders its deeply ethereal washes with gentle electronic waves slowly building up over a recurring theme and a slightly too conspicuous beat. The track bears little resemblance to Schnauss’s version but certainly fits in pretty well with the rest of the album, ensuring a great consistency of tone throughout.
Cardboard Rocketships is only Mint’s second proper full length, following his 2007 Binary Counting released on U-Cover. Close in spirit to the likes of Isan, Gimmik or Benge, Mint delivers here a rather engaging and fine collection of beautiful and warm electronic music.”
Crumbs in the Butter – 8/10
“I really shouldn’t have listened to this album today. There I was, having a much needed lazy day and thinking, right, I’ll write some reviews. I was just so happy sitting here, with the windows wide open taking in the sun tinged spring air.
“I Don’t Kvetch.” opens this release and my thoughts of laziness have paled into insignificance. This song fits the current breaking of springtime perfectly. I want to leave the house go for walks by rivers and through parks, all the while taking photographs of sunlight through trees.
The first few tracks on this release are the finest examples of glitchy playful electronica I have heard in a long time. A range of moods and shades shift various perspectives through the ears and mind. From the smile inducing first two tracks, the mood spirals into something darker on “System Cost.” A track that moves from the naturalistic tones of the album opener and takes the back roads straight into a darkened concrete enclosed housing estates. Reminiscent of early FSOL, a nervous walk through inner cities in the dead of night – Silence punctuated by eerie metallic sounds. A glitchy fat — padded horror movie of a song.
Mint has that rare ability to get you excited as each song finishes and you await the next, hoping that it’s as good as the last and in every case, it is. There are enough beats to keep any IDM fan happy and enough waves of ethereal calmness to keep anyone slow nodding in ambient appreciation but the main feature here is Mint’s dexterity to make each nuance sound so organic. With Electronic music there is often too much repetition which winds up leaving the tracks feeling cold, leaving the listener lacking any affection. Mint makes you want hug the life out his records, as each song has something so personal about it that the listener leaves Mint’s music with a warm glow inside.
From the ravishingly angelic to the starkly ominous, Mint is a master of he electronic arts. Boltfish Recordings pride themselves on their organic sounds and this release should be used as a bench mark for anyone submitting a demo to the label. It’s simply that good and another fine example of why Boltfish stand at the highest plateau of electronic record labels.
Right, I am off to go for a walk by the river with my Ipod and camera and I won’t be home for a long time.
Today feels good, thanks to “Cardboard Rocketships.”