No one's quite brought John Cage to the kids like Matthew Herbert, the austere Englishmen who makes a living from infusing house's breathy boom-tick with architectural sounds culled from the wastelands of real life. His seminal Wishmountain single "Rose" found Herbert collating sampled sounds of a virtual funeral to create a shrine to his mother, a tapestry of carefully assembled sounds of funerals, street life, and memory cars, footsteps, organs, photographs cut up to skip at rhythms of a heart fluttering with profound emotion. His love of concrète sound sourcing and conceptual record-making first came to the fore on his 1998 album Around the House (pun no doubt intended), which sought to not only give architectural depth to his slinky house rhythms but to capture an audio environment as a grand thematic expression. Carefully recording the most benign human-life events buttering toast, brushing teeth, washing hands, clinking cutlery and weaving them into tracks, Around the House details the homey space in which a relationship takes place, the artwork filled with photos of Herbert and partner/vocalist Dani Siciliano in various intimate poses, their fashionable threads tipping their hat to this entertainist's ruse of artifice. Originally released on his Herbert's Phonography label, the album has been reissued by K7 due to the popularity of 2001's Bodily Functions, in which Herbert uses body sounds cracking knuckles, groaning joints, snipped hair, cleared throats, coughs, spits, sneezes to map the emotions within, with Herbert and Siciliano's intimacy again at that album's center. But where Bodily Functions flushed out Herbert's jazz desires, Around the House keeps to its tonal house brief, culminating with "In the Kitchen," a track whose base is a real-time recording of breakfast under construction. Amplified to give it all a surreal quality, its time kept by soft house beats, its emotion set to plaintive violin lines, the whole takes on the unspoken melancholia of the cinema of the new guard of French Realists (of whom Sandrine Veysset is my favorite).