Heavy week here! So many killer things in to stick in your ear, it’s hard to just pick just 2 picks of the week, but it’s only fair. Unlike winter, just sneaking up all of a sudden on us. At least there’s plenty of new tunes to keep you occupied while you bunker down at home now.
…..picks of the week…..
Various: Even a Tree Can Shed Tears (Light in the Attic) LP
In tomorrow… Super sweet coloured wax in stock for a short while! There was something in the air in the urban corners of late ‘60s Japan. Student protests and a rising youth culture gave way to the angura (short for “underground) movement that thrived on subverting traditions of the post-war years. Rejection of the Beatlemania-inspird Group Sounds and the squeaky clean College Folk movements led the rise of what came to be known in Japan as “New Music,” where authenticity mattered more than replicating the sounds of their idols. Some of the most influential figures in Japanese pop music emerged from this vital period, yet very little of their work has ever been released or heard outside of Japan, until now. Light In The Attic is thrilled to present Even a Tree Can Shed Tears, the inaugural release in the label’s Japan Archival Series. This is the first-ever, fully licensed collection of essential Japanese folk and rock songs from the peak years of the angura movement to reach Western audiences. In mid-to-late 1960s Tokyo, young musicians and college students were drawn to Shibuya’s Dogenzaka district for the jazz and rock kissas, or cafes, that dotted its winding hilly streets. Some of these spaces doubled as performance venues, providing a stage for local regulars like Hachimitsu Pie with their The Band-like ragged Americana, Tetsuo Saito with his spacey philosophical folk, and the influential Happy End, who successfully married the unique cadences of the Japanese language to the rhythms of the American West Coast. For many years Dogenzaka remained a center of the city’s “New Music” scene. Meanwhile a different kind of music subculture was beginning to emerge in the Kansai region around Osaka, Kyoto, and Kobe. Far more political than their eastern counterparts, many of the Kansai-based “underground” artists began in the realm of protest folk music. They include Takashi Nishioka and his progressive folk collective Itsutsu No Akai Fuusen, the “Japanese Joni Mitchell” Sachiko Kanenobu, and The Dylan II, whose members ran The Dylan cafe in Osaka, which became a hub for the scene. Even a Tree Can Shed Tears also includes the bluesy avant-garde stylings of Maki Asakawa, future Sadistic Mika Band founder Kazuhiko Kato with his fuzzy, progressive psychedelia, the beatnik acid folk of Masato Minami, and the intimate living room folk of Kenji Endo. Nearly 50 years on, this “New Music” is born anew.
File Under: Folk, Psych, Japan
Jon Hassell: Dream Theory in Malaya (Tak:Til) LPFirst reissue of Jon Hassell’s “Fourth World” masterpiece, originally released in 1981. Featuring contributions from Brian Eno, Daniel Lanois (U2, Peter Gabriel), and Michael Brook (Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan). Beautifully remastered, with a bonus track (“Ordinary Mind”) and liner notes written by Hassell himself. “Fourth World is a viewpoint out of which evolves guidelines for finding balances between accumulated knowledge and the conditions created by new technologies” –Jon Hassell. From his time studying with Stockhausen in Cologne and a passage through the New York minimalist sphere with Terry Riley, La Monte Young, and Philip Glass to his mentorship with the Indian vocal master Pandit Pran Nath and collaborative excursions with Eno, the Talking Heads, Peter Gabriel, David Sylvian, Björk, and Ry Cooder, Jon Hassell has pursued a continuous questioning of the dichotomies between North and South, sacred and sensual, primitive and futurist. These cross-pollinating influences and pan-cultural musical educations led Hassell to the gradual development of musical concepts and gestures that he grouped under the “Fourth World” umbrella theory. “I wanted the mental and geographical landscapes to be more indeterminate — not Indonesia, not Africa, not this or that. . . . What would music be like if ‘classic’ had not been defined as what happened in Central Europe two hundred years ago. What if the world knew Javanese music and Pygmy music and Aborigine music? What would ‘classical music’ sound like then?” In the late 1970s in New York, Hassell began to produce a series of astonishing albums on which his trumpet explored both non-Western modalities and dramatic sound processing (deftly rendered by nascent digital effects like the AMS Harmonizer). Brian Eno, who was living New York at the time, was thrilled by Hassell’s 1978 debut album, Vernal Equinox, and sought out its creator. Together they produced the classic 1980 album Fourth World Vol. 1: Possible Musics, before Eno charged headlong into “Fourth World”-ish collaborations with a new partner, David Byrne, on Remain in Light (1980) and My Life in The Bush of Ghosts (1981). Hassell began to feel that they were at least borrowing concepts and sounds to which he had introduced them, and at worst, that a full-scale appropriation was taking place. As Hassell undertook the process of recording and finalizing Dream Theory in Malaya: Fourth World Volume Two — the follow-up to Possible Musics — Brian Eno was again present, as both mixer and musician, but this time the back cover credits leave no room for interpretation or confusion: “All compositions by Jon Hassell. Produced by Jon Hassell.”
File Under: Electronic, Experimental, Ambient
Alessandro Alessandroni: La Terrificante Notte Del Demonio (Cinedelic) LP
Directed by Patrice Romme, The Devil’s Nightmare (1971) was an Italian-Belgian production and featured main performers Jean Servais alongside a sensual Erika Blanc; also noteworthy is the disturbing presence of the graceful and filiform silhouette of Daniel Emilfork in the role of Satan. The film’s components are typical of the Euro-horror genre of the time: a gothic castle, eroticism, and bloody murders — all in a spectral and dense photograph. It is the music of maestro Alessandro Alessandroni, who needs no introduction, to indelibly mark the listener, starting with the hypnotic, psychedelic opening theme to which the harpsichord and his faithful Fender Stratocaster add the acid and fuzz, overlapping the silly wordless vocals of his companion Giulia De Mutiis. In the ranking of the 100 Best Horror Soundtracks, compiled by FACT Magazine, The Devil’s Nightmare is ranked ninth. First time on vinyl; Edition of 500 (hand-numbered).
File Under: Library, OST, Horror, Psych
Alessandro Alessandroni: Ritmo Dell’Industria N.2 (Sonor) LP
Sonor Music Editions present a reissue of Alessandro Alessandroni’s Ritmo Dell’Industria N.2, originally released in 1969. An absolute Italian mood music grail and one of the best library music recordings ever. Alessandroni’s Ritmo Dell’Industria N.2 is a true legend in the field. This is the maestro’s most prized and sought-after album, produced in 1969 on the small Grand Prix label. A mind-melting record featuring some of the most killer driven beats ever — dark vibes and haunting atmospheres with constant and moody industrial rhythms, filled with tons of drum breaks, trippy scat vocals, and Eastern inspired obsessive grooves. Music has been remastered from the original stereo master tape. Back sleeve features deluxe liner notes written by Jonny Trunk. Holy grail alert! Edition of 500.
File Under: Library, Italian. Funk, Psych
Alvarius B: With a Beaker on the Burner and an Otter in the Oven Vol 1 (Abduction) LP
You know, how can a guy NOT copy and paste a write up that talks about how lazy copy and pasting writes ups is… Alvarius B. on With a Beaker on the Burner and an Otter in the Oven – Vol. 1 Natural Wonder: “Volume One of three new LPs I am releasing simultaneously called Natural Wonder, this is the more melodic, savvy one and you might like it. Maybe I’m lying and it’s the innocent, straight record so maybe you should get Vol 3 instead if you’re in a darker mood. But that’s not really true either. Or maybe it’s one of those records that grows on you the more you continue playing it… like a cancer. The musicians who played on all three albums don’t deserve to be involved in these kamikaze promotional descriptions so don’t blame them for any of this. They played so well on these records, in fact they play much better than you do, and their performances deserve a ‘Whammy,’ which is the awards show where I’m in charge and the winners get to shoot members of the music industry academy dead in their seats. That’s where it’s all headed you know. . . . The modern world of record making has become so fucking dull and obedient that someone has to ram a poison dagger up your asses and since you’re all under hypnosis, I promise you won’t feel a thing. I could pay Dougie Jones to write this piece to match your intellect or hire a publicity company to promote it but who really gives a fuck? I’m still making records for myself and the rest of humanity doesn’t speak my language anyway. By deciding to write my own album promos, I can perform some market research. For example, this album description text will undoubtedly be copy/pasted by most online retailers onto their respective sites because they don’t write their own new album reviews or get too excited about music, they simply want to create the illusion that they’re in business to sell records. So I could put something like: Fuck all website retailers that copy/paste this description onto their site because they are too fucking cheap, lazy or chicken shit to have an opinion to write individual album reviews — and they probably wouldn’t even notice while doing it. Anyway, back to my new album. These songs are pretty good, most likely way better than your songs, and I don’t even have time to be a real songwriter, so what does that say about you? It says that you suck. And most of you do. But you should buy my new three album set because it’s probably as good or better than any other LPs that will be released this year. But if you aren’t ready to go all-in with confidence, then forget it. I don’t want any mudskipper sub-species of the crayfish to buy my records. There are always a few speculators who’ll pick up the extra copies you won’t buy anyway.” One-time pressing; Includes printed inner sleeve with lyrics and credits.
File Under: Folk, World, Psych, Sun City Girls
Alvarius B: With a Beaker on the Burner and an Otter in the Oven Vol 2 (Abduction) LP
Alvarius B. on With a Beaker on the Burner and an Otter in the Oven – Vol. 2 A Mark Twain August: “This is Volume Two of my new three LP set, and it’s called A Mark Twain August. Now don’t go asking me what the fuck that title means but I will say that it may be my favorite of the three. My ‘fans’, all 133 of them, are pretty smart. I used to think only 67 people mattered on earth, now it could be far less, but it’s beginning to trouble me how I’ve actually accumulated 133 fans. So if you’re not a moron, I don’t mind if you buy this record. I made more copies than I have fans so I need to expand on the audience a bit but I don’t want fucking idiots buying my albums. A brand new car loses value the moment you drive it home, but my records will always go up in value (like my Dodge Ram Van which tripled in value when I drove it off the lot) so this is also an investment opportunity. If you were to walk slowly on a hot bed of coals you may discover that Don McLean never actually drove his Chevy to the levy and that the singer-songwriter is dead, just like all the poets. What do contemporary poets and the entire Indonesian population have in common? Most of you cannot name even one of them. Homo Sapiens now love to complain and act as if they know how the world works by ‘expressing’ themselves on their social media networks — that’s become the new poetry. And I think there are only nine people writing songs today that I respect, I’d have to check to make sure. And the Thinking Fellars were a great band — I could name a dozen more from the past 30 years that I’d call contemporaries, but that’s about it. . . . And I almost forgot to mention that Mark Twain’s old banjo appears on this record. Oh and this is better than that Wolf King of LA album by Papa John Phillips, for all those who got mesmerized by it 30 years after it came out. There’s only three or four good tracks on that and A Mark Twain August has six great tracks on it, at least. One-time pressing; Includes printed inner sleeve with lyrics and credits.
File Under: Folk, World, Psych, Sun City Girls
Alvarius B: With a Beaker on the Burner and an Otter in the Oven Vol 3 (Abduction) LP
Alvarius B. on With a Beaker on the Burner and an Otter in the Oven – Vol. 3 Heathen Folklore: “Serial killing was one of history’s greatest art forms. Now it’s becoming almost impossible to get a skull-drilling startup off the ground unless you murder for the corporations or governments where you have highly organized protection from any enforceable law but at the expense of sacrificing all the glory for the anonymity required to maintain employment. So, unfortunately, the days of any zit topography random commoner being able to string together a few killings to hit the big time before being caught has almost come to an end. Sad. This record, the third and final volume of my new three-LP set called Heathen Folklore, could serve as somewhat of a manual of inspiration on how one could start such a career, as risky and unpopular as it is. It gets much more fucked-up than the previous two LPs, and sometimes I think it’s the best one due to that aspect. I’d have to give it one more listen but I also think this is the LP with coded messages that could trigger an unsuspecting listener to start his/her career in extreme behavior. But killing isn’t everything you know. There are many more ways to express yourself and reach the top of the charts these days. In fact, I saw Burt Bacharach three weeks ago gripping a huge fucking machete while chasing modern dance music architects off his champion ship and into deep water where they hopefully became shark bait. And to set the record straight, Jimi Hendrix did not fake his death and become Morgan Freeman nor was Hunter S. Thompson directing snuff films. But most of that other weird shit you hear about these days is probably true. And I’m working on a film called ‘Being Alvarius B.’ where all of you loser fucks crawl into my brain and see yourselves from my perspective and then commit collective suicide because you finally realize I was right all along. And I am. Can’t wait to make more albums so I can write these album descriptions. Cocksuckers.” One-time pressing; Includes printed inner sleeve with lyrics and credits.
File Under: Folk, World, Psych, Sun City Girls
Barbez With Velina Brown: For Those Who Came After (Important) LP
On October 6th, sui generis Brooklyn-based band Barbez, in collaboration with singer Velina Brown, release a remarkable tribute to the International Brigades called For Those Who Came After: Songs Of Resistance From The Spanish Civil War. The album, consisting of inventive and moving new renderings of the indelible protest songs of the International Brigades, was recorded live at the Japan Society, in 2016, at the annual reunion of veterans of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade. The highlight of the reunion has always been the singing of these songs, which were led on several occasions by Pete Seeger, a life-long friend of the Lincoln veterans, who recorded many of them for his iconic 1944 album, Songs Of The Lincoln Battalion. Barbez draws on avant-rock, contemporary classical, and folk music styles such as cumbia and flamenco to reinvent iconic songs for a new generation of listeners. The album features clarinetist Peter Hess (Philip Glass Ensemble), Theremin virtuoso Pamelia Stickney (David Byrne), marimba and vibraphone player Danny Tunick (The Clean), guitarist Dan Kaufman (Rebecca Moore), violinist Catherine McRae (The Quavers), bassist Peter Lettre (Shearwater), and drummer John Bollinger (Sway Machinery); with vocalist Velina Brown (San Francisco Mime Troupe) and special guests Dafna Naphtali on background vocals and Sebastiaan Faber on trumpet. It’s the first Barbez record since 2013’s acclaimed Bella Ciao. Dan Kaufman, the bandleader of Barbez, moonlights as a journalist. Over the course of reporting, he got to know many veterans of the Lincoln Brigade, including the last surviving one, Del Berg, who died at 100 in 2016. “A Las Barricadas” is a fragment of an interview Kaufman conducted with Berg the year before he died. “Viva La Quince Brigade”, the Brigade’s unofficial anthem, features a fragment of an interview with Abe Osheroff, a legendary Lincoln vet and life-long activist. In October 1938, the International Brigades were sent home. Five months later, Madrid, the Republic’s last holdout, fell. Some half million Spanish Republican exiles fled by foot across the border, settling for a time in damp, primitive internment camps on the beaches of southern France. Their plight — and defiance — are captured in the image on this album’s cover, taken by the renowned war photographer Robert Capa in 1939. Mixed by Martin Bisi (Swans, Sonic Youth, John Zorn); Live engineering performed by Damon Whittemore (Paul McCartney, Andrew Bird); Includes extensive liner notes by award-winning author Adam Hochschild.
File Under: Avant Rock, Protest Songs
The Caretaker: Everywhere at the End of Time – Stage 3 (HAFTW) LP
The third of a six album cycle cataloging The Caretaker’s fictional first person account of life with early onset dementia, presenting some of the last coherent memories before confusion fully rolls in and the grey mists fade away. In this crepuscular, autumnal phase, recollections phosphoresce, and wilt in advancing stages of entropic decay, steadily approaching a winter of no return. Continuing to mirror the progression of dementia, using nostalgia for ballroom as an allegory of the disease, The Caretaker’s musical flow in places becomes more disturbed, isolated, broken, and distant. Singular memories, and all their connotations, begin to atrophy and calcify, crumbling away with each rotation of the record — sometimes in curt scene cuts, others in quietly breathtaking reverbed fizzles; like tea lights extinguished, never to flicker again. These are the last stages of awareness before you enter the post awareness stages, where those memories become completely detached from comprehension. On Stage 3, the haunted ballroom’s repertoire becomes increasingly muddled, peeling off in recursive contrails from the gestures of “Back There Benjamin”, to snag on the stylus in starkly reverberant knots on “Hidden Seas Buried Deep”, or worn down to calloused nubs such as “To The Minimal Great Hidden”, and “Sublime Beyond Loss”, all leading up to some of the project’s most uncanny detachments in “Libet Delay” and the coruscating brass shimmer of “Mournful Cameraderie”, which beautifully suggest the mercurial nature of memory and its recollection. Artwork by Ivan Seal. Mastered and cut by Lupo.
File Under: Ambient
Stelvio Cipriani: Ecologia del Delitto/Reazione a Catena (Cinedelic) LP
A Bay Of Blood (1971) is a film directed by Mario Bava, known for explicitly inspiring the Friday The 13th saga as well as for being the forerunner of the slasher genre, is undoubtedly one of the most inspirational masters of horror cinema. His magical use of camera zoom, off-field, and out-of-focus, and cynical and crude death set pieces, make it a masterpiece in which every scene exudes very personal and expressive poetry. Stelvio Cipriani’s score, which develops a rich sequence of different themes and genres, and all accented by the evocative melodies and excellent orchestrations of the maestro, is brilliantly supported by the excellent rhythm performance of Enzo Restuccia on drums and Mandrake Som on the tumba and bongos. It is the voodoo-style percussion and violin that introduces the splendid original theme played by the maestro himself who plays piano, celestial, spinetta, harpsichord, and organ in the arc of the soundtrack. All in all, 21 tracks that make up the score: “Evelyn Theme”, the bossa nova “Due Amanti”, the dramatic and psychedelic “Un Cadavere Nel Lago”, the Italian-style samba of “Giovani e Liberi”, “Shake Giradischi”, whose title is well representative, the tension the pursuit of “Inseguimento E Uccisione”, the abstraction of “Ritrovamento Dei Cadaveri”, and so many others. First time on vinyl; Edition of 500 (hand-numbered).
File Under: Italian, OST, Horror
Dedekind Cut: The Expanding Domain (Hallow Ground) LP
Trance-derived melodies, murky industrial grooves, and all-consuming harsh noise attacks from Dedekind Cut. Created in transit between New York, Seoul, and Berlin and recorded between the fall of 2016 and the winter of 2017. Over 23 minutes, the release shifts from densely layered textures to subtle piano notes and hard-hammering beats, seemingly mirroring the drastic changes of the times in which they were conceived. With the help of Dirch Heather (modular synths), Elysia Crampton (piano), Mica Levi (dubbed piano), Jesse Osborne-Lanthier (synths), as well as Dominick Fernow alias Prurient and Death Grips drummer Zach Hill on percussion, Fred Welton Warmsley III reminds his listeners that now is not the time to give up. Warmsley left behind a career as Joey Bada$$’s producer and his previous moniker Lee Bannon to pursue a more experimental musical approach as Dedekind Cut. It’s a conceptual entity that draws on creative collaboration and aims at gathering unique artists under a single musical vision. Amidst the cacophony, a distinctive voice can be heard. The Expanding Domain might sound bleak and unforgiving at first, but it also communicates a hope as well as a desire to resist. After all, there is a reason that this record was created as a loop.
File Under: Electronic, Ambient, Drone
William Eggleston: Musik (Secretly Canadian) LP
Native Memphian William Eggleston, 78, is widely regarded to be the most important photographer of the late 20th Century, but there is another side to him that took root in his Sumner, Mississippi childhood, where he discovered the piano in the parlor that ignited in him a lifelong passion for music. It was a passion he carried forth his entire life, playing quite adeptly when a piano was handy: improvised turns on Bach, Handel, gospel, country, and popular selections from the Great American Songbook for friends and family. Though his travels found him rubbing elbows with Andy Warhol’s Factory superstars in New York, where he lived for several years with Viva at the Chelsea Hotel, and observing a music scene in Memphis that included Big Star’s Alex Chilton, and his old friend and owner of Ardent Studios, engineer Jon Fry, his own music went largely unheard by the general public. In the 1980’s, Eggleston, who disdained digital cameras and modernity in general, became surprisingly fascinated with a synthesizer, the Korg O1/W FD, which had 88 piano-like keys, and in addition to being able to emulate the sound of any instrument, also contained a four-track sequencer that allowed him to expand the palette of his music, letting him create improvised symphonic pieces, stored on 49 floppy discs, encompassing some 60 hours of music from which this 13 track recording was assembled. The music, which he refers to as “Musik”, adopting the German spelling of his hero, JS Bach, is highly emotional, whether he’s improvising a Bach-like organ fanfare out of whole cloth, using a Korg patch titled “guitar feedback” to create a dirge, or playing Lerner and Lowe’s “On The Street Where You Live” as a dramatic overture. Eggleston lives today in a small apartment off Memphis’ Overton Park that he shares with a 9-foot Bosendorfer grand piano and an arsenal of ultra-high fidelity audio equipment, some of which was designed by his son, William Eggleston III. The synthesizer, alas, is broken and stubbornly refuses to be repaired, so for the purpose of this project another was purchased in order to be able to play back the floppy discs, which, along with a handful of DATs and other digital media, though frail, were digitized and mastered for this and future releases. Mr. Eggleston often says that he feels that music is his first calling, as much a part of him, at least, as his photography. We take special pride in allowing the world to hear this side of a great artist who may now be rightly called a great musician.
File Under: Electronic, Ambient
Carla Dal Forno: The Garden (Blackest Ever Black) 12″
Four new, obliquely confessional dispatches from the edge zones of feeling. “You Shouldn’t Have To Wait” is an confrontational companion piece, or response, to her own “Fast Moving Cars”. It’s a forceful, void-chasing drone-rock led by a “Venus In Furs” bassline. “Clusters” is a bright, electronic pop fantasy in the tradition of Stereolab or Saint Etienne. “Make Up Talk” is a tense, awkward unpicking of a dysfunctional relationship. With “The Garden” Dal Forno pays tribute to Einsturzende Neubauten. Emotionally eloquent, “The Garden” is also her most subtly psychedelic production to date.
File Under: Synth Pop, Minimal
Free Jazz Workshop: Inter Frequences (Souffle Continu) LP
Souffle Continu Records present the first ever vinyl reissue of Free Jazz Workshop’s Inter Fréquences, originally released in 1973. The Free Jazz Workshop came into being in 1967 but their first album, Inter Fréquences, only appeared in 1973. Unfortunately there is no recorded trace of the group including the first drummer Pierre Guyon before he was replaced by Christian Rollet in 1970. One of the slogans doing the rounds at the time sets the tone: “Aesthetic liberation is but a prelude to the liberation of humanity.” The trajectory of the Free Jazz Workshop (which became the Workshop De Lyon in 1975 with the arrival of clarinetist-saxophonist Louis Sclavis) is emblematic of the emancipation of the mindset of certain French musicians during this period. It has been an exceptionally long-lived trajectory a “half-century” as the members say, during which the group — in Christian Rollet’s own words — went from being “an exploratory workshop who claimed to take no account of the musical certitudes of the majority” to becoming something of a classic institution. Right from this first album it is clear that the group would function as a collective with no designated leader. The legacy and influence of American free jazz can be heard throughout: Albert and Don Ayler, or Ornette Coleman and Don Cherry for the horns of Maurice Merle and Jean Mereu; Cecil Taylor for the pianist Patrick Vollat, absent from the group after the second album released in 1975 La Chasse De Shirah Sharibad; Gary Peacock and Barre Phillips for the bass; Sunny Murray or Milford Graves for the rhythmic agitation; but also the Art Ensemble Of Chicago for the collective aspect. This lyrical, incandescent album, alongside those released by François Tusques and the Cohelmec Ensemble at the same period, represents one of the high points of free jazz produced by French musicians. Licensed from Bisou. Reverse printing; 12-page booklet; Obi strip; Edition of 700.
File Under: Free Jazz
Ben Frost: The Wasp Factory (Bedroom Community) LP
Following the CD release of Ben Frost’s The Wasp Factory in December of 2016, a limited edition transparent vinyl version is presented here. In advance of new music from Ben Frost in 2017, Bedroom Community present the definitive recorded version of his 2013 opera and directorial stage debut, The Wasp Factory, based on the novel by the late Iain Banks. Setting his unwitting characters against the backdrop of vast, implacable forces of nature — storm, sea, fire, and even their own madness — Frost reaches deep into his formidable arsenal to reveal an unexpected warmth, from the composer of electronic experiments like Aurora (2014) and Theory Of Machines. The focus here is on the live sound of the Reykjavík Sinfonia, recorded in Abbey Road’s Studio II and, for the first time, the human voice. He sets David Pountney’s libretto to tuneful, even soulful vocal lines; an extraordinarily unreliable narrator describing scenes of extreme violence and horror in music of incongruous loveliness. Limited edition transparent vinyl comes in an edition of 1000.
File Under: Ambient, Experimental, Theater
Goat: Fuzzed Out in Europe (Rocket) LP
When the masked Swedish collective Goat toured Europe in the autumn of 2016 to promote their then recently released third album Requiem, the band came up with the idea to record every show. On returning back to their home town of Korpilombolo, Goat painstakingly went through all the recordings and picked out six tracks to be released on a limited live album presented here, Fuzzed In Europe. Goat picked these six tracks in particular because they are different versions to what is found on their releases. Goat’s live reputation is second to none — since their first public shows in 2012, they have stunned audiences across the globe. The band’s brand of danceable, tribal psychedelia is guaranteed to create mass hysteria from the wanting crowds — Goat know how to create music that is made for the “head” as well as the “body”. There are rumors of Goat disappearing into the hills, that they have hung up their masks now for good and have slipped away as quietly as they arrived on to the scene. Whether this is true or not, it can’t be said, but even if they have or have not disbanded from public view, this is a great document of their immersive power to cherish. It celebrates a band completely at the top of their game. The eye popping beautiful artwork for Fuzzed In Europe was created by the great poster artist Adam Pobiak who has worked with everyone from Soundgarden to Justice and Swans to the Flaming Lips. Green/black splatter; Edition of 2000.
File Under: Psych, Fuzz
Yair Elazar Glotman: Compound (Subtext) LP
Under his guises Blessed Initiative and Ketev, as well as his own name, composer and sound artist Yair Elazar Glotman has explored extended techniques and processes to forge new sonic textures and musical forms. Compound picks up where the previous solo work under Glotman’s own name — Études — left off. The acoustic sound palette has now expanded from solo contrabass into a trio including pianist Rieko Okuda and percussionist Marcello Silvio Busato. Glotman guides the trio into utilizing sounds from the edges of their instruments’ abilities — arguably mere byproducts of harmony — and through improvisation, repetition, and post-production, conjures new sonic bodies over two side-long pieces. His guidelines for each improvisation gave the players autonomy to emphasize the microscopic details of certain sounds: the shudder of a piano key, the hum of a cymbal, the incidental click of a plucked contrabass string. The recordings were then layered and reformulated by Glotman into two separate structures to complete the composition process. Both “Veil” and “Revelate” utilize the full spectral potential of each instrument, revealing new rhythmic patterns and harmonic content in the process. Taking Glotman’s microscopic focus on instrument noises, using Études as a starting point, the trio on Compound ultimately bring into question both density and contrast, rhythm itself losing its stricter structures and becoming a purely pattern-based driving force in the music. The resultant unit contradicts and opposes itself, all sorts of clashing rhythms and melodies coexisting within the body of the two compositions of evolving sonic architecture. Based in Berlin, Yair Elazar Glotman is a classically-trained musician and sound artist. Besides previous works on Subtext including Études, a collaborative score with James Ginzburg’s 2014 experimental film Nimbes, and the eponymous debut of his Blessed Initiative project, Glotman has released music via Opal Tapes and others under the nom de plume Ketev.
File Under: Electronic, Minimal, Jazz
Gunn-Truscinski Duo: Bay Head (3Lobed) LP
It’s an anomaly to make a record created out of the pleasure and desire of simply making music together. A record with no commercial aspirational location. Bay Head, the new duo record from John Truscinski (drums, synths) and Steve Gunn (guitars), makes it look easy, carving out a space where none existed before with assurance, resonating beautiful along the way. There’s a quality of timelessness to it without being nostalgic that is impossible to manufacture. It comes from their years of playing together based on a formula of chemistry. While Bay Head is the third record the duo has recorded together, John has played drums and helped shape the songs and the sound on all Steve’s more song-configured albums. Their bond is tight, unique, and effective. As an instrumental record Bay Head has no literal voice. It doesn’t need it, as the constant flow between the drums and guitar describe fully and without a narrator. Steve’s guitar leads you along a contemplative path that describes an inner monologue that is more expressive than if there were words. Some of the guitar parts are worked out and then set free, improvised in the playing. But it’s hard to tell. It all sounds deliberate. Bay Head is the accumulation of the duo’s years of playing music together where each can guess where the other is going to go next. The cover collage by their longtime friend Bill Nace reflects what is both abstract and figurative about this unique musical collaboration.
File Under: Folk, Blues, Guitar Soli
Lee Hazlewood & Ann-Margret: The Cowboy & The Lady
(Light in the Attic) LP
In tomorrow… The “Cowboy” moved slowly out of the booth and into the studio. You could tell by the look in his eyes, that the half-dozen shots of Chivas Regal had put his ego to rest, and he was ready to sing with the “Lady.” They Sang for three nights – the “Cowboy” and the “Lady”, and the Gods were kind, and their album was finished on time. Herein, lie the results…some good, some bad and some more. -Lee Hazlewood “He had that wonderful, raw sense of humor and that good ol’ boy accent. He certainly could turn a phrase.” -Ann-Margret In 1969 Lee Hazlewood’s personal record label LHI Records was flush with major label cash and Lee wanted to make Ann-Margret his next big star. In the quest for a hit, the pair recorded fuzzed out acid rock (“It’s A Nice World To Visit (But Not To Live In)” & “You Turned My Head Around,”) orchestral pop (“Sleep in the Grass” & “Chico”) and a genuine country album cut in Nashville. Light in the Attic Records is proud to continue it’s Lee Hazlewood archival series with an expanded reissue of Lee & Ann-Margret’s The Cowboy & The Lady. The album is Hazlewood’s truest country album and a perfect example of the genre hopping he was afforded at LHI with unlimited creative freedom and money to burn. Recorded over a weekend in Nashville with the help of Charlie McCoy and some Nashville session musicians. “That was 47 years and about 5000 sessions ago.” – Charlie McCoy With improvised lines like “Look at her standing there with chili all over her dress / If I knew her better, I’d give her a puppy,” the sessions were loose and fun, with most tracks cut in one or two takes. “I had done things in Nashville before. I worked with The Jordanaires in ’62 or ’63. We did a lot of things. I had worked with Charlie McCoy, Floyd Cramer, and Chet Atkins. I love the feeling of Nashville.” – Ann-Margret
File Under: Country
Lee Hazlewood: Forty (Light in the Attic) LP
In tomorrow… “I asked him if he wanted to use any of his songs, and he said, “No.” We had a long chat before we did any of this. He said, ‘No, I want you to do it and I want to just be a singer.’ So I said okay.” -Shel Talmy Originally titled Will The Real Lee Hazlewood Please Stand Up?, Forty was a different kind of Hazlewood album, one in which Lee just focused on being a performer. In 1969 on the eve of his fortieth birthday, Lee flew to England and enlisted Shel Talmy (The Kinks, The Who, Chad & Jeremy, Bert Jansch) to produce an album and hand pick the songs. Shel picked some incredible songs for Lee to sing and even wrote him a song that should’ve been a hit, “Bye Babe.” Recorded at famed IBC recording studio with cream of the crop British session musicians and arrangers, no expense was spared. Nicky Hopkins piano/organ work on “The Bed” and “The Night Before” evoke his then recent work with the Rolling Stones on Beggar’s Banquet and Let It Bleed. Arranger David Whitaker’s (Serge Gainsbourg, Vashti Bunyan, Air, “Bittersweet Symphony”) wizardry creates a lush, sophisticated orchestral sound. “He was one of the more unique arrangers I’ve ever run into. I think “It Was A Very Good Year” is one of the best arrangements of that song ever.” – Shel Talmy Forty begins with the boozy suite “It Was A Very Good Year”, a swingin’ shapeshifter that could’ve been a James Bond theme. The album traverses many styles from melancholy baroque orchestral pop(“What’s More I Don’t Need Her” “Bye Babe” & “The Night Before”) to country funk (“The Bed” & “Let’s Burn Down the Cornfield.”) Light in the Attic Records is proud to continue its Lee Hazlewood Archival series with an expanded reissue of Forty. Every track Shel and Lee recorded for Forty are included here for the first time, including the outtake “For Once in My Life” and the previously unreleased backing track “Send Out Love.” In exchange for piles of money from major labels, Lee and LHI made promises to produce an amount of recorded material that wasn’t humanly possible for one man and a small label. The logistics didn’t matter to Lee; once the check was cashed, he would do his damnedest to deliver the herculean output. Forty was one of those records, but what a beautiful way to meet a quota. Lee liked his work with Shel so much that tracks from Forty were included on subsequent Hazlewood albums Cowboy in Sweden (1970) and Movin’ On (1977). A whirlwind year of lear jet promo tours, magazine photo shoots, television specials and cutting records for LHI wasn’t able to bring the success that Lee and Ann-Margret pushed for. A second LHI album with Ann-Margret was planned but never recorded. Within a year of making the trip to Nashville, Lee would be living in Sweden full-time and Ann-Margret would focus on her acting career for the better part of a decade. Nothing exemplifies Lee’s “throw it against the wall and see if it sticks” record production of the LHI era like his work with Ann-Margret. Though it didn’t stick, and it didn’t sell, Lee’s adventure with Ann-Margret is an extravagant tangent that has since grown a cult following…
File Under: Country
Lee Hazlewood: Requiem for an Almost Lady (Light in the Attic) LP
In tomorrow… This is a group of songs about one lady… her name is not important… she knows who she was…What is important is once she loved me very much…These songs are a truthful attempt to show the effect the loss of this love had on me… They are not all sad songs full of self pity and remorse… but more a mixture of good and hard time, old and new thought, lost and found feeling, and near and far places… There was no pleasure (as there usually is) in writing this album… there was only the dull “thud” of realization that something you once took for granted is gone… and those “blue eyes” will never again look through this “old grey curtain”…The lady is dead now and I’m still alive… doing the same things with others I once did with her… and maybe that’s what being alive is all about it… if it isn’t… “to hell with it”. – Lee Hazlewood “He was a storyteller, that’s his music… the storytelling. That’s the thing I fell in love with him for. This final story that we see, the Requiem story, is kind of looking back at a career, I think. Not just a relationship—it’s his story. I think it’s authentic and the most revealing, really, because other things are cloaked, cloaked in romanticism, in a way. When you think of ‘Sand’ and ‘Jose,’ ‘My Autumn’s Done Come’ and ‘Some Velvet Morning’… those are stories, they’re stories you make up… they’re fiction. This is a little closer to home, I think.” -Suzi Jane Hokom. Light in the Attic Records is proud to continue its Lee Hazlewood Archival Series with LHI Records final release. 1971’s Requiem for An Almost Lady is a personal statement and one of the heaviest break-up albums of all time. There are no lilting strings, sweeping choirs, or dancing trumpets. The arrangements are stripped down to the raw nerve; Lee’s emotions are the orchestra here. The listener eavesdrops on a sonic journal of heartbreak. After losing his lady, his record label, and his country, Lee etches his woes to wax.
File Under: Country
Geoffrey Landers: 1 by 1 (Music from Memory) LP
Music From Memory’s final compilation of 2017 sees the release of the double album 1 By 1, which brings together the works of American experimental musician Geoffrey Landers. During a period spanning from 1979 to 1987, this Denver, Colorado based multi-instrumentalist, composer, record producer, and engineer conceived several solo albums. Only two of these, The Ever Decimal Pulse (1982) and Habitual Features (1983) along with the single Breedlove (1984) were ever released on vinyl. Being heavily involved in the local industrial/punk/new wave scene and wanting to create a recording studio “available to record artists regardless of their financial circumstances” Landers set up The Packing House Studio in 1981. This analog 8-track recording facility was located in a former slaughterhouse in the stockyards of Denver and was a place of significant activity for the next three years with the studio releasing recordings from numerous artists, most notably Allen Ginsberg. It was here that Geoffrey Landers also started his own aptly named Cauhaus label. Indicative of the underground/DIY culture, “Cauhaus” was a subsidiary of a label called Local Anaesthetics which was started as an in-store label by independent Denver record store Wax Trax. Typically Cauhaus releases were only pressed up in small quantities and independently distributed, making Lander’s music essentially elusive to a wide audience. After relocating in 1984 to an art district of Denver Landers opened the “Cauhaus Institute of Recording” studio where he continued to produce music for soundtracks, art, and multi-media projects for the next three years, after which Landers stepped out of the music industry entirely. He currently creates and exhibits mixed-media glass art. Throughout the twenty tracks of 1 By 1, of which six previously appeared on CD only, Music From Memory are submerged into a wide diversity of musical approaches from Geoffrey Landers. From the proto-house track “Logarithms” and the heart breaking new-wave boogie/funk of “Say You’ll Say So”, to the more contemplative pieces such as the oriental-inspired “Nisei” and the drenched in sunshine dub/reggae track “Mack”, Landers shies away from musical expectations again and again; searching continually for innovative and new forms of expression.
File Under: Experimental, Electronic, Minimal
Not Waving: Good Luck (Diagonal) LP
Alessio Natalizia, aka Not Waving, rides the wave of a lifetime on his magnum opus, Good Luck. The London-based Italian artist’s second album for Diagonal is an emotional but fiercely optimistic album of skewed cathartic dance pop written in the midst of these dark and uncertain times (made perhaps more uncertain by the recent birth of his first son). It represents the most ambitious album in his own unique catalogue, a discography that features acclaimed work as part of Banjo Or Freakout and Kompakt techno duo Walls — plus half a decade spent at the axis of underground electronics via his own Ecstatic label and his recent, raved-up output for Diagonal. This latest record sees Natalizia fine-tuning 20 years of recording and rave experience into a vibrant, pop-ready statement that’s never felt so necessary. It abandons the sensitive streak hinted at on Animals, his debut LP for Diagonal, to pursue a creative hunch for concision and social unity. This new perspective drives the album’s flux of emotions and guides what some may find to be a utopian outlook, wrapping his trademark experimental urges, clever song arrangements, and winking edits in a larger narrative. After all, rave ‘floors were conceived for many as a way to forget/abandon the dark undercurrents of late ’80s political turmoil. Good Luck is constructed as an album proper and follows a novel narrative: from the ego-pinching computer punk of “Me Me Me”, which jabs it into action, to the new wave thrust of “Tool [I Don’t Give A Shit]” and the ambient flush of “Roll Along With The Pain Of It All [I’ll Text U]”, Natalizia clearly delights in taking us on a frenzied ride, but he never forgets his fondness for contemporary club culture (see the fulminating iridescent EBM-pop of “Where Are We” — with Montréalais minimal wave chanteuse Marie Davidson guesting on vocals — or the acidic punk jabs of “Watch Yourself”). Good Luck is a thrillingly positive record; it’s delicious, sweet, creamy, and wonderful. And that’s the thing: even the title feels like a much-needed injection of optimism, a return to the utopian ideals of rave. Contemporary politics/culture/life/love/music/media seem to be infected by a feeling of impending dread — of fear, alienation, and division. It feels like there has never been a more important time for a record like this. Artwork by Guy Featherstone. Mastered and cut by Matt Colton.
File Under: Acid, Techno, Industrial
Harry Partch: And on the Sevent Day Petals Fell in Petaluma (New World) LP
Performed by The Gate 5 Ensemble: Harry Partch (director), Danlee Mitchell, Harry Partch, Michael Ranta, Emil Richards, Wallace Snow, Stephen Tosh. Limited edition LP release (180 gram vinyl) with previously unpublished bonus tracks + free download card. “‘In late 1962 Harry Partch returned to California and began a project that would not only become the bones of a masterwork, Delusion of the Fury, but have a life of its own. In a too-small space within an abandoned Petaluma chick hatchery, Partch gathered the instruments he had designed and built — new and old — eager to once again expand the boundaries of his compositional fabric. He learned each individual part as he composed, establishing that it could be played. And On The Seventh Day Petals Fell In Petaluma (1963-64, rev. 1966) was born of his exploration and assembled with that ‘minimum of players’ over a three-year period. In spite of rough conditions and meager resources Partch’s dogged persistence, along with the efforts of his dedicated assistants, eventually succeeded in realizing the 34 verses of expanded duets. With this album we revisit an important work and turning-point, guided by the original ‘Statement’ Partch wrote for the first commercial release of the piece. Previously only excerpted, it is a voicing of his beliefs that transcends one project to illuminate an entire purpose. We also reprise exquisite notes by the late Bob Gilmore, who distills and explains the story of Petals so clearly and eloquently. No one wants a dead reissue, so by digging into the archives, I am pleased to offer hidden gems. First, The Petals Sessions is an aural glance into the cramped quarters of the recording space, as composer and players labor to bring new notes to life, Harry himself giving direction. The montage ends with a ‘test take’ by Danlee Mitchell and Michael Ranta that could have easily been a keeper! Finally, we present the original Verse 17. In 1964 Partch wrote two duets that used the Adapted Viola; by the time the piece was finished in 1967, he had excised them. The ending track — never before released — brings Harry back to life, playing and recording Adapted Viola for one of the last times. I was completely unaware of this recording until I examined the outtakes and it glows, fifty years on. That Petals ever came to be, like much of Partch’s story, stands somewhere between determination and miracle.’ –Jon Szanto, The Harry Partch Foundation”
File Under: Classical, Avant Garde
Sestetto Dino Piana & Oscar Valdambrini: 10 Situazioni (Sonor) LP
Sonor Music Editions present a reissue of Sestetto Dino Piana & Oscar Valdambrini’s 10 Situazioni, originally released in 1973. A historical Italian jazz session — An outstanding and magnificent jazz funk jewel and the first album by this killer combo led by Dino Piana and Oscar Valdambrini. An original jazz library recording used for the soundtrack of Rai TV program Serata Al Gatto Nero (1973). A top Italian groovy jazz and mental album — Easily a grail of the genre, featuring some terrific breaks, killer wah-wah guitar and funky Hammond, with a solid backing studio orchestra. Loads of laden stylish grooves with brilliant modal jazz numbers, smooth vibes, and cool jazz influences with different musical themes. Every track is just heaven with several hot club tunes for DJs. Personnel: Oscar Valdambrini – trumpet, flugelhorn; Dino Piana – trombone; Antonello Vannucchi – organ, piano; Giorgio Rosciglione – electric bass; Sergio Conti – drums; Silvano Chimenti – guitar. Music by Franco Piana and Enrico Valdambrini. Edition of 500.
File Under: OST, Library, Italian, Jazz Funk
Rainforest Spiritual Enslavement: Ambient Black Magic
(Hospital Productions) 2LP+10″
Following a still-ongoing series of reissues of the earliest, previously tape-only releases from Dominick Fernow’s Rainforest Spiritual Enslavement, this long-in-the-making new album proper is an epic 80-minute set featuring additional production and “sound on sound processing” from Silent Servant, a remix from Substance, and mastering by Paul Corley. It’s by far the most ambitious and far-reaching Rainforest dispatch, taking that artificial, tropical humidity as a starting point before heading deep into a kind of textured ambience that are reminiscent of everything from Talk Talk’s Laughing Stock (1991) to Carl Craig’s “How The West Was Won” (1996), from Huerco S to classic Chain Reaction. Ambient Black Magic moves away from the extreme saturation of those early cassettes and the industrial environmentalism of his previous album Green Graves (2016) and is described by the label as “Fear Dub” — which is essentially the perfect encapsulation of the deep sense of paranoia contained within. The opening “Jungle Is A Shapeshifter” is a gargantuan 35-minute head-melter that’s split across the first two sides of the vinyl pressing. Co-produced with Silent Servant, it’s an absorbing piece of electronic music — slowly unfurling via chorus pedal guitars that gradually degrade, while a fathoms-deep bass pulse and tape-delay gives the piece its shape. It’s like an updated, tranquilized, fever-dream variant of the kind of ambient dub Vainqueur made his own back in the mid-90s. “Beyond The Yellow-Spotted Bamboo”, another Silent Servant co-production, clocks in at a relatively modest 17 minutes and heads off into more open terrain, this time with submerged percussion providing some propulsion, while shards of colored synth pull you back into the swamp. It’s another humid, breathtaking session — bringing out the best in both Fernow and Silent Servant. “Praying Mantis Black Arts” is another masterclass in sub-bass construction, while “Chile’s Crimson Tide” is the shortest track on the album, a kind of broken coda before Substance ends the set with a remix of “Beyond The Yellow-Spotted Bamboo”, deploying a tribal reduction that references classic Chain Reaction from a producer who was part of it first-hand. It’s a relatively upbeat conclusion to one of the most immersive listening experiences you’ll have in 2017; those of you looking for escape should dive in — you won’t want to re-engage with the world around you for a while. RIYL: Vainqueur, Huerco S, Talk Talk, Carl Craig.
File Under: Ambient, Industrial
Saz’iso: At Least Wave Your Handkerchief at Me (Glitterbeat) LP
Brazilian samba, Bosnian Sevdah, New Orleans jazz, Cuban son — and Albanian Saze! The turn of the last century saw mass migrations to the world’s cities with rural people bringing their music with them, adapting their traditions to new circumstances and modern instruments. Of all these great musical forms, the mesmerizing arabesques, joyful dances, and heart-breaking laments of Saze are among the least recorded, and they remain largely unknown outside Albania. At Least Wave Your Handkerchief At Me: The Joys and Sorrows of Southern Albanian Song is the debut of Saz’iso, a group of virtuoso musicians and legendary singers assembled by veteran producer Joe Boyd (Pink Floyd, Nick Drake, ¡Cubanismo!, Songhai) and his co-producers, Edit Pula and Andrea Goertler. The album was recorded live, with no overdubs, by Grammy-winning engineer Jerry Boys (Buena Vista Social Club, Ali Farka Touré, Orchestra Baobab) over three days of October 2016 at the Akademia e Filmit dhe Multimedias Marubi in Tirana, Albania. The music of Southern Albania is iso-polyphonic, which means that it combines at least two melodic vocal lines, a lead (marrës, the “taker”) and a second (prerës, the “cutter”), with a multi-voiced drone or iso. When manufactured “tempered” instruments arrived in the region in the late 19th century, Saze ensembles were born; clarinets and violins took on the roles of the lead and second voices while lutes carried the iso. As Vasil S. Tole, Albania’s leading expert on iso-polyphony — and an inspiring advisor to this project — puts it: “Saze remains to this day the musical language of the cities of Southern Albania, where East and West embraced when European instruments collided with the magic of a cappella iso-polyphony, and where life and death still coexist in a sound that is truly unique.” Donika Pecallari: voice; Adrianna Thanou: voice; Robert Tralo: voice; Aurel Qirjo: violin and voice; Telando Feto: clarinet; Agron Murat: llautë (lute); Agron Nasi: dajre (frame drum); Pëllumb Meta: fyell (flute) and voice.
File Under: Folk, Albanian
Hvide Sejl, Varg, & F. Valentin: Brazil (Posh Isolation) LP
Posh Isolation present a much needed reissue of Brazil, a collaborative work by three spearheads of Scandinavian electronic music today: Hvide Sejl, Varg, and F. Valentin. The original edition was presented in a limited run of four cassettes, boxed and with an accompanying book in 2016. This timely reissue comes as a remastered double LP set, inviting a new set of listeners to the work. Four sides of uniquely textured summer ambience, industrial rhythms, synthesizer pieces, and piano works, complete Brazil. The luxuriant melodic drones of Loke Rahbek’s Hvide Sejl project converge with the percussive work of Varg and the largely acoustic work of Frederik Valentin of Kyo, producing a fragile beauty. There is a sense of narrative to Brazil. The work cryptically leads its listeners through a small collection of moving panoramas. Keeping its distance, the storyline remains perpetually obscured. Like a crime unsolved, or a name-less love letter, as greater detail comes into focus the intrigue blooms. A multi-faceted affair for multifaceted affairs. “Things were somehow so good that they were in danger of becoming very bad because what is fully mature is very close to rotting.” –Clarice Lispector, The Hour of the Star (1977)
File Under: Ambient, Classical, Industrial
Tarawangsawelas: Wanci (Morphine) LP
Tarawangsawelas is a musical duo from Bandung, mainly performing a contemporary version of Tarawangsa, the sacred music from Sundanese West Java. Here they are joined by their teacher and maestro, Pak Pupung Supena, together with, Pak Jaja, on “Sekalipun”. Wanci is a minimalist, cosmic album composed with a careful modern interpretation of one of the most mystical and spiritual genres in Indonesia. A gorgeous and infectious six track album. Producer Rabih Beaini says “Last year, Europalia Festival commissioned me to work on a musical project with local musicians from Indonesia and develop a performance to tour during Europalia 2017. I chose to work with Tarawangsa, the sacred music from Sundanese West Java. Tarawangsa is played on two string instruments: a rababa-like two-stringed bowed instrument itself called Tarawangsa, and the jentreng, a seven-stringed kecapi-like instrument. Typically from Rancakalong village in Sumedang, West Java, Tarawangsa is played as part of a ritual consisting of almost eight hours of music and dance, complete with offerings and prayers. During a performance, a selection from the forty two known Tarawangsa pieces slowly build up from a cosmic slow groove to more repetitive and hypnotic rhythms, inevitably bringing the listener and dancer to a trance state. During the residency I had the great honor to be able to develop new structures and pieces together with Tarawangsawelas, recording them in Bandung, and ultimately having them joined by their teacher and Tarawangsa maestro Pak Pupung Supena together with Pak Jaja on jentreng. This album is a modern description for one of the local Indonesian music scene, but mainly it is an offering for the Tarawangsa ritual, like the food and incense and the prayers, and the messages of the ancestors to the people of Rancakalong.” Composed and performed by Teguh Permana, Wisnu Ridwana, and Rabih Beaini, except “Sekalipun” (traditional) performed by Pupung Supena, Jaja Rohmat, Teguh Permana, and Wisnu Ridwana. Recorded in Bandung, March 2017. Produced, mixed, and arranged by Rabih Beaini. Mastered by Neel at Enisslab. Cover design by George Sowden, curated by M-L-XL.
File Under: World, Java
Trees Speak: s/t (Cinedelic) LP
Trees Speak is an experimental rock band that transcend mainstream influences by incorporating elements of avant-garde, neo-psychedelic, minimalism, art, and electronic — along with violin-bowed guitar, Theremin, and a glut of effects pedals, and it’s an ear-bending rush of lush soundscape. Trees Speak — as much a sound laboratory as a rock and roll band — is the musical venture of acclaimed visual artist musician Daniel Martin Diaz (formerly of Blind Divine and Crystal Radio). For the debut double-LP, Trees Speak is joined by Michael Glidewell (Black Sun Ensemble), Gabriel Sullivan (XIXA, Giant Sand), Connor Gallaher (Myrrors, Cobra Family Picnic), Damian Diaz (Human Error), and Julius Schlosburg (Jeron White Acoustic Trio). The studio itself should also take top billing, because in the tradition of krautrockers Can and Bitches Brew-era Miles Davis (1970), the band takes its winding, incandescent motoric rock and roll improvisations and edits them into coherent compositions using the mixing desk after recording. And that’s where the sound lab half of the equation appears. The end result is flowing and droning ambient proto-punk reminiscent of fellow travelers NEU!, Stereolab, , and Cluster — translucent jams for a virtual autobahn. Trees Speak on the album: “Our intention is to create music with an unrehearsed minimalist approach performing simple beats, riffs, and sequences that take one inward. We attempt create a sonic environment to set one’s mind free and to become aware of the nuances of tone, melody, and structure. We organize our recording equipment with the same approach, in a transparent manner. Our recorded performances are never rehearsed. Our belief is that a brilliant rehearsal is a lost opportunity to capture a magical moment. We are chasing the mystery of music and tone. We let the musical performance sculpt its own destiny and create imperfect perfection. Our tool of creation is the anxiety one feels when they are unrehearsed or prepared for a performance. We believe this approach brings us closer to the authentic self. The result is genuine music without an agenda that captures the unfiltered spirit.” Recorded live in one room with no overdubs or repairs, only using edits to create arrangements. All tracks were written over a five-day period at Sacred Machine Studio and Dust & Stone Studio. Mastered by LOUD (United Kingdom). Clear vinyl; Includes 12″ double-sided print, 5×5″ postcards, and two stickers. Edition of 250.
File Under: Ambient, Punk, Psych
Nicole Willis & UMO Jazz Orchestra: My Name is Nicole Willis (Persephone) LP
In tomorrow… Nicole Willis, known for her collaborations with The Soul Investigators & Jimi Tenor produces an album including some of the tracks she composed with the former as well as originals specifically for a fresh collaboration with UMO Jazz Orchestra. Jimi Tenor, who is a multi-faceted artist, has penned all arrangements for the big band and their talented rhythm section. Pete Toikkanen who is a mega-talent guitarist from The Soul Investigators, along with the two, composed those original tracks that highlight their alternative influences. Indie god & personal hero of Ms Willis, Ian Svenonius introduces Ms Willis on the first track and wraps up the LP with a final plea.
File Under: Soul, Jazz, Funk
Workshop De Lyon: La Chasse De Shirah Sharibad (Souffle Continu) LP
Souffle Continu Records present the first ever reissue of Workshop De Lyon’s La Chasse De Shirah Sharibad, originally released in 1975. In France, in the years 1960-1970, musicians pondered over how to transpose the political struggle of free jazz onto a completely different political terrain. One of the first to do so was pianist François Tusques (agitator, theorist and militant) who recorded 1965’s Free Jazz, and then continued with Le Nouveau Jazz (1967), French equivalents to the American “New Thing”. The word spread, and was picked up by the Free Jazz Workshop which became the Workshop De Lyon in 1975 with the arrival of clarinetist-saxophonist Louis Sclavis. Still a source of joy, this lyrically feverish second album maintains a narrative dimension however subtle the textures developed through the contrasting collective improvisations. With their ever-inventive melodicism, the Workshop De Lyon invented an imaginary folklore on this album which is unlike any other. It is a knowing mix of the avant-garde and the traditional, collective playing vying, with panache and complexity, with the inspired urgency of the soloists. Even without filmed images the theatricality and humor of the group’s live performances, essential components of their identity can be felt during the long thematic suites which are both expressive and full of joy. What better way to honor their imaginary mentors, Albert Ayler or the Art Ensemble Of Chicago! More, More! Licensed from Bisou. Reverse printing; 12-page booklet; Obi strip; Edition of 700.
File Under: Free Jazz
Workshop De Lyon: Tiens! Les Bourgeons Eclatent… (Souffle Continu) LP
Souffle Continu Records present the first ever reissue of Workshop De Lyon’s Tiens! Les Bourgeons Eclatent…, originally released in 1978. The collective methodology of the Workshop De Lyon led to the creation of the Association Searching for an Imaginary Folklore (ARFI) in 1977, their aims were very much a mission statement “encourage improvisation, spread diverse musical styles and provide means of expression to others with similar ideas, establish a folklore…” Their reference was the Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians (A.A.C.M.) created twelve years previously with the similar idea of providing material assistance to and defending the interests of creative musicians, in order to encourage the emergence of new music. The open-structured ARFI self-produced their music thanks to their own label, on which almost all of the albums of the Workshop De Lyon appeared, from Concert Lave (1980) onwards. Their third album, Tiens! Les Bougeons Éclatent… is a perfect example of how the group sounded when it was released in 1978, about a year after the studio recording. Pianist Patrick Vollat had left but was still very much a part of ARFI (in particular as part of the excellent La Marmite Infernale), so the Workshop De Lyon stabilized to a quartet of Louis Sclavis, Maurice Merle, Jean Bolcato, and Christian Rollet, and already had at the time an unparalleled repertoire. This never ceased to expand, through the meetings and personnel changes, while losing nothing of its generosity, nor showing any signs of aging. This proffers on the Workshop De Lyon a certain universal dignity which honors their original models, Albert Ayler or the Art Ensemble Of Chicago to name but two, transfiguring them into a new, exciting aesthetic approach bursting with openings and exchanges. Irresistible. Licensed from Bisou. Reverse printing; 12-page booklet; Obi strip; Edition of 500.
File Under: Free Jazz
John Zorn/Eugene Chadbourne: 1977-1981 (Song Cycle) LP+Book
Song Cycle Records present a reissue of 1977-1981, a collection of rare free-jazz pieces performed by John Zorn and selected by the American guitarist and music critic Eugene Chadbourne originally released in 1998. Originally released to accompany the book release of Sonora: John Zorn (Materiali Sonori), the album is presented here for the first time in an exclusive release in limited edition on vinyl. This special issue includes the original book that features exclusive interviews, essays, and photos about the artist’s entire oeuvre up to 1988.
File Under: Free Jazz
Various: Buzzsaw Joint: Pavinyl – Cut 3 (Stag-o-Lee) LP
Buzzsaw Joint was born of a club offering Londoners the chance to revel in the sounds of good ol’ trashy rock n’ roll in all its vintage vinyl forms. Club top-cat, Fritz, then took the primitive buzzsaw sounds online with a series of savage Mixcloud mixes created by record fiends from all over the globe. Now, the high-octane energy of Buzzsaw Joint has manifested into the physical form with a run of compilations on Stag-O-Lee. Get your ears around the wild n’ weird sounds of the extraordinary and inimitable Buzzsaw Joint! Cut 3 comes from Pavinyl, a gent whose ride is a decked-out disco-hearse that, in his words, “puts the fun back into funerals”. Vowing to “Keep Music Evil”, his club night, Mockers, has had the British market town of Stroud dancing for a decade. Mockers initially played on the musical blur between mod and rock n’ roll culture, but now ventures further afield. As does the DJ himself — his records have hyped hep clubs from Barcelona to New York. On Cut 3, Pavinyl shares 18 exotic pearls all recorded from 1955-1962. From the jungle to the orient, ancient Egypt to Native America — hold on tight, it’s quite a trip! Features: Phil Campos, Glenn And Christy, Hi-Fives, The Space Men, D.C. Washington, The Fables, Lenny Troy, Honey And The Bees, The New Starts, The Jokers, Big Brown, Jack Franklin And The Rock-Its, Buddy Bow, Eddie Hill, Ronny Goode, Lee Richards, Marc Haven And The Aquarians, and Al Nathan.
File Under: RnR
Various: Coolsville Volume 1 (Stag-o-Lee) 10″
First of two 10″s called Coolsville. Watch out for two volumes of its sister compilation Sicksville. Compiled by Stay Sick, a gruesome twosome of deejays from the nightclubs of Brighton, UK. Established in 2008, they continue to spin the best dancing music from surf to soul, oddball R&B to filthy rock n’ roll, garage to punk, 7″s at a time. Their vinyl addiction has meant they have amassed a large collection of sleazy and greasy rock n’ roll from the fifties and sixties, including Tarantino surf, proto-soul stompers, swingin’ rhythm and blues, and twistin’ tittyshakers. Coolsville is a far-out selection of moody Las Vegas grind surf-strumentals and oddball beatnik records from the ’50s and ’60s. The first side of this platter of wax is full of mean instrumentals for wild cats of the urban jungle. On the flipside, brother, are there some solid gone finger clickers for you to swing and sway to. Bongo-laden beats that you’ll dig the most, daddio. This is the righteous stuff for all you jive talkin’ jazzbos and beatniks. Features: Ritchie & The Squires, The Champs, Creed Taylor Orchestra, Les Baxter, Jimmy Van Eaton, The Rockbusters, Dave Saville, Johnny & The Debonaires, Bob McFadden & Dor, Frosty & The Diamonds, Bing Day, and Richard Pine.
File Under: R&B, Surf, Soul, RnR
Various: Tokyo Flashback (Black Editions) LP
Black Editions present the first ever vinyl edition of Tokyo Flashback, the legendary 1991 compilation that defined the Tokyo psychedelic movement and first brought it to the outside world. Tokyo Flashback is one of the most iconic compilations in the history of underground music. Originally released by Japan’s P.S.F. Records, Tokyo Flashback defined the breathtakingly unique and previously obscured musical movement that had been developing in Japan since the late 1970s. The compilation features some of the earliest released recordings by Keiji Haino, High Rise, Masaki Batoh’s Ghost, White Heaven, Fushitsusha, Kousokuya, and Marble Sheep. It captures the excitement and energy of a Tokyo awash in Technicolor and deep blacks; the music echoing krautrock, psychedelic freak-outs, garage, and no wave. At the same time it reveals astonishing, totally idiosyncratic expansions of rock music. In time, Tokyo Flashback expanded to a synonymous nine volume series that, over the following two decades, unveiled Japan’s ever evolving soundscapes to the rest of the world. Tokyo Flashback is a defining statement of late 20th century Japanese psychedelic music and an essential primer to the world of P.S.F. All tracks are exclusive, this edition features the first time translation of the original liner notes. Black Editions’ deluxe edition is entirely re-mastered and marks the first release of Tokyo Flashback outside of Japan and it’s first ever vinyl issue. Also features Verzerk. Newly created artwork and design expanding on the original by Rob Carmichael at SEEN Sudio; Housed in custom printed deluxe Stoughton gatefold jacket and slipcase, including full color printed inner sleeves and inserts with soft touch and spot UV gloss finishes; Remastered and cut by Pete Lyman at Infrasonic Sound; Pressed to high quality vinyl at RTI.
File Under: Psych, Rock, Japan
Roger Tellier Craig: Instantanes (Root Strata) LP
Durutti Column: Paean to Wilson (Kooky) LP
Fiver: Audible Songs From Rockwood (Idee Fixe) LP
Funkadelic: Live (Tidal Wave) LP
Ksiezyc: s/t (Penultimate Press) LP
Ennion Morricone: Space 1999 (Mondo) LP
Of Montreal: Skeletal Lamping (Polyvinyl) LP
OST: Predator (Real Gone) LP
OST: Super Castlevania IV (Mondo) LP
Protomartyr: The Agent Intellect (Hardly Art) LP
Protomartyr: Under Color of Official Right (Hardly Art) LP
Psychic TV: Force the Hand (Angry Love) LP
Nicole Willis: Keep Reachin’ Up (Timmion) LP
Link Wray: Beans & Fatback (Tidal Wave) LP
Link Wray: Mordicai Jones (Tidal Wave) LP
Link Wray: Be What You Want To (Tidal Wave) LP
Various: Miracle Steps (Optimo) LP