No overblown introductions to greet this particular missive (I hear your disappointment) – frankly we are too tired and music’d up to think what to say, that said this is the first of two quick fire missives that’ll appear this week – missive 14 is due for airing at all good web spaces near your mouse namely www.facebook.com/thesundayexperience– www.marklosingtoday.wordpress.com and here at God is in the TV – at the weekend with missive 15 bearing down fast a few days later.
So with that the featured items this missive…
Maria Taylor, Strange Brew, Orla Wren, my cat is an alien, Death Valley Rally, the Young Sinclairs, phoenix foundation, Philippe Petit and Mercof, Pkn, Sunset Graves, A Sacred Cloud, Arachnadiscs, Lanterns on the Lake, Giant Paw, kyondarak, awsts, Maps and Diagrams, Rowley way overlook, live footage, Forest, Health, Crystal Stilts, Virginia wing, Megan Wyler, Moodoid, Asgeir, Dustin Wong, Shea Family, Public Service Broadcast, Bordellos, Ephemeral Man, Wyrding Module, Piotr Kurek, Embryo, Beau, Little Bow, Second Language, Isan, Dollboy, Islet, Greg Haines……
There’s a press release attached here that takes longer to digest than the record itself, it tells a tale of an artist maturing through the years working along the way with a roll call of musicians that reads like a pop aristocracy who’s who listing that draws from differing sonic worlds – Moby, Stipe, Bright Eyes. An ever present on the Saddle Creek roster coming to prominence by way of dream poppers Azure Ray to form an enviable partnership with Orenda Fink, Maria Taylor has in recent years applied her talents to chiselling out an acclaimed solo career. Described in passing as her ‘most assure record to date’ following the birth of her son, these press folk you suspect are playing things down for ’something about knowing’ is a rewarding listening treat that breezes through with such sweet seduction that’s it over before you’ve had a chance to close your jaw dropped mouth. A collection of secret love notes peppered and turned in a multi textured phrasing of drifting folk motifs and spectral electronica that grabs and holds you fixed in its alluring gaze, takes just one brief earshot of ’sum of our lives’ to give hint of the Technicolor rush of sound and emotion that oozes from these finite grooves, here serviced in amorphous orbital tides and demurely arrested by the airy cortege of dream dipped ethereal chorals sighing lunar murmurs. Rich pickings for airplay, ’tunnel vision’ shimmies in a free flowing pop velour richly immersed in the kind of hushed surrendering melodic symmetry of a cosmically hazed Belinda Carlisle / Cyndi Lauper smothered in lush 80’s panoramic motifs and dropped dreamily into the beautified hinterlands of Kate Bush’s ’hounds of love’ only to be dutifully rephrased through the impish viewfinder of Grimes. Likewise title track ‘something about knowing’ has that crooked ear candy lull that’s off centred with an attractively wonky hook that should assure repeat play list love, mind you we here are a tad smitten with ‘up all night’ with its bubble grooved 50’s country pop signifiers sign written in the free flowing glow of a twinkling Patsy Cline cutie festooned with sly handed kicks and the kind of cheery prairie flightiness that’s set to lilt. The country styled song craft is a recurring theme here for the mellowing prairie lilt of ‘you got a way with the light’ is sumptuously hushed and honey glowed in the kind of sighing genteel swoon of Laura Cantrell. Those preferring sounds draped in sepia and enchantment will do well to catch upon ‘a lullaby for you’ which is just as it says on the tin, all star crushed, sleepy headed and angelic though superbly unhinged by a fleeting visitation of wiring kaleidoscopia which ought to have you visibly unsettled with one eye peeping open watching the lengthening shadows stretching beyond the bed. And while all around might be readily equipped high end ear candy I’m personally taken by the lazily dazed ’broke objects’ as it aches with an introspective hymnal thoughtfulness into a shyly adoring dusting of snow falling sweetness of the type occasioning pop platters inscribed with the name Hafdis Huld.
New Strange Brew pod cast is their best yet and features a rare and exclusive special focusing on one of the finest acts ever to have crawled out of the 60’s. the Pretty Things didn’t subscribe to rule books, their sound was forged on a blind confidence removed from the influence of outsider fashions, a collective band of brothers blessed with a rare creative genius who would by the end of the decade post two of the finest albums in rocks rich and vast canon – namely ’S F Sorrow’ and ’Parachute’. celebrating their sixth decade together – on and off – they recently headlined Fruit de Mer’s inaugural all dayer at the Borderline supported by the finest crop of young psychedelicised disciples reared and awed in their slipstream. Oft compared with the Stones, though considerably better by far, the Stones basked in the riches of success whilst the Pretties laboured into obscurity boasting the bragging rights in terms of cool kudos, Lydon when invariably called to task about the Pistols signing to the majors and their phoney war with the Clash would oft cite his reasoning being to avoid the same fate as the Pretties. convening back stage at the aforementioned borderline soiree the Strange Brew crew join Messrs Taylor, May et al for chat in this 90 minute homage along the way a rich picking of platters – nineteen in all – featuring covers, off shoots, rarities and originals serve to celebrate the nations finest – amongst the play list the drop dead cool Floydian ‘fallen angels’ from ‘78 and ’defecting grey’ from the SF Sorrow sessions – arguably one of the most unhinged slabs of wiring punked out psyche psychosis ever committed to wax – a kind of fist flinging Cardiacs meets Supergrass with Syd Barrett styled hallucinogenic x-ray shades.
Many thanks to Tui for sending over wav files for the latest Orla Wren opus ’book of the folded forest’ out now via Home Normal. Old school subscribers to these musings from losing today times may well recall us fondly bestowing words of awe upon his ‘the one two bird and the half horse’ set from a few years back via flau and our recent mention per that quite exquisite 85% collaboration with offthesky and isnaj dui for hibernate. Anyway while we sort out the gremlins – the laptop has crashed twice trying to download this so its looking like Xmas at this rate – love you BT – here’s here’s a delightful video thing for the track ’four feathers few’ along with a link to the pastel records shop wherein there’s oodles of info, sound clips and video files to be had……
Strangely enough our cat Dylan (or Tig as he appears to be still used to being called even now – a name afforded by his previous owners because he has tiger like markings?! – funny how cat owners have a remarkable knack for unimaginative names – like snowy, tabby, cat – as an old acquaintance used to call his to save confusion though just between you and me I reckon the cat thought its name was fuck off on account of the constant cries each time it came into view) has spent the best part of the first side of this platter perched at my feet looking up at the laptop ears a pricked almost hypnotically frozen. I refer in case your wondering – and you are – unless you can mind read – to the recent ’pop’ platter ’alien, all too alien’ by My Cat is an Alien via trensmat. Came out a while back, pressed on white vinyl in extremely limited numbers, long since sold out and no doubt to source of brisk business on various online auction sites. Been an age since we had anything by MCIAA to rave about, the Opalio brothers are the improv psych experimental royalty of Italy, boasting a 15 year recording career spanning over 100 releases, they have worked with the aristocracy of outsider sounds. ’Alien, all too Alien’ is comprised of 2 elongated suites – well in essence one but split in order to accommodate the vinyl groove limitations I suspect. Cosmic concrete, folk drone, outsider freeform call it what you like but whatever the case there’s a betting that unless you tune variously into the worlds of no neck blues band or sunburned hand of the man not forgetting the kind of stuff kicked out by reverb worship imprint in their early years that your not going to be prepared for what trips out here. A positive flurry of busying activity, there’s gongs, scalping riff fracturing, chimes creating the kind of oblique atmospheric tension that usual adorns the work of Philippe Petit, the onset of silvery shimmers court an unearthly disquiet that suggests this has been plucked from some pre-natural primordial ooze. But still it evolves, shape shifting upon some evolutionary arc and blending in monastic chorals until layer by layer building in density and depth so that it gets quite disturbing and just a tad ominous especially with the appearance of eerie earth beat codas and is it just me or does it detour in to ‘flowers of romance’ flashbacks. Absolutely fried. Over the flip the process sustains only this time as though relocated onto super hyper galactic space craft – or more specifically inside its console command, whirring drones mask a deliciously wood crafted twilight like daydream psych folk motif, the mood very woozy purrs into transcendental states the flat lining drone accents taking prime presence for a while until everything converges in a blur amid a blitz of skree interference. Guaranteed to upset neighbours and be greeted by puzzled looks aplenty.
Quick message from Neil – head honcho over at planting seeds – giving us a heads up on a new debuting EP from Virginia based quartet Death Valley Rally with a knowing promise of ‘indie noise pop shoe gaze’ galore. And he’s not far wrong for opening cut ‘come on’ (available now as a free download via the esteemed Magnet magazine site – link below) is a rollicking sub three minute heads down and strutting slab of blister kissed bubble groove that oozes honey dusted sun kissed harmonies aplenty whilst simultaneously finding itself deliriously drop kicked in swathes of fuzz laden shimmer gazed gouging which on first hearing is about you like a rash recalling a pre ‘loveless’ era MBV and the kind of eargear that admirers of labels such as bliscent as was, northern star and the squirrel imprint will swoon to in droves. www.magnetmagazine.com/2013/09/01/mp3-at-3pm-death-valley-rally/
And here it is. Many thanks to Neil @ Planting Seeds who not only sent along the aforementioned Death Valley Rally EP but only the latest platter from the Young Sinclairs – which if you scroll down a wee bit you‘ll find.
Entitled ‘the stars shine brighter after midnight’ the debut lovely from Death Valley Rally sumptuously shoehorns into its tightly pressed groove lines a breathless sugar burst of dream dipped shoe gazed shimmer pop that happily reveals that ‘come on’ is no sun kissed honey drenched accident by packing in a 23 minute emotion wrecking ball set. ‘I see you clearly now’ leads out the charge for affection here which from out of its momentary brooding haze we here detected something of a fondness for Quickspace that‘s scalped by a bruising and epic wide screen sound cowed by a penetrating dark persona much admired upon early career platters by dream pop disciples Autodrone. Elsewhere there’s the divinely infectious pulse racing panic popping ‘stop and go’ lushly awash in a jet streaming bubble grooved soft psych wall of sound that stutters and soars to a subtle sugar rushing west coast channelling much present in pre ‘wake up’ Boo Radleys platters of yesteryear. Best of the set – just – the bitter sweet and aching silken hush rush of ‘one night in Vienna’ ought to draw sorrowful sighs and the occasional tear with its synth saturated swathes caressed in forlorn folds of honey kissed love note raptures – absolutely breathless and blissful. Not quite done with the love notes just for the quietly arresting ‘your frequency doesn’t matter’ similarly trades with the heartstrings and softly avails itself in the sweet haze of lovelorn demurs.
‘farewell’ draws matters to a stilled and elegant close, a precision honed beauty that takes flight in the tail smoke left by a classic era Ride, ablaze in seismic riff ruptures and bolted upon the kind of stratospheric struts and zoned in bliss kissing blister forming groove spliced in shimmered showers of loud / quiet attrition all hooked up to the much missed Skywave mainframe.
Absolutely smoking this, new 4 track (5 if you get it on digital – a bonus cut featuring a killer re-reading of the Roky Erikson’s ’I have always been here before’) pop platter from the Young Sinclairs. This babe comes sumptuously teased to an ultra coolly smouldered vintage signature that oozes to an old school song craft cradled in 50’s / 60’s motifs that are rightly picking up admiring glances from the shindig crew, I mean slyly nicking to riff from the Stones ‘brown sugar’ takes some nervy class but then to have the balls to wire it to a succulently darkly lysergic soft psych thread that smokes to a Brian Jones classicism that’s stirred and frazzled to an off centring and wasted buzz sawed blues bloodline purr – is by our reckoning sheer class (’ear to the ground‘). While the opening brace of the EP’s cuts are exquisitely honed by way of the honey crusted harmonies and crystalline chiming 12 string Byrds-ian shimmers that adorn the bubble grooves of ’you know where to find me’ and the forlorn teary teen angst tracing that aches within ’too young’ to hark back to a 50’s golden age of innocence (not to the Wilsons) it’s the latter three cuts which seal the deal here. We’ve already mentioned ‘ear to the ground’ but its ‘remember this song’ that stands up and looms large as the sets stand out moment. Ripped from the fuzz adorned primordial ooze that birthed the likes of the misunderstood, the standells and the troggs and chilled with the echoes of the dark kaleidoscopic sounds of a latter day youthful Bordellos, this prime cut 90 second slab of bad boogie sounds as though its stumbled out of the hazily fried confines of a garage vault intent on choking you with its menacing monochromatic purr. Rounding off what is a killer set with a faithful reading of the legendary garage psyche troubadour Mr Erikson’s lost power pop buzz bomb ‘I have always been here before’ here all trimmed in a gorgeously introspective radiance which at the three minute mark suddenly lifts off and exit’s earth orbit in a most welcoming Bevis Frond way. Essential – but then I guess you kinda knew that.
Must admit to being taken by video and tune alike, new thing by Phoenix Foundation who I’m certain have featured in these pages once upon a time in the near recent past who it seems have something of a penchant for the quietly stately and smooth panoramic sound boards of the 80’s. now we’ve wrestled with this each and every time we’ve heard it and much to our exasperation are still not convinced we’ve nailed the nagging reference marker that comes orbiting amid the deep recesses of our minds eye each time this cutie rears into earshot, at times its wispy slow seductive purrs had us recalling Peter Gabriel in his pre ’So’ persona, but that wasn’t quite it, then we thought Godley and Crème – nearer to the mark, perhaps the Church at their most chilled and statuesque getting closer still. It was at this point that we were near preparing the acceptance of defeat when upturned in our recall came Thomas Dolby. Anyway as to the song, delicately demurred in shimmer tingles and softly dimpled in sighing signatures all kissed in a distractive cosmic cool the type of which ought to get the daytime radio schedules all a jangle and the night time play lists a-glowed in spectral sophistication.
Well here’s the video judge for yourself…
The description immense is in well trodden usage these days – I’ll hold up my hands and admit its frequently scattered around these here missives with mystifying regularity. However how else could you be expected to shoehorn succinctly what is happening between the grooves of ’first chapter’. due for release shortly via the much admired aagoo imprint in cahoots this occasion with rev laboratories, ’first chapter’ sees Philippe Petit team up with Fernando Corona – here assuming his Murcof guise – to craft something truly spellbinding. For those still reeling and much in awe of Petit’s recent ’extraordinary tales of a lemon girl’ trilogy wherein his application of classicist arrangements steeled to a beautified sonic choreography crystallised succinctly into a breathtaking aural spectacle prepare thyself for this mammoth three part suite finds both Murcof and Petit engaged in the same sublime and exquisitely detailed sound-scaping only this time with the emphasis overtly gripped in shadows, dread and mythology. Three extended suites feature here, Circe, Pegasus and the Kraken the protagonists centred in this immensely moving and oft deeply affecting score that’s both considered and considerable, Petit and Corona are found operating at the heights of their individual craft to summon up a pact that twists and spews forth a terraforming musical vision whose menu mutates from chilling bowed arrangements, arcane choral chants and disquieting chamber doom to afford its subject matter reverential gravitas. ‘the call of circe’ opens proceedings, a mammoth 20 minute descent in the abyss, chilled with an ice formed ceremonial aura steeled in an ever darkening countenance, the atmospherics petrified and cast in an impenetrable brooding fractures ever so divinely into washes of harmonic chants beneath them the macabre grip of disturbed keys chatter and tingle with menaced delight only to be arrested by the momentary passage of a drone drifting elegiac calm. Illustrated and bathed in lost sonic dialects the snoozing lullaby that greets the entrance of ’pegusus’ is etched and flavoured in mystery and solace, stricken atmospherics smother with a starkly eerie caution to the crying groan of an opining viola metering out its archaic spell charm though it’s the parting suite that had us scampering for the safety afforded by the rear of the settee for ’the summoning of the Kraken’ is measured in equal degrees graceful and grim, framed in the fracturing mania of echoing bowed instrumentations, cavernous disquiet and shimmering oceanic tremors, distressed at being called from slumber there’s an impending sub text awakening in the depths and what first appeared melodically soft as though a ritualistic prayer like incantation to sooth the ancient beast soon assumes a more threatening persona which at its final gasp is steeled in something ominously tragic as the melancholic wave trails snake out towards its momentous first act curtain close. www.aagoo.com
Getting a little tired of prim and proper pop jangling nicely across the stereo decks, yearning for something caustic, in your face and liable to head butt you without so much as a ‘Hi, How are You’. I know where your coming from so with that here’s a spot of energetic anti pop gnarled groove from punk noise niks PKN. Now this belching buzz saw baby has been on our player with alarming regularity since sitting up in our email in box with a threatening scowl – PKN are due out on a short tour soon with Zombie Crash headed up by the constant flux crew whose overseeing eye Richard Phoenix plays in Sauna Youth (yes yes yes – we know – Sonic Youth – but not Sonic Youth) of who whose album blew us away and would have by rights featured here in print if that is both the review and album download weren’t currently stranded on a decidedly unhelpful laptop sitting moping in the corner. Anyway at this stage you might be thinking yea so what short tour – why are you blathering on about it – well simply this – the tour marks by way of arts council funding an attempt to bring to popular awareness the merits and promotion of disability learning music and in so doing highlighting such disadvantages as access issues to venue with an ultimate aim to empower the less advantaged in society and actively encourage integration and participation. Alas no sound clips for zombie crash just yet – we are working on it – however PKN or to give the Finnish quartet their full name – pertti kurikan nimipaivat have serviced us with ‘paattaja on pettaja – which translates as ‘decision maker is a traitor’ – a cut ripped from a compilation cassette entitled ‘coffee not tea’ being put out by constant flux to celebrate cassette store day. First hearing we nailed it to the Dead Kennedy’s, second attempt we were of the mind Government Issue and so it went so on and so forth until finally concluding that amid its gnarled and snarling three chord agit gouged rabid boogie there where trace elements of a very young leatherface exacting a nose bleed upon the might anhrefn. Perfect for those once upon a time tuned into late Peel hosted soirees as he muddled his way through unpronounceable bands hailing from behind the old iron curtain. More info – www.constantflux.co.uk as to the sound file –
After all the excitement of the previous platter what better way to calm the senses than with a spot of divinely traced chill down courtesy of a sneaked out cut from the forthcoming Sunset Graves platter ‘Variant’ which all being well will be due for swooning action at the tail end of September via the 3rd and debut imprint. If like us and you didn’t know – Sunset Graves is the alter ego of one Andy Fosberry – a fact we find useful to know should you find yourself in a final gasp attempt to waltz off with the local pub quiz prize and in so doing entertaining personage of the opposite sex with your knack of the obscure. A gorgeously woven slice of lights dimmed after the party sophistication is ’safe and empty’ – mellowed, alluring and dare I say mildly beguiling, trip wired with the genteel pulse of celestial chorus’ and swathed in an ethereal ambient faintness that sounds like the theme to your soul passing into the light and beyond either that or being visited upon and fleetingly kissed by an angel, for maximum effect play in solitude preferably at the dead of night through head cans with the volume racked to bliss. www.soundcloud.com/abadgeoffriendship/sunset-graves-safe-and-empty
Now we here often get vexed by the criminal lack of musical material featuring Nicaraguan nose flute players or pan pipe playing cigar smoking juggling minstrels, my heart skips a little faster when we hear word from afar of such sighting and discoveries from the Commonwealth only to sink into abject despair when it appears a ruse to get me to listen to some badly played banjo with one string by some grandeur afflicted hopeful with the musical wherewithal of a pinless button badge. There was a time when packages from the esteemed Scotch Tapes and Beta Lactam Ring hinted of hope among their shared contents, Scotch Tapes illustrious knack of weeding out ensembles who knew their power drills apart and the extent of sonic excruciation they could impact on an ill informed and unsuspecting soul were only excelled and outdone by the sheer creepiness BLRR’s occasional throatal chants. Why do I mention all this you might reasonably ask / puzzle / complain well only for the fact that if there’s one label around who might make dreams come true it might just well be Arachnidiscs recordings – a boutique tape label that’s been channelling on a different frequency to the rest since 1999 somewhere out of Toronto of whom whose Moonwood releases we’ve mentioned to much swooning acclaim in these here pages. Their readying themselves up for cassette store day with release numero 100 – a compilation entitled ’in decline since ’99’ is a showcasing trawl or in some cases exhumation of 17 lost loves from their vast out of print catalogue – a ridiculously limited pressing – 10 – in different colours to boot – that will be available at the cassette fair hosted by Toronto’s Sonic Boom record shop – those fancying a quick snifter will be advised to check out the labels website to sample the relentless earache delights of flatbed whose inviting ’eating 10 yards of shit’ is a stoned out fuzz core slab of razored head fuck-a-delia while the quickly pursuing farfisa laced ’more money than sense’ by the Apollo Ghosts may well prove ear candy to those among you preferring your sounds a little less caustic and decked out in trippy 60’s beat groove smokiness.
All said the reason for tripping across this site in the first place was to recommend the labels latest cassette. Only 30 copies of these available and its by a sacred cloud entitled ‘ensoleille 1972‘- this being the cassette edition to compliment a vinyl variant being put out by Jeunesse Cosmique – a label you should all be well versed with given we covered a recent compilation put out by them in previous despatches. Alas no pan pipes or nose flute recitals on this instead the promise of – and I’ll quote directly from the blurb ‘guitare astrale……and …..magical synths’ – a promise that no one in their right mind should resist especially when described by the label as sounding like ’the bleak retro futurist android daydreams of Vangelis in hell on a cloud that’s only silver linings’ – am I transmitting blade runner here – anyhow we were taken with ’entendre des perceptions qu’on ne puit voir ou ressentir , des choses qui inexistent pas’ and think you might be to framed as it is in the sun scorched rays of a dying star – detached, despaired and in truth delightfully disarming, a bit like a sepia trimmed wallowing distress call from the far edges of space – further investigation is highly recommended – www.arachnidiscs.bandcamp.com/album/ensoleill-1972 and www.arachnidiscs.wordpress.com
Heaven alone knows how I got here from there – but those among you good memories might well recall us a few years ago tripping over ourselves to the occasioning sounds of the Giant Paw whose releases where a thing of a desirable art craft coming as I recall in ultra limited handmade carded sleeves – there may have been four all told – who went on to release an album ’the stars are out’ posted with much admiring fondness on the losing today site before it went who knows where. Anyhow years of silence and we trip over their site only to catch an earful of a track they posted during the great Maggie is Dead outpouring and news of an album in the offing – which alas is still in the holding yard due to a mishap in the mastering wherein it was recorded at a slightly slower speed than intended. Anyway while they busy themselves with the technicals that ’Maggie’ track – yes yes yes I know I’m late with this – but still – well worth checking out – not least because it sounds not unlike a mid 80’s Psychic TV doing a plastic ono band type romp whilst channelling Syd with both the Freed Unit and they came from the stars I saw them invited along for the soiree – now there’s two names to add to your where are they now list, still what you get is a sub six minute neo psychedelicised funereal fracturing freak beat fancy loosely nodding to the crass – fine by us…incidentally its called ‘inner sun‘….. www.facebook.com/pages/giant-paw/15233480300
And while we were there we plundered this – featuring interviews with PIL well Lydon and the Godfathers who were basically the bollocks plus a load of mid 80’s tosh that you might feel obliged – nay – openly encouraged to fast forward past….. www.mickmercer.com/pdfs/the_mick_56.pdf
More adorable vapour trailed dream pop this time from Lanterns on the Lake of whom we know absolutely diddly squat about, that said who needs wasted words describing the millions of bands they used to be and what they’ve had for last nights tea when all your concerned about is whether its much cop or not. Imagine both St Etienne and Dubstar marooned on a distant star sending forth into the cosmic voids bitter sweet love notes whilst snuggled together in a long abandoned alien igloo tuned into distant frequencies and picking up crackly transmissions of Cocteau Twins replays, well your half way there for ‘until the colours run’ is a sugar rushed slice of shimmering galactic bubble groove dimpled in star twinkling sequins and hushed in delirious showers of pop euphoria all powered by fireball xl-5 styled retro burners being navigated by beat glider and etched with tearful glassy eyed melancholia, not a dry kerchief in the house. www.vevo.com/lanterns-on-the-lake/until-the-colours-run/GBE651341004
Perhaps its down to my ears being frazzled after seven days wall to wall spent listening to sounds but forthcoming from the mighty bearsuit imprint is a debuting platter from Anata Wa Sukkari Tsukarete Shimai of whom I’m certain we’ve featured in these pages once upon a long ago, ripped from that set – incidentally entitled ’the lost Charles underscore’ looms ’doll’ with all the strangest and out there-ness that you’ve come to love, adore and indeed worry about from these weird sound imps. Four and a half minutes of deeply unsettling aural disquiet, a superbly crafted smoke and mirrors melodic mirage which for the best part sounds as though Gazza Numan’s ’pleasure principle’ and ’telekon’ classics have been fried, frayed and forcefed through a sonic blender and then dragged through the other side to be refitted with a demented and deranged technoid shell and then set to meltdown, amid all this though croaking at the core there’s a hitherto strange mutant funkiness at work…..it’s a tune Jim, but not as you know it. www.soundcloud.com/awsts/doll
Okay there we were having a nose around the bear suit page when we tripped across this this brooding David Lynch styled slab of pensive post rockist groove by Kyomdarak by way of a track by the name ’future’. Ripped from a recently released free to download set ’tasogare no mirai’ which you can hook up to via the tanukineiri site at www.tanukineiri.net/home
this woozy slice of disquieting macabre comes trimmed in a ghostly aura once upon a time much recalled of early kranky releases in particular Roy Montgomery’s ’true’ set – further investigation much warranted. While you are there rummaging through the labels wares it seems that they’ve made freely available a double disc compilation set entitled ’tanukineiri drink sampler’ which gathers together 30 leading artists from the Japanese underground including previously unreleased tracks from bear suit regulars whiz kidd, Harold nono and the aforementioned anata wa sukkari tsukarete shimai’ – we’ll try and remember to review this in detail next time out.
Here’s the video accompanying that kyomdarak cut….
A quick email from Tim Diagram to remind us that the ‘laska’ EP is just out via the hand stitched imprint – home of all things Maps and diagrams / Atlantis – comprised of 4 tracks this shy eyed lovely arrives pressed up in a limited run of 50 copies all featuring dinky little 3 inch CD’s coming housed in hand stitched cork sleeves much like that ultra rare outing he did for static caravan entitled ’caoutchouc’ back in the day. As said a quartet of cuts that demur and coo with quiet elegance, ‘bicolour’ opens proceedings providing something of a lunar lightshow dinked in the serene serenade of an opining lullaby like orbital waltz teased in a spectral airiness and fractured in a sweetly souring detachment. Like some kind of ice sculptured inner sanctum there’s a calming resonance attaching to the frost chipped ’laska’ as though a secret prayer garden thawing from some glacial imprisonment, milky shimmer tones and frost flecked chimes gather together swoon and arc atop the fragile tremble of genteel riff needlework by whose hand a silent yet knowing craft nods to the bitter sweet ache of Roy Budd. Best moment of the set arrives with the appearance of the elegantly trod ’limosa’. cultured in far eastern dialects emerging as were in a spiritual Tibetan haze, the glassy bowed arrangements cut from a lost aural tongue deeply intoxicate to weave their trippy lysergic spellcraft as though born of a sub species blurring divinely the dots between the mystical and something approaching soft psyche magicalia – in short a prime serving for those drone heads among you whose savoured sonic delights are primed somewhere upon the alphane moon / our glassy azoth axis. ’penelope’ brings matters to a heart heavy end, crushed in sepia tonalities and ablaze in the final flurry of sunburst activity this bruised ambi-drone beauty wallows majestically in the tearful eye of dying stars sweetly solemn and resigned to its fading fate. www.handstitched.net
You won’t be too surprised when we say that somehow we’ve managed to mislay the accompanying press release that housed this cute little thing. Admittedly something that’s been kicking around the listening room for a fair while now during which time it to has managed to lose itself, first the sleeve and then the actual CD. Undeterred by such resistance we hastened out of a tracking mission and nailed the blighter skulking aside the kitchen boom box no doubt basking in the fading rays of the summer. Now I know that all the records covered here come with essential patronage to some degree or another – bit if there was just one among the crop that you were priming your hard earned cash for I’d be plumbing for this ’un. By Brooklyn duo Live Footage, ’doyens’ is their – I think – as info is a little hard to come by especially given the press release is still errant – their second full length, a self released sortie featuring 17 softly cured slices of succulent after lights lowered sophisticat tropicalia which at varying turns to its core smoulders with the kind of sumptuously trimmed lounge pop dialects ushered by emperor penguins exquisite ’mysterious pony’ set from 2000 while simultaneously immersing itself in a full on Technicolor floorshow that blends the smooth lilting arrangements of the likes of Barry, Mancini and Schifrin (just check out the amazing ‘lucien’ for further evidence) into a coolly arresting canvas that swoons and demurs to a trace element tasting of down tempo, trip core, Balearic drizzled pulse toned techno and cinematic elegance whilst simultaneously revealing something of a knowing admiration for platters eked out by tummy touch, warp and ninja tunes. The artistry is exquisite, the execution divine – from the minute ‘Brooklyn bridge’ stumbles into life shimmering longingly to a melodic matrix that sounds like van Dyke Parks re-tweaking the debut Sigur Ros full length your already hooked and found surrendering whilst the tear stained dramatics of the weeping string cortege that is the hollowing ’mortality’ is gripped by the intensity of both Mogwai and godspeed downed in flight and mournfully serenaded by the grails. somewhere else the brief symphonic swirl that is ‘van damme’ is dimpled with a panoramic gravitas that takes to its broadside a deeply engaging snarling fuzz scored strut while the astral funk of ‘secret cricket meeting’ is coded in crystalline textures whose bloodline traces back to the kind of sound board these days applied upon by old school kraut pioneers occasioning the esteemed klanbad imprint a la cluster, moebius et al. admirers of jean michel jarre will do well to search out the mournfully vulnerable ‘just moving parts’ given its lushly serenaded in a beautifully detached symphonics whilst the softly stressed arrest of ‘airport farewell’ is succulently smouldered in a chicly stirred moon glowed romance steeled in sumptuous noir strokes as though a bruised musetta had been hitherto stranded with only a landshipping cuddled with Discordia soundtrack to crush their forlorn yearn. Which leaves the parting ’purgatory (storm has passed)’ bliss kissed in sigur ros aural fissures to sleepily regale you as it murmurs to the run out grooves murmured in all manner of boards of Canada finery.
There’s a moment – well nearly eight minutes if your counting – when in the company of ‘rowley way overlook’ your transported to a place in some hither to as yet unclassified and undiscovered south pacifica hideaway where sun scorched skies smoulder to a glow, a place where the lulling overture of ‘sailing by’ wallows and opines upon sea bound hazy dream dazed mirages shorn in petal trimmed cascades that lazily lilt to the woozing echo of tropicalia motifs dinked in the lullaby arrangements of Raymond scott and cultured by an ear whose familiarity with the aural swoons ushered by the genteel turntable coo of savoured platters by the likes of the seahawks, toshack highway, j xaverre and that undeniable exquisite ’monsterism’ collage. Welcome kindly traveller to ‘modular living’ the third full length set from eat lights become lights. Not wishing to damn with feint praise, but with the onset of ‘modular living’ eat lights have turned a corner, an album so telling of a creative unit comfortable in their own skin and well versed in cinematic ambition.
No strangers to these missives we’ve been tracking these Kosmische Kadets since they first reared up on our hi-fi way back in 2008 with their debuting ‘they transmit’ 7 inch for enraptured. During that time they’ve piloted an aural trajectory across the vast sonic realms engaging in turn to tail gate elements of old school krautrock and nu school cosmic ambience and so doing sees them applying an expansive sound to their canvas. ‘modular living’ comes pressed on both CD via rocket girl and on a limited run wax pressing via the arty and highly eye catching great pop supplement house where it comes decorated in a by all accounts fetching striped clear / white variant. To describe ‘modular living’ in short is to imagine it traversing some distant point in a far off galaxy, the sound of lost transmissions reaching their home land light years after their initial despatch, sumptuously dipped in retro regalia of which nine star kissed suites sit sighing upon stellar grooves whose sound is akin to some aural archaeological dig unearthing primitive remnants from electronicas infancy. Shimmered in a nocturnal framing and coded in squirreling cosmedelic flurries ’modular living’ is a glorious effervescent lunar promenade waltz as were piloted by Meek and lushly housed in mesmerising star crushed carnivals powered by motorik murmurs all glazed in 70’s styled space age sirens. ‘mod-ulo-510‘ finds them touching base with distraction records own lunar lords the warm digits somewhat sharing an affectionate mindset for the tangerine dream. Somewhere else ’loss feliz to Griffith’ sees ELBL really stepping up to plate and expanding their palette, dream dipped in celestial haloes signed to the demur of cantering keys with a cinematic poise this could easily be Antonymes running to embrace fortdax amid some pastoral cosmica while framed upon a softly lit pulsar the gaseous vapour trailing ’life in a sprawl’ mainlines succulently on the cruise controlled sereneness of 90 degrees south. And while both ’Chiba prefecture’ and ’electromagnetika’ offer a brace of pristinely calibrated kraut sourced ELBL groove subtly gouged in library music kaleidoscopia and both braided in their by now trademark steady progression from genteel to grand sound it’s the parting cut ’habitat ’67’ (along with the aforementioned ’rowley way overlook’) that endow the ELBL sound canvas with a wider and more illuminating sonic spectrum to provide the albums centrepiece and in some respects mark a shift in perspective given its uplifting visitation as were of arcing arrangements and multi tracked string corteges sweetly serenading the heavens – quite blissful if you ask me.
Next expected transmission from eat lights becomes lights sees them appearing on the newly augmented great pop supplement off shoot boutique imprint deep distance – more about this imprint in a second or two. Typically eye catching this 12 inch release comes pressed up on hulking heavy duty slabs of wax and features the imprints newly designed company sleeves. Should say it’s a split release with the eat lights half serviced by the parting ’modular living’ cut ’habitat ’67’ whilst occupying the reverse side ex six by seven main man Chris Olley under his newly acquired twelve guise imbues the grooves with a spot of Can styled motorik murmurs.
Mere mention of Dinosaur Jr as a reference marker in press releases is guaranteed to have us sitting up paying immediate attention. Alas its usually met with disappointment when said so described platter rears up clueless and sounding like some ill thought third league vaguely grunge grasped affair possessed of little talent and bereft of anything approaching a redeeming quality. So caution was the watch word when PR emails heralding imminent release activity from Forest where wedged through our email letterbox, ’stunning lo-fi slacker indie for lovers of dinosaur jr, my bloody valentine, sebadoh, ride and splashh…’came the cry to which by way of some involuntary action our eyebrows arranged themselves in a cynical pose. Out via indielabel and pressed up on 10 inch prime cuts of wax coloured to boot and available to die for mid October time is the ’caramel arms’ EP from which tripped out as a herald comes ’coaster’ – in short a sub 4 minute fuzz trimmed scuzzed up rapid fired slab of blister kissed bubble grooved bliss replete with strum strutted riffola ablaze with the kind of coming apart at the seams cracked euphoria as bedevilled the kind of stuff shuffling out of the wilde club imprint in the early 90’s though here curdled with the flavouring of Moose’s debuting platter and trace elements of a pre ’wake up’ era boo radleys, kinda cute don’t you think…… www.soundcloud.com/forestuk/coaster
Now if I didn’t know better I’d hazard a guess that this little frost speckled slice of astral arrest had been bound up in the stuff that holds the stars in the heavenly night sky and succulency threaded in sparse sepia soaked bows and then jettisoned through some hitherto celestial slipstream to momentarily radiate seductively through some ether fractured portal. What is it tell me more I hear you cry. It be the latest outing dear heartz from the Still Parade who arrive described as mysterious by their press folk with a considered lack of additional information only serving us to nod sagely in agreement. ‘health’ is one half of a double A sided platter imminent on the serve and volley / akira imprints which once heard will render you beguiled and deep beneath its frost scribed glare and something which admirers of the equally mysterious no ceremony will do well to seek out before they get any older. www.soundcloud.com/stillparade/health
Drop dead gorgeous dandy imminent from the much adored Sacred Bones record shed is the latest full length from the Crystal Stilts entitled ‘nature noir’ from which ‘future folklore’ has been sneaked out as a groove growling taster. this baby coolly rips it up as though transmitting on the same frequency as the flaming stars and channelling some deeply primitive rock-a-hula psych blues that sounds as though its been hijacked out of the sun studios and retooled by Joe Meek – in short ripe for black angels heads. Nuff said. www.soundcloud.com/sacredbones/crystal-stilts-future-folklore
New from Virginia Wing who aside hailing from south east London describe themselves in passing as an ‘avant-garde’ pop group, they’ve a debuting EP entitled ’extended play’ due for record store scrambles at the counter very on 12 inch via faux discx from which ’donna’s gift’ has been treated and immortalised courtesy of a video which you can view to your hearts content somewhere below. As far as debuts go a bit of a darling this one that hints at evening soirees huddled together blissing out on the stereophonic sounds of broadcast, stereolab and the sound carriers with just the merest hints of l’augmentation and pram thrown in for good measure whilst viewing arty French films and wishing it was the 60‘s. lushly dreamy and very retro, Virginia wing blend swirling kaleidoscopic electronics with trace elements of Francophile pop all subtly glazed in an amorphous soft psych grounding to which admirers of the united states of america may well find of interest. Quite possibly our favourite platter right now.
I’m guessing you won’t be too surprised to hear that in our haste we’ve managed to somehow lose sight of the album preview we were listening to just t’other day featuring the debuting full length set from Megan Wyler entitled ‘through the noise’ out via however. You might think that you’ve not heard the demurring tones of Ms Wyler, think again and cast your mind back a little to a dinky leading food retailer advert – we are tempted to mention them by name and would were they to send a months worth of groceries to chez Sunday experience but be honest it isn’t going to happen any day soon, what’s that you say Mr Sainsbury and months supply of coffee, bacon rashers, strawberries and treats for Dylan the house feline – that’ll do nicely. Anyhow Ms Tyler indeed featured o said adverts with a cover of Kylie’s ‘can’t get you out of my head’ – the kind of delicate rehash you’d expect ushering out of the box room studio of Hannah Peel. And so back to ‘through the noise’ which did I happen to mention we’ve momentarily lost – ah well we here are much taken by the opening salvo ‘the fool’ a gorgeously shy eyed aural elfin that sweetly yawns, stretches and blossoms with such unguarded affection that you feel awed by its radiance not to mention acquiring of the kind of warmly glowing fuzzy feeling in your tummy that normally occasions winter long seasons dusted in browning leaves and roaring open fires, kind of Mazzy Star on smoulder settings all trimmed in a feint charcoal sketching and seductively coiled in the genteel braid of delicate thread bare strums, twinkling bells and haloing choral arcs which when heard collectively almost sounds like the heralding of snowfall and something with which has had us yearning to hear the dream academy’s ’life in a northern town’ – how strangely apt.
Insanely addictive and if I didn’t know better ought to arrive replete with its own jabs, now we swear we’ve had occasion to mention Moodoid in passing missives but are buggered if we can find the citations, not to worry for debuting EP via les disques enterprise is a genre fracturing sonic carnival showcasing these French psychedelicists piloting sound orbits so far off the radar that they’ve scarcely been mapped yet. ’da folie pure’ is a maddening multi layered swirling mistral of mind morphing lysergia dipped in the effervescent haze of Eastern mirages cooked in the vibrant wash of early 70’s tropicalia and impacted with the kind of rule book tearing dynamic of os mutantes albeit fractured and re-tooled by a deviously warped and impishly focused rainbow Arabia, in short over you like a rash radiating lush sun fried strobes all packed with enough kooky bombast to have your hi-fi trembling fearfully that it might spontaneous combust.
Arriving soon via one little Indian the debuting – well debuting outside his native homeland – single from Asgeir whose something of a sensation in Icelandic parts with his ‘dyrd’ full length being reputedly owned by 10% of the population. Easy to see why if ‘torrent’ is anything to judge by not least because upon hearing said song its as though someone has applied a quick acting shot of pick me up off the floor euphoria wherein within whose intricately compacted three and a half minute groove hugging every emotion appears to be touched upon. Gorgeously woven between the turbulent and the tender there’s a craft afoot that hints of someone peaking in at the secret workbook of the low anthem, stirring turbulence, rolling arrangements clipped in undulating grace lines rush with a statuesque effervescence all impacted in uplifting halos of pulse racing classicism which unless our ears do deceive sounds not unlike a distant cavalry honing down fast to charge over the hill. Album ‘the silence’ follows late October.
I’m assuming we can post this sound cloud link purely so that you can see for yourself the wonderfully schizoid groove we get sent and to explain the joyously perplexed looks mapped about our face when this came into earshot with the accompanying uttering of ‘wat da f***’ – new thing from Dustin Wong imminent on thrill jockey and pulled from a set entitled ‘mediation of ecstasy energy’, this here be called ‘the big she’ and a trippy blighter it is to and something which has an unnerving knack of shedding – as were – its skin mid flow. What first appears a spot of freeform lackadaisical noodling fractured in shard shredded springing scrapes pulled through an echo casing and turned abstractly in an odd no wave handicraft replete with spooked out woozy vocals ripped from a passing dimension – soon assumes a kraut grooved grind before blossoming into some big beard beatnik kicking out there early 70’s styled stoner fuzz progness – might require a lie down after visitation. Reading the notes it appears Mr Wong has in the recent past collaborated with a certain Takako Minekawa – reason alone to get our vote – must hear more methinks.
Is it just me or is this a tad bit on the melancholic side, I’ve been shedding tears since it arrived doing mournful things on our player. We’ve mentioned this lot in previous dispatches and each time they’ve ignored us, mildly sweet don’t you think – and I guess a cue for more shedding of tears. Anyhow latest word from the Public Service Broadcast crew is that they are set to release ’night mail’ just ahead of a tour and a specially cobbled together DVD type thing that includes videos, interviews and all manner of PSB’s goodies out of which the first 150 who sign up and part with the entrance fee will get as a reward a specially signed edition. Anyway back to ’night mail’ – simply gorgeous and faultless – a bit like rummaging through an attic and discovering a dusty box festooned in old photographs and 8mm film reels, a fond misty eyed doffing of the cap to a bygone age at its core an old information film from 1936 put together by the GPO and royal mail whilst looped into its audio a rather celebrated poem entitled (what else) ’night mail’ all set to a most weepy eyed bitter sweet aural backdrop that evokes undulating pastoral realms and the green and grey persona of these fine isles as it chuffs n’ choos along the arterial axis like a kraftwerkian future clone of Vernon Elliott capturing the rush, the hiss and the lull of travelling train – quite dandy if you ask me. www.soundcloud.com/psbhq/night-mail-radio-edit
There’s much festooning in the tales from the attic record room of bunting when news comes emanating from the bordellos hideaway especially when that word hints of not one but two imminent outings – for daddy tank – who incidentally feature somewhere here latter – and small bear – with a third cooking nicely on the back burner. it’s the latter one we turn our affectionate gaze upon as it introduces Brian Bordello’s 15 year old daughter applying some nifty fuzzed out bass gouging (and something which now gathering the Shea family together with Dan in the mix – Brian has fondly called his new Partridge Family phase) to a sneak preview track entitled ’drive by pleasantries’ upon whose seemingly fraught and menacingly ice cooled grooving we hear the distant sounds of a battered around the edges early career sonic youth set to a smoked haze of a drifting harmonica all uneasily fixed upon a fracturing lo-fi disquiet the type of which could easily have been ripped from an old school fast product / fresh styled imprint. Alas no sound files – planned release is anticipated next year.
Remaining with the bordellos for a wee while longer, proudly stashing a new album under their collective arms which is readying itself for release on the quite lovable daddy tank imprint – home of amongst others dissolved – who incidentally pop up shortly – the label has sneaked out a free to download track ‘weird K’. the eagle eyed among may well recall us enthusing fondly of cut when it appeared on our radar holding its own on a – if I recall rightly – cloud sounds pod, anyway this version comes rerecorded with added harmonicas – which does it for us especially when it comes smothered in the kind of lo-fi loveliness more commonly associated with records bearing the daniel Johnston / jad fair seal stamped to their hides albeit moulded and glazed in a distinctive guided by voices handcraft all bleached with an affectionate casting more becoming of arrowe hill and dinked in an distressed forlorn aura that had us scampering for our treasured Southall riot platters from yesteryear. Note takers among take heed the aforementioned album – entitled ‘ronco revival sounds’ comes strictly limited to just 100 specially crafted CD’s. www.daddytankrecords.bandcamp.com/track/the-bordellos-weird-k
Now here’s something we eyed via a posting by Leigh Wright better known to the sonic cognoscenti as the Ephemeral Man a mention of whom you should find littered among the pages of this particular missive. Anyway there was a mention for this, the debuting release on new imprint wholeness that finds the implicit order and the lost trail going head to head to embark on something of a super group type union with the latter seemingly retooling and glossing the skeletal lay lines provided by the former. Deeply intense stuff set across a seven part suite upon whose grooves everything from the hymnal and stilled to the dark and unnerving are visited upon in a tensely treated and gripped hauntologcal hue which at first point of introduction ought to appeal to admirers of both Vernon Arts Lab and Roadside Picnic (especially via voices from the hills’) as well as the greying monaural cinematic soundscapes of renowned composers such as Desmond Briscoe and James Bernard with the subtle traces elements of dead can dance thrown in for good measure – the latter being best served by the tuning in of ‘I want us to be happy again like we used to be’ whose ethereal shimmer tones are silvered in a bespoke beguiling that gives it the appeal of being forged in the same quietly majestic workspace as Perry, Gerrard et al. in sharpening contrast ‘the olde house’ is stricken in spook theme suspense, slow hollowing treads wrapped in woozily surreal daydream drifts exude disquieting paranormal unease. Somewhere else ‘wasted time’ is touchingly shrouded in a glassy ache that once emerging momentarily from the ecliptic shadow retires deep into depths forlornly licking its wounds, ‘haunted trail’ is dimpled in similar suit in glacial opines and the kind of sci-fi void-phonics utilised by Barry Gray for the closing title credits to ‘UFO’. the album incidentally is entitled ‘the black ridge tapes’. www.wholenessrecordings.bandcamp.com/album/the-blackridge-tapes
More strangeness abound – alas only a short edit of this, that said it comes strictly limited to just 50 cassette copies and by our humbled opinion looks pretty nifty and much deserving of closer inspection given the description which promises thus – psychotropic drones, hypno rhythms and eldritch sonic matter all immersed and inspired by 70’sstyled horror-phonics, the occult and kosmiche sounds of the day – its by the wyrding module who I’m certain we’ve mentioned passing before – better known to family and friends as Christopher Gladwin – its appears on the Icasea imprint and is entitled sub temple session II’ – a single 43 minute cut recorded live last month – admittedly not a lot you say when presented with just a very brief 64 second sample unless you happen to be called nepalm death or extreme noise terror in which case this would have translated into a double album opus – see what you think – we of course want one…….
Which neatly leads us to an email we received from Dome of black sweat records – who are based I believe in Italy – alerting us to the labels latest two releases. A cursory nose of the labels wares duly noted amid their fine back catalogue a re-release of Ariel Kalma’s ‘76 set ‘osmose’ all re-mastered and boasting bonus cuts, keen eyed spotters among you will indeed have taken note of our fondness for ’le temps des moissons’ when it appeared after a lengthy period in exile on the beta lactam ring imprint a few years back so while we seek out copies for a near future write up its back to these brace of new releases. First up Piotr Kurek, a Polish musician and enthusiast and collector of vintage instruments, Mr Kurek cut his career in dance and contemporary theatre during the 90’s forming the group Slepcy. Originally released by way of an ultra limited cassette on the polish imprint Sangoplasmo earlier this year, ‘edena’ marks the second limited re-press of Kurek’s work on black sweat – the other in case your taking notes was ‘heat’. lovingly pressed on just 150 copies of transparent red wax and sporting a vintage 70’s looking library sounds sleeve ‘edena’ is comprised of six svelte suites that radiate succulently to the kind of primitive electronica as though viewed through a portal observing a vintage age living in the lengthening shadow of the space race and immersed in a post 60’s hippy fallout screened in monochrome setting tuning keenly into futurist visions. A gorgeously lulling set that for the best part comes on like a nocturnal mirror balling nursery room lunar carnival plotted upon sonic trajectories not so distant from those found on broadcast’s latest opus ‘berberian sound studio’ albeit as though re-tooled in the wood shed of Raymond Scott. Blending together a progressive and kosmiche knowing this serene slice of out there retro-ism is subtly traced in a sepia lined gothic lysergia, warm digits and eat lights become lights admirers will immediately adore as will old school fans of goblin not least this being more so than on the parting ‘desires’ which finds itself cut to the sweetly light disturbia that at one time back dropped Italo-horror films directed by Lucio Fulci and Dario Argento. Within these grooves the melodies are crafted in a hypnotic warmth, steady progressions built layer upon layer assume depth, detail and stature to create an expansive sound canvas, by way of utilising a slow sonic drip feed the robotoid mechanisms and clock working rhythms adopt and apply a simplistic though intricate nod to Louis Hardin’s principle of the counterpoint. Title track ‘edena’ – perhaps if truth be told our favourite moment of the set – finds itself gloriously trimmed in multi tracked choruses and delicate lunar opines to sound as though both Komeda and Korzynski had collaborated in one late night studio sitting to reframe scores from Morricone’s ‘spaghetti western’ legacy. Elsewhere ‘untitled’ is dinked in the kind of affectionately teased kooky lullaby like tomfoolery that suggests its author is a fan of Delia Derbyshire / White Noise while the excitably jittery flurries that fleet foot fancifully throughout ‘tonal colors’ tap seductively into the heart of kosmiche classiness with its woozy application of Stereolab mindsets finding themselves fed through the Cornelius blender. Essential in short. www.blacksweatrecords.com
That promised second mention of black sweat loveliness comes courtesy of Embryo, a real rare find indeed is ’message from era ora’ . for those previously unaware of embryo – like say for instance yours truly which is only a half truth given we‘ve heard of them in passing but have never had the pleasure of having their sounds grace our player, this collective have been the cause of swooning fits among the more tuned in cognoscenti who prefer their ear gear more freeform and free from generic boundaries. Emerging in the celebrated late 60’s German music scene, the same scene noted for its experimental prowess and drawn together by similar minded souls who’d feared Germany had lost its musical voice in an age still cowed by the lengthening shadow cast by the second world war, Buchard and Serfas set about collaborating musically into what would become Embryo, far from being a rudimentary one trick pony, this ever evolving sound collective forged from a early career penchant for psychedelia soon began to develop and blossom far outside the restrictive codas of kosmiche sounds, more Coleman and Davis than Can and Faust there’s an eclecticism to Embryo, their musical melting pot is stirred to a concoction whose roots are very much informed by the free spirited nature afforded by the trappings of progressive rock and yet upon whose dynamic / structure an intensely fluid and vibrant jazz spiked ethno beat print is tattooed. Now I’ll be honest, when I first heard this the first name that popped in my head was ozric tentacles, both share the same free spirited mindset, that element of any thing considered and anything goes so long as its fit for purpose doctrine appearing to be the only rule. So to ‘message from era ora’ – a true vault find featuring two previously unreleased expansive freeform cuts totalling 43 minutes of groove recorded live way back in 1976 in a church and featuring Italo jazz legend Massimo Urbani in a freakish jam face off and something that captures the collective at the height of their mercurial powers. The set comes pressed upon a limited issue wax platter, 500 in total 200 of which arriving on splatter wax with the remaining number gouged on black vinyl. Admittedly not I’m guessing everyone’s cup of tea but safe to say those who’ve plugged into on a regular basis to the likes of classic era Amon Duul II, colosseum and nucleus will find much of interest here for this is deeply intricate stuff, in fact scratch that this is huge stoned out head music within whose lengthy duration you can actually grow a beard and you’d be well do so because these babies literally terra-form the deeper you get constantly shape shifting to draw into the brew essences travelled in from Africa, India and the hazy heat scorched plains of Tibet with jam #1 providing something of a kitchen sink and more besides thrown in for good measure and positing itself as the looser of the two head to heads. That said it’s the second side that proves the most wigged out experience, revealing a more defined rock mindset with the first five minutes primed to a gnarled strut gouged electric boogie that had us for a moment double checking that Acid Mothers hadn’t been mistakenly supplanted on the pressing like some nest robbing cuckoo before jettisoning off into the depths of the minds third eye like some rocket hot cosmica troupe headed up by Bill Laswell. And then it mutates again 10 minutes in cooking up a deeply intense and fraying slab of potent white hot scalded blues blistered rock a boogie to which admirers of hawkwind, white hills and mugstar ought to converge upon at their very earliest convenience. Quite sublime if you ask me. www.blacksweatrecords.com
We’ve been having what can only be described as technicals in trying to download the latest outing from Trevor Midgley better known to the heads among you as Beau who you may have noticed has been popping up on various Fruits de Mer platters of late. So while we get this sorted – incidentally the album is called ’the twelve strings to the Beau’ and its out on sound of salvation – here’s a cut from his self titled debut set re-issued a while back on cherry red entitled ’the summer has gone’ which is quite apt playing for this morn given there’s a distinct dour autumnal stillness that’s descended upon the outside world viewed through our window. The imagery greyed and decaying, the mood forlorn almost regretful like the loss of a lover, the playing sensitive, slow and deeply introspective – really – how could you resist, Beau teases the grooves with a beautifully woven rustic ode to the majesty of nature and its inevitable season changing cycle, wrapped in a classical musical tongue the sentiment smokes and melts and though stolen in ache and regret is steeled in hope at its eventual return – something we here are suspecting ought to provide ripe listening to those who love the Katie Winter…..
Sneaking into our air space and sprinkling its adoring affection upon everything it touches is the latest lovely from Littlebow. Heavy hearted as we were in discovering we’d somehow missed their debuting ‘the edge blown aerophone’ from a year or so ago our gnashing of teeth tendencies were soon cooed by the strange fleet footed fancies drifting from out of the sweetly cured grooves contained within. For those previously sat in the dark unaware of their existence – littlebow is the collaborative noodling of Katie English and Keiron Phelan, the former more easily identified as Isnaj Dui whose work including this here missive has been mentioned in musings long since past while the latter if I recall rightly last visited upon these pages being part of that quite beguiling smile down upon us debut. These days part of the extended Orla Wren collective whose promised follow up to ‘the one two bird and the half horse’ we still await with baited breath (what do you mean its been out and gone already – there will be words), ‘Pi Magpie’ is a quite frankly wonderful 10 track suite that woos and coos with a serene nature bound beauty to playfully tap on the tree house door of Vernon Elliott. Both magical and enchanting, these wood carved treasures draw upon a deeply engaging water coloured pastoral palette where the easy ear tones of smouldered lounge electronics blissfully caress and rapture to the figurine florets of willowy wind orchestrations. ‘Pi Magpie’ is the soundtrack for fading summer nights, subtly speckled in exotica and garnished with an affecting minimalist persona that for the best part sounds as though it was crafted in an enchanted woodland. irrefutable dashed with a lost English eccentricity tracks like the loungey ‘part time blind’ nod to the stirring British magicalia so eloquently set to score by Douglas Gamley most notably his sound-scape for ‘spring and port wine’ and should ring an appreciable bell to those who regularly subscribe to the wares of such esteemed labels as trunk and finders keepers whilst the wintry tasked ‘for the song’ slyly shimmers around the Laurie Johnson note book like some distant cousin after glowing on the vibe of ‘the avengers’ albeit here re-tooled as were by L’Augmentation. Those enamoured of krautrockian dialects ought to shuffle at pace to ‘devil’s interval’ where the shimmying motorik rhythms are frantically found huffing and puffing to the watchful sirens of squirreling wind opines to come on like some mutant jitterbug penned by John Lurie amid an impish after hours drinking session with Cluster. ‘wearside ratcatchers’ admittedly caught our ear not least due to it being steeled in a mournful bitter sweet classical elegance framed in clock working chimes but because its dusted in the kind of Stereolab squiggles that longingly littered their ‘cobra and phases’ set. Somewhere else the lush sand stroked tropicalia of the lazy eyed ‘hosianna baft’ recalls the idle some starry eyed distant land drift of to shack highway’s debuting platter with its softly deflected off set funk mirages envisaging a lilting warmth and carefree nature something with which the parting ‘paking halos’ sees fitting to bottle up and set afoot to voyage off in to the milky distance with.
Staying with second language, the label have just released their third compilation in the music and migration series to celebrate the 20th anniversary of birdlife international for their continuing work regarding the protection of birds and the bringing to public awareness the impact of mans threat to avian migration route ways. Volume III gathers together an enviable roll call of talent including Mark Fry, Lisa Knapp, Sharron Kraus, Piano Magic, ISAN and more – details about the work birdlife undertakes can be found here – www.birdlife.org while by way of a taster the label have put out the ISAN track as a means of hooking you in – not that you needed any encouragement you understand – the blighters even host a bi-monthly pod cast wherein they invite members of their collective family to step up to the plate and show off their wares.
Once such broadcast – their latest posting finds Dollboy presenting his recent work ‘ghost stations’. recorded live on 5th September earlier this month work that first took shape and hold way back in 2010 when he took a journey of discovery tracing the disused metro lines and underground stations of London and Berlin. With the Thames Tunnel Shaft providing the setting and with the assistance of a chosen group of musicians and an invited audience, Dollboy tried to capture the mystery, the bleakness, the sadness and the eeriness of these neglected subterranean hidey holes, blending beauty with the sinister, Dollboy and his assembled cast craft a deeply alluring oft melancholy real time hauntological experience that reaps rewarding dividends – www.soundcloud.com/second-language
Oh and back to that ISAN track – typical tender trimming from Messrs Saville and Ryan, ‘kirkeskov’ is a kookily cooled gloopy soupy cortege of chirping tropicalia sounds beset in ice formed snow globes so fragile you fear they’ll shatter to the touch though yet once shaken wake, stretch and yawn as though some secret hideaway lagoon life had wrested into life following a period of hibernation very demurring stuff indeed.
Just spotted it seems the ‘ghost stations’ soiree by Dollboy wasn’t the only offering that September night, here’s Isnaj Dui same evening, same place hosting her own set replete with power failure moment – a cornucopia of arpeggios and bowed vibes – deliciously serene. www.soundcloud.com/second-language/isnaj-dui-live-thames-tunnel
And we’re back with Beau – those of you networked to our face book dithering at www.facebook.com/thesundayexperience will have guffawed at our hopeless communication breakdown in getting album titles wrong and citations for tracks all ill informed – remedied now you’ll be happy to note – and stop laughing at the back – anyway we’ve now managed to download Beau’s latest full length ‘twelve string to the Beau’ – primed for near future missive mentions – so between now and then a little taster of what to expect. This is track one, side one – can’t go wrong with this surely – a beautiful little love ode for all you smitten by cupids bow, simple, affecting, poetic and straight to the point – rather like a less testy Louden Wainwright III and I say testy because when he’s not we’re usually doubled up on the floor eyes a welling in floods of tears….oh – should say at this juncture – its called ‘love is…’
Shudder to think how we managed to so far miss this. Recently released via denovali ’where we were’ is the latest opus from ambi-classicist Greg Haines. Now I’ll own up here and now in saying I was previously unaware of the work of Mr Haines and with that feel humbly embarrassed in which case I might just feel obliged to hook up with the retrospective set also being put out by Denovali showcasing his collective past adventures. Sandwiched upon 2 slabs of heavy duty wax ‘where we were‘ comprises of 8 star twinkled suites that blend, bend and morph together the disciplines of techno, ambience and dub into a glorious astral dub symphony. Strictly for lights lowered appreciation, there’s a smoothly smoked sophistication oozing from the grooves that recalls in the main 90’s pioneers Banco de gaia and Biosphere – none more so is this the case than on ‘the whole‘ wherein the subtle techno earth beat motifs fuse hypnotically to engage in an alluring nocturnally hued slice of smoked out sophistication. The production slick and the arrangements crafting a sumptuously night light show, in short what Haines has crafted here is an enigmatic palette filling suite of aural shape shifters delicately dipped into the panoramic folds of a tangerine dream matrix that cross-wires various sonic cultures and tongues as though a one stop kraut cooled / ambient / dubtronic / techno party bag. Here you‘ll find dreamy lunar flotillas such as ‘wake mania without end II‘ voyaging across aural plateaus more commonly attuned and visited by the likes of qluster, roedelius et al while with its lunar lullaby opines ‘trasimeno‘ twinkles frailly as though some forgotten radiophonic symphony from another age rediscovered on the cutting room floor and tended and cared for by a sympathetic ISAN. ’the intruder’ opens proceedings – genteel and softly skinned in an amorphous web of succulently layered textures caught as though rising and stretching from some sleepy interval, either that or the slow turn of a heavenly star emerging from the shadows of an eclipse, the twinkling motifs induce calming presence all the time depth and density slowly but assuredly gathering mass and precision to converge at the 4 minute mark in a brief snow bursting blaze before dissipating once again into the dream weaved demurred tides. assuming more definition ’something happened’ is deliciously bedded upon a soupy tripwired technoid template the type of which much loved via earlier catalogue warp outings as it blends elements of cosmica and dub to its canvas with the latter variants summarily duelled and spruced in showers of arabesque motifs mid way as the mood begins to freewheel and take ascent. Nothing quite prepares however for the humbling slow curved ache of ‘so it goes’ for us which provides one of two key note moments in the sets evolution and overall delivery – utterly devastating, parched and softly tended and housed in a tear stricken spectral shell, the genteel tilt of the melodic curvatures reveal an adept eye and ear for the compositional construction, quietly epic and almost hymnal in its solace and much nodding to the crafted hand of Morricone and Budd. Just in case you were wondering which track served to make up our vote as to the sets celebrated centre piecing pair then look no further than the parting ’habenero (version)’ which for us gets the nod over its more fulsome sibling ‘habenero’ mainly for the fact that it serves to complete the circle as were and bring us back to base and in the process cast a decidedly dream woven montage that’s both intricately spaceous being set to becalming orbital mirage of meditative demurring and dissipating weaves and tenderly hand pressed to be immersed in a deep rooted classicist appreciation. Enigmatic in a word.
As the press release rightly alludes imagining a trip would conjure floating images dreamed in sun showered hazes of pixelated hallucinogenia immersing the subject in a feel good glow, it’s an oft used melodic dynamic by ensembles especially those frequenting a psych toned sonic axis. Not so with Islet whose ‘tripping through the blue room’ assumes something of a subtle nightmarish sub text as though gripped in the disturbia of a bad trip. Prized from a forthcoming second set ’released by the movement’ through shape records, this ghostly slice of a trip-a-delic wooziness is rested in all manner of apparition like weaves, sepia palettes and spectral flavourings, fracturing chambertronic signatures dissipating in halos of celestial visitations are shimmered in ghostly hazes to be twinkled and possessed within a twisted toy box carnival that’s all at once surreal, sinister and disturbingly seductive. Accompanying video below by Casper White acutely mirrors the tracks somewhat fragmenting persona by way of utilising ice blocks and painted portraits to craft something of a warping / melting effect. Very strange.
And that’s your lot for now. As ever many thanks to press folk, labels, musicians and you – yes you there – for tuning in, reading and making this gubbins possible.
We love records, cassettes and even CD’s so should you feel the desire to contact you can get in touch in the following ways –
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As ever take care of yourselves…..xx