Esplendor Geométrico, "Ultraphoon"

Recorded in Madrid and Rome during 2013, this is the new album by the influential electronic duo ranked as industrial music pioneers. Ultraphoon is a leap ahead as for production and sound quality, with a stunning and brutal outcome, richly detailed nonetheless. Rhythms, noises and processed voices from different sources come together in hypnotic –bordering on trance– soundscapes along the lines of previous releases such as Pulsión (2009) and Desarrollos Geométricos (2011). Most of the meticulous mastering process has been carried out by Francisco López, internationally renowned as one of the top sound art and experimental music personalities, giving a new twist to the usual Esplendor Geométrico sound.

More information can be found here and here.

ultraphoon cover art

4273 Hits

Kevin Drumm, "Trouble"

Trouble is the brand new dispatch from the assorted output of Kevin Drumm and sits as one of the quietest in his entire catalogue. A single continuous 54-minute excursion into the netherworld of the audio spectrum, Trouble is neither ambient nor drone but a more complex investigation into the deep recesses of sound.  One which discreetly works itself into the mind of a listener willing to invest in the path laid out in this extremely subtle, beautiful and exceptional release.

More information can be found here.

Trouble cover art

4066 Hits

Oren Ambarchi, "Quixoticism"

Recorded with a multitude of collaborators in Europe, Japan, Australia and the USA, Quixotism presents the fruit of two years of work in the form of a single, LP-length piece in five parts. Ambarchi's work in recent years has evinced an increasing fascination with the possibilities of combining abstract sonic textures with rhythm and pulse, whether in his drumming with Keiji Haino, the subtly driving ride cymbals provided by drummer Joe Talia in their work together, or the motorik grooves of Sagittarian Domain (Editions Mego, 2012). Quixotism takes this aspect of Ambarchi's recent work to the next level: the entirety of this long-form work is built on a foundation of pulsing double-time electronic percussion provided by Thomas Brinkmann. Beginning as almost subliminal propulsion behind cavernous orchestral textures and John Tilbury’s delicate piano interjections, the percussive elements (elaborated on by Ambarchi and Matt Chamberlain) slowly inch into the foreground of the piece before suddenly breaking out into a polyrhythmic shuffle around the halfway mark, being joined by master Japanese tabla player U-zhaan for the piece’s final, beautiful, passages.

The pulse acts as thread leading the listener though a heterogeneous variety of acoustic spaces, from the concert hall in which the Icelandic Symphony Orchestra were recorded to the intimacy of Crys Cole's contact-mic textures. Ambarchi’s guitar itself ranges over this wide variety of acoustic spaces, from airless, clipped tones to swirling, reverberated fog. Within the complex web Ambarchi spins over the piece’s steadily pulsing foundation, elements approach and recede, appear and reappear, in a non-linear fashion, even as the piece plots an overall course from the grey, almost Nono-esque reverberated space of its opening section to the crisp foreground presence of Jim O’Rourke's synth and Evyind Kang’s strings in its final moments. Formally indebted to the side-long workouts of classic Cologne techno, the long-form works of composers such as Eliane Radigue, and the organic push and pull of improvised performance, Quixotism is constantly in motion, yet its transitions happen slowly and steadily, so that they are often nearly imperceptible, the diverse elements which make up the piece succeeding one another with the logic of a dream.

Anyone who follows Ambarchi's work knows that it has many facets: explorations of the outer limits of rock with Keiji Haino, psychoacoustic interference and sizzling harmonics in his solo performances, delicate improvisations with Keith Rowe or John Tilbury. To all these projects, Ambarchi brings his particular sensibility, patiently allowing sounds to develop on their own terms without forsaking their intrinsic physical and emotional power. Similarly, although Quixotism is shaped by its many contributors, the resulting sound world is unmistakably Ambarchi’s own. His most substantial solo release since Audience of One (Touch, 2012), Quixotism represents the summation of Ambarchi’s work over the last few years while also pointing to the future.

More information can be found here.

Quixotism cover art

 

4266 Hits

Ashley Paul, "Heat Source"

Ashley Paul's Heat Source was recorded during a challenging year of transience between New York and London. During this year of impermanence Paul performed regularly and the effects of frequent performance and traveling can be heard in the intentionally pared back emptiness of Heat Source. making it an emotionally challenging and fascinatingly personal listening experience.

Heat Source finds Ashley Paul working using her brilliant ears to find a zen like balance between her voice and a sparse arrangement of staccato instrumentation leaving as much open space on one song as most people would create in a lifetime. This open space isn't empty, however, but it's up to you to fill in the meaning. Heat Source is an emotionally challenging and fascinatingly personal listening experience that creates a powerful pace.

Ashley Paul is a performer and composer based in Brooklyn, New York. She uses an array of instruments including saxophone, clarinet, voice, guitar, bells and percussion, mixing disparate elements to create a colorful palate of sound that works its way into her intuitive songs; free forming, introverted melodies. This blend manifests beautiful and simple musical forms against acoustic experimentation. Her solo albums have received high praise being chosen in Wire Magazine's "Top 18 Releases of 2013," Pitchfork "Best Experimental sounds of 2013", first on Byron Coley and Thurston Moore's "Tongue Top Ten" in Arthur Magazine and included on NPR's All Songs Considered "Best of 2010". She has been interviewed or featured in Wire Magazine, BOMB, Gonzo (circus), Dummy, The Quietus, Ad Hoc, Spex, The Sound Projector and Foxy Digitalis.

Ashley has performed or recorded with Phill Niblock, Rashad Becker, Nik Colk Void, Loren Connors, Aki Onda, C. Spencer Yeh, Anthony Coleman, Joe Maneri, Joe Morris, Seijiro Murayama, Greg Kelley, Bill Nace and Eli Keszler appearing on such labels as PAN, ESP-DISK' and Tzadik. She received a Masters of Music from New England.

Out October 27th.

More information will eventually be available here.

4319 Hits

Lussuria, "Industriale Illuminato"

One of the most intriguing artists on the Hospital Productions roster, Lussuria came to prominence with the release of three tapes as part of the American Babylon series in 2012 which were eventually compiled into a double vinyl edition last year. His opiated atmospheres brought together the ritualistic appeal of late '70s and early '80s Italian industrial music crossed with the claustrophobia of early material from The Cure and the decadent, voyeuristic compulsion of Pasolini flicks so enamoured by Coil.

Having been in the works through late 2013 and in post-production for several months since, Industriale Illuminato is in some respects the first release by Lussuria conceived as a standalone album, and is perhaps his most unique, unsettling body of work to date. Inspired by Deconstructionism and an overriding sense of anxiety, the album revolves around the dislocated narrative of album opener "Boneblack," a dense and evocative fade into shadowy realms inspired by composer Giacinto Scelsi and the enigmatic mind-tricks of Alain Resnais' Last Year at Marienbad.

More information can be found here.

Lussuria - Industriale Illuminato - Hospital Productions

4642 Hits

Lee Gamble, "Koch"

Following up from the success of his emphatic PAN releases Dutch Tvashar Plumes and Diversions 1994-1996 in 2012, we are excited to announce ‘KOCH’ (pronounced "cotch"), the new album from London's Lee Gamble.

Sharing some stylistic affinity with his previous records, which excavated his deeply personal history with UK jungle and rave, and techno, this new work dives even deeper to reveal a singular and intimate musical vantage point, shifting to approaching music as projection, state, hallucination, an other place. In Koch, we experience an artist constructing a future after time spent deconstructing the past.

In the music we witness such dimensional abstraction, zooming between epic macro scenery and claustrophobically close detail, disorientation and absolute focus. Rhythms fuse together and phase apart, club tracks tunnel into an anxious wilderness, with themes and textures emerging as threads throughout the record, wormholing between each track.

There is a sense of the seen and the unseen, an honest tension between music as function (for this world) and as artistic exploration (for another world) as cracks in the surface appear to reveal the odd and alien minutiae within. Koch represents an intimate and revelatory new phase in Lee Gamble's practice. Producing tracks that can live and grow on their own in a club or personal listening environment, the artist's exploratory framework creates threads of consistency and tension between disparate spaces, locations, and mental states.

More information can be found here.

4165 Hits

Anjou (ex-Labradford)

The culmination of four years writing and editing, Anjou marks the first collaboration between Labradford's Robert Donne and Mark Nelson since the release of that group's fixed:context LP.

Combining modular synthesis, Max/MSP programming and live instrumentation, Anjou deftly weaves noise with gentle ambience and melody with texture.

Guitar, bass and Steven Hess' (Locrian, Fennesz, Pan American) live percussion give the eight pieces an immediacy and create a framework for the more abstract sounds of digital and analog synth programming.

The product of twenty-plus years of friendship, Anjou is refined and challenging.

An extension of the Labradford sound-world but no mere victory lap, Anjou represents Donne and Nelson stepping out and forward, their eyes firmly focusing on the future.

More information can be found here.

4530 Hits

The Legendary Pink Dots, "Chemical Playschool 16 & 18"

Chemical Playschool Volumes 16 & 18 cover art

The creatures who frolic in the Chemical Playschool have again escaped their test-tubes, and hell, this time they have gone too damn far...

Recorded from May through July 2014 at The Dolls' House, London and The Silver Studio in Nijmegen. Mastered by Ray.

Edward Ka-Spel, The Silverman, Erik Drost., Raymond Steeg...Cover Art by Anita Hammer.

More information can be found here.

 

4487 Hits

Rivulets, "I Remember Everything"

I Remember Everything cover art

"I've known Nathan for many years and we've played shows and made records together, so I know his thing - hushed, reaching vocals weaving an often melancholic impression over sparse guitar and ambient backdrop. As the opening song ("Reinforced/Delicate") stumbles in, carrying that familiar weight, I thought I knew what was coming, but I was wrong. By the first two lines of "Into the Night", the second song, I had to sit down because if the rest of the record was going to be like this, I knew I wanted to be there with it. To my delight, it did not let up - every song a relentless epiphany, the ragged edge of emotional, even physical, abandon.  Timeless songs like "My Favorite Drug is Sleep" and "I was Once a Handsome Man" careen into the more artful/obtuse textures even thru the sprawling electric tribute of "Ride on, Molina."  This is what happens when someone with a truly unique vision sticks to their guns and proves it."

- Alan Sparhawk, Low

Out September 23rd.  More information can be found here.

4433 Hits

Scott Walker & Sunn O))), "Soused"

Official 'Soused' Trailer, Pre-Order Now Available

When Sunn O))) first approached Scott Walker about appearing on their 2009 album Monoliths & Dimensions, little did they know what it would actually lead to. Four years on, Scott was back with something even more enticing, collaborating on Soused, a body of work he was writing with them in mind.

Recorded in London in early 2014 and produced by Scott Walker and long-time ally Peter Walsh with the assistance of musical director Mark Warman, Soused is a 5-track 18-minute body of work that cements both acts’ wide-reaching and otherworldly renown.

Out October 20th on 4AD.

More information and a brief trailer can be found here.

4737 Hits

Earth, "Primitive and Deadly"

Primitive And Deadly is EARTH's tenth studio collection.  Dylan Carlson and long term cohort, drummer Adrienne Davies, manage to pull off the trick of completing an Ouroborean creative cycle, twenty-five years in the making, whilst exploring new directions in their music.  For the first time in their diverse second act, they allow themselves to be a rock band, freed of adornment and embellishment.  As much as Carlson's guitar has always been the focal point of EARTH's music, it's been surrounded by consistently diverse instrumentation. Here the dialog between Carlson and Davies' drumming remains pivotal, underpinned by the sympathetic bass of Bill Herzog (Sunn O))), Joel RL Phelps, Jesse Sykes and the Sweet Hereafter) and thickened by additional layers of guitar from Brett Netson (Built To Spill, Caustic Resin) and Jodie Cox (Narrows).  Perhaps the largest left turn on Primitive And Deadly, though, is prominence of guest vocalists Mark Lanegan and Rabia Shaheen Qazi (Rose Windows) who transform the traditionally free-ranging meditations of EARTH into something approaching traditional pop structures.

Out September 2nd.

More information can be found here.

Primitive And Deadly

 

5999 Hits

Godflesh, "A World Lit Only By Fire"

The first new full-length Godflesh album in 13 years will be released on Justin Broadrick's own Avalanche Recordings label on October 7, 2014.

More information will eventually be posted here.

A new song ("New Dark Ages") can be heard here.

godfleshworldlitcd

5196 Hits

"Beautiful Noise" (Shoegaze Documentary)

Beautiful Noise is the first-ever documentary about one of the most influential, underground music movements of the late 20th century.

Featuring members of: Cocteau Twins, The Jesus & Mary Chain, My Bloody Valentine, Ride, Slowdive, Chapterhouse, Swervedriver, Lush, Curve, Pale Saints, Seefeel, and more.

Created by filmmakers Eric Green (Writer/Director) & Sarah Ogletree (Producer/Editor) and their production company HypFilms, Beautiful Noise is a DIY, indie film and passion project inspired by a deep appreciation of the music and the desire to see it documented in musical history.

The genesis of the project began with the principals Green in April of 2005 and Ogletree and evolved over the course of many years and with the help of a great many people who believed in the project and donated their time, equipment, knowledge, and even money to see this film released.

Following a  successfull Kickstarter campaign and a protracted licensing phase, the filmmakers were able to complete the film.

Beautiful Noise Premiered May 31, 2014 at the Seattle International Film Festival and Internationally June 8, 2014 at the Sheffield International Film Festival.  Currently it continues to screen in festivals and will next be released on Home Video (date to be announced soon).

More information can be found here.

6952 Hits

Severed Heads reissues

Medical Records presents two of the most striking and iconic reissues in its catalog.

ECT Vol. 1

Since The Accident was originally released in 1983 on Ink Records. The LP exemplifies the transition point between experimental structure and loops into the catchy pop hooks that would later define such releases as Rotund For Success.

Difficult to classify, it is a masterpiece of electronic music. The opening track "Relic Of The Empire" is a slow sequenced magnificent piece with time-stretched samples overlaid with multiple tracks to create a symphony quite unlike anything heard before. The hit "Dead Eyes Opened" (charted in 1985 as a single) is a dance floor-friendly track with crafted synth hooks fused with bursts of noise intertwining with interesting vocal samples.  "Gashing The Old Mae West" is a perfect example of how the record can take a dark turn into the style of the earlier Sev Heads with jagged industrial crunched out tape loops and folding in and out samples.

ECT Vol. 1

City Slab Horror was originally released in 1985 (also on Ink Records) . This LP, though 2 years after Since The Accident, continues to carry the torch illustrating the evolving transition between experimental structure and loops into the catchy pop hooks that would later define such releases as Rotund For Success.

This LP seems to move slightly into darker territory in general with its synth textures and slower tempo tracks, but overall has a nice “continuation” feel from Since The Accident, yet with obvious technological evolutions. The opening track "Spasm" drags the listener down the Sev Head mental rabbit-hole instantly with its heady samples and eloquent drum machine rhythm.  "Spitoon Thud" is a rambunctious affair with its cacophony of samples and percussion.  "4.W.D." is a great sneak peek into the sound of the Sev Heads LPs to come with its treated vocals and pop hooks (perfected on later records such as The Big Bigot).  Next to last is the amazing "Goodbye Tonsils" track which is unstoppably catchy and features more of the creative use of samples which made this group so interesting.

Though signed to '80s industrial label icon Nettwerk in North America and often classified in the same vein, these records are not easily definable and have a life of their own. Though commonly misclassified with a lot of the late '80s industrial/goth scene (as well as touring with Skinny Puppy at one point), Severed Heads would be more accurately in good company with acts such as Cabaret Voltaire, early Coil, Chris & Cosey (and CTI), and the like.  Long out-of-print and a rarity on the collector’s market, these LPs are presented with original repro jacket.  Remastered by Tom Ellard from the original source masters. Presented on high-quality 180gram heavyweight black and white vinyl.  Features bonus LP insert compiled by Tom Ellard with ephemera from the time.  Limited Edition.

More information can be found here.

 

 

 

8582 Hits

Duane Pitre & Cory Allen, "The Seeker and the Healer"

duane pitre and cory allen - the seeker and the healer (12inch vinyl lp)

Performed and put to tape at Estuary Recording Facility, The Seeker and The Healer constitutes the first collaborative work from Texas-based sound artist Cory Allen and minimalist composer Duane Pitre, who hails from Louisiana.

The album's two sidelong pieces were developed out of multiple improvisational sessions governed by predetermined rules, sourced from piano, bowed guitar, harmonium, and 49-stringed drone harp (a custom-made instrument of Allen's own design featured here on record for the first time).

In the context of both musicians' discographies, these pieces occupy a unique and important place, synthesizing the strengths and compositional tendencies of each into a sympathetic and symbiotic whole. Pitre's powerful, overtone-laden string work, documented on sterling outings for labels such as Important and Root Strata, is on fine display here, augmented by the keen sense of pacing and attention to the finer points of acoustic atmosphere that typify Allen;s solo output. Both pieces go beyond academic minimalism, mining deeper and more personal terrain.

The arc of "The Seeker" begins with contemplative piano clusters that are wed to guitar and harmonium drones, building to a dramatic crescendo and punctuated by percussive histrionics sourced from Allen’s drone harp. "The Healer" conjures a focused, mournful environment imbued with rich sonic lyricism by way of Pitre’s bowed guitar. Operating as a duo, Allen and Pitre have found truly fertile ground, producing an album that stands as a radiant beacon in their already exemplary catalogs- a masterful record that proves to be distinct from their past releases and simply cannot be missed.

More information can be found here.

8348 Hits

Alessandro Cortini, "Sonno"

Alessandro Cortini is best known as the lead electronics performer in Nine Inch Nails’ live unit.

His recordings under his own name have gained prominence in recent years and he has become known as one of the pre-eminent Buchla masters in North America. Cortini makes a surprising departure into the 202 on his debut album for Hospital Productions - Sonno.

Sonno was recorded in hotel rooms, using a Roland MC 202 through a delay pedal, recorded direct, sometimes into a small portable speaker system.

"I liked to walk around the room with a handheld recorder to hear where the sequence would sound better, turn on faucets, open doors or windows to see how the ambient sounds would interact with the MC 202/delay/speaker sound. It was very relaxing and liberating to make music this way..."

The result is a beautifully restrained yet oddly emotive album that's quite distinct from the overly academic approach so often undertaken by hardware driven devotees.

More information can be found here.

5335 Hits

Tashi Dorji

cover

Tashi Dorji grew up in Bhutan, on the eastern side of the Himalayas. Access to any music created outside the country is limited, as are most cultural options, given the geologically isolation of the country. How Dorji went from a life so remote to developing his innovative and revelatory guitar style is mind-boggling.

Yearning for access to the world outside, Dorji pursued and obtained a fully-paid scholarship to a liberal arts school in Asheville, NC, in his early twenties. He’s since settled in there (save a short stint in Maine), soaking up a vast array of music, most notably the works of Derek Bailey and John Zorn. Along the way, Dorji developed a playing style unbound by tradition, yet with a direct line to intuitive artistry. His recordings feature improvisations that spasmodically grow along tangential, surprising paths. All references break loose during a composition, as Dorji keys into his own inner world.

After a handful of cassettes on various labels, Dorji presents his first proper album on Hermit Hut, the label created by Ben Chasny (Six Organs of Admittance) and inspired by spreading word of Dorji’s talents. The six compositions here are hand-picked by Dorji and Chasny as the most representative and far-reaching of his recordings. Taken together, they announce a new guitar music unlike anything being made today.

More information can be found here.

5532 Hits

OOIOO, "Gamel"

OOIOO has always created a musical language all its own. Under the leadership of Yoshimi, also a founding member of Boredoms, the group has recorded six albums that have subverted expectations and warped perceptions of what constitutes pop and experimental music. Four years of work went into making Gamel, their bold new album inspired by the Javanese style of gamelan and the first new music from Yoshimi in over five years. Gamelan is an ancient form that has inspired a great many composers and musicians over the past century, from Erik Satie and Claude Debussy to Mouse on Mars and Sun City Girls. The introduction of this traditional form transformed the group into a super tribe, side-stepping the road between the past and the future. Their focus is not to replicate these ancient styles, but to incorporate them into their consistently inventive, constantly shifting musical frameworks. They take their love of indigenous music into an entirely new dimension by freely weaving organic and electric tones into a vivid tapestry, employing their keen sense of color and texture.

While previous OOIOO albums have been largely studio creations, Gamel is the most accurate portrayal of the band's overwhelming, forceful live presence they have released yet. Yoshimi leads her minimalistic rhythm ensemble by making quick, impulsive shifts in tone and attack, the group acting as one mind under her expert instruction. While the gamelan elements will be brand new to many listeners, the band offsets the bizarre with familiar, at times even nostalgic and childlike, melodies. Gamel is euphoric, bursting at the seams with an exhilarating frenzy that is universal yet uniquely their own. OOIOO’s music is reflected in the ear of the beholder, with each listener taking away something different.

Yoshimi began her music career in 1986 playing drums in UFO or Die with vocalist Eye, and later joined him in the revolutionary noise-pop group Boredoms. Her explosive drum performances captivated audiences and even inspired Wayne Coyne to name a now-famous Flaming Lips album in her honor. While the band’s tours of the United States are infrequent, they are as The New York Times has stated, transcendent.

More information can be found here.

5383 Hits

Jacaszek & Kwartludium, "Catalogue Des Arbres"

jacaszek & kwartludium - catalogue des arbres (cd)

For the past decade or so, Polish musician Michał Jacaszek has been exploring a new, resolutely modern chapter in Eastern Europe's long, storied love affair with classical music. His creations are painstakingly crafted collages of electronic textures and baroque instrumentation, harpsichords being swarmed by woolly static one minute and pulled apart by billowing wind the next. A push-and-pull tension runs deep and constant throughout. Ambient music is rarely so sonically challenging. Jacaszek has recorded for Ghostly International, Miasmah, Gusstaff Records and Experimedia and other labels. This is his first release for Touch.

Michał Jacaszek writes:

"When poets and writers declare their enchantment for the forms of nature, they often use musical terms as metaphors. Visual artists' creations often resemble graphic partitas, when recapturing the rhythms of landscapes.  Confirming, in a way, these musical intuitions, composers write great music deeply inspired by birdsongs, wind rustlings, waves repetitions etc."

More information can be found here.

4927 Hits

Hildur Gudnadóttir, "Saman"

hildur gudnadottir - saman (cd)

This album is about resonance: on Saman, which means "Together," Hildur melts her voice with her cello, connecting the two instruments together. The result is a highly involving and moving album, recorded, mixed and mastered in Berlin. Hildur's sylph-like vocals contrast beautifully with rich cello tones, resolving the tension between light and dark to produce a unique listening experience.

More information can be found here.

4893 Hits