Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Hey Exit - Caudata

As the sounds unravel and spill out on the floor, Hey Exit is standing there with a grin. Connecting two exposed high current wires, the sparks created consume all listeners. The mind sizzles and the fuses blow. Then begins the period where everything is restored. An ambient haze envelopes the shorted out consciousness, and stabilization is slowly achieved. The entire process allows hearing to become more acute. Small, faint, and distant tones can be heard with a new clarity. Until the end when collected data begins to overload thoughts again.

Brendan Landis is the artist behind Hey Exit. This cassette titled Caudata is his thirty five minute foray into a fascinating world of radiant sounds over a droning canvass. To get there, Brendan does blow the gaskets off the engine with the second track titled "Irises", a six minute long plunge into red lining noises causing the listener to shed all introspection. Moving through the bulk of the composition, Caudata really is more of a drone creation touching on brief moments of cacophony. There is a raw sounding beauty to this listening experience. Maybe this is derived from traveling through "Irises", and knowing this could be looming beyond each turn in sound. The tones we here somehow reflect the chaos of the start, but for the meat of the Caudata, they are kept expertly and skillfully managed.

 This was released in February of 2016. Not sure how many, but they are available from the Hey Exit bandcamp page. When you get there, check out all the music. Brendan has many guises of sound, with Caudata only being one facet. There is also a newer cassette that just came out a few weeks ago.





Links
Hey Exit site - bandcamp - facebook - twitter - tumblr - soundcloud

Monday, June 20, 2016

SISTER GROTTO - YOU DON'T HAVE TO BE A HOUSE TO BE HAUNTED

As we listen to certain compositions of music for the first time, the atmosphere we are in causes the sounds to permeate into our consciousness or fall away without any more thought. Sister Grotto has a very special tone and feel, given the right conditions, it's like submerging your body into a crystal clear lake at the perfect temperature. The music completely envelopes all of your senses, and tranquilizes your concerns.

Sister Grotto is Madeline Johnston from Colorado. You Don't Have to be a House to be Haunted is her beautiful half hour long cassette consisting of three tracks. Piano, vocals, cello and other found sounds ride afloat on an ambient sea. When you are working with a slow and patient delivery, this genre of music is so hard to get correct. A tiny bit of too much emphasis in any direction, and the entire composition goes cheesy or forced. Genres like deep forest folk, not so goth or slightly newer age minimalism get red stamped on the release, dooming a greater number of people the chance to be exposed. They stay clear of  particular types of music. You Don't Have to be a House to be Haunted avoids all genres. That is what makes Madeline's tones and even the choir on the first song so beautiful. The sound is natural and makes a spiritual impact. Going back to the first line in this description, you need to give this the proper environment for listening. Madeline's voice is so ethereal, this cassette as background music just does not work. Some quality time for a very worthwhile effort in exquisiteness. 

You can find this at Sister Grotto's bandcamp page. There are some more cassettes worth taking a listen to as well.



Links
SISTER GROTTO - bandcamp - facebook - soundcloud

Sunday, June 19, 2016

ARKLIGHT / SHEEP BELLA TINE

Another split cassette, this time on Kerchow! Records. Arklight and Sheep Bella Tine. In previous write ups, i described the tones of Sheep Bella Tine on their cassette What Doesn't Kill You Makes You Exotic. So new is Arklight and this is also the first Kerchow! Records release to roll into Lost In A Sea Of Sound. Two different approaches to woolly rock that takes me back to the early sounds of Velvet Underground on White Heat White Light.

The Arklight side consist of four tracks burning the core of the rock sound. The body of the music is well cooked, guitar, bass, drums and vocals stewed into a fuzz and emitting aromas of bands from the nineties. One comparison that immediately came to mind is the New Zealand band The Cakekitchen and specifically the album titled World of Sand. Both Arklight and The Cakekitchen seem to blend music and vocals, delivering them in a homogenized sound. The tones of both vocals and music seem to parallel each other making one sonic vault into your ears. Psychedelic rock that  goes back to the early K Records catalog of The Halo Benders and Beat Happening. I guess those are both Calvin Johnson bands, so there is another comparison to help connect the Arklight sound.

Sheep Bella Tine is on the other side of the world from Arklight but still in the same dimension. Dialed back on the fuzz, but still the similar four parts of guitar, bass, drums and some vocals. There are tones reminding me of the very first Sonic Youth album especially on two tracks, "The Tragic Farces" and "Of Katchina Dolls". Sheep Bella Tine exemplifies patience in style, allowing the songs to build in an almost drone like pattern. Not quite as slow as Codein's Frigid Stars album, but the tones of late eighties / early nineties music are again present on the flip side of this split. Sheep Bella Tine's side is more compact than their previous full length What Doesn't Kill You Makes You Exotic. Stands to reason since this is only one side, but this does make a more accessible listen to those who might be listening for the first time.

Kerchow! Records out of Chino Hills, California has this cassette in an edition of forty. They have a very big catalog dating back to 2013 with many releases still available on tape. This one is filled with great artwork and thoughts on the struggle of the world we live in.





Links
Kerchow! Records - bandcamp - facebook
Sheep Bella Tine - bandcamp - facebook

Saturday, June 18, 2016

Pumpkinseed ​/ ​Wica Intina ​- Songs From A Wooden Bell Vol​:​1​.

Ready yourself to dive into the timeless waters of Tennessee lakes. Pumpkinseed and Wica Intina  have hooked the raw folk sounds of the past and pulled their sparkling nostalgia up from the cool depths. I have always loved the creativity of Meliphonic Records and Songs From A Wooden Bell Vol​:​1​. solidifies this feeling even more.

Soaking in low-fi goodness, this split cassette works it's enchantment over nine catchy tunes. The first side by Pumpkinseed (Daniel Gardner)  has unprocessed electric guitar and well crafted vocals. Starting off with a modern raga like track titled "Yanga Yanga", with field recorded conversations, then the radio dial turning to forgotten country classics. "Dakotas Room/Holidays" delivers well sung harmony over thoughtful written lyrics. Really a nice composition. The next tracks explores some great guitar played over droned feedback and even more cleverly delivered singing. All hearkening to sounds simply played and recorded, no trickery or processing.

Wica Intina's (Dakoto Brown) side arrives with just a touch of more hi-fidelity. Resting even more into the singer-songwriter vein. Beautiful acoustic guitar and richly sung vocals. Starting off with "The Remaining Tribes Move to Shiloh", Wica has schooled himself in the art of timing. Balanced with patience and delicacy, the track is a pleasure to hear and rehear. "Ballad of Obey" is a superb classic and ends with death, like the direction all ballad songs of the past tend to go. The vocal tone of side b spans decades and reminds me of how songs were once sung.

From the tape i have, forty seven of fifty, this is a fairly limited run. Meliphonic Records out of Tennessee is quickly becoming a well traveled path with cairns like Songs From A Wooden Bell Vol​:​1​. showing which way to go. This is a great split with both artists in parity with each other. If you need more words, check out Ryan Masteller's write up on Cassette Gods. He has a great view of this tape and the label. And since you are into reading (because you have read this far), don't miss Wica Intina's prolific light on music We Keep The Neighbors Up.
 




Links
Meliphonic Records - bandcamp - facebook

Galaxie Deluxe - III

Out of bounds sounds for your ears to hear and mind to ponder. Electronic frequencies received from listening devices bridging dimensions yet to be fully understood. Rolling through time on hilly passageways, this composition strains to reach the peaks and glides down into the valleys. Some tracks hit with squelching pitch and variance while others cool your body on hot summer days. Slow plodding rhythms changing to all out sonic attacks. A wild ride through a strange aural landscape.

Fifteen excursions into what seems like mayhem, but after listening, you begin to realize the precision in this crafted architecture. Sometimes the sounds get dark and heavy, penetrating your consciousness and flushing out your thoughts. Other tracks are more whimsical and approach the newly erected carnival waiting for your admission. Contemplative throughout, reaching for extremes, always interesting, keeping the listener engaged not excluded. 

Galaxie Deluxe's third release on OJC Recordings. These artists, Rigel Migelin & Ropal Jagnu kicked off the label's first release back in 2014 with the cassette simple titled I. Both previous cassettes are long sold out, but here is your chance to be one of the thirty recipients of the hour long dive into electronic deliberations.
 



Links
OJC Recordings site - bandcamp - facebook - soundcloud

Friday, June 17, 2016

No Data - Uniform Groove with a Chisel

Sometimes you listen to tapes and your mind just numbs. Thinking about words to describe the sounds is so perplexing.... Uniform Groove with a Chisel by No Data bends the circuit board so far, cracks start forming and noise leaks out. A foray into the microcosmic world of synaptic sounds amplified and delivered to the human ear.

Well over a half an hour on ten tracks, Uniform Groove with a Chisel transforms itself before your ears. The noises arrive in their own time and space. Varying from subdued industrial sounds to a wrench torquing the nut so strongly, chaos happens. The tool slips, the fastener breaks, damage occurs. No Data played loud can seriously cause your mind to shut down in order to protect itself. This composition maintains its coherency from start to finish and has a slew of diversity. The strength of Uniform Groove with a Chisel is the foray into unexplored realms. No Data brings everything back from these ventures, revealing communications never heard before.

This is released on OJC Recordings label out of Los Angeles. This is the second release by No Data on OJC. The first was in May of 2015, now sold out. The newest No Data cassette is in a limited run of thirty tapes. Turn the volume up on this. Keep listening until you understand how creative sound can be.





Links
OJC Recordings site - bandcamp - facebook - soundcloud

Saturday, June 11, 2016

Inner Islands Late Spring Batch

This is a really spectacular batch from Inner Islands. Three artists, all are so close in delivering the same steady imperturbable atmospheres. The densities mix into one median volume. The label should wrap these three so they will always stay together. The batch is available from Inner Islands site.

Links to words on each release:
Inner Travels - Clear Seeing
Kyle Landstra - Jeweled Moon Codex
Matthew Barlow - Hatha




Links
Inner Islands site - bandcamp - facebook

Inner Travels - Clear Seeing

The beauty in the world is heralded by the senses we posses. The human mind glimpses and absorbs moments making impacts, articulating these instances into new exquisiteness. Inner Travels who is S. Targo, has been transcribing these points in time on numerous releases on as many labels. On this new cassette titled Clear Seeing, the allurement is grand and focused in length, making impressions all listeners will cherish.

Four tracks spinning in at right around forty minutes, fashioned with a cohesive morning mist that clears as the day progresses. From sunrise to sunset, Inner Travels connects the patterns of natural life. The sounds are so clear, allowing those who listen to see from hearing. From the opening track "Radiant Sunrise", birds awake as the suns rays are bent through the earth's atmosphere. Ripples of sound expand outwardly causing an almost trance like state for those paying attention. The terrain heats over the coarse of the day, the notes become sticky with humidity and everything slows. Finally the night sky appears and Clear Seeing radiates the entire composition into space above.

This is out on the label Inner Islands. Perfectly fitting into the wheelhouse for the genre of releases this Oakland outfit specializes in. Released in an edition of one hundred natural green cassettes. Available on it's own or in a special batch purchase of three tapes. This is a good really good batch, take a moment and give them all the time they deserve.








Links
Inner Islands site - bandcamp - facebook
Inner Travels site  - bandcamp - facebook - soundcloud

Kyle Landstra - Jeweled Moon Codex

Sustaining drift is far more beautiful to watch with living creatures rather than man made machines. Each dip and swell is a connection with evolution. Jeweled Moon Codex by Kyle Landstra stays aloft and has a similar feeling to watching birds ride the changing gusts.

The first half hour side is titled "Low Light Living". These sounds stay high in the atmosphere. The tones resemble the realm were gravity has only little effect, but it is there, and you are falling. The length of time is of no concern to measure. Maybe in some glacial time span in the cosmos, this composition is skipping off a planets outer pull.

"Jeweled Moon" is the title of the second track taking up the other long half hour of this cassette. In comparison to the first side, this composition has a lower bass like vibrancy. The note used take on a slightly more introspective tone for me. Done in a deeper scale, the drone of "Jeweled Moon" is thicker and grounds flight. The ebb and tide of sounds is strong in current and your consciousness can feel the weightier oscillation. Near the middle point of side two, the drone dissipates completely allowing the glimmering noises to peer from their abodes. Then we are gently enveloped again as the thickness sets in.

In the late spring batch from Inner Islands. Kyle Landstra has been many places over the last couple of years. I am happy to see a resting place at Inner Islands. They are probably pretty happy together.
In an edition of one hundred, ready to pick up in a batch or on it's own.






Links
Inner Islands site - bandcamp - facebook
Kyle Landstra - bandcamp - facebook

Matthew Barlow - Hatha

Mathew Barlow has taken his skills from listening to creating and delivers a simply beautiful composition. As the title Hatha suggests, these sounds are suspended in the gravitational balance of the Earth, Sun and Moon. Patient, being conveyed effortlessly, pulling the weight of carnal responsibilities off your shoulders.

Hatha has an extraordinary ability to root you to the Earth. With the flute and the field like recordings of nature, there is a native essence to these sounds. At a half hour, to side long tracks titled "Sun" and "Moon", the points of origin are from a time lost. Trying to create peacefulness in sound is incredibly difficult. The issue is sometimes the feelings come across as too much. Like you are being force fed a piece of "New Age" pie. This over stuffing then ruins the entire taste. That is why we should commend Mathew for feeding us just the right amount and hope more skilled musicians learn creating tranquility is not just something to be done and sold on shelves.

In the newest batch out now from Inner Islands. The label showing the path to the serene harbor as great artists dock around it. One hundred were in this edition. Available and ready to find homes.







Links
Inner Islands site - bandcamp - facebook
Matthew Barlow - twittersoundcloud
Twin Spring Tapes - bandcamp - facebook

Monday, June 6, 2016

V N C F - P L E A S U R E D I S T R I C T

Here outside the stadium in Orlando at the Copa America, Costa Rica vs Paraguay!
 
Listening to the VNCF cassette titled PLEASUREDISTRICT. I am truly amazed how so many releases from Bonding Tapes not only fit right in with the scene, but actually augment the environment. The new VNCF release turns the dial to ten! An undefinable genre of music crashing in with a weighty and deeply chiseled groove. Solid but never dragging you away into it's space. Always allowing you to breath and enjoy the surroundings.

VNCF has been highlighted on both Bonding Tapes "Quality Time I & II" various artist tape releases. This is the first full length cassette for VNCF, and it is so well deserved. Seventeen tracks coming in at around a half hour. Some longer, some just snippets of beats and samples. There is mystery surrounding these sounds. Transmissions from time, like listening to radio picking up frequencies from all genres, but mutated from their existence in the continuum. Pop and rap music dripping with ambient goo, now reshaped for new ears to hear.

Most of all, with all of the tentacles reaching through some portal into the past, PLEASUREDISTRICT slings you forward, transporting you into the future. This composition by VNCF is wild and lives off infinite timescapes. Wrapping dimensions like birthday presents and opening them up as they emanate from your speakers.

Released in the middle of May by Bonding Tapes. So many mind expanding contributions before PLEASUREDISTRICT, and now the label lands this one! Available in a limited run of fifty. Go ahead and start listening!






Links
Bonding Tapes site - facebook - bandcamp

Friday, June 3, 2016

Three Tapes from Personal Archives

Here are three 2016 releases from the Iowa label Person Archives. They are pulling undiscovered sounds from the river bed of the Mississippi and delivering them to the world. Each of these releases are so different. These uniqueness are the foundations of what Personal Archives is all about.

Here are the links to the three new cassettes.
DJ Too Slow - Fuck All
Sex Funeral - Eradicator 
Scammers - Lasers In the Jungle 
Links
Personal Archives site -  bandcamp

Scammers - Lasers In the Jungle

Scammers is Phil Diamond from Kansas City. Everything about this cassette titled Lasers In the Jungle is incredibly slick. There is a picture in my head of the entrance to an organ store that used to be in all the shopping malls. Phil Diamond is there on the poshest Hammond in the store, causing the mall crowd to gather in wonderment. Maybe this description is a little cheesy, it was just something that gathered in my head.

Lasers in the Jungle is a well rounded composition, eight tracks over forty minutes. Resting in a world of incredibly well written glazed pop songs. Messages in the lyrics about life and observations of the people within. So much information is being conveyed, Lasers In the Jungle requires a few listens in order to process everything Phil Diamond is channeling. The music is catchy, having a simple set up quality for the vocals. And the vocals.... deeply sung, both in tone and meaning. Delivered in a singer songwriter style that has veered way left, into a venue where time seems to go both back and forward. Sometimes i hear an eighties new wave vibe, then lost, because Scammers has progressed beyond my knowledge. There where a few bands that came to mind Phil Diamond reminded me of; Treat Her Right, in an odd way Cakekitchen, and a particular album i have been fond of Murder Ballads.Yeah, don't through comparisons out there much, but Scammers' sound is astonishingly unique. What it might reminded me of is one tool to help bring it into a spectrum i can understand and appreciate.

This is out on Personal Archives, the label from Iowa, somewhere near the banks of the Mississippi. In a run of one hundred crystal clear cassettes. If you have not purchased from Personal Archives before, Scammers is a good place to start. Very representative of how skilled and thoughtful all of the releases on the label are.





Links
Personal Archives site -  bandcamp

Sex Funeral - Eradicator

Eradicator has an ominous feel from the sounds it relinquishes. Lost in the seventies, with raw electric guitar and drumming to match. The sounds have perched themselves on the edge of rock and no wave music. Sometimes there are moments resembling segments of La Villa Strangiato by Rush then falling away to moments from James White and the Contortions BUY album.

Two side long tracks titled "Home" and "Away" spanning over thirty five minutes. From fathoms so deep, Sex Funeral is like punk music with to much creativeness for the listeners in that era. Both sides of the cassette are similar ranging from noise on the edge of rage to quieter portions where reflective guitar takes center stage. The entire listen is a journey through the minds of a guitar and drum duo with enough talent and timing, exposing the abilities of both musicians. Their world is chaos and refinement creating a stationary front of noise.

This is a March 2016 release by the label from Dubuque, Iowa Personal Archives. Available now and released in a batch of one hundred. Wild creativity harnessed and delivered on cassette medium is a Personal Archives standard.





Links
Personal Archives site -  bandcamp

DJ Too Slow - Fuck All

Crafty work by DJ Too Slow assembling music from music. The title is actually a conglomeration as well because when you fuck everything and everybody, "All" is the perfect pronoun too capture this essence. Music complied and slowed down into drone like mantras sung by inebriated monks. Gradually changing over the two forty minute long tracks.

Taken from albums by to different artists, these sounds were accelerated in a hadron collider. All tracks of each album were smashed together forming one new sound, an amassment of everything played as one. The first side is the process applied to  Fuck Everybody, You Can Do Anything by Andrew Weathers Ensemble. The second side, a similar rebuild with FUCK EVERYTHING by Casey Chisholm. Both tracks have hints of sounds from the originals, but are so completely different and uniquely creative.

This was released by the label Personal Archives in February of this year. One hundred of these were made and are available from the labels bandcamp page. Another deviation from anything traditional making Personal Archives a special resource for inventiveness in sound.



Links
Personal Archives site -  bandcamp