Tzusing follows THAT ACE cinematic LP on L.I.E.S. with this trampling collision of throat music, EBM, and industrialised trap for Bedouin Records.
There’s five tracks for the ‘floor or the BDSM dungeon, booting off with the stomping bass and throaty overtones of Flow State featuring Illsee and sinking lowing the bullet-riddled industrial trap wreckage of Shame.
The B-side signals a blank eyed sort of gabber trample with the horn wielding 風雲再起 and then a spot of late ‘80s/early ‘90s EBM swagger with 地心引力抓不住你 and 得意先生.
Debut album from Andrew Hung, also known as one have of Fuck Buttons.
"As co-founder of Fuck Buttons, he has toured extensively with headline shows at the Kentish Town Forum, Glastonbury and Greenman, been featured on the 2012 Olympics opening ceremony and all three albums have featured as Best New Music on Pitchfork Media. His production work has included Zun Zun Egui's "Shackles Gift" and co-writing/co-producing the critically acclaimed "Kidsticks" by Beth Orton. He soundtracked the multiple-award winning film "The Greasy Strangler". Realisationship is the continuing voyage through Hung's previous collaborations. Written, performed, produced and mixed entirely by Hung; the album is pure expression. In a world that seems more disconnected than ever, Hung sees this as an opportunity to highlight the duality of humanity. The music of Realisationship is both fragile and powerful, a celebration of nuance; we are light and shade, good and evil, love and fear. A hammer to expectations as an expression of hope."
An unmissable introduction to unsung American composer Mary Jane Leach with Pipe Dreams, astonishingly her first ever solo vinyl release. Despite playing an instrumental role in NYC’s pioneering Downtown avant-garde community since the ’70s, Mary Jane is, unbelievably, little known beyond the US avant-garde. Now, following her production input to the issue of Julius Eastman’s Feminine for Frozen Reeds (and her liner notes for Unjust Malaise in 2005 for that matter), the two powerful longform pieces contained in the cannily titled Pipe Dreams are set to attract a raft of new ears to her absorbing psychoacoustic explorations.
Recorded between 1984 and 1989, Pipe Dreams is only Mary Jane’s 3rd full solo release, arriving nearly 20 years since Ariadne’s Lament [New World Records, 1998] and 24 after Celestial Fires [Experimental Intermedia Foundation, 1993]. With a paucity of precedents to compare it to, it effectively forms the first time many will clasp ears on her music, and simultaneously illustrates the range of her sound - one side of spellbinding church organ interplay; one of gripping tonal discord - while also placing it within historical context amid the searching Downtown milieu of Julius Eastman, Arthur Russell, Arnold Dreyblatt, Ellen Fullman, Philip Corner, Daniel Goode, and Peter Zummo - most of whom she’s collaborated with at one point or another, either in Downtown Ensemble or guesting on their records.
That communal spirit, a sort of antidote to the capitalist realism of individualism, feeds deeply into these two solo works. On the A-side, Pipe Dreams (1989) finds her communing with psychoacoustic spectres in a way that strongly predates Áine O'Dwyer's more recent investigations into acoustic phenomena for Penultimate Press, as well as resonating with the drone work of La Monte Young and Marian Zazeela. Amid her precise, baroque figures, pulsing air and pealing microtonal partials, listeners are witness to the presence of plasmic atmosphere and sub-harmonic frequencies that flux and disperse in sublime antiphony, likely to turn your chosen zone of reception into a discrete, floating antechamber.
In stark contrast, Mary Jane’s B-side, 4BC (1984) is a more visceral, biting piece for four clarinets, employing long drones within a constrained tonal palette, combining their raspy dissonance in a thick body of resonant sound that speaks to the idea of discord as its own sort of harmony - a way of appreciating the friction and difference between sounds as much as people, and recalling to some extent the pitching grip of Harley Gaber’s The Winds Rise In The North, or the grind of Tony Conrad.
Hard to believe it’s taken until now for Mary Jane to receive at least some of her dues, but a real pleasure to finally immerse ourselves in her heavily meditative, distinctly singular world.
Important Congolese field recordings made in 1952 & 1957 by legendary ethnomusicologist Hugh Tracey are fed through the IRCAM prism by Mike Kitcher, with results that speak to a heady place out of time and space in the creation of what might be termed ‘new exotica’ - a music created from a very specific location that becomes placeless through abstraction. It's an incredible addition to this excellent, bijou imprint.
We’ve previously heard Peder Mannerfelt do something similar with The Swedish Congo Record, as well as Beatrice Dillon & Rupert Clervaux with Studies I-XVII For Samplers and Percussion, and likewise heard Rashad Becker take that concept to the next level by imagining a whole new sonic language, syntax and culture of notional species. But Kitcher’s efforts stand somewhere in between those approaches, taking those pioneering field recordings and techniques as the basis for a set of subtle yet radical inversions of that material, and in the process focussing in and releasing their uniquely inflected spirits and expressions through sleight of hand and ear.
In an attempt to reflect Hugh Tracey’s technique of live mixing multi-instrumental tracks with a hand-held microphone, Kitcher limits himself to brief samples, effectively plucking sounds from the ‘air’ of Tracey’s view, and, with almost sci-fi levels of forensic detective work (think Deckard as Denny with an Esper machine), zooms in onto their hidden moments of breath, pensive silences and the tactile haptics of performers and their instruments.
Those peculiarities are “scrubbed” of air and return sounding remarkably different, with flutes appearing like voices or vice-versa, and luma pipes sounding more like middle-eastern microtonal traditions than sounds we’d usually associate with the Congo. Each piece offers captivating new perspectives on what you thought you knew, or think you’re listening to, with incredibly rich results for keener ears to marvel at and pore over.