Enchanting recitals of Terry Riley’s two keyboard studies and ‘Dorian Reeds’, performed with hypnotic skill and attentiveness by AMM pianist John Tilbury
Wielding piano, organ, harpsichord and celeste, Tilbury deeply connects with the magic of Riley’s work in three durational archive recordings that now surface with Sheffield’s excellent experimental label, Another Timbre. Aside to his seminal ‘In C’, the two ‘Keyboard Studies’ are among the most peformed pieces in Riley’s canon of groundbreaking c.20th works. John Tilbury is one of the UK’s most renowned experimental pianists, perhaps most associated with Cornelius Cardew and the pioneering AMM ensemble, are hugely admired for his use of improvised and extended techniques.
Tilbury’s two performances of ‘Keyboard Studies’ are just staggering examples of technical prowess at the service of hauntingly beautiful music, yielding a swaying mass of crystal clear arpeggios in the 18 mins of ‘Keyboard Study #1’ before really taking off in ‘Keyboard Study #2’ with 30 mins of endless soaring flight likely to leave listeners with quivering flesh as it proceeds thru stages of harmonic bliss. His take on ‘Dorian Reeds’, originally the B-side to Terry Riley’s ‘Reed Music’ (1967), follows with iridescent cascade of synthesised reeds piped quicker than the eye can follow and wrapping us into a quieter sort of rapture that’s got us by a thread right now.
The psychedelic, edging on kitschy, side of krautrock is surveyed thru freaky tunes by Die Partei, Conrad Schnitzler, Faust, Moebius & Plank and many other greats of that pivotal era
Selections span a slice of time from the ‘60s and ‘70s german avant garde, ranging from the slackened dub disco groove of ‘Scharfer Scnitt No.1’ by Populäre Mechanik to the pitch bent spume of ‘Base & Apex’ from Brian Eno, Moebius & Roedelius, taking in a custom edit of Schnitzler’s cosmic glitter in ‘Bis die Blaue Blume blüht’, unbuttoned sludgy slump by Faust, and a wavey organ workout on Asmus Tietchens’ ’Trümmerköpfe’.
Avant-garde computer music pioneer Carl Stone's newest is a Max/MSP powered deep dive into unsettled dreamworld sampledelica, warping pitch-fuct pop garbles into hiccuping noise spirals and quasi-techno ethno-pop bumpers. Properly off the dial material that sounds like a plunderphonic take on the Sublime Frequencies catalog, or ABBA reworked by Oval.
'Wat Dong Moon Lek' might be the oddest missive we've heard yet from Stone. The Californian computer music vanguard has long been notable for his dissections of electronics, minimalism, world music and hip-hop, and this latest set melts his history into a barely discernible soup of chattering drums, veiled vocals and stuttered melodies. "Stone 'plays' his source material in the way Terry Riley's 'In C' 'plays' an ensemble," reads the press release - and it's not far off the mark. There's a freewheeling charm and humor to Stone's approach that's hard not to love, it's uncompromising and deliciously bonkers, but struck thru with a level of knuckle-crack'd expertise that lifts it a few inches from the ground at all times.
At its best, 'Wat Dong Moon Lek' sounds like a shortwave radio interrupting a skipping J-pop CD: almost aggrevatingly loopy but texturally inviting at the same time. And while the music is assisted and driven by software, it sounds organic and human, as if Stone is answering the ubiquitous algorithmic playlist age with an arched eyebrow and a double helping of glitchy mischief. Whether you're into John Oswald, Farmers Manual, DJ Screw or Steve Reich, this one's for you.
Synth-pop pioneer John Foxx reads from his novel ‘The Quiet Man’, set to distant solo keys and pads.
‘The Marvellous Notebook’ is latest in his ongoing, surreal fiction about a ghostly meta-figure who inhabits an old grey suit and tells the story of London becoming overgrown. It’s a fine example of Foxx’s enduring obsession with Ballard that has influenced his work since the ’70s, from his first poetic observations on Chorley and Lancashire’s mix of post-industrial ruin and bleak moors, thru his subsequent move to London and far beyond. It might just be us, but we can hear strong thematic parallels with the contemporary work of Preston’s prodigal Blackhaine, give or take a generation. Here’s looking forward to Blackhaine’s novels and spoken word LPs in 2062, but before that we’ll happily sit and listen to John Foxx’s Lancastrian tones in audiobook form.
“'The origins of the novel are firmly cinematic', says Foxx of The Quiet Man project. 'I found an old grey suit in a charity shop in the 1970s. Over the years, I got some friends to wear the suit in various locations in London. I filmed them just walking or sitting in cafes or apartments. As I did this, The Quiet Man story began to emerge. It's about London becoming overgrown, about the suit being alive somehow, and the way cities can alter us - and our memories. It's also about film', he adds. 'In the novel, The Quiet Man walks into the screen at one point. I think we all do this when we view a film, we enter into it. Participate. Travelling without moving. If that isn't magic, I don't know what is.’”
Glorious, compelling post-classical improv and reshod folk songs by widely admired virtuosos Tarozzi & Walker - required listening for anyone smitten with Laura Cannell’s folk vision, Cucina Povera, or the duo’s recordings of work by Éliane Radigue, Phill Niblock, Stephen O’Malley.
A shining new star amid Unseen Worlds’ glittering constellation, ‘Canti di guerra, di lavoro e d‘amore’ follows from Tarozzi’s 2020 solo album for the label ‘Mi Specchio E Rifletto’, and her work with Walker on Philip Corner’s ‘Extreemizms’ (2018), with a ravishingly free and joyous expo of their combined energies. Rooted in the people and landscapes of Tarozzi’s native rural Emilia, Northern Italy, the album sees them breathe new life into songs originating from working class women and the partisan resistance of WWII, notably the choral song of rice field workers, named “Mondine” or “Mondariso”. Earthed in this rich tradition, and pulled to grander heights by their shared lifetime of experience in classical, avant, and new music performance, the results are brimming with a rarely captivating vitality for the ages.
Oscillating incantations about “hard, poorly paid work, love, the hypocrisy of society, protests, war, the challenge of working far from home, the violence of oppression and the need for political awareness”, with instrumental passages, the suite flickers in a beautifully elegant form that blurs the music’s idiomatic borders. With poetic license they describe the natural world above and around them, with flighty strokes opening out ‘Country Cloud’ and contoured in slyding pitches to follow the temple-kissing vocal cadence of ‘Sentite buona genre’ at the album’s boundaries, while the main body utterly enchants with the rowdy choral swell of ‘La lega’ sequenced beside gripping experimental instrumentals such as the agitated elegance of centrepiece ‘Il bersagliere ha cento penne’ and the sublime staging of its 2nd part, into the inventive rabble of ‘Meccanica primitiva’, and simply breathtaking pastoral tableau evoked in ‘La campéna ed San Simòn - Ignoranti senza scuole’, where all their circles bleed into one.
Sweden’s leading avant gardists, Mats Gustafsson, Anna Lindal, Mats Lindström and Joachim Nordwall are captured live in quiet concentration during an online concert from ’21, hosted by Confront.
‘Vår’ renders the quartet in one intensely longform work beside a pair of odder preparations for the concert that venture into regression session primitivism and spectral electro jazz. Playing to no present audience, but heard remotely at the time, Ensemble Vår get right under the skin of their thing on the main piece, ‘Consort’, evolving from scribbly lower case plucks and scrapes into a restrained, primitivist language of animalistic purrs and breaths extracted from saxophone, flute, violin, electronics, sampler, analog synths, effects and tape. Nobody attempts to outdo anyone else, holding to a democratic division of frequencies that stalk each other and congeal into a sort of synaesthetically stimulating sound that feels like it grows hair, scales and baby teeth as their improvisation proceeds.
Black Twig Pickers' Sally Anne Morgan drops trad pop in favor of stark outsider folk on "Cups", a creaky set of homespun American psychedelia that'll appeal to fans of Richard Skelton, Laura Cannell or Six Organs of Admittance.
There's a simplicity and immediacy to "Cups" that sets it apart from so much DIY folk. Morgan's last album "Thread" was an attempt at melting folk into pop structures, but there's no such conceit on "Cups" - here Morgan sounds free to catch her own tempo, and paint with sounds without being trapped in one template or another. She uses familiar instruments - fiddle, banjo, and various small noisemakers - and sometimes awkward, evocative tunings, and lets her arsenal speak for itself.
Morgan sounds as if she's reveling in the strings and space around her, twanging meditative phrases until the strings themselves are making the percussive scrapes and rattles. Fiddle phrases are pushed and pulled as they squeal ritualistically - the root formula is European folk music, but the way Morgan flushes these sounds into American folk and more experimental structures is careful and captivating.
Maverick baroque lutenist Jozef Van Wissem returns to his Incunabulum label for an hypnotic follow-up to his latest works with Jim Jarmusch
Still beloved around our way for his collab with Smegma some decade ago, it’s fair to say that time is a malleable concept to Van Wissem, an artist trading in baroque music in 21st century, and his new album feels like scrying into a parallel dimension where the baroque era never ended. However, in that dimension Van Wissem skilfully prunes the more florid aspects of baroque music to taste, modernising by design with an elegantly deft restraint that pushes his instrument’s putative use along more minimalist angles and subtly fusionist angles, galvanised with electronics.
We can hear something resembling Cajun country styles on ‘A New Earth’, while ‘Your Flesh Will Rise in Glory on The Last Day of The Future Resurrection’ recalls Keiji Haino not just in its title but the gloaming music, too. For more classicist application, turn to the final song ‘The Adornment’ for a fascinating interplay of straight-played strings and shadowy electronics, but the real meat is in the two durational works, each taking up around 14 minutes to cast their magick with mesmerising melodies at opposing, romantic and gothic ends of the register.
Batu knocks at new doors of club and electronic music perception with an amazing debut album exploring alternate meters, spaces, and permutations of his personalised style and pattern.
As hinted at in 2021’s preparatory 12” of corkscrewing drums and mutable sound design (‘I Own Your Energy’), in recent years Batu has re-assessed his sound from the ground up with remarkable results. On ‘Opal’ he resets the parameters of his music with a dilated, psychedelic purview, markedly emphasising electro-acoustic textural and tonal aspects, and working with Serpentwithfeet’s vocals for the first time, while rendering his rhythms more omnidirectional and unresolved. It’s a bold and meticulously realised effort by one of UK rave’s keenest prism pushers, balancing club music’s technoid sensuality and Afrorhythmic roots with more introspective electronic soul in timelessly fwd fashion.
Unfolding its narrative along psychoacoustic, ballistic axes of exploration, ‘Opal’ follows a mostly instrumentally implied, seamless kind of sonic fictional arc. The title and future-primitive feel of ‘Former World’ with its bowed percussion and GRM-like shocks coalesce into 4th world signifiers of ‘Mineral Veins’, and crystallize into rhythmic frameworks akin to Rian Treanor’s riddmic flux on ‘Convergence’ and the disrupted syncopations of ‘Even Here’. His future-primitivist flex follows into the recalibrated muscle memory tweaks and throat singing-like tones of ‘Atavism’, with ‘Emulsion of Light’ coming off like SAW-era AFX doing drill, sans drums, and cleansing the palette for a gorgeous Serpentwithfeet vocal on ‘Solace’, notably tempering the more dramatic urges to measure.
The final parts reconnect with more sinewy strains of club futurism in the rug-pulling tekkerz of ’Spectral Hearts’ but the focus is smartly kept to “album-mode” with his expressively narrative flourishes of ‘Eolith’ and the deep space projection of ‘Always There’, each setting off this vessel as Batu’s definitive artistic statement and a new high water mark for UK dance music long players.
DJ Sprinkles & Mark Fell compile their collaborative 12-inch releases alongside a second disc of previously unreleased material for over two and a half hours of absolutely timeless, deadly productions from two masters of their respective forms.
Rooted in the duo’s passion for foundational NYC-skooled deep house and contemporary social politics which has inspired their artistic briefs in very different but often overlapping ways over the decades, ‘Incomplete Insight (2012-2015)’ extends the pleasures of DJ Sprinkles & Mark Fell’s original sessions with a bounty of alternate edits and unreleased productions from the vaults
In a sublime-to-rude back ’n forth, they open with tracks from their 'Complete Spiral' sessions, pairing purring, tuff basslines and naked drum machine rhythms with samples of Arthur Scargill and Tony Benn, before really getting inside their thing on the unreleased bits, shifting from buoyant expansions to more angular dubs by Mark Fell (“something like the chords stabs on “big fun” but more messed up and weirder”) that dial up his peerless Sensate Focus workouts. It’s the first time most of this material has appeared on any formats at all - with the previously released work only ever available on vinyl - so it should be considered absolutely crucial listening for deep house connoisseurs and experimenters - or basically anyone with any interest in electronic music of the early 21st century.
Now of a decade long vintage, the tracks’ original release marked over 20 years since the deep house phenomenon first hit from Chicago via NYC in the late ‘80s/early ‘90s, when its sleek studio-as-instrument engineering and focus on rolling drums, vibes and bass pressure would irrevocably influence UK dance music, in particular the rugged heft of Sheffield and South Yorkshire bleep ’n bass. As a jobbing DJ in the queer bars of downtown NYC, DJ Sprinkles was there at the sound’s inception, while Mark Fell absorbed it via US import 12”s, with both artists rapt by the form’s effortlessness and, ultimately, its irresistible effect on the ‘floor.
This raft of unreleased mixes sweetly dovetails and diverges the pair's appreciation of the style, with Sprinkles really getting inside the groove on the likes of her 11min Alt.mix render of ‘Fresh’, and a “personal favourite for mixing on the dancefloor” in the lush expansion of ‘Incomplete Spiral’, while Mark Fell effectively hustles his tightest gear since the Sensate Focus days with the liquid-hipped latinate tekkers of his ‘MF Dub’ parts and the ’Spiral Focus’ vignettes. It’s all supremely rich and deeply satisfying gear with a balance of immersive, tactile immediacy and emotional intelligence for the ages.
please remember that we support Terre and Comatonse Recordings' efforts to keep projects offline, minor, and acting queerly. When purchasing this item, we ask you to refrain from uploading and indiscriminate sharing in any form. <3
Maverick Swiss pianists the Kukuruz Quartet turn in a definitive work here, interpreting four of Julius Eastman's best-known pieces (including 'Evil N*****' and 'Gay Guerrilla') with delicacy, emotionality and studied poise. Phenomenal stuff - whether you're familiar with Eastman's output or a newcomer, it's essential listening.
Recorded back in 2017 in Zurich in the national radio station's large concert hall on four Steinway D grand pianos, "Piano Interpretations" captures the Kukuruz Quartet's obsession and fascination with Eastman's output perfectly. The Swiss group have been working with Eastman's compositions since 2014, and have slowly built up a reputation for their bold adaptations of the cult composer's anxious "creolized" contemporary classical works. Eastman died tragically in 1990 at only 49, and at the time was hardly recognized for his outsized artistic contributions and developments within classical music, but since then his catalog has been re-appraised. His music was confrontational and political to its core - Eastman knew his existence as a gay Black American was controversial even before deconstructing his activity as a composer, and his music screamed it from the rooftops, languishing in the pain, complexity and beauty of his identity and allocated role.
Known for their unique performances and outsized skill, the Kukuruz Quartet are well suited to Eastman's nuanced compositions. The composer wrote music that stretched itself across 20th century classical minimalism and jazz, music that opened itself up well to a kind of improvisation that Kukuruz are well-positioned to attempt. On their recording of Eastman's 1983 piece 'Fugue No. 7' they balance chiming, rhythmic intensity with doomy low register hits, punctuating dissonant minimalism with a hand into the distant past. There's little room for sentimentality here; Eastman uses "fugue" to represent both its musical meaning and its emotional one, ruminating on identity and loss with a clear hand. The recording of 1979's 'Evil N*****' is even more powerful, flowing like water from tense sunlight into stifling darkness, moving from clustered, dense notes into plodding baroque phrases.
The album concludes with the 30-minute 'Gay Guerrilla' from 1979, a powerfully shifting composition that Kukuruz are able to infuse with the level of mournfulness, transcendence and anger it needs to truly represent Eastman's genius. Mindboggling music from beginning to end.
Written, recorded & performed by Muslimgauze, this album was withdrawn by Bryn Jones, and replaced by the ‘Betrayal’ album in 1993. This is the album in its original form, as intended by Jones. The material was recovered from a cassette copy of the album as the original DAT was reused.
"Shekel Of Israeli Occupation' was never meant to be released. This is the only release of the album in its original form, as intended by Bryn. The material was recovered from a cassette copy of the album as the original DAT was overwritten with new material. Remixes of the tracks "Khan Younis", "Jerusalem Knife" and "Yasser Arafat's Radio" appeared on the album 'Hamas Arc'. The tracks "Caste" and "Amritsar" appeared on the album 'Satyajit Eye'. A version of "Drugsherpa" appeared on the mini album 'Drugsherpa'. Versions of the tracks "Khan Younis", "Drugsherpa", "Amritsar" & "Jerusalem Knife" appeared on the extended 'Drugsherpa' album."
Master of reflective melancholy, Tape Loop Orchestra presents their soundtrack to the titular catalogue/exhibition of Keith Ashcroft - a 41 minute tapestry of willowing ambient classical strings and synthesised choral vox inspired by his studio’s proximity to the painter’s. It comes in two editions -a signed "artist edition" book and CD (100 page), and a slimmed down booklet and CD (20 page). Both limited to 100 copies each. RIYL Basinski, The Caretaker, Lawrence English.
"Artists’ studios often exist in abandoned or rejected buildings, no longer used as they were intended. In these spaces, artists repurpose, rearrange and divide sites into new spatial enclosures. MDF boundaries mark out space for creation whilst giving the inhabitant a sense of scale, and a limit, to avoid becoming overwhelmed by the infinite world beyond. Thin walls also conceal artists’ labour, enabling ‘invisibility’ through which magical operations can occur (any bewitching quality found in the work would be lost by peeking behind the curtain).
Through the wall that separates Keith’s studio from mine, I am granted the experience of listening to him paint. Brushstrokes glide softly and slowly, at other times rapid and rhythmic, and on occasion there are harsh stabs as though he is trying to break through the canvas into a space beyond (i.e. my studio). In return, Keith hears muffled sound from my side of the wall, the vibrations pushing back, supported and finally captured within the canvas.
There is an uncanny ‘absent presence’ running through this series of paintings, like ghostly hauntings neither leaving nor returning, but hovering in and beyond the temporal space of the canvas. Despite their pervading presence, the paintings conceal information, beyond and behind the surface, to the extent we are instinctively aware of there being ‘unseen spaces’ in attendance. It is from these hidden areas that sounds originate, like spectral presences waiting to reveal themselves. Voices are suspended between embodiment and disembodiment, and out of tune pianos are played by unseen hands drifting in from cavernous chasms. The overlaying juxtaposition of different spaces in both painting and stereo allow the experience of being in one space physically, whilst experiencing another – being in two spaces at the same time.
Keith and I both construct facsimiles from real events, fusing different temporal-spatial elements to create a third fictive space. The wall between our studios does not maintain a boundary, it acts as a point of merger, a space where our practices overlap, coalesce and fold into one another, allowing for something unexpected to develop from the collision. An amalgamation or conceptual resonance occurs, where the paintings make us hear differently and the sounds make us see differently, facilitating a three-fold experience, with each work taken alone or changing the other."
Killer comp of traditional gong musics ranging from the central highlands of Vietnam and NE Cambodia to variants from the Philippines, Borneo, Sulawesi and Indonesia, with an introduction by David Toop.
As the venerable Toop opines, Gongs have played an integral role in the mythogeography of Asia, and this comp is a great example of the instrument’s potential to induce unusual feelings thru tonality and rhythm. Normally used for ritual purposes, encouraging unity or trancelike states of mind, the recordings impart heady sensations, and, for those who can join the dots, form a sort of distant echo of other far-flung rhythmelodic traditions from outernational techno to other regional folk traditions from African to Native American, as well as c.20th minimalism and free jazz.
Initiated by Japanese sound artist Yasuhiro Morinaga, the project documents recordings of over 50 different groups spanning the South East Asian mainland and along its thousands of miles of archipelago into the Pacific. We’re particularly struck by the clashing overtone play of Isneg Group’s clangorous ‘Rooster Dance’ from the Philippines, and likewise the mesmerising melancholy of ‘Music for Funeral Ceremony’ from the Sumba Island, Indonesia, which both contrast with the transfixingly monotone, woodcut techno-like trample of ‘Duet Gongs by Coho’ from Vietnam, and again the gently hypnotic rhythmelody of ‘Buffalo Sacrifice by Jarai’ again from Vietnam.
Again, we can’t disagree with Toop’s description of the music as “simple yet mysterious and enveloping, a sound world in which to disappear. A theory exists but this is not explained" and urge lovers of anything from Don’t DJ to Ka Baird, Harry Bertoia to Sleazy or Kode 9 to give it whirl.
Recorded at home on her farm in Kentucky alongside her partner Nathan Salsburg, Joan Shelley's latest album is a pristine set of filigree country-folk, with contributions from Meg Baird, Bill Callahan and others.
By the time the lockdown hit, Shelley had already grown tired of constant touring, and constant upset. She'd been working solidly since the release of her 2010 debut "By Dawnlight", recording and touring both solo and with her Maiden Radio trio, and the pace had begun to wear her down. So Shelley retreated to her farm with her guitarist husband Salsburg and the two raised goats and chickens, and had their first child. This time of relative peace is the inspiration for "The Spur", an album that addresses Shelley's new world and muses on her new creative landscape.
It's a personal album that's sparked by small touches and a generous heart; the album's title track (and lead single) is a clear highlight, anchored by a strong vocal performance from Shelley and an impressive turn from Salsburg. But the guest appearances provide equally enthralling entertainment: Bill Callahan makes a welcome vocal contribution on the horizontal 'Amberlit Morning', while Meg Baird turns up for an assist on opening track 'Forever Blues' and short folksy piano jam 'Between Rock and Sky'. Nothing feels forced, everything is natural and it's a pleasure to engage with.
On her sixth album, Nika Roza Danilova embraces the unknown, collaborating with producer Randall Dunn and drummer Matt Chamberlain (Fiona Apple, David Bowie) to piece together her most progressive and energetic album yet. A must-hear for anyone into Fever Ray, Eartheater or Jenny Hval.
As she was beginning to come up with sketches for 'Arkhon', Danilova found herself stuck behind a creative brick wall. It was a writer's block more intense than anything she'd experienced before, and reached the point where she couldn't even listen to music for pleasure. Wracked with frustration, she realized she needed outside assistance and sent her early demos to producer Randall Dunn, and looked to drummer Matt Chamberlain to help with the album's rhythmic backbone. Between them, the three managed to come up with a sound that Danilova could lean into and use to burn through her writer's block. That's not to say the album is completely an ensemble affair - piano and voice composition 'Desire' is all Danilova - but the majority feels like a conversation between Danilova and her collaborators.
Most impressive is the record's sparkling centerpiece 'Dead & Gone', which includes widescreen string arrangements from Danilova's friend (and ZJ touring violist) Louise Woodward. This track is the key that unlocks the rest of the record - it's both minimal and lushly orchestrated, centered around Danilova's powerful voice, but letting creative light stream in from outside her headspace. Similarly, 'Sewn' feels indebted to Chamberlain, who lays down drums that give the track its chunky, distorted aesthetic; Danilova's cavernous voice is draped around a beat that screams from the mountaintop, surrounded by woozy pads and pinging staccato blips, but little else. For anyone who's been following Zola Jesus since her gloomy debut in 2008, this new set reconciles her early material with her latter day sheen - there's a willingness to douse herself in bleak noise here, but Dunn helps balance the elements, retaining a full, poppy quality without sacrificing any bite.
Early singles 'Lost' and 'The Fall' express this best, utilizing Danilova's recognizable circular vocal melodies, and meeting them with billowing drum patterns and fractal electronics. The latter is particularly impressive, reflecting '80s aesthetics and contemporary R&B simultaneously, sounding like Toto, Tangerine Dream, Kate Bush and Kelela at once. Danilova's choice to embrace collaboration has resulted in her most complete full-length in ages, it's still pop on some level, but epic, baroque, emotional and unashamedly experimental.
Wonderful suite of archival gamelan minimalism from Bay Area practitioner Daniel Schmidt.
Recital dip into the personal archives of Daniel Schmidt, an integral scholar in the development of American Gamelan. After studying Javanese gamelan at California Institute of the Arts in the early ‘70s, Schmidt set about creating a West Coast movement based around an aluminium version of the instrument – the Berkeley Gamelan - forged of his own design. He’s since gone on to build numerous gamelan instruments, theorise on it’s compositional qualities, collaborate with Lou Harrison, Jody Diamond, and Paul Dresher, and currently teaches at Mills College San Francisco.
‘In My Arms, Many Flowers’ captures the American Gamelan movement in its nascent state, the result of a personal invitation for Recital boss Sean McCann to rifle through three boxes of Schmidt’s studio and live recordings committed to cassette between the late ’70s and early ‘80s. What’s immediately striking here is how Schmidt deviates from the traditional Javanese style of gamelan composition, instead seeking out the minimalist movement of North America for guidance.
Making use of a primitive sampler borrowed from Pauline Oliveros (RIP), lead track And the Darkest Hour is Just Before Dawn pairs a sumptuous looped string arrangement with Schmidt’s delicate caresses of the Berkeley Gamelan which build with quiet melodic complexity into something quite wonderful. The title track sees Schmidt augmenting the mysticism of his Berkeley with the bowed strings of a rebab, another traditional Indonesian instrument, deployed to signify a bird that “calls from far away.”
Ghosts is one of two compositions done solely with the gamelan, Schmidt leading a procession of players using traditional techniques on a detailed 14-minute recording of percussive dexterity and intricacy that highlights the spiritual powers of the instrument. Faint Impressions offers a sombre finale, the ringing melodicism of the Berkeley gamelan set to a backdrop of an understandably captivated audience.
Another Timbre finally realise their long-held ambition of putting together new recordings of John Cage’s Number Pieces, here performed by Apartment House who shine a light on Cage’s late period “reconciliation with harmony” on a staggering set of recordings that span over 5 hours in length and which will likely upend everything you thought you knew about the late, great composer's legacy. In other words; it’s a highly immersive, quiet and meditative entry-point to his vast catalogue that comes very highly recommended to old guard and complete newcomers alike - a mind/soul expanding session awaits you.
The Number Pieces were written by Cage during the final five years of his life, 1987-1992, and are widely regarded the most broadly appealing of his vast oeuvre - despite few of them having been performed over the past couple of decades. The starting point for the pieces is typical of Cage’s chance procedures - they don’t have a set time signature, bar lines or a conductor, and the musicians performing can decide when and how loud or soft to play each note, making each and every performance of a number piece unique. As the recordings took place during lockdown between August 2020 and May 2021, many of the individual parts were recorded separately and edited in in post-production, presenting a far from ideal, yet intriguing additional dimension to these performances.
Titled for the number of players (i.e. Five) and their position in the series of compositions (i.e. Five²), each piece accords to a score composed using Cage’s time bracket technique; short fragments which indicate performers play what is often just a single note, and for a mix of fixed and flexible durations. Some were composed for non-Western instruments, but this set focusses on works for traditional instruments, deploying a range from Accordion to Xylophone in myriad configurations.
The set is broadly centred around variations to one of Cage’s earliest number pieces ‘Five’, variations of which account for half of the set, and range from relatively succinct, gorgeous interpretations to a 40 minute rendering of its trombone and string quartet version ‘Five³’. Most striking to us, however, is the remarkably cavernous, abstract space explored in their take on ‘Fourteen’ and also ‘Seven²’, both demanding percussionists use “any very resonant instruments”, while the brief, Gamelan-esque ’Six’ also points to Cage’s fascinations with Far eastern traditions. The hour long ‘Eight’ for wind is also striking for the way Apartment House slowly comprehend its complexities (more than 80 time brackets per part) across its considerable arcing breath.
In effect, the Number Pieces reveal Cage’s return to ideas of harmony after ostensibly finding ways around it ever since his studies under serialist Arnold Schoenberg in the ‘30s. They are perhaps the most beautifully ponderous manifestation of his work with chance operations, or use of the I-Ching as compositional tool, and the soundest reflection of his notion that a harmony exists in everything, if one’s to acknowledge the possibilities that lie beyond the restrictions of classical convention - the rest of the world, the un/known cosmos, and everything between. For the Cage curious and acolytes alike, Apartment House and Another Timbre have here managed to frame Cage in an unexpected light, presenting us with an unmissable entry portal to his most rarified realisation of cosmic chaos.
The classic 12 disc Parmegiani Box Set finally given a reissue by INA GRM, covering the majority of Parmegiani's musique concrète output recorded between 1964 and 2007. Is there a more important, influential, totemic single-artist collection in all of electronic music?
The Wire magazine described this amazing package as "A bargain price treasure chest....containing worlds of inexhaustible spaciousness and strangeness" and, indeed, listening through just some of the 12 cd's included you find yourself drawn into a multi-faceted world of strange sound sources and audio manipulations designed to play tricks on your senses to an extent that has left this reviewer almost paralysed with wonderment.
Parmegiani was mentored by the founding father of Musique Concrète, Pierre Schaeffer. Making use of technological advances that gave the world magnetic tape and microphones, Schaeffer pioneered a method of taking everyday sounds and transforming them into unrecognisable, detached pieces of music with no identifiable sound source, a style that became known as Acousmatic music. Parmegiani was hugely influenced by Schaeffer's pioneering work and Groupe de Recherche Musicale (GRM), the French Radio institution that is often described as the French equivalent of the BBC Radiophonic Workshop.
The work Parmegiani would go on to create would make use of these Acousmatic techniques in creating a body of work which is not only one of the most significant of the 20th century, but also hugely influential on a whole host of musical pioneers that would follow in his wake, with Christian Fennesz, Aphex Twin and Jim O'Rourke being notable disciples. These 12 cd's cover the majority of Parmegiani's musique concrète legacy and include pieces recorded between 1964 and 2007.
Hard to comprehend the immersive and often woozy effect of these recordings, ranging from eerie cut-out tape loops through to popular music plunderphonics and proto-distilled-dub that's impossible to absorb in one sitting. L'Œuvre Musicale is one of the most impressive and important collections of electronic music you'll likely ever hear, but also one of the most rewarding.
The debut album from Thom Yorke, Jonny Greenwood, and Sons of Kemet drummer Tom Skinnner's new band The Smile.
The Smile officially debuted last year at Glastonbury, but some of the songs included on their debut have appeared in some kind of form at Radiohead shows over the last few years. Listening from beginning to end, while there's a minimalism and melancholy to the album that's elevated by The Smile's collaboration with the London Contemporary Orchestra, if we were told this was Radiohead, we wouldn't question it.
Opening track 'The Same' is like a "Kid A"/"Amnesiac"-era gem, a head-to-head between Greenwood (on synths) and Yorke (on vocals) that acts as a fake-out before the record treads assuredly into a guitar 'n drums-led post-punk groove. 'You Will Never Work in Television Again' is angular and chunky, a Radiohead goes Talking Heads moment if you want, but 'The Smoke' hits the band's other pole, with Stereolab-style bass and breathy drums accompanying Yorke's signature falsetto. "It's easy, don't mess with me," he states before orchestral swoops pick the grandiosity from the song's exposed skeleton.
'Speech Bubbles' is a gift for any of us who miss the weepier parts of "The Bends" or "OK Computer". Evocative guitar arpeggios and a barely-present drum beat play second fiddle to the LCO's cinematic sweeps, Yorke sounds in his element completely." 'Open The Floodgates' is another high point, matching piano with modular cycles, cautiously introducing guitar that ties the entire thing together.
Exploratory English-German sound artist and composer Claudia Molitor ushers a gently smouldering fantasy fusion of dream-pop, avant-classical, lieder and jazz torch songs for the ever searching Nonclassical label - RIYL Pauline Oliveros, Nico, Laurie Tompkins
‘Have You Ever’ shapes up as Claudia’s debut album, proper, after the conceptual LP ‘Decay’ and commissions for everyone from London Sinfonietta to HCMF, BBC Proms and the British Library over the past decades. Those credits should give one a firm idea of the zones Claudia operates within, but ‘Have You Ever’ persistently shapeshifts borders in a way that transcends concrete classification - almost any sweep of our descriptive butterfly net would catch such a remarkable confection of styles from song to song. That may be due to the fact that ‘Have You Ever’ wasn’t originally conceived as an album, but stems from many disjointed works, which Claudia has gelled together with her untrained vocals and spirited electronic substance to frame a remarkable sort of mosaic image spanning the breadth of her practice.
It would take more time than we have to unpick the complexities of every song, but, like the historic work of Pauline Oliveros, or the contemporary compositions of Teresa Winter, it’s clear that the magick lies in the way Claudia naturally binds many strands of interest in her singular, yet open ended plaits of artful sound. Expect to hear everything from brooding darkside drones and shredded guitar noise under harmonised vox on ‘Change’ to tongue-in-cheek whispers of “I’m so fucking chilled / this is a stream of consciousness, listen up misogynists” introducing the the schizoid brilliance of ‘I Am Chilled’, with an Alice in Wonderland trip in between, spanning something like Derek Bailey doing avant Lieder on ‘Ein kleines Lied an Dich’, while channelling ‘Desertshore’-era Nico on ‘You Crawl’ and shadowy torchsong ‘Das Gefühl’, taking in cosmic vectors of ‘I Caught a train’ beside Oliverosian accordion on ‘Interlude 2’, and plangent prepared piano noise giving way to dusky Deep Listening avant-blues on ‘What feeds a Listen’.
Leoni Leoni channels the eerie serene of Julee Cruise, exotica allure of Spencer Clark, and the twinkle of Orphan Swords from behind a lysergic sheen on her first vinyl release
Harvesting songs from her handful of tape/digital releases since 2019, this self-titled set is a strong introduction to Leoni’s timeless charms, sure to find favour with lovers of the sweetest DIY synth-pop and wobbly tape fidelities. We’re not quite sure what she’s doing, but practically every song is treated to the cutest patina shimmer of FX that lends it all a daydreaming warmth and the pleasurable effect of overdoing your microdosing, as in it actually feels trippy, and it’s not just a figment of your imagination, or is it?
Honestly it’s hard not to be seduced by this lot, reaching back to her earliest release with the groggy lilt of ‘I’m out of this 1’ off her ’Super Slow’ (2019) tape, while ‘Easyjet’ from the ‘Easy Sleep’ (20202) makes gorgeous use of pan-slosh woe and flutter wobble, beside the gauzy keyboard minimalism of ‘Weed + Cartoons’ off ‘Yellow and Why’ (2021), and, for good measure, the likes of her synth-pop stepper ’Schön Frau’ from 2021’s ‘Drum Problems’ tape proves she’s just as adept at more uptempo modes, and we urge you to check ‘Herbst im Dschungel’ for her pluckiest wee pop oddity.
20th anniversary of Steven Stapleton & Colin Potter’s ‘Salt Marie Celeste’, a lowkey drone masterpiece comparable with the scope of Gavin Bryars’ ‘The Sinking of the Titanic’ or indeed NWW’s own seminal enigma ’Soliloquy For Lilith’, and a massive RIYL Deathprod or Timo Van Luijk & Frederik Croene’s ‘Fortune De Mer’
Recorded and mixed in summer 2002 at Colin Potter’s legendary Watertower studio in Preston, the 60+ minutes of ‘Salt Marie Celeste plunges listeners to the imaginary depths of the ocean in a steeply sensurreal swill of two chords and fathomless spectral magick enacted by the NWW guys. The original release is now roughly equidistant to NWW’s earlier masterwork ‘Soliloquy For Lilith’ (1988) and now, and with the benefit of hindsight it can clearly be hailed a landmark in the dark ambient drone canon, reserving a remarkable ability to transport the listener by minimal, durational means with unforgettable effect.
Originally conceived as the atmospheric soundtrack to an art exhibition at The Horse Hospital, London, this released version features the FX of creaking timbers and briny, insectoid scuttles subtly but crucially foregrounded in the mix against its call and response swell of orchestral chords, gradually accreting layered traces of loops that come resemble the sound of ship’s horns or even siren-like voices rippling through the murk. The most notable change comes around the 50 min mark when those FX slip out of view, leaving us only with the amniotic whorl of its chords for strange, briny comfort.
William Bennett’s Cut Hands mark a decade of disruption with magnum opus ‘Sixteen ways Out’, hailing a surprising change of pace and style into spare chamber versions of his work voiced by his creative and life partner Mimsy DeBlois
Preceded by a seven year absence, Cut Hands’ return to the fray is a solemn and haunting affair that operates in the shadowy nether region between electro-acoustic and classical musicks. Compositions from that fecund first run of Cut Hands between 2011-2015 are here stripped of their studied Congolese rhythms and reset in richly noirish, cinematic dimensions, where Mimsy’s vocals almost appear to mimic the subvocalised narration from Ghost In The Shell, with her mix of poetry and prosaic numerical sequences allowed to coldly reverberate the upper registers amid alternating backdrops of swarming spectral apparitions and puckered original instrumentation.
Aye, it’s not what we were expecting at all, and better for it. The original Cut Hands productions, effectively exhausted his interests in Congolese, West African, and Haitian rhythms, and what we’re left with on ‘Sixteen Ways Out’ is a sort of residual meditation, all dematerialised echoes of sources that remains out of sight and earshot. It’s a sound he has previously explored in the likes of ‘Krokodilo’, which memorably soundtracked a Vice documentary on Russian drug addicts, but here dominates proceedings, and finds a sharp new foil thru Mimsy’s vox, distinguishing their inverted versions of Cut Hands classics such as ‘Curl Up And Die’ and ‘River Mumam’ beside reams of new material, at its dark ambient cinematic best in the likes of its elegiac opener ‘Inka’ and the dark baroque of ‘Navillera’, before almost looping back into the original sound with the resonant thumb piano like tang of ‘Secret of Elegua.’
Celebrating his 80th birthday, 'Cloud Shadows' is the third collection of Daniel Schmidt's groundbreaking American gamelan explorations, recorded by Gamelan Encinal and Mills College students. Beautiful music that draws thoughful parallels between Indonesian, European and North American folk traditions.
Following the release of the hugely loved 'In My Arms, Many Flowers' and 'Abies Firma' sets, this third album brings Schmidt's archive almost to the present day, featuring recordings made between 2017 and 2019. Schmidt is best known for connecting elements of 20th Century American minimalism with Eastern gamelan music, and developing American gamelan sounds alongside characters such as Lou Harrison, Jody Diamond and Paul Dresher. Here he considers death and relief, having written 'SEOR' as he recovered from cancer treatments, and 'Sandy Suite' after the passing of a close friend. The former is one of Schmidt's most impressive compositions, unashamedly beautiful but restrained, utilizing dynamic range to show emotional depth, and microtonality to hint at controlled chaos. The latter is one of the album's handful of tracks to feature vocals written by Schmidt's wife Deborah Bachels Schmidt and sung in the style of 19th century lieder, where poetry is set to classical music.
These vocal pieces are among the most unusual Schmidt has recorded; the voice hangs over the gamelan playing uneasily, but it's hard to imagine one element without the other - it's gorgeous, risky music that joins history across continents without sounding heavy handed. The album's longest track, 'A River in Delta', features vocals in a more familiar range. Dedicated to Lou Harrison and John Cage, it uses a Cage-influenced chance method for the composition and a poem written by Cage for Harrison's 60th birthday.
'Cloud Shadows' is an unmissable album for anyone interested in the possibilities of American gamelan; the recording is of exceptional quality, and Schmidt's dedication to progression and emotionality oozes from every note. As he states on the press release, "please allow this music to flow into you."
Psychedelic jazz funk from jamie branch and Jason Nazary's Anteloper project, with help from legendary guitarist and former Tortoise member Jeff Parker.
Following 2018's fractal "Kudu", the similarly vivid "Pink Dolphins" takes a familiar approach to jazz. Nazary and branch make music that refuses to root itself in one spot, lurching semi-consciously from hip-hop and dance music into funk, psych rock, prog and jazz. This time around the duo are assisted by Jeff Parker, who was a fan of Anteloper's kitchen sink sound and felt as if he could tweak them into the next tier. Inspired by Miles Davis's "Live Evil", Parker plays a Teo Macero role on "Pink Dolphins", reigning in branch and Nazary's influences but allowing the duo to breathe. branch is influenced by Sun Ra, J Dilla and Mouse on Mars, while Nazary wants his drums to sound like "Confield"-era Autechre.
Whether they manage that exactly is a tough question, but the two friends manage to jerk through ideas and styles with the blotter-damaged effectiveness of The Flaming Lips. They even tip their hats to Tropicalia on the album's lengthy closer 'One Living Genius'.
Éliane Radigue’s peerless series of acoustic compositions yields its mesmerising 4th instalment, exactingly performed by leading contemporary musicians Bertrand Gauget, Yannick Guédon, and Carol Robinson.
Since 2011, pioneering minimalist Éliane Radigue has shifted her attention from electro-acoustic phenomena, as explored in her seminal ’70-’80s works with the ARP 2500 synth and tape - arguably some of the c.20th’s greatest - to focus purely on the instrumental and acoustic realms. The results have been documented in her ‘Occam Ocean’ volumes since 2017, with each entry opening and invoking thee most curious harmonic relationships and timbres thru meticulous performance of strings, wind and voice. They are necessarily durational works, allowing the time needed to gauge both the nuance and the bigger picture of her work, each limning new horizons of minimalist drone which really only come into view with requisite time and committed listening (better yet with eyes shut).
While it’s really not ambient music, as in wallpaper sound, the effect may well evoke somnambulance to many, as the music’s sustained and ultra-subtly gradated transitions between tones can lure ears into space and most beautifully defocus the mind in key with Éliane’s Buddhist impetus, conjuring states of mind that we rarely achieve with other music. On ‘Occam Ocean Vol.4’ we hear regular collaborator Carol Robinson’s voix merged uncannily with Viola de Gamba, Alto Saxophone and Birbyné, a Lithuanian wind instrument in ways that caress and buzz our frontal lobes on ‘Occam Delta XIX’, while ‘Occam XXII’ is a stunning piece of Tibetan-style throat singing with masterfully intense overtones performed by Yannick Guédon, and we feel her patented sandman traction most strongly in Bertrand Gauget and Carol Robinson’s duet for Alto Saxophone and Bass Clarinet in ‘Occam River XXII’, where they conjure genuinely remarkable, unreal tones in the final parts that could easily be mistaken for coming from electronic sources.
Don Cherry, Nana Vasconcelos and Collin Walcott’s modal archetypes as CODONA produced three exceptional, pioneering albums between 1978 and 1983 that were compiled on this ECM ’Trilogy’ which is now thankfully available again. Kodwo Eshun described the trilogy as "18 intimations for new genres, 18 proposals for a poetics of principled perambulation and intense propinquity, each of which vindicates the capacity of jazz to make effectively fictional worlds, to hint at the possible forms implied by those worlds, to enact phonographic propositions for equality, hospitality, intimacy, distance, utopias.”
In 1977, Collin Walcott decided to form a trio with free jazz trumpet legend Don Cherry and Brazilian berimbau master Naná Vasconcelos. He'd worked with both musicians before, and the three had found common ground in their obsession with non-Western instruments and hybrid musical forms. Walcott had studied sitar with Ravi Shankar and tabla with Alla Rakha, and performed with Miles Davis on his legendary "On The Corner" album, while Vasconcelos was responsible for bringing the berimbau to Western audiences via his collaborations with Pat Metheny and Jon Hassell. Cherry of course was best known for his association with free jazz innovator Ornette Coleman, he performed on Coleman's best-known records before collaborating with Krzysztof Penderecki and composing the score to Jodorowsky's "The Holy Mountain". Together, the trio was able to reach into parts unknown - they were operating in a landscape not only before Jon Hassell had coined the term "fourth world", but before “world" music itself had reached a popular, widespread definition.
The first Codona set arrived in 1979, and is credited with shifting the dial on jazz globally. It was tempting for a while to label it “world" music, before that descriptor became identified as outmoded and condescending, but what Cherry, Walcott and Vasconcelos were attempting was fundamentally more experimental anyway - bringing their unique experiences, naturally global and explorative, to a broadly improvisational, jazz structure, and the result was new and invigorating. Anchoring the music is the tangled interplay between Cherry's trumpet and Walcott's sitar; Vasconcelos operates more subtly, but his impulsive rhythms are just as crucial to the music's unique breath. The group's cyclic back-and-forth is immediately evident on opening track 'Like That of Sky', where Indian rhythms, Chinese flutes and jazz horn sounds coalesce so perfectly the song almost levitates. On 'Colemanwonder', Cherry, Walcott and Vasconcelos weld together two Ornette Coleman tracks and Stevie Wonder's "Songs in the Key of Life" track 'Sir Duke', disintegrating all three pieces with the same sparse, free-form instrumentation, using sitar, vocal chants and cuíca. But it's closing track 'New Light' where the band's magic is fully pushed into the clouds: fusing an almost ambient sensibility with minimal shaker rhythms and spine-tingling dulcimer from Walcott, the sound they manage to arrive on is still without parallel.
Codona's second album was released in 1981 and found the trio challenging each other to lift their ideas further into the stratosphere. This desire is evident on 'Godumaduma', a solo piece from Walcott that reinterprets an African traditional standard using overdubbed sitar, influenced by Steve Reich's pulse music concept - the result is a brain-expanding two minutes of resonant and rhythmic sound that stands alone on the album, but feeds its concept perfectly. A skeletal cover of Ornette Coleman's 'Drip-Dry' provides another stand-out, with clattering percussion, dancing trumpet and particularly evocative sitar, but it's closing track 'Again and Again, Again' that lifts the album highest, balancing horizontal drones with whistles, bells and birdsong. 1983's "Codona 3" would be the trio's last album, as Walcott died tragically in a car accident a year later in 1984. Here the band expanded their scope, pulling in influence from ancient Japanese music and West African sounds, with Don Cherry playing the Malinese doussn' gouni.
In many ways, the trio's third album is their most complete, as at this stage their chemistry had reached a level many groups never graze. The fluidity at play on tracks like 'Hey Da Ba Doom' and 'Travel By Night' gives the record warmth without diluting the focus - it sounds as if all three musicians are flexing not only their instrumental skill, but also their exploratory muscle, poking into ideas they may have had for decades and inspiring each other constantly. Opener 'Goshakabuchi' is particularly effervescent, again highlighting Walcott's hammered dulcimer, rubbing its rhythms against shaker percussion from Vasconcelos and singing trumpet wails from Cherry. 'Trayra Boia' is another high point, a collaboration with Brazilian contemporary artist Denise Milan that circles chattered vocals with blasts of overdubbed horn and Vasconcelos's evocative coos. But it's yet again the closing track that has us fully ruined: 'Inner Organs' juxtaposes Western church music with tabla percussion and psychedelic vocal chants to create a sound that's ghostly, affecting and unforgettable. It doesn't get much better than this - truly foundational sounds, and one of the most essential collections on ECM.
Exquisite shadowplay from Sardinian, Saffronkeira and his Persian spar, Siavash Amini; sensitively underdoing each other for a fine album of atmospheric electro-acoustic inference
"Upon hearing a small snippet of sound an image is conjured, not a memory but not unfamiliar. A shell of a memory, thousand events superimposed on each other. While trying to extract points of a narrative to ease the discomfort of this recollection, I try to separate and unfold the image and with it the points of the spectrum which make up the sound, a shell of a narrative.
Here is an album based upon an almost entirely imagined/ synthesized happening upon hearing a snippet of sound. It sounded like of a whole story that never happened but yet I felt myself amongst it’s participants, a sound triggering a false memory. Each sound in Eugenio’s collection of sounds and ideas guided me a to a point in the narrative and it’s construction. He had handed me a portals of some kind to a few scenes of the whole narrative. This is the soundtrack for that false memory from all the perspectives I can think of."
A revised, remastered reissue of Sleepwalkers for 2022, on Groenland Records.
Featuring reworkings of previously released material, outtakes and a new piece, Sleepwalkers represents a cross-section of Sylvian's varied output. Work with Ryuichi Sakamoto, Fennesz, Joan Wasser, Steve Jansen, Takagi Masakatsu, Stina Nordenstam & Nine Horses is included as is the excellent Blemish bonus track 'Trauma', which was included on the Japanese and vinyl editions of that album.
Relatively well-known recordings such as 'Wonderful World' and 'World Citizen' sound great in the versions presented here, as does 'Sleepwalkers' (with Martin Brandlmayr, Toshimaru Nakamura and Sachiko M), but perhaps the most exciting entry is 'Five Lines', a collaboration with contemporary classical composer Dai Fujikura that proves to be a boldly experimental marriage of Sylvian's unmistakeable vocal and Fujikura's adventurous string orchestration.
The Bad Seeds’ Nick Cave & Warren Ellis furnish a gorgeous wildlife feature, depicting the hunt for the rare snow leopard by renowned photographer Vincent Munier, with one of their most heartfelt and poignant OSTs
Initially a commission for Ellis, the soundtrack for ‘La Panthère Des Neiges’ soon expanded from a solo project to duo with Nick Cave after Nick saw the film and dedicated himself to the full project. Ellis explains that it was “one of my favourite experiences ever working on a project”, and one where “The stars are the animals in all their wild glory, as we have never seen them before, and man in reverence and wonder”. Comparable to the descriptive richness found in Ryuichi Sakamoto, Alva Noto & Bryce Dessner’s brooding score to ‘The Revenant’, or, at times, Scott Walker’s grandest latter works, for example, the soundtrack’s 13 sweeping string cues and solo piano themes register a truly classic entry to Ellis’ steadily expanding oeuvre of soundtrack works.
A phantom chapter of ‘80s Japanese electronics finds its audience after more than 30 years in the archives, presenting Yasuaki Shimizu’s near-mythical follow-up to his cult work on Mariah’s ‘Utakata no Hibi’
Helming much closer to YMO and Ryuichi Sakamoto’s experimental dance music or avant styles on Vanity Records than anything else in his catalogue, ‘Kiren’ sees Yasuaki Shimizu flexing a flipside to his much sweeter work with Mariah, showing off his range and musical purview thru seven tracks of expressly rhythm-driven swagger, jagged sampler patterns and more atonal or discordant electronics that stalk the shadows of the 4th world. In more ways than one it’s music for the nether regions, packing more info below the belt, and coming skronky bad and jazz-headed with it, for an unforetold angle to his style.
In its own way ‘Kiren’ is exemplary of the electronic futurist phase shift that was under way by the time of its creation in 1984, arriving in the wake of Kraftwerk and YMO’s groundbreakers, and running perpendicular to Art of Noise’s sampler collages, the muscle music of DAF, and the club hunch of early electro/hip-hop and jazz-fusion, yet retaining traces of traditional Japanese drums and melody.
We advise checking new wave stepper ‘Ashita’ at the front, and the electro-jazz-funk budge of ’Shiasate’, the aerial ambient dub stepper ‘Kagerofu’, and the squashed, bittersweet funk of ‘Peruvian Pink’ and you’ll definitely get the gist.
Residual ‘90s rave emotions rise to the surface in Mike Paradinas’ most impressive new µ-ZIQ album for ages, full of atom-splitting jungle ballistics and heart-in-mouth synths
His first new LP in nearly a decade, ‘Magic Pony Ride’ is a romp for gurny IDM unicorns, reprising the sort of pastoral hardcore and pastel-toned electronica-ambient motifs that made his run of mid ‘90s solo albums and collab with Richard D. James canonical to the scene. Taking inspiration from a trip to Iceland, where he rode horses “across a snowy landscape at dawn”, and factored by emotions felt at the loss of his father, the tracks manifest something of a definitive opus in his catalogue, ripe with the style he’s developed over the course of 30 years.
One for the fluffy ravers and romantics, the album plays out a classic µ-ZIQ sound perhaps best compared with his 1997 LP ‘Lunatic Harness’, it comes on in leaps and bounds from the barrelling breaks and arps of ‘Magic Pony Ride, Pt.1’ to what sounds like Sigur Rós at a free party in finale of ‘Don’t Tell me (It’s Ending)’, with standouts in the soaring acid jungle winner ‘Uncle Daddy’, the Remarc-able amen choppage of ’Turquoise Hyperfizz’, and the serotonin injection ‘Galope’ dedicated to his departed father, all tempered by downbeat moments of relief in the melancholic sashay of ’Shulem’s Theme’, and the excellent ‘Elka’s Song’, written with his daughter.
Quebecois dreamweaver Racine returns to Danse Noire with a tormented suite of digital-organic simulations that insert placid ambience into industrial doomscapes, spliced together with eerie environmental recordings and delicate solo piano improvisations.
'Amitiés' means friendship, and Racine's new album is a pensive contemplation on connection, assembled during a time when isolation was mandated. To illustrate the theme, homespun sounds are set against digital processes: creaky piano is interrupted with decaying noise on the title track, and Racine's parents' harmonium is offset by electronic drones and clanking sound effects on 'Mon amour je ne guéris jamais'. On 'Les mains', breathy noise stutters surrounded by unidentifiable industrial scrapes, that coolly leads into the cinematic ambient grandeur of 'Arête coincée dans une amygdale'.
The album feels distinctly rooted to our post-COVID reality; it's a record that takes inspiration from recent experimental/electronic nodes - Oneohtrix Point Never, James Ferraro, Tim Hecker - but deploys its influences with a sense of knowing control and power. The resulting sound isn't so much a set of references, but an outpouring of emotion grounded in aesthetic tweaks and processes. It's a weighty catharsis, that feels as if its exorcising a full spectrum of ideas and feelings, converting them into jerky digital signals.
Benjamin John Power meets environmental terrorist the Unabomber on his moody synth-led soundtrack to Tony Stone's "Ted K".
Power was inspired by the usual suspects on his latest soundtrack, citing Ennio Morricone's Sergio Leone scores as the inspiration for the "good vs. evil" battle raging in Ted Kaczynski's mind. He definitely evokes the 1970s with the searing analog synth basses and clipped percussion on 'Montana', the movie's main theme, but prob echoes Carpenter more than Morricone.
Elsewhere, things get more complicated: on 'Pesticides', Power's plasticky synth sounds more in line with Michael Mann's canon, while 'Revenge' isn't a million miles from Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross's work with David Fincher. It's convincing material, that manages to retain Power's electronic outlook while still sounding fully Hollywood-ready.
Livity Sound mark a decade of skin in the game with a comp pulling focus on their roster of rhythmic misfits in 2021.
Originally founded as an outlet for Pev, Kowton, and Asusu’s like-minded soundsystem techno oddities in 2011, the label’s scope has gradually expanded over the intervening decade to embrace an emerging movement of non-standard bassbin operators such as Batu, Hodge, Bruce and Simo Cell via the Reverse label (Dnuos Ytivil), and nowadays stands at a busy intersection of globally related styles loosely termed hard drum, or bass music.
Destroyer's thirteenth album is what Dan Bejar calls a "high-energy Cher record". It's certainly the most cheerful - and most electronic - we've heard from him, echoing New Order, Junior Boys and the Dirty Projectors.
Canadian indie vet Bejar has been making music for what seems like forever, and while many singer-songwriters are content with functionally rewriting the same album over and over, Bejar is too ambitious to rest on his laurels. 'Labyrinthitis' was written in 2020 and inspired by Bejar's love of New Order, classic disco, techno and contemporary rap. It's an album that rarely stays in the same place for more than a few moments: 'It's in Your Heart Now' finds him crooning over Peter Hook bass before the track slips into dreamy instrumental prog excess; 'Suffer' is indie pop with an arpeggiated trance energy; 'June' is shimmering minimal punk-funk; and lead single 'Tintoretto, It's For You' centers a long rap-style performance from Bejar set against wiry synths and angular drums.
On the title track Bejar dials back the bubbly froth of the album's pop standouts and instead leads through sunset ambient, a timely interlude before the disco-inspired 'Eat the Wine, Drink the Bread' sounds barbed enough to have slipped out of the "Technique" recording sessions.
Terre Thaemlitz digs deep into her archive for a dead strong 80 minute CD compilation of all her 'Neu Wuss Fusion’s' releases to date, including adjusted and tweaked versions of classics and hard-to-find gems dating back to ’93, including a remarkable liquid D&B cut and an utterly unmissable take on Tangerine Dream - exclusive to the set.
The overarching vibe here hits even deeper than the recent DJ Sprinkles 'Gayest Tits…' set, hovering between the edge of the floor and a late, late night flex instead of driving club pressure, with a focus on bustling breaks and spellbinding ambient jazz atmospheres.
The material here reaches back to the early ’90s, with the kick-less deep House shimmy of opener ‘Thirty Shades of Grey (Demo Version)’ harking back to their debut solo album ‘Tranquilizer’ (1994), and the ambient jazz house lather of ’Sloppy 42s’ connecting to 1999’s ‘Love For Sale’ album, both elegantly edited here, and shuffled up next to both sides of 1998’s ’She’s Hard,’ in its glorious ambient-to-breakbeat mix and rousing ‘Live At Hug Parade’ take.
The set only gets stronger on its 2nd half. The original 11:30’ mix of ‘A Crippled Left Wing Soars with the Right’ makes a welcome first digital appearance beside a mix of its ‘Steal This Record’ edit omitting the ambient breakdown, while also highlighting its incredible, liquid D&B-like ‘1-Step Forward, 2-Step Back’ version - think Calibre meets MvO Trio - seriously - and, just to absolutely polish us off, they include an e-s-s-e-n-t-i-a-l cover of Tangerine Dream’s ‘Love On A Real Train,’ re-titled and remodelled as their orgasmic ‘Sex On A Real Train’ version alongside the 12 minutes of lush, pastoral flutes and subbass in ‘She’s Hard (2007 Archive of Silence Mix.)
Utterly essential, once again.
Please remember that we support Terre and Comatonse Recordings' efforts to keep projects offline, minor, and acting queerly. When purchasing this item, we ask you to refrain from uploading and indiscriminate sharing in any form. <3
Jonny Greenwood contributes an evocative soundtrack to Jane Campion's hotly-tipped dramatic Western "The Power of the Dog". It's smart music, that wrings out complex emotions from our connections to American primitive ideas.
'The Power of the Dog' is a heavy story that balances relatively recent history against more contemporary ideas of sexuality and gender. Greenwood has visited the old West before in his stark, powerful score for Paul Thomas Anderson's 2007 modern classic "There Will Be Blood". Here, he works with a much more subdued subject matter, but one that's no less emotionally affecting. He smartly opts to harness our own preconceptions of American folk music, utilising familiar instrumentation in more contemporary contexts, with scraping detuned fiddle on 'So Soft', hinting at the characters' dissonant personalities, and the odd jangle of a player piano on 'Detuned Mechanical Piano' foreshadowing Kirsten Dunst's character Rose - a piano player herself - unraveling mentally.
The piano - which Greenwood controlled using Max/MSP - gets more and more nightmarish, hitting a terrifying peak on 'Paper Flowers' - each sound is struck through with a deep sadness that reflects writer Thomas Savage's depressing portrait of an America that represses its urges.
Arboreal IDM frolics from Berlin/Montreal’s T. Gowdy, returning to Constellation with a batch of woodcut post-techno percussion and forest bathed ambient noise - imagine James Hodlen and Barker hugging a tree.
“Gowdy now returns with Miracles, his second full-length for Constellation, which draws on source materials originally performed in 2018 for an unreleased audio/visual project based around surveillance footage—a precursor to video-capped, monitor-based horizons that soon took on new meanings. Re-immersing himself in those recordings, Gowdy disassembles and deploys them as raw source material for new experiments with vactrols, noise gates and analog-to-digital triggering and aliasing, the original recordings juxtaposed anew amidst their successive textural and rhythmic treatments. Gowdy keeps this re-composition process stripped down, elemental and purposive, guided by an ascetic Aufhebung: synthesis as sublation—subjecting a temporal material/theme to analysis and transformation, reintegrating to form a whole that overcomes what it preserves without erasure, reshaping and intrinsically carrying its origins forward.
Where Therapy With Colour was strictly and rigorously a set of stereo liveperformances, Miracles fuses iterative—though still spartan—layers of performance. “Therapy With Colour was about healing through self-hypnosis; Miracles is about forging a future with memory through subjection to trigger mechanisms” notes Gowdy. The result is a captivating collection of minimal IDM and oscillated electronics from the Montréal/Berlin producer, working primarily in a 120-140 BPM zone of tonal percussion and corrugated pulse. Gowdy’s sensibility and sound palette gets deeper and dirtier, summoning new pathways of alluvial flicker and abraded euphoria. As the album progresses, low-pass gate vactrols coalesce into a clear and vital theme, conveying immanence through woody timbres at times reminiscent of the Shinrin-yoku aesthetic (Japanese ‘forest bathing’), though always with a grainy transcendence rather than invoking any clean pure sheen. Gowdy consistently heats and heightens the presence of each component in the mix, balancing different elements in democratic compression/distortion, attaining an unornamental and earnest form of mantric-industrial majesty. Miracles is live, corporeal, activated electronic music of the highest caliber, deployed with monastic and meditative focus. Thanks for listening.”
Justin K. Broadrick revisits his legendary FINAL project for a new album on ALTER swerving the isolationist ambient and power electronics of previous records to absorb sampled pop hooks in an attempt to reach some kind of blissed state. Basinski, Philip Jeck, MBV, Fennesz and Thomas Köner iheads should dive right in.
Billed as "an exploration of the decay of all living things," Broadrick's latest FINAL album - his first since 2015's Downwards-released "Black Dollars", is surprisingly upbeat given its theoretically funereal theme. The industrial metal pioneer's starting point here is a set of pop music melodies, which he decays artificially, removing their form and reducing them to hums and hoarse coughs of analog dirt and grit. To be honest, we wouldn't have known unless we'd been told - the sounds here may as well be self generated, but it's charming to know where they're from all the same. On some tracks the source material is barely audible at all, like gaseous opener 'Untitled 1', where slowly-shifting noise is bent and fluttered with the thumb-on-tape whole-channel grace of Kevin Shields on the 'Loveless' sessions.
Elsewhere, riffs poke out through the marshy overdriven grot: 'Untitled 5' begins with burned out tape hiss and amp fuzz, the black clouds eventually part to reveal unashamedly disarming guitar melodies. It's the meeting point between Fennesz, Merzbow and Godflesh - not quite one or the other, but as simultaneously hard-edged and blissful as you want to imagine. It's not the first time Broadrick has poked around sonic bliss states - his Jesu recordings (particularly 2006's "Silver") successfully fused shoegaze moods with metal textures - but "It Comes To Us All" still feels like a fresh chapter in the Brummie musician's ongoing narrative.
At times as murky and memory-triggering as James Kirby's Caretaker material ('Untitled 3' and 'Untitled 7') and at others as frozen in time as Kevin Drumm's ambient works ('Untitled 8'), Broadrick's latest FINAL set is a brilliant combination of experience, technical skill and a solid concept. Frazzled as fuck.
Exquisitely poised, hallucinatory chamber minimalism by Dutch duo Wanderwelle, a new name to us, and one naturally up to scratch with Important’s exacting standards
Helping usher in the seminal label’s 20th year along with superb sides by Lambda Sond and Alvin & Lucier with Jordan Dykstra, ‘Black Clouds Above The Bows’ shares a gloaming quality of light with the former act, which Wanderwelle deploy at more furtive, submerged angles. It’s their 5th album since 2017, and also their most refined, deploying a very fine grasp of edge-of-dissonant tones and absorbingly enigmatic space that calls for comparison with a sort of post-apocalyptic 4th world interzone, like a shadowier Pauline Oliveros piece or the barren cinematic isolationism of Lynch/Badalamenti and The Stranger, as the work progresses deep into its own recesses and quietly glowing folds of imagination.
Aye, it’s properly in tune with what, after 20 years, we can safely say makes the Important label tick. Working with unusual or non-standard tuning systems, the Dutch alchemists carefully conjure peculiar planes of thought on their journey from the darkly blissed buoyancy of ‘Jonah’ to the Lynchian tonal intrigue, and stuff, of ‘My Body Lay Afloat’; holding a fine narrative line between the first encounter-type atmosphere of ‘The Horned Moon’ thru the moonlight-bathed ‘Dead Calm’, and magnificent airborne roil of smeared horns in ‘Dies Infaustes’ that precipitates a transfixing deathly solemnity in ‘Penance’, and teeth-chattering stygian feel of ‘The Devil Knows How To Row’. One for the darkside connoisseurs, to be sure.
Emma DJ, Katatonic Silencio, Klahrk and more lend remixes to Glass’s debut set of crystal cut sound designer dance deconstructions on Florentine label, OOH-Sounds
Probing the parameters of contemporary music production, ‘crY’ is presented as a response to the constraints of commodified music. In it, French duo Glass apply obsessive detailing to familiar dance tropes, dissecting and restitching aspects of “deconstructed jungle, weirdo techno and ambient structures” in a way we’ve come to expect from Lee Gamble and his UIQ gang.
The results are buffed to a high sheen redolent of cinematic sound design vernacular between the gyring proprioceptions of their ‘crY (Live)’, the pointillist broken techno precision of ‘crY’ and warped breakbeat hardcore ballistics in ‘Appointment Scheduling System’, before knuckling down to the jagged techno freak ‘multi-functional prosthetic hand (L version)’. Emma DJ supplies a fleet-hoofed rework of ‘crY’ replete with auto-tuned bleating; Katatonic Silentio takes it down a cyber wormhole; and Active Benz’s Klahrk recalibrates it to sort of brittle jungle hustle.
Absorbingly textured, minimalist chamber soundscaping and arrangements of Renaissance music, by Austrian composer and organist Klaus Lang, performed by Trio Amos.
This recording, made at Stift St. Lambrecht, Peterskirche, July 15th & 16th, 2019, is played by Klaus Lang (organ), with Trios Amos: Sylvie Lacroix (flute), Krassimir Sterev (accordion), and Michael Moser (cello). It revolves three original Lang works interspersed with his arrangements of c.15th renaissance works by Johannes Ockeghem and Pierre de La Rue, which both offer clues to the roots of Lang’s own pieces. Those original works include the tensely gripping, haunting near-stasis of flute, cello and accordion deployed in ‘origami’ (2011), the finer sense of relief to the floating figures of cello & accordion on ‘tehran dust’ (2013), and a return to seat-edge tension in the 25 minute piece ‘darkness & freedom’ (2017), with its deeply uncanny resemblance to vocal music apparently coming from purely instrumental sources. The rearrangement for Ockeghem and de la Rue, respectively, act as ideal palate cleansers and reference points.
“The beginning of western philosophy, and the basis for all western art, is grounded in the fascinating intellectual achievement of Pythagoras: to find, by observing the concrete and contingent in nature, a purely abstract principle: numbers. The history of western art is a history of different ways of applying principles found in nature to the creation of art. The combination of structural clarity and beauty with rich sensual quality fascinates me in nature, and that is what I try to achieve in my own work. It is also the principle that I see in the music that I feel closest to: Renaissance music by the likes of Johannes Ockeghem or Pierre de la Rue, that uses the rigour of structure to set free the beauty of sound. But even if we can explain every single note in a canon by Ockeghem, we cannot explain the depth of the sensual experience that we feel when listening to that canon.” - Klaus Lang
Six improvisations by veteran composer Ernstalbrecht Stiebler (piano) and Tilman Kanitz (cello).
"Six duo improvisations for cello and piano by the veteran composer Ernstalbrecht Stiebler, and fellow-Berlin resident Tilman Kanitz. Fascinating music, which uses pitch and harmony much more than most improvisation, and is a remarkable document of someone who started to play improvised music in his mid-80’s. It’s obviously never too late.
Recorded during Covid lockdown by Tilman Kanitz at his studio in Berlin."
Investigative minimalist Ivan Pavlov turns attention to the guitar with typically fascinating results, including a cover of SoftCell, on his return to the cold teet of Noton.
As the titular nod to The Beatles implies, ‘While Your Guitar Gentle’ is CoH’s latest dalliance with pop, rock and song-based forms, as heard from his radical minimalist perspective. Processed guitars are core to his interests here, perpetually flickering between acoustic and re-synthesised strings in a subtly curious sort of captcha for the aural senses. The sometime Coil affiliate draws on an ever innovative sort of craft to give a fizzing character to his scalpelled riffs and glitching textures, variously congealing into wiry creatures that resemble parts of his most memorable works such as the retrospective comp ‘CoHgs’ (CoH = “Son” in Cyrillic; CoHgs = u get it), the grizzled ‘Iiron’ or indeed his 2007 set for Raster-Noton,’Strings’.
Not for everyone, but a real pleasure to keener listeners of electronic music, the nine parts follow in CoH’s singular, practically unparalleled practice to eke out new nuance in classic forms, variously making his axe chatter with a folk-rock jitter in ‘WYGG [For Tom Waits]’, and smearing it into spare oily notes and shadows in ‘Bolero with Ola’, while slipping into his Frankie Gothard guise to dismantle and rebuild Soft Cell’s ‘Heat’ as a piece of spidery post-techno-pop brilliance. Followers of CoH’s pulse-based styles will also be intrigued by ‘Gear Chill Spell’ and ‘Arrows of Faith’, where he also parallels the pointillist intricacies of Oren Ambarchi and Konrad Sprenger in his puckered balance of precise and elusive soul.
Sound interrogators Masami Akita and David Lee Myers rework each other in variously tactful and visceral, durational head re-arrangers
Both veterans in their field, Japanese noise virtuoso Merzbow and US feedback manipulator Arcane Device turn each other inside out across longform works that comprehensively decimate and rinse ou the other.
On ‘Arcane Device Mixes Merzbow’ the US artist speaks to his 30+ years of experience at the coal face of noise with an astringent approach to his spar, dissolving and smearing his organic sonic violence into a discordant vapour trail and curdled slosh that pools into viscous suds and primordial soup.
On the other hand, ‘Merzbow Mixes Arcane Device’ is all screeching attack and shrill high-register chaos that appears to shred and emulsify your innards and prompt the feeling that your grey matter is seeping out of your poor ears. Masochists and madheads, this one’s yours.
Mesmerising works for organ and percussion, rooted in early music, and distilled by Canadian composers Clark & Ceccarelli - RIYL Sarah Davachi, XKatedral, FUJI||||||||||TA.
With exquisite grace and patience, Katelyn Clark and Isaiah Ceccarelli smudge the respective sounds of continuo organ and portative organ (organetto) with analogue synth and traces of percussion to create a richly intoxicating timbral residue that begs eyes shut and effortlessly evokes states of deep concentration. Through processes of performance, listening back, and reiteration, they appear to variously slow down traces of early music until it dematerialises into quivering drones of the sort best not experienced while driving heavy machinery.
In their longer pieces, especially the 20 minutes of ‘Five Distances’ the soporific pull quite be quite intense and seduce to the horizontal, and feels as though they are pulling he structures of early music deeply out of focus and manifesting the distance of time between the object and their subject within their strangely sensorial space. Admirers of Yosuke Fujita’s water-built pipe contraptions will surely be attracted by the woozy glow of their vignettes ‘Improvisation on a Quarter’ and ‘Improvisation on a Kyrie Eleison’.
A firm fave in Merzbow’s early junk noise vein resurfaces on reissue with Important, packing 40 minutes of free-flowing, gunky cacophony
First deployed on the Chaos label in 1983, ‘Material Action 2 (N-A-M)’ yields Masami Akita (Merzbow) duelling with Kiyoshi Mizutani on a junk-shop’s worth of tapes, percussion, organ, synth, and violin. Also found on the legendary 50 x CD ‘Merzbox’ in 2000, the two side-long tracks work out a straight-jacket squirm of atonalities and arrhythmic flow that is pure Merzbow, and especially indicative of his seminal early work that inspired a whole genre in its wake.
Ostensibly an unstructured racket, it’s possible to detect the inspirations of natural world chaos, janky folk, free jazz and jagged blues rock collapsed into the pyroclastic flow of ‘Material Action (N-A-M)’. A lone fiddle soloist barely keeps their head above the clattering rhythms that attempt to drag it under on ‘Nil Ad Mirari’, leading to surprisingly sweet resolution of gamelan-esque tones in the final parts, before ‘Nimbus Alter Magneto Electricity’ really pushes out into primordial soup chaos with a resounding clangour and manacled grasp of his material.
Epic 16 hour François Bayle retrospective, an unparalleled document of the key C.20th electro-acoustic and concrète pioneer and director of the hugely influential GRM institution from 1966-1997, where he was instrumental in bringing the Acousmonium speaker array and INA-GRM label to life, among many important, enduring innovations
This 10 year reissue of ’50 Ans d’Acousmagique’ joins INA-GRM’s quintessential boxsets of Pierre Schaeffer, Pierre Henry, Parmegiani, Radigue, and Xenakis in a rare, stellar microcosm of works by twentieth century groundbreakers. At 16 hrs long, and including 228 tracks, it offers a comprehensive overview of François Bayle’s unfathomable catalogue of work between 1972-2012. During this time Bayle was pivotal in altering perceptions of music’s materiality and purpose at the most fundamental and philosophic levels through his work in developing the Acousmonium diffusion system - an “orchestra of loudspeakers” which has become key to the GRM’s facilities in Paris - as well as supporting technological developments (Syter, GRM Tools, Midi Formers, Acousmographe) which are vital to his own remarkable compositions, and his endeavours organising radio broadcasts and events.
Deeply informing and paralleling the history of recorded electronic music during its formative golden years, Bayle’s recordings render an embarrassment of riches for the discerning and explorative listener and historians of vanguard C.20th music. Between the flighty electro-acoustic staging of his avian dreams on ’72’s ‘Trois Rêves D'oiseau’ to the sensually lathered cosmic delirium of 1978-80’s ‘Erosphère’ works, to his beguiling latter tributes to his tutors at the Paris Conservatoire and Darmstadt summer courses, Messiaen and Stockhausen; the overwhelming scope of Bayle’s work, and thus the boxset, is brought into clearer focus by its chronological sequencing, offering a logical pathway thru his incredible projections of imagination.
It bears reflection that figures such as François Bayle created, and then opened, doors of perception for music in the past century that have come to mirror and shape the soundsphere we now inhabit. His innovations in sound spatialisation and the embrace of an acoustic unknown, or acousmagique, underline some of the most fascinating expressions of pathos thru art in our lifetimes, and this boxset is more than enough to send heads reeling into deep time for eons to come.