Ambient / Minimal / Drone

1345 products

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Delphine Dora - Hymness Apophatiques (CS)Delphine Dora - Hymness Apophatiques (CS)
Delphine Dora - Hymness Apophatiques (CS)Mascarpone Discos
Cassette version of the 2022 album "Hymnes Apophatiques" by the french artist Delphine Dora, previously released on CD by Morctapes. During the summer of 2021, Delphine Dora was invited for a residency at the church of St Saphorin (Switzerland), on the occasion of the Jolie Vue Festival. Having the opportunity to fully explore the organ the days before the festival, Delphine improvised a long, long series of tracks, of which you’ll find a small selection on ‘hymnes apophatiques’. She’s definitely full of respect for the organ, at some moments diving deep in the sound traditionally associated with this rich instrument – the one you’ll recognize from the hours spent in church as a kid. However, at many moments throughout the album the sound is more playful than we’re used to. It’s a fearless approach. The fact that she dares to intervene with her voice quite often really makes her recordings stand out from those of many other artists who have been experimenting with a church organ lately: she definitely has a high regards for the tradition of the organ, but refuses to bow. She’s in charge, not the instrument itself. This way, Delphine manages to bend the sound completely her way. It’s an enthralling listen, that not only takes you along all the possibilities of the instrument, but also through Delphine’s entire musical path. And that’s quite a journey. Review on Fluid Audio by James Catchpole : "Hymes Apophatique is the latest album from French musician Delphine Dora, recorded last year during a residency at the church of St Saphorin, Switzerland. Delphine recorded her improvised music on the church organ, an instrument she fully respects and recognises, and this level of respect comes through in her music. Although traditionally confined to the dusty recesses of a church, the organ is so much more than an instrument of devotion. Delphine isn’t afraid to open the doors and push the sound of the organ out and into the modern world. No hesitation is found in her music, and in her wish to spread its wings. With so many pedals and tonalities, the organ can be an intimidating instrument, not something to necessarily master but to temporarily hold the reins and somehow snake-charm its tones. Delphine manages to remain in control at all times while still respecting its background and rich history. Somehow, the organ exhales with the unfathomable weight of history. One of the most interesting elements of Hymes Apophatique is the introduction of her voice, which accompanies the instrument, partaking in a slow, entangled dance, but never blotting it out or overshadowing it. Trenches of deep reverence, respect, and awe are maintained. Other sections are incredibly melodic, sometimes sounding like an echo from a fantastical forest and at other times carrying medieval undertones. All the while, though, the organ is airy and well ventilated. Its reverent nature is not lost – not even a drop – as it steps forward into the glowing sun of a new dawn." Review on Terrascope by Simon Lewis : Recorded in the summer of 2021 at the Church of St Saphorin (Switzerland), this album is a collection of pieces for voice and Church Organ, that were improvised and recorded during a residency by the artist Delphine Dora. Familiar to anyone who attended church as a child, the sound of the organ is warm and comforting, easily evoking memories, the smell of wooden pews, old books, a quiet chatter and the echo of footsteps, whilst the addition of Delphine's voice adds a slightly stranger feel to the music, taking it into Canterbury sounding music, reminding me of early albums by Kevin Ayers especially on “Ritournelle Scolastisque #2” which has a lovely melody that would sit happily on “Joy of a Toy”. Another charming aspect of the album is the way the pieces just end as the pause button is pressed, each track a raw nugget of sound, the experience as it happened. Over 17 tracks, the music retains a similar pace and feel giving it a wonderful flow, allowing the listener time to just sit and contemplate the simple beauty of the music. Maybe I should be highlighting some individual songs at this point but it is the album as a whole that is its strength, seemingly more than the sum of its components although “. L'immuable sous-jacent “ has a fragile beauty running through it, whilst the six minute “Opus Divinum” is a distillation of the whole album,a gnetly breathing piece that could be the beginning of an early seventies Tangerine Dream track, especially as it contains distant voices picked up by the recording process, I was just waiting for a sequencer to kick in. I have played this album several times now and it gets better every time, the rawness of the recording and Delphines' untrained voice adding a human element to the music that really appeals to me, give it a listen. (Simon Lewis)
Basso presents: Sitting In Trees - Sitting In Trees (LP)Basso presents: Sitting In Trees - Sitting In Trees (LP)
Basso presents: Sitting In Trees - Sitting In Trees (LP)International Feel
This whole text about a compilation of legit chill slippers could be over with one quote of drummer Aaron Sterling. The John Mayer band member and studio guru called Basso (our compiler) the „ECM of chill wave“. As we all know, even if some words may be hollow, good quotes help to tell a story. And that is definitely a great quote and if someone has a good story to tell, it is Basso. Best known for his label Growing Bin and probably even more so for the online record shop of the same name, he is one of those miraculous figures in music or record culture who can be called a true believer. Helplessly addicted to collecting music nonstop (hence Growing Bin) from all corners of the spectrum and with an uncanny knack of finding precious little diamonds, where others only assume slop, his shop features everything from original trance tapes to fake reggae and plain private press folly. Much to the pleasure of his devoted customers and even more so to the nickel nursers who use his website for window shopping and go bargain hunting in the dusty canyons and wide plains of the internet. Unfair, you might think, because knowledge like that comes with a commitment. A commitment that is not only financial in nature, but also involves time, dedication, thrift store and flea market visits and hardships (lacerated cuticles especially). Sitting in Trees for International Feel is a sampling demonstration of this commitment. Devotees of his previous compiling efforts Proper Sunburn (Music For Dreams) and Lucky Are Those Who Hear The Birds Sing (Growing Bin), know what to expect: some of the best songs you have never heard before, some you would probably never hear without this and even some that you did not know you would even like. Even self-proclaimed record diggers might not recognize more than Mystery Voice by smooth jazz new agers Dancing Fantasy. It is a world of merry music that pretty much is boundary- and genre-free and includes sunshine stepper like Beau Michael’s Move Away. Patrick Jahn’s and Erobique’s previously unreleased Moonlight Shuffle (the soundtrack to a lost Schimanski Tatort) and Christian Ch. Kneisel’s impossible-to-find Balearic digi gem Jungle Connection. All contextualized, explained and wonderfully described with meticulous liner notes by the king of record descriptions himself: Basso. But what else would you expect from a DJ turned trip-hop-producer turned artiste turned record sommelier? Magic moments galore that won’t make you move away!

宝達奈巳 Nami Hotatsu - Ultra-Hyper Cosmic Voice (LP)
宝達奈巳 Nami Hotatsu - Ultra-Hyper Cosmic Voice (LP)Forest Jams
“Originally released on the lauded Green Energy label from experimental maverick Henry Kawahara, Forest Jams is thrilled to present the official re-issue of Nami Hotatsu’s sophomore album – revised and re-christened “Ultra Hyper Cosmic Voice” by the artist herself. Equal parts beguiling and inviting, Nami’s mixture of vocals and driving propulsive beats still sound as fresh and as captivating as when they were originally released in 1994. Now, thirty years later, we invite you to discover Nami’s “perfect world of being” in its totality – awakening yourself to the unknown world inside through what lauded producer Haruomi Hosono hailed as a “shamanistic” vision!” – Hsu Jui-Ting

Donato Dozzy & Tin Man - Acid Test 09.1Donato Dozzy & Tin Man - Acid Test 09.1
Donato Dozzy & Tin Man - Acid Test 09.1Acid Test
The now 10 year old Acid Test 09 sees a special 10th Anniversary Edition repress with a new vocal mix of track “Test 3”. The original EP saw acid nomad Tin Man team up with techno dreamweaver Donato Dozzy for three slices of deep acid and dubby, bleepy ambient. In this special 10 Year Anniversary Edition Test 3” comes with a new vocal mix and it’s a welcome return to the mic for Tin Man. Perfectly-placed words sit among chiming bells and are layered deep into the echoes, almost like the synths themselves are speaking. Acid Test 09 proved to be pairing in 303 paradise, but the results outclassed even Dozzy and Tin Man’s special partnership - they created simply a timeless signal that could broadcast through space ad infinitum. Mastered and recut by Rashad.

John Greek And The Limiters - I'm Hot For Your Body (12")
John Greek And The Limiters - I'm Hot For Your Body (12")DFA Records
The Pacific Northwest musician John Greek originally released "I'm Hot For Your Body" as a limited private press 12" single in 1979 - rumors abound that only 100 copies were ever made, though much about this record feels apocryphal.Across six minutes of sordid, primal disco- blues, Mr. Greek slowly yields to the power of desire, chasing swirling string synths around the shadows like they're ghosts, dousing everything in flange it's lighter fluid. It is both terrifying and undeniable.With permission from Mr. Greek's estate, we've remastered the original and presented it alongside a even-more-unhinged version from Velvet Season & The Hearts Of Gold, the duo of Gerry Rooney (co-founder of the legendary Black Cock edits label) and Joel Martin (of Quiet Village).Not for the faint of heart, this.
Drew McDowall - A Thread, Silvered and Trembling (Clear Red Vinyl LP)Drew McDowall - A Thread, Silvered and Trembling (Clear Red Vinyl LP)
Drew McDowall - A Thread, Silvered and Trembling (Clear Red Vinyl LP)Dais Records
Scottish experimental/electronic musician Drew McDowall’s lifelong interest in an elegiac solo bagpipe style called pibroch (ceòl mòr in Gaelic) has been an inspiration for much of his previous work (including Coil’s legendary Time Machines). This form, often traditionally used for laments and for tributes to the dead, fuses modal drones with flickering dissonance and plaintive melody evoking an ancient, solemn mood. His latest work, A Thread, Silvered and Trembling, both incorporates and transforms these elements via exploratory electronic processing, weaving an electro-acoustic tapestry of strings, shudders, voids, and voices, alternately disembodied and displaced. Co-produced with engineer Randall Dunn at Circular Ruin Studios in Brooklyn, the collection’s four pieces capture McDowall at his most elevated and elusive, in thrall to "the ineffable – that which refuses to be spoken." McDowall’s palette here is unusually eclectic, sourced from a dynamic orchestral ensemble arranged by Brent Arnold and comprised of cello, viola, violin, harp (Marilu Donovan of LEYA), and french horn. Ebbing between shrouded electronics and enigmatic, sometimes spectralist orchestration, the album moves with a seething, simmering energy, surging into elegant, uneasy crescendos. The first two pieces are inspired by a liberatory hijacking and inversion of a grim biblical story (and by a cryptic and strange UK simple syrup branding). Opener "Out of Strength Comes Sweetness" shivers with short echo and resonant pads, before shifting into the album’s centerpiece: the 14-minute saga "And Lions Will Sing with Joy." A murmuring electrical storm of keening strings and disorienting drones gradually grows darker and denser, until suddenly there’s a crack in the clouds, revealing mutated choral voices and sparkling harp. McDowall describes the track as "an incantation to help usher in a break, and a new beginning." The record’s latter half evokes a deep untamed animism shot through with spiraling radiance. "In Wound and Water" sways with harp, plucked strings and eerie cello undertows while lush layers of disorientated electronics hang in the dusk. There is no resolution, only a faint gradient of fragile dissipation, leading into the album’s harrowing and climactic closer, "A Dream of a Cartographic Membrane Dissolves." Processed voices (credited on the liner notes to "The Ghosts Who Refuse to Rest") contort, whisper, and gather as the rest of the ensemble sharpens, poising to strike. Then it does – grand, tragic stabs of strings and horns lashing the sky, storming heaven by force. The fallout is poetic and inevitable, raining embers into a dark sea. But the journey and catharsis of A Thread linger long after it goes silent. Like so much of McDowall’s multifaceted catalog, this is music of immanence and alchemy, attuned equally to the sacred and the profane, to the tile and the mosaic.

Mitsu - 水の彩 Clouds In The Water (LP)
Mitsu - 水の彩 Clouds In The Water (LP)Not On Label
Original deadstrock copy. Japanese Obscure Private Issue New Age gems!

Vangelis Katsoulis ‎- Minimal Suite - Double Image (LP)
Vangelis Katsoulis ‎- Minimal Suite - Double Image (LP)Praxis
Deadstock copy of Greek New Age Composer Vangelis Katsoulis's album. For fans of Franco Nanni, Ditto, Cabaret Du Ciel and Vito Ricci

Manuel Göttsching - Inventions for Electric Guitar (LP)
Manuel Göttsching - Inventions for Electric Guitar (LP)MG.ART
180-gram LP version. Originally released in 1975. Remastered by Manuel Göttsching. Recorded July-August 1974, Inventions for Electric Guitar is Manuel Göttsching's first solo album. Written and performed entirely by Göttsching on electric guitar, with a four-track TEAC A3340, Revox A77 for echoes, wah-wah pedal, volume pedal, Schaller Rotosound, and Hawaiian steel bar.
funcionário - Momento Claro (LP)funcionário - Momento Claro (LP)
funcionário - Momento Claro (LP)Glossy Mistakes
“Momento Claro”, a dream-like landscape crafted by funcionário, influenced by Jon Hassell and Hiroshi Yoshimura’s latest works Glossy Mistakes proudly announces the upcoming release of "Momento Claro," the latest full-length album by Portuguese artist funcionário. Scheduled to drop on May 10th, "Momento Claro" will be available digitally and on vinyl, inviting listeners to embark on a profound auditory exploration. Following the success of his previous work "Cavalcante," released on Hozulam, funcionário returns delving deep into the realms of ambient and Fourth World. Inspired by the likes of Jon Hassel, Brian Eno, and Japanese environmental artist such as Hiroshi Yoshimura and Takashi Kokubo. "Momento Claro" offers a sonic tapestry rich with textures and layers, evoking a sense of spirituality and introspection. A split second. At the heart of the album lies a collection of eight tracks, each a testament to funcionário's craft. The journey begins with "Esperança," a mesmerising nine-minute meditation adorned with the soothing sounds of the ocean, setting the tone for the ethereal voyage ahead. From the tranquil atmospheres of "Retrato" to the contemplative depths of "Momento Claro," each composition invites listeners to immerse themselves fully in the sonic, dream-like landscape crafted with care and depth. Here a glimpse into the intricacies of day-to-day experiences and interactions collide throughout a collage of organic layers, atmospheres and approaches, "Momento Claro" serves as a poignant reflection on the contemporary working society, where "the power of sound as a bridge between memory and the imagination that interprets it”. Mastered by Damian Schwartz, "Momento Claro" achieves a sonic clarity that enhances the album's immersive qualities, ensuring that each note resonates with precision and depth. Prepare to be transported to a realm where time stands still and the boundaries between reality and reverie blur. A deep journey that promises to captivate the mind and nourish the soul

Steve Hiett - Girls In The Grass (LP)
Steve Hiett - Girls In The Grass (LP)Be With Records
Steve Hiett, who is famous for his only work "At Nagisa ...", which is still very popular as a masterpiece of AOR / Light Mellow with a strange transparency and floating feeling, was spending time as a fashion photographer. This is the first record of an unreleased tape sound source recorded in Paris! Steve Hiett, a famous photographer who also shot JIMI HENDRIX's final performance at the Isle of Wight Festival in 1970 and the Beach Boys, Doors, and Miles Davis. A treasured sound source released in conjunction with the recurrence of "At Nagisa ..." released the other day. It's like a Drutti column played on the beach, and it has a tremendous Breezin'and Mellow, and a bottomless and moody taste. It's very good with a polished sound and a conceptual album composition that I can't think of as an unreleased work! A masterpiece behind the AOR.
Duval Timothy - Sen Am (LP)
Duval Timothy - Sen Am (LP)Carrying Colour
Carrying Colour presents 'Sen Am', the third album by Duval Timothy. The album is the product of Duval spending the last two years living between London, UK and Freetown, Sierra Leone. 'Sen Am' is a Krio phrase that means 'send it' or 'send him/her Throughout the record friends and family from Sierra Leone appear through Whatsapp voice notes that speak over solo piano and layered instrumental compositions. Also featuring: 6pac, Aminata, Aruna, Emmerson & Sydney. The LP was recorded in London (UK), Bath (UK), Freetown (SL), Tokyo (JP), Kyoto (JP). Recorded and engineered by Duval Timothy Copyright Duval Timothy
Takashi Kokubo & Andrea Esperti - Music For A Cosmic Garden (2LP)
Takashi Kokubo & Andrea Esperti - Music For A Cosmic Garden (2LP)We Release Whatever The Fuck We Want
WRWTFWW Records is very happy to present a new collaborative album by Japanese ambient/environmental legend Takashi Kokubo (Ion Series) and Italian & Swiss trombonist Andrea Esperti (Esperti Project): MUSIC FOR A COSMIC GARDEN. Recorded during the heights of the pandemic and completed in February 2021, the splendid ethereal soundscape created by Kokubo and Esperti is available in limited double LP, digipack CD, as well as digital. Takashi KOKUBO is a Japanese environmental musician who produces healing music that gently resonates with people’s hearts. He has recorded “sound scenes from nature” in countries around the world using a binaural “CyberPhonic” microphone of his own invention, and incorporates these dimensional sounds of nature in his work. The founder of Studio Ion, he has released more than 20 albums that include the highly sought-after Ion Series. His track "A Dream Sails Out to Sea, Scene 3" was featured on Light in the Attic’s Grammy-nominated Kankyō Ongaku compilation. Andrea ESPERTI is a Swiss trombonist and composer originally from Puglia (Italy). He plays in multiple genres (classical, pop, world, electro, jazz) in an eternal approach of exchange and encounters. He travels the world, listening to others and interacting with their cultures, crystallizing his globe-trotting emotions through music projects. More info at For fans of environmental, ambient, cosmic escapes, meditative atmospherics, and gardening in space.
川井憲次 - Ghost In The Shell (Original Soundtrack) (LP)
川井憲次 - Ghost In The Shell (Original Soundtrack) (LP)We Release Whatever The Fuck We Want

We Release Whatever The Fuck We Want Records is thrilled and honored to announce the first ever official vinyl pressing of the soundtrack for Mamoru Oshii's critically acclaimed and all around legendary science fiction anime film GHOST IN THE SHELL (1995), adapted from Masamune Shirow's groundbreaking manga series of the same name.

Cut from the original master reels at Emil Berliner Studios (formerly the in-house recording department of renowned classical record label Deutsche Grammophon), the album comes as a LP accompanied by a bonus one-sided 7" housed in official Ghost in the Shell artwork sleeve with silver gilt printing and a Japanese obi, and contains extensive 24-page liner notes.

The haunting score is composed by Kenji Kawai, one of Japan's most celebrated soundtrack composers, alongside Joe Hisaishi and Ry?ichi Sakamoto, whose work includes Hideo Nakata's Ring (1998) and Ring 2 (1999), Death Note (2006), Hong Kong films Seven Swords by Tsui Hark (2005) and Ip Man by Wilson Yip (2008), and countless others. Kawai's compositions see ancient harmonies and percussions uncannily mesh with synthesized sounds of the modern world to convey a sumptuous balance between folklore tradition and futuristic outlook. For its iconic main theme "Making of Cyborg", Kawai had a choir chant a wedding song in ancient Japanese following Bulgarian folk harmonies, setting the standard for a timeless and unparalleled soundtrack that admirably echoes the film's musings on the nature of humanity in a technologically advanced world.

Ghost in the Shell is widely considered one of the best anime films of all time and its influence has been felt in the work of numerous movie directors, including James Cameron (Avatar), the Wachowskis (The Matrix), and Steven Spielberg (AI: Artificial Intelligence).

Moritz Von Oswald - Silencio (2LP)Moritz Von Oswald - Silencio (2LP)
Moritz Von Oswald - Silencio (2LP)Tresor Records
Moritz von Oswald's latest solo album is his most startling, time-bending material since the Basic Channel days, a collaboration with a 16-voice choir that refracts techno and choral music into dizzying psychedelic traces, exploiting mind-altering xenharmonic synth tones, Ligeti-like operatic phrases and abyssal kicks with a veteran's cunning. We've been knocked sideways by this one - trans-dimensional afters music at its absolute best. We realise that there's been a lot of electronic music released recently saddled with these buzzwords. Choirs, unusual tunings, deconstructions of early music - elements almost mandatory for artists eyeing the lucrative Euro festival circuit. But to our mind that's what makes von Oswald's latest all the more astonishing. He's stepped in with an album that's so definitive, it reminds us just how foundational and game-changing his early material was, and how less can so often amount to more. Opening track 'Silencio' is a dazzling proof of concept that winds lilting, oddly-tuned synth tones around the barest percussion. There are no vocals on this one, instead the traces of early Detroit techno hang heavy around its frayed edges. Working like a scientist with the stereo field, von Oswald introduces familiar elements into the mix in unexpected places. Wormy,cascading synth tones are met by driving whirrs, and the kickdrum sounds so submerged that it's almost an illusion. When he does introduce noisier sounds, they color the track like drybrushed highlights, and he saves the best until the final moments, energising the mood with monumental Millsian stabs that reference the past without retreading churned mud. It sets us up for the album's biggest tonal shift, when Oswald presents the choir on 'Luminoso'. He's worked extensively with ensembles in the last few years, his own - the constantly-shifting Moritz von Oswald Trio - the Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester and Kyrgyz ensemble Ordo Sakhna, and the experience has furnished him with the ability to treat the choir with just the right amount of reverence and distance. Here, the Berlin singers' voices swirl into ghosted tones, nestling beneath a layer of mixing desk noise that feels like von Oswald's little wink to the camera, an acknowledgement of past glories. Moritz also provides a more abstracted rework of the track (along with three other versions of the choral compositions) that deepens the narrative. Losing the vocals completely, this take references the original's framework while adding impalpable, off-grid beats and cottony, rumbling textures that pirouette between the speakers. The synths and voices meet somewhere in the middle on 'Infinito', and von Oswald's remix shuttles them further into outer space, fogging them into spectral impressions and building a lithe rhythm over the top that hiccups and stutters with poise and momentum. 'Colpo' is even more impressive, offsetting the suggestive chorals with mechanical oscillations and thunderous sub bass tones. Like the earliest Detroit experiments, it's material that positions electronic music as a way to speculate about the past's relationship with the future. Von Oswald has formulated a minimalist masterpiece that interrogates not just technology, but the conceptual technologies of cultural invention. It's a highly rewarding, engrossing listen, certain to become a classic for the most adventurous after-hours listeners.
Steve Hiett - Down On The Road By The Beach (LP)
Steve Hiett - Down On The Road By The Beach (LP)Be With Records
Meditations Bestseller! Steve Hiett's only album "At the Shore..." is still very popular as a masterpiece of AOR/light mellow with too much unusual transparency and floating feeling. The album has been co-released by Melbourne's Efficient Space and Be With Records for the first time on vinyl! Steve Hiett has worked as an art director and designer, and has also worked as a photographer for top fashion magazines such as VOGUE and MARIE CLAIRE. The original album, released by CBS/Sony in 1983, is known to be extremely rare and hard to find. The album was released only in Japan and was not distributed worldwide, despite the fact that it featured a superb lineup that represented the Japanese music scene at the time: Toru Okada of the Moonriders, Hirofumi Suzuki, Masahiro Mukawa, and Kazuhiko Kato. This is a very rare album. Remastered from the original master tapes. Don't miss it!
Rafael Toral - Spectral Evolution (CD)Rafael Toral - Spectral Evolution (CD)
Rafael Toral - Spectral Evolution (CD)Moikai
After a two-decade interlude, Jim O’Rourke’s Moikai returns with Spectral Evolution, a major new work by Rafael Toral. Making his name in the mid-1990s with influential guitar drone platters like "Sound Mind Sound Body" and "Wave Field" (both reissued by Drag City in recent years), Toral has never been one to rest on his laurels repeating his past glories. In the early years of the 21st century, Toral laid the guitar aside, along with the focus on extended tones that had defined much of his music until that point. He began his ‘Space Program’, a thirteen-year investigation of the performance possibilities of an ever-expanding set of custom electronic instruments, played with a fluid phrasing and rhythmic flexibility inspired by jazz. Dedicated to honing his skills on these idiosyncratic instruments, Toral has performed with them extensively both solo and in many collaborations, including in his Space Quartet, where his mini-amplifier feedback integrates seamlessly into the frontline of a classic post-free jazz quartet rounded out with saxophone, double bass, and drums. Since 2017, Toral’s work has been entering a new phase, often still centred around the arsenal of self-built instruments developed in the Space Program, but with a renewed interest in the long tones and almost static textures of his earlier work; he has also, after more than a decade, returned to the electric guitar. Spectral Evolution is undoubtedly Toral’s most sophisticated work to date, bringing together seemingly incompatible threads from his entire career into a powerful new synthesis, both wildly experimental and emotionally affecting. The record begins with a brief ‘Intro’ that sets the stage for the unique sound world explored throughout the remainder of its duration: over sparkling clean guitar figures, Toral stages a duet between two streams of modulated feedback, seeming less electronic than like mutant takes on a muted trumpet and an ocarina. This segues seamlessly into the stunning ‘Changes’, where a dense array of Space instruments solo with wild abandon over a thick carpet of slowly moving chords, growing increasingly chaotic over the course of eight minutes yet always fastened to the lush harmonic foundation. On these and many other moments on the record, Toral manages the almost miraculous feat of having his self-built electronic instruments (which in the past he had seen as ‘inadequate to play any music based on the Western system’) play in tune. In an unexpected sidestep away from any of his previous work, the chord changes that underpin many of the episodes on Spectral Evolution are derived from classic jazz harmony, including takes on the archetypal Gershwin ‘Rhythm changes’ and Ellington-Strayhorn’s ‘Take the “A” Train’, albeit slowed to such an extent that each chord becomes a kind of environment in its own right. Threading together twelve distinct episodes into a flowing whole, "Spectral Evolution" alternates moments of airy instrumental interplay with dense sonic mass, breaking up the pieces based on chord changes with ambient ‘Spaces’. At points reduced to almost a whisper, at other moments Toral’s electronics wail, squelch, and squeak like David Tudor’s live-electronic rainforest. Similarly, his use of the guitar encompasses an enormous dynamic and textural range, from chiming chords to expansive drones, from crystal clarity to fuzzy grit: on the beautiful ‘Your Goodbye’, his filtered, distorted soloing recalls Loren Connors in its emotive depth and wandering melodic sensibility. The product of three years of experimentation and recording, and synthesizing the insights of more than thirty years of musical research, "Spectral Evolution" is the quintessential album of guitar music from Rafael Toral.
Oren Ambarchi / Johan Berthling / Andreas Werliin - Ghosted II (LP)Oren Ambarchi / Johan Berthling / Andreas Werliin - Ghosted II (LP)
Oren Ambarchi / Johan Berthling / Andreas Werliin - Ghosted II (LP)Drag City
An utterly unique guitar/bass/drums triad: the guitar sounds like anything but a guitar; bass and drums simultaneously insistent and relaxed. Telephathic group-think opens a window to fresh fields of fusion: funk-jazz heads, polyrhythmic skeletons, ambient pastorals, post-kraut drones and shimmering soundtrack reveries. A music of sustained tension and deep atmosphere, marked by subtle, shifting dynamics playing out in an open sound field.

Oren Ambarchi / Johan Berthling / Andreas Werliin - Ghosted (LP)Oren Ambarchi / Johan Berthling / Andreas Werliin - Ghosted (LP)
Oren Ambarchi / Johan Berthling / Andreas Werliin - Ghosted (LP)Drag City
Ambarchi, Berthling and Werliin share a fascination with rhythm and the myriad of ways it can subdivide within the beat. Using aspects of jazz, world and experimental musics, each tune settles into a deep groove, digging itself via continuous minimal adjustments into an ever-deeper, eternal groove.
Jennifer Walshe & Tony Conrad - In The Merry Month of May (LP)Jennifer Walshe & Tony Conrad - In The Merry Month of May (LP)
Jennifer Walshe & Tony Conrad - In The Merry Month of May (LP)Drag City
The final studio recording of the late, great Tony Conrad, and the first duo release with Jennifer Walshe. A wild, improvisatory flaying of song; the sheer sonic force recalls the ecstatic charge of Conrad’s Slapping Pythagoras, with Walshe’s clarion voice at the heart of it. A one-of-a-kind concoction whipped up by two fearless and often peerless souls. It’s a joy to hear their manifest mutual regard and commitment to busting a gut.

Jon Hassell - The Living City [Live at the Winter Garden 17 September 1989] (2LP+DL)Jon Hassell - The Living City [Live at the Winter Garden 17 September 1989] (2LP+DL)
Jon Hassell - The Living City [Live at the Winter Garden 17 September 1989] (2LP+DL)Ndeya

Part of a series of three new archival releases from Ndeya that showcase Jon Hassell and group in the late 1980s exploring a radical tangent on his Fourth World sensibility.

The Living City captures the Jon Hassell Group in September 1989 performing as part of an audio-visual installation inside the World
Financial Center Winter Garden in New York City, with Brian Eno mixing the band live. Eno had designed an audio-visual installation in the 10-story glass-vaulted pavilion, inspired by the hunting, ceremony, animals, and weather sounds of the Ba-Ya-Ka pygmy tribe from Cameroon gathered by Louis Sarno.

Jon Hassell and his then band, the musicians who had recently recorded the City: Works Of Fiction album, played in the Winter Garden Atrium over the course of three nights, with Eno mixing the band live with the installation sounds.

The audio presented here is an edited selection from the performance on the second night, available on vinyl for the first time, cut across four sides by Stefan Betke aka Pole. Gatefold vinyl edition includes download card and extensive sleevenotes.

Akira Kosemura & Lawrence English - Selene (Cloudy White Vinyl LP)Akira Kosemura & Lawrence English - Selene (Cloudy White Vinyl LP)
Akira Kosemura & Lawrence English - Selene (Cloudy White Vinyl LP)Temporary Residence Ltd.
Atmosphere and gravity lean into each other. They are simultaneously expansive, and anchoring. They hold us, and lend a sense of perspective. They provide a stability and a knowingness which is essential in the absolute, and yet we can't help but find ourselves gazing upward, outward and reaching towards that which sits outside those things and ways we know. Selene is a record about that this lingering desire for that which sits beyond. It is work that seeks new perspectives snatched from familiar vistas, and it meditates on that sense of anchor and perspective. The work is also a speculative hymn to the visions of the celestial zones that spill ever outward. These visions, once merely what we could perceive with the naked eye are now so much more. Our minds eye is fed in equal parts by radio telecopy, filmic dreams and fiction renders of a place most of us will never know first-hand. This recording ties into a linage that reaches back, while stretching forward. It is just one story of so many, told across places, across cultures, across generations. It sits in the in-between of before and after, and in that moment invites us to situate ourselves and lean into it.
upsammy - Germ in a Population of Buildings (LP)upsammy - Germ in a Population of Buildings (LP)
upsammy - Germ in a Population of Buildings (LP)PAN
On her sophomore album "Germ in a Population of Buildings”, upsammy moves through her surroundings with the curiosity of a place-bending landscape architect. The album is rooted in her interest for ambiguous environments in constant shift, and the feeling of discovering strange patterns in different ecosystems. Often, the Amsterdam-based artist finds herself zooming in and out beyond a place's most recognizable surface features to inhabit the microscopic and gigantic. Gathering field recordings and evocative environmental sounds, she shapes this source material into vibrating electro-acoustic rhythms and unstable, psychedelic textures. upsammy's debut album, 2020's critically-acclaimed "Zoom", was praised for its careful reimagining of IDM, evolving vignettes that nodded towards the dancefloor without being shackled to its rigid set of rules. On "Germ in a Population of Buildings" her process has evolved considerably; the skeletal trace of IDM is still present but it's been trapped in amber, allowing her unique sonic landscape to develop organically. 'Being is a Stone' is a proof of concept in many ways, layering upsammy's contorted voice in rickety patterns beneath a lattice of fragile rhythms and faintly melancholy synths. It's never immediately obvious where the sounds are coming from - a hiccuping beat might be glass cracking underfoot, and larger pulses could be wet concrete, rusted iron or bent plastic. As the sounds develop they morph into each other, demolishing what came before and building on top of the ornamental wreckage. On the dynamic 'Constructing', upsammy's sound design fluxes through hyperactive bass music structures, abstracting expectations at every turn. Often her sounds are whisper quiet, rattling and vibrating until heavier masonry drops and disrupts the structure. And when discernible rhythms subside into the background, like on the album's eerie title track, they become almost illusory, morphing between the real world and the electronic. upsammy's processed voice works like a bridge between these realms, snaking between stark, whimsical melodies on 'Patterning', arching from AutoTuned detachment into cooing, dreamy intimacy. By considering the harmonies between each location she's visited, upsammy has been able to build a unique topology that's an uncanny digital amalgam of her lived experience. It's a thoughtful alternative in an era more concerned with flatting the landscape than crumpling it and examining its peaks and troughs.
Joseph Shabason - The Fellowship (Sky Blue Vinyl LP)Joseph Shabason - The Fellowship (Sky Blue Vinyl LP)
Joseph Shabason - The Fellowship (Sky Blue Vinyl LP)Western Vinyl

Across eight tracks that mesh jazz-laced, emotive, and spacious composition with fourth-world and adult-contemporary tonality, Toronto saxophonist Joseph Shabason sketches an auditory map of the transcendence, unity, conditioning, and eventual renunciation of his upbringing in an Islamic and Jewish dual-faith household. The resulting album The Fellowship bears the name of the insular Islamic community Shabason’s traditionally Jewish parents belonged to from a time before he was even born; a mental and spiritual push-pull which continued shaping, even controlling, his outlook well into his adulthood. As a listening experience The Fellowship follows a chronological arc that spans three generations covering his parents’ early lives, his own spiritual and physical adolescence, and his subsequent struggle to eschew the problematic habituations of such a conflicted past.

“Life With My Grandparents” commences The Fellowship in overcast hues. A cassette recording of a child’s voice pops in and out of a murmuring brass tone as both elements drift like memories receding forever into the past. “My parents grew up in really difficult households. Both of my father’s parents had just survived the Holocaust only six years before he was born.” Shabason explains, cutting right to the root of what might have led his parents to diverge from their inherited spiritual conventions. "My grandparents were deeply traumatized from having lost so many friends and family members, and even if the war hadn’t happened I don’t think they would have been particularly emotionally available.” Exchanging the gloom for tension, the anxiously experimental “Escape From North York” jolts the cadence forwards and backwards by way of skittering jazz percussion as a nauseated synth melody balloons into full-on terror, all while the melodic elements are ambushed from below by a flash flood of air-rending texture. The title (a play on John Carpenter’s Escape From New York) refers to the area of Toronto where Shabason’s parents were raised, and rebelliously fled in their twenties against their own parents’ wishes. The title track of The Fellowship swings toward relief and reflection, and buoys the mood up to something childlike. It is suffused with saxophone, upright bass, chorus-drenched guitar, and digitized pan flute; the kinds of 90’s jazz timbres that mark a time in Shabason’s adolescence when the dilemmas of his family’s faith were still obscured by comfort, community, and a dash of the forgivable naivete of early youth. At the same time, the piece shows Shabason at his most melodically athletic, darting around chord changes with fervor for the subject at hand.

From here the perspective moves from third to first person as Shabason unpacks his teenage years across a three song suite, the titles of which mark the exact years they are meant to sonically illustrate. Where the previous track floated ever upward on innocence and clarity, “0-13” dispenses with both by its final third at which point things have unraveled into aleatoric unease representing “the first chink in the armour,” as Joseph admits, “and the first time I really started to question everything I’d been taught.” By “13-15” the pendulum is fully back on the side of apprehension as galloping percussion, an unrelenting synthetic marimba, an off-key wood flute, and jittering electric guitar tell a story of doubt and anger, dressed in fourth-world atonality. “By that time,” says Shabason, referring to the age denoted in the track name, “I was smoking weed and really getting into my head. According to my religion, smoking weed was gonna land me in hell, and all my friends who drank were also on the path to hell. The whole thing seemed totally absurd. The idea of a God that was that petty and vengeful made no sense. Those thoughts just swirled and created this background dissonance that existed all throughout my early teens. Middle school was fucked.”

“15-19” is the sadness that follows outrage, when the dust settles and the pieces need putting back together, yet they simply won’t fit in light of a new found perspective. As such, this final movement is bathed in tragic, futile optimism. Under a bed of half-tempo RnB, muted trumpets glow like dying embers catching the wind. Shabason elucidates, “at that point, I’d discovered punk and hardcore and decided to be straight edge. It provided me with a community and a great cover for why I didn’t drink or do drugs. It felt like this really cool disguise. It kept me from questioning why I was doing it in the first place, but underlying it all was sadness. Why were my gay friends going to hell? Why did women have to be modest and not men? Why did God want to punish me for so many things? Was I going to hell because I had sex with my girlfriend? None of it made sense, but I was so completely brainwashed that I never thought to seriously question it. Instead, I just slipped up more and more, did drugs, fooled around, and tried to put the divine ramifications of my actions out of my head.”

“Comparative World Religions” is a caffeinated gamelan named for the college course that caused Joseph-- and so many other young people engrossed in inherited repressive ideologies-- to see the irreconcilable nature of his beliefs from the outside in. Like the class itself, it stands apart from the backdrop of The Fellowship by replacing the seesaw of religious ecstasy and uncertainty with the type of transcendence that can only be arrived at through factual illumination. Using mournful brass and glassy keys, the aptly titled “So Long” represents the slow walking away that Shabason had to do mentally and emotionally, even long after the illusion had been cracked open. “It took me at least another twelve to fifteen years to fully deprogram myself from all the guilt and shame that was bred into me by religion, but I think that I’m finally free from it,” says Shabason of his present-day outlook. “This song is a final goodbye to that life… an exhale and deep inhale before I start a new chapter.” On The Fellowship, as on prior albums that bear his name, Joseph Shabason does what only the best instrumental music makers can: tell a story with emotional clarity that conveys even the subtlest of feelings, all without singing a single word. As wordless as ever-- with as complex a theme as ever-- this album may be his most emotionally articulate yet. Most importantly, those lost in the woods of repression and self-doubt that organized religion can be at its worst now have The Fellowship to help guide them into a softer light.

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