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VITAL WEEKLY
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number 866
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week 4
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Vital Weekly, the webcast: we offering a weekly webcast, freely to download. This can be regarded as the audio-supplement to Vital Weekly. Presented as a radioprogramm with excerpts of just some of the CDs (no vinyl or MP3) reviewed. It will remain on the site for a limited period (most likely 2-4 weeks). Download the file to your MP3 player and enjoy!
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JEAN-CLAUDE ELOY - KAMAKALA (CD by Hors Territoires)
JEAN-CLAUDE ELOY - ETUDE IV (CD by Hors Territoires)
JEAN-CLAUDE ELOY - BUTSUMYOE/SAPPHO HIKETIS (CD by Hors Territoires)
JEAN-CLAUDE ELOY - ERKOS/GALAXIES (2CD by Hors Territoires) *
ANDREW CHALK – FORTY-NINE VIEWS IN RHAPSODIES' WAVE SERENE (CD by Faraway Press)
TARAB - SHARDS OF SPLINTERS-FRAGMENTS OF SCRATCHES-KILLUSTIKU KILLUD-KRIIMUYDE KILLUD (CD by Semper Florens) *
ROEL MEELKOP & MECHA/ORGA - ROTTERDAM 54:21 (CD by Monochrome Vision) *
YANNICK FRANCK - HIEROPHANY (CD by Monochrome Vision) *
THU20 - VROEG WERK (2CD by Monochrome Vision) *
ERIC LUNDE - 30X30 SHORT BURSTS OF LIGHT (LP by Psych KG)
CREMASTER/KOMORA A (split 7" by Monotype Records)
80S COMPILATION EP (7" by EE Tapes)
EDGAR ALLAN POE & LEIF ELGGREN - THE ROCKING CHAIR (7" flexi disc by Firework Edition Records)
ANDREAS FUHRER & LEIF ELGGREN - HYPNOSIS (7" by Firework Edition Records)
COMPLICATION COMPILATION (CDR by Suitcase Recordings)
MARIEN VAN OERS (CDR)
CHRISTOPHER MCFALL - EPILOG (RECOMBINANT) (CDR by Con-V) *
WANDER - LIVE AT EX LIBRIS (CDR by Zhelezobeton) *
CARLOS VILLENA - ELS HUMANS TAMBE SUM CARN (CDR by Mantricum)
GEORGE CHRISTIAN AND MEHATA SENTIMENTAL LEGEND - LA GEOGRAPHIE SANS REGRET (CDR by Spectropol Records)
JOJO BLUE - FIRST ON AIR (CDR by Menu Music) *
PATRICK EMM - HAPPY FARM (cassette by Pinebox Recordings)
PATRICK EMM - HUMAND HAND (cassette by Pinebox Recordings)
FOSSILS - WHAT A DRAG (cassette by Mantile) *
SPOILS & RELICS - STAMMER CHALLIS (cassette by Mantile) *
KAYAKA - OPERATION DEEP FREEZE (cassette by Mantile)
GANGBANG GORDON - I'M NOT A MUSICIAN (cassette, private) *
MOONINITE/RS2090 (split cassette by Hel Audio)


JEAN-CLAUDE ELOY - KAMAKALA (CD by Hors Territoires)
JEAN-CLAUDE ELOY - ETUDE IV (CD by Hors Territoires)
JEAN-CLAUDE ELOY - BUTSUMYOE/SAPPHO HIKETIS (CD by Hors Territoires)
JEAN-CLAUDE ELOY - ERKOS/GALAXIES (2CD by Hors Territoires)
Although I never like to start with a point of criticism, along with these four CDs I got an extended book with interviews, scores, photographs of Jean Claude Eloy, in English, which is excellent, but the print and binding is like a print-on-demand book and really fell apart, paper by paper, the first time I even looked into it. That's a pity, as I now have a book of loose papers… Another thing I may not understand, but perhaps there is a perfectly logical reason somewhere, is that there is no design concept behind these four, and the previous releases of Eloy. It's clear now the composer has reached the age of 75 (this year), there is a demand for collecting and releasing his works, but all of these works look very differently. Nuf complaining, as it's always the music that counts. I entered these four by going to start with the one with the oldest work, which is the disc which has 'Etude III' from 1962 as well as two other pieces, 'Kamakala' (1971) and 'Fluctuante-Immuable' (1977). All three are orchestral works, 'Kamakala' even for three orchestral groups, five choirs and three conductors. It's hard to imagine that a piece like 'Etude III' caused trouble when it was first played. From all the works I heard from Eloy this particular release is the one that I am very likely least get into. It's no doubt an essential release if you want to know more about the development of Eloy as a composer, but for me it's also the most traditional work I heard so far, owing much to the world of serialism and other contemporary classical music.
The next one opens up with 'Etude IV', but it's an all electronic piece of music, using the tool invented by Iannis Xenakis, Upic, 'a graphic interface designed to create sound and compose music, who first version (1979) featured a big drawing board equipped with a ballpoint electromagnetic pencil, surrounded by a computer', which had a memory of 32K (the plain text version of this week's Vital is bigger!). The drawings were set to music using all sorts of parameters, using various banks of sound (the whole explanation would be too long too!). Now, this, me thinks, is a great work of electronic music, very dynamic, flowing about, in the best tradition of the 60s electronic music, although this is from 1979 too. A strong, evocative piece, very visual indeed, with lots of moving about. '… D'Etoile Oubliee' is perhaps more like the Eloy I already know. Slowly enveloping drone like sounds and heavily processed metal percussion flying in and out of the mix. 'La Grande Vague' is also an electro-acoustic work, originally intended for 'Erkos', but not used in the end. I believe the input here is all to do with voices, but it's so strongly modified and changed that this can hardly be heard. It's however hardly a left over piece, I should think, as it's multi-layered sounds, with carefully placed glissandi work in a very dense way, but it sounds great.
The other two CDs are related to each other, as the four pieces contained in here use female voices and electro-acoustic sounds. There were all composed around 1989-1991 and have Oriental titles, Japanese and Greek, and for the electro-acoustic material a variety of percussion sources are used from all over the world. 'Butsumyoe' is the one that uses the most vocal only material and has perhaps something that is a bit esoteric as well as modern classical, with the percussion moved away to the background. 'Sappho Hikets' has two voices and much more percussive sounds, but all along retains that meditative aspect that is part of so much of Eloy's work. It's however work that also has a few outbursts and is not meant to be 'quiet' all along. Especially this second work is mysterious and dark. These two works were performed on one evening. The other two works are electro-acoustic works and use electronics and voices. In 'Erkos', three parts are instrumental, and the two use the voice of Junko Ueda, and the title means 'song' or 'praise'. Whereas on the other CD the voice material prevails, here's it's the other way round, and the instrumental parts are much stronger. It's hard to see this as an electro-acoustic work, since the percussion sounds most of time as percussion, and it doesn't always seem to swirling around in electronics. 'Erkos' is a particular more 'quiet' work, which meanders slow and peacefully, with very few outbursts. 'Galaxies' is more like a sandwich, with an electronic piece at the beginning and at the end and three solo voice pieces in the middle, which make a nice contrast. Here the music sounds much more electronic indeed, with clusters of sounds derived from temple bells, making a beautiful, powerful drone. The form a great contrast with the solo voice of the three shorter pieces in between, which have a likewise contemplative character, but then perhaps of an entirely different nature. It's great to see two such different sides of the same coin work together on this work. Playing some six hours of music by Eloy (times a few, in order to get to this) is not an easy task, but it's a great task indeed. It's a wealth of musical material on display here, both in music and in writing - even when the latter falls apart too easily. I wonder what will be next for Eloy on the release schedule! (FdW)
Address: http://www.metamkine.com

ANDREW CHALK – FORTY-NINE VIEWS IN RHAPSODIES' WAVE SERENE (CD by Faraway Press)
So the ink hasn’t dried up yet on the review of the last Andrew Chalk CD in Vital Weekly and there’s already a new one. Talk about being productive! This album contains no less than 49 tracks, all ranging between half a minute and two minutes. As such you would expect a fragmented listening affair, but not so. Even though the sounds are far more diverse than on Mutsu no hana (his previous album on An’archives), there is a coherence that is very satisfying. Somehow, it passes its 44 minutes in one flow. Smooth and relaxing, but also demanding attention. Droney, but with much air around the music. There’s keyboards-a-plenty, but all with different sounds, some concrete sounds, other instruments, adding up to this most fascinating play. Play this random and you’ll get an instant new composition. The 49 views are packed in a handmade oversized slipcase (much like Raymond Dijkstra’s albums) with embossed picture on the front and obi with Andrew’s name and album title in Japanese. In all, 400 copies are available. I know I was very enthusiastic about Andrew’s previous album, but I’m beginning to feel I like this one even more. (FK)
Address: http://farawaypress.info/

TARAB - SHARDS OF SPLINTERS-FRAGMENTS OF SCRATCHES-KILLUSTIKU KILLUD-KRIIMUYDE KILLUD (CD by Semper Florens)
Eamon Sprod, also known as Tarab, has had a few releases in his twelve year career, on such labels as 23Five Incorporated and Naturestrip, and usually his work incorporates field recordings, sounds from objects and how they work together or against eachother. Sometimes it takes the form of a sound installation, and sometimes as a CD, such as this one. Maybe the title is for the three pieces on the CD, or perhaps it's just an odd title. The material was already recorded in 2008, when Tarab was on residency in Estonia, and it uses sounds produced by Felicity Mangan (wire/chimney) and John Grzinich (plates/room). It's hard to say what is what here, and that's perhaps the way things should be with this kind of music. You don't know what is the actual field recording, although sometimes you can guess of course, what is the hand played manipulation of metal objects and to waht extend things are recorded live in a big, empty space (which adds to the mystery of the music), and what exactly was edited in what the cover calls 'arranged 2008-2011'. To what extend there is manipulation of any kind is not easy to say, I think. All of this is, of course, hardly 'new' as it's perhaps common practice for a lot of people that we review in these pages. Tarab fine combination of pure field recordings and manipulation of found sounds, melting together in a rather organic way, is very nice. It's at his best when it sounds like it's the real thing - un-processed, un-edited, cut out from the real thing. And that happens quite a bit here, so I think this is a rather fine album indeed. (FdW)
Address: http://www.semperflorens.net

ROEL MEELKOP & MECHA/ORGA - ROTTERDAM 54:21 (CD by Monochrome Vision)
YANNICK FRANCK - HIEROPHANY (CD by Monochrome Vision)
THU20 - VROEG WERK (2CD by Monochrome Vision)
Roel Meelkop may not have been born in the city of Rotterdam, he's been there for more than half his life now, so he probably knows every in and out, and is a perfect guide for the city and the extended harbor. He toured the city, armed with a tape recorder and with Yiorgis Sakellariou, also known as Mecha/orga to tape the beauty and the ugliness of the big city. Afterwards they went down to Worm, Rotterdam's finest when it comes to staging experimental music, or more in particular to their in-door CEM studio (who moved since 1959 all over the country, Hilversum, Arnhem, Amsterdam and now Rotterdam), where we have some vintage synth modules. Here the sound was treated further and then stuck together as a collage of electronic music. Then it was played live a couple of times and ended up on a silver shiny disc. Thirty minutes together and then fifteen Meelkop solo and nine minutes Mecha/orga solo. Probably I am not the right person to shed any light on this release - too close involved and all that. But this is one damn fine release. The collaborative piece flows all into eachother with the solo ones. Whereas in the collaboration they use the collage form, setting field recordings aside from the electronics at one point, mixing and filtering them together at another point, making an intense, rich form of collage. In his solo piece, Meelkop seems to be concentrating on sustaining sounds from motorized objects, slowly filtering and fading several together, while Mecha/orga is more on the field recordings side of this matter, which is no doubt more his line of business. An excellent collaborative work and a story that will continue this year, not with the same line-up, but from these fruitful weeks in The Netherlands in April 2012.
More field recordings, but perhaps a bit differently when it reaches the point of release, is the new release by Belgium's Yannick Franck. He's been releasing on various labels before, such as Silken Tofu, Young Girls Records and Silentes, and has worked with K11, Craig Hilton, Alan Trench and Esther Venrooy. Here however he is solo and he uses instruments and 'non musical objects', voice, radio signals and field recordings. Perhaps so far not much difference, but it's the way Franck executes his music. Instead of using the collage form, Franck sets wheels in motion, and when they are all in motion, then he subtly moves them about. Perhaps the word 'drone' music could apply to his music? Derived from various sources, his music is played altogether at the same time, adding and subtracting on microscopic level, all along using minimal changes in the use of sound effects. Quite a dense sound he arrives at here and like with the other release, the three pieces flow nicely into eachother. In the final part, 'Dying Down', you realize you are in a church, with whispering voices, and a far away choir practice. And then it seems like the other two pieces shared that same sort of big hall/cathedral reverb. That makes it perhaps all a bit too religious for my taste, but throughout I thought this was a very refined disc of challenging drone music.
And then there is 'Vroeg Werk' by THU20. Now I am the last person to review that, you may claim, right so, but I really don't have that much to do with it. By accident I was present at two concerts, and added vocals (?) to one and a synth to the other, which makes a total of five out of thirty-one pieces. This double CD reflects the early works of THU20, an original five piece with Jos Smolders, Peter Duimelinks, Jac van Bussel, Roel Meelkop and, in these early years, Guido Doesborg. Started out by Doesburg and Van Bussel as a sideline project to Club Rialto, they experimented in their early years with feedback, sample delay pedal boxes, a synth, a rhythm machine and then slowly something such as 'composition' came in, along with the other three members. THU20 were part of the big cassette scene (see also the P16.D4 of two weeks ago), sending out their pieces to compilations. The first discs collects these in chronological order (which is commendable, but it means it's doesn't start out with the best tracks), ending with their twenty minute concert in Bordeaux from 1989 (originally released as a split LP with Merzbow). The whole of the second CD has concert recordings of the years before that, 1986-1989, plus one from 1992. Here we find THU20 improvising freely with electronics, turntables, tapes, synthesizer and sometimes, but not always, guided by a backing tape and a loose notion of a graphic score. Many of these pieces are well-known to me, following the band from their very early days, but boy, they sound great here. The muffled sound of the cassettes is complete washed away and all of these piece shine like diamonds. You could argue if 150 minutes is a bit much, wether the chronological order is a great idea, but this is some truly exciting music. It combines the industrial music of say 1986 (feedback, noise) with the more rough edged notion of musique concrete, electro-acoustic, and it follows this band to find their own way in this. Many of their previous releases are hard to find these days ('Eerste Schijf', 'Tweede Schijf', 'Derde Schijf' or 'Elfde Uni'), and surely here's a band who deserved their own big box set. That is not likely to happen, but this 'small' (what is small?) box set is worth every penny. And still kicking around, THU20 works on a very irregular basis in 2013, in a slightly different line up. Who would have guessed? (FdW)
Address: http://www.monochromevision.ru

ERIC LUNDE - 30X30 SHORT BURSTS OF LIGHT (LP by Psych KG)
Back on track. That's what you can say about Eric Lunde. In the last two or so years he probably released more music than he did when he active first around - say late 80s/early 90s. What strikes is that he has great care for his covers, although in this case it's not something he did himself. Each cover is unique, and is created by Ricarda Buttgen, and all 222 covers form perhaps one mural of seemen like wire mesh. I think! It comes packed in a sewn LP carrier bag, screen printed with his name. Yes, that all looks great; you can't have that with a download! The tracks, seven in total, do not indicate this seemen. A thing that strikes me with the current Lunde material is the diversity used here. We have his well-known speech-tape-erosion material, Pan Sonic like rhythms, and on this LP, Lunde goes to the world of industrial noise. From the sound, I think he just purchased a whole bunch of monotron keyboards, the monotribe rhythm machine and still has some of the sound effects from yesteryear and cut a few heavy slabs of organized industrial music. Someone said to me this week about the monotron, 'it's a toy, but it sounds great when you hear it over a PA system', and of course I couldn't agree more. The fact that something is a toy doesn't mean it's a bad thing, or anything less than a real instrument. This is something that Lunde understand very well, I think. Here those small cheap machines are used to play one hell of a noisy racket, but not in the sense of harsh noise walls, but well thought noise, like small finished off compositions. Probably not too small and short, but as finished pieces at least and not random, too long chunks of pointless noise. On side one it takes the form of noise with a bit of rhythm, and on the other side it's rhythm with noise. A moment of reflection, at least of some kind, is 'The Turrets Engine' at the start of the second side. Lunde has a pretty varied musical output and I pretty much seem to like most of it. Not just because of a variety, which in my book is always a good thing, but also because it sounds so good! (FdW)
Address: http://www.psych-kg.de

CREMASTER/KOMORA A (split 7" by Monotype Records)
The reason for this split 7" somehow eludes me; maybe it's the start of a new series? Both tracks spin at 45 rpm, and we have on side C the particular noisy beast 'Haz' by Cremaster, being Ferran Fages on feedback mixing board and electroacoustic devices and Alfredo Costa Monteiro on electroacoustic devices too. A dynamic piece with much high end noise and some deep end bass like sounds. Short by nice. in Komora A we find Karol Koszniec (electronics), Dominik Kowalczyk (laptop) and Jakub Mikolajczyk (modular synth). I am not sure if I heard them before. Their piece is likewise dynamic - hence perhaps also cut on 45rpm? - with deep end synth/laptop and more high end synth/electronics, but somehow it doesn't manage to sound beyond a cut out of a longer piece, which is quite common in this particular corner of the experimental music. There seems to be necessity to release 7"s, but usually pieces are created that are much longer, so 'fade in music fade out music' is what we get, and not always it is considered to compose a finished rounded off piece for a 7". That's what happens here with Komora A. Still not a bad 7" after all. (FdW)
Address: http://monotyperecords.com

80S COMPILATION EP (7" by EE Tapes)
To some the 80s are the worst of times for music, and obviously I don't agree. I grew up in those years and think of many exciting bands I heard back then. An era in which just a lot was possible and which saw the rise of many great (yet small) labels. One such label, still kicking around in 2013, is EE Tapes, who are now 25 years alive and whose ears are firmly rooted in those 80s. Many of their current releases are somehow by bands from those days, sometimes still active. Here we have a compilation 7" with four bands. Two 'European' and two 'Belgium', just in case you were wondering where Belgium would be. The Misz have a release on EE Tapes before, Nine Circles is a strong personal favorite here and Berntholer I know from a few compilations, while Opera Multi Steel is a name that I know but whose music I probably never heard properly. Of course it's not easy to judge these bands by their tracks on this compilation. If you never heard Nine Circles on the 'Radionome' compilation or their highly obscure CD, then would you be convinced by this piece here? It's a nice track for the completists, of which I happen to be one. Berntholer's piece tastes like more. Breezy synth pop with some nice guitars - they were on Les Disques Du Crepuscule back then. The Misz has a rather darkly toned piece of synth music and Opera Multi Steel are a bit too gothic for my taste voice from the echo-well, dramatic synths and rhythm heartbeat - you know the drift. I like this kind of productions, as it makes me want to play all of this Crepuscule stuff, Cherry Red (see also last week's Eyeless In Gaza review), Factory etc etc stuff. If only I had the time. If only (sighs). (FdW)
Address: http://www.eetapes.be

EDGAR ALLAN POE & LEIF ELGGREN - THE ROCKING CHAIR (7" flexi disc by Firework Edition Records)
ANDREAS FUHRER & LEIF ELGGREN - HYPNOSIS (7" by Firework Edition Records)
Two 7" sized discs, of which one is a flexi disc - the new toy for Firework Edition Records, it seems. The flexi is co-credited to Edgar Allan Poe, who died more than 160 years ago, but whose rocking chair plays the main role on this flexi. There are also two text inserts here, by Michael Esposito and Jonas Ellerstrom. The rocking chair is to be found in Poe's cottage in Bronx, his final home. We hear the rocking chair, recorded close by, and far away people stumbling in the cottage. The flexi disc adds some very fine crackles, which makes this sound like a very old record. But of course it's not an old record. Very conceptual.
And that's perhaps a concept I can understand but I have no clue with the other. I could retype the lengthy cover text, you could look it up on the label's website. It has text and music by Elggren and one Andreas Fuhrer, recorded separately I think, but I'm not sure about that. It's about circular shapes, about god screaming alone in space and about spaces. It has loud music, rhythms, hymnal singing and reciting. I can't figure out if this is best record ever, or the worst. It's certainly the most odd/intriguing/weird (cross out what you don't like) of this week. A great addition to your DJ set! (FdW)
Address: http://www.fireworkedition.com

COMPLICATION COMPILATION (CDR by Suitcase Recordings)
Most CDR releases don't look that well, which is a pity, since if you don't intend on doing a lot, you can make the cover into something special. Years and years ago there was a label called Petri Supply, run by a guy named Abo who was into more crazy aspects of screen printing. He's back, sort of, but he always lends a hand to the Suitcase Recordings label when it comes to packaging. That label has been around also for some twenty years now, and for some of their recent releases they go back to the earlier days, such as the much delayed release 'Paper & Plastic' (see Vital Weekly 731), and here another compilation, but in fact a re-issue, well, half of it. 'Complication Compilation' was originally a double sixty minute tape in a LP sized piece of carton with lots of inserts, but here comes as a single 60 minute CDR in a lovely Abo package: various silk screened inserts, 10" sized, which has the aura of handmade but still looking great (that's a rare thing, I know). This CDR doesn't follow either tape one or tape two from the original package. The four original sides were called 'Scratched', 'Warped', 'Skipped' and 'Broken', and from each side a few tracks have been picked for the CDR, according to a selection process that is a secret to us. It reads like a late 80s industrial music guestbook with Illusion Of Safety, Runzelstirn & Gurgelstock, Big City Orchestra and Kapotte Muziek still soldiering on, with the sadly deceased Minoy, with label partners Allfours and TAC, the disappeared (at least from my perspective) David Prescott and John Wiggins, and the forgotten Triptic Of A Pastel Fern Euthanasia and This Very Moment. Dark ambient industrial music, scratchy collage music, tape manipulation, and low resolution sampling devices (anyone up for some SK5 music - if you want what it is fine, if not, that's ok). Looking at the original cassette line up - which I haven't played in years - I think the second part should be released too - more great names and fine music, no doubt. Excellent package. (FdW)
Address: http://a4suitcase.com

MARIEN VAN OERS (CDR)
Vital Weekly is of course all about new releases of not necessarily new music. Many words - actually usually the longer reviews - are spend on old music, perhaps because there is always a bit more to tell. Now here I have a CDR that might not be for sale at all. It was handed out Saturday 12th at a farewell party for Marien van Oers, who died on the 8th of January of lung cancer. So, I hear you say, what do I care? His name never popped up in Vital Weekly. Quite right. But Marien van Oers was in the early 80s the man behind Het Zweet, a one-man Dutch 'industrial' music group, who used a lot of tribal inspired percussion, as well as voices, and sound effects. It was a sound that you didn't hear a lot, maybe Muslimgauze (the very early work that is) sounded a bit alike. Van Oers contributed to my very first cassette release, a compilation of Dutch industrial music, and later on a few more pieces for another compilation. While he didn't live far away, we never met - I think. He had a bunch of cassettes, a fair amount of compilation appearances, and the prospect of a LP for Bourbonese Qualk's Recloose label, which was eventually released by Dossier. And then he disappeared. Never returned, never left any comments on specialized blogs for his kind of music and the only rumor I picked up was that he played accordion in a wedding band, but I never figured out if this was true. A mutual friend, Martijn Hohmann (himself no stranger to Vital Weekly), informed me of his passing and was kind enough to send me this CDR, which is filled (80 minutes in total) with some forty short pieces which Van Oers recorded in more recent years. The whole project was made by Mark Rietveld, a very close personal friend of Van Oers, who went over Van Oers' archive to select all these pieces, all in accordance with Van Oers' wishes. Now, here comes mystery, I think. Why did he never resurface on the scene of, erm, any scene of experimental music. Lots of these pieces are made with guitar, bits of effects, far away vocals - reminding me of a more experimental Durutti Column - but also experiments with percussion (like 'Blue Room Nr. 05-04') and tape collage material. The accordion is there, but less dominant, but has some great pieces, such as the excellent drone piece 'Blue Room Nr. 05-18'. There is folk like stuff, but also blues like stuff, where he plays Johnny Cash and Lee Hazlewood. Perhaps the latter is of less relevance to the outsider, but there is certainly some great music in here. An excellent find this unknown music, but also at what sad occasion. (FdW)
Address: https://soundcloud.com/kwark-frietveld/marien-van-oers-compilation

CHRISTOPHER MCFALL - EPILOG (RECOMBINANT) (CDR by Con-V)
While Christopher McFall belongs to the group of people who seem to be releasing a lot of music, he's actually one of those who doesn't. It's been a while since we last reviewed something from him, Vital Weekly 755 if I'm not mistaken, and on this new release he returns to the first time he actually appeared in Vital Weekly, with 'Four Feels For Fire' (see Vital Weekly 599). That might have been his debut release and it uses 'heat, grit and turbulence' from his home town Kansas City. In 2011 he went back to the original source material, with the intent of having a fresh look at them and see what what else would be possible with it, while adding also new field recordings. That resulted in the three pieces on this release. Now of course many moons have passed since the original release of 'Four Feels For Fire', so it's not entirely clear here what that sounded like. The three pieces deal more than I remember with loops of material which play around for some time, before altering, changing or simply disappearing. The input is still eroded and corroded tape, with the magnetic information being on the fringe of disappearance. Wind, sand, dust: the ingredients of life in Kansas, I should think. The music seems to be 'easier' going, I think, like it's put together on the spot. Which of course is not a bad thing, since it offers indeed a somewhat fresher look upon the material. It's less collage like than some of his earlier, which seemed to be dealing with more lengthier chunks of sound material. McFall seems to be moving away from what we know from him so far, not radically changing his modus operandi, but a gentle nice move side ways, forward. Not one of the bigger dramatic new insights in the world of field recordings, but another fine, solid work. (FdW)
Address: http://www.con-v.org

WANDER - LIVE AT EX LIBRIS (CDR by Zhelezobeton)
It starts with a squeaky door, this particular sound is the introduction of the concert which Wander played on 15 October 2011 in Ex Libris in Moscow. The CDR has been issued in a limited edition by the Russian label Zhelezobeton. The label releases noise, industrial, experimental and other non conventional music. Wander consists of Frans de Waard and Freek Kinkelaar and play together since 1989 under the name Beequeen. Wander is more into abstract soundscapes. The duo takes the listener into a carefully selected mix of field recordings, electronic sounds and guitar parts. Abstraction and pop structures alternate, meet, and merge with each other. The music is both nimble as meditative, minimal and comprehensive, minimal or constructed or intense layers. The cover is a picture of a famous chocolate brand in Russia. This chocolate also consists of several layers and fits in well with the sense of this publication. The image is recognizable and nostalgic. Clear guitar parts which are easy to recognize and refer to different music styles. Associative sound which trigger memories. Overall? A wonderful concert which will stands the test of time. (JKH)
Address: http://zhb.radionoise.ru

CARLOS VILLENA - ELS HUMANS TAMBE SUM CARN (CDR by Mantricum)
Carlos Villena in Spain for years makes noise and dark-ambient music, released on his own label Mantricum and on other labels as well. Often he seeks cooperation with other musicians and proposes a split release together and connect with his music of the other musician. His latest solo-release "Els humans tambe sum carn" on Mantricum and is dedicated to animals. The music is very dark and threatening to call with continuous dark layers and slow changes in tone. The first track has some clear tones of processed sounds of crickets. The second track with a length of around twenty minutes is minimal and is slowly broken by carved long scream of a man. It has the feel of an abandoned slaughterhouse where the spirits of killed animals still roam. The last song begins with a more open in terms of tones, but also goes quickly through the dark under layers in the music. "Els humans tambe sum carn" is not a optimistic record at all. A part of animal rights activists mean that humans are equivalent to animals and in that sense are humans mea as well. In this case I can  imagine, that record is dark I you know what is happening to animals and humans who live and die in captivity. (JKH)
Address: http://www.mantricum.com

GEORGE CHRISTIAN AND MEHATA SENTIMENTAL LEGEND - LA GEOGRAPHIE SANS REGRET (CDR by Spectropol Records)
George Christian and Mehata Sentimental Legend both live on the other side of the globe and composed virtually the album "La Géographie sans Regret.. George Christian lives in Brasil and  Mehata Hiroshi in Japan. A mix of singing, folk guitar, electric guitar, flute and electronics results in an album with five songs and a long instrumental track with an experimental and adventurous streak . Both men were able to find each other musically and although there is a large physical distance with mountains, valleys and oceans. Mehata Hiroshi began in 2007 playing solo with guitar, higchiriki (a Japanese flute), percussion and electronics. George Christian has taught himself to play guitar and experiments for 10 years with guitar and electronics. The songs of the album unfortunately recorded with the sound in the middle and high part of the sound spectrum. This makes it difficult to listen to the recordings, because the high frequencies begin to irritate after a while. And that is a pity, because the songs are well written and if you listen to the album it is almost inconceivable that both musicians did their recordings in their own homes between May 2011 and August 2012. After all, "La Géographie sans Regret" a beautiful concept. The album was released by Spectropol Records in the United States. The netlabel brings adventurous music, without being constrained by musical boundaries and genres. A new mix of fine material would be great, to make  this transnational project more accessible. (JKH)
Address: http://spectropol.com/

JOJO BLUE - FIRST ON AIR (CDR by Menu Music)
From the Slowak Republic we have music by Jozef Miklos, who calls himself Jojo Blue and his release is on a Czech label, Menumusic. I had this release on repeat for a while this afternoon, while doing some incredible boring stuff, like accounting, sweeping the floor and such like. But I also sat down, read a bit, and all along this electronic music was playing in the background. That means I may not have liked it that much actually - well, I did - but more that music serves different purposes for different occasions. It keeps me happy while I am doing boring stuff, and it doesn't require much concentration. To serious music lovers perhaps a curse, but I do believe that music can have different purposes, suited for various occasions. If I was to sit down, listen closely and analyze what I am hearing, I may be very critical. Or perhaps I'd be without understanding. Much of the music by Jojo Blue is strongly rhythmic, with a dub influence (drop downs, heavy bass) but also with warm synthesizers spun around it. Somewhere the odd - very odd - sample of horror movie voice. I read on his information that this all about mixing dubstep and ambient, and that's where I am without much understanding. Despite the popularity of dubstep I could never figure out what that was all about. When people around me start playing me some dubstep, it always sounds familiar to so many other dance genres which I can never mention in their own way. Maybe this is all too smooth for Vital Weekly, or totally out of place, but the entertainment level of this was very high, which I guess was all I wanted this afternoon. (FdW)
Address: http://www.menumusic.cz

PATRICK EMM - HAPPY FARM (cassette by Pinebox Recordings)
PATRICK EMM - HUMAND HAND (cassette by Pinebox Recordings)
Two obscure tapes by one Patrick Emm on a label called Pinebox Recordings (catalogue number 004 and 005). Music by Emm was already reviewed here, back in Vital Weekly 805, when he had a release on Ydlmier. Pinebox seems to be his own label, and I learned that these tapes are 'sisters'. Again obscurity rules here, which is a pity. There is a fair amount of hiss on both of the tapes, but musically they seem to be along similar lines. Short lines though, since each tapes is about twelve to thirteen minutes in length. Improvisations on guitar, with a limited use of sound effects - not counting the hiss. Actually, come to think of it, I am not sure if the hiss is tape hiss, or used as an extra instrument. Maybe it's indeed the latter. By any account, it sounds less 'industrial' than his previous release, as it seems to be using less electronics. I am not sure though if it was really necessary to release this as two separate releases, but perhaps there is a good conceptual reason to do so. But sure it's nice enough. Again totally obscure, but with a nicely designed and printed cover, so they mean well with their obscurity.
Address: http://pineboxrecordings.blogspot.com

FOSSILS - WHAT A DRAG (cassette by Mantile)
SPOILS & RELICS - STAMMER CHALLIS (cassette by Mantile)
KAYAKA - OPERATION DEEP FREEZE (cassette by Mantile)
Three rather identical looking tapes on a new label, for me that is, Mantile from the UK. Of the three I only recognized Fossils, for they already had a bunch of reviews in Vital Weekly. None of the covers have exactly a lot of information. Also the website isn't exactly forthcoming, except perhaps for Kayaka. But I kick of with Fossils, the duo of Payne and Farr, armed with their guitars, stomp boxes, percussion, contact microphones and such like. They use a whole lot of them to create a rather lo-fi improvised music, which is never far off the rockist agenda but at the same time remains very free in approach. They do whatever it is they and they it quite well. Crude, raw, rough, uncut. That last is not true, it is cut however, spliced together from a bunch of live and 'studio' recordings, cut together on both sides as one track. Perfect music for a cassette release, I should think.
On similar lines we find Spoils & Relics, about whom we know nothing. It shares the same free spirit as Fossils, but is perhaps less based on the free play of guitars, electronics and stompers, and more on dictaphone, cassette and tape-recorder abuse, perhaps adding bits of vinyl on the spot. Here too we have the 'one track per side' approach, sometimes rapidly cutting through stuff and sometimes nicely working around lengthier chunks of sound. With music like this I was reminded of Howard Stelzer - more when he is playing live than his studio work. Not yet as refined in the hands of Spoils & Relics, but surely nice enough. The violent version of collage/musique concrete/improv.
As said, only about Kayaka, we have a bit more information. It's the music project of one Kaya Kamijo and about his release it's said: "a more structured form of noise music, towing a line quite close to what could be considered a more straight form of rock music, but its warped by an odd sensibility that’s pinned around the scattered beats of a primitive drum machine. At times it's reminiscent of the more abstracted moments of Peter Hammill’s A Black Box, and a somewhat less fractured To Live And Shave In LA." We have nine pieces here, and the drum machine is indeed the cement that holds the building together, but is it a good construction? I am not sure about that. At times the drums seem pretty chaotic, and whatever happens on top is trying to be even more chaotic, such as in 'Vulcanized Ghaut'. There is however (?) also an element of psychedelic music in to be found in here, as tracks are pretty long and are heavily layered, with lots of things happening on all levels, but all of this rather random and at times chaotic. It's not bad, I thought, but maybe not so much my cup of tea. (FdW)
Address: http://mantile.co.uk/

GANGBANG GORDON - I'M NOT A MUSICIAN (cassette, private)
Of course we have to look at this title to be the program of this release, Gangbang Gordon is indeed not a musician, and as such he needs no less than thirty-three pieces to proof his point. In a letter with this he writes 'this is sorta long, if you feel you get the gist after then first 10 that's cool! There are surprises throughout'. I got the gist probably after the first two songs. Gordon plays guitar most of the times, strumming no-chords, singing out of tune, with lyrics that are hard to decipher. Occasionally there are 'keyboards' and 'drums' to go along, which I assume are also played by Gordon and his self-styled non-musicianship (which is not the kind of non-musician as Brian Eno thought of, I mused). Lo-fi anyone? Outsider anyone? Although perhaps this not the really the kind of outsider I think, more like an attempt to be one via some non-sensical ramble. Is it bad? Well, I think, it's actually quite ok. Yes, thirty-three songs is a lot. The surprises I think eluded me. (FdW)
Address: <thegbgordon@gmail.com>

MOONINITE/RS2090 (split cassette by Hel Audio)
Utah, me always think, is the home of mormon land. Would they know there is a cassette label called 'Hel', which is actually the Dutch word for 'hell'? Would they care? The third release is by two roommates from Salt Lake City, and Mooninite and RS2090 call their music 'transhumanist music', whatever the hell that means. You would except a lot of noise, perhaps, to resemble life in hell, but these songs, produced by hardware synthesizers and samplers, are from the world of noise. It's rather the world of electronic music with a pop like edge to it. This is done through a series of rather short songs. The differences, should they be there, are very small. It could easily be all made by one person under two different names, I should think. But let's say they are different persons using each other's hardware synthesizers. Mooninite seems a bit more chaotic from time to time and RS 2090 a bit more organized in his piece. Both use taped voices from radio (youtube no doubt these days), and Mooninite a bit more than RS2090. There is a nice amount of rhythm machine appliances used, and both tap out a nice melody at times and some more moody stuff. Occasionally it sounds also a bit lo-fi on both sides, but RS2090 seems to be just a bit in handling the technical side of it. Excellent retro 80s minimal synth pop music. (FdW)
Address: http://www.helaudio.org



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