number 1006
week 46


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TIM O'DWYER - HYSTERESIS (CD by Ujikaji Records) *
PAN GU - THE PEOPLE ARE PANTHERS (cassette by Ujikaji Records)
PHILLIP SCHULZE - AMBASSADOR DUOS (2LP/CD by Apparent Extent Records) *
CHRON TURBINE/VIOLENT BULLSHIT (split 7" by Peterwalkee Records)
L'INCORONAZIONE (cassette compilation by Hyster Tapes)
BEN OWEN - BIRDS AND WATER, 2 & 3 (FOR CASSETTE) (cassette by Winds Measure Recordings)
S.A.S.W. - FINE PATTERN (cassette by Winds Measure Recordings)
RAFAEL TORAL - SPACE COLLECTIVE 2 LIVE (cassette by Notice Records)
LOREN CHASSE - THE SODDEN FLOOR (cassette by Notice Records)
AAS - BALANCING RITUAL (cassette by Holectics Research Recordings)
SUBLYME DIAGONAL - GEOID (cassette by Tanuki Records)


12K labelboss Taylor Deupree has worked with Marcus Fischer before, I noticed while
browsing old weeklies, and he also released a previous solo release by Fischer,
'Monocoastal' (see Vital Weekly 756). The two of them sat together for a couple of
days trying out some new music together and at the end of the first day, tired as
they were, they sat down and in the background there was just a mono reel-to-reel
tape loop from Fischer playing. They looked at each other and decided that the that
would be the starting point: two mono tape loops and four acoustic instruments;
loops of varying length and picked up with microphones from the build in speakers,
adding an excellent sense of warmth to the recordings. The instruments they use are
bells, electric piano, stringed instruments and played more or less in an accidental/
incidental way; a few notes here and there, and the repeating click of the loops,
the point where the repeat starts, as part of the music. This is music that is not
unlike the solo release by Fischer or the recent work of Deupree himself (and others
on his label). This is very ambient music for sure, exactly as Brian Eno thought of
this: a bunch of tape-loops of an unequal length playing together, so that sounds
are never in the same place when they collide. It brings that odd shifting of sounds,
going back and forth, but here tape-hiss and room quality are added as a bonus
instrument. It reminded me of Steve Roden's music, even when Deupree & Fischer create
significantly shorter pieces. It is all of a delicate beauty and deserves to be
played a lot. (FdW)


Along time ago there was a trio of musicians, who called themselves, if I remember
correctly, Powertrio, because they used powerbooks. Here we have another version that
includes three, for me unknown, musicians: Eduardo Raon (harp, electronics, idiophones),
Joana Sá (piano, idiophones) and Luís Martins (classical guitar, electronics, idiophones).
What's an idiophones, you may wonder? "An idiophone is any musical instrument that
creates sound primarily by the instrument as a whole vibrating", any percussion that is
not a drum, but there's also plucked ones (Jew's harp for instance), blown (Aeolsklavier,
hardly used) and friction (singing bowl, glass harmonica, turntable for instance). So
there is a wide choice for Powertrio. The cover suggests that these four pieces were
composed by the group (except 'Di Lontan Fa Specchio Il Mare', by Constanca Capdeville),
but for all we know this could also be improvised; certainly the sound of these pieces
suggests this. Either way is of course perfectly fine with me, and it's the result that
counts. The music, being somewhere between composed and improvised, is also on a similar
line halfway modern classical music and post rock/improvisation. When it sounds very
structured it sounds like a small ensemble but when it starts hammering away it's less
controllable and as power full as any heavy noise band. It is music that is full of
tension and mystery; you never know if it's going to burst and explode. Sometimes it
does and sometimes it never seems to happen. It makes something quite powerful indeed;
the group lives up to it's name. (FdW)


'Nearly Invisible' might not be the right title for the collaborative work by Deison
and Gianluca Favaron: there is a 7" sized (more or less) photo book that travels along
with the CD and it not nearly invisible: it is in fact very visible. It shows us pictures
by Stefano Gentile of surfaces (floors, walls) with dirt on it, or painted removed; rusty
stuff. Deison brings in tapes, synthesizers and noise, while Favaron brings objects,
microphones and effects along and together they seem to aim for that same sort of rusty
effects, but then captured in sound. This is what one could call experimental music. It's
a bit of a lot: drones, microsound, noise, ambient, electro-acoustic music, clicks 'n cuts,
all merged together in nine relatively compact pieces of music, short and to the point,
which is something other than what a lot of music these days suffers from: too long and
too much repetition of a single idea. That is not the case here. Deison and Favaron play
music, using an excellent amount variety of sounds and ideas to come up with some very
exciting pieces. In itself perhaps not always the newest things, but tapping from so many
influences and still being able to create a homogeneous album that keeps ones attention
throughout is a great thing. This is ambient music plus spice, noise with thought and
rhythms for no-dance, as in 'Gola Secca'. A product that unites power and beauty, both
musically and visually. (FdW)


True story: in my pursuit to play a bit of ambient music when waking up, either from
cassette, download, CD, LP, it doesn't matter (also to check what 'I have here anyway'),
I played just this very morning some bits by Machinefabriek and Celer, from a folder on
my hard drive that says: "assorted Machinefabriek digital". Then the mail arrived and lo
and behold there is this CD by Celer and Machinefabriek, which included the two pieces
I heard this morning, which the musicians released in 2011 to support their tour in The
Netherlands, which is something I sadly must report to have missed. No stopover in sunny
Nijmegen. They released a 7" before the tour, and did two more, in total six pieces,
which are now collected on this CD, along with remixes by Stephan Mathieu, Sylvain
Chauveau and Nicolas Bernier as well as previously unreleased song. Both Celer and
Machinefabriek are very active when it comes to releasing music and a lot of their work
has been reviewed in these pages, and music has been part of the weekly podcast
(Machinefabriek no less than 54 times, well, 55 as of this week), so it's safe to say
that these are household names. The music they play together holds perhaps not really
big surprises, certainly not when it combination (more difficult to break away from
patterns I should think when playing together), and in these seven pieces they play that
excellent trademark drone music they are so very well known for. Spacious, glacier like,
soft flowing, courtesy of Celer, and Machinefabriek adding a bit of strangeness to his
drones: a bit of crackling here and there, the odd move which seems out of place, but
which makes also sense. Not that it happens a lot, as Machinefabriek too has to think
about the drones he adds to the table. The great thing of course that since these pieces
were released on 7", they are all kept with the four to five minute range and each of these
pieces is well rounded off affair, and don't sound like an outtake from something bigger.
The three remixes follow a similar path of drones. Chauveau has an organ like drone bit,
going in one unmoving stroke, it seems, from beginning to end, while Bernier has some more
laptop tricks up his sleeve and makes the most experimental curves in this drone land
which makes room for the longest piece on the release, by Stephan Mathieu playing a rather
mysterious dark and atmospheric piece of music. This is a fitting coda to this release
(and do check out Mathieu's latest bandcamp release: it's awesome!). A grey morning in
sunny Nijmegen and this seems to be a most fitting soundtrack. You know what to get and
these boys deliver. (FdW)

TIM O'DWYER - HYSTERESIS (CD by Ujikaji Records)
PAN GU - THE PEOPLE ARE PANTHERS (cassette by Ujikaji Records)

From Singapore hails the Ujikaji Records, and in a highly limited edition of 100 copies,
they release a CD by 'meta saxophone' player Tim O'Dwyer, of whom I never heard, but who
is from Australia. His 'meta-sax' is a 'self-constructed hybrid instrument. By mounting
controllers on the body of the playable alto saxophone, O'Dwyer processes his playing in
real time to "extend the extended techniques of the saxophone" as the information tells
us. This work was recorded in Cologne when O'Dwyer was a residence artist at the Academy
of the Arts. "Hysteresis is the memory of movement found within an object after the shifting
forces have life", is the explanation of the title. Somewhere on the long line that covers
such places as 'improvisation' and 'modern composition', O'Dwyer moves along between both
places. In the opening piece it all sounds very spooky and drone like, with some kind of
computerized sounds dropping in and out; pitching sounds up and down, it seems. And the
other end of the spectrum we find 'Bone & Organ', which is O'Dwyer playing around with the
saxophone and it's keys in what seems to be a more traditional manner. It's the only place
that far out to the world of improvisation. The other three pieces are all more along the
lines of the title piece, with long sustaining sounds, sometimes dark and occasionally
lighter in tone. I think it would not have been a bad idea if 'Bone & Organ' would have
been skipped for the release and replaced by a piece that was more alike the others; it
would have tied in the album together a bit more. Otherwise this computer controlled
sustaining saxophone music works very well.
   Despite the plethora of activities that keeps Lasse Marhaug busy all the time, not a
lot of his music makes it to these pages, or the releases he puts out on his own label.
So, in 2013 I missed out his debut LP as Pan Gu, which is a duo of himself on electronics
and Leslie Low from Singapore on guitar, which was released by Utech Records. In order to
support that release, Pan Gu went on a 10-day tour in Southeast Asia, and this cassette
contains a show in Myanmar and in Thailand, both not exactly the kind of countries with
a long tradition in experimental drone guitar music. I had no heard of Leslie Low before.
I came in without any expectations as Marhaug can play a fair bit of noise, but doesn't
exclusively dabble with that. In Myanmar they start out on the very low end drone side of
this and bring it up to level of more considered noise; it never wails about it, but it's
angular and strong, with Low's guitar bouncing around. In Thailand, roughly about a week
later, Pan Gu takes a different course and straight start off with some heavy, chirping,
oscillating feedback sound, coming from both musicians, I would say, and throughout
they maintain a highly varied palette of noise sounds, which works really very fine.
It intertwines, bounces and collides, attracts and separates, and makes up an entirely
different piece than what we have on the other side. You could wonder about the other
eight concerts and how those sounded. Maybe one day we'll find out. (FdW)


The word 'lavishly' is not one I use a lot, but it would describe this package quite well.
Inside a full colour gatefold sleeve we find two pieces of vinyl, two gatefold pieces of
paper with liner notes (one in English, one in German) and a CD with the music of the LPs.
This is not something unusual in the world of Phillip Schulze: before he released 'Cause
Unfold Proceed, I, II, III, IC & V', also as a double LP/CD (see Vital Weekly 779) and
with his duo Weisser Westen the same thing (see Vital Weekly 880). Schulze is someone who
has explored the Cycling 74 software to quite some extent, so he can play it around like
a standalone instrument, or as a real-time processing tool, so he gets around to play
improvisations with other people. On this double LP he meets one improviser per side,
and no doubt Anthony Braxton is the one that is the big point of sales here; it's also
the piece I must I admit I least liked. Recorded in 2005, in America, this piece seems to
me not really a meeting of minds, a conversation between artists, but a showcase of tools
and methods. Braxton's saxophone blears away most of the time, to which Schulze's answer
is also let his software run amok. Four years later he met up with Christian Jendreiko,
a pedal steel guitar player, and their collaborative piece works very well together.
It starts out with computer treated sounds, which made me check what kind of instrument
this was; it sounded like a processed saxophone. Over the course of this piece however
the pedal steel becomes clearer and the way Jendreiko plays it, nervous, chaotic, slow
and disorganised makes perfect sense with Schulze similar approach to his software.
The saxophone returns with Andrew Raffo Dewar, but their piece is not about hectic free
jazz, but starts out with a long held tone on the saxophone, which Schulze picks up and
expands, while at the same time Dewar is also expanding his playing by changing very
slowly the tones. All of this happens on a microscopic level, gradually expanding and
thickening the sound, until at the end everything seems to have arrived in a more high-
end sound spectrum. Detlef Weinrich might not be a household name, but surely his band
is: he's the drummer of Kreidler. Here the record goes into an entirely different area,
playing around with a multitude of rhythm. At times it gets quite groovy, which is very
nice, but at other times the poly-rhythms do not work as well, I think, and it gets a
bit too crowded for my taste. But that said: the fact that this side is something entirely
different is also worth a bit. Quite a refined work of four quite diverse collaborations,
not all winners (for me that is), but well-worth investigating. (FdW)


It's been ages since I reviewed music by Jonas Olesen, when he called himself Hector
Rottweiler. These days he is occupied with the Nordic Sound Art label and also his solo
work. Some of his releases may look like a record, but they are also art objects and in
some cases playback might not be easy. For his new record Olesen uses a "number of
historical test records, and psycho-acoustical demonstration recordings", and plays around
with these sounds, adding additional sounds from "a LEADER LFG-1300S analogue Function
Generator, and processed by an Phillips ISP 5021 Sound Enhancer", as well as 'simulated
tinnitus sounds', 'psychoacoustic demonstration signals' and 'vibraphone recordings' -
the latter being an instrument, I believe. Actually that was a silly joke on my part.
The music that Olesen creates with these sounds is quite interesting. He may have shaped
the whole thing to look like a test record, including interesting descriptions of the
pieces, it also sounds very good, in a highly musical way. The static and dry sine wave
like sounds are looped melted and collated and thus new music is created. Sometimes quite
noise based as one could expect from music made with sine waves, but when Olesen uses the
collage form things turn out to be quite good. There is a lovely drone piece of ascending
and descending tones called 'Shepard Tonal Paradox', static hum pieces, crackles but
also spoken word, such as checking the stereo spectrum, which makes it almost sound
poetry. The whole package had something very 'art' like but luckily enough it is also
quite playful, which is the greatest thing about it. It takes the format of a 'test
record' and something is done with it, and that something is most enjoyable to listen
to: what more could you possibly want? Test succeeded! (FdW)


Active since 1999 as Moljebka Pvlse, Swedish Mathias Josefson sometimes works also under
his own name or as Skare with Per Ahlund. In recent years he seemed less active, for
reasons I don't know. Differences between all of these projects are not that big but it
seems but for the best drones I would still recommend the Moljebka Pvlse moniker.
According to the press release Josefson uses amplified objects, analogue synthesizers,
guitars and field recordings (from all over the globe), but all of these are effectively
in a melt-down process and it sounds like two sides of the same medal here: lovely organ
like drone material. Whatever it is that Josefson does, the end result is somewhere
along the lines of a church organ and a choir on the first side, and the same organ and
orchestral strings on the other side. The ending of the first side, 'In Love And Death',
is great: the singing of the choir gradually fading over into mumbling - voices die out
and few remain. In general this side has a somewhat lighter touch to it, while 'You Are
Alone' has a much darker, blacker aura, more along the lines of traditional drone music.
A great record, very much living up to its expectations I guess. The only downside is:
LP sized versions of these pieces would have been even better. You can't have them
all. (FdW)

CHRON TURBINE/VIOLENT BULLSHIT (split 7" by Peterwalkee Records)

Two bands on a split 7" and the members of both bands hail from previous bands as Les
Savy Fav, Panthers, Merel Hail Mary, Orchid, Rye Coalition, all of which I never heard
of it. Violent Bullshit on one side has a punk song with double vocals and comes to us
at a moderate speed, but with lots of energy and it ends with 'fuck you'. This is a
pretty straightforward song and one that works quite well at that. Recorded at DFA and
produced by James Murphy - in some circles that is no doubt an extra point of interest.
Chron Turbine sound weirder, with in their line up two drummers, bass, guitar and credits
for green machine and spirit. No vocals here, but this excellent wall of rock sound,
marching on and on, with the guitar on occasional free rollercoaster solo. Also symphonic
in approach, as if Godspeed were a postrockmetal band, recorded in a garage. Excellent
sound for this kind of music. Play loud and keeping playing it. Both sides.
   On cassette we find Cages from Buffalo, New York, a duo of Nola Ranallo and David
Bailey. Among their influences they cite Neubaten, Björk, John Cage, Boredoms, Crass and
Laurie Anderson; quite a diverse bunch as they say in such a case. According to the
label they play 'soaring crashing clanking smashing melodic destructive ethereal noise
improvisations' and that might be a true thing. There is a guitar, some effects, and a
woman's voice - which may count for some of the influences, I'd say. The cover lists
the places where they recorded these improvised pieces and throughout it's a free float
of voices and sounds. 'Ethereal' is quite the right word for it. Maybe someone would
refer to this as outsider rock, but I must admit I am less convinced actually. One could
say this is quite nice as it is, but it's maybe also a bit too much common ground. Let
your voice sing wordless, strum that guitar and have an infinite amount of reverb
popping in and out. Drum samples courtesy of Jon Mueller and that makes not a lot of
difference. I prefer the energy and spirit of the 7" to this. (FdW)


Greek label Orila has so far released a whole bunch of interesting music releases,
all in the realm of electronic music, noise, weird pop, field recording but, at least
if I remember this correctly, not a lot of improvised music. Here they have a release
with two players, of whom I never heard, Gaspar Claus on cello and Matthieu Prual on
saxophones (plural!) with a recording from 'this iconic bar in Brittany', La Bascule.
Claus has played with the likes of Jim O'Rourke and Sufjan Stevens, but also plays
contemporary music, pop and flamenco, while Prual is active as saxophonist, electro-
acoustic composer and improviser. That night in 2012, they played for close to an hour
and here it is presented as five separate pieces. This is, quite conventional improvised
music even if there is some use of electronics (which isn't mentioned anywhere, but
judging by the music there is), of hectic playing, quiet intertwining of instruments,
of chaos and of order, and most of the times we are able to recognize the instruments
as such. The saxophone leans, for my taste at least, sometimes a bit too much towards
the world of free jazz, which is not always my taste in free improvised music, but
throughout I must admit it all sounded quite all right; not great, not too exciting,
but on the other hand quite sturdy and these two players have an excellent interaction.
Yes, this might be the sort of thing best enjoyed in concert; maybe not all should
be released? (FdW)


Like I wrote two weeks ago about a compilation LP that was released as a cassette in
the 80s, there is obviously tons and tons of cassette releases from those days I never
heard. Magic Moments At Twilight Time is such a band that I never heard of before.
Mick Magic (guitars, synths, sequencers, voice) started this in 1987 and as far as
I understand it had a fleeting membership, especially a rotation of female vocalists
but also a bass player, more synthesizers and percussion. The band released a couple
of cassettes and then started compiling 'Flashbax' compilations, which they had released
through different labels, with changing artwork. Originally they intended this CDR to
be part of one of the 'Flashbax' tapes, but now it's grown into a slightly bigger project,
with twelve tracks on CDR, more on bandcamp with bonus tracks and a pdf booklet. Maybe
this band had better equipment than most others on the tape-scene, or perhaps I always
listened to the more low end side of electronic pop tunes on cassette, but this band
sounds quite professional in the recording, mixing and production. Now that might be
a great thing if you want to play some more poppy music, which is certainly something
that Magic Moments At Twilight Time wants to do, but it also adds certain elements of
normalcy to it, making it a bit more standard, even when it's all about rhythm machines
and synthesizers, female voices and guitars. Especially the latter add an element of
rock music to the proceedings, which is not something I always like. In 'Traveller II',
the band sounds a bit like Bene Gesserit, but that's an exception. Most of these tracks
are a bit longer than the traditional three-minute pop song, but it's not always for
the better. In the writing stage they should have considered making some of these pieces
a bit shorter and to the point. Now it drifts too much to far away, especially when
there is a bit of wailing on the guitars. This release might not be entirely my cup
of pop, but perhaps having missed them around the first time may not help this; had
I known them before than I am sure appreciation would have been on a different level.
But if you like a bit of alternative poppy electronic music, then this is surely worth
your while. (FdW)

L'INCORONAZIONE (cassette compilation by Hyster Tapes)

Another release on Hyster Tapes, who re-use old tapes for their releases, which I
believe is a great thing. Very green, if you get my drift. In this particular case it
turns to be a compilation. I recognized Debt Of Nature (the name rather than the music
that much, it seems) and R.S.T. (at least, if that was the same R.S.T. that had a
release on Corpus Hermeticum, ages ago) but the other three names didn't mean anything.
Oddly enough there is a sentence of information per band, so I learn that record
executives can mail Dear Beloved Henry if, based on the two excerpts they want release
a 4LP set. Their first piece is a bit noise based, with loops feedback sounds and
something that reminded me acoustic loops, while the other one is a very refined drone
piece; maybe it's recorded with a bunch of guitars and looper pedals in drone modus?
Either way this piece sounds really good, but who has the money to release a 4LP set
by a band, which has one tape and one split tape release? Debt Of Nature, still active
in 2015, has here a recording from 1983 of some hissy field recordings mixed with crudely
cut tape loops on a reel-to-reel machine. It may blend into the piece by R.S.T., but hard
to tell at which point that is, as this is of collage-like nature too. Grey Park opens
up the B-side with a rather short piece of electronics, synths and such, but it's over
before one knows this. Autumn Appreciation Society from Frankfurt and offer quite an
intense piece of crashing feedback and noise captured in a rehearsal space for that
elementary noise-rock sound. This is a highly enjoyable compilation with some excellent
pieces, and the whole thing oozing that 80s feel, complete with black and white Xeroxed
cover. That's how we like these best. (FdW)


A release by that curious imprint from Montreal, Crustacés Tapes, who, in the best mail
art tradition, send out tapes in return of gifts or postcards, another tape that is a
collaboration between two musicians who never met in person, in this case Anne-F Jacques
and Gary Rouzer. The hand written line on the stamped card says, 'field recordings,
objects, found sound', and that works out into hazy, foggy improvisations on objects,
right in front of a microphone - well two of those, I suppose. It's hard to tell where
these musicians record their music; on the b-side it seems to be the kitchen, right next
to the dishwasher, and one of these musicians works some ancient kitchen utensils to
produce some sound. This is all of a highly obscure nature, but that makes it all the
more fascinating I think. My mind wanders of and starts thinking of what this could all
be, sound-wise that is. There is a certain amount of composition/loops/organisation to
be found in these pieces (or perhaps there is just one piece?) and sometimes it all seems
vaguely absent. Curious? If you got a gift or tape to spare, you can simply trade! (FdW)

BEN OWEN - BIRDS AND WATER, 2 & 3 (FOR CASSETTE) (cassette by Winds Measure Recordings)
S.A.S.W. - FINE PATTERN (cassette by Winds Measure Recordings)

At the same time as releasing these two cassettes, Ben Owen also releases a LP, called
'Bird And water, 1 (for vinyl)', which might very well the companion piece(s) for this
cassette, which was released before on cassette by Notice Recordings (see Vital Weekly
804), even when I don't know if this LP is the same thing. 'Bird And Water, 2 & 3' was
also released before, on CD by obs, but not reviewed in these pages (and to be complete:
'Bird And Water, 4' was released by Notice Recordings again, and reviewed in Vital Weekly
957). All of this work was recorded at The Experimental Television Centre in Owego, NY,
where Owen worked in May 2010, on a residency project. On both sides we find one piece,
and both are absolutely minimal, but not in a drone sense necessarily. Especially the
a-side has a lovely brutal sound to it. I have no idea how this was made, but it seems
to me that Owen has some kind of electro magnetic scanning device which he holds close
to high tension apparatus, which he moves very gentle to cause some alternations.
The two pieces on the other side are more drone-like affairs, but here it is: maybe
the same apparatus is scanned but no longer transmitting anything and in this resting
position just humming. It is a bit deceitful, because if you turn up the volume quite
a bit, you have this great low-pressure tension. This is an excellent release of highly
charged music.
   The other new release is by SASW, which is the solo project by Minoru Sato, who
sometimes, also solo, works as m/s. Much of his work moves outside of our vision (and
ears), as he creates lots of on site installations that deal with sound, and otherwise
not all of his work reaches me. Sato also used to run the WrK label, which was
responsible for a small number of highly conceptual music releases, dealing with space,
time and sound and the relation between those. 'Fine Pattern' was already released in
1995 as a cassette by WrK, and back then contained four pieces, now expanded with two
bonus tracks; one from an exhibition catalogue and one previously unreleased. The
titles of his pieces are perhaps give always when it comes the sources of his pieces:
'Heater System', 'Disk & Streamer', 'Air Conditioner' and 'Overpass' might exactly
tell you what this is about. It all sound very minimal, but it is also truly fascinating
to hear. The way these minimal events are captured to tape has an expanded sound: it
sounds very rich and detailed, and that's what makes this, in perhaps all its simplicity
a great release. It is great to see this available again. (FdW)

RAFAEL TORAL - SPACE COLLECTIVE 2 LIVE (cassette by Notice Records)
LOREN CHASSE - THE SODDEN FLOOR (cassette by Notice Records)

Now that virtually everyone plays with modular synthesizers, it's time to look for the
early adapters (for no particular reason). Rafael Toral is such an artist who has been
using modules since many years now, actually since 2004, I believe, and he does something
that the others don't do: he incorporates into the world of free jazz. He released a
couple of CDs on Staubgold (see Vital Weekly 542, 734 and 787) of himself on the synth
and a bunch of other musicians on other instruments. It was quite a radical break with
his earlier drone guitar music. I wasn't enamoured by the first release, but Dolf Mulder
enjoyed the two albums that came after that. Still, it was all quite some time ago, and
Toral is still playing his free jazz modular synth music, and is about to tour the USA
again and for this occasion he has a new release out, a thirty-one minute concert he
played in 2010 at All Tomorrow's Parties with drummer Alfonso Simoes. Partly out of
curiosity to see what he does with modular synthesizers compared to the current wave,
and partly to see if I like it more, I played this tape and I must say I enjoy it to
some great extent. Maybe it's the reduction in instruments, just drums and synth, and
not the extended jazz ensemble, which makes everything much cruder in approach. Simoes
bangs his kit in a furious way, while Toral goes deep with a set of menacing tones,
quite harsh at times, especially on the B-side, towards the end of his live set. An
excellent set was played that night and now released for posterity.
   There you go: sometimes someone is quite for ages and then there are a few releases.
Following his CD on Semper Florens (see Vital Weekly 1002) there is now a new cassette
by Loren Chasse - that man is quite productive! (Take that with a pinch of salt). The
cover here mentions that the four parts that make up 'The Sodden Floor' were recorded
from 2011 to 2014 and they feature his great grandmother's melodeon; not that I
recognized it as such, I must admit. But maybe the airy, dreamy sound that we find is
not sound captured in an open space on a hissy cassette, is perhaps the processed sound
of the melodeon (which is related to the accordion) played in that space, where, in
the meantime a score is being performed, which could read: "make small sounds as quiet
as possible". A squeak on the floorboards, a metal object, a bell, the window clapping
in the wind, that sort of thing. Maybe there is more sound-processing going on that I
am not aware off, but I would think this is it. Just these few sparse sounds, played
in four different configurations and making up some beautiful poetic music. Once again
I am reminded of the music of Small Cruel Party, and while that is no longer a going
concern, Loren Chasse is the excellent alternative sound poet; poet sans words that is,
but with richness in it is sparse use of sound. This is something that should find it's
way to more people, preferable on LP or CD. (FdW)

AAS - BALANCING RITUAL (cassette by Holectics Research Recordings)

There is no website mentioned on the cover, but googling 'Holectics' brought me to a
website, and I read: "All Everywhere All The Time, AAS creates itself through chance.
AAS are sage ash and copper fire, bringers of the drone, extra-human changelings,
scourge of the future" and there is also a bunch of curious photographs and events
being listed, plus video documentations thereof. Lots to explore really, so why no
website is mentioned on the cover I don't know. I believe both sides have the same
piece of music, which is very much in the world of guitars, effects and drones. The
sort of drones that rock loud, if you get my drift (and not those to lull the listener
into deep sleep), certainly when, somewhere half way through the piece they drums kick
in and it all starts to rock even harder. Aas, maybe a duo then, play this in a very
minimal way, erecting a wall of sound with a loud guitar drone and a drummer hammering
the bass drum and toms, no cymbals. This is one of those things that may loose a bit
when reproduced on a cassette I think, and which perhaps could gain a bit with a better
recordings, especially on the drum sounds, which now sound a bit distant. But that's
all critique on details. I quite enjoyed this wall of sound drone approach. Not perhaps
the most innovative things to do, drone metal is household stuff these days, I should
think, but it cleanses ears and thoughts, which is great on a misty Wednesday. (FdW)

SUBLYME DIAGONAL - GEOID (cassette by Tanuki Records)

From Brussels hails Sublyme Diagonal and his twenty minute cassette consists of four
pieces, three being rather short and filling up the first side, while there is one
long piece on the other side. I have no idea who Sublyme Diagonal is but apparently
he had a career in "mutant hiphop on one hand and untamed musique concrete on the other
one". Rhythm is absent on this release and in favour of more spacious synthesizer
sounds, dreamy and droney, as well as being 'up there' in the sky. There is also a
very charming naivety about this music, like it was recorded on a bunch of cheap
keyboards and a four-track machine, exactly like the one that is depicted on the
cover. I liked the brief character of the three pieces on the first side perhaps more
than the long and more static B-side (pieces have no titles as such), but perhaps the
longer approach makes more sense when it comes to playing the space card with this
kind of music. Lovely, very lovely music, and the only downside is: why is this so
short? I would have loved at least another twenty yummy minutes of this. (FdW)