Our Interview With RXM Reality about "DEViL WORLD WiDE"

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Chicago electronic noisemaker, RXM Reality returns for another stunning release on Hausu Mountain. Devil World Wide is a supercharged chunk of fragmented energy, pulsating through layers of microscopically sampled sound, cascading through eleven layers of grimy, scattered electronic whiz-bangers. I had a chance to spend a little time with RXM and delve into the creative machinations behind the music.

Gray Lee: First of all, Devil World Wide is a really cool release. Definitely a good fit for Hausmo. I was digging around looking for all your releases, are the Hausu Mountain tapes the first physical releases?

RXM Reality: Thanks! All of my releases this far have been cassette/digital. Prior to the Hausu releases, I’ve had two on the label “We Be Friends,” which is run by Justin Randal aka Reaches. One on Crystal palace, a cassette label based here in chi run by my roommate and friend Pat, and one on Pretty Alright, the label run by Tom Owens aka Potions. They are all pretty different sounding to me. I’ve posted a bunch of random stuff on bandcamp and soundcloud over the years.

Much love to max and Doug though. This newest one is my proudest release.

GL: Awesome. Each your releases seem vastly different. Even between your two Hausmo releases. I feel like Panic cycle could have been called manic cycle. There’s almost a jubilant energy. The new one seems more brooding and aggressive. Or am I just more brooding and aggressive and I’m projecting? What kind of role does mood/emotion play in your recordings?

RXM: Actually Panic Cycle was made during a much darker time. This new one was made throughout the winter and it’s been the best year of my adult life.

But, I think being more stable allowed me to get darker and weirder with the music itself because I was more comfortable getting into the dark stuff

There is a definite aggression though, in the new one. But mostly I’m chill these days

RXM’s 2018 release,  Panic Cycle .

RXM’s 2018 release, Panic Cycle.


GL: Rock n roll man. I really dig the new thing. There are a lot of movements and changes in texture and style.

RXM: I’m super into tha texture

GL: For the gearheads who probably read my page,I gotta ask - What’s the equipment setup like these days for you?

RXM: This album was made mostly with the Elektron Digitakt and Ableton. I record tons of Digitakt sequences than cut them up and layer them In Ableton. The Digitakt is huge for me . I can play a whole set with just that. Everything goes through the Elektron analog heat for processing. There’s some MPC 1000 on it but not as much as the previous releases. I just got a Monomachine and a midi guitar system but that’s not on the recordings yet.

GL: The sound of Devil World Wide is so cohesive. There is a chaos to it, but I have no problem believing everything is happening in the same universe. Do you like to spend a lot of time crafting your samples and getting everything all set up and then just go wild and live record the mayhem?

RXM: Yep, I spend sometime working on the Digitakt alone. I sample myself a lot. I sample old clips from past songs of mine. I’ve got like a meta bank of samples that I’ve built over the years. For me the specific samples, however, matter much less than the sequencing and the processing. It’s super granular. I chop and chop beyond recognition. That’s what kind of makes it all seem like the same world because it all pretty much goes through the same process. But I’m like constantly distorting and manipulating everything in a similar way

GL: I’m really fascinated with that method of developing a signature sound bank for a composition or an album. I can certainly see a progression and a refinement of that process in each successive release.

RXM: Totally. It’s been building since I started this kind of music pretty much. I love how artists like Burial and Sophie have their signature sound. Like it could be no one else. Like a watermark. I want be like that more and more.

GL: Exactly. It seems embedded in the most minute detail, every stylistic choice leads back to the core aesthetic.

RXM’s in-house producer.

RXM’s in-house producer.

RXM: Yeah I wanna make like a radio style drop for my next album. Like a specific sample that creeps into every song.

GL: A pretty rad idea my friend. Where do you draw from when it comes to content? Do you have a loose concept in mind, or figure things out in the aftermath?

RXM: For me it’s so tied to learning production techniques either on the computer or on the sampler. I just get very studious and watch like dubstep production tutorials. It’s almost like I don’t view it as art but like a little building project I’ll start songs with a certain rhythmic or production idea I want to learn, and then build everything around that sketch. I took a bunch of notes and listened in my car, which I never used to do. I’m constantly editing and processing.

GL: There's definitely a sculpture aspect to the work. I can picture you hyper-analyzing mixdowns on the highway.

RXM: Yep

GL: I want to thank you for taking the time today, RXM Reality, to give me some insight on your new release. I’m looking forward to seeing it out in the world.

RXM: My first interview! I’m honored.












We talk with JP of BBGUNS About "Help Yourself"

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Pittsburgh-based pop/rock/indie/hip-hop duo BBGuns has released their album Help Yourself, and it’s a bright, flavorful shot of summertime reverie. Filled with chunky beats, infectious vocal lines, and clever rapping, Help Yourself is a huge sugar rush of music that never really goes out of style, presented in a fresh and colorful way.

I had a chance to catch up with with JP, one half of this dynamic duo, our conversation started just as we were both getting off work one afternoon. BBGuns had just participated in a 24 hour livestream.

Gray Lee: Do the people at work know you’re a secret rap star or do you keep it on the down low?

JP Pitt: Some do but I try to keep it discrete haha. It's a double life for sure.

GL: Same here. I have an alias and everything. My boss knows I play music and hes always trying to out me to people. I’m like. No.

JP: Yeah, especially doing something with hip-hop in it it feels weird. I don’t wanna be judged as ‘that rapper guy,’ when I mostly sing, anyways.

GL: How was the 24 hour livestream?

JP: It was a marathon but not as hard as you think

GL: Very nice! So youre doing a bunch of shows to launch the album?

JP: We got a few weekenders in July out of town but that's all right now. A lot of Pittsburgh region festivals as well. Had more dates planned but had some bad luck with stuff falling through

GL: Dates are so hard to set up

JP: Yeah especially seems to be for us. We do a lot of D.I.Y. here, but other scenes aren’t as open to mixed genre bills. We run into a lot of “too indie for rap”, or “too rap for indie” and it can be frustrating.

GL: Do you find yourself having to really go into detail explaining what BBGuns is to a venue to try and overcome their aversion to mixed genre acts?

JP: Sometimes we flub it a little. Tell rap promoters we just rap, and tell rock oriented people we do indie pop. I feel like we can go with almost anything other than heavy music but at the same time never gonna fit perfectly.

GL: True. It’s a shame that venues are so focused on selling tickets/drinks that they are afraid to book an act that they can’t promote to just ‘one group of people.’ There are a few upstanding D.I.Y joints in upstate SC, so I hope you guys make it down here one day.

JP: Yeah we have yet to venture further south than Maryland and West Virginia but would love to.

GL: It’s a unique sound, to be sure, and right away the album reminded me of other blended/mixed genre acts that I’ve been into for a long time. Right away, I was thinking Deltron 3030, and my wife listened to it and - right off she was saying definitely Gorillaz.

JP: Yeah as far as influences Damon Albarn is our music dad. Mixed genre artists are what I personally tend to gravitate to. Joel has a deep hip-hop foundation but as we've got older hes branched out a lot as well. Gorillaz, Blur, Primal Scream, Del, Brockhampton, Kid Cudi, Beck, even stuff that gets flack like Sublime & Linkin Park set the precedent at an early age. Can’t forget Massive Attack either.

GL: I love Massive Attack. Y’know people give Sublime flack now but we were all playing the hell out of that when we were kids

JP: I had a simultaneous Brit-pop and trip-hop phase a handful of years ago. It was a fresh mix of genres! And the hooks were catchy.

GL: I totally got into Tricky, Dizze Rascal, and Phi Life Cypher for a while.

JP: Dizzee Rascal is that dude. But yeah, I love the marriage of hiphop sampling and rapping with dance music and indie styled vocals. I feel like rap and rock have mostly intersected in cheesy ways, I feel like theres alot of uncharted territory there.

GL: It shows in the new album. Pretty much every track is exactly that perfect mixture. And every chorus is catchy earworm magic.

JP: Thank you!. That's the formula for sure.

GL: Also, I really was struck by the energy level of the album as a whole.

JP: Yeah I think with our styles of rapping, our strengths are most present in higher bpms. We love rapping to break beats. One of our main collaborators Charlie Scott was a boombap guy first but also was making more disco house on the side which we found out we enjoyed making songs with even more.

I think with the heavy influence of trap, the instinct is to go slower these days, so it’s refreshing to return to those old bpms. We've always had trouble with trap beats cause you either rap slow or your rapping double-time like Eminem, and neither really plays to our strengths.I was really into the stone Rose's at the time we started hanging with Charlie.

The dance break beats with Beatlesesque vocal structures and funky guitars and it was a good guidepost for us. And there are definitely some Beatles references in the album. I can think of the one on "One Piece" off top for sure.

GL: Was that the Come Together line?

JP: Haha yup.

GL: Another line that really stood out to me was there was a place where you guys say something like we aren’t going back to 90s style we are just playing good music and you’re the one who left that style behind. (Paraphrased greatly here)

JP: Oh yeah that was actually Moemaw Naedon who had that line about 90s style. He features with Hubbs on the last track.

GL: I really enjoyed the message of Visions.

JP: That one is a bit more on the nose than others. Wasn’t sure how it would go.

GL: I think it would be easy to preach on the subject of our over-dependence on technology, especially phones, and instead it comes off as more a personal reflection of “Look what I’m spending my time on! I need to change my habits!”

JP: That's how we try to be with any kind of social commentary. Its self-reflective and we are all apart of the machine in one way or another.

GL: I wanted to ask about this great cover art. What led to the popsicle?

JP: The popsicle was designed by John Muldoon and Anika Ignozzi local Pittsburgh artists. I saw it out and about knew it fit the album title perfectly. Help Yourself is about self care, but also self indulgence and the fallout of too much.

GL: Killer! That art is so vivid it just jumps. Really is perfect for the sound - lighthearted, high-energy, bright

JP: For sure.

GL: I want to thank you for taking the time to talk about the album. Really enjoyed it! Looking forward to what you guys do next!

JP: Thanks!

Get BBGuns from Crafted Sounds right here:

BBGuns Video:


[Track Premiere] STRING MACHINE - "Death of the Neon (pt. 1, 2, & 3)

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Pittsburgh, PA indie band String Machine releases the title track to their upcoming album Death of the Neon, which will be out August 2nd. This track represents the full release quite well, showcasing folksy songwriting, multi-part harmonies, and dynamically shifting compositions that build and release tension in varied and surprising ways. Stay tuned for a full review of this stellar album.


The release of this track is a great follow up to the debut of this video for another track, Eight Legged Dog, which appeared on July 2nd. The video. Not the dog. I’d be terrified of an eight legged dog. Anyway, it’s a great video, so we’ll include that as well:


Peradam Tapes Releases Back Catalog of Vintage Mixes

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Peredam tapes has released six collections of mixes by a couple of last.fm era aliases of Qualchan.- gngsgns and bopapocalypse. There are three releases for each.

The gngsgns releases are chopped mixtapes of mostly hip hop, and each is themed around a different Texas city. Welcometodallas is a pleasantly churning mixture of high falootin’ city sounds and seedy underbelly hip hop grooves.

ftworthherointrips is a more laid back excursion into chopped/screwed blending a syrup of slowed down beats and altered realities.

screwston, man is the final of the gngsgns releases as Qualchan. states in the album description,

“another archival release from the humid summer of 2k11. this was the last gngsgns. release as i discovered two white edm ding dongs from the midwest were also using the name & i didn't want to be associated with them, so i moved onto greener pastures with bopapocalypse. the tape version (which disappeared when my old macbook died) had a fifteen minute edit of bjork's unravel.”

Along with some nicely mellowed joyride jams, there are some other humorously obvious samples and loops, that the artist unashamedly includes as an illustration of his early curation and sampling style.

In fact, each of these releases is presented in its original form.

“again some of the song choices are a little questionable in hindsight but i am just putting out everything warts & all”

The Bopapocalypse releases are similar in style and build to the gngsgns releases, pitch-bent clips of hip hop and pop songs blended into casual mixtapes to while away the recreational hours. The first of these is
free ted kaczynski., on which each of the tracks is named after a city that the famous domestic terrorist sent an explosive device to. On the Nod demonstrates a honing of Bopapocalypse’s mixing skills, with tighter, more aggressive compositions.

The final Bopapocalypse mixtape marked the end of the era, and the transition of the artist into Qualchan. Listen carefully for alterations of style and purpose:




All of these mixes are a free download and. even without deep analysis of an artist forming a style - they’re perfect chopped and screwed hip hop jams that you can download for free.

Gray Lee

https://hangontoyrego.bandcamp.com/music

[Video Premiere] The Modern Folk releases "MF Ultra"

[Video Premiere] The Modern Folk releases "MF Ultra"

Portland, Oregon based experimental musician The Modern Folk is no stranger to releasing unusual audio artifacts of raw unfiltered folk audio, often reinterpreting traditional American music or expounding on the ills of our society.

In MF Ultra, The Modern Folk expands further into electronic embellishment of traditional musical structures while exploring the darker nature of the human condition. Here is a video The Modern Folk has produced for the opening track of MF Ultra. “Lyin’”

[Video Premiere - Smudgeon - "Enfolding"]

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German electronic composer Smudgeon reveals a video from a new release on Akashic Envoy Records entitled Enfolding.

According to the artist, Enfolding is a collection of miniature ambient landscapes that capture the acute essence of “hope, loneliness, disconnection, and the feeling of the Earth shifting under your feet whether you will it or not” Apart from a guitar sample, everything else we hear is software-based artistry based on musique concrete, binaural sounds, and automatic writing.

Enfolding is available on cassette via Akashic Envoy Records.

Here is an eerie visual to go along with this deeply emotional atmosphere of tension and warm energies, tempered with smooth composition and artful delivery.

Purchase the cassette:

https://akashicenvoyrecords.limitedrun.com/products/645602-aer-s014-smudgeon-enfolding-pre-order-release-date-june-21

Purchase the digital:

https://smudgeon.bandcamp.com/album/enfolding

[Premiere] New Tyler Holmes Single Heralds Upcoming Releases

[Premiere] New Tyler Holmes Single Heralds Upcoming Releases

Ratskin Records announces a new EP by unique experimental artist Tyler Holmes, entitled Devil. This new EP will build on Holmes’ previous three releases, which feature widely varied styles and techniques of music-making. While those releases pushed outward against boundaries and borders, Devil looks inward, to the mores and messages that shape us as children and follow us into adulthood.

Our Interview with Collections of Dead Souls

Collections of Dead Souls

Collections of Dead Souls

Collections of Dead Souls is Timothy Anderson, of Austin, Texas. He is an artist who creates chaotic works of synth and sound, that buzz with narrative energy. His latest release, Synth Explorations Of The Unconscious Mind Vol i, warns of the injustice of modern society, while also transmitting a peaceful tone, full of hope and magic. I had a chance to catch up with Timothy to talk about it.



Gray Lee: Thanks for taking the time to talk with me. How long have you been creating music under the name 'Collections of Dead Souls?'

Timothy Anderson: I started making this form of electronic music around January 2014, didn't come up with the name until about July of 2016.

It was actually in a motel on the Las Vegas Strip that I came up with the name.

G: It really stands out. It was definitely the name that drew me in at the beginning. But you’ve made music in other forms for much longer.

T: Yea, I started playing guitar in my teens, got a 4 track when I was 17, started playing around with recording.

Then I was recording under the name FONADI, eventually adding a Korg MS2000 and a Korg Electribe to the mix.

These are some of those tracks.


G: Ok so you branched into synths pretty early on.

T: Yea, it was really more of a had to do it kinda thing. I needed a rhythm section as it were, and instead of finding other musicians, I just learned to do everything myself. Main influence at the time was Aphex Twin and Godflesh, (that hasn't changed) so figured why not?

G: You seem to work from a broad range of  influences, including rock, ambient, electronica, harsh noise - each one of your releases has its own vibe. What's your creative process like? Do you start with a concept and then create to shape that, or create free form works and see what comes out of them - or is it a combination?

T: Usually a concept. The idea has always been to tell some kind of story through synths and drum machines.

- or in the case of "Because I Rushed It" I was really really drunk.

G: I’ve been listening to the new release and it does have that conceptual feel. I think the first thing I noticed about Synth Explorations of the Unconscious Mind Vol I is the way the song titles work together to create a sentence - a statement.

T: Yea. That was the intention. I've been constantly travelling for years, and was always spouting off everywhere about various anti-capitalist and anarchist topics in strange places. It's kind of been a theme in a lot of my releases.

G: Your works certainly don't mince words.

And your relationship with the evils of this world are more concrete than most people may imagine. In fact, up until very recently - you were homeless.

T: Yea, but I've been homeless a lot over the last few years. Joined OccupyDC in January 2012, which was essentially going to DC to live on the streets and march on Washington. Daily.

haha

So, yea, it sucked, but.....

I got better. I think.

It's tough to get off the streets, but, it's just about keeping your head up, and trying to stay on a path out.

G: Congrats on making it off the street.

I think it's amazing that living on the streets, you were able to continue making and releasing music, even doing all your own cover art

T: Thank you. Laptop and iPad. Just learned everything I could about everything I possibly could. I looked at music and art as a way to keep my head together, and maybe release some pressure of my situation, as well as at least keeping me in coffee and whatnot.

G: I must say, though this new release was recorded while homeless, and bears strong messages about the ills of our society - I often found the tone to be strangely peaceful.

T: I didn't want to make anything other that something that would fill the soul with a strange kinda smile and uplifting feeling. Life is short, miserable and confusing. I wanted to make something that for a bit, someone could escape into, leaving those feelings behind.

G: I believe you accomplished that. The blissful escape of it is tangible, even amid more chaotic sequences.

T: Thank you. It was somewhat tough, when the situation dictated a noise album. I did not want to make another noise album. Although I did release a couple one off noise tracks for a few comps and singles.

G: How do you think your creative process will change now that you have privacy, a place to keep your gear, and a myriad of other things people don't realize they have?

T: It won't. I've been working this way for so long, I don't see any reason to change it. I'm only here to share a story, to share ideas, I will not change much on how I create these things.

G: That’s the truest art, to continue expressing regardless of any change or situation, whether for good or for ill.

T: Thanks. I've got to stay true to this, even if it just relegates it to some 99cents bin of history.

G: Yeah definitely keep going with your creative endeavors. I'm looking forward to seeing what you do next.

T: The DVD.


G: Yes the DVD! What's that all about?

T: The audio track was recorded about a year ago, and Jorge Mario Zuleta contacted me about making a film. I said ok. I was on the streets at the time, and encouraged him to try and finish it for SXSW as I wanted to do something like project it onto the side of the homeless shelter. SXSW ended, I couldn't do it, so in the interests of getting it out there, I'm putting together complete wtf art package things for anyone who orders.

G: That sounds sick, sign me up for that.

T: It's going to be a box of stuff. Every single package will be unique in some way. A little part of Collections of Dead Souls.

_

Collections of Dead Souls’ releases can be found at https://collectionsofdeadsouls.bandcamp.com/

[VIDEO Premiere] BENJAMIN HINZ - "Deep"

Dive Into DEEP with Benjamin Hinz

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Benjamin Hinz - “Deep”

(Phillip K. Discs)

Wisconsin music maker Benjamin Hinz has been a sound innovator and creator for close to a couple of decades, and in that time he has participated in many audio projects and has also been a driving force behind boutique live sound equipment company Dwarfcraft Devices. His latest effort, Deep, takes the usual solo ambient guitar drone work he is well known for, and adds full band energy to create a dynamic release.

Deep challenges definition by combining drone, electronic, and rock elements that come together to take the listener on a tumultuous 22-minute journey through a murky, underwater environment full of mystery and terror. Beginning with a guitar drone that escalates into a full blown rock with unique electronic trim, Deep will draw you into the shadowy depths of oceanic fright. What lurks far below the frenzied chopping waves of an angry sea? Only you will know, when you dive into Deep.

Preorder Deep here:

https://philipkdiscs.bandcamp.com/album/deep

Video Premiere - Here is a five minute edit of Deep for you to test the waters with.



[Album Premiere] Headboggle Continues to Melt Brains with "Polyphonic Demo"

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Headboggle - “Polyphonic Demo”

(Ratskin Records)

Headboggle, who has been flipping wigs with a wild electronic spree of imaginatively composed synth masterpieces for years, releases Polyphonic Demo, a brain-bending collection of forty-four, one-minute tracks that serve as small windows into a series of different worlds. Right away, i want to analyze the word “demo” in the title. This is not a demo. I believe that in this context, “demo” is short for “demolition,” as in the demolition of the listener’s expectations of how recorded music should behave.

I can feel the gears turning inside of you. You are resistant to listening to a disc full of one-minute tracks, because you are convinced what it will just feel like someone flipping through their music collection, and listening to the first 60 seconds of every song. This resistance is not unnatural - but completely wrong. Polyphonic Demo flows like a narrative story, taking you on a tour through a hall of wonders, sharing a bite-sized piece of each strange chapter of your travels. It is highly unconventional, yet ultimately enjoyable way of experiencing Headboggle’s unusual musical perspective. Fans of Headboggle - you don’t want to skip this one.

From the label:

“San Francisco's Derek Gedalecia's long-standing HEADBOGGLE moniker has boasted over 100 releases in his twenty plus years composing and releasing music that spans from dense layered modern electronics, sputtering noise, modular and Buchla based synthesizer works, avant neo-classical, to giddy electronics and even ragtime piano, but none of these 100 plus releases have fully purged the deepest depths of unexplored sonic territories, with the inspired urgency and strategic extraction of unheard electronic compositions as his newest record, titled Polyphonic Demo, to be released on CD and digital this April 22 via Oakland, CA imprint Ratskin Records. On Polyphonic Demo, Gedalecia abandons all notions of what experimental music is "supposed" to sound like to offer a exploding, tense, exuberant, and refreshingly idiosyncratic take on synthesizer music. With forty-four one minute tracks, meant to be shuffled on CD or remain in their sequenced order, Gedalecia completely re imagines what is possible both compositionally and spatially within the confines of a sixty second track, or an album for that matter. Gedalecia constructs poignant, cinematic vignettes which offer a glimpse into dense, psychedelic zones. "Polyphonic Demo" is the listening adventure of abstract, yet masterfully grounded take on electronic music we've all been waiting for.  “

Track Premiere - Headboggle - “Country Club Road


“Headboggle splinters his typically all-encompassing style of synth composition into tiny one minute morsels & the results play out like fellow Bay Area legends The Residents on their Commercial Album: short and sweet, presenting each idea as a discrete miniature world and moving on. Derek presents a comprehensive taxonomy of the tones and strategies within his arsenal of synths and electronics, finding room for everything from glistening classical-informed harmonies to the bludgeoning rhythmic squelches that have become his signature. Across 44 tracks, Derek dilates time and sketches out some oblique narrative known only to him that seems to contain infinite details”.                      


- Max  Allison, Hausu Mountain 





Video for “Blue Guitar”




“ HOLY SHIT Headboggle has gone “commercial” with (44) one-minute jingles of brain-damaged intent. I can’t get over this joker’s Modern Ballroom Dancing © sound - puts me super smiley in the headspace of Mort Garson or The Residents. My favorite release of his so far.”     

                                                                                               

- Bran (...) Pos 



Derek Gedalecia, a.k.a. Headboggle, has been performing electronic keyboard-based soundscapes for several years in the Bay Area in over a hundred local performances at venues ranging from GTK to YBCA. Incorporating lowbrow with highbrow art, music, and comedy, Head Boggle’s intent is to fuse together a new ecstatic improvisational performance style with a carefully crafted musical underbed. In his formative years, Gedalecia studied classical and ragtime piano from noted ragtime composer/revivalist Dr. Brian Dykstra.

Preorder Polyphonic Demo starting 3/22/19:

https://ratskinrecords.bandcamp.com/

Our Conversation with Nathan Cearley of Long Distance Poison

Nathan Cearley is one half of Long Distance Poison, experimental analog modular synth outfit with over nine years of stellar releases. We caught up with him on a day off to talk about LDP’s new release Astro Topoi.

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Gray Lee:  So what’s your day off been like so far?

Nathan Cearley: Woke up at 5, went running, been watching movies

GL: Oh nice. Which ones?

NC: today I've watched an odd handful--The Bronx Executioner, Good Favour  and The Man Who Would Be King.

GL: I’ve seen none of those, but Bronx Executioner sounds good.

NC: The Bronx Executioner is a weird Italian cyborg film that was distributed by Cannon at the end of the 1980s.  Robots vs humans.  It has a crazy credit sequence at the beginning that has all sorts of weird video distortion and noise. There is a gang in it called The Humanoids

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GL: I already love it -

Let’s jump right into talking about Astro Topoi. That is awesome album, by the way. I was in the middle of several things and basically stopped all of my activity to focus on it.

NC: Wow, thanks.  what do you like about it?

GL: I really dig Liminal Diamond, when the beat comes in, and  about halfway through there’s this dirty, funky bass line that emerges. Really good interplay between that and the drones in the background.

NC: Thanks! that is sort of a dive into unassembled blues and funk. Like the other two songs on the record, that song unfolded completely by chance from the moment we were doing it. We didn't sit down and say, let’s do something that goes from droney into blues and then shifts into funk, but kind of weird and decontextualized. instead, one thing lead to another.

I guess the idea for the album was to have as little idea of time as possible, in the sense of goal-oriented time.  Like, lets make a song that sounds like this, or, let's do this and do this other part.

GL: Yeah that natural way that it moves from one zone to another really pulls the listener in.   And that’s something id like to dig into. This release is not 'computer generated,' but played live with analog equipment?

NC: Yes.  All three are mostly me on the modular synth and Erica on different analog synthesizers.  Most of the "composition" is psuedo-random, random or completely intuited, as far as sound, control over sound, and timing is concerned.

The long form piece, called Ausunya, was originally an experiment that came from a residency we had with Clocktower Gallery at Pioneer Works that explored how to create sound outside of typical modes of goal centric time. It was first performed there and then it evolved and was finally recorded. The spirit of that experiment is also how we made the other two songs - zero idea of an end point or goal underpinning what we were doing in the moment when bringing the songs into being

GL: How much does the recording end up differing from live performace when some of it is based in improvisation? Do you have an overall tone that you are aiming for?

NC: Rather than aim for a tone, we allowed the tone to create itself from how the sounds ended up manifesting.  So, in a way, the songs decided their own tone, or were part of that process, as the making of each song unfolded. We wanted to get our minds as out of the way as possible

The live performances of Ausunya changed quite a bit from the experiments at Pioneer Works to the performance there to when we finally recorded it.  Although, towards the end, the song decided to kind of reach a kind of stasis with regards to its parts.  after awhile it had a kind of structure that we didn't decide on and that just worked itself out.  there is a youtube clip somewhere of us performing at Silent Barn and its not completely unsimilar sounding to the recording on the album but if you compare either to some clips of the Clocktower Gallery residency event its really different but obviously related.



GL: In that way would you say this mindset is inverse to how maybe a rock or blues musician would improvise, watching for chord or rhythm changes? Do you make visual contact during the recording process?

NC: Lol, yes, probably, in that a rock or blues musician probably really knows what they are doing and we don't.  We don't even pretend to know.  We want to un-know the little we do know.

For example, we are not jamming chord inversions.  But we equally are not, not jamming chord inversions.  The practice is to try and avoid being dualistic whatsoever, but, quite different from a musican improvising in the fact that much of the reality of the music is being determined in the moment by the instruments themselves and the processes the instruments are engaged in.

GL: I think it's really working. The release has that transcendent feel without straying into psychedelic tropes

NC: Thanks!  that is the whole natural event of it:  autonomy, sovereignty of sound

It’s basically all proceeding from the strategy of what happens when the "musician" is removed from the music as much as possible. One time I was part of a really horrible improv group. it only lasted a couple meets. one of the men in the group looked at me one day and said, "You aren't a musician." it made me so happy. I was like, “Yes. Thank you.”

GL: It definitely takes on a life of its own

NC: Absolutely.  And, once the mind gets out of the way, something else is there--something very mysterious.

GL: This is your second release through Deep Distance. There seems to be a lot of contrast between the previous album and this one. The previous being a lot more tribal/meditational/ ancient sounding

NC: That album emerged from a really different context that also was weirdly similar.  but that album definitely had a kind of concept to it.  whereas this album was about neither clinging to a concept nor clinging to trying to avoid immanently emerging concepts

Human program was about trying to apply the tension between order and chaos, illusion and reality, simulation and ??? to sound composition.  so we wanted to really work and try to create orders and organizations of sound that appeared song like but that were in fact not.

But that album connects to this one because they intersect with the emphasis on process and psuedo random, random and intuited events

GL: I definitely think they work well together.

NC: Thanks!   There is also quite a bit of that play between apparent stability and real disorder in our two Hausu Mountain releases and our 2AM Tapes release.  In fact, on our last Hausu Mountain release, Knock Magh, there is a long form song called Ooch Nuch which is really a good example of randomness and intuition in composition that was literally like crazy weird mutant cell mutation where one duration unfolded or imploded or flipped out or exploded or whatever into another creating what should have been complete chaos but instead something weirdly listenable and relatable.

Same with this one song on the 2AM tapes release Perfect WeatherNodri Yaksha.  It unfolded from this kind of industrial martial thing into drone and then this Cure song.  Erica and I were like, WTF? It’s definitely related to evolution in the sense that there is really no master plan.  and circumstance creates the next form that becomes the next circumstance

GL: I like the level of thought that goes into your music before and after it's recorded.

NC: Ha, thanks!  but the funny thing is its an absurd amount of noticing how not to think.

Like, the mind is going to keep on spitting shit out.  the trick is to notice it without reacting to it.  we try to do that in parallel way when it comes to "making music"

But you always have to be aware.  you can't stop noticing. Then, the awareness becomes the letting go.

GL: Thats poweful. Where does the title Astro Topoi come from?

NC: It’s funny you say powerful because giving up control for just noticing and being aware of whatever is going on when its going on opens up the space for all this energy that would otherwise be lost in trying to impose time on the context and will on reality. there is an energy once you give up control. Once your thoughts are no longer wrapped up in the idea of what happened then or what might happen later.

Astro Topoi means “Space Places.” It was a conventional way for us to try and suggest that the songs have a presence with no direction - kind of like middles without beginnings or ends. You can just be with the sounds and not worry about being anything.

GL:  I think in many ways people are weary of being told what to think, and the message of this music is not to think but to be.

NC: Totally. or not to get entangled in your thoughts. Trying to willfully negate thinking is dangerous too, right?  but definitely, we hope that when people experience this album they can just be here. i think we are worn out with being a self, though--i think you are totally right about that. Modernism screamed:, “You gotta be someone, an identity, a self.  and we will give you all these commodities and narratives to accomplish that.”  And i think now people realize all this suffering in the world is a bigger problem than just political parties and political points of view...that there is this attachment to self underpinning the horror. Music is so amazing because its at one a thing and at once completely empty. And though it is used by modernism as a thing to create identities, it is equally a powerful way to cut attachment to self.

Noise, experimental music, the avante garde, jazz, whatever, can really pull the rug out from under the ego. So, its really horrifying at a deep level, because we equate that dissolution of attachment to death, rather than seeing it as freedom. That's why i get kind of crabby about how weird forms of music are being territorialized by capitalism through branding and social media.  through the simulacra of community.

it’s like modernism got a guard dog called postmodernism to save it from weird music robbing it of its treasure, the ego. Maybe music shouldn't be a form of self validation, maybe it should be a form of self dissolution. if the strategy, for sound, is creating the space for something new to happen, something not yet to arrive, something that is already here to be free to be seen, the attachment to self has to be cut. in that way music becomes the most important form of “validation”—it is the affirmation of the sacred or mysterious, whatever it is that is other than economy and rationalism and classification and thinking.

GL: I dont personally like talking about my day job but if youre cool with it, in your 'waking life' you are an educator? How does that influence your music or vice versa?

NC: I work in a gifted school that is almost entirely African American.  These are brilliant kids that society has thrown roadblocks against.  So, just like i see music as a way to cease suffering in the world, i see teaching in my context as similar. And on a really basic level there is also this struggle between goal centric thinking and the moment.  between right now and "then and next" Also, I try and remove myself as much as possible from the experience of learning and create systems, processes and structures that create the developmental events.  I kind of am more of a facilitator than a chalk and talk teacher.

GL: That sounds like an incredibly rewarding experience

NC: i guess its also like music in that its both rewarding and super frustrating, lol.

GL: Do you ever spin a LDP record in the classroom?

NC: Ha.  I did play an early mix of a track once to some guys who were in detention.  Then they wanted to come up for detention the next day to hear more. Today, they just find it online, something that didn't happen so much a couple years ago. It was there but they weren't so "google-ly" Now they are like, "cool show you are playing on Friday night." Or, "that video you made made me see things." Or, "what's with the flashing lights."

GL: Haha that’s wild. I go to great lengths to hide what I do from people at work. It seems like you are the same wherever you are.

NC: If you can figure out a way for me to hide the internet from my students, please let me know.

Well, I don't go on about making music.  Its such a academically tough experience for them that we are really focused on the work then and there.  but i think my "persona" is the same.  i wear my street clothes when i play out and i wear my street clothes when i teach.

i actually try and avoid talking about it with the other teachers more.  kids are like, whoa, that is weird.  and its a cool questioning and curiousity thing.  with adults, its like, i don't get it.  and the tone is like, you are a weird idiot. the kids aren't threatened.  their minds haven't been as conditioned.  it causes anxiety for the adults.

GL: Whats on the Horizon for LDP?

NC: Erica and I are working on a couple of new long form things, like inside out ambient, again, mostly created from autonomous psuedo random processes and structures and plain intuition. We are really focused on creating our version of an ambient album. There will be zero rhythm and lots of weird chords.

Also, Mark Dwinell of Forma and I have a Polytechnic Youth record that is just being released now of some raw early 80s'ish sounding industrial jams.  very different than LDP and Forma.




_ _ _



The LP of Astro Topoi is now sold out, but you can still obtain the digital version of the album here:

https://longdistancepoison.bandcamp.com/album/astro-topoi

Also, Nathan wants to give away some codes - grab them while they are still vaid!

wch4-5q5

nepch-bt2e

rfhh-wnxu

aw4s-cejp

rpps-w382

xnlb-hxcc

h5pm-epsw

479f-urws

4l2x-elld4

smj-ua5c












 

New Song From the Lyrics Generator - The Tangled Mango - "Storm"

Last year, we tried out the awesome power of technology in songwriting, in the form of The Song Lyrics Generator. We decided it was high time we tried it out again.

This time, I decided to be really topical and use a buzzword from current events. I chose “Executive Time.”

Please keep your input family friendly.

Please keep your input family friendly.

This time around, I went with ‘The Tangled Mango’ as our band name.

If you didn’t catch our last feature on this incredible new lyric writing tool - what follows is a series of screens where you choose from a list of prefab lines that populate based on your subject matter. Then - the site generates cover art with your band name, a title, and hands you a copy of your lyrics. It’s beautiful.

And so after some beep boop beep - Here’s a brand new song, waiting on someone to set it to music.( Feel free to do that if you like.)

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Storm


By The Tangled Mango

I found the landfall for me
A bourgeoisie for you and me
And every rainwater is carefree
Then you came with all your exploding
And I'm dancing because you're turnkey
I was disintegrating, eroding on my own
It's time we had some plutocrats
You must think I'm collaborationist
And now your proliferating is on repeat
Don't be afraid to try gravitating
Meet calculating thoughts
Don't like your boycotts
Provocations are not safe
I just wanna be part of your malefactors
You're always destabilizing when you lie
Do you mind if I steal a repression?
Your words cut deeper than an incitation
Lie lie

Gray Lee



[Video] Tmboy releases new video for "The Light"

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The Light is the most recent single from Tmboy's upcoming album, Steam, due out Feb. 8th. This is a special one - the electronic duo's powerful release features driving & evocative synth compositions and soaring, emotive vocals that hang timelessly in a dreamy ether above the mix. Full album review coming soon. For now, partake in this wonder:

 

 

Tmboy also announces tour dates to support the album release:

Feb 8 - Brooklyn, NY - Union Pool (record release)

https://www.union-pool.com/event/1796452-tmboy-record-release-brooklyn/


Feb 22 - Baltimore, MD - The Crown*


Feb 23 - Washington DC - Dew Drop Inn*


Feb 24 - Philadelphia, PA - Bourbon & Branch* -

https://www.facebook.com/events/2239011009496436/


March 1 - Portland, ME - The Apohadion Theater -

https://www.facebook.com/events/294054271299802/


March 2 - Boston, MA - Dorchester Art Project



* = with Operator Music Band

"Sacred Spells" compilation releases on Psychic Eye Records.

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Psychic Eye records has put together a solid compilation of twenty killer dark electronic, post punk, experimental/noise, EBM, and many other kinds of tracks by well known experimental acts from all over the world, to benefit the TGI Justice Project.

About TGIJP, Psychic Eye Says:

“From nearby San Francisco, TGI Justice Project was an easy choice as the compilation beneficiary for Oakland-based Psychic Eye Records. “There’s a lot of support for trans rights and a lot of concern for the safety of trans people in jails and detention facilities, so finding artists to contribute happened quickly.” says Sampson. “Hopefully our combined efforts can raise some funds for this organization, and maybe dark music fans will discover a few new bands that resonate with them along the way.” TGI Justice Project, formed in 2004, is a group of transgender, gender variant and intersex (TGI) people—inside and outside of prisons, jails and detention centers—whose mission is to create a united family in the struggle for survival and freedom. It was formerly overseen by the eminent LGBTQ activist Miss Major Griffin-Gracy, who emerged from the Stonewall Riots to become a prominent trans rights movement leader for decades. Since Miss Major’s recent retirement, the organization has been run by Executive Director Janetta Johnson.”

Our attention was first brought to this project by electronic artist Malocculsion, whom you may remember from our House of Cake project. They have an absolutely delicious track on here called Wormfood that sounds like beat-centric electronic mumbo jumbo that’s been disintegrated in a vat of intergalactic acid.

There is also a track from Cyborg Eye, whom we included in out 2018 Top 100 Albums of the Year. Their track, entitled The Death of Captain Rhodes, is easily one of the best tracks I have heard in 2019 so far!

If you like your electronic, experimental music dark, creepy, and for a good cause - this compilation is the one for you. Head on over to Psychic Eye records and have a listen for yourself!

https://psychiceye.bandcamp.com/album/sacred-spells

Gray Lee


 


Dinzu Artefacts Fall Batch

Batch Review - Dinzu Artefacts

If anything could be done to further cement the viscerally tangible aesthetic of Dinzu Artefacts, it would be the release of this October batch, replete with more found sound, field recordings, and tape manipulations than you can wrap an ear around.

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 Dominique Vaccaro -Close Distances

Close Distances is a slow ride on a conveyor belt made of burlap, teeth and oversized rubber bands. Each audio offering here is a hyper-aware focus on looped chatterings, clatterings, and spatterings that attains a hauntingly organic feel despite probably being recorded in a collapsing button factory. Vaccaro is able to take 'ordinary' sounds of everyday objects and turn them into abstract structures of layered sound that fool the ear and tickle the spine.

 

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 Ludwig Berger & Veronika Ehrensperger -The Capacity of Things to Act

This tension-laden piece is full of terrifying stillness and malevolent fury, allegedly recorded with a 'prepared harp' which is a fancy musical term that really means 'interdimensional helicopter made of nightmares and lies.' What begins as warmly vibrating drones quickly descends into dark and reverberating explorations of the rusted clockwork that operates purgatory. The sound on each of these tracks is dense, and heavily weighted with colorful swirls of shadowy energy, nimbly leaping to action and then falling dormant.

 

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 Weston Olencki & Max Murray - Gram

Treat yourself to this careful examination of pneumatic systems. Metal tunnels expand and contract, hissing with powerful surges of air. Valves squeak. Networks of pipes breathe with cycles of pressurizations, filled with rushing gusts of harnessed air energy. Tension builds as rivited seams of squealing conduits are tested by atmospheres of gushing power. Effort of breath is pushed through shaped brass, alloy tubes create bubbling sound in an exchange of expelled energy for sound output.

These three tapes are sold out, but digital editions are still available.

https://dinzuartefacts.bandcamp.com

Gray Lee

Houdini Mansions Top 100 Albums of 2018

This year has seen a tumultuous whirlwind of powerful new music, and we were here to witness it. At every turn, there was yet another stellar release from some artist or another. Like many others who attempted to observe the endless waves of new releases breaking upon our digital shores, I found myself overwhelmed by the magnitude of it all. I present to you:

The Houdini Mansions Top 100 Albums of 2018.

100. Buck Young - Proud Trash Sound

99. Johnny Utah - S/T

98.  Frank Wilke & Wayne Rex - Cobra Venom

97. Index of Refraction Records - Glimmer of Hope

96. Boycalledcrow - Hyperlight

95. Nikmis - #17

94. Disappearing - Untitled

93. Benjamin Shaw - Megadead

92. Young Scum - S/T

91. Ricardo Dias Gomes - Aa

90. Wizard Apprentice - I Am Invisible

89. Somesurprises - Alt

88. Voodoohop - Entropia Coletiva II

87. Pool Kids - Music To Practice Safe Sex To

86. EQ WHy - Life of the Why - The Mixtape, Vol 1

85. 土星4IO - 紫色の ホタル (_purple_firefly)

84. Molly Tigre - S/T

83. The Mighty Rhino - We Will No Longer Retreat Into Darkness

82. Exit Fear - Crestfallen

81. An Eagle in Your Mind - Miraculous Weapons

80. Tap Water - Amnesia Nightmare

79. Petridisch - Rêve d'un Rêve

78. Sponge Person - Eggo Jams

77. Kosmogyr - Eviternity

76. Fictional Girlfriend - Perfume Garden

75. Kibble - Lapses

74. Lafidkl - Derichan

73. b e g o t t e n 自杀 - (hushwave) - 治愈它

72. Pop Up - Tasty

71. Wilson Arcade - saturn audio system demonstration cassette 茨ヱめ畝ヹ

70. Dere Moans - Brain Mountain Disciples

69. Pepper Mill Rondo - E.D.M.

68. Glove Pilot - Thunder Suite

67. Pinkcourtesyphone - Romantic Threat EP

66. Fae & Seffi - Miraka

65. Saiwba - 輪 迴

64. Qualchan. - 100 Years

63. Spellling - Pantheon of Me

62. Qoheleth - Black Kite Broadcasts

61. Rangers - Late Electrics

60. V//Tomo - Dirty Oddesy

59. Stormland - Songs of Future Wars

58. Pony League - Picture of Your Family

57. Coffin Torture - Dismal Planet

56. McKinley Dixon - Who Taught You to Hate Yourself?

55. Ramble Tamble - Outlaw Overtones

54. Cartoon Forest - S/T

53. Madison Turner - A Comprehensive Guide to Burning Out

52. Quimper - Perdide

51. Whettman Chelmets - Annihlate Your Masters

50. Alan Morse Davies - Svalbard

49. C Moody Crews - T Zero

48. Little Kid - Might as Well With My Soul

47. Frog - Whatever, We Probably Already Had It

46. Tanner Menard & Andrew Weathers - Wanna Live in a World w/a Whole Face

45. Long Distance Poison - Astro Topoi

44. Surfing - Incubo

43. Fire Tools - Skinless X-1

42. String Modulator - Manifesto

41. VVV - Canson Months

40. Crosby Morgan - Rain Games for the Natural Born Pariah

39. Haunted Gauntlet - OM3G4 G3N3SIS

38. Quicksails - The Bright

37. NUM - Memory Machine

36. Dekonstruktor - No Way Back

35. Dan Mason - Void

34. Wellness - Mall Goth

33. Valyri - Expanses

32. Hide - Castration Anxiety

31. Super Hi-Fi - Blue and White

30. Honeyfitz - Cutting Your Hair

29. Rhucle - New Rain

28. Andy Burns - Excited

27. Yves Malone - The Most of What You Need Is All You'll Ever Have

26. The Tuesday Night Machines - Hawaiian Yurt Music

25. Illuminati Hotties - Kiss Yr Frenemies

24. Third Kind Records - Puzzle Time/ Puzzle Time 2

23. Cyborg Eye - Demo 1983

22. Apricot Blush - Where Blew a Flower, May a Flower No More

21. Doom Trip Records - Doom Mix Vol II

20. Papa Manzano - Ritualism

19. French 75 - S/T

18. åmßêrVVåvê§ - Organics

17. Ursula's Cartridges / Kizunaut - 07:15:14:05 OFFLINE

16. Adderall Canyonly - Museum of Fire

15. Bary Center - Betrayal

14. Valet Girls - Lost Wrld

13. William Carlos Whitten - Burn My Letters

12. Bast - Nanoångström

11. Mukqs - 起き上がり 

10. Ben Boogz & Doc Reevez - Thousand Islands of Death

9. Long Neck  - Will This Do?

8. Scientist - Barbelith

7. Recluse Raccoon - S/T

6. Barbara Morgenstern - Unschuld und Verwustung

5. Diamondstien & Sangam - The Ocean Between Us

4. More or Les - Nerd Love

3. Dinosaur on Fire - Populous Romantique

2. Tarkamt - Live at the Necropolis

1. Megan Jean & The KFB - Tarantistas

Gray Lee