Volcanic Tongue Catalogue

Sachiko & Rinji Fukuoka
Void

Musik Atlach MACDR-001

CD
£10.99


Stunning new self-released album from the Japanese underground duo of Sachiko (Kousokuya/Overhang Party et al) and Rinji Fukuoka (Overhang Party/Majutsu Ni Niwa et al): recorded in startling hi-fi at Showboat in Tokyo in June of 2011, Void is the perfect name for this mind-blowing wall of relentlessly peaking black hole sound, with Sachiko’s angel vox and heavenly electronics bisected by Fukuoka’s vocals, electronics, bass, percussion and shortwave radio work. Sachiko has a way of generating hugely organic walls of feedback that still scream like sheet metal and here she is on particularly devastating form, building ghostly shapes and witch cries from ectoplasmic electricity that Fukuoka threads with haunted shortwave voices and ghost tones. Soon the whole piece is vibrating like a gridlocked Parson Sound, with Fukuoka’s electric bass pushing the whole thing into full-on nod-out/brain-dunt mode. Another peerless release from two of the leading lights of the contemporary Tokyo psych sound. Highly recommended. 

Pumice
Worldwide Gullet

Nyali Recordings 5

CD-R
£7.99


Dunno how Nyali Recordings do it but as anyone who picked up their phenomenal Masami Kawaguchi New Rock Syndicate CD-R will tell you, they consistently succeed in scoring the best material from whoever it is they’re working with. This time round it’s Stefan Neville aka Pumice, with a collection of unreleased radio sessions from around the world that is so perfectly balanced between classic NZ/Flying Nun singer-songwriter-isms and blasted Dead C/Fushitsusha style black hole rock that it’ll have you lining up your King Loser wax before you’re even halfway done. Neville is one of only a handful of performers on the planet – Wooden Wand, Jeremy Earl, Alastair Galbraith – that is capable of combing classic songwriting moves and a feel for higher-minded melody with the aesthetics of scorch, invigorating the singer/songwriter blueprint with a ton of outside junk, with warped fidelity, Dictaphone hymns and mangled feedback instants co-habiting with great, great songs just like they used to ‘back in the day’. Worldwide Gullet draws on tracks from Neville’s last bunch of recordings – Pebbles and Quo - and also includes a buncha covers, two Gfrenzy tracks and one by CJA, both unreleased in Pumice form. Also included are a string of tracks labeled “etc” which Neville describes as “traditional extended live Pumice variations for endless cassette and intercom. Super fans might notice loops from albums being reused and buried in amongst those.” Some of the songs are so blasted that the only real comparison is early This Kind Of Punishment or even Galbraith’s Morse LP. Cross that with instrument destruction that’s as nod-out beautiful as any Dead C fade-out and you’ve got the go-to Pumice album of choice. Hand-numbered edition of 107 copies. Highly recommended.  

Desmadrados Soldados De Ventura
Thinkin’ Game – Live Europe 2014

No Label No Cat

4xCassette Box Set
£14.99


Massive bootleg –style live box set that documents the cream of the big band performances that Nick Mitchell’s UK guitar army cut while marauding across Europe in an edition of only 50 copies in moulded plastic boxes: five shows in full here that range from gridlocked Musica Transonic-style massed head ascensions through the kinda omni-directional all-soloing at once style of prime Vermonster: Basel, Switzerland; Amsterdam, Netherlands; Paris, France; Reading, UK and Antwerp, Belgium. Something about the fidelity is just perfect on this, with the kind of black hole-dense singularity of Nanjo Asahito’s legendary La Musica cassettes – highly recommended!

Ensemble Economique
Melt Into Nothing

Denovali DEN-200

LP
£18.99


Another great set of avant classical drones, whispered half-songs and otherworldly sonics from one half of Starving Weirdos, Mr Brian Pyle: six tracks that work hallucinatory amalgams of haunted machine noise, brokedown codes, industrial rhythms and the kind of miasmic, organic flesh/metal constructs of a more epic Maurizio Bianchi into mile-deep hymns to disembodied angel tones and washes of body-gnostic electricity. Some of the more vaguely ‘song based’ work here marks a major step forward, moving from soft, repeat keyboard hallucinations that could almost be Anima Sound tape-delayed by William Basinski to the kind of euphoric ascensions that are straight out of the Matthew Bower school of extreme altered states. Ensemble Economique beautifully reconcile an arcing, almost modern classical grace with a brain-pounding underground feel and a narcotic pop music vibe and this is another massive instalment. Comes with a download code.

Ensemble Economique
Melt Into Nothing

Denovali DEN-200

CD
£14.99


Another great set of avant classical drones, whispered half-songs and otherworldly sonics from one half of Starving Weirdos, Mr Brian Pyle: six tracks that work hallucinatory amalgams of haunted machine noise, brokedown codes, industrial rhythms and the kind of miasmic, organic flesh/metal constructs of a more epic Maurizio Bianchi into mile-deep hymns to disembodied angel tones and washes of body-gnostic electricity. Some of the more vaguely ‘song based’ work here marks a major step forward, moving from soft, repeat keyboard hallucinations that could almost be Anima Sound tape-delayed by William Basinski to the kind of euphoric ascensions that are straight out of the Matthew Bower school of extreme altered states. Ensemble Economique beautifully reconcile an arcing, almost modern classical grace with a brain-pounding underground feel and a narcotic pop music vibe and this is another massive instalment.

Isengrind
Underflesh

Was Ist Das? Was-02

Cassette
£8.99


Edition of only 100 copies cassette from Solange Gularte, one half of enigmatic French folk/psych duo Natural Snow Buildings: released to coincide with the group’s 2014 tour, Underflesh exists somewhere between Hosianna Mantra-era Popol Vuh, the sunbleached acid folk of Linda Perhacs and the haunted European exploitation soundtracks of the late Jean Rollin, with an impossibly ancient and otherworldly atmosphere married to future synth stylings and visions of Europe endless. Recommended. 

Marc Barreca
Twilight

Palace Of Lights POL-05/3000

LP
£14.99


Warehouse find of original, sealed copies of this amazing 1980 private press underground side by Marc Barreca: Twilight has been characterised as a ‘new age synth’ private, alongside titans of the form like JD Emmanuel’s Wizards, but it feels like a fairly cursory description of the jaw-dropping range of sonics within and might have more to do with the cover art by Rosalie Barreca than the actual music. Barreca does make extensive use of synth stylings but he also uses a lot of ‘incidental’ instruments and treatments as well as guest spots for saxophone and prepared guitar.
So what is it really like? Think a low-key doom-laden Charalambides/Scorces session where they were using brokedown beatboxes ala Tolerance and dead synth tones in order to more effectively channel the sound of the American night. There are aspects of Jim Shepard/Vertical Slit’s bloodyminded basement noise, swooning sliding strings and lunar treatments that touch on Ash Ra circa Schwingungen or the Fripp/Eno jams, zoned chains and drones sections that come over like a hyper-tactile Aube before we move into the kind of interstellar sax/keyboard work that touches on the Riley/Baker flights. On the flip there are loops of haunted subliminal vocals and cries of joy slowly fed into a phasing black hole (think a more heavens-focussed Nord or even Gary Kail/Slava Ranko) while almost Ora/Mirror style field recordings vibrate in the distance. Add in some genuinely lonely synth chorales and vague, distant guitar instrumentals and the satellites are truly spinning. The final track, “Industrial Landscape”, does exactly what it says on the tin, channelling metal automata and smokescreens of heavy drone in order to birth the sound of the future. Supremely lonely, out of time, with a classic basement weirdo atmosphere and some truly malevolent instrumental stylings, this is the black nightmare sound counterpoint to Wizards and one of the off-the-map classic of the early 80s private press scene. So make your move, very highly recommended, won’t see these again!

Mike Rep And Friends
Darby Creek Drifter

540 Records

LP
£16.99


Brand new LP from legendary Midwest underground hero Mike Rep: Rep, alongside buddies like Jim Shepard, Tommy Jay, Ron House, Don Howland and Nudge Squidfish, pretty much invented American basement rock/roll DIY via his work with The Quotas and True Believers and his New Age and Old Age/No Age imprints and he was one of the first to fully take rock/roll at its word, coming out of fandom to release some of the most purely focussed avant garage of any age. Darby Creek Drifter presents a series of beautiful new recordings from Rep that range across Velvet Underground covers (a tear-choking version of “Pale Blue Eyes”) through the kinda blasted folk/country of Tommy Jay’s classic Tall Tales Of Trauma. With a cast of many, many friends Rep transmutes Lou Reed-style drug ballads, stoned Michael Hurley-esque slow-mo folk, beautiful paeans to last stands before oblivion and the kinda intuitive grasp of rock/roll form that could easily be a Peter Laughner or Perrett. Another great one from Rep and a necessary addition to the Columbus, Ohio shelf. Very highly recommended. 

Section Urbane
The Final Program

540 Records 540-040

7” EP
£7.99


Cool reissue of these Australian post-Velvets murder punk’s only 7” EP: The Final Program originally came out in 1984 and while it touches on the kinda scorch then paint-peeling Oz basements – Victims/Scientists et al – Section Urbane had a much more UK-inflected DIY sound, giving the nod to everyone from Joy Division to the Manchester Musician’s Collective as well as the sound of up-tight NY. Mo Tucker drums, pulsing melodic bass, a cranky guitar attack that feels like a plukey UK bedroom cousin of Chrome’s deformed avant garage attack... this is the perfect sound of aggressively formulated teenage non. Previously known as Just Urbaine, Section Urbane represents their attempt at future-proofing the jams by removing any signs of wack or quirk and just mainlining the goddamn chord solos across classic no-nothing tracks like “I’d Rather Stay Home And Watch TV” while a track like “Goddess” catches the Just>Section dynamic in all of its oiky zit-covered Venus In Furs splendour. File this one on your creaking Oz shelf as the sound of Australia’s dreaming. Highly recommended. 

Spacemen 3
Live At The New Morning, Geneva, Switzerland, 18/5/89

Mental Groove Records MG-099

LP
£18.99


First time ever on vinyl for this legendary Spacemen 3 show, originally a revered bootleg cassette passed between heads: I was guitar tech for Spacemen 3 on the Scottish leg of their 1989 tour and can testify to the power of a front line experience of the group at the absolute height of their powers and the set list pretty much matches my memory of the shows at the time. The recording quality here is perfect, with enough fuzz damage to anchor their way-out orbits of free jazz form and post-MC5 testifying to sleazy rock traditions while the highlight here – and the most legendary part of the performance - is their epic side-long destructo psych reading of “Suicide” where they taped the keys down on the keyboard while they nipped back stage to get loaded and then reappeared to take the track to a whole new level of ecstatic ascension.  Over on the flip you get dazzling psychotic drug-damaged rips through primo material like “Rollercoaster”, “Things Will Never Be The Same”, “Take Me To The Other Side”, “Starship”, “Bo Diddley Jam” and “Revolution”. The key live document of one of the all-time great UK underground groups at the peak of their powers, on vinyl at last. Highly recommended.

The Clean
Anthology

Merge MRG-220

4xLP Box Set
£41.99


Insane, beautiful career-spanning set in a hard slipcase that gathers virtually everything from this legendary New Zealand underground group: this one has it all, running from the “Tally Ho!” debut through the Boodle Boodle Boodle and Great Sounds Great EPs in full, with raggedy 4-track recordings by Chris Knox of legendary material like “Getting Older”, “Anything Could Happen” and “Point That Thing Somewhere Else”. Then we have the great post-hiatus LPs, Vehicle, Modern Rock and Unknown Country as well as bonus tracks that appeared on 7”s and flexi-discs. This is the true motherlode, the blueprint for the NZ garage sound bled straight to tape and one of the great, original groups at the absolute apex of their form. Highly recommended. 

The Clean
Anthology

Merge MRG-220

2xCD
£16.99


Insane, beautiful career-spanning set in a hard slipcase that gathers virtually everything from this legendary New Zealand underground group: this one has it all, running from the “Tally Ho!” debut through the Boodle Boodle Boodle and Great Sounds Great EPs in full, with raggedy 4-track recordings by Chris Knox of legendary material like “Getting Older”, “Anything Could Happen” and “Point That Thing Somewhere Else”. Then we have the great post-hiatus LPs, Vehicle, Modern Rock and Unknown Country as well as bonus tracks that appeared on 7”s and flexi-discs. This is the true motherlode, the blueprint for the NZ garage sound bled straight to tape and one of the great, original groups at the absolute apex of their form. Highly recommended.

The Slowmotions
Operation Anagram/Panic And Spoiler

540 Records 540-024

7” EP
£5.99


Crude destructo punk moves from Japan that marry west coast USA scorch, classic almost Gonn-scale Pebbles raunch and a scrappy UK punk vibe all filtered through the bloody-minded all excess style of the Japanese underground. A co-release with HG Fact, the label that brought us Corrupted.

Chalaque
Switching Center

Golden Lab Records ROWF-44

LP
£16.99


Blazing edition of only 100 copies ultra-crude basement scuzz summit from Nick Mitchell’s amazing UK power trio w/silkscreened sleeves: joined by Dylan Hughes on bass and Pascal Nichols (Part Wild Horses Mane On Both Sides) on drums, Mitchell leads the group through the kind of dissolving steel string heavens that would render a Siltbreeze-scale destructo re-think on the kind of primal ecstasies of Sonny Sharrock circa Black Women or even an unholy Groundhogs take on the opening moments of “All Tomorrow’s Parties” modelled on Harry Pussy’s demolition of Kraftwerk’s “Showroom Dummies”. Two sidelong tracks – “I’ve Got The Control Room At The Teatro Della Pergola” and “I’ve Got The Father Of The Modern Synthesizer” – both recorded direct to Mitchell’s phone (!) make it sound like they have the father of the modern synthesizer kidnapped and secreted in a windowless room while they set out to single-handedly destroy the concept of the non-guitar-based future of rock and roll. Some great smears of wah wah here and Mitchell’s tone has an even bluesier feel – even a touch of country honk - thanks to the no-count fidelity, at points spilling over into the drooling sheets of sound feel of a John Coltrane>John McLaughlin while Nichols gains a little of Denis Charles’s loose, pugilistic style. Hughes derails and redirects the music at will with sudden bass nudges and key changes that reflect on Motorhead as much as Fushitsusha, which almost makes this the insane Motorhead/Peter Brotzmann free music face-off that Bill Laswell attempted but failed to orchestrate back in the day. No one is doing more for the future of the guitar as sonic reducer in the UK than Nick Mitchell and this is another thrilling finger in the eye to tabletop ‘performance’. Make your move – very highly recommended!

Ego Summit
The Room Isn’t Big Enough

540 Records 540-036

LP
£18.99


ONE OF VOLCANIC TONGUE'S RECORDS OF THE YEAR 2013!

Cool exact replica reissue of this legendary Columbus, Ohio supergroup blow-out from 1997, featuring the late Jim Shepard (V3/Vertical Slit), Michael Hummel (Mike Rep & The Quotas), Tommy Jay, Ron House (Great Plains/Thomas Jefferson Slave Apartments) and Don Howland (Gibson Brothers/Bassholes). This massive slab pretty much laid down the blueprint for a whole new brand of idiosyncratically destroyed DIY punk/folk/blues with a bunch of hard thinking loners channelling a whole heap of verging-on-sociopathic alienation, cheap beer and as serious as your life poetry with all of the disembowelling formal fury and no-fi aesthetic of The Dead C, Half Japanese and Hasil Adkins. The individual voices are instantly recognisable. Shepard plays some scabrous no-fi blues with visions of apocalyptic American culture – Paul Simon & Edie Brickell’s wedding night, pictures of Zoot Horn Rollo – populating the kind of outlaw balladry of a Peter Laughner or Roky Erickson. Tommy Jay’s vocals are unmistakable and he catches that perfect basement psychedelic/rural feel that lit up his classic Tall Tales Of Trauma LP. Mike Rep brings the punk blasters, Ron House power crys over the whole damn deal and Howland comes over like a gut-bucket Iggy & The Stooges. That no one fucking bothered to follow the trails is our own dumb luck. The LP was later parodied/given tribute by the Ego Plummet supergroup, with members of Son Of Earth/Wooden Wand et al but this is the source. The ultimate document of the whole Columbus under-the-counter-culture scene. Highly recommended.

Justin Lieberman & C. Spencer Yeh
Object Lessons

What The…? Records 008

Picture Disc LP
£10.99


Collaboration between Spencer Yeh of Burning Star Core and artist Justin Lieberman, that Yeh describes as combining their love of “sound poetry, psychedelic rock, Japanese scum noise and Japanese psychedelic rock.” There’s also a more conceptual/absurdist cultural critique running through many of these tracks, using samples of voices, advertising inanities and surrealist interventions in a way that - at points - comes across as a more psychedelic Residents. The whole deal is beautifully packaged with the picture disc wrapped in a full-colour gatefold sleeve. Edition of 250 copies.

Michael Flower and Neil Campbell
Wharf Cat

Golden Lab Records RWOF-40

CD + 7” + Art Book
£16.99


Massive new album/single/art book from the heavy-meta UK underground duo of Michael Flower and Neil Campbell of drone legends Vibracathedral Orchestra in a hand-numbered edition of only 250 copies: the set is housed in a beautiful heavyweight 20 page screen printed book of ‘live drawings’ to the music by Manchester illustrator Lucy Jones. The music is amazing, dropping from torrential storms of barbed wire post-Velvets drone violence into amorphous ascensions and triumphal slow-motion synth blats as Campbell welds the Astral Social Club-approach to automating ecstasies to Flower’s metal ragas. This is the apex of the VU bootlegs sound advanced to an actual working strategy, taking off on the gridlocked levitating style of “Sweet Sister Ray” before re-formatting  fourth world ritual music as a conduit for Northern white boy punk via blistered fingers and the kind of technicolour string osmosis of a phantom Michio Kurihara/Manuel Gottsching duo. Indeed, the title would seem to imply the kinda DIY bedroom-isms brought to the point of almost Dead-scale revelation that the sonics propose, with the feel of the warp and woof of rock form slowly, teasingly, being rendered apart. A timely blat of post-MacLise amplifier worship from two of the hardest omming psychonauts to come out of the UK DIY psych/noise underground. A true labour of love, very highly recommended!

Wolf Eyes
Live Brooklyn

American Tapes AM-Tour

CD-R
£8.99


Staggering limited live album from the new Wolf Eyes trio: Wolf Eyes have been blowing minds on the bandstand of late and this is a vital document of the genre-gobbling ferocity of the new line-up, moving from almost VU-style ‘rock’ through zones of brainy AACM-style free jazz confusion, cultic, almost Silence-era monochord lurch and low-level cracked electronics. Still light years ahead of anyone else, very highly recommended!

Wolf Eyes
Live Germany

American Tapes AM-Tour

CD-R
£8.99


Staggering limited live album from the new Wolf Eyes trio: Wolf Eyes have been blowing minds on the bandstand of late and this is a vital document of the genre-gobbling ferocity of the new line-up with a fitting kraut basement vibe that could almost be Conrad Schnitzler and son giving way to incredible free jazz tectonics, heavy metal drones and a euphoric almost teenage garage band blow out. Too much, very highly recommended!

C. Spencer Yeh
Songs 2002

What The…? Records What-006

one-sided LP
£10.99


Unlikey compilation of early song-based pieces by C. Spencer Yeh of Burning Star Core et al in an edition of only 135 copies on his own private imprint. Guitar and vocals from 2001 that seem to bridge the whole Twisted Village/Northwest USA basement songwriter vibe with the contemporary Brooklyn DIY style. Pretty surreal, played this to a few people and no one could believe it was Spencer.

Jon Collin
Burnt Monday

Golden Lab Records ROWF-41

LP
£14.99


Limited live LP from UK avant guitarist Jon Collin in an edition of only 250 copies on 140g vinyl: recorded live in Albany, NY, on tour with Yek Koo, Chalaque and Zaimph:  Collin somehow welds the tactile aspect of Derek Bailey’s approach circa Aida with a form of Northern Blues that weirdly connects to North Japanese traditions, with an almost shamisen-style feel married to the kinda hovering string vortices more commonly associated with Tom Carter’s work in Charalambides. There are a few nods to Fahey too, especially the kind of melancholy dissonance of Days Have Gone By, but overall this is a pretty singular solo guitar record with an uncommon emotional intensity. 

Muura
Untitled

Wormwood Grasshopper Records WG-07

LP
£21.99


Private press LP in an edition of only 150 copies from Matt Earle of Breakdance The Dawn/Craft Bandits/xNoBBQx etc....with classy paste-on handmade sleeves. As with a lot of Matt’s work, it’s difficult to work out what he is actually doing here, though there are spurts of deformed F/X, alternately scratchy/ululating eternal drones, factory sounds ala Joe Jones, deformed, endlessly echoed vocals that sound like they’re being recorded from the bottom of a well... the second side is more recognisably based around amp destruction and guitar abuse with waves of crude feedback interrupted by massive dooms of guitar wrangling ala The Dead C at their most extended (think the coda from “Outside”). No one makes rock music that is quite as unrecognisably fucked up and satisfyingly alien as Matt Earle and this is another righteous fist up the wazoo of musical conservatives everywhere. Very highly recommended.

Sexual Assault Rifle
s/t

American Tapes AM-850

one-sided LP
£11.99


“Rolling early to a gig can be problematic or amazing or a weirdo combo of both. The boyz rolled WAAAY to early to gig in Richmond VA only to get chased outta a strange bar (and sure enuff: same thing happened at the gig later at a piece of shit bar we jammed), but sometimes, rolling early into a city can be mindwrecking:
In Philly, some years ago, we rolled in hyper early and found (and waited in the van until it opened) a killer mega-bowl complex and posted up for HOURS. Brew flowing, pins knockin, no one there but the crew. RULED. After a way too long stretch of horrible double digit bowling, I wandered outside and called my main homebox PUCK to see if there was anything to peep before we roll onward to the R N R business hours. Puck thought for a second and said:
"Ya'll already busted that cheesesteak local spot...so... if you feel up to something REALLY intense...naw. ..forget about it..."
"Naw man, f-that- what is it?"
"Well, I had a super heavy sess there, if you feel up to the internal challenge: its right by the bowling alley- hit up JONATHAN & SUZIE's PSYCHIC SHACK"
Blown away by the prospects, I hung up, put out my cigarette on the bottom of my Red Wings, straightened up my coat and walked two blocks to the spot.
After finding it easily enuff, I rolled into the lobby and was first shocked by the decor on the walls: intense blood-sex-soaked paintings of zombies and horrible gore all done with the perfection of a pro graphic artist. Whoa! What did PUCK roll me to? Is he getting me black for the time I spilled pink clothes dye on his fav jersey? This place is too strange. I rang the bell, signed in on the sheet, and waited in silence in an empty lobby staring at a painting of a zombie chewing an ear of a bikinied lady. Tired from the brew session at the bowling alley and arm aching from trying to get the ball speed cam up to 87 mph on the lanes, I dosed off.
Feeling a slight nudge on my elbow I perked up and met JONATHAN, a huge welcoming dude with long blond hair and a SWANS "MONEY" tour long sleeve shirt and followed him into the reading room. I was ah...psyched! ! I came into the small black room, shook hands with SUZIE, who was decked out a TG shirt, also long sleeve and was ready for the reading...
The magical couple stared at me for what seemed like 15 minutes and then nodded to each other and said, almost in unison:
"I see you are from Michigan, and therefore are probably uncomfortable with a very personal reading."
"Ah, right on." I said, thinking to myself that Puck had found a player a PERFECT spot.
After another stretch of awkward but easy silence Suzie said:
"Well, you have a gig tonight, how about a glimpse into the future, not you, but what the world be like in say 10,000 years?"
"Man, whoa, hit me up!!!!"
"First, put both yr finger tips into this small pot and close yr eyes. There will be no words spoken but you feel the future, good or bad..."
Feeling the energy for a new situation and also the coming excitement of telling Puck/the boys about my PSYCHIC SHACK experience, I rolled up my sleeve, and put my fingers into the warm oily magic liquid and sneaked off...
What happened next or rather what I experienced just can be put into INZANE words. The future was: INTENSE.... fully of evil machines grinding onward on terror business, clangs disappearing into space, huge planets full of strange sounds delay into the deep atmosphere. It was strange, horrible, and super ace all at the same time. Man was I stoked.
So I walked out with Suzie and Jonathan, mind blown/shown by the future, ready for the present and ready to thank the crub outta my main man PUCK for the psychic tip. As I was walking out the door, Suzie says,
"Wait I forgot something... Here is a box of 100 records that was the soundtrack to that evil future.... we had em pressed while you were out cold, live at that studio that did the CRUDE PA comps...."
"OMG- no way...the sounds...were. ..too much.... and on wax????"
Jonathan says, firmly: "Yeah man, and jamm it at any speed, I know yr crew digs that...slower the better...cant be slow enuff....." And then stared at the floor.......
"Well, we know NONE of yr crew will believe you so here is some proof to show em...."
So here it is. TRUE STORY, yo. THE FUTURE...10, 000 yrs from now.... SEXUAL ASSAULT RIFLE. ON WAX. Edition 100, handmade covers, numbered.” – John Olson.

1/3 Octave Band
Navigation By Light

Celebrate Psi Phenomenon

CD-R
£6.99


Deep space gloomp and wind-tortured drone-silence from the duo of Bill Wood - sometimes member of Campbell Kneale’s Birchville Cat Motel orchestra – and Jules Desmond. Huge lungs of void cut up with diamonds of percussion and lone metal tone in classic globe-gobbling style. Mastered by Campbell Kneale.

Campbell James Kneale
I

Don’t Fuck With Magic No Cat

CD-R
£9.99


Massive new two track album from Campbell James Kneale, the first release under his own name in an age for this reclusive NZ underground electro obsessive: I features some of the most convulsively beautiful rainbow electronics of a career that runs through such key contemporary underground groupings as Birchville Cat Motel, Black Boned Angel and Our Love Will Destroy The World not to mention numerous international collaborations. Self-released in a tiny run on Campbell’s own Don’t Fuck With Magic imprint, I takes the sky-curdling/bone-bending prehistoric electricity of the Hototogisu sides and adds thunderous rock tectonics and torrents of buzzsaw melodies, blurring the lines between everything-in-the-red Japanese psych, aggressively nuanced avant classical and amplifier-worshipping power electronics. The opening track sounds like it is broadcasting a thousand simultaneous melodies via a single constantly fluxing shortwave band with interstellar influences generating black holes while electronic wildlife strip the skin from the planets. The second track combines the kind of nightmare USA basement cassette-isms of the original Destroy All Monsters and adds what sounds like a throat full of chainsaws to the heart of the mix, generating the sound of the true hive mind via conduits for higher electronics. Intensely beautiful, overloaded to the point of paralysis, this is drone music from way beyond the long blank and comes very highly recommended!

Devin Flynn
Light Show Music For Joshua White & Gary Panter

Arbitrary Signs No Cat

LP
£21.99


Hand-numbered edition of only 300 copies art edition LP, pressed by Pete Nolan and documenting Devin Flynn’s amazing soundtrack to Joshua White & Gary Panter Light Shows: Joshua White was behind the Joshua Light Show that was such a part of the Fillmore East gigs and happenings while Panter is a uniquely talented artist, illustrator and comics creator. During Feb-Apr 2012 the pair came together to create a Lightshow at the Museum Of Contemporary Art in Detroit and they asked musician, animator and artist Devin Flynn to contribute a soundtrack. This is that soundtrack, and it’s a doozy: Flynn was given four one-word descriptions for each of the four pieces; Spacey, Rocky, Goofy and Holy and Flynn more than delivers the goods. ‘Spacey’ presents some remarkable drone workings that squeeze eye-popping wormholes of eternal music through blats of lurid pink electricity. ‘Rocky’ comes over like Trad Gras Och Stenar on a Twisted Village tip. ‘Goofy’ is a cartoon vision of almost Raymond Scott-meets Smegma-scale, with snippets from The Butthole Surfers, Spike Jones and Woody Allen, while the closing Holy aka “Buddha’s Hair” is a brain-omming trancer with synths and loops circling recordings of monks in ceremony at the Five Hundred Rakan Temple in Fudomae, Tokyo. A beautiful set, the whole deal is packaged with two-colour screened sleeves and a  four-page fold-out insert featuring art from Panter and an interview with the players. A doozy, highly recommended!

Offerings
s/t

Breakdance The Dawn BDTD-191

CD-R
£6.99


“Blasted fidelity and digital error” documenting the debut show by Australian underground supergroup Offerings: Offerings feature Matt Kennedy of Kitchen’s Floor, Nicola Morton of Club Sound Witches/Bad Intentions, Matt Earle of BDTD et al, Dusty Annistassiou and Samuel Miers. The sound is radically destroyed, with smears of digital glitch and tape grime obscuring a mass group ritual that would re-apply the kind of massed free-form firepower of an Airway or a Smegma to the kind of radically dilated DIY ritual of some kind of BUFMS satellite playing the first two Pussy Galore EPs in their entirety. Insane.

William Basinski
Melancholia

Temporary Residence TRR-236

LP
£22.99


Glorious vinyl upgrade of this key Basinski side that features some of his most lugubrious and affecting loop compositions on the 10th anniversary of its original release: no one sounds the dying of the light like Basinski and this set, complete with evocative latticework cover art by James Elaine, bundles some of his most otherworldly work. Using piano, saxophone, tape loops and the sound of his fridge (!) Basinski generates phantom swells and smudged orchestral nocturnes that speak in slow-spinning geometric shapes and that move in great sighs of tone. Some proto-Disintegration Loops tracks on here as well as the kind lost at sea piano soundings that defined classic sides like A Red Score In Tile. First time ever on vinyl, with 100% virgin wax, re-mastered sonics and a free download. Highly recommended. 

Jailbreak
Colour Them Gone

Nyali Recordings #7

CD-R
£7.99


World-beating free music duo of Heather Leigh on pedal steel and vocals and Chris Corsano on drums, following on in style from their Family Vineyard LP. Once more recorded and mixed by Andreas Jonsson the sound is as dazzling as their debut, with three tracks that move from ferocious post-Sharrock power blues through new zones of smoky, spectral tone. The opener comes straight out of The Rocker, with Heather’s bad motor scooter guitar burning asphalt while Corsano plays in four directions at a time, ducking air raid warnings with an amphetamine dexterity. Second track, “White Spider” is a whole new bomb, with the duo navigating a kind of psychedelic giallo atmosphere with Corsano making like an orchestra of Max Roachs while Heather plays spectral strings and floating tones that are straight out of the Nicolai/Morricone songbook. The closing “Freezing Shark” might be the most radical recording they’ve nailed to the floor, with an unaccompanied vocal from Heather driven straight through the wall by Corsano before the guitar explodes like a heavy metal Masayuki Takayanagi playing future blues. This is such a great, invigorating shot from the source and it confirms a whole buncha things that are important in underground music: energy, passion, actual playing, speed-of-thought improvisation. Who else comes close? Hand-numbered edition of 297 copies. Highest possible recommendation!

RASheed
s/t

Breakdance The Dawn BDTD-194

CD-R
£6.99


“Cool sidestep militant boogie jams” the label sez, and they ain’t wrong: Rasheed play what sounds like The Velvet Underground’s “Guess I’m Fallin’ In Love” as stomping monochord boogie, dredging Hooker N Heat style scorch for maximum power chord friction and positing the eternal riff as the keys to the goddamn kingdom. Think the whole Numbers Band/Sweet Kelley/Jessie Mae Hemphill continuum re-thunk w/post-BDTD aesthetics and set the controls for the heart of the jam.

Scrabbled
s/t

Breakdance The Dawn BDTD-189

CD-R
£6.99


Debut release for Scrabbled, an Australian underground group that features Conwae Burrell of Extrafoxx, Bek Moore of Clag, Jason Bright, Emily Wade and Mark Spinks: BDTD describe them as playing “quintessential Brisbane pop, girl/boy vocals, more Kitchen’s Floor than Go Betweens” and it’s true that they swing between frail, heartbroken post-Velvets drone pop and moments of scabrous, oiky DIY that give way to chiming minor chord paeans that could almost be the greatest hits of the singer-songwriter wing of Xpressway.

The Flexibles
Cities Of The Narrow Universe

Nyali Recordings #10

7” EP
£6.99


Edition of only 250 copies debut 7” from a new Glasgow based collapsed power trio featuring Richard Youngs, his son Sorley Youngs (six years old at the time of the recording of this EP) and Andrew Paine: safe to say you have never heard anything remotely like this. The A side, “Oh Volcanio” (do they mean us?!) features a brain-mangling monochord riff that comes straight out of the early Throbbing Gristle/Zyklon-B Zombie school while Richard repeats the title in thrilling arcs of Church Of England glory while Sorley makes with down-tuned/screwed vocal that come over like Darth Vader narrates early Whitehouse, rhythm boxes spit out clunky, off rhythms ala Tori Kudo/Jutok Kaneko and guitars and bass bleed pure electricity. It’s disturbing, hermetic, gloriously out and massively life affirming. The flip features two tracks that take the devolved rock/pop Industrial brut into new levels of early Cabaret Voltaire style electro lurch complete with more peaking/down-tuned vocals, dunting rhythms, occult whispers and OTT DIY art strategies reduced to new depths/peaks. Hands-down the single of the year, can’t see anything coming close on the format as it feels these three are birthing a whole new form of spontaneous rock music here. Rumours of a full-length forthcoming on No Fans; this is the goddamn source. Too much and highest possible recommendation!!

Christina Carter
Character Study

Drawing Room Records No Cat

LP + Chapbook
£14.99


Stunning new conceptual work, long time in the making, from spectral songwriter/guitarist Christina Carter of Charalambides: accompanied by a chapbook that crosses poetic musings with interrogative enquiry, Character Study puts the soul of the 21st century artist on trial across two side long meditations for electric slide guitar, tambourine, bells and dark, miles deep F/X. Hypnotically subdued, with an uncanny feel of being directed, Carter power moans and shivers her way through two ghostly blues madrigals that pin your heart to the floor, transposing the ‘weight’ of Patty Waters College Tour to the kind of parched soul terrain of a Jandek or even a Skip Spence. Stunning, late night soul poetry, highly recommended. 

Eleven Twenty-Nine
A Tithe To Hell

Drawing Room Records No Cat

LP
£14.99


Massively heavy Satanic downer psych vibes on this 2014 album from Tom Carter (Charalambides) and Marc Orleans (Sunburned Hand Of The Man) now an avant/country/rock trio bolstered by Michael Evans on drums: if you’ve caught any of the recent solo blats from Tom Carter since his return to health and playing live then you’ll know that that these days his guitar is fully set to shred and this is a stunning document of two string-thinkers working with maximal freedom and organic rhythms. Tracks marries Orleans great fingerpicking style – which comes from a similar place to Glenn Jones – to Tom’s wild west coast style. Later tracks explode the blueprint even further, marring a 90s underground feel for squeal with an immolating post-Sonny Sharrock aesthetic and a ton of thud and electricity.

Nord
NG Tapes

PCP Records PCPR-03

LP
£18.99


Major deluxe art-edition reissue w/numbered obi strip  of one of the most legendary/rare sides from this key Japanese underground group. Nord were active from 1981 to 1985 and are best known for the amazing self-titled Industrial/psychedelic LP they released on the massively collectable Pinakotheka label, the same imprint that were responsible for Keiji Haino’s debut LP Watashi Dake. Their sound takes in a bunch of classic klang – the austere minimalism of Conrad Schnitzler and Cluster, the murky, organic psych of Maurizio Bianchi, 20th century avant garde modes, Suicide, the Kenneth Anger soundtracks, Throbbing Gristle, the Broken Flag axis et al – while transmuting them all via that classic form-gobbling Japanese style. 1984’s NG Tapes was only available in a limited edition to people who bought Nord’s classic 1984 LP, LSD, and it features two massive sides of extended, repeating keyboard narcosis, heavenly wraiths of post-Industrial noise and pulsing, F/X saturated minimalist structures. There’s an extremely malevolent air to the proceedings, heightened by the relentlessly cold keyboard tones but it’s all illuminated with rainbows of microtone-dizzy electronics that build to slow, euphoric peaks that are hypnotic in their gravity. Think Keiji Haino plays the keyboard music of Maurizio Bianchi and you’re halfway there. Either way, this has long been one of the most desirable of Japanese underground obscurities and this stunning new art edition restores the original packaging, complete with beautiful wraparound Japanese obi strip. Truly, one of the totemic releases of the Japanese underground restored to vinyl. Highly recommended!

Chris Corsano & Bill Orcutt
The Raw And The Cooked

Palilalia PAL-011

LP
£14.99


ONE OF VOLCANIC TONGUE'S RECORDS OF THE YEAR 2013!

Much-anticipated private press duo set from guitarist Bill Orcutt and drummer Chris Corsano: Corsano has made no secret of his total fucking awe at the kinda jaw-dropping breakthroughs in the logistics of time and space made by drummer Adris Hoyos in the few short years that she ruled the planet in Harry Pussy so it was pretty much a given that when Orcutt got back to string wrestling that Corsano was gonna be shooting for the drum stool. And what a hook-up. This is the closest to the full-bore Harry Pussy sound that Orcutt has come since reactivating, with that wild hiccupping style where it feels like the pair are just riding waves of buckling electricity. Corsano’s playing isn’t quite as, uh, blunt as Hoyos and there’s a fluidity to his pugilism that allows Orcutt to get a little slippy, exchanging well-oiled power chord blats with fast zig-zagging runs. And it’s not all breakneck speed-of-thought exchange either, there are long sections of tactile low level tension and some blues moaning from Orcutt that would spook Guitar Roberts. Edition of 500 copies in a cool gatefold sleeve with a snap of our heroes in full flight, immediately sold out at source, very highly recommended!

Lowest Form
The Lowest Form

Low Recordings LOW-01

7" EP
£6.99


Staggering new hardcore/wipeout quartet rock moves from a new UK group that features Paco Mus, Luke Younger (Helm/Birds Of Delay) and Michael Kasparis (Apostille/Night School Records et al): four tracks that trade bloodied/throat-rending vocals with amphetamine shots of pure thug, classic d-beat rhythms and a feel for the dynamics of fuzz that is almost Japanese. Full length album due on Iron Lung, meantime file this firecracker next to Atentado, Glam, Isterismo, Rotten Masters and Barbed Wire Explosion In The Kingdom Of Atlantis. 

The Lowest Form
Negative Ecstasy

Iron Lung Records LUNGS-049

LP
£15.99


Fantastic debut full-length collection of thug-punk ecstasy from this London-based group that features Luke Younger (Alter/Helm et al), Michael Kasparis (Night School Records et al) and Paco Mus (La Vida Es Un Mus): Negative Ecstasy explodes outta the goddamn gate with a sound that is equal points Nanjo Asahito circa 1993, Dischord/SST-style freak and breakneck post-d-beat/hardcore mainline. The quartet jam on wall-destroying descending chord breaks like no one this side of Cleveland’s Pagans, marrying garage scorch to amphetamine rigour while puking heavy lung all over the excess. Gotta be a blast to see this live but this heavy duty vinyl outing makes for one of the most exhilarating rock-as-rock statements of the fucking year. Love it. 

Trash Monkeys
Pass Out

Smitten Recordings Smite-1

CD
£9.99


Warehouse find of this completely off-the-radar anthology from 2000 that compiled a buncha scorch laid down by this pre-Harry Pussy group formed by guitarists Bill Orcutt and Mark Feehan. Trash Monkeys’ sound comes out of hardcore but takes in a buncha disparate influences. It’s not hard to imagine them sharing a bill with Sun City Girls back in the day, with the kind of scabrous fourth-world punk of the early SCG sound combined with goofy vocal stylings ala Alan Bishop but the combination of wise-ass songwriterly smarts, amphetamine rock breakdowns and occasional acoustic mindbenders lines em alongside a buncha weirdos that range from the kinda zonked Portland punk that came under the influence of Smegma, Cleveland doofs like Pagans, even the kinda under-the-counter-culture post-Meltzer/Teenage Wasteland Angry Samoans. It’s particularly fascinating to hear Orcutt and Feehan power-wrestling their guitars into the kind of protean forms that would eventually give birth to the ultra-complex white heat sound of primo Harry Pussy. A fascinating document of the earliest experiments of two of the greatest six string thinkers of the modern age. Recommended. 

Monostadt 3
Experiment 8.2

Digestive Systems DIGSYS-002

LP
£11.99


Monostadt 3 were a trio that originally came out of Miami, Florida and that featured Adris Hoyos of Harry Pussy on drums, Priya Ray of Kreamy ‘Lectric Santa on violin and Robert Price of Kreamy ‘Lectric Santa on electronics. Evidence of their reign is thin on the ground with a sole release on Phil Todd’s Betley Welcomes Careful Drivers back in 1998. Experiment 8.2 is the long-coming follow-up, an LP that bundles an amazing recording of their final triumphal show from the early 2000s with a buncha fucked-up remixes of original meat. Monostadt 3 have a similar relation to free jazz as Harry Pussy although their sound is very different. The playing here roars and screams at the apex of high almost from start to finish and while at points it’s as unforgiving as early Merzbow there’s the feel of a group playing – of actual interplay – even when the speed of response seems beyond comprehension. There are moments when the strings and electronics cohere in flashing, amphetamine takes on the iconoclastic Americana of Sonny Sharrock with triumphal melodies shot down in flames while Hoyos outplays Denis Charles with time-killing stomps and gargantuan lop-sided tattoos that steamroll the whole deal into the kind of instant energy zone of Borbetomagus. But there’s a pro-rock logic here, a warped hands-on hardcore, that situates the group’s overall aesthetic somewhere within the realms of ‘free music’, albeit with a ton of primal hunch. The live set is absolutely dazzling, a singular display of improvisatory firepower that is euphoric in its ability to birth form from energy and as such it’s as transformative as all of the best fire music. The flip is a little more confusing, a bunch of remixes by Friends Forever, DJ Le Spam, Tibetan Beef Garden & Ladyfingers, Captain Ahab w/Brian Miller (of Deathbomb Arc) – but it still makes for an interesting listen, w/a bunch of mixes that expose the groups exo-skeleton in a way that breaks down the individual contributions and helps give you some kind of sense of just how the group worked and evolved. Hardcore VT followers will need little persuading to pick up anything involving Adris Hoyos but this is much more than a footnote to Harry Pussy, with the live set alone a stunning document of ferociously aformal high energy rock/roll/freedom at some kind of peak. Highly recommended!

Sarin Smoke
Vent

Mie Music MIE-013

LP
£15.99


New duo album from Tom Carter of Charalambides and Pete Swanson of Yellow Swans et al: this is a great melding of the two’s respective styles. Tom is sounding more and more like Sonny Sharrock circa Last Exit or even Tisziji Munoz these days, with a testifying melodic style that trades fuzz for feeling and here he tears through some iconoclastic melodies that scrape the lining off the goddamn sky over chugging shots of electricity. Swanson’s more into the kinda chord solos and devouring wah gravity that would trade Tokyo-isms for Dunedin-isms, and he combines fuzz-choked repeat chords that are straight out of the Lou Reed fakebook with spidery, single note ascensions and chugging infinite-repeat punk.

Andrew Chalk
Blue Eyes Of The March

Faraway Press 2006

CD
£14.99


Solo album from Andrew Chalk, self-released in an edition of 500 copies with stunning hard card screened sleeve. Sounding quite unlike anything Andrew has done before - yet in someway essentially ‘the same' - Blue Eyes Of The March is a heartbreaking, highly atmospheric setting for solo piano works, all drenched in a sad slow-motion fog of reverb and delay that makes them sound like the final corporeal form of dreams slowly spooling to their end. Two tracks, the first of which is so smothered in a reverie of F/X that it sounds more like a guitar with hundred mile strings than any piano. Absolutely beautiful, one of Andrew's most delicate, poetic and emotionally affecting works to date. Highest recommendation.

Andrew Chalk
Goldfall

Faraway Press 06

CD
£14.99


CD version of what was originally a limited edition vinyl only release on Andrew’s own label. Packaged in a stunning colour/textured sleeve with die-cut detail. Recordings follow-on from Andrew’s recent experiments in mutated piano works, here played by Vikki Jackman. Vikki plays single note runs that are as wayward and emotionally charged as anything from the fingers of Christina Carter but Andrew treats them with such a depth of muzzy effects that they sound like delicate soul-charges set in slow-motion from the most fragile electric guitar blues. At points it sounds like Keiji Haino at his most soul-barren, at others like Basinski’s sad chorales but for the most part this couldn’t be anyone else but Andrew Chalk and I can’t think of any other UK underground artist with such a distinctive, obsessive and disarmingly beautiful sound-vision. Highly recommended.

Andrew Chalk
The River That Flows Into The Sands

Faraway Press Faraway-2

CD
£14.99


Follow-up to Andrew’s gorgeous Shadows From The Album Skies, The River That Flows Into The Sands (originally available in a non-infinite edition of 100 copies as a CD-R) is a deluxe CD up-grade of one of his most gloriously bombed works to date. Scored for solo guitar, The River… features some of Chalk’s most source-specific soundwork to date, with slow-bowed strings exploding in blooms of motion-stop colour. Another beautiful report from the other side of the sun by one of the UK’s most intuitively-graceful folk spirits. For fans of Nijiumu, Basinski’s Disintegration Loops et al. Highly recommended. Printed sleeves featuring Chalk’s own artwork, every one is different.

Ark
Voyages

Guerssen Records Guess-107

LP
£22.99


Long-time coming reissue of this massively heavy Christian psych legend recorded in 1978 and originally pressed in an edition of only 100 copies: legendary private press/real people psych dealer and Endless Boogie frontman Paul Major lists this as one of his all-time Top Five releases and it fully delivers on the hype with heady organ-driven eschatological hymns that combine the exuberant dooms of D.R. Hooker with the almost obligatory nod to Doors-style psychodrama and greasy biker duds that are a little more, uh, cocaine than gasoline, it is the late 70s after all, giving the whole Xian genre a touch of glitterball that reflects on the wastoid loungeland genius of Jade Stone & Luv as much as raw basement classics like Frolk Haven et al. Great endless/wayward fuzz jams that get all the way out coupled with goofy/inspired ‘F/X’ like wind across deserts and air raid sirens that give the whole deal the kinda epic/creepy Biblical aspect of Father Yod & Ya Ho Wha at their most thunderous. Beautifully presented with all-new liners and a ton of previously unknown info from ‘Lama’ himself, Mr Patrick Lundborg. Highly recommended!

Glam
Veneno En Sus Flechas

La Vida Es Un Mus MUS-58

12” EP
£12.99


Another amazing slice of OTT Euro punk from La Vida Es Un Mus in the vein of the recent Isterismo/Atentado sides: like Atentado, Glam come from Spain, based in Barcelona and channel UK anarcho-punk ala Conflict/Crass through a blazing proto-Japanese everything-in-the-red aesthetic. Monster fuzz bass and assaultive drums combine with the kinda streamlined six-string violence that will have you lining up Slayer’s South Of Heaven next to Minor Threat’s “Guilty Of Being White” for spot comparisons. As usual it’s rendered in a superb hi-fi/tactile fuzz style, with throat-shredding vocals and the kinda Greg Ginn-isms that are truly ‘breakneck’. Heard their live form is pretty amazing too. Another winner from La Vida on massively heavy vinyl with an insert and beautifully designed sleeves by Oriol Roca Sanchez. Recommended. 

Itasca
Grace Riders On The Road

No Label No Cat

CD-R
£9.99


Gorgeous privately released acid folk reverie from the solo project of Kayla Cohen in a hand-numbered edition of 300 copies, mastered by Sean McCann: this is a heady slice of lysergic ladies of the canyon, with the feel of tropical microdots that dominated the These Trails and Linda Perhacs sides given a slightly more baroque dream-time feel. Kayla sings in a blasted, lonesome style that is somewhere between Kendra Smith, Judee Sill, Christina Carter and Collie Ryan and her music is thick with atmosphere and mystery. Some of the guitar stylings have the kind of courtly appeal of Current 93 circa Of Ruine Or Some Blazing Starre but when she gets into more complex vortices of steel strings she comes over like Robbie Basho circa Basho Sings, power-crying into the void with the kind of lost, lamenting style that has caused many a heart to quiver. This one came out of nowhere and knocked us sideways. Recommended. 

Raum
Event Of Your Leaving

Glass, House #003

LP
£23.99


Beautiful new duo set from Liz Harris (Grouper) and Jefre Cantu-Ledesma in a white vinyl edition of 500 copies: described as “a loose set of memories, dreams and imagines interpreting the visual work of Latvian artist Vija Celmins for piano, guitar, keyboard, voice and tapes”, Event Of Your Leaving takes the fuzzy/distant rural psychedelia of Flying Saucer Attack circa In Search Of Spaces and dilates it to the point of embryonic interstellar bliss, with the duo floating out on waves of slow-glissing solar winds while celestial melodies cohere in chains of smeared single notes. Some of the more euphoric passages have that glorious backwards guitar/tremolo wormhole appeal of Isn’t Anything-era My Bloody Valentine but with a smudged tonal palette that goes even deeper into nowhere. Beautifully packaged in a three panel fold-out cover that is an offset print and letter-pressed edition of artwork by Liz Harris, this one won’t be around for long! Limited supply, very highly recommended. 

Roy Montgomery
324 E. 13th Street #7

Yellow Electric GR-013

2xLP
£26.99


Limited double gatefold LP, privately issued by Liz Harris of Grouper on her own Yellow Electric imprint, that restores this classic collection from New Zealand Underground legend Roy Montgomery complete with new artwork and bonus unissued material: originally released by Drunken Fish on CD in 1999, 324 E. 13th Street #7 gathers stray single tracks from Montgomery’s solo career as well as bundling the sole 7” from The Shallows, the amazing “Suzanne Said/Trial By Separation”, and it makes for a revelatory listen. Montgomery almost single-handedly invented the NZ post-Velvets garage sound with the Pin Group, Dadamah, Dissolve et al and his solo work is a whole other stone altogether, torrential raga/drone guitar forms that seem broadcast through blizzards of emotional trauma from a lonely edge of the world in which bedsit dwellers did more than just recite Morrissey lyrics in front of the mirror. His conceptions combine all sorts of suggestive autobiographical detail that appear to be as much about space, action and applied sonic representations as they are about specific emotional/biographical detail. They were literate without ever resorting to camp poesy. And here they are, mostly drawn from four-track home recordings cut in New York City between 1994-95, with guest appearances from Bill Direen and Barbara Manning, with tracks that run from euphoric folk-punk Dovers-play-Joy Division implosions, classic one chord/still pulse Velvets-isms, downer alone-in-the-dark ballads and the kind of dark/distant/desolate heartbreak of the classic Pin Group recordings reconfigured for maximal bedsit drama. Truly, an epochal collection from one of the key NZ underground thinkers and stylists, beautifully restored by number one fan Liz Harris complete with gatefold sleeve and suave fold-out poster/insert. Very highly recommended!

Alice Coltrane
A Monastic Trio

Superior Viaduct SV-020

LP
£23.99


Much-needed reissue of this all-time cosmo drone/devotional jazz masterpiece: 1968’s A Monastic Trio was Alice Coltrane’s first date as a leader following the ascension of her husband John the year before. Featuring Jimmy Garrison on bass, Pharaoh Sanders on bass clarinet and Rashied Ali on drums, it represents Alice’s first vision of the cosmo drone potential of the new free music, building great arcs of classical mass into testaments to new time and space configurations, as well as a furthering of her husband’s  vision of a total music.
In the years following John Coltrane’s death Alice took his spiritual vision even further out, going beyond any generic notions of jazz or classical music to create an epic orchestral hybrid that combined celestial string arrangements with rippling harps, droning sitars and overdriven keyboards.
A track like “Lovely Sky Boat” with its waves of glissing harp and its outward-bound arc still sound unparalleled, as the rhythm section of Garrison and Ali ground Alice’s celestial string formations with some deep, free grooves. As well as all of the massive string work, which at points sounds like some of Ennio Morricone’s more fantastic soundtracks, there’s some smaller group pieces which run from void-swallowing raga works through what could almost be Moondog driving The Beach Boys’ Surf’s Up into outer space. Still, the staggering “Oceanic Beloved” remains the centrepiece, a five minute séance that works as a transmitter/receiver of the oracular voice of John Coltrane himself.
The Alice Coltrane corpus remains one of the central repositories of 20th Century Holy Music and this is its founding document – highly recommended! 

Ara
Pick Up And Run 2007

What The…? Records What-003

LP
£18.99


Edition of 177 copies on Spencer Yeh of Burning Star Core’s own label documenting two live performances from this group that features Sara O’Keefe (Handicapper Horns/Eyes & Arms Of Smoke) and Trevor Tremaine (Hair Police/Burning Star Core/Death Unit et al). The sound is primitive, laid-back/stoned free jazz and electronics, with O’Keefe blowing brief halos of folk tone that Tremaine echoes and mutates via subtle shots of electricity while the two of em raise revenant vocal tones high above the din. One of the nicest reconciliations of free/folk in a while. Packaged in individually unique screened/sprayed sleeves.

Bremen
Second Launch

Blackest Ever Black BLACKEST-003

2xLP
£18.99


Killer new double LP of hermetic Kraut-inspired prog/crank from two members of thug-metal minimalists Brainbombs: long, dunting organ/guitar/bass tracks that summon the kind of cold war basement mesmerism of a German Oak or an Archaia while boasting the kind of flashing/third eye blinding production style of the goddamn Marble Index. Indeed, imagine Spacemen 3 circa Sound Of Confusion given a Cale/Eno makeover in Berlin circa Low/The Passenger played by sociopathic teenage metallers strung out on boo and you have pretty much a fantasy VT spin. The keyboards are just the right side of the Swiss mountains while the moody piano-led tracks take “Janitor Of Lunacy” to the edge of Neu’75 w/creeping atmospherics and a Bonehead/psych aspect that is extremely invigorating. A stunning out-of-time set of zoned basement Kraut from a pair of heads that know everything there is to know about monochord confusion. Comes with a download. Recommended.

Convergence
Live

Beniffer Editions #129

LP
£16.99


Fascinating unearthing by Beniffer of a document of this short-lived experiment in free improvisation that came into being as an off-shoot of the Humber College Ensemble For Experimental Music in 1976: Convergence existed between 1976 and 1980, progressing from performing written pieces to total free improvisation under the directorship of Michael Horwood, the father of Bennifer label owner Jacob Horwood. The instrumental line-up is singular: percussion (including steel drums, a first in improvised music?), piano, trombone and trumpet and the group walk the line between free jazz, avant classical performance and weirdo communal freak with considerable aplomb. There are long periods of silence subtly bisected by cranky tones and elongated brass statements leading into heady percussive voids that touch on the NNCK/Embryo collaboration Embryonnck while giving the nod to some of the St Louis Black Artist Group experiments . Although they came out of an academic establishment there’s less of a pointillist Spontaneous Music Ensemble feel to the music and a little more garage band grit,. The steel drums really work to wonk the music, locating it in some kind of fourth world conservatory where it’s possible to get down as much as it is to take off. An excellent exhumation and another thrilling chapter in the secret history of 20th century free music. Recorded live at the Music Gallery September 18, 1979, screenprinted sleeves. Recommended. 

Crys Cole & Oren Ambarchi
Sonja Henies vei 31

Planam C.O.C.A.Planam

LP
£18.99


Edition of only 150 copies LP from the duo of Oren Ambarchi and Crys Cole: a very intimate, diaristic working, Sonja Henies vei 31 was recorded during a week-long sojurn in Norway and is centered around a duo performance embedded in field recordings, unknown sound, Industrial debris, faraway voices and assorted covert/domestic acts. Aspects of Christoph Heemann’s work, the kind of hallucinatory tape work of Astor/Matt Krefting/Graham Lambkin/Dan Melchior et al and the massively dilated workings of the Ichiyanagi/Kosugi/Ranta trio. Otherworldly tape alchemy generates a feel of composition in time while the atmosphere flits between remembrance, memorial and nostalgia for the future. A very intimate and personal working, very limited supply, very highly recommended!

Fadensonnen
Badlands

One Hand Records 002

LP
£21.99


Staggering psychedelic guitar excess in a gorgeous private press edition of only 150 hand-numbered copies from the same people who brought us last year’s ass-flattening Dark Sunny Land LP: Fadensonnen – aka the Vermont-based duo of ‘PD’ and ‘RD’ on guitars, drums, ‘machete harmonic’, ‘feral wah’ and ‘echo disaster leads’ – take the raggedy black psychedelic blueprint of IIIRD Gatekeeper-era Skullflower and the UK experiments in American guitar blitz of Ascension, JfK et al and marry it to an all-in-the-red, soloing-all-the-time wipeout style that would build eternal plateaus of ecstasy sound ala Rallizes Denudes circa France Demo Tapes. The pair trill on grandstanding lead guitar histrionics before deforming the whole thing with nightmarish bottom-end bass dunts that could almost be Yasushi Ozawa and moments of pure, clear glissing space that push amplifier worship to the point of The Savage Resurrection play Hell Is Now Love. The insert pic featuring Lou Reed flipping the bird is just so much gravy and makes this a mandatory purchase for serious VT heads. Seriously; this is the best guitar-as-guitar side of the year that doesn’t have some kind of relationship to Nick Mitchell or Heather Leigh, just wild six string excess at a newly deformed and bloody-minded apex of high. The packaging is stunning too, with a fold around b&w sleeve that comes with a thick hard card insert w/paste on photo and credits and a stickered bag. US guitar album of the year? Just ridiculously good, but at 150 copies you better make it quick! Very highly recommended. 

Flashback Repository
s/t

Olde English Spelling Bee OESB-30

LP
£10.99


Solo work from Sam Meringue, aka Explorers, Matrix Metals, half of Yoga et al. Flashback Repository is a crude Xerox-psych take on James Ferraro and Spencer Clark’s Hypnagogic memory-recovery process, positing a universal storehouse where all of the waste consciousness of humanity resides. It sounds like abandoned machinery heard through a fog of tape hiss and dreamtone, with keyboards spooling loops of wasteland texture beneath hallucinatory vocal forms and far-away melodies. The feel is closest, perhaps, to the early Skaters style, with peaking drones jump-cutting into keyboard carousels and flickering dreammachine actions, all rendered in a way that sounds as if its beaming across the decades, from the future as much as the past. A reissue of an obscure cassette from Meringue’s Outer Limits Collective, the LP comes with a stapled together booklet featuring ‘explanatory’ text. Edition of 425 copies. Highly recommended. 

Francis Dhomont
Birthdays

Beniffer Editions/Bennifer/Beniffer #130/#130/#130

One-Sided Picture Disc LP
£16.99


Stunning and stunningly presented picture disc that bundles recent work (2007-2010) from the French composer Francis Dhomont, his first appearance on vinyl since his 1982 LP on INA-GRM Sous Le Regard D’un Soleil Noir: Birthdays presents a series of radical, scalpel-sharp workings dedicated to fellow-thinkers like Bernard Parmegiani, Oscar Wiggli and Annette Vande Gorne. Dhomont uses haunting vocal manipulations and rigorously edited concrete sound to generate dense noise works and skittering drones, with wormhole electronics sunk deep in constantly shifting tonal environments. “Denature Parme sons” utilises the first sound of the first movement of Parmegiani’s 1975 work De Natura Sonorum, blurring it into a series of heavenly metallic resonances. “Le Flux De Sons” touches on similarly eviscerated sound-sources but with sudden bursts of digital violence that could almost be Coil. The 8 track tape piece “Forte-piano” expands these contrasts with anxious electronic activity cut-up with moments of serene deep-sea drone and flat-lined tone while “Quelques Eclats” combines inverted and smeared vocal fragments with an hallucinatory depth-of-scene and an uncanny atmosphere that again, inexplicably, touches on aspects of late period Coil. This is a revelatory set, a rare outing for this major composer, packaged with a one-sided LP screen printed on the flip and stored inside a plastic slipcase with additional commentary from the composer. Highly recommended!

Heitkotter
Black Orckid

Now Again Records NA-5110

2xLP
£26.99


Unbelievable deluxe double LP archival edition with eye-popping booklet and previously unheard tracks/paintings/info etc of this incredible garage/psych/basement/real people legend: recorded by a trio of musicians under the visionary guidance of Stephen David Heitkotter and originally issued only as a test pressing sometime in 1971, ‘Heitkotter’ (as it was titled when first reissued by Time-Lag) stands tall as the peerless burnout jammer of the counter cultural haze. Heitkotter had played in a garage band before drugs and the gradual onset of mental illness forced him out. The album was recorded sometime before 1971 with Heitkotter himself on guitar and vocals and two unknown players on bass and drums (though some people insist that Heitkotter plays everything on it). The vibe is deeply personal and outrageously fucked up, lining up alongside legendary postcards from the void like Nicodemus, Circuit Rider and Kenneth Higney. Heitkotter gets into these classic sleazoid rock moves, jamming 10 minute songs about hangin’ all night while smoking and stomping like an autistic Neil Haggerty while the rest of the group collapse around him, sometimes stopping playing altogether or launching into unrelated lines and melodies. Indeed, there’s a kind of Jandek feel to the group interaction, not to say the circumstances of its recording, that gives it an extremely dislocated atmosphere. Still, it’s much more than a simple document of an insane person jamming in the basement. Heitkotter somehow channels classic rock/roll outsider moves into a psychotronic trip through weirdo biker rock, sick avant-garage crunch and almost Beefheart-styled breakdown and at points they really do sound like early Royal Trux. Totally inspired, easily living up to the hype, this is one of the greatest and most inexplicable real-people private press bombs and this incredible edition pretty much seals it with – get this – five unbelievable, terminally raw demo cuts that have never been uncovered until now on top of a massive book with unseen snaps, the full story in lurid detail and reproductions of his incredible paintings. Can’t recommend this monster enough!

Ludo Mich
s/t

Beniffer Editions/Bennifer Editions No Cat/No Cat

Cassette
£6.99


Fabulous cassette from European artist/sound poet Ludo Mich. The A side pitches him with Japanese improviser Kiyoharu Kuwayama with Mich’s vocals – by turn disturbing and hilarious – given an eerie post-production job by Kuwayama complete with high ghostly reeds and thin veils of electronics. Over on the flip Mich performs “The Fluidium – Superstrings And Strings Travel Together To The Singularity Of The M-Dimension” at Gallery Dagmar De Pooter in Antwerp with his exuberant free vocals and extreme body soundings accompanied by Kris Wanders on sax and Maarten Tibos and W. Ravenveer on synths. One of Mich’s best. Comes in full-colour screened fold-out cigarette-box package. Edition of 100 copies. 

Reizen
s/t

No Label No Cat

CD-R
£10.99


Limited self-released 2nd album from psychedelic Japanese guitarist and PSF recording artist Atsushi Reizen: quite different from his more Andrew Chalk inspired work for PSF, this album is based around very minimal soundings of an electric guitar. There are aspects of Keith Rowe’s work circa It Had Been An Ordinary Enough Day In Pueblo, Colorado as well as David Jackman’s eerie metal soundings with Organum. Reizen makes very small scraping, bowing and plucking interventions on the guitar and repeats them to generate a haunting, choral form of metal machine music, with little halos of sound generating discrete epiphanies. Very beautiful and an inspired re-sounding of the properties of the electric guitar. Comes in an elaborate art card package with the disc sealed to a series of coloured papers. Very limited run.

Shirley Collins
America Over The Water

SAF PBK

Paperback Book
£9.99


Paperback version of Shirley Collins' poignant re-telling of growing up in the south of England and her trip with then-partner Alan Lomax on a sound-collecting run through the American south in 1959, meeting and recording musicians like Mississippi Fred McDowell and James Carter. Highly recommended.

Three Legged Race
Persuasive Barrier

Spectrum Spools SP-022

LP
£18.99


Debut full-length album, recorded over five years, for Robert Beatty of Hair Police’s solo project: inchoate cut-up vocals and fucked-up beats give Persuasive Barrier a dark, Throbbing Gristle/Psychic TV/Coil vibe and the electronics have a heady ‘automating’ appeal. The drones are microtone thick and have a devotional aspect to them that comes over like some of the more gothic Krautrock but it’s all cut up with a deeply illogic style, jump-cutting from transcendent tone ascensions to minimal beats and deconstructed speech that gives it the feel of an hallucinatory travelogue through surreal, imaginary landscapes. Think Minimal Man re-worked by Steven Stapleton w/Pan Sonic and you’re still nowhere close. 

Tomutonttu
s/t

Bennifer Editions/Beniffer Editions No Cat/No Cat

One-Sided Picture Disc LP
£12.99


Edition of 300 copies picture disc with art on the flip presenting one of Jan Anderzen’s most psychedelic and hypnotically rocking sides. This self-titled collection, originally commissioned by the Aanen Lumo Festival for New Sounds, starts off like an early Sonic Boom side with fast tremolo guitar and padding motorik rhythms beneath hysterically modulated and extended vocals eventually locking-down into a fantastic eternal groove. But soon the whole thing devolves into what sounds like a chopped and screwed Arkestra tackling “The Satellites Are Spinning”. Obsessively constructed psychedelic electronica, set to stun. Recommended. 

Fred McDowell
s/t

Mississippi Records MR-047

LP
£13.99


Cool reissue of a bunch of key sessions from ‘Mississippi’ Fred McDowell, who was discovered in 1959 by Alan Lomax and Shirley Collins. This album was originally issued under the name Fred McDowell – Volume 2 on Arhoolie and features material drawn from four sessions across 1964-65. Track listing is choice, with “I Ain’t Gonna Be Bad No More”, “Where Were You”, “I Looked At The Sun”, “Do My Baby Ever Think Of Me”, “Brooks Run Into The Ocean”, “Bull Dog Blues”, “I Walked All The Way From East St. Louis”, “Red Cross Store Blues”, “Gravel Road Blues”, “Frisco Lines”, “You Got To Move”, “I Wish I Was In Heaven Sittin’ Down”.  

Orphan Fairytale
My Favourite Fairytale

Aguirre Records Zorn-10

2xLP
£21.99


Gorgeous double LP that compiles a bunch of off-the-radar releases from Eva Van Deuren aka Orphan Fairytale: My Favourite Fairytale sinks the gonzoid approach of earlier releases in favour of a more elegiac, stately, though still beautifully fucked series of tone hymns. Eva still makes use of toy instruments and primitive loops but there's a weight to the material that makes it feel even more personal. Gathering releases from Taped Sounds, Rampart, Blackest Rainbow and an obscure self-released CD-R, the set spans the years 2008-2011. The set runs from thin, glassy tones forming into detailed helix patterns in a way that evokes the more minimal Mirror sides as well as the sound sculptures of Harry Bertoia through lilting/falling keyboard patterns which in turn parts to reveal the kinda hallucinatory tonal percussive weave you might associate with Spencer Clark's work. The side-long “Neverending Waves” is exactly that, a mesmerising/haunting keyboard choral that laps at the gates of heaven like nothing this side of James Ferraro’s epic Marble Surf. Huge fans of Eva here at VT and this may just be the apex of her catalogue to date, personal, weird, gently seductive, if anyone ever re-makes the soundtrack to Valerie & Her Week Of Wonders let it be Eva, very highly recommended! 

Greg Kelley & Jason Lescalleet
Conversations

Glistening Examples GLEX-1402

CD
£12.99


Massively heavy two-header from contemporary soundists Greg Kelley and Jason Lescalleet on Lescalleet's own label: here Kelley uses Realistic Concertmate MG-1, Roland RE-20 Space Echo, Electro-Harmonix Frequency Analyzer and trumpet, Lescalleet uses tapes, turntables, amplified objects and Dell XPS. The sound is massively dense, slow-moving, with textures of metal and rust compacted into massive, juddering heavy meta drones that combine the phantom creepy-crawling feel of a Folke Rabe with the eroto-Industrial body stimulation of classic Neubauten and the disorientating deep/multidimensional production style of a Peter 'Sleazy' Christopherson. “La Conversacion” is particularly dazzling, with the kind of wailing, speaking in tongues trumpet work of a Donald Ayler mutated to the point of cries of pain intercepted by omming muezzin calls and the kind of fluttering/abysmal drone work that sounds like a swarm of flies buzzing in the heart of hollow planets. Lescalleet's recent collaboration with Graham Lambkin was one of the highlights of his catalogue and this stands shoulder to shoulder with it while obliterating alla the personal detail of Photographs in favour of obsessively annihilating electricity. Totally fantastic and highly recommended.

Jack Ruby
s/t

Feeding Tube Records FTR-105

LP
£20.99


First vinyl volume of this massive archival uncovering of the collected recorded works of this central, elusive No Wave group active on the New York underground in the mid-to-late 70s: Jack Ruby made only five studio recordings and an equal number of gigs in the space of 1973-1977. Formed by vocalist Robin Hall, guitarist Chris Gray, multi-instrumentalist Randy Cohen, classically-trained viola player Boris (also known as Boris Policeband), and later joined by bassist George Scott (James Chance And The Contortions/8-Eyed Spy/John Cale) and new vocalist Stephen Barth, the group first cut a pair of demos in a Times Square recording studio in 1974 – “Hit And Run” and “Mayonnaise”-  that sounded like “some unholy blend of Raw Power-era Stooges, Velvet Underground and J.G. Ballard's Crash” while factoring in wild avant influences like amplified Cale-scale viola and sequenced beats on a Serge synth. Three more radical avant rock refusals were cut in a single session in May 1974 – “Bored Stiff," "Bad Teeth," and "Sleep Cure" - with Cohen patching musique concrète sounds through the Serge, while guitar and vocals build to the kind of non-musicianly hysteria of Jandek circa “Painted My Teeth”. This crucial uncovering makes a convincing case for Jack Ruby as one of the more feral of underground NYC No Wave groups, as crude as Jandek or Teenage Jesus and as sophisticated in their application of avant theory as The Velvet Underground. Edition of 600 copies with download. A staggering, historically potent set, highly recommended!

Joe McPhee
Nation Time

Bo'Weavil Recordings Weavil-52

LP
£18.99


Edition of 500 copies reissue of this free jazz masterpiece from 1970: Nation Time is the album that really established McPhee as one of the truly protean horn thinkers of the revolutionary years of free jazz, combining massive shots of fully-electrified R n B and almost No Wave style funk with wild, radical black jazz testifying. Mike Kull’s electric piano – as well as the addition of organ and electric guitar on some tracks – takes the music someplace else entirely, with a wild, testifying style and demands for freedom now riding on waves of breakout brass and hard-jamming bass grooves. CjR was also one of the earliest artists-run private press free jazz imprints and the restoration of alla its earliest releases is a major public service. Highly recommended.

Joe McPhee
Undergroud Railroad

Bo'Weavil Recordings Weavil-51

LP
£18.99


Edition of 500 copies reissue of this free jazz masterpiece from 1969: McPhee is a versatile multi-instrumentalist who has forged his own circuitous route through the jazz underground since his blazing debut on Clifford Thornton’s Freedom & Unity back in 1967.  In recent years his profile has been higher than ever thanks to fruitful associations with younger players like Chris Corsano, Hamid Drake and Mats Gustafsson as well as with Peter Brotzmann but most of his early recordings, released on his own CjR imprint, have long been unavailable.  Underground Railroad was the first release under his own name and it’s a primitive whirlwind of a session, with drummer Ernest Bostic sounding like a fleet of steam rollers behind McPhee’s catastrophically powerful horn.  This is a cataclysmic recording, one that lurches between primitive field holler force, walls of tribal percussion and hurricanes of weeping brass. CjR was also one of the earliest artists-run private press free jazz imprints and the restoration of alla its earliest releases is a major public service. Highly recommended. 

oMMM
Parallel Lines Converge

Alien Jams No Cat

LP
£13.99


Debut release in an edition of 300 copies from this label run by Chloe Frieda of the Alien Jams radio show, dedicated to past>future electronic experimentation: oMMM is the brainchild of Edmund Davie and uses primitive electronics, four-track cassette recorder, tape work, synth and drum machine to generate the kind of lonely lunar satellites that combine the feel of early Asmus Tietchens with classic, spooked bedroom radiophonia and an eerie occult/galactic atmosphere that is somewhere between The Conet Project and Joe Meek’s I Hear A New World. Tracks read like NASA interceptions of punk primitive alien technologies tone-dialling 20th century receptors with squiggles of shortwave, early Industrial wasp soundings, brain-blotting loops and clunky hermetic drones underlining the whole scientific bedroom hobbyist appeal. Unmusical and mind-bendingly crude, this makes for the perfect combination of eccentric analogue experimentation and cold, austere Kluster/Conrad Schnitzler style dead dark space. A great debut, highly recommended.

Pascal
Nihilist Chakai House

Discombobulate BOB-003

LP
£13.99


Brand new solo LP from Pascal Nichols of Part Wild Horses Mane On Both Sides in an edition of only 250 copies: all solo percussion here but never sounding really like a ‘drum’ album per se, Nichols combines the kind of complex time/space equations of the early Roscoe Mitchell albums with an automatic steely machine-like vibe that comes over as somewhat akin to the massed toy orchestras of Fluxus freak Joe Jones and some beautiful, padding late night tone poetry that could almost be the late Phillip Wilson. PWHMOBS always have a heady ritual vibe to their performances and Nihilist Chakai House extends this to almost bloody-minded ends, with single metronomic statements coming over like a flat-lined Klaus Dinger project while some of the percussion miniature have all of the bent song quality of The Red Krayola circa God Bless The Red Krayola And All Who Sail In It. Throw in some almost Harry Bertoia-scale bowed metal soundings and sub-bass hypnotics and you have a goddamn tour-de-force by a guy that can make just about anything sing. Beautifully presented on clear vinyl and with a full colour insert, this is highly recommended. 

The Velvet Underground
Chelsea Girls

No Label No Cat

one-sided LP
£18.99


Glorious hand-numbered/handmade LP in an edition of only 300 copies that issues The Velvet Underground’s legendary soundtrack to Andy Warhol’s 1966 Chelsea Girls movie on vinyl for the first time: The Velvet Underground soundtracked parts of Chelsea Girls, specifically the section known as “The Gerard Malanga Story”, and it’s a remarkable piece of music. This is the holy sound of The Velvets at a ghostly, non-corporeal peak, playing in a loose free style that combines the black-hearted drone of the first LP with the feel of sad, melodic pop music denuded of anything but endless denouement. Lou’s guitar sounds heavenly chimes around barely stated phantom chord patterns, almost like a Disintegrations Loops-style re-think of fragments from “Sunday Morning” or “All Tomorrow’s Parties”, before sending them floating out into deep space. In many ways this is closest to a blueprint for the way contemporary underground groups like Vibracathedral Orchestra mined the Velvets sound for the keys to the horizon and here it feels like Reed, Cale, Morrison and Tucker are truly riding all the way into the sun, flashing on transmuted moments of psych rock, revved up R n B and classic American pop while extrapolating them into endlessly unfolding paeans to a long-gone New York moment. Impossibly beautiful, melancholy, otherworldly, just too much. Classily packaged in all hand-made/paste-on sleeves and pressed on coloured wax, you know the deal. This shit is gonna fly out, so make your move: this is the real holy sound of American pipe. Very highly recommended. 

Aaron Dilloway
The Beauty Bath

Rockatansky Records RR-011

LP
£19.99


Edition of only 250 copies solo album from Aaron Dilloway of Wolf Eyes et al, every copy comes with an original flier from the recent Dilloway/Hanson 20th anniversary ‘Archive’ exhibition that took place in Japan: this is an amazing LP, with low-level battlefield tectonics and the sound of smeared and tortured magnetic tape coming over like a rusty, Industrial scale take on classic 20th century minimalism. Some of Dilloway’s most barbarously vacated drone work here, with intense low-level fireworks reduced to inchoate shadow plays and rolling, planetary scale hypnotics. Then there are moments of glissing, echoing metal tones coming out of silence, suddenly morphing into sad feedback chorales ala Eliane Radigue’s early workings but with a crude, lonely aspect that is extremely affecting. One of Dilloway’s most personally expressive tone works with intensely sad feedback drones circling wraiths of clanking magnetic tape. Recommended. 

Fille Qui Mousse
Trixie Stapleton 291

Bichon Records 005

LP
£18.99


Vinyl reissue of this all-time-classic classic Nurse With Wound list album, Fille Qui Mousse's ("Girl With Froth") Trixie Stapleton 291 aka Sa Taire Pour Une Femme Trop Belle, recorded in France in 1972 and issued in '73 but only as a test pressing in a run of circa 50 copies on Futura. Often described as the French Faust, Fille Qui Mousse combine psych rock, automating collage, noise, sound poetry and classic heavy riff action. It’s easy to see how Stapleton and Fothergill would have been blown away by the very existence of this thing; consummate weirdo genre demolition with a liberated approach to form that explodes extended rock moves with jagged tape edits, eerie little girl vocals over distant urban sound environments, epic free jazz outings and that classic what-the-fuck Futura edge. A major influence on Nurse With Wound and one of the truly great off-the-radar European underground sides: "Straight off, we plunge into that Faust structure...riffing with a psychedelic bent, hints of Gong too...we move into bizarrely constructed patterns of percussive sound and chopped-up rock music, and just as a musical focus takes shape it disappears. A poem, recited by a girl, over an urban landscape populated by numerous barking dogs then gives way to an intensely strange mangled web of sound that's almost brain numbing. And, yet more in the way of strangeness is a piano based piece that recalls some of Roger Doyle's early experiments. The only actual song has the most bizarre lyrics (in English) and is followed by an excursion in distorted and processed guitar. Next is where the folk music comes in, but even with gypsy violin FQM's interpretation of folk is strange and twisted. Finally, we return to the psychedelic jamming that opened the album, but with a jazzier edge, ending the album perfectly." --Audion. Highly recommended!

Idea Fire Company
The Island Of Taste

Swill Radio 026

LP
£14.99


Excellent album from Scott Foust and co that feels more barren and emotionally adrift than the previous two entries, with the bulk of the racks based around piano and tape elegies that seem to exist somewhere between Neu ’75 and Henning Christiansen circa Abschiedssymphonie. Very beautiful. “IFCO follows up our conspicuously ignored Stranded LP with an equally, if not more so, strong statement. Core members Karla Borecky and Scott Foust are joined by an all star cast: Meara O’Reilly and Jessi Leigh Swenson from Stranded, as well as Frans de Waard, Graham Lambkin, and Dr. Timothy Shortell. The Island Of Taste depicts a manoeuvre in which the beauty becomes more beautiful as the desperation becomes more desperate. A stark and romantic mission to the rocks. Lavish package featuring an excellent Karla cover painting as well as a booklet presented as a set of 5 x 7 art cards with another Karla painting, band photos, and an essay of mine. Perhaps The Island Of Taste is the first LP to make explicit a certain nostalgia for itself. Along with The Shadow Ring’s Swill Radio trilogy (Lighthouse, Lindus, I’m Some Songs), I’d put IFCO’s trilogy (Anti-Natural, Stranded, The Island Of Taste) up against anyone’s three LP run. We’ll see…” – Scott Foust.

Juppala Kaapio
Alpen Ocean

Omnimemento OM-09

LP
£16.99


Mesmeric new long-form drone work from some of the goddamn masters of the form, Juppala Kaapio aka Japanese cosmonaut Hitoshi Kojo (Kodama et al) and Carole Kojo, reputedly their final working: this is a set to swoon by, just heart-breakingly beautiful violin fragments that sound like Henry Flynt teasing moon’s milk from a cluster of softly beating stars re-worked for maximum far-off swoon appeal by William Basinski. Going beyond even Pelt’s vision of hillbilly minimalism, Alpen Ocean floats all the way out through skies full of bird call, slow-motion sunrises, indecipherable unknown tongues and what Kojo terms “cosmopolitan ethnic music”. Fans of Coil circa Queens Of The Circulating Library, Taj Mahal Travellers, Axolotl’s Telesma et al pretty much need to hear this, the perfect long –form environmental drone vision and one of the deepest head spins of the year. Edition of only 250 copies, heavy duty vinyl, die-cut sleeves, very highly recommended!

Dylan Nyoukis/Fleshtone Aura
Split

Bennifer Editions #132

LP
£18.99


Split LP in an edition of 300 copies on coloured vinyl and with hand screened sleeves: classic old school working from Nyoukis here, with a wild collage of tape, violin, vocal, guitar, Dictaphone and objects that moves from eerie lunar repeat-tone hypnotism through classic 20th century splatter punk, plunderphonia and F/X heavy ectoplasmic drones. On the flip, Fleshtone Aura is the new nome-de-doof of Gastric Female Reflex founder and visual artist Andrew Zukerman and his side is a full-on widescreen stereophonic rendering of “Pierre Henry without the inheritance + a massive set of concrete balls”, with stately droning electronics giving way to radically spliced and repeating French dialogue through goofy almost LAFMS-style tape violence. A beautiful pairing, recommended.