Friday, April 27, 2012

Grasshopper - The Day America Forgot (Sicsic026)

thanks to Green Greener for the Madman. peace to you, bro :)

The sun looks pretty appealing in the above image.  Well, absorb those nourishing rays, and for good measure, take a big rip from the Madman.  We are going on a pilgrimage with Jesse and Josh, and I don't know if we're ever going to return in this form. 

Jesse DeRosa and Josh Millrod are the members of Grasshopper, a duo creating experimental compositions by utilizing a mix of trumpets, an electric valve instrument, and electronics.  After reading Rachel Evans’OMG Vinyl 2011 retrospective, which featured Grasshopper's blazer, Goodnight Sweet Prince, I was hooked.  This is some heavy shiit.  These guys are purveyors of sinister, heaving drones that catch you from behind.  So lock the doors, blaze up and crank this shiit to the max.  The Day America Forgot was recorded live and catches these guys in fine form.

"Blunt Force" begins side A as if some type of insidious agent has pervaded your veins, gradually gaining momentum, with the objective of taking complete control of the senses.  Elongated tones stretch over the body.  The tape begins to heave and a robust drone takes shape with an extra sustained tone in the mix.  And then the trumpet enters solemnly, progressively becoming louder.  The contrast between the trumpet and the tones emitted from the electronics is beautiful - this is some epic shiit.  The tape begins to mirror the start of the track, heaving and sounding like it's ready to disintegrate.  At the end of the track, the mix is barely audible, except for a slow moving silver din.

"Beermaggedon" starts with an ominous hiss, combined with menacing tones.  Soon enough the trumpet – echoing, tones oscillating - provides a warning.  All of this is combined with a rumbling drone, an amalgamation of sharp electronic sounds that spew forth mixing with solemn emissions from the trumpet.  These guys have a proclivity for making dread feel enjoyable. The sound consumes the speakers and the barely controlled energy spews forth until the track dissipates

The flipside is comprised of one track, "Recreational Liposuction".  It commences gently with a slight, shifting buzz and a few looped notes.  Suddenly, a shift in sound occurs.  The mix becomes gradually heavy and the trumpet makes itself noticed, initially with plaintive tones that become louder - the sounds from the beginning of the track are still running strong, at this juncture.  This is the point where a beautiful synthesis occurs.  These guys play off each other extremely well.  The guttural squeals of the trumpet are matched by the appropriate piercing electronic sounds.  The mix becomes heavy with electronics.  Isolated in time, it is a frightening, menacing sound.  Horror, unease, dread - one notices the tension produced by the visceral feeling of the music.  Everything is all fucked up, squalid, yet alluring.  The keyboard plays notes that hover, bleak notes and the trumpet is ascending, playing for its life.  In the last few minutes, a transition occurs.  No overpowering electronics, but solemn trumpet sounds.  It feels like an elegy…definite blue tones…the joke is up and the fucking show is over, unequivocally.  A conflagration is spreading quickly, swallowing the ostentatious private subdivisions that spread over this once fertile land like a disease.  The land has been raped and pillaged of its beauty.  The insular, for once, appear to recognize their folly.  The giant, once proud, receding into ignominy, battling to the final breath, yet ultimately powerless as the sound dissipates into a vacuum.  It engenders a new beginning and that path is glowing with the sounds that Jesse and Josh emit.

One thing is certain: artists bring their best game to Sicsic.  When it comes to sheer quality and quantity of releases, nobody does it better than Sicsic.  Johannes Schebler provides the vivid, gorgeous artwork for these pro-printed, hand numbered treasures.  After one emerges from the haze left by the destruction wrought by these guys, the next thing to do is order immediately from Discriminate or Sicsic.  Once you have purchased, head over to my friend's wonderful blog, Guide Me Little Tape, to experience a well-written review about another gem in this batch, Wolf Fluorescence.

Peace, my friends

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Kief with Ernesto González

Welcome to Kief, a section on Honest Bag that contains short interviews with some of my favorite artists!  I have come to adopt the notion that a little kief on your bud goes a long way.   These short interviews, in most cases, will be posted a few weeks prior to a new release – this functions as the kief and I’m hopeful that the readers will buy the bud (record) when it is released.

Shit man, I cannot think of a better way to commence this section than by chatting with one of my favorite artists, Ernesto González, of Bear Bones, Lay Low (BBLL) and Sylvester Anfang II (SAII).  His eagerly anticipated lp on Kraak, El Telonero, will be released in May of 2012.  Please support Ernesto and the venerable Kraak label by buying this record.

thanks to Generic Collective for sharing the kief :)

      Your last three cassettes on Cabin Floor Esoterica, Sloow and Sicsic are beautiful and contain synth. Soon you will be releasing an lp on Kraak, El Telonero. Can you talk about the process of making El Telonero and the instruments/devices used on the recording? Also, I am an advocate of the def sound! For the readers that do not know about def sounds, can you talk about its importance to you?

The new LP is made up of songs I’ve recorded for the last 2 years. Kraak asked me ages ago to do a follow-up for the “Vallée de Dith” LP and I’ve been taking my time for it. I wanted to make a more song orientated record, so whenever I would record something that would fit, I’d put it aside and work on some other stuff until I came up with something else that was along the same lines. All the songs started off as improvisations on some instrument and then I put melodies and crap over it. Sometimes, I’d think of parts I’d like to put in a song and include that in the improvisation. I’ve been making songs like this since I was 17/18 but for some reason never wanted to associate it with BBLL. The main instrument is my roland sh-1000 synth but I also use a lot of other stuff like drum machines, organs, percussion, tapes and sampler.

Def means stoned in French. I like making and listening to music that makes you feel more than it makes you think. Of course it’s always cool to read about the intellectual side of stuff, but as far as listening goes, if it doesn’t make me feel like floating or it doesn’t give me a punch in my gut, then fuck it, I probably won’t be into it. This has a lot to do with the way it sounds.


     Also, you are a member of Sylvester Anfang II. The most recent release on Great Pop Supplement, Perzische Tapijten, is the best lp I have listened to this year. It sounds great and a little different than the records on Blackest Rainbow and Aurora Borealis. What was it like to make this record? Also, can you talk about the instruments that you played on this record?

Glad to hear you dug it, I think it’s also my favorite SAII release. Making that record was exactly like making all the other records: jamming. We don’t really have some sort of plan when it comes to making records, we just hang out sausagefest style and record all day. After months of putting shit to tape, we put together the releases we have to do. That’s how it’s pretty much been so far. The recordings on Tapijten were actually made at different times, in several locations like Glen’s (Hellvete) parent’s attic, Tommy’s sister’s ex-husbands futuristic farm and the Kraak offices. On this record I played keyboards, synth, guitar and baby sitar (peace to Etherik).

    From your Foxy D. interviews, I know that you like to collect records. What are you listening to lately?

Hehehe well, I think I was talking out of my ass in that interview (like now probably). I’m just a record buyer, collecting implies serious discipline and really going for it when it comes to getting shit. Anyways, lately I’ve been spinning these recordings from Bali and Java that CBS put out in the 70’s on their “Musiques et Traditions du Monde” series. Of course there’s shit tons of great recordings of this music, but I really like these LP’s not only because the jams are particularly kick ass but also because the dudes putting together the actual object had a good eye for sleeves, adding huge pictures for the front and back covers as well as gatefolds with even more pics and info. They’re quite easy to find and right now I’m looking for the one on Indian music. These past few days I’ve been listening non-stop to Juicy J’s Rubba Band Business 1 & 2 mixtapes and I’ve realized that he’s one of my favorite MC’s, the fucking coolest voice when it comes to talking about sex, murder, money, weed and codeine. Oh yeah can’t forget the Spiral Joy Band 3xtape box has been on heavy rotation, awesome b-day gift from big brother Glen. Right now I’m listening to the Orkustra.
     2012 has been a fruitful year for BBLL and Sylvester Anfang II. What does the future hold?

As far as SAII goes, we have enough stuff for a new album, but don’t know on which label and when it’ll come out, if it ever happens. Of course, some tapes will pop up as well, at least one on SicSic (peace to Daniel and Holger). Glen and I have an acoustic/electric drone project called Steenkiste & Gonzalez and we should have a couple of tapes coming out real soon, the first will be on Eiderdown Records from the US (peace to Adam, coolest internet buddy). It’s based mostly around harmonium and violin, taking cues from minimalism with balls from La Monte to Pelt. We still have a lot to learn, though. I’m also jamming with Shazzula under the name Sayona and a tape and a track on a compilation should’ve come out already, don’t know how that’s going. As for BBLL, there’s a tape coming out in a couple of days on Young Girls Records from Liège (peace to Yvesito) of recordings I made during vacations in Venezuela and Spain. It’s pretty raw and done using non-multitrack overdubbing and shit. Also got a track coming on a compilation on Econore . Fuck it, I think that’s it, hope to tour as well!

Ernesto, congratulations on your new lp and thank you for being so generous with your time. Peace to you, bro :)

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Thoughts on Air - Glow on (TQ24)

Glow On with Mr. Nice Guy, thanks to FadedFools

UPDATE: buy this cassette from these distros:  Discriminate and Tomentosa in the USA, Boa Melody Bar in the UK, and S.O.L Sound in Japan

After a heartbreaking loss in the Champions League semifinal, it is no coincidence that i'm listening to the new Thoughts on Air tape from Tranquility Tapes, appropriately titled, Glow on.  Tranquility Tapes and Scott Johnson, aka Thoughts on Air, have commenced 2012 fruitfully.  Tranquility has already released stellar tapes from Ghostrider; the Aloha Spirit; Pierrot Lunaire; and Eagle Altar among others.  Meanwhile, Thoughts on Air released Paleo Sails on Avant Archive and Psongs of Retrospect Vol 1. from Hobo Cult.  Therefore, it is sensical that these two bodies of warm energy coalesce, producing something greater than the sum of their respective parts.  Glow on is a missive brimming with positive energy, dedicated to friends and fellow sonic travelers.

Regarding the aforementioned positive energy, read the following words from Scott, which appear on inside flap: My friends we are all a beautiful meltdown...Glow on and on forever as you are... Thanks for lighting the path ahead so brightly.  Prior to listening to the tape, this special dedication echoed in my mind.  After listening to this tape, it is apparent that these magnanimous words, to a great extent, inform his art.  Those words light the path, allowing one to bask in the warm psychedelic glow that is Thoughts on Air.

"ZY" starts things off with some hazy, warm guitar and effects.  A really nice sound that has shades of Knit Prism.  "Fin" starts off like a delicate, cool spring morning, with its glistening tones juxtaposed to crackle and pops of the tape. The tape seamlessly goes into the warm synth and guitar of "Cue" - distorted and beautiful.  The music has an natural quality to it and it is definitely conspicuous on this track.  Music such as this should be liberated from an indoor environment and realized outdoors.  Near the end he plays some glowing keyboard notes that float over the guitar - a real nice progression.  The last track on side A exhibits an interesting side of Thoughts on Air, with the eastern vibe and mysticism evoked by "MFWAAABMD".  The recording and the guitar remind me of the earlier albums from Songs of the Green Pheasant.  A great way to close out Side A.

"Glow on" starts off the flip and contains buoyant melodies.  Some of the synth here is overflowing with natural beauty and reminds me of Zawinul.  Next comes my favorite track on the album, "Hawaiia" - the sounds of which evoke feelings of Endless Summer.  It starts off with warm guitar tones and then something which sounds like a bass - but i'm guessing its the synth - enters and provides a nice foundation.  Quickly after, Scott overlays a nice pattern of notes.  One thing is for sure, Scott is adept at arranging sounds.  Two more tracks close out the flipside.

Well, my footie team lost and i'm out of fuckin booze, but at least i have the warmth of Thoughts on Air to keep me afloat.  As with the majority of Tranquility cassettes, the artwork is beautiful.  The colors correspond to the feel of the music nicely.  For those interested in purchasing a copy, scroll to the beginning for links to distros.

Peace, my friends

Friday, April 20, 2012

One St. Stephen - S/T (Anazitisi Records; ARLP70-30F)


check out this shite!! Afghan Kush from fellow seeker, medicalmarijuananow


Welcome to Nug Luv, a column which will appear sporadically on the site and one which is devoted to examining my favorite reissues of private press glory from yesteryear.  Aside from the music, the most intriguing aspect of these gems is the story.  Invariably, the circumstances that surround that music are just as interesting and imbue the music with a special feeling.

The path to One. St. Stephen started with a few emails to Time-Lag's Nemo Bidstrup.  Nemo recommended a few lps - things like Jungle, Kristyl, Armando Piazza and King George Discovery.  One track was all that I need to hear; One St. Stephen possessed an energy that seemed to flip the switch in my head.

One St. Stephen is the vision of Don Patterson.  Along with contributing the music, lyrics, lead vocals, and guitars, Don directed and produced the album. Don has a passion for film and initially the music, which became One St. Stephen, was intended to be the soundtrack to Don's film, "the Devil's Reservation".  Don wrote the script for this film in 1974. In mid-March, 1975, Don and some fellow musicians recorded nine tracks over five days, in the legendary OWL Studios.  They used the same 8-channel analog recording deck that was used to tape the audio at Woodstock in 1969.  The first vibes were positive - people really enjoyed the music.  With that in mind, Don talked to Queen City, in Cincinnati, about pressing lps.  The initial plan was to press 5,000 copies.  Queen City provided Don with one week to design the cover and a label.  Though I have not viewed the image, Don's design must have been awesome: it was an image of a coffee table with a picture of Don, as an 8-year old, dressed in a military uniform for a Catholic military academy.  Surrounding Don's photo were images of semi-clad girlfriends, a smoking joint in an ashtray, some lines of coke and other items - perfect imagery for a 70's psychedelic rock album.  Unfortunately, Queen City had other ideas.  The first 1,000 copies arrived and Don was astonished to find that the company had airbrushed everything white, except for his child photo, which was enlarged on the cover.  Queen City was affiliated with religious types and conservatives and wanted no part of the sex and drugs on display.  Thus, Don cancelled the remainder and only 1,000 were pressed. 

The record is considered gold amongst record collectors.  Heavily sought and illegally bootlegged many times, original copies fetch well over $1,000.  Don licensed the re-issue by Anazitisi Records and he did half of the remastering.  One St. Stephen is a shining light among 1970's psych-acid music.  The musicianship is excellent, the lyrics awesome and Don's guitar playing gives me goosebumps.  Don's vocal range is impressive - on some tracks there is a Jim Morrison vibe, while on others he has a throaty, assertive sound.  The A-side is hot, beginning with "November Edgar" and ending with "You May be Religious" and "Nightly Drift" - two songs where Don's fuzzed, acid guitar work is conspicuous - stuff that is constantly on repeat in honest bag territory.  The flip starts with "Old Man", which has a Jethro Tull feel; the side ends with two classics: "Richer You Get" and "Dash In The Rocks".

What can I say?  This record glows among the others in my collection.  It spins regularly and is so special that I have a pre-listening ritual.  

I purchased this lp from Nemo Bidstrup and I recommend others to go through him.  Other than being a customer and friend of Nemo, I have no other connection; I'm only an advocate. Time-Lag records is a special shop.  Nemo puts a lot of love into Time-Lag and if you have yet to visit his online shop, then check it out and pick up a copy of One St. Stephen.  Additionally, Anazitisi has black vinyl and the colored version available. 

This first Nug Luv column was only made possible by garnering and synthesizing information and media that I located online.  As a trained social scientist, I feel obligated to mention these wonderful resources. Please scroll to the end for a "works cited" section.  To Don Patterson:  thank you for making this music.  everyday your music puts a smile on my face and gives me the strength to move forward.

Peace, my friends
  1. November video from Don Patterson's you tube page
  2. Nightly Drift track from the castro0024 you tube page
  3. Interview with Don, from It's Psychedelic Baby
  4. Product detail page, from Time-Lag Records

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

La Otracina - The Aquarian Wind (SOC-7/WHO-08)

thanks to Kushweed for the Haze :)

Summer is approaching and it's time to get lifted in style.  One of the best treats of summer is listening to a La Otracina record.  With the sound high enough to piss off the neighbors, the sun scorching, the smoke thick and beads of sweat cascading on to a bottle of beer, the variables are in place for a fine listening experience.  La Otracina has a special place in my heart.  Along with being one of my favorite bands, The Risk of Gravitation - psyched out grooves of the highest magnitude - was one of the first lps that I purchased.  Making it more special, drummer Adam Kriney added a nice note.  While writing a note for each mail order can be burdensome, it means a lot to me and i'm greatly appreciative.

 After 2010's amazing Reality Has Got to Die on Holy Mountain, La Otracina return with a one-sided lp, co-issued by Sound of Cobra and Who Can You Trust? Records. The Aquarian Wind was released for the current European tour and is infused with their unique style of psychedelic sounds. From the drop of the needle, La Otracina take a big rip and produce the wonderful instrumental jam, "Voyage to Heldonia", in which Adam's drumming combines with heavy guitar sounds, all while the hypnotic bass negotiates its way through the sound waves.  Next, "Lost in the Sunrise" features Adam's vocals, guitars that wade into metal territory and propulsive drumming. Overall, the Aquarian Wind is infused with many elements: space rock, prog, krautrock, a little metal - a little of everything!  One thing is for sure: this nug is made for your head.

Grip it and rip it while supplies last. At this juncture, the only distro/label selling this is Who Can You Trust? Records.  They are selling it for 13 euros + shipping.  One can order by contacting,  I'm pretty sure Sound of Cobra is out of stock.  

Peace, my friends 


*Dates with IN ZAIRE (
**Dates with KADAVAR (

Thur April 12 – at Roadburn Festival, Tilburg/Holland
Fri April 13 – day off
Sat April 14 – at Bear Rock Festival, Andenne/Belgium
Sun April 15 – day off
Mon April 16 - day off
Tue April 17 - day off
Wed April 18 – at Les Combustibles, Paris/France
Thur April 19 – at Saint Ex, Bordeaux/France
Fri April 20 – at Cri De La Mouette, Toulouse/France
Sat April 21 – at Sala Mogambo, San Sebastian/Donostia/Spain
Sunday April 22 – at Rock Palace, Madrid/Spain
Monday April 23 – at Rumble Cafe, La Nucia/Spain
Tue April 24 – at L’Enthropy, Marseille/France
Wed April 25 – at Silver Club, Angers/France
Thur April 26 – at Le Vecteur, Charleroi/Belgium*
Fri April 27 – at Magasin 4, Brussels/Belgium*
Sat April 28 – HELP NEED A SHOW OR PLACE TO SLEEP! (possibly Luxemborg/Mons)*
Sun April 29 – at Carlo Levi, Liege/Belgium*
Mon April 30 – at Le Caveau Du Grand Sauvoy, Nancy/France*
Tue May 1 – at Mudd Mudd Club, Strasbourg/France*
Wed May 2 – at Ecurie De L’ilot 13, Geneva/Switzerland*
Thur May 3 – at White Rabbit, Freiburg/Germany*
Fri May 4 - at White Trash Fast Food, Berlin/Germany*
Sat May 5 – at Unsagbar, Aschaffenburg/Frankfurt/Germany*
Sun May 6 - at Hunhermanhattan, Halle/Germany*
Mon May 7 – at Stubnitz, Bremen/Germany*
Tue May 8 – drive day
Wed May 9 – at Mother, Stockholm/Sweden*
Thur May 10 – at Koloni, Goteborg/Sweden*
Fri May 11 – at Mayhem, Copenhagen/Denmark*
Sat May 12 – at Get Daun Festival, at TBA, Malmo/Sweden?*
Sun May 13 – off day
Mon May 14 - off day
Tue May 15 – at Cairo, Wurzburg/Germany**
Wed May 16 – at Klub 007, Praha-Břevnov/Czech Republic**
Thur May 17 – at Blog Music Club, Budapest/Hungary**
Fri May 18 – at Fabrica Club, Cluj-Napoca/Romania**
Sat May 19 – at The King, Bucharest/Romania**
Sun May 20 - at Mixtape 5, Sofia/Bulgaria**
Mon May 21 – at Eightball Club, Thessaloniki/Greece**
Tue May 22 – at Six Dogs, Athens/Greece**
Wed May 23 – at Kingston, Struga/Macedonia**
Thur May 24 - at Club Fest, Belgrade/Serbia**
Fri May 25 – at Klub Gromka, Ljubljana/Slovenia**
Sat May 26 – at Stereoclub, Klagenfurt/Austria**
Sun May 27 – at Club Wakuum, Graz/Austria**
Mon May 28 – at Ligera Bar, Milan/Italy
Tue May 29 – at TBA, Fidenza/Italy
Wed May 30 – at CS Bruno, Trento/Italy**
Thur May 31 – at Sidro Club, Savignano Sul Rubicone/Italy**
Fri June 1 – at Tipographia, Pescara/Italy**
Sat June 2 – at Init Club, Rome/Italy**
Sun June 3 – drive day

Monday, April 16, 2012

Toning - Paranormal Romance (Skell 009)

Maui Wowie, courtesy of Nuggetry

Out of all three cassettes from the most recent batch of Skell tapes, Paranormal Romance by Toning, might be the most intriguing.  Toning is the moniker of Cody Brant, an artist that generally utilizes guitar, bass, synth, percussion and other instruments to create wild, eclectic environments of sound. 2011 was a banner year for Brant, as Toning released the magnificent Pitch the Drone, on venerable and sadly defunct Stunned Records and Drained Brains on Eggy. For me, Brant is like an NBA all-star: The pallete from which he spins his art is rich and diverse.  If you have yet to examine the Toning soundcloud page, give it a chance, as I highly recommend the plethora of recently posted tracks:  "Soothes" is as smooth as Kevin Durant; "Island Wench" could be the soundtrack to the ultimate defensive player, dominating the boards; meanwhile, "Up the Staircase" is the portrait of a frenetic end-to-end game.  Brant's game is pretty complete; and Toning is a distinguished conjurer, creating soundscapes of great depth and feeling.   

On Paranormal Romance, much like Pitch the Drone, Brant's preference is to work in the shorter, focused realm of electronic music.  Being accustomed to listening to side-long or longer pieces of music, it is a pleasure and refreshing to assess an artist working within the constraint of time.  After many listens, it is evident that Brant's art is beautiful and under-publicized.  More so, his overall acuity in juxtaposing sounds and skill with multiple instruments makes for an intriguing and unpredictable experience.  As an example, the first four tracks are each unique, rarely traveling the same path.  "Certain Spots" opens the A side with electronic buzz, which slowly gives way to a warm synth drone; "Elusive March" is anything but elusive, as the thick, heavy tones envelop the listener; and without notice, "Magnetized" displays Brant's beautiful finger-picked guitar guitar and alluring tones.  "Looming Fog" is an apt name for the fourth track as Brant juxtaposes languid, sporadic tones, with fast guitar playing - almost sounding acoustic - that eventually dominates the track.  For me the other standout tracks are "Dream Answer"; "Go Your Way", with its eastern vibe; "Ski Dubai"; and "Patience", which sounds like a track from a Sunshine Ltd. cassette.  Alas, I almost forgot to mention the psyched out artwork, something of which is commonplace on a Skell tape.

Mike Griffin is definitely doing big things with the Skell label.  In keeping with aura of this site, for me Skell is like the six foot bong of my dreams, the vehicle; and Mike's cassettes are like the rarest of buds which only grow in certain climates.  Paranormal Romance is selling like the finest indica at the corner dispensary; Tomentosa has already sold their stock and supplies are likely running low elsewhere.  Buy this tape directly from Mike or through Flipped Out.

Peace, my friends  


Wednesday, April 11, 2012

High Aura’d / Xela - Third Life / Fourth Life (SLG047)

update to post:  John just notified me that there were no keyboards used on this recording, which is live, one take.  For the readers, i'm sorry if my references to the synth were misleading.  Thank you, John!  Peace, my friends :)

05/29/12: Available at Tomentosa  
05/13/12:  Available at Discriminate

A tape of great value possesses most of the following elements: music which ascends and bathes your personal temple in radiant light ; beautiful artwork; and a personal touch. Third Life, the magnificent drone release from High Aura'd, the moniker of John Kolodij - reissued on Sweat Lodge Guru - is unequivocally sacred. High Aura'd has a penchant for creating singular, affective music.  Mostly a guitar piece, though keys can be heard, Third Life exists in a weightless realm, a sonic body hovering.  Through the early going, the tones and chords remind me of Oren Ambarchi. The transitions and layered elements are added adroitly; and he knows just when to introduce warm, swelling sounds. Approximately three-quarters through, John introduces sounds that could have emanated from the guitar of Steven R. Smith. This track manifests as something highly personal and lucid.  If John were a futbol player, Third Life would be a golazo - a gol of the highest magnitude.  

John Twells - Xela and proprietor of Type Records - reanimates Third Life on the flip, producing the warm and heavy, Fourth Life.  The track is infused with percussion early in the track, sounding like raindrops on tin, while radiant energy exudes from John's setup.  Halfway through there sounds are emitted which remind me of Tim Hecker.  Xela, too, has a proclivity for skillfully adding elements, whether it is the synth patterns that occasionally line the mix from below or the intermittent flashes of synth that appear near the end.  The culmination of the B side is evidence of a tape that should be listened to regularly.

This tape has yet to appear at the distros, though it was released - and instantly sold out at the source - over one month ago.  For information on ordering, check out the High Aura'd webpage.

Peace, my friends

Monday, April 9, 2012

Sylvester Anfang ii - Perzische Tapijten (GPS075)

thanks to weedsmokersguide for the thai

BEST OF 2012

Shit man... if you are going to drop the needle on this nug, then you better go big.  Once the electric snake-like bass - tortuously weaving a path through the synapses - delivers the medicine, there is no turning back.  Sylvester Anfang ii return with their most impressive statement to date, Perzische Tapijten. The Great Pop Supplement (GPS) provides the tricked out vehicle to recalibrate your consciousness. No bud is left unscathed as the Funeral Folkers leave their imprimatur on six tracks of heavy psychedelia ranging from the mysterious synth beauty of "Assassijn" to third-eye guitar freakouts such as "Schadelijke Sektarische Organisatie".  There is a ubiquitous eastern vibe in these grooves, and overall the sounds remind me of Phallus Dei, Agitation Free and German Oak.  

In the lp category for sounds of the year, this nestles nicely into the #1 position.  Every Anfang release is cause for celebration, but for me this is the best stuff yet - a realization of artists that have honed their craft for years.  Dom, the man at GPS, did a stellar job with the release.  Furthermore, he ensured that the lp was nicely secured and shipped outside the sleeve.  Though i'm unsure if Dom still has more copies, I highly recommend ordering direct from GPS for future releases.  You can find Perzische Tapijten at Eclipse Records and Experimedia.  

Peace, my friends

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Eureka - Recognitions (AA019)

The coffee and smoke are still running strong.  Glistening drops of morning dew descend from verdant leaves - the nascent feeling of spring, of rebirth, is ubiquitous on this temperate morning in early April.  It is difficult to imagine a more serene, apt setting for Recognitions, the latest release from William Giacchi's Eureka project.  

Fecund is the perfect word to describe William's output during the last four or five years.  Chances are that you have jammed to his stoned grooves as part of Magic Lantern; basked in the psychedelic glow of Silver Bullets, which William produced; or been moved by his collaborative work with Stunned man Phil French as Super Minerals.    

Recognitions is laced with free flowing piano jams and various instruments, including barely audible strings.  Basically, however, Recognitions is the portrait of William and his piano.  Both sides overflow with cascading keys, producing copious notes which reflect much like molecules in a heated environment.  Though not everything is of uniform pace.  Throughout, William uses space adeptly, allowing the notes to glide on the air, transforming the environment.  Overall, the feel here is warm, free and unadulterated.

Avant Archive is one of my favorite labels.  There is a unique warmth which pervades an Avant Archive tape, which is due to proprietor and Black Eagle Child man, Michael Jantz.  Though it is early in 2012, Avant Archive has emerged as one of the best labels this year, garnering a slew of high quality releases including Thoughts on Air, Hakobune, and the excellent Abyssal Farmers, which is a collaboration of Frank Baugh and Uton.  Recognitions is available directly from Avant Archive.  

Peace, my friends