Tag Archives: Music

photo of staple singers

The Staple Singers covering “Slippery People”

Awesome cover of Talking Heads’s “Slippery People” posted by Pour Me Coffee (thanks Brent Sirota): And a live performance of the original for anyone that needs to be reminded: Advertisements

Pisaro at Big Sur

Interview: Michael Pisaro, A Conspiracy Against the Ordinary

Experimental music opens up our ears. Should we become too rigid or inflexible in our thinking, sound can point us toward broader avenues and unexpected possibilities. This, says Michael Pisaro, is one way that experimental music reaches out into the world. But, he says, it doesn’t just reach out, it invites listeners in and asks […]

Feldman at the piano

Let the Sounds Alone 02

From the end of Vertical Thoughts (1963): Art in its relation to life is nothing more than a glove turned inside out. It seems to have the same shapes and contours, but it can never be used for the same purpose. Art teaches nothing about life, just as life teaches us nothing about art. Vertical Thoughts is an early Feldman […]

detail from the cover of James Hoff's EP on PAN Records

Review: James Hoff, “How Wheeling Feels When the Ground Walks Away”

In light of the on-going Occupy Wall Street protests and England’s summer riots, James Hoff’s single-sided picture disc on PAN feels a little heavier than it otherwise might. Stitched together from various “historic riots,” none of which are named, How Wheeling Feels When the Ground Walks Away presents lo-fi crowd roar, chants, guitar solos, breaking glass, and […]

pierre at his mixing desk

Pierre Henry: “…and that’s where composing begins”

Below is an excellent documentary about Pierre Henry and musique concrète made available via YouTube. Thanks to Root Blog for passing it along.

photo of pioneers resting near the mountains

July 2011: Laughtrack MP3 Mix No. 7

Eventually, once I’ve become accustomed to some new software, I will post a continuous mix of the music I’ve been listening to the most these last few months. Until then, you’ll have to settle for a late edition of Laughtrack with a dash of basic mixing tossed in. This one includes music from Francisco López, […]

photo of Feldman writing

Let the Sounds Alone 01

I’m reading Give My Regards to Eighth Street right now and running head first into Morton Feldman’s philosophy, which somehow reminds me a little of Kierkegaard. Feldman is a very funny person, and very direct; sometimes I find what he has to say hard to swallow, but his conviction and passion are totally convincing, so […]

detail of cover art for Love's Secret Domain

Review: Coil, “Love’s Secret Domain”

The following review was one eleven articles published at Brainwashed.com last week, celebrating the 20th birthday of one of Coil’s best known and most loved records. Reviews, interviews, and personal reflections were published, including a great exchange with Stephen Thrower, which you can read here.  One thing I neglected to mention, and that I wish I […]

two swimmers featured in Life magazine

June 2011: Laughtrack MP3 Mix No. 6

Mix number six emphasizes electronic music in one form or another, with just a few exceptions, including a pair of chansons and a particularly unusual African tribal recording from Staring into the Sun. I hope you find them as entertaining and revealing as I did. Hearing Mick Harvey’s interpretation of Gainsbourg’s “Aux Enfants de la […]

still image from Eliane Radigue interview

Video: A Portrait of Eliane Radigue (2009)

I watched this video of a 2009 interview with Eliane Radigue this morning and was completely won over by the way she describes her writing process. It reminds me of a quote from Mark Hollis, which I’ve always appreciated: “Before you play two notes learn how to play one note – and don’t play one […]

detail of original cover art for Presences of Absences

Review: Asva, “Presences of Absences”

With his latest album as Asva, G. Stuart Dahlquist (Sunn O))), Burning Witch, Goatsnake) leaves metal behind and sets out on his own distinct path. Recent interviews tell me that he has spent the last three years investigating Josef Albers’ color theory, losing musical weight on the Arvo Pärt diet, and studying the way sounds […]

detail from the cover of Ways of Meaning

Review: Kyle Bobby Dunn, “Ways of Meaning”

In a recent interview, Kyle Bobby Dunn told Fracture Compound that he heard “the truth” in his favorite music, a truth that he associates with the “brutal honest beauty” of certain classical compositions. Kyle doesn’t spell out what he thinks the truth is, but I suspect that Ways of Meaning provides a clue. Kyle Bobby Dunn’s music is beautiful […]

detail of photo showing Sun Ra playing a keyboard

The Eternal Myth: 20 CD Sun Ra Box Set Forthcoming

Great news from Altered Zones, via FACT and Wire: Sun Ra will be issuing a humongous box set of rarities and unreleased goodies called The Eternal Myth Volume 1 that’s sure to make obsessives jump for joy. Produced by Sun Ra archive director Michael D Anderson and released by Transparency, the hulking release compiles more than 400 tracks from […]

detail from the cover of Texas Blues Working

Review: Christina Carter, “Texas Blues Working”

This album somehow earned a reputation for being one of Christina Carter’s best despite being limited to a cassette-only edition of just 200 copies. Released during a fertile 2008 that also saw the release of Original Darkness on Kranky, and initially mistitled Texas Working Blues, this Blackest Rainbow re-release shines the spotlight on one of Christina’s most direct, […]

blurry photo of Pisaro

Think the Note: Michael Pisaro on Challenging the Ear

This past week I read Bill Meyer’s review of the latest Michael Pisaro releases on Gravity Wave and ended up reading the small essay referenced in that article, as well. Besides my interest in music theory in general, I was intrigued by Meyer’s description of Pisaro’s strategy, which draws connections between baseball, The Temptations, John Cage, […]

detail from the cover of The Gathering

Review: Arbouretum, “The Gathering”

On their fourth full-length record, Arbouretum turn their churning rhythms and buzzing guitars inward to explore the uncanny spaces of the collective unconscious. Inspired in part by Carl Jung, Dave Heumann’s lyrics are featured more prominently on The Gathering, which might explain why the band sounds looser and less aggressive this time around. The change accentuates […]

detail from the back cover of Aethenor's "En Form for Bla"

Review: Æthenor, “En Form For Blå”

With mainstay Vincent De Roguin absent and Stephen O’Malley exercising smart restraint, Æthenor have released their best album and maybe one of the best live recordings I have ever heard. Assembled from three shows recorded in Oslo, Norway during 2010, En Form For Blå captures Æthenor improvising a loose electric sound bound expertly together by the […]

photo of a Japanese classroom from 1920

March 2011: Laughtrack MP3 Mix #3

Mix number three is dominated by Christoph Heemann and his brother Andreas Martin. Heemann’s 2010 re-issue of The Rings of Saturn is currently available from Robot Records, and my review of it is posted over at Brainwashed. I’ve listened to that record at least 20 times in the last month, probably more. Organum’s “Iuel” also […]

excerpt from the cover of Capri

Review: Celer, “Capri”

Will and Dani’s 32nd full-length album suffers from many of the same flaws found on their second. Broken up into 29 distinct songs, Capri sees Celer attempting to alleviate the monotony of their mostly monochromatic music by introducing intermittent asides. Unfortunately, many of the songs represent only a nominal change, and the record frequently sinks under […]

image of Kuula and Leino

A Finnish art song, but what does it mean? Updated!

The name of this song is “Tuijotin tulehen kauvan.” According to Youtube and a couple of classical music resources, that translates as “I was staring at the fire for a long time.” It was composed by Toivo Kuula in 1907 and the words are from a poem written by Eino Leino. My girlfriend played it for […]