Number 1062

THEA FARHADIAN – TECTONIC SHIFTS (CD by Creative Sources Recordings)
NUOVA CAMERATA – CHANT (CD by Improvising Beings)
  PILLARS OF DESTINY (CD by Improvising Beings)
FLOEX – SAMOROST 3 SOUNDTRACK (CD by Minority Records) *
SKY BURIAL – CORRANACH (CD by Reverse Alignment) *
VALANX – OUROBOROS (CD by Reverse Alignment) *
STATIC FRUIT (7″ compilation by Static Caravan/Fruits de Mer)
AMP – SWITCHED ON AND LIVE (CDR by Sound In Silence) *
ANDERS BRØRBY – MULHOLLAND DRIVE, 1984 (cassette by Hyle Tapes)
    Animal Tapes)
SWEAT TONGUE – DARK STAR (cassette by Cold Milk)
SELF INDULGENT ASSHOLE (cassette by Cold Milk)


Over the years, so I noticed, I reviewed a fair bit of the output by Dieter Müh, but to say I know all
the finer ins and outs about them? No, I don’t know. Sometimes I wrote they were a trio, or a duo,
whereas these days Discogs says it is just Steve Cammack. EE Tapes, best known for their excellent
output of many of the Insane Music bands, here dig out an old CDR release from 1998, which was
back then available in an edition of fifteen copies, and sees Dieter Müh as a duo, Cammack and Dave
Uden, capturing a performance from 8th of July 1998 at Nottingham Old Vic, and we are told there
are no overdubs and no cosmetics. As I noted before Dieter Müh belongs to the third or fourth wave
of industrial bands that emerged somewhere in the mid 90s, taking the heritage from Throbbing
Gristle and a lesser extent Cabaret Voltaire and Ramleh to the next level, and in live concert this
means they are using quite a bit of electronics to manipulate their own voices, whispering and
sighing, as well as those taped from multi-media sources but somehow it seems less grim than in
the early 80s. EE Tapes puts as a bonus on this one three tracks from compilations, two of which
they releases themselves on earlier compilations. Here the sound of Dieter Müh is much more
obscure and alien, as well as perhaps more ambient in approach and in part reminded me of early
zoviet*france or Maeror Tri, especially in ‘Whorle’ with its mind expanding heavy guitar layers. To
be honest I like this side of Dieter Müh a lot more than their more single minded live approach.
They show here a subtle approach to using electronics, sampled voices, and it has more depth
than when played live. So, I am not entirely sure why EE Tapes picked this one to re-issue, whereas
the back catalogue of the band surely has other hidden gems in it, studio based recordings that is;
maybe it was the sheer obscurity of the original release, fifteen CDRs, but if the idea was to give
the band a wider recognition, which they surely deserve, then I am not sure if a live recording is
the best route. (FdW)
––– Address:

THEA FARHADIAN – TECTONIC SHIFTS (CD by Creative Sources Recordings)

Farhadian is an American composer and performer with a base in San Francisco and one in Berlin.
Her work often is about connecting solo violin and interactive electronics. Combining her classical
background as violist (Berkeley Symphony Orchestra) with what she learned for her studies on
interdisciplinary arts and electronic music. ‘Tectonic Shifts’ illustrates this. If I’m not mistaken this
is her first solo-album. Earlier releases have her in duo and trio line-ups, with Klaus Kürvers (bass),
Dean Santomieri (electric guitar), among others. Liner notes on ‘Tectonic Shifts’ say “These pieces
for violin and interactive electronics were selected from a cycle of works that blend improvisation
and composition. Using Max/MSP software, Tectonic Shifts employs real-time processing to create
twisted echoes, jagged rhythms, and microtonal landscapes.” Recorded between 2010 and 2013 in
Berlin as well as San Francisco makes this release a document of her investigations into combining
violin with electronics, both in a composed and in an improvised setting. Whatever electronic
manipulations she uses, always one hears the violin is at the start of it. She expands the sound
world of violin into unknown and unheard territories. The music is a constant fight between
musicality and experimentation and demanding but interesting journey. Feelings of joy changed
for feeling lost. One could feel at home at last, in the closing piece ‘Silverplate’, that is the most
conventional and even romantic part of this journey. But it is here that I wanted to be lost again
like in the complex ‘Particle party’. (DM)
––– Address:


‘More Dreams Less Sleep’ is the 13th release in the Exchange-series, documenting meetings
between improvisers from Lucerne and Chicago. The combination we have here, we already know
from an earlier Exchange release, ‘Yuria’s Dream’ (2014). Recordings for this new release date
from October 2015. Two tracks are recorded live, three others came into being in the studio, all
in Chicago. Again we have Jason Adasiewics on vibraphone, Jason Roebke on bass and Christoph
Erb on soprano and tenor saxophone.  A good and transparent recording, so that nothing needs
to escape from your attention. Active attention however is needed to experience this music in all
its aspects.  The vibrating playing, using circular breathing, by Erb is again a joy to listen to. Just
listen to ‘Tense’ that has Erb engaged in one long and absorbing exercise, interluded by a fine
duet by Roebke and Adasiewicz.  Erb produces many different colours in the improvisations that
play their role in the intense, inspired interplay with the two other excellent players. The three
interact very focused and built patterns and figures of a clear shape. Moments where the music
just seems to continue for some reason are absent. Overall their poetry works from beginning to
end. Where it seems to fall apart, it is the beginning of a new start. (DM)
––– Address:

NUOVA CAMERATA – CHANT (CD by Improvising Beings)
  PILLARS OF DESTINY (CD by Improvising Beings)

Nuova Camerata is a combination of strings and marimba: Pedro Carneiro (marimba), Carlos Zingaro
(violin), João Camões (viola), Ulrich Mitzlaff (cello) and Miguel Leiria Pereira (double bass). We are in
Portugal, as these names make clear. With this unusual line up, they invite us for a set of seven
collective improvisations called ‘Chant I” up to ‘Chant VII’. Baffling moments, without singing by
the way. These inventive improvisations have depth with great interplay and a high level of
musicality. Close to modern composed music in a way. A very satisfying and exciting recording,
recorded in november 2015.
    ‘Four Pillars of Destiny’ is the title of a CD by the quartet of Maki Hachiya (voice, objects),
Shota Koyama (drums), Hugues Vincent (cello) and Yuta Yokoyama (trumpet). The title seems a
reference to ‘Seven Pillars of Wisdom’ by T.E. Lawrence (of Arabia). Anyway, the cd counts eleven
short improvisations recorded at the beginning of this year in Sapporo. Vincent, who studied
classical cello and jazz, toured all over the world, but I have the impression he is often in the
company of Japanese colleagues. Maki Hachiya is a voice performer, pianist, composer, and lyricist
from Tokyo. Yuta Yokoyama from Sapporo plays trumpet since his youth. After studying jazz he
choose for playing improvised music only. Shota Koyama is a self-taught drummer and already for
decades part of the Japanese jazz scene. These experienced improvisers deliver a set of very fresh
sounding music. The improvisations have a prominent role for the expressive vocals of Maki, making
you feel in Japan all the way. In each improvisation they take another route, with equal involvement
of all participators. Just a record of playful improvised music.
    The Linda Sharrock Network is new to me. This is a difficult one. Although I love free
improvised music, and can enjoy most of the time at least some aspects of it, in this case I really
had to my best. But alas, this one doesn’t talk to me. But fist some history. The start of the career
of Linda Sharrock brings us back in the 60s when she performed with Pharaoh Sanders. After
divorcing from Sonny Sharrock she moved to Vienna and works on the European continent since
the 70ss, working with Wolfgang Puschnig, Franz Koglmann, among others. After a stroke in 2009
she returned after a few years partially disabled, mainly under the banner her Linda Sharrock
Network. On this cd the Network is compiled of Claude Parle (accordion), Mario Rechtern (baritone,
alto  and sopranino sax, violin, saxoline), Yoram Rosilio (double bass), Makoto Sato (drums), Linda
Sharrock (lead vocals), Lucien Johnson (tenor sax) and Itaru Oki (trumpet, flugelhorn, flute). We
hear a live-recorded set at the Bab-Ilo, Paris, France on August 25, 2016. Again vocals are
prominent in this lengthy, cacophonic improvisation. Sharrock concentrates on screaming and
yelling in a – intentionally? – painful way. The rest however is okay. Improvisations of an open,
free-floating nature, with interesting contributions by Parle on accordion. (DM)
––– Address:

FLOEX – SAMOROST 3 SOUNDTRACK (CD by Minority Records)

By strange coincidence, and this is not a lie, these two CDs arrived on the same day, and both
deal with the soundtrack to computer games. I can honestly say I never spend any time at all on
computer games and looking at the math that says for me ‘age’, ‘books to read’, ‘films to watch’
and ‘music to hear’, let alone ‘something to create/work’, I can safely say I will not spend much
time on them either between now and my demise, whenever that is; no interest to waste time
anymore. I do know it’s a big market for experimental musicians to compose music for these and
very much like reviewing soundtracks to films one didn’t see, it is not easy to review music that is
made for games.
    I started with the soundtrack to a game called ‘Samorost 3’ by Floex, also known as Tomas
Dvorak, of whom I reviewed in Vital Weekly 724 ‘Machinarium Soundtrack’, which also was music
for a computer game. I wrote back then that “computer games are not my game”, and about the
previous record “if we forget the whole notion of the computer game then this is a pretty enjoyable
record of music that perhaps owes less to classical music that the blurb suggests, and also from
the world of ambient music, but more from the background of intelligent dance music, with washy
ambient structures here and there, melancholic melodies and odd musique concrete like samples.
Sometimes we hear instruments being sampled (guitars, a harp), but it seems to be quite remotely
present here. As said, its all enjoyable but also something that one tends to forget when its over”,
which is something I feel is also very much appropriate to this record. It is all pretty enjoyable and
relaxing music, and I had never the idea this was music for a computer game, nor any idea what this
computer game was about, but once the CD was over, seventy-eight minutes later, I also forgot
what I was listening too. Or as I wrote also before: “Music to use to set a tone or a nice mood, but
it seems also nothing more than that. Which is of course nothing bad. Perhaps its music for games:
you don’t pay that close attention to the sound?” Sometimes it seems things never change.
    So how does these things go with Rutger Zuydervelt’s music for ‘Astroneer’? Of course you
know Zuydervelt as the man behind Machinefabriek, and ‘Astroneer’ is a “sci-fi exploration and
adventure fame from developer System Era. In the game, the music plays continuously and is
reactive to the player’s actions. This album presents the musical themes as edited tracks”, it
says on the cover. Here the CD also starts with a ‘main menu’, the theme, just like Floex did,
and it’s the kind of music we haven’t heard from Zuydervelt in a long time: a melodic synth ditty,
short and very much inspired by the world of cosmic music. Totally different than the bulk of
work he put out in recent years, and absolutely great. I didn’t know Zuydervelt owned a synth!
The cosmic inspired tunes continue in the other pieces (sixteen on the CD, plus a further 8 bonus
pieces on the download), perhaps more spacious and less pop inspired as ‘Main Menu’; spaceship
drone material, some reverb to suggest the infinite space and sometimes the small melody
approach return as in ‘Gathering 2’. This is music that is delicate and careful, nothing offensive
and I can easily relate it to its space game theme. Like Floex these pieces are very much stand-
alone also and yet seem a little less ‘ear in ear out, what’s next’. Maybe I am biased since I know
Zuydervelt pretty well? What helps is that I love that whole cosmic edge quite a bit and that
Zuydervelt does something completely different. (FdW)
––– Address:
––– Address:

SKY BURIAL – CORRANACH (CD by Reverse Alignment)
VALANX – OUROBOROS (CD by Reverse Alignment)

Another trio of releases by Swedish house of ambient-with-an-edge/noise-with a heart refinement.
The first one is by Michael Page, who works here as Sky Burial, but is also known as Fire In The Head,
when it comes to a fiery set of noise sounds. That is not to say that Sky Burial is necessarily
something way quieter; far from it. But it just isn’t as noisy as some of that goes out under his
other banner. The music Page plays dwells heavily on the use of electronics and I assume his own
voice. Unlike many of the musicians that can be found in the pages of Vital Weekly, I would think
that such things as field recordings do not play a big role in this music. In a way it reminded me of
good ol’ power electronics and industrial music but more subdued. Sky Burial is ambient music of
the darker, heavier and perhaps industrial variation. This is the soundtrack for a post-nuclear
landscape; well, or at least a documentary thereof. The three pieces are quite long, especially the
first two, taking up over forty minutes, and at such length Sky Burial sometimes looses the plot
a bit and seems to get lost in his own sounds; some kind of editing would have been a fine idea, I
think. Or perhaps not, if one is willing to sit back and let it all wash over the listener, and experience
this dark rumble, Mars machines and eerie soundtrack as a long form soundscape. Do not think, but
do not panic; earth might be lost, but as least the apocalypse does have one hell of a soundtrack. I
thought as the CD moved from piece to piece, the quality of those pieces became better; from good
to best to better, with the final piece, ‘Movement II’ (just like the previous piece was also called
‘Movement II’; probably a misprint), as the last piece being the best out of three, with a lovely dark
rumble of debris falling on infertile soil.
    When we follow the post-nuclear path set out by Sky Burial we come across Valanx, which is
the name by chosen by Arne Weinberg for his music work. He sometimes works as Solemn Embrace
and has the Cromlech Records label himself. I haven’t heard of either, so I am not sure if there is a
difference, any one at all, with Valanx. Here too we have a hard time guessing what it is that is used
and abused by the musician, but looking at the credits where he thanks ‘the Muffwiggler forum’ and
‘the Eurorack community’, one could think that Valanx is someone who uses a lot of modular
synthesizer gear. Stage central for Valanx however seems to be the reverb unit, which is part of
most of the pieces in a small or, usually, big way. That, I must say, clouds a bit of the music Valanx
wants to play. His mood is dark, obviously I’d say as much on Reverse Alignment is dark and moody,
and there seems to be some kind of percussive element in here, via very slow thumps occasionally,
but these are also quite far away (it’s a big hall in which all of this happening). Sometimes it is a bit
noisier but throughout the atmosphere is eerie and cold. Perhaps too cold for my taste I think, as
somehow it failed to get a grip on me. I enjoy it best when it goes to the world of dark ambient
more than the noisier variety, but throughout I was thinking that a less reverb would make shine
the sounds a little brighter and I would be interested in hearing that side. What goes into the
machine and before it is changed and comes out at the end of the hall?
    And finally there is the third album by Mollusk, the duo of Per Ahlund and Johan Boberg, who
earlier this released ‘Aeon Synpases Connect’ (Vital Weekly 1021) and ‘Astral Mechanics’ (Vital
Weekly 1043) and I believe there is some sort of live set up/strategy in play with them to record
their music, and there is not a moment when you have the idea that this is live in any sort of way.
Mollusk, so I assume, a duo armed with laptops and maybe, just maybe some other equipment, but
it might very well be possible that’s just it. What they are running on those laptops, I have no idea;
maybe because I have very little knowledge of that kind of thing. Or rather, not enough to say with
any degree of certainty, ‘oh max/msp’, ‘ableton live’ or ‘puredata’, but me thinks it is very likely it
is one of these and on the input side there is surely a whole bunch of field recordings (come to
think of it, but hey what do I really know?, maybe I am all wrong and it’s all about modular
synthesizers). Not that any of this really matters of course, toys are for boys (to worry about),
and it’s the result that we should care about. And the six pieces on this release are great; maybe
even more ambient than before, even more glacial than last time, but without becoming a static
drone piece. Mollusk thrives on small changes in their music, on the move, as it seems, all the time.
Think acousmatic music, but then played out more, with very gradual changes and without fast
changing, up and down glissandi. ‘5:AM Crepuscular Rays’ is the furthest they venture into noise
land, but throughout it’s the beautiful mellow sound that I have come to love over the course of
these three releases; this is a great ending for this trilogy. (FdW)
––– Address:


Sheens is a young talent (composer and pianist) from Australia, winner of the Downbeat Student
Award 2009, who debuted on CD in 2012 with ‘Every Eight Seconds’, followed by a second release
(‘Untranslatable’) in 2014. That makes ‘Cloud Appreciation Day’ his third statement, released by
the German QFTF-label. It is my first encounter with his work, and it almost turned out to be a
very short one. The opening track is of a sweetness that is just unbearable. Is this serious? But I
let the CD player do his job, and even gave the album several listening turn in the end. To say it
right away this music is miles from my tastes, and in several aspects it is completely opposite to
my tastes. But there is also substantial quality in this work. Sheens has a strong sense for melody
and rhythm, two ear-catching characteristics that are found in most of the tracks on this album.
The tracks dominated by complex (poly) rhythms I liked most, like the short ‘Interlude 1: Rage” or
‘A Midsummer Nightnare’ with fine guitar playing by Goodman. In ‘Interlude 3: Cloud’ a romantic
opening by the piano is halfway transformed into a minimalistic rhythm-based part that brings the
melodic aspects to the background. Sheens compositions are of a very fluent nature. Following a
strong inner logic. His music is made up from many known elements from jazz and close harmony
traditions. But he is doing a lot of unusual and original things. The second piece, ‘Names’, for
instance again opens with a very lyrical – read irritating – piano, but accompanied by surprising
vocal arrangements. ‘First Orbit’ has fine close harmony singing, sounding ethereal and angelic.
Well, enough surprising moves occur, to call Sheens a very original and talented composer. (DM)
––– Address:


‘Quite an odd release’, is what ended the review of his previous release, ‘A Kto Slaby, Niech Jada
Jarzyny’ (Vital Weekly 1022) and I could easily say the same for this new one. Kujawski was once
known as 8rolek, known to set-up a fine party with his crude techno music, but under his own
name he samples the hell out of stuff and puts this together as collages of sound. Before it was
much from the world of orchestras, here he uses that too, but also those pumping synth sounds
one finds on trance/EDM records, along with heavily treated vocals from the same world, or perhaps
R&B; I am a bit of a loss here actually. Then there is also a bit of field recordings thrown in, for either
good measure or to mark a difference. Six pieces here, all between six and seven minutes in length,
and sometimes there is a full on dance beat, but as easily he breaks that up again. Perhaps that’s
the avant-garde aspect of this music? To make a satire out of dance music? Something that is
non-repetitive for too long? Maybe that’s the conceptual edge behind all of this? Or maybe it’s all
about humour anyway? I found this all very hard to pin down, which is perhaps the whole point
anyway. To step back and say ‘well, I don’t get it but I do like what I hear’ is then another thing; it
is something that I couldn’t say either. Some of this sounded not bad at all, but as a whole I must
admit this album didn’t do much for me. Maybe it caught me on a wrong day? Maybe I am just not
ready for this? Let’s keep it at that than. (FdW)
––– Address:

STATIC FRUIT (7″ compilation by Static Caravan/Fruits de Mer)

Something we rarely see in the world of Vital Weekly, the compilation 7″, and if we do it’s usually
(twice a decade perhaps) one that has either 100 short 10 second pieces, or 10 one minute
pieces, but this, the classic punky four bands cramped on a 7″? That’s a rare thing. Here Static
Caravan team up with a label called Fruits de Mer (sea fruit, in case you were wondering), which
Discogs describes as “Small independent label whose speciality is vinyl only releases including
cover versions of classic psychedelia, prog rock, acid folk & krautrock”, and a quick glance learned
me I didn’t recognize any of these names. I think they bring in Jack Ellister and The Insektlife Cycle,
whereas the statics bring on Art Of The Memory Palace and Cheval Sombre, whom we also reviewed
last week. Art Of The Memory Palace has a fine piece of orchestral pop tones with John Barry like
arrangements; quite lush and friendly. Cheval Sombre goes an entirely way, with a sombre song
indeed, complete with a sorrowful violin part. Both songs fit the season, I thought. The jubilee and
the sadness of it, combined in two distinctive songs.
    Jack Ellister on the other side has a fairly conventional song of synths, drums and vocals, with
some odd production value, but somehow I was thinking about the 80s (again); it could have been
a minor hit back then, which is a great thing. The Insektlife Cycle has an instrumental piece of
twangy guitars and drums, and seems to be going further down the musical history line, but me
eludes where to it leads really, time-wise that is; something that is not part of musical history I
guess. It’s not bad, but it didn’t do much for me. This side I thought was less festive, but all
together a lovely little record with four good to great songs. Wish there were more like these. (FdW)
––– Address:

AMP – SWITCHED ON AND LIVE (CDR by Sound In Silence)

All right, I easily admit weeks, nay months pass without me thinking about AMP, whereas maybe
fifteen years ago I sought out their releases quite heavily, being all interested in post-rock,
psychedelic rock, ambient rock or whatever the term was we were using at that time. I told you
all of this, when I wrote about ‘All Of Yesterday Tomorrow’, their 3CD of retrospective stuff
reviewed in Vital Weekly 578. Richard Amp, or Richard F. Walker as he’s known to his mum and
dad, was the nucleus of this band, in which line up at one point or another you could also find
Dave Pearce (of Flying Saucer Attack), Matt Eliott (of Third Eye Foundation) and Robert Hampson
(of Main fame) plus many more. With this fluctuating line-up AMP delivered a whole bunch of CDs,
CDrs and limited vinyl and also played live, and with various band members AMP not always
sounded the same. Here we have a live CDR of four different shows, two from 1995, one each
from 1998 and 1999 and 2003, and the latter with five songs present. The 2003 concert was
recorded at a place called The Mezz in Breda, The Netherlands, of which I never heard, and has the
full band line up, with Kanne Charff on vocals, keyboard and effects, Richard Amp (guitar,
keyboards), Donald Ross Skinner (guitar) and Marc Challans (drums, programming, bass). This is
the full atmospheric experience, psychedelic, ambient, yet rocky and meandering about. Charff’s
voice in a way reminded me Cocteau Twins (live rather than studio) and sounded neatly post-
punky, while the others hammer away in loud waves of cascading sounds. It’s not difficult to
see that Amp selected five songs of this concert for inclusion as they are in great from. In the
1998 and 1999 shows AMP appears just as Charff and Amp in stripped down version, with the
1999 one being all acoustic and vocals but some fine reverb to suggest space and the 1998 of
the same duo freaking out over a drum machine, and probably the least interesting song, save for
some diversity. The 1995 pieces are a full band line-up again, with Amp and Charff along with Matt
Elliott (guitars, drum/drum machine) and Matt Jones (bass) and also space out in a bit of distorted
way, and it all sounds meaner than a few years later. This is an excellent release for space heads,
which simply can’t get enough of Amp. For me a fine reminder of stuff to play again, providing I
have some more time.
    I was pretty sure I heard the name Sarah Kemp before, either from her work as Brave Timbers,
but maybe as a member of Memory Drawings, Last harbour, Lanterns On The Lake, Anna Kashfi
and The Declining Winter, but I can’t find anything, so perhaps I might be wrong. She has released
music on labels Second Language and, when Brave Timbers became a duo on Gizeh Records. Five
of the seven pieces were all created during the recording of their second album ‘Hope’, which I
didn’t hear, so it makes it not easy to judge if we are dealing with a bunch of left-overs here,
topped with two other pieces. However, if these are throw away pieces, then what about the
original? I thought this was some great music. The two instruments at work here are guitar and
violin, plus sometimes piano and harmonium. It is not a live recording I would think as some of
these instruments sound at the same time, which, in all the delicate playing that is going on,
seems humanly impossible. So I would assume these instruments are layered together and
together make up from some great chamber folk music. Everything moves here with slow pace,
like slow snowflakes falling down. I believe one is supposed to say ‘pastoral’ music, if ever I know
what that is, exactly. With a minimum of studio technology, Brave Timbers know how suggest a
lot of atmosphere, and it comes in a very natural way. Excellent release for the winter season. (FdW)
––– Address:


More music by Romania’s Somnoroase Pasarele, of who we saw various releases this year (Vital
Weekly 1036, 1041, 1051 and 1057), all of which were on cassette; so is this one, but there is
also a CDR version. So far all of the music has been electronic, and this one is not different. The
early ones were a bit on the rhythmic side, whereas the latter two were more experimental, ambient
and psychedelic, with the last one, a thirty-minute piece on a double cassette compilation, their
best work so far. Here on ‘Tion’ we have two long pieces, which is something that on ‘Voma’ I
didn’t dig too well. Back then the long tracks had a sketch like idea and not altogether coherent
when it came towards a composition. I have no idea what ‘Tion’ stands for and from the bandcamp
description (in fact other reviews, rather than information) I was none the wiser. Somnoroase
Pasarel seem to be bouncing back towards using rhythm, even it’s more loops than actual rhythm
machines. There is quite some sequencing going on here, stirring up sounds in other machines and
with a shower of effects towards the end. There is a psychedelic quality to this music; partly
because of all the sound effects used, but also because of the minimalism it uses. Slowly sounds
change but it keeps having this driving force. It seems to have the same groove throughout but
it keeps changing colour and shape and there is me thinking of psychedelic music and krautrock;
these two long pieces have multiple ‘tracks’ inside them, but are linked up by sounds going from
one part to the next, giving all of this a sense of continuity. Some more shaping could have been
in place, I guess, and as such this seems to be the result of taping down one single session (or
two, counting both sides as one), but on a bunch of tracks and then later mixed down to stereo.
The recording date, which was from October 2013 to February 2014 and mixing in 2015 and
2016 seems to confirm this. I still think that previous work was the best thing I heard from them
so far but this easily ranks as ‘fine, solid’ in their catalogue so far. Headspace music for the
paranoids, I’d say, and I mean that in the gentlest of ways (FdW)
––– Address:

ANDERS BRØRBY – MULHOLLAND DRIVE, 1984 (cassette by Hyle Tapes)
  Animal Tapes)

Yeah, I know, I suck. I still haven’t seen Lynch’s ‘Mulholland Drive’ movie; there’s tons of good films
and books I haven’t seen or read. Life is short, there is always much work, and you know the drill.
So, can I review then a cassette named ‘Mulholland Drive, 1984’? Of course I can, since the cassette
by Anders Brørby, is not an alternative soundtrack to the movie of the same name, but rather a
soundtrack to an imaginary movie of the same name. So far I heard two releases by Brørby, which
sounded quite different from each other (see Vital Weekly 944 and 953), although in a way both
‘pop’ inspired. That is less the case I think on this cassette, even when ‘Defeat’ sounds like
Radiohead in an experimental mood, complete with Thom Yorke alike vocals. That is however an
exception to the rest of the pieces, in which Brørby plays his ambient cards. Using ‘processed field
recordings, granular synth-works, loops and improvised laptop sessions’, Brørby comes up with a
fifty minute album of some finer and darker sound scapes, which one could easily see fit in any
movie with little conversation, shady streetlights, smoky bars with a trumpet player on stage (in
‘A Sudden Sense Of Loss’) or a saxophone on the street (such as in ‘Handheld Weapon’) and a
midget from mars. Brørby has titles as ‘Black Room’, ‘The Unhappiest Places On Earth’ and
‘Deconstruction Of Mirages’, which might give you an indication as the nature of the atmospheres
evoked here. Quite a different release indeed, and one I enjoyed quite a lot; there is some fine
diversity in these pieces.
    The other new release with music by Anders Brørby is a split he did with Oomy Mozg. Brørby
has a twenty-minute piece that continues from the ‘Mulholland Drive, 1984’ cassette I just heard,
using laptop, field recordings and guitar, and aptly called (another continuing line!) ‘Music For
Imaginary Scenarios’ continues what I just heard but also takes matters a bit further down the
road, and Brørby may start out in a soft and relaxed way, the treatments here also take him
towards the land of noise, somewhere in the middle, and explores that for quite some time; maybe
a bit too long? I don’t mind a bit of noise, but I think his ambient laptop doodle sounds just a bit
better. Here I have no idea what kind of film would be suited for this soundtrack. Maybe it all stays
quite imaginary? Apart from the noise bit, this is not bad at all.
    The information regarding Oomny Mozg is a bit sparse, I think. A duo from Souderton, PA, of
Joel Dillow (Vocals/Strings/Programming/Synthesizers) and Kyle Valdes (Bass/Programming/
Synthesizers), and its “music created by tea-drinking punks, 2016′ as it says on the bandcamp
page. They recorded four pieces, of which the first has curious lo-fi old school punk bass and some
highly obscured sounds, but the second is more synth-punk of a cyber sort of way, which continues
in the next two pieces, albeit a bit less punk inspired I should think. Quite all right these four pieces
I thought. In a way it sounded quite retro, I thought, but not like something a lot of other people
are doing this moment, unless I miss out on them. Maybe the synth-punk scene is now way
overdue a revival? (FdW)
––– Address:
––– Address:


The cassette was in the 80s quite popular for the release of music by home-tapers, as they were
called back then. But one of the downfalls of the medium was what some people saw the flood of
releases of people just ‘fiddling with their synthesizer for an hour, and release that’, and some
musicians openly admitted just doing that. That made that the cassette underground, and it still
is. I am not sure if Kai Niggeman and Nils Quak thought of that when they decided to call their
release ‘an evening playing the modular synthesizer’. Niggeman uses a Buchla 200e Electric Music
Box and Quak an Eurorack Modular System, a Ciat Lombarde Plumbutter and Native Instruments
Reaktor. They played separately on a night in May 2016 so I assume side A is by Niggeman and
the other side is by Quak. Obviously with modular systems things are much more complex than
with a model available in the 80s for home use, and thereof results these days a much more
enjoyable as stand alone releases. In that respect the situation is not the same. What happens in
this hour of music is quite interesting to hear, and each has his own approach. In general Niggeman
has a somewhat loose approach in using a variety of sounds that can be colourful drones, imitating
dripping water and warm oscillations. He moves from piece to piece, bit to part, part to bit, with
considerable ease, and is on a big journey through ideas and motives. Nils Quak on the other hand
is someone who likes to things slowly and has entered drone land a lot more. On his side one can
distinguish two or three parts, of which the first is a long slow enveloping drone piece, and the
second, short one, a logical extension of the first one and the third part starts out drone like but
ends on a broken down, single click. Two different approaches on this tape and they both very
well. The cassette is definitely not the landfill of unwanted sounds here. (FdW)
––– Address:

SWEAT TONGUE – DARK STAR (cassette by Cold Milk)
SELF INDULGENT ASSHOLE (cassette by Cold Milk)

For me Rotterdam’s Sweat Tongue is surely one of the very few current Ultra bands in The
Netherlands. Period. Don’t believe whatever anyone else says about rock bands recording on
four track machines to proof their Ultra-ness. That’s just over ground rock with lo-fi recording.
If you know what I mean, fine, if not, don’t care. Ultra was a very short-lived Dutch phenomena
at the end of 1980 and early 1981, which in short was the country’s answer to No New York. I
wrote about this before, many times actually, as part of 2012’s Ultra revival/reunion events and
releases. It is all about the freedom of music, the do-it-yourself attitude towards playing and
releasing music, things very much happening in the ‘now’. Let’s create today, for tomorrow things
might be different again. In that regard Sweat Tongue is an old band, having been around for some
two or more years and this trio (drums, guitar, vocals, electronics/cassettes) is something that is
worth seeing live. Now they have become a quartet, with the addition of a bass player, but in no
way they are now more conventional in their approach. They play some great no wave ‘rock’ music
that defies melody, artistry, logic but sometimes it has a great rhythm, loud guitars and a great
bass, while the singer moans, groans, whispers and shouts. This total free music, but one easily
hears that these four people know what they are doing; this is not one of those ‘let’s pick up a
guitar and see what it can do’ bands. Sweat Tongue is a great band, both in concert, but also on
tape. This is their best release so far.
    Behind the Self Indulgent Asshole we find someone who has an absolute great little coffee
space in the southern parts of Rotterdam, where he also puts up excellent little concerts. It was
here that I saw Sweat Tongue live. There is a small card with this tape that says ““being on stage
@ MiMa doing an interview with my old techno records the records were set up in their natural
habitat and me self indulgent asshole interviewed them through the amplifier I love the most”,
which I have no idea what it could mean. Listening to the music on this cassette didn’t make me
any wiser, I think. There are distorted electronics, transforming rhythms (from records) and the
master of ceremonies shouts on top of that, with a bunch of delay pedals; he does that
occasionally. I would think all of this is recorded on a cassette, as the whole thing sounds pretty
lo-fi, which adds to the noisy fun of it all. Sometimes he slides into a full groove mode, yet very
distorted. Rhythm ‘n noise anyone? That’s what you get here. Quite an obscure piece of music,
but it did work quite well. Just like Sweat Tongue there seems to be no rules, no guidelines and
no skills required, but deep down you know here’s someone who exactly knows what he is doing.
––– Address:


Previously music by Ross Manning has been released by labels such as Vitrine, Greedy Ventilator
and Room40, but somehow, I think, never made to these pages. He is from Brisbane, Australia
and he works ‘with optics, projection, light and sound’, as More Mars tells us. Manning creates
his own instruments since a very early age and on this cassette we find four of his pieces using
these DIY electronics and “shelf-made string pannel” [sic]. The pieces are slightly chaotic in
approach, with many sounds overlapping each other, thus creating nervous patterns. On ‘Gold
Spray In The Kinetic Upheaval’ it sounded like he has recorded three gamelan orchestras at the
same time, but it works rather well, I think. The longer you listen, the more patterns can be
discovered. Also rhythmical is the first piece, ‘Polaris’ but here it is a little less chaotic, and maybe
it is because this seems to me a very direct, improvised recording. ‘Deep Learning’ is a drone piece
of sustaining electric distortion and what seems to be street sounds, whereas ‘Drnk Poets’ is
something completely different; here Manning uses radio sounds in a collage form, which may
or may not sound like a bunch of drunken poets. All of these pieces served for me as a fine
introduction into the sound world of Manning. (FdW)
––– Address:

1. Jean-Marc Boucher <>

homework – year 1″ is the first volume in an ongoing series of compilations which will hopefully
be released at the end of each year and will gather unreleased tracks recorded/finalised during
the year by as much taâlem artists as possible.

the idea came from a cassette compilation named “opus 1” released in 1992 by the french label
les nouvelles propagandes featuring brume and internal fusion amongst other french artists. the
idea was to release each year tracks by the same artists. there was sadly no other editions…

inspired by this concept, we’ve asked every artist who had a release on taâlem during these past
15 years to contribute an unreleased track recorded/finalised in 2016.

a total of 52 artists have sent us a track for this first edition. most are still active, some have
changed their project name, others got back from their retirement for this occasion!

we have unfortunately not been able to gather everyone… some artists have stopped creating
music, some have disappeared, others we lost contact with and couldn’t get in touch again,
others didn’t have enough time to contribute…
we’ll try to gather even more artists next year!

this compilation is dedicated to akifumi nakajima and robert gray brownstead.

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All written by Frans de Waard (FdW), Dolf Mulder (DM) <>,
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