Archive for the ‘electroacoustic’ Category

“Sounds Like Radio” debut this Sunday!

April 3, 2010

This Sunday April 4th, from 3-5am CST on WSIU-FM, is the debut of my new show, “Sounds Like Radio”.

I’ve never gotten to listen to one of my own shows on radio before, so I’ll be liveblogging the whole thing here at Startling Moniker.

Be sure to tune in at WSIU’s live stream! Also, send me some mail–I want to know what you think about the show! –DaveX

Liveblogging! Commentary for “ITDE” 3/13/10

March 13, 2010

I made it into the station a little bit early today, just in time to interrupt some sort of Justin Timberlake madness in the CD player. Yikes. I’ve got a whole lot of good music with me this morning, so I know this will be a great show. Karthik Kakarala is my phone-in guest, live from Texas. He’s been attending the cool kids prom at NX35, so I’ve done my best to convince him to duct tape a cell phone to a guitar and have at it. We’ll see how that goes.

Other big news? My new show, “Sounds Like Radio” kicks off on April 4th, from 3-5 a.m., CST. I’ll definitely be posting more about this as the day gets closer– but for now, I’m just going to hammer it in a little at a time.

Eckhard Gerdes, Shelf Life — Blues For Osiris (from “Scuff Mud“)
Joe Foster, Hong Chulki, Takahiro Kawaguchi, Ryu Hankil — Oscillation, Vacillation (from Balloon & Needle release of the same name)
Gary Verkade, Kenneth Gaburo — Antiphony X (Winded) [from “Winded,” on Innova)
Eckhard Gerdes, Shelf Life — Z. Buzz
Karthik Kakarala — LIVE phone-in performance for WDBX-FM, 3/13/10
Ralph White & The Hora Flora Sound System — Wildflower Face, Insect Eyes (from self-titled album on Resipiscent)
John von Seggern — Hyper Erhu (this, and next two selections, taken from “Sonic Circuits VIII,” on Innova)
Antun Blazinovic — Elements
David Jaggard — Mary & Ann
Rodrigo Costanzo — I Am Your Density, Section 2 (from “I Am Your Density,” on The Noise Upstairs Records)

Liveblogging! Commentary for “ITDE” 2/13/10

February 13, 2010

I just finished reading Gordon Hempton’s remarkable book “One Square Inch of Silence,” which has left me full of thoughts about the relationship between sound and place. While I’m working to arrange an on-air interview with the author sometime soon, I hope you can enjoy these recordings.

Also, I have a head cold– hooray for long tracks! Next week, I’ll try to be more energetic. Oh! The station’s little clock just died. Apparently, it needs to be more energetic as well…

Cesar Bolanos — Divertimento I
Cesar Bolanos — Divertimento III
Cesar Bolanos — I-10-AIFG/Rbt-1
KGB — Noise Forest I
KGB — Noise Forest II
KGB — Noise Forest III
Malcolm Goldstein — The Seasons: Vermont, Summer
Malcolm Goldstein — The Seasons: Vermont, Autumn
Malcolm Goldstein — The Seasons: Vermont, Winter
Malcolm Goldstein — The Seasons: Vermont, Spring
Annea Lockwood — A Sound Map of the Danube, Donauwirt to Samorin
Annea Lockwood — A Sound Map of the Danube, Esztergom to Keselyus
Golden Roses — Monkey pie chair brain banana orange teeth toilet screaming (this track, and the next, taken from “Dictaphonia” vol.6)
Thee Virginal Brides — Accanto Al Cimitero
Conrad Schnitzler — DictaCon (excerpt)

Liveblogging! Commentary for “ITDE” 2/6/10

February 6, 2010

I’m playing fine examples of improvisational and ensemble works today, and needless to say, I’m really stoked about all the music I’m presenting. I’ve also got a bit of homework for my readers– suggest a book about sound for me! I’m self-directing a sound studies course for myself, so keep that framework in mind.

Volvox — Touched By A Mouth That’s Wrong
Volvox — Cardboard Cupboard
Phil Hargreaves, Glenn Weyant — Do Not Sing
Phil Hargreaves, Glenn Weyant — A Door Is Open
Phil Hargreaves, Glenn Weyant — Force of Circumstance
Big City Orchestra — Mantra (previously unreleased track from “White Fungus, Issue 11” zine compilation CD)
Shelf Life — tkcrdsuow
Shelf Life — cuswodkrt
Shelf Life — wkuctdrso
New Haven Improvisers Collective — Roger and Out
New Haven Improvisers Collective — BCS Triac
Keith Jarrett — Rotation
Ratchet Orchestra — Love On A Faraway Planet (from “Live at the Sala Rosa, November 28, 2007”)
Thuja — Pine Cone Temples
Anla Courtis, Seiichi Yamamoto, Yoshimi — Untitled 4 (from Public Eyesore release, “Live at Kanadian“)
id M Theft Able — v ide touch ess?
id M Theft Able — Split Angels (in tow no tow)
id M Theft Able — ovum crude (lasers out)
if, Bwana — Connecticut
Matt DavignonMesonychoteuthis

Liveblogging! Commentary for “ITDE” 1/30/10

January 30, 2010

I nearly had to arrive at the station by sleigh this morning– Southern Illinois is having a bit of a blizzard right now. Naturally, the station was empty when I arrived; I don’t think other people are quite as nuts as I am to drive in this yuck. Fortunately for you, staying at home near the radio is all that I require.

For today’s broadcast, I’ll be playing some of the winning entries from the Canadian Electroacoustic Community’s annual Jeu de Temps/Times Play competition for young and emerging Canadian sound artists. This year, a partnership with Germany’s national electroacoustic association DEGEM brings German electroacoustic works into the scope of this program as well. I’ll be speaking with three of the winning composers, so you’ll want to stick around! Here’s the lineup:

Florian Hartlieb, “Im Vorderen Zimmer des hinteren Raums” ~ 5am
Nicolas Wiese, ~ “Vertikalzeit”  5:30am
Yota Kobayashi, “Kakusei” ~ 6am

Nicolas Wiese reminded me of the upcoming “re(((Sound)))” exhibition at the Cecille R. Hunt Gallery in St. Louis, where he will have a piece in the installation. Ghost Ice fans will also want to check this out– an opportunity for a rare sighting in the wild. The opening reception will be held this Friday, from 6-8 p.m.

M/N/M/L — Breath (this, and next four tracks, taken from “Serge Modular Users 2009”)
CRAY (Ross Healy) — STRK
John DuVal — Distress Call
Benge — 1972 Serge Modular, from Twenty Systems
kkonkkrete — Untitled 1
Olivier GirouardSuite_04
Florian HartliebIm Vorderen Zimmer des hinteren Raums
Interview with Florian Hartlieb, WDBX-FM 1/30/10
Nicolas WieseVertikalzeit
Interview with Nicolas Wiese, WDBX-FM 1/30/10
Yota KobayashiKakusei
Yota Kobayashi — Tensho
Steve Lalonde — Quand la nuit se referme

Return of the Downloads

December 15, 2009

Here’s a ton of downloads for you– I’ve re-upped them at Mediafire due to the ongoing weirdness in the bit-torrent community, so these are good and solid links. Click on any date to go to the Mediafire download page, or click “playlist” to see the original liveblogged entry for the specific broadcast. Each file is under 200 megabytes, though some are much less. Be sure to share these with your friends!

12/5/09 (part 1) – Interview with Tristan Perich; Craig Colorusso/Joel Westerdale phone-in performance on WDBX-FM (playlist)

12/5/09 (part 2) – Karthik Kakarala, DaveX, LIVE @ WDBX

11/28/09 – This show is dedicated to Acid Mothers’ Temple, Katie Holmes, and Fred Savage. Features Terry Riley, Cluster & Eno, Eyes Like Saucers. (playlist)

11/21/09 – Analog goodness from Resipiscent label, Brian Eno, and the slowest “Yakety Sax” ever. (playlist)

11/14/09 – LIVE @ WDBX-FM; Karthik Kakarala & Tom Vasilj,  Malaria, Oblive, Wilmer Incognito, group improv w/ DaveX (commentary)

11/7/09 – Frank Rothkamm, Wadada Leo Smith, Ironing & Chefkirk, Art Jerks (playlist)

10/24/09 – Jeff Arnal, Edgetone Records goodies, Eddie the Rat, Sabrina Siegel (playlist)

10/10/09 – LIVE @ WDBX-FM, Matt Weston!!! Show also features recordings from Gordon Beeferman, George Korein, Focus Quintet (playlist)

9/26/09 – LIVE phone-in set/interview from Swamp of Pus label owner Novasak, plus an interview with George Korein. Also, lots of previously-unreleased Korein recordings, and an extended selection of Glenn Weyant awesomeness. (playlist)

9/19/09 – Improv saxophonist Randall Hall classes up the Hi-Life Room with THREE live sets, and a hands-on demonstration of extended technique. What does bubble wrap in the bell of a sax sound like? We do the things Mythbusters won’t try. Play along at home, and clap when you hear us say “John Cage.” (playlist)

9/12/09 – Harold Schellinx phones in a sound tour of his home, and Trash Ant provides the most art-damaged cassette tape EVER. (playlist)

9/5/09 – “It’s Too Damn Early” salutes BKPR, and jams to Peter Gordon’s “Life is Boring”. (playlist)

8/29/09 – Black Beast of Arrrghhh, LIVE phone-in performance on WDBX-FM. Also features recordings from Hal McGee’s “Dictaphonia” series. (playlist)

8/22/09 – Ironing, LIVE phone-in performance on WDBX-FM. Also features recordings from Transhumans, Bob Marsh, Rich West, and the “Dictaphonia” series. (playlist)

8/15/09 – Ernesto Diaz-Infante AND Mike Khoury do live phone-in sets for WDBX-FM. You get a car! You get a car! YOU get a car! (playlist)

8/8/09 – Unless you own a Brekekekexkoaxkoax DVD, cool microcassette recordings of Nassau from Ironing, and an alternate version of Alan Licht’s “Remington Khan,” you’d better grab this episode! (playlist)

8/3/09 – DaveX stars as a teen hockey player well-liked and respected among his coaches and teammates. He battles to hide the truth from his elders and peers — that he is actually an enormous lizard. A special daytime broadcast also featuring long-time listener favorite DJ Mo, and a subliminal animal theme! (playlist)

7/25/09 – Not quite the full show, but enough to cover Lonely Procession’s live set, and a lot of weirdness on either side. Well worth your time! (playlist)

6/27/09 – Karthik Kakarala, Tony Youngblood, DaveX, LIVE @ WDBX-FM. Recorded exactly one month before Tony got kicked off WRVU-FM, and setting off a chain reaction of community member shows being cancelled!

6/27/09 – Praey, LIVE @ WDBX-FM

6/20/09 – Marathon, LIVE @ WDBX-FM

6/13/09 – Warm Climate, phone-in performance, on WDBX-FM

Reviews for 12/8/09

December 8, 2009

Matt Weston – “Seasick Blackout” – 7272 Music

This is not an EP. It’s a three-track, sixteen-minute treasure, filled to the brim with Weston’s signature percussion and electronics. If Tom Waits was an orca (a drunken orca, natch) then he’d make music like “You’re Not That’s Right,” which opens the disc. Off-kilter, sobbing kettle drum noises issue mournful wails amongst the careless clattering of tin. “I Just Saw Fog and Dust” brings us to a clearing in an electronic cuckoo forest, where Weston is a one-man Arkestra. Amazingly, this doesn’t seem too hyperbolic as I listen to it for the umpteenth time today. But really, nothing compares to the final act, which I have described poorly as sounding like an ocean liner AND a freight train capsizing in the Arctic. “This October, All Octobers” is Weston’s opus– an arresting and majestic work of musique concrète that not only evokes nostalgic disaster and sci-fi film, but simultaneously re-awakens listeners to the immense power of sound. Most highly recommended.

Tomoko Sauvage – “Ombrophilia” – and/OAR

I’ve a special love of water music. Recently, I fashioned a weighted multi-ziploc bag enclosure in which to sink my microcassette recorder in the tub. I floated a few Corelle salad dishes about, dripping water inside them, while gently tapping their sides with a pair of homemade superball/chopstick mallets. I ended up with about 10 minutes of ethereal, globular beauty captured roughly in a tiny tape. Turns out that Sauvage did something similar, substituting wooden spoons for my mallets, and hydrophones in place of my sunken tape recorder. I might be a little jealous to find something so close to home making its way to and/OAR, but who wouldn’t be? However, Sauvage has done it properly– exploring many angles of her setup, from a calming refractive series of chimes to a frenetic clashing of dishware; and making a full-length study of the possible sounds that could be achieved. And of course, it all sounds great. Every soft stroke of wood upon porcelain is perfect, and the reflection of sounds from off one another audible as well. Lovely stuff.

Beth Laurin – “1984” – Firework Editions

Here’s a strange one… multi-media artist Beth Laurin curates an assemblage of tape recordings made in 1984, creating low-key creations to no apparent purpose. Occasionally, something drifts out of this slow-motion hodgepodge to get your attention, but mostly, its just one aimless cut after another. “What do you say about eating?” she asks in one track. Later– “This is so dangerous. It could go on forever.” Yeah, it seems that way.

Liveblogging! Commentary for “ITDE” 12/5/09

December 5, 2009

I’ve got many cool things coming up for today’s broadcast– an interview with Tristan Perich, a live phone-in performance with Craig Colorusso, and an improvisational set featuring Karthik Kakarala. It’s a lot to fit in, so I’m typing quickly!

Update: Today’s show went very well. The Perich interview was fascinating. I could have talked with him a lot longer, so there’s definitely room for a “part two” sometime in the future. Colorusso was joined by Diving Bell collaborator Joel Westerdale, who provided drums for what turned out to be one of the sketchiest phone connections ever. This should be a real trip to hear again; or to catch for the first time if you missed it. Finally, Karthik Kakarala and I got around to the “small sounds” improvisation that I have been after for the past couple weeks. I’m incredibly happy with how it went, and am looking forward to exploring more of these ideas soon. When I have downloads for this show available, you’ll be the first to know!

T.D. Skatchit & Company — Voodoo Skatch
T.D. Skatchit & Company — Aurora Rising
T.D. Skatchit & Company — Carnival of Skatch
T.D. Skatchit & Company — From beyond (for Toyoji)
T.D. Skatchit & Company — Popcorn Skatch
T.D. Skatchit & Company — Gargoyle
Interview with Tristan Perich
Tristan Perich1-bit Symphony (excerpt)
Tristan Perich — Active Field
Craig Colorusso, Joel Westerdale — LIVE phone-in performance for WDBX-FM, 12/5/09
Interview with Craig Colorusso
Juppala Kaapio — Kagami Hebi (Mirror Snake) (this and next two tracks from “Crows of the World, vol.2” on Last Visible Dog Records)
Renato Rinaldi — The Bite
Bosch’s With You — Movements Under Water
DaveX, Karthik Kakarala — LIVE performance at WDBX-FM, 12/5/09
Noertker’s Moxie — Whirligig
Noertker’s Moxie — What the Water Gave Me

Reviews for 12/4/09

December 4, 2009

Tom Nunn and David Michalak – “T.D. Skatchit & Company” – Edgetone Records

Nunn and Michalak form the core duo for this remarkable series of improvisational pieces featuring Nunn’s latest soundmaker– the Skatchbox, which basically amounts to the world’s first cardboard synthesizer at this pair’s more-than-capable hands. I don’t doubt that these two could carry the disc on their own, but happily, they invite some friends along. I particularly enjoyed Aurora’s guest vox (she apparently being of the mono-monikered people of Cher Town) on “Gargoyle,” where alarmingly videogame-like Skatchbox sounds burble alongside the sing-song of what I’ll describe as Littlest Pet Shop jacuzzi erotica. Everything I’ve heard from Nunn so far has been pure genius; but this album is his best yet. Pick it up and hear why I’ve been letting all my electronics languish in the garage!

Noertker’s Moxie – “druidh lacunae” – Edgetone Records

A nice collection of quartet and quintet semi-improvised pieces featuring Bill Noertker on contrabass. Not the sort of thing I’d personally consider essential, but I’m qualifying that by adding that my jazz background is rather slim. But, for every piece like “L’Elephant Blanc” that was a bit too in the groove to capture my interest, there tended to be another– “Whirligig,” for instance– that pulled me back. The repeated theme of “What the Water Gave Me” is also quite pleasant, and wouldn’t feel too out-of-place on the next disc, either…

Eddie the Rat – “Food for the Moon Too Soon” – Edgetone Records

I’ve actually had a work copy of this one for nearly a year, but I’m still finding new life in it with every play. Hard to believe that an album this utterly luxuriant was recorded in a public access television space! Blessedly weird, cyclical structures form sort of a rib cage which the ensemble populates with all the usual biological ephemera– drunken chimes, ringing guitar… it’s the land of forms, as brought to you by the nightmare circus metaphor division. As odd as “Food for the Moon Too Soon” can be, I still find a positive (and sizable) listener response every time I’ve played it on my show. Recommended, especially for persons who need to wring a lot of listens from a single purchase.

Go-Go Fightmaster – “Sound 1” – Edgetone Records

Here’s one I just can’t seem to get into. I think the problem is the inclusion of a bit too much all-purpose free jazz skronk in the mix, even if it is usually doled out in miniature half-minute tracks scattered across the disc. At other times, a martial linearity gets me down. If “The Cosmic Cogitator” reminds you of anything but some of Tolkein’s Uruk-Hai marching off to war, I’d be surprised.

TONIGHT! Tristan Perich and Lesley Flanigan at Lemp Arts

December 1, 2009

Tristan Perich contacted me a few minutes ago, to hip me (and you!) to tonight’s activities at the Lemp Neighborhood Arts Center. This is why I wish Lemp was a little closer. And now, watch me cheat the blogging gods by quoting liberally from Perich’s e-mail:

“I’m a New York-based composer, lugging a harpsichord around the country and playing a new composition for it with low-fi 1-bit electronics (an extension of 1-Bit Music, my circuit-in-a-cd-case album from a few years ago). Lesley Flanigan performs on her own hand-built speaker feedback instruments, which generate tones that she layers on top of her own voice.”

For my next trick, I will attempt an astounding feat of journalistic prestidigitation– copy-pasting the press release!

“New York artists Tristan Perich and Lesley Flanigan team up this Fall for a series of unique electronic music performances across the United States. Perich’s duet “Dual Synthesis” (for harpsichord and 1-bit electronics) and Flanigan’s “Amplifications” (for voice and speaker electronics) explore the viscerality of electronic music. Mixing primitive sounds from their own hand-constructed instruments with the harpsichord and voice, each choreographs intersections between acoustic and electric sound.

For composer/inventor Tristan Perich, Dual Synthesiscomes on the heels of finishing his new album, “1-Bit Symphony.” An electronic composition in five movements on a single microchip, “1-Bit Symphony” expands on the format of his 2005 release, “1-Bit Music.” A departure from traditional recordings, “1-Bit Symphony” literally ‘performs’ its music live when turned on. A complete music circuit, programmed by the artist and packaged inside a standard CD jewel case, plays the composition through a headphone jack mounted in the case itself. Probing the foundations of digital sound, “1-Bit Symphony” celebrates the virtuosity of electricity. The new album, to be released by Cantaloupe Music, will be available exclusively for presale at performances during the tour.

Artist/vocalist Lesley Flanigan’s tour of Amplifications introduces her first solo album for speaker electronics and voice. Moving among a cluster of wires and microphones, she builds compositional frameworks that grow and break apart. Her speaker instruments, employing a built-in microphone, create pulsing tones through their own feedback, which Flanigan samples and weaves into her own vocal patterns. The result is music that hovers somewhere between noise experiments and lyrical song, resonating with organic transparency.”

So here’s the moral of the story– if you’re able, get over to Lemp and check these folks out– and when you’re standing in line for that sweet pre-sale copy of “1-Bit Symphony,” remember to pick up a copy for the awesome blogger who told you about it!


New York artists Tristan Perich and Lesley Flanigan team up this Fall for a 
series of unique electronic music performances across the United States. 
Perich's duet /Dual Synthesis/ (for harpsichord and 1-bit electronics) and 
Flanigan's /Amplifications/ (for voice and speaker electronics) explore the 
viscerality of electronic music. Mixing primitive sounds from their own 
hand-constructed instruments with the harpsichord and voice, each choreographs 
intersections between acoustic and electric sound. 

Liveblogging! Commentary for “ITDE” 11/21/09

November 21, 2009

Hard to believe it’s getting on this late in the year, isn’t it? For today’s show, I’m hoping very much to get a chance to go back to work on those “small sounds” I wanted to hear last week. With a bit of luck, my regular coterie of performers won’t be too worn out from the past three (highly successful) days of taking over the SIUC Student Center during the “All Together Now” fest. I assume that footage and recordings will start leaking out over the coming week, but I’m pretty confident saying that it will be no substitute for having been present. Nick definitely did the Southern Illinois oddmusic community a solid by putting this thing together. Thanks, Nick!

Loachfillet — The Automated Bowl of Soup
Loachfillet — Somnambulist Synchronisms, Part 2
Loachfillet — Hell
Harold Budd, Brian Eno — Not Yet Remembered
Harold Budd, Brian Eno — The Chill Air
Harold Budd, Brian Eno, Daniel Lanois — Their Memories
Harold Budd, Brian Eno — Among Fields of Crystal
Harold Budd, Brian Eno — Wind in Lonely Fences
Harold Budd, Brian Eno — Failing Light
Harold Budd, Brian Eno, Daniel Lanois — Foreshadowed
Harold Budd, Brian Eno, Daniel Lanois — An Echo of Night
Harold Budd, Brian Eno, Daniel Lanois — Still Return
Karlheinz Stockhausen — Momente, side A (1965 version, Nonesuch)
The Guitar Factory — King Herod’s Song
Karlheinz Stockhausen — Momente, side B
DaveX — Improv w/ “Yakety Sax” 45rpm single
John DuVal — Distress Call
Benge — “1972 Serge Modular” From “Twenty Systems”
kkonkkrete — Untitled 1
cebec — Transformer Substation
Hans Grusel — Quarintimes
Electronic Waste Product — Picket Fences
Carlos Giffoni — All the Mistakes I Made During the Caribbean Winter

Liveblogging! Commentary for “ITDE” 10/10/09

October 10, 2009

I’m kicking off today’s show (#369!) with a few seven-inchers from Generate Records, percussionist Jeff Arnal’s label. Since I’m playing these, I figured I might bring in some older stuff he’s on as well, so you can look forward to a few deeper cuts this week too!

Speaking of percussionists, Matt Weston is scheduled to make an appearance here in the Hi-Life Room today! I’ve heard that his Lemp Arts set may have been cancelled, though, so we’ll have to see if he still makes it here.

YES! Matt Weston is IN the Hi-Life Room. Amazing things will be happening very soon.

Just finished playing a large portion of George Korein’s “Another Corpse” album.

Gordon Beeferman — No Meat
Ernesto Diaz-Infante, Jeff ArnalBrooklyn Mantra pt.1
Gordon Beeferman Far Interlude
The Focus Quintet — Dedicated
The Focus Quintet — Foreward
The Focus Quintet — Acknowledgements
Rev.99 — The Price of Bananas
George Korein — Rotodrone Encroaching!
George Korein — Squawking Corpse Rotodrone
George Korein — Squawking Sinking
George Korein — Flying Corpse: Liftoff
George Korein — Flying Corpse: Peak Altitude
George Korein — Flying Corpse: Evasive Manuevers
George Korein — Flying Corpse: Acceleration
George Korein — Flying Corpse: Crash Landing
George Korein — Flying Corpse: Flying Corpse Flies Again
Neil Rolnick — Hammer & Hair
Matt Weston — LIVE performance at WDBX-FM 10/10/09
New Haven Improvisers Collective — Schrodinger’s Wolverine
New Haven Improvisers Collective — You Me Who
New Haven Improvisers Collective — Suspended In Amber

This big show will impress her… friends!

August 4, 2009

August 15th is going to be incredible for “It’s Too Damn Early” listeners– even if it’s shaping up to be a hectic morning for me. Here’s what’s on the schedule:

First off, we have two phone-in guests that I’m VERY excited about. Ernesto Diaz-Infante, whose work includes everything from ethereal piano to improv noise, has been one of my favorites since hearing his 1999 release “Ucross Journal.” At the time, I wasn’t sure what to do with it exactly, but I’ve certainly paid attention to its continued ability to capture my attention and interest over the years.

Mike Khoury, whose free violin improvisations have featured on many of my broadcasts, will also be phoning in his own performance. I don’t know exactly what to expect from either of these guys, so you’d better just tune in and find out for yourself.

If this wasn’t enough, I’m also playing host to visiting musicians in the Hi-Life Room. Direct from a bill with Dan Godston the previous evening, I’ll be joined by Focus Group and Falcon Buddies. I’ve challenged Focus Group to showcase their experimental leanings– and while the rabid prog-fans at the following night’s Swamp show will surely give them a pass, I plan to lay a similar request with Falcon Buddies.

on purpose for money

Liveblogging! Commentary for “ITDE” 4/25/09

April 25, 2009

Things seem awfully calm here after last week’s Noise Summit, that’s about all I can say so far. Karthik Kakarala has a set worked up that he’ll be performing later in the show– apparently I’ll be doing some reading, though I haven’t been briefed fully yet.

I’m starting off today’s show with some Edgetone Records material, all Thollem McDonas-centric stuff. The first, from self-titled disc from Bloom: Rent Romus, Steven Baker, McDonas, Jon Brumit… then a duo of Baker and McDonas, “Lunar Etudes Time Differentials”… and why not? A Romus/McDonas outing, “Sudden Aurora,” as well! There’s a rather striking instrument photographed on the rear of the second disc– a metal ball, with a protruding, cylindrical neck strung in the round, culminating in something like a mushroom-ish headstock. I’d guess it is played with a bow. Neat stuff!

As for McDonas, I can’t help but think he uses every part of the piano– reminds me of the old Far Side gag with the guy holding up some mangled buffalo organ– “except this, we have no idea what it’s for.”

I’m digging this new Pogus Productions release, “Shadow Machine,” by Tom Hamilton and Bruce Eisenbeil. Kinda reminds me of Na’s “Na Is Nice” disc on Pax Recordings from a few years back. It’s rather random, but in a pleasant way. I could definitely see this becoming one of my long-range favorites… it’s going to merit many, many entertaining listens.

I’m now playing from “The Passage Between,” a fine collection of Randall Hall’s saxophone improvisations out now on the Innova label. I’m happy to learn that Hall hails from Augustana College– I wonder if it might be possible to get him down here for a performance? Regardless, there’s a lot of fine playing on this disc. I’m especially taken with Hall’s interactions with Jonathon Kirk as Pendulum, with Kirk processing Hall’s saxophone in intriguing ways. I appreciate Kirk’s light touch here; he doesn’t mangle Hall out of existence, but he’s still very much central to what’s going on. There are interesting “control” issues present in an improvisation situation such as this, it takes a special bond between performers to make it work.

Karthik Kakarala is performing his live set now. It has a theme– my birthday! I have introduced the concept of the “continuous birthday,” so I hope you’re tuned in, and taking notes.

Now I’m playing Frank Rothkamm’s “Frank Genius Is Star Struck,” one of my most favorite albums of this year. It’s gloriously Rothkamm, and that’s probably the best way to explain it, too.

Oh! Before I finish– let me know if you want a copy of the Noise Summit 2009 CDR. I have 9 copies remaining, though some may end up at the local record store for free distro. In other words, get your claim in early. If you live far away, give me a few days to get the download together.

Bloom — Stamen
Bloom — Chandelier
Steven Baker, Thollem McDonas — Perigee Dirge
Steven Baker, Thollem McDonas — Radio Below
Rent Romus, Thollem McDonas — Intimation Dusk
Rent Romus, Thollem McDonas — Of Reflection Veil
Tom Hamilton, Bruce Eisenbeil — Dusting Off Dada
Tom Hamilton, Bruce Eisenbeil — Dryer Mouth
Tom Hamilton, Bruce Eisenbeil — Shadow Machine
Tom Hamilton, Bruce Eisenbeil — Dot Dot Dot
Tom Hamilton, Bruce Eisenbeil — Mars Fell on Alabama
Randall Hall, Jonathon Kirk — Three Reflections on Eternity: Awakening
Randall Hall, Jonathon Kirk — Three Reflections on Eternity: Loss
Randall Hall, Jonathon Kirk — Three Reflections on Eternity: Apocalypse
Karthik Kakarala — Live @ WDBX-FM
Frank Rothkamm — Atari
Frank Rothkamm — Chelsea Girl
Frank Rothkamm — La Vie
Frank Rothkamm — Black in the Sky
Frank Rothkamm — Q
Frank Rothkamm — Roll X Tones
Frank Rothkamm — Vast
Frank Rothkamm — Elvis

Liveblogging! Commentary for “ITDE” 4/4/09

April 4, 2009

Last night to the flicks. All war films. One very good one of a DJ attempting to bring a modicum of creativity to a disinterested, careless population inhabiting some sleepy town. Audience much amused by shots of this great fat man wallowing about in the ether, then you saw the gunsights…

Postscript: Today’s show went very well. Although I’ve taken shows through some strange territory before, I will admit that I was surprised to make it all the way from Arcane Device to a live field recording of downtown Carbondale, Illinois. My musical thoughts have been partly concerned with bringing the external inside lately, but it was only during the last few minutes of the broadcast that I got the idea to switch from streaming bird sounds to the live ones outdoors– mind you, I wasn’t certain I had a mic at the studio sensitive enough for the job– but I’m very happy with the end result. I think there is a germ for a future show in this experience; it will be interesting to see where this leads! Oddly enough, I found a Folkways birdsong LP this morning, at a yard sale following the show. I’m going to take that as some minor confirmation that I’m on the right track.

Arcane Device — Seventeen Ambiguous Figures
Pillars of Heaven — The Old Ways
Asmus Tietchens — D3
Guilty Connector — Rainforest of Equilibrium
Maja S.K. Ratkje and Lasse Marhaug – Music For Faking
Arcane Device — Improvisations for Feedback, Studio (C-side)
Arcane Device — Improvisations for Feedback, Studio (D-side)
Philip Samartzis, Michael Vorfeld — Schaube
Malcolm Goldstein — The Seasons: Vermont (1980-82), Summer
Malcolm Goldstein — The Seasons: Vermont (1980-82), Autumn
Malcolm Goldstein — The Seasons: Vermont (1980-82), Winter
Malcolm Goldstein — The Seasons: Vermont (1980-82), Spring
Birdsong Radio — Live Dawn Chorus Birdsong Stream
DaveX — Field Recording, Downtown Carbondale, 224 N. Washington 6:20 a.m.

Liveblogging! Commentary for “ITDE” 2/21/09

February 21, 2009

Still no DJ to host the 2-4 a.m. slot, so I decided to come in a bit early. I really enjoy adding the extra hour to my broadcast; three-and-a-half hours is just perfect for “It’s Too Damn Early.” I’m going to be making a bit more effort to speak on-air today– although, I’ll admit, I’m really compelled to just stay silent and let the music speak for itself. It’s a battle!

Playing the Misco minidisc now– damn, this is brilliant stuff. Seriously, go buy it.

Ack. Someone just asked me if I meant “Leeroy Jenkins,” some sort of character from World of Warcraft. This is why I hate people. Educate yourselves!

Mira Calix — Bowling4Strings
Walter Maioli — Vegetable Seeds, Jungle Voices
Misco — From the Mouth of the Brave
Martin Tetreault, Otomo Yoshihide — Brest no.4, Le Vauban 22/04/03
Merzbow — Lava
Revolutionary Ensemble — Configuration
Revolutionary Ensemble — Usami
Zbigniew Karkowski, Damion Romero — 9 before 9, part 3
Nick Hennies — Absent, Removed
Brian Garbet — Ritual (excerpt)
Andrew Wedman — Breath
Giant Skyflower Band — Oh Mary Green
Giant Skyflower Band — Starbeams
Michel F. Cote — Cowboy a pied
Crank Sturgeon, IDM Theftable — Grit ((hearse || Th’Tunic(a) SeePez?
Jack Wright — Untitled (from “As Is: Solos From Beirut & Barcelona”)
Miya Masaoka, Joan Jeanrenaud — For Birds, Planes & Cello
Beans Hambone — Beans

Potpie vs. Krzysztof – “Appalachia”

January 22, 2009

Backporch Revolution label mainstay Mike Karnowski contrasts two of his aliases with each other, on this bluegrass-themed experimental EP. It’s certainly not a combination you see very often, but Karnowski holds it together with his Potpie persona churning bluegrass sound files into an increasingly complex ball, and his Krzysztof side doing more of what I expected from Potpie– agile sine wave manipulation “inspired by” bluegrass music itself.

potpie-krzysztof-appalachia
Don’t ask me how the Krzysztof track, “Descending Moonshine” is anything like bluegrass, though. Living in Southern Illinois, I thought I’d had my fill of the stuff. Apparently, Karnowski hears some untapped elements there, and it is refreshing to hear an artist visiting older territory to see what might be created anew. The Potpie track “Cold Mountain Breakdown” is a nice result– part Steve Reich, and part abstract electronica– but really a bit too stripped-down for either. “Cold Mountain Breakdown” lets the sound snippets speak for themselves to create a somewhat disorienting mixture of familiar fiddle lines, banjo licks, chords, etc. In their new context, they dart amongst one another playfully, less constrained than in their traditional support roles within songs.

Not a lot more can be said about this disc without ruining it; after all, it’s a limited edition EP clocking in just under 20 minutes. The cover art is a bit of wonderful illustration in a Russian or Polish folk style, and the whole thing comes in a decent heavy cardstock folding slipcase.

“Appalachia” is available through Backporch Revolution as [bpr-035].



Startling Moniker’s Top 12 Best Happy Neat-O List of 2008!

January 13, 2009

Yes, it’s mid-January 2009. Let’s just say I’m fashionably late, and leave it at that. Or think of this list as your buying guide– if you’re spending this coming Valentine’s Day alone (perhaps tearfully re-organizing your record shelves?) see to it that you order a bunch of these fantastic releases to cheer you up. Just as last year, I will be treating my inability to count as less of a handicap, and more of a endearing eccentricity. And now, in no particular order, here are the Top 12 13 Best Happy Neat-O List of 2008 winners:

amo_2001) Mooey Moobau — “All Murmur of Our Mothers’ Waters” — Earlier this year, I referred to this disc as “dictio-fuckery,” a term which captures the pure glottological delight of rolling words back and forth on your tongue until all meaning is lost save for the sweet sonority. As a child, I once said the word “question” repeatedly until I couldn’t figure out if I was saying it correctly at all. This could have easily been the accompanying soundtrack.

40782) Eddie the Rat — “Out Behind the 8-ball” — Privately, I think of Eddie the Rat‘s Peter Martin as  a more unruly modern-day version of Harry Partch. This may not be totally accurate, but hey, it’s my head. Still, what with the brash polyrhythms coaxed from oddball homemade percussion instruments, I may not be too far off. But where Partch carried elements of the American folk landscape back to a greater listening audience, “Out Behind the 8-ball” mines South Asian influences, resulting in something like a post-trepanation Les Baxter album. Lovely!

40773) Jess Rowland — “The Problem With the Soda Machine” — Here’s a weird one for you. Rowland comes across some intra-corporate vending machine related e-mail drama, and decides to set it to music. In less capable hands, a disaster. For Rowland, one of the most immediately loveable albums right out of the box that I heard all year. Order this, and I’ll tell your future as a free gift: you’ll soon find yourself singing “we are faced with a choice about the future of the machines.” (Psst, this disc and #2 are from Edgetone Records. Order them both, and you’ll save on postage!)

frank-rothkamm-just-3-organs4) Rothkamm — “Just 3 Organs” — I used to think that if I had math skills, I would have made Rothkamm music; that’s how much I enjoy what he’s doing. But lately, I realize that nobody can make Rothkamm music but Rothkamm. It’s really the only similarity this list of albums shares– it’s strange stuff, a unique product of a unique mind. Simultaneously sound-obsessed and math-enabled, “Just 3 Organs” visits a series of hyper-organ works upon us. It’s a post-Second Life music, both virtual and yet displaying the umbilicus of its creator. If my ongoing fascination with Rothkamm hasn’t got you to pick one of his releases up yet, now is the time.

5) GX Jupitter-Larsen’s “Zelphabet” Series — Didn’t I say it best already? “Like the RRRecycled tapes, but done with some class, and considerable more attention to quality.” This 27-CD subscription (or buy ’em individually!) series shows why Jupitter-Larsen is the Bruce Schneier of noise– he’s got deep connections, and even deeper knowledge. Each disc is like sitting at the knee of a master, so you better believe they’re worthwhile.

cc_elementalshifta6) Cristopher Cichocki – “Elemental Shift” — This is the kind of release that only comes around once in a blue moon; a perfect artistic statement in its own right, but also able to vividly enhance one’s perception of many other unrelated works. Undoubtedly, this was my favorite release of the year– I couldn’t shutup about it, either– so there’s more of my gushing here and here.

mangler-redbeard7) Warm Climate — “Mangler Redbeard” — Apparently the locus of many LA experimental projects I’m currently enjoying, Warm Climate’s Seth Kasselman recorded “Mangler Redbeard” in a month as part of an online challenge… true evidence of how hard inspiration can strike! Equal parts glam-rock and bizarro-world influence, this ugly little bit of Xerox-and-CDR should not be missed.

tefasimage8) Glenn Weyant — “SonicAnta D-Construction Series” — If you’re looking to develop an ongoing relationship with something truly unexpected, consider subscribing to this series of CDRs. They from full-length explorations with a Honeywell fan; to sonic smorgasbords of homemade instruments, field recordings, and Weyant’s trademark border-fence-and-violin-bow collage. Wild and heady stuff, crafted by someone with a palpable love of sound.

9) George Korein — “Another Corpse” — I can’t seem to nail down exactly when this disc came out, so I’m going to be bold and claim it for 2008. As always, Korein appears to have dropped in from somewhere out in space, content to mystify Earthling listeners with another art-fractured gem. Describing Korein’s music always reminds me of an old Rolling Stone review for Missy Elliot, “She jumps so far off the heezy, she lands right on another heezy.”

10) LX Rudis — “Audible Method 1.43” — I don’t have a lot of info on this one, but I’m still super-excited to hear a live-studio-CDR hybrid disc such as this. Field recordings, live performance, editing, mastering all get mixed up quite thoroughly here. It’s hard for me to make this sound as amazing as it actually is, the mystery of whether you can actually acquire a copy makes it every more fun. Better check with Rudis at his MySpace profile… and while you’re there, dig his blogged bio for fun bits about trying out for tuxedomoon and the Dead Kennedys.

transe_des_mots11) Frederique Bruyas — “La Transe Des Mots” — This is the album that got me thinking, “gee, I really need to learn French.” It’s a one-two punch of bibliophile elan and Diamanda Galas’s swagger, and well worth your time. Bruyas collaborator Pierrejean Gaucher’s dexterous fretwork surprises at all turns.

51tixbrjyxl_sl500_aa240_12) Annea Lockwood — “A Sound Map of the Danube” — A triumph, which all sound enthusiasts should own. Lockwood not only covers the entirety of the Danube in this three-disc hunt for the river’s voice, but features many inhabitants whose daily lives are shaped along its way. This is fascinating listening, perfectly captured in a sumptuous release from the always-worthwhile Lovely Music Limited label.

bnn21_313) Lee Hangjun, Hong Chulki — “Expanded Celluloid, Extended Phonograph” ( 확장된 셀룰로이드, 연장된 포노그래프 ) — An astounding film demonstrating a concept vital to understanding many of the fine releases from Seoul-based Balloon & Needle label, that of “cracks” or “gaps” in media. For Hangjun, this takes the form of not filming anything, but rather choosing to work directly with the film itself. For Chulki, listeners are confronted with the sound of recordless turntables, or of the “meta-record” created by putting two needles to digital time-code vinyl records. It’s a world where sound influences itself, and raw film finds a place in the spotlight, and is definitely a world worth your visit.

Liveblogging! Commentary for “ITDE” 11/15/08

November 15, 2008

Sweet Action kicked off the first few minutes of this week’s “ITDE” with a nasty surprise– Tracy Chapman. Who knew Nick was such a fan? Anyways, it was supposed to be some Otis Redding for me, but he switched it! This is like drinking Pepsi when you think it’s going to be Coke. Nothing to do but hold your nose, and wait for the vomit.

I countered with some vintage DaveX material, and am currently swirling a bit of Jin Sangtae’s “Extensity of Hard Disk Drive” around my earholes to make sure no germy detritus has been left behind. But hey, cool things are on the horizon– I’m doing a live set tonight, just me and some processed balloon… and you might get to hear some more vintage DaveX, which I’ll be playing to illustrate points while being interviewed for an upcoming documentary about Southern Illinois experimental music!

As it turns out, keeping up a liveblogged playlist while being interviewed (and hosting a radio show) is very difficult. I will simply list materials used– if you’re super-interested in the exact order, let me know, and I’ll figure it out for you. Otherwise…

~OrE~ — Heavenly Noise (excerpt)
~OrE~ — Doug’s Party (excerpt)
DaveX — The Only Motion is Returning
EKV — Purification
EKV — MOVE
Thanos Chrysakis, Dario Villegas, Oli Mayne — Terse Symmetry
Thanos Chrysakis, Dario Villegas, Oli Mayne — Phosphorus
Thanos Chrysakis, Dario Villegas, Oli Mayne — Sonoric Clay
Thanos Chrysakis, Dario Villegas, Oli Mayne — Fountain of Violet
EKV — 8onkey
EKV — We’re Having Problems
EKV — Incidental Damages
RP Collier — Dirigible
RP Collier — Prongulator
RP Collier — Over Valley
RP Collier — Yaw
RP Collier — Nightside
RP Collier — Jet Stream
Nils Butmann — Welcome
RP Collier —  2
Jin Sangtae — Fixed
Choi Joonyong, Hong Chulki, Sachiko M, Otomo Yoshihide — 1/1
Choi Joonyong, Hong Chulki, Sachiko M, Otomo Yoshihide — 1/2
~OrE~ — Mr. Lincoln’s Party (excerpt)

Robert Dow – “Precipitation within sight” & “White Water (airflow)”

August 20, 2008

Often, I receive promotional copies of an artist’s work that are not intended for general distribution: live sets dubbed as a single track on CDR, pre-mastered works in-progess, or compilations of selected works that could be broadcast but are not necessarily to be considered a proper album.

A while back, I was sent such a compilation by Robert Dow, director of the Soundings... festival of electroacoustic music and a researcher in the area of electroacoustic composition and performance with the University of Edinburgh. Although Dow’s knowledge of electroacoustic works far exceeds my own, I still thought it would be nice to write about one of the pieces for you– consider it half introduction, and half review.

“Precipitation within sight” is an interesting composition; generally, due to Dow’s willingness to allow natural sounds to remain unobscured by processing; and personally, as it ties closely with Miya Masaoka’s “For Birds, Planes, & Cello” which I have been enjoying recently.

Like Masaoka, Dow chooses natural sounds as both a focal point and a springboard for studio performance, constructing complimentary percussive sounds which often conjure the spacial properties of this work’s center– Smoo Cave in Durness, Scotland. Generous field recordings taken at Smoo Cave feature throughout, with indoor and outside events in evidence. Of particular beauty are Dow’s recordings of splashing water and children, appearing just prior to a bursting noise of some sort, rather like stones thrown upon a metal surface. I’m not sure what to make of the electronic whinnying that proceeds thereafter, underscored by a low rushing sound, and gradually taking aural focus… perhaps Dow is suggesting the feel of coming to the surface of water?

In his program notes, Dow states that he is interested in the “strong associative pull of such real world sounds and their tendency to create specific contexts,” which seems to be thought of as a problem among many electroacoustic artists in their rush to manipulate and obscure every source recording. Taken in this light, a reading of “Precipitation within sight” might include themes of motion as both physical movement and de/constructive energy, many of the associated emotions conjured by a journey through water, and possibly even our lingering human connection to formative natural spaces such as caves. There’s a lot to consider, so I won’t attempt to offer a conclusive summation here. Rather, I intend to whet your appetite– Dow has a release pending on the fine Russian label, Electroshock, so this might be a good time to become more acquainted with the composer.