We need your help – please
Amazingly well-timed compendium of See/Hear 1 & 2, both released exactly 49 years ago this month (well, going on 50 actually, in September 1968; this one's been in the works for a few months, mainly due to the insanely effort-oriented reproduction of all of the printed ephemera present in the inner pocket of "The First See + Hear" - all recreated here in perfect 5/12 scale in the form of ten separate inserts grouped into four "folios") &, other than Bill Bissett & Th Mandan Massacre's canonic "Awake In Th Red Desert" comprise the entire discography of the label / series.
Covering a who's who of the Canadian Sound Poetry & Avant-Garde figures including Bp Nichol, Jim Brown, Wayne Carr, Ross Barrett, Al Neil, Lionel Kearns, and the Australian Composer Bruce Clarke, the first half here collects a scattershot array of early work from everyone involved, dovetailed a fashion similar to "Iowa Ear Music" into a continuous mode. The second covers "Oh See Can You Say", credited solely to Brown but heavily featuring Carr & Barrett, essentially continuing in the same trajectory. It's not too far off from "Indeterminacy" in that Brown's stream-of-consciousness Sound/Poetry narratives are often interjected by Carr's abstract & frankly dynamite Psychedelic synthesizer work. Ross Barrett's solo track weaves chill sitar zones through the matrix, but it's mostly in & of the voice/electronic amalgam, with a few choice zaps straight from the cortex of the acid-damaged late 60s milieu.
SEE/HEAR is a RECORD MAGAZINE, a quarterly publication of recordings of contemporary sound arts. Contemporary sound arts are usually discussed in terms of certain categories such as electronic music, experimental acoustic music, sound poetry, projective verse, chance music, improvised forms and so on, however what should probably be recognized is that sound arts are continually evolving and to create categories only restricts the way in which we think about sound. Mixed media, combinations of sound and visual arts, or combinations of different modes of sound art, are easily seen as results of our electric environment, and are as valid as the already accepted sound forms. Comes with insert about the recordings. From the insert: A1 for Lennon and Mccartney. A4 was commissioned for the Adelaide 1968 Arts Festival by the Melbourne ISCM, fragments of poetry were chosen at random from the unpublished works of the late Ann Pickburn. A5 is a 30-minute dramatic cantata written for a Masters composition recital and performed at the University of British Columbia in the spring 1968. B4 made September 1968.
Creel Pone, 2018
Various Artists – The First See + Hear, Oh See Can You Say
Despite the all-time top-ten C.P. GOAT title "Greek Electronic Music-1" & it's counterpart "Works of Electronic Music", the series has seen precious little Greek Early Electronic Music. Attempts to secure copies of key Nikiforos Rotas, Nikos Mamagakis, & Dragatakis Koutouki sides have been futile for some time, until one of the key C.P. cabal struck gold in the form of this epic double-LP Tape Music suite by Greek Composer Kyriakos Sfetsas, released alongside the two Roland Hollinger LPs on the French Scorpios label in early 1974.
Touted, dubiously perhaps, as "one of the first pieces written for four-channel tape in the world", Sfetsas' score for the Ballet "Smog" is a wonder of arbitrarily layered Analogue Synth patches & gated electric organ filigree, coming in somewhere between the drone-psych undertones of It's "Viaje", the raw concrète sprawl of Jean-Claude Eloy's majestic "Shanti" & "Gaku-No Michi" sets, and the burbling, modular automatons of Conrad Schnitzler, Pierre Henry's "Mise En Musique" & Carter Thomas' "Sonoma".
This is one of those pieces that, much like Dariush Dolat-Shahi's "Electronic Music, Tar, and Sehtar", combines a number of ideas that I've been working with personally for the past few years into a combination that is far more pleasing than anything I've personally been able to muster; which is both frustrating & entirely amazing - astonishing to me that this has lain dormant for so long! One of the absolute highlights of the series thus far...
Creen Pone, 2018
Kyriakos Sfetsas – Smog, Musique Electroacoustique
This boxset compiles some of the inter-related releases that Sarah Davachi’s Late Music label put out in 2020 of her own solo work. Including the first album featuring her own vocals (Cantus, Descant), the two disc live set (Figures In Open Air) and an extended EP of sketches for these releases. Cantus, Descant largely consists of droning organs which slowly morph over the course of several minutes. Occasionally these drones etherise into something unsettling - the ‘Passing Bell’ interlude being the most obvious example - but by and large this is a positive-sounding record. Sometimes Davachi’s tones are curious, sometimes uplifting, sometimes almost joyous, but whatever mode she’s operating in the general mood of Cantus, Descant is one of upbeat drift.
One notable evolution of Davachi’s sound here is the use of vocals, an element which hadn’t previously featured in her music. ‘Play The Ghost’, for instance, is an inviting number which plays Davachi’s gentle singing and techniques influence by Black Sabbath’s Planet Caravan against woozy organs and languid, cascading melodies. It’s a dreamworld delight, one with an ethereal feel that means it wouldn’t sound out of place in a David Lynch film. Davachi is a very productive artist who has released several albums of keyboard music over the past few years. However, Cantus, Descant is a generous offering even by the standards that Davachi has previously set - this album runs to seventeen tracks and well over an hour in length. Figures In Open Air is described by Davachi as a ‘complement of sorts’ to her 2020 studio LP Cantus, Descant.
As such, it’s no surprise that different versions of several tracks from that album can be heard here - an instrumental take on Cantus, Descant highlight ‘Canyon Walls’, for instance, spins out the etherised dream-pop of the original into almost fifteen minutes of eerie FM drones and pensive woodwind harmonies. Laurus, an extended EP previously only available on cassette is a collection of demos and sketches for these sessions. Taped in the Summer of 2017, these pieces are, in Davachi’s own words, “a more raw and improvisational representation of the composition process [for Cantus, Descant] in its early stages”.
Late Music, 2021
Sarah Davachi – Cantus Figures Laurus
64-minute piece by Antoine Beuger, composed in 2004, and beautifully realised by Apartment House. "It’s from a series of pieces I composed, each for a different number of players, from two to twenty. And the number in each piece is really important, because everything that happens can only happen in a situation where there are, in this case, six people. The question I was really involved with in this whole series was how is it to play with this particular number of musicians? It’s quite easy to see that to be two is somehow different from being three. But with five, six, seven, it becomes less easy to grasp the difference. But there will always be differences."
Apartment House: James Opstad (double bass)
Mark Knoop (accordion)
Heather Roche (bass clarinet)
Mira Benjamin (violin)
Joe Qiu (bassoon)
Bridget Carey (viola)
Artwork by Jack Vickridge
Another Timbre. 2021
Antoine Beuger – jankélévitch sextets
An absolute masterpiece by OTO favourite Malverne Brume
All tracks recorded live with some processing after. Made using synthesiser, sampler, found objects, bells, metal objects, voice and cassette recorder
Mastering by Mark Klon Images by Malvern Brume Layout by Ben Waggett and Malvern Brume Music & Mixing by Malvern Brume in 2021
Infant Tree, 2021
Malvern Brume – Harsh Miniatures
If its broken, don't fix it. Further recordings made during the mess of the past year which you may hear as a shining pathway out of the shit, or a "Back to the egg!" warning cry. Pour yrself a drink, put on those headphones and let the gamble commence. Featuring tracks from Hobo Sonn, Muyassar Kurdi & Ka Baird, Sigtryggur Berg Sigmarsson, A.S, Raymond Cummings, Hardworking Families, Stone Cornelius, Dora Doll, Duncan Harrison, LDSN, Angela Sawyer & Ethan Marsh, Glands Of External Secretion, Tania Caroline Chen, Mark Groves, Staubitz & Waterhouse, Kraus, Kate Armitage, Constance/Nyoukis and RRS.
Chocolate Monk, 2021
Artwork - Bill Nace
v/a – Salvage Job
The beloved "Beard of Bristol" Owen Chambers spent several weeks trying to unlearn guitar but found that a toxic knot once tied is hard to undo. His resolve failed him, well not totally. While his splendid guitar playing would remain in tack he decided he could at least add a smear of "whatthefuckery" to his belt by spending the next week listening only to a handful of Glands Of External Secretions and Karen Constance recordings. He then set about making POTIONS!!! which he describes as "A soup of sounds made from old russian sci-fi films, lo-fi synth improvisations, duelling radios and other stuff like choral vocals and the like". It is better to travel well than to arrive. Artwork by Karen Constance Edition of 60
Chocolate Monk, 2021
Carnivorous Plants – POTIONS!!!
The Pheromoans main lunk and one half of The Teleporters was originally going to present a short chapbook of wanton sleaze, but felt the great unwashed were not quite ready for it yet, so instead he submitted The Blue Shirt of Simon, a piece of "noir crime fiction" in audio book fashion apparently. It is set in a fictional West London town called Simon, taking place over two weeks in Februrary 2021. All characters are fictional and any resemblance they have to persons alive or dead is coincidental. Aye right."I really liked it even though it sounds like a man of the edge of some sort of breakdown" - anonymous
Chcolate Monk, 2021
---Edition of 60
Russell Walker – The Blue Shirt of Simon
Another snapshot of lockdown life here on the shitty Brexit Isles, This time Odie ji Ghast aka Greta Buitkute (Labas Krabas, Historically Fucked etc) invites you to their abode in the thriving creative hive of Gateshead (don't call it Newcastle, ya bam!). Multitracked vocals (both gibber and song) get mixed in with dictaphone, home appliances, keyboards and "loud thoughts". An intimate insight into the clutter revolution."2020 summer full of domesticity that's soaked in time slow moving back and forth between arising direction and reflections on past crumbles" - Odie ji Ghast
Chocolate Monk, 2021
Odie ji Ghast – DOMESTIC recordings
"In an old issue of a London-based porn mag, the one with Funko Geräte on the cover, an essay attempts to recast Esplendor Geometrico as a Massachusetts freak-folk band. With the appropriate dosage, anything’s possible. Probably. Maybe they changed their name and emigrated from Spain and due to a translation error ended up in Seattle. Who knows what’s real and what’s made-up with that publication.
From Forrest Friends’ opening herald announcing the commencement of a marathon sweat lodge cotillion, where consensual flora gropings and various pagan engorgements run their respective courses until the inevitable dousing of the nethers with ritual electronic ooze, to the spent, post-credits vibe of a homemade horror movie, this album resembles little in the Chocolate Monk catalog. The duo’s debut release for the label was recorded by the side of the road in the middle of the night, naked but for banana-leaf loin cloths bound together with twine, crouching in the mud, staring intently at a nematomorph exiting the used-up husk that had been a typically happy-go-lucky praying mantis before the zombifying parasite took over its brain. This thirty-eight-minute disc’s high-primitive hoot coaxes spirit lizards out of a secluded northern-facing lichen shack and forces them to march on an infinity-symbol-shaped path, invoking visions of communion with First Nations spasticity. Patches of impaired fidelity, damaged by overdriven sound, smear the otherwise intimate recordings with heavy whiffs of opium cinders and Wiccan-roasted genetic structure that’s mustier than an old towel full of three-day-old phat si-io.
Everybody loves the idea of a lost world. Well, here’s one with hypnotic yelping, otherworldly accordion, dreams of the pipe, and processions of re-animated wooden children invoking the great drillbit in the sky to exact vengeance on the new president of Brazil."
Chocolate Monk, 2020
Forrest Friends – untitled
More processed surreal appeal from Wino Lodge's hardest working dweller. The words are garbled, but the tapes and gadgets are in enough oscillation to keep your ass anodic. It's hard to believe Miss Constance's craft graft wasn't always so strong but two chance meetings at a early age set her on the path of prevelance. Firstly meeting the Tartan Lads in Blackburn Chemists at the age of 7 where "Scotland's top performing duo" informed her "even a wee lassie can wear a skirt of many colours." and just a few years later a caged Myna bird in a pub in Coldingham told her "the life of an artist is a fucktards waddle!" or maybe it was the other way about, either way she implores you to fill your boots with fruits & vegetables, create and be damned. Heed.
Chocolate Monk, 2021
CDR, Edition of 60
Karen Constance – Old Scar For New Nose
Yet more sweet eye and ear yolk from the Lunk Headed Library and a great honour to have further recordings from the under documented tape mangling sound wizard Bob Desaulniers AKA Translucent Envelope.
The album was culled from recordings made at home between Summer 2020 and Spring 2021 using tapes, sampler, electronics, phone recordings, contact mics, and objects which he says is "a fairly accurate sonic depiction of my brain turning to mush over the last eight months or so. Too much time cooped up in the house... I'm sure I'm not the only one feeling this way right now."
The 20 page A5 colour booklet is a selection of collages made between 2015 and 2021 using magazines, scissors, paper, and glue stick which will sooth the aforementioned mush brain.
All tracks recorded and edited by Bob Desaulniers.
Audio mastered by Joel Shanahan.
Chocolate Monk, 2021
Translucent Envelope/Bob Desaulniers – Grimly Forming
With the CDR edition sold out, Chocolate Monk and Butte County Free Music Society pressured their respective kingpins to add another 30 minutes of audio and a couple more frames of Karen Constance artwork for an expanded reissue on CD (not a CDR) in a six-panel eco-pak. Churning and honking like a couple of white apes in a suntan lotion sento, Nyoukis and Glass bromance the mud for a solid uninterrupted (almost) hour. They manipulate field recordings, befoul sound effects recordings, loot audio thrift store cassettes, violate the public domain, and contaminate domestic objects. Auntie Pearl clinks and coughs and laughs and listens to Led Zeppelin. Duncan Harrison tries to teach Ms. Elkka how to ollie in a Hastings train station after a day getting pissed with Steve Underwood, because life skills. It’s just a good long wallow in ghostly moon flatch, something you look like you could use right about now. Allow the duo’s ballet-dancing electronic bendables to pirhouette and plié through your skull. A little equilibrium-challenged DNA, splatters of tube-squeezed murk, and descending plasmatic crud are the universal pick-me-up. If not yourself, do it for the plague babies.
Mastered by Julian Tardo at Church Road Studios. .Edition of 150
Chocolate Monk and Butte County Free Music Society, 2021
Dylan Nyoukis & Seymour Glass – No One Cares About The Drama Queen's Potassium Intake
A sparse and subtle jungle comprises the pieces that make up "pietra e oggetto". It is subtle, as such it remains in the memory. Thanks to the device of silence, which is like the air in between things, it allows time for what we have heard to imprint on our acoustic sketchpad. Like closing your eyes to preserve a memory and then moving on to the next. We feel a certain privilege in listening to these undecidable environments; these composite and hybrid objects filled with synthetic biodiversity, on the threshold between nature and culture. We access this privilege thanks to the cutting operation, a coring practice that cuts out salient acoustic narratives, fished (and then triggered) from a potentially limitless flow; rooms of occurrences and dark pink rustles from the undergrowth. ---
Luciano Maggiore is a Palermo-born, London-based musician whose work is characterised by the use of speakers and several analogue/digital devices (samplers, CD players, walkmans, tape recorders) and addresses the performativity of the musical act, the perception of it, and the obscurity that emanates from it. His main interests include mechanisms of sound diffusion, performance, repetition, endurance, non-humananimal languages, dance, folklore.
With Louie Rice, he started NO-PA/PA-ON, a project that deals with performing score-based works, both acoustic and amplified. His works are published by Balloon & Needle, Boring Machines, Consumer Waste, Hideous Replica, Kohlhaas, Palustre, Senufo editions, 1000Füssler, TakuRoku, Triscele Registrazioni and Tulip records. ---
Recorded and edited between May 2019 and May 2020. Mastered by Giuseppe Ielasi. Liner notes by Gaspare Caliri, translated by Laura Matilde Mannino. Cover drawing by Luciano Maggiore. Design by Matteo Castro.
Luciano Maggiore – pietra e oggetto
Matt 6-page Digipack with drawings by Luciano Maggiore on the inside panels. It contains one long track.
150 copies limited edition. Recorded and edited in London between November 2020 and April 2021.
edizioni luma, 2021
luciano maggiore – drenched thatched roof
9 short pieces, based on cassette recorders and small electronics. Recorded and edited between August 2017 and February 2018.
Mastered by Giuseppe Ielasi. Luciano Maggiore (Palermo 1980) lives and works in London. Active musician in the field of electroacoustic music, in recent years he has developed a strong interest in the mechanisms of sound diffusion, using speakers and several analogue and digital devices (walkmans, CD players, tape recorders) as principal instruments. His interest is focused on the architectural and psychoacoustic as well as dynamic and directional values of sound with a strong emphasis on fixed sounds.
His works are published by Balloon & Needle, Boring Machines, Consumer Waste, Hideous Replica, Palustre, Senufo editions, 1000Füssler, Triscele Registrazioni and Tulip records.
Senufo Editions, 2018
Luciano Maggiore – 9 Enclosures
The name is new, but the four members of The Cutmen all come from such storied backgrounds that it s reasonable to call them a supergroup. M (AKA Reeve Malka), the multi-talented leader of ensemble, has his fingers in more pies than can be listed here, but a brief overview includes recordings with Jarboe (Swans) and membership in Orchestre Noir and Sol Invictus. He runs his own label Infinite Document, co-runs the Sol Invictus label Tursa Records with Tony Wakeford, and offers his mobile engineering and studio services to bands of all genres
World-famous percussionist Z'EV needs no introduction. His career spans more than 30 years, 50 albums, countless performances, and collaborations with Glenn Branca, Organum, Merzbow and Psychic TV.
Stephen Flinn has been playing professionally as a percussionist and drummer for more than 20 years, performing across America, Europe and Japan. He collaborated on an album with cyberpunk author Kenji Siratori, and has been written about in numerous jazz publications.
Giles Leaman began his professional career 30 years ago as a member of the Penguin Cafe Orchestra, and has recorded with Rip Rig & Panic, Thomas Dolby, The Drones, Echo City, and a special performance of Brion Gysin s Cut-Up Poetry in London. He builds musical instruments, teaches, and performs regularly.
The music of The Cutmen is made from found sounds and unconventional instruments (including several built by Giles), skillfully arranged and performed in an engaging and playful style that constantly surprises and pleases the ear, as if one was tasting a salad made of previously unknown but delicious herbs and flowers. The songs are spacious and refined, and the overall atmosphere is one of measured and deliberate restraint rather than frenetic chaos. You can't call it experimental music because it s fully realized and complete.
Soleilmoon Records, 2011
The Cutmen – Seconds Out
Z'EV has been exploring and breaking ground in the audio and textual fields since the mid 1970s. Although best-known for his metal-based percussive performances, uns, his electronics and vocal-based whirlwind, was one of the most innovative (and individual) audio experiments of the early 1980s. uns's combination of sound poetics and voice treatments with dense sonic landscapes resulted in challenging, unique, and rewarding audio.A historical testament to the challenge uns presented appears on the first track of this 2 CD set, when some of the audience members -- in addition to repeatedly shouting 'Die!' as the set concluded -- shout out for Flipper. Given the ire Flipper drew from their audiences, the fact that the audience preferred that disconnect to the disconnect uns was creating speaks volumes about the gauntlet uns had thrown down. Even when uns was active (1980-83), recordings were extremely difficult to come by and live performances were infrequent. This new 2 CD set presents four live performances, with only fractional snippets previously released anywhere. For fans of: uns, Z'EV, Lieutenant Caramel, sound poetry, musique concrete.
Crippled Intellect Productions, 2010
UNS – What Does The Brain Have To Do With It