Jazz / Free Jazz
Drone / Ambient
Indie / Rock
"Gorgeously psychedelic debut by this new guitar/violin duo, created by two of the form's great maestros. Samara Lubelski and Bill Nace are both veterans of the American sub-underground. Between them they have many projects under many names on many labels. Most recently, however, the two have been focused on string-based duo aktion, Samara in cahoots with Marcia Bassett, and Bill with Kim Gordon in Body/Head. These two ensembles explore different expanses of the genre. The Lubelski/Bassett Duo focus on the powerful beauty of drone rainbow landscapes, while Body/Head venture into dialogues dealing with subconscious dream language. On this album Bill and Samara create a hybrid between these approaches, offering textual interactions that blaze like fire. On the five tracks of their eponymous LP, Samara's violin creates a base of long form string distention, against which Bill's amp-shudder creates event surges that fill your brain with frozen images of walls caught in mid-collapse, and continents sinking into a sea. Their motion has tectonic implications. About all I can compare it to is momentary flashes of A Handful of Dust (the Bruce Russell/Alastair Galbraith unit), but the intent here seems quite different, and as mentioned before, the results feel bracingly psychedelic. Have not had a chance to spin this after an acid drop yet. Will wait for the actual LP to do that, but I'm thinking it will make for a most excellent pairing. I suggest you consider the same. Tout de suite." - Byron Coley
Samara Lubelski / violin
Bill Nace / guitar
Cover art Spencer HerbstScreened on Stoughton Tip On Covers by Alan Sherry
Samara Lubelski / Bill Nace – Samara Lubelski / Bill Nace
After years of collaboration in various configurations, the trio of guitarist Bill Nace, drummer Chris Corsano and tenor saxophonist Paul Flaherty met in the studio in 2015 to create these three extended tracks of gut-wrenching and fierce free improvisations.
Wherein we come upon three visceralists who have been collaborating for years - innumerable instances in a roulette wheel of settings - finally shacking up in a studio and fashioning a proper trio record. Glory be. Let's listen in...
"These." It's a phrase that never gets started, and an apt title for this record, which right off bolts from the barn and burns so brightly it nearly gets away from you by the time you're done twisting your head around looking for whoever it was that left the door open. He asked me when I planned to come back. Always, I said.
Nace's guitar mines savage depths, egging on the propulsive swing of Flaherty and Corsano. The results are as beastly as the heart itself. Swing. Bounce. Joust. Jab. Uppercut. Flutter. Wink. Sneer. They all play with anguish and ecstatic rupture - the frustrating joy of pushing an instrument to its limits, fashioning a necessary and brutal needlepoint. They move with all the otherworldly elegance and mania of moths at a lamp show.The music asks no specific questions, but wrenches open a space for all manner of questions - this is one of art's most vital functions!
It deals in shades, no matter how sharp the apparent angle.
Check out "Blue Water": the solemn bells of Bill's guitar signal not so much a funeral, but a new dawn after a tragedy. Flaherty's saxophone sounds innocent, almost tentative at first, but as Chris' drums chime in, Paul starts to wrench the fabric loose. The track builds into a fierce and alien vista, charting a territory all its own - a simmering judgement. It becomes hard to talk about.
Didn't you ever try to eat your own tail in the midday sun?
These three, whose veins are coursing straight through with a nuanced emotional lexicon and the smarts to harness it, have given us a record that expands potential with each listen."- Matt Krefting, Holyoke, MA 2017
Chris Corsano / Bill Nace / Paul Flaherty - These
First in Open Mouths Solo Guitar Series. Excellent debut solo from Sightings guitarist Mark Morgan.
"The thing is though is that Mark has always had this really great guitar sound, only partly courtesy of all those shitty pedals he insists on using. He's not coming at this from a Pharoah Sanders-worshipping, free jazz-loving, sensibility. Rather, I hear his home town, Detroit. The record is scuzzy, and raw-sounding, punctuated with moments of utter desolation. Moments build, only to collapse again. There are even funky grooves but, of course, they fall apart. It's fucking great. Dude, you should check it out!' - Julie Cafritz, August 2018"
"It's probably the best solo ‘noise’ guitar album I've heard since Alan Licht's 2013 masterpiece Four Years Older(IMO, of course). And yet to call this noise guitar feels like a bit of a misrepresentation as it implies (at least technically I suppose it does) a certain underlying haphazardness. That definitely doesn't feel like the base force at work here. While harshness undeniably plays a big part in the proceedings, this is an infinitely listenable record for fans of inventive textures, extreme processing, and dark industrial implications." - Free Jazz Collective
1. Jinx Hack - 4:54 2. Gentleman's C - 4:103. Supercomplication - 10:554. Doctor Detroit - 10:125. A Guy Named Reggae - 2:246. Mikki - 4:22
Mark Morgan - Department of Heraldry
"Charley recites Apocalypse Rose on one side. Theother side is Bill NACE doing a piece of music inspired by the poem"
Charles Plymell's “Apocalypse Rose” was published in 1966 by the City Lights Journal and later that year in his first book of poetry with an introduction by Ginsberg. Charles recited the free-associative poem here, alongside Nace's 16-minutes instrumental guitar abstraction.
"Nace mirrors beautifully its dense, hallucinogenic images. Nace arranged a slow, hypnotic drone, first played on a distant, Far Eastern-tinged acoustic guitar, that later morphs into a quiet, and even quieter claustrophobic-electric rustle, that fits the closing lines of the poem:
The blood that fell on each new tomorrow
And you saw this as I was watching you.
Under the influence of all your stars,
In mirrors of your galaxies of blue,
The hero and his love became your scars
But this rose picked could not be picked anew.
To measure you and me in full disguise
I lay beside our rose of paradise." - The Free Jazz Collective
Charles Plymell, Bill Nace – Apocalypse Rose
X04 is Nace, Jake Meginsky, and John Truscinski. Their third LP, after previous releases on Ultra Eczema, Ecstatic Peace, Joshua Burketts Spirit of Orr, etc.
Bill Nace / guitar
Jake Meginsky / electronics
John Truscinski / drums
Recorded in July, 2008 VT.
X04 - Exile
"This trio of Chris Corsano on drums, Bill Nace on electric guitar and Steve Baczkowski on saxophones was one of the most powerful albums of the drums-guitar-sax statement in 2018. Unfortunately the vinyl is already sold out."
My first listen to these four extraordinary pieces by Chris Corsano, Bill Nace, and Steve Baczkowski was over a very rough ferry crossing from Cairnryan to Belfast. It's hard not to think of the ghosts of impossible crossings, victories, loses, harbors in such rough waters. Why would anyone venture out here? Finding something new or an overdue visit? Ending all of the wars? For me, for my first listen to Mystic Beings instantly cured all motion sickness. It was probably just the very welcome adrenalin shots from their performance, but all the crashing and pitching over the waves became a joy. I was braver from listening in. Sometimes they hovered like a three-headed beacon -- a soaring vision to follow out on the horizon. Sometimes they seemed pulled into action and attack. Detonations and radio calls. Sometimes the spines of their own instruments cried out on the power of their own cores, their bodies having been left elsewhere. They drifted apart like a search party, skies clouded over, a spreading landscape streaked with transparent layers over layers. Or they joined together in quiet and unsparing ceremony, the kind usually reserved passing back through the place by which you've entered. All the while there was no scratching or banging at hard enclosed corners. These three players created a world of open space and flexible membrane, where any violence would only come from an outside imposition. Each of the songs read like movements in a larger work. As an eavesdropper, I added my own abstract, personal story over the whole album. I could repopulate new stories over and over again over this framework. The arc is that strong, and the conversation is that good. And even if just overheard, Mystic Beings generously called me out to where I needed to be. The shallows and the shores are where the worst dangers can find us, and our best chance of survival is sometimes out in the rolling depths. Deafen out the sirens and stay onward in the deep waters. Thank you, Bill and Chris and Steve, for sharing this kind of wild captain's safety with us.' --Meg Baird, Cairnryan and San Francisco, Nov 2018"
Chris Corsano / Bill Nace / Steve Baczkowski – Mystic Beings
Fourth in Open Mouth's 'Live at...' series.
"This past March (2016), Bill Nace and I toured the West Coast of these United States of America performing in San Diego, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Corvallis OR, Portland, Olympia, Seattle and Vancouver BC. We recorded most of the sets and Daniel Menche was kind enough to record the Portland show. That recording stood out from the rest and Bill has released it as part of the "Live at..." series on his Open Mouth imprint." - Greg Kelley
1. Untitled - 11:08 2. Untitled - 15:10
Greg Kelley & Bill Nace – Live At Disjecta
Long sold out vinyl!
"Nace and Dilloway make the perfect duo. For years, they've each kept their music fresh, always avoiding preconceived notions of what they're supposed to do. Dilloway's tape loops and electronics are routinely musical, which Nace's guitar always stretches to the edges of alien electricity. Both exude a refreshing and vehement disregard for cliché without leaving behind the necessity of tradition. One hears the earliest hints of electronic music, the conceptual and visceral assault of noise, the structural and spiritual liberation offered by free jazz, the delicate patience of extended techniques, and so much more." Matt Krefting.
Bill Nace / electric guitarAaron Dilloway / tape
Originally released on cassette as Silver Lining #2. Mastered by Carl Saff.
"At long last, this recording sees a proper release. There's a story: Initially, I released this as a cassette on my own label, Silver Lining. To be fair, you can hardly call it a label. I have no right releasing my own music, let alone anyone else's. I'm bad at manufacturing things, I'm bad at promoting them, and I'm especially dismal when it comes to packing things up and mailing them out. And so this cassette had a brief brush with public life and then vanished, due primarily to my negligence and laziness. This is where Open Mouth, once again, comes to the rescue. The record comes in a gorgeous full-color sleeve, and the sound is so much finer than the cassette that even the more sweaty-palmed collectors out there will gladly welcome this object in favor of its previous incarnation, and join me in eagerly awaiting the day when these two release a proper full length. I like that they call this EP BAND. It's a subtle melding of the personal and the conceptual. The 'B' from 'Bill,' the 'A' from 'Aaron,' the 'N' from 'Nace,' and the 'D' from 'Dilloway.' It's simple. But they're not really a band. A band is a thing that exists over time and practices and builds its own identity. Or something. This is a duo. A meeting of the minds. A conversation. A lost weekend. At their best, duos illuminate the core tenets of individuals while pushing them into territory they might not otherwise occupy. It sounds easy but it's anything but. Just look at divorce rates. Nace and Dilloway make the perfect duo. For years, they've each kept their music fresh, always avoiding preconceived notions of what they're supposed to do. Dilloway's tape loops and electronics are routinely musical, which Nace's guitar always stretches to the edges of alien electricity. Both exude a refreshing and vehement disregard for cliché without leaving behind the necessity of tradition. One hears the earliest hints of electronic music, the conceptual and visceral assault of noise, the structural and spiritual liberation offered by free jazz, the delicate patience of extended techniques, and so much more. This collaboration though, like their back catalogs, works because it is beholden to none of these. Their individual voices are recognizable, yet the record's allure is found when those voices funnel into one another. In these moments, who's who becomes irrelevant, and the music is elevated to its rightful place, far above the concerns of personality or individualism. The gurgles, scrapes, moans, and loops build their own intoxicating fog, a metallic expanse with its own logic. After all these listens, I remain disoriented by it. It's the kind of thing you want to play again because you can't quite remember exactly what it sounds like. I'm reminded of J.G. Ballard: 'The slower the clock, the nearer it approximated the infinitely gradual and majestic progression of cosmic time.' And maybe that's the thing. Nace and Dilloway each embrace the immediacy of moments and the endless march of time equally, so for this record to finally see the real light of day is no minor event." (Matt Krefting, Holyoke, MA, 2016)
Aaron Dilloway & Bill Nace – Band EP
The trio of Chris Corsano (drums), Okkyung Lee (cello) and Bill Nace (guitar) performing live at John Zorn's NYC improv club The Stone in 2014, three free improvising titans of the modern age in a very limited LP
"An improvisation whose meshes, inextricable, allow larsens or repetitions to consider no solo. In any case, their network would always be more impressive in its solidity and coherence." - grisli
Okkyung Lee / Chris Corsano / Bill Nace - Live at Stone
A once super limited LP (50 test pressings only!) now available to cherish as MP3 or FLAC! First of two duo LPs from saxophonist Steve Baczkowski and guitarist and label head Billl Nace. Both know their instrument inside out and have an extraordinary ability to abstract their two already unique sounds into one super intense and sprawling new one.
"Barely off our sterero. A bedazzling demonstration of whacked, yet stunningly controlled guitar feedback smashing up against a wall of droning, wailing, crying and screaming sax, which each worked as the other’s tonal parallel, it was without doubt one of the records of the year." Golden Lab Records
Bill Nace / guitar, loops, voice
Steve Baczkowski / baritone and tenor saxophone
Recorded January 2014 by Bill Sack Buffalo NY. Mastered by Mark Alan Miller. Cover Photo by Peter Gannushkin. Layout Bill Nace and Juan Amaya
Steve Baczkowski & Bill Nace - I Can Repay You
Long sold out digital version of the single sided 12" featuring a trio of Nace, Baczkowksi & Japanese saxophonist Tamio Shiraishi (an original member of Keiji Haino's Fushitsusha).
"Here Baczkowksi provides the rumbling low end bedrock from which Nace's feedback & Shiraishi's wailing interlock, a perpetually moving yet static assault which savagely re-casts the anguished cries of Kaoru Abe in a more violent post-Japanoise landscape."
Tamio Shiraishi / alto saxophoneSteve Baczkowski / tenor, baritone saxophone Bill Nace / electric guitar
Steve Baczkowski / Bill Nace / Tamio Shiraishi - Live at Jack
Recorded during a trek to the Pacific Northwest, this session is very damaged by the post-tongue explosive devices packed by each of the quartet's members. Skittering along the most devious edge of improvisational madness, Greg Kelley, Greg Campbell, Bill Nace and Mr. Shoup bring four chunks of deep underground moisture into the air for the first time. Let us make to examine them. 'Morning' greets the listener beneath a raucous grackle filled tree, mounting to a commuters' rage. Then along comes a mage with mushrooms, and the growl and rasp spreads out into what one must imagine a stoned rabbit's brain records from a dawn. In 'Separating a door from a window', Mr. Shoup's sax limns the wall of sound into permeable spaces. The horns and percussion throw up bramble hollers of humorous squawk, but in the end, Wally is triumphant. Like smoke snaking over the door, 'Transom' is a very present and seductive piece. If you are a programmer, this is an excellent sound experience to loop, as it is both loving and bossy. Horn and reed lead you into 'Nothing is deprived of its warmth,' and then gleefully pierce your eardrums with needles. Once the path has been cleared to your brain, molten notes are poured in and, like a Dead Head prostrate with his pipe, you become one with the universe. A warm universe. At first I thought it was weird they named this album after the lost book of Tolkien's Silmarillion. Now I'm not so sure." -- Lili Dwight/Byron Coley, Deerfield MA 2015
Wally Shoup / Greg Campbell / Greg Kelley / Bill Nace - One End To The Other
Another once super limited LP (60 copies this time) now available to cherish as MP3 or FLAC! Second of two duo LPs from baritone / tenor saxophonist Steve Baczkowski and guitarist and label head Billl Nace. Both know their instruments inside out and have an extraordinary ability to abstract their two already unique sounds into one super intense and sprawling and intense new one.
Bill Nace / guitar,
Steve Baczkowski / baritone and tenor saxophone
1. Untitled I - 16:51
2. Untitled II - 11---
Recorded live at Vox Populi Philadelphia PA August 9, 2015 by Kevin Reilley. Mastered by Mark Allan Miller. LAyout by Bill Nace & Neil Burke.
Steve Baczkowski & Bill Nace - I Can't Repay You
Prior to Body/Head’s Matador release ‘Coming Apart’, Bill Nace quietly put out a limited 12” of the duo’s material on his own label, Open Mouth. Largely instrumental, with lattices of interwoven sustained guitar, “Where Did You Go?” is as much of a ‘song’ as the record holds, with Gordon ditching lyrics in favour of channelling improvising vocalists like Alice Coltrane. Long sold out in print, it’s a pleasure to share this one as a digital release.
Bill Nace / electric guitar
Kim Gordon / electric guitar, vocals
1. Turn Me On - 4.44 2. Be There Soon - 5.24 3. Take It Down - 0.524. Where Did You Go? - 8.22
Recorded at Brief Crossing Studio. Mastered by Mark Miller.
Body/Head - Body/Head
"Below a shuffling cabasa-like rhythm, a pair of taut drum patterns is punctuated by swirling electronic crackle and a deep bass drop. Slowly and almost imperceptibly, layers of spongy beats accumulate until they’re wiped out dub-style by an echoing sonar moan that suspends the track in a dark and undulating aquatic reverie, a lull broken by jittery bass tones and reverberant knocks that surge into an intricate percussive maelstrom.
Jake Meginsky’s music is distinctly low end and percussive. While nodding to minimal house, dub, and noise, Meginsky’s electronica bears ample evidence of his apprenticeship with fiery avant-jazz percussionist Milford Graves and his training in West African djun djun and djembe. There’s nothing rigid or mechanical here. On the contrary, Meginsky’s rhythmic sensibility is supple and flexible – rumbling, fluttering, and bouncing in elastic configurations of enchanting complexity.
All rhythm and squall, the pieces on Vandals can’t be called “songs”; but they’re too non-linear to be called “tracks” and too structurally unpredictable to be “compositions.” Rather, Meginsky builds little electronic ecosystems that seem to breed sounds in all their timbral and textural diversity, and to observe what results as they ally and skirmish with one another." - Christoph Cox
Jake Meginsky / electronics
Recorded April 2015 . Additional mixing at sonelab by Justin Pizzoferrato. Mastered by Carl Saff.
Jake Meginsky - Vandals
"Debut LP from Meginsky. Subterranean, nearly-inaudible restraint and a rushing, stuttering throb rule the night on this record. Its electric moods are so resolutely alien they suggest worlds unknown rather than create them. Irregular heartbeat thumps are set against high end atmospheres explored in microscopic detail. Haunting overlays of tones fluctuate and tremble, and not one moment feels forced. The music is meticulously constructed and consistently surprising. The electronics spin away, shooting off into bizarre and unexpected territory, and all the while Meginsky guides them with a benevolent, confident, endlessly fascinating hand. To hear him tell it, the record is 'a document of me looking for the experience I have not yet had, and maybe will never have. This is where the title comes from. The pull of the void.' Natural phenomena, like fog or mist, tend to render the environment and one's ability to see it nearly impossible, and if you tilt your head back like you have a nosebleed there is always the fear that the sun might set sooner. When you stop in a secret place there is no need to talk. These are streets full of sullen languid violence and grey phantoms." -- Matt Krefting Holyoke, MA May 2014
"By its closing track the album is in a state of malfunction, with rhythms splintering and disintegrating, peppered with fizzing tonal clusters and static blasts which sound more like Voice Crack than anything you’d expect to hear on a dancefloor." The Wire
"All electronics, almost all smooth and clean sounds chosen, it references beat-driven styles with seemingly regular rhythms, but they're overlaid in non-obvious patterns and use very different textures, resulting in a fine sense of space where the relative absence of grit and inexactitude don't bother me nearly as much as is often the case in work I've heard that's tangentially related" Brian Olewnick
Jake Meginsky / electronics
Artwork by Bill Nace. Mastered by Mark Allen Miller.
Jake Meginsky - L'Appel du Vide
Gates And Variations rounds out a loose trilogy of records by Jake Meginsky for Open Mouth. Not an intended trilogy on Jakes part but it has become one to my mind. It has come to be how I listen to them and experience them, all informing each other, echoing and challenging each other and growing into each other's space and light like a garden of plants that would never actually coexist anywhere in reality. Jake is always tirelessly reaching for something new yet I'd avoid using the word progression here. It instead feels to me like the last piece of a puzzle, or of a world created by some Jack Kirby demigod. Something has been completed and now all the pieces are interchangeable. The first can go last. The middle can be first. The whole thing becoming a universe looping in on itself with a multitude of entry points and not a lot of exits. These are dense environments where sections can move from microscopic to macroscopic, day to night and back again, so effortlessly that it's hard to tell if it's intended or if something imperceptible within you shifted the locus of your perception. But it is all very intentional, something carefully carved to give the feeling of something, though unfamiliar and strange, organic and grown. There's a sense of danger here like warning transmissions, concussive roiling rhythms and jagged disturbances. Yet also clear straight lines giving way to enveloping curve and staggering beauty. Supplant the beginning with the end with the beginning." --Bill Nace, Philadelphia, PA, September 2017.
Jake Meginsky - Gates & Variations