Stadiums & Shrines
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In his book Every Song Ever, jazz and pop critic Ben Ratliff talks a lot about repetition, retracing the wide range of music history to engage new ways of listening—in the age of musical plenty—that are more open, beyond subdivisions like genre. (It’s a great read). One passage deeply considers the 1947 song “Thelonious,” where Thelonious Monk plays one note, over and over, for eight bars. A phenomenal display of stubbornness, “an example of taking the idea of the drone or pedal point, which usually lies beneath a piece of music, and putting it on top instead,” says Ratliff. “He is getting up and walking around that note, just as he would get up from the piano during gigs and turn in circles. He is sounding it until it finds accordance with his own interior rhythms and he is playing it both as a musician and listener.”

Anyway, that scene suspended ahead of episode 54. We open with the maiden release from RVNG Intl. imprint Freedom To Spend, a thoughtful iteration of Michele Mercure’s 1986 human voice & synthesizer study, Eye Chant. One track—and thirty years—later, the mode echoes through Portland-based duo Visible Cloaks, then bounces back again, three decades or so, to the late Japanese composer Susumu Yokota.

Separately, also of RVNG note, just copped the “private press” edition of Helado Negro’s essential 2016 LP Private Energy (Expanded) at the MoMA PS1 + Other Music label fair. Find an interstitial compilation video arranged by Roberto himself, embedded down below.

Further into the broadcast, an active sequence begins with Los Angeles pianist and beatmaker Kiefer Shackelford, whose debut is out now on Leaving Records. Later there’s a Strategy reset, then a highlight from the new PAN compilation (Yves Tumor). London’s Ed Dowie released a charming, exploratory pop album with Lost Map earlier this year, his song “Red or Grey” appears. The set rests on ten minutes from producer Kelly Lee Owens, and twenty from pioneering composer Joanna Broak (via Healing Music, a collection of her 1970s-80s recordings released on archival label Numero Group).

Returning to, the space between, wherever Thelonious reached through repeated keys… maybe it’s a monotone realm not unlike what Celia Hollander aka $3.33 unlocked in 2014, with DRAFT. The series of piano sketches, which stunned us upon upload and in-person, was given cassette tape treatment last Friday by Leaving Records, alongside a video screening event in Los Angeles (Miko Revereza’s visual, at the bottom).

Michele Mercure – Eyechant
Visible Cloaks – Valve (ft. Miyako Coda)
Susumu Yokota – Kawano Hotorino Kinoshitade
Mary Lattimore – Wawa By The Ocean
Thelonious Monk – Thelonious
Kiefer – Kickinit Alone
Drugdealer – Were You Saying Something?
She-Devils – Hey Boy
The Sweet Inspirations – Sweets for My Sweet
Strategy – Occurrence at the Triple Door
Yves Tumor – Limerence
Olivia Summer – Moons
Ed Dowie – Red or Grey
TVO – Piano 5
Cremation Lily – Presence of Light
Justin Walter – It’s Not What You Think
Kelly Lee Owens – 8
Joanna Brouk – The Space Between

 

S&S Radio broadcasts every other Tuesday night on Newtown Radio.

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Our 52nd episode begins with the sounds of the Women’s March on Washington last month, captured and mapped into ambient terrain by Baltimore artist Glassine. An arc follows; at its peak is Will Wiesenfeld’s Geotic project (his new album arrives soon on Ghostly International). That smile returns via Laurel Halo‘s collaboration with Japanese virtual pop star Hatsune Miku. Further down in the lounge is London duo Yussef Kamaal, whose LP Black Focus hit at the end of 2016 and has yet to let up. Later on, after a drift behind the pickup truck of Sister Grotto‘s new Midwife alias, and Weyes Blood‘s Nilsson cover, we end on a recording of Molly Drake, mother of Nick, unearthed a few years ago by Squirrel Thing Recordings (known for restoring the enigmatic Connie Converse material). Hat tip, Listen To This.

Glassine – Day 1
CEP – Singalong
Romare – Who To Love?
Hidden Spheres – Beachy
Geotic – Actually Smiling
Miyako Koda – lo
Laurel Halo / Hatsune Miku – Until I Make U Smile
David Axelrod – The Human Abstract
This Will Destroy You – The Puritan (Julianna Barwick Remix)
Yussef Kamaal – Yo Chavez
Tiny Hazard – Sesame
junyamabe – 20080915
Virginia Astley – A Father
Midwife – Name
Norihito Suda – 20170116 (Light snowfall_usuyuki)
Weyes Blood – Everybodys Talkin @ Trans-Pecos 4/17/2014
Molly Drake – I Remember

 

S&S Radio broadcasts every other Tuesday night on Newtown Radio.

 

Two projects oscillating, linked by cerulean palettes and Patient Sounds; grouped here today in solidarity with Bandcamp‘s collective pledge to American Civil Liberties Union.

Naps’ recent tape Checking Out Early is a deeply meditative and observant window-side respite. The flutter and field noise of “Work” finds its rightful match in the blinds of its visual above.

Sunset Diver’s new cassette SD is a bright textural bath, fragmented and frothed. In the treatment for “Thicket”, the trio of goggles lock into an oceanic groove that does not go unanswered, for in next sequence (not shown above) they find that “Sunken Treasure.”

Patient Sounds is offering a few special collection discounts for the day, in addition to donating their portion of sales.

(Editor’s note: try playing both videos at the same time).

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Episode 51 opens with a recent message from Shigeto (supporting Planned Parenthood), and closes with Liz Harris’ winter solstice hymn. Between those edges are two bedroom recordings from Austin-based songwriter Julia Lucille, the third single from the finest album of this New Year: Julie Byrne’s Not Even Happiness, a beautiful collaborative track by Marry Lattimore and Jefre Cantu-Ledesma via New York-based holistic tape label Soap Library (trailer below), and other January highlights thus far.

Shigeto – What Are We Made Of?
Mary Lattimore – Borrego Springs (ft. Jefre Cantu-Ledesma)
blu jeen – coolin w my baby
Sunset Diver – Sailing
Julia Lucille – Night / Darlin’ Babe
Wandering Lake – Eclogue
Cuddle Formation – trails to the peaks of mtns
Sudan Archives – Escape
the2vvo – Oktober
Banana – Banana C
Hauschka – Shy
Julie Byrne – I Live Now As A Singer
Kirill Mazhai – Home (Reprise) [ШАΛАШ]
Visit – Meadowolf
Grouper – Headache

 

S&S Radio broadcasts every other Tuesday night on Newtown Radio.

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Episode 49 attempts to reconcile and to express, in the context of recent days, when music has felt especially vital. Setlist:

M. Sage – Montrose Harbor (two positions)
Emily Reo – Spell
Danny Clay – 5.12.2016
Weyes Blood – Generation Why
Ricky Eat Acid – Spinning About Under The Bright Light In Bliss
Naps – work
Noname – Freedom Interlude
Carla Sagan – Heroes of Space Travel
Danny Clay – 6.12.2015 (II)
Sunwoo Jung – A Far Away
Rayon – Kona
Julie Byrne – Natural Blue
Danny Clay – 6.12.2015 (IV)
Steve Hauschildt – A False Seeming
Loscil – Weeds
Mickey Newbury – Here Comes the Rain, Baby
Danny Clay – 10.15.2015 (II)
“With Love”, a short mix by ssurfacing (tracks listed below)
Enya – Exile
Paul Horn – Jumna
Pale Blue Sky – Attempt
(scanning am radio)
The Mamas & The Papas – Dedicated To The One I Love

Below are a few thoughts, collected from friends, and other inspirations.

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