Stadiums & Shrines
S&S-NewtownRadio-E61

 

Taking over Episode 61 are two longtime friends of the site with two markedly different hours of music. The first is a drifter, courtesy of FLORA founder Jamison Isaak (Teen Daze). Equal parts pastoral and cosmic, the mix feathers unreleased material from his British Columbia-based label with the sounds of contemporary New Age, jazz, and ambient practitioners and pioneers (Hiroshi Yoshimura, Laraaji). There’s an appearance by Japanese artist and Orchid Tapes-alum Atsuhito Omori aka Ex Confusion, a rippling Melody As Truth-released collaboration between Suzanne Kraft and D.K, as well as フジネットワークシステム (Fuji Network Systems), whose trail since 2016 has all but vaporized (now abstractly related to Bedlam Tapes).

The set closes under the care of Gigi Masin. The Italian minimalist composer and Music From Memory vet prefaces the piano work on his 2018 self-release KITE: “This collection contains some songs that I’ve made in the past few years, written to talk about dreams and love while waiting for new colors and new music. It’s like looking back at a garden of roses and flowers, hoping the next lawn is just as beautiful and bright.”

In short time FLORA has bloomed a bounty of relaxation recordings. Isaak’s 2018 EPs 1 and 2 were recorded primarily on piano (such as the uplifting “Us” below), while his latest tape, Spring Patterns, splays out with meditative guitar loops (full stream further down). These generous and gorgeous sets are suited for golden hours somewhere, under a tree or beside a window, paused and watching the shadows move.

Hour two is “a journey through pastures and depots, liveries and bayous, parlors and front porches, barnyards and haylofts” with Patient Sounds (intl) head M. Sage. We can picture our host grinning at his living room turntables, pulling spontaneously from a collection amassed in travels: undisclosed country-folk and blues compilations and dusty dollar bin nuggets, both old and new, showcasing distinctly American — Southern, Western, Appalachian — songwriting traditions (from Connie Converse up through Daniel Bachman). Full tracklist N/A, but it’s easy to imagine a few Polish cowyboys, Rocky Mountain resort hustlers, moonshiners, and lonesome crooners.

Hour One: FLORA Mix
??? – forthcoming on FLORA
Hiroshi Yoshimura – Soto Wa Ame – Rain Out Of Window
フジネットワークシステム – 1に向けて
D.K. / S.K. – Burn
Hiroshi Yoshimura – Deep Echoes
Laraaji – All Of A Sudden
Ex Confusion – Lilac In July
Pat Metheny Group – If I Could
Jackson Milas – December 21st
John Klemmer – Waterwheels
???
Gigi Masin – Kite

Hour Two: Southern Exposure by M. Sage

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S&S-NewtownRadio-E60

 

The cloudy, kinetic free jazz of Japan’s woodblue has held our curiosity for much of Spring’s confused bloom. On the last March’s episode, we featured a piece from the artist in collaboration with Hiroko Arima and Yudai Suzuki aka Multi purpose studio. Correspondence since yields a guest mix of original and unreleased work woodblue calls Gray City. At first blush, the 30-minute exchange is barely there, but as our mind’s eye calibrates to the fluttering improvisations, a metropolis of light percussion, found sounds, and whirling horns illuminate the atmosphere.

Stepping right into the fog, without introduction or city-wide alerts, Patient Sounds take over the last portion of the first hour (35 minutes onward), sharing an unmarked sampling from fresh releases.

Stitched into the second hour is a recent S&S guest set for the Marilis Hour on the wonderful Montréal-based internet radio station n10.as. A few Dreams appear, alongside snippets from Yasuaki Shimizu’s Music For Commercials, a striking ode to the natural world by harpist Mary Lattimore, some woosy “vertical listening” from 81-year-old luminary trumpeter and composer Jon Hassell, and the modular synthesis water memories of Emily Sprague, who recently joined us at Moogfest to render the first ever live Dream interpretation.

Hour One: “Gray City” by woodblue
Gray city #6 at Myou Den
Gray city #7 at Narayama SATY
Gray city #8 at Hirokouji am 1:00
Gray city #3 at Araya (Multi purpose studio remix)
Gray city #2 at Route 46 (Multi purpose studio remix)
Improvisation session at “studio” featuring woodblue, Multi purpose studio, and tko (omu-tone)
Gray city #9 at Minami douri
Tam Tech
Blue Tuesday next future
[34:50 – 01:05:20] Patient Sounds

Hour Two: S&S set on The Marilis Hour
Blithe Field – Prelude
Yasuaki Shimizu – Tachikawa / Seiko 1
Dip in the Pool – On Retinae (East Version)
Anenon – Open
Meitei / 冥丁 – Sankai / 山怪
Cuddle Formation & Emily Reo – Bermuda (Yoshi’s Story)
Emily A. Sprague – Your Pond
Alexia Avina – Glove
Mary Lattimore – Never Saw Him Again
Jon Hassell – Dreaming
Bing & Ruth – Quebec (Climber)
Yumi Zouma – France (Grands Boulevards)
Terekke – wav1

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E59

 

Sila Ptahi makes abstract beat tapes which, save for two released with Nekubi Tapes and Haju Tapes, are shared anonymously on SoundCloud. For Episode 59, Ptahi assembled an hour-long block of dust-covered soul and hip-hop, heavily optimized for headnods. Selections traverse syrupy sampledelia, jazzy instrumentals, and time-warped balladry, with careful attention paid to texture and tempo.

The episode’s second block catches up with 2018. A pastiche of new modes, the set kicks off with Jon Bap‘s frenetic new jack swing, Akiko Kiyama‘s scattered percussion, and Meitei / 冥丁‘s mood tribute to 19th-century painter Kawanabe Kyosai. Onto Anenon‘s latest fusion (of soprano sax, piano, synth and field recordings) on Friends of Friends, spacious dream-folk from Montreal songwriter Alexia Avina (courtesy of Cuddle Formation’s label Never Content), followed by woodwind drone via Eve Essex‘s tape out today on Soap Library. Next is a Séance Centre-reissued 1987 cut by Mexican guitarist/synthesist Eblen Macari, a Balearic night drive from Sydney’s Angophor, buzzing free jazz from Japan (that’s woodblue on MPC, Yudai Suzuki aka Multi purpose studio on trumpet, and Hiroko Arima on stone), and, finally, a tender bedroom-pop outro from New York-based artist Grub (hat tip, Tyler).

Hour One: Mix by Sila Ptahi
Hour Two: Freeform
Jon Bap – Voice Memo from 2013 / _Stuck_
Aalko – Body & Soul
Meitei / 冥丁 – Kawanabe Kyosai / 河鍋暁斎
Anenon – Open
Alexia Avina – Bird
Eve Essex – Here Appear
Eblen Macari – Supernova en Macuspana
Angophora – Uncarved
Hiroko Arima, Multi purpose studio, Woodblue – re-flectionB
Grub – Baby in the Sea

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S&S-NewtownRadio-E56

 

At the start of 2017, in a particularly bleak January, Denver-based artist Madeline Johnston — who records drone-pop music as Midwife and Sister Grotto — released a video for the song “Name.” Its first minute is silent. A guitar is tied to the back of a pickup truck with an amplifier switched on in its bed. A phrasing of chords begin; the truck pulls the guitar across pavement and down dirt roads, disrupting the debris of a solemn Midwest stretch. Johnston’s voice obscures in the mix, nearly clipping the audio as it rises into shouted refrains including the defiant “I’m not at home.”

Simple and devastating; the blunt image communicates anger, grief, and resilience. I keep returning to it. Johnston’s album Like Author, Like Daughter is said to represent her final days as a resident of Denver DIY venue Rhinoceropolis, which closed during the politically motivated assaults on creative spaces ushered in with the country’s new administration. In this context, “Name” aches as an anthem for cultural displacement, an ode to the expanding void.

Like Author, Like Daughter is out on Whited Sepulchre. Johnston made S&S a mix of her own material; entirely unreleased save for one track (the last), featuring collaborations with Tucker Theodore of Inanambulance Recordings and Allen Karpinski of The Six Parts Seven. Like her album, these thirty minutes are heavy and beautiful. Episode 58 is lucky to host them in the top half.

The show’s bottom half is lighter, flipping to a few favorites as of late: Olympia dream-pop group CCFX (DFA), Vancouver producer Yu Su’s latest ambient jazz cut via New York label Arcane, a highlight from Lee Noble’s new tape of synthesizer suites (Pale Blue), and one of ten transcendent piano studies from the hands of Billy Cigarette. Additional visual references, below.

Part One: Madeline Johnston’s set
303-295-3952
Midwife- Unborne
Midwife – Already Gone
Tucker Theodore – Placeholder
Midwife – Runner
Allen Karpinski & Tucker Theodore – My Reasons
Sister Grotto & Tucker Theodore – I Don’t Want To Love

Part Two: Freeform
CCFX – The One to Wait
An Luu – Pourquoi Tu Me Fous Plus Des Coups
Dip In The Pool – Transit
Yu Su – I’ll Say When I Can
Lee Noble – Elektra
I Am Just A Pupil – Algorithm
Marcus Fischer – 170211 – Dual Deck Piano Loop RRR
Billy Cigarette – Ecstasy

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