Back in the fall of 2014, Nick Zanca joined us in the Newtown Radio studio, armed with a sophisti-pop-filled mix in advance of his last Mister Lies album, Shadow (Orchid Tapes). In the five years that followed, he put Mister Lies on ice to explore collaborative work with the project Quiet Friend and otherwise settle into a personal hiatus, simply letting life happen in New York.
The new Mister Lies album, released last week, is a self-titled, self-released, and self-assured reset that was shared alongside an essay by Zanca at The Talkhouse. It finds the artist returning to his home-recording roots, embracing the power of memory and the present, and adding depth and subtlety, through dynamic field recordings, to his evocative and fluid late-night pop improvisations.
Like his last mix, Zanca taps into influences, only this time he’s dived below the surface of compositional work, headfirst into the textural and fragmental documentations of audio. Phonography opens with a recording of Pauline Oliveros outlining one of her deep listening exercises and then proceeds to flow through sound and music generated by, as he says, “sculpture, conversation, repetition, improvisation, travelogue, and natural phenomena.” Presented in this format, the mix offers a sprawling opportunity to exercise focused listening techniques, and to find nuances in the tonalites of the world, both here in this encapsulated selection, and in your everyday surroundings. A fascinating and erudite two-hour aural diorama (ending in our favorite lakeside scene), accompanied by a handmade collage cover by Nathaniel Whitcomb. Zanca adds:
“Field recordings and found sounds have always been a fundamental aspect of my musical practice, but I never consciously placed the origins of my interest in capturing the audible illustration of environment until revisiting my solo project after some time away. I found myself immersed in musique concrète and electroacoustic composition in the studio — sonic artworks that generally revolve around and build upon landscapes both natural and invented. This mix is an attempt to gather the fruits of these discoveries, blend excerpts into a dense collage and posit deep listening as an altogether meditative pursuit.”
Pauline Oliveros – Tuning Meditation (The Kitchen, NYC 1979)
Harry Bertoia – Clear Sounds (Sculpture, 1973)
Sarah Hennies – Foragers
David Hykes / The Harmonic Choir – Multiplication des voix au cœur du corps sonore
Costin Miereanu – Musique Climatique
Ernest Hood – From The Bluff
Wendy Carlos – Sonic Seasonings: Fall
Scott Fraser – Communiqué
Hiroshi Yoshimura – 小川にそって (Air In Resort)
Alvin Curran – Fiori Chiari, Fiori Oscuri
Nuno Canavarro – Untitled excerpt from ‘Plux Quba’
Annea Lockwood – Tiger Balm
Koichi Shimizu / Apichatpong Weerasethakul – Reverberation (Syndromes And A Century)
Luc Ferrari – Petite symphonie intuitive pour un paysage de printemps
Pit Piccinelli / Fred Gales / Walter Maioli – Amazonia 6891
Pat Metheny / Lyle Mays – As Falls Wichita, So Falls Wichita Falls
Egberto Gismonti – Maracatu, Sapo, Queimada & Grilo
Joni Mitchell – The Wolf That Lives In Lindsey
Yasuaki Shimizu – このように詠めり (その二)
Carl Stone – Shing Kee
Vanessa Rosetto / Matthew Revert – Everyone Needs A Plan
RIP Hayman – Dreams Of India And China
Tetsu Inoue – Inter Link
Aksak Maboul – Scratch Holiday
Jan Jelinek – Lady Gaga, you once said in an interview that you write music for the fashion industry. Is fashion as important to you as music?
Derek Bailey / Min Tanaka – Rain Dance
Satsuki Shibano / Yoshio Ojima – Caresse (3eme partie)
Holger Czukay / Rolf Dammers – Boat Woman Song
Julius Eastman – Gay Guerrilla
Moniek Darge – Turkish Square
John Martyn – Small Hours
S&S Radio broadcasts every now and then on Newtown Radio.
Last night, Mister Lies and Foxes in Fiction (also shoutout Brian Vu and Cuddle Formation) came by the studio for what can be considered an Orchid Tapes takeover. Nick provided a guest mix compiling some of the music that inspired his album Shadow (out October 28th). Warren, who arrived from the airport just in time to plug in for the second hour, performed a set of “deeper, weirder cuts” as well as a new song finished earlier that day.
[Hour 1, Mister Lies Mix]
Knower – Trust The Light
Scott Walker – It’s Raining Today
Steve Hauschildt – Uncanny Valley
The Blue Nile – Seven AM
Judee Sill – The Kiss (Live)
Prefab Sprout – Nightingales
Spencer Cole – Oh My Dear, Alright, You’re Right
Arthur Russell – You And Me Both
Thomas – So Many Dreams About You
The Roches – Hammond Song
Oneohtrix Point Never – Russian Mind
K Leimer – Two Voices
David Sylvian – Silver Moon Over Sleeping Steeples
Seal – Violet
58:00-1:19:00 – Interlude ~ Yoshimura/Eno/HEDIA (as Warren sets up)
Foxes in Fiction Live
Thanks all. Next show is Tuesday, October 28th.
It’s unclear exactly which dimension is allowing the other to escalate in this prism-ed ‘gray area’, but the interaction is unquestionably enchanted. Urban fantasia looks good on a late night (rapid eye) movement like “Safety Net”. The video’s director, AF-regular Left Arm Single, adds:
“I am fascinated by how two sequences of images put together can dance, bring together and pull apart your thoughts, kneading. The rhythms in the song impress in me a feeling of being somehow submerged, in a muffled, elusive world. There is no sense of direction and all you can do is roll with it.
Rolling down a hill, dirt in your mouth and hair and grass stains on your clothes. You come to as you look up at the sky. It is only afterwards that you discover the joy of remembering. Safety Net tells me a story of turning inwards, of falling off a cliff only to find oneself weightless.”