Friday, 1 September 2023

Masaki - Tubo -1982- (Cassette, Stratosphere Music 001), Japan


Dear music friends, it has been a while! Had to adjust to some new life developments, couldn't come up with the right connecting piece (it's all in my mind obviously) and even thought to maybe quit this blog after more than ten years. I could go into everything that is going on out there in the world and fabricate some narrative about where we are standing in these common music fields, but everyone knows what's the situation, so why even bother. Another thing is I'm also not really in a hurry I guess. Let's just go for another run now that summer is over and see what comes next. Maybe a longer hiatus will just happen every now and then. So with that being said.

Here's a nice short cassette by Japanese home-taper Masaki 江口昌記 (Eguti Masaki). He worked on collaborations in the early 80's with Merzbow and the Italian industrial project Laxative Souls a.o. He also had his own label called Stratosphere Music of which the most iconic release was that 40 Days / 40 Nights picture disc compilation that was posted on Mutant Sounds ages ago. 

Even though I suppose that contextually one might feel that this music is quite on the noise and industrial side of the spectrum, I find it more playful and primitive. Maybe minimal synth-ish even. Great cut-ups with primitive drum machines, analog effects. Has a resemblance of a lot of stuff on Vanity Records (ofcourse).

Enjoy and Macht das auf!

Get it HERE

Sunday, 30 April 2023

Vol Sec - Game Over -1981- (Cassette EP, Attrix Records), UK


It has been a while (for several reasons) but here it goes again. Vol Sec (originally Voluntary Sector) was a post-punk outfit from Brighton that emerged from the band The Parrots in late 1979 or early 1980. The band consisted of Les Phillips (drums), Brenda Robinson (vocals), Rick Blair (guitar, vocals, synth), Colin Murray (bass), Jay Derrick (keyboards, synth, vocals), Nick Wells (guitar) and Tom White (trumpet). Rick Blair was simultaneously running Attrix Records (which also was a record store).

Vol Sec was embedded in a larger local scene of punk, post-punk and new wave groups. The main underground venue for this music scene in Brighton was The Vault. Other venues where punk gigs took place were the Alhambra and the Buccaneer. Vol Sec's song Love (Sic) was used as the signature tune for Radio Brighton's weekly programme featuring Brighton bands, which went out during 1980-1981. The Vol Sec sound is a nice mixture of post-punk and new-wave funk. 

More information on the entire scene in Brighton at the time is to be found here.

Get it HERE

Saturday, 11 February 2023

Various Artists - Musicworks 48 - Warren Burt, Rhys Chatham, Susan Frykberg -1990- (Cassette, Musicworks), Canada

Here's another Musicworks cassette compilation. Musicworks was a journal that focused on Canadian avant-garde music as well as music recorded during music meetings in Canada by foreign musicians. It was founded by Andrew Timar and John Oswald in Toronto. Numerous cassettes were released and accompanied by background information and different articles on music.

This volume includes:

France based American composer Rhys Chatham known for his orchestral works for electric guitars and compositions with guitar, trumpet, keyboards and electronics. He studied under electronic music pioneer Morton Subotnick and minimalist icon La Monte Young and was a member of Young's group, The Theater of Eternal Music, during the early seventies. Chatham also played with Tony Conrad in an early version of Conrad's group, The Dream Syndicate.

Composer, ethno-musicologist and percussionist Don Wherry who was also part of the improv outfit The Black Auks. Didgeridoo player, flutist and sound sculpture creator Susan Rawcliffe. Composer, performer, video artist, sound poet, writer and instrument maker Warren Burt and electroacoustic composer Susan Frykberg from New Zealand. 

More info on the different pieces in the included liner notes.

Kindly donated by Matthew

Get it HERE

Tuesday, 31 January 2023

Error - Strange Universe -1991- (Cassette, Self-Released), US

So I never thought another cassette by Error would surface after stumbling upon their earlier Show Off Your Mutants tape, but I was wrong. Here it is! Error was an electronic music group from the small sea town of Corpus Christi in Texas. On this release it says that the music was made by Geronimo (voice/instruments) and Big Chief (instruments), however it might as well be a solo project, who knows.

Just like Error's previous cassette Strange Universe is an interesting collage of samples, electronics, drum machine patterns and EBM basslines. This album reflects a much more colorful 90's sound than the previous one that leans more towards darker EBM sounds. However Error definitely has a more humorous approach to their music in general which keeps reminding me of Severed Heads. The sound and attitude illustrate that the new dawn of musical styles of the 90's had risen. Unpolished, creative and fun cassette-making in hidden corners of the world during the global rave-olution. The Strange Universe of Error.

Kindly donated by The Y Create Archive

Get it HERE

Next month this blog will be 10 years old and there might be some sort of project celebrating that. I will give an update on that once I know more in February. Simultaneously this might be the last year of doing this or maybe I can't let go and will keep going. I don't know. Maybe it's time for other priorities. Probably what is still to come combined with the pace of this blog will be already more than a year of material. Some stuff I kept in the vaults for years. So let's keep it organic and see!

Sunday, 15 January 2023

Dust And The Minds Featuring Brenray - Prosperó Año Nuevo (PAN) -1985- (Double Cassette, Egmondse Klank Opsessie E.K.O. 06), Netherlands


Let's start the new year with another special cassette by the Dutch anarchist, free-form home-taping group Dust And The Minds. The band hailed from the surroundings of the small village of Egmond-Binnen and was created by the brothers Fred and John Valkering who were accompanied by a lot of different other musicians. The Valkering brothers established their cassette label Egmondse Klank Opsessie (Egmond sound obsession/on session) to release their different musical disguises like Dust And The Minds, Comrades Creating, Hafre as well as solo works. During the 80's they released dozens of cassettes of which many were beautifully created and released with DIY booklets, drawings, posters, unusual packages etc.

Prosperó Año Nuevo (PAN) is an extensive release with over two hours of pure DIY no-wave, post-punk and anarcho-punk sounds that was released for the new year of 1986. Apparently it's a mix between Dust and The Minds and a band with a slightly different line-up called Brenray. The cassettes were housed in a larger book-like case with information on the recording dates and line-up etc.

The output on the Egmondse Klank Opsessie has been vast and mind-blowingly authentic and home-made. The entire surroundings of Egmond and the smaller towns and villages in the province of North-Holland were always a very important fertile soil for (anarcho)punk in The Netherlands. Places like Wormerveer, Koog aan de Zaan, Heiloo, Castricum and their surroundings are some of the birthplaces of the typical Dutch punk sound that incorporates detuned improvisation and noise elements. This in contrast to the usually more structured sound of HC punk or the classic three-chord punk songs.

Some wonderful DIY sounds from 80's Holland. There is a lot more to say about all of this, but it's better to just give this a listen.

Knock knock who's there? I'm not. 1986.....

Get it HERE

Saturday, 24 December 2022

Thomas Girke - Elektronik Musik -1983- (Cassette, Togi Music), Germany

 Merry Christmas to all friends and followers of the blog!

Is that an image of the Brooklyn Bridge with the Twin Towers in New York? Can't really figure out the angle of the photo though. Ofcourse those towers were already there decades before they got used to scam us into the new millennium. But whether this image is a correct depiction of the skyline is quite unclear. Actually it doesn't really matter. All we care for is that those UFO's high up there in the sky were real! The rest is basically constructed around them. Skyscrapers, UFO's, modern metropoles: some key signs of the future in one depiction. Needless to say that within such a vision Thomas Girke from West-Berlin created a wonderful and futuristic soundtrack.

Elektronik Musik is a piece of Berlin School analog electronics on the synth-pop and minimal synth side of the spectrum. Analog arpeggiators, keyboard melodies, electronic syncopations and drum computer rhythms take us on a neon-light disco journey across the elektronik sky by way of China Town into synthetic dreams in time and space.

Quick get on board of the UFO! I heard those aliens have a space dancefloor and they are spinning some Italo disco records. Might have heard some Patrick Cowley and Stratis up there in the sky. Is that Magic Fly by Space now?! Abandon earth!

Get it HERE

Wednesday, 14 December 2022

Viktimized Karcass - Skinned Alive -1987- (Cassette, Sound Of Pig - SOP 86), US


Viktimized Karcass was an experimental underground band from Memphis, Tennessee that was strongly embedded in the cassette culture of the 80's. The band consisted of Chris Phinney (founder of the Harsh Reality cassette label), Michael Thomas Jackson, Richard Martin, Robert Henson and Roger Moneymaker. The music consists of psychedelic jams, electronic experimentation, tape-loops and other improvised sounds. Most of the members were also involved in solo projects and contributed immensely to the shaping of the cassette culture of home-tapers. Viktimized Karcass released many cassettes on a variety of international cassette labels. 

Skinned Alive was released through Sound Of Pig, a pivotal cassette culture label from New York that was created by Al Margolis (aka If, Bwana). There are some far out space rock jams on here. It reminds me a bit of Smersh or Sponge. Wonderful stuff.

Kindly donated by The Y Create Archive

Get it HERE