Sunday 19 March 2017

Wha-Ha-Ha - 女でよかった -1981- (7 Inch EP, Better Days), Japan

This is a pretty rare single only release by the crazed out Japanese experimental RIO synth jazz outfit Wha-Ha-Ha. They consisted a.o. of saxophonist Akira Sakata and singer Mishio Ogawa. Sakata recorded many strange albums and contributed to many artists like Kiyohiko Senba and His Haniwa All Stars and also participated in Gilbert Artman's Urban Sax project, the great French avant-garde multimedia saxophone orchestra.

Wha-Ha-Ha released two amazing albums in the early eighties as well as an EP.  Their material was also released in Europe on Recommended Records as a compilation. It's a weird combination of jazz, Rock In Opposition, Japanese melodies, pop songs, unexpected transitions and synthesizer sounds. They remind me a lot of Japanese RIO band After Dinner, also due to the female vocals. I recommend you to check out all the other Wha-Ha-Ha material.

The first song on this single was reissued as a bonus track on a CD in 2003, but the second song hasn't been re-released as far I know. Both of the songs do not appear on the albums.

Get it HERE

Friday 3 March 2017

Unovidual & Friends - Vetganzen In Jacquet -1984- (Tape, Stichting Stopcontact), Belgium

Time for another Minimal Synth cassette Jewel(!): Unovidual is the moniker of Belgian (Flemish) electronic music hometaper Henk Wallays. He was (is) part of the Micrart Group (a.o. Linear Movement, Twilight Ritual) and hosted an underground radio show called 'Stalhwerksynfonie' (after Die Krupps) in the early eighties. Wallays soon created the cassette label 3rio with Sandy Nys of Magisch Theater and Dirk Ivens of Absolute Body Control. Also he played in the band Tangible Joy and worked together intensively with US hometaping artist Tara Cross (featured on Minimal Wave's The Lost Tapes etc).

Vetganzen In Jacquet (Penguins in morning-coat jacket) is a very rare cassette that was published on the Dutch Stichting Stopcontact label, which was run by Ruud Kluivers (Doxa Sinistra). The label had legendary releases such as the Contactdisc compilation series and the Tranquil Eyes tape Walks (1985). I did not know there were more cassettes out there on this label, like the one here. I found out the cassette is from 1984 because of this catalogue.

The A-Side of this tape displays quite some dark wonky and occasionally humorous Minimal Synth sounds. It even contains a few songs with Dutch vocals. I do not know whether the pseudonyms (instruments?) written on the cassette cover were actually the collaborating Friends or that those friends are of a conceptual nature (probably he did work together with people). The B-Side starts with a lengthy track called Kankende Doctrines and has much heavier dancefloor potential. The last two songs La Romantise and A Thoughtful End are two amazing Minimal Synth tracks reminding me of acts on the Dutch Trumpett label (André de Koning, Ende Shneafliet), Asmus Tietchens his Sky Records series, but also Enzo Kreft, 5ive Ximes Of Dust, 18:e Oktober and ofcourse Autumn.

Vetganzen In Jacquet is great synth driven wave stuff complete with 808 drums, buzzing synths, home-crafted weirdness, ambient insanity, darkwave moods and more. A pearl from the Belgian 80's Minimal Synth scene everybody seems to be crazy about. What more do you want?

Hopefully someone can help us find Unovidual's other hyperrare cassettes! (Reissue labels?!)

Highly Recommended!

Get it HERE