Friday 27 November 2020

Various Artists - Passions Organiques Vol.3 - Instrumentaux -1987- (Cassette, Organic Tapes), France


The Passions Organiques volumes were a series of international home-taping compilations created by the French Organic Tapes label from Grenoble during the 80's. For the most part the compilations contain electronic, industrial and minimalistic ambient sounds with a slight emphasis on French acts. However the Organic label also published many international musicians and created special releases around certain countries like the great Polish Road cassettes that I posted some time ago. The less fortunate dimension of the releases by Organic Tapes is the poor sound quality. There is a lot of hiss on these tapes and the sound volume changes each track. Nevertheless these compilations were assembled with a lot of care and there are some true pearls to be heard that don't appear on any other release.

Passions Organiques Vol.3 - Instrumentaux is a nice electronic home-taping journey gathering some household names of the international cassette network like Los Paranos (FR), Marzidovsek (YU), In Aeternam Vale (FR), The Dead Goldfish Ensemble (UK) and Pacific 231 (FR) but it also gives attention to even lesser known acts. The cassette came out together with Volume 4 of the series in a large VHS case, but I decided to post both cassettes seperately, so the other volume will come to the blog somewhere in the future.

As said, not really desirable sound quality, but nevertheless some nice minimal synth, industrial and ambient electronic tracks. You can find Volume 1 of the series over at Tape Attack

Kindly donated by the Y Create Archive

Get it HERE

Saturday 21 November 2020

Ex Cathedra - Caedimus Noctu -198X- (Cassette, Regicide Bureau Tapes), US

Ex Cathedra was a home-taping project from Overland, Saint Louis, Missouri created by Thomas Sutter. As founder of the Regicide Bureau (both a music project and a label) Sutter released numerous cassettes throughout the 80's and 90's. He was also in the projects Next Radio and Drive!Hesaid and collaborated on various occassions with Berlin based musician M. Finnkrieg.

On this third cassette by Ex Cathedra we hear two side-long pieces of electronic experimentation, surrealistic collage, layered noises and other strange phenomena. It presents a mind-scrambling sonic experience and cocktail of weird sounds revealing the pure spirit of home-taping experimentation. No music standards or external music industry interferences play a part. If anything Ex Cathedra loops mainstream media and existing music back into the trip turning and twisting around the roles of power and influences. Those expressions can be serious, but often also contain some humour and fun elements. In the second piece there is a nice fragment of Kraftwerk's Pocket Calculator to be heard for example.

Another home-taping cassette that contains nice mind-bending electronic surrealist music that frees music-as-a-formula from its confined existence.

Kindly donated by the Y Create Archive

Get it HERE

Wednesday 18 November 2020

Dustbin Silence - Untitled -1985- (Square Wheel Cassettes), Netherlands

                                                  Dustbin Silence in Brussels, 1983

Dustbin Silence was a short-lived (1982-1985) jazz, noise and improvisation trio from Rotterdam that was formed by Han van Hulzen, ErikWard Geerlings and Henri van Zanten. Han van Hulzen was also part of the new wave group Corridor des Affaires during that time and Henri van Zanten is also known as a (sound) poet in his own right. 

Dustbin Silence, however, was connected to the Rotterdam based Jazzbunker scene that existed around the legendary Jazzbunker venue which functioned as a home for Dutch and international improvisation, jazz and rock in opposition. During the 80's Rotterdam had numerous special bands that created diverse styles out of a blend of new wave, jazz, home-taping and improvisation. Some of them were also performing at the Jazzbunker. Bands from Rotterdam from those times are a.o. Dull Schicksal, Nine Tobs, The Black Sheep, Kiem, Kontakt Mikrofoon Orkest, Niew Hip Stilen, Debiele Eenheid and many others.

On this cassette by Dustbin Silence we hear a recording from the Jazzbunker, but there are also pieces recorded elsewhere in The Netherlands. It gives a nice impression of the group's live recordings:  gloomy atmospheres combining free improvised sounds with punk poetry in Dutch and English. It reminds me of industrial performance art groups sounds of the 80's of which the live recordings resemble much more of a document of a scene than perfectly composed tracks. The Berlin band Sprung Aus Den Wolken sometimes created such a feel for example.

In any case here's another interesting cassette hailing from the Rotterdam improvisation scene of the 80's.

From the Collection Allard Pierson/NPI

Get it HERE

Monday 9 November 2020

Renegade Raspberry Retaliation ‎- My Name'll Be There -1986- (Tape, Northampton Musicians Collective), UK

Renegade Raspberry Retaliation was a band from Northampton, Northamptonshire, England that consisted of Richard Powell and T. Brice Bodsworth. The band was part of a larger community of musicians that organized itself within the region as the Northampton Musicians Collective. It seems that RRR wasn't active for too long despite belonging to this larger community.

Their only release - My Name'll Be There - displays a fantastic DIY post-punk sound including monotonous vocals, angular guitar movements, dirty garage rock tunes and repetitive analog synthesizer patterns. The music fits the typical English DIY sound reminiscent of bands like Amos and Sara, Sally Smmit And Her Musicians or Brain of Morbius later on. It even has some hints of The Fall (obviously dozens of bands could be named).

I guess Renegade Raspberry Retaliation actually still sounds fresh nearly 35 years later. The sound is bleak, punk, experimental, fairly absurdistic and contains quite some self-irony. At the same time it creates musical depth through simplicity. All the right musical ingredients for high value authentic British DIY post-punk I'd say (infused with some American themes). An unknown classic!

Kindly donated by the Y Create Archive

Get it HERE

Wednesday 4 November 2020

Ras.Al.Ghul - The Experimental Absorption Spectrum -199X- (Cassette, Self-Released), Portugal

Ras.Al.Ghul was an electronic music project from Lisbon created by Fernando Cerqueira and Paulo Rodrigues. The duo started out during the mid-80's as an electro-industrial group called Croniamantal. They released some tapes by themselves as well as on the Portuguese cassette label Ritual De Sombras and contributed to a number of Industrial compilations. After a short existence they decided to bury their industrial project to start the hypnotic electronic dance project Ras.Al.Ghul (perhaps named after a supervillain from the American DC Comics).

The Experimental Absorption Spectrum is a tape release that was apparently distributed through experimental cassette labels like Tonspur Tapes and Maljugin Musik in Germany. The album displays an electronic tribal sound that touches on different genres of electronic music of the 90's - from Drum 'n Bass to Downtempo - yet the music never really conforms to any of these genres. The sound is maybe closest to a 90's psychedelic trance atmosphere, but the lo-fi quality of the recording in combination with the electronic experimentation doesn't allow it to become generic. 

It sonically connects the industrial culture's breeding ground of the 80's with the rave feel of the 90's through hypnotic beats and sub-aquatic ambient electronics fusing technology with the mind's eye: a Portuguese underground sound that balances on the sonic intersection between a neo tribal industrial music tradition à la late Muslimgauze and the sound of upcoming communal neo-psychedelic trance festivals.

Southern European space music to be absorbed by.

Get it HERE