Category Archives: Seance Centre

“In Return for Your Homage, I Bring You a New Era!”

Featuring : Seance Centre

Seance Centre - Chandi

Beppe Loda is a legendary Italian DJ, who made a name for himself in the early 80s with an Afro sound (having been DJing since the early 70s).  He started a mix we posted (in June last year) with Bionic Boar, a track we wrote about last week.

Seance Centre is a collaborate between Loda, and Brandon Hocura and Naomi Hocura of VOWLS. Brandon described the thought process behind recording one of the tracks wonderfully:

…the song was named after Emil Zatopek, the greatest long-distance runner in recorded history. I edited the track down…from live jams in an attempt to capture some of the off-kilter mechanical expression of form that Zatopek was famous for. He was also known for running faster and faster during his final laps and not appearing tired at the end of extraordinarily long races.

Our tendency (rightly or wrongly) to anchor people who create culture to their heyday makes this particular collaboration seem temporally confused.  In a good way of course, not in a Bing Crosby and Bowie way (that’s for another post).  Zatopek certainly seems to emanate from the same synth-wave era that was flinging out tapes and cassettes to all corners of Europe.  Yet Naomi’s words seem pulled towards the more melodic, more emotive Italo that was a camp compatriot to synth/minimal-wave’s blank earnestness.

This transatlantic collaboration between an Italian and a pair of Canadian’s doesn’t simply fold time then; it draws together within itself several musical moments that co-existed in a world that wasn’t ‘always online’.  The geography — that added friction to music moving around the globe in the early 80s — is gleefully disregarded.  An almost psychedelic synth breakdown sits among the (seemingly) simple drum programming that defined the DIY electronic music coming out of the northern European countries.  A vocal that’s in some moments as icily practical as Kraftwerk’s machine noises and at others, the source of soft club incantations; not the excessive siren call of Italo but somewhere in between.

When we were sent this it was compared to Klein + M.B.O. another transatlantic collaboration of producers and musicians.  A bridge between Italo and proto-House in Chicago.  Which seems perfectly apt to us.

Seance Centre – Zatopek

You can listen to the whole EP on their Soundcloud.

Post title taken from this, if you were wondering.

Brandon’s been in touch to clarify that Loda wasn’t actually involved in this track.  Rather, after working with him in the studio Naomi and Brandon kept working and created the 4 tracks on the EP.

The City States of the Mind

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As your mind struggles to deal with the philosophical horrors of the singularity, a tree sprouts into view in front of you.  Of Knowledge or Of Life you’re not quite sure, distracted as you are by your synthesised neurones firing off faster than your consciousness can handle.

Diego Garcia – Marcha Albionica

Omar Souleyman – Yagbuni

William Onyeabor – Good Name

Your mind — now massively parallelised between various secret inter-continental locations —  is breaking down in much the same way that a cartoon car does at high speed.  Certain parts are tearing themselves away from your conscious while all the time more trees appear.  And is that a mountain range?

A mystic appears just as your memory of school (aged 13-16) is overwritten by a swap file for the Gutenberg Archives.

“My apologies,” says the mystic, “we weren’t quite prepared for the affect this whole process would have…on your reality…do you see?”

You stare blankly at him/her as you assimilate Sumerian and all recorded material on John ‘Jellybean’ Benitez — at the cost of your ability to regulate your heartbeat.  You didn’t need that anyway.

Mazes – Bodies

Slackk – Silk Robe

“We have made for you this place.”

The trees have formed a forest and the sky is being textured.  The lighting on the mountains still isn’t quite right but the way it currently filters through the leaves is quite beautiful.

Fielded – Eve of a New Moon
“You must wait here.  I will return once we have decided what to do.”

Your feet touch down on the cool damp grass.  Before you is a large stone worn flat.  Atop the stone is a goblet containing what looks like mead.  A few meters behind this is an imposing stone wall.  Set into this wall are a pair of enormous iron gates.

Not Waving – Battle Mountain

Seance Centre – Zatopek

You drink the mead, go here.

You walk through the gates, go here.

2013 References

Illustration by Ricardo Garbini for JLB’s The Circular Ruins which is totally about a rampant AI with amnesia.
Finally, three of our favourite groupings of music people got together to put out this:
http://youtu.be/nskM0V2OkYM
Click the names to buy the music: Diego García, Omar Souleyman, William Onyeabor, Mazes, Slackk, Fielded, Not Waving, Seance centre.