titassite

Rites of the Palm Spring

Featuring : Talaboman + Visible Cloaks

You lay by the swimming pool of a hotel in a mid-century modern resort in the middle of the Colorado desert while the cast of the OC cavort in the water, throwing margarita cocktails at each other. You arrived from Britain’s first pathetic attempts at a Spring a few days ago and the sun still burns, the heat still burns, the #FFFFFF smiles of the cast of the OC really really burn. You lay in a hallucinated haze, you feel your individuality dissolve, your soul stretch its amoebic tendrils into the water, ready to return to the source. You are not sure, in a British way. You gaze at the eye in the sky searing your everything, and for a moment you feel like a member of the stunned mob in JG Ballard’s The Reptile Enclosure, gazing at the sky, waiting for the signal which, with a galvanic surge, will send you into the water.

Your are experiencing these moments in a completely integrated fashion, stroboscopic blades of light and the murmur of your fellow swimming-poolers, a drone punctuated by shrieks when the margarita hits it target, the taste of a sour beer you sip from time to time, just because it’s fun to thicken the haze, make yourself more receptive to the signal.

And then it arrives,  the music , a divine manifestation, the colossal foot of the desert god stepping through the burning hole in the sky to dip its pinkie in the cool pool water, it could crash the skull of that buff swimmer right there, turn you all into skeletal husks with a blaze of its might, but today it comes with a message of beauty, not death, and you are its recipient.

You thank every single decision, life-choice, coincidence and contingency that brought you here, to this crossroad of primal emotions where the vibes of an epic jam decide the way forward.

You get up from your chair, and slip into the water.

[The artists we are posting today were played by the Friends of Friends DJs at the ACE Hotel last weekend, while we monged out by the pool. Enjoy!]

Visible Cloaks are sorcerers of kinaesthesia and designers of mood. Each of the compositions in the amazing Reassemblage, recently released by RVNG, is a tour of the rooms and halls and galleries of imaginary houses perched in the hills of Elysium. You glide through each of them as in a dream, never wondering about how you got to your current position because the state of satori immanent to every step of the journey renders your consciousness transparent, and quiet.

We balk at the idea of summarising their music with crude comparisons, but if we had to, we would say that they sound like Oneohtrix Point Never if you replaced his penchant for prog with a 1980s japanese ambient obsession. If you know us at all, you know we’re so there.

The DJs who so delighted us at Palm Springs last week played Valve. Today we leave you with the Revisited version, featuring soothing vocals by Miyako Koda. It could be the lullaby with which a pacifist Artificial General Intelligence evolved from a William-Gibsonian virtual pop star bids farewell to humanity’s materialistic, aggressive, nasty side, setting us up for a new age of bliss right after the Singularity.

Visible Cloaks and Dip in the Pool – Valve (Revisited)

Get the single including the Revisited version here, and the album (in digital, while waiting for a second vinyl pressing) here.

The second artist we wanted to mention is Talaboman (i.e. John Talabot + Axel Boman), whose recently released The Night Land is one of those rare things, a perfect, all killer no filler, seamless dance music album that could perfectly sit alongside Vitalic’s Ok Cowboy,  Levon Vincent’s 2015 effort or Lindstrøm’s Where You Go I Go Too.

The connections with the former are particularly strong. Although both records draw on similar influences – Kosmische, minimal techno, even minimal composition – their demeanors couldn’t be more different. Where Lindstrøm is apollonian, Talaboman is dionysian. Where Lindstrøm soars into the sky like a metal angel designed by Steve Reich, Talaboman runs into a night of monginess and voodoo, looking for transcendence in dance, sex and repetition, repetition, repetition.

Safe Changes is perhaps the only exception to all the debauchery (leaving aside Japanese edition exclusives), a straight krautrock stomper full of synthesisers beautiful and grandiose like a new sun rising over Europe’s green vales and pleasingly rectilinear autobahns. Unrepresentative as it might be, we will post it because it is the one that got played during our Palm Springs adventures. For the rest, you will have to chase Talaboman into the muck, filth and mong of their Night Land.

Talaboman – Safe Changes

Acquire Safe Changes from R&S.

Hard to Fear a God

Featuring : Robedoor

Robedoor enter 20JFG’s consciousness with a sound somewhere between pagan ceremony and tendrils from the Sun ripping apart the land.  But that’s just the first six or so minutes from their new album.  Today we’re interested in the next eight.

After the scorched earth, comes the night.  Age of Sewage is a heaving beast of guitars-as-sirens, drums-as-pure-terror and distorted, tortured vocals as our only island of humanity.  And while that all sounds incredibly bleak, it’s the sort of bleakness that’s ok to visit.  The sort of bleakness that might point to where we’re going but also reminds us we’re not quite there yet.  It’s also the sort of bleakness that subsides, that ebbs, as if the gaze of some terrible searchlight has swung away leaving us temporarily in the still, black calm.

You should totally fear though, for it returns, like some demonic procession: hooves and granite and steel.  A theme song for medieval totalitarianism.  Which is strangely preferable to the global, kleptocratic, reactionary, apocalypse cult we’re actually faced with.  Lol.

Robedoor – Age of Sewage

Age of Sewage is taken from Robedoor’s album, New Age Sewage which is out on Hands in the Dark on 21st April.  You can (pre)order it from their store, right here.

The bit is a basic unit of information in computing and digital communications

Featuring : Tristan Perich

The bit is equivalent to the unit shannon, a basic unit of information in computing and digital communications, named after Claude Shannon, and may therefore be physically implemented with a two-state device. These values are most commonly represented as either a 0 or 1. The term bit is a portmanteau of binary digit, in information theory.

The bit is a basic unit of information in computing and digital communications. The bit is equivalent to the unit shannon, and may therefore be physically implemented with a two-state device, named after Claude Shannon, in information theory. These values are most commonly represented as either a 0 or 1. The term bit is a portmanteau of binary digit. A bit can have only one of two values.

The bit is a basic unit of information in computing and digital communications, and may therefore be physically implanted with a two-state device. In information theory, these values are most commonly represented as either a 0 or 1. A bit can have only one of two values. The bit is equivalent to the unit shannon, named after Claude Shannon. The term bit is a portmanteau of binary digit.

Named after Claude Shannon, the bit is a basic unit of information in computing and digital communications. The bit is equivalent to the unit shannon, in information theory, and may therefore be physically implanted with a two-state device. These values are most commonly represented as either a 0 or 1. A bit can have only one of two values. The term bit is a portmanteau of binary digit.

And may therefore be physically implanted with a two-state device, the bit is equivalent to the unit shannon. In information theory, the bit is a basic unit of information in computing and digital communications. The term bit is a portmanteau of binary digit. These values are most commonly represented as either a 0 or 1. Named after Claude Shannon, a bit can have only one of two values.

The bit is a basic unit of information in computing and digital communications, and may therefore be physically implanted with a two-state device. In information theory, these values are most commonly represented as either a 0 or 1. The term bit is a portmanteau of binary digit. The bit is equivalent to the unit shannon. A bit can have only one of two values, named after Claude Shannon.

The bit is equivalent to the unit shannon, and may therefore be physically implanted with a two-state device. In information theory, these values are most commonly represented as either a 0 or 1. The bit is a basic unit of information in computing and digital communications. A bit can have only one of two values, named after Claude Shannon. The term bit is a portmanteau of binary digit.

The bit is equivalent to the unit shannon, and may therefore be physically implanted with a two-state device. In information theory, the term bit is a portmanteau of binary digit, named after Claude Shannon. A bit can have only one of two values, these values are most commonly represented as either a 0 or 1. The bit is a basic unit of information in computing and digital communications.

Tristan Perich – 1-Bit Symphony: Movement 1

Buy the amazing microchip edition of 1-Bit Symphony – not a ‘recording’, but a 1-bit machine housed inside a CD case and playing the symphony in real-time –  of from Bandcamp


Art: “Saturn Devouring His Son” (1819-1823) Francisco de Goya
by = 。= : 2009-08-28 12:24

Pilots of purple twilight, dropping down with costly bales

Featuring : Majeure + Rainbow Island

Today is all about things that move forward, and fast.

Rainbow Island come first. Their name, potentially inspired by the 1989 Amiga platform is apt. This drum and synth music definitely sounds like a good candidate to soundtrack the prances and jaunts of a Bubby and Bobby of Bubble Bobble fame, as they traverse a landscape so chromatically saturated it will make your eyes bleed, shooting wasps and caterpillars with their rainbow guns. They also make us think of Holy Fuck if they had been into Silver Apples instead of early noughts breakbeat, and even Add (n) to (x) if they regressed to some proto-human state like William Hurt in Altered States.

In Gigi Rally, Rainbow Island chart an alternative evolutionary path for video games soundtracks set in a counterfactual world where Babbage and Lovelace have made the analytical engine work, and graphics consist of the rapid movement of cardboard cutouts, like those pre-digital racing games writ large, or Balinese puppet robots on speed. Gigi Rally it this world’s Wipeout, and its physically, computationally and sonically pumping.

Rainbow Island – Gigi Rally

Get Crystal Smerluvio Riddims from Flying Kids or NO-FI recordings.

Then Majeure, whose latest release in Temporary Residence amps up the muscle ‘n’ throb to almost unbearable levels. Seeing him live at an excellent London show with Grails last week made us think of folk-hero John Henry’s legendary competition with the steel drill, if the machine was a Giger design, and the whole thing had been shot by John Carpenter in the style of the magic battle between Lo-Pan and Egg Shen at the end of Big Trouble in Little China.

Needless to say, the human wins this time, but instead of vanquishing the machine, becomes one with it, a cybernetic sprite surfing a virtual world of Silicon Graphics info-porn designed by a Mahavishnu Orchestra obsessed superintelligence.

Majeure – A Few More Pieces of Eight

Get Apex from Temporary Residence.

Last Night at the Britpop Proms

Das Capital: The Songwriting Genius of Luke Haines is a curious beast. It’s a part-swan song to Haines’ 90s indie group, The Auteurs, a part-bridge to his new solo career, and a not-quite greatest hits. But most of all, it was a scam.

Hut Records, the Virgin subsidiary that Haines spent the 90s signed to, was being shut down. As a final fuck you to the Virgin overlords, Hut boss Dave Boyd exploited a loophole whereby he could siphon off a substantial chunk of money from what remained of the Hut coffers and give it to Haines under the guise of ‘back catalogue’. The catch is, Haines would have to re-record a selection of his old songs, maybe as an acoustic album.

Instead, Haines went wild with the budget, smothering re-recordings of tracks from the four Auteurs albums proper and his Baader Meinhof concept album – along with a handful of new tracks – in stately orchestration.

“The sessions went well and nearly every song that have been re-recorded are better than the originals,” Haines wrote in his second autobiography, Post-Everything, “though I know I’ll have a hard job convincing ‘the kids’ about that one.”

And certainly, others were not convinced. Pitchfork, for instance, commented:

“Das Capital: The Songwriting Genius of Luke Haines and the Auteurs is a primo Situationist stunt. From the title on down, it concerns itself purely with the sound of money. Fat with winds, strings, chimes, echo chambers the size of Wembley stadium and, per liner notes, ‘the greatest sax solo in the history of popular culture,’ the album is meticulously designed to mimic fundraiser quickies like The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra Plays the Music of Oasis. There’s even an overture, ingeniously hidden before the first track (you have to hit pause and rewind well into negative numbers to play it). The result, needless to say, is patently and intentionally ludicrous; it could be one of the greatest jokes ever played on a label by an artist.

I can’t help but applaud Das Capital’s meta-architecture, which incorporates everything from the cover art to the attendant interviews filled with bragging about the project’s cost (press manipulation has always been an integral part of Haines’s work– his solo debut came out the same week he called for a ‘pop strike’ from the op-ed page of The Guardian). One small quibble, however, remains: The album is unlistenable.”

In truth, the album isn’t bad. Probably not a lost classic, but better overall than similar efforts like Tori Amos’ Royal Albert Hall-debuted Gold Dust. The new songs – usually filler on these albums – end up being some of Haines’ best, and would have made a classic EP if on their own.

Although Haines’ solo work would tend towards concept albums, where the sound of the song and its theme are tightly meshed, The Auteurs albums were just Good Songs that happened to be performed by an indie band that featured an electric cellist rather than a lead guitarist. So recontextualising them as ‘last night at the Britpop Proms’ anthems doesn’t hurt them at all.

Take the reversioning of lead track from The Auteurs’ Mercury-nominated debut:

Luke Haines & The Auteurs – Showgirl

Also, the tongue-in-cheek overture that opens the album is not only pretty funny, but kind of great, a medley of stand-out melodies from Haines’ premium-grade songbook thus far.

Buy the 2003 album Das Capital: The Songwriting Genius of Luke Haines and The Auteurs from Discogs


Art: Der Orchideen Garten

Black Materia

Featuring : Michele Mercure

 

20JFG, forever on the pulse of popular music, today brings you a record from 1983, that was reissue at the start of February.  Aren’t we glad those breakneck blog-house years are behind us…

But our avant approach to release dates and responding to emails seems in keeping with today’s slice of early 80s synth-age.

In the Air begins like a suitably mystical moment on the Final Fantasy 7 OST, contemplative and peaceful (you just know someone’s about to die).  Before a far more towering series of synth chords interrupt the dancing, arpeggiated  shafts of light.  These moments recur: attempts to shape the formless; attempts to add urgency to an eternal crystalline structure.  But no amount of drumming and uplifting synth stabs can alter the pace of this essential, looping beauty.

Michele Mercure – In The Air

In the Air is taken from Michele Mecure’s phenomenal record, Eye Chant, which has been reissued by new label Freedom to Spend.  It’s out now and you can get it from RVNG right here or from all good internet and physical record stores.

Summerisle Rugby Union drinking songs

Featuring : Bert Jansch

Rosemary Lane is an English traditional that tells a story about the seduction of a domestic servant by a sailor.

The earliest appearance of Rosemary Lane in popular culture dates to 1904.

Folklorists Steve Roud and Julia Bishop, in their 2012 book on the origins of English folk songs, describe Rosemary Lane as:

“An extremely widespread song, in Britain and America. Its potential for bawdry means that it was popular in male-centred contexts such as rugby clubs, army barracks and particularly in the navy, where it can still be heard, but traditional versions were often collected from women as well as men.”

Bert Jansch recorded the tune for his 1971 classic LP of the same name.

Bert Jansch – Rosemary Lane

There are copies Rosemary Lane available from Discogs


gif from La Chenille de la carotte (1911), director unknown