Thursday, 8 November 2012

stop press: Le Ton Mité added to Al Doum bill...

Hey folks, things just got even more special...

very pleased to announce a last-minute addition to tomorrow's bill: Le Ton Mité is the project of a modern troubadour. The songs tell the story of McCloud Zicmuse, an artist and musician who lost his home in Olympia, USA, was stranded in France for some years, then found himself in Brussels, Belgium. Le Ton Mité's music has been compared to Moondog, Charles Ives, Caetano Veloso and Eric Satie. Mr Zicmuse sings in French as he has lived and currently lives in countries that speak this language. He is also known as an active member of the 'free music' improvising community & is seen frequently singing & playing percussion with his junkyard sonic group Hoquets. Le Ton Mité has recorded and collaborated with such groups as Maher Shalal Hash Baz, Deerhoof, Tenniscoats, Mt.Eerie,  Old Time Relijun,  l'ocelle mare, Oneone & Darugaries.
Listen to his album '"Version d'un ouvrage traduit" by Le Ton Mité:
interview on The Quietus:

Four incredible acts for just five pounds (details on all the other acts appearing below)
really recommend coming down early for this one...
keep warm and well,

Sunday, 14 October 2012

Al Doum & the Faryds, Ichi, Snails - Cafe Kino, Friday 9th November

The positive force
is the deep force that moves everything
You don't know,
but it leads you to the future choice
of peace and harmony.
Space travellers crashing in outta nowhere. Delighted to have Al Doum & the Faryds stopping by in Bristol on their first ever UK tour. Channeling the spirits of all your favourite cosmic explorers (Sun Ra, Alice Coltrane, Pharoah Sanders...), the Faryds’ sound is a hot bath of exotic groove and sweet-smelling freak-out. Come and immerse yourself…
While the six-piece hail from northern Italy, their sonics range across continental divides. Drawing on percussive tribal rhythms, highlife guitar licks, eastern winds, desert blues and, particularly, the more psychedelicised end of Arabian musics, the resultant sound is somewhere between the most liquid-grooved Embryo/Sunburned/No-Neck jams and the wilder reaches of the Sublime Frequencies catalogue.
Following last year’s private-pressed eponymous LP, their new album, Positive Force,Is co-released next month by Black Sweat Records (the band’s own label) and Glasgow’s Julia Dream Recordings (new art-label run by Andrew Ross, correspondent for the legendary Volcanic Tongue record shop).
Al Doum & the Faryds live is an experience not to be missed: transcendental and intoxicating, music for the mind and body. Feel the positive force.

Support on the evening comes from one-man-band phenomenon, Ichi.
 Hailing from Nagoya, Japan, but now based (at least part-time) in Bristol, Ichi is one of the most exciting and unlikely live performers you’re ever likely to witness. At once playful and totally sincere, Ichi takes the concept of one-man-band to its most fantastic illogical conclusion. With tape-loops, steel drum, ping-pong balls, trumpet, balloons, alarm clocks and a whole arsenal of further home-made devices, Ichi’s live sets are truly magical and guaranteed to leave you blown away.
Opening proceedings, it is our pleasure to welcome Bristol’s own Snails. A duo of Dan Weltman (Hollowbody) and Mog Fry (the Wraiths), Snails initially formed to soundtrack a budget slasher movie involving a homicidal nun. Sadly no Baftas resulted, but this bonding process led to the creation of several more lost soundtracks, and a beautiful 7” release on top underground folk label Great Pop Supplement. Evoking influences as diverse as Moondog, Basil Kirchin and Clive Palmer, their sound is sweet and melancholy; lonely and comforting.
Sitting in a conservatory, heavily blanketed, during a rainstorm, watching snails climbing on the roof.
All this at Café Kino, Stokes Croft.
Just £5 adv.
For tickets: The Here Shop or Bristol Ticket Shop

Friday, 10 August 2012

JASON LESCALLEET + Stephen Cornford + Aigon DAAC – Café Kino, Tuesday 9th October 8pm

super excited to welcome long-time /shieldshaped/ obsession JASON LESCALLEET to these parts. A towering presence in the US underground for the past decade or so, JL has built a reputation as an utterly unique noise artist with a true and singular vision.
Lescalleet is a master of magnetism: he works primarily with tape – both audio cassettes and open reels – and the medium burns into red-hot life in his hands. Despite operating at the fringe of a genre noted for its coldness and impenetrability, Jason's music is both deep and poignant. In his hands, the qualities and imperfections of both the tapes and the obsolete machinery that play them serve to evoke human frailty and tenderness. His self-released 2006 LP, The Pilgrim – part audio-memorial to his late father/part self-healing catharsis – is possibly one of the most haunting and haunted works ever committed to vinyl. Or check his pair of collaborative albums – The Breadwinner and Air Supply – made with The Shadow Ring's Graham Lambkin, for a ghostly, Beckettian exploration of the mundanities of everyday household living.
Much of Jason;s work is concerned with capturing both the sound and the feeling of decay; he operates between the poles of both composition and decomposition

"he works degraded formats as abstract metaphor for human relations, not as cynical commentary, but as an aid to revelation and remembrance, the warm glow of analoge and the physicality of tape loops and editing obsessively reiterating the human touch at the centre of this music" - Jon Dale, The Wire

Recent months have seen a flurry of recorded activity from Jason, with cassettes on Chrondritic Sound and Hanson, a double album on Erstwhile, and a collaborative LP with Aaron Dilloway (Wolf Eyes) upcoming on the consistently awesome Pan imprint. But JL's rep is built as much on his live shows – where he highlights the fragile/tactile natures of his music, with tape reels spooling around the space. His performances are gestural, visceral and able to navigate great leaps in scale - from the subatomic to the universal... Jason has only performed solo a couple of times previous on these shores, so this is a rare opportunity to witness this master at work.

Stephen Cornford is an artist whose work blurs lines between sculpture and music. He uses sound and noise to investigate the physical qualities of the material world, and has a process-based approach to performance, where the material, as much as the performer, determines the outcome
Aigon DAAC is a promising new trio comprising Dan Bennett (skjølbrot, ex-Hunting Lodge), Dominic Lash (bassist collaborator with Chris Corsano/Evan Parker/Tony Conrad/Joe Morris/etc) and Stuart Chalmers (cassette mangler)
Also on the night, Kurt from Infinite Limits will be manning a pop-up record shop. IL is one of the UKs premier outlets for limited and hard-to-obtain underground music-objects: cassettes, vinyl, CDs, lathe-cuts, art editions... bring pocket money for this rare real-life browsing opportunity

All this at Café Kino, Stokes Croft, Bristol.
October 9th, 8pm
Tickets £7 adv

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

The Tobacconists present Smoking is Green

The Tobacconists present
Smoking is Green -
a radiophonic opera in four cigarettes
+ H + Stuart Chalmers
Café Kino, Stokes Croft, Bristol,
Wednesday 11 April 2012, 8pm
Tickets: £6.50 adv
Perhaps you haven’t heard of The Tobacconists… Chances are though, if you’re prone to occasionally dipping a toe into the murky world or outsider musics (and that’s why you’re here, right?), you’ve come across their members before. Scott Faust and Frans de Waard (for The Tobacconists are they) are underground legends of the highest order, with CVs that read like a who’s who of subcultural musical activity during the last few decades.
Visionary theorist, musician, composer, filmmaker and performance artist, Scott Foust is a true outsider artist. Unlike most outsider artists, though, who tend to be mystical crackpots or mental defectives (usually both), Foust has a clear worldview grounded in reality. For three decades Foust, now 50, has pounded away at The Spectacle, employing a wide array of aesthetic approaches with no public or financial support. Foust’s hermeneutics lie at the strange crossroads between Guy Debord and Oscar Wilde. If Foust’s ideas seem idealistic and impractical at first, it is only because being against power and for beauty is always idealistic and impractical. His Swill Radio record label, founded in 1983, has released not only his own work, but also LPs by The Shadow Ring, Asmus Tietchens, and Ralf Wehowsky among others. His longest running musical project, Idea Fire Company (or IFCO, as they are more snappily known), founded with long time associate Karla Borecky in 1988, , produced three of the finest – if still unknown – LPs of the last decade: Anti-Natural, Stranded, and The Island Of Taste. In 1997 Foust along with Borecky and Dr. Timothy Shortell founded the Anti-Naturals, an art and theory group, which has few but dedicated members worldwide. Faust has another group, Tart, with Graham Lambkin of The Shadow Ring.
Frans de Waard, meanwhile, has been producing music since 1984. First as Kapotte Muziek, but also as Beequeen (with Freek Kinkelaar), Goem (with Roel Meelkop & Peter Duimelinks, both of whom are also a member of Kapotte Muziek these days), Zebra (with Roel Meelkop) and Freiband, Shifts as well as his own name. He has worked for the iconic Dutch avant-label/shop Staalplaat (1992-2003) and since 1986 as a reviewer for his own publication Vital, (now online as Vital Weekly). As an improvisor, he has played and collaborated with Pan Sonic, Guiseppe Ielasi, Jaap Blonk, Howard Stelzer, Andrew Liles, and the mayor of his home city, Nijmegen. Frans de Waard started his record label, Korm Plastics, back in the early 80s, and it was a ‘major’ player in the thriving cassette-trading scene of that decade. Korm Plastics has released records by such artists as Francisco Lopez, Thurston Moore, The Hafler Trio, Jim O’Rourke
Frans de Waard toured with Scott Faust and Karla Borecky in 2005, resulting in the IFCO album Vital. In 2009, Faust and de Waard decided to take things to the next level, forming their own group The Tobacconists. With various releases already under their belt, the duo are setting out across Europe to bring you their most ambitious project to date: Smoking is Green. Starting life as a radio play, the piece has now evolved into a stage version or, as they call it, a radiophonic opera in four cigarettes. Taking the exquisite textural electronics/electro-acoustics of both players’ previous work, and mixing them with a collection of smoking-related texts, The Tobacconists have brewed up a wild performance dedicated to the band’s favourite activity – smoking. Pretty much guaranteed to be unlike anything else you’ve seen before; come and fill your lungs…

Plus two great musical performances to begin the evening…

H is the solo project of Héloïse Thibault, a French expat who has been making waves in Bristol’s underground music circles since moving to the city a couple years ago. H unleashes impro-ritualistic dream-music, that obliquely references a whole bunch of dance/electronica approaches while sounding not like any of them. Her music is celestial in its reach, yet retains an earthen warmth; bedroom music for galactic diversions. Oscillating between theta and beta brain-states, H ventures far out to reach magical spheres.

Stuart Chalmers makes frenetic junk-collages from magnetic tape and electronic circuitry.  It’s raw, un-digital noise that manages to hover just above the point of collapse; absorbing both the energy of kitchen-sink breakcore and the sparseness of minimalist improv clatter. There are musique concrète elements to his output, but they are filtered through a no-fidelity DIY aesthetic that owes more to American Tapes than GRM, and a compositional approach that is based on more intuitive compass-readings.

Tickets available from Bristol Ticket Shop and The Here Shop

A co-promotion with Public Interest Promotions

Tuesday, 14 February 2012

Michael Hurley / Rozi Plain / Dean McPhee

Qu Junktions and ShieldShaped bring you...
Cube Cinema, Bristol
Sun 8th April – 7pm till 11pm
£9 advance ticket
Arrive early and take it all in, as tonight's music bill is worthy of your wandering time and attention… It's going to be like a ramble: not sure if there will be sighting of big cats or tastings of wild garlic and field mushrooms dripped in honey, but there will be songs (and ales) that will taste good, bite at your ankles and glisten your lips.  Have Moicy!

Air is abuzz with anticipation and chitter-chat – Michael Hurley is going to play The Cube. Mr. Hurley's songbook is one of the most important living, walking, talking, singing, playing bodies of work in Northern American culture. He is a singer of beautiful old style Americana songs, by turns melancholic and funny, and wrung into life on the banjo, fiddle and guitar.

Michael Hurley, known affectionately to his fans as 'Snock', was born in 1941 in Florida. He has unleashed a string of consistently ground-flattening records on such labels as the seminal and anthological Smithsonian Folkways Records (his debut record First Songs was recorded on the same reel-to-reel machine that taped Leadbelly's Last Sessions) and the prolific omni-temporal roundabout that is Mississippi Records. Hurley's songs seem to criss-cross time and labels without convention, just like the man himself.
Sometimes they coin him as Outsider Folk. Hmmm… Michael’s songs certainly declare his love of old style folk music and he certainly has a unusual flair for setting his own course, but it is the rich seam of lyrics mined by Hurley that really transcend any hep media tags you might wanna throw at him. As Ann Powers wrote in the New York Times "Whether weaving a yarn about a mysterious hog or comparing the human heart to a mechanic box, Mr. Hurley creates elaborate vistas in a musical version of outsider art".  Michael’s influence in today’s American music is immense; his repertoire has been lauded, visited and spread wide; but this is his first fully-fledged tour in Europe in more than 10 years.

Official website

The perfect middle section to this bill is Rozi Plain whose effortless, beatific and gracious songs have come to mean a lot to folks round here. She has a timeless, English, rustic and dewy eyed sound, but with a raw and tender undertow that allows her songs to snag unexpected heartstrings, making you wistful for a time and place and somebody that you have yet to experience. Dreamy…

Dean McPhee is a solo electric guitarist who lives in West Yorkshire. He plays a Fender Telecaster through a valve amp and effects. His fluid, hypnotic and melodic style touches on Davey Graham territory, but factors in aspects of Krautrock and sprawling post-rock atmospherics. Something says this is a intense guitar player that needs to be heard direct with no interference. The Wire talked of his...”free-ranging variations on melodic ideas via a mesmerising progression of harmonics, cleanly picked notes, full chords and string-bending arabesques…”

Brought to the wider, weirder public by ShieldShaped & Qu Junktions

Sunday, 5 February 2012

My favourite records of last year

These were my favourite records, tapes and CDs of 2011:

Ghédalia Tazartès - Works 1977-79 (Vinyl On Demand)
The No-Neck Blues Band - Ytiu (Kellipah)
Ernst Karel - Swiss Mountain Transport Systems (Gruenrekorder)
Flaming Dragons of Middle Earth - Electric Scaryland (Beniffer Editions)
The Dust Busters with John Cohen - Prohibition is a Failure (no label)
Village of Spaces - Morning Nap (Turned Word)
Julian Lynch - Buffalo Songs (Goaty Tapes)
Village of Spaces - Alchemy and Trust (Turned Word)
Group Ongaku - Music of Group Ongaku (Seer Sound Archive)
Dan Hayward's New Hawks (Timbreland)
Shabbazz Palaces - Black Up (Sub Pop)
PJ Harvey - Let England Shake (Island)
Anton Bruhin - Deux Pipes (Alga Marghen)
Bill Orcutt - How the Thing Sings (Mego)
Jason Lescalleet - Music for Magnetic Tape (Arbor)
Blake Rumfitt - The Dog (no label)
Stare Case - Public Vanity (American Tapes)
Eli Keszler/Ashley Paul - Aster LP #2 (Rel)
Jason Lescalleet - This Is What I Do vol 1 (Glistening Examples)
Sky Needle - Neckliner (Albert's Basement)