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Recent Releases: October 29th, and November 1st and 4th

Happy November to you! I'd meant to share this overview of the releases from the end of October and on into this week, but I guess I'm just in time for this to function as a reminder for any Friday shoppers.

October 29th, 2021

American Cream Band - Dark Hemisphere (Moon Glyph)

Artifacts: Nicole Mitchell, Tomeka Reid, Mike Reed - ...and then there's this (Astral Spirits)

David Behrman - ViewFinder / Hide & Seek (Black Truffle)

Bitchin Bajas - Switched On Ra (Drag City)

Kyle Bruckmann - Mesmerics/Hindsight B (Infrequent Seams)

Bex Burch & Leafcutter John - Boing! (Vula Viel Records)

Dear Laika - Pluperfect Mind (NNA Tapes)

Robin Hatch - T.O.N.T.O. (Robin Records)

Ross Goldstein - Chutes and Ladders (Odd Cat)

Lily Konigsberg - Lily We Need To Talk Now (Wharf Cat Records)

Lotic - Water (Houndstooth)

PG Six & Louise Bock - All Summer Long is Gone (Feeding Tube Records)

Christopher Parker & the Band of Guardian Angels - Soul Food (Mahakala Music)

William Parker & Patricia Nicholson - No Joke! (ESP-Disk')

Patrick Shiroishi - Hidemi (American Dreams)

SiP/Prezzano - SiP/Prezzano (Moon Glyph)

Strictly Missionary - Heisse Scheisse (Astral Spirits)

WESQK COAST - Clava (OOH-sounds)

November 1st, 2021

Aldo Clementi / Kathryn Williams / Joe Richards / Mira Benjamin / Mark Knoop - Canoni circolari (All That Dust)

Angharad Davies - gwneud a gwneud eto / do and do again (All That Dust)

Evan Johnson / Ben Smith - lists, little stars (All That Dust)

November 4th, 2021

Martyna Basta - Making Eye Contact With Solitude (Warm Winters Ltd.)

Nick Malkin - Nothing Blues (Mondoj)

This Patrick Shiroishi album is absolutely essential. There's a lot that needs to be covered with why this specific music exists, you can read more on that at A Closer Listen, but for now I just really want to emphasize that the construction of this music makes me think it is really quite accessible. There's material on this album where I want to say it's using hockets, although I'm not sure if I'm using the term correctly (I tried to use Google to see if anyone else was using the term for this music, but I couldn't find anyone, so I'm just gonna go out a limb here and say it), it's like there's different instrumental recordings that are given their own distinct position in the stereo image, and each one will only be giving a portion of the melody, like there's some engagement required in putting it all together, but the stereo imaging set-up makes the process all feel very intuitive. This is just one quality of the music, but I think it's a good example of the way that this music hits that sweet spot of combining ambition with immediacy. It will be one of my first choices if I ever have to recommend music for someone who wasn't engaged with new music this year.

There's so much other great stuff here too, like these new ones on Astral Spirits. The album from Strictly Missionary features Wendy Eisenberg and gets into something that's like a noisier version of the harmolodic party line that Ornette Coleman and Prime Time had going. I've only had the one listen with it, so there's probably more to it than that, but that's the aspect that guarantees I'll be back for more. I haven't heard the Artifacts album yet, but I'm not going to miss that lineup.

Another label with a double dose was Moon Glyph, with the albums from American Cream Band and SiP/Prezzano. Parts of the first one kind of remind me of Flying Saucer Attack with a lot of the parameters turned down, like it's not noisy at all but there's still something that takes my mind to a similar place. But then there's also stuff that doesn't at all sound like that, so it's one I'll need to live with some more to really talk about. And then this SiP/Prezzano makes me think of a total chroma focus, like a charming cartoon had its outlines pulled out and everything's spilling, but it's still maintaining that initial charm. That may not be entirely "accurate", the sound isn't all a blur, but I feel like the image captures the spirit of where I'm at with it.

And there's so much more, including many names that are already familiar. David Behrman is back with another archival release on Black Truffle, after being a part of the "She's More Wild..." album from last year. I still haven't heard Behrman's stuff outside of that album. I probably should, the way that people get upset on Discogs.com about the quality of the repress of his first album feels different than the normal way they get upset, it's probably a good one. So I should probably hear that, but I'm sure this new one will be getting into my ears soon as well. Leafcutter John showing back up in a duo with Bex Burch, seemingly going into more exploratory areas than the more directly melodic stuff he's put out recently. His "Microcontact" album was a formative one for me, so while I have loved the recent turn, I'm psyched to hear the re-entry into stranger waters using the current equipment. Bitchin Bajas have a Sun Ra cover while also paying tribute to Wendy Carlos' "Switched On" series. And then William Parker makes another appearance on this page, this time via a collaboration his wife Patricia Nicholson. Lily Konigsberg offers a look at her songwriting outside of Palberta. Lotic shows that she can be as powerful in pop-mode as she can with the far out club stuff she was doing in the '10s. And then there's also the second part of this massive new work from Kyle Bruckmann. He had this great collaboration with Olivia Block a while back, with his contributions centering more on physical instruments like the oboe. And then I've also heard some really cool synthesis stuff from him with some albums on Entr'acte. This new stuff is more in the weird synthesis territory, the type with a low enough pH level to strip the paint off the walls of my mind, so of course I love that.

Then there's a new one on OOH-Sounds, I've never heard anything from WESQK COAST but this label has had some great recent releases with some cool takes on digital synthesis, this one is going to be using processed acoustic sounds but I'm still curious to see what it's all about. This Ross Goldstein album is a cool one, I guess it's the last part of a trilogy of mellotron-centric recordings, I've still only heard this one, but it's such a great meeting of artistic perspective and tool, the cinematic drama embedded in these sounds works so well with the compositions. Another new name for me is Dear Laika, this is an album I'm going to need to go in-depth with later, the music is this tremendous collision of piano/violin/vocal songwriting with synth and electronic processing that seems to magnify certain aspects of the sound so that they can match the scale of emotion in these performances... I'll need to think of how to explain it better, but it's one to check out for sure. You've also got this new one from Robin Hatch, crafting some fun tunes with a hint of disorientation using that massive old T.O.N.T.O. synthesizer. PG Six & Louise Bock have a harp/synth/alto sax combo that kind of reminds me of the last disc of Brother Ah's Divine Music. And then I'm not sure how best to describe this Christopher Parker album, but it's worth checking out, especially if you're a fan of contributors like Gerald Cleaver, Jamie Branch, or William Parker.

Then there's also this new batch of releases that came out on All That Dust, if you're not familiar with the label, they're incredible, they had this awesome binaural recording of a new performance of Stockhausen's Kontakte, along with other great albums of works by composers such as Cassandra Miller, Catherine Lamb, Morton Feldman, and many others. I know basically nothing about this new collection of albums, I'm probably just gonna do some blind pickups with these, but if you'd like to read something, Ben Harper at Boring Like A Drill has some thoughts up about two of them.

Finally, there were a couple of Thursday releases as well. Mondoj continue their hot streak with the new Nick Malkin album. It's the type of music that I want to see accompanied by a supercut of footage from tv shows where someone's face is entirely bandaged and they show a first person perspective of the gauze coming off from over the eyes. It just feels like that type of moment before full removal is sustained through this album. Lots of gorgeous sax and synth melodies floating above fuzz on this one, excellent stuff. And then this Martyna Basta album continues a similar hot streak from Warm Winters. This is one I've barely begun to grasp, I'll put some real work into finding the words for it at a later date, but just know now that I think it is great.Ok, so that all was just the stuff I was aware of ahead of time. But there's also all the stuff that caught me by surprise! Let's take a look at that too.

Noam Bierstone - mountains move like clouds (No Hay Discos)

Nikita Bugaev - oo Flips (Klammklang)

Russell Ellington Langston Butler - Collective Response to Giving Up (Self Released)

Henning Christiansen - OP.173a Als die Sprache platzte und die Musik abfuhr - und der erscheint "Ich glaube, der Mond will uns Helfen!" (Henning Christiansen Archive)

Henning Christiansen - Op.199 MANRESA (Henning Christiansen Archive)

Henning Christiansen - Op. 231 Der Mund spricht die Gedanken aus - Die Landschaft gibt ihren Klang / The Mouth expresses the Thoughts - The Landscape gives it Sound (Henning Christiansen Archive)

DJ Lycox - LYCOXERA (Principe)

Paul Dolden - Muses' Song (Self Released)

glia - #shekdo# (Self Released)

Masamichi Kinoshita - Study in Fifth I (Ftarri Classical)

Lolina - Fast Fashion (Deathbomb Arc)

Savvas Metaxas - 14.56.31 (Self Released)

Nakama. - human_error (Self Released)

Toshimaru Nakamura / Tetuzi Akiyama - Idiomatic Expressionism (Ftarri)

PT Musik - Não Sou Perfeito (Principe)

Slikback - SOMETIMES I JUST WANT TO FEEL (Self Released)

U - Joy of Labour (Where To Now?)

Yol - viral dogs and cats (Crow Versus Crow)

This Noam Bierstone album came to my attention very recently so I barely have gathered my thought on it, but I think anyone interested in some abstract percussion work will find a lot to like in these compositions (I especially enjoyed the way the first track used previously recorded material, what sounds like a flap of a bird wing, it fits in perfectly with the sound grammar of the performed material). And this Nakama. album is one that really needs a serious look, like I've only had time to be struck by all of the cool ways that the beats and the raps fit together, but I think there's going to be a lot to be found in these lyrics. And then you've got new ones from glia, Russell E.L. Butler, Slikback, Lolina, always worth catching anything they do, and then you've got stuff from Principe, Ftarri, a whole bunch of archival stuff from Henning Christiansen. Just so much! And there's probably even more that I forgot or missed, so wild.

If you're doing some shopping today, you might also be interested in all the new releases coming up today and in the near future. Like this new one from model home, I just had a listen to it recently at the best possible time. I came home after having some drinks with family that was in town, and I needed to do some dishes. Having to do things with my hands while slightly inebriated and listening to that music, it felt like life just completely made sense in that moment. It's so good. You can find that album and more on the anticipation list!

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