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Thursday, November 30, 2017

Healing sound - vibes, frequencies, Music & the Universe







  “If you want to find the secrets of the universe, think in terms of energy, frequency and vibration.”
― Nikola Tesla


The above should be enough for today and many todays to-come, folks... everything in Nature, from atoms to Supernovas have their own frequency.

When I look at my almost boiling water on the stove, every morning, waiting to have my green tea, what amazes and enthralls and hooks my attention is the mandala-like "vibe" on the hot water surface, this beautiful phenomenon is both a visual effect and a sound, as well.



It's the boiling water vibration... everything has several frequencies: the vibe of joy or fear, something which give a diffuse wave to our skin... 

The Universe is possibly vibrating - i.e. expanding - since eons and eons ago and so will to for eons and eons to come... until it will begin to retract itself... concentric waves endlessly spreading in the immensity of Zero Kelvin outer-space.

Tesla knew... like Dr. Anthony Holland, a composer, musician and scientist, searched for years about the cancer-cells of Leukemia and exposing these cells to a definite frequency, found that more than 60% of the bad cells were destroyed.

Unfortunately, no direct exposure of cancer-patients has already been scientely explored.  
   
When I'm seating in my studio, listening to some good music, I feel the music with my ears and body, as well.

What happens to my body when I'm soaked in music?

I barely know and understand what happens to my mind or soul...

I cannot imagine what sound, vibes make to my organism: is low end interacting with liver or kidney?

Please be sure I'm not saying I'm avidly listening to music or my playing my guitars to preserve my body and live forever...

... yet, it's absolutely true after an intense, good, pleasant listening session to my Gotorama of, say, a couple of hours, when I turn-off my audio system and go back home... well, I feel different, at least!



Not better, healed or immortal, an Highlander... be content enough to feel different -  i.e. less stressed, angry, nervous... more focused and feeling as a Whole.

Same sensation I have after a bare-foot walk on a looong sand beach: Music and Walking are true-to-life activities and soul-food.

Maybe one day - which I hope not too far to come - science will find that frequencies are healing and the way to effectively handle them... that Phythagora wasn't wrong with his 432 Hz theories.

That we can peacefully live in good health having a diet of Ravi Shankar and Bach and John Fahey's music.

Call me a dreamer or a visionary... always thinking and looking for a music-based, war-less world to-come.  

I just hope so, for posterity and future of humankind.



Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Henry Flynt - You are my Everlovin'





Henry Flynt
You Are My Everlovin'

 
While Henry Flynt is widely know among fans of avant-garde music - the partial result of a series of reissues and archival releases which appeared around the outset of the millennium, he has never entirely received his due - cast as a secondary figure next to friends and peers like La Monte Young, Charlemagne Palestine, Tony Conrad, Dick Higgins, and George Maciunas. The recording which makes up You Are My Everlovin was made in 1981, and it encounters Flynt at his stunning best - rendering a wild, powerful, improvised raga inspired work for violin, pulling equally from his experiences studying with Pandit Pran Nath, as from indigenous rural American folk music. It represents a pure image of Minimalism as it was conceived - democratic, adventurous, contentious, and creatively brilliant, reforming the understanding of history across its 45 minute length. 



 A writhing bath in tone, elevating our vision of Flynt’s contribution, with its seminal importance, to towering heightsAs essential and welcome as reissues come, Superior Viaduct’s edition comes with Flynt’s own explanatory liner notes. Many thanks to the label for bringing it back. This one won’t sit around for long.  He planted the seed for so much of what finds itself within our reverent gaze today.



Grab it before it’s gone.











Pauline Anna Strom - Trans-Millenia Music







Pauline Anna Strom,
Trans-Millenia Music (2Lp)

Within the communities surrounding ambient, electronic, and synthesis based music, Pauline Anna Strom holds a legendary status, yet remains almost completely unknown within the broader field. A fascinating outlier of the electronic counterculture, her music transcends simple categorization. Blind from birth and a self-described “loner and heretic”, she lost her sight due to complications resulting from a premature birth, activating an acute sensitivity to sound. While connected to the b road concerns of the New Age movement, few artists have sprung from such a singular philosophical ambition (as Laurie Spiegel and Midori Takada to name a few). Even when addressed through their sounds alone, Strom’s efforts far exceed the expected bounds - threaded with tension, drama, and as much darkness as light.
The first authorized overview of the enigmatic composer, Reiki master, spiritual counselor, and healer, Trans-Millenia Music draws its material from Strom’s seven impossibly rare private releases from the 80’s, bringing them the distinction and attention they deserve. Beautifully produced 2 LP, this is a true labor of love.

One of the most important archival releases of the year. This is ambient music and synthesis at unprecedented heights

Since launching six years ago, the ReRVNG series - a curatorial effort by the New York based imprint RVNG, has carved a singular place in the cultural landscape. Dedicated to highlighting remarkable, but overlooked gestures in sonic expression, its effect has been so wide sweeping that the names found within its catalog - Harald Grosskopf, Craig Leon, K. Leimer, Ariel Kalma, Anna Homler, etc, have emerged from the shadows, becoming familiar to most. After a year hiatus, much of which has been spent carefully assembling the release in our hands, the series returns with one of their most remarkable entries yet, an expansive survey of the work of Pauline Anna Strom.



Within the communities surrounding ambient, electronic, and synthesis based music, Pauline Anna Strom holds a legendary status, yet remains almost completely unknown within the broader field. A fascinating outlier of the electronic counterculture and New Age movement, her music transcends simple categorization. Blind from birth and a self-described “loner and heretic”, she lost her sight due to complications resulting from a premature birth, activating an acute sensitivity to sound. Following a move to San Fransisco, and encounters with early gestures in ambient electronic music during the mid 1970’s, she began composing meticulously crafted works, recording at home on a Tascam 4-track recorder and a small array of synthesizer, culminating as seven privately produced releases, which emerged between 1982 and 1988.

Strom’s work draws on a unique form of sonic spirituality, envisioning herself as a musical consort to time and the living incarnation of an all-embracing entity of music - inviting the listener to travel into the profound realm of the psyche, where time dissolves and people of the past and future may be found. While connected to the broad concerns of the New Age movement and contemporary works by Brian Eno, Tangerine Dream and Klaus Schulze, few artists have sprung from such a singular philosophical ambition. Even when addressed through their sounds alone, Strom’s efforts far exceed the expected bounds - threaded with tension, drama, and as much darkness as light. Across the four sides of Trans-Millenia Music, her inner world emerges as a mysterious, interlaced realm of synthesized tone. A rippling, shadowy landscape of organized sound, defined by stunning creative brilliance.

The first authorized overview of the enigmatic composer, Reiki master, spiritual counselor, and healer, Trans-Millenia Music draws its material from Strom’s seven impossibly rare private releases from the 80’s, bringing them the distinction and attention they deserve. This beautifully produced double LP set is the product of seven years of discussion, deliberation, and patience on the part of RVNG. A true labor of love. One of the most important archival releases of the year. This is ambient music and synthesis at unprecedented heights








Woman from Utopia - Bjork's last effort













The album is written by Björk with five of the 14 songs co-written by Arca and one of the songs co-written by Sarah Hopkins.
All of the songs except one is co-produced by Arca. One of the songs is co-produced by Rabit. Björk formed a twelve piece Icelandic female flute orchestra, which she arranged for and conducted.
She also wrote an arrangement for Hamrahlíðarkórinn, a choir conducted by Þorgerður Ingólfsdóttir. The album was edited and structured by Björk on Protools. It was engineered by Bergur Þórisson, Bart Migal and Chris Elms.
It was mixed by Heba Kadry and Marta Salogni and mastered by Mandy Parnell.



Björk's new album Utopia is here!

Listen to the album Utopia:

Vinyl furniture







Here are some of the nicest cabinet I’ve seen in a long time, from Atocha Design of New York.






It's not cheap, but the quality looks great.




Reel-to-reel - Needing new heads?







Confirmed AM Belgium can supply original Studer heads: Hi Mu core (317) and Vitrovac core (318). 







Price is 525 euro per head(1/4”).


In-line and butterfly models are both available.







Monday, November 20, 2017

Shopping for Chopin...






Since their launch shortly after the outset of the new millennium, few labels working within the territories of the vinyl reissue and archival release, have reached the heights charted by Vinyl on Demand. Their catalog is among the most dazzling that can be called to mind. Sadly, the imprint has decided to go on hiatus, but before they do, they’re leaving us with this incredible collections by Henri Chopin’s Recordings 13 LPs and a 7" in two box sets, all issued in a very limited edition of 300 copies only.
To mark this Mind-crushing release, we're offering a special discount
on several VOD rare and out-of-print releases (second part to follow)


Henri Chopin

Recordings 1955-91 Vol. 1 (7Lp Box + 7" Ep)

Since their launch shortly after the outset of the new millennium, few labels working within the territories of the vinyl reissue and archival release, have reached the heights charted by Vinyl On Demand. Beyond the incredible quality and care embedded within their efforts - redefining the idea of deluxe, they have elevated countless remarkable and overlooked creative gestures from the shadows of history, entirely recalibrating the legacies of music which exists outside of mainstream interest, placing the diverse actions of the underground in conversation with each other. Their catalog is among the most dazzling that can be called to mind. Sadly, the imprint has decided to go on hiatus, but before they do, they’re leaving us with this incredible collections by Henri Chopin’s Recordings 1955-1991 Volume 1, a seven LP set with a bonus 7inch, Recordings 1955-1991 Volume 2, a six LP set, all issued in a very limited edition of 300 copies only
Henri Chopin needs little introduction. His name carves a path through 20th century avant-garde practice - one of the iconic and noted figures in sound and concrete poetry, sound-art, and experimental music, while also producing a remarkable body of effort as a poet, painter, graphic artist and designer, typographer, independent publisher, filmmaker, broadcaster and promoter. His life and work are a totem to the wonders of the post-war vanguard, offering an image of its diversity, intertwined discourses, optimism, and ambitions. Chopin, who passed away in 2008, spent more than a half a century pushing the potential of art - particularly within sound, and the very character of what it was understood to be. The body of work he left is dazzling and remarkably diverse, something which Vinyl on Demand’s two sets - speed across fourteen discs, with material spanning from 1955-1991, immediately lay bare.
 
 Recordings 1955-91 Vol. 2 (6Lp Box)

He was, said his friend William Burroughs, an "inner space explorer", but the Frenchman remained a solitary figure, outside any artistic grouping, almost the only exponent of his art, and almost certainly the only poet to record sounds and movements by swallowing a microphone. It is a career survey which he has always deserved, but, given how prolific he was, which few are ambitious enough to take on. VOD is among the few up to the task. These two sets are astounding, spanning four decades of remarkable effort and creation. Across their lengths, the wonders of 20th century creative practice - it’s towering challenges and incredible optimism, unfold. Volume 1 covers his entire catalog of official stand-alone releases, while Volume 2 covers all his other contributions to vinyl and tape productions as well as unreleased recordings. His emphasis on sound is a reminder that language stems as much from oral traditions as from classic literature, of the relationship of balance between order and chaos. As ambitious as anything could ever get, both boxes come with an illustrated 52-page booklet and texts in French and English by Vincent Barras, Marc Matter, Larry Wendt and Henri Chopin’s daughter, Brigitte Morton. For any fan of the 20th century avant-garde, particularly sound and concrete poetry, these are as essential as it get. Limited to 300 copies each, grab them before they are gone.




Sunday, November 19, 2017

Miles' 1959 by Enrico Merlin - a one of a kind book




Dear Miles Davis fans and music lovers, here is the long awaited  book:

MILES DAVIS 1959 • A DAY-BY-DAY CHRONOLOGY by Enrico Merlin

... yes, 1959, the very year when everything happened... Kind of Blue's year, what else!



We'll not tell you what the book is about, we just remark that this artifact is absolutely out of regular schemes. 

This very book marks an unprecedented approach in biography of any performing artist, being a true day-by-day chronology in a large format (12” x 12”), full color, c. 600 pages thick artefact.


Easy to appropriately store among Miles' vinyl-records!

A diary of Miles' life and music through an incredible research work on the international press, exhaustive discographies, biographical facts, interviews and musical analysis.

This will set a new standard reference for future research as it gives a full picture of what was happening in the music world in 1959.

You have the chance to become owner of a collector's item, a numbered copy, limited edition, at the price of €250 (+ S&H) for the first 200 subscribers. 

The price will be increased from copy #201 onward.

What are you waiting for? If you want, you can choose the number of your copy (if still available)!

For infos and/or to order your copy, please write to chronodavis@gmail.com


I wish Denise and Enrico the very best with this project... I'm well aware of the incredible research work behind this large format book.

A labour of love and a life-achievement for Enrico and his decades long Miles' scholarship. 

Miles Smiles, I'm pretty sure... 



Thursday, November 9, 2017

Vazz - Chronoillogical








Long live the CD, the Vazz CD! Click-free, surface-noise-free, warp-free, seamsplit-free, hype-free, fair price, excellent sound, housed in smart double digipak, WOW!
Paypal 17€ *worldwide postage included* to
plaguetower@gmail.com and get this in your mailbox within 2-4 weeks (depending on location)!  Yeah, you can combine with https://forcednostalgia.bandcamp.com/album/submerged-vessels-and-other-stories. In that case the price is 45€ *worldwide postage included*. Life is great!



  Vazz / Hugh Small ‎– Chronoillogical (Glasgow Recordings 1982 - 1987) / Piano Music (2014 - 2016)

CD 1: Chronoillogical (Glasgow Recordings 1982 - 1987)

1       Pearls (Vocal)
2       Bleached White Skin
3       Cast Reflections
4       Your Final Word
5       Lost Time
6       Feverpitch
7       Want Of Anger
8       Violent Silence
9       Flute Dance
10      Silver
11      For A Reason
12      Endless Road
13      Pearls (Dub)
14      Thirst For White
15      You Haunt Me
16      Breath

CD 2: Piano Music (2014 - 2016)

1       Isolated Incident
2       Days Without
3       Cascais
4       The White Cathedral
5       Ghostwritten
6       Myxomorphia
7       Decembers
8       Only Child
9       Substrata
10      All Saints Day
11      Cloudland
12      Rue St. Placide
13      Ulterior Motive
14      Cat & Mouse
15      Sputnik
16      Field
17      Mission Statement
18      Kazimierz
19      Girl With Kite
20      Wishlist

CD 1: Complete official VAZZ discography taken from Whisper Not / The Wrong Holiday (cassette/split-LP), Breath / Violent Silence, Feverpitch, Pearls (7" & 12" singles) and Your Lungs And Your Tongues (mini LP).  CD 2: Recorded at home. First edition limited to 123 numbered copies. Impress neighbours, pets and family members with this amazingly original artefact! Buy 3 and list 2 on discogs ("RARE SEALED LTD"). Everyone can be an entrepreneur. Yeah! Life is great!

Nice...


The Beatles' Sixhundredninetysixtythree shades of White







New York-based artist Rutherford Chang brings his unique We Buy White Albums collection to the home of the fab four this month.





Rutherford Chang has been collecting White Albums for eight years. In early 2013, with his collection of The Beatles’ self-titled 1968 LP – more commonly referred to as the White Album – totalling 693 first edition copies, Chang put his unique haul on display at New York’s Recess Gallery, documenting the ways in which the snow white sleeves had aged or become deformed over time.

Obesessions are salt-to-life.

Thanking Anton Spice of TheVinylFactory for his nice review...




Wednesday, November 8, 2017

R.I.P. for Paul Buckmaster



A genius, a master musician, arranger, composer who played and collaborated with Miles Davis, Third Ear Band, Carly Simon, Shawn Philips, Rolling Stones, David Bowie, Nucleus, Chitinous Ensemble, Angelo Branduardi and countless others...

He so sadly and suddenly passed away in Los Angeles yesterday, November 7th...




A gentleman and such a lover of life... I'm sincerely and deeply impressed by his passing away!

Everything he did was so beautiful... just look at his Pistachio pup watercolour!



R.I.P. Maestro... you gave so much to Music and to this so flawed world!

Thanks.





Music







Thanking Charlie Brown for reminding...



Gary Peacock in NYC (Nov. 2017)





Mr. Peacock is one of my most beloved musicians and such a poet on his double-bass.







Love this one... for shape & function, a Leonardo da Vinci-like music-machine.



Thanking Tyran Grillo for his great pixies... and for honouring yours truly with his friendship.







Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Gruppo di improvvisazione Nuova Consonanza - Azioni/Reazioni 1967/1969 (Deluxe Box Set)





The year 2007 saw one of the most remarkable findings in the long treasure-hunting history of Die Schachtel: the complete set of recordings of the early manifestation (1967-1969) of one of the most legendary improv group of all times, the Gruppo di Improvvisazione Nuova Consonanza. Rescued by the private archives of Mr. Walter Branchi, one of the original founding members – alongside with Franco Evangelisti, Ennio Morricone, Ivan Vandor, Roland Kayn, Egisto Macchi, Mario Bertoncini and John Heineman – the tapes were then restored in their entirety, but only a part of them were published in an epic 500 copies -CD-only boxset titled "Azioni 1967-1969", which also featured a DVD with the original film "Nuova Consonanza" shot by Theo Gallher during the rehearsal and the concert that the group held on March 19th and 20th, 1967, at the Galleria d'arte Moderna in Rome. Spanning from free-jazz to total abstract noise to wild electronic sounds (thanks mainly to the wizardry of Roland Kayn and Walter Branchi), their music was – and remains – one of the most dynamic, original and uncompromising expression of a period defined by intense experimentation and musical bravery, that anticipated a lot of the experiments to come in later years. Or, to put it simple, "They were utterly unique", as per the words that John Zorn – a long time admirer of the Gruppo – expressely wrote for this edition.








To mark the 10-years anniversary of its original release, and to finally make it available for the vinyl aficionados throughout the world, Die Schachtel is proud to present AZIONI/REAZIONI 1967-1969, the complete cycle of improvisations (which in fact means thirteen additional inedit pieces, spanning over 2 and a half LPs and two CDs ), taken from the original tapes, lovingly remastered by Mr. Giuseppe Ielasi and masterly cut to five black vinyls, with a new design and an even more complete information apparatus, that includes a 64 page LP-size book in English and Italian, complete with essays, memories from the members of the Group, a new article by Valentina Bertolani exploring in detail the techniques of the group (based on the enclosed DVD), a chronology and a collection of original reviews by Maurizio Farina, and – to add an additional cherry on the almost rather juicy cake - a set of stunning (and inedit) black and white photos of the group playing in the glorious Venice "Teatro della Fenice" in 1968, taken from the archives of the Venice Biennale.


This is your unique opportunity to grab one of the 100 Limited Collector Edition, the only ones complete with both 5LPs, 4CDs and 1DVD, the coffee-table book, an exclusive large poster and – to add an even more appealing dimension to the whole thing – hosted in a hand made (in Italy) custom wooden boxset designed by Dinamomilano, whose stunning tactile, "arte-povera" inspired artwork (by Dinamomilano as well) is in fact made by two laser-cut pieces of black rubber and white felt, complete with a matt grey foil-stamped title on the side. You can almost feel the weight of the edition (in metaphorical terms too).


To sum it up, the monumental "AZIONI/REAZIONI" boxset includes:

- 5 vinyl LPs

- 4 CDs
- 1 DVD (with English and Italian subtitles)
- 1 large poster on high-quality paper
- a 64-page sewn-bound large book
- handmade wooden boxset with rubber and felt motif

Please consider that this Limited Edition will be followed by a "regular" one, comprised by 5 LPs+DVD+book (hence no CDs and poster), hosted in a standard cardboard boxset, and a 4CD+DVD+book (hence no vinyls) edition. Please also bear in mind that this is going to be a 1-timer pressing: no further pressing are foreseen for the years to come.



Got my copy... stunning recording quality, as italians do it better!



Friday, November 3, 2017

Pandit Pran Nath's Gramavision Ragas of Morning & Night (1968) reissued





Owned this very sought-after disc for decades, now... just wish to share its beauty and uniqueness with you out there...


At long last, La Monte Young and Marian Zazeela reissue this seminal, hugely influential album on their Just Dream imprint, the legendary recording from 1968 India of Pandit Pran Nath titled 'Ragas Of Morning & Night'.  The original studio session was produced in New Delhi, February 1968, by Jimi Hendrix associate Alan Douglas, it features recordings of "Raga Todi" and "Darbari", which showcase Pran Nath at his prime.

 Pran Nath's exquisite control between microscopically fine degrees of pitch can be easily heard in the former. The first two thirds of the piece is performed slowly and delicately, each sinuous line being given careful weight and consideration. When, in the final few minutes, the pace quickens there is a startling sense of unfolding possibilities, almost an embarrassment of riches after the earlier rigour. The second raga follows a similar structure but the tonal center is entirely different; instead of the plaintive almost keening quality of the morning raga, we hear a calmer, more accepting feeling, as though the singer has graciously acceded to what has occurred that day.


This time when the tempo picks up it's as if the singer has gotten a second wind late in the day and is suddenly full of joyous energy. The effect of Pran Nath's quivering lines and immensely complicated vocal arabesques is liberating enough. When he goes head to head with the tabla player for some intricate sparring, ones jaw tends to drop. Ragas of Morning and Night (originally released on the hugely influential, now-defunct, Gramavision label) is a wonderful recording and would serve as a fine introduction both to this musician and to this particular style of singing as well.

 Pandit Pran Nath was a master of the Kirana style, a 600-year-old school of Hindustani music that involves extraordinarily minute gradations of pitch. He sang with a grainy tone, virtually no vibrato and remarkable control and finesse, and his improvisations had a deeply contemplative aura. "The raga is created in between the tones," he often said. For the Hindustani musicians, the voice is the original instrument, possessing the flexibility and potential that other instruments should aspire. Pandit Pran Nath was a vocalist capable of piety and tenderness, yet during late night ragas he would unleash fiery recitals that left his audiences shellshocked.







 "He was a living encyclopedia of the ancient traditional compositions," La Monte  Young once said. "And he had an extraordinary knowledge of the proper delineation of each raga." Ragas are connected to certain times of day, seasons and other natural and personal associations, and Pandit Pran Nath insisted on performing them at the appropriate times.

 A living repository of thousands of obscure ragas, many of which have probably become extinct with his death in 1996, Pran Nath devoted much of his later years to teaching. He numbered La Monte Young, Terry Riley and Jon Hassell among his long time students, who were fascinated by pure intonation and microtones and who were pioneers of Minimalism, and through them his unique phrasing and melodic sensibility have filtered into contemporary composition. Additionally, excellent and detailed liners notes by La Monte Young are included.

To hear the music of Pandit Pran Nath is to enter an extraordinary domain, where the tones of his voice at once calms and centers the listener, speaking directly to the soul in a magical world of pure White




For a decade and a half, Pran Nath lived in Young and Zazeela's loft for a good part of each year, and the New York night owls were typically requ ired to rise at 3am each day to prepare tea for their teacher, who slept at the other end of the loft. He would then perform his riaz (practice) and give them a lesson - if he chose to.

"He was the head of the household'' recalls La Monte Young. "We were not allowed to have friends. We had to give up everything - rare ly did we even get to vis i t our parents. He was very protective of us and extremely possessive of us. But we got the reward. The reward is, if you make the guru happy, then you get the lessons."



Available at Soundohm...