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Experimental / Avant-garde / Sound Art / Field

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Eric Chenaux

Sometimes you gotta keep the unknowing masses at a distance. That’s what Eric Chenaux must have thought, because Skullsplitter is not filled with extremely hardcore techno. In fact, it’s overflowing with gentle and beautiful soundscapes, straight from his skull to the vinyl. Maybe that’s where the name...view item »


When you read the words 'frankly insane instrumental hip hop all the way from Poland' you know you want to take a listen. So this describes the next release 'comac' by CO. The nearest comparison I guess is Dalek but without the vocals the sonic manipulations need to be even more visceral which CO manage with aplomb. Rickety beats...view item »

Richard Chartier

Once upon a time I was staying in a house in Welwyn Garden City. Adding to the glamorous setting was the fact that the only space to sleep was in a kitchen where the dog normally slept. In order to stretch out satisfactorily I had my head pressed against a fridge. All night I lay there with t...view item »

Richard Chartier
Transparency (Performance)

This is a recording of a performance from October 2010 in the ring Auditorium at Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden in Washington DC. The performance is a culmination of recordings from a research fellowship which explored the National Museum of American History's collection of 19th...view item »

Kim Cascone
Anti-musical Celestial Forces

“Anti-Musical Celestial Forces” continúa la serie de CDs basados en grabaciones de campo de que comenzó con  “Austrum Argentum”, “Pharmacie: Red & Green” y “Music for Dagger & Guitar”. En esta obra Kim Cascone presenta grabaciones de campo recogid...view item »

S. Araw "Trio" XI
Gazebo Effect

Stoned psych-jammer Cameron Stallones’ Sun Araw project appears here in a new and evolved form, as the S. Araw “Trio” XI. Gazebo Effect presents four sides of their explorations, utilising various synths, computer programs and a ‘midi-guitar’ to produce str...view item »

Joe Evans and Craig Burston
Systems out of Chance

This two disc set is super nice with its mix of classical piano, ambience and field recordings that recall the likes of Nils Frahm, Alva Noto and Ryuchi Sakamoto and William Basinski's excellent 'Variations For Piano And Tape'. Joe Evans also records as Runningonair and contributes all of the audio production here while Craig Burston has created...view item »

MIke Bullock
Mild Disappearances

Every time I see the title of this CD I keep thinking it says mild disappointments which neatly sums up the contents of my life. It's been full of 'em. Even just thinking it says that and then realising it's called Mild Disappearances is another in a long line. I know fuck all about this guy except he used to be one third of a band called Fetish...view item »

Armchair Traveller
Schoene Aussicht

The Disambiguation Of Anonymeye

Next in my ears is a CD from Anonymeye on Sound & Fury and it sounds great actually. It's called 'The Disambiguation of Anonymeye'. The first couple of numbers are analogue synthesizer workouts that really pricked my ears up, then a total contrast on 'Hill Loop' he's plucking away at his steel string acoustic guitar then slowly layers of analog...view item »

A'qui Avec Gabriel
Itsukushimi No Ame No Naka De

I've reviewed quite a few records at this point but I think this is my first effort at taking on a release of solo accordion improv so I feel I should thank this lady (who, contrary to the name and the instrument, is Japanese) for the opportunity. Coming in on Sachiko's label and after having collaborated with Keiji Haino you'd be forgiven for t...view item »

Hand of Stabs
Amphipod Gunvessel

Hand of Stabs fill this c60 cassette with the same improvised ambience that they have used to fill a wide variety of interesting spaces in and around their native Kent. The oddness of some of these places (burial grounds, abandoned schools etc.) seems to have infused into the music, a very positive thing. Amphiphod Gunvessel...view item »

Damian Anache
Capturas del Unico Camino

Oh, there’s a lot going on here. Where to begin? So, there are some acoustic instruments played by Damian Anache and he also makes sounds “generated with his mouth” - it’s kinda like throat singing, or just someone saying “aah” for the dentist. There’s also a computer playing an algorith...view item »

The Grey Lynn Homeless Set

Yikes, I'm never really sure what to make of stuff like this. On this 7” here we've got four short pieces of anti-music from MHFS. The final track has some hushed and decayed vocals underneath some scratchy, percussive, arrhythmic guitar but that's very much the closest we get to any...view item »

Jac Berrocal, David Fenech, Vincent Epplay

Available on 12” vinyl LP with full colour reverse board sleeve and printed inner bag or CD, on Blackest Ever Black. To help Blackest Ever Black raise the bar yet again they’ve brought in french avantgard trumpeter Jac Berrocal. Sucking you into his film-noir Dale cooper/Bohren und der Club o...view item »

Baby Dee
I Am A Stick

Baby Dee finds serial percussionist Alex Neilson (Death Shanties, Trembling Bells) and a band also including Joe Carvell, Victor Herrero and Jordan Hunt working with Dee herself, to bring her piano-led songs to ...view item »

Cortar Todo

‘Cortar Todo’ is the new full length album by Italian, experimental instrumentalists Zu, released on California based, independent label Ipecac Recordings. Recorded in the heart of the Bologna countryside in the summer of 2014 the album features a host of guest artists including Italian guitar maverick Stefano Pilia, known for his co...view item »

Flailing Tomb

The Petrels sound is a huge one, shooting high into the sky and falling down all around the listener. Flailing Tomb, his latest, is influenced seemingly by a little bit of everything under the sun: sonically, it contains a large choir in addition to the usual Petrels pallette. Released on 180g vinyl and...view item »

Solar Cafe

Available on digipak CD on Eibon Records (500 copies) or hand numbered 180g red vinyl on Deafborn (400 copies). Found sound and drone swamped plucked post rock guitars soundtrack-like album from the aptly(and excellently) named Melanchoholics. With sub frquencies and darkened tones competing with each other, put it somewhere bet...view item »

Eugene Ward
Paint en Pointe

Originally the soundtrack to five months of modern dance exhibition in Sydney, the music on Paint en Pointe is both abstract and catchy. Heavily percussion driven, Eugene Ward, also known as Dro Carey / Tuff Sherm, will treat you to the perfect environment to experience your own expressive dan...view item »


The people of Winchester don’t get masses of opportunities to see experimental music, but the occasional series of ‘Ology’ gigs make up for that by being extremely high calibre. This Dendrology CDr showcases one of those great line-ups, with Robert Curvengen, Plurals, Jennifer ...view item »

Bruce Ditmas
Yellow Dust

Progressive pop synthesist Bruce Ditmas began life as a teen prodigy jazz drummer in Miami Beach where he was raised until he was relocated to New York where he eventually met up with vocalist Joan La Barbara (later Mrs Morton Subotnick). La Barbara encouraged Ditmas in his experiments in heavy electronic rhythms and the potential of musical tec...view item »

Berangere Maximin
Dangerous Orbits

Available on CD or double vinyl LP on Crammed Discs. Jeeez! Name dropping alone should grab you if you like any kind of drone or sound art. Berangere Maximin studied under Denis Dufour (GRM, and himself a pupil of Pierre Schaeffer), first album released on John Zorn...view item »

Tyondai Braxton

Available on CD vinyl LP on Nonesuch. Former Battles frontman Tyondai Braxton is probably fed up of being described as such, after all he has many more “strings to his bow”. Having had many compositions played all over the world he has returned with his first solo outing since 2009. Whilst Centra...view item »

TVO & Paul Purgas
Tangents Series #01: LiveGlasgow040414

Glaswegian underground electronic label Broken20’s Tangents Series has been set up to release collaborative live performances. In Techno on the whole, the more open-ended, improvisatory approaches to sound creation are usually confined to the producers’ private studios; the fruits of their experiments carefully edited and processed f...view item »

Tim Catlin & Machinefabriek

Australian native Tim Catlin and Machinefabriek, aka Dutch sound artist and musician Rutger Zuydervelt have collaborated for the third time to bring Whorls into the world. Whorls is an effervescent and captivating collection of droning guitar and ambient soundscapes. Whorls...view item »

Kink Gong

Cripes, not even really sure where to start with this one. Basically Laurent Jeanneau has gone to Xinjiang Province in China and recorded a load of local musicians playing local instruments with names like kazakh dongbra and uyghur tambur and dotar that I'm not even going to pretend to kno...view item »

Gomila Park
Ununoctium / Gomila Park

Gomila Park, the newest output function for Carl Michael von Hausswolff (who recently also released one hell of a singular record with Leslie Winer) and Martin Rössel, is unpredictable to say the least. This self-titled release on the Ununoctium se...view item »


I've got to do summat "beard" says he, the man over there, rapidly sliding down the slippy chute into the terrifying realm that is 40-dom. 'Beard' was the term we used to employ to describe anything that may get musical academics & sound-art buffs frothing with excitement but would undoubtedly clear 99.9% of the public houses in Britain. Als...view item »

Bucket of Songs

Starting with a collection of sounds, Labfield slowly organizes their tracks, throwing in crazy, whispering, stalking, are-they-really-there? vocals over an otherwise pleasant polyrhythmic beat. Bucket of Songs features improv-scene favorites David Stackenals, Ingar Zach as well as new member Giuseppe Ielasi and offers ...view item »

Nurse With Wound and Graham Bowers
Mutation.. The Lunatics Are Running The Asylum

Steven Stapleton’s wandering band of un-merry weirdoes / wyrdoes are here found collaborating with Graham Bowers. Mutation… The Lunatics Are Running The Asylum (a typical Nurse With Wound album title if ever I saw one) contains the post-industrial mysticism we’ve come...view item »

Jarboe and Helen Money
Jarboe and Helen Money

Jarboe, formerly the eerie female side of Swans, teams up with Helen Money, the go-to avant-cellist of the out-rock underground. Truly, an exciting combo. Certainly this self-titled debut is heavy: Money’s distorted strings are often enormous. But Jarboe h...view item »

Exhaustion w/ Kris Wanders
Exhaustion w/ Kris Wanders

Scrappy no wave punx Exhaustion are friends with a saxophonist, named Kris Wanders, and here lies the inevitable conclusion of their acquaintanceship: a self-titled LP of music that goes slower and more patient. These are carefully considered improvisations, in a way, bringing together differ...view item »

Wounded Galaxies Tap at the Window

Seasoned Coil fanatics will no doubt be familiar with the names Ossian Brown and Stephen Thrower who were early collaboraters with Balance and Sleazy. Cyclobe also did an album with Nurse With Wound which I think is the last thing they (Cyclobe) released. This sounds like it would eat me up, at home, late at night, evoking an alternate unive...view item »

Group of the Altos
R U Person Or Not

Twelve piece avant-garde rock band from Milwaukee, Group Of Altos make their music by huddling together when drunk or angry or excited about thunder. They build themselves into a frenzy of expression through loud humming, heavy beats and blown out guitars. The result is a an instrumental intensity of beautiful human sound....view item »

Sage Taylor
Parallels & Rhythms EP

‘The Parallels & Rhythms’ EP is Portland composer Sage Taylor’s second release on Dutch label Shimmering Moods Records. The A side is a perfectly flawed and serene work of ambient, blissed out peacefulness while the two B sides are both warm and hazy summer time tracks. Very limited edition with no repress....view item »


New and unexplored territory from Zs. Xe is the new set of noises from the group in it's current 3 person format. Taking ideas of minimalism, the avant-garde, jazz fusion and an assortment of rhythmic concepts - they have woven a tapestry of sorts based around drums, percussion, the guitar and the saxopho...view item »

Hiiragi Fukuda

Two sides of cool improvised jams from Hiiragi Fukuda, one with guitar and one with a monophonic synth. A fun and playful sound, grabbed with whatever equipment was to hand, that also digs deep into spacey vibes. Seacide was first sighted on a limited cassette, so this proper vinyl / CD release on Trouble In Mind is mos...view item »

Ricardo Donoso
Sarava Exu

Available on 180 gram 12” vinyl LP with special 3D print in various colors with download code included, as well as CD digipak. Brazilian composer Ricardo Donoso who currently lives in Boston draws on his disparate compositional projects of Scuba Death and Ehnahre to create these violently ...view item »

Phil Legard

Warren Ellis (the comic book writer, not the musician. Everyone gets those two mixed up) called Angelystor by Phil Legard ‘one of the most beautiful pieces of music’ he owns. An exploration of St. Digain’s churchyard which contains possibly the oldest living thing in the British Isles, which surprisingly isn&rs...view item »

Das Sombreros
The Lamp

Estranging music in all meanings of the word is the forte of Das Sombreros. They specialize in sounds that you may recognize, vaguely, like a bad dream you had last night and forgot about, but can’t quite place. And while you’re trying to figure out what happened and what didn’t, you are surprised by something ...view item »

Yannick Dauby
Penghu Experimental Sound Studio Vol. 1

French sound composer Yannick Dauby spent several months in Peng-Hu (located in the Taiwan strait) composing this record which documents the environment using sounds of underwater fauna, waves shortwave radio and sounds collected from harbours. He used analog electronic instruments to create a haunting sketchbook of his time on the island. Like ...view item »

William Ryan Fritch

Available on CD, and vinyl LP presented in a bound jacket alongside matte printed artwork limited to 300 copies. William Ryan Fritch pushes his highly cinematic blend of modern classical and world music which, in a strange way, is simultaneously pleasant and overbearing. Suits the Lost Tribe Sound label down to a T...view item »

Scott Ogden And Malcolm Hearn

Night Owl

We could just say Rune Grammofon and let your imagination run wild from there, but that'd be misleading: Albatrosh actually make jazz, and while 'Night Owl' is their second record on the experimental Norwegian label, it's their fifth on a long, steady career built on tenacious compositional structures and a melodic approach to playing....view item »

Ingram Marshall
Fog Tropes / Gradual Requiem

I haven't encountered the work of Ingram Marshall before but this label's last reissue was Arthur Russell so they have my attention here. On this LP is a shortish piece called 'Fog Tropes' and five longer pieces which make up the lengthy Gradual Requiem suite. 'Fog Tropes' combines field recorded foghorns a...view item »

Alistair Crosbie/ BM/ Divine Coils/ Family Battle Snake

Indian Weapons

This week we got a bunch of cassettes on the Chemical Tapes label which seems like an interesting one to me! Tapes from Maps & Diagrams & Machinefabriek as well as Indian Weapons which is the one I'd picked up for two reasons. One, I like the name and two I've not heard 'em before. You never know if that amazing thing you've been waiting...view item »

Cafe OTO

This is a recording of Peter Brotzmann, Ken Vandermark and Mats Gustafsson all blowing horns at Cafe Oto in April 2011 culminating in a particularly windy night across north-east London. Originally broadcast on Jazz on 3. I wonder if anyone in the audience was shushed as happened to me the last two times I attended Cafe Oto?   ...view item »


A high-concept attempt to break down geographical barriers from supergroup of sorts Tetema. A collaboration between Mike Patton and Anthony Pateras, Geocidal looks at the death of place, finding beauty in cacophony and uniquely orchestrated curveballs. Featuring no less than twelve musicians it’s a richly textured...view item »

Full Blast & Friends
Sketches and Ballads

This group comes together on the orders of one Michael Wertmueller, the part-composer, part-drummer who makes Full Blasts what it is. The & Friends part is thanks to the contributions of saxophonist Peter Brötzmann and e-bassist Marino Pliakas as well as clarinet player Ken Vandermark and additional percussionist Dirk Rothbrust. 'Sketch...view item »

Maurizio Bianchi / M.B
Untitled 1980 / Untitled 2013

CD on Important Records. Gritty industrial noise produced from a single Korg MS20 synthesizer by Italian pioneer Maurizio Bianchi. Recorded and originally released in 1980 this release contains the original recordings as well as four new compositions, recorded in 2013, based on the original material....view item »

Jeff Keen
Noise Art

Hats off to the good people at Trunk for unearthing these archive recordings from maverick avant-garde UK film-maker Jeff Keen as they really deserve to reach a wider audience. Interest in Keens work peaked recently following a collection of films lovingly reissued by the BFI. Until now none of Keen's audio work has...view item »

Grimm Grimm / TAPERS
Grimm Grimm / TAPERS

Split CD here from Grimm Grimm and Tapers. Grimm Grimm is the London-based acid folk outfit of ex-Screaming Tea Party Koichi Yamanoha, with a rotating cast of characters from bands like Le Volume Corbe, Chrome Hoof, Bo Ningen and L...view item »


Difficult to pin down debut album from Acolytes. With guest appearances from D. Aird (Vindicatrix) and D. Bolger (The Pheromoans), Acolytes mixes tribal rhythms with 8-bit bleeps and stop-start song structures to intriguing effect. If Ensemble Economique was born in London. Out on Vinyl LP from Alter....view item »

Keine Oase In Sicht

Fresh from a stint at the Death Metal School of Logo Legibility, space-headed German DIY psych collective Datashock are back this week with a follow-up to 2010's superb 'Pyramiden von Giessen'. This time around their deep space theatrics have taken a slightly earthier (dare I say hippier) turn with the swirling synth drones and subtle modular ...view item »

Pan & Me
Ocean Noise

Pan & Me is in fact Christophe Mevel, a dark ambient artist who has previously made some seriously droning, evil jazz as part of the Dale Cooper Quartet. His solo project takes more from neo-classical than from jazz, bringing in electronic elements more formally to create a variety of sustained sounds, be they ambient pieces, field recording...view item »

Phil Julian

Someone let abstract-electronics-expert Phil Julian into the EMS (Elektronmusikstudion) studio in Stockholm! I can only dream of the delicious range of sound machines one might find in a proper electroacoustic music studio like that… This LP on Harbinger Sound is the result of two weeks in residence at the EMS, and it sou...view item »

Max Bondi

Max Bondi sounds like a cool jet-set actor from the 70s. Imagine my disappointment on finding he's merely another drone/experimental musician and not some perma-tanned, ice-white toothed Remmington advert guy. I'll let him off though cos not only does he run the amazing Tartaruga records of Bleeding Heart Narrative & Quinta fame but he's the fo...view item »

Robert Curgenven
They Tore the Earth and, Like a Scar, It Swallowed Them

This vital emotive and academic work, entitled 'They Tore the Earth and, Like a Scar, It Swallowed Them', collects field recordings that document colonialism around Australia over the last twelve years, with instrumental work supplied by Robert Curgenven's arrangements trough pipe organ and guitar feedback. The tensions and violences of Aus...view item »

Alchemic Heart

A self-described "brutal orchestra", Vampillia collects a noise artist from just about every walk of life you could ask for and chucks them in a single band: you've got members past and present from Boredoms, Swans and Inswarm in this thing, as well as freaking Merzbow. I could describe some of the instruments that actually go into comprising th...view item »

The Ski-A-Delics
Snow Bunny Bobby Katz and the Aspen-Aspirin

Now for something completely different.....a band from late '80's Boston who played ski's. Yup you read that right. Ski's. By stringing piano wire to the ski and mic-ing it up they managed to produce music from their sports implements coming up with a wholly unusual sound that sounds rather electronic in a funny kinda way. ...view item »


Wow! This is a collection of tracks a father made for his son, each year of his existence from birth onwards. Initially made to commemorate the childs birth, dad kept it going and will presumably keep it going until one of them dies. Thing is, the track I'm listening to is absolutely gorgeous. The warmest of warm electronica. Sweet as a nut...view item »

Dorcha Aigeann

Here's something that will sell out quickly. Chris Douglas's Dalglish project has long been a go to for visionary future thinking electronics and as our Ant says in a previous review "Just reading the words Dalglish and vinyl in the same sentence is enough to make hardcore electronic music fans salivate". The label describes this release as &nbs...view item »

Safer Tropics
Dream Boys EP

Here's a folk from Leeds who knows and love a few different genres and likes to make his own version of a couple of them under the same cover of darkness. This lo-fi bundle of joy, also known as 'Dream Boys', collates dream pop chords with droning samples and noisy, clipping distortion. It sounds thoroughly organic in every one of its incarnatio...view item »

Tobias Hellkvist

Home Normal are cracking 'em out at the mo. There's another bunch of releases due over the coming weeks. This week we got two newies and the one I've got in my hands is a CD by Tobias Hellkvist. It starts off all pleasantly droney and warm sounding like many other releases sound at the mo. It does develop though as it's not just your fanc...view item »

Greg Gobel

Here is an album of experimental sound art from this Madrid based multi instrumentalist who has produced an ambitious album veering around between genres. He deals with love, death and all that shit across the course of these 14 songs. From the soundclip I'm listening to, he makes a right old racket too. Terrifying stuff....view item »


A dejected cheese board of unease on this collaboration from Hadakanacht. This self-titled release of one part Merseyside to one part Sweden is pretty grim. It's overflowing with suspense and worry, sounding at times like a twisted nursery rhyme. The pair mix elements of lo-fi aesthetics with an expansive orchestral back drop. O...view item »

Jozef Van Wissem
It's Time for You to Return

The dark, lute-driven folk of Josef Van Wissem found its place on the soundtrack for Jim Jarmusch's most recent evil vampire movie, but now it steps out on its own on this record where he seemingly thinks it's a good idea to rebrand himself as a vicar. These nine works see him working at a lethargic and mesmerising pace that entrances the listen...view item »

Tlaotlon / Katie Gately
Split Series #23

These two rising artists share their playful and cerebral experiments with all on a dynamic 12" split for FatCat -- where pop songs go to meet an untimely end. Katie Gately meshes together found sounds with melodic precision, calling to mind the chilling ambience and resounding beauty of Julia Holter's 'Loud City Song'. Meanwhile, Tlaotlon offer...view item »

Transmission One

Supposedly named after a Western Ukraine town, presumably in affectionate sympathy for the country's ongoing woes and struggle, this is a collaboration between Gareth Hardwick, Dan Layton & David Stockwell and some cinemaphiliac bods Kneel Before Zod. There's not a great deal of information I can muster up about this enigmatic...view item »

Wadada Leo Smith, Jamie Saft, Joe Morris, Balazs Pandi
Red Hill

An impressive quartet of free-expressive outsiders assemble here for an LP of intuitive fluid tranquility and aggressive skronk'n'plink free jazz. Avant-garde trumpet legend Wadada Leo Smith is central here, with Slobber Pup bandmates Jamie Saft, Joe Morris and the remarkable Hungarian percussionist Balasz Pandi fill the rest of the slots on key...view item »

Science Fiction Park Bundesrepublik

'Science Fiction Park Bundesrepublik' offers scuzzy and mysterious ramblings from Felix Kubin inc. This time around he's gone out of his way to curate a compilation of speculatively DIY, amateurish and home-made recordings from Germany in the 1980s. This one's calling out for fans of mangled krautrock. ...view item »

Chris & Cosey

Chris & Cosey are an amazing duo, and the Exotika album is one of their best known. The songs "Arcade" and "Vengeance" are just amazing tour de force exercises in brute synthetic sensuality. Useful for proving to teenyboppers that 'electronica' existed way back in the '80s. My favourite here is "Dr John (Sleeping Stephen)", deceptively sounding lik...view item »

Celebrate Music Synthesizer Group
Celebrate Music Synthesizer Group

This is out on Sun Araw’s new label and features M. Geddes Gengras and a member of Boredoms. The three of them convened at a Rotterdam’s legendary The Worm studio – a grotto of vintage synths and hard-to-find analogue e...view item »

The American Avant-Garde in the 20th Century

This dual CD collection on LTM gathers together a cross section of the most prominent contemporary composers of the last century in America. Featuring Morton Feldman, Charles Ives and John Cage, the bastions of classical oddballery are showcased in their prime, including Cage's full Sonatas and Interludes....view item »

Human Greed
World Fair

On his fifth record as Human Greed, Michael Begg continues to obsess and fantasize over the cruellest of themes, this time focusing on death, both on a personal and cosmic level. Influenced by 16th century composition, the record experiments with minimal sounds and chilling spoken poems; on "Waiting In A Car", he juxtaposes primitive keys w...view item »

Holger Czukay
On The Way To The Peak Of Normal

This is a reissue of the third album by Can’s Holger Czukay. A quick google search reveals to me that he was the one with the moustache. It isn’t exactly a lavish package, but if you are lucky there will be a record included and thats the main thing. It comprises of two lengthy pieces that marry electronics ...view item »

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