I haven’t felt this privileged since releasing Casino Versus Japan on Moodgadget. Here’s a perfected EP from Pop Ambient legend Markus Guentner. We’ve been sitting with this album for a few months just trying to find the right time to release and work up the right artwork. Would love some feedback to share with Markus, trying to get him to come out to the US for a tour. Also, download the single “Shadows of the City” for free in the Soundcloud player.
The EP is only $3.99 for the first 2 weeks
It wasn’t until the advent of time-lapse photography that humans were able to perceive slow and subtle processes on a comprehensible scale. New wisdom can be found in being able to perceive clouds flowing like a river, or the way heavy traffic on a city street begins to resemble the circulation of blood vessels through an artery. In many ways, “Shadows of the City,” Markus Guentner’s latest release captures this fleeting sensation of experiencing time and space on a novel but disarmingly-familiar scale, enthralling listeners with deftly-constructed soundscapes that tell a story widely-open to individual interpretation.
Opening with the track “Chromatic Fields,” Guentner envelopes the user in a warm, resonant sphere of energy, gliding over the shimmering surface of a moonlit pond. Continuing with “Ashes,” a stark but uplifting and meditative movement, the listener is prepared for the first of two longer pieces as the sense of anticipation grows. The title track emerges from the shadowy silence before a Voigt-like four-to-the-floor beat takes hold of the listener and carries them through canyon-like resonance separating monolithic structures of percussion, snaps of air and cracks of sunlight flashing through to illuminate the dust. With the following track, “The Run,” Guentner releases the built-up energy, returning the listener to the center, preparing them for what comes next. “The Coral Crowd” is ushered in much like it’s long-playing counterpart (or counterpoint, to some), graceful yet grounded, organic, but orderly. Ending symmetrically with “Eternal,” listeners are gently returned to consciousness, new insights revealed and ready for the next play-through. A wholly satisfying low-levels listening experience from beginning to end, “Shadows of the City” may represent some of Markus Guentner’s finest and most mature work to-date.
I know some of you have been bugging me for this stream so i’m happy to be able to share the Nitemoves Themes LP on the blog. Rory is one my dearest friends and the talented man you see on stage with Tycho and Com Truise and the one that posts the great vintage motor posts here. I hope you enjoy and give feedback, i’m sure Rory will stop in here and answer any questions below in the comments.
Like a dusty memory whose vivid nostalgia renders you powerless to resist smiling, the newest full-length from Nitemoves, Themes has a certain power to flood your mind with imagery, but not without reminding you of your frame of reference in the now. Setting out to refine his sound following the release of his Moodgadget debut, Longlines, Rory O’Connor, who over the past few years has been touring the world as the drummer for both Com Truise and Tycho, has left us speechless over how far things have advanced. A colorful collage of live instrumentation, modern technology, and analog recording techniques, Themes holds the listener from start to finish.
Opening with the frenetic Polypel, the tone of Themes is established in subtle details that shimmer as the horizon comes into view. Not long into the second track, Veaquis, the listener is engulfed in warm synth-drenched nostalgia that washes over the ears, punctuated by live drums. Drawing on decades bygone, Themes continues to flutter like the reflection of light off water, giving in to raw emotion that plays out in syncopated drums, F1 screams and ambient swells, fading away to gently return the listener to their childhood bedroom with a music box at their feet.
You may know part of Dukes Of Chutney if you’ve been on the ISO50 blog for a few years. Part of the duo is Tom Croose who has done mixes and playlists for us in the past. He is now releasing with long time surfing buddy Dustin Lynn on Tim Sweeney’s Beats In Space label.
We’re proud to be premiering a video for their Domino EP which the vinyl is ONLY $10(I ordered mine up last week) – order/support here.
We are proud to premiere an exclusive stream of the Teen Daze “Glacier” LP on the blog today. The record has dynamic motion to it that touches all different varieties of enjoyable glowing melodies. Below are links to the limited vinyl and tour dates, hope that if you enjoy the stream then you’ll be able to pick up a record or see him live on an upcoming tour date:
The record ships from Lefse Records October 1st. PRE-ORDER COLORED VINYL or DIGITAL
Tour w/ Camp Counselors:
10/2 Calgary, AB – Saits the Gateway
10/4 Edmonton, AB – Wunderbar
10/5 Woodbury, TN – Music In The Middle Fest
10/6 Saskatoon, SK – Amigos Cantina
10/8 Winnepeg, MB – Union Sound Hall (Side Room)
10/9 Fargo, ND – The Aquarium (Dempseys Upstairs)
10/11 Madison, WI – The Frequency
10/12 Chicago, IL – Beauty Bar
10/15 Kingston, ON – Clark Hall Pub
10/16 London, ON – The APK
10/17 Toronto, ON – Parts & Labour
10/18 Ottawa, ON – Mercury Lounge
10/19 Montreal, QC – Le Divan Orange
10/20 Burlington, VT – Signal Kitchen
10/22 Philadelphia, PA – Boot & Saddle
10/24 Hartford, CT – The Arch Street Tavern
10/25 Baltimore, MD – Golden West Café
10/26 Brooklyn, NY – Glasslands
10/28 Cleveland, OH – Beachland Tavern
10/29 St. Louis, MO – The Demo
10/30 Lawrence, KS – Bottleneck
10/31 Denver, CO – Larimer Lounge
11/3 Phoenix, AZ – Last Exit Live
11/4 San Diego, CA – Soda Bar
11/5 Los Angeles, CA – Echo
11/6 San Francisco, CA – Brick & Mortar Music Hall
11/7 Portland, OR – Holocene
11/9 Vancouver, BC – Electric Owl
11/10 Bellingham, WA – The Wild Buffalo
Autumnal days feel exceptionally short in Abbotsford, BC, Canada. The sun rises but hardly invites. The inevitability of night is impending. As 2012 came to a close, Teen Daze entered a state of repose. He wrote new material, and for the first time he found the process not to be a means of escape or refuge. Rather than imagining an outward utopia, or seeking an inward sanctuary, he simply engaged his work with his reality, his physical world. Like it’s namesake, Glacier is more than solidified water adrift in a sea of home-produced electronic music. It is a collection of moments, historical particles and physical experiences, gathered into a whole. Varied yet cohesive, Glacier finds Jamison confident both as a drifter and a romantic. Lyrics are used personally and sparingly, often drifting in and out on a single phrase. “No one sees you, the way I see you”, he repeats through opener “Alaska”. Album centerpiece “Ice On The Windowsill” celebrates the notion of remaining indoors with the one you love as the world frosts over. Connecting each epiphany are wordless ruminations—like the twisted pitch of“Tundra”, the cool warmth of “Forest At Dawn”—some of the most evocative sound design in Teen Daze’s career to date. The album’s fixation on manifesting physicality translates to being a highly performative production. The role of live instruments, field recordings, and general human presence is evident in these songs. This was a deliberate choice; Teen Daze plans to tour in support of the release for the first time as a full band—essentially to actualize Glacier in the physical world.
“Half Of Where You Live”
We’re proud to be allowed to be streaming the new Gold Panda album for the ISO50 readers. If you love the record be sure to support it physically, this one should be around for years to come. Below is a more detailed description/story around the album but if you want just the music then enjoy above.
BUY VINYL / CD / DIGITAL
Nearly three years after the release of his debut album Lucky Shiner, Gold Panda returns with his second album Half Of Where You Live, to be released on Ghostly International and his own NOTOWN label (UK). The album is the product of a period spent touring the world multiple times around, absorbing influences and probing potential new avenues of creative exploration.
Half Of Where You Live represents a stylistic and thematic advancement from Gold Panda’s previous work, expanding on the ideas he presented on 2012’s Mountain/Financial District 7” and this March’s Trust EP. It reflects its creator’s nomadic existence — you can see the influence of his travels in track titles like ‘Brazil’ and “Enoshima,” in the oriental textures of “My Father In Hong Kong 1961″ and “We Work Nights,” and in the sounds of “Junk City II,” conceived as a hypothetical soundtrack to ’90s anime and the films of controversial director Takashi Miike.
“These films depicted a post-economic boom Tokyo in the 1990s”, the producer explains, “and there was a last days feeling in them. [The feeling] still lurks [in Japan]. I saw a return to that possible dystopia. I’ve seen people in Osaka walking around, jobless, mental, stricken. I think real desperation and poverty is returning; it’s quite scary.”
The whole album, in fact, is described as a “city album” by its maker, and it’s easy to see why — each track possesses a different aesthetic and reflects a different environment. Gold Panda describes it as “a jump from location to location… I felt like I was stealing a piece of each place I went to.” ‘Community’ is a house-tinged reflection on cultural divides in London, while “Brazil” catalogs Gold Panda’s arrival in Sao Paolo: “I wanted to make a track that soundtracked my ride from the airport to downtown” he explains. “The [vocal] sample is kind of like an excited chant, bigging up the place, then it all gets confusing to replicate the traffic and buildings.”
Taking on this loose concept has meant a more considered approach for Gold Panda, and the music has harsher edges than his previous work, and an almost hauntological feel at times. Crucially, though, this new approach hasn’t compromised the producer’s creative freedom, and the album still flows with his trademark organic vibrancy. “I’ve tried to really focus on just a few elements,” he explains. “I tried to avoid chopped up female vocals this time around, as it’s become pretty well done, and anything that was too solid structurally. Ultimately, though, you just you find your groove and settle into a sound and realize you only really need to please yourself.”
Looking for that essential hidden summer album to share with friends that have been loving Bibio and Prins Thomas/Lindstrom world? Then you’ll love this slow burning dub disco LP from Almunia. It has moments where the acoustics range everywhere from Jose Gonzalez to synth journey’s by Hatchback. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.
I adore these tracks to no end:
The Magician, Secret Marriage, and Ode To Mom
BUY VINYL / CD
Artwork by Langdon Graves
Since Beacon has toured with Tycho they have found themselves some proper exposure from singing live with Sarah Barthel from Phantogram to hitting the road with How To Dress Well. The duo will hopefully be all over the states and EU this summer and fall, until then just enjoy the stream above.
Thomas Mullarney and Jacob Gossett, aka Brooklyn duo Beacon, introduced themselves to the world with the No Body and For Now EPs, both released last year on Ghostly International. The EPs were united by minimalist, R&B-influenced instrumentation, and also by a lyrical theme, with both serving as meditations on the darkness that underpins the most intense of human emotions: love.
The duo’s debut album The Ways We Separate both consolidates and develops these ideas. The album focuses, as the title suggests, on the idea of separation — both within the context of relationships and in a more intimate, psychological sense. As Mullarney explains, “The narrative contained inside The Ways We Separate deals with two kinds of separation: one where two entities grow apart, and the other where we grow apart from ourselves. Over the course of a relationship, the two sometimes happen together, one being the result of the other.”
Desires, passions and regrets are central to the songs on The Ways We Separate, which take a variety of perspectives to construct a nuanced reflection on the album’s central theme. ‘Between the Waves’ draws a clever analogy between relationships and soundwaves falling out of phase: “I know all the ways we separate/ Where we start to fade at different frequencies.” ‘Overseer’ catalogues a parting of the ways with discomfiting clarity: “Isn’t it fine?/ Taking it slow?/ Watching you watch me walk out your door.” And album closer ‘Split in Two’ explores how the extremes of love and loss can take you far away from being the person you thought you were, making explicit the connection between the two ideas of separation: “What I’d do for you?”, sings Thomas Mullarney, “Split myself in half/ Divided into two.”
Musically, The Ways We Separate finds Beacon working with a richer sonic palette than ever before —as Gossett says, “The production on this album is much more expansive than anything we’ve done thus far. We spent a lot of time exploring new gear and experimenting with how to pull a wide range of sound out of various instruments. Some of the key sonics that shaped this LP are analogue synthesis, lots of heavily processed guitar work, and vocal layering/processing.” While the abiding mood remains that of late-night introspection, the production draws from elements of hip hop and a wide gamut of electronic music, marrying intricate beats and subtle textures to honeyed pop melodies that belie the album’s conceptual depth. Rarely has bleakness sounded so pretty — this is a record that’s deceptively, compellingly beautiful, an exploration of a place both discomfiting and darkly seductive.
– Ghostly International
BUY VINYL / BUY DIGITAL
Tomorrow night 1015 Folsom/DJ Dials Present GHOSTLY INTERNATIONAL SHOWCASE
FRIDAY MARCH 22nd, 2013
DAUWD (DJ Set)
HEATHERED PEARLS (DJ Set)
Come say hello, i’ll probably be DJing early and you know the rest of the roster is worth it. I’ll try to be giving out some of the new Ghostly stickers on this beautiful half satin matte finish. Sadly I don’t think Scott will be able to make it, maybe he’ll drop in, here’s hoping.