Bless is the second album by Brooklyn-based producer, Portable Sunsets, released a little while ago via the brilliant Amsterdam based record label, Atomnation. While it took me a little while to actually sit down and listen to it properly, it’s safe to say that it has quickly become one of my favourite albums of the year. ‘Ledges’ and ‘Straylight’ are two of the most beautiful cuts from the album, inhabiting a fine space between soft aerated ambient music and languid danceability. The whole album is highly recommended.
Really proud to announce my sophomore album ‘Body Complex’, there are a few things that come along with the announcement: the first single Interior “Architecture Software” which started streaming today. The record comes out August 7th on Ghostly International on vinyl/CD/Cassette, pre-order is below.
PRE-ORDER Coke Bottle Clear Vinyl / CD / Emerald Green Tinted Cassette HERE
This sculpture that I created which is about 7 inches tall and weighs close to 6 lbs made out of hydrostone which is a hi-tech cement pretty much. Also, I went more in-depth on the story of this album and sculpture below. As always, would love some feedback! Thanks for reading and listening.
For Jakub Alexander, the languages of music and visual art are permanently intertwined. And he’s always been this way—from his birthplace in communist Poland, to growing up outside of Detroit, to his current home in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. “When music like Gas, early Dial Records, and Mille Plateaux releases in the 2000s popped up in my headphones,” Alexander begins, “it was completely visual for me. Something clicked from collecting pages out of old Architectural Digest magazines and being completely overwhelmed with inspiration for my own visions of interior architecture.” The concept carries on still, now as an integral part of Body Complex, his second album as Heathered Pearls. Body Complex represents a new form of Alexander’s visually inspired sound creation, but just as it points to changes in direction for the ambient-inclined producer, it also revisits the past experiences that make his music possible.
Perhaps the most important era referenced in Body Complex is Alexander’s mid-teens, when he was a 15-year-old DJ going to raves with the older kids. Sure, the parties themselves were influential, but it’s the afterhours that resonate the strongest on Body Complex. “I remember those mornings better than the holidays during those years, the drives home from Detroit at 7AM were always stimulating. Everyone was so content, we’d usually listen to something deep and easy on the ears. This was a perfect time to let your mind wander.” It was also an opportunity for him to discover the likes of Terrence Dixon and Lawrence, artists who would eventually offer encouragement to Heathered Pearls as he moved into a new beat-centric sound. “I respect [Terrence Dixon and Lawrence] because they can ride the same thin lines of what I love: electronic music that is heavily repetitive, melodic, and deep. They both can find this elegance in techno beyond the dark warehouse.”
Body Complex doesn’t necessarily aspire to recreate the music of Alexander’s youth. But while taking inspiration from !K7’s classic audio-visual mix series, X-Mix, and early-aughts techno compilations, Heathered Pearls has moved himself closer to the dancefloor. “Loyal was these indirect, huge, heavy, slow ocean waves off in the distance at night,” he says of his beatless debut album, “and Body Complex is a stunningly bleak, uncharted landscape of man-made cement and artificial foliage.” Take a track like the desaturated “Sunken Living Area”, where flickering synths and chrome-plated drum patterns sketch out Alexander’s conceptual backdrop. You can almost envision the sounds as columns and plateaus protruding from a dusk-lit valley. “Personal Kiosk”, an exuberant ambient-techno highlight with The Sight Below (who also mixed and mastered Body Complex), might best represent everything Heathered Pearls brings to his second album: whorls of deep texture, abstract melodic drifts, elegiac beauty, and illusory dance music.
Of course, the artwork is another integral aspect of Body Complex, especially as it was conceived around an object designed by Alexander. “The shape came from wanting to create an imperfect sculpture that, from a distance, looks like a display piece,” he shares, “but when you get closer and you have more time with it, you see its flaws.” And that sort of ever-changing perspective reflects how the album itself can be heard differently in various contexts. Put on the Shigeto-featuring “Abandoned Mall Utopia” at home, and it’s a softly pulsing current of astral dust; put it on in a DJ set, and the music becomes a heady balm for the dancefloor. “You’re given this body and mind to build on, and everyone has their imperfections they don’t love,” Heathered Pearls explains in regards to the double meaning of his album title. Indeed, Body Complex is an elaborate expression of personal memories and visual metaphors as nuanced electronic music, and just like any fully realized body of work, it’s best understood from more than one vantage point.
During a recent Soundcloud dig, I came across the brilliantly crunchy and grimy house music of Melbourne’s Rudolf C and Silentspook. Both tracks have an incredibly strong focus and flow and would be perfect the dancefloor.
Despite there being an array of demos and snippets scattered across their respective Soundclouds, there is definite potential in all they do, so definitely worth keeping an eye on.
Future Times is very pleased to introduce this killer 12″ to the globe, a serious disc by JACK J. His 12″ for Mood Hut last year flipped many wigs and this 12″ is further proof that the dude is full-fledged. “Thirstin'” takes the day-in-the-life quintessence of “Something (On My Mind)” even farther, using his voice to beautify the sparkling, spaced track. The B-Side “Atmosphère” is just as mighty, as Jack channels a velvet Patrick Adams vibe in this gorgeous instrumental, the pianos in particular take the song to a galactic place. Both tracks feel like you could live inside them, each as good for walking around This Life chillin’ as they are for the party. Essential Summer Music.
Recorded & played by J. Jutson at Mood Hut Studio, additional mixing by Christopher Wang
I put some love into this one, as deep and Detroit feeling as I could, has a lot of new favorites as well, enjoy!
Jakub Alexander (aka Heathered Pearls) injects a heavy dose of distilled and audible imagery in his new THUMP mix, one he calls the soundtrack to an “Inner City Morning.”
The Polish-born is proving his experience with the ambient, yet desolate nature of a concrete jungle. “As someone who was largely raised in the Detroit area, this mix reflects my love for the world of deep and its roots in Detroit’s sound,” he tells THUMP. “From spacey to tribal and techno to house, everything is originally sourced in Detroit.”
– via Thump
“I spent the last few months working on a film score, then I got fired. No hard feelings.”
– Dev Hynes
So Blood Orange’s Dev Hynes just posted pretty much an unreleased soundtrack that didn’t get used, now its a 45 minute collection of songs that range from the most delicate minimalism to piano pieces and some hints of New Age.
Wow…ANOTHER single from Tame Impala, wonder if they’ll just leak the whole album one song at a time? Hey its just another opportunity to share another great piece artwork from Robert Beatty along with a great band.
Support VINYL pre-order