Editions Mego gets closer to eventually releasing everything any Pierre Schaeffer disciple ever touched, announces new GRM compilation Traces Three

If you have somewhat of a passing interest in 20th-century European experimental music, you know that musique concrète’s history strikingly resembles that of the X-Men. It all started when Pierre Schaeffer and Pierre Henry founded the Groupe de Recherche de Musique Concrète, an institute for gifted youngsters willing to push electroacoustic music beyond its boundaries. The two quixotic figures mentored and lead their students through many adventures, until diverting opinions on what path the group should take — essentially how theory-bound it was supposed to stay — culminated in a split. Departing leader Pierre Schaeffer started a rogue group in 1958, under the name Groupe de Recherches Musicales, recruiting promising talents like Bernard Parmegiani, Iannis Xenakis, Luc Ferrari, etc. So, pretty much exactly like the X-Men. Just don’t ask me who of the two Pierres was Magneto and who was Professor X. Okay, maybe Luc Ferrari was Beast. But you’re not getting any more of that out of me.

With such an impressive roster and comic-book-ready backstory, it’s no surprise that the GRM archives are loaded with undiscovered gems. The ever-enterprising people at Editions Mego noticed this and created a specific imprint — Recollection GRM — to curate and release the GRM’s archival material. They’ve been doing so for the past few years, putting out retrospectives on Parmegiani, Xenakis, and Schaeffer; but also devoting the Traces series to compiling individual pieces by lesser-known composers who are groundbreaking despite their lack of celebrity.

For instance, take Charles Clapaud’s “Ruptures,” which opens this album, and wouldn’t sound out of place amid songs by Raime, Vatican Shadow, or any of today’s droney/dark/process-music-obsessed electronic musicians. The same goes for Venezuelan Servio Tulio Marin, whose “Impresiones Fugitivas” predates The Caretaker’s work by several decades. The third volume in the Traces series is rich in prescient sounds, yet also includes pieces that firmly plant the album in the mid-70s European tradition. Let Eugeniusz Rudnik’s grotesque, anti-militaristic collage “Moulin Diabolique” stand as evidence. Or the even more orthodox “Hypnos,” Janez Matičič’s homage to classic electroacoustic pieces — vintage oscillators and all.

Promising a fascinating look into experimental music’s days of future past (sorry for running that joke into the ground), Traces Three is out via Recollection GRM on June 24. Stream Janez Matičič’s “Hypnos (extrait de Trois Visions)” below:

Traces Three tracklisting:

01. Charles Clapaud - “Ruptures” (1978)
02. Janez Matičič - “Hypnos” (extrait de ‘Trois Visions’) (1975)
03. Servio Tulio Marin - “Impresiones Fugitivas” (1976)
04. Eugeniusz Rudnik - “Moulin Diabolique” (1979)

• GRM: http://www.inagrm.com
• Editions Mego: http://editionsmego.com

J Mascis’ upcoming solo record Tied to a Star may finally win him freedom from goblin captors

Somewhere in deepest, darkest Amherst there is a dingy, carpet-walled rehearsal space that smells of the accumulation of 23 years of body odor and the faint waft of urine. This is J Mascis’ natural habitat. Some say he was born here, others think that he’s been cursed to roam that space and churn out record after record until a family of mystical goblins has been nourished by the sweet fuzzy tones of Mascis’ songs.

In a bid to feed this goblin family’s insatiable appetite, Mascis has announced the arrival of a new solo album called Tied to a Star, which will be available to the world at large on August 26 (the cover art of which contains said goblin family). If lead track “Every Morning” is any indication, then J Mascis may soon find himself released from his rehearsal space; check it out below and sign the “C’mon Mystical Goblin Family, Surely You’ve Got Enough Mascis Goodness to Last a Lifetime” petition here.

In anticipation of obtaining emancipation, Mascis has also lined up a run of tour dates as epic as his tale of overcoming furry captors with nothing but a guitar, a big muff pedal, and the help of a few friends (including Cat Power and members of Black Heart Procession who play on the album). Check out the tour dates, tracklist, and a trailer for the album below.

Tied to a Star tracklisting:

01. Me Again
02. Every Morning
03. Heal the Star
04. Wide Awake
05. Stumble
06. And Then
07. Drifter
08. Trailing Off
09. Come Down
10. Better Plane

Tour dates:

06.26.14 - Carnation, WA - Timber! Outdoor Festival
09.24.14 - Hamden, CT - The Ballroom at The Outer Space
09.25.14 - Philadelphia, PA - World Cafe Live
09.26.14 - Baltimore, MD - Ottobar
09.27.14 - Chapel Hill, NC - Local 506
09.28.14 - Asheville, NC - Grey Eagle
09.30.14 - Birmingham, AL - Bottletree
10.01.14 - Nashville, TN - Exit / In
10.02.14 - Athens, GA - 40 Watt Club
10.03.14 - Atlanta, GA - Terminal West
10.04.14 - Louisville, KY - Zanzabar
10.05.14 - St. Louis, MO - Off Broadway
10.07.14 - Lawrence, KS - Bottleneck
10.08.14 - Omaha, NE - Waiting Room
10.09.14 - Minneapolis, MN - Minneapolis Institute of Arts
10.10.14 - Madison, WI - High Noon Saloon
10.11.14 - Chicago, IL - Subterranean
10.13.14 - Ann Arbor, MI - Blind Pig
10.14.14 - Cleveland, OH - Grog Shop
10.15.14 - Pittsburgh, PA - Club Cafe
10.16.14 - Washington, DC - Black Cat
10.17.14 - New York, NY - Bowery Ballroom
10.18.14 - Boston, MA - Sinclair
11.07-09.14 - Austin, TX - Fun Fun Fun Fest
11.11.14 - Phoenix, AZ - Crescent Ballroom
11.12.14 - San Diego, CA - Casbah
11.13.14 - Long Beach, CA - Alex’s Bar
11.14.14 - Los Angeles, CA - The Echo
11.15.14 - San Francisco, CA - The Independent
11.16.14 - Sonoma, CA - Gundlach Bundschu
11.19.14 - Seattle, WA - Tractor Tavern
11.20.14 - Portland, OR - Dante’s
11.21-22.14 - Denver, CO - Larimer Lounge

• J Mascis: http://www.jmascis.com
• Sub Pop: https://www.subpop.com

Radiohead(’s drummer, Phil Selway) to excite everyone who reads too fast with the release of new (solo) album called Weatherhouse!

Ah, the tragic plight of poor Phil “Philip” Selway: too well-known as Thom Yorke’s drummer and laundry guy to release records that won’t be compared to Radiohead albums; yet even too bald to be confused with Phil Collins! Oh well. I hope he can take some small solace in the fact that he’s presumably, you know… totally rich and famous and talented and all that shit either way. That’s probably what I’d try to do!

But heck, when he’s not busy doing that (or yeah, Yorke’s sweaty leather laundry), he might as well put out a new record or two! As Consequence of Sound reports, ol’ Prince Philip is gearing up to release a new solo album called Weatherhouse. It comes out on October 7 via the Bella Union label. I’m not sure what the album will sound like, but given the fact that my spellchecker has never heard of the word “Weatherhouse” before, I think we can rest assured that it’s going to sound bold, innovative, new, exciting, audacious, and experimental. Yup, kinda like that other band usually does.

Weatherhouse tracklisting:

01. Coming up for Air
02. Around Again
03. Let It Go
04. Miles Away
05. Ghosts
06. It Will End in Tears
07. Don’t Go Now
08. Drawn to the Light
09. Waiting for a Sign
10. Turning It Inside Out

• Phil Selway: http://www.philipselway.com
• Bella Union: http://bellaunion.com

Run the Jewels set to make lonely rappers jealous of their glorious friendship with string of August tour dates

A recent study conducted by the National Institute of Mental Health found that 90% of rappers today are friendless loners. As it turns out, the high demands of the profession can cause severe isolation, which in time makes it more and more difficult for these increasingly socially inept hip-hoppers to connect with those around them. This isolation often causes feelings of worthlessness, depression, and songs such as this. The study concludes by asserting that, next to coal mining and temping, rapping may be the worst profession for one’s mental health.

With these new developments still fresh in our minds, the announcement that Run the Jewels will be touring in August, a news story that should be joyous and celebrated, comes instead as a distressing and potentially harmful prospect. For those who don’t know, Run the Jewels is a collaboration between legendary rappers El-P and Killer Mike, who first connected in 2012 when El-P produced Killer Mike’s album R.A.P. Music (one of our favorite albums of that year). The two have reportedly been “best buds” ever since. This new tour comes following last year’s self-titled Run the Jewels album and in support of a second Jewels album coming in the near future, with the album’s first single being released through Adult Swim’s Singles Club in September. While fans could not be more excited to have the pair coming to a town near them, many city officials fear for the health and stability of some of their lonelier MCs in the face of such a successful rap-related friendship.

Fortunately, El-P and Killer Mike understand the negative effects this tour could have on the hip-hop community and have provided some encouraging words for any lonesome rappers who feel they may never forge such a strong connection with another person. “It’s all about being open, with yourself, with others. Look at us: just a few years ago we were just like all of you out there, two lonely MCs spitting rhymes about paranoia and government conspiracies alone in our basements over hard-ass beats. Now we’re two best friends spitting rhymes about chains and shooting poodles and shit over hard-ass beats. You may feel alone now, but that doesn’t mean you have to feel that way forever. Muthafuckas.”

Dates:

08.02.14 - Chicago, IL - Double Door
08.03.14 - Chicago, IL - Lollapalooza
08.08.14 - San Francisco, CA - Outside Lands
08.09.14 - Seattle, WA - Showbox
08.11.14 - Victoria, BC - Upstairs Cabaret
08.12.14 - Vancouver BC - Biltmore
08.13.14 - Calgary, AB - Republik
08.14.14 - Edmonton, AB - Starlite Room
08.16.14 - Portland, OR - Music Fest Northwest
08.22.14 - Denver, CO - Mad Decent Block Party
08.23.14 - Los Angeles, CA - FYF Fest

• Run the Jewels: http://www.runthejewels.net
• Fool’s Gold: http://www.foolsgoldrecs.com

Krakow is living The Dream: Unsound announces first wave of artists, including Swans! Ben Frost! Perc! Container! The Necks! More!

Krakow’s Unsound Festival is an industry leader in Keeping It Weird. Sorry Austin, Krakow may have fewer bumper stickers, but they’ve totally cornered the market on this one, especially with the recent announcement of the festival lineup for 2014. Spanning one magical week, from October 12-19, Krakow’s underground visionaries, sages, high priests, and yes, druids (my favorite type of ancient priestly class) will unite in honor of R&B singer/producer The-Dream. Wait, a different dream? A more abstract, ideological construct sort of dream? Oh. OF COURSE.

From fest director Mat Schultz:

The Dream is an act of auto-criticism and self-reflection aimed to trigger discussion. It isn’t meant to be negative, but inquisitive. Historically, The Dream stems from alternative and even oppositional artistic movements and social systems. Our question is, what remains of that subversive drive? In asking this, we realise we also open the position of our own festival to scrutiny, no doubt revealing contradictions.

So, in the spirit of The Dream, the festival promises music, films, and yes — TALKS. But like, cool talks, not the kind your mom wants to have with you after you come in the house at 5 AM reeking of booze. THESE talks are about Dada, the Beats, punk, situationist movements, etc. Plus you know, you got people like Swans, Deathprod, Chris Carter and Cosey Fanni Tutti, Ren Schofield (a.k.a. Container) with Kenneth Kapstad & Thomas Jahrmyr, The Necks & Radian, Księżyc, Ben Frost, DJ Stingray, EVOL, Perc, Rrose, Total Freedom, and Zmaliska. Also! There’s a multi-sensory thing called Ephemera that “presents olfactory compositions based on musical resonances and reverberations.” It’s the artistic baby of Berlin’s Geza Schoen and Ben Frost, Tim Hecker, and Steve Goodman (Kode9). Tickets go on sale this Thursday, June 26.

• Unsound: http://www.unsound.pl

Vashti Bunyan announces new album Heartleap, steals Linda Perhacs’ thunder

Does the word naturalismo mean anything to you? In that case, you might recall the halcyon days of 2004, when all it took to bring an overlooked artist back to the spotlight after decades in the wilderness was the goodwill (or perhaps the whims?) of the blogosphere. No feature-length documentary was needed to rescue Vashti Bunyan from oblivion. Regarded as the Godmother of New Weird America/freak folk/naturalismo — a “scene” loosely held together thanks to blog posts and the commendable Arthur Magazine during the first half of the past decade — she released the pastoral folk gem Another Diamond Day in 1970 to very little commercial interest. Disappointed, Bunyan left the music industry and essentially became a mother for the next three decades. With her album gaining cult status, and fans like Devendra Banhart, Animal Collective, Piano Magic, and Joanna Newsom citing her as an influence, she finally found her way back to professional musicianship in 2005, with her second album Lookaftering.

Now, possibly swiping some of Linda Perhacs’ thunder (this was meant to be her “folk legend returns from oblivion” year, until an accident sidetracked her plans), Bunyan has announced a new album for October, Heartleap, her first in roughly nine years. Since her return in 2005, Bunyan has issued a compilation of outtakes and demos (2007’s Some Things Just Stick in Your Mind) and even had a documentary — I know! — devoted to her (From Here to Before). She’s also played a handful of shows over the years, but with everyone more or less accepting we had moved on to the next comeback story, no one expected new music from her.

Unlike her previous two albums, where Joe Boyd, Robert Kirby, or Max Richter took care of production and arrangements, this time Bunyan is responsible for all the recording duties, which mostly took place in her own studio. It will be interesting to hear the British singer’s music in such a setting, considering how star-studded her comeback album was. She has also set up a short tour of the UK to accompany the release.

Heartleap is out on October 6/7, depending on which side of the Atlantic you’re on.

Tour dates:

10.07.14 - Birmingham, UK - MAC
10.08.14 - London, UK - St. Pancras Church
10.09.14 - London, UK - St. Pancras Church
10.11.14 - Farndale, UK - The Band Room
10.12.14 - Manchester, UK - St. Philip’s Church

Outkast, Massive Attack, New Pornographers, Janelle Monae, TV on the Radio, more to play at Treasure Island Music Festival

Outkast, Massive Attack, alt-J, TV on the Radio, The New Pornographers, Washed Out, Banks, Janelle Monae, and more will be performing at this year’s Treasure Island Music Festival. The two-day fest takes place October 18 and 19 in San Francisco, where you can chew on churros, ride a ferris wheel, and go buckwild. It’ll be your last chance to see Outkast perform this year, or maybe ever, so you know the tiny island affair will make that ticket price worth it. If that ain’t your thing, well, Ryan Hemsworth, Tobacco, The Growlers, Classixxx, Ratking, Bleached, Washed Out, White Denim, and XXYYXX will also be there to aurally stimulate you.

Be sure to set your alarm for Thursday, June 19 at 10 AM PST (a.k.a.), for that is when the early bird gets the wormy worm, as this is a limited sale for two-day passes, which is nice for those of us who are always looking to save a buck. Check the Treasure Island Music Festival website for more details on pricing and all the hullabaloo.

• Treasure Island Music Festival: http://www.treasureislandfestival.com

S-Type announces new EP for LuckyMe, shares single, may have an uncomfortable crush on Rosario Dawson

Glasgow-based producer S-Type (a.k.a. Bobby Perman) has kept a relatively low profile since his 2012 debut for LuckyMe, Billboard, which followed along similar hyperactive hip-hop lines as his Scottish peers Hudson Mohawke and Rustie. Now, S-Type has announced a follow-up EP for the illustrious UK label, titled Rosario, along with a stream of lead single “Lost Girls.” The track had originally been set to appear on last year’s LP from Drake, Nothing Was the Same, but the Toronto rapper couldn’t finalize it before the album’s deadline.

Allegedly inspired by a major crush on American actress Rosario Dawson, S-Type crafted the music on Rosario in a plea to woo the talented female star. When the Drake connection fell through, S-Type took matters into his own hands and created a concept EP about the Garden of Eden, the fall of man, and the queasy feeling he gets in his tummy when watching Josie and the Pussycats. Featuring guest spots from Bronx rapper YC the Cynic, Long Island legend Roc Marciano, and a trill guitar solo or two from his pal Rustie, if Rosario doesn’t get Rosario Dawson’s attention when it drops on June 23, well then it wasn’t meant to be, right? Right?!? Cheer up Bobby, you’ll find your Rosario someday.

Rosario tracklist:

01. Outside (Intro) (ft YC The Cynic & Rustie)
02. Rosario
03. Franco
04. Lost Girls
05. Inside (Outro) (ft Roc Marciano & Rustie)

• S-Type: http://s-ty.pe
• LuckyMe: http://thisisluckyme.com

[Photo: Kirstin Kerr]

Lil Silva says his first words on upcoming EP Mabel; stream the title track

For such a lil guy, Lil Silva has accomplished a lot. He’s released music through Night Slugs and Good Years, two significant UK labels, collaborated with SBTRKT staple and artist in his own right Sampha, produced for up-and-coming L.A. vocalist BANKS, established himself as an important component of UK funky, constructed a number of impressive block towers, and learned to walk. His production for BANKS, in particular, has drawn attention, and brought many to wonder where the duo will go next. Yet Lil Silva’s next release, an EP dropping on August 5 through True Panther / Good Years called Mabel, is a surprise in that neither Banks, nor Sampha are the featured vocalist. Nope, it’s Lil Silva himself, speaking out for the first time on record, with a voice far removed from naiveté.

Listen to the title track:

Mabel tracklist:

01. First Mark
02. Kimmy
03. Don’t You Love (feat. BANKS)
04. Mabel
05. Right For You (feat. BANKS)

• Lil Silva: https://www.facebook.com/lilsilvauk
• True Panther: http://www.truepanther.com
• Good Years: http://goodyearsinc.com

Zola Jesus confirms Taiga album details, proves TMT’s prophecy skills inferior

So maybe we were over-stretching it a bit with our earlier predictions on the new Zola Jesus album, but hey, we’re a music website that only sometimes dabbles in prophecy (not a prophecy website that dabbles in music news) and even Nostradamus didn’t have a 100% hit rate (Y2K anyone?).

Zola Jesus has dropped some more information about her now-definitely-forthcoming-on-October-7-via-Mute record called Taiga. We now also know that the album was recorded on Vashon Island, WA and mixed by Dean Hurley who frequently collaborates with another prominent conspiracy theorist, David Lynch.

The information is still pretty scant, so maybe not all of our previous predictions were off the mark. Zola Jesus herself hasn’t ruled out the possibility of the album being inspired by the Lykov family who lived as hermits in the Russian taiga, when she describes that Taiga “represents a feral,
untapped world that could happily exist without us. There are taiga forests in Northern Wisconsin where I was raised, and also in Russia where my ancestors are from, so it also feels very native.”

Could it possibly be that Zola Jesus is hinting at being a direct descendent of the Lykov family? Probably not.

You can download the thumping, epic lead track “Dangerous Days” by giving up an email address over at Zola Jesus’ website.

• Zola Jesus: http://www.zolajesus.com
• Mute: http://mute.com