♫♪  Kevin Greenspon - To Leave A Mark

Kevin Greenspon is a cassette-culture renaissance man. As the sole proprietor of his long-running Bridgetown Records imprint, KG curates a roster of little-known luminaries somewhere along the experimental spectrum between what could be called “rock” and “ambient.” He designs his cassette and LP artwork, dubs his tapes, does his own PR, and sells his music from his own web-based storefronts. But Greenspon elevates the practice of label-heading to a higher stratum by musically participating in his own scene — or, perhaps more accurately, serving as a shared focal point for dozens of loosely connected scenes across America. His exhaustive tour schedule, which tends to place him somewhere around the 100-shows-a-year benchmark, connects him with more nooks of the US underground on a regular basis than anyone should ever be able to keep track of in their brains. His tightly synced audio-visual sets, which time abstract visual expanses to the drifting layers of his synth-based compositions, have captivated normies and heads alike in an untold number of basement spaces or DIY living rooms. Find Kevin somewhere out on his tour schedule this year, and take the opportunity to get to know him a little before he schleps back onto the highway — headed to the next town on his circuit that you never imagined to have any sort of DIY infrastructure.

With a new tour comes new material, this time in the form of the To Leave a Mark cassette/CD-R release. The album develops the strategies of textural synthesis and tightly structured songcraft exhibited on his side of 2013’s split LP with Former Selves, while occasionally streaking off into slightly heavier directions. Greenspon revels in timbral contradictions. He’ll whip out a contact mic and drape some peals of feedback over a particularly beautiful synth line. He’ll coax out soaring consonant leads while a mire of atonal blips swirls through the stereo spread. Opener “Happiness pt. 2” and closer “To Leave A Mark” bookend the tape with some of Greenspon’s most gorgeous synthesis. The latter maintains its lulling atmosphere, while the former breaks open halfway with a surge of quivering noise that complicates the meditation. “Lexical Trap” and “Rust Eagle” both bubble with uncertainty, as filtered beats provide a backdrop for occulted synth missives and layer after layer of disfiguring static. “A Step Towards” glistens with the infinite sustain of Returnal-era OPN, flecked with music box-like melodies that loop together behind a thick sheet of drone.

Check out Kevin Greenspon’s upcoming tour dates from June to October. Grab a physical copy of To Leave A Mark from Bridgetown, or pick one up from Greenspon’s own two hands at a show near you.

• Kevin Greenspon: http://kevingreenspon.info
• Bridgetown Records: http://www.bridgetownrecords.info

Chocolate Grinder

CHOCOLATE GRINDER is our audio/visual section, with an emphasis on the lesser heard and lesser known. We aim to dig deep, but we’ll post any song or video we find interesting, big or small.

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