Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Vale The Foundry

One of the first label to support Ampersand when I first went solo was The Foundry. Label boss M Bentley created much of the early music (as eM, part of Apiary, Mollusk and himself) and also printed a fine line of chapbooks. Over the years the label expanded both its roster and its reach - and for a time was releasing material in conjunction with Hypnos. Satisfying both auditory and visual systems, The Foundry was a label you could rely on to give pleasure. 

Things had been quiet at the website for a while, and on a visit today found the inevitable - a goodbye from Michael.

All I can say is that another great label has gone, and that if you can find any of the releases, including on the Archipelago sublabel, go for it.

Thanks for it all Michael - it will be fondly remembered.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Seeded Plain: Land tract

The latest (and first of a new batch) from Bryan Day, this time as Seeded Plain, with jay kreimer, released on featherspines. They are both credited with objects and time on this release Land Tract

Many years ago I reviewed an album by Anna Planeta recorded in an abandoned school, which this reminds me of (something of a gratuitous reference which few people will have heard - but it was on the lovely named label Betley welcomes careful drivers). 

It sounds like a couple of guys have gone in to a room full of various bits of pieces and have spent a jolly time twanging on metal, singing a bit, banging around - contact mikes and perhaps a bit of processing - to create 70 minutes of formless noises, with odd titles (arise-d or berel-ed - but I note their label doesn't worry with the suffices). Which isn't necessarily a bad thing, but I am not sure it is something you want to listen to, although it is quite diverting as a background noise as the twangs wobble, metal things are rattled and banged, rattles and squeaks, density builds and diminishes, voices/vocals appear in the mix (and some coughing), whirring sounds, humms pass. All in all a noisey experience, which makes quite a diverting sort of background soundscape  as it weaves in and out of the foreground, making you wonder what is being played with at various points. Impossible to describe in any detail, I have played it through 3 times already now and continue to be diverted by it.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009


I am back from a break in which my classical fascination has been satisfied by The rest is noise and a welter of cheap bigpond downloads, including: multiple disk sets of Stravinsky orchestral, Webern (the complete Boulez), Dvorjak string quartets, Nielsen symphonies, Miavokvsky complete orchestral, Bernstein conducts Bernstein, Lutoslawski, single disgs of Berg and Dutilleux, and just to spice it up, a couple of Miles Davis albums (each side a single track). 

While still digesting this cornucopia I am also back in the reviewing seat, so I hope to get a few reviews up soon (though work in the new year is always busy, plus we are moving). Back soon