samizdat territory: joe murray on blood stereo, hair & treasure, aaron dilloway, thomas bench, dylan nyoukisMay 19, 2016 at 12:04 pm | Posted in new music, no audience underground | Leave a comment
Tags: aaron dilloway, blood stereo, chocolate monk, discrepant records, dylan nyoukis, hair & treasure, joe murray, thomas bench
Blood Stereo / Hair & Treasure – Split LP (vinyl LP or download, Discrepant, CREP29)
Aaron Dilloway & Dylan Nyoukis – Dropout Elements (CD-r, Chocolate Monk, choc.328B)
Thomas Bench & Dylan Nyoukis – Dylan Thomas (tape, Chocolate Monk, choc.330, edition of 50)
Blood Stereo / Hair & Treasure – Split LP
The Blood Stereo: a photograph album with all the eyes scratched out.
This side is an incomplete memory guide. The abstract is re-stitched as finest tapestry. It’s never about the destination but always the in-the-minuteness, the total immersion that acts as inauthentic spirit guide.
Again, the domestic (snotty snores, child chatter) is nestled up to improv clank / clatter and holy minimal organ meditations. But the BS still kick it hard and surprise just like a Jodorowsky Box Set from Auntie Gladys at Xmas. The wrenched tape / throat glots are fresh and salty as any shucked oyster as the KOFFS and SKWAA bounce between my 5am ears.
Hey you! This complexity is exquisite – multi-layered like a dream, each piece pregnant with meaning and freaky symbols. Even without the snatches of fuxxhorn this is a distinctly Ellingtonian piece from the pebbles. Take the fucking A Train pal!
But the B-Bop doesn’t stop things getting a little spooky. The final third is measured out in soul weights; scant grams but super dense. Curious backwards propulsion becomes the perfect background for Lewis Carroll’s LSD-flecked Victoriana; starched petticoats and cheeks stuffed with mushrooms. The final few seconds take us into Samizdat territory, but I realise, slowly, slowly, slowly that this is not an ending but merely a new beginning in an ongoing BS continuum.
It’s like ∞ man.
Hair & Treasure; those guys deliver! And they rub out not one but two pieces on their carefully scratched side.
Part one takes Table Electronics (?) or Tape Manipulation (??) or Computer Enhancement (???) and crispy dries it. The crackles and clicks are set with poise and deliberation becoming an ornate gilt frame. They say:
These are the new boundaries. Pay attention and look deeply.
Hoofing yoghurts are pitched against Bollywood dancers weak with fever so every finger snap and coquettish glance is damp with sweat. It’s musical collage as Curiosity Cabinet. Small shelves and alcoves filled with err… hair and treasure? But instead of your withered Monkey’s Paw or violet Amethyst you’ve got foreign-language dubs, whooping cough rhythms and fake farm-yard bleats.
But when all is shown, the ‘ooohhhss’ and ‘aaaahhhhhsss’ are extracted from our audience until it gets serious with the Basic Channel sound leaking from one speaker. The deep throbs and gristly bass wash over me submissively and I realise it’s only the Dictaphone ‘scccccvvvv’ that’s keeping H&T off the front of Mixmag or something.
Part two is a knockabout – a lightener, but with damn fine loops chicanery. Imagine Tom Recchion/Stuart Chalmers/Klaus Fillip goofing over your tape collection of handmade loops. You diggin’ it? Short and precise… it ends with marvellously sick coughing. Seek help! Get better…
Aaron Dilloway & Dylan Nyoukis – Dropout Elements
A sold-out tape version of this gunk led to a pretty swift CD-r re-release. But ditherers take note: this mung moves quicker than shit through a goose so make plans, make plans.
Modus Operandi? Four pieces of roughly equal tape glitch and loop menace. And, like Guru Josh in a trench-coat, this disc showcases the power of gentle squeezing, gradual release and deferred gratification.
These are ‘process pieces’ so the source material is just a starting point in the sonic flowchart. It’s what they’ve done with it that tightens the plums. I’m riding the gradual rise & fall of sound as AD & DN reveal themes, cryptic, like scraping moss off a rock.
Some parts lay exactly halfway between goof-gravy and M25 Acid Squelch (Untitled I) others play with the very idea of ‘realness’.
Let me explain: A Mongolian horse-head fiddle recorded on a University-sponsored field trip? It’s an HD recording and fully annotated with extensive notes (English & German) yeah. OR it’s a broken violin recorded in a sweat-lodge back room, bounced on the crappiest MP3 across the Atlantic. Does it matter when my ears rotate and my hair levitates? I’ve not quoffed the Reindeer urine cocktail – I favour the metrosexual Soy Latte – but the result baby… the results are the same (Untitled III).
Take four notes from any Cosmic Psychos thug-anthem, reduce to the two nastiest and distill until it becomes the memory of a too-loud night ringing in your ears. Rushing and repetitive, a whooshing loops through the hippocampus so you twitch and drool in yr sleep (Untitled IV).
What did Dolly say? If life gives you lemons, make super-strength headfuck juice!
Thomas Bench & Dylan Nyoukis – Dylan Thomas
Two sides of the same coin? Hardworking Tom and indolent Dylan take a recent live set made in brotherly togetherness and rip it apart like a ripe tangerine.
Side Tom – Astral Travel grants transparent eyes! All the colours become visible, so as long as I peer into the bubbling BenchMix I can re-live these total colours and shades. Gems are hidden like Easter surprises –both glittering and sweet, familiar and faintly chalky. Deeply knotted, a suspicious slopping occurs halfway through broken down into a hiccough/doorbell loop that’s pure Vision On!
In fact the vibe of Schools & Colleges leaps like a leaky thermos; it’s a crispy pancake flicking a zippo lighter. No thumbs!
Side Dylan – Single moments (hiss, consonant blip) chopped and kneaded together. It’s pretty fucking wild and twice makes me rip out the ear bugs – ‘who said that?’
I’m goofing on the pause-button choke that makes all words and sounds slippery when pizzicato turns tardo. I end my listening lustily – insect porn narrated with heavy emphasis on the gasps and snarls.
Don’t tell mum.
Tags: 777 was 666, aaron dilloway, altar of flies, chocolate monk, dylan nyoukis, hair stylistics, joe murray, john wiese, karen constance, luke poot, marc hurtado, phil minton, rick potts, skatgobs, smegma, spoils & relics, t mikawa, the custodians of the realm, the new blockaders, yeast culture, yellowhouse
Skatgobs – Pointless (CD-r, Chocolate Monk, choc.314, edition of 40)
Various Artists – Found Secret (CD, 777 was 666, 777-022, edition of 300)
Skatgobs – Pointless
The cockney fug of Café Oto gives way to a relaxed domestic burr and the sharp acoustic slap-back you get between Victorian terraces.
Please welcome Skatgobs
…says some showbiz dude and the performance starts with Luke Poot in your left ear, Dylan Nyoukis in your right and Phil Minton all over your face. These three have been pulling gunk outta their necks for about 1000 years or so but tonight they are concentrating on collective mouth-music and similar damp jaxx.
For those expecting duck-like explosions, brace yourself. The sound here is mainly gentle; hissed swoops and whispered threats are the vocabulary. Each individual – Poot, Nyoukis or Minton creates fresh cockles and whelks from that tonsil and mind conglomerate but it’s the collective that makes this one a speciality bean. Ideas may launch individually but work in tandem then triplicate. Things lock pleasingly together for a while then peel away… reflective soap bubbles.
The ‘hssss-furrr-chow, chow, chow’ is lightning fast with pico-routines and micro-dramas played out and passed from cake hole to shell-like to shrimp joke like a juggler’s hot nut. The collected minds carefully splice each presented ‘bluurr’ or ‘tssshhhh-ch’ with an infinite number of other potential ‘blaaaahs’ to become a 50’s Radiophonic but without the sellotape and white coats.
The pace is brisk enough to satisfy any Minor Threat fan but the deepness of this game means we’re looking at things along the vertical rather than horizontal. I’m not saying this is a hippy-band meditative piece (this is way more large-colon than third-eye) but a certain gravity and space is required to sup properly .
It’s been asked before but I’ll ask it again. Does this work without the red-faced gurn and fat-cheeked pop; the sweaty visual to eyeball wide and contextualise? Well of course it does, listening to this in your own dungeon, it becomes an abstract electronic, they (P/N/M) become the human synths with a Mentat’s purple lips.
So dearest librarians… do you file this under Sound Poetry, free-release throat metal or tooth-jazz?
Categories become problematic and stifling with juice this fresh so park that thought buddy and slip these randomly between Editions Mego and Naxos joints, let the punters sort it out.
Essential? You betchya.
Various Artists – Found Secret
The N-AU loves a compilation: short odd-ends and snippets, bedfellows a-strange and lumpy. This compilation finds loving arms for all its wonk-eyed children.
But what’s the general feel? Is it a ready reckoner, a ‘now’ check against your wish list or a wide open window to glistening new green fields? That all depends on you, my dearest of all possible readers.
Does this tickle you?
- Rick Potts – Calliope collapse/loop-ography. Ninja Tune scratched and scratched but never got this blunted.
- Spoils & Relics – Gandalf’s pocket fluff rubbed on a shiny pate. Squeals become veals. Never an accident ignored.
- Yeast Culture – Dot Matrix Disco! Micro-events drench you like drizzle to awake refreshed but inky.
- Dylan Nyoukis – Close-miked MB Games (Frustration? Perfection?? ) summons up a slobbering beast muttering oaths to pond-scum reverb. Munch the kelp!
- Smegma – Travel expenses claim recorded in the medium of squeaks and gingerly sliding tones. “How much for an egg sandwich?”
- Aaron Dilloway – Congolese Ping-Pong. The heat effects the balls so they become heavy as sand. To be inhaled violently, with paddles proudly flapping.
- Hair Stylistics – Reptiles let loose in the studio. You’ve heard of Lounge Lizards right? Go-Go revolution with £15,000 worth of percussion.
- T Mikawa – a cleansing pixelated conundrum. The sphinx rendered in exclamation marks. Singular as a Morse Code fist.
- New Blockaders – Mystery men rattle a waterfall. A ghost of Lisa ‘Lefteye’ Lopez does backing vocals in the style of a ticking car bonnet. Malfunction never tasted better.
- Yellowhouse – From the brain canal of every blues guitarist ever. When half-formed is overdone we all win!
- The Custodians of the Realm – The urban jungle beautified with sheets of sound (Coltrane on tapes). Tiny Indian head massage works my skull as beds vibrate in the emptiness within.
- Altar of Flies – Any Moomin re-boot needs to leak this into the mix. Other worlds but with a distinct Northern flavour – like Dill sauce I guess.
- Karen Constance – 25 years of Eurovision distilled into a pipette and dripped slowly into the corner of your eye. A slight sting then blissful, herb-scented numbness.
- John Wiese – Bristles like my chin. See-sawing horns rasp like they are ribbed with foul rubber. The unease suggests significant REDRUM music.
- Marc Hurtado – Motley Crue’s Mick Mars gave off this vibe in black waves, up to, but not including 1985’s Theater of Pain. The residual mung is collected in jars and left to ferment.
Take a chance sir? Feel like a flutter madam? Catch this one while it’s piping hot.
[Editor’s note: Found Secret cover pic nicked from the Mantile Records site, where this CD is also available.]