A Silver Mt Zion (as the band was first known) was formed by Efrim, Thierry and Sophie (all of GY!BE) at the beginning of 1999, and after a debut performance at Constellation's Musique Fragile concert series, the trio recorded this sublime debut record on 8-track at the original Hotel2Tango in November of that year.
Starting with simple, stirring piano themes written by Efrim, the music swirls and sways with multiple violin tracks from Sophie and plucked contrebasse from Thierry (his first recording on upright acoustic bass). What initially began as a single long, sparse chamber piece evolved into more fully-orchestrated movements, interspersed with tapes, drones and loops, along with some vocals.
Guest musicians include Aidan Girt (GY!BE, Exhaust, 1-Speed Bike), Gordon Krieger (Exhaust) and Sam Shalabi (Land Of Kush).
Additional taped fragments are from Efrim's archives, with contributions from Aidan. The resulting series of plaintive ensemble pieces shivers with intimate sadness. He Has Left Us Alone. is among the most requested records in our catalogue for film projects.
The album was dedicated to Efrim's dog Wanda.
2010 was a busy year for the Disappears. They finally saw their debut album "Lux" released, they did a fair amount of touring, and they recorded this new album "Guider".
Having worked these new songs into proper shape in the live setting, they went into the studio and ripped through the recordings, using the first take on all but one of the tracks. Disappears are so much about the NOW and not the THEN that they recorded over the same reels of tape that they used for their first album.
"Guider" means to control or influence, which is what all the songs ended up beingabout in one form or another. This is a heads down, blinders on, damn the distractions, forward driving, controlled squall.
Drop the needle, turn up the volume and surrender to the delicious. For Fans Of: Spacemen 3, 90 Day Men, The Paper Chase, Television.
A friend of Flying Lotus, a practising Sufi and a cryptic psyche-hop prophet, not the usual credentials for admission to the Warp sect these days? From almost any perspective, Gonja Sufi is one of the most interesting acts to arrive on the esteemed imprint in a long time.
His debut album 'A Sufi And A Killer' is largely co-produced with the immeasurably talented Gaslamp Killer, also featuring guest beats from Fly Lo and Mainframe. Evidently all involved have tapped into their finest rhythm reserves, with The GLK splicing obscure psyche samples into swirling beat collages befitting of Sufi's off-the-dome idiosyncracies, while FlyLo gives one of his very best on 'Ancestors', wading into a deeply tripped sitar and burnt bump-beat headspace making reverant nods to Alice Coltrane.
Mainframe's contributions include a tidy electro-soul edit on 'Candylane' and a sparse electro build for the Zomby-meets-Dâm-Funk vibe of 'Holidays', but the success of this album can be mainly attributed to the cerebral kinship of GLK and Gonja Sufi, a marvelously symbiotic relationship that connects the two on a plane way above.
GLK seems to innately understand the range of Gonja's vocals, whether complementing his earthly rasp with laidback hashish grooves on 'Klowds' or entrancing psyche-rock chants and swampy bass on the outstanding 'Kowboys&Indians'. This all results in the kind of album you'll return to time and again, revealing the intricate artifices of GLK's byzantine sampledelics and Gonja's oracular lyrics. Well recommended!
Montreal's Suuns possess a rare trait in rock music: restraint. they use it like an instrument, which makes their debut full-length Zeroes QC as unsettling as it is wonderfully exasperating.
It's immediately apparent in album opener "Armed for Peace," a track that starts off like a robot breaking down in a hot desert; the song's mechanic beat plods like iron-shoed footsteps as the melody of a wheezing synth mirrors, the crackling sound of old transistors and circuitry being cooked in the sun.
It's deceptively lulling, the tension almost unnoticeably wrenching up and up until the track unexpectedly opens into a barrage of nose-diving guitar riffs and crashing drums - yet the band still stays locked on the song's linear, forward-motion direction.
Suuns were born during the summer of 2006 when vocalist/guitarist Ben Shemie and guitarist/bassist Joe Yarmush got together tomake some beats which quickly evolved into a few songs.
The duo were soon joined by drummer Liam O'Neill and bassist/keyboardist Max Henry to complete the line-up.
"I don't think we were really a 'band' for the first year," Ben surmises. It wasn't until a friend helped them procure a spot at Pop Montreal 2007 that he says the group played their first "real gig." Last year, Suuns entered Breakglass Studios with Jace Lasek of the Besnard Lakes co-producing and engineering, and recorded their first album.
The group wanted to create something that couldn't be pigeonholed as simply indie rock.
"Jace definitely had a huge impact for bringing to life the big sound of the band and being open and willing stretch out any idea we or he had," Ben explains.
The resulting Zeroes QC is a warm yet dark, propulsive collusion of pop, post-punk and experimental rock - one that allows the group to musically shapeshift without losing any of the sense of tension and unease that runs throughout the record.
During tracks like "Gaze," tightly wound guitars and bass ring and buzz atop Liam's metronomic, powerhouse drumming, with Ben's cool, detached vocals acting as a nervy counterweight as he delivers falsely assuring lines like, "Don't you be yourself, you are someone else."Often his close-miced sing/speak is as metronomic as it is melodic; in "Arena" Ben's rhythmic "What-choo, whatchoo"'s are reminiscent of Suicide's Alan Vega as he leads the band's death disco groove into a bloodbath of razor-sharp guitars, while his icy, hushed delivery in "Sweet Nothing" is almost as motorik as the song itself.
Most impressive, though, is how Suuns effortlessly sculptmemorable pop songs fromexperimental building blocks, frequently using noise and space as actual hooks.All of this amounts to a great first album - one that is as timeless as it is thrillingly modern.
SUUNS release their second full-length album, ,Images Du Futur" via Secretly Canadian. After touring North America and Europe extensively throughout 2011, the band spent the winter and spring of 2012 writing & recording in their hometown, Montreal.
Their sessions were concurrent with the Quebec student protests that started in February of 2012 and continued through September of 2012.
Set against a backdrop lead singer Ben Shemie calls "a climate of excitement, hope and frustration," SUUNS aimed for an expansion of the musical ideas on their critically acclaimed first record, "Zeroes, QC".
Lauded especially by Pitchfork and NME, the former saying "few bands this young are operating on quite this scale, and fewer still have the brass-- and the patience-- to pull off a big, glitzy, complex record like Zeroes QC," and the latter declaring them 2011's Best New Band, SUUNS have deepened their approach, using minimalist techniques to create maximalist works.
Produced once again by Jace Lasek from BESNARD LAKES, "Images Du Futur" blasts out of the gate with "Powers of Ten," laying out a sort of manifesto for the record in the very first lines: "Got it together/I read in the paper/all of theses strangers/stranger and stranger.../No, no, no, no, how you try and remember/how all of these pieces/all fit together." Shemie says of the process, "As a band we were trying to look at our music from further and further away, seeing more details in the picture as we expanded the landscape." The first single, "Edie's Dream," starts with a single bass line repeated from which layers build & rise - first drums, then a wash of white noise; echoes of guitar, then chanted vocals.
The song's clever shifts are jazz-touched and delicate, almost subliminal. It all makes for a stark, skeletal boogie - more an astral projection than a song, "Edie's Dream" shows us where SUUNS are headed.
Hold/Still, the third studio album from Suuns, is an enigmatic thing: an eerily beautiful, meticulously played suite of music that embraces opposites and makes a virtue of cognitive dissonance.
It is a record that does not give up its secrets easily. The 11 songs within are simultaneously psychedelic, but austere; sensual, but cold; organic, but electronic; tense sometimes to the brink of mania, but always retaining perfect poise and control.
From the beginning, Suuns (you pronounce it "soons", and it translates as "zeroes" in Thai) have sought to do things differently.
They formed in Montreal 2007 and the group's first two records, 2010's Zeroes QC and 2012's Polaris Prize-nominated Images Du Futur - both released on Secretly Canadian - were immediate critical hits.
Suuns soon found themselves part of a late '00s musical renaissance in the city, alongside fellow groups like The Besnard Lakes, Islands and Land Of Talk.
Still, at the same time, Suuns feel remote from the big, baroque ensembles and apocalyptic orchestras that typify the Montreal scene.
After two records produced by their friend Jace Lasek of The Besnard Lakes at his Montreal studio Breakglass, Suuns decided Hold/Still demanded a different approach.
In May 2015, they decamped to Dallas, Texas to work with Grammy- winning producer John Congleton (St Vincent, The War On Drugs, Sleater- Kinney).
For three intense weeks, the four recorded in Congleton's studio by day, the producer driving them to capture perfect live takes with virtually no overdubbing.
The result is undoubtedly Suuns' most focused album to date, the sound of a band working in mental lockstep, crafting a guitar music that feels unbeholden to clear traditions or genre brackets.
Hold/Still is an album which derives its eerie power from simmering tensions and strange, stark juxtapositions, and in doing so, directs rock music down a new, unventured path.
180g Vinyl + Download Code Gatefold Sleeve The German instrumental duo SANKT OTTEN (Stephan Otten, Oliver Klemm), founded in 1999, has been releasing music on Denovali Records since 2009.
Their 10th full length album called MÄNNERFREUNDSCHAFTEN UND METAPHYSIK (eng: Male Friendships and Metaphysics) is once again a collaboration record - this time with fellow countryman and experimental guitarist N (Hellmut Neidhardt).
The eight pieces on the album are based on freely improvised studio sessions and have all been recorded live, with a few overdubs added by SANKT OTTEN later.
SANKT OTTEN's Denovali labelmate N - for whom this album is release nr. 47 - is well-known for Noise, Ambient and Drone sounds standing apart from classical song writing.
The aim of this collaboration was to combine the perspectives of the genres of both partners, with N adding a grave and menacing mood to SANKT OTTEN's Electronica and Kraut Rock and SANKT OTTEN providing the sound walls of N with an unusual dynamics.
The german instrumental duo SANT OTTEN already teamed up for building the first walls of sound in 1999.
Since then they released 4 albums and several eps together. In 2009 they joined Denovali Records to realize their 4th length "Morgen Wieder Lustig" followed by a split record with MAJEURE - the solo project of A.E.
PATERRA from ZOMBI (relapse records) - in 2010. With "Fast neu ist auch gebraucht" the full length includes an homage to the old Krautrock heroes NEU! just as a ROBERT FRIPP influenced 13 minutes monster piece like the title track Gottes Synthesizer.
Other songs ("Die Welt ist ja nicht zum aushalten" or "ich verlasse mich selbst") are rather influenced by STEPHAN OTTEN's energetic electric drums.
Mellow epic ambient hymns like "Wir sind deine Propheten" or "Das Ende vom Lied" are their great instrument to create a connection between specific soundscapes to make a coherent album out of the single tracks.
The main excellence of this full length is that SANKT OTTEN are combining influences of an old genre with elements of today's music to a new interesting mixture.
The vinyl comes as a thick 180g gatefold version - the cd in nice digipaks. FOR FANS OF KLAUS SCHULZE, ZOMBI, BRIAN ENO or KRAUTROCK in general.