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Mi And L'au

Good Morning Jokers

    Mira Anita Mathilda Romantschuk is an ethereal looking Finnish girl who sings like an elf, with a sharpened, chilly voice. She used to work as a model in Paris when she met Laurent Leclère, the composer and guitar player to whom Devendra Banhart dedicated "Gentle Soul". Laurent had composed music for some films, and was plenty of inspiration, but he still had not been able to channel it. When he met Mi he found his own intense and indescribable musical language, as indescribable as the fire crackle or a January blizzard. The combination was perfect: 'Imagine a glacier with ember inside', Michael Gira said when he produced their first work with Young God Records. Mystery and intelligence, tenderness and fear, beauty and misery combine in a disturbing and queer potion that is listened with pleasure, but at the same time makes the listener become uneasy, finding that suddenly is hidden away in somebody else's world, filled with an irresistible and unlikely beauty and ambiguous as sirens songs and fairies tears. "Good Morning Jokers" is a deep and demanding new musical experience that won't leave anybody indifferent. Sounds like: Nick Drake / Arvo Part / Nina Simone / Leonard Cohen.

    Arthur Russell

    Iowa Dream

      Nineteen tracks of Russell’s most personal work. Featuring collaborations with a stacked roster of downtown New York musicians. More than forty years after Russell recorded several nearly finished songs, Broderick worked diligently with Audika to complete them, and performed audio restoration and additional mixing.

      Over the past decade, the visionary musician Arthur Russell has entered something close to the mainstream. Sampled and referenced by contemporary musicians, his papers now open to visitors at the Performing Arts Library at Lincoln Center in New York, and his name synonymous with a certain strain of tenderness, Russell is as widely known as he’s ever been.

      Thanks to Russell’s partner Tom Lee and to Steve Knutson of Audika Records, who have forged several records from Russell’s vast archive of unfinished and unreleased work, the world now hears many versions of Arthur Russell. There’s the Iowa boy, the disco mystic, the singersongwriter and composer, and the fierce perfectionist deep in a world of echo. While all of these elements of Russell are individually true, none alone define him. Now, after ten years of work inside the Russell library, Lee and Knutson bring us Iowa Dream, yet another bright star in Russell’s dazzling constellation. Blazing with trademark feeling, these nineteen songs are a staggering collection of Russell’s utterly distinct songwriting.

      And although Russell could be inscrutably single-minded, he was never totally solitary. Collaborating here is a stacked roster of downtown New York musicians, including Ernie Brooks, Rhys Chatham, Henry Flynt, Jon Gibson, Peter Gordon, Steven Hall, Jackson Mac Low, Larry Saltzman, and David Van Tieghem. Musician Peter Broderick makes a contemporary addition to this list: more than forty years after Russell recorded several nearly finished songs, Broderick worked diligently with Audika to complete them, and performed audio restoration and additional mixing.

      Alliance Upholstery casually switch between reissue treasure and new material magic, with "Sky Miles Volume 1" presenting a global perspective of fresh music from the label, a round trip from Stockholm to Osaka, stopping off in Savannah and Rio along the way.

      Bobby Bricks (Dream Time, Sweden) kicks us off with "Orchid Island”, an enchanting and uplifting number that conjures images of clear skies and crystalline oceans, the gentle sea breezes lapping against our beaming faces as we arrive at our tropical island soiree in buoyant form. The crew will be around shortly with drinks, so ease into Séculos Apaixonados' (Future Times / 40% Foda / Maneirissimo, Brazil) slow burning love jam, “As Velas da Cantareira (DJ Guerrinha Mix)”. Low BPMs and timely synth stabs bring this bright, leisurely track from Corcovado to your turntable. Great for beginning of the night drinks or post sunrise smooches.

      As we reach cruising altitude, C Powers' (Sweat Equity / CGI, USA) eponymous “Sky Miles” gets us popping, broken beat syncopation, breezy production and playful percussion making this one dancefloor ready from the get-go.

      Roy Comanchero (Running Back, Japan) is always greatly admired here at Picc headquarters and “Moon Hike” aptly brings the EP to a natural concludes, a skeletal and quite serene track littered with 303, Roland perc and bright scales.

      150 gram vinyl from Brooklyn Phono and mastered by Dietrich Schoenemann.


      STAFF COMMENTS

      Matt says: Nice n varied selection of coastal moods to ingratiate the label's roster into the sunnier climbs ahead. It might only be 10° outside but listening to this I could be completely horizontal in my speedos sippin on a Daiquir with not a care in the worod...

      Dirty Songs

      Dirty Songs Plays Dirty Songs

        Directed and produced by David Toop, DIRTY SONGS PLAY DIRTY SONGS reacts against our poisonous present, inspired anti-nostalgically by similarly reactive records and live performances from the 20th century: The Soft Machine and Pink Floyd 1967-68, The MC5’s Kick Out the Jams, The Stooges, Sun Ra’s Cosmic Tones For Mental Therapy and The Heat Is On by The Isley Brothers.

        DIRTY SONGS PLAY DIRTY SONGS is the musical offshoot of a project conceived by artist Maxime Rossi, originating in (among other things) speculations on the (then unreleased) legendary Pink Floyd "John Latham” recordings (1967) and FBI investigations (1964) into subversive and obscene messages supposedly buried within the recorded lyrics of The Kingsmen’s “Louie Louie”.

        Developed through conversations between Maxime Rossi and David Toop and through support from Fondation Fiminco & MRAC, these ideas metamorphosed into the band and recordings known as DIRTY SONGS, existing both as audio recordings and audio-visual elements of Maxime Rossi’s installation Christmas On EarthContinued, exhibited at MRAC in November 2017.

        DIRTY SONGS is David Toop (bass, guitar, digital electronics, VCS3 synth), Phil Minton (voices), Evan Parker (soprano and tenor saxophones), Steve Beresford (Farfisa organ, VCS3 synth), Mark Sanders (drums).


        Au.Ra

        Jane's Lament

        Sydney's Au.Ra, a duo composed of Tim Jenkins and Tom Crandles, are set to release their new full length Jane's Lament, a work which carefully envelops the listener in dreamy hues of sound. Made over the course of two years, the LP was birthed from improvised jams the pair play over droning guitars and looped drum beats. Tracks like “Sun,” and “Pyramid” emerge slowly out of interplays between simple melodies and layered, reverbed instrumentation.

        Au.Ra's “emotive soundscapes” perfectly encase their nontraditional pop songwriting, like on highlight “Morning,” where shimmering guitar riffs transport you to a serene, meditative realm. Their repetitive lyrics belie this easy transcendence, sometimes even verging on incantation. These songs evoke a languid drive along a bending highway in autumn, the scenery and light shifting ever so slowly out the windows. As the sun sets earlier, this is an album to savor with the dying light.


        AU are Portland, Oregon-based duo Luke Wyland and Dana Valatka. 'Both Lights' is AU’s third album and first for The Leaf Label, a joint release with US label Hometapes

        'Both Lights' is the closest their recorded incarnation has yet reached to the blissful force of an AU live show, while expanding outward in new directions. Since 2008’s 'Verbs' album, AU have slimmed down to an extraordinarily potent two-piece live band, with Valatka on percussion and Wyland taking care of everything else: vocals, keyboard, sampler, lap steel, banjo and melodica (often two or more at once). Wyland’s rich baritone takes centre stage on 'Both Lights', a one-man tug-of-war with love, loss, pain, anger and desire, while the music behind him flits with gleeful abandon between styles - choral folk, ferocious jazz-punk, wild percussive workouts, sumptuous indie-pop.

        AU contributed a track to the Tradi-Mods vs. Rockers collaboration in 2010, which featured versions of tracks by Konono No.1 and Kasai Allstars. The Congolese bands’ influence is strongly evident on 'Both Lights'.


        The ‘Solid Gold’ 7” is limited to 500 copies for the world (just 150 for Europe), and is a joint release by The Leaf Label and Hometapes. Pressed on transparent yellow-orange vinyl, it’s packaged with full-colour transparent cover art in a heavy PVC sleeve, and includes a free digital download.

        Luke Wyland and Dana Valatka, the Portland, Oregon-based duo known as AU, embody a remarkable, cathartic energy that is immediately apparent on ‘Solid Gold’, the first single to be taken from their forthcoming album. Both Lights will be AU’s first album for The Leaf Label (released by Hometapes outside Europe). Fortifying Valatka’s adrenalised percussion and Wyland’s soaring vocals and multi-tentacled performance on keys / guitar, is man-machine Colin Stetson on alto and bass saxophone. The B-side, ‘Under / Epic’, is a reinterpretation of the album’s opening track, taking Stetson’s wild wind a notch higher and into the brightly lit stratosphere.

        AU reflect that light. ‘Solid Gold’ is the first taste of a sweeping aural experience that captures Wyland and Valatka’s journey through three years of love, loss, and levity. “The back and forth, the tug of war for love,” says Wyland, getting at the root of ‘Solid Gold’, in essence a love song, “exhausting, exhilarating, and so totally not sustainable.” Like the best songs, in some way or another, we can all sing along to that.

        "Jardin Au Fou" is the second solo album by German keyboardist Hans-Joachim Roedelius, best known for his work with Cluster, Harmonia, and Aquarello. Recorded from April through July, 1978 at Paragon Studios in Berlin, it was produced by former Tangerine Dream member Peter Baumann and released by the French label Egg in 1979. The original release included 10 tracks but the final short piece, "Final", was left off the tracklisting on the original album cover.

        FORMAT INFORMATION

        CD Info: The CD features 6 additional tracks: three of the new tracks are remixes of material from the original recording while three others are newly released.

        Mi and L'au recently put the finishing touches to their beautiful new album in Brooklyn, NY. The music on their self-titled debut is austere yet simultaneously warm, expressing the passion they possess both as human beings and as songwriters. Think of a glacier with a red ember glowing in its centre. Mi was working as a model in paris when he met L'au, then involved in the french music industry. The two intensely focused individuals immediately fell in love, and after apartment-hopping around the city for a time, gave up everything and moved to the woods of Mi's native Finland to spend time discovering each other and their music. They now live in a small cabin in complete isolation with the barest of essentials, spending virtually all their time making music together in solitude. They are pure and gentle souls (indeed, Devendra Banhart's song "Gentle Soul" was written for L'au with whom he'd collaborated in Paris). Their music is bare and delicate, with simple instrumentation and sparse orchestrations.


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