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FELTE

Ganser

Nothing You Do Matters

    RIYL: Sleater-Kinney, Bartees Strange,Liars, Shellac, Blonde Redhead, Protomartyr, Iceage, A Place To Bury Strangers, Throwing Muses, Omni, Shopping, Bikini Kill.

    In the era of Ganser’s Just Look At That Sky delightfully descended on the world in July of 2020, I do admit that I mostly did find myself looking skyward, though that looking was often colored by an ever-present anxiety. My city was coming apart and maybe your city was coming apart too. Maybe atop the buildings of your downtowns there were guns, and men in fatigues. Maybe in front of the libraries, there were tanks, maybe in front of the food banks, there were army patrols. And yet, maybe you found an album or some tunes that reflected the times, which means both everything and nothing at all now, as time fractures into small, elastic shapes, some jagged, some joyful. An album of a moment must require malleability – songs that hold several songs within them.

    Ganser is back with a couple of tunes that will anchor spring through fall, a project called Nothing You Do Matters (produced by Liars' Angus Andrew) and the songs are full, biting, sweet and relentlessly tongue-in-cheek. What propels Ganser as a band, for me, is what shines here: their performance of joyful apathy so often has many other moving parts underneath that suggest that they are a band of deep caring, simply unsatisfied

    with the hands they’ve been dealt by the world. The dark humor seeped into the apathy is the central and most visual part of the magic trick, but it isn’t the trick itself. It is the disappearing bird or rabbit, that which returns safely to the open palm in order to distract an audience from everything else unfolding during its

    disappearance. “People Watching” is almost a mini-suite of a jam, which first kicks in your door and then lulls you with what feels like comfort, before tearing your place apart on the way out. It’s a thrasher of a tune that is more deliberate than breathless, picking its spots to twist the lyrical knife of talk until the words lose meaning, which circle the drain of the song repeatedly, until it has evicted you, or you have evicted it.

    “What Me Worry?” fills the space of breathlessness, a sneering romp where each line of lyric feels engaged in a mighty tug-ofwar for what comes before and after, simmering with the kind of tension that Ganser has gotten great at – a tension that pushes a listener to the edge before dragging them back to firm ground.

    Survival is hard-won. For many folks, it has always been, for many more folks it feels especially hard-won now. Ganser has adjusted to the times. Yes, the lyrics are darker, seem more exhausted with the realities of having to make it to whatever is next. But there’s also real bursts of playfulness and gratitude wrestling underneath these songs. Gratitude for what winning another inch of survival, perhaps. I needed these songs, and you might, too. It’s good to feel, for a moment, that all is not lost. And even if it is, at least we can laugh our way to somemeaningless demise. - written by Hanif Abdurraqib

    TRACK LISTING

    01. People Watching
    02. What Me Worry
    03. People Watching (Liars Remix)

    Fashion Club

    Scrutiny

      Debut art-rock album project from Moaning’s (Sub Pop) founding member/bassist/synth player, Pascal Stevenson (she/they).

      RIYL: Moaning, Wire/Colin Newman’s solo work, early Brian Eno, Cate Le Bon, Crack Cloud, Japan, Preoccupations, Deerhunter, Iceage, Ought.

      Scrutiny, the debut album from Moaning's Pascal Stevenson under her new solo alias Fashion Club, explores the mind's complex relationship to morality, and the way structures of power tend to replicate themselves through unexamined habits. Stevenson began writing the songs that would become Scrutiny toward the end of 2018, as Moaning embarked on a European tour in support of their critically acclaimed first album. Between shows, in the back of the band's tour van, she traced early drafts of Scrutiny's instrumentals on her laptop, planting the seeds of what would bloom into her captivating solo debut.

      While concocting Scrutiny's dreamlike art-rock palette, Stevenson drew inspiration from artists working during the incipient decades of the synthesizer’s lifetime, like Kate Bush, Brian Eno, and Wire's Colin Newman –
      musicians whose work bridges the gap between disarming experimentalism and pop pleasure. The album similarly channels the influence of Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis’s tactile, material production on Janet Jackson’s late ‘80s albums Control and Rhythm Nation 1814, records that exploded the potential of digital music-making and entwined the sounds of new technology with the currents of the body.

      TRACK LISTING

      01. Pantomime
      02. Failure
      03. Dependency
      04. Scrutiny
      05. Feign For Love
      06. Reaction
      07. Chapel
      08. Phantom English
      09. All In Time

      Billow Observatory

      Stareside

        Billow Observatory is the project of trans-Atlantic duo Jonas Munk (Denmark) and Jason Kolb (Michigan). Initially planned as a small sideproject from their main work in Manual and Auburn Lull respectively, the two quickly realized their collaborative experiments merited more time and attention. Using heavily treated cavernous guitars, subtle synths, and crackling radio transmissions, their self-titled debut was released in 2012 as a double LP and established Billow Observatory as purveyors of unhurried, highly detailed ambient immersion.

        The release pair of II: Plains/Patterns in 2017, and III: Chroma/Contour in 2019, on Munk's own Azure Vista Records, introduced a subtle underpinning of rhythm, pulse, and stutter among the washes, expanding their sound with a hint of understated electronica.

        Marking 10 years since debuting on Felte, 2022 sees the release of Stareside, their most forcefully elegant undertaking to date. A record of swaying quarantine temperament, Stareside's 9 tracks thread the needle between hope and hopelessness - daydreaming whilst watching the world go mad in the blink of an eye. Not shy of overt rhythm, soaring motifs, and daunting undercurrents, Stateside veers wildly in new directions, yet keeps one hand near the record bin of comforting nostalgia (think early Warp Records, Jon Hassel, and Conny Plank to name a few).

        TRACK LISTING

        01. Inner Citadel
        02. Sink The Outlook
        03. Vantage Low
        04. Wash Away The Dust
        05. Osar
        06. Havel
        07. Stareside
        08. Red Morning
        09. In A Stream

        Deserta

        Every Moment, Everything You Need

          For Matthew Doty, Deserta has always been about exploring a sonic universe that allows him to express a kaleidoscope of emotions, without having to say much at all. Through a patchwork of reverb-tinged textures – drone guitars, lingering synths and driving percussion – the Los Angeles-based singer/songwriter and multi-instrumentalist weaves together stories of care, frustration and catharsis that ultimately stretch to a gentle resolve.

          On new album Every Moment, Everything You Need, Doty chronicles the kind of year we all fear, full of uncertainty, tension and sustained pressure, and transforms it into a celebration of perseverance. It’s an essential reminder that we have the power to shape the stories we tell. The pandemic meant that Doty had to give up his studio and downsize a lot of his gear and instead, carve out a space in his two-bedroom apartment to craft the next chapter of Deserta.

          Sharing the space with his wife and son, Doty and his partner are also essential healthcare workers, which meant the couple would often have to tag-team childcare, along with 13-hour shifts in PPE and people constantly calling with questions about the ever changing guidelines and protocols. Once the blueprint for Every Moment, Everything You Need was set, Doty reached out to a number of collaborators to stitch together his vision for the sonic landscape.

          James McAlister (Sufjan Stevens, The National, Taylor Swift) came onboard to perform and record drums, while Caroline Lufkin (Mice Parade) wrote and performed vocals on the ethereal “Where Did You Go.” Elsewhere, the LP was mixed by Dave Fridmann (Tame Impala, Mogwai, Interpol), with Beach House and Slowdive producer Chris Coady engineering and co-producing, making this the first time Fridmann and Coady had worked together on a project.

          While the vocals are more prominent than Deserta’s previous albums, it’s their amalgamation with the instrumental aspects that secures Every Moment, Everything You Need as Deserta’s most confident and assured release to date. An affecting emotional candor teamed with persistent riffs and tenacious rhythms sees Doty unafraid to dive deeper; an unrestrained approach that ushers in a lustrous purging of agitation and anxiety. Showcasing those dark, exhaustive thoughts through crucial swells and looped, electronic soundscapes, it’s an LP that’s infinitely layered, with something new to discover with each and every enchanting listen.

          TRACK LISTING

          01. Lost In The Weight
          02. I'm So Tired
          03. Where Did You Go
          04. Far From Over
          05. It's All A Memory
          06. A World Without
          07. Goodbye Vista
          08. Visions

          Ashley Shadow

          Only The End

            Recorded and mixed by Joshua Wells (Destroyer, Lightning Dust, ex-Black Mountain). Guest vocals from Bonnie “Prince” Billy on the “Don’t Slow Me Down” single. Guest pedal steel guitar from Paul Rigby (known mostly for his studio work with Neko Case) on 3 of the 10 tracks. Support thus far from FLOOD Mag, Stereogum, KEXP, KCRW, Popular TV (ex-Nylon writers), Pitchfork, Exclaim! & more. “Tonight” single synced for a Netflix series 13 Reasons Why in March 2017.

            Ashley Shadow winks at darkness, but she won’t lead you towards it. It’s easy to fall under the spell of Ashley’s haunting voice. The Vancouver, B.C. based songwriter forged her own identity as a songwriter with 2016’s eponymous self-titled debut. Her sophomore effort, Only the End, maintains the moody introspection that is ingrained in Pacific Northwest life, but now comes armed with a palpable hope complementing her signature melancholy. Ashley explains, “I wanted to make a more upbeat album, something you could play with some friends over. Some of the songs I wrote were initially bummers, but when we went to record them, we lightened them up.”

            Balancing a couple of jobs and navigating life and love in increasingly unstable times, the album was written over two years by Ashley at her apartment. Her confident vibrato above lightly, distorted guitars mirrors the album’s theme of resilience, if not triumph, over adversity. There is comfort in these warm songs that endorse the realism of contented acceptance, rather than the naïve search for non-existent utopias. While the songs were conceived in contemplative solitude, Ashley invited some very capable collaborators for their journey into the studio. Ashley’s first album saw her take center stage after more than a decade of gracing friends’ projects in a supporting role.

            The move to the front was a cautious one. “First record was, can I do a solo album? This time, I know what I’m doing. It’s way more clear.” "Don’t Slow Me Down" reunites Ashley with Bonnie “Prince” Billy for the first time on record when she sang vocals on Bonnie's Lie Down In Light album in 2018. The album also includes contributions from Paul Rigby (Neko Case), Colin Cowan (Elastic Stars), Joshua Wells (Black Mountain, Lightning Dust) and Ryan Beattie (Himalayan Bear). It’s clear to anyone listening. It’s Only the End. If only all endings were so glorious.

            TRACK LISTING

            01. Gone Too Long
            02. For Love
            03. Don’t Slow Me Down (feat. Bonnie "Prince" Billy)
            04. Grey
            05. From You
            06. I Will Remember
            07. Unspoken
            08. Nothing
            09. Catlin
            10. Bury 

            Mission To The Sun

            Cleansed By Fire

              RIYL: Ritual Howls, Throbbing Gristle, Coil, The Legendary Pink Dots, Suicide, Cabaret Voltaire, Sonic Youth, Current 93 & The Stranglers.

              Mission to the Sun synthesizes ambient, post-industrial landscapes with expansive arrangements and haunting vocals. Comprised of Christopher Samuels (synths, samples, programming) of Ritual Howls and Kirill Slavin (vocals), the Detroit-based duo creates an atmosphere of lamentation for a world left behind. Fragments of industrial noise and hypnotic synths fill Samuels' foreboding, alien terrain, and it's in this vastness that Slavin’s voice mourns the drudgery of everyday life and the loss of universal consciousness.

              The duo's debut album, Cleansed by Fire, takes the listener on a journey home to the inferno of the sun, navigating memories of a life lived, dissolved into time. A wind of desolation opens "Take Me Back," with Slavin mourning for a return home to a distant reality. The song uses repetition to build a somber ambience while maintaining a spaciousness sparsely accented by noise with care and precision. Slavin's lyrics examine the conflict and paradoxes that riddle the human condition with

              Samuel's instrumentation providing a fitting backdrop. "The Unbroken Sea" illustrates this symbiotic reflection with a propulsive bass line contradicted by ethereal synths that swell and contract, only to be finally engulfed by a pulsating crescendo of rhythmic noise at the end. The dystopian title track "Cleansed by Fire" marches steadily along to a creeping darkwave rhythm. The basic elements of dance music are there, yet the song remains devoid of danceability. Punctuated by lyrics inspired by J.G. Ballard and technological isolation, a glimmer of pop sensibility can be found beneath the haze of the track's potent mood.

              Mission to the Sun beautifully captures an alien feeling: one ripe with despair and longing, one that doesn't quite belong to this world or time. A slow, satisfying burn, Cleansed by Fire traverses the dystopian past and present, while moving toward the future.

              TRACK LISTING

              01. Take Me Back
              02. Cleansed By Fire
              03. Damaged
              04. Mission To The Sun
              05. The Unbroken Sea
              06. Computers
              07. In Your Eyes
              08. Three Crossings

              Initial copies of the coloured vinyl edition include an exclusive 11" x 11" art print whilst stocks last.

              The duo consists of Camila de Laborde and Daniel Hermann-Collini and met in London’s global melting pot. Originally they hail from Mexico City and Munich respectively and now call Lisbon home. Produced + mixed by Peter Kember (Sonic Boom, Spacemen 3, Spectrum) who has mixed bands such as Panda Bear, Beach House and MGMT Camila Fuchs creates experimental electronic pop with spectral vocals and avant-garde sensibilities. Currently based in Lisbon, the project was formed by Camila De Laborde (Mexico City) and Daniel Hermann-Collini (Munich) in London in 2012. The band released their debut album Singing From Fixed Rung in 2016, followed by 2018's Heart Pressed Between Stones on ATP Recordings. Met with international praise, Camila Fuchs has performed at numerous well-regarded festivals including Mutek Mexico, Primavera Sound and All Tomorrow's Parties Festival. They have also supported and shared the stage with Plaid, Actress, Aleksi Perälä, Starcrawler, Charles Hayward, William Basinski, Braids and The Orb.

              Kids Talk Sun is the duo's third full-length album. It was produced and mixed by Peter Kember. With an imaginative, child-like approach, Camila Fuchs have managed to harness a transformational space of exploration and experimentation. Filled with a youthful sense of wonder, Kids Talk Sun is a meditation on childhood, as well as the exchanges between humans, between humans and nature, and within nature itself. A textural, drumless offering, "Sun" opens the album with a slow-tempo arpeggiation guided by Laborde's transporting voice. The words “heat me up, heat them up” conjures warmth that radiates throughout the album. “There was no way, no need to be careful,” Laborde sings in “Moon Mountain.” Mirroring the lyrics in approach, the band taps into a playful psychedelia with dense, hypnotizing instrumentation. Synths contract and swell punctuated by bleeps, bloops, and spaced-out effects beautifully articulated by Kember's production.

              A step into darker territory, "Come About" shows the band's breadth of range with Laborde's voice soaring over a driving downtempo rhythm, pleading for love and dedication to be taken and received, with a haunting effect. Kids Talk Sun was recorded near the sea and wilderness outside of Lisbon, with the band shifting back and forth from the natural world to the studio. The result is an ecosystem of complex, ever-evolving sounds working together, with generosity given to the process itself; the biomimicry of plants, insects, the sun and moon, earth, seasons, and cycles gorgeously reimagined in sonic form. There is a sense of multiplicity, a reassurance on change deeply rooted in transformation, on things disintegrating, decomposing, and something new coming to ground us, arms open, and ready for hope.

              STAFF COMMENTS

              Barry says: Camila Fuchs' previous releases have always indicated towards a multi-faceted psychedelic electronic powerhouse, but nly on 'Kids Talk Sun' has that possibility become quite so crystal clear. Texturally rich but imbued with the sort of avant-pop spirit of 70's psych or the octaved drive of Italo-disco. Absolutely astounding work.

              TRACK LISTING

              01. Sun
              02. Moon’s Mountain
              03. Gloss Trick
              04. Roses
              05. Sandstorm
              06. Silenced By Hums
              07. Come About
              08. Mess
              09. Pool Of Wax

              Mint Field

              Sentimiento Mundial

                Mint Field was originally formed in Tijuana by frontwoman Estrella del Sol Sánchez and ex-member Amor Amezcua in 2015. The band is now led by vocalist and guitarist Estrella del Sol with Sebastian Neyra on bass and Callum Brown on drums. The band creates a unique blend of avant psych shoegaze that explores the nostalgia and melancholy of daily life with complex rhythms, loud, shimmering guitars, and softly sighing vocals. Emerging from the two most exciting destinations for art and music in Mexico, the atmospheric shoegaze proggers originally formed in Tijuana before relocating to Mexico City where they are now based.

                Following the release of their debut album Pasar de las Luces in 2018, the band toured extensively, playing over 100 shows including dates in North America, Mexico, and two headline tours in Europe. Without skipping a beat, the band recorded the Mientras Esperas EP, releasing it in March 2019. With continued touring in the US, Canada, and Mexico, Mint Field closed the summer of 2019 with two sold-out shows in Mexico City.

                The band quickly went on to record their second full-length, Sentimiento Mundial, in London at Wilton Way Studios with producer Syd Kemp and help from drummer Callum Brown (both of Ulrika Spacek). The album sees the evolution of the band's psych-shoegaze sound shift toward a more minimal, rhythmically focused approach. "Natural" resumes Mint Field's classic sound with a dreamy guitar that bursts into raucous distortion, elevated by the addition of violin, strings, and saxophone. This was achieved with the help of guest collaborators Cathy Lucas (Vanishing Twin) and Nathan Pigott, who along with Kemp are part of the HAHA Sounds Collective. The motorik beat of "Contingencia" sets a krautrock-inspired tone that's taken to new heights with del Sol's angelic voice. Hauntingly melodic, "Delicadeza'' perfectly captures the band's very own type of supernatural shoegaze. Sentimiento Mundial crystalizes Mint Field's distinctive, contemporary sound with passion and energy that takes listeners to unimaginable places.



                TRACK LISTING

                01. Cuida Tus Pasos
                02. Natural
                03. Delicadeza
                04. Contingencia
                05. Aterrizar
                06. Le Hable A La Ola Del Mar
                07. Sentimiento Mundial
                08. Nuestro Sentido
                09. Nadie Te Esta Persiguiendo
                10. No Te Caigas
                11. Presente

                Gross Net

                Gross Net Means Gross Net

                  Gross Net is the project of Belfast-based artist Philip Quinn, guitarist of the now defunct Girls Names. A departure from the techno-driven sound of 2015's 'Quantitative Easing,' 'Gross Net Means Gross Net' bridges dark electronics, avant garde experimentation, and black humor. The album title is based on a remark made by British Prime Minister Theresa May "Brexit Means Brexit," and 'Gross Net Means Gross Net' is just that - whatever Quinn sanctions the project to be. What it is is truly unique. Shaken by the political upheavals in the US and UK in 2016, the refugee crisis, and the consequences of present-day capitalism, Quinn mined internal feelings of mental anguish and slowly pieced the album together starting with acoustic guitar sketches that would evolve into the carefully crafted compositions that comprise 'Gross Net Means Gross Net.'

                  Throughout the album, melodies of rapture and unease duel, creating a dizzying anxiety ala the minimal electronic doom of Coil and Bish Bosch-era Scott Walker. The ethereal "Gentrification" alludes to the orchestral ambience of Popol Vuh, eventually entering unexpected pop territory with the arrival of a palpitating beat and Quinn's delicate croon. "Of Late Capitalism" demonstrates Quinn's range of instrumentation with combat-ready percussion and ominous textures wielded from both synths and guitars. The equally gorgeous and unsettling "Dust to Dust," with its melancholic beauty, builds to a dramatic conclusion that marks the album's cinematic climax. Conceived in the void of personal isolation and societal darkness, 'Gross Net Means Gross Net' is an eerily intimate affair that captivates with its originality. 

                  TRACK LISTING

                  A1. Light Introduction (for Will)
                  A2. World Of Confusion
                  A3. Shedding Skin
                  A4. Theresa May
                  A5. Gentrification

                  B1. Of Late Capitalism
                  B2. Dust To Dust
                  B3. Damascene Conversion
                  B4. The Indignity Of Labour
                  B5. Social Nationalists

                  Gold Class

                  Drum

                    The week we started to write Drum, my relationship ended and I was left alone in a drafty, old house, which belonged to a friend of a friend. I’d been moving around from place to place for eight or nine months at that point, since just after our first album was released. When the band got together that week to write, the first thing that came out was the song “Get Yours.” written in one jam, just this hurricane of noise.

                    In the house, I sat around with my notebook, the quiet hours cut with news from friends and the TV: the suicides of musicians and writers I’d known and queer kids I hadn’t; the systematic abuse of vulnerable people, the constant mockery of anyone on the outs. I knew what the purpose of the album would be when I wrote the repeated line in “Get Yours”: “There’s none left here and all I need.” I wanted it to be a record of defiance, a resistance to the idea of scrambling for a place at a table that wasn’t set for you. A sort of a love letter to anyone who not only can’t meet the standard but doesn’t want to. I wanted it to be a record of rage and ecstasy and endless nights and sex and dumb fun and ventures in solidarity. Not just an album of urgency and longing, but one of abandon and a reclaiming of a self beyond boundaries.

                    But I couldn’t avoid what was immediately happening in my life, either, that the end of my relationship had uncovered a lot of the feelings of isolation I experienced growing up. And so it turned out that the album is also personal, and I think is in conversation with queer histories of silence and evasion and transgression, which I was revisiting through the writing of James Baldwin and Cocteau. Childhood imagery kept creeping into the lyrics. Maybe I was trying to come to some peace with the past and to stand up and find some agency in the present. I suppose it was the most defiant thing I could think to do: not to write as some act of catharsis but in an attempt simply to document and claim my existence; that I am here. It seems a worthwhile enough act when our existences are being further and further streamlined, turned into commodities unworthy of protections or acts of humanity, when some weird version of equality and not liberation is now the aim of even the left.

                    I want to be the author of my words. My words are often still at the mercy of my day-to-day, but I can try to locate them in history and to look beyond myself, too. That’s what I’ve tried to do. The politics and the personal experiences were sticky and came out all tangled up. I couldn’t detach them. I can’t still, maybe because not enough time has passed since making the record, but maybe because those things simply can’t be detached. I suspect that last part is nearest to the truth. 

                    TRACK LISTING

                    01. Twist In The Dark
                    02. Rose Blind
                    03. Get Yours
                    04. Trouble Fun
                    05. Bully
                    06. Thinking Of Strangers
                    07. We Were Never Too Much
                    08. Mercurian
                    09. Place We Go
                    10. Lux

                    Chasms

                    On The Legs Of Love Purified

                    Debut album from this San Francisco, female based duo. Chasms is the San Francisco based project of Jess Labrador and Shannon Madden. The duo crafts percussive dirges that are at once beautiful and menacing. Labrador's haunting vocals and hypnotizing guitar work wade between rhythmic bass lines and bursts of Madden's stinging feedback, laid on a bed of pummeling drum programming. The band's affinity for industrial rhythms, swelling textures, precise minimalism, and chaotic eruptions of noise sounds as equally informed by shoegaze as drone and doom metal—to choose just one would be a disservice. On the Legs of Love Purified, the band's debut full-length album, will see the light of day on October 14th. Written over the course of several years, the album explores the healing force of love and the exorcism of pain that inescapably accompanies it. Light cannot exist without dark, bliss without suffering. …Love Purified conjures this atmosphere of duality as it drifts through an expanse of emotion. While this is Chasms’ debut, they’ve been an active duo since 2012. They’ve released the When It Comes (Dream, 2012), Riser (Dream, 2014) EPs and the "Bad Evolution" single (Sleep Genius, 2012). They then collected a majority of the two Eps on the Subtle Bodies compilation album (Sleep Genius, 2014). Why hasn’t it taken so long for a debut album? Labrador spent a year recording the album herself despite a hand injury that made guitar playing and production work difficult and physically painful. Recording between the band's illegally rented rehearsal space and a cramped apartment compounded a sense of tension and isolation as the two struggled to not only finish the album but to also stay afloat in a city that is increasingly hostile to artists, and where the threat of eviction constantly looms. This underlying uneasiness and discomfort can be heard in these recordings, and it works not to mar their beauty but rather to emphasize it by contrast. 

                    TRACK LISTING

                    01. More Love To Be Found
                    02. Black Ice
                    03. Beyond Flesh
                    04. We’ll Go
                    05. Come To Harm
                    06. Intimacy
                    07. Between The Eyes On The Legs Of Love Purified

                    RIYL: D.A.F., Nine Inch Nails, HEALTH, Metz. Toronto underground staple Odonis Odonis broke out in 2011 with their scrappy, blown out debut, Hollandaze. The dynamic trio instantly began turning heads with their signature "industrial surf-gaze" sound.

                    On their Polaris Prize nominated follow up, Hard Boiled Soft Boiled, Odonis Odonis masterfully crafted a sonically divergent record that pushed their sound into new territory. Odonis Odonis' latest epic, Post Plague, delivers a powerful blend of industrial, electronic and Sci-Fi. Odonis Odonis' post--apocalyptic anthems construct scenes of sci-fi horror and saturate them with industrial strength synth beats. Dean Tzenos' vocals sit clear and upfront, delivered with a foreboding intensity accented by his synth motifs and soundscapes. Denholm Whale's carefully crafted bass figures / electronic percussions are strategically placed like demolition charges throughout the sonic foundations of each track that Jarod Gibson, like some futurist architect, constructs.

                    On Post Plague, Odonis Odonis delivers the kind of hypnotic, pulsing destruction that you can't wipe away. Post Plague inhabits that impending reality of synthetic experience which forces us to realize what we are: vulnerable, frantic creatures yearning for an authentic present / future. Jeff Goldblum, in the acclaimed motion picture The Fly, reminds us that we must take a “deep penetrating dive into the plasma pool,” and take stock of ourselves before we lose something profound. Something that may be necessary to ward off a pending anthropogenic apocalypse. Recognize and take pleasure in our fucked up place in time as we have so many new worlds possible at once.

                    TRACK LISTING

                    01. Fearless
                    02. Needs
                    03. That’s How It Goes
                    04. Nervous
                    05. BLTZ
                    06. Pencils
                    07. Game
                    08. Vanta Black
                    09. Betrayal
                    10. Lust

                    Ashley Shadow

                    Ashley Shadow

                      With the release of her eponymous debut album, Ashley Shadow has at long last taken center stage after a decade of valuable contributions to highly regarded, diverse musical acts. Though bestowed with a strong voice both lulling and bracing in its quality, Ashley spent the first five years of her musical career playing bass guitar for rock-noir outfit The Organ before recording and/or touring with Bonnie Prince Billy, Pink Mountaintops, The Cave Singers and Lightning Dust. Her self-titled debut endeavors to find certainty amidst incessant change and ensures that her talent -- a secret long known around her home of Vancouver, British Columbia -- will be shared with the rest of the world's melody lovers.

                      Enlisting the help of producer and multi-instrumentalist Josh Wells (Black Mountain), guitarists Ryan Beattie (Himalayan Bear) Peter Le Grand and Darcy Hancock, Ashley Shadow has asserted an independent stake in the musical community she has enriched for so long. Prior to focusing on her own songwriting, Ashley has given much of her heart and energy to working with the marginalized, at risk population in Vancouver. When she stepped back to reflect on these experiences, songs were inspired by both relationships during that time and the unique emotional work and struggles she involved herself in. 

                      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.


                      TRACK LISTING

                      1. Morning
                      2. Sun
                      3. Pyramid
                      4. You’re On My Mind
                      5. Juki
                      6. Spare The Thought
                      7. Talk Show
                      8. Ease
                      9. Width

                      Mysteries is just as it implies. A few months ago the felte label received an anonymous demo accompanied by a photo of 3 figures, faces covered like some sort of futuristic druids. To this day the label still doesn't know the group's origin, but the joy of discovering this music unimpeded renders this fact almost irrelevant.

                      There’s a sense that the band would prefer to keep your focus on the music and not who they are, where they come from or what you might perceive them to be before hearing a single note. If you need glorious mug shots and preamble to capture your intrigue, then this is not for you. The album’s title, New Age Music is Here, could even be interpreted as a sarcastic shot at the new listening habits dictated by the constant noise all around us, but is more likely a simple invitation to engage with the music on its own terms, in its own universe. One thing is certain. New Age Music Is Here glows with exotic, crunchy, muscular, expressive pop music built around vocals and drums, rather than the big synth or guitar riffs prevalent today. Almost like a psych-rock, cyborg, 50's doo-wop Alice Coltrane if you will. Is it truly new age? We definitely haven't heard much like it.

                      Listen with an open mind and heart and you too might believe in music once again strictly for music’s sake. Let’s get to it then, shall we?


                      TRACK LISTING

                      01. Introduction (New Age Music Is Here)
                      02. Knight Takes Rook
                      03. Newly Thrown
                      04. Stateless Wonder
                      05. Authenticity Machine
                      06. Motion
                      07. Ev’rything
                      08. I Wanna
                      09. Call And Respsone, With Morals
                      10. In The Dark
                      11. Deckard
                      12. Trust

                      Lushes are a band born of tensions – between art and math, order and chaos, planning and chance. You can hear it in their songs – taut, twitching art-punk that balance anxiety and elation, often within the space of a few bars. Album opener "Harsh" glides along slowly, feeling like a moody and measured art-rock meditation until you zero in on the words in the chorus: "Harsh on my ears, that's the way I like it." This is push-pull music, songs that temper the jagged fitfulness of groups like June of 44 and Slint with the soft-focus sweetness and open-ended song structures of The Sea & Cake and The Notwist. That moods so diametrically opposed can peacefully coexist is part of Lushes mystery and allure. That duality extends to the group's background. James Ardery and Joel Myers were living in worlds far removed from music, both working day jobs that neither of them enjoyed. Their personalities were different – James was outspoken and gregarious, Joel introverted and reserved. Their musical backgrounds were different: James grew up pillaging his father's record collection, getting turned on to Nirvana and Wu-Tang Clan by his older brother and attending hardcore shows by pioneering bands like Fugazi at 12 years old. Joel was formally trained, loving classical music but almost completely oblivious to rock and pop. The fusion of their disparate influences is what animates Lushes – the anarchy of punk and hardcore colliding with the precision of jazz to create music that is marvelously ordered while still feeling seconds away from detonation. That tension pulses throughout What Am I Doing, the group's warring influences making for music that feels brittle and vital.

                      TRACK LISTING

                      01. Harsh
                      02. One Right Word
                      03. Traffic
                      04. Warm Contagion
                      05. Dead Girls
                      06. Feastin
                      07. Garden

                      The Tower Of Light

                      The Tower Of Light

                      Beaming its sleep-walking sound from a bedroom in Brooklyn, The Tower of Light deals in the marriage of polarities on his self-titled debut album. At once delicate and severe, ecstatic then pensive, both sparse and lush, it follows a road that was paved by the early days of 4AD and its strange, beautiful diversity, while making unexpected stylistic detours as it winds its way through the ether. Though the general mood is hypnotic and arresting in equal measure and the sonic details reveal no allegiance to any genre in particular, one consistent thread is the pairing of thoughtful melodic/harmonic counterpoints against tense, elaborate atmospherics. Imagine a catchy pop song being hijacked, slowed to a narcotic pitch, its words turned to surrealist poetry, then all of it wrapped in a warm blanket of drone. It's these juxtapositions that consistently reveal the project's center of gravity. "Carrier" begins as a bittersweet lament; harmonies compound until a small chorus is pining an unnamed loss, when suddenly things turn eerie; booming drums, lilting swells of unrecognizable instrumentation, panicked breaths and an atonal breakdown later, the mood is very different- more sensual, definitely more ominous- what was lost now seems buried on purpose. The monomaniacal "New God" obsesses simply and cyclically over a strange yearning in a cold, empty place but steadily accumulates mass and ferocity until it transmutes altogether into a hot, pummeling fury that fans of Swans may find familiar. Comparatively, "Honey Resist" shimmers behind an opaque haze of rising melodies which careen into one another, intertwining sweetly, refocusing the listener on the light as opposed to the end of the tunnel. "Lightnet" feels sinister, it drives manic and white-knuckled toward whats seems will be an unavoidably violent climax only to pause, take a deep breath, and soar into space instead. Relentlessly unpredictable and effortlessly genre-defying, The Tower of Light can be difficult to pin down. And while some may read the aesthetics as more black-hole than shining sun, this is music that feels very aware that both are just different states in the same life cycle.

                      TRACK LISTING

                      01. Cap Grass
                      02. New God
                      03. Carrier
                      04. Glass Body
                      05. Honey Resist
                      06. Lightnet
                      07. Visitor
                      08. Wish

                      A sense of place. It's a notion that has informed some of our most memorable works of art — everyone has a favorite book or painting or album that somehow has the power to immerse you completely in its world, so much so that you don't want to leave.

                      This sense of creating art that can spirit you away somewhere else entirely is something that most definitely also informs the selftitled debut album from Brooklyn-based band ERAAS. In 2011, the band's founding members, Robert Toher and Austin Stawiarz, both ex-members of New England-based project Apse, were gravitating more towards ritualistic and darker themes not fully explored in their previous incarnation. In searching for a place to translate this mood to record, the duo settled on a rambling, atmospheric mansion in Western Massachusetts outside of Northampton. ERAAS decided to retreat to an area steeped in history and its own distinct atmosphere — all deserted hill towns and melancholy beauty — to make this record. The decision paid rich creative dividends — this is an album that's heavy with both an ominous mood and a certain orchestral grandeur.

                      When you listen to these songs, the ambience of the house itself is palpable, its creaking boards and tenebrous hallways reflected in the claustrophobic, echo-laden production — from the mournful strings that introduce the opening "Black House" until the flurry of tribal percussion that brings final track "Trinity" to a conclusion, there's a real sense of mood that never relents. The album plays out more like a single coherent entity than a simple collection of songs, the tracks emerging ghost-like from the shadows and then receding into interludes of whispers and strange, abstract samples. The songs are built around insistent basslines and driving percussion, along with a distinctive, evocative vocal sound created with deft utilization of delays and reverbs. Tracks like "Briar Path" and "A Presence" sound like stumbling across secret rituals, all haunted vocal melodies and spidery guitar figures. Other songs see subtle elements drifting in and out of the mix— "Crescent" is adorned by a delicate piano melody that sounds like it was recorded from an old Victrola, strange whisperings lurk deep in the mix of "Ghost", while "Trinity" strips things back to percussion and an insistent, rasping vocal.

                      TRACK LISTING

                      1. Black House
                      2. A Presence
                      3. At Heart
                      4. Ghost
                      5. Skinning
                      6. Moon
                      7. Briar Path
                      8. Crosscut
                      9. Fang
                      10. Crescent
                      11. Trinity


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