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MUSIC FROM MEMORY

“The idea of getting together Orquesta De Las Nubes with Glen Velez, Layne Redmond and Miguel Herrero in a recording studio arose when Glen and Layne visited Spain to hold a seminar on frame drums techniques. We had met Glen some years before during an event that took place in the amazing “Aula de Música de la Universidad Complutense de Madrid”. Glen came to Madrid playing with Charlie Morrow as part of an event about Fluxus with Alison Knowles and Philip Corner. On that time Glen played in Steve Reich Ensemble and our mutual love for repetitive music and ethnic music allowed us to build a very good friendship. When Glen visited Madrid we always get together in our rehearsal space and we played, talked and drink for hours. In 1985, during one of those sessions, Miguel Herrero joined us. On that time Miguel and meI used to play together in a club each week, where we made a bizarre fusion between pop and repetitive music. The sessions sounded so good, our ideas flowed so easily that after one session, I called Track Studios to ask if they have free rooms to make a recording during next days and as they told yes, I booked it immediately. The recording was made with an incredible fluency and about 12 hours after, we had recorded Música Esporádica. Fluency, spontaneity, close friendship was the fuel that fed us. After 34 years everything remains the same. Some of them are not with us any more but Música Esporádica keeps the unselfish spirit that encourages to share without objectives. Música Esporádica never step on stage and the 6 never met again altogether.” - Suso Saiz

STAFF COMMENTS

Patrick says: The latest Music From Memory release comes from an esoteric supergroup, active for one sole studio project in 1985. Rather than a 70s style supergroup, this was the product of the scene's DIY vibe and the joy of sharing music with kindred spirits. Fans of fourth world, ambient and Balearic need to lend this an ear.

‘Broken Belief’ brings together a selection of recordings by Japanese multi-instrumentalist Toshfumi Hinata drawn from a body of work originally recorded between 1985-1987. Attending Berklee College of Music after spending time living in both the United States and the United Kingdom, Hinata would study under the tutelage of pianist Patricia Laliberte, graduating from the esteemed American school in 1982. Returning to Japan after becoming disillusioned with his classical training, Hinata experimented with many different forms of music. Moving away from depending simply on acoustic instruments, he would instead become entrenched in the possibilities of the latest analog synthesizers being developed at the time.

Toshifumi Hinata’s initial idea was to make his first album with just a Prophet 5 and Linn Drum Machine. Tweaking filters and creating intricate sequences, Hinata would record various sounds on analog tapes and overdub many different layers; recording violin, piano and other accompaniments separately later on. It would become a method of working for the musician which he would apply almost entirely throughout this period. A deeply submerged process; one in which he would seek, as he himself puts it, to "weave musical images".

Toshifumi Hinata would go on to record several more albums released only on CD throughout the late 1980s and 1990s, after which he focused mainly on music for TV dramas, commercials and documentaries. Now living in Tokyo he is almost exclusively focused on creating music for documentaries. The period of work released between 1985-1987 is one though that was not only a rich moment in the history of Hinata himself but of Japanese music and electronic music in general.

STAFF COMMENTS

Patrick says: Music From Memory save you a lot of hard work and deep digging here, collecting the best bits of Toshifumi Hinata's "Sarah's Crime", "Chat D'Ete", "Reality In Love" and "Story" LPs onto one release. "Atarashi Yuhubokumin" has been a total favourite of mine since I picked up "Chat D'Ete" about five years ago, and gets the ID requests whenever it gets an outing. Japanese ambient with a Balearic twist...

In the lead up to part two of the highly anticipated Outro Tempo compilation, MFM drops this teaser EP with the never before heard cassette madness of São Paulo’s Bruhahá Babélico and Individual Industry’s ethereal electro pop on the flip.

Music From Memory embark on a series of Brazilian releases for this Spring that pick up where their 2017 Outro Tempo compilation left off. Circling around the musical projects that emerged out of the art world in Brazilian cities during the late 1980s and 1990s, “Outro Tempo II: Electronic and Contemporary Music from Brazil, 1984-1996” takes another dive into the depths of the Brazilian underworld, exploring the rhythms that lurk beneath the Ipanema sunset. It shines light on more illustrious unknowns and on the genre-defying music that maintained asymbiotic, yet uneasy, relationship with mainstream popular culture.

STAFF COMMENTS

Patrick says: Music From Memory herald the arrival of a second volume of Brazilian electronics with this limited 12" featuring demented cassette funk and weird wave pop from Bruhahá Babélico and Individual Industry. Already in the bags of our most future facing customers, this is gonna be a look for 2019 - don't get left behind.

Curtains wide open, breeze drifting freely through the grasses outside your window, occasional ripples atop the marimo bowl in the corner - everything in its own designated place. Forgot your hot stones and reiki healing, Jonny Nash is back, returning balance to the universe with the heartfelt ambient of "Make A Wilderness". Setting out to centre each and all of us, Jonny arranges stately piano, controlled feedback, chimes and guitar into eight immersive compositions inspired by the descriptions of landscape and environment in the work of authors Shusaku Endo, J.G. Ballard and Cormac McCarthy. As such, the LP is steeped in space, widescreen and wild or ethereal and ecstatic, and captures the mist and distance of an ancient forest or future ruin in its own abstract way.


STAFF COMMENTS

Patrick says: After half a decade supplying the healing frequencies via his Melody As Truth imprint, Jonny Nash arrives at Music For Dreams HQ on a solo tip (he's previously graced the label as one third of Gaussian Curve) with a moody set of ambient compositions inspired by the wilds. Though far from gloomy, "Make a Wilderness" is a shade darker than his MAT work, reflecting the ambivalent energy of nature, whilst retaining those clean and clear tones he's made his own.

Music From Memory’s final 12" for 2017 is a reissue of Dub Oven's self released, and sadly one-off, 1983 EP 'Skin N Bones’.
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Pioneers in the Post Punk Industrial and New Wave scene in 1980’s San Francisco, Gary Miles (Voice Farm) and Blaise Smith (Minimal Man), met at San Francisco’s notorious 181 Club in December of 1982. This straight/same sex/swing-both-ways late night dive bar was tucked away in one of the city's most risky, drug riddled neighbourhoods. Stationed near the SF Museum of modern Art it attracted a wild audience of local patrons, aspiring young artists and music heads. In the thick of all this the duo felt impartial to a lot what was going on musically and set out to produce electronic music that could break through the "somewhat exhausted post disco sound that was then competing in the local San Francisco clubs". Enlisting soul vocalist Celeste Miller, the duo were also inspired by Lee 'Scratch' Perry / Upsetters dub tracks being produced in Jamaica and created a unique breed of avant guard hybrid New Wave/Electronic Funk.

With its influences seemingly as much rooted in the past and the present as it was focused on the future; Dub Oven formed a distinct, mystical approach to music intended for the dance floor. All three tracks on this 12" embody a signature groove and an inventive synthesized abstraction to express a languishing urban unsettledness and spiritual awareness. Recorded at L7 Studios in San Francisco with the assistance of the the studio’s in house producer Marco Perry (who currently now works with Bjork) the record was unfortunately overlooked by A&R at several major and even local labels and was finally self-released in very limited quantities. Utilising analog electronics and instrumentation, the record draws on elements of dub, new wave, soul and funk to create a sound that is uncategorizable and one that was perhaps simply too forward thinking for its time. 

STAFF COMMENTS

Patrick says: MFM cap off an excellent year in their 12" series with this bonkers bit of dubby/new wave from 80s Frisco. There's a wonderfully weird bedroom B52s vibe to these three tracks, which are currently causing all manner of excitement amongst the Piccadilly staff.

Music From Memory’s latest release sees the reissue of G.B. Beckers' 'Walkman' album from 1982.
A painter and musician from Aachen, Germany, Günther Beckers created his third album ’Walkman' to coincide with an exhibition of his latest body of artwork in 1982. Released on his very own 'Milky Music' label with a run of just 500 copies and original pieces of artwork included with some copies, most copies of the album however remained amongst art collectors and with the painter himself. Rediscovered a few years ago through a friend of Music From Memory in the archives of a local radio station where all but one of the stations copies had been destroyed, it has been an album the label have been in love with since the first listen.
Touring as a guitarist with ECM affiliated Jazz musicians such as Alex De Grassi, William Ackerman, Ralph Towner & Larry Coryell to name but a few, Günther Beckers also would record on a number of releases of Klaus Schulze’s cult electronic music label ‘Innovative Communication’.
Always exploring new ideas and the possibilities of technology within his music, Günther would record the ‘Walkman’ album utilising the ‘Kunstkopf’ technique of sound recording. Kunstkopf or ‘Dummy Head’ recording is a 3D audio recording technology that enables listeners to define each source of sound as if they were in the original recording situation itself. Using two microphones which are usually mounted in the ears of a mannequin (giving it the ‘Dummy Head’ name in English) the technique exploits certain basic principles of human spatial hearing.
Listeners to ‘Kunstkopf’ recordings are in fact encouraged to listen to such recordings on headphones, as the 3D perception is often greatly diminished on speakers. With the title ‘Walkman’ G.B. Beckers was very much hoping the album would be enjoyed on headphones, even portably through a Walkman. Minimalist variations around an acoustic guitar, guitar synth, rhythm box and with wordless female vocals, G.B. Beckers' 'Walkman' drifts in and out of moods; it is a unique and at times hauntingly beautiful album, which the Kunstkopf recording technique further adds to the albums at times often otherworldly feeling.

STAFF COMMENTS

Patrick says: Music From Memory visit the evocative sounds of Gunther Beckers for their new release, bringing us a ten track excursion into rainsoaked windows, introspective guitar and bedroom beauty. Folk-meets-Balearic with a twist of ambience...

Amsterdam's archival experts Music From Memory are back with more ‘Music From The Living Room’. Delving further into the archives of British musician Michal Turtle, "Return To Jeka" brings together eight previously unreleased works recorded between 1983 and 1985. Drawn from a larger archive of works the compilation highlights a fascinating period of material Michal recorded after the release of his only album.
Working as an accompanist musician at The Laban Centre in New Cross at the time, Michal there met Jonathan Smart who was currently studying Dance. After being invited to add spoken word vocals to a few of Michal’s tracks, Michal discovered Jonathan was also an accomplished guitarist; and Jonathan would add guitar to a number of recordings from this period. Vocalist Lucianne Lassalle who Michal was working with in local bands ‘The Duplicates’ and ‘The Wicked Kitchen Staff’ and who had worked with Michal on recordings for his album, would also collaborate with Michal again during this period.
While some tracks were produced with the idea in mind of a follow up to his album ‘Music From The Living Room’ which UK label Shout proposed but which would sadly not materialise, others were in fact demos written for student dance choreographies. Produced in the living room of his parents' home in Croydon, South London and later in his apartment in Camden Town, Michal Turtle’s home recordings featured on ‘Return To Jeka’ continue his unique musical explorations; drawing extensively on the use of percussion and electronics they bring together elements which were not only in many aspects visionary but also sound like little else.

STAFF COMMENTS

Patrick says: Drifting between dream and nightmare, Michal Turtle's otherworldly electronic suites beguile, bewitch and transport you to another place entirely.

Denis Mpunga & Paul K

Criola Remixed - Inc. Prins Emanuel/ Dazion / Androo / Tolouse Low Trax / Interstellar Funk Remixes

Music From Memory continue to cook up the heaters here, beaming onto your deck with a remix disc inspired by that curious and crucial Afro-Belgian LP. The odd combination of electronic elements, rubberised grooves and the sunbaked flavours of the mother continent took us all by surprise when it dropped a couple of months back - bounding out the speaker like a long, lost twin of Zazou, Biyake & CY1 with just a little extra oddball rating. Now the dons of the 'dam invite a veritable who's who of contemporary production druids to work their body moving magic on a bunch of "Criola" originals. Swedish drum fiend Prins Emanuel kicks us off with a suitably percussive reinterpretation of "KWEI!!", cycling through chanted vocals and pinging synths over an irresistible blend of circular rhythm elements and breezy bass. Next up Holland's afro-cosmic wunderkind comes up to the plate with a "Turtle Maraca" remix of "Intermezzo B" perfect for a memorable night of chicken limbo and lysergic marinade. Picking up where he left off on "Rigola", Dazion stretches the OG into a proper cosmic roller, surrounding the psychedelic flute refrain with shamanic drums, hypnotic sequences and a deep and earthy kick drum. Second Circle's most recent recruit, Androo continues his fine run of early form with an astrally inclined kosmische mix dripping in otherworldly dub elements. The slow and sensual drum pattern holds it down from top to bottom, creating more than enough space for echo drenched guitars, delicate mallets and smooth synths to enjoy an ear pleasing threesome. Flipping the disc we're dropped into the dark and sticky domain Detlef calls home, coming face to face with a transportative Tolouse Low Trax mix of "Veronika". Slicing and dicing the emotive vocals and soft-goth guitars over a typically lopsided groove, the German makes us move...slowly. Mechanical, packed with soul and slow enough to lock your shoulders into a right good roll, it's another eyeball licking masterpiece from Dusseldorf. As we reach the B2 we take a break from the remixes in favour of an unreleased version of "Veronika 02" with about 4 tons of extra electronic bass banged under it - holy heft it's muscular. Finally, Dutch electro chief Interstellar Funk delivers a slow moving sci-fi rendition of "Intermezzo 2" which drifts through the deadzone dodging growling synth stabs and static space junk to the tripped out patter of a rippling rhythm track.

STAFF COMMENTS

Patrick says: MFM revisit the madcapped magic of "Criola" with a star studded remix package perfect for the more open minded dancefloors of the world. Dig in for Afro-cosmic strollers, deep space rollers, mechanical soul and subbed up dub. A perfect accompaniment to the original, with more than enough retweak to turn the dancefloor inside out.

After chilling us out with last year’s Suso Saiz retrospective, Music From Memory mark their 20th release in gleeful style with an album of new works by the Spanish electronic music pioneer. Recorded in Madrid between January and February 2016, this is Suso Saiz’s first release of new music in nearly 10 years. Titled "Rainworks" this double LP release was originally part of a commission from a Canary Islands water company. The first ideas for the compositions developed from a documentary that Suso had seen suggesting the possibility of water molecules having their own ‘memory’. As Suso himself explains, he became fascinated with the “possibility of an eternal being, changing its cyclical condition from solid to gaseous state, travelling through and between the Earth and the Sky, as a witness and keeper of the true history of Earth and Mankind”. Suso, his son Emil Saiz and pianist Raph Killhertz set out to explore this metaphysical process of cyclical movement through music in "Rainworks". Developing from the original commissioned tracks into a much more elaborate project, the album’s process became something of a mystical journey, drawing on aspects of minimalism and modernism. The music is also embedded in textured natural soundscapes and spoken word passages which were recorded and processed by Suso himself. Despite having the immediacy of an improvised piece, "Rainworks" was entirely composed by Suso. Though it appears at first inspection to be electronic album, if you dig a little deeper you'll find plenty of acoustic elements to the recording. A resonant piano (a grand piano re-amplified using its resonant box and harp to generate effects) as well as guitars (with simple effects) are played in Suso’s inimitable hypnotic way, slowly drawing the listener into a transportive state or lucid dream. 

STAFF COMMENTS

Patrick says: I loved the MFM collection of archival records from last year, so I was a right giddy kipper when I saw there was soon to be brand new material. As they say, class is permanent and Saiz' first release in ten years is every bit as good as his old compositions. Immersive, aquatic and in places experimental, "Rainworks" first challenges, then rewards. Check out the stunning "The Way Of Water" if you need a little beauty in your life!

Music From Memory return with their penultimate EP of 2017, this time with four tracks drawn from Virgil ‘Vincent’ Work Jnr’s little-known cassette only debut from 1987, ‘Fast Forward’. Following on from a previous compilation of works taken from one of Virgil’s collaborative projects as the duo ‘Workdub’, this album under simply ‘Vincent’, reflects a more stripped back and raw musical approach from the St. Louis musician.
Experimenting with rhythm programming, midi, layering, sequencing, digital effects and sound synthesis the ‘Fast Forward’ sessions grew out of a series of late night jams with Vincent’s brother Scott who was then living in Kansas. With nothing planned in advance and no written music involved in the final recording sessions, the songs that would form ‘Fast Forward’ very much evolved out of improvisation lending a unique often spatial and searching quality to the tracks. Virgil’s equipment at the time very much lead the experimentation with the album being produced on a Yamaha DX7 Synthesizer, Korg DW-8000 Synthesizer, Yamaha RX-15 Drum Machine, Korg SQD-1 Sequencer and a sequential TOM Drum machine. As Virgil himself explains the title of the album in fact came about because it felt “as if I had fast forwarded to a different sound”.
Bedroom produced, the "Fast Forward" album had an initial run of only 100 copies, of which none were commercially available and were simply sent to friends and family along with a handful mailed out to local radio stations in his hometown of St Louis. Although the album received a good response from local radio DJs and music magazines, the album sadly never gained enough momentum or demand for a further run of copies. Fast forward to 2017, exactly thirty years are their production, and Music From Memory are delighted to be able to finally make Vincent’s music commercially available again."

STAFF COMMENTS

Patrick says: Spangled and sparkling, these four propulsive, percussive synth jams dance right at the fringe of the proto-house dancefloor. Playful, naive and largely unplanned, these charming future primitive shake-downs should sit comfortably next to your favourite jams from Young Marco, Andras Fox or local hero Ruf Dug. Ace!

Gaussian Curve (Gigi Masin, Jonny Nash, Young Marco)

The Distance

An Englishman, an Italian and a Dutchman walked into a recording studio...Gaussian Curve are back! Early in 2014 the international trio of Gigi Masin, Jonny Nash and Young Marco came together for an impromptu jam session in an ad hoc studio space, intending only to enjoy each other's company and see where the music took them. The result of that lost weekend was the majestic "Clouds", a sublime LP which helped to reignite interest in all things ambient. Reuniting last spring to rehearse for a string of live dates, spontaneity struck once again and it soon become clear that all three members were brimming with ideas for new Gaussian Curve material. Over the four days that followed, and fuelled by the same organic process that drove "Clouds", a new album began to take shape. Although their methodology remained the same, the inspirations were different. Whereas "Clouds" was intimate by design, "The Distance" reflects more on spaciousness, span and time. Though instantly recognizable as a Gaussian Curve record, this widescreen approach finds emotion in expressionism - more Terrence Malick than Ingmar Bergman. Timeless, melodic and undeniably stunning, "The Distance" is every bit as beautiful as its predecessor.

STAFF COMMENTS

Patrick says: Last time out, Gaussian Curve treated us to a horizontal highpoint in 21st century ambience, and this follow up fully delivers on the weight of expectation. Melodic, measured and utterly beautiful, "The Distance" finds Masin, Nash and Marco at the top of their game, and remarkably, more than the sum of their parts. Stunning!

FORMAT INFORMATION

LP Info: One copy found

Denis Mpunga & Paul K

Criola E.P.

    Holy man batshit! I mean...How in tarnation do Music From Memory keep furnishing us with these oddball gems? Picking up exactly where they left off on the Outro Tempo release, the Amsterdam archivists swap South American minimal wave for Afro-pean experimentalism, keeping the focus on the groove of course. Combining elements of traditional African music with experimental electronics, the Belgian/Congolese duo Denis Mpunga & Paul K released only a handful of tracks, scattered across a few rare LP and cassette compilations that were put out in the mid eighties by obscure european labels. Alongside the picks from this bonkers bunch, we get a smattering of unreleased cuts, lovingly revived from the original master tapes. "Intermezzo 03" opens the set with the kind of squirming bassline and skittering drums you'd expect from a Larry Heard produced Young Thug mixtape, before digital birdsong and psychedelic synth washes begin to make those walls melt. "Criola" steps into the void with an Afro-cosmic groove and paints a colourful melody of polyrhyhm, snaking bass and circular marimba before the warped synth funk of "Intermezzo 02" takes us into a whole new dimension. "---!!! KWE" closes the side with a little abstract afro-beat while "Dou-Niya" invites us for a quiet Guinness at an Adrian Sherwood set in a Brazaville social club. There's more synth and surf trippery on "Intermezzo 01 V3" (eat your heart out Sun Araw), "Funyaka" gives the Afro-beat to us straight and subby and "What" glides through a little hi-life hijinx. Taking us to the run out groove in hypnotic style, the sweet and psychedelic "Veronika 02" is one of those glorious tracks you wish would last for 2 hours, the perfect finale to a flawless set of genre mulching sounds. 

    Joel Graham

    Geomancy / Night

    After wowwing us with the experminetal synthesis of their Vito Ricci retrospective last time out, Music From Memory continue their journey through obscure 80s electronics with this two tracker from the suitably low key Joel Graham. Prompted by a chance cassette discovery by Red Light Radio founder and label associate Orpheu de Jong, this two track 12” highlights the work of electronic music pioneer Joel Graham, a San Francisco based artist who self released two cassettes in 1984 / 85. Originally recorded and performed live on pre-MIDI analogue equipment in 1982 as an outline for a live performance, these visionary tracks provoke much of the same sensibilities found in both contemporary dance music as well as in works of more established vanguard artists of the time. Slowly unravelling and deeply hypnotic, Joel Graham’s music seems to manifest a doorway to a profound new world and can be seen as a forerunner of what was to come in electronic music. A-side cut "Geomancy" powers up gradually, first lulling us into a concentric cycle of drum box rhythm and blinking LEDs before blooming into a full frequency embrace of glacial synths. On the flipside, "Night" plunges us into the depths of a murky proto-techno ocean where propulsive bass sequences brush aside melodic synth shoals on the way to the subaquatic crystal realms beyond. Hats off to Amsterdam's finest once again - mindblowing time machine shit here!

    Vito Ricci

    I Was Crossing A Bridge

      For their fifth excursion into the lesser thumbed pages of the great musical story, Music From Memory present a collection of works from a man close to the label's heart. Operating at the leading edge of NYC's underground music scene, Vito Ricci produced only a handful of self-released cassettes and one LP (titled "Music From Memory", wouldn't you know) between 1983 and 1985, with most of his work being recorded for experimental theatre and performance art pieces. Starting out as a percussionist, Ricci’s early musical journey led him to improvised and experimental jazz; working alongside such luminary musicians as Rashied Ali, Byard Lancaster, Peter Zummo and Yousef Yancey. Quickly becoming involved in the avant-­garde scene with spoken word performances, film scores for independent movies and even playing in punk bands with performances at venues such as CBGB’s and Mudd Club, Vito’s own compositions drew on all of these influences whilst channeling them through his experiments with synthesizers and drum computers. Drawing comparisons with New York’s downtown no-wave scene Vito’s compositions blend his unique use of intricate percussion with a wide sphere of musical influences to create a world of hypnotising ambient, meditative and minimal synthwave through to dubbed out electronic funk and even leftfield boogie. "I Was Crossing A Bridge" unveils Vito Ricci's unique and visionary take on electronic music, most of which was previously unreleased.


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