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Dorothy Carter

Waillee Waillee - 2024 Reissue

    The first ever reissue of the work of American composer Dorothy Carter, master of the hammered dulcimer, zither, and other instruments of the hammer chord zither/ psalterium family. A true musical vagabond, Dorothy was born in New York in 1935, though her spiritual pursuit of an expansive musical knowledge would take her to monasteries in Mexico, conservatories in France and London, and the founding of the Central Maine Power Music Company (CMPMC), with new-age/minimalist luminaries such as Constance Demby and Robert Rutman.

    Dorothy Carter was many things - a virtuoso player, storyteller,historian of Celtic and Appalachian folk music, avid lifelong busker, avant-garde musician, and itinerant troubadour, laying a framework for music that existed both within and outside of standard folk idioms - never better represented than on her 1978 masterwork, Waillee Wailee . Underscored by Bob Rutman's cavernous bowing of the steel cello, the richness of Waillee Waillee's sound produces an album unlike any other in her discography. In particular, its two side-ending pieces, "Summer Rhapsody" and "Tree of Life,'' glide with the shimmering filigree of hammered dulcimer and Dorothy Carter's ephemeral voice floating over Rutman's droning buzz of the steel cello. The elements of these two tracks suggest something akin to a transcendental appalachian raga or whirling cosmic folk music, an effortless combination that serves to add additional substance to the remaining tracks on the album.

    The title track is one of her most enduring compositions, often performed in stripped down versions throughout her career, and one of her sole recordings featuring a full band, with the contrapuntal interplay of tremulous flute, vibrating steel cello, bass and drums. Lyrically and tonally, her voice would never sound as stirring and refined as on this, her most outwardly accessible song.

    She counted musical colleagues as diverse as Constance Demby, Einstürzende Neubauten and Laraaji, as well as her lifelong artistic partner and friend Bob Rutman, whose imprint is felt throughout the grooves of this record. The master tapes for this recording were fortuitously discovered in Rutman's Berlin studio, many, many years later. As recounted in Laraaji's contribution to the liner notes, Dorothy was "someone who really influenced my early zither exploration and vocabulary and inspired my shift toward hammered zither performance and recording," after encountering him busking on the sidewalk one day in the 1970s. Later, when living in Berlin in the early 1990s, Dorothy would begin work on manuscripts detailing the history of the dulcimer family and providing extensive sheet music, selected material of which is reproduced in the twelvepage booklet included with this release. Dorothy would find later success touring and performing in the late 90s with the ensemble Mediæval Bæbes, which she led with British musician Katherine Blake, playing a prominent role on their first four albums.

    The recording of Waillee Waillee would mark the end of an era for Dorothy: leaving behind the familiar confines of the northeast, she embarked to New Orleans, settling with her family there. An outsider more so in a city known for its rich musical tradition in jazz and zydeco, Dorothy continued to busk - performing on corners, Mississippi riverboats, and more. She immersed herself in the city such that after suddenly and unexpectedly passing in 2003, the church played "Tree of Life" (this album's final track) at her memorial service, the community revelling in her wondrous life. "Tree of Life" would remain a composition that Dorothy Carter returned to many times throughout her life, appearing in a much more stripped down version on an earlier album, Troubadour . Its deep meaning and significance informed Dorothy's life and ineffable spirituality in ways that provide insight into her music, writings and expression of sound, heard remarkably through her songs and mastery of dulcimer and zither playing.

    TRACK LISTING

    1. The Squirrel Is A Funny Thing...
    2. Dulcimer Medley - Robin M'aime
    3. Along The River
    4. Summer Rhapsody
    5. Waillee, Waillee
    6. Celtic Medley
    7. Autumn Song
    8. Tree Of Life

    Yasuaki Shimizu

    Kakashi - 2023 Repress

      1982 album from Japan's visionary saxophonist Yasuaki Shimizu, the man behind Mariah 'Utakata Ho Hibi'. Through its 8 suite-like tracks, Kakashi transports the listener into Yasuaki's colourful sound-world, a fusion of outre jazz, new wave, ambient, and dub practices. Another high water mark in the 80s Japanese underground which has gathered cult status in recent years, and considered to be a highlight of Yasuaki's solo career.

      Woo

      Into The Heart Of Love

        Absolutely essential. Deluxe 2LP edition of this impeccable album from 1988. The spot glossed Gatefold jacket features artwork including archival photos & drawings from Woo’s archives as well as liner notes by Clive Ives (one half of the band). Issued for the first time in its entirety on vinyl, spread over two LPs, and remastered from newly discovered hi-quality DAT sources, we’re thrilled to present the definitive version of Woo’s most fully-formed album. A cosmic testament to the healing power of love, utilizing vocoded clarinets, pastoral guitars, homespun folk lullabies, and lilting electronics, coalescing into a an hour plus long journey through their otherworldly soundscapes. A prime entry point to Woo’s sound, containing some of their most beloved songs, such as ‘Make Me Tea,’ ‘It’s Love,’ ‘Hopi’ and many others, and also including a never-before heard bonus track – the vocal version of ‘It’s Love.’

        Into The Heart Of Love was originally self-released on cassette in 1988, with a wider cassette release in 1990. Compiled from home recordings from the preceding years, and released during a transitional point for the band, the Ives brothers see this album as their most complete work, offering space to the listener to stretch out and immerse themselves into the warmth of their sound.

        Woo is the uncategorizable project of Clive and Mark Ives from Brighton, UK. Since the 1970s, the duo have been recording a plethora of eclectic sounds, most falling under the blanket genre of new age, but spiraling out toward notions of ambient sounds, jazz, and other spiritual takes on modern music. They received some acclaim for their early releases, including 1982's Whichever Way You Are Going, You Are Going Wrong and 1989's It's Cosy Inside, but their work began to receive renewed appreciation during the 2010s, when labels such as Drag City and Palto Flats reissued the band's albums. The brothers remained active all the while, digitally self-issuing material.

        TRACK LISTING

        Hopi
        Taizee
        Make Me Tea
        A Little Long Way
        Frogs Of Fandango
        When You Find Your Love
        Complex Art
        Trishas Return
        Into The Heart Of Love
        Love On Other Planets
        Dont Delay
        Woo Woo
        The Subtle Shadow
        Sarah
        Are You Falling
        Its Love
        Mountains
        Gentle Actions
        The Return Journey
        The Heart Of Love Lullabye
        The Heart Sleeps
        Spaces We Breath
        It's Love (Vocal)

        Yasuaki Shimizu

        Kiren

          Following the release of his widely regarded solo classic Kakashi, from 1982, and the otherworldly Utakata No Hibi, by Mariah in 1983, he went into the studio the following year with frequent collaborators, producer Aki Ikuta and Morio Watanabe (bassist of Mariah), to record a mystifying collection of experimental dance music.

          Utilizing cutting-edge technology and studio trickery, Kiren showcases Shimizu's trademark playfulness, marrying richly layered production techniques to off-kilter, sometimes traditional sounding rhythms and melodies. Unreleased until now, Kiren represents an important period of Shimizu's artistic expression, an artist at his peak, while successfully exploring the intersections of fusion, synthpop, new wave, and jazz.


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