No one knows what the history is, probably some sort of trade deal or maybe the world threw em a bone, but for whatever reason Australia gets to enter the new year first. The first crack at it! That means they were the first to get the hell out of 2020! Lucky them. That also means that Sydney-based Oxtail Recordings had a head start on 2021 releases! Lucky us.
Oxtail used that inside knowledge of time wisely and fully prepped their 2021 lead off, “Royal Blue” by label bud Rhucle. By my count this is Yuta Kudo’s 4th cassette with them. Having a jump on things must have meant no one needed to rush. So they didn’t. Each limbering moment from “Royal Blue” is the antithesis of haste, sounds flowing with the velocity of a Brita pitcher filling up (If you don’t have experience with a Brita filter just know that they are comically slow). I can’t help to wonder if that Brita analogy was Psyop’d directly into my brain, what with all of the sounds of gently flowing water spilling their way through sizzle and sputter and ambience digesting itself. If, while listening to this, you don’t feel like you’re standing on thin ice, or maybe stained glass, then start the tape over. Turn it up a little bit, and try to get there. If you can’t do it then you quite possibly may not be ready for something so chill. Go do some hot yoga and revisit the situation.
I know I got there. Good on you, Rhucle. You have radicalized another regular human into a brainwashed Soldier of the Ambient.
All nine tracks are very short, especially for washed out sounds like these, but are cohesive as hell and make for a cloudy trip. Leave your body without ever leaving your house, that’s what I always say. C40, edition of 100, from Oxtail.
Okay okay okay, I don’t want to waste anyone’s time! Gonna make this very fast. Almost TOO fast, maybe? You could be thinking “whoa, slow the h*ck down this is TOO fast!!” I don’t care, we gotta get this done.
Strategic Tape Reserve (who you know, or should know) posted the vid STR020-STR042 Release Survey. It includes 8 seconds from each and every title in their bonked out catalog. Look, I can prove it:
See? I was telling the truth. To piggy back on the absurdity I asked STR to submit 8 words on each release. You can find them below, but a warning: We at Tabs Out cannot confirm that each of these is exactly 8 words. If you happen upon one with, for example, 6 or 9 words (heh heh) please contact us IMMEDIATELY as we will need to send STR to cassette jail (aka: they can only release 3″ CDrs for two years). Enjoy!
STR002 (VLK): STR’s second release revisits Shaquille O’Neill’s second release.
STR003 (STR Staff): Wait, but what about STR001? Um… that’s lost.
STR004 (VLK): Last sounds in billboard list just before Y2K.
STR005 (Beauty Product): Cheese-funk done three ways. Retirement community wave.
STR006 (The Modern Door): Ethnographic recordings of traditional musicians from Lower Saxony.
STR007 (VLK): Leckeyan survey of schunkeln, congalines and arrhythmic clapping.
STR008 (Jöns): If Jöns sends you a demo, DON’T respond.
STR009 (Belmont Lacroix): Nothing matters under Mr. Chicken on Rialto Boulevard.
STR010 (Emerging Industries of Wuppertal): Music for North German industry-themed gymnastic spectaculars.
Listen, I’m not gonna sit here and tell you all to “chill out.” You kidding me? There’s a Great Unchilling going on, work to be done, etc. So I wont outright say to you the words “chill out.” Nah, that won’t happen. But maybe I’ll casually slide Weaving’s self-titled, self released cassette tape in your deck. Maybe I’ll hit play. Then perhaps I’ll sorta disappear from the situation like a ninja, something I am certainly capable of doing, as your body enters jelly-mode.
… Did you even notice I was gone? Are you already under the influence of the chiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiill??
Weaving is womb-to-tomb zoned on this sucker, and I assume more than pleased to pull a grip of listeners into the occupation. It’s not a salvo of balmy soundscapes, though they do make up a portion of what goes down here. To some of you ‘channel surfing’ will be a reference equally as hazy as the psychedelics on this tape, a tape which channel surfs between atmospheric guitars to Mario Paint bloings and sproings to wee subtle sound manipulations and warbled frequencies. BUT ALWAYS CHILL!! I can’t make that clear enough. #chill
You should grab a lawn chair, give it a once over with bleach wipes, and allow yourself to be in that lawn chair for Weavings work, soaking in a responsible amount of sun. Allow the durable beats that Weaving keeps in rotation to hijack your pulse as radio signals veer and slither. We don’t have time to worry how Candy’s secret mission went (that will make sense about half way through side B) we only have time to chill. Then it’s back to UNCHILLING, comrades.
Besides a very rude request to PLAY AT MAX VOLUME (I don’t even know who this Max Volume is) Weaving’s s/t tape is a good-time-smash-hit, baby. Pick it up!
I’m not sure how to pronounce Haord. My instincts tell me to go with /hôrd/, like hoarder, or a better comparison: like Hoarders. I don’t want to pile on the poor folks that appear on that reality show, they are honestly going through dark struggles and need help, but in addition to the possible pronunciation relationship, both Haord and Hoarders share a passion for some twisted-ass anxious damage. With one it’s hazardous stacks of empty Meow Mix bags and broken VCR’s and jugs for peeing in. With the other it’s the audible equivalent.
So when I heard that Haord was up from their year-long nap with some new releases I was like “cool!” This label’s discography can tie the listener in knots. Libythth (I don’t know how to say that either but I think it’s like a labyrinth except scarier) is participating in that tradition with “A Serious Glompotch.”
Seth Cooper (hey, I CAN pronounce that! Look at me!) is the person twisting up the mutant pretzels here, and has been for a reported 25 years. The tunes on Glompotch are loopy, goopy, and not easy to predict. Cooper’s synths are a skittish group that act on pure impulse. They belch up knee jerk giddiness before looking around and wondering “where they h*ck are we??” Lost in a libythth (a scary labyrinth most likely home to goblins) with moldy guitars and candy-stained drum kits, the entire gang makes the best of this Sid-and-Marty-Krofftian fantasyscape. No, actually, they thrive in it. Personally, I would panic in this environment. We are in a zone that is too surreal for Hoarders, too Haord for reality. Cooper apparently has the map to this place.
Welcome Haord to 2020, and transport yourself to whatever year Libythth resides, by purchasing this C50 pro dubbed high bias cassettes (blue) edition of 100.
It’s 4/20, baby! The day Jerry Garcia invented the joint (I think?). To celebrate we have our 5th annual TAPE LABEL or WEED STRAIN quiz! All ya gotta do is decide if the names presented before you belong to cassette labels or weed strains. Duh. Go!
Time limit: 0
0 of 15 questions completed
Let’s get rolling…
You have already completed the quiz before. Hence you can not start it again.
Quiz is loading...
You must sign in or sign up to start the quiz.
You have to finish following quiz, to start this quiz:
No Rent Records has stacked up a formidable catalog since it’s rehabilitation just few years back. With their upcoming five tapes (or “jawns” being that they are located in Philly now) No Rent will smash through the 100 release mark. The lineup is quite a party:
Listen, if you’re gonna be a baby about this you should just go. Close this tab now and open up some decisively not scary content on the web. Oxen. Is. SCARY! Skeptical? Take a look at the special edition packaging for the Wasteland Jazz Unit tape above. Spikes? Check. Metal? Check. Black Fabric? Friggin check, M8. Thank your lucky stars that sucker was limited to three and definitely sold out. 💀
Oh, and you read that right: Wasteland Jazz Unit! New tape! The Cincinnati John/Jon-Jazz that was so jacked up nature forced it into hibernation for a few years is back. A regular/less scary version of their tape, plus one from Like Weeds (special edition sold out), kicks off 2019 for Oxen!
Wasteland Jazz Unit – Session to Nothing
Wasteland Jazz Unit delivers their brand of confidence-in-chaos and bemused, dizzy gestures into a skidding vortex of unfurling pieces across two sides on ‘Session To Nothing’. For fans of Jon Lorenz and John Rich’s oxygen deprived frenzy they deliver in abundance their daunting, unclassifiable webs of non-linear showers of noise, the duo expertly avoiding any gestures short of an overwhelming roar.
Like Weeds – The Will of the People
Kenny Sanderson’s new project since hanging up the FACIALMESS moniker has been challenging listeners live and on recent releases to join in the expansion and course change of his particular talent to create sublime obsessive narratives in sound art. LIKE WEEDSTHE WILL OF THE PEOPLE obliterates any possible preconceptions of what the master of harsh cut-up noise was up to in 2019. The answer lies in the presentation of Side A’s COME FRIENDLY BOMBS, a deliberate, spacious and highly disciplined array of blasts and slinky entrails of elusive unwinding knots of what might be distant junk entropy or iron structures collapsing in excruciating slow motion. No energy lapses completely before it lathers into a gratifying fracture of any constraint. The ominous staccato of bruising clusters continues until it too inevitably gives way to unfettered abandon by the end of Side B’s UNREAL CITY.
Oooooowww when I catch wind of new Unifactor Tapes [licks lips]!! Ooooooowwwweeee I go batty [licks lips even harder and wetter]!! I start sucking theoretical BBQ sauce off my fingers. Why? Because Unifactor is a bulls-eye clearing house for OG midwestern kush and beyond. They employ a different artist to tackle graphic design for each batch, and have done so since their start in 2016. From set to set the look of their tapes ping pongs from googly-eyed birds to juicy cartoons to 3D wizardry and is always so very on point. [hardest, wettest lip licking ever].
Now imagine how I felt upon hearing of their upcoming batch of tapes, slated for mid-February. It’s so very 😋 and probably the most soothing trio from the label yet: Curved Light, Endurance, and Kyle Landstra. You want a taste? Sure you do. I see you licking those lips. Check out these ₮Ɽł₱₱Ɏ videos!
UF027: Curved Light – Airs of Modality
Heavy on both bristling uneasiness and a more demented rendering of new age tones, Airs of Modality captures Curved Light in a live rescoring of Hoichi the Earless, the third section of the Japanese horror anthology Kwaidan. Embodying the ominous ceremonial intensity and slow moving dread of the film, this re-envisioned soundtrack hovers with all the tension of the best horror soundtracks, detuning an ancient ghost story and even it’s 1965 film counterpart into something more sinister, plastic and panic inducing.
UF028: Endurance – We Can Sleep Now
“We Can Now Sleep” sees Joshua Stefane balancing a complex entanglement of modular synths and processed tapes, arranging a switchboard of destroyed voices and alien sounds with solid beams of tonal melody. The eight pieces wander various wastelands, quietly kicking at fossilized remnants of decayed cities. Throughout, there’s a grasp for memories that are out of reach, impressions that are now mostly dust or shed data. It’s unclear if the echoes of unfamiliar days are even real or just errant crackles rushing by in the emptiness, but the layers of obscured fragments and dark sonics blur into a compelling whole, zoning in from a place of deep isolation somewhere after time.
UF029: Kyle Landstra – Bloom Lake
Migrating to the Pacific Northwest after years in Chicago brought new light to Kyle Landstra’s crystalline sounds. Bloom Lake represents some of the first deeply devised sounds made by Landstra in his new environment, and while it’s not a dramatic reaction to some conceptually new life, you can’t help but hear some clouds clearing all the same. Recorded in real time, these two side long pieces slowly braid strands of reflection and acceptance. Drifting but bright, “Love In A Mist” stirs with a kind of restrained excitement that comes at the beginning of promising times. The title track communicates a darker side of the same excitement, but in a way that again suggests understanding more than fear, growth more than foreboding.
I Hate My Records? That sure sounds awfully negative. I thought Londoners were supposed to be jolly. It’s frigging called Jolly Old London, right? We just did another Mary Poppins, didn’t we? So why the disMay from this tape label, run by Edwin and George from Werk? As an American, and therefore one who knows, I’m pretty sure the gloom has something to do with a thing they call “brexit.” They are tits over pudding for this brexit thing, which I believe is a sandwich that has beans on it.
No beans on the two cassette tapes IHMR released in 2018, which appear to be their first offerings since a 2016 tape by Tourist Fashion + Jake Wyatt. Welcome back! Nope, no beans. Just greasy, massive highways of catastrophe electronics. A double dose of slow-mo death cycles from freshman Bootlicker and sophomore Schwerpunkt (the title of their tape is the only positive take going on here: DON’T GIVE UP YOU CAN DO IT.)
Bootlicker – Burial Practices
Burial Practices is the first release from Bootlicker.
30 minutes of buzzing, droning oscillators; choking; bass pressure; juddering feedback; metal percussion; unidentified mechanical static; Hamburgerisms; digital ebb and flow.
We’re all trapped in the abyss – capitalism has made the world an ossuary. The landscape is haunted by ancestral modes of living that have lost meaning in the post-penicillin world.
Schwerpunkt – Don’t Give Up You Can Do It
‘Don’t Give Up You Can Do It’ is the second solo release from Schwerpunkt.
Following in the mould of previous release, ‘How To Be Saved And Know It’, this tape consists of two extended, freeform, pieces, one on each side. The tape finds Schwerpunkt, AKA George Rayner-Law, continuing the process based approach to sound common between Shwerpunkt relates and his contributions to his band, Werk.
Both of these pieces were improvised. Track A, ‘Don’t Give Up’, consists of a synthesised pulse running through a range of delays to create a dry, harsh, abyssal sound. Track B, ‘Your Success Is Guaranteed’, was made by gaffa taping a Bontempi organ to produce a constant drone, then micing the organ through delay, EQ and straight into a tape deck, to create a hyper-saturated sound – a quavering, dense block of noise. The contrast between the two pieces is very sharp – ideology of approach is the strongest link.
Both recordings sat in George’s archive, until enlivened by a new context – the trip to Tesco. Track A came on shuffle while in Elephant & Castle Tesco, and quickly became the preferred soundtrack to the threatened shopping centre. Indeed, both pieces are rapidly hasten the Gruen Transfer – the moment of confusion in a shopping centre where a consumer forgets their original intention and gets lost in retail. Sound best experienced as a soundtrack to the capitalism’s death rattle.
The artwork is based on a religious pamphlet, drawn from the artist’s extensive collection. The current trend in religious pamphlets is a co-option of ‘wellness’ culture and imagery – ‘wellness’ itself being part of the same death rattle of capitalism. This artwork is part of that trend – originally designed to look like a health pamphlet, then a flyer about God, now a record cover.
Patient Sounds ain’t no spring chicken, bub. 2019 will be the label’s 10th year in existence. That is a full decade of sounds oh so patient, and they are kicking`19 off the same way they have in years past: A couple of preorders and an open call for submissions (plus a few digital optical and risograph goodies). Here we go.
PS108 – Regarding the Music of Others – Shank Trilliams
Cut and lassoed into tightly wound bangers, this wobbly beat tape bobs and skips like a busted jukebox at the nearest honky tonk and it will knock your dusty boots right off. Step into some sneakers and pop across the square dance. Brandon Eckes is Regarding the Music of Others. Here, he takes a stab at an American Icon’s warbly catalog, chopping it into a laconic set of vagrant hustlers and bustlers. There are moments when that branded horse’s hide sticks its ass clear out, but most moments find the whole thing marred, wry and charming. With that fetching hitch in his giddy up, ol’ Shank moves to the city and makes his come up, looking distinctly dope in those streets and shades. Approachably horseplayed. Swagger along and slide in time with proper regards to those rodeo roots.
PS107 – Margraff & Yantis – Ohne Eile
The quality of a walk as determined not by the pace, or the distance, but by the landmarks passed. A leisurely wandering in proximity to infrastructure, vista, rubble. A memory is called up at every crumbling edge. Ohne Eile is the first collaborative work by the duo Rene Margraff (Berlin, Germany), and Cody Yantis (Colorado, USA). This expansive set of compositions explores a tacit dialogue between two remarkable and distinctive musicians. Sauntering into jarring electroacoustic sputter and warped guitar, churning static and tense orchestral stabs, and settling into a lilting and highly textural ambient haze, the compositions on Ohne Eile display dynamic grace, a sense of narrative, and an accessible and casual curiosity. This duo exchanges ideas, harmonizes and disuages, settles, second guesses; their dialog is even and their discourse is balanced. Some moments sprout curiously and tenderly, sticking a head through the grate tender green, others are stubborn and rugged, a bent steel beam of light, intertwining and oxidizing openly with the scenario.
Open Window 2019
“Every year from January 1st – April 1st we open a metaphoric window into our office/ears and let anything in. This is our unsolicited demo window. Please follow guidelines and your music can and will be considered for release on cassette tape in 2019/2020.”
Check out the full details and guidelines for the Open Window here.