Hey, Mom! The Explanation.

Here's the permanent dedicated link to my first Hey, Mom! post and the explanation of the feature it contains.

Monday, June 6, 2016

Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #335 - Musical Monday for 1606.06



Hey, Mom! Talking to My Mother #335 - Musical Monday for 1606.06

Hi Mom, I am posting a day late on Musical Monday because "today" was jam-packed with work, work, and more WORK. Rather a lot. The party cost me a lot of work time.

Just two features today, but lots of text to go with them.

I learned of Julianna Barwick from Warren Ellis. But this is how I get so much of my music these days: online connections.

I don't know Warren personally, though his newsletters and Twitter feeds make me feel as if I do some times, but he has had a big impact on my life in music recommendations.

Barwick is touring, and she will be in both Detroit and Chicago this month; I don't think the stars will align properly so I can see her.

I eagerly anticipated the release of this album, Will, via my new favorite music distribution system: Bandcamp.

Anyone who loves music should be exploring Bandcamp. According to its web page: "Fans have paid artists $159 million using Bandcamp, and $4.3 million in the last 30 days alone."

The second piece comes from a blog called "itslostitsfound," by a chap who does not share his name but hails from Carlisle, Cumbria, United Kingdom. He dedicated his blog to "highlight alternative, esoteric and experimental music that is not readily available. If you are the artist or copyright holder and you do not wish to have your music discussed here, please contact me and it will be removed as soon as possible. Comments are open for discussion, ideas and requests."

I follow "itslostitsfound," and I do check my Blogger reading feed from time to time. I spotted this arresting visual (above) and again I find an artist who is on Bandcamp.

I copied this chap's text as it was already formatted for Blogger, so even the embedded album html code copied over.

Treehouse Orchestra Recordings (TOR) has a blogger page and a Bandcamp page. There are many more offerings from other artists and from We Are The Wooden Horses, who do not always work with Lorén Clare.

But first, Ms. Barwick.

The following text appears on Julianna Barwick's Bandcamp page for the album Will.

JULIANNA BARWICK - WILL



Julianna Barwick’s revelatory third full-length, Will, is a surprising left turn for the Brooklyn experimental artist. Conceived and self-produced over the past year in a variety of locations, the ominous, compelling 'Will' is a departure from 2013’s Alex Somers-produced Nepenthe. If that last record conjured images of gentle, thick fog rolling over desolate mountains, then the self-produced 'Will' is a late afternoon thunderstorm, a cathartic collision of sharp and soft textures that sounds looming and restorative all at once.

Will comes off of Barwick’s busiest period in her career to date following the release of  Nepenthe—a spate of activity that included playing piano for Yoko Ono, performing at Carnegie Hall at the annual Tibet House concert with the Flaming Lips and Philip Glass, the Rosabi EP and beer created in conjunction with brewing company Dogfish Head, and a re-imagining of Bach's “Adagio” from Concerto In D Minor.

Barwick’s life over the past several years has largely been lived in transit, and as such the genesis of Will was not beholden to location; Barwick worked on the album in a variety of locales, from a desolate house in upstate New York to the Moog Factory in Asheville, North Carolina, to Lisbon, Portugal, the first European city to embrace Julianna’s music in 2007.

“I love touring, but it can be a wild ride,” Barwick reflects on this cycle of constant motion. “You’re constantly adjusting, assimilating, and finding yourself in life-changing situations.” Those experiences played into and helped shape Will’s charged, unstable atmosphere: “I knew I’d be playing these songs live, so I wanted some movement,” she explains. “Something that had rhythm and low-end.”

That sense of forward propulsion is largely owed to Will’s synth-heavy textures, an ingredient she was inspired to add to her vocal loop-heavy formula after demoing a new prototype analog sequencer for Moog during last year’s FORM Festival in Arcosanti, Arizona.

The electric current that runs through 'Will takes on various shapes of intoxicating instability: the orbiting chain of tones that wafts through “Nebula," the frizzy sine waves lying under the firmament of “Same," the haunting vocal echoes on opener “St. Apolonia” that were recorded late at night at a Lisbon train underpass, and the martial arpeggios that accompany Will’s processional closer “See, Know."

Another new wrinkle that Will introduces in Barwick’s sound: Mas Ysa’s Thomas Arsenault, who lends his richly complex vocals to “Same” and “Someway” and weaves perfectly into Barwick’s distinctive musical fabric. The album also features contributions from Dutch cellist Maarten Vos and percussion from Jamie Ingalls (Chairlift, Tanlines, Beverly).

Will is largely a product of ups and downs, a reflection of a life lived somewhere in between transience and standing still. “While making this record, there were moments of isolation and dark currents,” Barwick admits. “I like exploring that, and I love when I come across songs that sound scary or ominous. I’ve always been curious about what goes into making a song that way.” The beguiling, beautifully complicated Will is the result of that curiosity, as well as the latest proof yet of Barwick’s irresistibly engaging talent as a composer and vocalist.

released May 6, 2016




WE ARE THE WOODEN HOUSES & LORÉN CLARE - (UNEXPECTED)





















Treehouse Orchestra Recordings 2016

01. Standing Still/Departure and Arrival
02. Spine Fin/The Carcass
03. The Brown G/Out of the Woods
04. Slow/Burn
05. Death and Horses/Ashes and Passion


It's been almost nine months since the last TOR release; the last few months have seen new methods, new sounds and new collaborations.

The first of these collaborations to be released is '(unexpected)' by We Are the Wooden Houses & Lorén Clare.

The beginnings of this set began last August. The first of three improvised sessions provided the bulk of the material; after discussing performing and recording, Lorén and I decided to improvise some music and put it to tape. Autoharp, Bass, Percussion and various effects were used and a date was set for further sonic explorations. The next session saw the recording of a performed sound collage and the final session more autoharp and percussion recordings.

The week after these sessions had been concluded, the next project began. 

Not wanting to postpone inspiration, the sessions with Lorén were put to one side as further recording began.

Al revisited these tracks a few weeks after the initial sessions and began re-sculpting and re-composing.

In January, Al and I decided to have a final improvised session for additional sounds. This was performed with shamisen, violin and effects.

The hazy sounds of the evening weave in and out of new ambient soundscapes created by Al from sounds on the recording, distorted and effected beyond recognition. The sound veers between live improvisation and drones created from the ambiance with some tracks being wholly created from heavily treated samples.


It took Al a few months, on and off, to conclude the reconstruction of these recordings, ensuring this spook folk, ambient, found sound and avant garde project made sense; to ensure this trip had the right trajectory.

The artwork also demanded patience and experimentation to get right. I had initially met with Lorén for a photo shoot, and some of the images from that day are featured in the artwork. An extremely limited box set edition is also accompanied by a set of ten prints of photographs taken by myself and Al throughout 2015 and 2016. In this special edition, the tracks are spread over three 3" compact discs and are housed in a wooden box. The regular edition comes in a jewel case with two randomly picked images from the set of ten.


As always, there is a free download and limited physical copies for purchase over at Bandcamp.



Reflect and connect.

Have someone give you a kiss, and tell you that I love you.

Talk to you tomorrow, Mom.


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- Days ago = 337 days ago


- Bloggery committed by chris tower - 1606.06 - 10:10

NOTE on time: When I post late, I had been posting at 7:10 a.m. because Google is on Pacific Time, and so this is really 10:10 EDT. However, it still shows up on the blog in Pacific time. So, I am going to start posting at 10:10 a.m. Pacific time, intending this to be 10:10 Eastern time. I know this only matters to me, and to you, Mom. But I am not going back and changing all the 7:10 a.m. times. But I will run this note for a while. Mom, you know that I am posting at 10:10 a.m. often because this is the time of your death.
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