Ten years ago, Brainwashed.com launched The Eye, one of the first regular music oriented video features online. Over the years, close to 150 mini documentaries were produced from live and interview footage with some of the most innovative acts. In the last few weeks, the videos have been re-visited, re-mastered, and re-presented on YouTube. We're excited for the new resolution, sound, and clarity of these features, along with the portability afforded by YouTube. Over the next few weeks we will be randomly selecting features on the home page here of Brainwashed but you can always Start at the beginning and see where it takes you!
Brainwashed is taking a pause to remember those whose lives were either ended or forever changed due to the events over the last week. We thank you for understanding and encourage the support of legitimate, humanitarian, peaceful organizations.
We are saddened to learn of the passing of Jason Molina, as reported in Chunklet, today. Jason was best known as the singer/songwriter of Magnolia Electric Co. and Songs:Ohia and also released and toured under his own name. Jason was a friend of Brainwashed, allowing us a rare video interview for The Eye back in 2003. Jason was clearly one of the hardest working musicians in the business and for years had a touring schedule so rigorous that very few band members lasted long. In all his incarnations he has amassed an astounding 18 full-length albums between 1996 and 2009. Jason will be sorely missed.
A major tragedy of thelast few years is the growing usage of computers as exclusive musiclistening environments. Kids are growing up in a world withoutexperiencing true high fidelity, a life without listening to anuncompressed music source through a stereophonic amplifier with warmroom speakers. It's all MP3 to them and why the hell not: it's freeright? Ikeda is probably onto this, which prompted him perhaps torecord something like 'Matrix.' Disc one, "Matrix [for rooms]"stretches about an hour over ten tracks. It absolutely cannot beexperienced to its fullest intent without a relatively decentstereophonic sound system with appropriate space between speakers,placed well inside a room. Well who the hell are you to tell me how tolisten to this? Track one: the pulses are established, elements fadein, space is established between the speakers. Walk around the room andhear pulses changing sequence or solidifying into one solid tonedepending on where you stand and how you hold your head. Track 2: thewood on a coffee table starts vibrating, rattling a pen. Track three:pitches change, earlier tones fade out, this guy is either a fuckinggenius or I'm going crazy. Track four: where can I get somehallucinogenic drugs? Track five: blissful massaging of the inner ear.I think I'm going to stop here and reccomend that you try your ownexperience now. Think of this CD as a movie you buy on video or DVD tohave at home, to watch every now and again, to entertain guests with(this disc does sound different if there's multiple people in the roomversus being alone) or just to pull out on a Saturday afternoon betweenlunch and your evening plans. Do not, however, listen to this on yourcomputer or in your car or anywhere 'convenient.' It demands your fullattention. For fans of Ikeda's head bobbing, almost poppy rhythmicmulti-tonal work, there's always disc two. ".Matrix" also features tennew tracks, a half hour of cleverly-crafted beat friendly gems, stylishand intoxicating. It is in no way less spectacular than disc one, bothof which make this package well worth the wait and an excellent bargainfor the inexpensive price.
We are sad to learn of the passing of Jason Noble on Saturday, August 4th, after a three year battle with cancer. Noble was a full time member of Rachel's, Shipping News, Young Scamels, and had his own project, Per Mission. Jason is noted for being part of Rodan, whose only album, Rusty, has been incredibly influential to the Louisville, KY and mid-western independent scene of and beyond. I can't say I was friends with Jason Noble but every time I met him, he was a very kind, and gentle man. He will be missed.
Tom Carter, founding member of Charalambides with an extensive catalog of solo and ensemble recordings, was hospitalized in Berlin while on tour in Europe in June. Tom has complications due to pneumonia, and while his condition continues to improve, he remains hospitalized for the time being. The bills are quite extensive, however, and Tom needs everybody's help. Tom, a long time friend of Brainwashed, is on a long road to recovery and needs financial assistance from anybody who can donate whatever they afford (from a little to a lot). A PayPal account is established for donations. Please visit HelpTomCarter.org for updates on his condition. All donations are welcome and appreciated. Thank you for your support.
It's somewhat unusual that Brainwashed would mention the passing of a figure that people don't come to brainwashed.com to read about, but I wanted to share my thoughts and condolences. Not just about the singer whose music influenced a whole host of electronic related genres who have been featured here on this site, but as the person I met and had as a client once.
Do you ever listen to afull-length album and almost wish it were an EP? Following this year'sincredible release, 'Thermos Explorer,' Vicki Bennett waltzes into theWild West. Here, she samples from only a handful of Old Americana andthreads a home tapestry to hang on the wall. Unfortunately the ideassomewhat get old half-way through. Clicks and scrapes of old recordbecome rather grating on the ears and the humor just isn't up to theenjoyable level of the variety of themes served in the Thermos. Thereare some salvagable funny highlights like the couple times she playswith "She'll Be Comin' Round the Mountain," which is why I said thatthis could have easily been a nice extended-play single.
This indeed is what it should all be about. Side one has three tracks,two different versions of the title track, "Sign" and another track,"COGWHEEL." As expected from the last release, "Sign" harborsTakemura's love for beauty and the voice, coupled with his ability tohack and chop away at sounds and beats electronically. The realexcitement happens when you flip the record over to side two. Now, Iset my timer to this one as it looked like it was pressed rather tight(the vinyl that is). Experts have claimed that only about 25 minuteswould fit comfortably on one side of a 12" record, played at 33 1/3RPM, right? The improvisational "jam" that takes place on side twofeatures Chicago friends Bundy K. Brown, John McEntire and Doug McCombs(all from Tortoise and related camps) clocks in just over 35 minutes.Right, that's not a typo! The piece is fantastic and might as well beanother one of those songs you always wished would appear on a Tortoiserecord. It starts off with a wonderful showcase of how all fourmusicians have a keen sense of improvisation and incredible talent tocreate cohesive noise with each other. It starts off like a jammingrockish jazzish tune, but then something goes awry, glitchiness ensuesin a dreamy audio bath of laptop fuckery with live instruments... I'mgetting flashbacks and almost begin dreaming that this could honestlybe "Djed 2!" Yes, I'm a fan and I love Tortoise music, but this tracksimply titled only as "Souvenir in Chicago" is a stunning performance,and it's something you knew these guys could do and hoped they woulddo, but never actually heard. This record only comes on vinyl and islimited to 2000 copies. Tortoise fans, Takemura fans shouldn't passthis one by, you'll regret it for years to come! And vinyl sure makesfor a great stocking stuffer!
Words can not describe how heartbroken and devastated we are by the sudden and unexpected loss of our friend James Izzo. James recorded primarily as Thread, with remixes of Coil gracing the first Brainwashed Recordings release. Additionally, Izzo recorded, performed, and remixed under his own name and as The Boy Without Hands, and collaborated with Jarboe and Neotropic.
Unfortunately the core duo of Coil can no longer reply to us but we are happy to feature three people who were present at the time. Attempts were made to contact other people involved: guests and collaborators, but responses were and are still waiting to be received. If more responses come in, this article will be appended.
Twenty years ago this month (July 1991) Love’s Secret Domain was finally released by Coil. Ten years ago the album was remastered and reissued in time for Coil’s first (and what was to be their last) US appearance and today the duo at the heart of it all are no longer with us in this existence. To honor the album’s birthday, we’re featuring reflections on the album this week and words from a few of those who were involved.
Soundpool follow their critically acclaimed 2010 album Mirrors In Your Eyes with this fantastic limited CD EP (Killer Pimp will only sell 500 copies) of six remixes and reinterpretations. Syntaks, Strategy, GTO, Screen Vinyl Image, Colder, and Lawrence Chandler (of Bowery Electric fame) have all twisted and turned these soon-to-be-classic pop gems around and infused them with new life. Available separately or FREE with a purchase of the Mirrors In Your Eyes LP while supplies last.
Brian McBride has been recording music as one half of Stars of the Lid since 1995, but 2010 has been an especially active and varied year for him.¬† Last month, he released The Effective Disconnect, his long-awaited second solo album and first foray into composing a film soundtrack.¬† He also recently co-founded a record label (Failed Better) and made his debut as a member of Bell Gardens on the Hangups Need Company EP, a significant stylistic departure from his past work.¬† Brainwashed caught up with Brian to gather some insight on each release along with his other current activities.
Little Annie and Baby Dee begin a long stretch of European shows this week both with and without Marc Almond. The two have been collaborating on a record, which will hopefully be available in 2011. We talked with both briefly about their recent music and their time together.
2010 marks the 30th year of existence for The Legendary Pink Dots. Their latest album, Seconds Late for the Brighton Line is out now and they begin their extensive North American tour this week on Friday, October 15th in Vancouver, British Columbia. Brainwashed talked very briefly with Edward Ka-Spel, taking a snapshot of the current, about the latest album, the forthcoming shows, and the ever changing state of the Dots.
Aachen, Germany-based Christoph Heemann has made a name for himself as a musician, composer, remix artist, and engineer through groups like HNAS, Mimir, Mirror, In Camera, and collaborations with Charlemagne Palestine, Jim O'Rourke, Merzbow, Organum, Nurse With Wound, Current 93, and others. His artwork has graced covers for Edward Ka-Spel, The Tear Garden, Aeolian String Ensemble, Ragnar Grippe, and Ultra, and through his Streamline label he has issued music by John Duncan, Little Annie, Keiji Haino, Intersystems, Limpe Fuchs, Xhol Caravan, and more. Heemann is making a rare trip through the USA with 8 live shows scheduled beginning in Boston on Friday, October 8th. This brief interview is only a snapshot of what he's currently up to.
Aranos will play at Electric Picnic, Stradbally, Co. Laois, Ireland 5th of September 2010.
David Wilson, curator of the New England Synthesizer Museum, passed away on Friday, August 27th in Nashua, NH, according to the Nashua Telegraph. He was known in the community for his incredible collection of vintage synths as well as his extensive knowledge and skills at repairing the most obscure ones for various owners and dealers. A video excursion was made back in October 2007 by Brainwashed for The Eye. Dave was 49.