Apartment House perform Derek Baron, Pluto Bell, Erkki Veltheim, James Tenney
Biarrezgaur (not tomorrow, today) is a blissful and misty set of guitar tones entangled with effects and reverberation. Dreamy and reflective proto-blues-folk sketches that suggest a sense of matured serenity that only comes with years of practice. Spontaneous, gentle and free-flowing in equal parts, Biarrezgaur is a perfect autumnal recipe for those looking in the direction of Six Organs of Admittance, Loren Connors with Alan Licht, or even Robbie Basho or Albert Gimenez if you listen to the closing track Itzulera. Bidai (Trip) is the new collaborative project between two emblematic figures of the rich Basque musical heritage, Xabi Strubell & Mikel Vega. It took more than 30 years for their paths to cross, but we are very pleased they finally did in 2022. Entirely improvised with two guitars and effects, it was recorded at Bonberenea, the independent and self-funded cultural hub housed in an abandoned warehouse in Tolosa (in the valley of the river Oria). Xabi is a writer, poet and musician from Hondarribia, a fishing village on the border with France. He started his career as a member of Dut, the seminal Post Hardcore band that any Basque kid growing in the 90’s and interested in feedback and distorted guitars will sorely remember, still a cult these days. He formed Zura in 2005, a solo mature project focusing on acoustic guitar. Mikel is an accomplished musician and all-around cultural activist from Bilbao. Has collaborated in numerous projects (Conteiner, Killerkume, Loan, Orbain Unit) and more recently with Miguel A. Garcia (also a member of Dopelganger, Heg008) and Joseba Agirrezabalaga (Lepok, Urpa i Musell beginning of 2023).
Biarrezgaur – Bidai
C60 with on-body printing in jewel case and printed two-sided j-cardReturning to the Czech Republic for the next release with a reissue of Richter Band’s first album, Smetana (Czech for ‘Cream’), released originally in 1990. Pavel Richter gained a considerable reputation as a guitarist, playing in a number of Czech avant-garde rock groups, including Švehlík, Marno Union and Elektrobus, and became one of foremost figures of the Prague scene which opposed the socialist regime of the 70’s and 80’s. Towards the mid 80’s, he began to focus on calm music and subtle sound structures, playing a number of gigs channelling this energy wtih Oldřich Janota and Luboš Fidler, and eventually forming a new group alongside Štěpán Pečírka and Jaroslav Kořán. Smetana is one of the highlights of that creative period, characterised by a fusion of Richter’s gentle electric guitar alongside the fidlerophone, a unique percussive instrument, invented by Fidler, made of jars and struck by plastic strainers, and whose sound is similar in character to Tibetan bowls or Gamelan.Recorded in the spring of 1990 in the apartments of Štěpán Pečírka and Pavel Richter. Track 1 recorded in October 1988 at the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague. Overdubs and track 10 recorded in October 1988 in the apartment of Pavel Richter.
Richter Band – Smetana
Translation of lyrics from experimental Indonesian band Senyawa
Senyawa, the experimental Indonesian band formed by Rully Shabara and Wukir Suryadi, does not sound like anyone else… the combination of Wukir’s handmade instruments and Rully’s other-worldly vocals, channeling Javanese melodies with the intensity of punk and metal, with an avant-garde / DIY approach to constant experimentation and boundary pushing.
Over the past ten years Senyawa have continually developed their sound, shifting in relation with the instruments Wukir builds. Unfortunately for people who do not understand the various Indonesian dialects used, while you can appreciate their music and performances, you can appreciate the aurality of Senyawa – the sheer force and wonder of their music – but not the lyrical content.
This project is intended to rectify that, translating Rully’s lyrics for Senyawa into English for the first time.
Senyawa: Compound Lyricism
"After his self imposed exile from the global world music niche, Mamer found his stage at Shenzhen’s two annual music festivals – Tomorrow Festival and OCT-LOFT Jazz Festival – curated by his loyal friend and supporter Tu Fei, who would always reserve at least one set for Mamer’s newest sonic experimentations. Mamer’s most recent album Faintish Radiation documents his full performances of solo improvisation at the seventh (2017) and eighth (2018) OCT-LOFT Jazz Festivals, in which he performed electric bass, guitar, dombra, jew's harp and vocals.
These recordings register Mamer’s trajectory towards a maturing avant garde composer who is able to capture the audience with an everchanging bizarre sonic kaleidoscope, one which summons industrial noise, doom drones, heavy metal riffs, dark and punchy grooves, and broken pieces of folk melodies. In each of his solo performances, Mamer would start from random notes and eventually build up an overpowering atmosphere that is distinctively his own, knowing only too well when to release a delicate Kazakh tune as a reward for intensive listening. Here “Daidiydao”, a heartbreaking love song believed to be composed by Kazakh poet Magzhan Zhumabayev, was unleashed towards the end of the 2018 performance, before an abrupt, typically Mamer stop that ended the whole set.
录音 Recording：曾君 Zeng Jun；罗绿野 Luo Lvye混音 Mixing & 母带处理 Mastering：刘英 Liu Ying制作人 Producer：涂飞 Tu Fei设计 Design：尹思卜 Yin Sibo封面照片 Front Cover Photo：@Waitetc_等等其它摄影 Other Photos：阿瓜 Wain；陈鸿@DAFA；蒙润
Faintish Radiation – Mamer
Finis Africae, a group without fixed members organized in Spain in the early 1980s by Huang Alberto Arteshe Guell, is a studio project that emphasizes work, especially "Amazonia" (1990) in the far north. It is a standing masterpiece. Inspired by Conan Doyle's adventure novel that he once read, Huang Alberto develops a soundscape that depicts the fantasy unexplored Amazon that circulates in his brain. In the late 80's, Arteshe upgraded his studio equipment to 16 tracks, and the technique he had tried on his two albums was complete. Manipulating many European and African instruments, overdubbing most of them alone, and combining the natural sounds of wind and rain, birds, insects and creatures, this "Amazonia" has a mysterious atmosphere and a mysterious sign. Expression. His unique organic groove feeling is also very comfortable, and it became a masterpiece worthy of its name (* note).* "Africae" is an old name for "Africa" in Europe based on Latin, and adding "finis" creates nuances such as the farthest land and unknown places.+ Japanese / English publication+ CD version: Paper jacket, liner included
Finis Africæ – Amazonia
OTOROKU is proud to present the first vinyl reissue of Blue Notes for Johnny - a defining statement by one of the greatest ensembles in the history of jazz. Recorded in mid-1987 by Blue Notes - then reduced to the trio of Dudu Pukwana on alto sax, Louis Moholo-Moholo on drums and Chris McGregor on piano - it encounters the band 25 years after their founding embarking on an inward meditation through collective music making dedicated to Johnny Dyani, their former bandmate and friend.
Blue Notes were founded in Cape Town in 1962, and stand among the most important ensembles in the history of jazz. Artistically brilliant and groundbreaking - gathering, within a few short years, a devoted following that included Don Cherry, Steve Lacy, Abdullah Ibrahim, Dexter Gordon, Kenny Drew, Keith Tippett, Evan Parker, John Stevens and numerous others - they were also the first widely visible multiracial band in South Africa.
As a mixed race band under apartheid, this group of friends and like-minded artists - Chris McGregor, Mongezi Feza, Dudu Pukwana, Nikele Moyake, Johnny Dyani and Louis Moholo-Moholo - existed within a context that viewed their mere existence as a dangerous and subversive act. In 1964 they joined an exodus of musicians leaving for Europe and eventually settled in London the following year. Sadly, not long after arriving and facing continued economic peril, the group buckled. Johnny Dyani left to join Don Cherry’s band. Moholo-Moholo and Dyani followed suit and joined Steve Lacy on tour, and the remaining members morphed into a number of ensembles that eventually grew to become Chris McGregor's Brotherhood Of Breath.
Following the death of Mongezi Feza in 1975 the remaining members of the group had come back together to record Blue Notes For Mongezi, reigniting a sporadic period of activity over the coming years. Following the untimely passing of Johnny Dyani in late 1986, the last three members of the original line-up - McGregor, Pukwana and Moholo-Moholo - reformed to pay tribute to yet another of their fallen brothers.
Blue Notes for Johnny, the group’s second musical memorial to a band member, incorporates a considerably broader range of touchstone and practices than its predecessor, nodding toward the band’s foundations in be-bop and post-bop without abandoning where they had journeyed along the way. Internalising equal elements of hard-bop, modalism, and free improvisation, it is a startling creative statement, imbued with a tension that renders an equally radical and sophisticated challenge; a furious tide - slow in pace and it slow to reveal itself - masquerading in gentler forms.
A celebration and a memorial. Joyous and tragic. A real time resurrection of personal experience, Blue Notes for Johnny dodges, dances, and transforms across its two sides, refusing to be nailed down. As the trio pushes against each other, bristling tonal and rhythmic collisions leave the impression that something is bound to explode, without ever fully letting go.
Blue Notes for Johnny’s memorialisation is unwittingly doubled by capturing the final time that the Blue Notes would come together in the studio. Both Dudu Pukwana and Chris McGregor would pass away three years later in 1990, leaving Moholo-Moholo - who continues to carve a groundbreaking trajectory across the world of jazz - as the last surviving member. The album remains as a journey between an imaged future and the beginning of it all. Six friends meeting and communing through sound. Six friends who had triumphed against the odds, becoming some of the greatest creative voices of their generation. Six friends who were five, then four, and then three, before they were done. Friends who never failed, in whatever form, to come together and play. It is a story begun 60 years ago that remains just as prescient today.
DUDU PUKWANA / alto sax
CHRIS McGREGOR / piano
LOUIS MOHOLO / drums
This 2022 re-issue has been made with permission and in association with Ogun records. Transferred from the original masters and featuring an exact reproduction of the original artwork. Remastered by Giuseppe Ielasi. All music by the Blue Notes. All music published by Ogun Publishing Co. Cover design by Ogun.
Blue Notes – Blue Notes for Johnny