Laurie Spiegel - The Expanding Universe (1980)

Recently re-issued with a slew of new material, this brilliant debut from the composer and programmer is a trip to outer space through the technicolor goggles of a gleeful child. The joy of looking at the stars and imagining swimming though them is a naive but beautiful one, and Spiegel captures this wonderfully. Utilizing a slew of analogue synthesizers and various interactive automated music programs, her vision would reach long into the future, sounding dated at first but revealing itself to be all too fresh. The original release featured Patchwork, Old Wave, Pentachrome, and the Expanding Universe, and this remastered version includes an additional 15 tracks.

Stones Throw: Our Vinyl Weighs a Ton

i don't particularly give a shit about about kickstarter, or any label in specific, but i do like me some stones throw documentary (charizma, peanut butter wolf, madlib, j dilla, beatjunkies, m.e.d., funkaho, madvillain, quasimoto, et al.). so you can imagine that it was pretty cool to find out they are making one. but if the shitstarter campaign fails, the movie doesn't get made, and that would suck. just sharing for those who might not have seen it. FUNDED.

Greg Haines - Moments Eluding (2012)

A wonderful little discreet album full of simple but effective piano pieces. Split between ambient excursions, featuring eggshell cords bookmarked by stretches of silence; and repetitive arpeggios, striking in their execution (and somewhat reminiscent of Glass), there is nothing shockingly original, but there is the undeniable melancholic prettiness oozing from the keyboard. Recommended for a nice little cry or evening tea.

Try: Slip Away...

Buy: Vinyl/CD

Robbie Basho - Venus In Cancer (1969)

robbie basho was a guitarist with a peculiar technique, developed in part by him studying under ali akbar khan. his virtuosity in the steel 6 and 12 string is evident and the music communicates fire. get it.

Byetone - SyMeta (2011)

Icy and bleak, SyMeta is a record basically impossible to connect with emotionally. Gritty and droning synths and clean, sharp percussion create an altogether desolate atmosphere, very similar to the cover itself. While this may be a deal breaker for some, there's still so much to the record. Impeccable production, interesting rhythms (some even danceable), and efficient minimalism abound throughout, making for an altogether interesting and satisfying listen.

Dead Fader - Work It, No (2012)

To use a phrase that I hoped I never would, this is some absolutely filthy shit. These roaring and searing bass lines and screeching synths are enough to drill a hole in your head. Well, maybe only if you have a soft head. 

Hella - Hold Your Horse Is (2002)

Consisting of some dude on guitar and Zach Hill (1/3 of Death Grips) on drums, comes a non-stop onslaught of spastic drumming and barely tonal guitar. The technical proficiency is impressive, and every so often something genuinely catchy comes in just to screw with you. Really great stuff.

Various Artists - Copulatin' Blues (1996)

I'm back and got something saucy for you. Collection of really racy, either thinly-veiled or blatant blues recordings about sex. Was revisiting this essay earlier today, and was reminded how important this collection is. These songs, and others like them, are products of an environment where oppressed black communities were openly discussing sexual enjoyment and power, arguably for the first time (at least in such a public, disseminated format), which is huge for intellectual independence and representational freedom.

I think there's a lot that can be taken from this. I also acknowledge that it's hugely problematic in a lot of ways. Let's discuss in the comments... but without further adieu:

part one
part deux

macintosh plus - floral shoppe (2011)

What's vaporwave? It's like found audio stuff. You take familiar music and 'screw' it. Think: James Ferraro, hi-def capitalism, all things skymall, digital smoke, 3D, dubai, Mediafire, customer service, the internet, Chuck Person, elevator music, 4D, Fatima Al Qadiri, Angelfire, cassettes,, Oneohtrix Point Never, hypnagogic pop, Chinese and Japanese lettering, lo fi; that type of stuff. It's like pop music, but not really. Crystal simulacra.


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