Composer, producer, multi-instrumentalist, and poet JJJJJerome Ellis today shared “Stepney,” a new track and video from his forthcoming 2xLP and book The Clearing—a conceptual and musical tour de force that explores how stuttering, blackness, and music can be practices of refusal against hegemonic governance of time, speech, and encounter.
“Stepney” was “written as an offering to the ancestors,” says Ellis. The track begins with him vocalizing over a hip-hop beat with rumbling 808s and swirling processed saxophones. Then, Ellis sings the names of African-descended, fugitive enslaved persons (e.g. Stepney) who spoke with stutters or other speech impediments. Ellis encountered these names in newspaper archives of so-called “fugitive slave advertisements” from the 18th and 19th century. After this ceremonial invocation of ancestors, Ellis’ mentor and friend Milta Vega-Cardona reads an email she wrote to him in 2019: “I am moved to believe that your so-called stutter is a space where you transcend the limitations of lineal white-time. And how in the space of that holdtime you create a non-lineal time continuum, and access to the ancestors, both for you and the listener.” The track builds to a climax with arpeggiated synths, galloping hi-hats, and Ellis’ saxophone overdubbed in rising swells.
Find more information, read the full bio and preorder The Clearinghere.
Dear Laika (the 23-year-old UK-based musician Isabelle “Izzy” Thorn) today announced her new album and label debut, Pluperfect Mind, will be released October 29, 2021 via NNA Tapes and Memorials of Distinction. Pluperfect Mind is an extraordinary creation—a beautiful and singular oddity which exists in the liminal space between dreamworlds and a blurry, watercoloured version of reality. It is a reflection on the past few years of Izzy’s life, during which she sought solitude in the North Wessex Downs while beginning her gender transition.
Alongside the announcement, Dear Laika has shared the emotional zenith of the album, “Black Moon, Lilith”, a song about desire, its reckoning and its actualization from a trans lesbian perspective. “There’s a common experience among gay people of seeing someone of the same gender and questioning if you’re attracted to them or if you want to look like them. This is a psychological and emotional quandary that must be resolved,” says Izzy. Utilizing angelic vocal harmonies, slowly blossoming piano and the distinctive warmth of the Roland Juno 106s, Dear Laika poetically expresses the over-thinking and over-feeling associated with this phenomenon in an otherworldly art pop gem evocative of Kate Bush.
A consistent theme of Pluperfect Mind is isolation, both from other people and from parts of herself, and the intention to overcome anxieties and reconnect. Pluperfect Mind also chronicles aspects of Izzy’s own transgender experience, from the painful tedium of waiting for hormone treatment, to the elation of finally inhabiting a body that feels right. It captures the sense of being cast adrift between an uncomfortable past and an uncertain future, living outside of heteronormativity and caught in “queer time”. Izzy’s mercurial songwriting aims to suspend the perception of time, allowing the listener to inhabit an immersive half-lit world of mystical landscapes, volatile atmospheres and shifting rhythms.
Having grown up singing in church choirs and listening to classical music, those influences can still be heard in Izzy’s music now. Although she rarely listens to classical music nowadays, the rich harmonies of composers such as Messiaen, Finzi and Ravel have left an indelible mark on her own writing, and she freely mutates samples of Bach and Beethoven beyond recognition. During her transition, making the shift from baritone to alto, she was captivated and inspired by the expressive intensity of Vashti Bunyan, Kristin Hayter and FKA twigs; her own clear, keening vocals soar throughout Pluperfect Mind, breathy and otherworldly. She whispers French poetry and lilts over lines about warped memories, exploring her inner world with gentle ruminations on love, hormone therapy and dreams.
Pluperfect Mind is a beguiling collection of vivid lyrics and celestial song, built around piano (sometimes prepared with screws), strings, choirs and synths, and bound together with digital glitch and field recordings. Comparisons can be made to Björk, Tim Hecker or Bat For Lashes, but ultimately, Dear Laika’s exploration of the experimental and the mystical builds something intricate and intimate that is truly original and bewitching.
Pluperfect Mind is out October 29, 2021 via Memorials of Distinction (UK) & NNA Tapes (ROW). Read the full bio and preorder the album on digital / cassette / vinyl here.
Today, New York based composer, producer, multi-instrumentalist, and poet JJJJJerome Ellis announces The Clearing, an ambitious and visionary double album releasing November 5th, 2021 via NNA Tapes, co-produced with the Poetry Project and released in tandem with a book published by Wendy’s Subway. The Clearing is a conceptual and musical tour de force that combines Jazz with the narratives of enslaved Africans, experimental electronics with historical accounts of Black rebellion. The album centers speech but uses it as a starting point to not only depathologize dysfluent speech but to build new tools to critique anti-Blackness, linear time, culture, and power in our society.
“Loops of Retreat“, the lead album preview out today and the first track on The Clearing, opens with processed saxophones leading us into a kind of sonic forest: dense, mysterious, and dynamic. Over the soundscape, Ellis speaks: “My thesis is that blackness, dysfluency [i.e. stuttering and other forms of disabled or non-normative speech], and music are forces that open time.” As Ellis reads, the forest grows into the pauses in his stuttered speech. A trap-inspired beat with stuttering hi-hats, crisp snares, and beefy kicks gradually builds as we move deeper into the forest. The track’s title references the “loophole of retreat” Harriet Jacobs describes in her book Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl. On this track, and on the album as a whole, Ellis suggests that the looping sounds of Black music, and the looping syllables and silences of the Black stutterer, resist linear time and offer new ways of being. The track ends with fire running through the forest, clearing ground for further growth.
JJJJJerome Ellis is a blk disabled animal, stutterer, and artist. Through music, literature, performance, and video, he explores blkness, disabled speech, and music as forces of refusal, possibility, reparation, and healing. His diverse body of work includes contemplative soundscapes using saxophone, flute, dulcimer, electronics, and vocals; scores for plays and podcasts; albums combining spoken word with ambient and jazz textures; theatrical explorations involving live music and storytelling; and music-video-poems that seek to transfigure historical archives. JJJJJerome’s solo and collaborative work has been presented by Lincoln Center, The Poetry Project, and ISSUE Project Room (New York); MASS MoCA (North Adams, Massachusetts); REDCAT (Los Angeles); Arraymusic (Toronto); and the Center for African American Poetry and Poetics (Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania), among others. His work has been covered by This American Life, Artforum, Black Enso, and Christian Science Monitor.
Find more information and preorder The Clearinghere.
NNA Tapes is thrilled to reveal ‘In The Tender Dream’ in full, today—the profound new album from the Oakland, CA based composer, performer, and writer Sally Decker. In the record’s distended drones, chattering poetry, cosmic synth work, and gentle ambiance, Decker dives back and forth between chaos and order, turmoil and respite. There are stormy feelings captured in these pieces, but there’s peace too if you’re willing to listen for it.
Decker’s first offering was “The Loss,” accompanied by a video made in close collaboration with Emily Chao in which “rephotographed landscapes emerge from the shadows in a confrontation of self.” Then came the buzzing and euphoric titular centerpiece, followed by “Affirmation Pt. II”, a track about the drama and messiness of relating to another person, but also the joy and magic of falling in love.
‘In The Tender Dream’ is available now on Compact Disc, Cassette, and Digital formats. “In The TenderDream steps up the intensity of her mesmerizing concoctions”
–Ears To Feed
“Recognisable as a long, dark night of the soul, In The TenderDream is alive with the elastic, unexpected results of acquiescing control to the subconscious, and trusting in process rather than result.”
“SallyDecker switches between feedback and blissful ambiences on In The TenderDream, as though she’s trying to echolocate the self with the sheer force of vibrant sound.” –The Quietus
Dear Laika—the 23-year-old UK-based musician Isabelle “Izzy” Thorn—today announced signing with NNA Tapes in partnership with Memorials of Distinction in the UK. Alongside the announcement, Dear Laika shared “Phlebotomy”, a spellbinding Bach invocation about “queer time” in the context of medical transition.
“Every six months I get a blood test to check my hormone levels, requiring three vials of blood to be drawn. Most recently, I fainted for the first time in my life,” says Thorn. “Transitioning is a constant process and it takes a long time, made longer in the UK by dangerously long waiting lists. Trans people often find their lives temporarily put on hold while they wait to finally become happy with their bodies. It can be a painful, lonely experience. I’ve spent most of the past 5 years waiting. I’m still waiting. And so I have begun to process time in a different way, as if it is simultaneously standing still and stolen away from me.”
This theme is reflected by the time-stretched choir sample that forms the foundation of the song; its sound is alien, at once syrupy and vaporous, creating an intoxicating sense of melancholy calm. Dear Laika’s clear, keening vocals soar above the choral texture, accompanied by a synth bass resounding like a distant cathedral organ.
Despite full immersion in the “classical” tradition from a young age, singing and playing piano and violin prodigiously, Dear Laika at once embraces and rejects these roots in pursuit of sonic invention and beauty, electronically warping classical instrumentation and conjuring ghostly choirs in the service of non-traditional structures and sound-worlds. Through invocations of mythology, mysticism and the natural world, Dear Laika explores dreams, time, love, loneliness, and being transgender through the lens of (admittedly limited) personal experience. Two albums of this pop music exist so far: Vision of St. Cross (2017) and Rinzen (2018). There exist four other ambient/noise albums for electric guitar and violin: Twin Mythemes (2018), White Leopards (2018), Dewy Reds, Fatal Jaws (2018), and A Panther to Ephraim (2019). This discography was selected in August 2018 to be preserved in the British Library Sound Archive. Dear Laika has played live, sharing bills with artists such as Matana Roberts, Loraine James, Mermaid Chunky, Mich Cota, and caroline; Dear Laika has also played violin as part of caroline in live performances.
Sally Decker—the Oakland, CA based composer, performer, writer, and Mills College graduate—today announced her new album In The Tender Dream will release August 13, 2021 with NNA Tapes. Alongside the announcement comes the ominous lead preview “The Loss” which is accompanied by a video by Emily Chao, made in close collaboration with Decker. The two provide this synopsis of the video: “Rephotographed landscapes emerge from the shadows in a confrontation of self.” The video debuted earlier today via Foxy Digitalis and the track is now available to stream here.
“This song came at the brink of a new understanding around acceptance,” says Decker. “Understanding that doesn’t necessarily take place in felt experience, but at least in the glimmers of seeing an alternate reality you want to move toward. The first impulse that brought this track out of me was wanting to express the visceral pain of longing, the wound of self-abandonment, feeling the core of yourself just totally not there. The power the voice finds is through honest confrontation with the reality of what has been neglected in the shadow, what has not been fully grieved. Wishing for change, hoping for another reality (past or present) that isn’t aligned with the reality that occurred or is occurring, is a sure way to be stuck in that place of longing and helplessness. Acceptance will ultimately set you free. The voice in the song starts to understand this, and accumulates power through orienting toward this possibility.”
It is our pleasure to release Ben Seretan’s beautiful ‘Cicada Waves’ into the world today! Listen now, wherever music streams, and own it on cassette; 2nd edition ‘Glitter Green’ tapes are still available (but going fast!) from our web store and on Bandcamp.
During an artist residency in the thick of the pandemic, tucked away in a dance studio at the base of the Appalachian mountains, Ben Seretan set out to finally make the piano recordings he had always wanted to make: pristine, clean, ringing, indeterminate. For two weeks he would be alone with an antique Steinway—a blessing that, in spite of an unexpected, globally tragic, and tremendously surreal circumstance, miraculously remained possible.
But “silence” and even “peace and quiet” are slippery, man-made illusions that we can never quite grab hold of, and this proved to be especially true in the woods. The environs there were riotous, almost joyously noisy; the old wood creaking with rot, rain pelting the roof five times a day, rolling thunder. And then there was the breathtaking presence of critters; hissing feral cats, fiddling crickets, birds belting their songs every morning and, ever-presently, the sea of cicadas—enormous swarms of them—so loud and so multidirectional, as though they might try to lift the concert piano right off of the earth.
“It was clear the moment I hit ‘record’ that any sound I captured from the piano would always carry some other sound with it. There would be no silence whatsoever. So I gave in—I threw open the windows and let the world in.”
Cicada Waves, then, is the sound of allowance. It’s the sound of room being made, of guards being dropped, of adaptation. It’s more often than not the sound of a piano *not* being played. It’s the sound of wings or wind or water doing what they will.
These recordings are shared with as little artifice as possible; there are no edits or comped parts, no mixing, no second takes. The album is, more or less, simply and exactly the sounds that happened in the world at that moment, as chaotic and full of sound as they ought to be.
We are beyond excited, at NNA, to announce our newest signing: composer, poet, and performer JJJJJerome Ellis.
Ellis, today, continues his pre-pandemic practice of giving live sound baths and his ongoing investigation into forms of “infinite music” with the release of “Fountain #3” — his latest piece of perpetual music.
Following “Fountain #2” (which premiered exclusively on the ISSUE Project Room website for 24 hours a day as part of his 2021 ISSUE Residency), Ellis invites listeners to visit the fountain as often as they want, for as long as they want, and he encourages them to use the music to accompany the rhythms of their lives.
JJJJJerome Ellis’ current practice explores blackness, music, and disabled speech as forces of refusal and healing. Ellis’s work has been heard at Lincoln Center, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Poetry Project, Sotheby’s, Soho Rep, and on This American Life. He’s a 2019 MacDowell Fellow, a writer in residence at Lincoln Center Theater, and a 2015 Fulbright Fellow.
Kalbells’ new album Max Heartis out today! NNA Tapes is thrilled to release this colorful, magical album into the world on ‘Salty Pickle’ green vinyl, standard black vinyl, CD, and digital formats. ‘Red Marker’ red vinyl is also available—exclusively from indie record stores!
BUST Magazine describes the album as “psychedelic in the most mind freeing, soothing, yellow-smiley-face sense of the word—elastic funk and fluid synth-pop blurring the lines between sensual and surreal, complete with hyper-pictorial lyrics delivered so smoothly…” while Bandcamp says it “wends its way through lushly painted, fantastical worlds as an exercise in both escapism and world-building for self-care.”
Max Heartis an illustration of death and rebirth; letting go of what doesn’t serve us in order to leave space for the blessings that do. The album is the band’s most collaborative release to date, and the vibrancy of the collective is truly captured here. Read more about Max Heart, at Bandcamp.
Today, Ben Seretan announced Cicada Waves— the musician and composer’s first proper instrumental release since 2018’s enormous My Life’s Work (a 24-hour long album recorded over three consecutive nights, sunset to sunrise). Cicada Waves directly follows Seretan’s acclaimed album of songs, Youth Pastoral, which earned Best of 2020 accolades from Pitchfork (35 Best Rock Albums of the Year) and Paste Magazine (Best Songs of 2020, Best Albums of 2020).
In Seretan’s own words: “I’ve got a new album coming out next month! It’s a collection of serene, barely-there piano improvisations recorded last summer in the riotously noisy woods of the southern tip of the Appalachian Mountains.”
Over the next seven weeks leading up to the release, Seretan will share a new track alongside accompanying videos and essayic writing via his regular newsletter. The weekly rollout starts today with the serene album closer “Fog Rolls Out Rabun Gap”, a title which nods to the album’s remote recording location in Georgia.
The release of Cicada Waves on April 30th, 2021 will coincide with another release: the arrival of the once-every-17-year Brood X cicada, one of the world’s largest swarms of the noisy insects.
“As expansive as it is intimate… Magnificent music full of abstract memories and synthesized, manipulated sounds that function as a two-way mirror.” – Bandcamp (Album of the Day)
“As the song progresses, endless variations of the sample emerge and collide like particles in an accelerator, assuming unexpected forms as they build towards clarity… a meditation on the potential of interpersonal touch.” – Pitchfork (on “The Trembling of Glass”)
“Through all the wonderful textures, there’s an essence that doesn’t need to be explained, it can just be felt.” – The Quietus
“Delicate but powerful, evoking the feeling of recollection in every wavering beat.” – WIRE
The debut full-length from ambient-electronic musician Rachika Nayar, Our Hands Against the Dusk, is animated by the experience of “touch—not just caress, but encounters, collisions, and the point of contact between worlds. Composed over four years from digitally processing a combination of textured guitar loops, shimmering synthesizer crescendos, and orchestral strings, the album synthesizes a range of genres—modern composers, deconstructive electronic, even Midwestern emo and beyond. It’s a shifting stylistic bent that reflects a queer life woven between ever-evolving identities, discourses, and spaces as a trans-feminine Indian American.
The diverse influences are visible on longer tracks such as “Losing Too Is Still Ours,” which extends from rippling guitar figures and keening vocals to methodic, marching strings. Such titles reference a range of personal and cultural images—a Rainer Maria Rilke poem of great personal importance, an Indian mystic at whose Pondicherry ashram a family member had a moment of Hindu “darshan,” and other vivid motifs.
For Nayar, the album’s fluid but always deeply felt form is thus a way of translating that which could never be summed up with static names, words, or feelings. To that end, Our Hands Against the Dusk mines the flux and discontinuity of experience as fertile ground. Nayar’s debut invites us to join alongside it in thinking beyond metanarratives, as musical and emotional histories touch in its twilight space and refract into a multifaceted whole. In that endeavor, Our Hands Against the Dusk is an embrace and a hope.
Elif Yalvaç (@hazalelifyalvac) had a chat with writer/editor Robert Ham for an exclusive interview about her new album ‘Mountains Become Stepping Stones,’ out now ➕ see the incredible new video for the album’s opening track, “Brocken Spectre,” by Jason Arber — Curated Doom.
Incredibly happy to announce ‘Max Heart’ — the sophomore album from Kalbells, aka Kalmia Traver (of Rubblebucket), Angelica Bess (Body Language), Zoë Brecher (Hushpuppy, Sad13), & Sarah Pedinotti (Lip Talk) — out March 26 on NNA Tapes.
‘Max Heart’ is available to pre-order on standard black 🖤 & “Salty Pickle” green vinyl 💚 as well as on compact disc & digital formats. The album will be available on “Red Marker” red vinyl exclusively from local indie record stores.
‘Max Heart’ explores what happens when we let go of what doesn’t serve us in order to leave space for the blessings that do. The album’s ten vibrant and subtly layered tracks of mesmerizing psychedelic synth pop (co-engineered with Luke Temple) were birthed from the band’s practice of listening and accountability, rejoicing in their queerness, and promoting each other to be their most genuine selves. ‘Max Heart’ is a portrait of badass women harnessing their improvisational magic.
The effervescent lead single “Purplepink” is out today, and the video, conceptualized and directed by Lisa Schatz, features 3D animated rocket ships, faceless furry creatures, a 30 foot glittery hologram of Maddie Rice (Jon Batiste’s Stay Human, Saturday Night Live Band) shredding on guitar, and Kalbells as warrior space queens. 🚀
Today, Brooklyn-based ambient-electronic composer Rachika Nayar (formerly Rachika S.) announced her debut full-length album, Our Hands Against The Dusk, and shared the deeply moving lead single “The Trembling of Glass.”
On the track Nayar explains: “I arranged nearly the entire song from processing one guitar progression into a bunch of different sounds—which then reveals itself in its raw form at the end of the piece from beneath the fog of all those textural mirrors. For myself, listening to it brings to mind: Nostalgia. Memory. Pulling back the veil, and the painful clarity of seeing yourself anew.”
Our Hands Against the Dusk is a kaleidoscopic release built from textured guitar loops, shimmering synthesizer crescendos, lyrical piano, and orchestral strings — all digitally processed and threaded through multiple genres, including ambient, emo, electronic, and contemporary classical. The album’s fluid but deeply felt through-line represents Nayar’s navigation through the many musical and human communities she has been a part of as an Indian-American trans person. Written over the past four years, Nayar’s debut full-length winds through vivid personal moments — ecstasy, ambivalence, grief, and calm — via the composer’s protean musical voice.
Our Hands Against The Dusk will be released March 5, 2021 on cassette and digital formats.
Tracklist 1. The Trembling of Glass
2. Losing Too Is Still Ours (feat. YATTA)
3. Marigolds Tulsi
4. The Edges
5. New Strands
6. A Burning Plain
8. No Future (feat. Zeelie Brown)
“A deeply atmospheric collection of ambient, transportive compositions” – The Guardian 🏔🏔
“Tasty abrasions dissolve into alien landings,
absorbing monolithic transmissions colored in unmuzzled fuzz” – Maximum Ink 🏔🏔🏔
On Elif Yalvaç’s sophomore album Mountains Become Stepping Stones (her first with NNA Tapes), the Turkish electronic/ambient musician leads listeners on a transformational journey to experience outer landscapes and inner feelings.
Inspired by her travels to Nordic countries far from home, with Iceland and Norway influencing her most, Mountains Become Stepping Stones reflects the rawness of nature; its danger and intensity, as well as its beauty. This is also a deeply personal record, reflecting a conscious choice to keep creating at difficult times and despite difficult experiences; becoming stronger as a result.
Using a vast array of instruments, including electric guitars, synthesizers, and Game Boy, as well as field recordings from Iceland, Yalvaç’s compositions embrace opposites: microsound glitches with slow intense builds; celestial beauty with abrasive energy.
Elif Yalvaç (@hazalelifyalvac) — the Turkish electronic/ambient composer — has shared a new single, “Freak Box,” the 2nd to be released from her forthcoming new album ‘Mountains Become Stepping Stones,’ out Dec. 4 with NNA Tapes 🌄🌄🌄
“This piece represents the ‘2020 side’ of things,” Yalvaç explains. “I was locked inside a room, and sometimes it did not feel safe. There were threats that, sometimes, felt bigger than the threat of the virus. Instead of being trapped in that room, I dove into the world of Freak Box and Game Boy, and they helped me survive. “Freak Box,” is a duet between the two tools. Both are portable ‘boxes,’ but when I dive into them, I dive into a huge world. I also utilize microsound techniques in this piece — a technique I studied at MIAM — and the song’s ending connects with the rest of the album. It’s an eerie sound; the eerie side of our planet.“
New York singer-songwriter, StephenBecker, has debuted his new single “Slurpee” alongside a Santi Slade-directed video via The FADER, which they described as “a sweet song about relentless horrors.” Of the poetic track, Becker says: “‘Slurpee‘ juxtaposes springtime euphoria with social anxiety, icees and sandcastles with middle child syndrome and political turmoil. The pervasive kick drum represents an existential anxiety about the state of things, a brain freeze in the sun that prevents you from really enjoying the sunshine.”
“Slurpee” is the second single from his forthcoming EP Nothing Sun Under the New, out October 30 on cassette and digital formats.
For StephenBecker, music is a stream of consciousness. Originally working as the Trees Take Ease moniker, the Brooklyn based artist is stepping out from under the branches and releasing music under his own name for the first time. It marks a shift, a new beginning, that initially started out as a casual bedroom project but quickly blossomed into something significant. This new chapter starts with EP Nothing Sun Under the New.
Equal parts weird and sublime, Becker resides in a sonic universe that bends into a state of oblivion and relishes the fleeting moments. This uninhibited approach creates a kaleidoscope of textures where songs about frozen drinks and old teachers exist against a backdrop of propulsive synths, screwy percussion and lo-fi guitar hooks. “I think there’s a lot of power in the right melody and the right chord progression and the right sonic environment and that to me has as much emotional weight as anything that I’m saying,” he says.
Attending concerts as a teen with his Dad and playing in jazz band throughout high school led Becker to experiment with different improvised arts, rubbing shoulders with different genres and practises. This curiosity, along with his talents, secured him a place at Oberlin college in Ohio, studying guitar performance. There, Becker witnessed performances from the likes of Deerhoof, Frankie Cosmos, Yo Yo Ma and Fred Frith that inspired him to merge his skills as a jazz musician and guitar expert and dive into songwriting.
The transition led to “art songs” and “experimental folk music” that can still be felt in Becker’s output. “I got to a place in my studying that started to feel frustrating,” he explains. “I realised that I wanted to write songs and also embody all these other things that I was excited about, whether it was improv or contemporary classical music. I wanted to synthesise everything that I love.” With inspirations including the likes of Marilynne Robinson, Werner Herzog, Olivier Messiaen, Sibylle Baier and Nels Cline, the result is a glorious mish-mash of spontaneity, where songs flow more like free writing.
Becker’s journey into music was unintentional, accidental even. While his parents are both doctors, Becker sees himself as taking after his artistic Grandparents. His Grandmother is a visual artist, watercolorist and painter, while his Grandfather built violins and collected all sorts of instruments, most of which now reside in Becker’s own closet. He never met his Grandfather in person but he finds solace in the family connection. “It’s funny when your immediate family doesn’t really do what you do or understand what you do but you feel this lineage of carrying on,” he explains. “Who knows if I’ll be that to some future generation in my family – the quirky instrument-collecting Grandpa.”
This free-spirited, almost unconscious nature sees Becker create a playground of escapism, where snapshots of his life are exaggerated and fictionalised through an often ironic prism. He finds beauty in the in-between, where strange, abstract realms exist without the need for a clear narrative or rigid structure. Nothing Sun Under the New shines a spotlight on the beauty that can arise from a spur-of-the-moment mindset. By accessing this kind of process, Becker taps into something real and concrete, resonating through an introspective honesty. “I like to be freeform and fictional in my music, but my feeling is that within that abstraction lies a deeper truth, something more real than just the plain facts about me,” he says. “It’s a wash of sounds and lyrics, but the picture that it paints is ultimately more true and sincere than anything else.”
Elif Yalvaç–the Istanbul-based electronic/ambient composer–has announced her new album Mountains Become Stepping Stones, out Dec. 4 with NNA Tapes.
On Mountains Become Stepping Stones, Yalvaç leads listeners on a transformational journey through outer landscapes and inner feelings. Inspired by her travels to Nordic countries far from home, especially by Iceland and Norway, Mountains Become Stepping Stones reflects the raw vitality of nature: its danger and intensity, as well as its beauty. The record also draws deeply on Yalvaç’s inner world, and it reflects her conscious choice to keep creating in difficult times such as these, despite challenging personal circumstances. Using a vast array of instruments, including electric guitars, synthesizers, and a Game Boy, as well as field recordings from Iceland, Yalvaç’s compositions embrace opposites: microsound glitches with slow intense builds; celestial beauty with abrasive energy.
The album’s lead single and opening track, “Brocken Spectre,” is named after the natural phenomenon: “When I was flying to Iceland for the first time from Bergen, Norway,” Yalvaç says, “it was magical to see a glory: seeing the aircraft’s shadow within a halo of a rainbow.” On this piece, Yalvaç introduces the Game Boy as a musical instrument, incorporating its soft sounds into ambient layers. “I wrote so much about Game Boy in my master’s thesis; it was now time to make music with it.”
Today, Bendrix Littleton (@bendrixlittleton) shared his third single, “Daylight Curls,” from his upcoming solo debut, Deep Dark South, out September 25.
“Deep Dark South’s final single is both its deepest and its darkest moment yet to come to life, and it’s this taste of bitter emotion – brought to life alongside a breathtakingly beautiful instrumental outpouring – that Littlejohn’s latest work so appealing, and Bendrix Littleton a name worth committing to memory.”
– Atwood Magazine
“‘Daylight Curls’ was written when I was visiting family in New England for an indeterminate amount of time,” Bendrix told Atwood Magazine for the track’s premiere. “After a while, it became apparent that I was abusing alcohol because I wasn’t used to feeling so still. The only people I know there are older adults so I spent a lot of time alone driving my mom’s car or reading at a local dive bar. Basically having to come to terms with feeling good with yourself to be able to sit still with yourself.”
Click to listen & pre-order / pre-save / pre-add ⚡️ HERE ⚡️
I recorded Laughing In My Sleep two years ago, Spring 2018, and the songs really come out of experiences in 2017 and early ‘18, which was a dense time with some healthy personal upheaval and a lot of traveling. April ’17’s month long Megabus/Greyhound tour was crucial and left me enamored with the idea that I could do a full solo tour without a car, and with the act itself of traveling around by bus (the song “Society of Men” came directly out of a bus station experience from that tour). That September we got pushed out of our house on Prospect Place in Crown Heights where we’d been consistently putting on shows for a few years (as a venue it was called “Bottom Bell”), and where a ton of music was written, practiced and recorded, (including every Cradle album from “Basketball is Beautiful” through “Bag of Holding”).
I was considering not settling back down in New York, thinking about moving or trying to tour and travel indefinitely, but ultimately I got lucky and found a room in November around the corner with friends. I think a lot of this album comes out of that happy coincidence that allowed me to keep living and making music in Brooklyn. The perspective of wonder and curiosity in songs like “End of the Day” or “Children” is involved with a kind of renewed, deepening appreciation for the breadth and wondrousness of the city I grew up in.
Early ’18 saw more traveling and also slowly detangling a longtime romance, and there are admittedly some pained anti-love songs on this album like “Eyes So Clear” and “One Too Many Times”. Hopefully these bluesier feelings are balanced out by the celebration and joy in songs like “Parasite” or “I’ll Walk”, songs about letting go and feeling free.
Form-wise, Laughing in my Sleep was supposed to be a summary album of sorts that would give someone listening to my music for the first time a little taste of everything. Previously, I had been particular when recording about making each project it’s own coherent and distinct sound-world, either through consistent instrumentation or a consistent recording process, but Laughing in My Sleep was the opposite. The drum-machine songs (“I’ll walk” or “See if it Lasts Longer”, for example), were recorded lo-fi on cassette, while the acoustic-guitar ballads were recorded hi(er)-fi on half-inch tape. Some of the songs are voice memos recorded on a cell phone that were supposed to be turned into proper songs later, but which, in retrospect, contained so much feeling and sense of place that I never rerecorded them. I wanted the album to give something different on each listen and give something different to each listener. I wanted there to be many landscapes, some near and some far, and many lenses to see them through, some blurry, and some clear.
Today Bendrix Littleton shares his music video for “Smoke” — the second single from his upcoming solo debut, Deep Dark South, releasing September 25.
The video was directed and shot by Hovvdy’s Will Taylor at and around his family’s farm in Gustine, TX. Inspired by a mortician he held a conversation with at a bar in Dallas, “Smoke” is a nostalgic meditation on appreciating a relationship only after it’s gone.
British electronic musician Darren Cunningham, better known as Actress, has lent his expansive vision to “Wave,” the second track from the LEYA’s acclaimed March 2020 release, Flood Dream. “When I heard and saw the video for “Wave” by LEYA I experienced one of those rare moments when time stood still outside of my own practice,” Actress told The FADER over email for the track’s premiere. The previously cyclic and lilting tune is stretched into an 8-minute landscape in Cunningham’s hands, a trickling, groaning, subterranean ebb that eventually opens skyward while never straying from the thread-like meditation that is a defining theme in LEYA’s work. The result is one of subtle grandiosity that remains grounded in liminal, slowly-unfolding movement. Listen to the track here (available to download).
Harpist Marilu Donovan and violinist/vocalist Adam Markiewicz are NYC-based group LEYA. The two work with and against the grain of tradition, mining intensity through alternate tunings, strange harmonies, and dreamstate operatic-like vocals. The resultant visceral experience underlies beauty but spans many imperfect worlds. LEYA has released a steady volume of work in several years. Their two albums via NNA Tapes, The Fool (2018) and its follow-up Flood Dream (2020), exist alongside a range of collaborations. In 2018, the group wrote and performed a full-length soundtrack to I Love You, an erotic film directed by Brooke Candy and produced by PornHub featuring the duo as actors. 2019’s Angel Lust, a collaborative EP with Eartheater, followed courtesy of legendary experimental label PAN. In 2020 they released “Antigone,” a collaborative single with Liturgy and the first of a number of shorter releases for the year. Taken together, these recent works represent a distinct but wide-ranging perspective on underground movements in pop music and indicate myriad possibilities for the group moving forward.
Over a decade of releases Actress has built a reputation as a fine creator of cerebral abstract techno or R&B concrète; crafting pulsing kickdrums, jittering percussion and chopped sample loops into churning, rumbling tracks soaked in static. Earlier this month, Actress surprise released his new album 88 for free on Bandcamp and announced his next full-length with Ninja Tune called Karma & Desire. In 2018, Actress collaborated with London Contemporary Orchestra for LAGEOS, an album which sought to create a synergy between both live electronic and acoustic components, not just in the harmonies but in the way the traditional instruments were spliced into new hybrid instruments. As part of the process, Actress and LCO augmented traditional piano and created sounds from objects as varied as temple bowls and plastic bags. His most recent solo studio album was 2017’s AZD, a chrome aspect journey into a parallel world. One of the most prominent and singular voices in electronic music, in addition to his recorded work, Actress has been photographed by Wolfgang Tillmans, and the late celebrated photographer Lord Snowden. Other collaborative projects include White Cube artist Eddie Peake, Mehdi Lacoste, Dan Emmerson and Belgian visual artist Pierre Debusschere, as well as fronting campaigns for fashion brands Acne and Cav Empt.
The Cradle, aka Paco Cathcart, is sharing his new single “Eyes So Clear,” today, the final single to be released from his upcoming album, Laughing In My Sleep, out August 21st on standard black & cream vinyl, compact disc, and digital formats.
On “Eyes So Clear,” Cathcart is joined by Lily Konigsberg (of Palberta) on backing vocals. Driven by plodding piano chords and strummed guitar, the song’s narrator wrestles with feeling distrustful and bitter toward friends who have a clear-eyed, less solipsistic perspective on life. Recalling the philosophical and reflective duets from artists such as Simon & Garfunkel and Sufjan Stevens, “Eyes So Clear” feels timeless.
Today, Bendrix Littleton (ex-Bent Denim) announced his debut album Deep Dark South (Sep. 25) and shared a video for the contemplative lead single and title track “Deep Dark South,” which is a compilation of iPhone clips shot around the time of the record’s creation and edited together by Will Taylor (from rock duo Hovvdy whose latest album, Heavy Lifter, was produced by Littleton).
On “Deep Dark South,” Bendrix Littleton conjures the feeling of looking up at the Southern night sky — “and realizing how big and full of wonder it is down here,” he says. Built on a foundation of steady, elegant piano chords, Bendrix’s gently-picked guitar loops create a lush soundscape, making space for his hazy, solitary voice to ponder solitude and time.
Deep Dark South is available to pre-order on cassette and digital formats from our shop & on Bandcamp.
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Bendrix Littleton is the writing and recording project of Nashville-via-Dallas musician Bennett Littlejohn. The project’s namesake, Maurice Bendrix—the protagonist of Graham Greene’s 1951 novel The End of the Affair—is described by enotes.com as “sometimes an unreliable narrator, for he is so consumed by jealousy, self-pity, self-hatred, and bitterness, that he measures everyone else by himself…[and] confesses that from time to time ‘a demon’ takes possession of his brain.” It’s an appropriate moniker for the self-aware, malaise-filled songs of Bendrix Littleton’s debut, Deep Dark South, due out September 25 from NNA Tapes. While in the album is imbued with the contradictions and painful beauty of the modern American South (as opposed to Greene’s WWII-era London), the hazy, solitary narrative voice remains.
Formerly one half of the “NyQuil-Pop” duo Bent Denim (dissolved in the summer of 2018), Littlejohn sought a fresh outlet that was more individual and freed from any preconceived artistic notions. During this time Littlejohn began taking on significantly more studio work, including production credits on Hovvdy’s Heavy Lifter (out now on Double Double Whammy), new material from Katy Kirby (out on Keeled Scales), and forthcoming work from Sinai Vessel. While production on this music was deeply rewarding, it was nonetheless work that was beholden to someone else’s vision. And it was out of this craving for artistic autonomy that Bendrix Littleton was born. Deep Dark South has provided a space for Littlejohn to experiment, collage, write, and record in a completely independent manner—a long-awaited and welcome zone of unfettered creation.
On the singular writing and recording process of Deep Dark South, Littlejohn states:
The initial spurt of songwriting was directly correlated to a vintage Harmony H162 acoustic guitar I found at a flea market in Kentucky, near the Tennessee border. This guitar would’ve been sold at Sears in the early 60’s. I strung it up with all of the higher pitched strings from a 12-string acoustic set and got to writing. A lot of rich, burnt-out musicians affectedly claim that there are ‘songs in guitars’ to justify their ever-growing guitar collections, but I do feel there is an ounce of truth in this. The way something feels, or the faults of a certain instrument indeed can bring out something unique and new.
Once the basic bedrock of the record had been tracked, I realized that the songs were too slow, my voice was too low…a spark was missing. My brother had just sent me my old Tascam four track cassette recorder. So, I spent a little time with that, and ended up committing these songs in their unfinished states to fixed tracks on this old tape machine—no editing, no panning, no volume changing. Driving the cassette tape hard and speeding the songs up (which also raises the pitch), gave this album that special aspect I had been looking for, and also provided a completely fucked up and new sonic foundation for me to start layering on top of.
And on the themes and sensibility of the album itself, Littlejohn says:
Throughout the record I deal with the common tropes of alcohol/drug abuse, malaise, ennui, regional junk, and the dissolution of relationships. It’s well-trod ground, but I’d rather write what feels genuine rather than something foreign for the sake of novelty. It feels ridiculous enough to put out something in 2020…so much noise to break through. But I feel like these are common enough things. I wouldn’t say these things are universal, but they’re not far from it.
NNA Tapes is thrilled to release “Antigone,” a collaborative piece from transcendental black metal band Liturgy and NYC-based avant-pop duo LEYA. The track weaves two distinct threads: the bronzed grandiosity of Liturgy’s soaring, ecstatic swells of guitar and drums cedes to the ghostly roll of harp chords and electric violin/voice melancholy, then returns with propulsive roil to a climactic ending. The resulting song within a song takes the listener on a journey that is simultaneously exhilarating and somber, an expression of feeling that draws from two groups pushing towards opposite energetic poles of a balance between the sublime and damned.
PAPER Magazine premiered “Antigone” this week along with an exclusive Q&A with Liturgy & LEYA. The single is now available on Bandcamp.
The Cradle, aka singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Paco Cathcart (Big Neck Police, Eyes of Love, Shimmer), has shared “End of the Day,” today — the second single from his upcoming, 21-track album Laughing In My Sleep, out August 21 on standard black and limited edition cream vinyl, compact disc, and digital formats. The first 50 vinyl pre-orders will ship with a chapbook handmade by Paco.
“End of the Day” has been a staple in The Cradle’s acoustic live sets over the past couple of years. It is also a song that bucks easy categorization: “It’s a repetitious lullaby; a series of images at greater or lesser distance; an ode-poem to Brooklyn; the daily splendid and heartbreaking minutia of city life; a first-person account of events of questionable significance; a dream that goes both towards nostalgia and out towards adventure,” Paco says. “End of the Day” follows “One Too Many Times,” and both singles feature backing vocals from Lily Konigsberg (of Palberta).
Laughing In My Sleep is available to pre-order from our shop & on Bandcamp. Pre-save the album to your preferred streaming service by clicking here.
Horse Lords’ 2014 LP ‘Hidden Cities’ is back in stock! Available from our shop and on Bandcamp.
On opening track “Outer East” the band showcases its considerable range and sick chops: over a low-slung motorik groove, Andrew Bernstein spins a smoky web of sax-into-delay that recalls Terry Riley’s “Reed Streams”. The song turns an unexpected corner five minutes in as guitarist Owen Gardner—who has structurally altered his frets into a just intonation tuning system—carves beguiling arabesque figures on top of Max Eilbacher’s insistently funky bass. Sam Haberman then breaks in with a fierce drum solo, from which the whole band erupts into a relentless forward moving ecstatic riff that blurs the difference between prog, no-wave and minimalism. It’s a compressed lesson in the effortless eclecticism and muscular playing that makes this band so mesmerizing live. Following “Outer East” with barely a pause, “Life Without Dead Time” rides a mutating polyrhythmic grid that showcases the synthesizer and signal processing chops of Eilbacher (whose solo LP “Red Anxiety Tracers” came out to critical acclaim on Spectrum Spools last year).
A gradually building ramp built of field recordings, tape manipulation and modular synthesis, “Tent City” introduces the second long-form composition on the album, “Macaw”. A floor burner at their live shows, “Macaw” builds rhythmic tension and release before coalescing into a unison burst of festivity and abandon. Bernstein’s woodblock figure pulls away from Haberman’s steady beat and the resulting groove plays out like a krautrock duel-in-the-sand between two offset patterns competing for dominance in a vivid strobe effect. By the ten-minute mark, Gardner’s guitar hits a Bo-Diddley-meets-Group-Doueh sweet spot and the track lifts off in a final spiral of ensemble unison hammering. A coda for extremist signal processing, “All That Is Solid” manipulates and processes the record’s preceding riffs into liquid pools of unrecognizably alien new forms, setting you down on the other side of “Hidden Cities” at once startled and becalmed. It’s vital, thrilling, and utterly transcends its many influences to arrive at a new place on the map for forward-thinking American rock music.
Truly beyond excited to announce ‘Laughing In My Sleep’ — the new 21-track album from singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Paco Cathcart, aka The Cradle.
Available August 21 on standard black and limited edition cream vinyl, compact disc, and digital formats. ⭐️ The first 50 physical pre-orders will receive a chapbook handmade by Paco. Order from our shop & on Bandcamp.
Check out the lead single “One Too Many Times,” featuring Lily Konigsberg (of Palberta) on backing vocals. “It’s a lament about miscommunication, and the difficulties of being vulnerable and clear with one another,” Cathcart explains. “It’s about feeling desperately apart from the “vanguard,” that is, those who are fearless and true with their language, politically and personally.”
Acquiesce, the fifth solo album from Chicago-based Lebanese-American electronic artist Natalie Chami (aka TALsounds), is out today! The album is available from our shop and on Bandcamp on standard black and limited edition white vinyl, in addition to digital formats. The album is also available on transparent blue vinyl at select local indie record stores.
Bandcamp made AcquiesceAlbum of the Day last week, saying, “Chami continues exploring her penchant for slowly unfolding drones, her analog synthesizers and gentle whispers layered like silvery smoke hanging in a lamp-lit room.” Read more here.
The album’s lead single, “No Rise,” premiered exclusively at The FADER, and subsequent singles “Soar” and “Else” were featured on NPR’s Viking’s Choice playlists, and more.
Chami also recently made a FACT mix for FACT Magazine, featuring women from DIY music scenes in the US and beyond. Listen here.
Over the past decade Natalie has been at the forefront of Chicago’s DIY electronic music community. In addition to her solo work, Chami is one-third of Good Willsmith, half of ambient duo l’eternebre, and frequently collaborates with her peers—notably with Brett Nauke and Whitney Johnson (aka Matchess)—in the Windy City’s “post-band” scene.
To celebrate the release of Acquiesce, TALsounds will have a live-streamed record release show tonight, May 22, broadcasted on Twitch via Lumpen Radio.
GRID–the experimental trio of Matt Nelson (Battle Trance; Elder Ones) on saxophone, Tim Dahl (Child Abuse; Lydia Lunch Retrovirus) on bass, and Nick Podgurski (New Firmament; Feast of the Epiphany) on drums–have released their colossal sophomore album ‘Decomposing Force’ today on NNA Tapes.
‘Decomposing Force’ was recorded live, in one room, and then mixed to ½-inch tape. With Dahl’s bass amp angled directly into the microphone Nelson uses for his saxophone, the improvisational sounds of the entire band are fed through the same effects, creating a continuously interactive and variable soundscape that remains beyond strict categorization. GRID’s cyclical transmission of sound and energy continually develops expressive, hyperactive, and protean textures that brutally and masterfully navigate through the dense, heavy atmosphere of ‘Decomposing Force’ with vigorous dynamism. There are no overdubs.
Listen to GRID and Lydia Lunch discuss the album on Lunch’s podcast The Lydian Spin. As a bonus, a previously unreleased collaboration with Lunch, titled “Lockdown,” opens the hour-long segment. GRID and Lunch collaborated, previously, on digital single “Stranglehold : The world according to Herbert Huncke,” available at Bandcamp.
‘Decomposing Force’ [NNA125] is GRID’s first album available on vinyl. Order it from our shop and on Bandcamp.
NNA is overjoyed to release ‘Mothertime,’ — the new EP from Kalbells, the project led by multi-instrumentalist and songwriter Kalmia “Kal” Traver.
Co-produced with Jeremy Malvin (aka Chrome Sparks), ‘Mothertime’ sees Kal processing themes she has been continually chewing on in the 6-year wake of surviving ovarian cancer and transforming a codependent relationship wither her long-time music partner: resilience, yielding, beckoning creativity, self-exploration, and joy. “It’s something I feel proud to have moved and grown through,” she says, “and I hope writing about it can be a form of revealing the illusion, and healing.”
‘Mothertime’ [NNA126] is available from our shop and on Bandcamp, on limited edition cassette and digital formats.
Made while meditating on a new love and relationship, “Soar” opens with a heavy, plodding bass line and works in layers of long tone swells and shimmering sequencer spirals amidst climbing synth and vocal melodies. As Chami explains: “This improvisation had me reflecting on my new relationship. Was he grounded enough for me? Were we living contradictory lifestyles? Would we be able to find balance together? Was our happiness just a facade? I think all of my uneasiness came out in this song in an ominous kind of way.”
“Soar” follows lead single “No Rise” which premiered with The Fader who praised Chami’s body of work as “an unpredictable discography that’s impossible to categorize. It is, by its nature, impulsive music, guided in the moment by Chami’s emotions and immediate sense of what should come next.”
Acquiesce is available from our shop and on Bandcamp, on standard black vinyl, limited edition white vinyl, and digital formats.
GRID—the Brooklyn, NY noise-jazz trio comprised of Matt Nelson, Tim Dahl, and Nick Podgurski—just released “Cold Seep,” the second single from their upcoming sophomore LP Decomposing Force, out April 24.
The band describe the disquieting 12+ minute track: “In “Cold Seep”we have a bottom giving out at the moment of orientation. The fundament, all that has come before, is undone. Free-falling into dark new age we must face the terror of our nothingness.” The previous single “Brutal Kings” caught the attention of a wide array of publications, from the jazz publication Jazziz to the electronic focused outlet XLR8R.
Recorded live in one room with no overdubs and mixed to 1/2-inch tape, Decomposing Force will be GRID’s first release available on vinyl, which is available to pre-order from our shop.
Today, Kalbells—the project led by multi-instrumentalist and songwriter Kalmia Traver—is sharing “Mothertime,” the title track (and accompanying lyric video made in quarantine with a microscope) from her forthcoming EP co-produced with Jeremy Malvin (aka Chrome Sparks), releasing April 10.
Following the lead single and video for “Cool and Bendable” (that premiered with The Fader who called it “crackly and tactile… a dazzling celebration anthem.”), “Mothertime” is about Traver’s mother and their relationship together. As Traver explains in her own words: “it’s about the bewildering beauty and uncanniness of the fact that we can keep growing & changing so much, cueing off each other across our two mobius-entwined lifetimes.”
“One of America’s most compelling DIY artists.” –The FADER
Chicago-based Lebanese American electronic artist Natalie Chami has announced Acquiesce, her fifth solo album as TALsounds, available on Standard Black Vinyl, Limited Edition White Vinyl, and Digital formats on May 22nd. Today, Chami is sharing the album’s lead single “No Rise,” ahead of its release to streaming services tonight at midnight, exclusively via The Fader.
“The long, instrumental beginning of “No Rise” was just me obsessing over sounds—letting them spiral together organically, much like thoughts have a tendency to do, while also trying to make sense of them.” Chami told The FADER over email, “The song was originally over 9 minutes long, with me just jammin’ on the MS20 trying to make it sound like a guitar solo. It wasn’t until I started singing that I realized I was actually working through feelings of vulnerability and anxiety. I eventually got to this moment where there was nothing good, nothing bad, nothing spiritual going on, just me and my breath.”
Over the past decade Natalie has been at the forefront of Chicago’s DIY electronic music community. In addition to her solo work, Chami is one-third of Good Willsmith, half of ambient duo l’eternebre, and frequently collaborates with her peers—notably with Brett Nauke and Whitney Johnson (aka Matchess)—in the Windy City’s “post-band” scene. Her last album Love Sick (2017) landed at position #39 on Chicago Reader‘s Best Albums of the 2010s list.
TALsounds will be playing at Metro Chicago on April 2nd with Dan Deacon and have her release show at Constellation on May 22nd (tickets on sale tuesday March 10th) with Sam Prekop. This spring, Natalie will announce a full summer tour.
GRID—Brooklyn noise jazz trio comprised of Matt Nelson (Tune-Yards, Battle Trance, Elder Ones), Tim Dahl (Child Abuse), and Nick Podgurski (New Firmament, Feast of Epiphant)—today announced their new album Decomposing Force will be released April 24th, 2020.
“Brutal Kings,” the album’s lead single that is out today, delivers an initiating thrust, a brief glimpse of coherence, torn in two by corrosive psychedelic fission. It is the genesis of Decomposing Force’s descent into pandemonic new age annihilation. The track follows their recent standalone single “Stranglehold : The world according to Herbert Huncke,” which features singer/poet Lydia Lunch on vocals, as well as their 2017 debut, which earned praise from Pitchfork, Vice, NPR, among many others.
On April 6th, GRID will be playing at Pioneer Works (as a part of the venue’s monthly False Harmonics series) and will announce US/EU tour dates this Spring.
Kalbells (the project led by multi-instrumentalist and songwriter Kalmia Traver) have announced Mothertime, a four track EP co-produced with Jeremy Malvin (aka Chrome Sparks). The cathartic lead single and accompanying music video for “Cool and Bendable” premiered via The Fader and is now available to purchase/stream worldwide here.
NNA Tapes is thrilled to release “INTP” — the third and final single from LEYA’s upcoming sophomore LP Flood Dream, out March 6.
Premiering first at i-D Magazine, the horror-romance clip follows two young lovers, vibrant with the purity of life, as they break into a house they believe to be empty. As the lovers begin to question their solitude, “INTP” revels in the tension.
The “INTP” video was dreamt up and directed by Kathleen Dycaico, who also directed the video for “Sister” from LEYA’s debut album The Fool.
The video’s director, Yuka C. Honda (of Cibo Matto), shared her process: “I approach music and video in the same way as cooking. For me, it’s all about understanding the ingredients and creating something that uses their character to the fullest extent. In other words, I don’t write the story and look for the performers. I write the story based on the characters I am already aware of, with whom I am working. Jeremy sent me this music and asked me to make a video. I love the song very much. Somehow, it made me think about the last scene of the film “Black Orpheus”. When the protagonist dies at the end, children emerge. They pick up the guitar that he dropped, then regard the sunrise and start singing and dancing. Life goes on. Death is heart-wrenching. But there are children who will keep on dancing, playing the guitars that we dropped. I thought, “I can make this video!”, because I knew I wouldn’t mind listening to this song 600 hundred times while editing.”
The release of Mere Husk will be celebrated alongside Gustin’s forthcoming photography book Foundscapes (releasing with 11A Records) at Brooklyn NY’s Step Bone Cut on February 1st.
“The video features our two friends,” LEYA explains, “disciples of 34th generation Shaolin warrior monk and activist Shi Yan Ming, founder of the luminous USA Shaolin Temple in Manhattan, where RZA, Rosie Perez, Wesley Snipes, Jim Jarmusch, and Tricky have all trained. They are part of the wave.”
“Wave” follows the album’s lead single “Weight” (which features the operatic-pop vocalist GABI), as well as their newly released collaborative EP with Eartheater, Angel Lust, surprise-dropped in December 2019 via PAN. The band have also announced a North American tour, today, including dates with Eartheater and Liturgy.
Flood Dream is available for pre-order on vinyl and CD, and will be released on March 6.
TOUR DATES March 5 – Brooklyn, NY @ Trevorshaus †
March 6 – Richmond, VA @ Shockoe Atelier
March 7 – Athens, GA @ Adverse Fest
March 8 – Atlanta, GA @ The Bakery
March 9 – Orlando, FL @ Uncle Lou’s
March 10 – Miami, FL @ Churchill’s
March 11 – Gainesville, FL @ Civic Media Center
March 12 – Birmingham, AL @ The Firehouse
March 13 – New Orleans, LA @ The Mudlark
March 14 – Houston, TX @ Rudyard’s
March 15 – Denton, TX @ Rubber Gloves
March 16 – Dallas, TX @ RBC
March 17 – 22 Austin, TX @ SXSW
March 23 – El Paso, TX @ Love Buzz
March 24 – Tucson, AZ @ Wooden Tooth
March 25 – Los Angeles, CA @ Zebulon
March 26 – San Francisco, CA @ Adobe Books
March 27 – Oakland, CA @ The Dome
March 29 – Phoenix, AZ @ The Compound
March 30 – Albuquerque, NM @ The Desert House
March 31 – Tulsa, OK @ Tulsa Noise
April 1 – St. Louis, MO @ Blank Space
April 15 – Pittsburgh, PA @ Thunderbird *
April 16 – Grand Rapids, MI @ Pyramid Scheme *
April 17 – Chicago, IL @ Empty Bottle *
April 18 – Detroit, MI @ The Sanctuary *
April 19 -Cleveland, OH @ Now That’s Class *
April 21 – Toronto, ON @ Baby G *
April 22 – Montreal, QC @ L’Esco *
April 23 – Boston, MA @ Great Scott *
April 24 – NYC @ The Dance *
April 25 – Philadelphia, PA @ MilkBoy *
July 2020 – Brooklyn, NY @ Pioneer Works
† NYC Record Release with Eartheater & Chanel 63 * with Liturgy
Today, The Ah—solo project of composer and musician Jeremy Gustin (Rubblebucket, Okkervil River, Delicate Steve, Marc Ribot, Albert Hammond Jr, etc)—shared the second single from his forthcoming sophomore full-length Mere Husk.
Following the lead single “Watermelon Tears,” which caught the attention of Paste Magazine (“displaying the happy energy of life”), The New York Times (“a burst of comic relief”) and others,”The Factory Girl” features Gustin’s friend, Yuan Liu, on vocals, who also stars in the track’s accompanying music video. Links below!
On the song, Gustin explains, “‘The Factory Girl’ is based on a traditional Irish song I first heard Margaret Barry sing. When struck by the beauty of the melody and the phrasing, I challenged myself to see what I could do with it to completely change the vibe, but keep the integrity of the melody. As I decided to not have vocals here, the narrative of the original, of course, is lost. But my friend Yuan just happened to be over my place at the moment I was recording this and I asked her to improvise some dialogue, which she did brilliantly. This of course alters the original narrative but keeps the underlying theme of love intact.”
The release of Mere Husk will be celebrated in conjunction with Gustin’s forthcoming photography book Foundscapes (releasing with 11A Records) at Brooklyn NY’s Step Bone Cut on February 1st. Mere Husk is available for preorder in our shop and on Bandcamp (with a limited quantity of the album and book available as a bundle), and will be out January 31st.
We’re excited to announce our first cassette release of 2020 — a new album from the unique sound world of NYC-based musician Jeremy Gustin, aka The Ah. Mere Husk is now available for pre-order (available January 31), and we’re thrilled to share the lead single with you today.
On “Watermelon Tears,“ humor and unpredictability are put to good use, giving the track a candy-coated quality that’s steeped in colorful psychedelia. Gustin says, “Watermelon tears are the kind of tears you get when you laugh really hard… the sweet tears.”
The release of Mere Husk will be celebrated in conjunction with Gustin’s forthcoming photography book Foundscapes (being released with 11A Records) at Brooklyn NY’s Step Bone Cut on February 1st.
NNA is thrilled to announce the forthcoming sophomore LP from LEYA — Flood Dream — out March 6, 2020. Flood Dream includes a few tracks from their feature-length score of Brooke Candy’s queer pornagraphic film “I Love You” (made for PornHub’s Visionaries Director’s Club) and follows their debut album, The Fool, which caught the attention of Noisey, FACT, SPIN and more.
Framed within a network of outlying artists whose experiments sketch out far-flung deviations from aboveground movements, the work of New York-based duo LEYA stands out as an anomaly that exemplifies the idiosyncratic impulses of the avant fringe. Harpist/vocalist Marilu Donovan and violinist/vocalist Adam Markiewicz seem from a sidelong perspective to approximate the languages of neo-classical performance and post-minimalist exploration in their austere, meticulously rendered compositions. In truth, the duo’s own self-perception casts their project closer to the axes of noise and punk than conventional refinement.
As formally educated composers acutely aware of the traditions and conventions into which their instruments fit, Donovan and Markiewicz exploit preconceptions and confound expectations by pursuing the most transportive and emotional means of communication with their audience. Just as their peers warp systems of electronics or tropes from the pop and rock traditions, LEYA channel the surface signifiers of orchestral music and 20th century classical composition into deeply personal works that encompass bursts of raw dissonance alongside moments of spectral beauty. The duo’s performances shift the spotlight from the authority figure looming over an ensemble of players to those planted in the corner of a dimly lit basement populated with freaks who can’t help but fall into silence when confronted with the duo’s bewildering stimuli.
LEYA’s album Flood Dream follows the acclaimed The Fool (NNA, 2018) and their soundtrack to PornHub-exclusive short film I Love You directed by Brooke Candy. The Fool presented the project both in densely plotted duo pieces and joint efforts with New York luminaries like Eartheater, PC Worship, and Sunk Heaven. Though guests from LEYA’s wide social environment appear on Flood Dream, including vocalist/producer GABI, flautist/synthesist John Also Bennett of Forma, and bassist Tristan Kasten-Krause, the album pares back the presence of external artists as full co-writing collaborators to highlight the raw core of the duo’s practice. Flood Dream plays out as a decadent feast of the senses struck through with the disturbed influence of intrusive thoughts.
The album’s pieces each follow their own sinuous narrative arc, building from empty expanses of detuned harp arpeggios and languid smears of violin into climaxes draped in Markiewicz’s impassioned vocal lines. LEYA generate tension with their darkly operatic sense of drama, conveyed in weeping melodies and the desolation of solitary notes against blank backdrops, as they dole out fragments of resolution or momentary triumph before sinking back into uncertainty. Their arrangements bridge instances of baroque ornamentation and blocks of harmonic density with stretches of fugue state-inducing confusion built over dreary standing tones and repeated dissonant intervals.
In an industry obsessed with precise classification, how do we make sense of the ambiguous shadow LEYA casts over the landscape? The duo reject the tenets of the new music establishment and thrive within a scene of noise transgressors and electronic auteurs. In all of its indulgence and emotional upheaval, their music adapts as easily to the context of arthouse pornography as to a late-night bill populated with no wave acts and performance artists, without ever coming off as a harsh juxtaposition. LEYA’s music reveals that the boundaries between these disciplines aren’t boundaries at all — that everything pours from the same well into different vessels that might be carried off in opposite directions, but that will always returned to a shared source.
GRID — the New York based noise-jazz trio of Matt Nelson (saxophone), Tim Dahl (bass), and Nick Podgurksi (drums) — have released a new single today, featuring the legendary singer, poet, and self-empowerment speaker Lydia Lunch.
« Order “Stranglehold : The world according to Herbert Huncke” from Bandcamp.
On “Stranglehold : The world according to Herbert Huncke,“ Lunch summons the spirit and philosophy of the original beat writer Herbert Huncke, who inspired Burroughs, Ginsberg, and Kerouac. Her performance is hypnotic, seductive, and haunting.
GRID have also announced a European tour, beginning Monday, Nov. 3, at Cafe OTO in London, and a new, limited edition live cassette will available only at shows. All dates are listed below.
GRID EU Tour 2019
11/4 | London | Cafe OTO
11/5 | Lille | CCL
11/6 | Amsterdam | Occii
11/7 | Leipzig | Villa Plagwitz
11/8 | Gdansk | Jazz Jantar Festival
11/9 | Berlin | Villa Kuriosum
11/10 | Stuttgart | Container City
11/11 | Geneva | Urgence Disk Records
11/12 | La Chaux-De Fonds | ABC Theatre
* Lydia Lunch Will Not Be Appearing with GRID on Tour *
Guerilla Toss have shared the second single from their impending ‘What Would The Odd Do?’ EP— out Oct. 18 on standard and special edition vinyl, compact disc, and digital formats.
“Future Doesn’t Know” premieres at FLOOD, and is available now for listening on your preferred streaming platform. FLOOD calls the track “A triumphant look forward… Recalling the chiptune power pop of their peers Crying as much as the godfatherly wonk of Deerhoof.”
“When I got sick it felt like I was right there, on the edge of death and there was no time to test fate. It took getting there to realize I would disintegrate and cease to exist unless I started making decisions that benefited my own personal recovery from depression. So often we look to others for the meaning of life or what to do next, but really the only answer is within.”
— Kassie Carlson
A portion of the proceeds from the album will go to theHarlem Harm Reduction Clinic, in an attempt to further our reach in the opiate crisis battle.
We’re thrilled today to finally unveil the lead single from ‘What Would The Odd Do?’, the upcoming EP from Guerilla Toss. “Plants” is a disco-post-punk-prog epic about the perceived psychosis of the fictional protagonist, Lara. Based off the books, What A Plant Knows and The Hidden Life Of Trees, the song combats the anti-spiritual western notion that plants are devoid of all communication, when, in fact, there is an entire language of which we are “blissfully unaware.” The track also explores the old-fashioned idea of a woman being crazy, when, in reality, she simply isn’t being heard. Stephen Cooper’s driving bass line propels a force that is somewhere between Hawkwind and Giorgio Moroder, while Sam Lisabeth’s exploratory synth explosions create one of GT’s most blissful and sentimental tracks to date. With additional drum production and sound design by Catskill, NY synth wizard, MaZmiTh, the track moves into a psychedelic oblivion.
For Kassie Carlson, singer, songwriter, and bandleader of Guerilla Toss, What Would The Odd Do? is unarguably the groups most personal release in their impressive history as a music-making collective. After open heart surgery in 2017 to remove a dangerous blood clot caused by a severe opiate addiction, Carlson has found a new joy in life. She has since moved to Upstate New York with her partner and Guerilla Toss drummer, Peter Negroponte, and has never felt more inspired.
What Would The Odd Do? is a further exploration into new territories, while still remaining true to the band’s fringe sound. A portion of the proceeds from the album will go to the Harlem Harm Reduction Clinic, in an attempt to further our reach in the opiate crisis battle.
‘What Would The Odd Do?’ is available now for pre-order on Standard and Special Edition Vinyl, Compact Disc, and Digital formats – out worldwide on Friday, Oct. 18. » Click here to order from our Shop.
» Also available on Bandcamp.
It is with great pleasure today that we announce the first audio offering from Lea Bertucci‘s upcoming full-length album ‘Resonant Field’. On “Warp and Weft”, Bertucci slowly builds increasingly dense clusters of whirling saxophone improvisations, captured inside the cavernous Marine A Grain Elevator at Silo City in Buffalo, New York. As harmony and dissonance blur together as one, Lea unlocks the cerebral, trance-like microtonal effects of the frequency spectrum, reminiscent of the great pioneers of minimalist composition such as La Monte Young and Lou Harrison. Field recordings emerge and dissolve through the waves of overlapping sax improvisation, as does the growling low end of bowed double-bass, played by long-time collaborator James Ilgenfritz. You can listen to “Warp and Weft” now courtesy of NPR Music’s All Songs Considered: Viking’s Choice, as well as on electronic music news source Resident Advisor. Also available for streaming listening on Bandcamp and Soundcloud below.
“like a spinning top that doesn’t so much end, but seeps into our spiraling consciousness.” –Lars Gotrich, NPR Music
“[a] 12-minute journey, layered with celestial drones and basked in a warm glow.” –Andrew Ryce, Resident Advisor
☆ Special Edition Vinyl version comes packaged in a hand-screen printed jacket with silver metallic ink, plus an insert booklet containing photographs, drawings, and liner notes by the artist. The first 100 copies come pressed on Translucent Smoke with Black & Ice Splatter vinyl, first come first served at no additional charge.
Album Release Concert:
Thursday, July 11th 2019
1665 Norman St
Ridgewood NY 11385
Lea Bertucci with James Ilgenfritz
C. Lavender LEYA
It is our honor today to announce the long-awaited new album from composer, performer and sound designer Lea Bertucci – ‘Resonant Field’ is coming July 19th to NNA Tapes. It’s been a little over a year since her critically-acclaimed full-length ‘Metal Aether’ made it’s debut, and Lea has been diligently busy across a wide array of musical platforms ever since. In the last year, she has toured the globe, debuted her composition Mass Of Dissolution for percussion trio Tigue (commissioned by the American Composers’ Forum), unveiled the piece Acoustic Shadows, a site-specific performance for brass ensemble inside the hollow body of a bridge in Koln, Germany, formed a new duo with Amirtha Kidambi, and so much more. Now, with ‘Resonant Field’, Lea returns to her exploration of site-specific acoustic phenomena. This new album is centered around recordings of alto saxophone played inside the cavernous concrete structure of the Marine A Grain Elevator, located at Silo City in Buffalo, New York. Lea was able to beautifully capture the haunting resonances that Silo City possesses, and brought them back to the studio to transform them into four stunning electro-acoustic compositions of saxophone, field recordings, tape manipulation, and additional collaborative instrumentation.
‘Resonant Field’ will be available on Special Edition Vinyl, featuring screen printed jackets containing an insert booklet featuring liner notes, drawings, photographs by the artist, plus schematics of the Marine A Grain Elevator silo. Presented in a limited edition of 400 copies packaged with a digital download coupon, along with a standard Digital edition.
★ The first 100 LP copies will be pressed on Translucent Smoke with Silver & Black Splatter vinyl – first come first served, no additional charge. The remainder of the edition will be pressed on black vinyl.
PLUS – We’re happy to announce a fantastic album release concert:
Thursday, July 11th 2019
1665 Norman Street
Ridgewood, NY 11385
Lea Bertucci with James Ilgenfritz (5 string double-bass)
C. Lavender LEYA
8pm | $10
Tracklist: 1. Wind Piece (4:54)
2. Warp and Weft (12:53)
3. Resonant Field (17:32)
4. Deliquescence (2:26)
We’re thrilled today to finally unveil the debut single from ‘Artificial Fairytales’, the upcoming album from Alice Cohen & The Channel 14 Weather Team. “Plastic Paradise” is a prime example of Alice Cohen’s cultivated sound, with funky, danceable rhythms, juicy synths, and incredibly catchy songwriting. For the music video, Alice teamed up with the director/cinematographer duo of Gabrielle Muller and Alice Millar to create a dreamy tale set in the crusty seaside utopia land of Wildwood, New Jersey. It depicts the fantasy life of a barmaid who works at a local sailor bar, and dreams of escaping her mundane existence. Eventually, she finally works up the courage to leave her waitress job, and joins the Channel 14 band onstage to bring the party to the people. Many thanks to Harley Brown and our friends over at Billboard for hosting the video premiere, along with a great write-up and an interview with Alice herself – click here to watch and read. Also available on our YouTube channel.
★ The first 100 LP copies will be pressed on Lavender & Slate Blue swirl vinyl – first come first served, no additional charge. The remainder of the edition will be pressed on black vinyl.
Director: Gabrielle Muller
Cinematographer: Alice Millar
Assistant Camera: Swelee Joseph Millar, Wonnie Shen
Editing: Fay Gartenberg Featuring Alice Cohen, Gabrielle Muller, Adrian Knight, David Lacker, BJ Rubin, Zach Phillips, Max Zuckerman, Bryce Hackford, Dominika Mazurova, Grace Chang, Nicole Louie, Hanna Lea Novak, Tom Henry and Mikel Durlam
Hair: Megan Morganweck
Color Correction: David Carson
Shot in Wildwood, NJ and at Magick City, Brooklyn.
We’re thrilled today to announce a brand new full-length from an NNA newcomer, and our 2nd vinyl release of the year. Alice Cohen & The Channel 14 Weather Team’s ‘Artificial Fairytales’ is officially available now for pre-order on Vinyl, CD, and Digital formats.Alice may be new to NNA, but she is no stranger to the world of music. Having been immersed in music since childhood, Cohen has been writing songs, performing, and playing live since age 14 in her hometown of Philadelphia. Traversing through the realms of soul, funk, disco, new wave, and grunge, Alice has since settled in New York City, working diligently on her solo work in the modern art pop underground. ‘Artificial Fairytales’ is her sixth solo full-length, joined now by The Channel 14 Weather Team (Adrian Knight and David Lackner) to build upon her sound, presenting us with 9 fresh tracks of rhythmic electronic synth pop goodness. She has recently expanded her live band to include NNA family Ryan Power on drums, and Zach Phillips (Blanche Blanche Blanche, OSR) on bass. This album is a truly special addition to our discography, and we’re so excited to bring this album to life in the true NNA spirit of audio-visual artist collaboration.
Alice is also a talented visual artist, working primarily in stop-motion collage video. We’re happy to share this teaser video made by the artist herself, giving a sneak peak of what’s to come. Watch below or on our YouTube page.
We’re psyched today to share “New Organ,” the first official single, and accompanying music video, from ‘The Glare Of Success,’ the upcoming new album from The Cradle. Much like the “A Thought That Deletes” music video from The Cradle’s previous album ‘Bag Of Holding,’“New Organ” is another creative audio/visual collaboration between Paco Cathcart (The Cradle) and Anina Ivry Block (Palberta). Video art and music combine to create an abstract and intimate whole, genuinely capturing the unique spirit of Paco Cathcart’s work. Watch below, or visit our YouTube page for more content from The Cradle, plus tons of others. Also available for listening on Bandcamp and Soundcloud.
‘The Glare Of Success’ is available worldwide on April 12th, 2019 on Cassette & Digital formats. Available now for pre-order in our Shop. Also available on Bandcamp.
Cassette edition includes a double-sided color insert featuring the original ‘Bag Of Holding’ cover art, plus a complete lyrics sheet. ★ NNATapes.com Exclusive: Order the Cassette + Vinyl LP Bundle and receive ‘The Glare of Success’ PLUS The Cradle’s previous NNA album ‘Bag of Holding’ together for one low price.
We’re also happy to share some fresh tour dates, which conclude with a special album release concert in Paco’s home town of New York City. He will be heading south and back with Holy People for a week of shows – dates below.
The Cradle + Holy People “Fool’s Errant Tour” April 2019
4/5: Baltimore, MD at The Aquarium w/ Mems
4/6: Asheville, NC at Static Age Records
4/7: Nashville, TN at Betty’s Grill w/ Cherry Blossoms
4/8: Birmingham, AL at The Firehouse w/ Minerals
4/9: Athens, GA at The Mill
4/12: Philadephia, PA at Magic Pictures w/ Alex Tatarsky & House of Fear
4/14: New York, NY at Flowers For All Occasions (Album Release Concert)
We are psyched today to deliver some great news – new music from The Cradle is here. Following up the acclaimed 2018 NNA debut ‘Bag of Holding,’ we are now happy to officially announce that ‘The Glare of Success’ is coming April 12th, 2019 on Cassette & Digital formats. For this release, The Cradle’s Paco Cathcart has taken an innovative approach to a follow-up album by extracting the isolated orchestral and vocal elements from his ‘Bag of Holding’ full-length, and used them as source material to create an entirely new song cycle. The sounds of Sammy Weissberg‘s lush orchestral arrangements and Palberta‘s vocal harmonies are recycled and remixed, using the sonic essence of dub music as inspiration to create a new set of rhythmically-driven electronic compositions. Cathcart’s natural talents in the mixing and editing process are on full display on this recording, creating a perfect companion album to the largely acoustic worlds of ‘Bag of Holding.’ Check out a sneak preview of the track “Giving Dub” on the album teaser below:
‘The Glare of Success’ is officially out on April 12th, 2019 on Cassette & Digital formats. »Click here to pre-order from our Shop. ☆NNATapes.com Exclusive:Order the Cassette + Vinyl LP Bundle and receive ‘The Glare of Success’ PLUS The Cradle’s previous NNA album ‘Bag of Holding’ together for one low price. Also available for pre-order on Bandcamp.
1. Victorious Dub (4:48)
2. Call Out Dub (3:01)
3. The Name of Willis Reed (2:20)
4. Dub of Holding (2:36)
5. When We Forget Each Other’s Names (1:11)
6. New Organ (3:31)
7. Day’s End Dub (4:46)
8. Poison Mushroom (2:10)
9. Intro (0:38)
10. I’ll Give Dub (5:42)
NNA is thrilled today to unleash another single from ‘La Fine Del Futuro,’Tredici Bacci‘s masterful upcoming full-length. “Felicity Grows” is another vivacious Simon Hanes original, with a delicately simmering samba rhythm that erupts into a robust, dynamic orchestral chorus, full of cascading strings, fierce saxophones, and a poignant piano backbone. The song also features another amazing performance from lead vocalist Sami Stevens, who once again shows her dazzling range and classical adaptability with her superb voice. “Felicity Grows” is composed by Hanes in collaboration with JG Thirlwell (Foetus; “Archer” and “Venture Bros.” original soundtracks), who also wrote the lyrics. Thirlwell has been a longtime friend and collaborator of the band since 2016’s ‘Amore Per Tutti,’ and also lent his unmistakable vocals to ‘La Fine Del Futuro’s debut single “Emmanuelle.”
To accompany this colorful tune, we’re also excited to share a complementary music video, directed by the bandleader Simon “Luxardo” Hanes along with Chris “Mr. Transylvania” Shields. Tastefully filmed and edited in classic black & white, Sami and the orchestra audition for the Maestro himself, but will they make the cut? Watch below to find out…
Available on our YouTube channel – subscribe for more exclusive NNA audio/visual content.
‘La Fine Del Futuro’ is available now for pre-order on Vinyl, CD, and Digital formats. Click here to order from our Shop – including an exclusive 2 LP bundle that includes both Tredici Bacci full-length albums: ‘Amore Per Tutti’ and ‘La Fine Del Futuro’ together for one low price.
Also available for purchase on Bandcamp.
It is our pleasure today to share a brand new music video from Tredici Bacci! “In The 1970s” is the second single from the upcoming full-length album ‘La Fine Del Futuro,’ following the previous yuletide single “Emmanuelle” which we shared on Christmas Eve. “In The 1970s” is a perfect example of a new musical direction from Tredici Bacci, locking into the essence of orchestral pop hits of yesteryear, calling to mind the mastery of Burt Bacharach, Dionne Warwick, The Carpenters, classic showtunes and more. With Sami Stevens’ opening lines “everything was so much better in the 1970s,” one could even say this is Tredici Bacci’s manifesto. The video, directed by Zachary T. Scott with cinematography by Taylor Camarot, tells the story of an oddball murder mystery involving a psychedelic backyard barbeque orgy gone wrong, complete with a vixen-led sex cult and some questionable police officers. Huge thanks to our friends at Tiny Mix Tapes for sharing the video, which you can watch on their site here complete with nice write-up. Also available on our YouTube channel below.
It is with utmost thrill and pleasure that we announce today a brand new full-length album from one of NNA’s nearest and dearest artists, Tredici Bacci!‘La Fine Del Futuro’ is officially available NOW for pre-order on Vinyl, Compact Disc, and Digital formats. Following up the band’s debut EP ‘The Thirteen Kisses Cassetta’ way back in 2014, up through 2016’s masterful full-length ‘Amore Per Tutti,’ we’re honored now to present ‘La Fine Del Futuro’ as our first LP/CD release of the new year. ‘La Fine Del Futuro’ hones in on the classic Bacci sound, while expanding their palette and influences with a full orchestral line-up of extremely talented musicians. You’ll hear plenty of Simon Hanes‘ original compositions and arrangements, plus covers, collaborations (one with Hanes’ cohort JG Thirlwell, and one with NNA’s own Ryan Power), and the unbelievable vocal prowess of Sami Stevens.
The first 50 LP copies ordered will come pressed on Giallo & Pink Split vinyl, and the second 50 LP copies ordered will come pressed on Solid Pink vinyl in the usual first-come-first-served fashion. The remainder of the edition comes on standard black vinyl.
We’re also offering a special 2x Vinyl Bundle that includes both‘La Fine Del Futuro’PLUS Tredici Bacci’s previous full-length album ‘Amore Per Tutti’ together for one low price.
“Tredici Bacci keeps the collaborative spirit alive with their track “Emmanuelle,” a deranged, gun-slinging take on a yuletide classic featuring vocals from Simon Hanes’ partner-in-crime JG Thirlwell (Foetus, Venture Brothers). This creative rearrangement of a 12th Century hymn turns a Christmas favorite into a sinister Spaghetti Western anthem as Thirlwell’s guttural sneer weaves a menacing tale of good versus evil.”
Stay tuned for more Tredici Bacci news in early January, and Happy New Year from NNA Tapes!
As our 10th Anniversary year comes to a close, its time once again for our annual Year End Sale!
To show our appreciation for your support over the last decade, this year we’re offering 20% Off EVERYTHING in our catalog until January 1st, 2019. This includes our Shop here at nnatapes.com, plus our Bandcamp page. To participate, simply enter the coupon code NNA2018 upon check-out to receive your discount.
NNA is extremely excited today to announce our inaugural release for the new year, ‘Activated Clown’ by S. Araw Trio XIII. The “Trio” is a new configuration of the Sun Araw Band, the live-action collaborative branch of Sun Araw (brainchild of Los Angeles artist Cameron Stallones). Sun Araw has been steadily active for a full decade now, pushing their own flavor of psychedelic music to it’s limits, initially as a solo project, then expanded to a full band, and now also active as a special “Trio” formation with a rotating lineup. Trio XIII, consisting of Cameron Stallones, Jon Leland, and Tomo Jacobson, is dedicated to live improvised electronic music, performed in various locales around our Earth sphere. Following their first two digital releases ‘Antwerp’ and ‘Warsaw’ on Stallones’ own Sun Ark Records, ‘Activated Clown’ brings us two long-form pieces recorded live during a residency at Grnation in Braga, Portugal. These two pieces, performed with Fender Rhodes, guitar, synthesizers, Vdrum, and ribbon controller (to name a few), achieve enlightened headspaces through a unique language of deep-fried MIDI jazz, making tasteful and expert use of pace, texture, melody, and telepathic connection. We’re so psyched to kick off 2019 with such a special cassette release. Check out the official album announcement & preview from Resident Advisor here for more information.
PLUS, we’re offering a special Cassette + T-Shirt combo package (exclusive to nnatapes.com), featuring an Ash Grey shirt with a two-color silkscreen print, designed by Cameron Stallones himself. Check out our Shop for more details.
Listen to an excerpt from Side A – “Hermeto’s Tume”
We’re elated to report today that ‘Temporary etc.’, the brand new full-length album from percussionist Booker Stardrum, is now available for streaming in it’s entirety courtesy of our friends over at Noisey. Writer Colin Joyce gives an in-depth listen and analysis of the new record, as well as sharing some insight from the artist himself via email correspondence. ‘Temporary etc.’ is a truly stimulating and refreshing listen as a complete entity, with one track flowing seamlessly into the next to create a fluid, singular experience. Many thanks to Colin Joyce for the intelligent write-up, and to Noisey for hosting and supporting adventurous new music. Click here to read and listen.
‘Temporary etc.’ is officially out this Friday, October 26th. Pre-orders are shipping now. The first 100 copies of the LPX Series LP come on limited edition Sea Blue w/ Diamond White Splatter vinyl, first come first served while supplies last. Click here to order from our Shop, or from our Bandcamp page. Tour dates (including two record release concerts in LA and NYC) and more can be found below.
10/25: Baltimore, MD – Solo @ 2640
10/26: Philadelphia, PA – Solo @ Jerry’s on Front
10/28: Brooklyn, NY – Solo @ Union Pool 10/29: Chicago, IL – Solo + trio w/ Dave Rempis + Beth McDonald @ Experimental Sound Studio
10/30: Chicago, IL – Trio w/ Katie Young + Matt Mehlan @ Comfort Station
11/11: Joshua Tree, CA – Solo @ Beatnik Lounge
11/14: Los Angeles, CA – Solo @ Zebulon 11/15: San Francisco, CA – Solo + w/ Sontag Shogun’s Braided Sound @ The Luggage Store Gallery 11/17: Los Angeles, CA – Duo w/ Andrew Bernstein @ Coaxial
11/18: San Diego, CA – Solo @ SDCP
NNA is thrilled to announce a brand new vinyl release for the fall season – Booker Stardrum ‘Temporary etc.’ is officially available now for pre-order. It’s been 3 years since Stardrum’s 2015 NNA debut ‘Dance And,’ and we’re honored to present a new full-length album of the Los Angeles-based percussionist/composer’s unique and otherworldly music. Having spent the better part of the last decade recording and performing with a variety of artists and groups, including Cloud Becomes Your Hand, VaVatican, Lee Ranaldo, Weyes Blood, and Nels Cline, ‘Temporary etc.’ further hones Booker’s distinct vision for the melding of percussive and electronic worlds, exploring electro-acoustic spaces and pan-tonal / pan-rhythmic musical concepts. Recorded, engineered, and mixed with Deerhoof’s John Dieterich, ‘Temporary etc.’ collects nine tracks that flow seamlessly together as one organic entity, ranging from scattered, frenetic drumming to droning, churning minimalism.
‘Temporary etc.’ is the third installment of NNA LPX, our Limited Edition Vinyl LP series, featuring boutique packaging that utilizes locally-sourced manufacturers & small businesses from our hometown of Burlington, Vermont USA. Each LPX record is hand-assembled, numbered, and stamped to ensure limited edition authenticity. The vinyl, silkscreen-printed jackets, and stamps are all produced here in Burlington in order to support & sustain our local creative community. The LP is limited to an edition of 350 copies, with the first 100 copies on custom colored vinyl available on a first-come first-served basis while supplies last. The remainder of the edition will be pressed on White vinyl.
We’re thrilled to share an official trailer video today featuring an excerpt of the track “Swimming,” with video and animation by the inimitable and brilliant Peter Nichols. Check it out below or on our YouTube page:
Cover artwork by Hrafnhildur Helgadóttir.
Portrait photograph by Emma Rae Norton.
Booker Stardrum September/October Tour Dates: 10/25: Baltimore, MD – Solo @ 2640 10/26: Philadelphia, PA – Solo @ Jerry’s on Front 10/28: Brooklyn, NY – Solo @ Union Pool 10/29: Chicago, IL – Solo + trio TBA @ Experimental Sound Studio 10/30: Chicago, IL – Trio w/ Katie Young + Matt Mehlan @ Comfort Station 11/10: Joshua Tree, CA – Solo @ TBA 11/14: Los Angeles, CA – Solo @ Zebulon 11/15: San Francisco, CA – Solo + w/ Sontag Shogun’s Braided Sound @ The Luggage Store Gallery 11/17: Los Angeles, CA – Duo w/ Andrew Bernstein @ Coaxial 11/18: San Diego, CA – Solo @ SDCP
Super exciting news to share today – NPR’s Tiny Desk Concert series with Kalbells is now live! Kalbells, the solo music of Kalmia Traver (Rubblebucket), made their debut on NNA last summer with the acclaimed full-length album ‘Ten Flowers,’ and have since been touring and performing all across the US with an amazing full band. They recently stopped by NPR headquarters in Washington, DC to meet up with Bob Boilen and the Tiny Desk crew to record a live performance in the outstanding Tiny Desk tradition. Click here to watch!
“The band makes life-affirming music that Kalmia created over the past few years, filled with the triumph of being cancer free. The joie de vivre is palpable.” –Bob Boilen, NPR Muisc
Here’s what director Corbin Ordel has to say about the video:
“I wanted to film Marilu and Adam from two places; the first would be outside, brightly lit, and loud, the second would be inside, dimly lit, and peaceful. These locations are a true representation of what their music does to me, both live and recorded. It’s a full on grounding machine, a peacemaker, music to make a pin drop audible inside your own head. I get chills when their natural holding of court makes every room they play completely silent, and how incredibly loud it gets with applause in their between songs. You feel the energy and blissful tension build up and you feel the release after the final notes are played. I wanted to represent this on film, in one shot, in a close up and personal way. The idea in my mind was to put a sheet of glass between us and the band, so as to keep our eyes directly on the musicians.
We walked out and cast our microphones to catch the sounds of the street, and the train, and the people, and their footsteps, and kept it rolling as we retreated inside to see Leya transform into performance, transitioning from talking to singing, walking to plucking, light to dark, everything to nothing, nothing to everything. We focus the light on the sounds of Adam and Marilu. These concepts cover our reason for filming in a place that is a very familiar setting for everyone involved in this video, outside is everything and on the inside is focus.”
LEYA’s debut album ‘The Fool’ is available NOW from NNA on Cassette & Digital formats.
It is with very proud hearts today that we can formally announce a true milestone for our label. A long, long time in the making, the time has finally come to present ‘Centennial’ to the world. Two of the most important things that keep us going are working with all of our talented artists, and the spirit of collaboration. This monumental box set encapsulates both of these ideals to us. For its arrival to also fall on our 10-year anniversary only makes it that much more special. Infinite thanks to all of the artists involved, and our dear friend Brian Raymond for making it a reality. Without further ado, here are the official details:
Over the past decade, NNA Tapes has had the privilege of working with an incredibly diverse, hand-picked selection of artists and musicians from all corners of our planet. With the advent of the 100th catalog number in our discography, we knew we wanted to celebrate this personal milestone with a special release that went back to our roots in the limited edition cassette tape medium, and that also encompasses the unique variety of music that our label has been able to touch upon throughout the years. We reached out and reconnected with the artists who contributed their talents to our label from our first release up to our 99th, asking them to participate in an epic scale project that celebrates not only our 100th official release, but our 10-year anniversary as well. We are very proud to finally announce the culmination of these efforts – ‘Centennial’ is here. This special compilation contains nearly six hours of music, with 66 tracks spread across six professionally duplicated cassette tapes, housed in a 10×10” hand-made brushed aluminum box, adorned with an embossed NNA logo. The box also contains a full-color poster insert featuring original artwork by Robert Beatty, as well as a digital download coupon. Featuring unreleased, exclusive tracks from:
Sun Circle, Pregnant Moon, Duane Pitre, Pink Desert, Jefre Cantu-Ledesma, Toby Aronson, Caboladies, Harmonizer, Jeff Astin & Raymond Reitano, Time Life, Nonhorse, Driphouse, Pulse Emitter, Ryan Garbes, Hobo Cubes, Headboggle, WANDA GROUP, Hubble, Ken Seeno, Aguirre, Dog Lady Island, Mike Shiflet, Drainolith, Innercity, Quicksails, Hex Breaker Quintet, Co La, Rale, Lieven Martens Moana, Keith Fullerton Whitman, Ryan Power, Le Révélateur, PHORK, Decimus, Belarisk, Howard Stelzer, Transcendence Orchestra (with Anthony Child & Daniel Bean), Blanche Blanche Blanche, Je Suis Le Petit Chevalier, Jason Lescalleet, Ahnnu, Astral Social Club, Migrations In Rust, Banny Grove, Guerilla Toss, Tredici Bacci, Battle Trance, Sediment Club, Kid Millions & Sarah Bernstein, Wei Zhongle, Olivia Block, Patrick Higgins, Booker Stardrum, Jake Meginsky, AJ Cornell, Nerftoss, Fox/Soper Duo, die Reihe, Max Eilbacher, GRID, Lea Bertucci, and Wren Kitz.
We are also offering some special deals, exclusive to nnatapes.com – purchase a package deal of either Centennial + any NNA vinyl LP, or any two NNA vinyl LPs, for only an extra $5.00 per record. Head to our Shop for more information.
We’re very excited today to share the second official single from ‘Bag Of Holding,’ the upcoming full-length album from The Cradle. “Cell Games and Beyond” is set against a tender foundation of Paco Cathcart’s gorgeous acoustic guitar playing, weaving a lyrical tale of a sci-fi-tinged modern love triangle with his candid and imaginative writing. Like the first single “Sweet Dreams,” this song features beautifully punctuated vocal harmonies from Palberta‘s Anina Ivry-Block and Lily Konigsberg that accentuate the lyrics in all the right places. The talents of collaborator and friend Sammy Weissberg are featured prominently as well, as the song breaks down into an orchestral suite of strings and wind instruments, with emerging melodic motifs that add to the song’s woefully romantic sentiments. Listen below via our Soundcloud page:
PLUS, we’re happy to announce The Cradle Northeast US tour dates with Eyes Of Love!
• July 25th: Portland, Maine @ The Apohadion Theater (link)
• July 26th: Boston, Massachusetts @ Dorchester Art Project (link)
• July 27th: Brooklyn, New York @ Sugarlife Lounge (link)
• July 28th: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania @ Tundradome (link)
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We’re honored today to officially announce our sixth release of 2018 – ‘Bag Of Holding’ by The Cradle is available now for pre-order on Vinyl and Digital formats. The Cradle is the solo music of NYC-based artist Paco Cathcart, a member of the bands Big Neck Police, Shimmer, and Climax Landers, and also a talented recording engineer, writer, and much more. His newest full-length album ‘Bag Of Holding’ takes Cathcart’s distinctive style of homespun folk/pop music and elevates it to the next level of refinement through it’s brilliant production and collaborative nature. For this album, Cathcart enlisted the help of close friends and like-minded artists to add new layers of depth to his recordings, both through the luscious orchestral string & wind arrangements of Sammy Weissberg (a longtime collaborator of The Cradle), plus the harmonic vocal assistance from Lily Konigsberg, Nina Ryser, and Anina Ivry-Block (Palberta). The result is a collection of songs that are both moving, intricate, poignant, and unique, with new details emerging from each listen.
We’re super happy today to share the debut single from ‘Bag Of Holding’ entitled “Sweet Dreams,” which is also the album’s opening track. Huge thanks and gratitude to our friends at Stereogum for hosting the premiere of this song – click here to listen and read the full article.
‘The Hole In The Landscape’ is the second release in our new LPX Limited Edition Vinyl Series, which utilizes local businesses and craftspeople from our hometown of Burlington, Vermont to create it’s boutique packaging. Each record is hand-numbered, stamped, and assembled by Toby & Matt of NNA here in Burlington to ensure limited edition authenticity. These records feature silkscreen printed jackets inside a resealable poly sleeve, as well as a protective poly disc sleeve to keep the vinyl out of harm’s way. Digital download coupons are also included inside each copy. The first 100 orders will receive a limited edition colored vinyl version on sublime Pink & Blue Swirled vinyl, first come first served. The remainder of the edition is pressed on White vinyl. These records came out beautifully and we’re excited for folks to finally see, hear, and hold these. ‘The Hole In The Landscape’ is officially available worldwide this Friday, May 25th – pre-orders have already begun shipping. Click here to order your copy from our Shop. Also available from our Bandcamp page.
“They occasionally indulge the celestial glissandos you might imagine, but more often they embrace a more complicated tonality and melancholic pace—the predominant moods seem to be confusion, uneasiness”
Today it is our distinct pleasure to announce a brand new NNA release: Tsembla ‘The Hole In The Landscape’ is now available for pre-order on Limited Edition Vinyl & Digital formats. Tsembla is the solo musical endeavor of Finnish-Swedish artist Marja Ahti, a member of the Kemialliset Ystävät musical collective, as well as one half of electro-acoustic duo Ahti & Ahti with her partner Niko-Matti Ahti. The music of Tsembla is a lush, electronic world of creative new sounds, pieced together meticulously with incredible detail. ‘The Hole In The Landscape’ is a collection of eight tracks based around the ideas of positivity and negativity in terms of matter, and the absence and presence of the physical world around us. Ahti uses synthesizers in conjunction with played and sampled instruments, objects, field recordings, and more to create an intriguing patchwork of rhythm, texture, and melody through the use of intricate layering. This album is the second release in NNA’s LPX Limited Edition Vinyl series, which utilizes local manufacturers, businesses, and craftspeople from our hometown of Burlington, Vermont. These records feature silkscreen printed jackets and colored vinyl, and are hand-stamped, numbered, and assembled by Matt & Toby in a limited edition of 350 copies. Plus, the first 100 copies will come on limited Swirled Pink & Blue vinyl on a first come, first served basis (the remainder of the edition will come on White vinyl). Pre-orders are available now in our Shop. Officially available everywhere on May 25th, 2018.
As part of our ongoing celebration of 10 Years of NNA Tapes (2008-2018), we’re thrilled to formally announce our two-night NNA Tapes Showcase at this year’s Northside Festival in Brooklyn, New York! Also celebrating their 10-year anniversary, Northside Festival is graciously hosting two nights of 100% NNA music at their annual arts & music festival in the heart of New York City. Our first show is on Thursday, June 7th at the infamous Union Pool and features live performances from Tredici Bacci, Ryan Power, Erica Eso, and Kalbells. Night 2 is the following day on Friday, June 8th at Film Noir Cinema and features live performances from Lea Bertucci, Qasim Naqvi (of Dawn of MIDI), Marilu Donovan (of LEYA), and Jake Meginsky. Plus, each artist will be performing live with projected cinematic accompaniment, featuring works by a diverse lineup of artists and filmmakers. We’re so excited and honored to have such diverse, comprehensive NNA representation at Northside this year, and we can’t wait for the festival.
Tigue on their latest video: “We shot this video over the course of a weekend in a 50+ year old gymnasium in Brooklyn. Originally we were planning to hone in on the sculptural nature of our performances — how the arrangement of our instruments can influence how we play and how we write — so we captured performances of the track in a couple different configurations. Simultaneously we spent a lot of the weekend talking about dreams and “strange paradise” and eventually found imagery that seemed to capture the experience in dreams where surroundings feel familiar but are clearly something else.”
Matt Evans — Editor, Producer
Steven Reker — Director
Ty Flowers — Director of Photography, Colorist
Dan Foley — Production Designer, Lighting Designer
Grace Chang — Wardrobe
Today we’re proud to announce our annual showcase for Vermont’s greatest music festival, Waking Windows 2018! The folks of Waking Windows have been bringing massive amounts of live music, art, food, live comedy, and good times to downtown Winooski, Vermont for nearly 8 summers now, and we’re thrilled as ever to present a special 2018 showcase show with a 100% NNA Tapes lineup. Join us on May 4th, 2018 at Lucky Cloud on 13 E Allen St in Winooski, VT for live performances from:
Today we’re extremely excited to announce our first cassette release of 2018, the debut album by LEYA entitled ‘The Fool.’ LEYA is the new duo of Adam Markiewicz (violin, voice) and Marilu Donovan (harp, voice). Markiewicz and Donovan are New York City-based musicians who have collectively collaborated with a diverse array of forward-thinking music projects, including The Dreebs, PC Worship, Eartheater, GABI, and many more. Their recorded debut ‘The Fool’ is a collection of eight haunting tracks that experiment with alternate tunings of the violin and harp, and the unsettlingly beautiful effects that result in combining vocals with their string-based compositions. ‘The Fool’ also features three collaborative tracks that combine their sound with like-minded artists: Eartheater, PC Worship, and Sunk Heaven. Pre-orders and more information can be found here in our Shop.
We’re happy to share the first single, “Sister,” in the form of a music video directed by Kathleen Dycaico. Many thanks to our friends at SPIN Magazine for premiering the video and for the thoughtful write-up. Click HERE to check it out.
Today we are thrilled release the 3rd and final single from NYC avant-pop outfit Erica Eso. “House That’s Always Burning” features sultry vocals from Angelica Bess (also of Body Language + Kalbells) and is augmented by aggressive rhythms from an alchemy of both live and electronic drums and relentless arpreggiated synth melodies.
Today we’re thrilled to announce that ‘Strange Paradise’ by Tigue is available now for pre-order on Vinyl LP. ‘Strange Paradise’ is the brand new sophomore full-length album from New York City-based composer/performer percussion trio Tigue, who have been diligently performing and recording since their widely-acclaimed debut album Peaks (2015). Their percussion-based sound integrates elements of minimalism, art rock, electronic music, ambient, and so much more. On ‘Strange Paradise,’ Tigue have designed an album for extended listening where radiant phrases of tone, texture, and rhythm flow through one another in constant motion, creating dynamic shifts that as a whole provide a transcendent, ecstatic sound environment. We’re excited to team up again with our friends at New Amsterdam Records, who will be issuing the CD/Digital edition of the album.
You will also find full details for the official album release concert at Union Pool in NYC on March 4th with special guest Ruth Garbus. Coincidentally, 2018 marks the 10 year anniversary for not only New Amsterdam and (le) poisson rouge, but NNA Tapes as well. Come share this special event with us! Subtle Degrees will also be embarking on a US tour later this week – full dates can be found on our Live page.
Today we’re happy to share that PopMatters has premiered the brand new official music video for Erica Eso‘s second single “Love-gun” from their forthcoming album ‘129 Dreamless GMG’! Directed by Theo Cote, the slow-tempo dreaminess and tag-team vocal delivery of “Love-gun” gets progressively messier (in a good way) as the song progresses… read the full write-up by Sarah Zupko and watch the video here. Erica Eso’s Weston Minissali gives some great insights into the song’s creative songwriting and lyrical ambiguity.
This LP is the first installment of our new vinyl series, NNA LPX.LPX Series Limited Edition Vinyl LPs feature boutique packaging and utilize locally-sourced manufacturers & small businesses from our hometown of Burlington, Vermont USA. Each LPX record is hand-assembled, numbered, and stamped to ensure limited edition authenticity. The vinyl, silkscreen-printed jackets, and stamps are all produced here in Burlington in order to support & sustain our local creative community.
‘129 Dreamless GMG’ brings us 7 tracks of microtonal synth pop, combining elements of modern R&B, krautrock, and experimental electronics to deliver a refreshing, forward-thinking amalgamation of music for the Next Age.
We’re excited today to announce that NPR Music’s ‘Songs We Love’ has shared the debut piece of audio from Lea Bertucci‘s upcoming full-length album ‘Metal Aether,’ available everywhere on February 9th. Writer Marc Masters remarks on how Bertucci “devoutly mines the kaleidoscopic sonic possibilities of the saxophone,” comparing the piece to “a stream that’s both natural and human-made, freely flowing yet clearly directed by a patient hand.” Many thanks to Marc for his thoughtful and always-excellent writing, and to NPR Music for sharing. Click here to listen to “Patterns For Alto” and read the full write-up.
Happy new year! Our local newspaper Burlington Free Press just published an article on NNA, featuring insights from co-owner Toby Aronson.
Click here to read the article and watch a nice 4-minute video featuring words from Toby and a nice look inside our NNA Headquarters in Burlington’s Old North End. Thanks to Free Press writer Brent Hallenbeck for the excellent work
Today we’re very excited to announce brand new music from NNA Tapes artist Lea Bertucci. Following up her 2017 cassette release ‘All That Is Solid Melts Into Air,’ we’re thrilled to present Lea’s new full-length album ‘Metal Aether’ – now available for pre-order on Limited Edition Vinyl in our Shop.‘Metal Aether’ develops a language of extended technique for alto saxophone that is based on a spectral, psychoacoustic, and non-linguistic approach to the instrument. Much like the recordings of her previous NNA release, the work continues to explore Lea’s acute interest in the nature of acoustics and the harmonic accumulation of sound, with its four pieces having been recorded in Le Havre, France in a former military base, and in New York City, at ISSUE Project Room. Available everywhere on February 9th, 2018.
With the release of ‘Metal Aether,’ we’re also proud to debut our new LPX Vinyl Series. LPX Series Limited Edition Vinyl LPs feature boutique packaging and utilize locally-sourced manufacturers & small businesses from our hometown of Burlington, Vermont USA. Each LPX record is hand-assembled, numbered, and stamped to ensure limited edition authenticity. The vinyl, silkscreen-printed jackets, and stamps are all produced here in Burlington in order to support & sustain our local creative community.
In addition, its our pleasure to collaborate with ISSUE Project Room to announce a record release concert for ‘Metal Aether’ featured the incredibly talented Drew McDowall (of Coil) and NNA Tapes alum Olivia Block. This special event will take place at 8pm on Saturday, February 10th at ISSUE Project Room at 22 Boerum, Brooklyn, New York City. Official press release:
Saturday, February 10th, ISSUE presents an evening of site-responsive solo performances with composer Olivia Block, electronic artist Drew McDowell, and composer (and 2015 ISSUE Artist-In-Residence) Lea Bertucci. The evening observes each artist’s individual approach to presenting new work in ISSUE’s theater space, applying the room’s unique acoustics to inform their independent performative methods.
Olivia Block performs a new multiple speaker composition, continuing an ongoing investigation into the properties of wind and its related sounds and symbolic themes. Using a microphone and her breath, small fans, and other small objects on its surface, Block creates aural patterns and “currents” in the room, processing and moving sounds live on her laptop. At certain times, these currents, respond to the architecture and resonance of the space, swirling and flowing around the listeners in particular directions — as in the cold or warm currents of air over the oceans. At other times, all evidence of space and built shapes are erased, as microphone distortion obscures, then reveals additional sounds — voices, organ and piano — buried underneath the wind, settling in various locations in the room. The resonance of the room colors the wind sounds over time, as more tones enter into the mix.
The evening also features stalwart industrial and experimental pioneer Drew McDowall presenting new works which will become the basis of an album to be released on Dais Records in the Fall of 2018, following his previous releases Collapse (2015) and Unnatural Channel (2017) with the label. For this performance, the pieces make use of a quadraphonic array and are informed by and respond to the acoustics of the space. This proves to be a focused opportunity to hear new work from McDowall, known for his crucial contributions to legendary British avant-pop act Coil, Psychic TV, and numerous collaborative and solo projects that have been foundational to the development of meditative drone and abstract sound.
In addition, for her return to ISSUE, Bertucci celebrates the release of Metal Aether, her second album on NNA Tapes (following 2017’s All That Is Solid Melts Into Air), by presenting recent works for alto saxophone and tape that appear on the record, as well as a new composition that is directly informed by the particular acoustic qualities of 22 Boerum Place.
Boston, Massachusetts-based Birthing Hips releases a music video to the track ‘Internet’ which NPR calls “Beautifully Deranged”. The video was directed by Mood Killer & feature monstrous hands, stark lighting and food fights.
We’ve breached the final month of the year, which means it’s time again for our annual Year End Sale! 2017 was an incredibly prolific, refreshing, and productive year for new NNA music, and we’re honored and humbled to have worked with such talented artists to release eleven forward-thinking, progressive new music titles. To celebrate the closing of another year, and to welcome in another, we’re offering 25% OFF all of our 2017 releases (with the exception of Ahnnu ‘Special Forces’) for the month of December only. Simply use the code NNA2017 upon check-out to receive the 25% discount. This includes the following titles:
We’re excited to share today that Ahnnu‘s latest album ‘Special Forces’ is now available for listening in it’s entirety courtesy of Vice’s Noisey. Accompanying the stream is an excellent write-up and interview with Leland Jackson courtesy of writer Colin Joyce, giving some deep insight into Jackson’s musical philosophies and creative practices. Listen & read here.
‘Special Forces’ is available everywhere TOMORROW, December 1st. Order now to secure a copy on limited edition Translucent Red w/ Black Splatter vinyl (moving quickly), or pick up the T-Shirt Package which comes with a limited edition t-shirt featuring the album’s cover art, available exclusively at nnatapes.com – check it out here via our Shop.
Today we’re happy to share that Birthing Hips brand new full-length album ‘Urge To Merge’ is streaming NOW in it’s entirety, courtesy of our friends over at Dig Boston! Click here to listen and hear for yourself why Dig Boston’s Nina Corcoran asserts that “Urge to Merge is arguably the tightest Birthing Hips have ever been.” We’re so happy to release the final album by one of Boston’s most exciting, talented new bands. Order your copy of ‘Urge To Merge’ here from our Shop, officially available everywhere tomorrow, November 17th on Cassette and Digital formats.
Today we are thrilled to announce our final release of 2017 – and what a tremendous way to end the year. Ahnnu ‘Special Forces’ is available NOW for pre-order on Vinyl & Digital formats. We’re honored to welcome Los Angeles-based producer Ahnnu, aka Leland Jackson (Cakedog), back to NNA with a brand new full-length album. Following up 2013’s ‘Battered Sphinx,’ Jackson returns to push his sound collage expeditions further into the deep beyond by excavating fragments and ethos from music history’s past and infusing them with the electronic frequencies of a future landscape. ‘Special Forces’ continues the experimental & ever-evolving nature of the Ahnnu sound world, stripping the compositions further down to their core to reveal a hypnotic, alien minimalism that seems to transcend time and space.
‘Special Forces’ is available now for pre-order in our Shop – officially available everywhere December 1st. and we’re also offering an LP+Shirt Bundle containing a vinyl copy of the album along with an exclusive limited edition t-shirt featuring the cover artwork by Leland Jackson. PLUS, the first 100 LP copies will come on Translucent Red w/ Black Splatter vinyl – first come first served, no additional charge.
NNA Tapes is very excited to welcome Boston, Massachusetts-based Birthing Hips to the family. Their 2nd release, ‘Urge to Merge’ is record full of blistering noise rock + virtuosic performance. Pre-orders are available now in our Shop – officially available everywhere on November 17, 2017.
Today we’re pleased to announce new music from The Ah, the solo project of NYC-based musician Jeremy Gustin. Perhaps best known for his talents on the drum set with groups like Delicate Steve, David Byrne, Albert Hammond Jr., & Rubblebucket to name a few, The Ah is a different world altogether, conceived by Gustin as the product of collaboration with his own imagination and the world around him. It’s tough to describe The Ah’s sound with words, but one listen to Gustin’s electronic collages will leave you curious and craving more. Pre-orders are available now in our Shop – officially available everywhere on November 17, 2017.
Over the last 1.5 decades, Vermont-to-Brooklyn based songwriter/producer Ryan Power has tirelessly embarked on the quest to write the definitive song-based music, full of accuracy, refinement, deliberation, and perfectly-placed shifting harmonic puzzles. This show will be in celebration of his new NNA release: They Sell Doomsday. Ryan will perform two sets: one with Matt Mitchell, one with Tredici Bacci. Ryan is looking forward to this.
Today we’re thrilled to share the second official music video from Kalbells‘ debut album ‘Ten Flowers’! “Alonetime” was created and directed by Kalmia Traver herself, featuring lyrics translated to Chinese, Russian, German, and Spanish. Many thanks to Paste Magazine & Robert Ham for spreading the love. Check out their post here, or watch the video below:
We’re also very happy to announce that Kalbells will soon embark on their Fall 2017 Tour around the USA supporting And The Kids! Two very amazing live bands, be sure to check them out when they roll through your area. Dates below:
‘EVRLY MUSIC’ presents an incredibly original fusion between ancient European musical history and distinctly American experimentalism, hinged on the nexus between improvisation and chamber music, and fueled by a deeply personal musical alliance.
Pre-orders are available in our Shop – officially available everywhere on September 22nd, 2017.
It is with tremendous pleasure that we announce ‘They Sell Doomsday,’ the third full-length NNA album from acclaimed songwriter & producer Ryan Power. Nearly four years since his incredible previous album ‘Identity Picks,’ Ryan is back with a 15-song behemoth of a record – and perhaps his most complex and refined work to date. This is also a landmark release for NNA as it is our first Double LP, and the first 100 copies will come on decadent green & purple vinyl. Pre-order your copy here on CD, Vinyl, or Digital – officially out everywhere on October 20th.
Listen (and dance) to the debut single “Empty the Jewels” below:
Check out the album trailer, made by Ryan himself: