PRECIPITATION “EARTH / SKY” CS (SILK103) $7
The latest capsule collection from pensive Vancouver visionist Zefan Sramek aka Precipitation presents a more binary take on overcast house and half-light ambience, split between a rhythmic “earth” side and a smeared cirrus “sky” side. Tracked live to tape and padded with Pacific Northwest field recordings of rainy forests and wet meadows, the pieces soar, sink, and spiral like small birds blown by the wind, isolated and adrift. Past cuts for Ville Nouvelle (in the duo Aquatic Language) and Jungle Gym have shown Sramek’s versatility with vignette melody and soft-focus atmospherics but Earth / Sky distills them even further, into a muted, melancholic expanse of elemental conditions and emotive hypnosis. Mastered by Eric Hanson. Video stills by Zefan Sramek.
12″ + TAPE
THE CYCLIST “ALABASTER THRONES” 12″ (SILK105) $10 / $15
Last year’s altered mind opus, Sapa Inca Delirium, showcased The Cyclist at his most eclectic, spanning ayahuasca break-beat and rave jungle pop, but his latest EP returns to the uniquely kinetic and shredded mode of churning electronic rhythm he both named and perfected: “tape throb.” Alabaster Thrones collects four of Andrew Morrison’s recent and most vibrantly blasted house constructs, tracked at his home studio in Birmingham, UK during “the height of mania – a time when I had no time.”
The context translates: this is frayed and decayed music, shifting gears at sleepless hours in dim twisting tunnels. The title is “a deflation of grandiosity” cribbed from Ulysses (“…a noble race, rulers of the waves, who sit on thrones of alabaster, silent as the deathless gods”), though Morrison’s meaning is more personal: “It’s a reminder to level yourself and think of all those around you.” A captivating capsule of reflective forward motion for lean times. Mastered by Eric Hanson. Design by Britt Brown.
NOTE: 12″ is available individually or with exclusive full-length companion cassette, Beat At The Heart Of The City (SILK106), limited to 100 copies. (The tape is not for sale separately). While supplies last. Paypal accordingly.
HUBERT CLARKE JR “AL DENTE” 12″ (SILK083) $10
Impressionistic dub-house devotee Hubert Clarke Jr. fluctuates through several deviations of Sydney afterhours circuit specialties on his debut, Al Dente. Alternately wired and unwound, classic and contempo, vibed soul and lean house, the EP threads soft-focus funk into longform live voyages, naturalist emotion, dance as relaxed delirium. The vocal samples (“I’m not into this to be traveling around the world / I’m not into this to impress anybody”) evoke a mood of reflective idealism, spirits undiminished, hope in spite of it all. Dusted with memories and reveries of Heavenly, Picnic, and Mad Racket parties, hallucinated Omar-S demos, newer Sex Tags sides, and various nations under a groove, HJC’s 4 originals (plus a remix by Adelaide vibe squad MBM) feel like a beginning, a submerged energy swelling to the surface. Black vinyl 12 inches in stickered sleeves designed by Peta Farago with smiley meatball illustrations by John-Henry Pajak and Geordie Cargill. Mastered by Eric Hanson. Edition of 175.
SILK: THE FILM – DIGITAL RENTAL & PURCHASE
(via VHX) $1.99 / $6.99 / $7.99
SILK, the 100% Silk documentary and dance film, is available through VHX and Amazon Instant Video. Shot over two years, the film follows four acts from the label – LA Vampires, Ital, Magic Touch and Maria Minerva – across a lengthy 2012 tour of the UK, Europe and Russia. SILK chronicles the performances, environments, and scenes they passed through: congested underground Parisian clubs, motorcycle showrooms in Bristol, abandoned industrial lots in Moscow, afterhours Berlin compounds, re-purposed World War II gun towers in Hamburg, plus large international festivals (Distortion in Copenhagen, Sonar in Barcelona). The film is punctuated by staged dance sequences conceived, choreographed, and performed by Mecca Vazie Andrews and the Los Angeles Contemporary Dance Company. SILK premiered in 2013 at CPH:DOX in Copenhagen and subsequently screened at the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art in Denmark, as well as la Gaîte Lyrique in Paris. SILK was an official selection at the 2014 Amsterdam Dance Event, Melbourne International Film Festival, and Planete + Doc Film Festival in Poland. The SILK: DELUXE package includes the film as well as four exclusive live sets from the tour by each of the featured acts.