microphones in the trees: February 2012

Wednesday, February 29, 2012


“all i see is light” captures one of Köhn’s true cosmic healing sessions at the legendary house show venue ‘at Anthony’s’ in Ghent. we hear De Blonde’s weirder side, combining his love for late 70s kraut in more abstract terms with the old school Köhn vibe. think bizarre repetitive leads, eighties string work, oscillation paradises and other maneuvers in the dark. for those who liked we need more space in the cosmos, here he takes his nouveau brain sound even one step further.” k-raa-k

transcendental rodeo | matthew albert dunn

"four track album from this lysergic country/lunar blues group featuring matthew 'doc' dunn of mv & ee fame. the sound is raggedy communal goodtime ala the cherry blossoms, with mouth harp, banjo, guitar et al rendered in a lower east side hoedown style that is sure to appeal to fans of the holy modal rounders, mike nesmith, pat kilroy, david peel, tower recordings, peter grudzien, matthew valentine et al." volcanic tongue

"this is heady album of acoustic layers and dazed out folk. really great set of two tracks zoned out in a mist of haze" lucid owls

christina carter

"a new 7" by Christina Carter which serves as the opening ceremony for our new 7" series of solo performances 'Alone Together'. A loan voice, the tangled bells, the caw of a crow, a plane passing overhead… A fortuitous overlapping of sound moments, trapped in amber by Christina for us to bear witness. Much like her early cdrs 'Hand & Mind' or 'Human As Guitar', 'Obelisk/Tholos' is an act of white witchcraft, a healing spell that defines time with the merest of tools: bells, voice, a microphone…" emerald cocoon

foto: searching for the light by misha de ridder

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

blues control & laraaji

"...Laraaji plays an electronically modified zither w/a spectral aspect that is very appealing. This is an inspired pairing, with Laraaji bringing out Blues Control’s most phantom, otherworldly side across a series of slow-moving vistas that combine the hallucinatory tonal/rhythmic depth of Javanese gamelan with translucent exotica and creeping, barely-there synth stylings. Aspects of Jon Hassell, early choral/devotional music, Mirror/Andrew Chalk (especially in the distant piano sounds), even Organum cohere around wraiths of zither and floating flowers planted deep in haunted rainforests where snatches of vocals appear deep in the mix and the occasional single note rises to the surface with all of the magisterial slow-mo beauty of Loren Connors. By far and away my favourite Blues Control jam to date. Comes with a download card with bonus tracks. Highly recommended!" volcanic tongue

foto via sara gossett

(incluye dos bonus tracks, 'somebofy scream' y 'astral jam', de 35 y 28 minutos)

the diamond family archive

"laurence collyer makes music under the name the diamond family archive. everything i've heard from this traveling folksy i've fallen in love with, over & over.

here collyer has created a refreshing & imaginative album, effortlessly utilizing the banjo, piano, drums, sounds of the sea, rain, acoustic and treated guitars, effects, lap steel, box harp, zither, organ, casios, omnichord, harmonium, shruti box, radios, tapes, melodicas, percussion, bells, glockenspiel, electronics, found sounds, field recordings, voice, harmonicas & beyond.

the bulk of these recordings came together in an old sail loft on the day david carradine, the 70's actor, died. 'the death of kung fu' tells it's own dynamic story of a dreamer & his death. like snapshots of a day in the life, this album consists of 15 shorter tracks all displaying their charm within three minutes." tired trails

Monday, February 27, 2012

derek rogers

"Derek Rogers brings together five epic tracks of beautiful guitar and synthesizer.  Side one consists of four shorter tracks of distorted guitar and calming synth. Side two is one long, epic meditation." space slave editions

me hace especial ilusión recomendar la nueva cinta, tape, cassette, de derek rogers. además de ser la banda sonora perfecta para un paseo por el inhóspito desierto, la publica space lave editions, el sello creado por carl, autor del imprescindible blog amigo the radiant now.

entrevista a derek rogers en foxy digitalis by steve dewhurst

artwork: carl & derek rogers

sold out | download

talk west

"Tulsa, Oklahoma multi-instrumentalist and scissortail records guy Dylan Golden Aycock delivers this stunning batch of drone-folk meditations fashioned with a truly refreshing mix of synths, loops, air organ, and expressive pedal steel. These sunken timber hymns harken back to the roots of American experimentalism but stand in their own new space, lonesome bedroom ballads tinged with universal nostalgia. Edition of 70 pro-dubbed/imprinted tapes with letterpressed and risographed artwork." no kings

no kings (cambodian field recordings de stephen molyneux, disco de la vida) es el sello de lee noble, que a su vez es el autor de la portada original de freights & fields. además, dylan golden aycock (the doldrums) tiene su propio sello, scissortail records, que a su vez ha publicado el preciosísimo workers lament de golden pawn. y además son de oklahoma.

foto via sara gossett

endless caverns

"the buzz of the city is slowly wrapped with the humming body tones of the seven major chakras amplified. percussion, dilruba, trumpet, heartbeat, vocals, electric guitars and bells join in a mass of energies. sky high night jams for the sidewalk crowd recorded this past spring by Matt Lajoie (Herbcraft, Cursillistas, etc.) at the Building of Song in Portland. a dense journey through echoing sea port howls and shaken soul tremours. program repeats on side b. in an edition of 75 hand-painted tapes with an insert in a sewn fabric pouch."

sold out | download

"debut release from matthew lajoie. fripp & eno, terry riley, ambient, krautrock, inspired minimalist, composition, conceptual, drone guitar... primarily recorded direct to mono reel-to-reel in an empty frankincense and myrrh smoked out house on christmas eve, chalice toasted to the great north star, this a mediatation on isolation, astrological voyaging, and biblical magick."

sold out | download
(thanks to broadcasts from poor farm for the rip & the upload)

voodoo mount sister | annapurna illusion | hellvision

"Voodoo Mount Sister  makes it on tape for the first time. Following 2010 debut cdr on Winged Sun and first vinyl appearance on Hands in the dark records “Soul Sista” is their weird attempt to bring soul music in noise / drone improvisations. Recorded in one session in July 2011 that went in many different directions, from dark kraut to noisy dub to psych dance. The girl is on synths and vocals, the guy is on beats & bass."

A side : Old dusty files from 2009 that sounds like an old babylonian conjuring the spirit deads…Like if the necronomicon book turned into a tape…Heavy organ chords, black mess style.

B side : One night in Belgium. The meting of Annapurna Illusion and Helvette (Glen Steenkiste from Sylvester Anfang II), under the full moon, after a few smokes and a couple of drinks. Two exhausted minds improvising minimal dark drones.

foto: reuben wu

Saturday, February 25, 2012


"we’ve just released a cassette of new songs, all wintry and wrapped up warm in a lot of fuzz, it’s a mix of floaty vocals and sparse drum beats, and the b-sides are personalised. we have only made 50 coloured cassettes." deekie

"Deekie was formed in 2007 by an enigmatic London duo named Mr L and Neets, to fulfil a desire to write music together despite neither having much experience with the writing of their own songs prior to the bands formation. the pair have produced interesting and charming records comprised of delicate acoustic melodies and catchy, uplifting songs." fluid-radio

michael hurley & betsy nichols

"One day Betsy Nichols traveled all the way from the East Coast and showed up on the doorstep of Bellemeade Phonics Studio. Although she had never met the legendary 'Snock,' she was determined to sing a few songs with him and record them. Here are the results: four songs featuring duet vocals with guitar. A lovely but short version of 'Jockos Lament,' an epic version of 'Knockando," and the haunting 'River in the Rain.' Not a reissue but rather a bonafide contemporary recording never before heard." mississippi

foto via sara gossett

sold out | download

Friday, February 24, 2012

oracle offering | lightning strike lightning

"Howl's Angels by Oracle Offering, one half of Brainshadows, is a quiet and beautiful meditation for echoing voice, flute and sympathetic strings by a lone female artist. Very spooky-ooky and sure to please fans of the chanteuses of Prisma or Visitations. One gets the feeling of observing an arcane ritual." cassette gods

sold out | listendownload*

* this is only a very small preview, three songs, of the actual tape. The tape is about 40 minutes long, in total. because it was recorded entirely on cassette, mixed and mastered to cassette, and dubbed 1-to-1 on cassette it never actually hit the digital realm. maybe in a few days we'll post all the songs. (thank you matt!)

"in which the ghosts in your attic, after leafing through your boxes of can and nnck albums, decide to pick up your broken instruments and make their own music. songs overflow with more sonic ingredients than the recorded medium can hold; guitar overdrive spilling all over banjo riffs, exponential layers of wordless vocals smothering the pristine marxophone, and rumbling percussion dousing the fattest basslines. all is permeated by a warm layer of cathedral reverb and cavern echo, pointing out the space in even the most dense and cluttered compositions."

fotolas: hoy.joy aka 'en mi próxima vidosa quiero ser un cactus'

sold out | download

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

hobo cubes

"This one blew us away with its reverb drenched arpeggios and bizarre sci-fi vibe. I couldn’t help imagining it as the soundtrack to some slow paced 70s space opera cartoon." orangemilk

"A sonic passage through transient mindscapes. A timeless journey that bridges the gap between memory and prophecy. An audible education in self-discovery and global investigation. Those are just a few ways to describe the spellbindingly pleasurable tracks that you will discover on this tape. Francesco De Gallo, a synth dynamo, encases us in a cocoon of reverb only to spread our wings and fly through a new world of sci fi hypnotics. I’ve heard some say that this is the most textual and full tape we’ve heard from Hobo Cubes so far and I don’t doubt it.

...it all feels like you can reach through the music and touch new worlds, new realities, new revelations. It’s like having one foot fixed here on common soil and the other dipping into something so unknown that it’s like a distant galaxy’s galaxy. A perfect way to end the summer, before the sobriety of winter chills blow in. Perceptive Pulses gives us yet a couple more sidelong tracks to feed heart, soul, and mind, and maintain a concretized career for Hobo Cubes. Super psychedelic art that almost nails the whole vibe perfectly. Pro dubbed and pro imprinted solid orange tapes, which are more than appropriate for a label called Orange Milk. Grab one before they return to the universe they came from." foxy digitalis

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

ruth garbus

"lovely set of guitar/voice studies from vermonter ruth garbus, reminding of kath bloom’s sides (both w/ & w/o loren connors) & linda perhacs’ effortlessly breathy “parallelograms”. but then again i imagine most will compare the omnipresent patina of tape-hiss & chiming guitar figures to liz “grouper” harris; fans of whom will most certainly want to investigate herein" mimaroglu

"ruth garbus used to be in a band called Feathers,  she still plays with kyle t. in a band called happy birthday, she lives with c. weisman in brattleboro & her sister is merrill Tune-yards.

is she a singer/songwriter? folk musician? chanteuse? torch singer? jazz vocalist? new age artist? tropicalia? early music?. im not sure what we should call it. maybe all of the above. well it doesn't really matter anyhow because we think you'll think ruth's new album is super good." autumn

foto: miroslav tichý

feathers, otro nombre con significado especial

gareth dickson

"To say that the last few years of Gareth Dickson’s life have been tumultuous would be an understatement. In 2007 he fell in love with a girl from South America, packed up a few essentials from his life in Scotland, and moved to the Argentinian countryside. It didn’t turn all fairy tale at that point, however. While there he was shot at, attacked by dogs, and was involved in a very close call when the passenger plane he took to a little town in the Andes was forced down after an engine caught fire. The bullet missed, the aircraft landed, and the dog bites healed; he survived intact, albeit a little more aware of his own mortality, and a good bit more anxious.

The bullet in all honesty was never meant to hit” he states calmly, it was a robbery gone wrong and he happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. The incident in the aircraft was far more terrifying because there was the agonizing time to think and reflect during the plane’s unintended descent. “It’s interesting to find out how you would react in that situation. Faced with the possibility that it’s really time up, I felt an overwhelming sense of this having been destiny, that it was impossible that I had boarded this aircraft by chance.”

...Gareth often gets comparisons to Nick Drake but it’s important to mention the influence he takes from experimentalists like Brian Eno, Bert Jansch, and Glenn Gould. His music is characterized by an intimacy gleaned from his dream-like approach to singing and playing guitar as well as the immediacy of being captured shortly after being written by whatever recording device is closest at hand, be it a cassette machine, handheld recorder, or 4-track. His use of analogue delays and reverb add to this soft, spacey vibe. The lo-fi nature of his sound harbors all of the cracks, flaws and rough edges of humanity, soul, and the deeply personal circumstances that surround the creation of art. ...Up until this point Gareth had been traveling as one of the mainstay’s in Vashti Bunyan’s touring band" 12k

Monday, February 20, 2012

sinner jim whitney | franklin & lajoie

"Pure analog dreams. Tape manipulations and radio singers, handmade loops, piano runs."

sold out | download

"White Fir & Herbcraft/Cursillistas brothers team up for free-form improvisations. Patched together from a few days of living room sessions. Horns, tapes, viola and guitar among other things, melted together into the fuzz."

sold out | download
(thanks to broadcasts from poor farm for the rip & the upload)

Sunday, February 19, 2012

shep and me

"these ramshackle lo-fi appalachian musings seems to capture the home-made fragile junkiness of this packaging quite well. the liner notes, which come in the form of a 14 page zine, include various photos and collages that further heighten the sense that you are listening to the next generation of east-coast weirdoes “gone native”; the original wave being the likes of the holy modal rounders." foxy digitalis

"Matt Himes is the man behind Shep and Me, which incorporates the sounds of experimental folk, outsider noise, tape loops, and acoustic balladry to create a sound that is wholly his own. He bumped his way onto a show that I set up in Bloomington a few years back. He set up simply with a small guitar and light accompaniment and captivated the room for the next 20-30 minutes. His sound, for me, evokes the images of punks living on homemade boats in the river, simple living, rotting Midwestern porches, and long, cold winter days that feel endless.

This tape compiles a few years of analog recordings in New Orleans, Pittsburgh, Evanston, IL and Whitesburg, and it's the perfect thing to listen to on a cold day with nothing ahead of you besides hot tea and unfinished projects." remote outposts

"psych-folk troubadour and Minnesota viking Matthew Himes opens up with some drifting ditties and outer world caterwauling (and even a Throbbing Gristle cover), and Tracey gathers a band on the B side, a quartet of Bloomington heavy-hitters covering the roamin' gnome's greatest hits."

cinco nombres con significado especial:

humito records
bruce langhorne
cap'n jack
field recordings
y shep and me

recreaciones acústicas, aires gospel apenas imperceptibles pero que están ahí, una voz inconfundible, rural, añeja, que parece atrapada por algo tan indescriptible como las postales de una louisiana de los años treinta, campos de algodón, tonadillas montañiles, como aquellos genios anónimos, menos conocidos que dock boggs o la familia carter, que ilustran la maravillosa 'anthology of american folk recordings'. demasiado bonito

Saturday, February 18, 2012

daniel bachman

"You can usually find Daniel Bachman at the local coffee shop wearing a plaid, flannel shirt and smoking a cigarette, or sitting on a porch drinkin’ a beer and playing this song on guitar. He is more of a mint tea man than a coffee person, but we don’t fault him for that. Daniel is single, turning 21 next week and you should buy him a drink. Those aren’t coke nails, they are for finger pickin’." chillwave

siguiendo la estela de aldea f aka adrianus: "llevaba tiempo este año queriendo tropezar con un disco así. cuando uno vuelve a reencontrarse y una y otra vez con fingerpickings como peter walker, robbie basho, richard bishop... las sensanciones lejos de diluirse se intensifican y sientes que se llena ese vacío interior y disfrutas con plenitud de principio a fin."

Thursday, February 16, 2012

the turin horse

si el propio Béla Tarr afirma que la película nació en 1985, cuando László Krasznahorkai (responsable del guión) escribió un relato acerca de la anécdota entre Nietzsche y el caballo que abrazó después de contemplar el maltrato infligido por su cochero, negando por agotamiento el seguir andando, es lógico quedarse bloqueado a la hora de emitir un juicio mínimamente sensato  tras terminar de ver The Turin Horse (¿necesitará la humanidad 20 años para entenderla?), película que intenta despejar la pregunta que planteó László en 1985; de Nietzsche sabemos que la resaca de ese episodio derivó en la pérdida del habla y la razón hasta el último de sus días, pero ¿y qué pasó con el caballo?

y ahí empieza la película, con probablemente la secuencia más poderosa que haya visto en mi vida. todo el drama que cabe en el mundo contenido en un plano secuencia de cinco minutos sostenido por una banda sonora apocalíptica (Myhály Vig que estás en los cielos), una fotografía asoladora (Fred Kelemen santificado sea tu nombre), con las estereotipias afines a los animales vencidos por el horror (el balanceo de la cabeza, el rumiar estéril de las correas, el galope mortecino) y el viento, sí, el mismo que se lleva las palabras pero no los hechos, de ahí que azote con violencia inmisericorde durante las dos horas y media que dura la agonía de la humanidad.

a partir de ahí Béla Tarr y su mujer Ágnes Hranitzky destruyen en seis días lo que dios creó en ese mismo tiempo, y lo hacen sin azúcar y sin sal más allá del aderezo de las patatas, el recuerdo de la fertilidad de la tierra cuando la humanidad trataba con cariño el arado. convirtiendo la cámara en un taladro que percute repetidamente las bases de la moral y la ética que deberían otorgarle a la humanidad los parámetros correctos para moverse con franqueza y honestidad por ese mundo que nos han regalado, y que, día a día, aniquilamos sin pararnos a pensar qué coño va a pasar cuando lo hayamos destruido. y aquí recupero un texto de Nietzsche que leí ayer al meterme en cama de "Así habló Zaratustra": "si tuviéseis más fé en la vida, os abandonariais menos al momento. ¡pero no tenéis bastante valor interior para la espera ni tampoco para la pereza!". Nietzsche empatizó con un caballo porque no entendía cómo el ser humano, con todo el intelecto que se le presupone, no es capaz de entender la libertad de aquellos que le rodean, sean animales, como en este caso, o humanos como en el rudo comportamiento que el padre regala a su hija, al caballo, a los gitanos o así mismo, al fin y al cabo la violencia empleada en pelar, romper y devorar las patatas no es más que una proyección de la frustración del que se ha perdido en la ignorancia de su yo.

por esa falta de valentía interior los personajes se abandonan al momento, a la rutina, incapaces de asumir el destino que ellos mismos se han labrado. un destino que el caballo asume desde el primer día, cuando las lágrimas que brotan de sus ojos anuncian el fín, el dejar de comer no es sino una muestra más de la avanzada concepción empírica que los animales tienen de la muerte, no tenemos que comer como asevera el padre a su hija en el sexto día, tenemos que morir, tenemos un largo camino por recorrer para aprender a morir.

si lo que buscas son porqués últimos, nada como pararse detenidamente en el monólogo del vecino que entra en la casa a por licor. da igual la forma, el fondo siempre ha sido el mismo, la codicia fue, es y será siempre nuestro mayor enemigo. que esta película resulte tan destroy se debe a la dignidad o decencia empleadas a la hora de filmar, que a algunos nos llegue ahí, lejos de perpetuar clichés gafapastiles, se debe, digo yo, a la predisposición a ver y no a mirar, la diferencia está en la intención. mirar es algo que se hace intencionadamente, mientras que ver es algo que sucede independientemente de nuestra voluntad. podríamos aplicar lo mismo al escuchar y oír, de ahí que cuando en una película coinciden ambas percepciones te corras emocionalmente. vuelvo a Nietzsche para cerrar: "la vida está echada a perder por tanta humanidad superflua" porque a ti no sé, pero a mi es lo que me dicen los ojos de este caballo turinés.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

apenino, mónica vacas & árbore

"i wrote these songs in 2009 at home, to honor the animals exploited to serve as clothing, food, entertainment or used for vivisection. and for pets that died during the recording. now i can tell, are immortals. animals are friends, not food, not things. they're voiceless, you're his voice. please consider yourself go vegan."

es difícil expresar todo lo que es y representa "animals are not things!". me puede por razones evidentes. junto a greta, creo que es mi disco favorito de árbore. pero claro, hay cantos de los pajarindos de peiti, silbidos, ladridos, maullidos y ronroneos de tini mandarini, sapri y fonian fon, la naturaleza y el mundo animalesco revoloteando en las catorce canciones, como para no serlo. además mónica vacas, la voz femenina más bonita, canta en pachocas (‘me acurruqué en tus brazos…ea…’) y petula. hay versiones entrañables de silver jews y smog (rafa no acaba de creerse que su voz es preciosa, pero madre mía… ). melodías de cuento, y una canción de carne de gallina, oklahoma soul, little kirby blues. y la fotola de la portada que lo resume todo. 

y sipes, ése es el espíritu. disco de la vida para siempre jamás.

ah, y nuestro arbolindo estrena bandcamp con todas sus grabaciones y canciones sueltas que ha ido grabando a lo largo de los años. no hay mejor manera de celebrar un cumpleaños

hoy es el día de los enamoraaaaaados :)

my home is the sea

01. and instantly take effect (loscil remix) ~ christina vantzou
02. a1 ~ darkside (nicolas jaar & dave harrington)
03. morning criminal ~ ricardo donoso
04. heat ~ piotr kurek
05. the righteous wrath of an honorable man ~ colin stetson
06. untitled ~ taiwan
07. track race ~ mascara snake
08. sky high ~ oracle offering
09. jasmine girl ~ sinn sisamouth
10. morning ~ david lannan
11. sun out my window ~ ducktails
12. esengo ya mokilim ~ franco and le tpok jazz
13. chemirocha ~ ketienya, chemutoi & girls
14. arap chemonget ~ ngasura, kipkemo arap
15. and the dance goes round ~ bern porter & mark melnicove
16. the ballad of fancy gap ~ jim, artie marshall & carson gardner
17. third street woman blues ~ blind willie reynolds
18. the night before last ~ marisa anderson
19. étoile star ~ high wolf
20. moonbow ~ majeure
21. earth same breath ~ kendra smith
22. dead dog drowning ~ chris lyons
23. dust sale  ~ vincent over the sink
24. lonesome mountain ~ miaux
25. spinning tires ~ mittland och leo
26. shower scene ~ umberto
27. never change ~ julianna barwick
28. in the same room ~ julia holter
29. and i say ~ nicolas jaar ft. scout larue will epstein
30. return to paradise ~ henry mancini
31. guilty ~ al bowlly & ray noble orchestra
32. i found my love in portofino ~ billy & friends
33. orinoco flow ~ enya
34. pop is dead ~ anne-james chaton

felicitacións de la vida, abuelete ^.^

Monday, February 13, 2012

Sunday, February 12, 2012


"I feel so blessed to have this. Very fine and delicate mix of plucked and bowed strings with lovely male singing. It almost sounds like it could be two different singers, but I'm not sure..." cavebears

"really wonderful and totally mysterious one here, with no artist credit at all. received this as an anonymous demo and managed to sort out this release, which is essentially a straight reproduction of the demo cassette transfered to the vinyl format… totally mesmerizing hushed, raw, bedroom acidfolk sounds, steeped in alchemical spiritual depth, profound lonesome melancholy, and seriously intense and haunting intimacy. magical poetic songs from a true searcher, battler of the spirit sorrows, and rejoicer in all mystical beauties. there is a gripping sadness that permeates these recordings, but also flashes of joy, redemption, and in the end a powerful hopefulness. indeed, this is living, breathing music from the true inner/ancient soul, nothing but intricate yet meditative acoustic guitar figures, mournful viola, and those vocals, all wrapped in gauzy 4-track haze and far distant street sound hum… you really just gotta hear this one to understand…" time~lag

bonito de verdad, como aquella misteriosa caja con portada más misteriosa todavía de boots/c.c./snake & remus, o el eterno cap'n jack. tienes que oirlo para entender, nemo dixit.

sold out | download

Saturday, February 11, 2012

mascara snake

"Portraits and Scenes by Mascara Snake is a furry creature that has curled up into my chest and taken to rest, purring gently, each breath reminding me of the happiness I’ve known.
Whimsical guitar sounds and the minimalist percussion paint portraits of the happenings in and around the artist’s sphere while living in Paris.
Listen to this record and paint, draw, dream" moonspeak

"The air met the colors just right; this was a portrait day, a pleasant one indeed. And with only a few blinks left before that golden hour, into frame entered in a peculiar man. His helmet bent the sun, and he spoke in reverse. From there the wind skipped a beat, the film overexposed, and they all quietly evaporated, confused, elsewhere, but okay.
French artist Pacôme Genty has a way with scenes, and an album full of them, all painted in guitar loop and sprawling oddity." stadiums & shrines

photo: woodcum

Thursday, February 09, 2012

félicia atkinson

"a wunderkammer limited cassette published by Le Bon Accueil Gallery, Rennes  by Félicia Atkinson. 50 copies.  handmade, pro-dubbed and signed in a wooden box."

en un altar

Monday, February 06, 2012


"hello friends, getting to the good stuff! today, this full moon, marks the release of the first album by ashan, 'to return to'. inner islands has wonderfully released this album digitally and on cd. it is about messages of love, listening to the heart, giving is receiving, celebration, and many ineffable things. so i shall say no more and let the music speak for itself." sean conrad

hace unos días, sean nos envió un correo alertando de la inminente publicación de su primer disco rebautizado como "ashan", coincidiendo con la luna nueva de febrero. ana habló de hacer una crítica pero como la cascada de adjetivos grandilocuentes que le hemos regalado a su música se ha secado, hemos preferido para esta ocasión tan especial hablar con el propio sean, acercándonos un poco más al hombre tras el nombre. parafraseando al propio sean, dejemos que música y respuestas hablen por sí solas.

microphones in the trees (trees) :: what music was in your house when you were little?
sean :: my dad playing the piano. like rachmaninoff, bach, chopin, rock ‘n’ roll stuff. and we’d listen to madonna, jewel, the beatles, and around christmas this series called ‘celtic christmas’. 

trees :: what moves you to make music?
sean :: lately it’s been because i have a feeling or experience that i want to share with others. from my heart and spirit. it comes out as sounds and images mostly. it’s really just energy. i feel love for this world of individuals and want to express that.  

trees :: what would be the ideal effect of your music upon the listener?
sean :: whatever they take away from it is ideal. 

trees :: do you have a ghost story?
sean :: my current understanding of ghosts is that they are clusters of energy that might not have a physical form, but we know they’re there because we can sense energy. i think our (as humans) psychic abilities are pretty underplayed for the most part though. but with ghosts.. i’ve definitely felt presences in my bedroom as a kid, often sitting in my desk chair. i told it to go away and it did. but sometimes it would return and i’d have to ask it again. 

trees :: do you believe in another life (s) beyond the one we're living?
sean :: i think there are beings that exist in different dimensions that aren’t like this one. like how our world/dimension is created by our senses (touch, sight, etc), i’ll bet there are other dimensions based on other senses. there could be “aliens” on our planet but we can’t perceive them with our 5 senses. perhaps with our psychic sense we can. 

trees :: how mystical are you?
sean :: 0%. i’m not at all mystical. totally real and true. i don’t want to mystify anything in my life. but there’s another sort of idea about ‘mysticism’ that has to do with magick and spirituality, which seems different to me. i’m way down with magick. earth is a very magickal place. i’m seeing it more and more every day. it almost seems like humans forgot about their magick and their power to consciously work with energy. for instance, there is a lot of magick in intention and pouring your energy into making something happen. that manifestation is magickal to me. 

trees :: a memory of your childhood.
sean :: learning how to ollie on a skateboard in front of my parents’ house with my friend harrison. it was a cloudy day in the mid-afternoon. 

trees :: what do you think about the consciousness of non-human animals?
sean :: they are certainly conscious beings.. if that’s what you mean? 

trees :: yes, for sure. i know they're conscious and sentient beings like you and me. what about eat them?? i mean, most of time i hear people who loves animals (specially dogs, cats, horses, dolphins, panda bears, etc...) but at the same time they could eat a cow, or a pig, a turkey, etc... i can't understand the way they separate their moral value. i always think human animals suffer moral schizophrenia.
sean :: hehe, i like your term. yeah. i think it’s a lack of compassion on both ends. it seems when people have a lack of compassion for themselves that is the limit of their compassion with others. if we can not show ourselves love then it is much harder to do so for some creature we have never met and probably never will meet. also, i don’t think that most people know about factory farming and what really happens there… 

trees :: favorite films and why?
sean :: princess mononoke is one of my favorite films. it speaks many volumes about animals (including humans), spirits, magick, ignorance, awareness, intention, way more, and the interaction between all those. there’s so much to say, hehe. this is perhaps not the best place to get into it. but if you’ve seen it then perhaps you know what i’m talking about. if you haven’t, and that sounds interesting, then perhaps check it out. 

trees :: hehe i know what you talking about!! princess mononoke is a great film absolutely. i love all studio ghibli's films but my favorite could be "my neighbor Totoro". have you seen? i've got a soft spot for cats =)
sean :: indeed i have seen it! it’s one of my favorites as well. earlier today i was just talking about the scene where the cat-bus is walking on the telephone wires. and just a couple days ago i was standing in my garden with my partner rosa recalling the ritual that totoro and the girls do to grow the trees. 

trees :: where "gkfoes vjgoaf" & "ashan" names came from?
sean :: ‘gkfoes vjgoaf’ came from trying to think of band names, coming up with nothing, and then surrendering to the energy i was working with and saying, “what are you called??” and then closing my eyes and typing, “gkfoes vjgoaf”. but now i feel like i’m dialoguing with different energies. ‘Ashan’ is a word/force that my dad’s friend bo gatewood came across while doing some channeling work. it means, “the vibration of creation, of harmony, of unification, and of love. used as a greeting, blessing, and an expression of love. to be spoken or said mentally to attune oneself to the rhythms of the universe.” that’s an excerpt from a book called ‘Ashan: The Gentle Way’ that flowed through bo. it came before i was born and my parents named me ‘sean’. i think they were subconsciously dialoguing with ‘Ashan’. so it feels like a pretty homely name to me. maybe like a deeper version of my given name.

trees :: introduce us braden J mckenna (wyld wyzrdz, coyote dreamer, inner islands) and tell us his favorite breakfast :)
sean :: braden’s favorite breakfast is a deep one ;-)
it’s hard to introduce through words. i feel like i was introduced to braden through playing music together. the day we met we had a really deep jam with our mutual friend, stag hare. i also go really deep with braden’s music. i’m excited for his new energies, Coyote Dreamer*, to be released into the world. he also runs a music label/family, called Inner Islands. it’s rooted in love, peace, and coming from the heart and spirit. he’s a spirit friend for sure.
and back to totoro, braden's family has a cat named catbus. hehe.

* coyote dreamer - the path we make, will be released on cd, april 16th 2012. check inner islands for updates!

trees :: way to spend a sunday morning? 
sean :: today is sunday. i spent the morning sharing a coffee with two great friends and going deep. it was wonderful! 

trees :: i think dreams are mirrors of ourselves, with our desires and our fears, do you think they have a determinate role in our lives?
sean :: i dunno about a determinate role. but for me they’re totally just extensions of our waking life. just not so much basis in the limitations we normally put on the possibilities of events and physical forms. i like what you said about mirrors of desires and fears.

trees :: imagine your house is burning in flames and you only could save 5 records, what would they are?
sean :: at the house i’m living at right now i don’t even have 5 records. just a couple gkfoes lp's. i’d probably let them burn though.

trees :: physical detachment rules??
sean :: are you asking if i have rules about physical detachment? if so, not specifically. but i do like to keep things simple. i’m living in melbourne, australia at the moment and all my records are at my parents’ house in los angeles. there is much abundance in the world though. it’s up to us to let it in. so many beautiful things to breathe in and breathe out.

trees :: neil young recently said: "piracy is the new radio, because it's how music gets around". are you agree? 
sean :: that makes sense. music gets around so many ways. 

trees :: favourite tree to put a microphone and play some notes.
sean :: i’ve never done that. but it sounds like fun!

trees :: how did you know the song of my soul?
sean :: sometimes i know the song for my soul. i didn’t know that i knew the song for yours??

trees :: haha, i've got a theory about relationships. i think some people are connected through invisible red threads. no matter where they live, finally they meet because "they have to". causality, not coincidence. i think we're talking because "we have to". i'm wrong?
sean :: i don’t believe in coincidence, other than that is co-incidence. all things are happening together in harmony :-)

trees :: thanks!! i feel like we were talking in the "real world"
sean :: this has been wonderful talking! muy bonito!

pues eso, bonito muy.

cover art: sean & rosa
fotos: sean