James Bernard / Atwater (Remixes) Now Available

 
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James Bernard’s live recording, ‘Atwater’ demonstrated the beauty to emerge from the simplicity and gentle manipulation of modular synthesizers. Such a raw moment captured that day, packed full of melody and escapism, presented a perfect opportunity to invite some of our favorite musicians to remix the original material recorded in North Atwater Park.

The remix lineup was purposefully selected to highlight electronica and a genre that grew from the manipulation of the synthesizer - a new toy for many bedroom producers that grew in commercial success and helped define a new sound in the late 90’s and early 00’s. With this in mind, we invited six producers who go some way in reflecting this approach over the years, with James Bernard’s original synthesizer recordings providing the basis of each experiment.

Arovane opens the release, with a sweet and sharp electronic punch, followed by Christian Kleine’s guitar-hook driven take, who as many will know, were two crucial producers that helped place electronica on the map through their releases on City Centre Offices. Alongside Uwe and Christian, also representing the early pioneering years of the sound and housed by the seminal label, Warp over the years; B12’s, Mike Golding, who takes James Bernard's sound to the limit across 9 minutes of additional modular manipulation.

Joining them, are three producers taking the electronica sound in new directions in recent years. James Clements, known to many under his own name or as ASC, guides us into the relatively unheard realm of his electronica-inspired Comit alias, combining the energy of his drum’n bass-led releases with the nostalgia and escapism heard amongst his ambient works. Bluetech, producing since the late 90’s and known for many approaches from psychedelic to downtempo, turns in an inspired, glistening take on the original, unearthing even more melodic moments. And lastly, Milieu, a firm favorite of ASIP's for many years now, uses nothing but the source material, to create a chugging and serene take on the original, closing out the Atwater remixes.

Buy on Bandcamp

 

ASIP - MNMT Label Showcase

 
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Believe it or not, over the past six years (since our very first label release in 2013) I haven’t put together a label showcase mix. However, this year I find myself sitting on an amazing amount of upcoming music, so when MNMT Podcast asked me to put together a label mix, I went all in. I tend to hold on to previewing upcoming music, so it makes me a little nervous to put this out there but hopefully you all get a sense of the amazing albums we have coming up.

60% of the music in this mix is upcoming on ASIP, so get ready for some new and exciting moments alongside some familiar sounds…

For more info on the mix and a short Q&A, head over to Monument.

 

James Bernard / Atwater (ASIPV014) now available

 
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With productions dating back to 1994, James Bernard has gained a cult following for his combination of atmospheric analog beats and modular synthesizers. His debut album, ‘Atmospherics’ is often heralded as a classic by the diggers who stumble across it, and James’ 'Unreleased Works' are a hidden gem of early 90’s electronica (if you’re lucky enough to own a copy on CDR of course).

James has been busy experimenting and refining his modular setup over the years, to the extent that a full album of beautiful music, created live in one take on a sunny afternoon, comes to life once more here on ASIP.

‘Atwater', was performed live during a 2018 'Modular On The Spot’ event, held in Los Angeles’ North Atwater Park. With his custom analog modular rig, a small set of speakers and a generator, James took the afternoon audience on a glistening tour of the beautiful sounds to emerge from a Moog Mother 32, custom built filters and various Eurorack modular sequencers, modules and effects.

After hearing James' set, ASIP proposed presenting the music in permanent form for everyone who missed that special day. James initially took the chance to recreate the set and edit versions ready for a release, but after careful consideration, it was decided to release the raw unedited live version of his set (mastered by Rafael Anton Irisarri) forever cementing that special moment and irreplaceable emotion found in North Atwater Park that one afternoon.

Visit the release page for more info, the latest stockists and links to buy

Additionally, we had our very first label night to celebrate James’ release on Sunday 24th Feb, with James playing the record live on his modular setup, followed by an exclusive first-time performance of his classic record ‘Atmospherics’. James was supported by a lovely set from Hark Madley on modular.

Below, some pictures from the night.

A big thank you to Stellar Remnant for hosting us.

 

James Bernard / Atwater (ASIPV014) Live in Los Angeles

 
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We're excited to announce the next vinyl release (ASIPV014) by modular synthesist James Bernard, titled Atwater. More details here.

To celebrate the release, James will be bringing his rig and playing a live modular set at LA's Stellar Remnant Record store in DTLA, from 5-8pm on Sunday 24th February.

There will be advanced copies of James' 12" 'Atwater', available to purchase along with a store full of great records. James will be supported by ASIP / Ryan Griffin spinning vinyl + more guests TBA.

Entry is FREE and open to all ages. We hope to see you there!

View / attend event on Facebook and Resident Advisor

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Full Circle Handmade Wooden CD Case by Kevin Bryce

 

What seems to be a tradition now with any ASIP compilation (Europe, Uncharted Places and now Full Circle), we enlisted Kevin Bryce to make a limited, hand-made wooden companion to the main release.

This time, Kevin made five beautiful CD cases, which were modeled off the main Full Circle artwork by Mario Morales. The vinyl artwork was a 3D take on the ASIP logo, and Kevin decided to take the 3D files used to generate the design, and make a real-life wooden version. Like everything Kevin has done for us (the Uncharted Places CD case and the Europe Vinyl Case for example) it turned out absolutely beautiful.

Hours of craft and detail went into it, producing a prototype case which was near to spot on. All we did after the prototype version was deepen the inlay to host two CD’s and add a black felt, and title text on the inside. Then once the design and build was final, Kevin and a friend went to work sanding, detailing, and finally oiling.

The five CD cases were made available with the Full Circle vinyl release and sold out instantly back in December. Since then, Kevin has been busy finalizing them ready for delivery.

A big thank you to Kevin for the outstanding craftsmanship and effort he put into these. And thank you to the five people that snapped them up. We hope you not only enjoy them, but place them with pride for everyone to see. All profits from this, and the main Full Circle release are going to charity - The Harmony Project.

An introduction and overview of the process by Kevin Bryce, including care instructions for you lucky five owners:

This was a difficult but ultimately satisfying project. I had the idea after seeing the artwork for the Full Circle release and tried to think of a way to adapt the original design into a 3-dimensional shape. After a very long time trying to convert the original artwork I was able to get it into a workable albeit somewhat crude physical model. Next came several attempts at figuring out how to machine such a shape on a 3 axis CNC. It would have been handy to have access to a CNC lathe for this project but you have to work with the tools at hand…

I had access to a ton of hard Maple that had been used to make butcher-block style restaurant tables, so I went through several large piles of wood to select some wood that I thought would work for the project. I wanted to find wood with some unusual grain patterns, the main problem being trying to find neat looking wood with wood that would be structurally sound enough to handle being cut into the relatively thin pieces I would need.

Once I had the wood, I began testing the 3D cut file. It took some time to get the optimal balance between time spent on the CNC and a smooth workable finish. I eventually found the right balance (or so I thought) and proceeded to cut all the pieces for the project. Once I had all the pieces cut, it was just a matter of sanding it to a smooth finish. Unfortunately I hadn’t fully grasped just how hard this particular hard Maple was, so after spending more than eight hours sanding the first one, I enlisted the help of an old friend who I had worked with for years and years at a local Vancouver guitar shop.

Finally after countless hours and many profanities and promises to never use this particular strain of Maple again, we had five boxes ready for finishing.

One of the interesting side effects of this design is how the Tung Oil used to finish the wood is absorbed. Generally a box presents a uniform surface to be finished but with this being such an odd 3D shape, the different surfaces all seemed to absorb the oil at different rates, so it took several extra applications in order to give it a uniform finish.

After the oil had been applied and rubbed smooth, it was time to add the hardware. I was pretty nervous that pounding nails into such a thin piece of wood might cause it to split, but I got lucky and after pre-drilling the hinge and lock holes, I managed to get everything installed with no catastrophes.

A couple of notes about the care of these boxes: The hinges are quite small as they had to fit on the side of the two box pieces. So please be careful opening and closing the box. They will not stand up to a lot of abuse if allowed to swing open and rock back against the hinge.

The other important thing to note is that because these are solid wood pieces, they are susceptible to any drastic changes in relative humidity. The best way to care for them is to think of them as people. If they are kept in an environment that you would find uncomfortable, then they will very likely be uncomfortable as well and express that by warping in some way. The good news is if you happen to notice your box cupping or bowing, it can probably be remedied by placing it in a comfortable environment- about 40% relative humidity.