isolatedmix 88 - An On Bast

 
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On the heels of our modular-synthesizer-heavy release and remix album by James Bernard, we dug into some other artists playing within the rabbit holes of analog frequencies. There are of course many to choose from, but one artist has recently caught our ear as a purveyor in both techno and ambient sounds within the modular realm.

An On Bast is Anna Suda, a Polish based musician who, whilst making techno and experimental music also has a fine ear for beautiful ambient compositions. With a steady cadence of recordings since 2006, Anna was selected from thousands of candidates to participate in the (soon to be defunct) Red Bull Music Academy in Melbourne where like many others, she got to hone her craft. Since then, her infamous live sets which combine many of her production approaches and jump between modular to drum machines, have graced the likes of major festivals such as, Sonar (Barcelona), and Nachtdigital (Germany), and clubs from Berlin’s Watergate and Berghain, and Shanghai’s Elevator.

Anna’s ambient productions were what really stood out for us, and her latest outing on the Dutch label, Shimmering Moods, titled Nothing Shapes Everything, is a perfect example of why this producer is so intriguing, malleable and talented across various approaches.

Anna’s isolatedmix traverses a variety of territories that could be said to define her eclectic and varied production approaches. From the infamous Bill Laswell opening it up, to Woob, Coil, Loscil and Pan American, hidden amongst some of of the greats of the genre are some of Anna’s own productions adding a personalized tint to this extraordinary journey.

The mix I recorded contains very important tracks to me, for my personal evolution of taste and feel of time and space in music. Ambient was the genre that introduced me to electronic music so it has very special place in my heart. It taught me how much story can be told, how much ideas and emotion can be put within infinite possibilities of sound creation. I am sharing the tracks that had and still have very big influence on me, plus a few of my own productions, as well as in my duos. It was a huge pleasure to put them together in a long music journey, I hope you will feel it too - An On Bast

Download

Tracklist:

01. Bill Laswell - Káshí
02. Mouse On Mars - Unity Concepts
03. An On Bast & Maciej Fortuna - Our Plateux
04. David Toop - Bodies of Water
05. James Bernard - Euph
06. Atone - Qobac Sine
07. Unknown - ShiveRX
08. Arvo Part - Tabula Rasa - Fratres
09. Coil - Finite Bees
10. Pan American - Coastal
11. Celia Green - In The Extreme
12. An On Bast & Allca - 04:05
13. An On Bast - Rootless
14. Unknown - 10060
15. Woob - Later
16. Dream Fish - Underwater
17. Tatsu - Stilness / Introspective Me
18. Loscil - Monument Builders
19. An On Bast - Enter
20. Meritum - Harfowa

An On Bast | Soundcloud | Bandcamp | Facebook | Discogs | Website

 

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.

 

isolatedmix 87 - Seahawks: Celestial Voyage

 
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I feel a little disappointed in myself that I hadn’t stumbled across Seahawks when I was back in England. It turns out the duo, consisting of Jon Tye (Lo Recordings) and Pete Fowler (known for his work with Super Furry Animals and his monsterism toys) have been frequenting some of my old haunts back home for quite some time. The Big Chill festival for example, or even the Big Chill Bar in London - both regular destinations for me a few years back. Funny, that I should come to own my first Seahawks record after picking it up at, of all places, Technique record store in Tokyo last year. But that’s the great thing about this type of music and in particular the approach of Jon and Pete as Seahawks- it’s music that transcends time and place.

As they prepare to release their latest album on Cascine, titled Eyes Of The Moon (released 15th March) Jon and Pete have prepped a journey into their very hard-to-pin-down-cosmic world. Taking advantage of their many years DJ-ing, collecting and throwing boat-parties, this isolatedmix does exactly what the title suggests. A celestial voyage, into the minds of Seahawks, traversing the many imaginable worlds they conjure up through their colorful, vivid and complimentary music and art.

Download.

Read more about the Seahawks project and the mix in the Q&A with Jon and Pete, below.

Tracklist:

1. Iasos – Helios and Vesta
2. Seahawks – Eyes Of The Moon (Ocean Moon ambient mix)
3. Clifford White – Lost At Shore
4. Suzanne Ciani – Eighth Wave
5. Meditation Y.S. – Neocrystal (On The Beach Mix)
6. Swami Kriya Ramananda – Hymn To A New Age
7. Larry Heard – Summertime Breeze
8. Waak Waak Djungi – Rainbow Serpent
9. Jon Anderson – Deseo (Future Sound Of London remix)
10. Emerald Web – Nightsong
11. Seahawks – Run Through My Mind
12. Wally Badarou – Awa
13. Yoshio Ojima – Glass Chattering
14. Body San – Marimba Class
15. Iasos – Helios and Vesta

ASIP: You both have some serious history between you. Would you mind giving us the quick rundown of how you got to where you are today?
Seahawks: It’s the 10th anniversary of our first release next year so yes indeed some serious history. To some extent we just pointed the ship in the right direction, stocked up with supplies and set sail into the unknown. It’s been a great trip but as to how…I guess we let the cosmic wind carry us along.

How did Seahawks come about and what inspired the project?
The Seahawks boat party at the Big Chill bar was our R&D (research & development) centre. We would try jamming different styles and adding FX and tracks we were working on and also invite friends to join in. At the time Pete lived just up the road so we could continue our research, sometimes deep into the night…

When it comes to the specifics of the project, Jon, you look after music and Pete, art. How important is it to you that these two are presented as one in today's throwaway streaming world?
It makes a big difference for us to present a conceptual whole, the Eyes Of The Moon album is actually the first where one of us has not created the artwork but it was fun to work with other people and direct the art rather than make it for a change.

I've seen a few terms describe your music. Everything from "Cosmic deckshoegaze", "Balaeric" "New Age", "Kosmische" and "Celestial" - often interchanged between each other - to "whale drone amplified through an enormous pearlescent conch". How would you describe the Seahawks sound? (or rather, what does it look like!?)
It’s a many headed good natured beast that likes to venture out for a cavort in the cosmos and loves all kind of esoteric delights from deep space vibrations to deep ocean drones, but we’ll settle for "whale drone amplified through an enormous pearlescent conch”.

You don't hear much music like this anymore. Am I just not digging hard enough, or are you just fighting the good fight and bringing it all back?
Well it’s all out there but I think our music is just a little more expansive than most current music I hear. We’d certainly like to bring back a strong cosmic vibe in these troubled times.

Who or what are the main inspirations for this specific sound?
Right now the Mu-tron Bi Phase is a big feature in our lives, it just instantly makes everything sound more lush and immersive. Cassette tapes are also a really big influence, the sound is so ear friendly.

It sounds like you like to lay low, play great parties and put out timeless records that abide to no-one or nothing (how it should be!) How do you find the ambient and experimental scene in particular? Would you even place Seahawks within it?
There’s a lot of incredible music out there and the reissue scene helps keep things interesting. I think we’re part of a historical scene that includes all sorts of music and vibrations.

Thank you for such a great, eclectic and as you describe "celestial" mix. How did you approach the mix and where was it recorded?
This mix contains mainly tracks from CD. I think CD has got a bad rap and that if you have a good CD player they can sound great and it’s also a way to find tracks that are either not available or too expensive on vinyl.
It was done over a two week period.

Where should people be listening to this mix? Poolside? The other side?
Wherever feels conducive. One suggestion: Transfer to cassette and listen on a walkman on a train to Amsterdam before heading for a smoke by the Amstel.

And in what state?!
A suitably modified one and hopefully our mix will help take you to a ‘very fine state of mind’.

The influences in the mix range from classic ambient and chill-out, to dub, ethnic, tropical, disco, even classic Larry Heard - the list goes on. What makes a DJ set great in your opinions?
We like surprises but not ones that are jarring and there has to be a flow but there’s no reason the journey can’t visit some unexpected ports on the way.

It feels like a very grown up and mature set - like a hell of a lot of experience has gone into your ears and record collections. I can smell the years digging. Are you both serious collectors?
We both have plenty of music on multiple formats but I don’t think either of us consider ourselves serious collectors. We know people who are and we’re nowhere near that league!

You've treated us to an exclusive remix in here too, how often do you make edits of your own music to suit a set or a mix? Is it important for you to always present new music in this way?
There are always potential alternative versions of tracks, ideas we’d like to extend and transform. We definitely like to present a multi-faceted vision when we can.

Jon, you played at a bunch of places in the UK (where I used to live) - from The Big Chill to Spiritland. Where would be the ideal place to spin this type of set nowadays?
I think it might well be The Hutong Café in Plymouth. It’s right by the sea and only an hour or so from the studio in Cornwall and we can arrive by ferry and play whatever we like.

What track/s didn't make it in the mix that you might still want to share with us?
Too many to mention and we’d share it all if we could : )

Finally if this was your closing set - last set ever - lights coming on - what would you be ending with?
The Floaters - It’s Magic (We Thank You) – Extended mix

~

Seahawks | Discogs | Bandcamp

 

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.