If you happen to be one of those lucky folks whose friends and family delve deep, deep into the DIY tape scene each holiday season, painstakingly curating a selection of out print classics to fill your stocking at 4x prices from Discogs, well, then good on you. For the rest of us, I present five incredible tapes (we'll have to gift to ourselves) that I didn't have time to properly promote in 2015. Great tapes, great artists, and the knowledge that no matter how many hints you drop, your mom is still getting you that goddamn iTunes gift card again this year because "you like music".
Seth Graham - No.00 in Clean Life
Seth Graham doing is his thing (seriously every single release he tops himself) with five tracks of incredibly terse next level sample experimentation and manipulation. Although in fairness, I don’t really know if this tape is actually either of those things. Sounds like Vaporwave tracks being remixed by a Free Jazz artist in an orchestra pit. It’s madness, fearless. Orange Milk doing us a solid and bringing the real.
Paa Annandalii - Yen Pox
Not to be confused with the excellent Paa Annandalii release Altars which I did write about (glowingly) back in November, Yen Pox is another in the ultra limited release of recordings from 2012. This is one for all you old school free drone tape heads. Ayahuasca rituals in the dark heart of the Amazon. Four left of twenty five as I type this. Grab directly from Celestial Paths Ltd.
øjeRum - The Forest Is Sleeping Within The Trees
Horror Fiction alum and personal favorite, Copenhagen's Paw Grabowski with a release in six parts on the aesthetically perfect Scissor Tail Editions. Somber, delicately composed melody, given a wear worn quality by the hiss and static purposefully used as a compositional element. As sincere and emotionally honest a release as you’ll find. Melancholy for rainy days spent in the present moment. Edition of 70 featuring Paw’s incredible collage art.
Olli Aarni - Peite
My dudes Kevin and Colin at Baro were kind enough to do us all a favor and re-issue Peite, an out of print formerly self released blanket of fog from Finland’s Olli Aarni in an edition of 100. Two long form explorations from the absolute wizard of crumbling beauty. As the label description elucidates, “mist and moss, we become one with mother earth and the beauty that surrounds us.”
The Plastic Plan - RGB
I have mad respect for David at Hornbuckle, because the dude absolutely goes his own way releasing shit he believes in,... kind of like The Plastic Plan’s RGB. 17 track reintroduction to the disbanded Atlanta based drum, bass and synth trio via this archival release of recordings. Unapologetic high tension right up in your face blazers. Personally, I just dig how hard this rocks, and that it knocks me out of my tape scene comfort zone good and proper. Appropriately on your choice of Red, Green, or Blue shell to get your holiday party moving.