yoshinori hayashi – “bit of garden”

– featured image courtesy of kim hiorthøy – 

the tokyo-based producer yoshinori hayashi thrives in organic elements, threading well-worn melodic timbres through understated percussion to achieve a singular, meditative palette.  hayashi stands out within japan’s vibrant electronic music community; the wonderful smalltown supersound has latched on to his prowess and will release his debut full-length, ambivalence, on october 26th.

on lead single “bit of garden,” hayashi deploys a warbly, hypnotic piano loop on the track’s nocturnal synth foundation, its percussive elements pinpointing a groove only after fully internalizing the subdivisions.  secondary elements emerge and swirl together as the track progresses, enveloping hayashi’s soundscape in an almost celestial exterior that yearns to depart this world.  listen in below.

premiere – benjamin shaw

– featured image courtesy of aisha latosski – 

benjamin shaw has been making bedroom pop for much longer than the term has enjoyed a certain ubiquity.  a chameleon of genres, the melbourne-based shaw has drifted through washes of shoegaze and fields of electronica, melding dissonant drones and folk affectations into an incredibly singular and raw brand of confessional music, its ennui palpable.  shaw’s latest album, megadead, marks a return to work that is decidedly more vocal-centric, although certainly not devoid of the desolate soundscapes he’s wont to create and inhabit.

after the release of “terrible feelings!” last week, a track that atwood magazine aptly described as “visceral and frantic,” shaw has down-shifted into the more ruminative “a brand new day,” a six-minute odyssey populated by found sounds and a lovely guitar loop.  a lengthy voyage through the track’s aural architecture leads shaw to its precipice, where, instead of a steep drop into the void, he’s treated to a sonic sunrise of soaring brass, a moment of respite that arguably marks the true arrival of “a brand new day” and informs its final stages.

megadead is due august 31st via audio antihero and kirigirisu recordings.  listen to “a brand new day,” premiering right here on the dimestore, below.

interview – hush hush records

– featured image courtesy of the artist – 

Frequent patrons of this space already know that the dimestore has been enamored with the seattle-based label hush hush records since last summer.  the label’s aesthetic is fluid with seemingly endless permutations; a loose nocturnal regulation has yielded ambient projects, glitchy electronic experiments, and pristine dream-pop albums among other releases.

on friday, hush hush will release HH100, a centennial of sorts that highlights and celebrates its growth over the past six years.  the compilation features fourteen brand-new tracks that are all collaborations between hush hush artists past, present, and future, a compelling distillation of the label’s “night bus” ethos.

we recently touched base with the label’s founder, alex ruder, to chat about the history of hush hush, its hundredth release, and how ruder’s work at the iconic radio station KEXP informs his approach to the label.  streaming alongside the interview is the premiere of “wait too long,” the captivating collaboration between vivian fantasy and quiett that serves at the compilation’s penultimate track.  click the play button and digest the interview below.

hush hush began back in 2012 with kid smpl’s skylight.  what sustained you in the early days of cultivating the label, and has that driving force changed at all over the past six years?

when i launched the label, i honestly didn’t have any big-picture or long-term goals, the main thing was just to work with joey butler (aka kid smpl) to help present his debut album.  but a major motivation to cultivate the label beyond that release in those early years was bearing witness to the relative success of skylight.  it wasn’t necessarily the most successful release financially, but there was some nice momentum around it.  kid smpl was accepted into the red bull music academy just after the announcement of the album and months prior to its eventual release, his live shows were consistently memorable affairs and each performance showcased his quickly growing sonic evolution, and positive press coverage about the album all made it feel like the time and energy we collectively put into the album was a worthwhile effort.

during this early period of the label, i was also hosting a monthly hush hush DJ night in seattle, and those monthly events kept a complimentary aspect of the label moving forward and allowed the label to connect with more artists, as each monthly DJ night featured a special guest DJ to showcase their own “night bus” soundtrack.  thanks to the support we received for skylight, both local artists and non-local artists began reaching out with demos to consider for release on hush hush, and hearing exciting demos from new, unknown, or overlooked artists and wanting to help them share their sounds continues to be the driving force behind the label.  it’s still based in that desire to share quality sounds from artists that i feel deserve a bit more of a spotlight.

the hush hush catalogue feels like a curated playlist on an album-sized scale, if that clumsy analogy makes any sense: each release is complimentary to its predecessors but explores a fresh facet of the label’s aesthetic.  does your experience in radio at all inform how you sequence releases and approach hush hush as a whole?

aside from wishfully trying to align releases with a season that makes the most sense (ie: darker ambient/drone releases in winter, brighter sounds in summer), i’m not trying to be too intentional with the sequence of releases, but i’m super focused on the sequencing of songs on each release and frequently geek out when taking a collection of songs and figuring out the best sequence to paint the most captivating picture possible.

my experience in radio definitely comes into play in these situations.  with every radio show i put together, i try to play and transition songs in an order that feels natural and smooth, but also sneaks in challenging segues and allows the narrative to grow and expand with each new song, and that’s how i view each hush hush release.  i’ve never released a stand-alone single on hush hush; i’ve always been focused on fleshed-out EPs, mini-albums, or full-length albums, as i’m still a huge fan of LPs and EPs that showcase a clear vision from the artist.

HH100

HH100 is, as the name suggests, your 100th release.  congratulations!  it’s also a pretty unique release: fourteen brand-new tracks, all collaborations between artists that have called hush hush home at some point.  what gave you the initial idea for this kind of project?

thank you!  i thought it’d be a fun challenge to coordinate another hush hush compilation for the 100th release.  i’ve done a couple bandcamp-only compilations in the past, more as a thank-you to fans, featuring new unreleased songs from hush hush family and friends (presents vol. 1) or a combination of new unreleased songs as well as select songs from the past year’s catalog (presents vol. 2).

but this was the first time trying to do an “official” compilation, and i thought it’d be exciting to tap into the generous collaborative spirit that so many hush hush artists possess and try to do something unique for the compilation: pairing up artists, sometimes from different sides of the planet, to bounce ideas off each other and see what they could come up with.  i’ve always been amazed at the talent of the artists that have released music on hush hush, yet i was admittedly a bit shocked to hear how strong and seamless the collaborative tracks turned out, especially from two artists that had most likely never communicated with each other before.

were there any collaborative pairings that took you by surprise, or any memorable anecdotes about the various processes that made their way back to you?

honestly, i don’t think any of the collaborative pairings came as a “surprise” to me.  although their styles may vary widely, i feel there’s a common thread to every hush hush release and each artist tapped into that shared vibe for their track.

i was thrilled that cock & swan and TZECHAR were able to collaborate on a new track; they’ve both been strong admirers of each other’s work for years now.  they’ve previously remixed each other’s tracks, but to have them work together on something new felt really special.

hanssen and secret school teaming up on a track is another collaboration that has led to some wonderful results.  both of them live in seattle and are big fans of each other’s work.  working together on “felt” was quite pivotal, as it’s not only a stunning track that shows them creatively pushing each other, but it also planted the seed for them to continue to work together on new tracks, so there may likely be a bigger collaborative release from them down the road.

Vivian-Fantasy-Photo-1-Credit-Bee-Cardoso

– vivian fantasy (bee cardoso) –

today we’re premiering “wait too long,” the collaboration between vivian fantasy and quiett.  can you share the label’s history with these two artists?  how did this particular collaboration come to be?

yeah, i was stoked when vivian fantasy and quiett decided to work on a track together.  each of them bring a cool “live band” feel to their songs.

vivian fantasy is richmond, virginia-based musician danny bozella. he had been self-releasing music on bandcamp, but then last year he came across hush hush via asking/bearing, an album by seattle-based artist olive jun (aka lushloss) who previously lived in richmond, so danny was familiar with her music and was excited to see her music released on a label.  he reached out to me with a handful of demo tracks that turned into the dreamy psych-pop EP deep. honey. that came out late last year on hush hush.

quiett is actually a duo comprised of sam leffers and kevin hake.  sam reached out to me in early 2017 with some demos he had done with kevin as well as manchester, UK DJ/producer two tail, and i was immediately impressed with the set.  i ended up releasing their fountains EP during the summer last year.  both vivian fantasy and quiett create such magnetic, romantic, gauzy sounds, it was exciting to hear their styles mesh together so smoothly on “wait too long.”

what does the future hold in store for hush hush?

the future is still driven by the initial motivation to do what i can to work with new/underground artists, help share their music in the way that feels both good for the artist and the label, and be able to foster a family/community through it all.  there’s still lots of releases in queue, so the future holds many more hush hush sounds that will continue to explore the genre-less yet distinctive vibe that originally birthed the label.

HH100 arrives august 3rd on bandcamp and later this month on cassette.  you can pre-order the compilation now.

interview – pastel

– featured image courtesy of the artist –

Last month, gabriel brenner released the latest extended play under his pastel moniker.  the los angeles-based artist uses the five songs that span absent, just dust to examine a concept of native erasure that is both familial and personal, a desire that stemmed from myriad recent events.

those familiar with pastel’s earlier work might anticipate another offering of celestial r&b; instead, the intimacy and vulnerability of this project’s subject matter necessitated a shift into a more ambient, experimental realm.  brenner’s commanding lead vocal still haunts tracks, like the standout cut “silhouette,” but absent, just dust is often shrouded in ominous pulses and static found sounds, a malleable canvas onto which brenner can interpret a bevy of emotions.

we were fortunate to catch up with brenner recently via e-mail and discuss all things absent, just dust: from compositional approach to an integration of visual art to brenner’s preference for shorter bodies of work.  a lightly-edited transcript, along with a full stream of the extended play, is presented below.

this new ep is a pretty explicit exploration of erasure.  what was the catalyst to delve into this personal topic?

i recently graduated from the art program at ucla, and i spent much of my last year there making video works largely surrounding my relationship with my native heritage.  these were ideas that i had spent a few years trying to work out (i tried sculpture, poetry, etc), and it just seemed to click with video.

this also happened to be around the same time that the nodapl resistance started gaining national attention.  there was a livestream video that a journalist had set up on facebook one night, showing militarized police cornering water protectors on a bridge, throwing tear gas at them, and spraying them with a water cannon in subzero temperatures.  i felt such a multitude of emotions, but i couldn’t quite put them into words.  or, rather, words just didn’t suffice.

in trying to understand my heritage, i’ve continually arrived at a similar loss.  i’m pima on my mother’s side and cherokee on my father’s.  neither side of my family knows much, if anything, about our people and culture, and it’s largely because of a long history of atrocities like this.  at base, so much of art is about making new language, and when the language wasn’t there for me, it made sense to process this through art, and later, music.

absent, just dust is also a bit of a sonic departure for you.  did the thematic material you explore necessitate the shift, or did the shift lead you to explore this thematic material?

it was a bit of both.  i had made the foundation for “haunt” and “silhouette” two years prior to the release, and sat on the music for so long because it was such a sonic departure for me.  it didn’t make sense with the rest of the music i had released prior and i didn’t know what to do with it.  when i started making the videos, the music suddenly made sense when placed within a similar conceptual framework.  from there, i started making the rest of the ep, and it continued to follow in the same sonic footsteps.


i think your project could be described as audio/visual, what with the photo book that accompanied bone-weary and the general thought and care that goes into the design of your cassettes.  how do you approach integrating photography and fine art with your music to create a cohesive whole?

i think because i come from a contemporary art background, i tend to think of music projects as visual art projects, too.  i think of the cassettes as art objects, and thus think it’s equally important that the visuals communicate nuanced, poetic ideas like the music.  i want listeners to know what i’m talking about in my music, and they can’t know deeply if the visuals are communicating something different than the music.

many, if not all, of your releases have been either standalone singles or extended plays.  do you find yourself gravitating towards a shorter format for any particular reason?

i’ve always been enamored by artists that can say a lot with very little.  it’s the difference between félix gonzález-torres and someone like matthew barney.  félix can communicate more to me with just a few light bulbs than barney can in five grandiose feature-length films because félix allows me ample space to sit with the particulars.

i think i always work towards a-lot-with-a-little because it’s so effective.  i’m also aware that my music asks for quite a bit of patience from the listener because it doesn’t reveal itself all too quickly.  i contemplated turning absent, just dust into a full length, but i couldn’t imagine asking a listener to sit even longer with a work that already felt a bit like an endurance piece at just five tracks.

to that end, do you anticipate releasing a full-length in the near future?

i guess it depends; if the work calls for a full-length, then it will be a full-length!  but i do think it’s long overdue, so we’ll see.

this ep is very heavy thematically and that weight manifests itself frequently in the arrangements, but i get an occasional sense of serenity, at least musically.  did making absent, just dust feel cathartic at any point?

“stammer” definitely felt cathartic to make.  i basically just hit record and started singing, and then worked with what i had.  the track is largely about the struggle to communicate without the right words, and letting my voice unfold to fill in the gaps was pretty freeing.

half of all proceeds made from absent, just dust will be donated to freshet collective, an organization providing legal services to the water protectors at standing rock.  a handful of cassettes are still available for purchase through pastel’s bandcamp, where digital versions of his entire catalogue can also be procured.

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pastel – “silhouette”

– featured image courtesy of the artist –

after exploring the realms of towering, majestic r&b on last year’s bone weary, gabriel brenner is set to take a more explicitly introspective angle on his upcoming extended play.  throughout absent, just dust, brenner explores his native identity, how familial traumas intertwine with a larger tendency to erase native experiences from the historical narrative.

that concept of erasure seeps into the fibers of “silhouette,” brenner’s latest offering under his pastel moniker.  even after an initial murky sample dissipates, brenner’s lead vocal is still submissive to the surrounding textures, echoing in a haze amidst the swelling synths, distant percussion, and controlled feedback that populate the track.

“silhouette” proves aching in more ways than one; a repeated thesis gives way to a fragmented narrative, its lack of resolution a heartbreaking nod to brenner’s overall examination of loss.  it’s the type of track with a gravity that lingers, especially after repeated listens in solitude.

absent, just dust arrives august 25th.  hear “silhouette,” the extended play’s centerpiece, below.

interview – apollo vermouth

– featured image courtesy of the artist –

Alisa rodriguez has been building sprawling, droning landscapes under the moniker of apollo vermouth for the better part of a decade now.  armed usually with little more than her guitar and a sampler, rodriguez sculpts titanic walls of sound that are often as pensive as they are crushing.

after a rapid-fire succession of releases between 2012 and 2014, apollo vermouth’s output slowed considerably; crashing into nowhere, rodriguez’ first full-length in more than three years, came out last friday via orchid tapes.  its seven songs should supply familiar touchstones for long-time followers of the milwaukee-based artist, but a handful of new tracks meander into new territory with wondrous results.

we recently caught up with rodriguez via e-mail to chat about the evolution of songwriting, milwaukee’s experimental music scene, and translating ambient albums into a live setting.  check out the transcript below.

to the casual observer, milwaukee seems to have a flourishing music scene, and especially, a vibrant experimental/ambient niche. what’s your perception of the scene? what kind of cog is apollo vermouth within that machine?

i have sort of a love/hate relationship with milwaukee’s music scene.  it’s really hard to stand out with the music i make, but i think that can definitely be a good thing.  i try not to be afraid of coming off vulnerable.  i want people to have a reaction to the music, but it’s tough in milwaukee because it’s such a party city.  people have a tendency to turn a show into a social event and treat the music as background sound.  most experimental musicians i talk to around here feel the same way, especially at bar venues.  it’s sort of a great excuse for us to play louder.

your newest album, crashing into nowhere, is out on orchid tapes.  how did you connect with the label for this release?

i’ve known warren for years.  i first heard about his project foxes in fiction in the mid-2000s via a deerhunter fan message board.  i was a huge fan of his first album, swung from the branches, when it came out and have been following orchid tapes since he started it back in 2010.  we finally met in person in chicago when he was on tour opening for owen pallett.  warren is one of the most humble and sweetest musicians i’ve ever met.  about a year later, he contacted me about putting out an album on his label.  i was so flattered and practically jumped out of my chair when he asked.

has your songwriting process changed over time?  do you perceive any marked evolution?

definitely, yeah.  i took a break from songwriting after putting out fractured youth.  even where there were instances where i wanted to make music, i’d try, but i wasn’t making anything worthwhile.  i started questioning ending the project, but i didn’t feel comfortable ending apollo with an album like fractured youth.  it also feels like apollo vermouth will never really end; it’s sort of something i feel like i’ll always come back to, even when i’m taking a break working on something else.

it took about three months to make crashing into nowhere.  i recorded a few tracks at my practice space and the rest of the album was done at my house.  i typically use the first take with each track i work on, but this time i wanted to do the best that i could.  no more amateur hour.


“always there” and “reflections of” feature prominent vocals, a bit of a departure from this project’s vernacular.  “reflections of” in particular feels like a very singular component of your catalogue.  what was it like to approach a few apollo vermouth tracks from a collaborative standpoint?

after finishing fractured youth, i thought a lot about collaborating with other musicians i’m good friends with.  my boyfriend has always been my number one collaborator, but i wanted to work with friends that i admire a lot.

travis johnson of grooms is someone who i’ve admired for years, even before we became friends.  travis has such a distinct voice that feels like you’re listening to your guardian angel singing.  he’s a big influence on me, musically and spiritually.  i was excited to have him on board to sing on one of my songs.

i got one of my oldest, best friends, eli smith, to work on the song “reflections of.”  i gave him my guitar track and told him to do whatever he wanted with it.  he came back with something out of this world.  i was so pumped on his part and couldn’t get over the orchestral samples. he’s without a doubt the most talented musician i know.

the dense textures of ambient and drone music sometimes necessitate an approximation in a live setting, but i get the sense that your approach to composition is already often pretty minimalistic.  does the gear you use to record differ much from the gear you use when performing live?

not at all.  the only thing that’s slightly different for the live shows is that sometimes i can’t always emulate the recording due to me not remembering how to play a certain part, or even the whole song.  it’s partially my fault for only recording a song on the first take and ending it there.  i always admired the idea of certain musicians like william basinski and electronic artists who only play new music live or take songs to another level, like changing the progression.

you were actively plugging the documentary who took johnny” a year or so ago on twitter.  it’s an incredibly profound film that i don’t think i would have discovered without your social media connection, and you seem very invested in the issue of missing and exploited children overall.  does this advocacy extend to and become intertwined with your music?

yes.  it’s something i care a lot about and it can sometimes be emotionally challenging.  i won’t get into personal reasons why, but i think it’s important to help people.  a month ago, i was driving towards downtown milwaukee and i saw a billboard that read, “wisconsin is the 3rd highest in the nation for sex trafficking.”  it made my heart sink.

it’s sickening how big the trafficking industry is.  it happens in places you’d never think it would happen; it could happen down the street from your parents’ house.  it’s messed up.  who took johnny really opened my eyes to this terrible part of society.  i have a tendency to even get frustrated with people who don’t open their eyes and look around. it’s like i’m roddy piper from they live, with the sunglasses.  no one deserves to be taken advantage of, especially young children.

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jenny hval – blood bitch

– featured image courtesy of jenny berger myhre –

“album of the fortnight” is a new bi-weekly feature that digs into a recent release of note.  the articles will run roughly during the middle and at the end of each month, always on a friday; the album or body of work in question will have been released at some point during that two-week span.  this column focuses on art that resonates deeply, on pieces that necessitate more than just a knee-jerk reaction.  next up: jenny hval.

there’s something inherently autumnal about jenny hval’s newest album, blood bitch.  not autumnal in the sense that it conjures up cliché imagery and feelings associated with the waning months of the calendar year, but rather in the sense that it seems, at times, to be teetering on the edge of a desolate landscape, grasping at motifs of warmth and familiarity before slipping into a period of hibernation and eventual rebirth.

hval’s airy vocals drift in and out of the foreground throughout blood bitch, often allowing her muted production to take precedence.  there’s the four-on-the-floor pulse of “the great undressing,” the duple-meter lilt of “period piece,” the esoteric thrum of “female vampire” – a smattering of directions that, together, would feel utterly directionless in another artist’s hands.  yet hval commands these avenues with the dexterity and nuance of the seasoned veteran she is, stringing together these at-times disparate compositions with the recurring theme of feeling.

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pencil scratches frantically against paper on “untamed religion,” its anxious state countered by ambient static possessing great poise and restraint, a soliloquy on powerlessness superimposed over the top.  these juxtapositions sound messy and convoluted in description, but aurally, they’re exquisite, a dichotomous matrimony whose soothing attributes somehow manage to reign supreme.  elsewhere, hval is more overtly vulnerable (see “the plague,” “ritual awakening”) and her reliance on her own voice to convey these shortcomings renders their accompaniment decidedly more eerie: murky, with an occasional ominous dash of malice.

if blood bitch isn’t hval’s most ambitious effort to date, it certainly feels like her most immediate. “it’s about vampires,” she says amidst laughter from her conversational partner while discussing the central thesis of the album; anyone tuned into the nuances of blood bitch realizes that this generality would warrant admonition, and hval quickly doubles down to assert that the album is about more than just her horror movie influences.

and it is; blood bitch is a fairly transparent exploration of hval’s feminism, and that transparency aids in its potency.  if the contents of blood bitch cause discomfort, good.  if they create solace, even better; this is a manifesto that is equal parts unapologetic and gorgeous, a multi-faceted work of art that can be consumed and digested in myriad ways, depending on the date, time, and general state of being.  indulge.

interview – adoptahighway

photo courtesy of david szymanski

sometimes incredibly thought-provoking music is simply dropped in your lap.  such was the case with a fault, the dark and disorienting new album from experimental artist adoptahighway that showed up in our inbox early last month.  we recently caught up with adoptahighway’s mild-mannered alter ego, classical musician barry paul clark, via email to talk about a fault, influential composers, and the experimental music sub-culture that has firmly entrenched itself into milwaukee’s expansive music scene.  check out the transcript below.

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there seems to be a lot of disjointed and competing rhythms throughout a fault, especially on tracks like “qualmness” and “defiance,” and those rhythms mirror the disjointed and aggressive undertones of the record really well.  can you talk about your inspirations while writing this record?

the inspiration behind this record had a lot to do with defining and obtaining inspiration – where it is, what it is, how it comes to be, whether or not it can be harbored or contained, and the spectrum of conflicting emotion and self realization that presents itself within that journey.  i know a lot of artists deal with these issues in different ways, so everything i expressed on the subject within the record is very personal.  i’m still unsure if i’ve answered any of my own questions on the matter, but at the very least i made what i consider my most honest material.

i did some internet digging and found out that you spend a considerable amount of time playing classical upright bass in various ensembles.  how does that experience translate to your electronic music, or are do you tend to compartmentalize the two?

yes, i studied and graduated with a degree in classical music performance on upright bass, so outside of adoptahighway, i spend my musical efforts in a handful of regional symphonies, smaller chamber ensembles, jazz and improvised music outfits, and a string quartet i co-founded called the tontine ensemble, which is dedicated to new music performance, mostly by wisconsin composers, as well as our own compositions and improvisations.

i don’t think I necessarily compartmentalize adoptahighway and these other efforts, although i do get a bit of a surprised reaction when i say i’m a classical musician who makes experimental electronic music, or vice versa.  some musicians are totally dedicated to a single craft, which is absolutely amazing, but i use each musical outfit i’m in to express a different part of myself.  it keeps me happy and excited to be able to do that.  i do feel a constant, direct correlation between my classical training and electronic music would be the composition techniques and theory/orchestration studies that I’ve taken part in translate into my work as adoptahighway.

are there any particular composers that have heavily influenced adoptahighway, either throughout the project’s existence or on this album in particular?

i’ve always been inspired by the extreme emotional output of the romantic era to early twentieth century composers.  some of my most fond performance memories, and composers i listen to regularly, are tchaikovsky, mahler, sibelius, and ravel.  i’m also very keen on minimalist composers like glass, reich, cage, john adams and lamonte young; the ability to say very much with sonically very little is very impressive.  i also have a close group of friends through the wednesday sound collective with whom i’ve developed heavily as an electronic musician: my pals lorn, dolor, and 18andcounting.

another project you’re involved in is unrehearsed mke.  can you talk a bit about the experimental music scene in milwaukee?

unrehearsed mke is a project that was started by my longtime friend and frequent collaborator, percussionist devin drobka.  it’s a monthly event here in milwaukee where we, along with the help of composer and saxophonist steve gallam, put together groups of musicians from all fields and disciplines – many of whom have never met or played together before – and ask them to create music on the spot, improvising in a performance setting.  we’ve been doing this for just over two years and it has really brought together and developed a brilliant community of improvisers and artists.  i always equate improvising with speaking.  you’re using the language of your instrument or craft to communicate an idea, just like how you would in any day-to-day conversation.  it’s about speaking clearly, without judgement, and without ego.  there have been some unforgettable and brilliant performances that have taken place this way and part of the magic is that it will never happen again, in light of it being improvised with no prior meeting of the musicians beforehand.

this is only a small facet of experimental music in milwaukee at the moment. another great contributor to the scene for the past several years has been a series called melt, that showcases electronic musicians in a performance setting, curated by my friend the demix.  he’s done a brilliant job advocating and getting support for the actual performance of original electronic music, and not just djs stuck in a booth in the corner of a club somewhere – which is unfortunately what often gets equated with “electronic music” for some people.  melt has been amazing in giving an outlet for many experimental musicians who would otherwise be confined to their studio spaces.

i could talk for hours about more goings on, but i guess the bottom line is that there’s a strong and healthy community of new music happening in milwaukee; you just have to be willing to seek it out.

wisconsin is the rightful beer and cheese capital of the country, and milwaukee especially embodies that stereotype.  what beer and cheese combination do you think would pair best with a fault?

ha!  i haven’t really thought about an edible/drinkable comparison to the record, so i guess i’d go with personal preference of dark beers.  i’ve heard reviews of my music as being dark and heavy, so a porter, stout or black ale seems to make sense.  my girlfriend really enjoys edam cheese, and she enjoys my musical output as well, so there’s that – dark beer and wisconsin edam.

do you have any immediate plans for adoptahighway, in terms of touring, new music, or both?

i don’t have anything necessarily planned outside of a show coming up in milwaukee at the end of march as adoptahighway.  maybe once the snow melts and there’s sun again i will try to string together some shows and hit the road.  i’m looking forward to getting into new music now that a fault has finally been released.  i invested so much time and emotional energy into this record, i felt that i couldn’t move on until it was released and out into the world.  i get very much involved in the concept and expression i’m trying to reach each time i write, so a fault really latched its teeth into me.  it was like exorcising a demon, really, and now that that’s off of me, it’s time to let the next one in.

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the show clark refers to is a stacked bill at cactus club in milwaukee on march 27th, part of the relaunch of melt; if you’re in the area, strongly consider attending.  in the meantime, you can stream and download a fault through the bandcamp link provided below.

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listen to a new song from clark

clark’s eponymous album that he dropped last fall was a jarring experience, with dark, aggressive tones underscored by fervent drum programming.  his ethos shows no sign of subsiding; a follow-up ep entitled flame rave is due out march 23rd, and it’s prefaced by a new track called “silver sun.”  brash, brassy synths dominate early before losing their sense of identity to a cavalcade of other elements.  the song is an exercise in gradual ambiguity, a concept clark excels at rather well.  take a listen to “silver sun” below.

listen to a new song from ricky eat acid

ricky eat acid catsam ray has shared his latest effort as ricky eat acid, the b-side to his new single “context” which dropped earlier this month.  “walking around a garden at night” is pretty indicative of its title, a murky stutter-step of dynamic shifts and subdued piano textures.  ray touts it as “music for smoking weed in your car at night,” but, you know, it works pretty well in a variety of settings.  take a listen below.