Emily A. Sprague has become a household name for those with a moderate curiosity for the indie-folk music scene developing out of NYC. Her project, Florist, has released two soft-hearted and graceful records over the past two years. Now, released under her own name, Sprague trades her delicate guitar playing for tranquilizing modular synthesizer and piano manipulation to create pastoral ambient sequences.
During the time when Unknown Mortal Orchestra were laying down their majorly dense psych-pop entry, Sex & Food, the band quietly collected material that would become their second LP of 2018. Recorded in Hanoi, Vietnam with several local musicians and also the father of frontman Ruban Nielson, UMO use traditional Vietnamese instruments and over-amplified guitars to synchronize the band’s inimitable anti-gravity pop and spectral jazz-funk on the seven-suite IC-01 Hanoi.
Taking his four-track song-sketches from the Calico Review sessions with his band Allah-Las, Pedrum Siadatian honed his violet-tinted, worn-in acid pop songwriting that would become his debut, self-titled LP as PAINT.
The first PAINT single was released this fall. How long have you been working on these songs? What made November 2018 the right time to push the record into the world?
I wrote the record over the course of 2015-2016 and then recorded it with Frank Maston at the end of 2016. It took some time to sort out label stuff and then November 2018 was just the date that fit with the release schedule.
The new record, your first as PAINT, is self-titled. It seems that some bands withhold the self-titled for a special time or career-defining moment in the band's timeline. What made the first release worthy or fitting of the self-titled moniker?
I didn't think too much about that. It was a natural decision.
For the sound quality of the new record the final cuts have a granular and demo-tape texture. Was the lo-fi sound part of the original intent and vision for the new record?
Yeah, I wanted to do something just a step above my cassette demos in terms of fidelity.
How has visual art and videography impacted the project? Were the visual elements of the record developed simultaneously or did one evoke another in terms of audio and visual creation?
I knew that I wanted a VHS aesthetic for the videos before I had settled on album art and all that. All the other visual components materialized well after recording was done.
How is songwriting as PAINT different than working with Allah-Las? Is there any overlap within the two universes?
It's different in the sense that I can write what I want and not have to put it through the democratic filter of the group. It's much easier to be spontaneous with recording and keep idiosyncrasies as the “dictator."
With Allah-Las, there's a strong connection to Los Angeles and the Pacific Ocean in the band's music and aesthetic. What's your finest memory from your time in Los Angeles? Which place in the city gives you the most creative inspiration to write new material?
I don't know if I can cull my finest memory here. I form a lot of ideas just getting stoned, driving around, & people watching-- which has resulted in a couple fender benders. Overall, I'm always trying to keep the antennas up.
How long have you lived in Los Angeles? In your time there, how have you seen the city change for artists and musicians?
I moved from Utah about 16 years ago. It's changed in the sense that so many bands and musicians have moved here. There's more music here now than ever it seems.
You'll be playing a handful of US dates followed by a string of shows in Europe to finish out the year. Who will make up the live band? How did those folks get involved with the project?
It'll be Nick Murray (White Fence , Oh Sees) on drums, Jackson Macintosh (Tops, Sheer Agony) on guitar, Frank Maston (Maston, Jacco Gardner) on keys/flute and Spencer Dunham (Allah-Las, Gortopia) on bass.
I just wanted to get a group of friends together who jibe together personality-wise and can improvise and play really well.
The ritualistic droning incantations of San Fran experimental rock outfit Dire Wolves reappear from the misty hollow with a new concoction of devotional psychedelia. Patient, meditative singing leads hauntingly into a slithering guitar lead that exhumes the band’s vast, momentous instrumentation.
Furrows is the project of Baltimore-based singer and multi-instrumentalist Peter Wagner who today is premiering his first single “Feeling Sure.” Mixed by engineer Andrew Sarlo (Big Thief, Nick Hakim), the first foray into Furrows’ kraut-leaning folk is a hazily joyful and melodically affecting introduction.
Mariya Takeuchi- September
Amli Ozaki- Wanderer In Love
Tomoko Aran- Midnight Pretenders
Taeko Ohnuki- 4:00 AM
Anri- Shyness Boy
Yurie Kokubu- Just A Joke
Miki Matsubara- Dream In The Screen
Taeko Onuki- Carnaval
Kumi Miyasato- Shokei Shigan
Minako Toshida- Light’n Up
Kikuchi Momoko- Deja Vu
In December of 2016, Mat Davidson, who records candid and devastatingly beautiful old-fashioned folk music as Twain, began trading one song a day between a group of friends. The batch of songs Twain shared is available as Dec. 6~12, 2016, a digitally streaming interception of a brief wintertime exchange about make-believe expiration dates of Jimmy John’s sandwich bread or that asshole Louis Pasteur.
Java is the instrumental project of Paul Cherry and Justin Vittori. Their first release is a two-track cassette, Java 1 & Java 2, that is branded with Cherry’s delectable, glossy-finished sensual pop delivery. His bubble-bath synths and lush, fogged-mirror guitar strokes devours every last drop of hot-buttered mojo in the tank that carries into the evening long after the candle burns out.
From the shadowy margins of experimental, psychedelic, and grunge music, the foremost leader of atypical noise composition, Justin Frye’s latest PC Worship release is another first-rate concoction of monochromatic and misshapen sonic malware. Released in tandem with Issue 60 of Monster Children Magazine with Dane Reynolds, Future Phase is, as expected, programmed with brutal percussion, contorted feedback and momentary flickers of pseudo-human guitar solos.
Whoa. It appears to be a homemade music video for the insanely beautiful and mysterious track “Steamboat Mama” from the incredible record Prayers Of A One Man Band from Bobby Frank Brown created by the enigmatic star himself.
Recorded in 1970, Tony Joe White brought his country soul and Southern funk to the BBC stage for 30-plus minutes of his hallowed songwriting while his cigarette burned in his headstock.
PAINT has released “Moldy Man,” the second track and video from the upcoming self-titled debut. The project’s pointman, Pedram Siadatian, serves another dose of heliotrope psychedelic pop with whirling guitars and low-eyed vocals. Directed by the masterful Sam Kristofski, the video features animations from artiste fantastique Bailey Elder.
Much like their antithetical album title, Pill harness a relief within disorder as their collision of punk and experimental arrangements weild an unsettling allure. For their second LP on Mexican Summer, Soft Hell refines the group’s no-wave, free jazzy core that is unmistakenly shaped by the NYC junk culture but is deliberate and faultless in its pummeling delivery.
As one of the greatest living experimental musicians, Tim Hecker’s composition warps any delineation within the infrastructure of music. His ambient soundscapes have mined from a deep stockpile of instruments and sound utensils from the hyper-modern to the exotically antiquated. On his latest record Konoyo, Hecker enlists an ensemble of Japanese musicians to record and contort their traditional imperial court music with synthesizers and sequencers developing a cybernated breach in the mosaic of modern and ancient sound.