One of our most successful releases last year was the “La Psicotropia” compilation, compiled by Guillermo M. Cerredo of Pakapi Records. Now we’re teaming up with Pakapi for to co-release the follow-up “Industria Tropical” compiled by Juan José Calarco. Whilst “La Psicotropia” took a psychedelic approach to modern electronic cumbia music, “Industria Tropical” takes the classic early industrial sound to South America. Think early Cabaret Voltaire, Front 242 and Throbbing Gristle set to a tropical beat. The sunny beats of cumbia & reggaeton soaking up the dark moods of European urban decay. It’s a perfect culture clash, just listen:
01 Bloque del Sur – Explanada
02 Astrosuka & Ornamenti d’oro – Ahaetulla Nasuta
03 Titanik – Doombia
04 San Ignacio – Líneas
05 Panchasila – Proyecto Huemul
06 Kristallo – Aleatorio
07 F.L.N – Rithalin 9210
08 hhhnihhh – Mam Boni
09 Carlos Alonso uxu – Hayam Alwa (yo tierra)
10 Zigo & Onfel – Muscarita de los Andes
11 Minicomponente – Seno
12 Pablo Cercas – Odin & Viracocha vs el FMI
13 Bio Dread – Phantom Guerrilla
01 San Ignacio & Bio Dread – Cajero Abandonado
02 DJ Pinchado – Linda Bomba Amapola
03 Dos Pesos – Plucked Cumbia
04 GMC – ARP-1
05 Sofitrax – 8ton
06 Peninsula Fernandes – Do 16 ao 18 (flui bem)
07 El Zombi Flash – Bass y Cumbion
08 Bloque del Sur & Panchasila – Alarma! (terror tropical)
09 Jin Yerei – Vos lejos, ellos ni enterados
10 Sidirum – Romaniuk
11 Barda – Arroyo
12 Lesglobe iss – Africa64
A mind-blowing/mind-blurring team up from Argentina’s kings of the bizarre, this is over 35 minutes of the most out their sounds we have ever released. Ø+yn have always sounded to me like what Nurse With Wound would sound like if they were a South American acoustic band. There is that experimental surrealism but instead of the studio as instrument approach, its something for more tactile and hands-on. Madrugapha is more of a cosmonaut, following whacked-out stoned comet trails through deepest space. The two worlds collided a couple of years ago for the live tape “Golden Rain Pope” released on Madrugapha’s own label, the excellent Salvador Records (check it out).
Anyway, here’s some fruits picked from the overflowing branches of this album:
1.The Great Gig In My Hole
2.Golas Con Surpensor
3.Climbing The Limits Of Molecular Strings
1.Meado (for Ricardo Montaaer)
2.Loro Lin Tones
3.El Sintetizador Anal
Limited edition of 50. 42 copies on dark blue cassettes, 8 on freaky purple. Buy from here
It is a great honour and privilege to bring to you the debut release from a major new talent – Cheval Scintillantes. Cheval Scintillantes is Sophie Bernadou, a multi-instrumentalist who previously played in the trio Folle Eglise along with Alice Dourlen (aka Chicaloyoh). Both the tracks on here see Sophie displaying her creative talents with the cello. Her playing is passionate, intricate and inspired.
The recording captures the tactile actions of her instrument and the acoustics of the room she was recording in. More akin to how Steve Albini engineers recordings to make them sound as live and real as possible, this is the antithesis of a sterile over-produced production, but a living, breathing organic recording in which you can almost hear the air molecules being displaced by her bow.
This is a very limited release of 50 copies on glittering blue tapes, pro-dubbed. Recorded at Studio Chaudelande by Bertrand Duchemin. Artwork by Marion Dubois
Bonne chance pour ta passion
J’espère que tu vas t’épanouir et profiter de ce nouveau départ
WAS14 – out October 16th
pre-order now from our shop
This is edited together from the highlights of a very creative session that Sophie Cooper and Delphine Dora had in the perfect setting of Todmorden Unitarian Church. This is their first collaboration, although Delphine put out Sophie’s stunning solo album “Our Aquarius” last year on her own excellent Wild Silence label. They also both appeared separately on Richard Moult’s album “Last Night I Dreamt of Hibrihteselle”. Put all these previous works out of you mind, though, as this is something very different. Different to most things.
Sophie and Delphine are caught here carrying out primal improvisations utilising the profound acoustics of this historic chapel. If you caught any of the unplugged sets at Tor Ist Das! Festival that just used the building’s acoustics then you will know what the building is capable of but with just two people in there, it sounds even more spacious, more infinite. Their tools are a trombone, percussion, electronics, organ and their wordless voices.
This is a limited edition of 50 copies on pink tapes, home dubbed. Mastered by Andie Brown. Cover art by Lucy Atherton
Les Différences S’unissent
L’avenir Le Dira
The Former Residents
A Moment of Speaking
The Cold Train
Length of Space
Mary’s in the Doorway
WAS13 – out October 9th
“France’s Delphine Dora and England’s Sophie Cooper have both made impressively uncategorizable music over the past decade, and while they’ve been mutual supporters (Dora released Cooper’s excellent Our Aquarius on her Wild Silence label last year), this is the first time they’ve played together. Improvising in a echo-laden church in West Yorkshire, the pair found a sound distinct from their respective individual work. Their voices fill the space in a haunting-yet-reverent way; some of the tracks are like wordless hymns sung by ghosts. Distance Future’s surrounding ambience reminds me of the holy drones of Charlemagne Palestine and Janek Schaefer on Day of the Demons, but where that record’s power came in clarity, Dora and Cooper’s work is more mysterious—and ultimately something only these two could conjure” – Marc Masters, Pitchfork. Experimental albums of the year, 2015
“There’s something completely transporting about this album that makes it a winner, one of the standouts in label Was Ist Das?’s already formidable discography. Those vocals, wordless, enigmatic and beautiful, are definitely part of it, their ineffable shimmer seeming wholly alien and totally human at the same time. They cast a glistering web that seem to reveal the immutable laws of the universe, stars and planets revolving like brass models as those same incantations, almost shamanic in nature, bind them together in their eternal pirouettes.” – We Need No Swords
“Sounds emanate from stained glass shadows, reverberating through the church’s crevices to become both immediate and distant, a ghost simultaneously stuck in the past and present.” – The Big Takeover
Its our first ever split album and we are taking no prisoners, is it a real double-whammy. We have two solo artists, both from France, who recently wowed everyone on their joint UK tour which included revelatory sets at our very own Tor Ist Das! festival which won them lots of new fans so its a real honour to be putting out one tape with both of them on it.
First up is Chicaloyoh, the project of Alice Dourlen. Alice is a singer, painter, poet and multi-instrumentalist from Normandy. She has amassed a rich and varied discography since starting out on her own in 2010, clocking up releases on labels such as Shelter Press, Brave Mysteries and Digitalis. On this release, Alice sings in French, her voice soft but dark, over a backdrop of head-nodding beats, weird psychedelic soundscapes and heavy synths.
On the flip is Terrine, the solo project of Claire Gapenne from mighty French noise-rockers Headwar. Her first EPs were devastatingly heavy no-wave assaults but here she embraces playful experimentalism creating head-wigging sounds that cross through the realms of Coil, musique concrete and even early Faust but all with a playful wit and some burst of speed noise.
Coeur De Sable, Ogre
Punks & Jean Detrémont
Mundial Consignar Late
Indus Mauvais Goût
Limited edition of 100. Black C30 tapes with yellow cases. Cover artwork is “TWO GIRLS IN HAUNTED WOODS” by Alice Dourlen.
On sale now at http://wasistdas.bigcartel.com/
From Vienna, Austria hails Ulrich Rois’ majestic Bird People project. Sometimes its just Ulrich and sometimes its a full band. For “Constellations” its a trio of Ulrich, Roy Culbertson III and Lucas Henao Serna. This time the drone harvest is one with a rich vein of Indian classical drone via the anticipation of Austrian spring. Ulrich, Roy and Lucas on this album use lap steel, singing bowls, mountain dulcimer, shruti box, bass, esraj, banjo, singing bowls, gong, accordion and electric organ to take you away to imaginary mountain retreats and impossible landscapes.
Easily the deepest, most blissed-out release yet to grace our spools. This one is a limited edition of 75 and comes on fluorescent green tapes with beautiful cover artwork by Sarah Coppen.
Out mid to late August, pre ordering now from HERE
We’re very proud to have been putting Suzuki Junzo on in Hebden Bridge every year since 2010 and we’re even prouder to be releasing the next chapter in his recording career. How to describe Junzo’s work to the unitiated? He is a cosmic bluesman whose work ranges from skeltal laments to space-ripping walls of noise. His live shoes and records usually capture all these extremes. He’s in bands with Tabata Mitsuru of AMT/Zeni Geva, Koji Shimura of Mainliner
‘If I Die Before I Wake’ is another gem for his discography and takes an interesting new approach. Side one is all brand new studio work and sees Junzo accompanied by veteran drummer Takahashi Ikuro (High Rise, LSD March, Overhang Party and many more). Side two, meanwhile, is a live solo show from 2014 at the Fortress Callosum in San Francisco.
A: Studio 2015
1.Crossing the Valley of the Cosmic Death Demons [08:39]
2.Les Visiteurs du Soir [10:53]
3.If I Die Before I Wake [12:28]
B: Live at Fortress Callosum SF/CA, 21/11/2014
1.She Kissed Their Graves but They Hit Her with Their Ashes [04:38]
2.In the Lair of Norma Desmond / 4 Mosche di Velluto Grigio [22:49]
Limited edition of 70 copies, coming out July 13th. Pre orders now been taken from https://wasistdas.bigcartel.com
Its taken a while but I’ve finally got Daniel MacKenzie of Plurals to let me put out the first ever tape from his solo project Ekca Liena. How to describe this music? Its difficult to pin down but it is a kind of high-fidelity blend of electronic drones and intense waves of guitar noise. You might say if Natural Snow Buildings sound comes from rural France then Ekca Liena does a similar thing for decaying urban Britain. When I listen to it I imagine beautiful glowing sunsets over crumbling, derelict industrial estates.
You can listen for yourself right now as for this album we are selling it via bandcamp so you can stream it there right now and you will get a free download of it immediately when you buy it but I really can’t stress enough that this is an album that needs to be experienced as a whole not by dipping in for few seconds or skipping through the tracks on bandcamp while listening on rubbish laptop speakers. This is over 70 minutes of deep listening music and needs total immersion for maximum results.
It’s been mastered by Andrew Liles (Nurse With Wound/Current 93), sleeve design by Daniel himself and cover photo by me. We’re only doing 50 copies which means after artists copies and subscribers copies that we have less than 20 of these going on sale. Get it here while you still can.
Introducing Mondo Hebden which is the name we are using for releasing archival music (as opposed to Was Ist Das? which is for new music). Our first release really is from the first lady of British electronic music and founder of the BBC Radiophonic Workshop – Daphne Oram.
It came about because I’ve spent the past 10 months working on a book about the BBC Radiophonic Workshop and ended up at Goldsmiths University going through Daphne’s papers. While I was there I was given the opportunity to listen to her archives and the contents of tape number 037, marked “Pop Tryouts” really struck me.
It seems to be various different arrangements and takes of the same track, a very melodic part of the “Birds Of Parralax” suite featured on the excellent “Oramics” compilation. Daphne tackles it in a variety of ways including acapella and proto-techno. It was probably made around 1972/1973 as it was for the ballet “Xallaraparallax” which Daphne which Daphne’s paperwork refers to as being worked on in that period.
It gives a fascinating glimpse into her working methods and gets the melody very firmly lodged into your memory! Its been gently remastered but the two acoustic tracks have some inevitable room hiss on them. Thank you to the Daphne Oram Trust for making this all possible.
The tape will be shipping mid-March and the book, “An Electric Storm” will be out in Autumn. You can pre-order the book fromObverse Books
Limited edition of 150 copies, pre-order from http://wasistdas.bigcartel.com/
nearly 50 minutes of Makoto exploring the possibilities of his guitar in Hebden Bridge’s Masonic Hall. Makoto’s solo output away from Acid Mothers Temple is always far more way-out there and here he creates a wide-ranging cosmic adventure that goes from heaven to hell and back again. Limited edition of 130 copies on orange cassettes.
Out now! Order from https://wasistdas.bigcartel.com
“Kawabata Makoto manages to channel the distilled spirit of Hebden Bridge in this solo set of electric guitar and what sounds like a slew of pitch shifter, ring modulator and delay pedals. As with most of his solo recordings, here Makoto eschews the prog/psych excesses of his various groups in favour of a starker, more introverted approach that ranges from isolationist ambience and shimmering waves of silvery chords to alien plumes of twisting feedback, motion sickness glissando and melancholy cello-like resonances. He moves across the various sections of the set with seamless grace, conjuring up a similar atmosphere of cosmic wonder seen in some of Keiji Haino’s more meditative moments or KK Null’s early solo guitar work. I’m not sure when this was recorded but I’m guessing it was winter as there’s a frosty, almost glacial feel to the music that’s perfect for theses dark months.” – Jim at Norman Records
“What a title, eh? Like The Incredible String Band jamming in the background of some lost Twin Peaks episode … or something. Anybody who’s followed the solo guitar explorations of Acid Mothers Temple’s spiritual leader Kawabata Makoto knows he well and truly eschews his “Speed Guru” nickname for what usually constitutes lengthy, minimal, often improvised and often ambient pieces. This outing recorded at the Masonic Hall in Hebden Bridge manages to stand out though, with a gradually aging Kawabata plunging even deeper into the recesses of the cosmos than usual. There came a point during the 2000s (when the Acid Mothers Temple camp were seemingly releasing albums on a weekly basis) that Makoto’s improvisations for solo guitar became somewhat predictable, though admittedly far from stale. Lines of loop drones and impressionistic glissandi would wash over the listener, with Makoto occasionally breaking into sparse lush plucking, or dropping back into some variation of his eternal riff from ‘Pink Lady Lemonade’. Anybody who’s seen more recent solo live sets from Kawabata knows he’s changed as a solo improviser, drinking in the atmosphere of his venues, and often eschewing any semblance of melody or the user-friendly wash of ambient chords in favour of atonality, and timbral experimentation. A series of bizarre passages strewn together by stream of consciousness fill up both sides of this 50-minute tape, with Makoto spending plenty of time scraping his strings furiously with a bow, warping tones through a ring modulator, and generally making drones almost unrecognisable as having first come from a guitar. Some way into the second side, we’re treated to some very pretty noodling akin to Kawabata favourite Jerry Garcia reaching ultra deep into space on some harsh-acid-trip reading of ‘Dark Star’. Kawabata soon disintegrates the pretty shapes of his noodling, quickly disseminating everything into whistling wails of lingering glissandi underpinned by folksy picking, and vocals!!. It’s not quite “The Speed Guru Sings”, but his mumbled intonations make the penultimate passage of the tape some of the tenderest music the man’s recorded since his utterly gorgeous collaboration with Richard Youngs back in 2001 – admittedly he soon destroys the sweetness with a blast of red raw amp-exploding feedback. Kawabata Makoto continues to develop as an improviser, and his focus here on riding wave after wave of non sequiturs into the cosmos makes In The Black Lodge Of Prince Frederick one of his most revealing and rawest solo recordings.” – Tristan Bath, The Quietus
- Orange Car Crash – Simple Music
- Hush Arbors – Albion Way
- Nihilist Spasm Band / Metabolismus – split album
- Stuart Chalmers – In The Heart of the Wilderness
- Worship My Panther – This Is Scaldhouse
- These Feathers Have Plumes / Isnaj Dui
- David Colohan – Hill Of The Moon
- Various Artists – Noise In The Wood
- Gwendolen Osmond – The Mermaid
- Jake Blanchard – Shade
- Various Artists – Industria Tropical
- Ø+yn & Madrugapha – The Dark Side of the Moon
- Cheval Scintillantes
- Delphine Dora & Sophie Cooper – Distance Future
- Chicaloyoh / Terrine – Elles Sont Barrées Elles Ou Quoi?
- Bird People – Constellations
- Suzuki Junzo – If I Die Before I Wake
- Ekca Liena – Lacia Is Joined
- Daphne Oram – Pop Tryouts
- Kawabata Makoto – In the Lodge of Prince Frederick