The extraordinary creative partnership of New Haven, CT duo Kath Bloom and Loren Connors, has haunted psych-folk fans ever since the early 80s.Kath taught herself guitar during shifts as a janitor at a New Haven cemetery, while Loren's free-form idiosyncratic style had been developing since the late 60s. Between 1981 and 1984, the duo recorded two live and four studio albums, mostly self-released in tiny quantities. Early on, their music mixed folk and blues traditionals with a handful of Kath's vulnerable, moving originals. By the later albums the songs were all Kath's - her fragile voice and subdued finger-picking set against Loren’s abstract but always supportive playing. Together the duo created a sound almost impossibly emotional and haunting. Restless Faithful Desperate emerged in 1984, in an edition of 200-300 copies. As her creativity accelerated, Kath's songs became looser and more intuitive, but Restless contains one of her most gorgeously realised compositions Look at Me. Loren's long-term collaborator Robert Crotty contributes extra guitar on a couple of tracks.After reissuing four of Kath & Loren's albums on CD in the late 2000s, Chapter now embarks on the first ever vinyl reissues for these remarkable records. Expect more volumes in early 2019.
In the years 1978 to 1981, Robert Crotty would show up on Loren Connors' doorstep in New Haven, Connecticut with his tiny, almost toy guitar. The two would then spend hours playing acoustic blues, the likes of which was absolutely staggering in its truthfulness."Robert Crotty with Me: Loren’s Collection (1979-1987)" is the first anthology of the late bluesman's work, as selected by Connors, his former playing partner and avant blues master. These are the unheard tapes of Crotty and Connors communing with the spirits of Delta and County Blues through their own revisions of standards and tingle-inducing improvisations. These also some of the Connors' earliest available recordings showing the development of his iconoclast guitar style and vocal moan.Crotty was a New Haven lifer and linchpin of the region's blues scene yet, he never achieved much recognition outside local bars and house parties - until now. The album features never before heard recordings, unseen photos, liner notes by Connors and Crotty's brother plus a bonus CD: the first-time reissue of Crotty's ultra rare sole LP "Robert Crotty Blues" and 7-inch -- both released on Connors' private St. Joan imprint in the late 1980s.
A haunting and volcanic suite of electric guitar and piano from the modern master of the avant blues and the abstract -- Loren Connors. Angels That Fall slips deeper into Loren's headspace where vocalists in glissando and the swelling romanticism of chamber strings echo from beyond this mortal plane. Transcribed through Connors’ effect-laden six strings, he carries the listener from bluesy violence to sadness, hope and eventually a piano coda. Angels That Fall was recorded May 2016 at First Unitarian Congregational Society in Brooklyn, NY. This 500 edition 1-sided LP features cover art by Connors and a full-color inner sleeve with portraits of Connors. Includes download coupon.
Just months after reviving The Departing of a Dream series from a ten-year hiatus -- Loren Connors issues another movement of saturated guitar tones, dissonance and impermanence.
Volume Six begins with the percussive sound of struck, muted strings -- an unusually rhythmic effect for one of Connors solo recordings, writes Kurt Gottschalk in The Wire. But from there, Connors' guitar notes morph into gentle wisps of guitar sounds -- or as Connors himself describes: "just like the wind scattering the notes around."
The mini-album is presented as a 10-inch record with artwork by Connors -- a faint, subtle outline of a woman's face. One-time edition of 500 copies, includes download coupon.
Tom Carter and Loren Connors are a pairing so obvious, it's a mystery how it took this long to happen. Each has traversed the American underground on their own unique path. Carter co-founded acid-folk improvisers Charalambides in 1991 and Connors has been redefining his singular vision of the blues since the late 1970s.
On this debut untitled LP, these guitar masters conjure a stunning, and at times labyrinthine, six-string tableau. Carter's high-contrast spiral melodies sear through Connors' expanding canvas of blacks and molten reds. Like an end-of-the-world flood filmed in slow motion, their echoes and howls cast a foreboding: all will be swallowed.
It's a startling and new language of psychedelic and avant blues that is a next step in Carter and Connor's ongoing exploration of the guitar. Bradley Buehring's gorgeous black and white photos of Carter/Connors in action adorn the glossy LP jacket and inner sleeve. Audio mastering by Taylor Deupree at 12k and vinyl mastering by Jason Ward at Chicago Mastering. One-time edition of 500 copies with download coupon.
Live in New York is an album seemingly simple as its title. Yet Loren Connors -- captured here in cinema verite quality at two performances six days apart in November 2014 -- is anything but straightforward. During the past 40 years the guitarist has not only developed an iconic sound but continues to reshape it and challenge himself, and the listener, in accepting radical permutations of the blues.
Across these three pieces, Connors builds upon the vision captured on his last studio album, 2011's Red Mars, where transparent, ghostly notes slowly unravel against a canvas of black drones and funeral tolls. In addition -- maximist, distorted six-string solos, that were once a hallmark of Loren's early-90s performances, make a mighty return here.
The CD is presented in a Stoughton miniaturized "LP" sleeve with metallic ink and an insert. As with past releases, features cover art of Connors' cut/paste remodeling of a photo of himself. Mastered by Taylor Deupree at 12k.
Vinyl reissue of master guitarist Loren Connors' modern classic The Departing of a Dream — the first of what would become a three volume series based loosely as tribute to Miles Davis' "He Loved Him Madly." This album finds Connors exploring slowly churned darkened hues — each collapsing onto themselves like echoes of Miles' muted trumpet and Connors' signature ghost melodies.
Since the late 1970s, Connors' use of haunted Delta Blues, minimalism and compositional underpinnings have become an avant-garde style synonymous to him. When The Departing of a Dream was released as a CD in 2002 it signaled a dramatic growth in Connors' sound by combining electric, acoustic and bass guitar with the unsettling menage of subtle percussion and ambient hiss. Remastered from the master tape this 180 gram LP extends the closing two part suite "For NY 9/11/01" with a bonus track. Comes with download code.
Loren Connors has long been heralded as one of the country’s most inimitable guitar voices. Like kindred spirit John Fahey, Connors’ legacy began by quietly self-releasing a series of raw and embryonic LPs. Since the late 1970s, Connors’ use of haunted Delta Blues, minimalism and compositional underpinnings have become an avant-garde style synonymous unto him. Along the way, musicians diverse as Chan Marshall, Jim O’Rourke, Darin Gray, Keiji Haino, Jandek, Alan Licht and others have sought Connors as a musical partner on record and stage.
Red Mars is the first CD of new solo music by the New York City guitarist since 2004. Since that time, Connors' unmistakable electric blues style presented on album has changed somewhat — from multilayer tape-recorded pieces to spontaneous live performances. The five pieces here, a suite to the Red Planet, are filled of the cinematic pacing, lyricism and a palette of phantom tones that hoist Connors to a stunning new peak. Portuguese bassist Margarida Garcia joins Connors on the opening journey, introducing a dialogue unique in its ambience as its entwined mystery and melodies. Features cover artwork by Connors.
Into the Night Sky is the sixth album from avant guitarists Alan Licht and Loren Connors, the first after 2003's In France. Since 1993 these New York City artists have evolved an instrumental dialogue merging shades of electric blues and minimalism. These two epic pieces — one from 1996, the other 2006 — recorded live in concert clearly show far their desolate sound world grew over a decade of collaboration while the core of layered guitar complexities and alien melodies remain. The atmosphere conjured by the duo is unmistakable — the ebb of eloquently shaped feedback — while the harmonic patterns recall 20th Century classical music. Active since the early 1990s, Licht has worked with a veritable who's who of the experimental world, from free jazz legends to downtown composers while performing in Text of Light and an ongoing duo with Aki Onda. Since 1978 Connors has released dozens of acclaimed and sought after LPs documenting his singular adaption of the blues and forging his place as one of America's most iconoclastic artists.
In 1981 guitarist Loren Connors took his tape recorder to the graveyard where the legendary Midnight Mary's grave lies in New Haven, Conn. The curse is: Anyone who gets caught in her graveyard past midnight will die the next day. But Connors, like a young fool, taped in that place, making this album that was lost and forgotten until uncovered in 2008.
Recorded between Connors’ eight volume Unaccompanied Acoustic Guitar Improvisations LP series and the folk albums he would make with Tom Hanford and Kath Bloom, these nine pieces meld those distinct forms. Connors, singing in a trance like moan, reforms the Mississippi Delta blues on his acoustic guitar with flashes of melodic hooks and a percussive guitar style that erupts into boogie-woogie riffs and other world spirituals. It’s an album for fans of Connors’ solo avant work and collaborations with Jim O’Rourke or Jandek; and will enthrall devotees of early the 20th Century blues of Blind Willie Johnson and Charlie Patton. A rare and essential peak into the still mysterious early years of this American guitar master.
These two nice Catholic boys, Loren Connors and Jim O'Rourke, met at the crossroads each night during a 1997 European tour. By this time O'Rourke already reissued Connors' seminal heartbreak album In Pittsburgh on his Dexter's Cigar label and and was preparing to produce the guitarist's big-band mash-up with Alan Licht, Hoffman Estates. Together, Connors-O’Rourke unravel slow motion ghost blues across three extended pieces that evolve from the elder’s martian style to the thundering, feedback splattered lead grooves of that whippersnapper. The spontaneous melodies shift from devastating, country road intimacy to hypnotic overamped rock. It's ferocious, epic, and an utter beauty capable only from two who know themselves and each other all too well. This live CD is only the second duo release by these musical partners despite performing together since the mid-90s. During the past decade, O'Rourke has repeatedly returned to the hours of recordings captured across Europe to select these 47 minutes.
It was 1987. Loren MazzaCane Connors, not yet recognized by a world audience, had already recorded and released his 8 volume Dagget series and his five albums with folk singer Kath Bloom. He had abandoned his guitar for a 3-year period, and returned to it with renewed vigor. He was not yet recognized as one of the great musical loners of the age (his future Black Label solo recordings and the eventual unearthing of the Dagget series were the titles that would establish Loren as such). He was, in fact, performing live and about to record some of the most potent recordings of his career -- recordings which may challenge any present notion of Loren being a true loner at all. It was on these recordings that he first played with his future wife Suzanne Langille. Together they performed Langille-adapted traditionals and gospel standards, slowing them "down to a crawl." Two albums were released on his own St. Joan label under the moniker Guitar Roberts with Suzanne Langille, entitled BLUESMASTER 1 and BLUESMASTER 2, in 1987 and 1988, respectively (both issued in small runs of 200). This album represents the best of their material as a duo from those two records (there were also intermittant solo guitar compositions on both BLUESMASTER recordings), plus the one song they performed as a duo from Loren's 1989 IN PITTSBURGH full-length ("Haunted House") and three previously unreleased recordings from the same period. In her spare and "deeply considered" arrangements for these songs, Suzanne allows all the room necessary for their collective personality to shine through, making for truly timeless performances. These recordings were Suzanne's first to be released publicly. They showed a singer who was unafraid to push herself to lay claim to these folk tunes and make them her own, particularizing them with her own experience and thus imbuing them with a rare vitality. These recordings layed the groundwork for the work they would later do on the albums COME NIGHT, THE ENCHANTED FOREST, LET THE DARKNESS FALL and with their new group Haunted House. After even a casual listen to the songs on this collection, it's quite difficult to imagine either Suzanne or Loren playing with another performer, or alone for that matter. The grace and intimacy with which they perform these songs together gives the impression that they'd been playing together since childhood. It's no wonder Loren found so much fulfillment in playing music again.
Let the Darkness Fall is the return of singer / lyricist Suzanne Langille. She is once again joined by longtime collaborator Loren MazzaCane Connors as well as Atlanta's Andrew Burnes and David Daniell of the group San Agustin. The result is an intensely bleak, yet satisfying, musical excursion. A much steamier affair than Suzanne's and Loren's previous concept album THE ENCHANTED FOREST, LET THE DARKNESS FALL showcases Suzanne's lyrical intonation and her zesty, more sensual vocal style. Her deep and throaty vocals parallel the doleful sounds of the trio on songs like "Strong And Foolish Heart" and "A Sadness In Me." The album is full of gently churning and ethereal moments which are steeped heavily in the musical and emotional concentration that only the wisdom afforded to veterans of this group's tenure can allow. Loren's lone blue notes quietly escape to the forefront of the dual guitar weaving of Andrew and David. Six of the seven songs are darkly textured by the bending tones of what is often a three-guitar chorus. LET THE DARKNESS FALL finds Suzanne and Loren entering their fourth decade of performance, while Andrew and David are beginning their second. But does it offer a clear picture of where these artists are headed? Perhaps. Or maybe it's simply a month of frolic in the life of four fine musicians.
After over a decade of appearances on Loren MazzaCane's albums, Suzanne Langille releases a full length of her own songs. THE ENCHANTED FOREST combines Suzanne's celestial voice and lyrical talent with Loren's crystalline guitar work. Loosely based on John Lebar's 1945 film of the same name, Suzanne acts out the story of a lost child, a forest's impending end and those that try and save it, through the voices of six characters. As on previous MazzaCane albums, Suzanne's soulful and blues-filled moans create burning holes in the hearts and ears of many during each song. Loren's guitar stays at a constant whisper pitch throughout the album, his minimal chords and lone notes have never been this fragile. Intertwined with Suzanne's character expressions, the guitar mixes with the muted sounds of chirping birds and the feeling of THE ENCHANTED FOREST takes hold. Reminiscent of the St. Joan-era collaborations between Suzanne and Loren, these two have never sounded so brilliant.