Secretly Distributon

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2019-05-24
Emily A. Sprague: Water Memory / Mount Vision

Emily A. Sprague's Water Memory and Mount Vision albums are presented in new and complete detail. Emily's work concerns the connectedness of all things, giving living, core form to the mysterious forces that guide earthly activity and human contact with them. Memory and vision, ocean and mountains, question and answer, emotions and infinity. Sunshine, lizard, sea salt.

A collection of reflections are visible in the mirrored structures of Water Memory and Mount Vision, two chapters - two halves - each complemented by a written verse. As much about the presence in youthful experimentation as the permanence of transition and maturation, Water Memory is the first long-form instrumental music Emily ever channeled, generated over a year of self and sonic exploration between Massachusetts and New York.

By contrast, Mount Vision was conceived in a smaller window of time than its predecessor, the pure residue of intense emotional build up during a period of self-healing and unguarded reflection. Composed and captured in Northern California, the body of Mount Vision is a trio of synthesizer pieces; deeply grounded compositions of extended tones trilling into the ether.

Emily's mission on this planet may be facilitating - or illuminating - the correspondence between innermost knowledge and intelligent nature, and Water Memory / Mount Vision are most certainly monumental documents along this sharing path.

Craig Leon: Anthology Of Interplanetary Folk Music Vol. 2: The Canon

Craig Leon revisits the extraterrestrial origins of civilization in Anthology of Interplanetary Folk Music Vol. 2: The Canon. Picking up where the pioneering electronic albums Nommos and Visiting (Anthology of Interplanetary Folk Music Vol. 1) left off, The Canon traces the imparted knowledge of alien visitors as it spread from Africa across the ancient world. Co-produced and featuring vocals by Cassell Webb, the pair engage a sonic pallet familiar from Vol. 1, updated with ecstatic contemporary sound and synthesis, creating a propulsive, exploratory album of cosmic lore and speculative anthropology.

Visible Cloaks, Yoshio Ojima & Satsuki Shibano: FRKWYS Vol. 15: Serenitatem

Serenitatem, the fifteenth installment of FRKWYS, joins Visible Cloaks with Yoshio Ojima and Satsuki Shibano, two trailblazers of the Japanese avant-garde music and visual arts scenes of the 1980s and 90s. While the music excels on an environmental level, serenitatem aims to be more than that, burning away the easy cynicism of the day and presenting itself as the kind of delocalized work of art the internet promised us decades ago - a synthesis of artistic visions, technological sophistication, futurist ambition, and, occasionally, ancient polyphony.

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2019-03-22
June Chikuma: Les Archives

Taut instrumentals snap you into movement. A whooping gonzo record of synths, samplers, string quartet and drum machines, Les Archives is composed, arranged and produced by illusive Japanese artist June Chikuma. Her neon-vibrant aesthetic would be at home with films like After Hours, Repo Man, Gleaming the Cube or Teknolust. If it scored an action movie this record is a tale of mistaken identity (hijinks ensue). Les Archives bares little trace of its Picture Label 1986 origins in name or sleeve design, but makes an emphatic entrance at the end of Freedom to Spend’s 2018 archiv-ities.

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2019-03-08
Helado Negro: This Is How You Smile

Helado Negro returns with This Is How You Smile, an album that freely flickers between clarity and obscurity, past and present geographies, bright and unhurried seasons. Miami-born, New York-based artist Roberto Carlos Lange embraces a personal and universal exploration of aura - seen, felt, emitted - on his sixth album and second for RVNG Intl. This Is How You Smile derives from Jamaica Kincaid's "Girl," a story she wrote in the form of a mother’s sole, complicated, but loving voice, speaking a "How to" litany of advice ranging from domestic chores to what a daughter, an immigrant and young woman of color, must do to protect herself in a world that was not designed by or for her. This is how joy, or its visage, at turns comforts, constricts, or becomes armor.

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2018-11-09
Michele Mercure: Beside Herself

Beside Herself collects the dream music of Michele Mercure's self-produced and distributed albums, offered in scarce analog editions between 1983 and 1990. Traversing the DIY cassette trading scene and sensory bending soundtracks for experimental theatre and television, Mercure's night-lit, minimal synthesizer music expresses an ambitious vision and (simulated) voice swelling from the electronic music substratum of the 80s. Double LP co-release from RVNG Intl. and Freedom To Spend includes a multi-format digital download code and 12-page booklet with extensive liner notes and ephemeral enrichment.

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2018-11-02
Colin Self: Siblings

Colin Self's Siblings is a proposal for interdependence, critical joy, and an expansive sense of being. As the lyrics beam, "I used to live as an anomaly... no explanation biologically," so siblings share hidden language, lore, and identity. On Siblings, ecstatic voices and sound knot to form new ideals of kinship, emerging as horizontal relations for multi-species flourishing.

Colin Self challenges boundaries of perception with his art, music, and performances. Inspired by the work of Donna Haraway (Cyborg Manifesto, Staying with the Trouble: Making Kin in the Chthulucene), Siblings is the final segment of the six-part opera series entitled Elation. Informed by Self's exploration of the ways of knowing, Siblings places a non-biological family at its center. The characters, bonded by curiosity and caring, generate ways of collectively coming together on a damaged planet. Self uses Siblings to define this familial experience through sound and its soundmakers.

Colin Self's Siblings will be released October 19, 2018 in limited vinyl and digital editions.

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2018-10-05
Rimarimba: Below The Horizon

The first in the Rimarimba series, 1983's Below The Horizon, feature Robert Cox in exploratory mode, figuring out exactly how to make his music. There's a pleasure in hearing how he feels out the parameters of his aesthetic, here - there's a boxy minimalism, slightly clunky and charming with it, that reflects the home-spun, improvisatory tenor of the compositions. It's ambitious music, though, wanting to do the most and the best it can with its limited resources. Cox himself admits to not being "pre-wired" to making this music, but that only makes it more compelling: "Were I to be properly musical, it wouldn’t actually work as well in some ways; it'd be just another album of contemporary clattery music."

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2018-09-28
Tashi Wada with Yoshi Wada and Friends: FRKWYS Vol. 14 - Nue

Composer Tashi Wada has performed for years with his father Yoshi Wada-artist, composer, and early member of the Fluxus movement. However, they have rarely appeared together in studio settings. Nue, the fourteenth entry in RVNG Intl.'s intergenerational FRKWYS series, finally brings Tashi and Yoshi, along with an eclectic group of close friends and extended family, together on tape. Nue draws on aspects of Tashi's background for his widest vision to date-among them the minimalist bagpipe music of Yoshi, who co-composed three of the tracks, the psychoacoustic and perceptual explorations of his mentor, composer James Tenney, and reimagined forms of ancient and devotional music. The album, however, is not a tribute to the past or a recapitulation of familiar sounds. Instead, Nue is an intertwining of people and ideas as a means of growing, of looking inward to move outward, and of looking back to move forward. To achieve this growth, Tashi assembled a core group of fellow travelers, including Yoshi, composer Julia Holter, producer Cole MGN, and percussionist Corey Fogel to give life to this multifaceted suite. As an experience, Nue subtly navigates the interactions, intimacy and spaciousness of this group. The album's title itself is a nod to Tashi's abiding interest in duality and the unknown: nue is a mythological Japanese chimera with the face of a monkey, the legs of a tiger, and a snake for a tail, a composite form, at once disturbing and otherworldly. But, as the composer points out, nue is also French for naked-stripped of complexity, bare and exposed, but also raw and essential. From the doubling of tones-and the world of harmonic nuances such an action produces-to the rich interplay between individual musicians, all baring their own personalities and experiences through shared performance, Tashi's compositions allow space for these elements to join and grow. The multipartite creature that is an ensemble melds in the simplicity and purity of the music itself.

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2018-09-07
Oliver Coates: Shelley's on Zenn-La

In broad string strokes, British cellist, composer, and producer Oliver Coates went from studying at the Royal Academy of Music to becoming an artist in residency at London's Southbank Centre to contributing to works from Radiohead. His in depth understanding of classical cello is met with his study and exploration of electronic experimental sound.

Earlier on, Coates received the Royal Philharmonic Society Young Artist Award and has been commissioned for string and electronic arrangements with visual artist Lawrence Lek and composer Jonny Greenwood (on the scores for Paul Thomas Anderson's There Will Be Blood and Phantom Thread) and collaborated with musician Mica Levi on their 2016 album Remain Calm.

Coates' foray into electronic leanings on Upstepping, his other 2016 release, have led to the more expansive architecture of his 2018 album, Shelley's on Zenn-La, his first for RVNG Intl. Shelley's on Zenn-La is a cerebral dance record that does much with live cello performance alongside synthesis. Coates made music mostly in Renoise, composing complex drum sequences in numbers and pencil drawn waveforms. Some of the compositions get into FM synthesis - "I like hearing how one tone is enriched by another tone modulating the first, resulting in gleaming sets of new harmonics," says Coates, "I started thinking about putting live cello playing into that chain of antagonism resulting in beauty."

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2018-07-13
Ursula K. Le Guin & Todd Barton: Music and Poetry of The Kesh

Music and Poetry of the Kesh is the documentation of an invented Pacific Coast peoples (the Kesh) from a far distant time, and the soundtrack of famed science fiction author, Ursula K. Le Guin's Always Coming Home.

The ways of the Kesh were originally presented in 1985 as a five hundred plus page book accompanied with illustrations of instruments and tools, maps, a glossary of terms, recipes, poems, an alphabet, and with early editions, a cassette of "field recordings" and indigenous song. Le Guin wanted to hear the people she'd imagined; she embarked on an elaborate process with her friend Todd Barton to invoke their spirit and tradition. For Music and Poetry of the Kesh, the words and lyrics are attributed to Le Guin as composed by Barton, an Oregon-based musician, composer and Buchla synthesist.

The Music and Poetry of the Kesh cassette was meant to accompany and enhance the experience of reading Always Coming Home. Presented in this vinyl edition, where only traces of the book linger (the jacket offers some of Le Guin's illustration, and a letterpressed bookmark featuring the the narrative modes of western civilization and the Kesh valley is included), the music alone breaking the silence of what might be. It can transport-offering a landscape for imagining a future homecoming. One in which we are balanced, peaceful, and tend to the earth and its creatures.

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2018-06-22
Kate NV: для FOR

Over the ten, symmetrical pieces of ’ля FOR, Kate NV scores her native Moscow environment with just enough whimsy to gurgle through the cracks and grow psychotropic foliage. Each sound assumes its own personality, moving through the album metropolis like miniature, malleable mutants viewed from NV's apartment window. Kate NV is a versatile artist that maneuvers instinctively in whatever musical environs she finds herself. NV's second solo album is an even more abstract endeavor than the hybrid pop of 2016's Binasu (Orange Milk Records). Inspired by casual moments of ephemeral sound from within and beyond her apartment walls, the record has a clarity arrived altogether and from right under her nose, as if the music was not written by herself, but her chair. ’ля FOR inhabits a stage that Piero Milesi & Daniel Bacalov, Ann Southam, or Hiroshi Yoshimura may have written music for and dresses it with Viktor Pivovarov's psychedelic depictions of Moscow - contorting bodies and flying pencils dance with subtle arpeggiations and anthropomorphic MIDI. Each piece is an alien arrangement of common elements that extend the everyday ritual into an eternal landscape of unconscious activity. Somewhere along that landscape, Kate awaits with apples for hands and fish for feet.

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2018-05-04
Lucrecia Dalt: Anticlines

Lucrecia Dalt's Anticlines is a volume of poetic theory and sound contemplating the bodies of self and earth's surface. On Anticlines, Dalt conjures a sonic space of speculative synthesis and spoken word where South American rhythms rattle contemporary composition recalling Laurie Anderson, Robert Ashley, and Annea Lockwood. CD version comes with lyric booklet documenting Dalt's collaborative work with Regina de Miguel and Henry Andersen.

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2018-02-23
Mark Renner: Few Traces

Few Traces surveys Mark Renner's scarcely released and unreleased material recorded from 1982 to 1990, embracing and evoking wordless translations of the individual's musical experience, and the poetic expression of being here. Something of a rust-belt Brian Eno, Few Traces places the Baltimore artist's ambient explorations, composed as soundtracks to guide his visual work, alongside his guitar-centric, vocal driven songs traversing terrains similar to Cocteau Twins or The Durutti Column.

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2017-12-08
Visible Cloaks: Lex

Visible Cloaks' Lex proposes a utopian dream language and its accompanying sound, a limitless, delicate space developed by fluid musical techniques and subconscious voices. The six pieces comprising Lex simulate a more peaceful future, their mysteries telling a new tale in an unknown but imaginable melodic language. Visible Cloaks are the Portland-based musicians Spencer Doran and Ryan Carlile. Utilizing software-based composition rooted in randomization, MIDI-translation and chance operations, the duo has established an improbable humanist mode of music from esoteric processes. Following their self-titled debut album, Visible Cloaks offered Reassemblage, an album simultaneously honoring the post-Yellow Magic Orchestra school of avant musical adventure and diverging from it. Veering from the paths cleared by Japanese and Italian electronic pop and ambient artists of the mid-80s / early-90s, Reassemblage established Visible Cloaks' own camp in a forest of deep sound canopied by trees grown from synthetic seeds. The sound represented on Lex is webbed with sculptural arrangements and interpolated by the sounds of alien speech. These strange and serene utterances were created by Doran feeding a chain of multiple dialects and accents through a language translation software to create an auditory poetry of an evolved place and time. Lex features both the final version of this process and earlier, simplified experiments with it ("Keys"). "The idea - building on 'fourth world' or 'global village' type concepts - was to create a projected language that was a fusion of many," Doran explains. "The result was a very disorienting form of non-language that amplifies the lapses in meaning that occur with the inaccuracy of auto-translation software." Permutate Lex, a companion short film to Lex made by Visible Cloaks in collaboration with artist Brenna Murphy (who also created the artwork for Reassemblage and several virtualist videos for the album), is an integral counterpart, both visualizing an aesthetic alive with human form and guiding the sonic experience of the first five pieces: "Wheel," "Frame," "Transient," "Keys," and title track "Lex." "World," the longest piece presented on Lex, is redrawn from a generative composition originally produced for an installation Doran made with Murphy. The original work incorporates LFOs and randomized MIDI-information, and was intended to variate indefinitely. In this 'fixed' version, "World" provides a more conclusive view into the impossible musical environments Visible Cloaks make real. Longer than any track on Reassemblage, "World" expresses the deepening, patient intimations suggested by Lex. Doran says the Lex "attempts to communicate the essence of a world distant enough that it can’t be captured or comprehended from the present, appearing only surreal and inscrutable." The statement reveals a broader musical philosophy fueling this new moment; an awakened voice woven through complex melodic shapes and phrases establishes communication between listeners and the unknown, here presented by Visible Cloaks as sounds coloring the very edge of the envisionable. Visible Cloaks' Lex is available December 8 in LP and digital formats. An exclusive CD version of Lex featuring the audio of Permutate Lex will be available around Visible Cloaks Japanese November / December 2017 tour with Sugai Ken.

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2017-11-10
Pauline Anna Strom: Trans-Millenia Music

Otherworldly and anomalous, hushed and hallucinatory, Pauline Anna Strom's unique style of inner space music reaches across time to futures and pasts far from our own. Trans-Millenia Music compiles 80 minutes of Strom's most evocative work, composed and recorded between 1982 and 1988 across seven albums released in minimal vinyl and cassette editions. Strom's heightened sensitivity to sound and spirited sensibility with the primal synthesizer tools of her trade elevates this music beyond the catch-all containers of New Age and ambient music into a realm of its own. RVNG's double LP and CD collections feature original artwork by visionary Karma Moffett, printed inner sleeves and booklet with extensive liner notes scribed by Britt Brown.

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2017-11-10
Sugai Ken: UkabazUmorezU

With a melodic cluster dripping into a pool of dark water, UkabazUmorezU's arrival ripples as an apex in Sugai Ken's continued construction of a deeply resonant, enveloping sound world. Upon contact, UkabazUmorezU gently and generously unfurls across aural alleys and streets mundanely but mystically detailed with recontextualized Japanese rituals and tradition.

A lived experience of traditional Japanese music's conversation with environment, and vice versa, forms the melodic make-up and metaphysical philosophy conditioning UkabazUmorezU. Upon imagining a landscape, Sugai decomposes the image (and the images within the image) and replaces it with a sound representation - an artifactual terrain, tethered to but abstracted from the natural world.

The eleven pieces which form UkabazUmorezU dovetail meaningfully with the invented album title, roughly translating to "slow and steady wins the race." Made up of recordings sourced and appropriated from the local performing arts of Kanagawa, Japan (where Sugai lives), his daily surroundings, and Sugai’s tool kit of electronic synthesis, UkabazUmorezU evokes tranquil patience while never settling into a single style or still of sound for too long.

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2017-10-06
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2017-09-08
Greg Fox: The Gradual Progression

The Gradual Progression is a transformative collection of new music by Greg Fox. The seven pieces of The Gradual Progression activate spiritual states through physical means, Fox's rigorous inner rhythms the mandalic vessel for unbound expression and arrangement. TGP signals both a reconciliation of disparate musical ventures and a new nirvanic stage in the artist's oeuvre.

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2017-09-08
Palmbomen II: Palmbomen II

Kai Hugo works in two guises. Palmbomen is a group-oriented collaboration suited for live dynamics and instrumentation, while Palmbomen II is geared toward solitary production with an austere toolset: classic sequencers, time-tested drum machines and their contemporary counterparts. Hugo's foray as Palmbomen II makes its debut on Beats In Space Records with the eponymous full-length Palmbomen II.

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2017-06-16
Pep Llopis: Poiemusia La Nau Dels Argonautes

Poiemusia La Nau Dels Argonautes offers a Mediterranean journey, one that Ulysses, Aeneas, and Jason with his Argonauts charted first and Valencian artist, Pep Llopis, retraced and retread from the islands of Menorca to Santorini. All of his experiences are aboard this vessel of sound: no format in mind, no course but the chasm within self. Poiemusia La Nau Dels Argonautes offers a musical language that any listener can understand. Untethered to the meaning of words, one is set adrift and free in minimalist sound and traditional music.

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2017-05-05
Helado Negro: Private Energy (Expanded)

Exploring the expressivity within intense states of being, Latinx identity, and pluralistic sensibilities, Helado Negro's Private Energy is an engrossing statement achieved through lyrically personal and political avant pop music. Private Energy will be re-introduced to the public via RVNG Intl. in expanded form on May 5, 2017, appearing on vinyl for the first time alongside new CD and digital editions. Supplemented with three brand new "versions," this iteration of Private Energy will continue the strong narrative of Helado Negro's spectral opus.

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2017-03-03
Marc Barreca: Music Works For Industry

Marc Barreca's Music Works for Industry is a layered assertion. An economic mantra for the mind to spin, like the many loops on this recording, or churn, as gears of some godhead machine. From the pool of playful compositions, a social subtext appears - a somewhat sardonic riposte to the commercial and cynical abuse of music and musicians. Favoring musicians, performance artists, and a bespoke instrument maker over an assembly line, Barreca combines multiple disciplines into a collective, industrious whole for this consumable work.

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2017-02-17
Visible Cloaks: Reassemblage

Visible Cloaks' Reassemblage is a collection of delicately rendered passages of silence and sound that invokes - and invites - consciousness. The foundation of the duo's second album could be described as translingual or polyglottal, working within an eastern / western feedback loop of influence, Fourth World ambiguity, and the universality of human emotion. Vinyl includes high-quality, multi-format download with bonus tracks.

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2017-02-03
Michele Mercure: Eye Chant

You can see the sounds her voice makes. The literal depiction of this, a photograph of Michele Mercure with an eyeball in her mouth, is removed in the updated album art. The original graphic elements are left to suspend, speak, and sing across time. In the absence of the decade-specific portraits, the redesigned edition is dislocated from a particular or linear history. Our initial point of encounter is artifactual; a trace in place of a scar.

Accordingly, Michele's true image and body is sound. Eye Chant, as a whole, offers meditations of sound as material. Her instruments are voice and synthesizer, the former following the machine’s lead and language of patterns. Machine sounds become abstract words. The human voice is pulled apart, dislodged from context; a tactile, textured quality appears to reconfigure the body and machine presently or permanently.

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2016-10-14
Syrinx: Tumblers From The Vault

Syrinx's path veered from the dominant modes of '70s subculture, their version of chamber pop hybridized with wild, whimsical electronic experimentation charting new territory in the under and overground. Formed by composer John Mills-Cockell after the dissolution of Intersystems, Syrinx's two adventurous albums, Syrinx and Long Lost Relatives, endorsed the poetic potential of the avant-garde, subverting a turn of the '60s trend toward technological pageantry. Tumblers From The Vault presents these two albums alongside the trio's unheard music, revisiting the Syrinx story and sharing their memorable, mind-bending melodies. Triple LP version comes with printed inner sleeves, 20 page booklet with extensive liner notes, and a high-quality digital download.