The blog of author Dennis Cooper

Gig #141: Of late 46: yeule, Thomas Brinkmann, Maria Chavez, Xylouris White, galen tipton, First Tone, Thaiboy Digital, ODAE, Stefan Fraunberger, Gross Net, Moor Mother, Carl Stone, Destroyer, François J. Bonnet & Stephen O’Malley


Thomas Brinkmann
Maria Chavez
Xylouris White
galen tiptpn
First Tone
Thaiboy Digital
Stefan Fraunberger
Gross Net
Moor Mother
Carl Stone
François J. Bonnet & Stephen O’Malley


yeule Pixel Affection
‘yeule longs for an internet that predates the monocultural conglomeration of social media — an internet of small, niche communities that have been all but decimated by the institutions of Facebook, Twitter, et al. “Pixel Affection” re-imagines the layered, grainy textures of these influences as synth chords pulsing against a 4-on-the-floor kick, bobbing under stray sine waves and vocal chops. “Pour my heart into simulation, digital in reciprocation,” she sings. “I’m trying to remember your name then/ The memory before I awaken is coded to a million fragments.” The track feels like an ode to the internet friend you’ve lost contact with over time, a saved chat log being the only evidence left of your connection.’ — Jude Noel


Thomas Brinkmann Elitex Jet MG.
‘Throughout his career Brinkmann has focussed on the human operating amongst industry alongside rhythms that manifest as a result of technological advancement. With this new release Brinkmann makes a u-turn, looking back to the early industrial age. Comprised of recordings of various looms, Raupenbahn investigates the sonic properties and consequences of the first automatic loom as constructed by Jacques de Vaucanson in 1745. Thomas Brinkmann once again adheres to his tendency for clarity and simplicity whilst further investigating not only the sound and rhythms of the machines (looms) but also what role they serve in society and what consequences they have on the environment.’ — Editions Mego


Maria Chavez La Fabrique Agitée live, 17/01/2019
‘Maria Chavez approaches the turntables as an instrument of transmission. This Peruvian artist doesn’t opt for just its function of mixing different types of music. Her approach is more primordial, also exploring the turntables’ sound-generating abilities. She could even be considered a necromancer of sorts, giving broken records new life as part of her noise incursions. Like her mentor, the late Pauline Oliveros, Chavez is a unique case study in the practice of focussed listening.’ — le guess who


Xylouris White Ascension
‘George Xylouris is a lute player and singer from the Greek island of Crete. Jim White is the drummer of Australian post-rock heroes the Dirty Three, and he’s also played with people like Cat Power and PJ Harvey. Xylouris and White are the two members of Xylouris White, a duo who make spacey and otherworldly psychedelic folk music.’ — Stereogum


galen tipton tender
‘galen tipton’s fake meat pokes fun at our post-industrial alienation by accelerating reconfiguration via the absolute deconstruction of the soundscape, which is framed as a sonic polymer of samples that one can instrumentalize, rearrange, discard, etc. cut down to their component parts & decontextualized, these sonic motifs melt into a sort of primordial molecular soup whose ingredients are distinct & yet totally alloyed, unnatural & yet somehow familiar — organic & synthetic; real & fake.’ — Baldr Eldursson


First Tone Reaction 1
‘First Tone unfurl poignant, flickering compositional works that utilize pitch material that is tuned using the system known as Just Intonation (which Pitre has studied for nearly 15 years) in conjunction with various software and a single hardware synth. The result is a collection of music that is both organic and alien. Layers of tone and texture build and dissolve from the ultra minimal to the enormous, on occasion seamlessly blending the two. A wide array of striking timbres patiently wash over one another, at times sounding like organic instruments, at other times sounding completely otherworldly.’ — Editions Mego


Thaiboy Digital Legendary Member
‘Born in Thailand, raised in Sweden, and influenced by American rappers like Soulja Boy and 50 Cent, Thaiboy Digital (real name Thanapat Thaothawong) testifies to rap’s status as a global commodity. He also illustrates the gap separating the life of the music from its makers; Hip-hop might go where it wants, but human beings often have more trouble, and Thaiboy’s had a number of scuffles with Swedish immigration authorities over the years (he was deported back to Thailand for a spell in 2015). Those troubles don’t necessarily manifest in the lyrics of Legendary Member, Thaiboy’s debut album, but they have impacted how the album was made. His deportation to Thailand turned his creative collaboration with Drain Gang, a Swedish collective that includes producers Yung Sherman and Whitearmor and rappers Bladee and Ecco2K, into an entirely digital relationship, a wireless transmission pinging back and forth between different countries and disparate styles.’ — Nathan Smith


ODAE Cascade
‘Beats that whisper, pumping. Fluid structures, never landing. Milky and thick like cement. Slipping through spaces, breathing. ODAE presents tangible motifs out of less suggestive sonic fodder — static, clicks, hums. These motifs never clear the way, emerging just to the top, surface tension molding, revealing their form under a thin viscous layer of that which preceded them. There’s a formal sense of breath here; evenly distributed and regular, it never fully subsides. Living with a light intensity (lighter than that of many of its deconstructed club predecessors, may be less spectacular for it, might be a good thing; peaks are turned down, rests are turned up). It sways and trips, stumbles and moans, purrs its way through a minuscule situation. It creeps out of background ambience. It dips in and falls back, as matter does. It moves and vibrates and sits alongside you. Synths skitter and jump, a fragment here a fragment there, a new mood, dim lighting.’ — B. Levinson


Stefan Fraunberger Elegie
‘This video for Stefan Fraunberger’s ‘Elegie’ was captured at the church in Romania where the Austrian composer performed and recorded his upcoming LP for Rabih Beaini’s Morphine label. Based entirely around Fraunberger’s usage of a 19th Century organ built by K. Einschenk, the album is a third installment of his Quellgeister series, which explores the influence of the “non-human on terrestric organ-machines.”‘ — 4:3 Boiler Room


Gross Net Dust to Dust
Gross Net Means Gross Net is the work of Philip Quinn, formerly of Belfast’s solid but often overlooked Girls Names. Quinn’s Gross Net project feels like a completely different animal, however, rooted as deeply in bass-heavy electronic and ambient music as it is in the post-punk of Quinn’s previous group’s latter work. Gross Net revels in blending and blurring these traditions in ways that invigorate and disorientate and confound.’ — Bernie Brooks


Moor Mother Black Flight
‘Delivered with a booming, stentorian confidence, Moor Mother holds the listener’s gaze with frightening conviction of purpose, underlined by the ratchet strength of her Afro-punk-techno-blues-noise backdrops. Alongside guest input from poet/rapper Saul Williams and her fellow Philly native, MC Reef The Lost Cauze, Moor Mother holds darkness to light in a way that edifies and complicates the magick of her art. In its detailed arrangements and penetrative focus, ‘ Analog Fluids of Sonic Black Holes’ resembles an immersive film sans the visuals, but the range of real and synthetic textures and timbres, coupled with Moor Mother’s central narration bring the music and her ideas to life in a way that visual languages may not fully be able to articulate so fully, while also leaving room for the listener to fill in their own gaps. She’s lost none of the rage that informed her first three albums, but here it feels more tempered and pointed than ever.’ — Boomkat


Carl Stone Jame Jam
‘It takes 35 minutes to reach the summit of Carl Stone’s new Himalaya. To arrive there, you ascend through manically cut up and overlaid Afrobeats, funk and hiphop grooves together with a tasty disco riff that reassembles the very molecules of your being. Then, having hit the apex, Stone throws you into idyllic freefall for the next half hour, into a balmy environment of slow moving and ethereal tones, music that is as voluminous and prayer-like as the opening part is compacted and hedonistic.’ — The Wire


Destroyer Crimson Tide
‘Dan Bejar, the elliptical Canadian bard who records as Destroyer, coolly intones the phrase some 16 times across “Crimson Tide,” the first single from the forthcoming album Have We Met, but per usual, he leaves the meaning open to interpretation. And what a sumptuous puzzle: The spacious synth-rock forms an elegant backdrop for one of his patented absinthe monologues. Our rakish raconteur picks up similes and then self-consciously rejects them, languishes in a hospital, lifts from Kenny Rogers, louchely savors the word “blow,” dismisses “chickenshit singers paying their dues,” and attends an “insane” funeral.’ — Marc Hogan


François J. Bonnet & Stephen O’Malley Erosion always wins
‘Stephen and François deal in those moments and instants that happen after the violence, and the ugliness and the mess. Their music is about chaos being summoned and ordered. It is about the noise that nurtures your ears after a long heartbreaking pain. I have heard the sounds of wars being fought and the noises of hearts being broken, and I have never found a shelter as soothing as this music which makes me think of sunken ships and beauty found in the depths of oceans long forgotten’. — Joseph Ghosn




p.s. Hey. ** David Ehrenstein, Hi. As I discovered when making a post about the French actor Gregoire Colin the other day, there’s a film from several years ago about Cocteau’s relationship with Radiguet directed by the wacko French actress Arielle Dombasse called ‘Opium’ that apparently is laughably horrible and barely got released. Thank you for the Ruiz wisdom. ** Bill, Hi, B. Right, I think the Balance tribute book is volume 3? I haven’t read any of them. ** Sypha, Hey. As I’ve said, nothing that anyone has ever said about life on Twitter has made me want to be there, and quite the contrary. Yes, I read ‘Distemper’ long ago, whenever it came out originally. ‘Chinatown’ is a goodie for sure. ** _Black_Acrylic, That’s good to hear about Vicious Coffee, although, yeah, fat lot of good that does for you and me. ** Steve Erickson, Hi. Hope all goes smoothly with the voice-over actor. Do you think the right performance by him could assuage your concerns about the film? ** politekid, Ah, gotcha. Cool if I see you at the mysterious thing. There’s some possibility that I might hit the Tate with a couple of friends on Friday afternoon if there’s time, so you might see me then. I’ll do my best to hunt you down. ** rigby, Whoa! Rigby! Holy moly! It’s been … what … ages. So great to ‘see’ you. Yeah, the blog has comment viewing issues for some people. No idea why. I tried to fix that and there seemed to be no way. No, at the Friday event, they pick the film, and I (and everyone) don’t know what it will be until the very moment I’m asked to introduce it. I’m not sure if the thing is to pick a film they know I know and like or a film they know I know and hate or a film I don’t know at all. Curious project. Caught my fancy. T’would be sweet to see on Friday, but no sweat if it doesn’t end up doable for you. Love to you, buddy! ** Okay. I’ve done one of those gigs featuring music I’ve been listening to and into lately, and now you decide if you want to add what’s up there to your own listening realm or not. Tomorrow morning I go to London for an overnight, but I’ll do a rather speedy p.s. before I head off. See you then.

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  1. Whole Lotta Shakin Goin On today.

    Gregoire Colin is TOTAL BABE, seen at his most devesatingly lovely in Rivette’s “Secret Defense”

    If Arielle Dombasle has become a wacko I credit it to her entirely unnecessary nose job of a few years back. I interviewed her here in L.A. when “Pauline at the beach” came out and she was most amusing about Rohmer. She is of course Mrs. BHL which may also contribute to her current wackiness.

  2. Lots of interesting fare on offer here, so thank you! Was especially into the Stefan Fraunberger treated organ sounds. Am reminded a bit of Tim Hecker’s Ravedeath, 1972 LP which I love dearly.

    I’ve been listening to another LP of archival releases from the late synth genius Patrick Cowley, this volume titled Mechanical Fantasy Box. It’s mostly odds and ends but plenty sounds absolutely essential.

    Today is my last day of being a 30-something human, because tomorrow is my 40th birthday, yikes. My family are coming up from Leeds and we’re booked in at a fancy place called Castlehill. I’ve eaten there once before and can confirm it’s very fancy indeed, the kind of place where you spend most of the meal talking about what you’ve just eaten.

  3. I love how you’re always finding these obscure acts, Dennis (well, obscure to me at least). As for my recent listening habits, I’ve been going through a classic rock phase, stuff like Janis Joplin (who I used to listen to a lot back in high school) and the Eagles… I even got my very first Rolling Stones album a few days ago (LET IT BLEED), on a whim. Not that I’m avoiding new stuff… recently I’ve also listened to the new Nick Cave double album (which I wasn’t that crazy about) and also the new Swans double album (which I quite liked).

  4. I did end up watching the Child’s Play reboot, albeit a day later and a little reluctantly. Unfortunately, the redesigned Chucky doll wasn’t really to my taste visually speaking and besides that, the movie itself was pretty generic and uninspired. I’m curious about the Chucky TV series that’s apparently on it’s way next year since it seems more likely to have fun with the original series’ own goofy lore, which I can appreciate. Thank you very much for the Rimbaud recommendations! My library had Starkie’s translations, but I think I’ll go ahead and grab Enid Peschel’s since what you linked was so affordable, it’s my first time reading Rimbaud and I want to do it right haha. (As a sidenote, Paul Schmidt’s version was the first result in the catalog so thanks for that save.) Also, I love the gigs posts, always find some great new music to listen to in them. I’ve been listening to yeule’s latest album that Pixel Affection is from myself, so it’s cool to see you enjoy her music as well! If you haven’t heard of them already, I would totally recommend some artists from the netlabel her debut album was released through, zoomlens(.bandcamp.com). My personal favorite releases are …Belong and (reclamation)(EP) by Meishi Smile and anything by LLLL.

  5. The Thaiboy Digital album sounded slightly generic at first, with a downed-out feel and lots of Autotune, but although his lyrics aren’t particularly memorable, he has an interesting sense of rhythm and the production conveys a sense of being lost amidst all the drugs he brags about taking. I also liked yeule, First Tone, Stefan Fraumberger, and Bonnet & O’Malley. In very different ways, the yeule and Thaiboy Digital videos are interesting filmmaking as well.

    I know that the actor has now downloaded the first cut of my film. Although he has a home recording studio, my editor says that there’s a studio set-up where she works that we could use and the three of us could work together on his voice-over if he can record there. The next step seems to be recording the v/o and then going back to the images to see what might need to be added or how they could be edited differently for greater impact.

    I saw the French gay porn film EQUATION A UN INCONNU, which is a Yann Gonzalez favorite and now being re-released by your US distributor Altered Innocence, tonight. It has a real elegance and tenderness to it that mostly left porn when the switch to video happened; you can tell that Dietrich de Velsa didn’t intend the film to be seen while guys jerked off as quickly as possible and then left the theater. There’s also a melancholy tone, without getting too negative; it keeps reminding the audience of our voyeurism and suggesting that even the protagonist’s most joyful experiences might all be fantasy.

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