The blog of author Dennis Cooper

Gig #158: Ashenspire, Stefan Paulus & Automatisme, Editrix, The Maghreban, Jamal Moss, Nancy Mounir, Prison Religion, Avvitagalli, Tasos Stamou, Ohyung, Osasco Dynamics, Quelle Chris, Shit & Shine, Boy Harsher, Chloe Alexandra Thompson, Pinkcourtesyphone


Automatisme & Stefan Paulus
The Maghreban
Jamal Moss
Nancy Mounir
Prison Religion
Tasos Stamou
Osasco Dynamics
Quelle Chris
Shit & Shine
Boy Harsher
Chloe Alexandra Thompson


‘Ashenspire uses post metal reminiscent builds to hypnotize with stacked layers of chaos on their longer format excursions. Ashenspire litters their defiant world with organic oscillations, like the guest hammered dulcimer4 on “The Law of Asbestos” or Scott McLean’s beautiful Rhodes jingles that ring through the darkest moments. Dunn himself, sitting behind the kit as well, continues to provide his key ‘in the pocket’ style that cultivates with jazzy aplomb the smoldering build of abstract tracks like “Béton Brut” and “Plattenbau Persephone Praxis” (which also features truly trippy vocal layering)—every raised fist comes with a bobbing head.’ — Angry Metal Guy


Automatisme & Stefan Paulus Nob (Altered Source Recording)
‘In early 2021, Paulus approached Automatisme with a proposal based on his field recordings made during numerous mountain expeditions in the Swiss Alps, the Caucasus, and north of the Arctic Circle—documenting stormy weather, high alpine winds, avalanches, and sounds emanating from glaciers and from the insides of crevices and caves. Paulus created ambient noisescapes from these recordings by splicing and folding them into hundreds of layers of sound: an analog to the geological strata of their geographic sources. The resulting audio mixes, compounding a multiplicity of spatio-temporal excursions, were then further encased in drones using the natural tone series (the traditional zäuerli or wordless yodels of northeastern Switzerland), the monotonic standing drone of Lamonte Young’s Dream Syndicate, and the mass chords of early 1970s Kosmische Musik as points of reference. Paulus sent these extended ambient/noise pieces to Automatisme as source material for the latter’s bespoke Automatisme techniques, where variable tempo and glitch systems forge more overt minimal techno/IDM works.’ — Constellation


Editrix One Truck Gone
‘Editrix makes music that sounds like Lightning Bolt deconstructing Black Sabbath-ian fuzz — heavy rock and roll for trouble-making honor roll students in leather jackets. The songs on the Easthampton, Mass., band’s second album, Editrix II: Editrix Goes to Hell, are dirty, gnarled and even a bit demonic. Editrix recently got back from a tour with its spiritual forebears Deerhoof; Editrix II dwells in the same inventive, truly singular vein as the best work by that legendary San Francisco experimental pop group. Only three releases deep, Editrix has already proven that the more its restructures and warps the conventions of a time-tested genre into something innovative and unrecognizable, the more their output downright whips.’ — Ted Davis


The Maghreban & Nah Eeto Got Your Number
‘Just as his dance 12 inches sound like a hip-hop producer tackling house and techno head-on, ‘Connection’ may touch on familiar tropes but approaches them in a wholly unique style and fashion. In less talented hands, this could fall into lazy homage. But it transcends any cliche, sounding dynamic and fresh as all hell.’ — Piers Harrison


Jamal Moss Poisonous Effects
‘Slicing off just one cross-section of his ceaseless, holistic practice, the music here speaks to the endless variation within a theme that Jamal has made a virtue of since his nascent ‘90s productions. Where those early works with legendary mentors such as Steve Poindexter and Adonis still had Jamal’s experience of the original Chicago warehouse scene fresh in the memory, he’s come to singularly carry that flame far from the original object while never losing sight of its original reasons for being, seamlessly integrating lessons of Sun Ra’s cosmic jazz and his DJ/diggers-instinct for classic synth and industrial musicks, into a syncretic roil of ideas that simply sounds like nobody else.’ — Boomkat


Nancy Mounir (with Fatma Serry) Ana Bas Saktalak
‘Mounir’s interest in working with many different sounds drives her musical practice, and Nozhet El Nofous builds on that passion by lacing her original compositions with archival recordings of early 20th-century Egyptian songs, all of which tell intimate stories. The older songs use free rhythms and microtonality—notes that lie between the 12 tones that span an octave—and they represent a freer time in Egyptian classical musical culture, one that has often been forgotten.

‘Throughout Nozhet El Nofous, Mounir uses her menagerie of instruments to accompany the solo voices that appear on the unearthed recordings. Piano, strings, and more swirl around the fervent singing, following their wandering tonalities and rhythms. There’s a murky quality to the aging recordings, and Mounir’s crisp orchestrations bolster them, highlighting their underlying meaning and forming a bridge between the past and the present.’ — Vanessa Ague


Prison Religion Torn Up Body
‘Prison Religion has produced a bruise on the surface of perfect space, a perfect page, a tilt in the balance of sonics, a reconfiguration of structure pieced together with a sound mind, a smudged blemish on the blue note, a cacophonous polyvocalic swell inside those distinct undergrounds and non-spaces. Spaces on shelves, spaces between each other, spaces within ourselves. It stands strong as an album symbolic of some tossing of a cup of acid on the canvas and laughing as it blackens, a testament to the tarnishing of universal truths, a disintegration of hegemonic dog food, and a celebration of a more relevant, a more real, revelatory truth found once more within communities, within cracks. In turn revealing a bloom of new shapes, a changing of the paradigmatic guard, and an invitation to explore new potentials and methods of getting there. The pair of them look on as brain-death dressed as entertainment, as maximum cost for minimum value.’ — Ryan Walker


Avvitagalli Stay Anonymous
‘Debut outing for Valentina Magaletti and Pino Montecalvo’s Avvitagalli project. Variegated percussion + wtf jams inspired by an abandoned & torched palazzo somewhere in southern Europe. None Corsa explores presence and absence, purpose and chance. The push-pull between Pino’s toys, records, radio & instruments with Valentina’s arsenal of percussion and production techniques takes in elements of modern composition, jazz, dub and post punk.’ — Bleep


Tasos Stamou No breath to breathe
‘During a decade of sound performances and recordings, Tasos Stamou has developed a unique style of live electroacoustic composition. Long and continuous pieces are created on stage or in the studio using a “portable electroacoustic music studio”. His gear consists of acoustic (prepared zither, reeds, recorders, objects) and electronic instruments (handmade electronics, modular synthesizer systems and live processed feedback loops). Based on sustained tonal textures and free improvised instrumental solos, his live compositions create a particular and unique atmosphere of ritual noise.’ — Cafe Oto


Ohyung Symphonies Sweeping!
‘The brilliance of OHYUNG’s compositions — apparently achieved through a series of rehearsals and finalized in a gamut-running 72-hour recording session — is how they interrogate structure in fascinating ways. While the unending drones of “releases like gloves!” are of a specific aesthetic caste, tracks like “my hands hold flora!” subtly shift and change, introducing new chords and waves of sound amidst lightly clattering speaker fuzz. When a bright new tone comes in after the three-minute mark, it sounds akin to a ray of sunlight stabbing through clouds, shining a light on all that follows it.’ — Evan Sawdey


Boy Harsher Autonomy (feat. Cooper B. Handy)
‘For those of us who have seen Boy Harsher’s self-directed The Runner, the music video for “Autonomy” is an extension of that. Clips of Coopers’ part in the film are cut in and out while fellow characters dance in the off-white alternate reality. The idea of movie characters hanging out with the musical artists was not uncommon for 1980s OST soundtrack hits—think about the Brat Pack hanging out in the music video for John Parr’s “St. Elmo’s Fire (Man in Motion)” video—and this nod to the past has always been Boy Harsher’s modus operandi (including the nice touch of Muller’s unplugged Ensoniq synthesizer).’ — Ani Harriman


Osasco Dynamics Cascata de Serotonina
‘This music is playing, replaying and relaying over the neural laces, the unserviced connections mangling the signals beyond recognition from listener to listener. Meditation music sounds off for a few seconds before being drilled into abstraction, the next recognizable bit ranging from anything to 80s Goth-Pop to dream pop, evangelical content now warped beyond salvation. The signal-to-noise ratio varies from lace to lace and the excitement is in finding from where/when each nugget of meaning and melody comes from.’ — problemas dos outros


Quelle Chris & Chris Keys Sudden Death
‘Unique artist, committed, whose artistic identity does not accept any concession dictated by the air of time, Quelle Chris has gratified us in 2019 with one of the best rap album according to most music prescribers of good taste. Active since 2011, he has accustomed us to various experiments through his multiple projects filled with cynicism and black humor. On his latest album “Guns” released on the prestigious label MelloMusicGroup, Quelle Chris decided to tackle this time the issue of carrying weapons in the United States. A delicate subject that represents the daily life of the rapper from Detroit. Because since always, in Hip Hop, the gun fascinates but kills, is it a reason to live with it?’ — Periscope


Shit and Shine Dividrleedoth
‘For Texas-based Shit and Shine, curveballs are very much the name of the game. Veering from mucky noise rock dirge to gurning slabs of techno, Craig Clouse is uninterested in the self imposed restrictions of genre. Across Shit and Shine’s output he’s proven himself as equally adept at twisting melons as dislocating limbs.’ — Oliver Cookson


Chloe Alexandra Thompson Nocturne Voice
‘Thompson is a Cree, Canadian, interdisciplinary artist and sound designer. Thompson approaches sound as a mode of connection—embracing the kinesthetic agency of sound to compose abstract feats of spatialized audio recording and synthesis. Her work engages tactics of material minimalism to create site-specific installations that sculpt droning, maximalist experiences out of space and sound. Using audio programming software, computational processing, and acoustic instruments, Thompson’s work seeks to create connection by guiding audience participants through these augmented experiences.’ — Working Consortium


Pinkcourtesyphone Drained By The Very Nearness
‘Enacting a sort of perpetual dusk of the LA mindset, here we find Pinkcourtesyphone’s most succinct snapshots of glamorous, noirish decay. Proffered as “catastrophe muzak”, the sound of sympathy amplified, leaving the room” the imposed stasis of lockdown lingers of proceedings, with a particularly isolated opener ‘that intangible object of contempt / the tenderness of …’ setting a bleakly damaged tone that glacially resolves across the long string sighs of ‘’drained by the very nearness’ and finds its softer, sentimental centre in the fleeting dark bliss of ‘out of an abundance’, and pools into gorgeous, gloaming Lynchian feel of ‘comfortable predictability’ and ‘wistful wishful wanton’, where we can almost hear the medics peering over our prostrate fleshly vessel, searching for a heartbeat behind the shut eyes and blissed expression.’ — Boomkat




p.s. Hey. ** Dominik, Hi!!! So, I looked to see where I could get a Túró Rudi in Paris, and it seems that my only chance will be at something called Marche de Noel Mission Catholique Hongroise which will only take place December 2nd – 4th, so I’ll have to be patient and hope I’m still here then. Otherwise, the only other place you can get it in France is in Strasbourg! Yes, it was definitely extremely interesting what was possible under hypnosis and, well, what wasn’t. Maybe I should do it again, but only if one of my friends secretly knows how to do it. My friend with the split tongue says kissing and eating are really weird, and not in a good way. Yesterday was hellish outside, but I think we’re doable today. So far anyway. I just had a flash of seeing people walking Minecraft dogs down the street, and I liked it! I have to remove the stitches in my forehead wound today myself because all the clinics are closed for summer break, so all I need for love to do for me today is to transplant a nurse’s hands onto my wrists for about 20 minutes, G. ** Mieze, Mieze, my old pal! It does my heart super good to see you!!! Sorry you got whomped by the Covid, but very happy you sound like you’re in clear. I still have never gotten it, and it just seems weird, but, hey, it’s not over yet even if everybody here acts like it is. As I’m sure I probably always say when I get to see, come visit Paris! I’ll be the coolest tourist guide, I swear. Lots of love to you! ** Misanthrope, That sounds like a joke only a conspiracy theorist would tell or think is funny. Ah, gotcha, on ‘Dodgie’. I guess George is hard to pronounce, or I mean it would be if your mouth is new to words. Huh. My only nicknames are pretty boring: ‘Denny’ or ‘Den’ and/or ‘Coop’ or ‘The Coop’. But the ones used behind my back might be better. Dude, I hope you don’t have the C. Even if it seems to be no big deal these days, isolation sucks. You in the clear? What’s the scoop? ** _Black_Acrylic, If you haven’t seen ‘Gummo’, that’s a must-see. How’s the Nico bio? Is that ‘the one’ to read, can you tell? I’ve read none of them. ** Ian, Hi, Ian. Yep, she had kids, and I think that was her reason or excuse for bailing on movies for so long. Hooray for your docile baby! All hail rebels, but maybe not while they’re still in the crib. Enjoy that and everything as much is feasible! ** Jeff J, Hi, Jeff! How’s it going? Thanks about the Manz fest. I … think I read ‘Concluding’, but I can’t remember it, so maybe I didn’t. Wow, it sounds exciting, I’ll try to hunt it down. Reading him sounds juicy at the moment. How was the Julien Calendar gig? No, I don’t think ‘Earwig’ has come out here yet. I feel like there would be a screening that I would be invited to when it does. Well, for better or worse, what you say about it could be said about her other films too, in my opinion. I like her, and she’s super smart, but I do wish she was a little less interested in atmosphere and a little more interested in, well, anything else really. The new Gisele piece is on a summer break. It’s early on and hard to tell how it’s going so far. It needs a ton of work, and I’m not yet sure what exactly she wants from the text aspect, and she has been all over the place about what part text will play in the piece so far, so I’m waiting for her to figure that out. How’s your stuff? The novel, everything else? ** l@rst, Hey, buddy! I’m essentially all right. As such things go. Right, you were going to the East Coast, I remember. We just had a one day brutal heatwave here yesterday, and … Jesus. I’ve always wanted to read that SST book. I’ve never even read ‘Our Band Could Be Your Life’, shockingly. What’s on your horizon, eh? Great to see you! ** David Ehrenstein, Ah, I don’t agree, I think as great as ‘DoH’ is, he was just getting started. ** Bill, I know, that fact blew me away too. Yes, it was really, really great to get to Zoom with you yesterday. And the heatwave broke late last night. Or … I think so anyway. Excited to hear more about the project whenever the time suits, like I said. Giddy Thursday! ** Okay. I think the gig I made for you today is an especially rich and rewarding one, so please do test it out and see what you can find. Thanks! See you tomorrow.


  1. Mieze

    Do you know… I STILL have never seen Paris, not in what, 18 years of living in Switzerland? That’s kind of shameful. I did, twice, cross the border in past summers and felt all the Frenchiness on the edges of the country. But that’s so long ago, I don’t even know I can claim that as anything substantial.

    I see you‘re in the midst of budgeting and planning for the next film. A 50k cut is not nothing, but I‘m sure you‘ll get it right. All luck to you and Zac going forward.

  2. Dominik


    Uhm… that December event doesn’t sound too heartening to be honest. I’d really be more than happy to send you a little package when it’s not so fucking hot – I don’t know how fast cottage cheese goes bad, but I don’t want to poison you, haha.

    Yeah, I was wondering how kissing might feel with a split tongue. Or a blowjob… On both ends. I wonder if it’d be a turnoff simply because it’s so unusual.

    Stitches? Fuck! I don’t usually read others’ sections in the P.S. because it kind of feels like reading others’ personal letters to you, which is pretty stupid, as it’s all out in the open but anyway, now I went back and checked whether you’ve written anything about what’s going on and fuck! How are you feeling? When will you hear back about the results? Did love steady your hands while you removed the stitches? Love putting on a tight little nurse costume and offering you his assistance, just in case, Od.

  3. _Black_Acrylic

    I very much enjoyed Jamal Moss as I always do, but also Osasco Dynamics and Pinkcourtesyphone represent exciting new discoveries for me. My own Play Therapy radio show is on temporary hiatus at the moment but other sonic input is welcome.

    That Nico bio is pretty good so far, well researched and detailed anyway. The other one that’s recommended is Songs They Never Play on the Radio by her keyboard player James Young. That one contains plenty of dark humour, as you might expect from her European tourbus days.

  4. Russ Healy

    Great assemblage of music new to me. I particularly enjoyed Ohyung for the droning, ambient sound and the juxtaposition of (seemingly) random video clips and prose. I’m sure if I spent more time with it the randomness would cohere. I also liked Boy Harsher and Editrix. They are both from Western Massachusetts where I spend time on holidays. WM has produced some great bands, like the Pixies (or were they from Boston?). I sampled Automatisme and Stefan Paulus because of the reference to LaMonte Young, who influenced one of my favorite artists, John Cale. Cale just released a new single video, “Night Crawling,” which is an animated depiction of Cale and David Bowie wandering around lower Manhattan in the mid 1970’s. Captured the feel visually – especially the color palette and the look of the various denizens they encounter. I think Allen Ginsberg makes an appearance early on (but I could be wrong).

    Sounds like the wave of heat in Europe continues, as it is here in the States. Today in the NYC area it will “feel” like 104. Covid may be flattening. As in maybe. I still haven’t gotten it – but everyone else has. Plus monkeypox is on the rise; one of my clients has a friend who has mp. I hope you all stay cool and well! Thanks for the videos!

  5. Steve Erickson

    It’s heavy air conditioning weather here once again – too bad ’cause PENDA’S FEN is playing Anthology tonight.

    My review of the embarrassingly bad queer slasher movie THEY/THEM is out now:

    I haven’t had time to listen to any of these music clips yet, but the Maghreban and Quelle Chris are the only artists I’m familiar with. (Chris has a production credit on the new Lizzo album!) Chat Pile’s album deserves the hype – nasty but sincere sludge-rock about the ugliest aspects of Middle American life, like a more metallic version of the Amphetamine Reptile sound. They go from an extremely earnest song about homelessness to a 9-minute freakout inspired by a bad drug experience. Tomorrow, I want to hear the Bloodz Boi/Claire Rousay/More Eaze album and Mbulelo’s Afro-techno ep on Hakuna Kulala.

  6. David Ehrenstein




  7. l@rst


    This SST book came out this year so yr not so late to the party as opposed to “Our Band…” which I though was fabulous. I’ve read the Buttholes section multiple times. Looks like the heat is returning this weekend but it’s been wonderful having it gone. On the horizon… hmmm…. I’ve solicited participation in a new zine I’m putting together which I hope to release in a couple of months. I gave my selectees and myself perhaps TOO MUCH time to put it together. What the final outcome will be a mystery! I’ll definitely share a digitized version when that happens….


  8. John Newton

    Hi Dennis, I hope you are well and that you heal fast. What happened? I looked up Túró Rudi, and the chocolate is sold on amazon but it is summer and super hot.

    I have been reading some Alfred Chester, you might enjoy his fiction? or maybe you read him before?

    I was doing personal geneology and found out about the Wisconsin death trip photographs by Charles Van Schaick. You can read the newspaper articles about supposed hauntings and view the photographs here. To me it is very odd how the Wisconsinites or Midwesterners apparently disliked Germans, Swedes, and Norwegians but where I live in Pennsylvania was once part of Sweden, we have lots of Swedes, Danes, and Finns as well as Norwegians, Dutch and Belgians here and in NJ, and then the Dutch tried to take it over or parts of new Sweden and we have always had many Germans, who Benjamin Franklin did not like but they were very well educated compared to British colonists.

    I am also reading the horror novel the entity, by Frank De Felitta. It is not scary to me, but I just imagine myself in the novel as an observer.

    I am sure you have heard about the drama over the Sesame Street theme park. I understand the parent is angry or hurt, but the teen or young adult in the character costume should not have been fired, and maybe the person in the costume could not see? Asking for $25 million because your child was not seen or acknowledged by a children’s TV show character in the hot summer is being a bit ridiculous, especially when they were offered free passes/tickets, a private meeting or stage show or whatever, with the costumed characters, etc. Most of that $ if they win the class action law suit will go to the lawyers and law firm. Maybe someone will sue Disney next or great adventure?

    It is super hot here. I have been busy getting books ready to sell. I have some about French criminals and a French serial killer all written in English. I can mail them to you if you would like? Please send me your address to JRN158@GMAIL.COM thanks

    I hope you are avoiding the hot weather and are well.

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