Алексазіз dreams of the Unknown
This is one of my go-to experimental albums. Alexaziz, aka Aleksei Malakhov, an original Solntsetsvety member/collaborator from Minsk, recorded six tracks while in Saudi Arabia.
Saudi Suite’s crystalization of Alek’s loneliness, fascination, and feeling of strangeness in a different place is the fog that binds these pieces together. Regional musical forms mix with Alek’s own background as a hardcore, psych, and rock guitarist in his ex Soviet homeland. Radio samples, field recordings and prayers move as a mist. I’ve never heard something so emotionally accurate to the exhilarating and suffocating conflictions of being alone in a strange place.
After years teaching in New York City Aleksei left his troubled birthplace in Belarus (where his instruments remain due to exportation laws) for good and emigrated to Canada with his family; he now lives in Toronto where we have him working in a factory. I hope one day he’ll find some gear and start a band with me.
All around psychedelic guy Arrington de Dionyso double times as a visual artist and a musician, and while he’s consistently exploring interesting territory with both, my personal belief that his public love of noise patterns can help free the bodies and spirits of Western music fans from the tyranny of the male plaid paradigm makes him a folk hero. Noise patterns!
Dionyso hits Toronto May 14th with his trance punk band Malaikat dan Singa, in support of their new release Open the Crown on K Records. The album is the band’s first release to feature English as well as Indonesian vocals, and I’m into the new English language stuff. Single “I Create in a Broken System”, for an avant dance track, actually reminds me of Pavement, but in a way that’s fresh and unique, which really, how can that be possible, but it does. “Open the Crown” and “I Feel the Quickening” are spookier and kinda ride a Liars vibe. Nuts guitar lines might be the messy black outlines of Dionyso’s paintings. Civilizations melt and are built again.
Malaikat dan Singa take a far out idea and make something real with it, and it’s going to be special seeing them live in action. I talked to Dionyso about Open the Crown, his Indonesian music recommendations, and tigers.
You just touched down at Double Double Land a couple months back with your 24 hour drawing performance. Anything memorable go down?
I created a lot of work (which is viewable at arringtondedionyso.tumblr.com – the ones tagged Toronto are the ones created while there!) over the two days there and a handful of people came to visit during the day. The concert at Double Double was a fantastic experience but I was surprised how little people seemed to take any notice of the art. I decided to start doing these 24 Hour Drawing Performances as a way to further integrate my visual output with my musical experiences, and to try to bring the musical audience into a more immersive “art” experience, but after my tour through Canada in January I realized there is much more work to be done to be able to successfully communicate that to an audience. I’m not discouraged at all though: the other aspect of the 24 Hour Drawing is a very practical consideration. I am on tour half the year I don’t have an official “artist’s studio” so setting up a few days of drawing allows me to go deep into my creative zones within the set time parameters of the performance. Some of the work I did in Toronto is now being sold by a new gallery in Austin called Las Cruxes.
What advice do you have re creating in a broken system?
There is no force on earth more powerful than the imagination. Sure, most of the problems we face today are of our own creation, but we have incredible power to transcend, to go above and beyond within our given reality. This is one of those songs that just kind of wrote itself, I’m trying to tie together lots of different things in the lyrics: what role does the power of imagination play in the fight against oppression? How much of what we call “oppression” is something that is imposed upon us externally and how much of it is really something that we help sustain and perpetuate in our own minds? People like to complain about everything that “Society” does to us but we are all society, we are all humanity. It’s like when thousands of cars are stuck on a highway not moving very fast. You aren’t just stuck “IN” traffic, you ARE traffic.
Why should we not be discouraged people?
Well, there’s so much more work to do, so if we’re discouraged now, God help us!Read more
¿How exciting are the words new Asian Women on the Telephone? ¿How can anyone not feel hooked into this experimental trio of noisey, filthy, intellectual art punks?
It’s been almost a year since Aidan Baker and Leah Buckareff, or Berlin-based metal-gazers Nadja, played their hometown of Toronto during NXNE. Since then they’ve released an album with a member of Jesus Lizard, toured Europe like 66 times, and Baker released 400 solo albums, most recently Already Drowning, a beautiful interpretation of female water spirit myths which features Carla Bozulich, Liz Hysen, and Clara Engel to name a few.
I spoke to Nadja a couple times in the past year about like, music, so we didn’t talk about their doom or their thunder this time: we talked books, specifically Buckareff’s Lesen Lounge, a mobile zine library she’s built in Berlin. I found out the duo met at a bookstore, which solidifies AB & LB as one the top Canadian power couples. Look out, Chavril.
O: Can you talk a bit about how you’ve been involved with books and zines: from early days to present?
AB: I come from a reading family, books and library cards were always present. For a while, I was a bit more focused on being a writer than a musician — my formal education is in literature, not music. I also worked at Book City for about 10 years. We won’t talk about the Chapters/Indigo years.
LB: Early days? My parents had a jewelry shop in a mall in London, ON, and I would get sent to the kid’s aisle of W. H. Smith to spend a few hours. We spent a lot of time in the library - this was a babysitting measure as well. After university, I worked for nearly 10 years at Book City on the Danforth. Instead of going to law school, I learned to book bind and had dreams of starting a tiny press.
O: Whoah, did you two meet before Book City?
LB: Nope. I remember their hesitation at hiring Aidan. I was full-time at the time and we were a pretty close staff. We were almost exclusively all women in the shop at the time so we discussed the new, grumpy male to join us.
O: Omg! Adorable. What are some techniques you’ve used to design and create physical books/zines?
LB: I formally learned to bind traditional case-bound books so I made these before I ever made a zine. I’ve always been more of an advocate of zines than a maker myself. I’ve always had insecurities with my writing abilities.
AB: I did a few illustrations for a friend’s zine as a teenager — but otherwise, haven’t really been involved with them until Leah started her zine library.
O: Can you tell us about your Lesen Lounge zine library project? It looks like you built a tiny book mobile. Did it begin in Berlin?
LB: Since moving here, I wanted to run a little book shop that only stocked small and very tiny press titles. I can’t actually do this, but I was inspired by the ability to just throw something on bike trailer and haul it around town.
I also have no money to really do something stationary, but there are these neighbourhood grants available for non-commercial initiatives and after running a couple exhibitions on handmade stuff, I had the confidence to just go for it and I got the grant!
Rekordmagasinet - Mats Olofsson
Happy Station (Scratch Remix) - Fun Fun
Microphone Connection - Tara Cross and Unovidual
Elaborate Dummy -…
This cold warm cold cold warm mix from Doom Tickler.
It’s always Saturday night in Canada.
And holy jesus mother of disco these new tracks on Doom Tickler’s soundcloud featuring Chavril’s face.
The world isn’t bad, the net isn’t cruel, women are feeling great, I’m dancing six inches off the ground, I’m falling down, I’m sinking into the mud of spring, I’m getting back up. Nothing but fresh embraces and smiling faces. Rose nails and finger bushes, loving you was red. A growl in the dark is just a pug you haven’t met.
Yesterday Moscow’s lofi masters of the night ĸŋüłł (formerly Noise Immunity) changed the name of their demonically under-liked facebook page to Australian Ballet School, an ambient drone tweeindustrial side project they’ve been working on.
Is ĸŋüłł dead? Long live ĸŋüłł.
Nino Rojo / Noise Immunity / ĸŋüłł rules apply. Sources can and will disappear and the artists might deny they even existed.