Cuts addresses our Uncertain Future with 'A Gradual Decline'

Anthony Tombling Jr a.k.a. ‘Cuts’ is a British film maker and composer who approaches his productions with a sense of purpose, which is palpable in his upcoming release ‘A Gradual Decline’ out Nov 30th on Village Green Recordings.  Tombling says “We are living in the age of the Anthropocene and it feels like everything is in decline. We’re in a moment where extinction is regular. I wanted this record to reflect these frailties.” It is obvious from this statement that Anthony deeply feels the decline of these corroding landscapes plagued by global warming and industrial pollution. Although Tombling is commenting on dire facts most of us are already aware of, it is his unique, skillful and even hopeful interpretation of this tipping point that really sets this work apart.

Music can bring us to many different places. We can seek comfort in nostalgia, we can seek escape in hedonism, we can seek joy in stories that are told in which we can relate to and sometimes, when we can bare it, we seek truth in music like this. ‘ A Gradual Decline’ is an urgent call to action reflecting all the bleak sobering realities of a contemptuous zeitgeist. It is a record that gives a raw and unfiltered look into the harsh, hard to swallow truths of environmental decay. And in an auditory sense, this is exactly how the album feels. Crushed percussion, a dark driving bassline, harrowing melodies and somber sonic textures sustain a focused feeling of frailty. ‘A Gradual Decline’ is a project of political importance. It is a drop in the ocean of music, with the potential to be powerful, moving and poignant as we stand facing a most uncertain future.

Pre-order the album on Bandcamp

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'Humanity at a crossroads' with Deru's new album- Torn in Two

One part cutting edge digital art project and one part snapshot of a dystopian future, Emmy award winning film composer and music producer - Benjamin Wynn, aka Deru, puts forth some his most poignant work to date with his new album ‘Torn in Two'.’

With a rich musical background, Wynn has taken his years of technical and musical experience and boiled them down into this 9 track concept album, bringing some of humanity’s most pressing challenges to the forefront and dissecting them with laser sharp sound design and texture rich productions.

There are delicate moments, tumultuous times, and walls of sound powerful enough to disassemble your physical self. Ultimately this is a concept album on the human condition, our vulnerability, strength and uncertain future. What would Earth be like without humans at all?

Attempting to tackle such large, philosophical questions in a coherent form of presentable art is a monumental task to say the least, luckily Wynn had some help in bringing these concepts to life. Take our video above for example, ‘Refuge’ is the 2nd track off the album and in many ways the counterweight to the bone-crushing opening track ‘Torn in Two’. With billowing acoustic elements and slow, cinematic builds of white noise, the audio syncs perfectly with the monochrome and desolate visual landscape.

The film is directed and edited by Wynn himself, in collaboration with Bryan Konietzko, the animator and director best known for Avatar: The Last Airbender and The Legend of Korra, who provided the concept, art direction and digital sculpting. Longtime collaborator EFFIXX provided visual effects, 3D rendering, and artwork design. Tim Navis supplied the tintype photographic plates used as backdrops and cover art, and Xander Smith served as 3D Sculpting Assistance.

’Torn in Two’ is available via LA imprint Friends of Friends.
Grab it on limited edition translucent splatter double vinyl with gatefold or digitally over on Bandcamp


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A Dystopian audio/visual rollercoaster from New York's - Tauk

“TAUK is unstoppable, If you haven’t see them, dear God, go.”

‘Live for Live Music’ raved about the 4 piece progressive rock / live electronica group a few years back, and the words still ring true to this day. Now fresh off the release of their 5th full length album entitled ‘Shapeshifter II’ the group continues to explore futuristic themes of artificial intelligence, the blurring lines between humans and machines, and visions of a coming dystopia a la Bladerunner aesthetics set against a sonic backdrop of free flowing jazz, progressive rock, hip-hop and electronica.

In a time where the live experience is more important than ever, with groups making their entire income from touring, Tauk’s searing live chops ensure they sound just as good on the stage as they do in the studio. But such psychic cohesion doesn’t just happen overnight, this effortless gelling has taken years to fully set.

TAUK’s creative connection traces back to childhood, when longtime friends Dolan, Jalbert, and Carter formed their first band in seventh grade and held practice in their school basement. After playing together in various projects over the years, the trio brought drummer Isaac Teel into the fold in 2012, cementing the final lineup. “We gelled pretty quickly as friends and as musicians, and now there’s a connection on stage that’s unspoken,” notes Teel. “You just feel it from the energy within the band and from the response coming from the crowd—all these people in the same exact headspace.” 

You can expect that same kind of cosmic connection between the musicians on stage as in the studio, making it truly a collaborative effort for their new release Shapeshifter II.
In sculpting the album’s intricate arrangements, TAUK called on such esteemed musicians as The Naughty Horns, Ghost-Note’s Nate Werth (a percussionist who’s also played with David Crosby, Q-Tip, and Snarky Puppy), and Juan Alderete (longtime bassist for Racer X and The Mars Volta). Shapeshifter II: Outbreak came to life in collaboration with TAUK’s longtime cohort Robert Carranza—a Grammy Award-winning producer/mixer/engineer also known for his work The Mars Volta, Ozomatli, and Taj Mahal.

Grab the release over on their Bandcamp
 
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Experimental electronica from Toronto's Fried Dough

Fried Dough is an electronic psych band that blends dark trip hop grooves and spacey ambient textures with elements of experimental music and IDM. While working on commercial music projects at an ad agency in Toronto, Canada, Andrew Cariboni and Aaron Gaistman became friends over a shared love for independent electronic producers and psych-tinged jam bands. The two formed 'Fried dough' as a vehicle for their creative output and friend Nolan Bouvier later joined the band in 2016. 

With a strong history of eclectic indie music, including Broken Social Scene, Caribou, Metric, and Death from Above 1979, Toronto is no stranger to bands that blur the lines between genres and styles. Fried Dough not only sees the groups various members playing a wide range of instruments, but also producing a full spectrum of tracks from pink floyd esque flowing psychedelia to texture-rich cutting edge electronic music. 

The latter best describes the groups most recent track 'Brume' which is a brief yet powerful two and a half minutes of brain twisting idm and swelling analog synths. Despite the apocalyptic overtones the track ultimately concludes with a sense of resolve and optimism. 

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LA producer Deru's blistering new track 'Torn in Two'

Benjamin Wynn, aka Deru, is an Emmy Award winning American composer, sound designer and music producer. Born and raised in Chicago, it was Wynn's early experiences with urban music and hip-hop that sparked his initial passion for production and sound design. It was the raw, rough sound of 90s hip hop that formed some of his earliest musical sensibilities, Ben stating "I loved the sonic quality of hip-hop, I loved how gritty it was, I loved the sound of hiss and record noise." Even to this day, many of these rough, organic elements that influenced him so many years ago can still be heard in his productions.

In the pursuit of further honing his sonic sensibilities, Wynn took to the west coast where he studied electronic music at the California Institute of the Arts. He focused on synthesis, signal processing, acoustics, music theory and composition, and earned a Bachelor's degree in music technology. Adding a well-rounded technical skillset to his ever growing passion for music and sound design was a key step in the young producer's music career. 

Over the next decade Wynn put these technical and creative skills to good use, releasing 4 albums under his electronic music 'Deru' alias as well as countless television, film and even ballet scores. Incorporating a unique mix of electronic and acoustic elements Ben states "I love the control over sound that electronic music provides, and I also love the sound of acoustic instruments and human players."

His forthcoming release 'Torn in Two' serves as a perfect example of this unique marriage of electronic and acoustic elements.  The album is a collection of microtonal pieces where the pitches were derived from acoustic instruments, and processed woodwind and brass recordings. Both represented new directions for Wynn, and the results are pieces that are more dynamic and full-spectrum than his previous body of work. 

The track 'Torn in Two' serves as the powerful album opener to the upcoming release. A dizzying array of slithering distortion set within a dissonant dystopia. Bone-crushing builds give way to moments of supreme sensitivity and delicateness. 

'Torn in Two' releases Oct .19th on LA label 'Friends of Friends' 
Pre-order the vinyl over here.

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New event gallery- Compartments

"Compartments: an alternative perspective on the spaces we visit" is a pop-up photography exhibit featuring work from Vancouver artists and international photographers, with music from the ADSR Collective.  This miniature themed show will display artwork no larger than 6 x 8 inches. 

This was our second photography / vinyl collaboration with Latent Image following up our "Perfect Imperfections" event from earlier this year.  

Tokiomi "Secret Stash" A/V collab- Laine Butler

To celebrate the release of Tokiomi "Secret Stash" we have another fresh audio/visual collaboration, this time coming from Vancouver's- Laine Butler. Laine is a multi-faceted artist, with experience in sound design, graphic design, and visual art. His work has been featured in theatre pieces, films, video games as well as art exhibitions and late night electronic events. Read more about his works over at www.lainebutler.com

Tokiomi "Secret Stash" A/V collab- Arya

For our third visual collaboration we reached out to another west coast favourite- Arya. Multimedia artist and designer, Arya's works have been featured at Bass Coast Festival, in international publications, and accompanying a wide range of live performances. Check out his interpretation of tokiomi's unique soundscapes below :) or read more about his work at www.aryahawker.com

Tokiomi "Secret Stash" A/V collab- Tev 13

It's release week!  Japanese beatmaker Tokiomi releases his first full length album "Secret Stash" this coming Thursday, November, 16.  To celebrate our first physical release we collaborated with 7 of our favourite visual artists to get their interpretation of the sounds 🎶  

Here's the first clip from Vancouver visual artist - TEV 13