Friday, June 30, 2006

Here is a quick attempt at re-capping the last week’s activities:

Saturday June 24
The Lucky Cat
Brooklyn, NY

WIERD Live #6
Vegas Martyrs
Carlos Giffoni
Jutta Koether and Mark Solotroff
Sleep Museum
DJ Pieter

Pieter got the night started, spinning the hits from Wierd and beyond, warming up the audience for the Sleep Museum set which started after some technical difficulties were solved. Robert and his arsenal of synths, sequencers, etc., were joined by Alex, on cello (run through various guitar pedals), which sounded amazing, both during the songs and during segues. The set was dark and dreary in the best possible way, and Robert’s echoing vocals sounded excellent in a live setting. Jutta and I were up next, and things really clicked for me during our set. I totally got the whole idea of interchange, or “playing together,” live. It seemed like her keyboards and my vocals/feedback really worked well together, locking in, and doing a “give and take” thing. Our feedback sounds might have been too much to take at times, but with minor adjustments to the soundboard, Carlos came on and blew the roof off with his intense analog set-up. This was heavy stuff and I liked the equipment set-up, sans laptop, for that true cult feel, which was so necessary with this crowd. Dominick, Rich, and Joe, then tore down the walls with a brutal Vegas Martyrs set, scaring off a few synth devotees, but pleasing heavy music fans with their metal-meets-p.e. gut-punch. Thanks to Jeremy and everyone at the Lucky Cat, for being amazing hosts, for helping out with my United Airlines baggage mishaps, etc. Thanks to Pieter, for helping pull off a fun night. Thanks to Jutta, for being a great collaborator! Thanks to the other bands/acts, for joining in on the night. Thanks to everyone I know who showed up. “Hey” to Drew… nice to meet you.


Sunday June 25
The WIERD Records Radio Show on Minimal Electronik Plus
East Village Radio

Pieter is launching a record label, related to his long running DJ night. At EVR, he introduced and played tracks exclusively from the forthcoming WIERD Records Compilation (VR001) that is due out in late August. The show featured interviews with Martial Canterel, Xeno and Oaklander, Blacklist, Sleep Museum, and Mark Solotroff from A Vague Disquiet (BLOODYMINDED, ex-Intrinsic Action).

For those of you who have not heard or figured it out, AVD, officially named in a bookstore in Detroit, in November 2005, is a new project that I am doing with Isidro Reyes from BLOODYMINDED, along with the ever-mysterious Hansi W. This project is not at all like BLOODYMINDED, but it may have some links to Intrinsic Action. Our set-up includes bass, guitar, drum machine, synth, and vocals. It falls somewhere between minimal synth, coldwave, and early industrial (think Xtract Records, etc.).

Here are links to the station, to the program, and to a streaming archive of Sunday’s show, for the brave of heart, or those of you who need to hear some A Vague Disquiet tracks ASAP:
or directly:


Tuesday June 27
Southside Lounge
Brooklyn, NY
DJ Pieter
Mark Solotroff (Guest DJ)

Primarily utilizing records that I own, but from Pieter’s record collection, I managed to stick to vinyl, and to mix up early industrial, death rock and early goth, minimal synth, etc. Probably my favorite sets from the three Wierds that I have spun at. It was a totally easy-going and fun night, with lots of friends hanging out. “Hi” to Karen from Chicago/Milwaukee.


Thursday June 29
Chicago, IL
Religious Knives
Zodiac Mountain
Jason Soliday + Mark Solotroff

Whoa, my ears are still ringing a bit. Locrian started things off with their familiar keyboard and guitar drones, building up to intense points where Terence’s vocal “drones” entered the dynamic mix -- and they reached an apex where beats were introduced, and where Andre played heavier guitar riffs – and things sort of sounded not so unlike a less “pop” version of Jesu. Really surprising and really nice to hear. Jason and I were up next, and our deal was me with six microphones - running into his synth/keyboard set-up – allowing him to filter my vocals and feedback – sending the splintered and crystallized sounds in a disorienting manner through a quad-PA system that he set up. This was a nice alternate version of collaboration where my output was being processed in an interesting and unusual manner. This made for a nice contrast to Saturday’s show. Zodiac Mountain were up next, and the slowly evolved from a swampy blues (even early ZZ Top) riff machine into a more “live” Velvet Underground psychedelic drone and feedback breakdown. This was cool to see because it was so different from the WWVV show that I organized last year. Harrius was up next and this three-piece played a curious mix of noise and songs, with guitar, traditional and handmade instruments, and dramatic vocals. Then came the act that I had been waiting for… Religious Knives in full weird prog- and Kraut-rock glory… so much heavier than on the LP, but so good. Nate from Mouthus kept a strong beat going, fully in the Can, Faust, etc., vein, while Maya from Double Leopards wove in strong, repetitive Hammond organ melodies. Mike (DL) played guitar, sang and shouted his vocals, and rattled some amplified “stuff” against his leg. While the live set might be a little easier to “date” compared to the otherworldly and “is it from the past or from the future?” LP, the impact of seeing them play together is heavy-duty. Thanks to the full documentation crew… crazy… Marlene, Ben, and Jon. Thanks to Jason, for hosting the show and for initiating the rewarding collaboration. Thanks to everyone who showed their support.

We moved on to El Taconazo after the show (the one west of Pulaski, on North), and I was pleased to learn that RK+WW was a 100% carnivorous crew. Plenty of tacos were sampled, including liver and onions, rib-eye, and chorizo. We had a quick nightcap to the sounds of Wierd mix CD #7 and then it was off to sleep. After a round of morning espressos, Marlene whipped up pancakes (blueberry and regular), and then the crew headed off to Detroit…

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Out now:

Artist: Sleep Museum
Title: "Street"
Format: White vinyl 7-inch
Catalog Number: B!061
Genre: Minimal Synth / Industrial

The tenth release in a series of private 7-inch singles:

This may be the 7-inch single that throws everyone off of the scent. This is true minimal-synth music, but probably not the type of thing that most people would think of. This is not M.B.-style synth-drone, or other noise and industrial peripherals like that. Sleep Museum is a New York-based project that specializes in rhythmic, darkly melodic synth music, which feels utterly contemporary, yet also reminiscent of certain early-1980s "cold" music, or even the (pre-folk) electronic era of Death in June. Robert Anthony's unrepentantly eccentric vocals and dour lyrics first caught my ear on a trip to NYC in early 2005, thanks to Pieter Schoolwerth. I was fortunate enough to be there to perform with Jutta Koether, in October 2005, at one of Pieter's Wierd live events, which also included Sleep Museum. That remarkably diverse show also featured Double Leopards, Echo West, Martial Canterel, and Matthew Fanuelle, and was suitably held deep in the hull of the Frying Pan, a rusted-out lightship docked at Chelsea Piers. Robert's performance that night was totally riveting, to me. Sleep Museum has a new LP, "Dream of Waking," on Anna Logue Records from Germany, along with tracks on the forthcoming Wierd Records Compilation 3LP set. I have continually looked forward to the numerous CD-Rs and mp3s that Robert has been sending me since last fall, and Sleep Museum has been, without doubt, one of my most-listened-to bands since then.

7-Inch - 33 RPM - pressed in an edition of 300 copies - white vinyl - white labels with minimal black text - poly-lined inner sleeve - unmarked white cardboard sleeve (sealed on three sides) - simple black and white 8.5" x 11" insert.

Track listing:
Side A: "Street"
Side B: "Theology" and "Hate"

Price: $6.50 USA/$9.00 World @ postpaid