JASON KAHN

Analogues

(Cut) Used CD $5.00

“Atmosphere, depth, a sense of direction, and the exploration of sound” is how Sound Projector sums it up, with “repetition and a minimalist approach [providing] structure and direction…. [S]amples of radio and field recordings, and of drums and metal objects … create moody and sometimes ominous [atmospheres].”

JASON KAHN

Drums And Metals

(Cut) Used CD $5.00

“The six compositions on drums and metals are, Feldman-fashion, named after the instruments employed on each track,” notes Avant Reviews. “ ‘Snare Drum + Bell’ features a bell, hieratically tolled, and as each toll decays there’s a rustle of activity on the snare drum. The articulation of the snare is indistinct; it sounds like someone panning for gold, or perhaps a distantly recorded rain stick. Progressively, as the snare gets louder, it is joined by a buzzing screech as a resonator is touched lightly to the surface of the bell. The snare-work gradually reduces in volume, and when it becomes barely distinguishable the track ends…. Minimalism … has obviously had an impact…. Kahn makes sparing use of phase-shifts, and throughout the CD emphasis is placed on repetitive rhythmic patterns, especially pulses and waves. Kahn doesn’t foreground human agency, how a sound has been made; he focuses attention on sound itself, its timbral qualities, its duration, its relationship to other sounds and their placement in space.”

RICHARD FRANCIS / JASON KAHN / BRUCE RUSSELL

Dunedin

(CMR - CMR27) CD $14.25

Thirty-eight minutes of immersive sound and fractured electronics by Richard Francis (modular synthesizer, computer), Jason Kahn (analog synthesizer, radio, mixing board) and Bruce Russell (analog electronics), recorded live at Dunedin Public Art Gallery in New Zealand. Russell’s analog system cleaves a path through Francis’s thick cloud of dusty field recordings and swirling standing waves; Kahn’s chaotic feedback system of synthesizer and radio spikes and sputters, like a dying bird in the midst of some caustic low pressure front moving slowly across the horizon.

JOHN HUDAK / JASON KAHN / BRUCE TOVSKY

For The Time Being

(Cut) Used CD $10.00

The “drone- and texture-focused track, recorded at Diapason Gallery, New York” by Hudak and Kahn, consists mainly of “field recordings … from Dobbs Ferry….” according to The Brain. “While changing slightly over its twenty-minute running time, this first piece fluctuates with minute strokes, brushing ever so softly on tiny changes and developments. Themes emerge then reemerge at steady intervals through a soft haze which blankets the rest of the oscillating cycle…. High, smooth, piercing drones inhabit this performance with light and airy shuffles slowly broadening as the loops multiply. The textures gradually come to the forefront from its muted beginnings to an exhilarating density. The second piece is more upfront, with Hudak slightly plucking a guitar subtly contrasted with the processed playing of Tovsky…, an evolving universe of sound and morphing microcosmic shapes.”

JASON KAHN / Z'EV

Intervals

(Monotype - MONO032) CD $12.75

Duo performances by two outbound percussionists (with Kahn on synthesizer also) from Switzerland 2009 recorded by Kahn, composited into their final versions here by Z’ev. Not surprisingly, the heavy processing transcends the inherent rhythmic quality of percussion and settles instead on their complex sonic qualities. “Lausanne” layers metallic noises with delicate grains running through a hollow wooden body; dark clouds gather, undefined sounds appear, a soft metallic hum becomes for a moment the sole audible component, underlying drum tremors rise to the surface. “Zürich” goes through light and dark phases, and rather bare moments where only drone-like electronics and processed drum noises create an impenetrable vacuum.

TETUZI AKIYAMA / JASON KAHN / UTAH KAWASAKI

Luwa

(Rossbin) Used CD $5.00

Analog improv trio date led by Akiyama (on tape delayed electric guitar) with Kahn on modular synth and cymbal, and Kawasaki on dismantled Roland synthesizer.

JASON KAHN

Miramar

(Sirr) Used CD $6.00

Using an analogue synth as a basic source plus a floor tom (as a resonator) and small cymbals,” says Touching Extremes, “the New York / Zurich-based sound carver achieves that kind of phenomenon where the vibrating propagations turn ears into resonance instruments themselves, something varying through placing our stance in different listening perspective…. The sound quality ranges from tidy oscillations to semi-distorted beating of frequencies, both cases yielding membranes’ movement and strange responses from the brain. Looks like you’re undergoing a transformation of the way you accept an acoustic code, it takes a while before your body reacts correctly…. [T]his is a radical approach to a delicate argument but Jason demonstrates much more about physics with such a few means than hundreds of theories could ever explain with hollow words and formulas.”

JASON KAHN / JON MUELLER

Papercuts

(Crouton) Used CD $5.00

“With subtle electronic processing and various grades of handmade and commercial paper, Kahn and Mueller devote 18 minutes to exploring the ‘movement and malleability’ of paper, shoveling deeper into more esoteric forms of percussive experimentation,” according to Tiny Mix Tapes. In “what could be a gimmicky run-through of exchange-value bombast and tripe, Papercuts instead allows the subtle, tangible qualities of paper itself to dictate where the music goes (or doesn’t go), without the intentional efforts of the musicians to use it as a replacement for acoustic or electronic percussion…. It’s discreet, delicate, and rewarding… [I]t will make you appreciate the simple pleasures of material sonority itself, while reintroducing a bit of Dada-esque uneasiness.” Numbered edition of 500

JASON KAHN

Plurabelle

(Cut) Used CD $5.00

“Kahn works with loops and waves of sound, most of which are generated from percussion (metalophones in particular — he likes harmonics) and treated electronically,” notes Avant. “He constantly modulates his sounds; nothing is allowed simply to be; it always has to be becoming, albeit at a slow and steady rate. These pieces are attractive and engaging, without in any way emulating the sugar-spun electronica those descriptors would imply.”

JASON KAHN

Vanishing Point

(23five - 23five015) CD $12.00 (Out-of-stock)

American sound-artist Jason Kahn is exacting when it comes to the principles of noise. His application in composition is not that of Merzbow or Masonna, with teeth-gnashing explosions of distortion, feedback, and volume; rather, Kahn's psychoacoustic techniques employ the specific frequencies of white, pink, brown, and blue noise in works that reflect the ideals of minimalism. These are sounds that regularly occur through the constant vibration of machinery; and Kahn is more than happy to appropriate such events through field recording. He also generates complementary noises through systems that involve the rattling architecture of a drum kit and an analog synthesizer. For all of the phenomenological studies and stoic mesmerism attributed to much of Kahn's catalogue, Vanishing Point is a subtle and hypnotic elegy for rattling metals, timbral vibration, gossamer static, hissing field recordings, and those aforementioned colored noises.