Set Of Five

(New Albion - NA036) Used CD $10.00

Violinist David Abel, pianist Julie Steinberg, and percussionist William Winant’s 1990 view of Pacific Rim influences in modern classical composition. Henry Cowell’s title composition and Lou Harrison’s “Varied Trio” use exotic percussion and the-world-is-one inspiration, while John Cage’s “Noctourne” is not so explicit, and Somei Satoh’s “Toki No Mon” opens time to “not simply progress from past into future, but slowly describes a circle.” The five-part “Invocations to Vahakn” by Alan Hovhaness delves further through cultural icons to the ancient Armenian sun god.


Composition N. 165 [For 18 Instruments]

(New Albion) Used CD $8.00

Performed by the University of Illinois Creative Music Orchestra, conducted by Anthony Braxton in 1992, who describes it thus: “There are static and mutable cloud formations that drift in and out of the canvas of the music…, yet there are target recognition states. This is a sequential event continuum that places equal emphasis on sound and space — the moments come ... the moments go.”


19 [Solo] Compositions, 1988

(New Albion) Used CD $8.00

Sixteen originals recorded live plus “You Go To My Head,” “Round Midnight,” and “Half Nelson.” Although free in spots, Braxton’s performances also have their own logic and are quite concise.


The Ready Made Boomerang

(New Albion) Used CD $8.00 (Out-of-stock)

The title track is a John Cage mesostic written for Pauline Oliveros, Stuart Dempster and Panaiotis. Guests include vocalist Thomasa Eckert and William O. Smith on clarinet, recorded at Fort Warden Cistern in 1990, where balloons are exploded, vocals are suspended, percussive stuff is dropped, and instrumental sounds are lovely and mysterious.


Deep Listening

(New Albion) Used CD $42.00

“Recorded in a massive underground cistern in Washington State with a 45-second reverberation time, the recordings are defined by a surreal smearing of [the] tones [of accordion, voice, conch shell, metal pieces, trombone, didjeridu, garden hose, whistling, and metal pipes]. Like much of Oliveros’s and Dempster’s work around this time, most of these improvisations … focus [on] extended drones, with Dempster’s trombone and didjeridu providing the backbone. Far from evoking any sort of stasis, these tones swell and resonate actively throughout the space, and the effect is hallucinatory. Melodic lines intertwine as they ripple and decay, and momentarily raised voices seemingly emerge from within the insistent, omnipresent root…. In a contemporary context, Deep Listening still sounds revolutionary. While drone, minimalism, and ambient music have proliferated in the intervening decades, few albums in those fields are as rich texturally and harmonically or have such clarity of vision. The album remains vital largely because it embodies Oliveros’s ideas, which have themselves resurfaced as a corrective to the sinister undercurrents of social and technological advancement.” From 1989. Manufactured at Disque Americ.



(New Albion) Used CD $6.00 (Out-of-stock)

The title-track, according to no less an authority than Blue Gene Tyranny, is “a mysterious 25-minute concert suite from a soundtrack to Anima, a film concerning a woman who journeys to the desert seeking to enter ‘the world where magic happens’ by performing certain rituals and labors. La Barbara recorded voice (sighs, whispers, lamentations, ululations, calls, cries echoed by the surroundings, lullabies and ‘vocal winds’) and percussion sounds (ancient Balinese gamelan instruments, tar and dumbek hand drums, shakuhachi, music box tines, rainstick, and African rattles) on location, high in the rocky cliffs of Diablo Canyon, NM, with its ‘ravens and echoes, birds and thunder’. Several of these sounds are also modified by computer…. ‘Rothko’… emulate[s] painter Mark Rothko’s layering techniques in sound…. Tapes of multiphonic and microtonal voice choirs and bowed pianos move through … space…. The mood is sombre, meditative and intense, with a pervasive constantly moving drone filling and reconfiguring itself in the space as a living presence. ‘Calligraphy II / Shadows’ … for voice and Chinese wind, string and percussion instruments … [is] gentle [and] evocative [of mysterious] gestures.” From 1998. Drilled barcode


Nordisk Sang — Music Of Norway

(New Albion) Used CD $6.00

A rare and intimate look from 1991 at genuine Scandinavian folk music courtesy of artists from the Heilo roster. Willow bark flutes, pristine voices, fiddles (both hardingfele and standard). Central to it all is Kirsten Brten Berg, a ear-swooning singer of pure tone and ethereal space. There are two pieces for transverse flute (one as a duo with a pipe organ that is quite unusual); one solo dulcimer piece; and one for willow bark flute. There are only two slightly larger ensemble pieces, one a trio for voice, saxophone, and hardingfele, another for voice, hardingfele, bouzouki, and recorder.


Batak Of North Sumatra

(New Albion) Used CD $10.00

Traditional music of the Toba, the Karo and the Mandailing (three of seven ethnic groups living on the shores of Lake Toba). As noted by your dad’s old hippie zine Rolling Stone, “Voices and instruments rise in sacred and secular celebration with an idyllic elegance that belies the music’s vigorous, complex locomotion.” Music and dance play a crucial role in Batak society. The words for “ceremony” are actually a musical term and refers to the Batak orchestra of drums, gongs, and oboes and also to the tunes they play. The musicians are essential intermediaries between humanity and the Creator. The sounds of the drums and gongs convey human prayers to the spirit world.