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Deep Dive #19 – Pauline Oliveros “No Mo” CD

Pauline Oliveros was an American composer and performer whose impact on contemporary music. and listening practice in particular, is immeasurable. From the mid-1960s until her death in 2016, Oliveros was involved in early electronic and tape music experiments, just intonation, and the development of Deep Listening as an approach to both the playing and experience of music.

Shame File Music stocks range of her back catalogue, including solo releases and collaborative works with the likes of Joe McPhee, her Deep Listening Band and The Carrier Band amongst others. It is hard to go past “No Mo”, her astonishing mid-1960s electronic/noise/tape works. The two pieces featured here were recorded in 1966 (at the University of Toronto Electronic Music Studio, and the San Francisco Tape Music Center respectively) using a range of noise and tone generators, tape techniques and a Buchla Series 100 Box. As well as these timeless noise ecologies, her “Tara’s Room: two meditations on transition and change”, with just-intonated accordion and electronics, has been a particular comfort over recent turbulent years. Both are highly recommended.

Use the code OLIVEROS for 10% off all Oliveros-related releases (expires 8 July 2022).

As always, free postage for orders within Australia over $100.

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Deep Dive #18 – Todd Anderson-Kunert “When There Is Nothing Left To Say” LP

Todd Anderson-Kunert is a sound artist in a very literal sense, in that his work has the sense that he deals directly with sound. His music is constructed by great slabs of tone and timbre, alternately piled methodically on top of each other, or arranged in vast sonic fields like standing stones or Nazca Lines; the components seem relatively simple and unadorned on their own, but the overall combination of the parts creates a momentous impact.

The “When There Is Nothing Left To Say” LP stands out for me amongst Anderson-Kunert’s work, in that it goes beyond his already-impressive aesthetic achievements with his music by packing an emotional punch somehow through the subtle use of deep bass tones. This is minimal industrial music constructed with a great care that belies its monumental form.

Most of Anderson-Kunert’s in-print music is available through Shame File Music on a variety of formats, including vinyl, cassette, CD and digital. Also available is my “In Situ” CDR, a remix/repurposing of an earlier vinyl release of Todd’s

Use the code TODD for 10% off all Anderson-Kunert releases (expires 5 July 2022).

As always, free postage for orders within Australia over $100.

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Deep Dive #17 – Splinter Orchestra “Mungo” 3CD (with a nod to THIS Ensemble)

Splinter Orchestra is a radical large-scale improvising collective that has been active in and around Sydney for two decades. The group’s focus and activities have developed over the years to a current practice that includes interaction with natural environments, and playing in remote locations.

The “Mungo” 3CD set documents three days the collective spent in Mungo National Park in outback NSW in 2016. This sprawling album “presents an argument for a creative collective, sensitive to time/space — one that treats all the participants, be they performers, other species, or the wind, as equal players”.

The Melbourne performance collective THIS Ensemble is something of a distant cousin to Splinter Orchestra. Led by Ren Walters, THIS Ensemble was a large-form, multi-disciplinary improvising mass, well-documented in their “Brown Paper Business” 2CD box set. THIS Ensemble also often ventured into rural and remote locations for creative interactions. A subset of the Ensemble in Ren Walters, Clinton Green & Michael McNab camped and played at the Pink Lakes, Murray Sunset National Park in 2015, part of which is documented on their “At The Salt Museum” CD.

These selections paint a picture of collective and contemporary approaches to sounding landscapes.

Use the code SPLINTERTHIS for 10% off all Splinter Orchestra and THIS Ensemble-related releases, as well as “At The Salt Museum” (expires 4 July 2022).

As always, free postage for orders within Australia over $100.

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Deep Dive #16 – Peter Farrar “Fabio Pastell 2: More Fabulous Stories” cassette

Peter Farrar is a Sydney-based multi-instrumentalist/instrument builder who participates in a number of free-form collectives, including Splinter Orchestra and Prophets. Of his solo cassette “Fabio Pastell 2: More Fabulous Stories”, he writes:

I have many musical interests that seemed to be unrelated, at times almost contradictory. There were no pre-existing musical worlds to accommodate these interests in the one place…

Here at Shame File Music, I hear a lot of strange music, but Farrar’s solo releases have even me exclaiming, “what the hell is that?!” (in a very positive, excited way, of course). “Fabio Pastell 2: More Fabulous Stories” certainly ticks that box. It appears to be a series of pieces incorporating both acoustic and electronic instruments, many automated, into self-generative bands. These “bands” resemble anything from demented brass bands to electro-acoustic ensembles, and everything in between. His solo debut “Avocado” LP/CD produces similarly-astonishing music for extended/modified saxophones (I think, but you never really know).

Use the code FARRAR for 10% off all Farrar-related releases (expires 1 July 2022).

As always, free postage for orders within Australia over $100.

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Deep Dive #15 – Anthony Pateras/Erkki Veltheim “Duos for Other Instruments” CD

Erkki Veltheim is a composer, sound artist and string player whose music goes to deep places between notes, drawing out whole sonic worlds out of minimal musical materials. His recorded work features across a number of releases stocked by Shame File music, largely as a collaborator and contributor to the work of others, yet a couple of releases feature more-than-substantial contributions.

Veltheim has released three CDs in duo with Anthony Pateras, the standout for me being the most recent “Duos For Other Instruments”. The album features two duos (for viola and celeste, and harpsichord and mandolin respectively) that involve the subtle accumulation of acoustic materials sparking something approaching psycho-acoustic phenomena; is that chiming I’m hearing really there, or is my brain to trying to make sense of the relationship between sounds? It’s a highly recommended, stunning listen from two of Australia’s leading exploratory musician/composers (Veltheim and Pateras’ trio with trumpeter Scott Tinkler – North Of North – also have released two albums of interest).

“Works for Travelled Pianos” features performances by pianist Gabriella Smart of works by Cat Hope and Veltheim. The latter’s “Two New Proposals for an Overland Telegraph Line …” is inspired by the 1st piano to arrive in Alice Springs, Australia, in the 19th century.

Use the code ERKKI for 10% off all Veltheim-related releases (expires 29 June 2022).

As always, free postage for orders within Australia over $100.

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Deep Dive #14 – Moe Chee “Be It Hot, Humid or Ghostly Cold” CD/digital

Moe Chee 默契 is a phrase in Mandarin that has no direct English translation, but can variously be interpreted as ‘silent bonding’, ‘unspoken agreement’, ‘mutual understanding’, ‘tacit’, ‘in sync’. Moe Chee was formed in 2014 by Taiwanese performing artist Chun-liang Liu and myself (Clinton Green) around a series of unauthorised performative actions around the grounds of the State Library of Victoria (including a run of 7 performances over 7 days, featuring a mythical 3am performance). In 2015, we toured Taiwan and recorded our debut album around public spaces and other social situations in Taiwan (plus one recording made in Melbourne). “Be It Hot, Humid, Or Ghostly Cold” is an amalgam of field recording, public space performance, conversation, and explorations of the potential for creativity and musicality in everyday life.

Moe Chee have also released the cassette “Testament of the Trinity”, documenting one of their State Library performances (this one on midnight on a Friday night) in collaboration with Jen Callaway. Chun-liang Liu has also released a solo album on Shame File Music “Friction”. Her second solo album will be released on Shame File Music (on digital and cassette) later this year.

Use the code MOECHEE for 10% off all Moe Chee-related releases (expires 28 June 2022).

As always, free postage for orders within Australia over $100.

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Deep Dive #13 – Carolyn Connors “Surface Noise Vol.9” CDR/digital

Carolyn Connors is a singer, sound artist, performer and composer whose work has excited and challenged Melbourne audiences for a number of years. She continues to collaborate with a range of artists and improvisers, and explore the limits of vocal performance.

“Surface Noise Vol.9” captures a tour de force solo performance at Make It Up Club in 2012; a thrilling and joyous extended vocal performance with occasional slide whistle, staggering in its range and material covered. A rare solo release from Connors, it is shared with a live performance recording by instrument builder Ernie Althoff from 2015.

The Shame File Music shop also features a recent collaborative project with Terry McDermott using software interfaces and the Federation Bells, on the “Music Under Lockdown: Melbourne 2020” compilation, and 1995’s “Chris Mann & the Impediments” CD, where Connors is joined by other luminaries including Mann, Rik Rue and Jeannie Marsh.

Use the code CONNORS for 10% off all Carolyn Connors-related releases (expires 27 June 2022).

As always, free postage for orders within Australia over $100.

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Deep Dive #12 – Ross Manning “Harmonious Angles” LP

Ross Manning is a Brisbane-based sound artist, maker of instruments and kinetic sound sculpture. He uses a variety of machines to create self-playing sculptures that create percussive and texture-based music that is surprisingly deft and humane.

His solo debut “Harmonious Angles” LP is a joyous yet understatedly-intricate sonic outing created in real time via live playback of various recorders (HD, tape and MD) overlaid with live sound events, including field recordings and an assortment of Manning’s own instruments. Evocative of a less-manic (legendary Melbourne outfit) Volvox in its strangeness, the soundworlds created here are intriguing and immensely satisfying.

Shame File Music also stocks other solo releases by Manning on vinyl and CDR in limited quantities. Look out as well for a new album from Manning released by Shame File Music on vinyl early in 2023.

Use the code MANNING for 10% off all Ross Manning releases (expires 27 June 2022).

As always, free postage for orders within Australia over $100.

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Deep Dive #11 – Jenny Barnes “Surface Noise Vol. 6” CDR/digital

While Jenny Barnes may be generally categorised as a singer, she is so much more: performer, improviser, explorer of the limits of language and human sound. Her live performances are something I always try to catch, for Jenny consistently pushes the limits of her practice and seeks out new techniques and performative mindsets.

Volume 6 of the “Surface Noise” series presents a rare gem in a solo, unaccompanied live vocal performance from Jenny Barnes, recorded at Make It  Up Club in 2017. Interpretations of the performance will no doubt differ between listeners, but to my ears I hear Jenny embody an acute emotive psychodrama of language and uttered sound. Personalities emerge in her like spirits and have their desperate say in dialects that cannot be translated, yet resonate on a human level that is both tender and devastating. Surface Noise Vol. 6 is backed up with a live performance from another exploratory vocalist in Alice Hui-Sheng Chang, accompanied by an ensemble of Rosalind Hall, Nigel Brown, David Brown, Tim Catlin and Michael McNab. Barnes also contributes significantly to Jessica L. Wilkinson & Simon Charles’ “Marionette: a biography of Miss Marion Davies” CD.

Use the code BARNES for 10% off all Jenny Barnes-related releases (expires 24 June 2022).

As always, free postage for orders within Australia over $100.

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Deep Dive #10 – Ernie Althoff “Dark By 6” CD

Ernie Althoff is a Melbourne sound artist and instrument maker active in Australian experimental music since the late 1970s. He is unique not only for the original textures and sonic elements he creates, often tempered with wry humour, but also for his practically continuous contribution to and participation in the Melbourne experimental music community for over three decades.

Althoff’s recorded documentation is extensive, and Shame File Music makes available all currently in-print titles plus a range of digital offerings. It’s an impossible task to choose a key work, but I regularly come back to the 2005 “Dark By 6” CD, which documents five of Althoff’s early 2000s installations. These works are sprawling both spatially and musically, incorporating chance operations as overlapping rhythms through his trade mark kinetic sound sculptures, often driven by turntables and cassette players. I love to listen to these recordings and identify particular objects by their sound; for instance, the bell-like aluminium bowls on “The Emergence of Mammals”, which Ernie gifted to me a number of years ago, whose tones I know very well.

Shame File Music also hosts an archive of Althoff’s early cassette releases, as well as his most recent work “Symmetry Marred By Impulse

Use the code ERNIE for 10% off all Ernie Althoff releases (expires 24 June 2022).

As always, free postage for orders within Australia over $100.