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CD/DVD Releases: Cuneiform Announces New Releases For May 2011

Posted on Sunday, April 24 @ 11:45:00 UTC by nightowl

"Below are six (!!!) new Cuneiform releases and a re-printing of an out of print classic, which are not going to be generally released for another 4 weeks, but which you can buy directly from us now," writes the folks Wayside, the retail arm of Cuneiform.

"Our releases are available from us to our direct mail customers several weeks before they are generally released or available from other sources. We spend a small fortune on our releases and your direct purchase from us via Wayside Music helps us tremendously and is extremely important to our being able to continue our work and our release schedule; Please don't steal them or make it possible for others to steal them. Thank you for your interest and support of our work."

So here are those six titles:

Afuche - Highly Publicized Digital Boxing Match ($15.00)

"An evolving local group with a cacophonous yet catchy approach..." – The New Yorker
“Afuche's palpable onstage energy is key to the unique corner the band has carved for itself in the ever-saturated Brooklyn music scene.” - Jezebel Music

Based out of Brooklyn, NY and creating a group sound that is truly their own, Afuche is a band that needs to be heard by lovers of adventurous, modern progressive music! Formed by Ruben Sindo Acosta & Zach Ryalls in 2008, they have been adding to the ensemble and evolving their sound by writing, performing, and touring non-stop – it was at one of their many shows where we found them and watched their continued development with keen interest. Afuche is a 5 piece band featuring Ruben on keyboard, vocals and percussion, Zach on guitar, Denny Tek on bass, Andrew Carrico on baritone sax and Max Jaffe on drum. Taking their cues from Can, The Dirty Projectors, Frank Zappa, King Crimson, James Brown, Tortoise, as well as African and Afro-Cuban music, they take these musical influences as a base and apply their own group sound to it and bend it all into a hybrid, original and very progressive contemporary rock music that is interestingly complex without losing its inviting quality; most of all Afuche is a lot of fun.

Highly Publicized Digital Boxing Match is a showcase of a group whose sound is more than the sum of its parts. Recorded mainly live in the studio with minimal textural overdubs in one day, it is Afuche presenting their work with just as you would experience it at one of their lively and exciting shows. The fearless intensity and the strong group dynamic in the playing - extremely notable in such a young band - pours through the speakers; their sound is catchy and mesmerizing and will have you moving in ways you never thought possible! [Cuneiform]

You can hear a track from the record here: www.cuneiformrecords.com/realaudio/Afuche-Gulf.mp3

Find it here at Wayside

Cheer-Accident - No Ifs, Ands Or Dogs ($15.00)

"Tons of weird rock records have streamed out of Chicago over the past two decades, but none have blended pop smarts and avant-garde impulses as skillfully as this marvelous brainteaser of an album..." – Time Out New York

Emerging from the incredibly diverse crucible of music that is Chicago, Cheer-Accident embodies and re-affirms the “promises made” by previous generations of progressive rock, post-punk, and post rock bands -- the creation of a thoroughly new rock-based music. There are bands with pretty melodies, bands that rock, bands that dazzle with exalted technique, bands that make you laugh, and bands aiming to perplex even the most intrepid listener. Cheer-Accident is all those things and more, truly a band for the 21st century. Cheer-Accident wrap creativeness inside an inviting enigma of honeyed vocals, harmonious pop melody, and thorny dissonance. They have the rare ability to synthesize and juxtapose pure pop, thundering rock, and avant-garde complexity and ambiguity, intuition and intellect, sweetness and sarcasm, to create a stunning signature sound. No Ifs, Ands, Or Dogs, Cheer-Accident's 17th album is a kaleidoscopic, inclusive trip into a musical madhouse that you'll want to stay lost within. The core membership of the ever-shifting organism that is Cheer-Accident remains Thymme Jones (vocals, keyboards, brass, synth, drums); Carmen Armillas (vocals), Alex Perkolup (vocals, bass, guitar), and Jeff Libersher (vocals, guitar, keys, trumpet, bass), with able and many assists from D. Bayne (trombone, keyboards), Andrea Faught (vocals, keyboards), and Lise Gilly (saxophones), among others. Everyone makes significant and important and wonderful contributions, but since the vocalist is always the focal point in bands, I want to mention that Carmen is a real find, with a powerfully emotive voice; she really lends a huge presence to this album, working beautifully with Thymme and Jeff and the rest.

The songs on No Ifs… run the gamut of everything that makes Cheer-Accident an exceptional band: prickly, lurching psychedelia with honeyed singing, quizzical Steve Reich-meets-King Crimson rockers, and sweetly peculiar soft-pop a la Beach Boys and Free Design. This diversity does not denote dilettantism, however; Cheer Accident empowers and devotes itself to whatever style, mode, or genre it absorbs. Even after a few listens, regardless of stylistic diversity displayed during No Ifs, Ands Or Dogs is the commitment to primo performance of the album/music/concept as a whole -- songs often lead into one another, going from a self-contained song to a introduction (or a coda) depending on where you are or where your focus is in the listening. After the critical acclaim and expanded audience that greeted Cheer-Accident after the release of Fear Draws Misfortune, the group responded as they always do; by a reinvention of their sound. A wonderful album that is – as usual - also something completely different! [Cuneiform]

You can hear a track from the record here: www.cuneiformrecords.com/realaudio/CA-Sleep.mp3

Find it at Wayside here

Gösta Berlings Saga - Glue Works ($15.00)

"Masterpiece … or thereabouts: 5/5" – Lowcut Magazine
"This is hypnotic, robotic, thankfully long and yet somehow, so damn soulful. Also, I haven't heard a Fender Rhodes being played like this since like forever .... It doesn't get better than this." – Deaf Sparrow

Named after one of the most notable Swedish books of all time, Gösta Berlings Saga are currently one of Sweden's most notable bands. The group are a modern instrumental rock band and their style combines post-rock, progressive rock, minimalism, avant-rock, collage/sound and more, all recorded and combined with unusual and interesting studio techniques. The four members of Gösta Berlings Saga, with their diverse musical backgrounds and personalities find a common focal point in the music they create together. Each individual effort is melted into the pot and glued together with the rest to create something greater together. The collage as a working method; Soft glued to rough. Epic glued to tiny. Minimalism glued to maximalism, all to create a new whole.

For their third album and their first for Cuneiform, they have created an album that is highly and creatively produced. The solid backbone of the band is always the focus and the core: Alexander Skepp (drums and percussion), Einar Baldursson (guitars), David Lundberg (Fender Rhodes, synthesizers and Mellotron), Gabriel Hermansson (bass). With the engineering and production work of Mattias Olsson (Änglagård, White Willow, etc) the band has created a truly all-embracing and forward thinking album. The disc is packed with creative and surprising flourishes from guest musicians performing on French horn, musical saw, cello, trumpet and more. There is always a lot going on that makes Glue Works much more than "merely" a document of band performing; the group is performing extremely well, but the production work incorporates many unique elements into the album in surprising ways. [Cuneiform]

You can hear a track from the record here: www.cuneiformrecords.com/realaudio/GBS-354.mp3

Find it at Wayside here

Richard Pinhas and Merzbow - Rhizome (CD + NTSC (all region) DVD + download coupon $15.00)

"In 1973, a rock guitarist and an electronic knob-twiddler released a revered and trail-blazing document in contemporary ambient music: Robert Fripp and Brian Eno's No *****footing. Thirty-five years later, guitarist Richard Pinhas and noise artist Masami Akita (aka Merzbow) have formed the 21st century version of the concept." – Brandon Wu/Washington City Paper

It's interesting that Brandon Wu compares the work of Richard Pinhas and Merzbow to Fripp and Eno. At the time it was recorded, No *****footing was considered to be practically "noise" (sound familiar?) and Robert Fripp has gone on record about how the record label didn't want to release the album because it would affect the commercial impact of these artsts. Yet, with time, the work the duo did was absorbed into the greater musical universe - if not into the mainstream - and its influence continues to this day.

While it's never safe to predict the future, perhaps the unlikely but also quite logical meeting of Richard's billowing clouds of guitarwork with Masami's well considered sonic assault will also prove to be influencial upon the larger musical universe. In any event, this recording from September, 2010 expands upon their first studio meeting, Keio Line, and offers an obvious follow-up, as well as new twists to the sound.

The first pressing of Rhizome also includes a number of bonuses not available after the initial pressing: a bonus DVD of a generous excerpt of the duo's performance at the Sonic Circuits festival as well as a download coupon for their performance in Paris, November 12, 2008. [Cuneiform]

"A surprising meeting of minds and one of the strongest CDs I've heard in a while." – Musicworks

You can hear a track from the record here: www.cuneiformrecords.com/realaudio/Pinhas_Merz-Rhizome4.mp3

Find it at Wayside here

Richard Pinhas and Merzbow - Paris 2008 (blue vinyl edition LP with download card (due to size and weight, this price for the USA only) $18.00)

"...arguably one of the finest works in either artist's canon; hypnotic like Harmonia and monumental like Mountains. ... 4 stars" – Spencer Grady, Record Collector
"Merzbow's collaboration with French pioneer Richard Pinhas features some of his best music and gleefully amplifies the psychedelic tendencies of both composers." – Luke Schleicher, Laughter
"...an album of ambient soundscapes that prove noise can indeed be beautiful, and that it's possible to dispense with conventional constructs of rhythm, melody and harmony yet still create something both musical and profound ... it's ... quite extraordinary just how appealing it is." – John Kelman, All About Jazz

In 2007, guitarist and rock electronics innovator Richard Pinhas performed in Tokyo and then performed a duo concert with notorious "noise" artist Merzbow. Both men were so excited by the duo concert, they immediately booked studio time to make the recordings that became their first duo release Keio Line. The duo continue to perform together; this concert performance and recording was their first meeting together after Keio Line. It was recorded at Les Instants Chavirés in Paris on November 12, 2008. Even though they had only worked together for a very short time the year before, the duo had already established a recognizable sound with Richard's metronic and spacey guitar figures being worked over by Merzbow's electronic mayhem in a glorious, psychedelic death spiral.

Paris 2008 is a vinyl-only release; the first vinyl released by Cuneiform in over 20 years! There are only 500 copies made and there will not be a repress; this LP edition is the only way to buy this in a physical format. The LP comes with a digital download card for the music and if you buy it from Cuneiform, your copy will be on beautiful blue vinyl.

You can hear a track from the record here: www.cuneiformrecords.com/realaudio/Pinhas_Merzbow-ParisOne.mp3

Find it at Wayside here

Wadada Leo Smith/Organic - Heart's Reflection (2 x CDs $21.00)

"Organic's music is a swirling roar, part fusion and part jazz rock orchestra, like a combination of Burnt Sugar and Frank Zappa's Hot Rats Ensemble. – The Wire, February 2010 cover story
"Organic's music is powerfully electric and electronic in nature; fiery and interactive in character; contemporary, spiritual and politically conscious, its creative energy is heartfelt and connected with the human feeling." – Wadada Leo Smith

Although he made his reputation over decades and decades of work in the free jazz and improvised music realm and as a early member of Chicago's hugely influencial AACM (the Association for the Advancement of Creative Music), trumpeter Wadada Leo Smith has long been interested in larger ensembles and electric music as well. Heart's Reflections is a bold double-disc set that features Wadada Leo Smith's Organic, a predominately electric, fourteen-piece group, a band most notable for a lineup marked by four guitarists. In addition to Smith, who plays both acoustic and electric trumpet, the extraordinary lineup on Heart's Reflections includes: Brandon Ross, Michael Gregory, Lamar Smith, and Josh Gerowitz on guitar; Skuli Sverrisson and John Lindberg on bass; Angelica Sanchez on acoustic and electric piano; Stephanie Smith on violin; Casey Anderson on alto saxophone; Casey Butler on tenor saxophone; Mark Trayle and Charlie Burgin on laptops; and Pheeroan AkLaff on drums.

For a record by such a large group, at times the sound is surprisingly sparse and delicate - both qualities that have long marked Smith's work, while at other times, it sizzles and stomps! There a strong melodies and strong solos throughout; this is not a big band blow-out, but a carefully scored and worked out set of compositions. Though longtime listeners who haven't followed Wadada's work in the last decade might be surprised at times by the fierceness of Organic's rhythm section, Heart's Reflections is nonetheless marked by the trumpeter's usual touchstones: long sustained notes, occasional clipped phrases, and a tough-to-define playfulness that infuses all of his work. Coming across like the next evolutionary step after Miles Davis' electric era, Heart's Reflections is a vibrant set that harkens back to the blues influence of Smith's Mississippi childhood, and looks forward to still-developing realms of noise and electronics. The album fuses a galaxy of influences into a natural and accessible form, offering an ideal entry point into Smith's vast oeuvre. Heart's Reflections should appeal to fans of groove-oriented jazz, as well as rock and electronics audiences with a taste for adventure. [Cuneiform]

You can hear a track from the record here: www.cuneiformrecords.com/realaudio/WLS-Certainty.mp3

Find it at Wayside here

Phil Miller - Cutting Both Ways ($15.00)

Back in print after several years of unavailability. Phil Miller made his name as guitarist with the legendary Canterbury bands Delivery, Matching Mole, Hatfield & the North and National Health. After the demise of National Health, he began preparing for a solo career that began with Cutting Both Ways and continues to this day. This was the first album released under his own name, and the first album to feature his band In Cahoots, who are pretty much of a supergroup themselves: Hugh Hopper - bass (Soft Machine), Elton Dean - saxes (Soft Machine), Peter Lemer - keyboards (Gilgamesh, Mike Oldfield, Pierre Moerlen's Gong) & Pip Pyle - drums (Gong, Hatfield, National Health). Additionally, two tracks are multi-overdubbed meetings between Phil and keyboardist Dave Stewart (Egg, Hatfield, National Health) and Barbara Gaskin (Hatfield). Canterbury jazz/rock of the highest order.

"This album comprises two aspects of my compositional output. The first is represented by the four pieces recorded by my band, In Cahoots, and the second by the two pieces recorded in collaboration with Dave Stewart. In Cahoots has toured Europe extensively in the past two years. The music recorded here is largely a result of the live-in-the-studio approach. This contrasts with the two pieces recorded in collaboration with Dave. Here the orientation is towards multi-tracking, utilizing the latests developments in music technology."– Phil Miller [Cuneiform]

Find it at Wayside here

Cuneiform new release bundle (for USA & Canada only) 5 CDs (3 single CDs/1 CD + DVD set/1 double CD) $74.00
Save $10.00 (in costs + postage combined), when you buy this package of all 5 new Cuneiform CD titles (Afuche, Cheer-Accident, Gosta Berlings Saaga, Richard Pinhas and Merzbow, Wadada Leo Smith's Organic). Thank you!
Get it here at Wayside

Cuneiform new release bundle (for customers outside of the USA and Canada) 5 CDs (3 single CDs/1 CD + DVD set/1 double CD) $88.00
Save $10.00 (in costs + postage combined), when you buy this package of all 5 new Cuneiform CD titles (Afuche, Cheer-Accident, Gosta Berlings Saaga, Richard Pinhas and Merzbow, Wadada Leo Smith's Organic). Thank you!
Get it here at Wayside

Cuneiform new release bundle (for USA only) 5 CDs/1 vinyl LP (3 single CDs/1 CD + DVD set/1 double CD/1 vinyl lp) $91.00
Save $12.00 (in costs + postage combined), when you buy this package of all 6 new Cuneiform titles (Afuche, Cheer-Accident, Gosta Berlings Saaga, Richard Pinhas and Merzbow CD, Richard Pinhas and Merzbow vinyl LP, Wadada Leo Smith's Organic). Thank you!
Get it here at Wayside

[Source: Cuneiform Records/Wayside Music]

Posted in Album Release News