Features

Santa Fe to China: An Interview with Lime Lodge’s Angelo Harmsworth

August 28, 2015

Santa Fe to China: An Interview with Lime Lodge’s Angelo Harmsworth Back in early July, Angelo Harmsworth reached out with a brief and simple message alerting us to Lime Lodge, a new imprint he’d recently founded. Jumping over the freshly minted Lime Lodge site immediately revealed a modest but powerful new imprint with a subtly striking and wholly arresting... 

Songs With Words: Heather Woods Broderick & ‘Glider’

August 26, 2015

Songs With Words: Heather Woods Broderick & ‘Glider’ Heather Woods Broderick released her first solo record in 2009, the earthy From The Ground on Australian imprint Preservation, later to be issued on vinyl by Digitalis – one of Decoder’s spiritual motherships. Broderick fans likely knew she wouldn’t be writing the gorgeous, cabin-in-the-woods... 

Sound Is What It Wants To Be: Dialing Out to Stag Hare

August 12, 2015

Sound Is What It Wants To Be: Dialing Out to Stag Hare It seems redundant to admit my significant positive bias toward my subject matter here. The Stag Hare oeuvre has been profoundly important to me over the past year, so I would be risking dishonesty — or worse, insincerity — if I dared to write without acknowledging the personal weight behind... 

Substrata 1.5 in Photos

July 28, 2015

Substrata 1.5 in Photos In 2011, a time when the term “summer festival” had already come to connote the massive, multi-stage, corporate-sponsored events which have since become the norm, Rafael Anton Irisarri envisioned Substrata – a different kind of model for showcasing live music. The first edition of Substrata... 

Voice of the Valley Noise Rally VII

July 15, 2015

Voice of the Valley Noise Rally VII Even being from the state, if all you knew about Voice of the Valley Noise Rally was that it took place in Millstone, WV, you might wonder — how unusual is a gathering of noiseniks in the backwoods? I’ve been writing about weirdo music for a bit now, but I only came across the event a little... 

Patch Memory: Karl Fousek’s 20 Favorite Synth Records

July 13, 2015

Patch Memory: Karl Fousek’s 20 Favorite Synth Records This is a mix of my favorite music composed for and/or played (or improvised) on a synthesizer, any synthesizer. It is not meant to be a comprehensive list in any way, it is certainly not a complete history of synthesizer recordings and it is not meant as a best-of list in any sense. What it is is a... 

Global Music & Canary Records: An Interview with Ian Nagoski

July 9, 2015

Global Music & Canary Records: An Interview with Ian Nagoski Canary Records is the roving imprint of Baltimore-based Ian Nagoski, a maven producer and researcher, and at the time of the label’s foundation in 2008, a record store employee with a long list of interesting and gone-from-print international oddities accumulating. Since then, Canary has become... 

The Chicago Triangle: Finding Everyday Music

July 6, 2015

The Chicago Triangle: Finding Everyday Music Ada and Huron is a relatively sleepy corner in the middle of Chicago’s West Town, but among a set of fortified multifamily dwellings sits a once-lost piece of Chicago music history. Granted, in a city the size of Chicago, there are so many unheard stories hidden within each neighborhood, but this... 

Michael Vallera – “Dream Lense”

June 30, 2015

Michael Vallera – “Dream Lense” When not recording with Cleared (with Steven Hess) and the moniker COIN, an alias under which he previously recorded for Opal Tapes, Michael Vallera remains quite active solo, with a few recent standouts that include a murky, guitar-laced track titled “USA Self” for the 2015 edition... 

On Chance and Randomness: Who is Sir Thelonious?

June 23, 2015

On Chance and Randomness: Who is Sir Thelonious? In this series for Decoder, I talk with some of the musicians in The Spacesuits collective on the role of chance and randomness in their work. The Spacesuits is an international collective of musicians working in tandem to generate new creation myths, taking their cues from pioneer Afrofuturist, Sun... 

Side-by-Side: Drawing Room Records’ May Batch

June 17, 2015

Side-by-Side: Drawing Room Records’ May Batch Drawing Room Records is nowhere near the household name it should be. Part of the label’s relative unknown-ness is probably massive, multi-year gaps in activity, having initially launched in Little Rock, AR back in 1997 by Jeff Kuykendall and taking a handful of years off here and there along... 

U/V Light: An Interview with Kip Uhlhorn

June 3, 2015

U/V Light: An Interview with Kip Uhlhorn Through the waning moments of the 90′s artful post-hardcore scene and into the 2000′s unencumbered, artful experimental world, Kip Uhlhorn has led a fruitful course of nu-kraut modernism. Largely through his work with Cloudland Canyon and seductive, airy statements with Eden Express, Uhlhorn... 

On Chance & Randomness: Improvising with Mal Devisa

May 26, 2015

On Chance & Randomness: Improvising with Mal Devisa In this series for Decoder, I talk with some of the musicians in  The Spacesuits collective on the role of chance and randomness in their work. The Spacesuits is an international collective of musicians working in tandem to generate new creation myths, taking their cues from pioneer Afrofuturist, Sun... 

Quicker Than a Binary Search: Eric Frye, Roy Werner, & Jeff Witscher’s 2015 East Coast Tour

May 21, 2015

Quicker Than a Binary Search: Eric Frye, Roy Werner, & Jeff Witscher’s 2015 East Coast Tour Readers of this site are undoubtedly familiar with the work of Jeff Witscher, most likely via one of his many alter egos (the most well-known likely being Rene Hell). For around a decade, Witscher has pumped out release after stellar release for a plethora of underground imprints — Monorail Trespassing,... 

Raymond Castoldi & X-Ray Records: Early 90s House in New York

May 19, 2015

Raymond Castoldi & X-Ray Records: Early 90s House in New York There’s a common adage that popular culture moves in twenty year cycles. As sure as the cutting edge cools, new ears resurrect and reassess as they find importance in the ideas of the past. One need only flip through fresh pressings of Nirvana LPs or see the persistent popularity of nostalgia... 

Evan Caminiti: ‘Meridian’ & The Shift To Electronics

May 13, 2015

Evan Caminiti: ‘Meridian’ & The Shift To Electronics Evan Caminiti‘s upcoming new album Meridian represents a shift into truly “immersive,” organic electronics. According to Caminiti himself, the goal here is to “transport” listeners. Though the depth of detail in the rest of his solo output (this will be his second solo... 

MUTEK Montréal 2015: International Veterans & Techno Revisionists

May 12, 2015

MUTEK Montréal 2015: International Veterans & Techno Revisionists Now entering its 16th year, MUTEK has grown co-continuously with the electronic music and media of the 21st century. Born in Montréal by the opportunity to create a festival focused on digital sound and its many intersections with culture, the festival has become known for impeccably-curated lineups... 

Embracing Contingency: An Interview with Benoît Pioulard

May 12, 2015

Embracing Contingency: An Interview with Benoît Pioulard It’s easy to introduce Thomas Meluch and his music as Benoît Pioulard by talking about dreams — for example, by mentioning how parts of his new album Sonnet (and even his moniker) came to him while he was asleep. But I really want to begin by emphasizing how beautiful Sonnet is. It’s... 

On Chance and Randomness: Sketches for Albinos and Bastardgeist

May 7, 2015

On Chance and Randomness: Sketches for Albinos and Bastardgeist The Spacesuits is an international collective of musicians working in tandem to generate new-media artworks on utopia. Together with my partner, Winston Scarlett, we’ve provided each musician with a unique set of prompts, which usually deal with concepts like utopia, reincarnation, apocalypse, and... 

Mountain Show #18 (curated by Decoder)

April 27, 2015

Mountain Show #18 (curated by Decoder) On April 18th, Decoder (as represented by Liz and I) and several dozen others folks from in and around New York hiked up, down, and alongside Mt. Taurus in Cold Spring, a beautiful and relatively well-to-do seeming little town on the Hudson River. While many of the attendants arrived via the Hudson... 
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