Monday, January 30, 2012

Paramita Recordings Update

Chicago, one of the great cassette tape hotspots of America, has recently given the world yet another killer label! Paramita Recordings, started their catalog off with three split tapes, and they were kind enough to send us a copy of each (which are all still available). Thanks guys!

P.S. Check out that crazy die-cut cover artwork! No 3-D glasses are optional.

Sparkling Wide Pressure/No Mind Meditation - Split

Longtime KZSU favorites No Mind Meditation remain as enigmatic as ever, keeping their cards close to their chests and leaving us all in the dark while they compose gooey alien sounds--brewing up another psychedelic trip strong enough to make you want to call in to work sick for at least the next few days. On the flip, Sparkling Wide Pressure also delivers with a buzzing set scruffy noise rock and kooky percussive instrumentation. I love the controlled anarchy of their jams, and the looped sounds of scattershot doorknocks are oddly lulling (plus they'll keep all the neighbors confused for hours...)

Black Eagle Child /Excavations - Split

Black Eagle Child doing what he does best on a core-of-the-sun red tape. What more could you ask for? Lonesome strummy guitar/banjo musings that are relaxing yet fully engaging. A nice return to nature, thumbing through a well worn copy of Leaves of Grass, breezy open chords, (and especially for us Californians) the romance of seasons.

Excavations holds things down on the flip, and while they're a band I'm not familiar with, they certainly don't disappoint--I seriously dig their looped grooves and frothy distorted vocals. If you're into Hobo Cubes, Food Pyramid, or the sunnier side of Debacle records, you'll cherish this one as well.

Soundings/Shapers/Verma - Split

A three-way split? Where do splits leave off and compilations begin? This cassette features 60 minutes of sludgy garage, splattered experimental, and gunky organic noise from three of the gnarliest psych rockers in Chicago. It's all good stuff--maybe not the most accessible, but I loved it--it would probably sound even better in a dingy club with terrible acoustics, slimy brick walls and utilities pipes snaking overhead and threatening to crush you at any moment. Recommended for those who have a few Hive Mind or Wolf Eyes recordings under their belts.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Christopher Merritt - Crown Heights

Brooklyn-based experimental Christopher Merritt sent us a package of tapes a little while back—this one from Digitalis is perhaps the finest example of his intricate collagework.

While both sides are juicy gumbos of jaunting electronics and vibrant effects, Side A is more of a classic "ascension" piece, where a powerful photon torpedo barrage of synthesizer slowly rises from it's hibernation and pummels he very medium--blasting the EQ into the red, shooting for the stars.

Side B starts with crunchy blown-out beats in the extraterrestrial style of Clams Casino, (but orchestrated a few months earlier might I add...) and later transitions into blurry patchwork of gently plucked acoustic guitar, rainsticks, atypical percussion, the rush of water—all sorts of creatively blended recordings.

All in all, a fantastic release--surly an aural delight for anyone lucky enough to have snatched one of these up (although you might still be able to track a few copies down...)

For other great tapes by Christopher Merritt, I also highly recommend his excellent split with Reedbeds on Tranquility Tapes.

Gary Busdriver - Sports!

The brand-new label Teflon Beast puts their best foot forward with their first cassette release Sports! This c40 is split into two halves: "Fanfare" on the A and "Victory" on the flip, and explores the various facets of the human athletic experience. Composed of noisy electronics and field recordings, it was recorded both to showcase the intricacies of sports (on an amateur and multi-million-dollar-contract level) and to showcase the more "joyous" side of noise.

I really liked this tape, although honestly, it took a couple of listens. Its an interesting blend of the blood, sweat and tears blend of sports jockism, and the more "nerdy" side of intricate experimental landscapes. Reminds me of that fuzzy yellow letter I got playing varsity sports in high school...but also the long-overdue letters I was promised for state Quiz Bowl and orchestra.

You can try it/buy it on the Teflon Beast bandcamp.

Sunday, January 8, 2012


Mark your calendars! On Feburary 12, KZSU will be broadcasting 24 straight hours of live experimentation and improvisation from experimental/noise/drone bands and artists from the Bay Area and beyond. You can tune in here, and find out more information and read all the juicy details here. Should be a great time, so listen in, or visit the station to see the performances in-action if you're in the area.


Thomas Dimuzio
Ernesto Diaz-Infante
Matt Davignon
Thea Farhadian
Jessica Rylan
The Voice of Doom
Abode: Caroline Pugh & Paul Stapleton
Bad News
Feast and Friends
Danny Paul Grody
Matt Ingalls
John Ingle
Brian B James with Trevor Morris
The Lickets
Peter Nyboer
Bill Orcutt
Frank Rothkamm
David Slusser
Vulcanus 68
Kurt James Werner
White Pee
Wobbly Black Hair People

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

KZSU's Top Tapes of 2011

2011 was a truly sensational year for our favorite medium: the cassette. Thanks everyone for all your fantastic submissions to the station. Best wishes for the new year!

-KZSU Cassettes Department

1. No Mind Meditation – Face Skull Spirit

2. Plankton Wat/Super Minerals – Split
3. Red Electric Rainbow – Come and Melt Your Face Off
4. No Mind Meditation – Molecular Clock
5. High Wolf - Etoile 3030
6. Peaking Lights – 936
7. Lunar Miasma – Arrival
8. EarthMasters – Dwellings
9. Super Minerals – Contacteer
10. Folja - Pompa Funebris
11. Voder Deth Squad – I
12. Brainworlds – *****
13. Run DMT – Dreams
14. Mold Omen – Blacktop
15. Andreas Brandal – Autumn Drama
16. Cane Swords / Griefhound - Split
17. Grey Ghost – Songs to Wake Up To
18. Dry Valleys – Aqua Aura
19. Derek Rogers – Populist Context
20. Cruise Family – Up to Us
21. Christopher Merritt / Sound Out Light - Split
22. Sky Stadium – Carpet Ride
23. This Could Be the Last Time – M. Geddes Gengras
24. Cambodian Field Recordings - Stephen Molyneux
25. Billiam Wutler Yea - Calico Desman
26. Archers – Archers
27. Eagle Chalice – Hot Glue
28. Giant Claw – Midnight Murder
29. Spires – Puzzlebox
30. Cruise Family/Innercity – A.H.E.A.D.
31. Christopher Merritt/ Reedbeds – Split
32. Sea Oleena - Sleeplessness + Sea Oleena
33. Tracey Trance – Learning to Your Stuff
34. Brain Syndrome – Disconnect
35. Motion Sickness of Time Travel / Tidal - Split
36. HMS – Cascades
37. Lab Coast – Pictures on the Wall
38. The Paperboxes- Sometimes It Does, Sometimes It Doesn't
39. Gkfoes Vjgoaf – Nature Eternal Striving
40. Mshing / Sick Llama - Split
41. ThrouRoof – Feathers and Blood
42. A Full Cosmic Sound – S/T
43. Dust Bunnies – We Are Not Alone
44. Kenichi Sakamoto – Bio Feedback
45. Rainbow Valley/ Black Sky Chant – Split
46. Tidal / Holographic Arts – Split
47. Wether – Walking Through Black Prisms
48. Lunar Miasma – Gone
49. Patrick McBratney - Lovebrrd
50. Innercity – Time Bender