unknown knowns. miyako/Tamasudare. Two songs.

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“Something french. I forgot.”

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10 Questions with The Weighty Tree (Mark C Todd)

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1. How would you characterize your music?

W: A primarily guitar based mix of different styles which I seem to classify from psychedelic groove, ethereal fuzz outs, bluesy funk, laid back acoustic, indie melancholy and somewhere in between. I love to improvise as much, if not more than produce music as fully crafted tracks. The Weighty Tree is the vehicle for my own personal musical emotional expression. It allows me full control over the process and content of the music that I can’t achieve in the same detail when playing in a band, although that has it’s own magic completely, but this way there are no compromises necessary. I play true to me and maybe someone will enjoy that in a different way, in the same way I enjoy others’ musical adventures!

2. What is one early music experience that made a deep impression on you//made you rethink what music can sound like//has helped shape the music you make today?

W: The first ‘toy’ my parents gave me which I would not leave alone was a radio cassette player. I had it in my playpen as a small child. Apparently I was completely hooked on it and never let anyone take it away without all mayhem! They quickly gave in and let me keep it! I’d never go to sleep unless it was on – a comfort blanket I suppose! I learned sound could be a toy I suppose.

3. What is usually your process when creating//writing a new song?

W: Pretty basic really, just playing around with various chords, progressions riffs I like and then I hit record. Overlay by jamming on top in various ways with different instruments, delete most of it until I have something that captures my attention and then move on to something new. I’ll go back later with fresh ears and either junk it or develop something further. Occasionally, I’ll figure out exactly what I want before I begin and work out full arrangements before I start.

4. Where can we find your music//what have you done to make your music available?

W: I never really pushed my music seriously because I’m not a singer/song writer as such, but when I discovered soundcloud and the fact that people might actually listen to my music and enjoy it I decided what the hell and uploaded some tracks. Then I got some really inspiring feedback which reinvigorated my creative juices, so I thought I’d work on a few more with a view to finishing some of them (the hard part!), which is where I am now…

5. What is a recent musician//band//music that you are excited about?

W: I like all music from jazz, blues, RnR, rockabilly, folk, 60s beat garage psych, soul and funk, 70s prog, krautrock & afrobeat, 80s indie, 90s/00s psych/shoegaze, stoner rock, americana & folk etc etc. and along the way alot of hip hop, drum’n’bass and rap too.

There are so many arresting artists, especially on soundcloud. Those I have collabed with all excite me, but I can’t choose one of them, so I’ll have to say 60s legends The Pretty Things – I saw them recently in Southsea (UK), and they blew me away, albeit with a young outstanding rhythm section!

6. How would you describe the music climate in your home when you were a child?

W: My dad always played jazz of the big band swing and bebop variety, country and western, blues and sixties RnB. My mum was into 60s/70s soul and classical music. I guess that’s why I like most styles of music so much, veering from one to another and why I love jamming. My older sister got me into indie music. I have been addicted to the search for new and old sounds ever since.

7. Is style//image important to you and if so what//who do you consider cool in music?

W: I think image doesn’t have anything to do with music but everything to do with the visual art, and of course it is fun to mix them together. I think truth is coolest, but a good old yarn is also hard to beat. I’ll go with the late, great Bo Diddley.

8. What song do you want playing at your funeral?

W: Bo Diddley – Bad Trip

9. Why music and why do you make it?

W: Cartharsis and fun. There is no why for me, only why not more! Job security kills my time but I guess that’s pretty important, damn it!

10. If I should listen to one undiscovered musician//song today who//what should I check out?

W: Charlotte Gordon soundcloud.com/charlottegordon


Visit Mark at:

https://soundcloud.com/theweightytree

http://theweightytree.bandcamp.com/


Jordaan Mason – “The Decline of Stupid Fucking Western Civilization” STREAMING

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You have to listen to Jordaan Mason’s new album, “The Decline of Stupid Fucking Western Civilization” which currently is streaming for free on bandcamp! This is some gut wrenching post-punk monster of raw feeling. I’ve never heard music done like this before.

If you can you should definitely help out and pre-order your copy or support the physical making of this album by visiting his indigogo campaign:

https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/the-decline-of-stupid-fucking-western-civilization

At the 100 dollar donation level he will even cover a song of your choice!

10 Questions with Jordaan Mason

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1. How would you characterize your music?

J: Medicated, illiterate, wandering.

2. What is one early music experience that made a deep impression on you//made you rethink what music can sound like//has helped shape the music you make today?

J: This is a very difficult question. I could think of plenty of examples. But here’s one: hearing Hole’s “Live Through This” for the first time. I was probably seven or eight. I know I didn’t fully understand what most of the songs were about back then but I knew that they were completely honest, and that left a mark.

3. What is usually your process when creating//writing a new song?

J: Write words very slowly over a long period of time, then work at giving them rhythm and structure, eventually pick up my guitar or sit at a piano, try to write a riff, sing over it, hate it, start over, repeat.

4. Where can we find your music//what have you done to make your music available?

J: All of my albums are available on my bandcamp: http://thehorsemuseum.bandcamp.com. I don’t charge a lot for most of them and some of them are pay-what-you-can. I just released two new singles from my upcoming album – one of them is streaming on the bandcamp and the other is streaming with a music video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6Rnv-RXJHxE

5. What is a recent musician//band//music that you are excited about?

J: Perfume Genius has been blowing my mind.

6. How would you describe the music climate in your home when you were a child?

J: I grew up in a house that was filled with music of all kinds. I had three older siblings who all had very different taste and my parents both were eclectic as well. We would often sit and listen to music together as a family and talk about the lyrics, which I think was very formative. I also spent many hours alone in front of the stereo reading through liner notes and singing along.

7. Is style//image important to you and if so what//who do you consider cool in music?

J: Bjork is cooler than anyone else living on this planet.

8. What song do you want playing at your funeral?

J: Nina Simone’s cover of George Harrison’s “Isn’t It A Pity.”

9. Why music and why do you make it?

J: Music because it is of the body, it hits the body, it makes the body ring out. I make it because I don’t understand my body except when I am singing.

10. If I should listen to one unknown musician//song today who//what should I check out?

J: If you can find the album “A Kali Yuga Opera” by Holy Haunted Head in the ether of the internet, I highly recommend it. It saved my life on more than one occasion.


Help Jordaan Mason’s new album The Decline of Stupid Fucking Western Civilization find a material form by donating at: https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/the-decline-of-stupid-fucking-western-civilization

Or visit:

http://thehorsemuseum.bandcamp.com

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Jordaan-Mason/172415860243


10 Questions with Barry Snaith (THE INCONSISTENT JUKEBOX & SHOOT THE WENDY BIRD)

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1. How would you characterize your music?

B: Guitar-based alternative rock soundscapes, ambience and commercial indie.

2. What is one early music experience that made a deep impression on you//made you rethink what music can sound like//has helped shape the music you make today?

B: Trout Mask Replica by Captain Beefheart & The Magic Band. An utterly unique double-album’s worth of creativity and groundbreaking innovation in a rock music medium. Smashing the rule book on musical timing, writing and melody. Don Van Vliet (Beefheart) said that ‘music should be an irritant’. It taught me that music should be allowed to be difficult and worth spending time getting to know and love it. That it should be allowed to seep in. It also taught me how to play with time on a song, in fact, how timing can be almost disregarded because your brain will always try to put the music into some kind of recognizable time signature anyway. It’s fun to play with that. And then there was that playfulness with words, using them like paint.The whole of that album is like a painting. After a few listens it becomes a masterpiece. It counters my love of beautiful music too.

3. What is usually your process when creating//writing a new song?

B: If I were to write a song entirely from scratch it would often begin whilst strumming on an acoustic guitar or whilst inventing the whole thing in my head first, like doing a sketch. Most of my songs with a riff would start in my head rather than on the guitar. Riff and drums and a general vocal. Sometimes the title but I would mainly just use phonetic sounds, for a feel of the song. Often these would later determine the sounds in some of the words (because they became ingrained in the songscape). For non riff-based songs I would strum the guitar, getting a feel for some chords or melody, then jam for a while until I the picture started to form, then I would get some kind of structure to the piece. Write some lyrics, which I would really deliberate over, trying to get almost every word right and relevant to the song, and well-considered words too (not just throw-away shire, which I am sometimes very partial to also – T. Rex spring to mind as do a lot of contemporary pop songs). Often I will take someone elses music (willing victims) and try to put an entirely different slant on it. Almost always starting with atmosphere/mood before I even considered adding my guitars. There are so many ways of creating and writing. One of my favourite songs of my own is “Let’s Defenestrate” which came about as a ‘challenge’ – the brief being to write a song using F, Am, C and G. In that order. That’s all. So that was written under strict guidelines as a foundation and then just finding out how to make it sound exciting. I think under that framework you could write many songs, just always strive to make it interesting, unpredictable, challenging or catchy.

4. Where can we find your music//what have you done to make your music available?

B: iTunes, Spotify, Bandcamp, Soundcloud, hearthis.at, and a few others. Two websites (The Inconsistent Jukebox and Shoot The Wendy Bird), Youtube, and links or norices on FB, Twitter, Google+ . I’ve released a few tracks on the Holier Than Thou indie label and these can be found on the the aforementioned sites, for what that’s worth nowadays. Sales have dropped so low nowadays even for major artists that it’s much harder to make a living just from music alone. We do it for the love of it, we have to make it and are compelled to let it pour out, and that’s the enjoyment of any creativity – if we make money from it that’s a bonus.

5. What is a recent musician//band//music that you are excited about?

B: FKA Twigs – like Lady Gaga with interesting songs. St Vincent. Both idiosyncratic and original.

6. How would you describe the music climate in your home when you were a child?

B: My parents weren’t really interested in music, neither was my brother. But my mum’s younger sisters always had interesting taste and liked cool bands, not pop, although those things can live together very well too (interesting, cool, pop). My tastes were influenced by my friends’ older brothers or sisters, so I never really grew up on mere bland pop. I was buying Beefheart at 12 years old. Once I was int my teens my world was entirely immersed in music. And girls. Still is.

7. Is style//image important to you and if so what//who do you consider cool in music?

B: Yes I do think it is. I think image is part of the creation in most music. Even if the image is ‘not having an image’, but too much of that seems lazy. It’s good to see people who add style and panache to their music, whether that be attutide, clothes, charisma. I’m drawn to people who make an effort – Bjork, Cool could be The Velvet Underground, Bowie (a slip in the early 80s), Jim Morrison – I don’t think Alex Turner’s quite mastered the fine line between cool and arrogance yet. The flambouyance and identity of past eras don’t seem to be as prevalent lately – Elbow, Alt J, Hot Chip, even Radiohead (who I love) band like that aren’t people who you’d think ‘hey, they look cool, I might dress like that too’. Not that I’d do that anyway – better to dress like yourself. I dress like the actor Terry-Thomas when I’m not slumming it in t-shirt and cords. See, i even wear trousers that sound like something musical. I like any artist or band who put thought into how they appear, whether it be exotic, subtle, outlandish or minimalist. Anti-fashion as a statement, as adopted by The Fall or The Buzzocks (both great) may be interesting as a talking point for maybe a minute but just looks shit. I’d rather listen to The Fall but look at Prince. Imagine Mark E Smith snarling into the mic whilst wearing a diamond-encrusted tailcoat, platform boots and a ruff around his neck. That would bring us back to Bowie in the mid seventies. Karen O is pretty cool. Style and image doesn’t have to be fashion. It can be art. Like Factory Records. It was more an artistic non-profit-making concept than a business. That’s petty cool and stylish.

8. What song do you want playing at your funeral?

B: I was close to death once and I had to think about my possible funeral, just in case. I chose ‘Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah’ sung by James Baskett. Just as a celebration of a happy life. Not taking things too seriously. That was a long time ago now and I think I’ll now maliciously choose a song calculated to make everybody cry their eyes out. and be miserable throughout my funeral. So I’ll pick… nah, fuck it, let’s have‘The More I See You’ by Chris Montez.

9. Why music and why do you make it?

B: It’s the only thing that comes naturally to me. I have work at everything else. An old school Physics report said “The mere mention that any effort has to be made on Barry’s part renders the task impossible”. that’s a genius sentence and I’ve tried to adhere to that as a lifestyle choice ever since.

10. If I should listen to one undiscovered musician//song today who//what should I check out?

B: I have to give you two, as i can’t split them. They draw for number one position so you have to allow them both. One is Hydrophone Recording Of Burning Embers Underwater by Richard Devine. Genuis to think of recording that:  and the other is Songe 3 by Serge Gentil and Renaud Deback. Sublime and very cool..


Find Barry at https://soundcloud.com/barry_snaith

https://soundcloud.com/shoot-the-wendy-bird

http://www.theinconsistentjukebox.co.uk/