Thursday, November 19, 2015
Tonight on Explorers Room, I'll pay homage to the long-ago fallen blog, Allegory of Allergies, where I (and many others of us, I'm sure) had my mind expanded – and my weirdness-threshold bumped way way up – by the incredible cult music, private-press, and outsider sound-art that was, for a blessed time, preserved there. It will be a bizarre evening of idiosyncratic sounds in praise of all manner of deities and in search of unexcavated sound-caves.
Thursday, November 12, 2015
It's gonna be a trip, my heads. See you there:
Saturday, November 7, 2015
Here's a fellow whose work I've been enjoying over the last year or more. Coming out of Calgary and Saigon, and operating under the name sonar lee, he's delivered a wealth of adventurously experimental sound collages, shambling along on jalopy beats and loops, littered with overlapping spoken texts, and obfuscated by mists of murkiness. Like a muddy river, into which someone has crashed an old bootlegger rustbucket full of books and exotic pigments. Hallucinatory, highly textual, exotic, and with a totally collagist sense of juxtaposition: how could I not dig it?
Check out this representative jam in video form:
There's a few releases on bandcamp – I'm particularly fond of omphaloskepsis [filthy jazz] (very heady revolutionary vibes), and jimjilbang muzic [ ừ ] (some serious exoticism in the mix), but I'm excited to declare that there is also a new release, called tomorrow's nostalgia, which you should totally check out. Endless discontinuitous samples, spoken word piled like leaves in the yard, a swirling sense of remembered unreality. Particularly dig the opening two tracks, "ventrilophenia" and "phantom tuktuk."
Check it out:
sonar lee discography
Thursday, November 5, 2015
Tune in tonight for exotica, synthi times, percussive travelogue, and more. No big theme tonight, just lots of great music, from Brian Eno to Pete Rugolo, all-exotic.
Also, check out my book-for-sale, or don't. There is no gun to your head, you are free. Breathe the air and enjoy the world while it lasts. Be human. It is a pretty cool book though; I mean, I promise it won't crush the growing lightness in your soul or anything. Think about it.
Heading for the Horizon with Full Sails
Sunday, November 1, 2015
I come to you today with some exciting news: Expedition is now available. It really is. I've had some really wonderful reproductions made, most satisfying in quality, and am using kickstarter to sell them (and hopefully, receive enough orders/funds to have more copies made, but that's a bridge to cross if it ever arrives).
If you're unfamiliar with Expedition, you can peruse it on my website. Expedition is a collage book that I spent two years making, assembled from hundreds of exoticist bits from books and magazines (all of which is indexed). It's an exploration of the tropes of exotica and the beats of the adventure narrative, done with great love, deep history, and a surrealist sensibility; it is exotica, but it also critiques exotica. If you're interested in maybe thinking about buying one, check out the kickstarter page, which has all the information and the general pitch. It has a pretty ok video at least. Go on, check it out, I promise it won't bore you all the way to death.
The kickstarter campaign launched a few days ago, on Thursday. Within 24 hours, we were almost a third of the way to the goal. As of tonight, we're over halfway. The campaign ain't over till one minute to midnight, December first – that's a lot of time to meet the goal. This is happening. We're going to make it, and more. If you pledge, you will end up with a book. If we go over the goal, that just means that more people get books. So think of it as a preorder, and order a copy, if you're interested. There's a lot to look at in there, stuff that just doesn't register when you look at it online; plus, it's a great-looking object – and dammit, it's meant to be experienced as a book!
Anyway, the whole shebang is intensely exotic, and I really think that if you're reading this site, you'll probably like it.
Thursday, October 29, 2015
Tonight, in deference to the season but without much regard for the Halloween-industrial complex, we go deep down into that voodoo swamp with Dr. John, only it's not really Dr. John... tonight, we hear from the Dr. John known as the Night Tripper.
As you surely know, Dr. John the Night Tripper is a persona adopted early on in Mac Rebennack's career, based on "a purported Senegalese prince who came to New Orleans from Haiti, a medicinal and spiritual healer. The Doctor was a free man of color who lived on Bayou Road and claimed to have fifteen wives and over fifty children. He maintained a fascination with reptiles and kept an assortment of snakes and lizards, along with embalmed scorpions and animal and human skulls. His specialization was healing, and as such, in selling Gris-Gris, voodoo amulets that protected the wearer from harm."
This persona would carry through Dr. John's first four LPs, to be revisited from time to time afterward. Though Rebennack maintained the stage name Dr. John for his prolific career, there are but a finite amount of true Night Tripper recordings. And that's where we're going tonight, to walk on those guilded splinters with that king of the Zulus.
A L S O: This week is the last week of October crunch time. Consider undertaking a heroic gesture and help to continue the existence of a heroic enterprise in radio freedom and proud humanity.
DANSE KALINDA BA DOOM, tonight
Thursday, October 22, 2015
Tonight on Explorers Room: Exotica Project 45s, Paradise Fantasies & Miscegenation Fetishes – in Miniature!
Tonight on Explorers Room, in observance of Singles Going Steady week (wherein many DJs opt to spin singles exclusively), I'll be playing an absolutely orgiastic selection of 45 rpm singles from the incredible assembly of marvels that is Dan Shiman's Exotica Project (Dan also does another one of my very favorite music sites, Office Naps – check em both out or be the fool). It's going to be awesome.
As Dan explains on the Exotica Project site, the 45 was a more affordable and thus more democratic format; the result being that 45-bound exotica has the possibility to be more wide-ranging, experimental, and crazy than a lot of what you might find on 33 1/3 exotica LPs, particularly some of the more canonical among them. This stuff is so great to hear, because as Dan and I have both long maintained and worked to demonstrate, exotica is a vastly more multivalent, boundary-less force than is often thought. Some of them are more experimental in really fascinating ways, others are hair-raising in their racial attitudes and the way they make exotica's usual subtexts much more explicit. I'll say it again: it's going to be awesome. Don't miss it.
And one last thing: help keep free radio alive, pledge what you can to this wonderful thing that is WFMU. Look, I'm currently at 49% of my program's individual goal! That's not half bad! Help me, if you can, tip over the halfway point, and beyond. Maybe if we turn the barn into a stage, and we sew our own costumes, we could put on a show and save this station! Whattya say!
Thursday, October 15, 2015
Continuing on to part two of the Can members post-Can series, tonight we listen to a motley patchwork of various projects by Irmin Schmidt, Michael Karoli, Jaki Liebezeit, and Damo Suzuki. All sorts of crazy stuff tonight, from Schmidt's late 20th century avant-crooning to Liebezeit's bizarre and varied session work with other experimental European bands.
Next week, for a great big change of pace and a return to the Explorers Room wheelhouse in its strictest sense, we'll be doing all-exotica 45s for Singles Going Steady Week. But until then, enjoy the sounds of CAAAAAAAN without CAAAAAAAAN.
AND OF COURSE, ONE MORE THING: (forgive me repeating myself, but this is important) October is Crunch Time on The Good Ship WFMU, so if you have a dime you can spare, please consider donating and helping to heroically preserve a mighty and noble institution. Keep alive something that is free true and full of love and goodness. AND INTEGRITY, my god, how rare is that? Pledge what can or what you care to here, or via this widget below:
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Thursday, October 8, 2015
Tonight on Explorers Room: Let's Get Cool and Normal in the Pool with Holger Czukay (Can Members, Post-Can, Pt. 1)
Following up last week's all-Can black hole, we enter into a new dimension of Can members, post-Can. Tonight will be dedicated almost entirely to Holger Czukay's "solo" work, much of which is of course highly collaborative. Almost all of it (at least, a lot) will feature the godlike talents of
Jaki Liebezeit on drums, as well.
Czukay's output following his departure from Can is an astonishing marvel, a constantly changing, ever-morphing, yet naturally always indelibly Czukay, spirit of pure experimentalism. Tonight will be full of rulebook-burning collaborations, shortwave radio-as-instrument, daring sampling techniques, Can samples and cannibalisms, alternate-dimension pop songs with unseeable faces, and Can-style jams rocketing downward from the heavens. Do not miss, unless you are allergic to intense excellence and vibrant genius. Tonight! 7:00 until I stop.
C O O L in the P O O L
ONE MORE THING: October is Crunch Time on The Good Ship WFMU, so if you have a dime you can spare, please consider donating and helping to heroically preserve a mighty and noble institution. Keep alive something that is free true and full of love and goodness. Pledge what can or what you care to here, or via this widget below:
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Thursday, October 1, 2015
Tonight on Explorers Room: A juicy explosion of Can monsterpieces, wall-to-wall genius music from what I consider to be the best period, from 1970-'75, Soundtracks through to Landed (sorry Mooney fans, and sorry Flow Motion, you're both still pretty good). I'm not gonna play it too cool, I'll be throwing on a lot of the biggest, most obvious tracks (we will hear "Vitamin C," of course we will). But I'll also play a good portion of rarities and sidestreets, juxtaposing period-appropriate obscurities with their more well-known counterparts. If you're a big Can fan, it'll be fun to hear the tracks that have blown your mind many times over. If you're new to Can, well, it'll be a pretty decent primer on the greatest group of musicians to ever coalesce into something like a band. DON'T MISS IT, PSYCHEDELIC PEOPLE.
ALSO, and this is important: WFMU is commencing with a month-long silent fundraiser. Considering that this dark damned rock of souls that is our planet seems to be committed to crushing all things either right or good, it is crucial that the Good Ship WFMU keep sailing strong. If you are at all able, I implore you from the bottom of my wicked heart, please consider donating. WFMU is one of the few institutions I've been involved with that didn't deserve to be burned to the ground and written out of the history books, so I really want it to last a thousand years. Else what's the point of still having people?
Check the widget below, or the one embedded on the Explorers Room playlist page. If you want.
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