Sunday, September 17, 2006

[HA-1] Goin' Down Slow - music for acoustic guitar

A compilation of new music for acoustic guitar featuring 13 artists/acts from the UK, New Zealand, US, Norway and Finland. Blues, folk, noise, minimalism, improv, drone...


1. Tom Carter - Arroyo Crawl
2. Robert Horton - Chaos Blues
3. Andy & Michael Futreal - Bukka's Bad Trip
4. Keijo - On that winding road
5. Mark Dagley - I Call Unto My Lord
6. Mike Tamburo - The Ballad of Stuart McGill
7. The North Sea - Moon Shadow
8. Stephen Lewis - All great and precious things are lonely
9. Sindre Bjerga - A Harsh Leak (Random Overtones)
10. Amigo Result - Pelkselit
11. Ville Moskiitto - Joen varrelta
12. Don Bosco - Newton's Big G
13. Armpit - A cooler spot on the pillow

Released in a limited, numbered edition of 80. Black cd-r, handpainted cardboard sleeve, printed inserts.

What they say

"Goin' Down Slow is a small but super satisfying sampling of modern day free folk cd-r artists who are doing strange and wonderful things with acoustic guitars. It's not just strum and pick and twang anymore, although we do love us some of that too. Instead, these visionaries transform the simple acoustic guitar into strange shapes and wondrous sounds. As with a lot of these comps, there's an exciting collection of known names and favorites, but an even more exciting assortment of folks totally new to us.
Some of the favorites include Tom Carter (from Charalambides), who takes his guitar and stretches it into a slowly slithering raga like buzz, local boy Robert Horton, who offers up a tangled cacophony of detuned strum and damaged jangle, Finnish troubador Keijo who unfurls a very exotic sounding folk jam that is equal parts old scratchy blues and some exotic snake charmer music, Armpit who take a simple strum and a mumbled vocal, and wrap them in thick swaths of distorted electric guitar and dense spacerock FX, The North Sea, who offer up the most straight ahead piece, a dreamy rambling melancholy Appalachia, as well as Sindre Bjerga and Mike Tamburo. The new names here: Andy And Michael Futreal, Don Bosco, Amigo Result, Ville Moskiitto, Stephen Lewis and Mark Dagley offer up their own varied takes on the steel string, from dark and languorous bluesy buzz, to super abstract sine wave wrapped shimmer and strum, to murky percussive fingerpicked tangle to gorgeously languid near ambient folk drift and beyond.
Another amazing collection of guitarists on the periphery, and a beautiful introduction to some new names we definitely want to hear more from."
(From the Aquarius Records website)

"Excellent compilation of, yep, acoustic guitar music from some sort of international and underground weird folk scene or another. Mostly solo playing, but there are a couple duo tracks. Tom Carter, Robert Horton, Keijo, Mike Tamburo, The North Sea, Sindre Bjerga, Armpit, and those are just the names I've heard of before. The other six acts on here are even more obscure than that, but the whole album is great, a continuous instrumental vibe somewhere between ancient folk lament, hopped-up mountain music, and total modern noise. I like it because for acoustic music it's pretty weird, and sometimes a little crazy, but it never tries too hard to be either. I still don't know who does which tracks because I always just get stuck listening before I get around to checking out the credits." (From Blastitude)

"Limited to 80 copies and packaged in handpainted sleeves ”Goin’ Down Slow-Music for Acoustic Guitar, is a mighty fine compilation and the first release from Finnish cd-r micro label Harha-Askel. Featuring a cast of musicians from Europe, New Zealand and North America the compilation highlights a variety of style ranging from the scratchy drone of Tom Carter through to the blues wizardry of Andy and Michael Futreal. Other players include Robert Horton, with some wonderful discordant chaos, the fragile beauty of Mike Tamburo, the deep space exploration of Sindre Bjerga, and the random scraping of Armpit. Truth be told however, if you have a Terrascopic heart you are gonna love all these tracks, a small essential purpose." (From Terrascope Online)

"Tamburo, Wood, and Horton also all appear on the first CD by a new Finnish microlabel called Harha-askel, a compilation of acoustic guitar music titled Goin' Down Slow, each copy of which comes housed in a nice hand-painted cardboard sleeve. (It's probably worth a brief digression here to note that the theme of this column has my attention mostly focused away from the micro-label/private release underground, though that is where a lot of our favorite sounds have been coming from; just check any of Lee's Bones columns for more on that...) The unplugged 6- and 12-string has been seeing continuing revival action of late, with great players like Jack Rose, Glenn Jones, Harris Newman, and Steffen Basho-Junghans making consistently fine music, and some worthwhile compilation showcases like Berkeley Guitar and the Imaginational Anthem series. As befits its provenance, Goin' Down Slow swims in more basement-experimental waters than most of the above, also bringing in figures more noted for their avant-garditude than their traditional leanings, including Sindre Bjerga (usually part of the great Bjerga/Iveson drone duo), Armpit, and Tom Carter. I don't think I'm being unreasonably churlish if I note that compilations such as this do not always feature an artist's most fully-conceived work, and a few of the tracks here are clearly closer to rough sketches than recognizable figures. On the other hand, there's plenty of invention at work too, and everyone involved deserves proper respect for not simply restating currently fashionable Takoma-isms, and at least trying to see what other possibilities remain open to this most basic yet possibility-filled of instruments." (From Deep Water Acres)