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Review: “The Promise” by Weeping Boy.

From the opening haunting notes of “your last touch” through to the end of “empty grounds”, the Promise by Weeping Boy is a work of experimental electronic music that hits you in the feels. When I first heard “lonely nights”, in some weird way that I couldn’t quite put my finger on, it almost reminded me of sombre indie rock from the early 2000’s even though that’s not at all the genre of the work itself. Then it hit me; vulnerability. That’s what it was. Vulnerability on full display.

Glassy ambient synth textures combine with occasional subtle, noise-oriented, percussion. Occasional pulsing arpeggios and sparse melodies float around the listener’s space. Inventive spacey pad-synths float above minimalist bass pulses on “inching closer” while subtle percussive samples carry the listener forward. “hearing voices” is another inventive and haunting piece, where sample aliasing and subtle bit distortion are used as an emotive textural backdrop that swirls about the listener’s head, while samples drift overtop.

“breaking waves” is a truly unique collage of almost melodic string type pads and digital bassy pulses, evolving into monosynth lines in the vein of classic experimental electronic music from the 70’s.

Packaged with gorgeous abstract artwork that complements the sonic qualities of the release, “The Promise” is a quirky, experimental and haunting release that will leave you aware that you’re longing for something, even if you’re not quite sure what that something is.
Fantastic release.

#WEATNU Digital Magazine – April 2024 – Graham Jackson

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InterviewsNew Music

Interview with Jason M. Norwood

London ON, Canada, native, Jason M Norwood has been creating many projects since and before the year 2000. First forming his gathering HMR (Hope Mansion Recordings), then later joining with WEATNU in the early days. His music has bounced around from electronic, experimental, industrial, shoegaze, Berlin-school and post-rock. His work entails detailed music and soundscapes in the avant-garde territory. His current project ‘angel on fire’ has been showcased on WEATNU’s sub-label Transmission Nova. He had much to say about his music process, what he has learned over the years and how he has contributed to the music scene.

 

How are you doing today?

 

Jason M Norwood: I’m doing well. Just got back from a walk in the warm weather, which was good.

Glad to hear that, it must be nice up there in London ON this time of year?

 

JN: It varies. Cold last week, springlike this week. I’m not much of a winter person, so 17 degrees C is welcome.

It appears over the years you’ve been moving from different sounds, and have various projects. One being angel on fire.

 

JN: angel on fire’s my second-longest project, which started around 2000 or 2001. It’s probably the most “different” of the different projects I do, as it’s primarily guitar-based. In fact, I only really used keyboards on the most recent record to see if they’d fit in, which I think they worked out well. Piano’s always been a part of it as well, but adding e-piano was an experiment that worked out.

At this time I have the diamond silence playing, it always captivates me; and lures me in to listen to all of it. The post-rock aspect always draws me in.

JN: It’s funny, because up until recently I couldn’t figure out a genre for it. Originally it was a combination of being inspired by shoegaze and industrial music, and trying to create a “dark shoegaze” thing, but it’s evolved so much over time (better recording equipment helps) that I couldn’t place it.
The first two angel on fire albums were recorded quite raw on a 4-track with a guitar, bass guitar and a single mutli-effects box

 

angel on fire – the diamond silence

 

The flow of things via the music itself places ones mind in this relam of remembrance. Especially the mid to late 90’s when bands were played on the airwaves. Where do you draw your influences from?

JN: Influences are kind of nebulous for me. The more ambient side of shoegaze, certainly, and (when I started) post-rock stuff like Godspeed You! Black Emperor with their shortwave radio segues. I was also listening to a lot of industrial at the time, but more the late 70’s experimental stuff. Nowadays I have a hard time putting my finger on what influences it–angel on fire music is something that just sort of suggests itself in my head, and I roll with it. – When I started recording “the diamond silence”, I was originally set to try making an all-acoustic album. My brain sort of hijacked the process and said “time to do some angel on fire”. ?

That kind of happened with me when I was writing my album -ATD-. It was meant to be recorded to tape entirely then back to the computer, but I had a lot of tech issues. We get these happy musicial accidents.

JN: I love happy accidents in music; I’d rather hear that than over-processed, over-quantized music. It’s one reason why I like to use loops of my own drumming rather than programming everything; it feels slightly more natural even if they are loops that I can build on top of.

Since you’ve been with WEATNU Records, you found a place to drop your earlier music, such as Minutes after, Jason M Norwood and now angel on fire’s music. How has Transmission Nova served you, its sub-label?

JN: Artistic freedom, certainly, and community, which I think is incredibly important in a music business that just keeps squeezing artists more over time. angel on fire certainly fits Transmission Nova better than WEATNU, which is where jason m norwood resides.

 

 

Do you like the vibe on TNR? or Transmission Nova Records

JN: I do, and I like a lot of the music as well. I’m always just as interested in the artist as the art–like, where does YOUR music come from? Which is a good vibe to work with, even if angel on fire’s kind of its own thing.

 

angel on fire – the diamond silence

 

The track ‘deep down’ from your album the diamond silence does something to me, especially the droning part toward the end, and while myself I am very experimental in nature when I approach electronic music, but in the sense that it’s organic and not electronic. The repeating voice: the whole album is hypnotic in nature.

JN: I think one of my earliest “wow” moments was when I started hearing about really early experimental artists like Stockhausen and John Cage. I’ve always been fascinated by the art of the tape loop, so that’s where a lot of that comes from, as well as my fascination with shortwave radio (you hear that at the beginning of the album).

Quite the avant-garde in nature, but as a post-rock balance. There are all kinds of things via bass and guitar that make this album what it is, not to mention the vocals as a mystery in music.

JN: angel on fire’s strange in that I have a hard time defining what a song is about, for the most part. Lyrics just sort of suggest themselves. There does seem to be a theme of isolation in the album.

From an influence perspective, I hear Pink Floyd as well?

JN: You’re not the only person who has suggested Pink Floyd, and I do like them. I know I loosely based the structure of “the diamond silence” around Talk Talk’s “Spirit Of Eden”, which I can definitely say is one of those deserted island albums for me. The sonic space of Pink Floyd, maybe?

It’s very possible, as we are influenced subconsciously by so many things growing up. Personally I can name my influences, such as 70’s pop being one of the later ones in my life now. We grow into our influences and make music around them.

JN: I always like to joke that I make records to fill gaps in my own record collection. ?

It’s hard not to notice the drumming on this album, have you always played the drums, is it a full set?

JN: I can play the drums; I’m not really a drummer. I’ve been lucky to help other people with their studios and recordings, and they let me get some recordings of just me playing a drum kit. So over time I’ve built up a library of these recordings that I can draw on. Occasionally I’ll add rhythmic elements over top of that.

So there are actual real drums on the album?

JN: Mostly, yes. For the title track, I used an electronic kit I had handy. The rest of it is a real drum kit with (in the case of “static in mind”, a mix of both). Even if it’s an electronic kit, I still prefer live playing over programming whenever possible.

What happens when you begin to write music?

JN: With angel on fire, it’s a kind of a general feeling that something’s starting. Like I said, with “the diamond silence”, I was originally going to work on an album of acoustic music, but angel on fire sounds started happening, so I just “switched gears” to recording the album that you hear.
It’s a process of kind of giving over to a raw creative process and letting it define itself, which is probably why every angel on fire album sounds somewhat different.

Are you working on new music as of late?

JN: I’ve been taking a break, which for me is new territory—I normally go from one project to the next pretty fast. But it’s been nice to take a break even as I think about a couple ideas, including going back to the acoustic album and trying again. That’s a new project. I still have music in my head almost 100% of the time, though. ?

There is something about taking breaks from a just-finished album, that sense of accomplishment, which builds up in time and then you wish to make another one.

JN: I think I released my last electronic album in 2022. I had stuff written but it kind of fell out of favour, so that’s a possibility. angel on fire happens usually once every four or five years, but you never know.

What are your thoughts on the surfacing of your music to a new crowd of listeners, via our entrance into threads.net

JN: I think that the relationship of musician-to-listener gets shoved aside a lot in online discussions. I love it when people hear my stuff and come at it with their own ideas, and I’m starting to see glimmers of that coming back.

 

Due to your struggle in the music scene after your endeavor HMR, would you have continued down that road had you not have found WEATNU those years ago?

 

JN: I’m not sure, to be honest. HMR had a very similar philosophy to WEATNU, but when the various bands disappeared, I decided to end it. I had already released my tiny little techno project Minutes After via WEATNU because it fit WEATNU more than it did HMR. After HMR’s ending it was easy to fold what I do into the WEATNU ecosystem.

 

If you had something musically philosophical to say to the modern world, what would it be?

JN: Just to tune out all the noise that exists telling you to do things a certain way, and make the music that you want to make.
And, and….never throw anything away.

It was a pleasure to hear from you the first time talking about your music Jason.

JN: Always a pleasure. ?

 

#WEATNU Digital Magazine – April 2024 – Almark

 

buy angel on fire – the diamond silence on Bandcamp

 

Follow Jason on Threads https://www.threads.net/jmnorwood

 

Follow Jason on Instagram https://www.instagram.com/jmnorwood/

 

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New Musicreviews

SUNFLOWER | ANGEL

Lo-fi is on the rise these days, but it doesn’t mean that it all has to sound the same. Enter Aussie artist SUNFLOWER who recently joined our artist roaster, full of soulful, hip-hop and smooth beats. Lo-fi has become an aesthetic these days, much like how Vaperwave first hit the scene in years past. Each song on ANGEL is somehow tied to itself, and at same point vocal interludes, looped samples of various rhythms and chilled jazzy beats fill your lonely soul. The album ANGEL takes us on a journey from long ago, with 70’s club hits, sax and urban music, usually composed on controllers such as MPC, though let your mind wander a bit. With the likes of Marvin Gaye and other soulful writers of yesterday, these days, artists can take from the past and write a new score for the mind to pick apart. I can compare some of this to St. Pepsi and other Vaperwave that is still considered quite obscure to the listener. Looping and interludes, 808 beats, kicks that fill the room or your car stereo and straightaway each song fades out and into the next, with a new idea, a new form. Vocal-driven songs such as Witchcrash, “You said you would…” sung in low key, mystery and sensual mystery.” Music like this you hear on the hi-fi record player, better yet record the music straight to your MiniDisc and place it on loop.

#WEATNU Digital Magazine – Dec 2019

Follow SUNFLOWER on Twitter @B0TULISM

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New Musicreviews

The New Pollution – Live at Creative Corner

Wham, Bam, Thank you Ma’am – With a hint of Stones, Blondie, late 70’s Punk coupled with Elvis Costello, and 90’s pavement, you get a hit straight out of NYC itself.’

I’ve been listening to music most of my life, starting with a journey of 70’s rock during the early 80’s, and well into my teen years, with bands such as R.E.M. – and various Alternative rock groups. The super-group The New Pollution finds our ears this month, formed not from NYC but outside their state of residence, put together as High School friends. There are hints of John Spencer’s Blues Explosion, and our ears go wandering via this avant-garde rock anomaly. This is clearly an 80’s recreation by influence. Since the album is one continuous long-play, ones ears just need to take them in the direction they wish to go. Before the album is complete, past the warm up, then you really get to hear the genius of The New Pollution, when the organ comes in on Sad Pricks, coupled with, jazz-related tones, saxophone infused melodies, noise, wonky off-beat intervals and even a tambourine. On the final song, basslines that take you back to songs from The Talking Heads, and big city club music, in dark setting. It’s much like those hip cats during the days of the beat generation, just doing their thing. Influenced by the likes of David Bowie, on the first track and throughout, taken from each member’s influence, (Joy Division, The Fall, Pere Ubu) – as related from their leader, even early synth-pop. It’s an acid-jazz, snappy drum beat, punk rock, ska, session, that reminds me of the type of music I get to listen to at the local coffee shop I frequent, playing on the flat-top disc machine, “they have an actual turn-table there, behind the counter you know, classic, ya dig?”

Almark#WEATNU Digital Magazine
December 2019

Pick up the CD on WEATNU Records.
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New Musicreviews

Jazzykat – Never Stop… The Music

I have a soft spot for retro eighties synth wave music, and tonight, Jazzykat delivers in thumping fours on the floor percussion with all the right flavors of pads and leads. The electronic strings, cut with precise lines of evilness bass arpeggio bring about another level of high energy aural entertainment. I am very fond of the transitions in this album.

I feel a strong sense of passion in the keys and melodies used, but it’s not overkill. It’s enough to keep a party going until morning, rather. The use of octave differences makes for a potent melodic impact that keeps the vibe going through phases and songs that compliment each other perfectly, to weave a wordless narrative that will keep the listener engaged and then some.

The contrasts and sweeps build into quite the anticipation a few songs in, as the changes in leads keep things ethereal enough to relax, but the implementation of break beats keep things rhythmically satisfying enough to make the album appropriate for various contexts. The Low Frequency Oscillator is done justice in a subtle uplifting correctness of dance floor notoriety.

I am even pleased with the use of vintage electric toms (a rarity for your humble author!) . I am really enjoying the ebbs and flows of this work. The melodies are tight, and nothing is left to the imagination. Every patch makes a statement. If the mood strikes for something that is not overly emotive, but still potent enough to pull those neon heart strings, look no further.

Jazzykat is definitely an artist worth checking out. I am psyched to hear what will come next, as for with each song, boundaries are subtly and amiably pushed!

JC Luff#WEATNU Digital Magazine – November 2019

<iframe style=”border: 0; width: 100%; height: 120px;” src=”https://bandcamp.com/EmbeddedPlayer/album=2145557815/size=large/bgcol=333333/linkcol=0f91ff/tracklist=false/artwork=small/transparent=true/” seamless><a href=”http://jazzykatweatnurecords.bandcamp.com/album/never-stop-the-music”>Never Stop … the Music by Jazzykat</a></iframe>

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ArchivesNew Music

WAFFENSUPERMARKT – FEELING ALRIGHT feat. AANYA

German producer, DJ and Label owner for WAFFENSUPERMARKT, Guido Braun does not disappoint. This month his latest release “FEELING ALRIGHT feat. AANYA” displays classic house, techno tendencies that any modern DJ would enjoy playing for their spin tracks. His music has been spinning on #WEATNU OUR for some time now. Buy his music on http://wsm.onl and also through Weatnu Records

Follow Guido on Twitter.

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ArchivesNew Music

Ashleigh – Do You Know

It isn’t everyday that you hear clear and precise quality, pop-related music. But this is experimental mind you. Ashleigh Antolini is soulful, her strong but trained style of singing is combined with R&B and experimental all in one. Do You Know, Vicious Cycle EP – Produced by Shark Anthony is Witchhouse/Dreampop in modern day with a hint of jazz, classical and DnB. This is good music, the rest of the EP will not disappoint. She has been slowly showing her music to #WEATNU, this of course won’t be the last time.

<iframe src=”https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/193620338&color=ff5500&auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false” width=”100%” height=”166″ frameborder=”no” scrolling=”no”></iframe>

Buy on Bandcamp

<iframe style=”border: 0; width: 350px; height: 470px;” src=”https://bandcamp.com/EmbeddedPlayer/album=1532301424/size=large/bgcol=ffffff/linkcol=0687f5/tracklist=false/transparent=true/” width=”300″ height=”150″ seamless=””>Vicious Cycle by Ashleigh</iframe>

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ArchivesNew Music

FTNM – Well of Fungi

Music of ‘For The Naked Mind’, conceived by one solo artist.

This month we get a sneak-peak of a up and coming new EP from FTNM.

Coupled with bleeps and bloops, along with classic IDM, Experimental, bass driven tunes.

Coming soon.

Listen to Well of Fungi

Follow FTNM

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