Hailing from San Francisco, Barn Owl formed in 2006 and have been carving a path through the extended drone landscape ever since. Comprised of Evan Caminiti and Jon Porras, the duo use effected guitars to create their sounds but often augment their sonic palette with synth, voice, and harmonium. So far they have two full-lengths and a handful of more limited releases. Their latest album, "The Conjurer" was released on LP/CD in 2009/2010 by Root Strata.
"We are a wild and desperate style music band. Obstinate recluses attracted to mystery, we’ve left our native lands. In favor of wilds and embedded as such, in California’s pacific-northwest. Staring into the future. Strange senses beguiling us, with a strange love."
Pulse Emitter is Portland based Daryl Groetsch. For the last 10 years or so he has been slowly crafting a niche in the world of noise / drone music via his array of homemade modular synthesizers. His self released 'Meditation Music' series (now in its fourth volume) has been a Root Strata favorite for a good while now.
Danny Paul Grody is a founding member of both San Francisco based bands Tarentel & The Drift. His first solo album was released on Root Strata last year to critical acclaim. He is a self-taught guitarist, and the melodies at the core of his songwriting bring to mind his love of West African kora, Takoma style fingerpicking and all things minimal, repetitive & hypnotic.
Rene Hell is the latest moniker of US noisenik Jeff Witscher. Over the last handful of years Witscher has made a name for himself under a plethora of different pseudonyms exploring various disparate styles. He has been known as Impregnable, Secret Abuse, Marble Sky and as part of Roman Torment and Deep Jew among others.
En is James Devane and Maxwell August Croy. Using koto, guitar, voice and electronics, they create a rich, sun-drenched sound which often balances the faded edges where dreams meet imperfect memory. Their debut album, 'The Absent Coast' will be out on Root Strata this summer.
Oneohtrix Point Never is Brooklyn based Daniel Lopatin. He creates compositions exclusively for a Juno 60 synthesizer. His work touches on discarded motifs and textures from various points in 20th century music, including new age, 1980's soundtracks, early electronic music & soft rock.
"my name is adam forkner, i make music as white rainbow. ambient/hyphy/punk/lazer/future"
Pete Swanson was a founding member of Yellow Swans. He quit music in 2001 and continues to be done with it. He went into retirement in 2008 but kept recording in his basement because it helped him avoid interacting with others. His debut solo album, "Feelings In America" will be released on Root Strata when they get around to it. It sounds exactly like his old band, but funnier in a depressing sort of way.
Operative explores "primary structures" in house and techno out of a laboratory in Portland, Oregon, United States. Jed Bindeman and Spencer Doran constitute the group's binaural percussion corps while Scott Goodwin and Alex Neerman play a variety of home-built analog and digital electronic synthesizers. The results of which can feel like a rhythmically dense, phase-y assault on your nervous system.
Golden Retriever is an electro-acoustic music collaboration between Matt Carlson and Jonathan Sielaff based in Portland, Oregon. They use an amplified & processed bass clarinet and analog synthesizers to create dense harmonic clouds of melodies, long tones and textures. The sound they've developed has been described as a combination of Poppy Nogood-era Terry Riley, 70's German electronic, Indian classical, and free jazz.
Aster is the name of Eli Keszler & Ashley Paul's ongoing improvised, experimental project. Utilizing an array of instruments including reeds, percussion and voice, Aster create rattling dream-like clatter, minimalist psycho-accoustic experiments and floating melodies, free rhythm.
Robert A.A. Lowe (90 Day Men, Singer, Lichens) lives in Brooklyn, NY. Well known for his angelic loop-based vocal stylings, Robert is currently making minimalist music with a modular synthesizer.
The Alps are Alexis Georgopoulos, Jefre Cantu-Ledesma & Scott Hewicker. Since their inception in 2005, they have moved from free mind improvisation to tight kraut-soundtracks for films that have never been made.
Chicago-based three piece Zelienople have been around for quite a while now, and in that time have become staples in the underground music architecture. Percussionist Mike Weis has appeared on recent recordings with alt-folk legend Scott Tuma; Weis, Tuma and guitarist/vocalist Matt Christensen form the band Good Stuff House. Despite all this activity, their passion still lies in Zelienople. Multi-instrumentalist Brian Harding completes the trio which has forged its most essential work to date with ‘Give It Up’, a record which succeeds as a perfect summation of their progress in the last few years.
Xela is the long-running solo project of John P. Twells, a British ex-pat now resident in Massachusetts who has a taste for the darker things in life. Using an array of synthesizers, tape machines and his own voice Xela creates blackened soundscapes and distant, haunted songs, and in the last ten years has amassed a number of releases on his own Type Recordings imprint and plenty of other labels. For On Land, John will be joined by Zelienople drummer Mike Weis, who lends an adept hand to the percussive side of the dense fog of sound.
Date Palms is the name of the Oakland based duo of Gregg Kowalsky and Marielle Jakobsons. Their music has been described as 'Carnatic Dub' and will see its first release 'Of Psalms' on Root Strata this summer. Far from the ornate dronescapes the two have been known to conjure in their other endeavors (Kowalsky solo & Jakobsons in Darwinsbitch and MYRMYR), 'Of Psalms' is full of lush phrases slathered a top dreamy bass lines that creates an effect somewhere between hot summer nights and swimming through honey.
Grasslung is Brooklyn based musician Jonas Asher. After a few below the radar cd-r's & tapes, Asher's first full length 'Sincere Void' will be out on Root Strata this summer. His most melodic and song based release to date, the disc paints a monochromatic seascape of synthesized waves and heartbeat rhythms perfect for lost midnights.
Métal Rouge was formed in 2006 by Helga Fassonaki and Andrew Scott in Auckland, New Zealand with no aim but to open themselves to the spontaneous psych tonalism running through the underbelly of popular music like a vein of pure lightning. Birthed from the rich history of New Zealand underground they began to mold a sound comprised equally of the forward motion of ecstatic jazz and the drugged stasis of NYC loft minimalism circa ’66. Using electric guitar, vocals and amplified santur as their primary instruments, they forged a new vocabulary of unrefined free spiritual music. Relocating to Los Angeles, they toured the US, adding lap steel and pedal steel to their arsenal and most recently drums. Related projects include Yek Koo (Helga solo), Nest (Andrew & Nigel Wright), Golden Krone (Andrew & Rohan Evans) and Huzun (Andrew & Tim Coster). Métal Rouge have releases on Root Strata, Not Not Fun, Stunned, and Foxy Digitalis.
Le Révélateur is the solo moniker for Montreal-based electronic artist Roger Tellier-Craig. Started in 2008 in order to explore an ongoing fascination with electronic music, it’s a resonant beast blasting its way through labyrinths of eroded nostalgia filled with psychedelic synthesizer waves and repetitive sun-drenched pulses. Motion Flares, the debut cassette by Le Révélateur, was released by Root Strata in June 2010. In a live setting Roger Tellier-Craig joins forces with video-artist Sabrina Ratté, Le Révélateur then becomes an electronic audio-visual experience. He has also performed live with Montreal experimental filmmaker Karl Lemieux at the No Fun Night in Montreal, organized by the Suoni Per Il Popolo Festival.
Despite occasional attempts by yardstick-makers to place them in any of the various genres that rose & fell in their musical proximity, Charalambides have remained dedicated to a vision of spiritual music (in all its forms) as transformative force. Their sound is uniquely personal and consistent, even through some outwardly extreme shifts in tactics. Their appearance at San Francisco's On Land festival marks their first live performance in over 2 years.
Grouper is Portland resident Liz Harris. Since the release of her first CD in 2005, her work has slowly transformed from a black & white fuzz & feedback to lovely, bleak, stripped down pop songs anchored by her radiant vocal lines.
Daniel A.I.U Higgs, Interdimensional Song-Seamstress and Corpse-Dancer of the Mystic Crags was born in the Harbor City of Baltimore, USA in the early-mid sixties of the previous millenium. Having begun singing 25 years ago, he is perhaps best known as the singer and lyricist of the band Lungfish, which is now, as it often has been, quasi if not entirely defunct. Presently, the music Daniel manifests proceeds without the blessing/curse and help/hinderance of collaborative influence.
Guitarist Bill Orcutt formed, with drummer Adris Hoyos, Harry Pussy in Miami in 1992. After some 10 years of silence he self-released the LP 'New Way To Pay Old Debts' last year to much critical acclaim. His volatile mix of lightning-fast blues runs and dire immediacy channeled straight from the void is something that has to be seen live to really believe.
Portland based Ilyas Ahmed traffics a sound that has been called everything from "gone" to "darkly emotional and sweetly mournful". His often times simple play on a raga/folk/drone axis is nothing short of hypnotizing.
San Francisco based Common Eider, King Eider was started as a solo project for Rob Fisk (Badgerlore, 7 Year Rabbit Cycle, Deerhoof) but has now expanded to a four member group. Fisk's gentle falsetto lays over any number of scrapped & plucked instruments, always perched on the edge of imploding completely.
Beginning in 2007 Lisa McGee and Evan Caminiti began experimenting with improvised home recordings capturing a drifting cosmic narrative. After years of recording experiments and several live performances, the duo’s sound has evolved to a spacious, fog-shrouded mind-gaze. Sourcing their sounds primarily from guitars and vocals, the duo spins repetitive song structures, emphasizing texture and harmonic detail. With previous releases on Root Strata and Digitalis, the duo’s third album and most fully realized statement, “Pacific Fog Dreams” is due out this summer on Root Strata.
Paul Clipson makes experimental films exclusively with a Super8 camera. Master of color, shape and texture, he has collaborated with countless musicians at home and abroad and is a tireless creative force. He will be screening films with multiple acts at On Land.
Nate Boyce is a San Francisco video artist who uses digital technologies to create disorienting works inducing "retinal fatigue". He will be challenging the audience's visual senses along to Oneohtrix Point Never's set.
John Davis is a longtime Bay Area musician, photographer, and filmmaker. He has released musical works on Root Strata, Students of Decay, and Peasant Magick and continues to explore the inner/outer worlds of visual landscapes with his solarized Super8 films. He will be projecting along to En's performance.
Sabrina Ratté is currently enrolled in the Master in Film Production of Concordia University in Montreal. She is experimenting with video imageries, eerie atmospheres and abstractions. She is also working on projects involving live video performances and will be accompanying Le Révélateur at On Land.