SEA URCHIN NEWS
06.01.2019

New from Counter Culture Chronicles:

Albert Saijo – Who Wants To Be A Lone Survivor?

 
Albert Saijo (1926-2011) was an American poet from Los Angeles whose parents were first-generation immigrants from Japan. After the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor of 1941, Saijo’s family was interned in Heart Mountain Relocation Center, Wyoming. The US government much later concluded that the internment of Japanese Americans – which at the time affected some 115,000 people of Japanese descent – had been based on ’race prejudice, war hysteria, and a failure of political leadership’. Heart Mountain had a lasting influence on Saijo. The injustice experienced in those days lay at the root of his later radical and nonconformist stance. Moreover, Saijo’s career as an author started at Heart Mountain, where he attended high school and wrote for the school paper, and throughout his life the people he had befriended at the internment center stayed at the heart of his circle of friends.

After his internment at Heart Mountain, Saijo was drafted for military service and was stationed in post-war Italy. Once back in Los Angeles as a civilian, he earned a bachelor degree in International Relations with a minor in Chinese. It was a combination of having taken an interest in Zen Buddhism and haiku and having moved to San Francisco in 1957 that brought Saijo in touch with Lew Welch, Gary Snyder, Allen Ginsberg, Philip Whalen and other Beat poets and their affiliates. Saijo became good friends with Jack Kerouac and together they took a road trip from San Francisco to New York in 1959. The 1972 publication ’Trip Trap’ is a collection of haiku written jointly during that road trip. One of those Trip Trap poems comes as a laser-printed extra with the Albert Saijo cassette that Counter Culture Chronicles released late in 2018. The C-30 cassette contains a reading by Saijo in Honolulu, 2000.

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06.01.2019

New in our catalogue:

James King / Ali Robertson – Split Tape

 
Hypnagogic #002 is a split C-40 cassette of performance artists James King on one side and Ali Robertson on the other. James King is an artist from Northern Ireland and Ali Robertson an artist and noise musician from Scotland.

Side A of the cassette contains James King’s performance ‘Types’ with Rory McSwiggan, a piece of sound poetry recorded in Derry in February 2018. The improvised duet with McSwiggan centres on the artists’ command of their voices, sometimes accompanied by the sound of a typewriter, ukulele or flute. The duet varies in atmosphere from wild fairy tales to eerie chants and rhythmic, at times violent, typewriting. Something or someone has gone berserk. Or is on the verge of doing so. On all levels. Animal. Mechanical. Subhuman. Angelic.

Side B of the cassette has been put together from Ali Robertson recordings from 2016-2018. The sound poetry collage is called ‘Life’s A Gas’. “Doctor, doctor I’m a free improviser”, Robertson explains during an absurd phone call during the performance, only to end his noisy and multi-layered sound collage later on with ‘The other person has hung up’ in a thick Scottish accent, vaguely reminiscent of humorist Ivor Cutler’s.


 

03.01.2019

Ludo Mich - Soundtrack to the film Ludo Is Fantastic

New in our Ludo Mich catalogue:

Ludo Mich – Soundtrack to the film ‘Ludo Is Fantastic’

 
Irish filmmaker and musician Willie Stewart premiered his documentary film ‘Ludo Is Fantastic’ about Flemish artist Ludo Mich late in 2018. An audio CD with the soundtrack to this film was released simultaneously on Stewart’s own label Hypnagogic. But the CD is much more than just an extra to the film. Hypngogic #004 is a well-balanced and varied compilation that is strong enough to stand on its own feet. Excerpts from the soundtracks to Ludo Mich’s avant-garde films ‘Deus Ex Machina’ (1970) and ‘Saturnus’ (1971) are combined with tracks by the Flemish band The Joyous Cosmology, with whom Ludo often performs, and tracks by several bands that Willie Stewart and his partner Natalia Beylis are part of: Woven Skull, Three Eyed Makara, Worship My Panther and others. The result is a beautiful and enjoyable CD with music that varies from gentle psychedelic pieces to wild avant-garde experimentation.

With: Ludo Mich, The Joyous Cosmology, Worship My Panther, Lesser Thans, Three Eyed Makara, Natalia Beylis and Woven Skull.


 

19.11.2018

New in our catalogue:

Ludo Mich / Jennifer Walshe / W. Ravenveer (Hypnagogic Tapes, Ireland)

 
Hypnagogic Tapes 003 contains recordings of two performances by Antwerp artist Ludo Mich. Side A of the cassette is a recording of the duet ‘We Are Robots, But We Are In Love’ that Ludo Mich and Jennifer Walshe performed live at the Hunters Moon festival in Ireland in 2012. Side B contains ‘The Bells’, recorded with Antwerp musician W. Ravenveer (Erwin van Looveren) in 2016. In both recordings Ludo can be heard in full swing, as he descends growling, grunting and screaming into regions beyond the grasp of his audience and surfaces again cleansed and pure. On side A of the cassette Ludo and renowned Irish vocalist Jennifer Walshe enter into a duet in which it is impossible to tell whether it is an embrace or a stranglehold. It is a passionate and violent affair, accompanied by Walshe’s accordion, recorder and percussion instruments. Side B is a collaboration with musician W. Ravenveer (Erwin Van Looveren) from Antwerp. Their improvised piece ‘The Bells’ – Quasimodo dissected live, his hump turned inside out and worn as a madcap – was recorded by Frank Vranckx in Antwerp in 2016.


 

19.11.2018

New in our Moloko Print catalogue:

Jürgen Ploog – Flesh Film (A Cut-Up Novella)

 
Edward S. Robinson writes in his introduction to ‘Flesh Film’ for Reality Studio:

“Where the precise origins of the cut-up lie remain the subject of debate in certain circles, although no one would dispute the fact that it was Burroughs who formalized the method, provoking controversy in the literary establishment, and who is the writer with whom the technique will be forever associated. Burroughs himself acknowledged myriad literary precedents, and accredited Brion Gysin with the actual ‘discovery’ of the method, quite by chance, in 1959. Of those involved in the first collection of cut-ups, Minutes to Go (1960) — Burroughs, Gysin, Sinclair Beiles and Gregory Corso — only Burroughs would subsequently pursue cut-ups further. From Burroughs’ central point, however, radiated concentric rings of influence as other authors took his proclamation that ‘cut-ups are for everyone’ as a call to arms against language control and the narrow confines of linear narrative structures.

The European mainland spawned a remarkable second wave of post-Burroughsian cut-up authors to expand upon his principles and took the technique deep into new territories. Jürgen Ploog belongs to this lineage of vigorous, exciting, cut-up practitioners which includes Claude Pélieu, Mary Beach, and Carl Weissner… Read more