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Old 03.01.2007, 08:44 PM   #21
pokkeherrie
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GRRR... How come you lot already have it? I ordered mine on the same day as the rest of you and i just got an email that it's shipping today.
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Old 03.02.2007, 04:08 AM   #22
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The CD is brilliant. Totally unlike what I expected. There's one track of about 8 minutes and one about 20 minutes, and the artist that it most reminded me of is Loren Connors. The guitar sound is very clean and, at times, almost bluesy, not the distorted shredding that I had been kind of expecting. Probaly the best Thurston release of the last twelve months, I reckon.

I'll report back on the vinyl after the weekend.
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Old 03.02.2007, 07:10 AM   #23
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hmmm... quite curious now after that description
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Old 03.06.2007, 08:57 AM   #24
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http://www.boston.com/news/globe/living/articles/2007/03/06/a_welcome_guitar_haze_for_sonic_youth_fans?mode=PF

welcome guitar Haze for Sonic Youth fans
By Linda Laban, Globe Correspondent | March 6, 2007
SOMERVILLE -- For a cold Sunday night, P.A.'s Lounge was well filled. However, given that the billed headliner was Bark Haze, an experimental guitar duo featuring Sonic Youth frontman Thurston Moore and the mysteriously monikered Gown (a.k.a. Andrew McGregor ), you'd presume the line would've been around the block. Somerville! Thurston Moore! Come on!
But this was a low-key, barely publicized appearance where the preternaturally youthful looking Moore seemed intent on, well, having no intentions beyond hanging out and, when he was onstage, coaxing and demanding sounds from his guitar.
Bark Haze, which just released "Total Joke Era" alongside the vinyl "LP," each containing different music, is named after a phonetic misinterpretation of Memphis R&B legends the Bar-Kays , most of whom died in an airplane crash in 1967 with Otis Redding.
A last-minute switch moved Sunburned Hand of the Man to close the night with its luscious psychedelic jams. Earlier, following opener Keith Fullerton Whitman's short electronic set of screeching, squealing sounds pulled from two keyless synthesizer modules, Matt Krefting (of the Believers ) read poetry and added an a cappella, unamplified cover of Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah."
Expanding to a quartet with drums, bass, and Moore on guitar, Krefting romped through a cover of the Misfits' thrash operetta "Hybrid Moments." Clearly Moore enjoyed the moment. He grinned widely as he slipped off his guitar afterward .
Bark Haze's performance was more languid, but with staggered intense peaks, all in one continuous piece of music, just 20 minutes long. Moore threaded a wavering repeated chord around Gown's jangles and clangs. The music grew bigger as Gown slashed firmly at his guitar and Moore added bubbly high notes, before the pair ended up riffing together madly. A clamorous squall erupted, then Gown's wall of notes cushioned Moore's hard repeated chord, plucked as his whole body twitched like a kid throwing a tantrum.
Of course, it was the kind of guitar noise Sonic Youth fans adore. One satisfied fan at P.A.'s complained that Sonic Youth's appearance at Avalon last fall had been too bland. "That was the kind of old-school Sonic Youth guitar jam that was missing," he said.
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Old 03.06.2007, 09:05 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pantophobia
is Ecstatic Peace gonna get an allotment of the bark haze stuff?, or are they planing to release a different bark haze CD or LP?

was thinking the same thing myself. also going to send off for mine this week cant wait!
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Old 03.06.2007, 10:08 AM   #26
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Kim's has the CD but not the LP...
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Old 03.07.2007, 03:59 PM   #27
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can someone post the track listings for the albums please?
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Old 03.09.2007, 05:47 PM   #28
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finally got it. listened to it few times. really liking it. it's like "quiet, sublime, peacefull" drone for whole half an hour. sweet.

there's no tracklisting on cover jon boy (you mean name of tracks?).
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Old 03.11.2007, 12:02 PM   #29
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I really really like it, especially punchline 1.
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Old 03.15.2007, 07:10 AM   #30
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I finally got round to listening to the vinyl last night, or one side of it anyway. It's very very different to the CD, much noisier. That's a "first quick listen" thought, I'm sure I'll come up with something more than that after a few more listens.
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Old 03.15.2007, 07:21 AM   #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jon boy
can someone post the track listings for the albums please?

CD

1. punchline 1 (11:03)
2. punchline 2 (24:37)


LP

Side A:
Innocent Yet Doomed
-Recorded in the Ecstatic Peace Folk + Cinema Basement, Northampton, MA.

Side B:
Shit Monitor Kicker
-Live at Pace, Easthampton, MA.

What Do You See?
- with Pete Nolan, Drums. Live at Apollo Grill, Easthampton, MA.


I've only litened to the LP once so far, but I like it better than the CD.
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Old 03.21.2007, 10:20 AM   #32
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i'll try and post links for the LP as soon as i get it onto my laptop.
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Old 04.03.2007, 02:32 AM   #33
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http://www.foxydigitalis.com/foxyd/r...php?which=2283

The Bark Haze "Total Joke Era"
Important



This Bark Haze disc is a slow boiler. Thurston Moore and Gown’s guitars are set against a backdrop of edge of consciousness drone as the two players bust some restrained and truly innovative fret work. Though the Bark Haze have jammed with others in the past, here it is just the two guitars recorded in stark fidelity.

The album is split into two long pieces. The first “Punchline 1“ is the most minimal. Though the music here sounds improvised, it is clear that a lot of duo mind-meld concentration has gone into the sounds on this track. Each touch of those steely livewire strings is considered. The track builds from shifting crackles and tentative figures into a wiry almost raga.

“Punchline 2” begins in a similar fashion. A crackling guitar sound is alloyed with a distorted synth like drone to create a menacingly charged atmosphere. These guys have some totally amazing guitar peddles and they know how to use ‘em.

“Total Joke Era” is a really exciting guitar album, alive with improvisational energy and expertly directed creative impulses. Total heat.

The vinyl only companion album ‘LP’, also on Important, is similarly high-grade. 8/10 -- Cola Nitida (3 April, 2007)
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Old 04.11.2007, 10:11 AM   #34
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I got the vinyl about 10 minutes ago. mailman just dropped that shit off at my house. Dropped the needle and, thus far, me gusta.. real noisy whilst still having some semblance of tonal interplay... amazing velocity considering there are only two guitars...
enjoying it a lot more than what they did at ATP
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Old 04.11.2007, 10:17 AM   #35
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Have you got the CD too?
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Old 04.11.2007, 10:21 AM   #36
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not yet... i knew the vinyl was strictly limited so I didn't want to sleep on it... CD is lined up for my next imminent sonic binge
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Old 04.11.2007, 10:25 AM   #37
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weird little anecdote... I thought this record was lost in the mail... I had emailed Juno records and they said it should be with me by now, that I should go check at the nearest mail depot... so I went to enquire about it to no avail... then I went for a stroll... was debating how far to walk... something made me turn back towards home... just as I walked up to my door, the delivery van pulled up... what a delicious sight..
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Old 04.17.2007, 04:49 AM   #38
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http://www.pitchforkmedia.com/articl...al-joke-era-lp

The Bark Haze
Total Joke Era / lp
[Important; 2007]
Rating: 4.8 / 5.4
http://assets.pitchforkmedia.com/ima...gif?1174876540
http://assets.pitchforkmedia.com/ima...gif?1174876540

If the worldwide experimental music circle had a centralized booster club, Thurston Moore, by default, would be its president. For nearly three decades, Moore has been at the threshold of cutting-edge art on multiple levels. He played on early downtown New York versions of Rhys Chatham's conception-busting Guitar Trio while starting Sonic Youth, a band that not only brought new ambiguities to the melody-dissonance-noise continuum but also helped bust indie rock's major-label barrier. He's been a tireless advocate for all things avant, whether reviewing experimental poetry in Arthur or, most recently, taking his 25-year-old, basement-level vanity label, Ecstatic Peace-- which has released several hundred cassettes, records, and discs-- to Universal. Since, the stream of Ecstatic releases-- from big rollers Be Your Own Pet right down to Sunburned Hand of the Man-- has multiplied with Moore's devotion to making his weird little label a legitimate voice in the major music market.
That said, it's as significant as it is strange that the first two albums from the Bark Haze-- the guitar duo of Moore and Andrew MacGregor, who records as Gown-- are being released simultaneously on Important Records. The quietly ambitious Important has released almost 150 records over the past six years, including a box set from forgotten electronic pioneer Conrad Schnitzler and two albums from new doom heroes Ocean. Total Joke Era (the Bark Haze's first CD)and lp (its limited-run vinylcounterpart) could have been released on most any experimental label, the larger Ecstatic Peace! (where MacGregor works, too) notwithstanding. But Moore and MacGregor chose Important, thus helping a label that's as adamant about the excavating the underground as Ecstatic Peace! is.
Alas, that's where the Bark Haze's significance mostly ends, at least for now. Over 35 minutes and two improvisations, Total Joke Era unfolds as a pair of listless guitarscapes with the usual tricks-- low-end, sustained grumbles, distended pick scrapes, flickering harmonics, free-picking sprees, reverb micro-riffs and Moore's dissonance-flecked quasi-chords. "Punchline One" aims to undermine a consonant core with minor pitch shifts and careful feedback, but its effect is minimal. The 25-minute "Punchline Two" is a similar mood piece, and it's distant reverb washes and torpid movements are either mildly sunbaked or wintry. Still, even though the track is occasionally fascinating sonically (a stretch near the midpoint conjures a perfect tension that the duo eventually sidesteps), its drift never invokes much attention.
Indeed, both artists have worked atmosphere better: Gown's best work has been about naturalistic trance, epitomized by the plodding rhythms of "Mystical War Canoe", the hazy closing track from his The Rich Lives of Trees debut. MacGregor took his instrument and built its sound into something bigger, a slowly moving cradle with space for everyone that understood. With Sonic Youth, Moore's constructed very different pieces with much the same effect: It's hard not to get lost in the wide, circling hallways of their best SYR action (like the damaged coruscation of 2005's Koncertas Stan Brakhage Prisiminimui) or the heated drones of the band's sinuous 25-minute edit of "The Diamond Sea". On Total Joke Era, even when things coalesce, they're too passť and thin for devotion.
lp is more aggressive, peeling from the record in sheets of ripped tones and brittle guitar noise. But the tracks' stasis is similarly forgettable. At least until the Bark Haze take trio shape on the final track, incorporating Magik Markers drummer Pete Nolan for "What Do You See?" For the first several minutes, MacGregor and Moore brood and simmer, Nolan finding his place among the strings and pretty guitar crosstalk. As the motion builds, Nolan adds the spark the rest of the takes lack, adding an unsettling push that forces MacGregor and Moore to reach for something beyond what their guitars and hands have to offer. When both guitars begin to unravel into a grunting, grinding squall, Nolan explodes beneath, playing at punk-rock triple time and threatening to topple the whole 15-minute construct. When it fades away, you feel a dent and a lift. The same, however, does not apply for the rest of the Bark Haze's Important output.
-Grayson Currin, April 17, 2007
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Old 04.17.2007, 05:04 AM   #39
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So they liked it, yes?
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Old 04.17.2007, 06:40 AM   #40
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http://www.tinymixtapes.com/The-Bark-Haze

The Bark Haze
Total Joke Era [CD Version] [Important; 2007]
3.5/5

Styles: two-pronged guitar and effects drone-fest
Others: Loren MazzaCane/Connors, Roy Montgomery, Bardo Pond + Tom Carter, Sonic Youth, Gown


Dead comedian Lenny Bruce was dead wrong when he claimed "there’s nothing sadder than an old hipster." Not that 48-year-old Thurston Moore is neither old if we are going by the standards of anyone important, nor necessarily a "hipster" in the same manner as Bruce meant. However, Moore is the summit of hip to the thousands upon thousands of rabid followers (and even aloof admirers), and at this stage in the game, any new release is greeted as an event, regardless of its "significance." For every salivating SY fan waiting for the next full-length album there is an eager noise-guitar addict chomping at the bit for side-project table scraps that still get tossed from the big band table with surprising regularity. The Bark Haze — a mixed-up mondegreen of the legendary Stax instro combo The Bar-Kays — is Moore’s guitar improv collaboration project with the complex cat (and recent Tiny Mix Tapes tour diarist) Gown. Live, the duo is often augmented by folk like John Maloney (Sunburned, etc.) or Pete Nolan (Magik Markers, etc.) smashing drum-like objects, but on Total Joke Era, twin axes are the only weapons of mass seduction. Bring on some ear ulcers!
Not quite. Two "songs" recorded in Northampton, MA in September 2006, both slow-burners called "Punchline," grace this Bill Nace-illustrated CD (the limited vinyl version has different music than the CD). "Punchline 1" is the shorter of the two tracks and also the more lovely, if 11 minutes of wobbly sparseness can be described in such a manner (it can). Featuring creaking, creaking noises and an outpouring of percolation, the piece is trumped by a backing built on metronomically-plucked sour notes which act as a meditative mantra before dying out. The second "Punchline" is more macabre in sound but in no way less enjoyable. Clocking in at 24-plus minutes, it showcases effects ad nauseum. Parts shuffle between the coaxing of a hesitant voice from a guitar suffering with a bad stutter, feral feedback hunting for a place to spend the night, and the stock cine-sound that is always paired with the lightning of a Tesla coil in the movies. Attempting to humanize a guitar-laden release such as this is an exercise bordering on absurd, but it is also the easiest way to explain things heard on this longer pot-simmerer.
Yes, two "songs" only, but they contain everything you would expect from such a clever and enthusiastic tandem. A satisfying curio on its own, The Bark Haze is one of the brightest and best moves Moore has made in the past couple of years. For Gown, the pairing provides a perfect outlet for his more rambunctious tendencies. Total Joke Era contains no digital trickery and no revolutionary statement. It is the result of two men standing on one stage playing two guitars through various effects pedals into an amplified source then fed back out, pure and simple. It is a charming A4-zine in a world of gushing glossies with perfume-inserts. Thank goodness for "old hipsters."
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