Alley Catss & S Olbricht (Opal Tapes, 2014)
2 weeks ago, 10 April 2014  ·   3 notes

Following in the footsteps of the SicSic Tapes Alpár/Carla Under Water/S Olbricht split, is another proof of the healthy state of Budapest’s electronic scene, the numerous impromptu collaborations and happenings, improvised sessions or heavy analogue synth abuse hosted by the splendid Ballacid studio housed in the concrete housing estate of Új Pest.

After Martin Mikolai released his well-received solo album on Opal Tapes last year, he has shunned ego-masturbation in favour of introducing further talent from the Hungarian capital, the Magyar Zodiak Club, as they say. Apart from the aforementioned, it is also his recently released Norwell Cleaning Tapes split.

Alley Catss is one of the newer additions to the city’s sprawling underground scene. The fresh-faced producer (you can read our interview with him here) has made his name on Sewage Tapes release. Largely renowned for his beat-based stuff, he also makes offbeat, noise-oriented music. On the Opal split, he merged both of his sonic guises into a 17-minute epic journey that somehow sounds much older than his 15 years. Elements of jungle, rave, techno or break/beat feature on his A side resulting in an imaginary paranoid forlorn soundtrack to a lonely walk home from a non-existing squat party. Martin’s B side is more abstract, hovering in the liminal zones of consciousness, reflecting his more sombre, contemplative side of personality.

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Alpár / S Olbricht + Carla Under Water (SicSic, 2014)
2 months ago, 4 February 2014  ·   10 notes

The Budapest scene of the last few years has garnered attention, because of its cross-pollinatory nature, specific sound revolving around the Farbwechsel label. Lo-fi house, analogue electronics, vintage techno have become staples of sonic map of the Hungarian capital. A healthy scene emerged, free of competitiveness and back-biting. The collaborative nature of it has even spawned self-proclaimed tongue-in-cheek descriptions such as “The Budapest Zodiak Club" alluding to the legendary arts and music space Zodiak Free Arts Lab established by Conrad Schnitzler and Hans-Joachim Roedelius.

Aside from issuing releases on the aforementioned Farbwechsel, the guys also put out their output via internationally renowned labels such as Opal Tapes, where S Olbricht's Deutsch Amerikanische Tragodie tape was released last year. The latest “Western sonic import” comes courtesy of the agile German label SicSic tapes, who commissioned S Olbricht and his label-mate Bálint Zalkai performing under his nom de plume Alpár for a split release. Mikolai - S Olbricht - invited his friend and also one of the staples of the Budapest scene of late, the wonderfully named Tulipán Máté who is featured here under his name Carla Under Water.

Alpár’s part sees him showcase his tradmark synthwave, kraut and kosmische inspired analogue-driven ambient-like compositions. It is definitely the “lighter” side of the album, the more hopeful and calming. The angel to the devil that arises on the other half - S Olbricht with vocals of Carla Under Water are plaintive and melancholic, embracing genres like cold-wave, EBM or even shoegaze, the vocals sometimes reminding of those of a sombre Freddy Ruppert, cloaked in a fog of lofi post-punkish doom and gloom. Nevertheless, this is probably their most accessible and versatile release, promising to further cement the status of the Budapest Zodiak Club.

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Lanuk - o​(​O
3 months ago, 22 January 2014  ·   2 notes

There is music and sound that without any ornamentation or sycophantic tropes manages to evoke specific almost synaesthetic evocations. It is almost as if it didn’t need a particular source or origin, it is acousmatic, as if it existed alone, emitted into urban decay, those areas abandoned by the well-to-do and successful. Unpretentious and direct, raw and uncompromising. 

That is the music of the Hungarian Lanuk. I first saw him in Budapest supporting Nate Young, and his crazy buoyant live set easily surpassed the one of the headliner of that night. Noodly, playful, psychotropic. 

Four of his tracks now feature on a new release, simply entitled o​(​O. It is not bothered by the passing fad of noise techno, it mostly eschews rhythm or more approachable elements, and when there is one, it is relentless. 

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Východiska Xmas mix
3 months ago, 27 December 2013  ·   3 notes

Every week on Wednesday Czech Radio's Wave station, we try to present a project, label, in a short interview format. Our show Východiska (you can check the archive of the show here) aims to map the latest happenings on the independent music scene in Central and Eastern Europe. We have created a special mix featuring our favourite labels and project, and asked them to send us their upcoming releases. Here is what came out of it.

1. Superskin – Drown
2. Lightning Glove – Brave New World
3. Plevna – Imperios
4. Shamanelism - Shamanelism
5. Steaua de Mare - Babadag
6. Katraven – Stars
7. Obete Sekty – Čo ak sa nevrátim /noitt remix/
8. Jonáš Gruska - Site specific resonances II
9. Dead Janitor – Divided
10. Lutto Lento – Vengo
11. Skan-zen – Tothem
12. Carla Under Water - Cocoon Boy
13. Alpár - Psychedelic Leftovers For Sunday Brunch (Chapter ‘Definitely Bad Trip’)
14. Nightmare Carpet - untitled
15. Kucharczyk – Green Green Kick
16. Sillyconductor - Piano

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Podcast - 12z’s live sessions
6 months ago, 4 October 2013  ·   2 notes

12z sessionz Podcast by Easterndaze on Mixcloud

The 12z sessionz started as a weekly rehearsal in 2012 for practicing purposes on free electroacoustic improvisation in a Budapest flat. As the project developed, 12z members started to invite friends to join the weekly improvisations, to get inspirations from very different styles and record the jamming. The first participant was the founding member of the randomroutines art collective, then followed by the most active one: Márk Bartha, later zaikon, Palmovka, The Stanley Maneuver, András Halmos, Alpár of Farbwechsel label, Carla Under Water, Árpád Kiss trumpeter, Micachu and her sister, Fran, last but not least the London-based artists, Lawrence Lek and Andi Schmied. 12z’s live performances were always about the flow of unaborted improvisation and these two hours long open sessions (using constantly changing instruments and playing music absolutely freely with such influencing people) became more and more interesting and as the number of recordings grow, members decided to make them public. Reblog   Like