Dekorder 2 x LP set Janek Schaefer released by Dekorder Dec 1st 2014

Dekorder presents two new vinyl editions composed and designed by UK sound artist Janek Schaefer,
who is known around the world for his wide variety of engaging and unpredictable works for installation, concert and composition.

Following his highly acclaimed 'Lay-by Lullaby' album on 12k [which Pitchfork listed in the 'Top 10 under-the-radar releases for 2014'],
Janek has created and collated a collection of tracks that showcase both his more ambient works [077], and his highly charged sonorities [078].

A beautiful pair of LP's that ideally should be experienced together for your home listening pleasure.

£11 each + p&p > or order both together for £20 + p&p - only here from the audiOh! Kiosk
[+ once you have bought the vinyl and listened/experienced the grooves... email me and I will send you MP3's if you want them]

The tracks were mastered by Stephan Mathieu and cut by Lupo at Calyx Mastering.

 

LP1 Unfolding Luxury beyond the City of Dreams [Dekorder 077]

A1 White Lights of Divine Darkness (for Sir John Tavener)    7:34    

By chance I composed this for my brother-in-law the day he passed away.
In recent years he had seen the white lights of heavens gate, but returned,
and became fascinated by what he called God's divine darkness in this lifetime.

A2 Unfolding Honey    6:06   
A track from my exhibition soundtrack 'Future Beauty, 30 years of Japanese fashion' held at The Barbican Gallery, London.
The exhibition featured some amazing folded garments by Issey Miyake, that inspired the unfurling feeling of the composition.

A3 Luxury    3:00    
An orchestral drone piece featuring an old French lady singing to her cats with an extra celestial chorus.

A4 Skyline Ascending    3:28   
A Carpenters LP piano loop is layered again and again over a high sky recording,
which was recorded using a helium balloon floating in the clouds over the city, with raindrops.

B1 Coda (for Sir John Dankworth)    5:00          
In my early teens, I used to attend week long music camps in the grounds of Sir John Dankworth's home with Cleo Laine.
I used to know them, and composed this piece with one their vinyl's on the day I heard he died.
The installation premiered at the Sydney Cooper Gallery in Canterbury, broadcasting a 3 channel version to six 50's radios.

B2 The City of Dreams    8:28   

Theme tune for the opening of "The Mill: City of Dreams" a site specific theatre production in a deserted mill in Bradford.
Piano motif recorded live with my twin-arm turntable, additional overlays recorded with Mark Robinson on his old family piano.

B3 Beyond    6:30    
The Carpenter's return, sliding piano loops through recordings made in Grand Central Station at closing time when the vast hall was deserted,
and the full majesty of the acoustic space could be appreciated. Stilettos pass by forming polyrhythm's, as the last train announces it's departure...

 

LP2 Inner Space Memorial in Wonderland [Dekorder 078]

A1 Inner Space Memorial [for J.G.Ballard]    20:57 ......PREVIEW LINK
Over the years, I have produced a number of works in praise of the ideas of J.G Ballard. He lived just over the river from my home.
While reading his autobiography in 2009, I was wandering how to go and say hello, but found out I was too late.
I produced a monument in honour of him called the 'Inner Space Memorial', part of my Retrospective at the Bluecoat in Liverpool.
A pair of speaker cones were turned around to play back into the void of their cabinets. An epitaph for a great mind.

B1 Wonderland    20:00
Wonderland is the finale of my exhibition soundtrack to "Asleep at the wheel...".  A work that questions where our culture is heading further down the highway ahead.
A single majestic daydream that drives you forwards as reality undertakes you. Location recordings were made in the middle of the night on a footbridge over the M3,
at the end of Ballard's street. Ideal music for when you need to stay awake on the road! I was fascinated to work out that while he was writing Crash and Concrete Island,
the six lane motorway was being built right past the front of his home.

 

 

> Promo Video : 'Luxury'


 

 

Reviews:

Touching Extremes [full review here]
>
"You don’t have to be a kid to helplessly stand in awe in front of a phenomenon... Janek Schaefer is the man for the job...
As always, the beauty of what he conveys lies in the mixture of comfortable intimacy and sense of uncertainty..."

Vital Weekly [full review here]
>
" . . . This is Janek Schaefer at what he does, and what he does best. Beautiful dense, atmospheric fields of sound, and it's probably best if you get both LP's at the same time."

Bloglovin
>
"A gripping collection of soundworks from a range of installations by Janek Schaefer. Showcasing his knack for
ambient composition alongside more theoretical pieces, Unfolding Luxury beyond the City of Dreams is
an exquisite entry point as well as a collector’s essential."

Boomkat
>
LP1 A softer, more tactile collection of signature ambient textures and slowly shifting space spread around seven sublime pieces united by an elegiac solemnity. They range from tributes to friends and family who've passed on, thru sweeping orchestral moments woven with field recordings, to one gorgeous number crafted from recordings made from a helium balloon and meshed with a piano loop robbed from The Carpenters, plus his theme tune for a site specific theatre production, and recordings made in Grand Central Station. Beautiful material.
+
LP2 The 2nd of Janek Schaefer's two new albums for Dekorder presents a pair of ecstatically vaulted and longform compositions. In contrast to the willowy drones of 'Unfolding Luxury beyond the City of Dreams', this record documents Schaefer's more highly-charged, almost ecclesiastical style of composition in two pieces originally written for installation and exhibit. The A-side's 'Inner Space Memorial in Wonderland' continues a long tradition of Janek writing in tribute to J.G. Ballard - quite recently with 'Lay-By-Lullaby' - featuring twenty one minutes of sweeping, glistening and breathless organ and strings that were once played thru a pair of speaker cones facing back into the void of their cabinets in a nod to the short story, 'The Enormous Space'. There follows 'Wonderland', the finale to Janek's exhibition soundtrack for 'Asleep At The Wheel', using location recordings made in middle of the night on a footbridge over the M3, at the bottom of J.G. Ballard's street. It's a twenty minute daydream of a piece, simulating a curious sort of suburban somnambulance in its hazy tone streaked with transient noises.

HHV Mag
>
LP1 Music to enjoy without hesitation. A unique ambient balance. [full review here]
LP2 Two long pieces of epic proportions. A monumental sounding grave inscription . . [full review here]

Darla.com US Distributor
>
Top 2&3 in the six week sales chart


Monsieur Delire

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"Delicate experimental ambient pieces where instrumental motifs drift over moiré drones. These albums compliment each other."


Ambientblog

>
"Janek Schaefer has the gift of presenting well-respected, serious sound-art, with a deep emotional appeal."


Ondarock

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"a record that confirms once again the incredible density and intensity of the soundscapes of Schaefer,
as well as his status as the undisputed champion."


The Wire
>
Feb 2015

Musique Machine here
>
"I have nothing but good things to say about Janek Schaefer's music"


Chaindlk here
>
I expected so many feedbacks for the couple of releases that well-known sound artist Janek Schaefer dropped on Dekorder in the end of last year, particularly as a consequence of the fact they followed the critically acclaimed "Lay-By Lullaby" on 12k, that I thought that Janek didn't really need another one. This is the main deducible reason I've not spoken about them before. I can surmise it could depend by the fact that there are many reviewers who keep on focusing on the reputation of labels: both 12k and Dekorder are two really good imprints, but someone keeps on thinking that Dekorder stuff is less accessible than 12k's one, whereas both labels manage to diversify styles of their outputs within their niche. I hope there are some available copies so that I can comfortably state that it's never too late! 'Unfolding Luxury Beyond The City Of Dreams' is the first of this combo (and maybe the easiest to listen) and the title suggests the idea which glue together seven tracks whose inspirational sources are remarkably different, in spite of their stylistical homogeneity - an enjoyable and soothingly inspiring amalgamation of ambient and found sounds -. The theme and the intent of the album is the rendering of an authentic representation of an urban context behind the misleading flamboyance of luxurious life, but a number of event departs from this spine to feed the sonic imagination of Janek, including two tribute to gone people: Janek's brother-in-law Sir John Tavener seems to greet and smile to Janek from another blissful dimension on the opening "White Lights Of Divine Darkness", while British jazz composer Johnny Dankworth relives in the ethereal "Coda", which got built over old tapes by Johnny himself. The main contacts with outer world occur on the "mundane" track "Unfolding Honey", which got composed by Janek for the installation "Future Beauty, 30 years of Japanese Fashion" held at The Barbican Gallery in London, feauturing some garments by Issey Miyake, and a couple of tracks, which got linked to Janek's previous output "Carpenters": "Skyline Ascending", where he reprised a piano loop from that album that got overlapped by layers of sounds taken by a recorder inside an helium balloon while floating in the clouds over the city while som raindrops were falling, and the final track "Beyond", where piano loops got matched to field recordings grabbed at London's Grand Central Station before the departure of the last train, but the moments when a listener could really feel the emotional journey into the illusions of the urban environment are the orchestral drone of "Luxury" and the daydreaming enchantment that got evoked by "City of Dreams", a wonderful tune which got composed for the opening of the piece "The Mill", fed by a piano recorded live by Janek's twin arm turntable and Mark Robinson's old family piano. Excellent soundscapes!

+

The second simultaneous output by Janek Schaefer on Dekorder, "Inner Space Memorial In Wonderland", portrays the second stylistical directrix of his recent sonic research. Likewise some stuff of the twin output "Unfolding Luxury Beyond The City Of Dreams", thw two long-lasting suites - their lenght as well as their sonic nuance focusing on minimal drones will delight fans of William Basinski - derive from the re-shuffle of previously recorded stuff. The one I liked most is "Inner Space Memorial", a dedication to sci-fi novelist J.G.Ballard and part of an audiovisual commemorative tribute that got composed by Janek just after Ballard, who lived just over the river of Janek's home, passed away. Its ascensional drone, whose seemingly static tone varies inintensity by means of slight pitching, volume modulations and saturation, got premiered at Bluecoat, the contemporary arts center inside the oldest building in the historical centre of Liverpool. THere's also a connection to the inventive sci-fi novelist on the following suite "Wonderland", originally made for the finale of his exhibition soundtrack to "Asleep at the wheel", as the field recordings that got diluted in soundwaves were "made in the middle of the night on a footbridge over the M3, at the end of Ballard's street", according to Janek's own words. Janek himself didn't hide his fascination "to work out that while he was writing Crash and Concrete Island, the six lane motorway was being built right past the front of his home". Try playing "Wonderland" while driving in the night while the surrounding metropolis sounds like sleeping.