We wanted to let everyone know that we’ve added and will be continuing to add lots of product to the USED & SINGLE COPY area of the SOUNDSWIM store, so stop by and check out the latest items and be sure to check back regularly for ongoing additions! We also have some restock items on the way, so look for those to be arriving soon as well.
During the recent move of the hypnos.com domain to a new server, this blog and the Hypnos Forum were both “broken” and inaccessible.
Last week we restored the Forum, but the blog took a bit more work, due to the size of the database. This morning full functionality was restored here as well. Thank you for your patience while we worked through restoring the database backup and re-configuring the WordPress settings. We should have more updates for you soon!
“Originally released in 2004, Movements was one of the releases that shifted the focus of the label. Analog ambient in one way, brilliant recordings from fairly unheard of artists in another. The decision to stop clamoring from known entities to give us a release and focus on ones that shared the idea of experiments in ambient music, beautiful compositions, and a venture into a new chapter of recordings.” –infractionrecords.com
“M. Derrick’s ten compositions on this record easily qualifies as some of the most relaxing music I’ve ever had the pleasure of hearing. (The) ten tracks have separate names, but Movements comes together as one cohesive picture built from shining strings and warm, enveloping tones. ” –Brainwashed, 2004
Mini-LP gatefold sleeve. Each CD is housed in an envelope style cardstock sleeve with full artwork. Photography by Griffin Lamb. Image modification by Keith Berry & Timothy O’Donnell. Layout by Timothy O’Donnell.
“The title of Keith Berry’s double-CD set for Infraction comes with no small amount of baggage, considering how solidly tied the word “simulacra” now is to the writings of Jean Baudrillard, most obviously his 1981 work Simulacra and Simulation. Berry’s release isn’t an homage, however, though a connection could definitely be made to one of Baudrillard’s central themes, the idea that in postmodern culture artificial renderings of the real world have so thoroughly supplanted that which they’re representing that reality now imitates the model. In that 1981 text, he writes, “The territory no longer precedes the map, nor does it survive it. It is nevertheless the map that precedes the territory—precession of simulacra—that engenders the territory.” –textura.org
At the intersection between ambient, minimalism, 4th world, found sound, drone, and post-classical composition.
“Seven uneasy pieces. The duo draw the drapes of an abandoned stage set. A head(y) cinema—a space waiting for timbres to exhale; a rumble, an ominous string swell, dissonant synth shivers. Suspense—uneasy, queasy, eerie. Tension without resolution, sometimes broken—a single piano string or foot shuffle (“Ashes of America”), sometimes paused for thoughtful resonance—a violin saw (“Delicate Exit”), a distant harp (Witch Season”), a drowning string section (“Simulacromancer”). Sudden variations in volume, minimal movements in apparent stillness, define the dynamic, requiring adjustment to default distracted listening mode. A strategic deployment of silence, or rather a still resonant air left by the decay of a musical gesture, is part of this album’s unusual presence, at once delicate and weighty—part artful arrangement, part production prowess.
A Thousand Fields is a genuinely exploratory work, an ambient less ordinary, a classical more post-, a drone less prone to be blown off course, while taking you down some paths less trodden.” –igloomag.com
“This is such a classic that to review it now, 11 years on, seems completely unnecessary. Not widely acclaimed on its initial release in 1996, and unfortunately out of print for quite some time, Infraction is thankfully bringing this back to market. World Receiver ranks very near the top of best ambient albums lists, up with Eno’s On Land, KLF’s Chill Out, and Global Communication’s 76:14.
Inoue was ahead of his time with this record, incorporating field recordings seamlessly with his own analog synthesizers. Field recordings had been used for years by the time this came out, to be sure. The perfect nature of how the music plays off the recordings and the reverse on this record still possesses the capacity to amaze. The location recordings are never too location-specific, sounding like they could be anywhere on the globe. Which they might very well be, as Inoue travelled Japan, Thailand, Pakistan, Germany, and the United States, gathering his sounds. Point being that the integration sounds so completely organic, composed around each other, on a level unparalleled upon initial release.
World Receiver deserves the accolades heaped upon it since 1996. There weren’t many ambient releases that sounded like it at the time, and 10 years on, there still aren’t that many. Even Inoue himself has moved on from this sound. There is nothing like this being released today. If you don’t have it, what are you waiting for?” –igloomag,com
“This is a previously unreleased and new work from Keith Berry. Partially inspired by Koda’s ‘Movements’ full-length recording from almost 10 years ago, Berry has moved away from the computer-based compositions of ‘The Ear That was sold…’ utilizing Akira Rabelais’s Argeiphöntes Lyre software to something a bit more windswept perhaps or at times aquatic and organic sounding. Not that prior endeavors were ever easily categorized as computer-based, or sterile environments – quite the opposite. What makes Berry’s recordings so engaging, is that one is never quite sure what the source of sound is. It doesn’t matter – each piece in their own right is magnificent from the debut ‘The Golden Boat’ to the twin masterpieces, ‘The Ear That Was Sold to a Fish’ and ‘A Strange Feather’ to ‘The Cartesian Plane’ LP and now ‘Towards the Blue Peninsula.’ Berry’s recordings are the result of letting ideas take their course, revising, re-visiting and letting the works breathe.” –infractionrecords.com
“75 minutes of ethereal, drifting ambient drone, ‘Discourses Of The Withered’ introduced the essential (then) husband-and-wife duo of Celer to a wider audience. Perfect for staring out the window, full of memories and dreams of brighter tomorrows.” –forestpunk.wordpress.com
“Spencer Williams and Ryan Gracey’s 2nd full length LP as Drape on Infraction. Analog orchestras and guitar
notes that expand for minutes on end. The first two tracks on Let There Water Air are awash in a guitar and
cello haze, rising up on ‘new mountains’ like the morning sun cresting over the horizon. When it gets quiet,
as in with the opening of ‘Interiors’, it is a stark-like Cage piano piece with the sounds of the piano
repair shop these tracks were recorded in captured like bits of dust. The buzzing of a not too faraway
guitar still makes it’s presence known, but it is the slooow melody of textural piano that is the centerpiece
here. Where Drape in the past has blended noise AND ambience, here the noise is weighted, perforated and the
light is allowed to filter through.
All filters aside, Let There Water Air is Drape shining brightly. Balance and restraint – the soft noise of
guitar, the melodic anchor of carefully chosen piano notes, the occasional metallic reverb and hum, even a
cacophonous (relatively) piano hammering (courtesy of Doug McDiarmid of Why?), and the entwining of guitar strings with cello strings. ” –infractionrecords.com
“The recording was dead. A lifeless piece of audio ‘lost’ (filed) on a dusty hard drive and purposely dropped under a nameless ‘untitled’ folder. The men and women of the Zimiamvian Night collective were content to move on, record more pieces, capture other lights, and bathe in distant ambiences far, far away.
The Wolf (indeed his real name) caught word of this abandoned audio and offered to inject some life, and perhaps revive what was left behind. After careful listening, tape splicing (uploading) and painstaking attention to the neverending, everlasting drone notes, blowing wind and dappled environmental samples – a new recording emerged and is now presented here. Alive and well.
Zimiamvian Night 3 is the collection over 2 discs of the before, after and in-between. It is meant to document this transition and serves as a reference point to the story that spans years, the accidental audio diary passively collected on tape and the mysterious end result.” –infractionrecords.com
“Keith Berry’s The Ear That Was Sold to a Fish is one of those albums whose inner life and fertility is compelling evidence that Drone is not only alive, but with designs on immortality. The artful construction and architecture of this post-minimal space drone suite shows how spare means can be harnessed to rich ends, making it one of the most engrossing records of the year – whether 2011 or 2005.
Stoughton mini-lp gatefold CD sleeve, cardstock inner sleeve envelopes. Design by Timothy O’Donnell.” –infractionrecords.com
“This is a beautiful yet serious record. It is ambience, but not ‘simply’ ambient. These are cinematic tracks begging for a narrative, often invoking the skeletons of stories with sounds of footsteps, rain, winds, waves, fire and animal life (birds?) alongside metals and the odd machine. The sound is almost always a bit grand and roomy, as if reverbing off of the sky and thickly layered with varied-pitch tones and drones which often become so much a part of the soundscape that they become the foundation of its lushness, sometimes building tension, sometimes delivering an other-worldy, floating quality. As I listen to some of these tracks, I am reminded of times in my childhood during weather warnings when I stared at a dark sky, both menacing and terribly compelling, watching it roil too close to the ground where I stood.” –infractionrecords.com
“Over three years in the making, Anthropology Vols. 2 & 3 continues from Anthropology Vol. 1 CD and the Anthropology Extras. Epic sweeping ambience with layered drones punctuated by piano interludes. Anthropology Vols. 2 & 3 features 25 tracks and over 140 minutes of all new material. Housed in a 6 panel digipak with cardstock slipcase. Design by Loren Dent & Timothy O’Donnell. Limited to 400 copies.” –infractionreords.com
The overall sound of ‘The Ghost Ship’ and ‘The Last Leaf’ is simple to describe—the tones of a piano are stretched to the horizon line; long, lingering sounds, the fluttering threads of them in the wind, drifting like subtle perfumes, a dream language culled from a very familiar instrument. In its way, it is also a kind of Mandelbrot image—the briefest segments of the tracks can be listened to (like Eno’s Neroli or Thursday Afternoon) to get an accurate idea of the whole. However, the magic of Piano Text is that, when taken as a duo of suites, the larger forms of the piece are revealed to be a classical composition of the utmost drama, suspense, nuance. It is, indeed, the music of the inexplicable dreamworlds we all travel to during sleep.
This is an album that must be listened to—no words can adequately describe how spellbinding the music is, how staggeringly elegant and tantalizing the world created within becomes with the simple touch of the ‘play’ button.” – Brian Bieniowski (Asphalt Eden)
“Two deep and hypnotic longform drone pieces by Halation, the working name of Hiroshi.He is influenced by Andrew Chalk, Taiga Remains and David Tagg and this is his first release.”Halation gives off a flat-on-back eyes-to-skies drowsy air with its long drawn out tone-rays. Highly amorphous in strategy, a purist ambient Enovian ethos a la Thursday Afternoon may suggest itself. On occasion, clusters of notes flicker within the freefloating drone, mirroring the eponymous halation effect – transient morning brume, or light refracted through water vapour rendered blurred.” –databloem.com