Every once in a while I come across a label that somehow wasn't on my radar and that just blows me away. Goaty Tapes is a prime example. Goaty are making some amazingly beautiful tapes, even for a subculture where labor-intensive, obsessively designed objects are the norm. Color, texture, shape and size are all utilized to incredible effect. And the music represented on the label is nice cross section of the fringe scene right now, ranging from song-leaning to fairly abstract, artists both domestic and international.
CAETHUA/ANCESTRAL DIET SPLIT - GOATY TAPES
I've been a Caethua fan for a while now (here's an interview I did for Foxy Digitalis) and was excited to hear what she was up to. Her past stuff played the murky folk game -- stacked-up vocals, dirt reverb, vignetted grime-scapes -- this tape is a new leaf. Sun or ice, the tone is bright and pure, an electric pattern backed by flowing organ and bird calls. Then a wisp of golden folk song before sudden dusk and menacing collage sounds. One long track, makes me think of Linda Perhacs. Ancestral Diet on the flip play it much simpler -- a hovering drone opens onto voice and piano mantra, tape speeds become vague and then back to drone. Nice. The Caethua side is one of the best things I've heard all year, and the packaging is pretty stunning. $7
MUDBOY - GOATY TAPES
Three tracks, first a synthesizer meditation. Subtle shifts in texture and dynamics work to great effect. Simple and confident, free of junk. Two starts with Eno sounds, then pulls them into dissonance. Dips, warbles, becomes the third track, a throbbing, sea-sick, heavily manipulated organ-grinder's song. $7