Archive for the ‘Free Music’ Category
“This set is a triumph that goes beyond the scope of mere words. It should stand as one of the year’s best.” – ALTERNATIVE PRESS
1994 — Inspired by seeing Love Spirals Downwards’ perform a black tape for a blue girl song live, Sam asked other artists to contribute their interpretations to this one of a kind compilation. Fourteen artists from the Projekt roster, guest artists from America & Europe, and even fans who create music in their home studios come together with strikingly different and beautifully personalized renditions of black tape for a blue girl’s touching ethereal-goth sound.2CD Box Set (final copies)
These are the final copies of this box set, that have been in storage for years. 2CD in jewel boxes, with 4 art cards + sticker in a nice hard box. 1994 release. Note that although they are in shrinkwrap, they have been traveling the country with Sam for ages; there might be some scuffs or dings. As mint as it gets, I suppose. 6 remaining.
Concept, design, production • Sam Rosenthal Original idea • Ryan Lum Photography • Susan Jennings Model • Anne Chen released November 12, 1994Consider joining the Black tape for a blue girl patron area. For $5 a month you get this album (download & streaming) and lots of other exclusive music. Plus you're giving a monthly contribution to help me create my art. And that's just very cool of you!
jarguna and Friends: Trapped Vol. 3 #FreeMusic 🕷️ 🕷️ 🕷️ 🕷️ 🕷️ 🕷️ Changes in the music industry (good ones!)
name-your-price download at Projekt's Bandcamp . Get it for free or donate anything if you fancy. Your funds are split between Projekt Records and Jarguna. Your contributions assist us in releasing more great music.
Sam writes: I had an interesting conversation last Saturday with some record label friends. I was riffing on the present, the future, and how easy it is to find oneself living in a past that is rapidly vanishing. I’m talking about the feelings & experiences around buying & playing a physical object; as well as creating art for this specific format.
Much of what we understood as fact has morphed into a new NOW — because of digital.
There was once a limitation on the output of our art because of the physical object it was conveyed upon. CDs & LPs restricted in a number of ways — the production schedule at our pressing plants, the lead time required by our physical distributors, the minutes-of-playing-time available, and the gotta-have-the-money-to-make-them concern.
There’s another old-paradigm issue that needs rethinking. As you know, Projekt’s Steve Roach is a very prolific artist. Why should his ever-creating mind be limited — as we all were — by the recording industry strategies of fifty years ago? These strategies rationed art; the paradigm of one-album-every-18-months was designed to allow the marketing department time to ring every penny out of a falsely finite quantity of music. Fans love the art and we want more it it! When an artist makes intriguing & amazing work, why constrict their creativity? The shift to streaming shows that once the price cap is removed, you listen to music. Lots of it!
Yes, of course I still love physical objects; and Projekt is not abandoning the CD format. When I look at the trends, though, I see the majority of our audience listens to music digitally. The royalty Projekt pays artists is now 80+% from digital, and 50+% of the total is from streaming; those numbers grow every month. I’m excited to release more music via the digital format, removing the constrictions of the old physical model.
Ultimately, the music is what we crave, not the medium that it lives on.
This all leads me to today’s new Projekt release from another prolific ambient/electronic artist — Italy’s Jarguna. Just three months ago I was writing to you about his lovely album, ;Prospettive Animiche. Today he’s back with a new digital-only collaboration, Trapped Vol. 3; 92 minutes of ambient / electronic / drone with intriguing collaborative input.
Projekt has the Bandcamp download available for FREE / name-your-price for a limited time. Go ahead and enjoy this new album!
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jarguna and Friends: Trapped Vol. 3
Border Music: 11 poems with 14 poets webbed together via vibrations generated by instruments, objects, field recordings; each using his pen to give life to his emotions. > “In just two years,” Jarguna explains, “I have produced three volumes of Trapped alongside all my other parallel musical projects. I have to thank the artists who dedicated time and trust in me. With the Trapped series I want to represent the metaphorical allusion of me as the spider and the friends, artists and groups as ‘prey’ which I trap into my ‘music web.’”
With this volume, the challenge of intertwining artists from different genres — from darkAmbient to jazz, chillout, folk — grows more complex, creating a release with diverse stylistic changes over the course of 92(!) minutes. It’s an intersection of electronic sounds (synthesizers, samples, loops, many effects) with clean acoustics (classical guitar, ethnic wind instruments, sax, and violoncello.) Together, Jarguna and his prey have created an articulated structure that is difficult to classify in any one style.
“In fact,” Jarguna continues, “I would like to use the term that Nicola Serena thought and proposed as ‘order music’ or ‘fringe music,’ as it is not pure electronic, not pure acoustics. Though I know many people would classify this style as new age, in truth I’ve never been interested in classifying; I don’t want to spend too much time to identify the genre, it’s all a bit unidentifiable — but yes, let’s say border music I really like it.”
🕷️ And what of those spiders that grace the covers of all three releases in the Trapped series? Jarguna has thoughts! “There are very few people who know how to appreciate some animals like a spider, which like others such as snakes and reptiles create a sense of disgust, horror, we can say an atavistic terror. Primordial! I love them and am literally amazed. Without these beings the food chain would break; there would not even be the decomposition of the organic material of the plants which thanks to spiders split and transform into fertile ground. The spider, despite being of small stature, is a formidable predator, patient and capable of organizing amazing architectures with his silk thread that is one of his main weapons: the canvas (web). I decided, metaphorically, to take the form of a spider because one of my life’s abilities is to weave canvases to trap people and situations. Bold, often brash, I capture the attention by pushing artists to meet even though they have very different lifestyles. This is how the idea of these volumes was born. I invite friends to my house and the prey does its job: it creates the canvas. My desire is to try to trap their ideas, eagerly learn their style, learn their experience. I have grown a lot thanks to all the artists who have dedicated their time for me and for these volumes. So I just have to thank my wonderful prey!”
From a David Gilmour-style guitar by Riccardo Dellocchio, to effects-packed synthesizers by Chris Russell, to jazz player Franchesco Schina allowing me to link my syntheses with his sax, Greg Moorcrof with percussion, rattles and guitar, John Tocher and Simone Santarsiero to build drones full of emphasis and mystery, Massimo Di Nocera with his splendid and romantic acoustic guitar (he produces music for yoga practices and I have the honor of coloring his live performances with keyboards and environmental recordings. The energetic “Nightlife” piece by Nicola Serena and Alessandro Manno, Reese William with a drone generated by his voice, Giuseppe Dal Bianco taught ethnic music for 30 years in schools, enchants the senses with wind instruments of various ethnic origins, some also created by him, Ronny (aka Seetyca) we imagined wild and pristine northern forests, and not least the spectacular cello by Henrik Meierkord.
name-your-price download at Projekt's Bandcamp . Get it for free or donate anything if you fancy. Your funds are split between Projekt Records and Jarguna. Your contributions assist us in releasing more great music.
Originally released on vinyl in March 1984, Tanzmusik is one of minimal synth’s top Holy Grails. Recorded in the electronic style now known as synthwave, it was the first LP from Sam Rosenthal, founder of the iconic Projekt Records label and mind behind one of the most influential darkwave acts out of the US, Black Tape For A Blue Girl.
A historic work that deserves to be torn from oblivion, Tanzmusik was completely recorded at home on a four-track TEAC-2340 with a super minimal setup (Korg Poly-61, Moog Realistic Concertmate MG-1, Boss Dr-110 and some effects). The ’84 vinyl release was limited to 250 copies with a tannish card glued to a white LP jacket; the re-release in 2012 was an edition of 500 on Italy’s Mannequin label. All physical formats are once again sold out, but the album lives on in the digital world, with a name-your-price-download at Bandcamp.
In 2012, The Big Takeover wrote: “Released at a time shortly before the forming of his band, Black Tape for a Blue Girl, the listener might well be stunned by what they hear. Instead of the dark — some may call it ‘goth’ — sounds that he would soon become famous for, Tanzmusik is a record that is oddly upbeat, somewhat poppy in nature, yet with a prog-rock heart that’s equally undeniable. It’s not quite New Wave, it’s not quite progressive, it’s not quite darkwave — but it is an interesting compilation of the ideas of a talented young man with numerous ideas in his head about directions he could go. “
Recorded when Sam was 19, the album continued in the “electronic mood-music” tradition established on three earlier cassette-only releases. With the added intrigues of the drum-computer, Tanzmusik explored the realms of electronic music that critics at the time compared to Tangerine Dream, O.M.D., Brian Eno and these days also compare to Cluster and the first Human League.
Sam writes, “When contacted about a re-issue in 2010 by Alessandro Adriani at Mannequin, I decided to remaster the album for them. After getting the digitized recordings back from my mastering guy in Canada, I discovered it wasn’t the stereo 2-track mix at all but the actual 4-track recording. Wow! I thought the multis were long gone, but here they were in pristine digital form! I remixed the album in my studio, staying true to the original – while bringing back a few instruments that were buried in the '84 mix. Sonically, the current version sounds even more incredible than it did back in 1984!”
"Before I remixed the album, I had not listened to it in probably 15 years. In my memories of the album, I thought the ambient songs were the good ones, and the synth-pop ones were the weak link. But now I think I like the synth-pop ones — like “Alone” and “We Return” — more. On the other hand, I really like that sequencer at the beginning of “The Coming Fall.” If my Korg Poly-61 wasn’t dead, I would set up that patch again and write something new around it; I still have all the notes for my synth settings for the songs. Scary. Overall, I am a lot happier with the album than I expected to be. When Alessandro got in touch with me about releasing it, I was sort of skeptical, and procrastinated a whole bunch. But when I started actually working on it, I liked it. It’s quite a nice album. Schizophrenic, but that’s OK."
Sam Rosenthal is an American artist. He is the founder and leader of the band Black Tape For a Blue Girl and the record label Projekt Records (35th anniversary in 2018). He lives in Portland Oregon with his son and cat. Black Tape For a Blue Girl — begun in 1986 after his move from Florida to California — serves as a vehicle for Rosenthal’s musical vision. Its signature combination of gothic, ethereal, ambient and neo-classical elements explores existential themes of loves lost and passions yet to come. After releasing 9 cassettes and the LP of his early electronic work prior to 1986, he developed a full-fledged band whose members revolve around Rosenthal’s subtle electronic foundation. In the last few years he has also been releasing electronic solo work under the names As Lonely As Dave Bowman and Sam Rosenthal, as well as collaborations with other artists.
Click Here for the history of Projekt's out-of-print releases, and Sam’s early electronic releases.
Over the course of seventeen solo albums and three-plus decades, San Francisco Bay-area ambient/electronic musician Forrest Fang has cultivated his surrealist blend of electronically-transformed ethnic instruments and minimalist aural environments. Today we bring you two previously unreleased tracks available for streaming and download at Forrest's Soundcloud page. The first one was recorded just 10 days ago!For John Dunn (081819) Listen here
Forrest writes: I recorded this piece after hearing recently of the passing of John Dunn, one of the early developers of generative music software for the PC in the age of DOS and Windows 3.1. I learned recently that Dunn had passed away in 2018. This piece uses only output from his generative programs, SoftStep and Bankstep. The sounds come from an old EMU UltraProteus module, which I used extensively during the 90s. (The screenshot comes from another early Dunn program for DOS called Melodia. I used Melodia on my 1997 album, "The Blind Messenger," on Cuneiform.)
Happy Belated BD, Mr. B.E. (051819) Listen Here
I missed Eno's 70th birthday by 3 days, but I belatedly recorded this piece to honor it.2 free downloads from jarguna, here
Jarguna is Italian ethno-organic-ambient sound-artist Marco Billi. Prospettive Animiche is intimate and minimalist with deep ambient characteristics. “I made this music,” Jarguna reflects, “by playing the instruments as if I were creating a mantra; what arose is a sound spiral for electronic meditation, drones for an emotional exploration, deep, low, slow, sometimes repetitive with refrains imbued with sacredness." Full album description here
Enjoy the music!
From Sam: You might wonder why I regularly give away downloads from this amazing Italian electro-ambient-drone artist. Why isn’t Projekt trying to get every possible penny from the albums we release. The answer is pretty simple: I want people to hear Jarguna’s work. I love the music he creates, I listen to it for hours and hours over here; it’s a perfect fit for fans of Projekt’s ambient side. Ok, but that doesn’t explain why it’s free. I find that any price point is an obstacle to people checking out new music from artists they aren’t familiar with. There’s so much available these days, it’s hard to get people to listen. Giving the music away allows Projekt and Jarguna to add something nice to your listening space where you can give the music time to work it’s magic on you.
That’s why I do it!
Jarguna is Italian ethno-organic-ambient sound-artist Marco Billi. Prospettive Animiche is intimate and minimalist with deep ambient characteristics. “I made this music,” Jarguna reflects, “by playing the instruments as if I were creating a mantra; what arose is a sound spiral for electronic meditation, drones for an emotional exploration, deep, low, slow, sometimes repetitive with refrains imbued with sacredness.”
Ok, there’s another reason I give albums away. Many of you are fans of the art of music, you understand it costs money (in time & energy) to create this work, and you’re generous and you want to support people who’ve dedicated their lives to creation. Thus, w hen getting a free download, many of you put in a donation. It doesn’t have to be a lot. A dollar. Five dollars? It adds up. That’s money Jarguna and Projekt split, so we can keep releasing great music.< Here's something you might not know. Prospettive Animiche is Jarguna’s 26th release! That’s a lot of wonderful music in 13 years.
2019’s Prospettive Animiche and 2016’s Fusion of Soul. These digital-only releases are name-your-price for a week at Projekt’s Bandcamp store.
“A guitar-heavy shoegaze backdrop over a beautiful female voice, hovering like a red angel and instilling both fear and devotion.” – BIG TAKEOVER #44
Sam says, "Digging through the back catalog, I noticed Mira's debut wasn't on our Bandcamp page; so I fixed that. Back in 2000, this album introduced Projekt fans to an amazing new shoegaze band with Regina's striking vocals. At the time, fans were aching for more music to follow in the footsteps of our successful early-90s act Love Spirals Downwards; with Mira they got a full rock sound and aching, heartfelt vocals. Mira followed up their debut with two additional incredible albums. For today, give their debut a fresh listen, with a crisp new download for your collection. It's brilliant!
From POST-PUNK, 2018: Definitive Dreaminess: 100 Essential Dream Pop Releases: Hailing from the bowels of Florida, Mira found a perfect home on Projekt Records, a label well aligned with dream pop, shoegaze, and ethereal music. Their (2000) debut, a transitional record, perfectly dabbled in all three styles over the course of nine original tracks and a beautifully understated cover of a My Bloody Valentine classic that sleepily traded in the noise and focused on the song’s true essence. The song “Cayman,” while written about a cat, tugs at the heartstrings in a way that few songs can, building upon itself with sweeping layers of guitar and Regina Sosinska’s sweetly detached vocals. – FD
Mira drift on a wave of dreamy, engaging female vocals. Ripples of guitars swell against shores of post-punk structures, undulating in a surging, shoegazer undercurrent.
name-your-price download at Projekt's Bandcamp
Byron Metcalf & Mark Seelig: INTENTION Weekend sale: $8 CD and name-your-price download
Sam writes: It’s hard to believe it’s already five years since Projekt released this fabulous CD! I like reminding our listeners (new and regulars) about past releases worthy of attention, and one of the best ways of doing that is with a free download. Put it on your device and listen at your leisure. Intention is an especially potent release for journey work, meditation, studying, etc. Give it a go, and add it to your regular rotation.
Intention is a totally acoustic, transcultural tour de force of multi-layered tribal-ambient rhythms, indigenous instruments, and mesmerizing soundscapes – expertly crafted to induce and support expanded states of consciousness.
Byron’s potent and spellbinding drumming and percussion merge with Mark’s haunting and beautiful bansuri flutes and Tuvan-style throat singing to create a bold, larger-than-life journey into infinite possibilities. Rob Thomas (Inlakesh) and Dashmesh Khalsa contribute aboriginal didgeridoo textures to further deepen and expand the sonic field.
Tav Sparks (author and director of Grof Transpersonal Training) writes: “With Intention Byron Metcalf and Mark Seelig have created an irresistibly powerful, aesthetic synthesis of indigenous sources and trans-cultural trance with a mesmerizing urban shamanic pulse. This CD is proof that the rhythms and sounds of the ages can be translated with respect, grace, and skill to support a broad spectrum of transformational practices, including breathwork, dance, and any modern framework celebrating journeys into expanded states of awareness.”
Peter Thelen of Expose writes: Trance music means different things to different listeners, and this latest collaboration between drummer and percussionist Byron Metcalf, and bansuri flute player Mark Seelig plus guests is a case in point where “Trance” doesn’t need to involve any electronics or amplified instrumentation at all. All but one of the five tracks feature didgeridoo, played either by Rob Thomas or Dashmesh Khalsa, with the final cut featuring guests on water pot udu and tabla. Each of the five long pieces – the shortest being just under ten minutes and the longest being well over an album side, evolve slowly and gently guide the listener into mysterious worlds of alternate consciousness, layering bansuri, digeridoo and overtone vocals (by Seelig) over a repetitive yet spellbinding bed of hand drums, rattles, shakers, and more.
The result takes a different path for each piece, but moves the listener into a tribal ambient world where sounds and feelings are folding and twisting together into something ritualistic and magical. While the overtone singing may sound like a synthesizer at times, the proceedings are a purely acoustic endeavor, merging powerful external visions with cosmic inner spaces into something of an explorative ceremony. The listener will find power and beauty among these primitive soundscapes, merging modern spirit with ancient traditions.
Please reshare. Twitter: #ProjektRecords and @ProjektRecords
❤️ ☠️ ❤️ ☠️ ❤️ ☠️ ❤️ ☠️ ❤️ ☠️ ❤️ ☠️ ❤️ ☠️ ❤️ ☠️ ❤️ This month, Projekt reprinted 4 of Aurelio Voltaire’s releases; 5 of his 6 albums are now in earth-saving non-jewel box packaging. To celebrate, we’ve put his entire Projekt catalog on sale for $10; and Boo Hoo is a free download at Bandcamp to boot! Purchase here at the Projekt Webstore, or from our Bandcamp page.
Sale runs for one week, through May 6.
Cyber Overload. Sheesh! I got so many Cybersale emails in the last week. I am sure you’ve been flooded by them as well. My apologies for adding one more to your in box. Then again, I know you’re a fan of Projekt music; you’re on this list because you’ve purchased from our webstore, our Bandcamp page, or you signed up somewhere else over the years. Thanks for your interest. So far this week, 346 of you have taken us up on the Cyberdigital 50% off sale, and 8 of you have taken the Cyerphysical 15% off coupon. I guess that’s a pretty good indicator of how digital has taken over the music business. I was interviewed yesterday for The Future of What podcast (it should go live within a week.) We discussed the changes in the record business. Each podcast features one record label person in a 45-minute interview about the record business. It was great to talk with another label owner about Projekt’s 35+ year history, and the changes we’ve seen over the years. The one thing that doesn’t change is that fans of the music keep the label alive. Giving a bit back with a discount is my way of thanking you for your interest in the cool independent music on Projekt. So for you, a few more days of our cyber specials:PROJEKT’S CYBER DIGITAL 50% OFF SALE
Digital-only 50% OFF sale at our Bandcamp store. Sale does not include Merchandise (CDs+LPs+etc). Order refunded if you purchase merch. Use checkout coupon code “cyber18”. Sale ends Friday Nov 30, Noon EST.PROJEKT’S CYBER PHYSICAL 15% OFF SALE
Get 15% off the entire Projekt webstore, excluding pre-order & new releases. Use checkout coupon code “cyber18”. Sale ends Friday Nov 30, Noon EST.WEBSTORE: FREE CD & PIN
Every $10+ order placed here at the Projekt webstore gets a free copy of the Projekt 2-CD Holiday compilation Ornamental. (That’s $10 in merchandise, before shipping) Yup! Free CD for you. Every order over $40 also gets the Projekt enamel pin for free. Both of these offers are while supplies last.
If your order total (before postage) doesn’t get to $40, you can purchase the Projekt enamel pin for just $5.
Sale does not apply at Projekt’s European webstore. However they offer fast, inexpensive shipping that might more than make up for the % difference.
from Sam Rosenthal:
Our new track “the Stars” is available as an exclusive preview at ReGen Magazine. ReGen says the song has “distinctively ethereal textures and haunting melodic atmospheres, led by the alluring vocals of Danielle Herrera.”
Read a bit of my thoughts on the creation below.
This track is from Black Tape For A Blue Girl’s November To touch the milky way album. As I started writing the song on the acoustic guitar, an 80s ethereal dream-pop vibe immediately made itself known to me, and I was intriqued. I felt I was tapping into the moody beauty we love from those artists we listened to back in the day, and that got me excited to see if I could write a song in this style. It’s not something I ever completely pulled off in the past (some pieces in the early 90s might have come close, but I wasn’t playing guitar back then, so I always came at it from a different direction.) “the Stars” is wistful, sad, hopeful. Beautiful sadness. All the things you look for in this kind of a song. I sent my backing track over to Chase Dobson, and asked him to add electric guitar and drum programming, and his lovely contributions gives the track that ringing melancholia that really centers the song in that era of sound.
When Danielle came in and brought my lyrics to life, I knew we had it. Yes! That’s one of the amazing things about making music: creating the song I’ve always wanted to hear, but didn’t yet exist. Dani would sing a line and I’d start hearing a harmony, take a second to work it out, and then we’d layer another vocal into the mix. It was spontaneous, fun, and turned out beautiful!
Lyrically, “the Stars” concerns being overwhelmed by the expectations we put on ourself, our fear of failing and doubts; but there’s a faint glimmer of recognition that we are just as we are meant to be, and that is what makes us uniquely special and uniquely ourselves.
all of this makes us what we are i love you like i love the stars we’re imperfect but that’s ok we are imperfect in every way i love you like i love the stars
You can listen at Regen. PreOrder the download, CD or LP at our Bandcamp page, and Projekt’s website. In Europe, you can save on shipping by ordering from Projekt’s European Website. The album will be available for streaming at all the usual sites, next month.
This track is exclusive at ReGen’s website.To touch the milky way schedule update
For those of you who have already preOrdered the album, there have been some more delays at the vinyl pressing plant which pushed the album back from it’s original release date. I’m really sorry about this, but unfortunately the vinyl process is filled with unexpected detours. I am in daily contact with the plant. More soon.Pittsburg special
PS: The ad on the right in the ReGen screen shot is for an October 27th Pittsburgh PA show featuring Aurelio Voltaire. The bill includes Athan Maroulis’ NOIR. As you recall, Athan was the vocalist on Black Tape For A Blue Girl’s 2009 release 10 Neurotics, and he was also with me on the shows we played around teh album, including our 2nd appearance at Germany’s Wave Gotik Treffen festival in 2011. More info on the Pittsburg show.Ashes in the brittle air free download
Every now and again, I like to make a past album available as a name-your-price Bandcamp download. I know many of you purchased the ashes in the brittle air CD in the 80s and 90s, and likely never got around to ripping it into your computer. Save yourself the time and go grab it for free. The CD is available for $10.
Margaret N sent me this message just minutes ago, after downloading the ashes album at bandcamp: “Good mix of ethereal and ambient. Thanks for bringing this one back to light!”
#RTPlease — Could you help. I’m just one guy trying to spread the word about my art. You probably have friends who enjoy dreampop, ethereal, darkwave music, right? They might not know that BlackTape is still recording. You could brighten their day by introducing them to “the Stars.” Please share the link to the ReGen preview page or share ReGen’s Tweet. I really appreciate your help.