Discover more from Tone Glow
Tone Glow 095: Our Favorite Music, January-April 2023
Tone Glow's writers highlight the music they enjoyed during the year's first four months
A few times throughout the past few years, I have been asked by editors to change specific facets about articles I’d written for reasons related to SEO, clicks, and accessibility for a mainstream audience. While I can understand the intention, hearing such things makes my blood boil, especially when it requires forsaking one’s integrity. Such an experience happened recently, and while it all worked out, I’m just glad that I still have this space on Tone Glow for both myself and my fellow writers to muse on whatever they want, in any fashion they want. The amount of publications that have shuttered in 2023 alone is horrific, and I frankly don’t see any way forward unless major changes happen. In the meantime, we’re just gonna keep channeling the spirit of the blogosphere days. Below, find 39 different albums and songs we enjoyed throughout the first four months of the year, be they new or old. —Joshua Minsoo Kim
Larry Wendt – 1983-2002 (Why Keith Dropped the S, 2023)
Larry Wendt is one of the all-time great sound poets, and this compilation is doing good work by making his ’80s material more widely available. On the narrative end of things, his discography is full of tales of the nascent Silicon Valley culture in which he was firmly embedded. Some string together fictive anecdotes of home tech nerdom that range from the dryly satirical to eerily poignant (“The South Bay Homebrew Inventors Club”); many narrate surreal horrors or dystopic near-futures that emerge from those same technologies (“Modem”). Wendt’s deadpan delivery is an essential part of what makes his pieces compelling, as it lends itself to the sorts of compression, phasing, delay, and other subtle ways he processes his voice. Key plot details are reflected by changes to the soundscape, in the manner of a deft radio play.
Many of Wendt’s other compositions riff on the language of advertising, often taking the form of speculative advertisements. A standout in this department is “You Can Change It All You Want,” which takes a seller’s script for a digital word processor and chops it up so as to repeat and segue erratically, embodying in its cut-and-paste structure the narrator’s encouragement that, with your newfangled word processor, you can delete, rewrite, and edit as much as you want—in any way you want. The juxtaposition between the modest proposal of the base text (“it’s a typewriter, but more convenient!”) and the novel directions—including those at the edge of coherency—that digital manipulation opens for the very composition of texts (and the ways in which they’re read) is an ironic and incredibly effective way of orienting the listener toward the possibilities for sound poetry latent in the techniques afforded by consumer cassette technology in the ’70s and ’80s. The strength of Wendt’s work lies in its engagement with the formal properties of a medium that played as important an ancestral role to modern consumer-oriented audio software (e.g. DAWs) as sampling did, thereby granting that work implications that unfold far beyond his own milieu. —Jinhyung Kim
Michelle Lou - HoneyDripper (Carrier, 2023)
I have a long personal history with Michelle Lou’s music, and in particular a deep fondness for her piece HoneyDripper. I first heard HoneyDripper in 2016 and was immediately seized. Have you ever had the experience of seeing someone you don’t yet know and in spite of this, feeling a deep sense of familiarity towards them, knowing somehow that they would be important to you? Many of my deepest friendships were preceded by this sensation—it’s enough to make you believe in ghosts or past lives! My first encounter with HoneyDripper was one of the few times this has happened with music: I felt a sudden connection to this work, sensing that there was more to come, that the piece and the person would hold an importance in my life. From 2017-2018, Michelle was my composition teacher—since then she’s become a dear friend and collaborator. Despite the evolution from mentor to friend, when I listen to HoneyDripper, performed here with rigor and commitment by Mattie Barbier and Weston Olencki, I find my ears drawn back to something pedagogical, transported into the role of student once more.
With HoneyDripper, I find my ears attending first to the form. The piece works with a seemingly impossible formal simultaneity, one where vertical blocks of material somehow unfold the horizontal aspect of time. It’s like a transposition between states of matter, as if a massive block of marble were dropped on the ground only to begin flowing like water on impact. The piece cycles through the presentation of singular and complex materials, but on further inspection, the materials aren’t really singular—are they? Each block, or module, is like some shifting perspective on a single object: it’s not that the materials are different, but rather, that the conditions under which they are presented, through which we encounter them, are changed.
As a student Michelle would tell me that my work needed to be longer; she said that when working with materials of a certain complexity an increased amount of time was required in order to process them, to properly perceive them. In this sense, we start to better understand the form of HoneyDripper—it’s the result of a single sound, a single material, extruded and spilled out across its formal container. The horizontal aspect of time is literally set in motion by the material itself and thus becomes indistinguishable from the substance of sound.
In my first lesson with Michelle we made a score. I was having trouble planning a new piece and she suggested that we make a map, a pictorial representation of the form together. Michelle was not a prescriptive teacher and instead showed me how she would sketch the piece if it had been hers. Whenever I hear HoneyDripper, I see those blocks taking shape on the page, but in relation to my music. And once again, I feel the horizontal aspect of time slipping, distorting as time fades into memory, as memory fades into sound, which fades into pencil marks on paper, which over time completely fade away. —Dominic Coles
Jack Callahan & Jeff Witscher – Stockhausen Syndrome (FLEA, 2021) + ISSUES (FLEA, 2022) / Alex Brown & Splash Blade – Live at Static Age Records (COPYRIGHT420, 2023)
Listening to Live at Static Age Records, I couldn’t help but think of the music of Jack Callahan and Jeff Witscher, whose work operates in an ostensibly similar mode of memetic hyper-referentiality. On Stockhausen Syndrome, Callahan and Witscher ensconce their samples in Max/MSP patches that exaggerate the contours of the original audio by way of reactive orchestrations that revel in dissonance; on ISSUES, patches serve the simple purpose of defining triggers for samples, generating a collage whose sequence—and all its concomitant serendipities of tone and meaning—represents only one of a nigh-infinite number of possible arrangements of the same set. Both are instances of an uncompromising drive to sublate memetic (i.e. highly referential and semantically supercharged) material into a purely formal, syntactic register. Of course, recognizing references in the first place is an essential part of the listening experience—without this, there’d be little making sense of it. But this is essential only insofar as that recognition makes the push toward aesthetic autonomy (via a meaning-agnostic formalism) all the more jarring in its audacity. On Stockhausen Syndrome, this produces moments of intense discomfort, humor, and even pathos; on ISSUES, where far sparser samples punctuate recordings by the artists’ friends of answers to (often personal) questions, it yields a contemplative distance that neutralizes both the usual viscerality of meme-recognition and the vulnerability of individual testimony, compressing them onto the same plane. These divergent outcomes of Callahan and Witscher’s radical formalism speak to particular extremes one can encounter in the course of internet-mediated existence: affective overstimulation and the dissociative atomization of personhood (one’s own and others’).
Clarifying the lineages of computer music and aleatoric composition that inform the works above helps to place Alex Brown and Splash Blade on a distinct branch, despite superficial kinship. The latter’s memetic citations are governed by an aesthetics inherited from plunderphonics and post-vaporwave; this means the process of sound assembly is collage in a stricter sense: samples and other building blocks are relatively free-standing and overlap or abut so as to avoid large swathes of negative space. Unlike Callahan and Witscher’s music, this greater legibility and density encourages the listener to read, in however scattered a fashion, for meaning; memetic referentiality is left in rather than sublated into a hermetic formalism, making it an open instead of closed system. This openness manifests as the freedom—in the wake of surprise and laughter—to mull on the implications of a reference or chain of references before another jolts one back into the present tense of the text. It feels both random and structured in the same way internet-surfing does: highly unpredictable, yet undeniably a trace of whatever networked form online culture possesses. If Callahan and Witscher push the listener (with admittedly remarkable aesthetic rigor) to the burnt-out terminus of information overload, Brown and Splash Blade suggest a mode of navigating that surplus, which feeds it back into a living flow of experience. —Jinhyung Kim
Elysia Crampton Chuquimia ft. Joshua Chuquimia Crampton - Live Set (2020)
The lilting three-beat rhythmic cell of huayno propels this wondrous music forward; this is above all a tracing or documentation of that cell’s journey through a twisted gauntlet of feedbacking, flanged circuitry, a maze of subtle recontextualizations and realignments akin to the overlapping three-track interplay of the most heat-warped Screw tapes. What appears, on first glance, as amateurish jank—manually triggered one-shot tags, blown-out basement guitar lines, arrhythmic chordal stabs—reveals itself to be the unfolding of a luminous and impossible ritual, a chaotic spinning and weaving of everything out of nothing. In a way, this act of conjuring is the hope and drive inherent in all music: the mute objectivity of the technical and structural apparatus—equipment, performers, space—only speaks to a tiny fraction of the near-limitless possibilities, potentials, and contingencies that can, without warning, swoop in and change everything. A work of such clear, decisive vision could only be the product of a torturous path of constant experimentation and failure: here we see the crystallization of such a life effort, of risk begetting reward. —Sunik Kim
Kasongo Band - Gejo (1990, Gramma)
Though from Zimbabwe all, the original seven members of Kasongo Band originally met while in a refugee camp in Tanzania as members of the ZANLA People’s Choir, then struck out on their own after the ceasefire in order to record and play their own shows. Their time in Tanzania had exposed them to music from all over Sub-Saharan Africa and they became enormously popular as one of the first Zimbabwean bands to bring those influences into the country. As veterans of the Zimbabwe War of Independence they were especially popular with veterans and active soldiers.
Gejo was recorded over a decade later, after the original bandleader Ketai Muchawaya left to form his own rival group, The Simba Brothers, and singer Knowledge ‘KK’ Kunenyati was promoted to bandleader. Kunenyati later described this change with the following words: “My real aim was to take over the leadership of the band and get composer’s fee which was the greatest chunk of the royalties which I eventually did.” A fierce rivalry ensued: at the behest of a crooked promoter, The Simba Brothers would go on to play all of the same venues that Kasongo Band played, but on the day before or after.
Gejo betrays none of that complicated history to the uninitiated listener—it is simply a perfectly formed 35 minutes of music. It’s aggressively upbeat, bright, and fast-paced, and people familiar with the history can trace the sounds on Gejo back to the Congolese kanindo and rhumba they were exposed to way back in Tanzania, or you could call it “Hawaiian Shirt Music” like my coworkers do when I play it on my little boombox at work. It is, emphatically, music for dancing and celebrating life. —Samuel McLemore
Tank Jr. - Autism House (self-released, 2023)
Florida-based producer Tank Jr. dabbles in a vast panorama of styles—gorge, speedcore, footwork, and ambient folk instrumentals, among others—that all chatter and shriek with a trademark distortion that slams headphones and dancefloors face-first into concrete. Autism House, her newest release, is a compilation of her riffs on the buzzy, obnoxious electro house that dominated the festival EDM of the early 2010s: think old Knife Party, but sharper, heavier, wittier, and somehow more brick-walled. The trick of Tank Jr.’s approach is that it channels both the affection and gentle shame of musical nostalgia, of casting a fresh eye over old favorites; it’s a loving paean to brutish irreverence, warping Bee Gees acapellas and Crazy Taxi samples into a brain-melting goo of noise that doesn’t miss a single opportunity to go as hard as humanly possible. —Maxie Younger
CFCF - Never Going Home (BGM Solutions, 2023)
The solution to feeling self-conscious about dancing is to start dancing and never stop. Your body will ease into the kineticism, naturally accumulating serotonin. The dance floor doesn’t judge you, it has no lord or master. CFCF didn’t make “Never Going Home” as a DJ, he made it as a raver. It begins in a wonky trance, flitting to and fro, positioning itself as “braindance” for the first 3 minutes before unveiling the curtain as a big-room crowd-pleaser. Continuing with the vein he explored on Memoryland, CFCF fully embraces the Nokia ringtone electronica that was so dominant at the turn of the century, when Underworld packed stadiums like they were the Stones. Shimmering coos from the Vocaloid known as “Troy” makes you ascend into orbit as CFCF sends the neverending Y2K bug through our ears. —Eli Schoop
Mammo - Type Null / Arcology (Nduja, 2020)
This is a double-tracker from obscure producer Mammo, on the equally obscure Nduja label. I have no clue as to who’s behind this project, but what really counts is the gorgeous Detroit vibes on these. Its proper first wave techno: sweeping, beautifully melodic, soulful, with a hint of aching melancholy. “Type Null” starts out with swinging 909 drums and a deep, pitch-enveloped pulsing bassline, as wide, sweeping strings envelop the rhythmic section. They slowly ebb and flow across the track’s duration. “Arcology” has a slightly stepping rhythm, with an earthy, rotating bassline-arp, soothing delayed keys, staggered 909 rides and a sea of mysterious, floating pads cascading in the background. Truly timeless tracks. —Vincent Jenewein
Lolina - Face the Music (Relaxin, 2022)
Very little can top peak Lolina. Live in Paris, Lolita, and The Smoke are some of my all-time favorite records. Her output since 2018 has been somewhat hit-or-miss for me, though: Who Is Experimental Music? and Fast Fashion are gripping in spurts—the latter more so—but at the end of the day, they feel like research projects with mixed outcomes. While Face the Music is an ostensible return to form (in an idiomatic as well as literal sense), it also bears some of the fruits of that research; these two aspects in concert are what make the album compelling. The title track exhibits the most novelty, resituating the instrumental palette of The Smoke in a looser, almost improvisational context; Lolina’s voice, with its distinctively vacant affect, threads together an ensemble of drums, bass, marimba, and electric piano in a manner that meanders with swagger. Of all the songs in her oeuvre that regard music itself with a coy reflexivity—“Murder,” “Mark Ronson’s TED Talk Intro,” “Music Is the Drug” (a later track on the record), etc.—“Face the Music” is the one that best embodies that questioning in the very shape of its sound. “Forget It Left Bank” is the other standout here, taking the stuttering glitch explored at length on Who Is Experimental Music? and Fast Fashion and giving it a rhythm and structure that generates the sort of forward momentum that made her song-oriented work so infectious. While Face the Music looks back about as often as it looks ahead, I'm crossing my fingers in the hopes that a new era may be lying on the horizon. —Jinhyung Kim
AyooLii - “Shmackin Town” (self-released, 2023)
There’s some interesting stuff happening over in Milwaukee. It’s not a city as steeped in hip-hop history as Houston or Memphis, but the volume of music coming out of the Badger State lately is almost enough to make up for decades of lost time. AyooLii has been particularly prolific, clawing himself into minor internet fame and generating dozens of micro-viral moments on TikTok with a collection of songs numbering in the hundreds already, despite only hitting the ground running in 2022. You don’t need to be great at math to intuit that he’s probably not spending a ton of time on each song, and possibly even less time on the music videos which mostly feature the fairly drab backdrop of his barren apartment, mostly devoid of furniture, and recurring props like a power drill that he seems to find hilarious to brandish like it’s a loaded gun. “Shmackin Town” feels like it was crafted in the spur of the moment, with seconds from conception to execution from the starting point of: “wouldn’t it be funny as fuck to make a stupid little song that interpolates ‘Funkytown’?” And wouldn’t you know it, he was right. —Shy Clara Thompson
9ina & Bidney Blood – “Heavy Steppers Remix” + “Back 2 Back” (self-released, 2020)
Columbus is my hometown. Even when I was a kid, I used to joke that Ohio was the platonic ideal of undistinguished statehood, unassuming in both shape and character. And at the dead center, Columbus: equidistant from Cincinnati (they had U.S. history and Skyline Chili) and Cleveland (they had LeBron and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame); several hours from Chicago, Detroit, and D.C., depending on whether you went West, North, or East. We had college football, but I’ll give you one guess as to how much I cared. Ohio wasn’t even peak Americana—you had to go a little deeper into the Midwest for that.
The funny thing is that while I definitely felt the confinement of Columbus’s cultural and geographic limbo, I also always took a degree of pride in it—if I ever made it in the world as a kid from Columbus, whatever the hell that might mean, I’d have no one to thank but myself and the people I knew and loved. It’s a bit silly, but I still feel that way whenever I find out someone cool is from my hometown. If you’re in a scene there, you’re probably not riding anyone’s coattails—you’re keeping communities alive, or fostering new ones, or both. I love that Keith Rankin is a Columbus resident and born-and-raised Ohioan; I love that Brakence is from there, and that for the two weeks he attended OSU before dropping out, he was probably on campus at the same time as a lot of my friends. And when I first found 9ina and Bidney’s music earlier this year, I felt a deep satisfaction in knowing that my hometown easily stood toe to toe with any other Midwest rap scene. I don’t have anything deeper than that: this shit’s fire, and if you haven’t heard it, you’re missing out. —Jinhyung Kim
Don Cherry - Where Is Brooklyn? (Blue Note, 1969)
My first reaction was to say to Don, it’s in New York! I should know—I was just there. My next reaction was disappointment. Don Cherry’s third album that he made in a 10-month span for Blue Note doesn’t have the overwhelming avant-everything of Complete Communion and Symphony for Improvisers: rather than side-long suites, Where is Brooklyn? is parsed out into smaller songs, compositions. And whereas those two albums featured European players co-mingling with American artists, Where is Brooklyn? is played by an American-only quartet. So yeah, my initial reaction was disappointment. But the album is essentially “Don Cherry does Ornette Coleman” with Pharaoh Sanders instead of Coleman. And how could that be disappointing? Sax-cornet harmonies backed by Coleman’s drummer Ed Blackwell would’ve slotted happily next to the ones on The Shape of Jazz to Come, except Sanders’ hard-swinging solo on “The Thing” and piccolo solo on “Unity” are unique to him. Hopefully Don eventually found his way to Brooklyn, because wandering the museum and botanic garden there is gonna be in the running of best moments of 2023 for me. —Marshall Gu
Don Cherry & Jean Schwarz - Roundtrip (Transversales Disques, 1977/2023)
1977 would mark a crucial year in Don Cherry’s life, as the Organic Music Theatre had almost dissolved and he would focus on his new groups, Codona (a trio) and Old and New Dreams (a quartet). The former featured Naná Vasconcelos, and it was through him that Cherry started becoming fascinated with string instruments— Vasconcelos excelled at the Brazilian berimbau, a single-string percussion instrument, and it was through that experience (and working with Christer Bothén) that Cherry adopted the West African ngoni. He plays the instrument on this incredible performance at a GRM festival.
The most immediately notable facet of Roundtrip is how Schwarz’s electronics fit neatly into the mix, providing raw and rugged tones alongside traditional instrumentation and simple vocals. I’m most reminded of what Cherry says on 1973’s Organic Music Society: “We can be in tune with time, we can be a slave to time, or we can be in total aspiration, trying to catch time. There must be a fourth way—to flow with time.” The key is in how everything feels so natural in its movement and melodic phrasing, and how the “universality” of it all persists amid a clashing of different traditions. Check, for example, Michel Portal’s bandonéon on “Bando” and how its romanticism and drama transfer to the electric whirring. It’s a lovely reminder of the ongoing dialogues and connections that defined Cherry’s work as he continually evolved as a musician. —Joshua Minsoo Kim
Various Artists - Why the Mountains Are Black - Primeval Greek Village Music: 1907-1960 (Third Man, 2016)
Spin the wheel and pick any of these 28 songs at random and any notions you have of what “primeval Greek village music” might sound like will be turned on its head. I would have assumed this collection would have been more akin to Anthology of American Folk Music but with Greek lyrics, or that dimotika might sound close to rembetika, which I was familiar with going in. Instead, you’re met with a blast of high-pitched drone set to an irregular beat. This would be considered free jazz if it were played in America at the time, much of which predates free jazz anyway. Writer and ethnomusicologist Christopher C. King produced the record by remastering old 78s he found in northern Greece, and his intent was not to entertain the curious, but to show a glimpse of life in rural Greece with all of its hardships and struggles, and how the people there might respond to it. If only Third Man would spend more time releasing stuff like this than the billionth Jack White Cinematic Universe entry! —Marshall Gu
Na-Kel ft. MIKE - “Livin / Livid” (self-released, 2022)
Rewind the VHS, staggering back like a drunken gait, in and out of consciousness and staring plainly into the abyss. The man, the myth, Na-Kel Smith is a born multihyphenate, sharing credits with Frank Ocean as easily as he does Davonte Jolly and Matt Ox. His bars start interior, affirming his mom, his life, his own foibles, and then slowly but surely, he gains confidence in himself and pops off, ending his verse “still giving no fucks.”
█▓▒▒░░░BEAT TRANSITION HERE░░░▒▒▓█
Brooklyn’s finest MIKE gives his biggest city boy turn of his career: “Sorry I missed on a bad bitch being polite / hit shawty in the past, she be aight” is a far cry from the insular raps he’s known for. It’s a welcome pivot, given all the tribulations the man’s been through. Smith’s beat is woozy and stretched out with copious reverb, and you can tell MIKE definitely splurged on the gas he was thinking about. “You be capping the most / you need a hijab.” The boy MIKE is on demon time with his mans. —Eli Schoop
TrapKane x Gizwop x Young Foot Soldier - “Anyway” (self-released, 2023)
Can a song be evil? Like, ontologically speaking? I realize this is a loaded question to propose, especially considering Black men are already unfairly targeted for supposed violence and mayhem in a system that brutalizes them daily. But this song just might be evil. TrapKane, Gizwop, and Young Foot Soldier have nothing but ill intent lined up on “Anyway,” their camaraderie defined by spinning on opps with gleeful efficiency, these plain statements made in lawn chairs while rolling up. And my god, that beat would’ve started a satanic panic if it came out in 1992. Mephisto trap shit straight out of the nation’s capital. —Eli Schoop
Calamitous Skies - Demo 2023 (self-released, 2023)
I got lost in a bit of a tech-death rabbit hole a few months back—a lot of Portal and late Death, but also other stuff old and new; this compilation of the Timeghoul discography in particular is an unsung classic. Calamitous Skies' new demo opens an unexplored path for the genre in subtle yet promising ways; their cover of "Birth of a God" (from the FFVII soundtrack) contains the blueprint: they swap the 4/4 meter that lesser metal covers just graft onto a straightforward thrash groove, and instead rearrange the song in 12/8 (with a few clever deviations), making it cascade and soar with a grandeur befitting the instrumentation. It's a feat that points to the novel musical language of the demo as a whole: it blends the rhythmic density and chromatic dissonance of death metal with the gratifying heights of symphonic harmony that define many a classic accompaniment for a ’90s Japanese video game boss fight. I'm floored by how earworm-y this amalgam came out to be, and I can't wait to hear more. —Jinhyung Kim
Supernormal Kids - Supernormal Kids Party (GLARC, 2023)
Supernormal Kids Party features music from a 2022 workshop held at the incomparable Supernormal Festival. As the title suggests, we get children working with battered equipment, field recordings of the surrounding area, a girl singing “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star,” and more. The angle with this sort of music is always the same: witness the purity of creative expression! But what exactly is purity in this sense? Is it just that they can’t play any sick riffs or do anything technical? Indeed, I like the ramshackle nature of this music, but the draw of this work goes beyond its simplicity. Throughout many of these tracks, which are all incredibly short, we get an understanding of how laid-back this space was. The fact we hear parents talking with one another attests to that. Hearing that background noise is hugely important for me: we get a sense of the “world” the kids are in when making music, and how enthralling it is for them despite every adult standing around effectively babysitting. Would they ever engage in such activities and appreciate the sounds created? Probably not. And of course, even hearing this album is vastly different from being in a similar setting and making the music (which I have done several times with my niece and nephews). In hearing this, I’m reminded that I sometimes need the distance and mystique of a specific recording to provide that pleasure. Lord help me from getting jaded. —Joshua Minsoo Kim
Henry Martin - Concerto per un quadro di Adami (Creel Pone, 2023)
In the course of trying to write about one of the reissues I enjoyed most this year from Creel Pone—a prolific archival label run by Keith Fullerton Whitman that recovers lost histories of early electronic and experimental music from around the world—I got swept up reading about the life of the composer Henry Martin. Martin was a Black art critic who grew up in Philadelphia and studied English at Bowdoin before moving to New York and befriending Ray Johnson and members of Fluxus; he moved to Italy in 1965 to teach Chaucer and ended up staying there for the rest of his life, eventually settling around Bolzano (also called Bozen)—a city with a substantial German-speaking population in the Northern Italian province of South Tyrol (though he would reside at brief intervals in Rome, Venice, and New York). He spoke often with people in Fluxus, Mail Art, Nuclear Art, Arte Povera, and other conceptual art movements, contributing articles and interviews to Art International, Art and Artists, and Studio International; he also wrote books (including several on George Brecht), frequently translated others’ writings, and did occasional curatorial work before finally passing away in September 2022. As far as I know, Concerto per un quadro di Adami—first issued in 1972 as the only release by Edizioni Studio Marconi—is his sole recording.
In the winter following his passing, the Bolzano kunstverein (a kind of collectively run art space) ar/ge kunst hosted an exhibition dedicated to Martin; in an article on it, critic Rosalyn D’Mello recounts curator Emanuele Guidi’s description of Martin’s life as “testimony to what it means to practice in a kind of stillness, outside the limelight, to be part of art history and yet not be fixated about one’s place within it”; she goes on to paint Martin as “someone who seemed to possess an unequivocal understanding of the worth of his critical body of work without an excessive need for external legitimation.” Another article by Guidi and art historian Lisa Andreani frames his life this way: “to live on the periphery, to operate in a dimension of… cultural overlaps that consolidate… [a] geography of relationships is something that speaks [against] the contemporary art system.” It’s a rejection of the accretion of clout via established institutions in favor of “[b]eing a facilitator of relationships… [and] play[ing] a key role in shaping an active community.”
Reading these accounts, as well as this lovely interview by mailartist John Held Jr., gave me a strong sense of kinship with Martin. I love art and the people who make it, and I have my way with words, but I don’t want to get too deep into any art world per se. I don’t like spaces where I feel like I’m entering my art or ideas into a competition for social capital, or where the latter exerts too determining a pressure on the former. There’s freedom in a certain Goldilocks zone of marginality—one Tone Glow has afforded me in no small measure—where I get to talk with artists and write about their work just because I care about it and want to share it with others. Like Martin, “I’m good at languages. I don’t have a lot of imagination, so I use other people’s imagination.” If I had a stronger personality, I might be less prone to the pressure of competition. But Martin speaks to this point for me in his description of George Maciunas: “He was always colonizing other people’s minds. Which is okay, if the people around you are Dick Higgins, Ben Patterson, Alison Knowles, Philip Corner, or La Monte Young, who were grownups. But you don’t do that to a boy, and that’s what I was. I was just this nice kid—a nice kid that Ray [Johnson] took to places. Ray was the person I needed in my life. I did not need George Maciunas.” I, too, much prefer to be around Rays rather than Georges.
Martin's communal orientation and mindedness is readily visible in one of the texts from the memorial exhibition: a multilingual poem in German, Italian, and English he penned in 1992, dedicated to members of Fluxus he knew. It parallels the liner notes for Concerto per un quadro di Adami, which were printed in Italian, English, and French; their oblique description of the recording and its processes is clearly more akin to texts from Martin’s artistic milieu than to any proper exposition. But it does an excellent job invoking the attention and sensitivity toward language that characterize his life and work, and this quality is mirrored on the album as well: it’s sound poetry whose gentle ebb and flow of phasing and layering brings subtle and mellifluous nuance out of every word, even as the words themselves gradually blur into illegibility. I’m not sure whether or not it’s a coincidence that Creel Pone put out this reissue a mere two weeks after the exhibition on Martin wrapped up, but the timing happens to be perfect—Concerto per un quadro di Adami is just as wonderful a testament to the quiet devotion that animated his life. —Jinhyung Kim
Eric Andersen - Margrethe Fjorden (Recital, 2023)
This is a monumental release from Recital that features a dense booklet, four hours of video footage, and a CD with audio taken from filmed performances. The music is, in particular, a joy to experience in this context because it gains a mystical aura without any accompanying visuals. The 37-minute organ piece, “Stringendo,” sounds better because you know it’s coming from a shoddy recording; the room tone and sound of people coughing keep one in a headspace that allows one to understand how music can be transcendent even in the most everyday of settings. You’re witnessing the beauty secondhand—being reminded of its secondhandedness—as a way to understand more fully what it was like to experience it firsthand. And then there’s the rumble of “Vivace,” the whirring of “Adagietto,” the sacredness of “A piacere”—it’s all immediately apparent. I heard these pieces before watching the film, and the background information regarding these performances—which involved models on stilts, toy frogs hopping across pews, and a helicopter “air ballet”—are maybe best appreciated when not being able to align the story with concrete images. I love that the decision to watch the Blu-ray was so difficult. —Joshua Minsoo Kim
Eric Schmid – Live at Cafe Oto LDN (Infant Tree, 2023)
Eric Schmid can be very hit or miss. A lot of what he does attempts to critique “the art world.” But in so doing, he treads a fine line between skewering, idiosyncratic humor and the very self-indulgent expenditure of social capital he thinks he’s putting down. On Live at Cafe OTO, he treats his own self-seriousness with total sincerity; despite the indulgence, this makes the mathematical-philosophical treatise at the core of this piece strangely compelling. I’m probably one of six (if that?) people listening to this who has the sort of thoughts going through Schmid’s head here swirling about in mine on the daily: the epistemo-/onto-logical parallels and differences between various branches of knowledge and their relation to scientificity; the question of universality in the context of immanence; etc. Even if the manner in which he presents his inquires is somewhat overwrought—especially with all the verbiage drawn from analytic philosophy, which reminds me of Alain Badiou (in a bad way)—their manifestation as overlapping lines of text-to-speech amid a steady backdrop of noise grounds the text in an aural form whose relentless, cybernetic propulsion faithfully mirrors Schmid’s theoretical ambitions. —Jinhyung Kim
Sweepsculp – Sweepsculp (Nous’klaer Audio, 2021)
Ever since I got hooked on ’80s King Crimson in middle school, I’ve found music that tessellates to be exquisitely satisfying: it makes the pattern-recognizing part of my brain sink into a contented fog. The knot on Discipline’s cover represents the pleasure of that geometric balance well, but it doesn't necessarily suggest the just as delightful sense of unboundedness that kind of music generates—there’s a feeling that its sonic fabric could weave itself well beyond the borders of its runtime. I can’t think of a recent album that scratches this itch better than Sweepsculp. Its formal construction speaks for itself with greater conviction than any triangulations derived from genre: the relationship between acoustic guitar and programmed/sampled drums here is nothing less than egalitarian; the experience of listening is like following a zipper as it locks two rows of teeth together with a cozy strength. Each note rings dry and clear, and ornamental (i.e. non-continuous) flourishes are applied sparingly, highlighting the economy with which everything else is put together. These five tracks—despite their unassuming presence and brevity—each conjure long chains of variation toward a ceaselessly receding horizon. —Jinhyung Kim
Undecisive God - Archive 7: 2004 (Shame File Music, 2023)
Here’s two hours of varied recordings from Clinton Green aka Undecisive God, an Australian underground legend. I’m drawn to the absolute zero-effort art work for this, the lack of extensive background info provided, and how the majority of the tracks aren’t even listed on the Bandcamp page until you purchase the music. It’s a simple invitation: pay $7 AUD and you’ll get a trove of material that you have to make heads or tails of on your own. I like the quiet beauty of “The World is as I See It,” meditative in its oceanic ambience and glints of guitar. It’s as calming as “Can’t Get Better” is anxiety-inducing. On that track, he mischievously ruptures the space with shards of noise as different radio broadcasts (?) play, one of which is a woman that keeps repeating the titular phrase. The “Three Movements for Batman Bridge” tracks are simple, edited field recording soundscapes that capture everyday mystique while “Guitar and Feedback Study 1” is the process of him trying to attain magic through different tools. Consider Archive 7: 2004 a sonic diary that’s been thrust into the world. —Joshua Minsoo Kim
Zbyszko Cracker & MAURICIO – Shovlin’ (Grandmother’s House, 2023)
Shovlin’ is no more or less than what it says on the box: a split record where each artist’s contribution is a field recording of them shoveling snow outside their home. I’ve spun it so many times since it came out that I find myself questioning my sanity for how much cumulative satisfaction I’ve gotten out of it. This is my album of the year so far, and I won’t be able to write that many words explaining why—if you give it a listen, it’ll either hit just the right spot or pass through one ear and out the other. Here’s the best thesis I have to offer: it has something to do with the way it’s filtered. There’s very little audible outside the narrow frequency range that each track adopts to best select for the muted clipping of shovel hitting snow; it encourages one to hear the sounds less as figuration and more as pure rhythm, occupying a snug middle ground between field recording and analog noise. —Jinhyung Kim
Yukihiro Takahashi - Portrait with No Name (Eastworld, 1996)
The one-two punch of losing Yellow Magic Orchestra luminaries Yukihiro Takahashi and Ryuichi Sakamoto in such a short period of time hit me pretty hard. Death has weighed heavy on my mind this year. I was floored by the sudden news that a close friend had left me behind, and before I even had a chance to assess the damage—much less begin to chart a path forward—I was told that I lost my baby niece and nephew too. It seems silly that in the face of such major personal losses, the deaths of a couple of musicians I never knew personally felt nearly just as painful, but I handled both of them poorly. The last thing I needed was for the harsh truth of mortality to seep into my only escape from despair. Takahashi’s passing was made known in the thick of planning for two separate memorial services, so I didn’t have time to give him his flowers. By the time the world learned that Sakamoto had shuffled off, I was lucid enough to be broken all over again. I had surprise fits of crying for days as I kept his music close by.
After about a week of ritualistic mourning, I thought of Takahashi again. I was frustrated with myself—and with the world—that the response to his death wasn’t met with an outpouring of love on a similar magnitude. There were some beautiful tributes, but they came and went relatively quickly. I decided that I needed to give him some time. I’m intimately familiar with his discography spanning from the start of his career throughout the ’80s, but I’d only sampled bits and pieces beyond that. Generally, music nerds seem to agree that musicians mostly known for their work in the ’80s fall off by the following decade. I sort of unquestioningly assumed that would be true for Takahashi, despite knowing that’s not the case for either of his bandmates. In barely two days’ time, I had listened to the entirety of Takahashi’s ’90s discography; what I found is that much of his most brilliant work is scattered throughout the ten-plus releases I visited.
I was enraptured by the balearic instrumentals of his score for The Adventure of Gaku. His solo rendition of “Betsu-Ni”—a song he originally penned and performed with Steve Jansen of the band Japan—on A Day in the Next Life tugged at my heartstrings. I was floored by Mr. YT’s “Stardust Over the Town,” which has a lovely melody and stunning harmonica solo by blues harpist Koichi Matsuda. Most of all, though, Portrait with No Name left the strongest impression on me. Songs like “Donna ii Koto” showed how adaptable Takahashi remained well into the ’90s, rolling the emerging sounds of contemporary R&B into his craft.
Ultimately, the exercise was good for me. The Yellow Magic boys opened my eyes to several dozen parallel universes, seemingly connected in some way or another to everything I love the most. It’s comforting to know that even when someone goes, they don’t leave us alone. You’ll find something new to appreciate every time you look inside the box where their memories lay down to rest. —Shy Clara Thompson
Various Artists - In a Moment… Ghost Box (Ghost Box, 2015)
Celebrating 10 years of Ghost Box, this generous two-disc set has been tenderly compiled so that it functions as a great introduction to the label’s roster, yes, but it’s also sequenced magnificently so that mid-60s’ psychedelia (“Hey Let Loose Your Love”), synth-pop (“Almost There”), big beat (“Boiling Point”), and dub-techno (“The Mirror Ball Crack’d”) can dance together in the same thread. A lot of that magic is from the short songs that form connective tissues between these comparatively larger set pieces, including those by Broadcast’s own Steven Raj and label co-founder Julian House’s the Focus Group (who collaborated with Broadcast). The effect is exactly what the label promises: a ghost box. A literal box of black and white memories, didactic sci-fi shorts, and idealistic futures. They’re all ghosts now, moored in this haunted house we call reality. —Marshall Gu
Kanashimi – Yamiuta (self-released, 2023)
I stopped studying classical piano after I finished high school. I can’t play my old repertoire anymore, but from time to time, if I find a piano, I’ll noodle around with a few chord progressions. I never had any jazz training, so my improvisational ear is rooted in basic functional harmony; I used to play in CCM bands at church and liked to learn pop songs by ear, both of which reinforced that orientation (I’m a total sucker for a good i – VII – VI to this very day). I’ve always felt this to be limiting in a performance context: I lack the skill to improvise in a way that would add much heft or texture to an ensemble dynamic; the harmonic palette I know my way around is bread-and-butter for something like emo or post-rock, but those chords are interesting in those genres mainly because of the instruments they’re played with—and piano usually isn’t one of them. That, along with how far I’ve strayed by now from music that uses any sort of conventional pitch organization, often has me feeling like my piano playing is a sad, vestigial thing—the lingering trace of twelve years of work that I left long ago to rust and molder in the attic.
Listening to Yamiuta has helped allay that feeling lately. Each song centers around a funerary piano dirge that squeezes every single last drop of mourning out of the most heartrending progressions functional harmony has to offer; the guitar, drums, and vocals round out this edifice with a black metal coat of paint. It sounds like something I could arrive at if I sat down at a piano with the intent of making myself cry, and it has the same air of plodding cyclicity that I might lose myself in during such a session. There are clear, arguably narrow boundaries Yamiuta stays within in terms of complexity, variety, and mood, but that’s besides the point: the point is to get caught up in that slow, churning, melancholic eddy. The music is wholly dedicated to an unremitting pathos—a distillation of the kind I sometimes still have the power to conjure with my fingers. —Jinhyung Kim
Orchid Dealer - Soft Reactions in the Sun (Enmossed, 2023)
Nuovo Testamento - Love Lines (Discoteca Italia, 2023)
I have this insane, deterministic theory that the best darkwave is produced in the hottest climates. I don’t know: probably something to do with the cultural background radiation of stylish film soundtracks. But the theory derives, mostly, from my weakness for Los Angeles’s premier darkwave groups across the past five years—the likes of VR SEX, Riki, Mareux, Drab Majesty, Them Are Us Too/SRSQ (ish). Nuovo Testamento’s Love Lines doesn’t really try to be as goth as the names I just rattled off—it’s more straightforward Italo-disco than its own predecessor, even—but it’s captured me above the others all the same. Love Lines is a clean half-hour of Gina X Performance sexiness and glittering drum machines and heart-stoppingly earnest, immediate pop. Yeah, sometimes it still basically sounds like it could’ve just come out of the ’80s, a sound we don’t exactly have a dearth of under the great modern post-punk umbrella, and the lyrics aren’t a lot more innovative (I'm drowning, baby, throw me a line/Stuck in the motion of your ocean tides). But I can’t put this on in the background; every single track wakes me up. It could be the gloomiest day in the world here, a thousand miles from Nuovo Testamento’s hometown, but I put on “Heat” and feel the desert wind across my face—all the urgency and atmosphere, all Sonoran heat and neon brightness against the night. —Zhenzhen Yu
soft tissue - gush (GLARC, 2023)
soft tissue remain one of the best electronic acts of the moment, constantly finding ways to transform the aesthetics of turn-of-the-millennium glitch and microsound into arresting romanticism. In today’s never-ending stream of experimental music, this means their work provides a different sort of ambience, one that doesn’t allow for easy comforts. Still, the beauty is evident. Check “grain,” which has zero pretense: its processed blips could’ve easily veered into kitsch, or coalesced into a dense pool of sound, but it sort of just exists, like a MIDI recording of suikinkutsu. The entirety of gush is like this: no moment becomes overly melodic, overly heady, or overly anything. The added benefit is that there’s casual humor and delight in these sounds, akin to the electronic panel at the beginning of Jacques Tati’s Playtime. I’ve become increasingly annoyed by the sort of Statement that music must make to be noticed by publications, and how people’s expectations of “greatness” are far more conservative than they realize. In this sense, the minimalism of gush is a reprieve. —Joshua Minsoo Kim
dj interior semiotics – 2015-2022 (self-released, 2023)
When I first hit play on 2015-2022, I was completely knocked (or rather, clobbered) off my feet—“byob” hits like a ten-ton truck. As I made (and laughed) my way through the compilation, I grew more and more impressed with each track; dj interior semiotics had clearly spent a non-insignificant amount of time and labor reconfiguring disparate parts of my childhood into trash-club bangers. Each song deploys a complex interplay between two experiential registers: (1) that of the original song and whatever role it might play or associations it might have in a listener’s memories, (2) that of a lexicon of memetic vocal soundbytes and compressed kicks, snares, claps, etc. that define a rather specific niche of ’10s internet music; another point of reference might be those viral songs that take junior-millenial or gen z pop culture and trap-ify or club-ify it. Every single cut here is a plunderphonic experiment in warping space and time; in this way, the music possesses affinity with the work of Elysia Crampton Chuquimia—albeit in an orientation toward the hyper-parodic and radically unserious.
The results of these experiments are varied, but all are delightful. Many tracks, such as “green day,” “ocean avenue,” “i miss u,” “nirvana im so happy lol,” dissect emblems of overwrought teenagerdom so as to allow the listener to both laugh at and reclaim their younger self. “halo 3” and “jackass” take irreverent media and fold that irreverence back in on itself, while “wow i cant get sexual” and “jizz in my pants” take songs that were already memes and compound their humor exponentially. However, the album is far from lacking in moments of sincerity: “byob,” “fidelity,” and “reading rainbow” are simply ingenious on the level of their formal mutations; “maps boot instrumental,” despite its subjection to the same vat of internet goo as everything mentioned above, manages to craft a satisfying liminal space out of iterations upon the original’s intro. But far be it for me to spoil everything 2015-2022 has to offer—just know that when dj interior semiotics gets around to Gucci Mane, you’re in for a real treat. —Jinhyung Kim
PAS TASTA - GOOD POP (self-released, 2023)
Hyperpop has been mutating in fascinating ways outside of the United States. If you’ve been paying attention to what the zoomers are up to in Tokyo, you’ll know this already. 4s4ki managed to pierce through the international barrier with 2022’s Killer in Neverland, but there’s been a storm raging in her orbit for the past little while. Everything from PlayStation samples, Vocaloid ballads, and fuzzed-out trap covers have been swirling around in this bubbling gumbo of a scene.
Six of Tokyo’s most interesting producers have been dropping a trail of breadcrumbs for the better part of last year, with the absolutely demented “peanut phenomenon” landing as their definitive statement. The entire PAS TASTA essence lives in that track, with the transition from a bouncy rock riff to a blaring stomp-clap beat to hoarse screaming vocals happening so fast that you barely have time to clock any of its modes. There’s even a feature from a butt ugly peanut VTuber. Despite so many musicians having their hands in this thing, it doesn’t feel like any wires are getting crossed—each of them has their turn to do what they do best. It’s just a get-together between friends, and everyone’s having a blast. —Shy Clara Thompson
Elephant Kashimashi - "Kanashimi No Hate" (Pony Canyon, 1996)
I distinctly remember the look on Shiina Ringo after she performed “Kemonoyuku Hosomichi” with Hiroji Miyamoto on Music Station. This messy-haired, middle-aged man could barely provide a coherent answer during the talk section of the program, and he went through more of a physical breakdown for the actual performance of the song. “Please excuse this man,” her face seemed to say, like she’s taking full blame for bringing the sloppiest drunk to the cocktail party.
While this unhinged, self-destructive image of Miyamoto has stuck with me since that broadcast in 2018, I think I finally understand the appeal behind the man and his work as Elephant Kashimashi’s frontman. He embodies a nihilism, a kind that convinces him to care fuck all about what his actions ends up making him look like in front of hundreds of thousands of viewers. He sang it himself with Shiina on “Kemonoyuku Hosomichi”: “We only got one meaningless life / so let’s use it all up.”
But “Kanashimino Hate,” or Beyond Sadness, showed me that Miyamoto as a songwriter represents more than pure doom and destruction. He admits to life’s pointlessness as if it’s an obvious, banal truth in the 1996 single but also sings in deep earnest about the joy of living for the sake of living. “After all the tears / there’s got to be laughs / I heard someone say that / Is that true?” he hollers in the song as though countless listeners don’t turn to him already about the question. He doesn’t provide any leads nor any hope that what lies beyond isn’t a worse place than here, though what hits is him rallying to live it up to provide our own answer: “At the end of sadness / let’s have an amazing day,” he bellows as a big fuck-you. Miyamoto might not hold on to the possibility of any meaning to life, but he’s always willing to celebrate its beauty. —Ryo Miyauchi
Young Turks Club - “Others” (OGAM, 1997)
I have spent the past six weeks devouring Korean music for an article that will be unveiled later this month. During this time, I’ve become increasingly familiar with the history of Korean pop music from 1900-onwards, and have found joy in how the country’s music has always been an amalgam of different styles. Many Korean music critics are obsessed with national identity, often to a detriment, and try to figure out how “Koreanness” exists in their music. This is understandable given the history of Japanese and US imperialism in the country, and how Korea’s many musical innovations are a result of occupation. In the 1990s that meant hip-hop, R&B, and other Black American music entered Korea through broadcasts on the American Forces Network and Black GIs stationed in Itaewon.
It was producer Yoon Il-sang who, more than many others during this time, tried to bridge Korean and American styles in a sufficient manner. His work for Young Turks Club, Cool, and Turbo helped define a generation of K-pop, but it’s his specific songs for that first group that resonate with me most. In “Others,” my favorite K-pop song of the 1990s, I sense the spirit of trot music and the desperate melancholy that has underpinned Korean music since the early 20th century. Even more, it’s the women in this co-ed group who rap while the men croon. This masculine bellowing is something I have felt in both K-pop’s folk and rock days and the country’s more recent strains of contemporary R&B. While I know many Korean men, especially of older generations, are stone-faced when it comes to expressing emotion, I sense a kinship with my own sensitivity and emotional openness when hearing works like these. This is funny to me, though, because I can also sense how this song is akin to the fado I adore. Such ambiguity is beautiful; I love that my Korean identity is something imperceptible, unplaceable. —Joshua Minsoo Kim
Habak – “En la huelga de los acontecimientos” (self-released, 2023)
This is the closing track for the most recent mix I made. I don’t make mixes as often as I did in high school. But when I do, there’s one move I still go for without fail: end on a melancholic note. Back in the day, most of the music I listened to was melancholic, so it wasn’t much of a curveball. Now, though, I think it speaks to the state of mind that compels me to put a mix together in the first place. I do it when I want to look back—when I’m trying to put a finger on the shape of my recent past so I can put it behind me somehow. There’s a whole slew of emotions wrapped up in that; as I get older, reflection has become a less wistful process, where the knottiness and ambiguities of my life seem more fascinating than frustrating to me. My recent mixes have stranger juxtapositions in tone, whereas the older ones show greater concern with cultivating a homogeneous(ly dour) mood.
I think I still end up finishing my mixes off wistfully because that’s how I feel about exiting a reflective space. Ultimately, my happiness doesn’t rest on the net weight of the good and bad I experience in my day to day; I feel most content when, no matter how I’ve been feeling lately, I’m able to regard my emotions, thoughts, and self from a certain distance—to understand their roots and the ways they interconnect. That process of sense-making brings me a large measure of peace, and it’s disappointing when that’s all over and I have to reenter the fray of living. Whenever I finish a mix, I listen to it over and over for a few days before putting it to bed—I rarely (if ever) revisit it, and even then only after a very long time. —Jinhyung Kim
ICYTWAT - HAVE MERCY ON US (self-released, 2023)
The heading says HAVE MERCY ON US because that’s his most substantial 2023 release on Bandcamp, but for the true ICYTWAT experience you’ll have to comb through his unwavering series of drops from the past two years, ideally at 3AM when it feels like nothing in life matters, and pick your faves. In the years since he crystallized an #aesthetic and inspired a million Type Beats as the producer behind mid-’10s group Divine Council, the Chicago artist has developed as a rapper, associated himself with A$AP Rocky’s AWGE, and found an exciting solo lane, often inviting other producers into the fold who jell with his new-and-improved sound. He’s released a ton of songs, all variations on a singular vision; nothing else works quite the way they do.
In keeping with his online origins, ICYTWAT’s new music sounds kind of like a lot of different things and samples even more. But it’s so insular and detailed that it renders these influences as echoes, little flashes of clarity in a style that circles around something deeper and harder to grasp. The most obvious touchpoint is ‘90s and 2000s Memphis rap, but rather than attempting some semi-ironic moodboard scrape of that era’s signifiers, ICYTWAT understands its goals: hard, heavy beats that sound insane in the car, an unmistakable mood, and ambiguous feelings that loom in the background, too real to be tangible.
The rapping, which is pretty familiar formally, consists of whatever koans, squawks and sketches make sense. Like fossils captured in their final moments of motion, ICYTWAT’s punch-ins lend little arcs to the relative stasis of his songs. Much of his output, HAVE MERCY ON US especially, focuses more on the producer side of his brain, with a reverence for his favorite artists’ ideas that rewards fellow music fans who listen closely. Occasionally, though, ICYTWAT hits on a lyric that’s just perfect. When he says others are so jealous of his success that they think he has “cheat codes”, it feels like both a nod to the indelible CRPG-soundtrack atmospheres in his work and a glance at the gnawing dread of everything arbitrary about the world that compels so many of us to seek out music in the first place.
I wax and wane on ICYTWAT’s music a lot, which I don’t tend to do with stuff that I listen to this often. Sometimes his sound just passes through me and sometimes it’s the only thing that sticks. It avoids so many of the things that I find frustrating about new music these days. It’s not chasing trends or trying too hard to establish them. It’s fresh and unique without posturing as “the future”. It doesn’t feel like it’s crafted as some cynical branding exercise, and it’s not too anonymous or abstruse. It’s definitely not universal, but I can’t imagine anyone ever arguing about it. It just is.
 Trying to narrow it down is kinda missing the point but I love “Genie on My Back”, “Siddhi Agenda”, the stormy “Final Boss Music”, the throbbing fervor of “SHIRT”, and the defiant “Off tha Leash!”, which got overshadowed by its viral zoomer remix. His best project is probably Siddhi World (Deluxe). Listen to all of his stuff though.
 To capitalize on all the music he’s lived through and affected, he recently made “EVERY ICYTWAT KIT EVER” available for purchase, bundled together at a price point of $50.
 from “Genie on My Back”:
Thank you for reading the ninety-fifth issue of Tone Glow. Happy listening.
If you appreciate what we do, please consider donating via Ko-fi or becoming a Patreon patron. Tone Glow is dedicated to forever providing its content for free, but please know that all our writers are paid for the work they do. All donations will be used for paying writers, and if we get enough money, Tone Glow will be able to publish issues more frequently.