From the forthcoming album Traditional Music of Notional Species Vol. I by Rashad Becker on PAN.

'Traditional Music of Notional Species Vol. I' is a devastating display of potential which ensures a journey unlike any you have encountered.  In the vast world of electronic music, where sounds, signifiers and gesture's are recontextualized to a numbing degree it is increasingly rare and refreshing to encounter a release as perspective distorting as the debut full length release by Rashad Becker.  The album is a masterpiece of focussed non-referential electronic environments.  It is is both warm, alien, paranoid and exhilarating.  Sounds are stretched in the most unusual manner, foreign bodies are frequent and the structure is simply bewildering.  Split into 'Themes and Dances', the 8 tracks guide the listener through Becker's brave new world.  Despite being entirely synthetic there are sounds which appear like a distortion of the world around us, on occasion 'voice-like' sounds are present, elsewhere there appears the sound of cicada's, only these cicada's are made of mercury and swim through time.  The end result is beautiful in a way only a unique work of art can be.  PAN is proud to present the outside from within.  

The LP is mastered and cut by Rashad Becker at D&M, pressed on 140g vinyl. It is packaged in a pro-press color jacket which itself is housed in a silkscreened pvc sleeve with artwork by Bill Kouligas.  

Rashad Becker creates precise, phantasmic computer sound designs encouraging audiences to focus their hearing. His carefully constructed, sparse improvisations, have unexpected qualities, and have been called conversational not only for his sampling of dissected human voices, but for the way these samples integrate with the timbre of his electronics. “It sounded like a long stream-of-consciousness sentence made up short syllables, electronic oohs and wahs, sections of muttering, and occasionally bickering. Whatever he does, it seems Becker has the knack of giving sound its voice.” (Scott McMillan in the Liminal)  

Evan Parker and John WieseC SectionPan
FROM THE ARCHIVES// Three years on, this is something that should continue to be celebrated: British free jazz figurehead Evan Parker collides in an improvised session with prolific noise merchant John Wiese.  One of Pan’s initial game-changing records, the entirety of “C-Section” is a full volume and maximum impact collaboration, with the duo cutting across numerous lines of logic in the experimental field like some type of abstract expressionist musical monster.  A strong sense of friction is evident throughout and frantic saxophone lines scrape against shards of feedback and bleed viciously into caustic rumbles of tape noise.  It’s bracing stuff, but there’s also a vivaciousness – even playfulness – to the proceedings, as if both musicians are thoroughly elated by the racket they’re making.  Even better, that feeling comes screaming through to the listener in the best possible way.  – Ryan Potts, Experimedia

Evan Parker and John Wiese
C Section
Pan

FROM THE ARCHIVES// Three years on, this is something that should continue to be celebrated: British free jazz figurehead Evan Parker collides in an improvised session with prolific noise merchant John Wiese.  One of Pan’s initial game-changing records, the entirety of “C-Section” is a full volume and maximum impact collaboration, with the duo cutting across numerous lines of logic in the experimental field like some type of abstract expressionist musical monster.  A strong sense of friction is evident throughout and frantic saxophone lines scrape against shards of feedback and bleed viciously into caustic rumbles of tape noise.  It’s bracing stuff, but there’s also a vivaciousness – even playfulness – to the proceedings, as if both musicians are thoroughly elated by the racket they’re making.  Even better, that feeling comes screaming through to the listener in the best possible way. – Ryan Potts, Experimedia

MohammadSom SakrifisPanImmense, daunting, and monolithic, Pan takes another left turn with Mohammad’s “Som Sakrifis.”  Whereas the venerable label surveyed abstract references to dance music with recent releases by Lee Gamble and NHK’Koyxen, Mohammad, a Greek trio built on the elliptical and microtonal collisions of cello, contrabass, and oscillators, is focused solely on the divine and otherworldly possibilities of drone.  The dour moods of Sunn O))) and the compositional approach of La Monte Young are certainly apt starting points, but the best comparison to “Som Sakrifis” would be Eliane Radigue’s cello work for the album “Naldjorlak.”  It’s no mistake that those are three iconic names in the realm of experimental music as Mohammad makes a bold statement of depth, subtlety, and power.  Few releases in 2013 will reach its heights.  – Ryan Potts, Experimedia 

Mohammad
Som Sakrifis
Pan

Immense, daunting, and monolithic, Pan takes another left turn with Mohammad’s “Som Sakrifis.”  Whereas the venerable label surveyed abstract references to dance music with recent releases by Lee Gamble and NHK’Koyxen, Mohammad, a Greek trio built on the elliptical and microtonal collisions of cello, contrabass, and oscillators, is focused solely on the divine and otherworldly possibilities of drone.  The dour moods of Sunn O))) and the compositional approach of La Monte Young are certainly apt starting points, but the best comparison to “Som Sakrifis” would be Eliane Radigue’s cello work for the album “Naldjorlak.”  It’s no mistake that those are three iconic names in the realm of experimental music as Mohammad makes a bold statement of depth, subtlety, and power.  Few releases in 2013 will reach its heights. – Ryan Potts, Experimedia 

NHK’KoyxenDance Classics Vol. IIPan
The first volume of “Dance Classics” was a huge favorite around these parts, its primal, haphazard (and undeniably catchy) polyrhythms were nothing short of addictive. I was beyond pleased then to hear that Kouhei Matsunaga was returning to the PAN label for another installment. “Vol. II” blooms into being in a similarly compelling way as did its predecessor, with a rollicking track that perhaps recalls Gold Panda at his most bare. “703” conjures a similar soundworld to that which dominated the first “Dance Classics,” all skittering rhythms, high-end filigree and a head-nodding bedrock sequence. Ultimately, my reaction to this LP is the same as it was with the first volume, that Matsunaga makes fascinating and urgent avant-techno to which I find myself wanting to return over and over again. - Alex Cobb, Experimedia

NHK’Koyxen
Dance Classics Vol. II

Pan

The first volume of “Dance Classics” was a huge favorite around these parts, its primal, haphazard (and undeniably catchy) polyrhythms were nothing short of addictive. I was beyond pleased then to hear that Kouhei Matsunaga was returning to the PAN label for another installment. “Vol. II” blooms into being in a similarly compelling way as did its predecessor, with a rollicking track that perhaps recalls Gold Panda at his most bare. “703” conjures a similar soundworld to that which dominated the first “Dance Classics,” all skittering rhythms, high-end filigree and a head-nodding bedrock sequence. Ultimately, my reaction to this LP is the same as it was with the first volume, that Matsunaga makes fascinating and urgent avant-techno to which I find myself wanting to return over and over again. - Alex Cobb, Experimedia

Lee GambleDiversions 1994-1996Pan
PAN’s turn towards the rhythmic has been nothing short of enthralling to me and, from a curatorial perspective, impressive in its seamless integration with the rest of the label’s more experimental releases. “Diversions 1994-1996” has an interesting backstory, its source material reportedly culled from old Jungle mixtapes, assembled into the looming, spectral masses that occupy the record’s two sides. The effect of Gamble’s process and production tactics is one that is fundamentally deconstructive, much in the way that, say, the Dead C’s appropriation of rock tropes is. We hear recognizable elements of techno and Jungle divorced from their usual environs, existing here as fragments and signifiers. A focused and unique record, “Diversions” is one of PAN’s finest drops to date. - Alex Cobb, Experimedia

Lee Gamble
Diversions 1994-1996

Pan

PAN’s turn towards the rhythmic has been nothing short of enthralling to me and, from a curatorial perspective, impressive in its seamless integration with the rest of the label’s more experimental releases. “Diversions 1994-1996” has an interesting backstory, its source material reportedly culled from old Jungle mixtapes, assembled into the looming, spectral masses that occupy the record’s two sides. The effect of Gamble’s process and production tactics is one that is fundamentally deconstructive, much in the way that, say, the Dead C’s appropriation of rock tropes is. We hear recognizable elements of techno and Jungle divorced from their usual environs, existing here as fragments and signifiers. A focused and unique record, “Diversions” is one of PAN’s finest drops to date. - Alex Cobb, Experimedia

Eli KeszlerCatching NetPan
Installations - Compositions. That hyphen is important. Eli Keszler’s pieces represented here aren’t one or the other, but chimera blends of the seemingly disparate experimental music practices. The first disc features both of sides of Cold Pin (the previously released PAN LP) complimented by an unreleased live recording featuring the same unit as the vinyl tracks. Altering between sections of extended resonance and chaotic precision, the three variations on this piece highlight Keszler’s extensive range at its schizophrenic finest. The second disc begins with Catching Net, the first few minutes of which could easily be mistaken for some vintage Nonesuch rarity. Backed by a string quartet this time, the piece is a bit more reigned in at first, but eventually unfolds and reveals the Keszler-isms lurking beneath the surface. From there, the collection is rounded out by two unaccompanied installation pieces, Cold Pin playing itself and Collecting Basin, a long string construction in Louisiana. If you are new to Keszler’s work, this is a great introduction. And if you already happen to have the Cold Pin LP, there is still more than enough new and unique material here to satisfy. - Mike Shiflet, Experimedia

Eli Keszler
Catching Net

Pan

Installations - Compositions. That hyphen is important. Eli Keszler’s pieces represented here aren’t one or the other, but chimera blends of the seemingly disparate experimental music practices. The first disc features both of sides of Cold Pin (the previously released PAN LP) complimented by an unreleased live recording featuring the same unit as the vinyl tracks. Altering between sections of extended resonance and chaotic precision, the three variations on this piece highlight Keszler’s extensive range at its schizophrenic finest. The second disc begins with Catching Net, the first few minutes of which could easily be mistaken for some vintage Nonesuch rarity. Backed by a string quartet this time, the piece is a bit more reigned in at first, but eventually unfolds and reveals the Keszler-isms lurking beneath the surface. From there, the collection is rounded out by two unaccompanied installation pieces, Cold Pin playing itself and Collecting Basin, a long string construction in Louisiana. If you are new to Keszler’s work, this is a great introduction. And if you already happen to have the Cold Pin LP, there is still more than enough new and unique material here to satisfy. - Mike Shiflet, Experimedia

Aaron Dilloway & Jason LescalleetGrapes and SnakesPan
2012 has been something of a ‘coming out’ year for Maine-based sound artist Jason Lescalleet. I first became aware of Jason’s work by way of stellar collaborative releases such as “Love me Two Times,” his 2006 double-disc suite collaboration with Nmperign for Intransitive Recordings. More recently, of course, his superlative duos with Graham Lambkin have made my ears stand at attention. To date though, “The Pilgrim” remains my favorite release in Lescalleet’s oeuvre, a quite personal and beautiful album that I return to often and highly recommend. It’s interesting then to see this usually somewhat hermetic musician release a (audaciously titled) double-disc on NYC’s eai clearing house Erstwhile and now this relatively high-profile outing for the always fantastic PAN imprint within the same month, all the while touring extensively. Of the many collaboration records I’ve heard him on, Lescalleet’s work here with Dilloway is some of the most menacing and bleak, largely favoring low-end tones, hissing static and negative space. “Burning Nest,” my favorite of the two sides, opens with seething drones and rolling, deep, low end sounds. Over the course of its 20-minute duration it blooms into a mechanized, rhythmic monster, somewhat akin to earlier Wolf Eyes material but much more detailed, less spare. Overall, this is a fantastic, dark set of recordings that fans of any of the aforementioned acts, or, really, experimental music as such, would do well to check out. - Alex Cobb, Experimedia 

Aaron Dilloway & Jason Lescalleet
Grapes and Snakes

Pan

2012 has been something of a ‘coming out’ year for Maine-based sound artist Jason Lescalleet. I first became aware of Jason’s work by way of stellar collaborative releases such as “Love me Two Times,” his 2006 double-disc suite collaboration with Nmperign for Intransitive Recordings. More recently, of course, his superlative duos with Graham Lambkin have made my ears stand at attention. To date though, “The Pilgrim” remains my favorite release in Lescalleet’s oeuvre, a quite personal and beautiful album that I return to often and highly recommend. It’s interesting then to see this usually somewhat hermetic musician release a (audaciously titled) double-disc on NYC’s eai clearing house Erstwhile and now this relatively high-profile outing for the always fantastic PAN imprint within the same month, all the while touring extensively. Of the many collaboration records I’ve heard him on, Lescalleet’s work here with Dilloway is some of the most menacing and bleak, largely favoring low-end tones, hissing static and negative space. “Burning Nest,” my favorite of the two sides, opens with seething drones and rolling, deep, low end sounds. Over the course of its 20-minute duration it blooms into a mechanized, rhythmic monster, somewhat akin to earlier Wolf Eyes material but much more detailed, less spare. Overall, this is a fantastic, dark set of recordings that fans of any of the aforementioned acts, or, really, experimental music as such, would do well to check out. - Alex Cobb, Experimedia 

Mika Vainio/Kevin Drumm/Axel Dorner/Lucio CapeceVenexiaPan
An auspicious collaboration indeed, the act of reading the personnel on this new album from the always sterling PAN imprint invariably colored my first listen, setting the bar rather unreasonably high even while rendering my expectations somewhat nebulous. I was unsure of precisely how these four musicians, each with a refined and distinct approach to sound construction, would work together towards a cohesive whole, yet I remained confident that they would do just that. The A-side begins with with pulses and negative space, a liberal use of silence and wriggling acoustic machinations. By the midpoint of the piece, the horns weld themselves to the electronics of Drumm and Vainio, forming a dense and imposing, yet undeniably beautiful drone. This proves to be, one the whole, the way the album plays out- with dynamic interplays between acoustic brass and electronics/synthesizers and a veteran’s sense of structure and restraint. It’s a wonderful merging of aesthetics and a truly engaging listen. Great, great stuff, just as expected. - Alex Cobb, Experimedia

Mika Vainio/Kevin Drumm/Axel Dorner/Lucio Capece
Venexia

Pan

An auspicious collaboration indeed, the act of reading the personnel on this new album from the always sterling PAN imprint invariably colored my first listen, setting the bar rather unreasonably high even while rendering my expectations somewhat nebulous. I was unsure of precisely how these four musicians, each with a refined and distinct approach to sound construction, would work together towards a cohesive whole, yet I remained confident that they would do just that. The A-side begins with with pulses and negative space, a liberal use of silence and wriggling acoustic machinations. By the midpoint of the piece, the horns weld themselves to the electronics of Drumm and Vainio, forming a dense and imposing, yet undeniably beautiful drone. This proves to be, one the whole, the way the album plays out- with dynamic interplays between acoustic brass and electronics/synthesizers and a veteran’s sense of structure and restraint. It’s a wonderful merging of aesthetics and a truly engaging listen. Great, great stuff, just as expected. - Alex Cobb, Experimedia

HeatsickDeviationPan
Steven Warwick as Heatsick very nearly crafts the exact opposite album as his musical partner in Birds of Delay did as Helm. Both solo projects are recent releases from the Pan label and “Déviation” sees the label boldly expanding into straight-forward beat-oriented music that feels sunny, bright, and open where past releases have felt dark, claustrophobic, and threatening. Danceable genres such as disco, house, and dub form the backbone of the 12”, but Heatsick ultimately creates a looser, weirder version of those classic styles. MIDI-triggered keyboards, vocal loops, handheld shakers, spliced fragments, and synthesizer pulses pile atop one another to bring a busy, collaged sound to the dancefloor. - Ryan Potts, Experimedia

Heatsick
Deviation

Pan

Steven Warwick as Heatsick very nearly crafts the exact opposite album as his musical partner in Birds of Delay did as Helm. Both solo projects are recent releases from the Pan label and “Déviation” sees the label boldly expanding into straight-forward beat-oriented music that feels sunny, bright, and open where past releases have felt dark, claustrophobic, and threatening. Danceable genres such as disco, house, and dub form the backbone of the 12”, but Heatsick ultimately creates a looser, weirder version of those classic styles. MIDI-triggered keyboards, vocal loops, handheld shakers, spliced fragments, and synthesizer pulses pile atop one another to bring a busy, collaged sound to the dancefloor. - Ryan Potts, Experimedia

HelmImpossible SymmetryPan
Like an unheard Wolf Eyes off-shoot or an early piece by Seasons (Pre-Din), Luke Younger fills his third full-length as Helm with tortured, claustrophobic drifts of sound that seethe with malevolence. It’s still as exploratory and raw as most Pan releases, but with a decidedly darker bent that is built upon creeping electronic textures and ghostly acoustic fragments. A wide array of material is presented, however, as “Impossible Symmetry” veers from buzzing, unidentifiable clang (“Miniatures”) to bubbling synth drones (“Stained Glass Electric”) and high-pitched sine waves (“Above All and Beyond”). Younger may be better known for his work with Steve Warwick as Birds of Delay, but the practiced and jarring atmospheres of “Impossible Symmetry” will leave a lasting impression one way or another. - Ryan Potts, Experimedia

Helm
Impossible Symmetry

Pan

Like an unheard Wolf Eyes off-shoot or an early piece by Seasons (Pre-Din), Luke Younger fills his third full-length as Helm with tortured, claustrophobic drifts of sound that seethe with malevolence. It’s still as exploratory and raw as most Pan releases, but with a decidedly darker bent that is built upon creeping electronic textures and ghostly acoustic fragments. A wide array of material is presented, however, as “Impossible Symmetry” veers from buzzing, unidentifiable clang (“Miniatures”) to bubbling synth drones (“Stained Glass Electric”) and high-pitched sine waves (“Above All and Beyond”). Younger may be better known for his work with Steve Warwick as Birds of Delay, but the practiced and jarring atmospheres of “Impossible Symmetry” will leave a lasting impression one way or another. - Ryan Potts, Experimedia

February 2012 Edition of Experimedia’s Monthly Mix Series

00:00 - Ben Vida - Track 3 - Esstends-Esstends-Esstends - PAN
04:35 - FRAK - In Order to Create - Muzika Electronic - Digitalis
10:00 - Marcus Fjellstrom - LM-118 - Library Music 1 - Kafkagarden
12:20 - Kyoka - 23 Ish - Ish - Raster-Noton
16:20 - Dimlite - Pour Some Blood, We Got This - Grimm Reality - Now-Again
21:32 - The Drum - Euthanasia - Heavy Liquid - Audraglint
25:10 - Aaron Dilloway - Labyrinths & Jokes (Reversed) - Modern Jester - Hanson
26:50 - Demdike Stare - Meets Shangaan Electro - A1 - Honest Jon’s
31:50 - NHK’Koyxen - B4 - Dance Classics Vol.I - PAN
35:30 - Concessionaires - Sparkler - Artificial Interface - Under The Spire
30:28 - Alva Noto - Uni Deform - Univrs - Raster-Noton
42:59 - Alva Noto - Uni Asymmetric Lll-Llll - Univrs - Raster-Noton
43:02 - Aaron Dilloway - Tremors - Modern Jester - Hanson
45:31 - NHKYX - 257 - Yx Aka 1ch Aka Solo - Skam
48:50 - Kyoka - Hadue - Ish - Raster-Noton
52:48 - NHK’Koyxen - B3 - Dance Classics Vol.I - PAN
55:20 - High Wolf - Kenya Sunset - Atlas Nation - Holy Mountain
60:28 - Venetian Snares - Seqsy - Affectionate - Self Released
63:40 - Felix Kubin - No.5 - TXRF - IT’s
68:10 - Jim O’Rourke - Natural Bonbon Killers - Old News #7 - Old News
72:02 - NHKYX - 475 - Yx Aka 1ch Aka Solo - Skam
74:50 - Robert Turman - Flux 3 - Flux - Spectrum Spools