Tonight a release from Tonesuckers.
Tonesucker are a trio based in London and Suffolk, UK. They work with electric guitar and synthesised sounds - sounds they describe as "fundamentalist". They often record on location incorporating soundscape material in their work. Although they are sometimes classified as drone music, Tonesucker have been working in a characteristic way since 2006 combining improvisation and composition with a sense of the occult history of the places they play live and record in, crossing the borders between post-rock, noise, free improvised and electro-acoustic music, and accompanying performances with austere and abstract films.
A typical Tonesucker piece will move between extremes of loudness, musicality and discipline, sometimes sounding delicate and minimal, sometimes intense, machinic and visceral. Though largely improvised and never rehearsed, Tonesucker work under constraints. A musical or other sound-shaping rule will be agreed in advance. This can be the requirement to use only a certain note, or a certain sound, or to observe certain 'shapes', or to follow the film as a visual score. Pieces commonly exhibit the rule at the outset with the task to explore, stretch and battle with it until it can be tolerated no more. Things break down. Literally unruly passages follow as the restraint is tugged against, mocked or negated. Tonesucker may return to where they started. They may move into unprepared territory. They may establish a new rule. Or it all may fall apart into a messy shambles.
The pleasure of Tonesucker is in the pain of restraint.
The album Sub Rosa (to be debuted on Berlin's 88vier Radio at 04.00am Wednesday 23rd January 2013) follows last year's Omnia Convivia Crastina (Onoma Research) which appeared in A Closer Listen's Top 20 Albums of the Year as well as in their Top 10 in the Drone category. Sub Rosa's four tracks examine the psychogeographical resonances of the places they were recorded, all of which are close to a river or estuary (the Rivers Severn and Orwell in England, the River Loire and the Gironde in France) and so suggest voyages, pilgrimages, migration - a sense of loss of home or being adrift but also trade, connection, messages from elsewhere, hope.
Sub Rosa is released by Fibrr Records with the cooperation of APO33, 88vier Radio, CoLaboRadio and Onoma Research.
Tonesucker appear live in Berlin at Salon Bruit, Tiefgrund, Laskerstrasse 5 on Thursday 24th January 2013.
APO33 is a not-for-profit association/artists collective founded by Julien Ottavi in 1996. APO33 research practices cross philosophy, poetry, visual, sonic art and anything else that may arrive through collaborative working. APO33 operates across networked and physical spaces and develops tools (hardware/software) for creative projects and the wider FLOSS (Free/Libre Open Source Software) community of artists and programmers. APO33, as an interdisciplinary laboratory drawing on the artistic and technological fields, fosters various collective projects associating research, experimentation and social intervention. In the continuity of the dynamics that has been opened by the free software movement, APO33 is structured as a modular space, initiating collaborative projects and creative processes, as well as exploring new artistic and creative modes of production and diffusion.