What's this? An official website?!
What's this? A new trailer for this Friday's Blue Dependence? Come join us at Place des Arts for an amazing performance with some pretty neat-o music (if I do say so myself).
Huge thanks to the fine people at CKUT 90.3FM for hosting my very first French interview (well... 95%). Hear me talk about: Cormac McCarthy. experimental cello, Constellation Records, humble beginnings.
Click the link "September 29th", and grab the 128kbs version.
A very beautiful review from the highly respected Raven Sings the Blues!
"Copeland’s compositions scrape and gnaw, gasp and moan through the body of an instrument that shouldn’t seem like it has this much anguish inside of it. Each crushing drop of bile, blood and tears comes seeping through the speakers."...
Enjoy my bile friends 😍😍😍😋😋😋😫😫😫
One of the most truly perfect pieces I've heard in a long time. The Bulgarian Voices Angelite featuring Mongolia supergroup Huun Huur Tu. A masterpiece.
Day #7: Cormac McCarthy
Genre: Literature / Southern Gothic
Recommended Book: The Road.
Brief Bio: I couldn't make a list of influences without including the writer Cormac McCarthy. While he isn't a musician, his landscapes are nothing short of perfection. They are desolate, unforgiving, challenging and have a sense of beauty and scale unlike any writer I've heard before. .
My takeaway: His books were revelatory for me, they are very stark and very lonely, but I like to believe they are celebrations. They are celebrations of a cruel and terrifying and wondrous world. Not celebrations of the life in the world, but celebrations of both life and death, both equally cruel and equally beautiful. The point is not that we conquer the world, but that we are merely held in its merciless jaws for a short time, and that is our only gift.
“He walked out in the gray light and stood and he saw for a brief moment the absolute truth of the world. The cold relentless circling of the intestate earth. Darkness implacable. The blind dogs of the sun in their running. The crushing black vacuum of the universe. And somewhere two hunted animals trembling like ground-foxes in their cover. Borrowed time and borrowed world and borrowed eyes with which to sorrow it.”
Day #6: Michiyo Yagi
Genre: Noise / Folk / Minimalism
Recommended Piece: Rouge
Brief Bio: Michiyo Yagi is a breathtaking and fascinating koto artist (a japanese lap zither), one whose work I respect immensely, one who showed me what one person can do with complete mastery of their instrument. It's too often the case that noise artists are afraid of creating conventional beauty, and conventional artists are afraid of making noise, but Michiyo Yagi seems to explore both in extremes.
My takeaway: There are a number of solo artists doing interesting and experimental things with their instrument, but Michiyo Yagi is my favorite. It is a hard balance to keep: doing new things with only one instrument in a way that is both accessible and interesting. Not only are her technical skills impeccable, she always keeps an experimental approach to the music. Her album Seventeen is filled with such diverse ideas, ranging from noise, to minimal classical, to folk. There are some songs that are unlistenably noisy, but that challenge and that struggle is what makes the peaceful songs even more rewarding.
Day #5: Shostakovich
Genre: Classical / Neo-classical
Recommended Piece: Symphony #5 III. Largo
Brief Bio: Shostakovich has created some incredibly challenging and wonderful pieces, pieces that uncomfortably straddle this line of order and chaod. His music is more metal than metal could ever be. He wrote doom metal and thrash and black metal before anyone else, and he did do so with purely acoustic instruments.
My takeaway: This is pure black. There is no composer or artist who captures violence and terror and desperation better than Shostakovich. That is all that needs to be said. Just look at his String Quartets 8 and 10, Cello concerto 2, Symphony 5, String Octet. All of them brutal and unforgiving (but not without hints of sarcasm and irony).
Day #4: Ulver
Genre: Experimental / Rock
Recommended Piece: Not Saved
Brief Bio: Another genre-bending collective, conceived as a true black metal outfit, they went on to create neo-folk, experimental electronic, minimal, and noise music. One of the best known truly experimental bands out there.
My takeaway: Though stylistically I don't take a lot from them, I do appreciate and respect their ideas a lot, they are the one of the first bands that opened me up to experimental music (including ambient and minimalism). But during my teenage and early adult years I listened to a lot of Ulver and respected what they did. The constant incessant need to experiment and work on new ideas; artists in every sense of the word. Their songs are influenced by darkwave, industrial, black metal, doom metal, classical, without being any of those things. It's something I aspire to reach.
Day #3: Ravel
Genre: Classical / Impressionism
Recommended Piece: Gaspard de la nuit
Brief Bio: Ravel is an impressionist composer who was around in the early 1900s. He is popularly known for his Bolero which is the most garbage piece in the world, and his exceptional chamber music is often overlooked. To me he represents the perfect balance of experimental and accessible.
My takeaway: While I'm not quite a classical composer, I do take a few things from him. His balance of order and chaos / consonance and dissonance / light and dark is so perfect, and his crescendos highlight this in a perfect way. They don't resolve in typical fashion but take a very dynamic and chaotic approach to resolution. He uses very interesting rhythmic jumps and harmonic layers to draw out a crescendo into something cacophonous and terrifying. The biggest climax in Ondine (Gaspard) is a great example, as it resolves to nothing, it almost doesn't resolve at all. It leaves you with a feeling of hopelessness after all of that effort. It just kind of... shatters. He does this often in his chamber pieces, with notable examples in the piano trio, the violin sonata #1 and Gaspard de la nuit.
Day #2: Vex'd
Genre: Dubstep / Industrial
Recommended Song: Thunder
Brief Bio: Vex'd was a dubstep duo who pioneered the early sounds of dubstep. Dubstep ended up as a bit of a cliche, but there were some exceptional experimental acts who took the sound in new and exciting directions. While 140bpm has been almost entirely abandoned, you can see its influence on most EDM.
My takeaway: Even though I cite doom metal as a major influence in my music, I would actually argue my sound is a mix of industrial and doom metal. Industrial is more chaotic than the pure distortion of guitars, and Vex'd captures this idea so well. They've got some hard-hitting tracks, tracks that you feel in your chest, tracks that make you feel anxious and scared and overwhelmed. Their take on grit and grime is unique and beautiful.
***As I'm exploring ideas and brainstorming my next project, I've been revisiting my biggest sources of musical inspiration. I'd
like to take the opportunity to highlight 7 artists whom I deeply respect and admire, and whose music is a continuously amazes
and motivates me to experiment with new ideas.
Day #1: Boris ...
Genre: Doom metal / Sludge metal / Drone metal
Recommended Song: Aileron
Brief Bio: To fit Boris into any genre would be blasphemy. Their reach and scope is so overwhelmingly large, with 25 years and
24 albums together. They have some of the heaviest doom and drone I've ever heard, and frequently explore noise, shoegaze, pop, and rock and roll.
My takeaway: Boris is a Japanese band that defies most doom metal cliches. Even their slowest, doomiest songs are often
bittersweet and lamenting as opposed to angry and noisy. They aren't afraid to experiment and explore; they have some of the
heaviest and most brutal drone metal I've heard, but they aren't afraid to write straight up pop songs. Or shoegaze songs. Or
noise songs. Or American-style rock songs. On my favorite album Rainbow, guest guitarist Michio Kurihara has a beautifully
idiosyncratic tone and technique, it's a desperation and chaos that I aim to emulate when I write certain cello parts.
Such a rad mix with some amazing new music! If you're looking for those organic sounds, that dark minimal classical, that experimental folk, you've come to the right place.
Huge thanks to all those who've checked out my mix of Lost Tribe Sound artists for Headphone Commute! Amazingly, it is 1st in the Instrumental chart , 2nd in t...he Experimental chart , 8th in the Ambient chart and 8th in the Eclectic chart on Mixcloud!
If you haven't had a listen yet, please do. I stacked this mix with some of my most favorite tunes from the year!
Biggest thanks to brilliant artists on the label, you all make my job so much easier. This mix features more song premieres than you can shake a stick at, including tunes from William Ryan Fritch, From the Mouth of the Sun, KJ Rothweiler, Alder & Ash, Seabuckthorn, The Green Kingdom, The Phonometrician and Matt Finney.