The Troubled Times: Hill Road in Winter

Happy new year – here’s our first new music release of 2023 – available for download or limited-edition cassette, courtesy of Antony Milton‘s Smalltown Electron label:

The first physical format release from Masterton trio The Troubled Times (and the debut release for Small Town Electron as a label) is a loud and noisy nocturnal romp through the hills and onto the gravel back roads of one of Aotearoa/New Zealand’s least visited regions.

(see also

The Troubled Times discography

)

Continue reading “The Troubled Times: Hill Road in Winter”

The Troubled Times: A Second Sun

credits

Antony Milton electric guitar, keyboard (1,4), drums (4), painting

Dave Edwards – bass, electric guitar (4), vocal (6), harmonica (7)

David Heath – drums


John Collie (1834-1893) – lyrics (6) (a crossover with fiffdimension.bandcamp.com/album/poems-lyrics-in-the-english-dialect-1856 )

Recorded in Masterton, New Zealand, 25 September 2022

Loosely a sequel to Antony Milton and Dave Edwards‘ first duo collaboration fiffdimension.bandcamp.com/album/return-of-the-sun-2021 – The Troubled Times’ debut.

Continue reading “The Troubled Times: A Second Sun”

The Troubled Times: State Highway 2

credits

released August 13, 2022

Antony Milton – electric guitar, banjo (6), drums & keyboard (7)

Dave Edwards – electric guitar (1,3,5), acoustic guitar (2,6,7), bass (4), aluminium ladder (7)

David Heath – drums

https://fiffdimension.bandcamp.com/album/state-highway-2-2022

——-

Masterton, New Zealand

Recorded in Antony’s garage,
17th July + 7th August 2022

Photo by Sara Rogers


Further listening: Antony and Dave also collaborated on fiffdimension.bandcamp.com/album/return-of-the-sun-2021
and
layyourburdensdown.bandcamp.com/album/-

Outono 21

A new multilayered Dave Black electric improv / xenochronous composition.

The track continues the evolution of my Wairarapa one man band 2020s ‘late style’, which began with Glimpses of Utopia (2020) and Spastic Rhythms (2021)

It was originally created for the Psi-solation+12021 compilation album curated by fellow Featherston resident Campbell Kneale. He’s known for his noise music, paintings of cats, and as proprietor of the Miracle Room.

Continue reading “Outono 21”

Gar mar par da nee sa

the opening track from Ruasagavulu

by Dave Black & Snake-Beings

recorded in Suva, Fiji, 2nd November 2019

Snake Beings and Dave Black in Fiji

This short warmup improv is based on an Indian scale, inspired by Dr Emit Snake-Beings‘ travels to Kerala in India, and harmonium lessons in Suva.

There’s an Indian influence throughout the album, as several sections are based on drones and modal improv (rather than the chord changes)… though this is not a traditional Indian album, we’ve borrowed ideas to inform our own experiments.

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The temple in the photo is Sri Siva Subramaniya in Nadi. It’s built in the Dravidian style from southern India, which is also found in Singapore and Malaysia.

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In contrast to other Pacific Island countries, Fiji has a large – almost half – population of Indian descent. Indians came to Fiji in the 19th century, as indentured labourers to work the sugar cane plantations.

The following videos are made in India, courtesy of www.snakebeings.co.nz

Continue reading “Gar mar par da nee sa”

Huia Vortex

Animated visuals, with electric guitar loops, one-stringed bass, and drums – the opening track from the ‘Ngumbang‘ album (get the free download) – w/ Emit Snake-beings & Nat da Hatt

The title ‘Huia Vortex’ refers to the location where the track was recorded, in Huia, a small village on the outskirts of west Auckland.

Dave Black & Emit Snake-Beings

It’s not necessarily related to ‘Swansong (for the Huia)(2004), the second album by The Winter, an electro-acoustic trio improvisation in tribute to the extinct New Zealand bird the huia by Dave Edwards, Mike Kingston, and Simon Sweetman. Its 19-minute final track remains an underrated fiffdimension epic. [send us your review]

The Marion Flow (part 2, Wellington 2001)

: produced by Paul Winstanley, & featuring Chris O’Connor (drums), Chris Palmer (electric guitars), Simon O’Rorke (percussion). Recorded at Thistle Hall, Wellington, 2001, and mixed by Joe Callwood.

For the earlier 1999 New Plymouth sessions see The Marion Flow (part 1, Taranaki);

The Marion Flow was originally a longer album which spanned recordings from New Plymouth in 1999 and Wellington in 2001.

It’s lo-fi, organic and about as eclectic as one could manage. Kind of reminds me of Nick Cave if he had grown up in Timaru. No pretentious American accents or catch phrase choruses, just a bunch of people making music. A little beauty!” – NZ Musician, August/September 2002

By the time the opportunity arose to finish recording the Marion Flow I’d been thoroughly immersed in the Wellington free jazz and avant-garde music scene, and was very fortunate to have help from some of the top players there. I’d never studied music at school or been in a conventional band, and was out of my depth technically… so working around my limitations became a spark to creativity.

In 1999, aged 20, I’d left New Plymouth, a large rural town, where I grew up, and moved to Wellington, New Zealand’s capital city, where I’d been born and where my early pakeha settler ancestors had lived in the 19th century. The Marion Flow reflects this journey, geographically, sonically and spiritually.

]

I’ve now reissued the two halves of the album separately – to emphasise the sense of time and place, and stylistic evolution, and to re-present them more concisely for the short-attention-span 21st century.

Edwards’ music is often a sculpture rather than a melodic composition. Within this chosen form, amongst all the writings rantings & poetry there’s much difficult pleasure to be had for the musically adventurous.” – Brent Cardy, Real Groove, July 2002

Further listening

Continue reading “The Marion Flow (part 2, Wellington 2001)”

The Marion Flow (part 1, Taranaki 1999)

It’s lo-fi, organic and about as eclectic as one could manage. Kind of reminds me of Nick Cave if he had grown up in Timaru. No pretentious American accents or catch phrase choruses, just a bunch of people making music. A little beauty!” – NZ Musician, August/September 2002

Produced by Paul Winstanley, & featuring Steve Duffels, the Digitator, the Dadapapa Magickclone Orchestra and more. Recorded at the TFC Lounge, New Plymouth, 1999 – with special thanks to Brian Wafer.

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The Marion Flow is a pre-millennial fusion of warm acoustic pop, spoken word and postpunk discord.. An almost-acknowledged New Zealand classic from Taranaki – of its time (the ’90s!) yet timeless.

In 1999, aged 20, I left New Plymouth, a large rural town, where I grew up, and moved to Wellington, New Zealand’s capital city, where I was born. The Marion Flow reflects this journey, geographically, sonically and spiritually.

The Marion Flow was originally a longer album spanning recordings from New Plymouth in 1999 and Wellington in 2001. I’ve now reissued the two halves separately – to emphasise the sense of time and place, and stylistic evolution, and to re-present each more concisely for the short-attention-span 21st century.

This page is for the 1999 New Plymouth sessions;

Further listening

Continue reading “The Marion Flow (part 1, Taranaki 1999)”