Sunday, November 11, 2012

The Story So Far: Barn Owl #8

I'm seriously gonna have to move fast to close out last year's Top 10 before this year's is due. When it came to a certain kind of drone, there's a progression in my head. Originally I never cared too much for Sunn-O))), then I did like some Robedoor, and finally discovered Barn Owl. All these bands (& others like them) are pretty different, but this progression is in my head.

Sunn-O))) is more doomy & metal (and maybe I should try again), Robedoor (#11, 2011 and #15, 2010) is more ecstatic & noisy, and Barn Owl (#11, 2011 and #11, 2010) is Morricone & mescaline & the desert - with just a couple of guitars and a bit more. So let's dig deep into the earth and see what we find.

"Teonanacatl" from From Our Mouths A Perpetual Light (2008)

Here's the first Barn Owl that I heard, but I still don't own it - only have a couple of tunes from internet mixes. A little bit more folky, maybe? But I could wander the badlands, exploring various records and just getting lost. Check out a partial playlist.

"Walnut Tree" from Barn Owl CDr (2007)

Earlier in 2007, there had been a couple of self-released CDr's: a self-titled and Bridge To The Clouds. Let's see... I did not know about a Tom Carter split (2008)?! Might gonna have to track that down - nothing streaming that I could find.

Side "II" from Smoke Loom Ceremony cassette (2008)

Wait, we're already back through 2008? Okay... That's apparently only one of a few cassettes out that year. I'm imagining some epic opium den/rehearsal space jam-improv galore.

Side A of The Conjurer (2009)

Wait, wait, wait... I've never once talked about this album? It's fantastic! Like, I dunno, the best Earth album ever or something - and then more. First side is "Into the Red Horizon" and "Across the Deserts of Ash" (above). Here's Side B: "Procession of Golden Bones" and "Ancient of Days" (if you wanted just one song).

"Light from the Mesa" from Ancestral Star (2010)

As much as The Conjurer might have deserved a Top 10 ranking, Ancestral Star almost made it (#11, 2010).

Sometimes downloading those free live jams is the way to go. Barn Owl has got at least the 2nd part from Live on WFMU's Long Rally, Nov 19th, 2010: either from or over at Free Music Archive! You can stream their first piece from the show page, or just click here.

"Light" [w/ Infinite Strings Ensemble] from The Headlands (2010)

I remember this coming out, but not why I never picked it up. Among others, per Important Records:
In 1981 Ellen Fullman began developing the “Long String Instrument,” an installation of dozens of wires fifty feet or more in length, tuned in Just Intonation and ‘bowed’ with rosin coated fingers. Fullman has developed a unique notation system to choreograph the performer’s movements, exploring sonic events that occur at specific nodal point locations along the string-length of the instrument. She has recorded extensively with this unusual instrument and has collaborated with such luminary figures as composer Pauline Oliveros, choreographer Deborah Hay, the Kronos Quartet, and Keiji Haino.

The individuals of Barn Owl - Evan Caminiti and Jon Porras - have released quite a bit of solo material and with other combos. I might come back with an overview later, but don't bet on it!

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