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5 Years RAW TONK RECORDS

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Coming up are the RAW TONK 5th anniversary celebrations in the lowlands and the UK featuring almost all key players of this fine label.  RAW TONK records is a fine DIY label from the UK under direction of saxophonist Colin Webster.  During the Lowlands tour the events will see Dirk Serries team up with turntablist and soundartist Graham Dunning while for the UK leg of the celebration Dirk will join forces with Suisse’ saxophonist Tapiwa Svosve.

For tickets visit the venues’ websites and for the UK you can order them directly from the label here

17/3/17 – Pletterij (Haarlem, The Netherlands)
18/3/17 – De Singer (Rijkevorsel, Belgium)
19/3/17 – De Ruimte (Amsterdam, The Netherlands)
26/3/17 – Hundred Years Gallery (London, UK)
27/3/17 – St. Margarets Church (Manchester, UK)

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XXVI-XXX : RESOLUTION HEART

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DIRK SERRIES – MICROPHONICS XXVI-XXX : RESOLUTION HEART (LP/digital, Tonefloat)

Topping an album that received applause from press and fans alike, and was considered a personal achievement by the artist isn’t easy. Nearly three years went by before Dirk Serries found himself back into the realm of his self created Microphonics.

The intense involvement in free jazz and the improve scene (with his curated A New Wave Of Jazz label and artists like Yodok III and Kodian Trio) and the completely different way of working dragged him into the third studio album. Testing and trying the dynamics of inviting guest musicians, working his way through different themes and paths in a live setting where the steps needed to make that (final) chapter in the story that is Microphonics.

“Microphonics XXVI-XXX : Resolution Heart” is a breathtaking farewell to a remarkable series of releases (studio and live) for Tonefloat Records. An album that captures the essence of his music. Harmonic, emotionally charged, dynamic and minimal at the same time.

A statement that once again explores the versatility of Dirk Serries as a composer and musician, and at the same time acts as an answer as to why he has been (for over three daced) yet still maintains a key factor in a genre that has been labelled and perceived incorrectly more than often.

“Microphonics XXVI-XXX : Resolution Heart” has Serries’ signature all over and will in more than one way meet expectations.

The album will be out on vinyl as a regular 180 grams audiophile LP, plus a limited edition of 50 numbered copies in a box with an exclusive t-shirt and concert poster.
Pre-order the regular edition here and the special edition here.

Tickets for the releaseshow on November 19th at De Singer (Rijkevorsel, Belgium) you can order here.

Check out the album teaser :

upcoming concerts

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a few concerts are lined-up, from pure vintage ambience, the abstract impro of KODIAN TRIO to this year’s highlight : Dirk Serries’ release show of his long-awaited final MICROPHONICS album on November 19th, this is our agenda :

17/9 – AMBIENT SOLO – in-store performance – Morbus Gravis (Antwerpen, B) 2pm !
24/9 – AMBIENT SOLO – Bozar Electronic Festival – Bozar (Brussels, B)
01/10 – DIKEMAN/GOVAERT/SERRIES – Oorpijn Festival – SunBakedSnowCave (Gent, B)
15/10 – KODIAN TRIO – Kinkystar Club (Gent, B)
17/10 – YODOK III – Brukbar/Blaest (Trondheim, N)
19/11 – DIRK SERRIES’MICROPHONICS – De Singer (Rijkevorsel, B)

ASTRAL SPIRITS releases

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On July 14th 2015 alto-saxophonist Dave Jackson and electric guitarist Dirk Serries played Cafe Oto.  Now the fantastic Astral Spirits is releasing this recording on a split tape with Lotte Anker/Fred Lonberg-Holm.

From the Astral Spirits presssheet “Astral Spirits is incredibly proud to present a new split tape Two Duos, featuring four amazing improvisers. This tape is set up as two different takes on a Reeds & Strings duo, with each side showing a unique take on the classic duo pairing.

Fred Lonberg-Holm returns to Astral Spirits for his third release (following Ballister & Survival Unit III) here paired with the brilliant Danish saxophonist Lotte Anker. The duo was recorded in Chicago at Corbett vs. Dempsey Gallery, a beautiful and intimate setting that captures some truly beautiful music. Anker & Lonberg-Holm have been playing as a duo (and as part of larger ensembles) together since 2011 — their initial show was following Link Wray!! They explore far reaches of their respective instruments — from harsh & jagged edged cello scrapes & electronics of Lonberg-Holm to growling flutters out of Anker’s sax — while also leaving plenty of space and breathing room for each other.

Dave Jackson & Dirk Serries are also new to Astral Spirits, showing a different side to the strings/reeds dynamic…Dave Jackson has been playing alto sax in the UK for quite some time, focusing on lots of solo playing (please visit his bandcamp, lots of great stuff) as well as the Solar Fire Trio (also features fellow AS artist Ray Dickaty of Warsaw Improvisers Orchestra!). Dirk Serries has been making a splash in the music world for quite some time as well, from his recent work with YODOK III, Kodian Trio (w/Colin Webster) & his work with John Dikeman to past work as vidnaObmana & Fear Falls Burning. Side B is Jackson/Serries giving us 28 minutes of scorched earth free jazz (think Blue Humans without a rhythm section) with a healthy dose of quiet ambient bridges as well. A beautiful dialogue from two European veterans that are gaining more attention that they both deserve.  Two Duos is out May 13th in an edition of 175 tapes (w/digital download).”

Order here.

JESU & DIRK SERRIES

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LIMITED JUSTIN BROADRICK AND DIRK SERRIES COLLAB OUT ON 7″ AS A PRELUDE TO MICROPHONICS ALBUM #3

The exclusive and limited (300 numbered copies) 7inch RESOLUTION HEART is a continuation of Justin K. Broadrick (Godflesh, Jesu) and Dirk Serries’ ongoing collaboration. Long overdue but with RESOLUTION HEART, Broadrick(in his Jesu fashion this time) and Serries bring their best fusion to date. As part of the prelude to Dirk Serries’ 3rd studio album under the Microphonics moniker (out later this year) the single is just perfect: a perfect melange of new wave, shoegaze and ambient minimalism. an instant classic and a perfect opening to the forthcoming microphonics album. RESOLUTION HEART (tf171) will be out on May 6, 2016, as a limited edition 7″ (300 numbered copies). Check the TONEFLOAT store for pre-order details.

On that very date, Dirk Serries will play his one and only 2016 Microphonics performances at DUNK! festival.

 

new tape release

Multi-instrumentalist Steven R. Smith and Dirk Serries teamed up for a collaborative album that is as familiar as it is different from their individual sonic endaevours.

Made with electric guitars, fender rhodes, organs and all various types of bowed instruments, this album is about organic evolution. Each ‘mantra’ constructed from the directness of each instrument, meticulously layered against each other, creating the drone.  Four long-form mantra’s, four harmonic themes that excel in their own beautiful organic progress over time. Available from Important Records’ spin-off Cassauna.

 

Music Won’T Save You reviews

HABOBUNE & DIRK SERRIES – Obscured By Beams Of Sorrow (CD, White Paddy Mountain 2015)

“Due generazioni artistiche e due approcci alla musica ambient si fondono nell’incontro tra Dirk Serries e Takahiro Yorifuji: fondamentale precursore dell’ambient moderna il primo (basti ricordare la sua trentennale attività sotto l’alias Vidna Obmana), tra i più romantici dei nuovi manipolatori di drone il secondo.

Nei quattro lunghi brani di “Obscured By Beams Of Sorrow” i due artisti trovano facilmente un comune denominatore espressivo nello svolgimento lento e graduale di composizioni che non a caso si dispiegano per oltre dodici minuti ciascuna, incentrate come sono sul crinale tra iterazione e graduale movimento aritmico. L’iniziale “The Slow Movement Of Thought” chiarisce in tal senso in maniera emblematica l’agire compositivo comune, che si dipana attraverso evanescenze aurorali e caliginosi crescendo ipnotici (“Harrowing Surface” ).

La consistenza integralmente astratta delle modulazioni rarefatte prodotte da Serries e Yorifuji lambisce inevitabilmente pratiche isolazioniste (“Nocturnal Pillars Of Solitude”), fino a manifestarsi in un’essenza purissima dolcemente emozionale, le cui nebbie anecoiche (“Obscured”) sublimano verso un infinito di decompressa malinconia ambientale.” Music Won’t Save You – Italy

LIVE AT CAFE OTO

DIKEMAN/LISLE/SERRIES/WEBSTER – Live At Cafe OTO (CD, Raw Tonk Records)

Live at Café Oto is another lively racket, this time pitting John Dikeman’s tenor against Webster’s baritone gurgle, Dirk Serries’ white-hot guitar fuzz and Andrew Lisle’s clattering row. It’s by far the most ‘jazz’ of the records under review here, although by ‘jazz’ I mean the freest, most far out grooves you could hope to wander across.

Dikeman’s Coltrane-in-Ethiopia cry at the start sets the tone for what follows, and his tenor gives the quartet’s two-horn attack a punchy sound that contrasts with gluey scuff of Night Streets of Madness and the stretched dronescapes of Bleed. As is usual with Webster, the overall tone is egalitarian, with all four players surging forward, the assault of their individual sonics knotting together like some horde of berserkers charging over the hill.

I’m always a sucker for the moodier sequences of pieces like this, however, and there’s a fantastic long stretch in the second half where the quartet deconstruct their own playing, breaking their yowls and scratches down into their molecular elements, before building them back up again in discreet chunks of flutter and crash. At around 18:00 things get kind of shadowy and beautiful, various moans and rustles turning into a sax duet, Webster’s baritone blasting out pitted bass tones as Dikeman’s horn bellows over the top.

Serries’ guitar, meanwhile, lurks around the edges, its abstract clouds thickening the sound palette and occasionally creeping into the spaces left by the other three, like some ghostly vapour seeping underneath the door. At about 14:00, however, he lets rip with a series of fuzzy blasts that take things, momentarily, into some weird digital-metal arena. Even better, his riffs are accompanied by grunted vocal yelps, as if James Brown were urging Tony Iommi to take it to an incredibly heavy wrought iron bridge. Whether that’s Serries himself venting or one of his colleagues encouraging him, I don’t know. But it’s a thrilling a moment in a high-octane performance. Tough and uncompromising” We Need No Swords – UK

DIKEMAN/NOBLE/SERRIES reviewed

“Artists from three countries pool their respective talents on this forty-six-minute set from the Vienna, Austria-based Trost label. Laid down at Sound Savers, London on April 2nd, 2015, Obscure Fluctuations pairs American tenor saxophonist John Dikeman, Belgian guitarist Dirk Serries, and English drummer Steve Noble on two long-form improvisations occasionally capable of peeling wallpaper and shaking foundations (apparently the three recorded the two pieces without ever having played together before).

In the liner notes, Guy Peters contrasts the open-mindedness, trust, and respect exemplified by the free playing of the three musicians to the diametric qualities of fear and distrust that different countries’ leaders bring to their interactions. Peters’ point isn’t without merit—there’s certainly room for such a socio-political reading, especially when each musician hails from a different country—though it probably won’t occupy your thoughts for long once the musical storm hits. And it doesn’t take long to do so: two minutes into the opening “From Assent to Refusal,” the three already are operating at full throttle, Dikeman rapidly squealing and honking, Noble violently battering his kit, and Serries unleashing shards and splinters into the air alongside them. The music alternately lurches, wails, and combusts as it works its way through twenty-three minutes, with the guitarist often acting as a stabilizing center that allows the others to play with abandon. At times one of the three drops out and the musicians gather themselves into different configurations in keeping with the improv’s development. The less-tumultuous “The Heart Strips Bare” opens quietly, the three quietly painting the scene with restrained textural gestures, Serries generating creaking noises and Dikeman channeling ghosts, until fourteen minutes along, the saxophonist briefly amps up the energy level before returning again to the subdued pitch.

As loud and noise-laden as the recording sometimes is, it’s not an unrelenting free-for-all. Episodes of contrasting mood and design appear, the music evolving from one sequence to the next at the behest of its creators. I won’t front: the style of music captured on Obscure Fluctuations isn’t entirely to my taste, nor is its first piece the kind of playing situation I most prefer for Serries. I’ve been listening to recordings of his—solo and otherwise—for years now, and this setting, in certain moments, is the most ferocious of all the ones I have on which he performs. That being said, I have the utmost admiration for the guitarist for constantly putting himself into new playing contexts and continually exploring new musical directions. One imagines that a world leader or two could certainly learn from such open-mindedness.Textura – Canada