Hotcha's Calypso Now Label

December 7, 2010

New Years On Earth tape

Filed under: Bands,Catalogue — Tags: , — Hotcha @ 12:00 pm

Some time ago I wrote here about Years On Earth from Northampton, a band that I was in touch with in ’84. I had two of their tapes in my label program, license releases, that is: YOE-2 ‘Site’, YOE-3 ‘Worlds Apart’. Read it here:

When I reactivated my cassette label last september, Bob Roke from Years On Earth sent me by happy coincidence a solo work he had done in 2003 – he did not know then that I was back in business again. Of course I was thrilled, because I was badly looking for the whereabouts of the band. So of course I asked Bob if I could release the CD on cassette. And now it’s here for the taking:

The cassette is a C50 with 15 tracks, it’s a Calypso Now exclusive release, and it goes by the number YOE-4, thus continuing the band’s work. YOE-3 was ‘Worlds Apart’ from 1984, by the way.

Bob uses dark ambient electronics combined with natural sounds or field recordings, and he is still a master of the bedroom electronics. And I remember that YOE used to build part of their equipment themselves. You hear the Years On Earth heritage, of course, but you find less of their song structures here. What always amazes me, since their first recordings, are the high quality standards. No fillers, no fiddling around with the buttons, although it definitely goes under ‘industrial’. In short, a very good production, and a very special tape. The same goes for all the Years On Earth productions, and they are all rereleased by Calypso Now at the same time!

You can order the tapes online here at the Calypso Now Shop.

June 19, 2010

Zidsick And Zanstones

Filed under: Bands — Tags: — Hotcha @ 12:11 pm

This man is just incredible, he’s probably the only person in the world to give meaning to the term ‘far-out’ – Zan Hoffman from Louisville, Kentucky!
While the high priests of collectable underground music just press a ‘nobody can take this stuff seriously’ through their stiff lips, Zan Hoffman goes on and on and on and has today over one thousand releases listed in Discogs.

I collaborated myself with him back in ’84 on the The The The The The The The The The The The The The The The The The compilation, and though I didn’t really think he was that great, I featured his cassette in an interview Swiss national television did with me, because it was clearly weird and thus highly presentable.

Today I just can’t help but admire madman Hoffman who’s aspiring for the title ‘Most Productive Artist Of The Free World’. Read all about him in the latest edition of Don Campau’s Living Archive Of Underground Music and also have a look at Zan’s own blogs and sites:

December 12, 2009

Walti Anselmo Rocklegende

Filed under: Bands,Zines — Tags: — Hotcha @ 2:00 pm

Habe diese Woche per Zufall in einem Ordner meine Angeldust wieder gefunden – ich war ueberzeugt, kein Exemplar dieses legendaeren Fanzines von 1985 mehr zu besitzen. Nachdem ich andernorts bereits meinen damaligen Artikel ueber Garagenrock in Bruegg und Port veroeffentlicht habe, nun hier noch der Nachschlag. Da geht’s um die grosse weite Welt, allerdings.

Walti Anselmo war in den 60er Jahren der wohl bekannteste Beat-Gitarrist der Schweiz und gruendete dann in der hohen Zeit des ‘progressiven’ Krautrock zusammen mit Duede Duerst von den Sauterelles und Hardy Hepp Krokodil, eine sagenumwobene Truppe, deren LPs, allesamt in Deutschland erschienen, heute wohl zu Hoechstpreisen unter Sammlern gehandelt werden. Ich weiss nicht mal, ob die Sachen noch erhaeltlich sind – Google habt ihr ja selbst, nicht wahr.

Als Stift war ich grosser Fan von Krokodil und habe damals versucht, sie so oft wie moeglich zu sehen – mit dem Toeffli 60 km in kalter Nacht gefahren und so -, und fast 20 Jahre spaeter habe ich mein seinerzeitiges Idol Walti Anselmo aufgespuert und mit ihm ein langes Interview gefuehrt. Daraus wurde dann ein zweiteiliger Artikel in Angeldust, der seine ganze musikalische Biographie bis zur Aufloesung von Krokodil erzaehlt. Sehr gelungen, bin heute noch stolz darauf!

Was nach 1985 geschah: Anselmo tauchte zwischendurch in der Aarauer Szene um die Bermuda Idiots und Gogo auf, man konnte ihn sogar mal in Biel konzertant erleben, an der Orgel der nicht minder legendaere Jelly Pastorini von der 60er Beatcombo The Sevens. Aber mir schien, es war ihm nicht allzu wohl dabei – jedenfalls war dem Projekt kein langes oeffentliches Leben beschieden.

Mojo Weideli, der schoene Mojo, der bei Krokodil mit Mundharmonika und Querfloete stark zum unverwechselbaren Sound beitrug, war bis vor ein paar Jahren Barmann in der Aktionshalle der Roten Fabrik, allerdings nur noch ein Schatten seiner selbst. Er ist 2005 gestorben. Bilder von Krokodil, uebrigens, gibt’s hier, auf der offiziellen Homepage. Dort finden sich auch weitere Infos.

Anselmo Teil 1

Anselmo Teil 2

December 6, 2009

Years On Earth

Filed under: Bands,Free MP3 Download — Tags: — Hotcha @ 2:00 pm

I came across Years On Earth in 1984, when they sent me their third tape asking for distribution. I liked it at once and wrote back asking for licence production, and they agreed at that, even sent their second tape with a handful of covers for distribution. As you can read in the file I enclose for your documentation, they sent 11 covers. Helas, it’s a shame that I still have a couple of these original copies here, proof how underestimated the band was at their time.

Today I have the impression there’s quite some fans of this period of homemade electronic music who are on the lookout for music from Years On Earth, and for more infos, of course. That’s why I’ve decided to upload some tracks from “Worlds Apart”, their third tape, and also the material they sent me, as well as the letters we’ve exchanged. I hope we’ll hear from them again some day. As for now, they seem to have been disappeared, and by reading their letters, this comes as no surprise – they weren’t that interested in exposure back then already.

So enjoy the music – you can also get their tapes from me, as long as I still have some of those covers (just a handful). As for the money after covering costs, by the way, it will all go into microcredits – i’m thinking about using kiva. The tapes sound so much better than it’s possible for an MP3, hope you kept your deck!

Years On Earth – Worlds Apart

Press the playback button

To download right-click

You can download all the printed material I have from them, it’s a PDF (3.5 MB) – right-click on this link here.

yoe review

November 26, 2009

Chart Attack

Filed under: Bands,Free MP3 Download — Tags: , , , — Hotcha @ 12:00 am

Deutsche Version hier

Fixed my Revox today. I always say: Never throw anything away. You could use it one day. Probably just the day after having disposed of it. You know that.

To cut a long story short: I have 3 Revox machines, one is working, one isn’t any more, the third was given to me by my hifi vendor just in case I could use some spare parts. This year I was several times on the edge of throwing those latter two away! Lucky me I didn’t. Because today I wanted to copy some reel-to-reel masters onto my computer to mp3 them for your listening pleasure. When doing so the machine started to make some weird sounds, and I detected that in the heat of the summer a small rubber wheel that presses the tape to the recording head had literally melted! Ok, so that has been fixed now – to order the part from Revox would have cost real money, that’s where the money is made, on the replacement parts. Plus I would have waited 10 days for delivery, at least.

So here we are, ready to copy the summer masters. You’ll hear about them soon. For now, just a glimpse into the charts hungry side of Calypso Now. Summer 1984 saw the release of the famous Cassingles (‘Splendid – The Sound Of Young Switzerland’), Summer 1986 the sampler ‘Chart Attack’, followed by ‘Guitar Town’ in ’87 (summer, of course), a sampler with bands from Geneva, at that time the capital of swiss garage. Remember: The Maniacs, The Needles, The Faster.

I’ll give you some tracks of Splendid and Guitar Town soon. Today, to celebrate my newly fixed Revox, the first three tracks from ‘Chart Attack’.

Chart Attack Compilation 1986 – The Reaction, Eugen, Hydrogen Candymen

Ajust playback volume to 10 and press the play button!

(pic shows back cover of Chart Attack, graphics by Martin Schori, thank you)

To download right-click

Peopleism (for Google to use hehehe): Max of The Reaction now works for SUISA, Stephan Ramming of Eugen for NZZ am Sonntag, Lori Hersberger from Candymen is a world famous biennale triennale documentale artist

Tired, have to go. Had too much work restoring certain cassette masters, finding the right hardware and, much more difficult, the right software. Am using Audacity now, a great open source program. A bit more difficult to use than Goldwave, what I used before, but better quality, at least on my hardware.

November 21, 2009

My famous neighbour

Filed under: Bands — Tags: , — Hotcha @ 1:33 am

Well, it’s his brother who’s my neighbour, but who cares about those details? Anyhow, due to the fact that my neighbour’s got a famous and prolific brother I was handed a free CD, the first since at least 20 years. It’s on enja. And it’s great, nonetheless. It’s even fantastic. No, I’ve only had one beer.

You know how it is, when the first note hits it right home. This is how it is: It is rare. But they did it. Incredible.

Ever heard of the Lucien Dubuis Trio? Could be, they’ve been around since quite some time, they played Willisau, they are Swiss, they will be big. Believe me. I’m just listening to their new CD. It’s on enja. Oh, I already said that. But enja… The home of Guido-Westerwelle-Contemporary-Jazz, the fetish of every Revox Head Cleaner. Or do I mix it up now with ECM now? Whatever, whoever – they took the money from the label (enja…) and made something unheard until now.

On the jazz level you hear bits of Arthur Blythe, maybe, seventies jazz rock licks from guitar whizz kid Marc Ribot (well, pretty grey by now), but above all this CD is about Sounds And Rhythm. And about the fun you can have when a very young trio of immaculate taste teams up with mildly crazy Marc Ribot. And about the moog-defying sound of a bass clarinet. About the Daniel-Humair-was-yesterday-drumming of Lionel Friedli. Not that I don’t like Daniel Humair, of course. No, I love him. Well, shucks, have a look at the trailer. Come back after.

Since you’ve been away, I heard: a hardcore dance track, a Zappa-like ditty, now they are playing a folksy tune, could be drunken sicilians locked in a studio messing around with the instruments they found. Steve Marcus, to give you another reference, used to indulge in stuff like that. But Steve Marcus never played so good, of course. Highly entertaining.

But don’t be fooled: It’s not a nice little record, it’s a record that will be played in clubs, and people will stop their talking for a moment and wonder, who this might be. And there’s no greater compliment for a record these days.

Lucien Dubuis Trio with Marc Ribot, Ultime Cosmos. enja 2009.

November 19, 2009

Be there or be square

Filed under: Bands,Catalogue,Free MP3 Download — Tags: , — Hotcha @ 1:48 pm

Releasing and playing music since several decades, I never cared much about keeping track of the stuff I’ve done. As the title of this posting says, I subscribe to the punk motto ‘be there or be square’ – pity, if you’re born after the fact. No pity, though, if you’ve missed on it because you were lazy.

Now, this may sound quite preposterous – I mean, you could rightfully say: Well, if nobody cared, then it probably wasn’t worth it.

Check it out for yourself – this is a catalogue poster I printed around 1987/1988 – click on each page for bigger view.

catalogue poster pt. 1catalogue poster pt. 3catalogue poster pt. 2catalogue poster pt. 4catalogue poster pt. 5catalogue poster pt. 7catalogue poster pt. 6catalogue poster pt. 8

You sure are right, if you like your taste mainstream and middle-of-the-road. Because I’ve never cared much to live up to expectations. Call me the Taste Hero, or, if you like it really heroic, The Man Who Wouldn’t Give A Fuck.

You read me spitting out big sounds now, because today I came across traces of my work from the 80s in the internet. As a matter of fact, I for instance discovered a site where some of my Calypso Now releases are listed, some quite popular, like the split tape by The Ex/Svaetsox, Pay no more than 6 Fr (the tongue in cheek title referring to hip indie releases ‘for the working man’ in England in the Thatcherist 80′s). But I’ve also come across a real obscurity, like Big City Orchestra’s Hand Of Fear – they were always my favorites, by the way, and if you read their portrait, you’ll know why.

I’ve also found several sites who still keep the fire going, like Mutant Sounds, which I found researching Years On Earth; like Crud Crud on a more general level, where you keep falling over rare and strange sounds, a lot of tape-only productions, but also other stuff like belly dance rip-off singles; like Sweet Thunder which is full of surprises, check it out for yourself.

I was looking for the whereabouts of Years On Earth because I used to release two of their fantastic dark droning tapes, ‘Site’ and ‘Worlds Apart’, and I’ve always listened to them ‘in private’ as well. I will tell you more about them as soon as I can find the master tape for YOE3 in my piles of incredibly great, rare and half-forgotten stuff. But for today, I will give you just a listening of two tracks from their tape ‘Site’ from 1982 (YOE2). Bedroom electronics really well done.

Years On Earth – from their tape ‘Site’, 1982

Ajust playback volume to 10 and press the play button!

To download right-click Years On Earth: And I Dream or Years On Earth: Lost Letters

November 15, 2009

Bande Berne Crematoire & Anal Furgler

Filed under: Bands,Free MP3 Download — Tags: , — Hotcha @ 1:03 pm

There are boxes of master tapes laying around here, tons of sessions that were never released, hundreds of demos I got that I can’t release due to copyright reasons. Like for instance the first demo of The Young Gods – recorded in 1986 with ultra cheap gear, unlike Yello, by the way, but probably a lot more creative. No offense ment to Boris Blank…

So much to make you drool, drivel and slobber (thank you, Wikipedia :-)

As you can imagine, I have a lot of my own masters awaiting to be filed under ‘trashbin’. So allow me to save one of those for this here blog. I didn’t like it at the time, but listening to it now I think this is nothing less than pure chart fodder – which in my world is the most positive statement there is about any track.

I hope he will not kill me, my buddy Michael Antener, who at that time, must have been 1984/85, had made himself a household name in the international industrial home recording scene, which in Europe was mostly the crowd around the Graf Haufen Label in Berlin. Antener then recorded, in the basement of his parents house in a small village, Utzensdorf, if my memory serves me well, under the dark name of Bande Berne Crematoire.

Myself, I went by the name of Anal Furgler, always hoping to create a media scandal by hijacking the name of a then famous politician, but to no avail. So much for the history of the two tracks I’ve unearthed today.

Michael invited me to record a session with him in his basement, and I went there with a sax, records and tapes, he playing the analog synthesizers noise makers back then usually had. I found today two tracks of this session on a lost cassette, and as I’ve said, I rather like them now. It has a nice ambient feel to it, all the while keeping that dark gloomy spirit BBC used to fancy then. I could have released them on my label, but I’ve decided against it, rather unwisely, I think, because it didn’t come out the way we liked it then; this being an entirely improvised session, without any overdubs, add-ons or remixes, both rather reluctand to really trash it away like we both did usually, the greatness of the result was lost on us. Anyway. Here they are now, for you to listen or download.

Bande Berne Crematoire, by the way, later teamed up with Ane Hebeisen, then a very young goth adonis and ideal frontman. They went by the name of Swamp Terrorists, played live around Europe and released several ‘real’ records. Hebeisen later was a better journalist than he was a singer, if you allow me my saying so, and his articles in the now almost bygone Berne newspaper “Der Bund” always made for a very pleasurable reading. Yeah, Berne really has a quite morbid touch to it…

Bande Berne Crematoire & Anal Furgler

Ajust playback volume to 12 and press the play button!

(pic shows cover of joint tape release by nacht’raum and Nisus Anal Furgler, designed by BBC, who played in nacht’raum)

To download right-click Bande Berne Crematoire & Anal Furgler: Mutter or
Bande Berne Crematoire & Anal Furgler: Manneszucht

You can also find downloads of the early works of Bande Berne Crematoire at this site:

Also, the cassettes of Bande Berne Crematoire seem to be quite rare – several people have them on their want list, I see here. Well, if you missed on it: here’s the cover of the first official release of Bande Berne Crematoire, it came out on several labels simoultanesly, also on Calypso Now. Must have some laying around here… grin. As I always say: Be there or be square. Why, according to my ‘files’ I’ve sold seven copies of the tape in 1984 – and now I see that five people at Discogs have it on their want list. Bad case of being born too late, probably.

I’ve almost forgot, that the other tape by Bande Berne Crematoire, which remained unnamed, has also been released by Calypso Now. That must have been one of the last tape releases, as it is packaged the way I did it then: Have an A4-cover printed, to be folded in a plastic bag which allowed more paper work to be included. This cover has been handprinted by Rueebli, a madman back then, now successfull winemaker at the lake (Bielersee). Luckily, I’ve still got a couple of those covers…

Order here:

[MINICART item="1"]

Payment through Paypal – shipping by economy mail included.

October 31, 2009

SS Whores

Filed under: Bands — Hotcha @ 2:47 pm

Joy Division certainly is one band with many faces. the best of Joy Division coverThere is undeniably a provocative flirting with fascist esthetics, starting with the name taken from a book about the SS, according to this book the Joy Division at that time being whores to thank SS members for services rendered; the uniform-like clothings singer Ian Curtis sported; the cold lyrics, expressing a sometimes futuristic feeling; the dancing on stage that reminds of an android out of control – where ever you look, you can find hints to the aesthetics of the 1930s. Not to forget the name the three remaining members of the band chose, after Ian’s suicide. New Order became a million dollar band in the end.

There’s a film on dailymotion telling the story of Joy Division and Manchester, a very impressing documentary. Don’t miss it, the whole 90 minutes are still online, and you can even download it, if you get Download Helper, a Firefox plug-in.

After watching the movie I was kinda wondering how Deborah Curtis would tell this same story, she being the wife of Ian, but never part of the scene. I see she has written a book about her marriage, and I would at least read her side of the story here in this interview or in the book, it’s still available.

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