The first releases for the ‘12,000 Seconds’ concept series were released today on Bass Clef’s Magic + Dreams imprint.
Punch Drunk honcho Peverelist, multi-instrumentalist Ashley Paul and Vi are the first artists to contribute to the series. Despite largely being given creative freedom by curator Ralph Cumbers aka Bass Clef, the composers were given one specific requirement in their brief: a set of eight track times (0:06, 0:23, 1:11, 2:37, 3:03, 3:14, 4:20 and 6:06) to conform to. The idea was to total the length to 12,000 seconds but, rather impressively, Cumbers got the maths slightly wrong… “I always thought I was good at maths, but to my chagrin I later noticed that the times actually add up to 12,060 seconds. But hey nobody’s perfect. I left the series title as a reminder of my infallibility.”
Magic + Dreams’ cassette releases have mostly been Cumber’s own experimental output since 2011, the two exceptions being Duncan Brown’s ‘Pipe Dreams’ and a collaboration between Bass Clef and Ekoplekz. The ‘12,000 Seconds’ series marks a new chapter for the label – with its first digital releases alongside physical cassette. The tapes, which should arrive later in the week (according to the Magic + Dreams site), are split between two artists – the first between Peverelist & Ashley Paul, and the second between Vi & Hacker Farm.
Peverelist’s attempt is a highlight: after the initial 6 second opener he builds ‘Caught a Glimpse’ over a shuffling breakbeat and soaring synths before gently taking things down. More familiar Pev drums occur in the following couple tracks and a gentler side is shown in the shorter pieces later on. Ashley Paul’s aesthetic couldn’t be more different: the instruments are raw and untreated, relishing in tension as dissonances are built and settled. It takes a while for her saxophone screeching to settle, but by the time the vocals step into the forefront on ‘Weight’, Paul’s sound is gentle and warming. Vi takes a hardware approach: analogue experiments that, like the other EPs, balance uncomfortably between ambiance and menace.
Hacker Farm’s release is likely to follow very soon, but in the mean time two of their efforts are available to stream below. Another ‘special’ cassette release entitled ‘Basic Channel’ will also be released (but no digital for that one).
The three digital EPs are out now and available to order via Juno.
Cassettes aren’t up for pre-order just yet, but keep your eyes on the Magic + Dreams site as they will be soon.