TWO NEW PREORDERS UP TODAY. LEXAGON "FEMININE CARE" and HEADBOGGLE "Digital Digital Analog" on LP an CS 

Today is a big day for us as we announce the preorder for two brand new releases, one from a brand new artist who we’re welcoming to the Ratskin collective and another from an artist we’ve worked with but never in vinyl format. Both of these projects are years in the making, and although it’s nerve-racking to release brand new art into an uncertain, broken world in the middle of a once again rising global pandemic, without the possibilities of the artists touring or even performing locally to support their work, we move forward because we believe the world needs both of these albums now more than ever, so we put our trust into you to take it from here to experience these beautiful, unique and special recordings.  Without further ado we present the preorders for - HEADBOGGLE “Digital Digital Analog” and LEXAGON “Feminine Care”

The former, is Headboggle’s  first vinyl LP on Ratskin, titled,  “Digital Digital Analog”  on stunning 150g Clear Vinyl in an edition of 300.  Preorder now and is out September 25th!. You can stream the first two singles “Ancient Trap” and “Data Entry” now. There’s also a special edition and a collectors edition which come with various limited ephemera including, two bonus cassettes, art prints, a pin back button, and something we have never done before or seen done before, and maybe best of all a customized  composition produced and recorded by Headboggle, just for you. There is also a brand new Headboggle shirt designed by Oakland artist Jason P. (TVOD)   

The latter project, from Oakland-based artist LEXAGON, is a monumental addition to our catalog. We couldn’t be more thrilled to share her Ratskin Records debut “Feminine Care” with all of you. The first single “Hurricane”, is up now on our bandcamp and webpage for streaming waiting for you to experience.   

Please see individual release pages on the Ratskin bandcamp  for details on special editions, shipping info/ times for preorders.  Onto the music:

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HEADBOGGLE "DIGITAL DIGITAL ANALOG" - PREORDER {Bandcamp}

For his second full-length and first on vinyl with Oakland-based Ratskin Records, Derek Gedalecia’s HEADBOGGLE project has taken the critically acclaimed hybrid one-minute electronic-stylings of 2019’s “Polyphonic Demo” (Ratskin) and expanded his ideas into 24 longer form pieces that pull from Parliament/Funkadelic as much as Raymond Scott. “Digital Digital Analog” could easily be undulating in the catacombs of label discographies from Editions Mego to Sub Pop or even Mute Records, but has landed in the bin of the Oakland esoteric imprint Ratskin Records. We couldn’t be more excited to present this on beautiful limited edition clear vinyl and digital download to the world, certainly Headboggle's most astute and developed work to date. 

The strange and alien worlds Headboggle opens up throughout the album are a complex mix of Gedalecia’s mischievous sense of humor, love of pure sound, and quirky melodic sensibility inspired by his studies of ragtime and classical music. Whereas previous LPs were more improv-based in their arrangements, “Digital Digital Analog” refines Gedalecia’s decades of research into synthesis through a highly focused and refined compositional lens. The album represents the culmination of 20 plus years of sonic experimentation spanning noise, new music, avant garde, collage, soundtrack oriented music, and so much more into a meticulously refined and generously melodic approach. “Digital Digital Analog” far eclipses the artist's previous works in a myriad of ways wholly rewarding for the listener. 

With it’s compositionally adventurous spirit, and sonically cinematic presentations, “Digital Digital Analog" stands as Gedalecia’s most refined and articulate work to date. Most of the tracks for "Digital Digital Analog” came out of the continued exploration of the Dave Smith Prophet polyphonic synthesizer and was culled from many hours of rehearsals in preparation for Ratskin Records 2019 US Tour. 

Picture the undulating synth lines of mid-‘70s Parliament transplanted to a petri dish and allowed to grow, or maybe the soundtrack to the most baffling caper movie ever made, and you might have a fraction of what Digital Digital Analog contains. This 36-minute record finds Gedalecia working across a variety of rhythm and genre templates, the titles (“Ancient Trap,” “Skip Pop, ”Breakdance Music”) provoking many questions and fewer answers. The music can be at times both stark and grandiose, desolate and luxuriant, dead-serious and ridiculous, dirge-like and joyful; it’s all de rigueur for Headboggle. 

Gedalecia has taken the best and most developed parts of a myriad of sound synthesis and production techniques and coalesced it into a forty minute tour de force of forward-thinking, cinematic and whimsical music. To contextualize this album as anything short of his grand opus within the context of his vast 100+ release back catalog wouldn’t be giving “Digital Digital Analog” it’s due diligence. 

Album Artwork By: TinyLittleHammers
Mastered By Jake Rodriguez

 

 

LEXAGON "FEMININE CARE" - PREORDER  {Bandcamp} Out September 10, 2021 

 

"Feminine Care" by LEXAGON  is a collection of hypnotic mood swings, spirit jazz and haunted incantations that explore permutations of femininity and care between 2016 - 2020. These songs were moments of freedom and release in the midst of the Trump administration, Black terror, wildfires, displacement and heartbreak. 

This album is a rite of passage. These compositions ask, “What does it really mean to be cared for, caring, carefree and careful in the feminine experience?” 

Absurdly titled after the puritanically cursed tampon aisle in American drugstores, Feminine care plays with ideas of cycles, failed gender-conformity, climate-change, the black female body as a “pre-existing condition,” tenderness within femme rituals, and the relationship between American horror and sexuality. This is an investigation into the femme experience, behind the capitalization of our bodies, beyond binary thinking and before the witch trials and our dislocation from the natural world. 

Lexagon’s sound swallows you into a thick atmospheric cloud of dark melodic incantations that feel both delicate and dangerous- ancient and haunting. Her sound pushes vocal pop into realms of “spirit-noise” often letting the ghost in the machine distort and influence the compositions of her tracks. 

Field recordings of storms and animals, clarinet, cajon, omnichord, journal entries and whispered confessions swell into rising tides of breathy ballads and electronic spirituals. 

Listen to the soundscape of a locked diary, sonic sketches oscillating between form and dissolution.Hear the musicality of the inner mind- intrusive thoughts playing peek a boo with focus, an argument between self and shadow, an overstimulated nervous system draped in sweet harmonies that melt into the uncanny valley; making rhythms out of syllables,tears in bayou cemeteries and breathlessness from being policed in Amerikkka. 

When describing her music practice Lexagon states, “I’m fascinated with the idea of exploring alternate, hidden versions of myself and the thousands of ancestors who’ve worn my face- music is a spiritual technology that allows me to drop into the deepest parts of myself and lineage...I’m not interested in making pretty music as much as capturing the variables and energies moving through me in a given moment. I see my music practice like an astrological natal chart- a blueprint documenting me and the cosmos right now.” 

Downtempo tracks like Hurricane slip you into a brooding sultry soundscape, humid with lush reverb and resonant drones. Field recordings of rain and thunder swell between lyrics like “Drench me, I can go all night” or “torrential rains between your legs” as a lovesick ode to female ejaculation. 

While other songs like Values shuffle syncopated rhythms that weave samples of paper money and pitch-shifted clarinet, almost mirroring the self-aware nuance of the chant- like lyrics “I can’t afford a good night’s rest” to “I can’t afford to be afraid, look me in the eyes-unlock the cage.” Her vocal delivery is raw and vulnerable, exposing the threads of her grief, anxiety and courage. 


As a filmmaker, Lexagon’s compositions are often crafted with a moving image in mind. Some of her compositions like The Motivation act as a documentary soundtrack: picture a summer afternoon, she is sitting on a California beach and writing down notes about metaphysics from Walter Russell’s “The Secret of Light” while staring off into the blue horizon. There is both a sense of channeling and auto ethnographic archiving layered between sounds of crashing waves and sizzling sea foam. 

Feminine Care nods to the women who throw bricks and soup cans, the crones whose wisdom mends our broken hearts, the mothers who sing the lullabies of our ancestors, the post-men-opausal badasses with beards, the two-spirits who are both, and most of all- for Black women who conjure worlds of possibility with every breath. 

Released September 10, 2021  on Cassette, CDr and digital download 

Recorded Composed and Arranged By Lexagon 2016-2020 
Front Cover Artwork : Lexagon 
Mastered by : Jake Rodriguez 
 

Please sight the  Bandcamp page for all of the individual special edition specifics, and shipping dates for the preorders(which will begin shipping early September, three weeks ahead of the release date. 

 

Also of note is the TYLER HOLMES "NIGHTMARE IN PARADISE" Album Release Show, which you can purchase tickets for by clicking on the poster below.  We are so excited for this and have released a very limited amount of $5 presales which are going fast and you can get them here; TICKETS

 

FRIDAY AUGUST 27, 2021 On Our Youtube Channel & Twitch Channel.  $5-25 suggested Donation For the Artists. 

Featuring performances by:

TYLER HOLMES

SPELLLING

PLANNINGTOROCK

 

 

TYLER HOLMES "NIGHTMARE IN PARADISE" IS OUT NOW!  

OUR NEWEST RELEASE - TYLER HOLMES "NIGHTMARE IN PARADISE" IS LIVE VIA OUR BANDCAMP STORE! 

“Nightmare In Paradise” ​by​ ​Tyler Holmes ​was written in the wake of a violent trauma that Holmes and tour mates experienced on their last night in Puerto Rico at the end of an otherwise blissful tour. Holmes stayed behind with longtime collaborator and friend San Cha to care for their injured bandmate, taking shifts sleeping on a hospital floor and staying with friends in downtown San Juan. Upon returning stateside, Holmes experienced intense PTSD, bouts of agoraphobia, and extreme ongoing stomach pain. The symptoms drove them to composition as a survival tool and means to process extreme dark thoughts, anxieties and emotions. Initially the project began as acoustic guitar demos sounding like Hole’s MTV Unplugged performance remixed by Tricky, the songs eventually morphed into the electro-acoustic aquarium that the album contains now​. 
Despite the album’s violent and chaotic conceptual underpinnings,​ ​“Nightmare In Paradise” i​s the culmination of many years of ​toil, struggle, scrapping and re-editing, crying and singing, ultimately rebirthing ​the most complex and nuanced musical offering yet from Bay Area artist Tyler Holmes. ​“Nightmare In Paradise” is H​olmes’ most refined and deliberate distillation of concept and composition working in a complicated and refined harmony. Through even more delicate and nuanced vocal presentation across the twelve songs, beds of layered acoustic guitar, minimal electronics, cello and woodwinds, Holmes has refined their hybridization of Electronic / Folk / R&B and Modern Black Classical music to a feverish crescendo on ​“Nightmare In Paradise”.​ 

“I’ve been calling this my ‘adult-contemporary’ album because it is leagues softer than anything I’ve ever released, especially as a collection. This work was created as a document of my personal recovery from a very violent traumatic event and maps my experience with healing, PTSD, and illness. If the record is soft, or soothing, it is so because I needed to tell the story that way to make it palatable to process for myself. I needed to channel brutality through a healing lens to be able to recount the experience.” 

The album features 12 players across its 12 tracks and a duet co-produced by LA’s GESS. Holmes’ uncanny ability to constantly reinvent and reimagine their own compositions through the addition of live players, remixes, in both expanded and minimal forms shines through on several tracks on the album, highlighted through lush strings and wind sections, such as on the lead track ​“Confuse Me”​. 

These moments aren’t beautiful accidents however, rather delicately wrapped sonic gifts in musical form. Pulling from genres as disparate as Harsh Noise and Dop-Wop, Holmes breathes life into their own uniquely personal sonic and conceptual world. 

Holmes states​ ​“I wanted to create a white space. A clean slate; where emotions (no matter how painful) could present themselves fluidly and be wiped clean. To process the traumas and tribulations one by one, each feeling a colorful gesture on blank canvas. Each wound here for a moment and then passing off into the void to make way for the next.” 

The album’s lead single and visual “​Confuse Me​,” ​a breakup song written as a reflection in the aftermath of a long tumultuous romance​. Minimal synths, electronics and horns lay delicately below Holmes’ breathy, layered vocals. On ​“Confuse Me”​ Holmes channels a reflecting pool of emotion, building intricate architectural structures within a single feeling or experience, providing the listener with an intimate window into the destruction and need for rebuilding which informed the album. Through precision and stark, pop minimalism- the listener is transported into ​a space​ where Holmes is oftentimes present in the space, whispering out of the speakers. Other times, the lyrics reflect inwardly on Holmes own subjective orientation to the story (talking to themself,) but never closing the listener off completely. Holmes has allowed us into their vivid universe as an observer, friend and perhaps even on occasion, the subject. Like a jellyfish following an unknown torrent, we float through the rich sonic landscape of “​Nightmare In Paradise '' a​ nd all of it’s vivid conceptual dichotomies. Rich in feeling, form, and execution, ​“Nightmare in Paradise'' w​ ill appease fans from ​Bjork​, ​FKA Twigs​, ​Xiu Xiu,​ and ​Florist​, while simultaneously carrying them to spaces untouched by these names adorned to so many of us. 

 

Nightmare In Paradise: 
01 Heart Token 
02 Confuse Me 
03 Concrete Balloon 
04 The Girl You Knew 
05 To Accept 
06 Song 
07 Moss 
08 Eden 
09 Hold Me Ghost 
10 Nightmare In Paradise 11 Guts 
12 Canvas

 

ORDER NOW!]

 

 

 

 

and we're on KPFA.ORG doing a. takeover of OVER THE EDGE radio Show Hosted by NEGATIVLAND! 

DAX PIERSON "NERVE BUMPS (A Queer Divine Dissatisfaction") LP / CS / CD/ DL Available for Preorder NOW! 

Today is a special day, today we announce the most ambitious  RATSKIN releases to date, the monumental solo opus from one of the most talented and magical people i know, Dax  Pierson  titled "NERVE BUMPS (A Queer Divine Dissatisfaction)" - two plus years in the making production wise, conceptually many many more. We've joined forces with Bay Area Powerhouse label  Dark Entries Records to present this in as many formats as possible- LP, Cassette, and Digipak CD! This is a huge step for us and we couldn't be more excited to having a small hand in releasing this beautiful work into the world. 

There is no. possible way for me to overstate how important of a release this is for Dax and the electronic community in general, but we will do our best to try. 

To say that Dax is a personal musical hero of ours, and many others would also be a massive understatement.

PREORDER IS LIVE NOW via Dax's bandcamp page and our webstore

Thanks to XLR8R fo sharing this beautiful feature on "NERVE BUMPS (A Queer Divine Dissatisfaction)"

Dax Pierson’s debut solo LP is coming via San Francisco’s Electronic powerhouse imprint Dark Entries Records and Oakland’s Ratskin Records collective. Pierson, an Oakland-based underground legend, has pushed the boundaries of experimental electronic music with his soul-moving opus Nerve Bumps; A Queer Divine Dissatisfaction, an endeavor two long years in the making. On Nerve Bumps, Pierson blends hip hop, jazz, John Carpenter-esque arpeggios, trap/anti trap-influenced percussion, and musique concrete-informed experiments. Futuristic synthesizers cut through layers of fog as Pierson’s bombastic drum programming forges new worlds within themselves. 
Pierson tells a complicated and inspiring story on Nerve Bumps, which is both a privilege and a gift to experience. Tracks such as “I Slay The Pain” reiterate that although Pierson has to live his life as a quadriplegic, this does not define him as an artist or as a person. The cinematic “For The Angels” plays as a masterclass in heart and body-moving rhythms and undulating synthesizers. Pierson directly confronts the listener on “Snap”, an act of solidarity with the disabled community. Sputtering orchestral swells become encapsulated by splintering shards of Pierson’s voice, evoking his relentless determination to learn new music production methods as well as share his experience with losing certain physical abilities. The album’s closing track, “NTHNG FKS U HRDR THN TM”, is a perfect distillation of the varied emotions explored on the album. Warm, heavy synths masterfully guide us down a psychedelic slope through the track’s twelve minutes. On Nerve Bumps, honesty, empathy, and humanity bleed through the speakers like a dark liquid just beneath the skin’s surface. For Pierson, music is his lifeblood, both as a creator and a listener. 

 

Nerve Bumps was mastered by George Horn at Fantasy Studios. The front cover features a painting of pink and green horizontal stripes by Pierson’s partner, artist Chuck Nanney. A photograph of Pierson’s wheelchair by Lenny Gonzalez graces the back sleeve. Dax’s guiding mantra throughout this journey has been a quote from choreographer Martha Graham: “No artist is pleased… There is only a queer divine dissatisfaction, a blessed unrest that keeps us marching and makes us more alive than the others.”

 

 

December Mini Update & END OF THE YEAR BLOWOUT SALE - LIVE NOW! 

December 2020 Update to say that our. fundraiser is still live for Mixed Reality Festival, and we are hosting the first event coming up as a trail run in the space, this January 14th,  2021 featuring a performance by Ratskin artist and collective member WIZARD APPRENtICE.  

ORDER TICKERS HERE, space is very limited and accessibility information is listed in the Eventbrite Event

We are also having our ANNUAL END OF YEAR SALE, which starts DECEMBER 25TH at 4:44 PM PST and runs until JAN 1, 2021 at 4:44PM PST.

Use code: GARBAGE DAY in our BRAND NEW WEBSTORE or BANDCAMP STORE. 

heck the above links for some brand new items, new garment preorder, test pressings, master cassettes and MORE. 

All sales totaling $50 or above (not incl. shipping) get a free Cassette/CD only available in the sale!

 

October + November Updates! TWO NEW RELEASES +Another Album Release Virtual Show!  

Thank you so much for your continued support.  A LOT has been happening here, so much so that we almost cannot keep up. 

GOLDEN CHAMPAGNE FLAVORED SWEATSHIRT "EXPECTANT" ALBUM RELEASE SHOW STREAMING LINK :

Begins tonight at 8PM PST / 11 PM EST 

TWITCH.TV/RATSKINRECORDSOFFICIAL

TICKET LINK

Donate Directly:

Paypal: order@ratskin.org

Venmo: @ratskinrecords

CashApp : $ratskinrecords

First off, WELCOME TO OUR BRAND NEW WEBSITE! We are still adding a lot to the site over the next two weeks so bare with us while that happens but  for today we have a BRAND NEW WEBSTORE which you should go check out, we have some special one off items in there over the next few weeks as well as a DISCOUNT BIN for special items. To celebrate, we're giving you 20% off anything purchased through the weekend with discount code "r a t 2 0".   

Second, we have a brand new preorder announcement we are beyond humbled and excited  to announce our very next release, RAT089, MARIA CHAVEZ / LUCAS GORHAM "Live At Jewel's Catch One" Cassette and Collaboration T-Shirt. The shirts are limited to 25 and are hand dyed with natural dyes from NYC based artist Julia Norton in collaboration with Maria Chavez. 

you can CLICK HERE TO PREORDER THE CASSETTE and/or T-SHIRT from our new web store, or order directly from Bandcamp. 

"Abstract turntablist, and sound sculptor Maria Chavez and avant-garde guitarist Lucas Gorham. This collaboration afforded us with a unique opportunity to work with both artists and release a sonically and conceptually beautiful sound work. Both Chavez and Gorham are known internationally for their acute investigations into improvisational sound, the complexities of chance improvisation and free-jazz inspired compositional 
methods, unifying the breath of all sounds big and small, and seemingly the very essence of sound herself. 

On “Live At Jewel’s Catch One”, the duo creates a deep, rhizomic, sonic investigation of texture and rhythm that span deep listening through chance operations. Synthesizing the space between Chavez’s uniquely brilliant and idiosyncratic methods of turntablism and Gorham’s fractured, abstracted lap-steel guitar/electronics work, a beautiful sonic adventure emerges. Chavez’s extended technique of turntablism, chance operations and compositional strategies pull equally from John Cage, Elaine  Radigue, Pauline Oliveros and DJ Premier alike.

 

 

 

Our newest release, "Expectant"  from GOLDEN CHAMPAGNE FLAVORED SWEATSHIRT, is released TODAY!

ORDER HERE ON BANDCAMPALREADY it's been reviewed in ASTRAL NOIZE, THE TAPE DECK , THE SEATTLE PIand lastly  SHI THE MUSIC CRITIC MAGAZINE  and you can read them by clicking these link  here! 

The special editions are almost sold out, last count at the time of writing this there were only TWO special editions remaining. 

"It’s obvious just from listening that blood, sweat and tears have been poured into this album’s production. Each of the tracks function both on their own and as a whole. The record veers between sublime washes of downtempo techno beats over hypnotic, buzzsaw waves on tracks like ‘Sea Creatures’, whilst tracks like ‘Horsemouth’ jar the listener’s brain with snarling, crunchy waves of synth and skittering beats, though never suffer from this juxtaposition. Each track flows neatly into the next, perhaps because of the keen line of thinking behind Expectant’s hyperactive catharsis. Golden Champagne Flavoured Sweatshirt explains that “the personal and political nature of creating art under capitalism has been an intense journey of self actualisation. This is to remember these feelings, this time, this part of my story.” - Astral Noize 

 

"Golden Flavored Champagne Sweatshirt’s new record, like so many great boundary-breaking sonic works, says a great deal with a careful fusion of sounds. Yet it’d be foolish to claim it’s simply a response to recent catastrophes, despite knowing titles like “3.26_”. 2020 might have been one of the most traumatizing years in recent history for American Black people in particular, but those traumas have roots dating back decades, even centuries. Albums like Expectant, with its distinctly misanthropic POV and pointed discord, speak to ancient queries still ignored, often aimed less at sophistic resolution than release." - The Tape Deck

 

 

"GCFS is one of the artists looking to take electronic music out of its almost cloistered existence and bring it to a wider audience. She's a multimedia artist - working in everything from watercolours to digital to create visual art - and she brings the sensibilities of both musician and painter to her work. Her pieces are a type of synaesthesia - generated sounds which create images and pictures in your head. 

This isn't music you can listen to as background or something you're going to hear piped in to some coffee shop. This is music you have to pay attention to. Like a painting which reveals its secrets the longer you stare at it, the more you listen to Expectant the more you will appreciate the atmospheres and moods it creates."

- Seattle PI

 

 

 

 

Also last Friday, we launched a Trailer and Go Fund Me Campaign for our largest and most realized project to date, MiXED REALITY FESTIVAL, a festival and virtual venue experience centering accessibility through the lens of de colonial artists and musicians. The festival is happening in October 2021, and we began working on the. concept and basic testing in October 2019, and are beyond elated to share the initial trailer and fundraising campaign. 

Also our final virtual event of 2020 is happening December 3 and is an album release for "Expectant". 
streaming right on Our Youtube Channel. Make sure to subscribe if you haven't. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

and lastly, MIXED REALITY FESTIVAL Trailer:Watch On YouTube

Mixed Reality Festival is an immersive VR event for de-colonial artists that untethers itself from the daily oppression of our lives. This project, by Ratskin Records , will feature current and upcoming artists that push the boundaries of music, experimentation, healing, and self-expression in 2020. Through years of arts-based organizing, we have found that our communities are in crisis around physical, emotional, and financial access to physical art spaces and COVID-19 has only exacerbated this crisis. As queer and trans disabled artists of color, we are often overlooked as a community that has, in many ways, defined the cultural output of the Bay Area. We are in the position of archiving our struggles and creating social relevance through our own narratives. Our shared value of collective liberation has given us the integrity, passion, and inside knowledge needed to develop a platform that responds to the needs of our communities.

Please direct folks who can spare a few extra dollars TO OUR GO FUND ME. We're not really calling on our direct community to donate, but rather share with friends and family who might be down to support i a number of different ways. 

Also thank you to everyone whop voted us BEST RECORD LABEL  2020 in SF BAY GUARDIAN & 48 HILLS, what an honor, read it here.

 

 

 

 

 

September Updates  

Preorder RAT090: GOLDEN CHAMPAGNE FLAVORED SWEATSHIRT "Expectant" on Cassette/Digipak CD/Download Now & Bandcamp Sale + End Of The Year Breaths. 

Thank you much for your continued support of Ratskin. This year has been challenging for many different reasons, but we have so many projects in the works that are really inspiring, that we cannot wait to share with you. We are extremely excited to present you with one of our two remaining releases of 2020 up for pre-order now. Our 90th release, Golden Champagne Flavored Sweatshirt, presents "Expectant" available on Cassette, CD Digipak, and Download.  The preorder is up now on our Bandcamp page.  

 

There will also be a Limited Artist Edition of the CD  (ltd to 15)  that comes with a Custom  Puzzle Which unlocks an additional section of the album, as well as an all-over print T-Shirt. Keep your eyes peeled for these special items.  
  

Black femme producer, Multi-disciplinary artist, and curator, Golden Champagne Flavored Sweatshirt has announced her debut full-length record, titled “Expectant” available for preorder now, and set to release on November 20, 2020  on Oakland based imprint Ratskin Records​.  

GCFS has crafted seven songs of futuristic, electronic-based soundscapes. The tracks on “Expectant” span from psychedelic post-industrial chaos to more minimalist, hypnotic ambient soundscapes. Without ever losing focus, or a central theme of distance space, and surrealism, the sounds of “Expectant” create an unwavering investigation of distortion and sound; bringing the listener into a tense and psychedelic journey.  

GCFS’s “Expectant” makes huge strides in both concepts and feel from earlier self-released works, creating tracks that are both visceral and technically engaging, idiosyncratic and speak to layers of the collective subconscious of sound. “Expectant” shines a highly-focused yet surreal lens into the despair and desperation of an entity in chaos. 

Follow GCFS Here: Website | Instagram | Bandcamp  

 

Order JOEL SHANAHAN "Frozen Clock Hovering"  SECOND PRESSING on Cassette/Download Now.  

“Frozen Clock Hovering” is at once both dark and hopeful, disorienting and insightful, melancholy, and victorious. Through a meticulously idiosyncratic creative process, Shanahan has created a contemporary electronic music masterwork, bridging ambient and modern dance music. The nuance, care, and intentionality put into these compositions help solidify a psychedelic musical offering worth engaging in completely. The sounds of Frozen Clock Hovering oscillate just underneath our eyelids to sew warm beds as a temporary respite. Electronic pulses trigger huge electronic events, shooting us into space and slowly recoiling back through the cold atmosphere. plunging into the cold barren sea, leaving a faint crease in the sky, like brushes painting a sonic map to unknown futures, when you look back up into an unknown space all you can see is one, isolated Frozen Clock Hovering, " 

End Of The Year Breaths:


There will be one more release going up for preorder on October 16, 2020. We will also be launching our brand new website and web store  on that same day, but in terms of releases,  that's it for 2020. We are taking the rest of the year to reset and come back stronger with more specific intentionality around all of the projects we are working on. We are shifting into a more collective based mode with Ratskin artists Beast Nest and Wizard Apprentice running operations and content strategy as well as curation  This is a huge step for the label and all of our artists as they are two of the most brilliant minds we have ever come in contact with. To say it's an honor is a huge understatement. We have updated our mission statement and would like to share it with you here: 

 

and finally, we're announcing this special Ratskin Records Virtual Showcase:

 

Saturday October, 24th, 2020. |  8pm-11pm.   |   $5-15 Sliding Scale Ticket Link 

***Please consider buying a ticket early*** 

RATSKIN Records Presents: A Virtual Night Of Outsider Experimental Music, Sound, and Performance featuring: 

MATMOS   |   matmos.bandcamp.com 

Matmos is M. C. Schmidt and Drew Daniel. Currently based in Baltimore, the duo formed in San Francisco in the mid 1990s, and self-released their eponymous debut album in 1997. 

Marrying the conceptual tactics and noisy textures of object-based musique concrete to a rhythmic matrix rooted in electronic pop music, the two quickly are known for their highly 

unusual sound sources: amplified crayfish nerve tissue, the pages of bibles turning, water hitting copper plates, liposuction surgery, washing machines, chin implant surgery, contact microphones on human 

hair, rat cages, tanks of helium, a cow uterus, human skulls, snails, plastic objects, cards shuffling, laser eye surgery, whoopee cushions, balloons, latex fetish clothing, rhinestones, insects, life support systems, inflatable blankets, rock salt, solid silver ingots, the sound of a frozen stream thawing in the sun, a five gallon bucket of oatmeal. These raw materials are manipulated into surprisingly accessible forms, and often supplemented by traditional musical instruments played the group’s large circle of friends and collaborators. 

Dr. Drew Daniel is an associate Professor at Johns Hopkins University in the Department of English Literature and Schmidt is a homemaker. 

Their most recent album is entitled The Consuming Flame: Open Exercises in Group Form, and was released on Thrill Jockey Records  In August of 2020. It involves 99 collaborators and it’s tempo is entirely at 99 Beats per Minute and is around 3 hours long. 

 

WIZARD APPRENTICE   |  wizard-apprentice.com  |     wizardapprentice.bandcamp.com 

WIZARD APPRENTICE (pronouns: she and/or they) is a music producer, live performer, and video artist. As a highly sensitive introvert, her multimedia projects are strategies for managing an overwhelming world. Her music is a combination of lyrical precision, minimalistic composition, and technically-amateurish charm. She creates media that takes advantage of user-friendly technology, skipping time consuming learning curves to focus on inventing highly relatable language for subtle personal experiences. She’s not a gear-head, rather, a digital folk artist who vividly and simplistically expresses her inner world using resourcefulness and honesty. Her video work incorporates green screen graphics, digital puppetry, and compositing to produce imagery that’s cerebral, campy, and hypnotic. She combines song and video to create multimedia live performances that explore intimate emotional themes. 

“Carter’s singing harkens to that of a Catholic psalm or some sort of postmodern plainsong. Comparisons to Laurie Anderson would be appropriate. Although where Anderson confronts culture with a sideways glance, carter is entangled and entranced in the eccentric minutiae of her own psyche.” - The Wire, November 2018 

 

DAX PIERSON  |  daxpierson.bandcamp.com   |   ratakin.org/artists/daxpierson.html 

Dax Pierson is a musician/producer who has called the East Bay home for 20 years. He was co-founder of the bands Subtle and 13 & God, a touring member of left of center hip-hop group Themselves and an associate of the Anticon collective. In 2005 Subtle encountered black ice in the middle of the country while on tour and flipped over, leaving Dax with a spinal cord injury in the 5th and 6th vertebrae. Since his individual fingers are now paralyzed, Dax has switched to using a laptop controlled with iPad apps in order to produce. The last 12 years have been spent exploring the possibilities that technology could offer, often with time-consuming learning curves. His work is currently informed by limitations, college radio segues, hip-hop, ‘90s post-rock, odd time signatures, new techno, ambient drones, bobbing head beats and sentimentality. Dax released "Live In Oakland"  to critical acclaim on R Ratskin in2019 and has a brand new LP due out on Ratskin Records  / Dark Entries Records in early 2021.  

 

JEFF CAREY   |  http://jeffcarey.foundation-one.org   |   https://jeffcarey.bandcamp.com 

He is an active member of Baltimore's music scene. He organizes local concerts for touring electronic musicians and is a co-curator of the High Zero Festival for improvised and experimental music and for the Diffusion Festival for electronic multichannel music. 

 

CORAL REMAINS   |   coralremains.bandcamp.com 

(ritual for Jsun featuring RK & MD )  CORAL REMAINS  is a post industrial sound and sculptural installation personifying the trash island in the pacific gyre. Spawning from a hybrid of human DNA and trash, CORAL REMAINS is a dystopian, amalgamated magnification of failed civilizations, spliced rogue technologies gone awry spawning dark pulses of technological neurosis and inner psychosis . When fish put fin to sand then you'll understand, fish can carry guns. CORAL REMAINS represents the last molecule before total conversion of humans into futuristic trash receptacles. Human, your skull will be in a museum.  Continuum invoking of Jsun Alien who left this mortal coil on December 2, 2016.  

 

DJ HEADBOOGLE  |  headboggle.bandcamp.com 

(intro & outro) 

Derek Gedalecia, a.k.a. Headboggle, has been performing electronic keyboard-based soundscapes for several years in the Bay Area in over a hundred local performances at venues ranging from GTK to YBCA. Incorporating lowbrow with highbrow art, music, and comedy, Head Boggle’s intent is to fuse together a new ecstatic improvisational performance style with a carefully crafted musical underbed. In his formative years, Gedalecia studied classical and ragtime piano from noted ragtime composer/revivalist Dr. Brian Dykstra. . 

Streaming Links: 

youtube.com/c/proartsgalleryofficial 

youtube.com/c/ratskinrecordsofficial 

RSVP to Facebook Event 

We will also be PREMIERING a trailer for a new project we are working on the Ratskin Records Mixed Reality Festival, a VR Festival Centering Accessibility,  co produced by Tieraney Carter and Sharmi Basu.

 

Fall 2020 Mission Statement.   

Ratskin Records is a collective record label and archival imprint championing de colonial experimental music centered in the Bay Area. We focus on LGBTQ+, Black, Native, POC, and disabled artists who create work that is sonically and politically pushing boundaries toward liberation. We work together to create an alternative to an industry that has historically exploited and devalued artist labor and requires artists to exhaust themselves to fulfill their life’s passion. We see the work of de colonial artists as world-building activism that centers empathy and basic human needs. The crux of our work is centered in engaging the healing power of sound for communities in struggle.    

Our goal is to pay and provide material resources for artists whose work lies on the margins of mainstream consumption. Our work is multifaceted in that we take multiple avenues to address issues around accountability, accessibility, racism, transphobia, and other systems of oppression. Ratskin is curation centered in its practice and provides resources for artists to create self-determined spaces.    - Sharmi Basu, Tieraney Carter, Michael Daddona , 2020  

 

August Updates  

Thank you to everyone who pre-ordered our newest release, Joel Shanahan "Frozen Clock H\overing". The support was overwhelming and the double- cassette edition is already sold out! We were able to donate all of the pre-order proceeds to the Black Trans Travel Fund, and Survived and Punished. Make sure to click the link to find out more about both of those organizations. 

Although the cassette is sold out, you can still grab the pre-order in digital form

PREORDER "FROZEN CLOCK HOVERING" HERE

For the next Bandcamp Day,  September 4 we are announcing our two newest releases for pre-order. These are both brand new artist we have never worked with before, and we are really excited to share these wonderful works with you, for your help and SUPPORT allows us to continue going and releasing physical and digital media through these monumental uncertainties.  We are excited to be launching a brand new website, and online store. It's a much cleaner, more user-friendly version of the old site with a lot of improvements we're really excited about and a lot less broken links as well. 

Both of these will be extremely limited and you will prob want to preorder if you want to purchase, stay tuned tuned up with our mailing list, which is where we drop the info first.

We also have a few Custom One-Off TOTE BAGS left and a few  LP BUNDLE Starker Packs in Our Bandcamp Store. 

July Updates  

IT'S LIVE!  RATSKIN RECORDS is proud to announce our 84th release, JOEL SHANAHAN "Frozen Clock Hovering"  Double Cassette Album Art Edition Preorder! 

 

PREORDER HERE! 

We are beyond excited to be releasing this breathtakingly stunning and heart-felt work of contemporary/future electronic music from Portland-based producer Joel Shanahan (Golden Donna, Auscultation, Puritan Waste, et al.) “Frozen Clock Hovering” takes the form of two sixty-minute cassettes housed in an elaborate box-set / art-edition style packaging, as well as digital download. 

For his first release for Ratskin, Shanahan presents a prescient double full-length cassette album spanning mixed-genre electronics with heavy cinematic overtones. Fresh off his LP as Auscultation for the 100% Silk label, Shanahan's newest release under his own name, "Frozen Clock Hovering" explores the complex, esoteric rhythmic zones, sewing dense forests of electronic drones all in crescendo, heavily mixed with lush, otherworldly ambient spaces which, in harmony, act as a guide for the previously uncharted sonic journey that is "Frozen Clock Hovering". 

“Frozen Clock Hovering' was simultaneously an attempt to seek comfort through creation, as well as raise the question—"When will this all end?" Musically, this work was inspired by early intersections of jazz and electronic music—like collaborations between jazz superheroes like Joe Henderson and Herbie Hancock and legendary synth explorer Dr. Patrick Gleason. It also draws from other early electronic music and music concrete works, as well as meditative synth work, and the patient passages of folks like Andrew Chalk and Drunjus. I'm sure that to most listeners, this work will likely and rightfully pale in comparison to the aforementioned references, but this is definitely what I was listening to and feeling inspired by when I recorded this work, also Mike at Ratskin asked me to write a blurb, otherwise, I would probably say very little, as I'm usually not one for "artist statements." From an emotional standpoint, this collection was created in the shadow of lingering pain, trauma, and general futility in tandem with the heartbreak of a failing and now finished relationship with someone I was very in love with. It sits in a contemplative purgatory, as I try to figure out how to scale its towering walls and pull myself out.” - Joel Shanahan 

“Frozen Clock Hovering” is at once both dark and hopeful, disorienting and insightful, melancholy, and victorious. Through a meticulously idiosyncratic creative process, Shanahan has created a contemporary electronic music masterwork, bridging ambient and modern dance music. The nuance, care, and intentionality put into these compositions help solidify a psychedelic musical offering worth engaging in completely. The sounds of Frozen Clock Hovering oscillate just underneath our eyelids to sew warm beds as a temporary respite. Electronic pulses trigger huge electronic events, shooting us into space and slowly recoiling back through the cold atmosphere. plunging into the cold barren sea, leaving a faint crease in the sky, like brushes painting a sonic map to unknown futures, when you look back up into an unknown space all you can see is one, isolated Frozen Clock Hovering, 

Frozen Clock Hovering is available for preorder July 3rd, 2020, and released Sep 4, 2020. 

 

We will also be donating 50% of our sales from this entire weekend to Black Trans Travel Fund and Survived and Punished. Follow their links for more about the vital and very specific work bot of these organizations are doing for Trans centered Black Liberation as well as Abuse Survivor Liberation!

June Updates 

We decided to drop two  surprise releases and do a sale that's happening from right now until Sunday May 3rd on our Bandcamp Page 

RAT087: TYLER HOLMES "NOTHING" CS/DL 

For their new two song EP, “Nothing” Oakland, CA-based producer, and multi-disciplinary artist and Ratskin Records collective member Tyler Holmes offers us two brand new compositions “Nothing” and “ Rinse [Breath Play]” Through intense voice and breath manipulation backed with their minimal yet powerfully presented electronic based compositions, nodding to Holly Herndon, Xiu Xiu, and Cocorosie, Holmes offers two forcefully elegant and haunting tracks both separate from but in dialogue with their upcoming full length LP “Nightmare In Paradise” on Ratskin in Fall 2020. Holmes once again tightropes a complex web of emotion, sound and movement within their own sonic world into a pair of sonically powerful worlds. We hope you appreciate these beautiful electronic compositions as much as we do. 

RAT083: HILLBOGGLE / NERFBAU "Onyx One" CS/DL 

"Onyx Split Series One" is the first installment of the next iteration of our split single series. The first was the GOLD BOX which featured twenty artists featured across ten cassettes, all doing 2:30 tracks. The first is Hillboggle on the A-side and Nerfbau (RK/MD) lineup on the B side. This is the first new NERFBAU material since co-founder and brother Jsun Adrian McCarty tragically left this mortal coil in the ghostship fire on Dec 2, 2019. This release is for him. 

Hillboggle is the nascent "noise-grass collaboration" of San Francisco recorder Derek Gedalecia and his father David on banjo and dobro, debuted in 2013 as a cassette b-side through Derek's prolific Headboggle project. Imagined as a way to explore the elder Gedalecia's own experiments with unconventional sounds in the 60s -- Dwight Pavlovic, Crash Symbols 

Nerfbau is wrestling foam-choked streams and sunless oil-slicked oceans back into cataracts of blinding consciousness. Theorems are laid forth herein as "Error Swarms” and proofs conducted using custom sequencers, laryngopharynx, reprocessed wind instruments, guitars, sound-object graphical processors and Dow Chemical's styrofoam modified with Cyanoacrylate. - Resipiscent Records 

Use code "GUILLOTINE" for  30% off all weekend, including these new releases. We also have some special one-off items on the Bandcamp page which are very very limited so act fast if you want in on those. <3  Big official updates coming soon thanks for your patience and please stay as safe as you can.

RATSKIN RECORDS NEWS + NEWEST RELEASES

DAX PIERSON - NERVE BUMPS (A Queer Divine Dissatisfaction)

Dax Pierson

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Dax Pierson’s first full-length studio solo album is coming to LP/ CD / CS / and digital via SanFrancisco’s Electronic powerhouse imprint Dark Entries Records and Oakland’s Ratskin Records collective. Dax Pierson, an Oakland, CA based electronic music underground legend has pushed the boundaries of experimental electronic music once again with his two-plus years in the making soul-moving, full-length experimental electronic opus “Nerve Bumps; A Queer Divine Dissatisfaction’’.

On “Nerve Bumps” Pierson blends hip hop, funk, and jazz sensibilities, with complex, dark, harrowing percussion, John Carpenter-esque arpeggios, 808 trap/anti trap-influenced drum programming, musique concrete conceptual experiments, nodding to later Talk Talk and fellow queer producers Matmos, who’s new album, Pierson contributed to Futuristic synthesizers cut through layers of fog, as Pierson’s heavy, bombastic drum programming bridges new worlds within themselves, pulling rhythmic influences from sources as diverse as Prince and The Revolution to Moor Mother, and Ras G.

For an album that’s mostly instrumental, Pierson tells a complicated, nuanced and inspiring story, which is both a privilege and a gift to experience, but only on Piersons’ terms. Tracks such as “I Slay The Pain” reiterate once again that although Pierson has to live his life as a quadriplegic, often in a motorized chair, this, nor any other singular experience defines him as an artist nor a person, and this is the story, one of the stories told within the near forty minutes of “Nerve Bumps”. Throughout the record, Pierson mainly utilizes the voice as additional instruments, and yet even with very few discernible lyrics, the story’s narrative and timing is never lost. Honesty, empathy, and humanity bleed through the speakers like a dark liquid just underneath the skin’s surface. For Pierson, music is his lifeblood, both as a creator and a listener. The epic, cinematic synth heavy “For The Angels”, plays as a masterclass in heart and body moving rhythms and undulating synthesizers, the only track from “Neve Bumps” to be previously released (albeit in live form), takes on an even bigger life in this studio version. Pierson methodically moves us through unknown landscapes and we discover a path into his world, and we now have the privilege to peer inside. Pierson’s breathtakingly complex and endlessly rewarding sonic worlds created on “Nerve Bumps” utilize self-constructed systems, custom designed and integrated to tell his story with as few creative limitations as possible. “Nerve Bumps” realizes this to his fullest in a spectacular show of force of contemporary electronic prose, a magnum opus within Pierson’s musical lexicon.

The album’s title, “Nerve Bumps: A Queer Divine Dissatisfaction” which references a quote from American dancer and choreographer Mathra Graham, who once stated, “No artist is pleased... There is only a queer divine dissatisfaction, a blessed unrest that keeps us marching and makes us more alive than the others.” This quote, which addresses a universal conundrum amongst artists of all disciplines, also served as Pierson’s personal manta throughout the two year writing and recording process of “Nerve Bumps”. Pierson used this mantra as a mental and psychological weapon against the pain, and physical limitations of living as a music producer who also happens to be quadriplegic, as well as the abnormal and often violent peaks and troughs of producing as a Queer, Black Disabled artist in America, as a member of the human race in a crumbling world being torn apart at the seems by capitalism, ableism white supremacy. The album’s cover displays a painting of the same name, titled simply “A Queer Divine Dissatisfaction” by Pierson’s partner, renowned multidisciplinary visual artist Chuck Nanney. The title serves as a conceptual throughway through Pierson’s idiosyncratic processes in the creation of both “Nerve Bumps” as well as validation of his own experience as both a musical inspiration to many as well as a survivor.

“It’s the thing that I can’t not do, it’s the thing that keeps me going. Without this I don’t really know what I would have”

  • Dax Pierson

The near-impossible and often horrifying experience of completing “Nerve Bumps” under the painful and exhausting realities of an almost constant schedule of dialysis, hospitalizations, surgeries, and recovery periods where he cannot produce, Pierson has been forced to constantly re-adopt and reinvent his relationship to making music. Pierson directly confronts the listener with an act of solidarity to the disabled community at large with the track “Snap” “Snap”, the album’s shortest, and darkest and perhaps most abstract track, begins with sputtering orchestral swells which slowly become encapsulated by splintering shards of Pierson’s voice - cracking, layered and transposed across multiple spaces sonic and mental spaces, shifting between demonic growls and hymn-like chants, each with their own architecture holding the contents of pain, change, recovery, resilience, and triumph.

”Snap” , a continuation/remix of Pierson’s 2019’s, “A Snap of The Neck” which Pierson iterates the phrase, “Don't take your physical abilities for granted, for you lose them with a snap of the neck” - a sort of mantra referring to a 2005 accident which partially paralyzed Pierson. Although the album’s shortest track, clocking at just over a minute, “Snap” serves as a lesson about Pierson’s relentless determination to relearn new music production methods, as well as share his experience with losing certain physical abilities.

““I had to wait for certain technologies to exist” -Dax Pierson

Pierson’s music mimics his personality in many ways; it’s generous, robust, warm, nuanced, and detail oriented, and with “Nerve Bumps” we get the full scope of Pierson’s deep-seated investigations into his musical and philosophical practice and the existential and very real frustration of a world that was designed for him.

The albums’ epic, near twelve-minute closer serves as a beautiful distillation of the complex web of experiences and emotions that unfold throughout a careful listen of “Nerve Bumps” . The album’s closing, and longest track, “NTHNG FKS U HRDR THN TM” is a perfect distillation of the complexities of human emotion displayed across the near forty-minute sonic journey of “Nerve Bumps” The warm, heavy, punching synthesizer programming bends us down a psychedelic spiraling slope with a masters hand. For a largely instrumental album, Piersons’ uncanny ability to turn musical spaces into their own worlds, packed with information and rich with discovery and reward, allow us the privilege into the psychological realm of Pierson’s own personal electrified Afro-Futurism. “Nerve Bumps” is Pierson’s magnum opus to date. The seminal work from one of the bravest artists we know. We hope it transports you sonically, conceptually, and spiritually across as many spaces and rhizomes of beauty as much as it has us. credits releases February 26, 2021

Nerve Bumps was mastered by George Horn at Fantasy Studios. The front cover features a painting of pink and green horizontal stripes by Pierson’s partner, artist Chuck Nanney. A photograph of Pierson’s wheelchair by Lenny Gonzalez graces the back sleeve. Dax’s guiding mantra throughout this journey has been a quote from choreographer Martha Graham: “No artist is pleased… There is only a queer divine dissatisfaction, a blessed unrest that keeps us marching and makes us more alive than the others.”

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"Nightmare In Paradise" -

TYLER HOLMES

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“Nightmare In Paradise” ​by​ ​Tyler Holmes ​was written in the wake of a violent trauma that Holmes and tour mates experienced on their last night in Puerto Rico at the end of an otherwise blissful tour. Holmes stayed behind with longtime collaborator and friend San Cha to care for their injured bandmate, taking shifts sleeping on a hospital floor and staying with friends in downtown San Juan. Upon returning stateside, Holmes experienced intense PTSD, bouts of agoraphobia, and extreme ongoing stomach pain. The symptoms drove them to composition as a survival tool and means to process extreme dark thoughts, anxieties and emotions. Initially the project began as acoustic guitar demos sounding like Hole’s MTV Unplugged performance remixed by Tricky, the songs eventually morphed into the electro-acoustic aquarium that the album contains now​. Despite the album’s violent and chaotic conceptual underpinnings,​ ​“Nightmare In Paradise” i​s the culmination of many years of ​toil, struggle, scrapping and re-editing, crying and singing, ultimately rebirthing ​the most complex and nuanced musical offering yet from Bay Area artist Tyler Holmes. ​“Nightmare In Paradise” is H​olmes’ most refined and deliberate distillation of concept and composition working in a complicated and refined harmony. Through even more delicate and nuanced vocal presentation across the twelve songs, beds of layered acoustic guitar, minimal electronics, cello and woodwinds, Holmes has refined their hybridization of Electronic / Folk / R&B and Modern Black Classical music to a feverish crescendo on ​“Nightmare In Paradise”.​

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EXHAUSTIVE LABEL PROFILE ON RATSKIN IN BANDCAMP DAILY TODAY!

EXHAUSTIVE LABEL PROFILE ON RATSKIN IN BANDCAMP DAILY TODAY!

While it is exciting for us to see so many of our friends family peers and cohorts getting back to some semblance of social interactions (live shows, vaccinated hangouts, outdoor meetup’s  etc)  we want to remind everyone that while case numbers have drastically improved in the United States (for now) in many populated cities, there is still a huge disparity towards access to health care and vaccines amongst Black people and especially Black disabled people, so while “on the news” things appear to be improving for many, but for many others the battle and aftermath that covid is leaving in it’s wake are nothing short of horrifying.  In many other places in the world, INDIA for example is currently and has been suffering a humanitarian crisis with the continuing surge of cases and fatalities due to COVID-19.    COVID-19 in INDIA and many other parts of the world is very much far from over and eclipsing even the worst U.S. case numbers on a daily basis. Just two weeks ago INDIA recorded nearly 404,000 cases in a SINGLE DAY. Yes, in a single day. if these numbers themselves don’t send a shockwave through your system because you think you don’t know anyone directly affected by this, well that shouldn’t matter, because being a human and artist and musician should be empathy based. We will also share that Ratskin collective members as well as close personal friends and family members of Ratskin artists have suffered insurmountable familial losses and tragedy just within the last few weeks while we are all planning tours and festival travels including one of the three  core members of Ratskin.  These atrocities are still happening as you read this, as the numbers have begun to decline, but so much damage and trauma and loss has already been endured, and we need to show true solidarity. In India along with other places around the world, COVID is once again surging out of control, without access to proper PPE and vaccine supply / access , there is little end in sight at least in the next few months. As people flock back to shows and community gatherings  in the states and Europe etc , we are forced (out of the safety and well being of our families and friends and extended communities)  how can people both hold space for shows progressing to be more accessible and safer in ways which can acknowledge the rich and vast history of this work often led by Black and Brown women and femme and non binary people,  subvert and push against a white supremacist system often perpetuated by underground communities through anti Blackness, transphobia, AAPI hate, islamophobia, native erasure and ableism. Before March 2020, many/most events and spaces weren't very  accessible for many artists, musicians, and community members to begin with, so to be rushing back with no real plan in sight, seems like it has the potential to be slightly dangerous and reckless.  to talk about “community” we also must talk about the enemy of “community” which is whiteness - an extension of white supremacy- the violent system that allows white people to simply point comment and gaze at the trauma and violence of the rest of the modern world done in the name of whiteness.  it is in this framework that we ask white CIS members of the music art and adjacent communities consider what the resources and privilege  they are using rushing back to go on a tour or fly to europe’s to play a festival. if humanity and empathy are  not embedded into the  art or music  we are sharing than who are we really sharing it for ?  

all  white CIS People have  resources and privilege even if you have had a difficult life. there is always room for both and it does not negate your own trauma to  admit the system still benefits us .  going forward,  how can  privilege be leveraged and allocated to help friends and fellow artists and musicians whose lives are  still being affected in ways which are made exponentially worse based on colonialism, fascism and white supremacy.  

below is a list of ways you can support financially the covid crisis in india. also we (and me , MD. as a white cis male) often overlook that the most  obvious way you can support your Desi friends is just ask them what they need and stay true to your commitment to offer help assistance or mutual aid.   

If you would like to participate in a benefit show for COVID RELIEF TO INDIA PLEASE EMAIL RATSKINSOUND@GMAIL.COM with INDIA BENEFIT SHOW in the title  

https://mutualaidindia.com/   - A curated list of opportunities to donate for COVID relief.

latest physical releases

JOEL SHANAHAN - Frozen Clock Hovering 2x

Joel Shanahan

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We are beyond excited to be releasing this breathtakingly stunning and heart-felt work of contemporary/future electronic music from Portland-based producer Joel Shanahan (Golden Donna, Auscultation, Puritan Waste, et al.) “Frozen Clock Hovering” takes the form of two sixty-minute cassettes housed in an elaborate box-set / art-edition style packaging, as well as digital download.

For his first release for Ratskin, Shanahan presents a prescient double full length cassette album spanning mixed genre electronics with heavy cinematic overtones. Fresh off his LP as Auscultation for the 100% Silk label, Shanahan's newest release under his own name, "Frozen Clock Hovering" explores complex, esoteric rhythmic zones, sewing dense forests of electronic drones all in crescendo, heavily mixed with lush, otherworldly ambient spaces which, in harmony, act as a guide for the previously uncharted sonic journey that is "Frozen Clock Hovering".

“Frozen Clock Hovering' was simultaneously an attempt to seek comfort through creation, as well as raise the question—"When will this all end?" Musically, this work was inspired by early intersections of jazz and electronic music—like collaborations between jazz superheroes like Joe Henderson and Herbie Hancock and legendary synth explorer Dr. Patrick Gleason. It also draws from other early electronic music and music concrete works, as well as meditative synth work, and the patient passages of folks like Andrew Chalk and Drunjus. I'm sure that to most listeners, this work will likely and rightfully pale in comparison to the aforementioned references, but this is definitely what I was listening to and feeling inspired by when I recorded this work, also Mike at Ratskin asked me to write a blurb, otherwise I would probably say very little, as I'm usually not one for "artist statements." From an emotional standpoint, this collection was created in the shadow of lingering pain, trauma, and general futility in tandem with the heartbreak of a failing and now finished relationship with someone I was very in love with. It sits in a contemplative purgatory, as I try to figure out how to scale its towering walls and pull myself out.” - Joel Shanahan

“Frozen Clock Hovering” is at once both dark and hopeful, disorienting and insightful, melancholy and victorious. Through a meticulously idiosyncratic creative process, Shanahan has created a contemporary electronic music masterwork, bridging ambient and modern dance music. The nuance, care, and intentionality put into these compositions help solidify a psychedelic musical offering worth engaging in completely. The sounds of Frozen Clock Hovering oscillate just underneath our eyelids to sew warm beds as temporary respite. Electronic pulses trigger huge electronic events, shooting us into space and slowly recoiling back through the cold atmosphere. plunging into the cold barren sea, leaving a faint crease in the sky, like brushes painting a sonic map to unknown futures, when you look back up into an unknown space all you can see is one, isolated Frozen Clock Hovering,

“Frozen Clock Hovering” is available for preorder July 3rd, 2020 and released Sep 4, 2020

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Latest Music

HEADBOGGLE "Polyphonic Demo"

Ratskin Records

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HEADBOGGLE "Polyphonic Demo"

San Francisco's Derek Gedalecia's long-standing HEADBOGGLE moniker has boasted over 100 releases in his twenty plus years composing and releasing music that spans from dense layered noise, synthesizer based works, avant neo-classical, to giddy electronics to ragtime piano, but none of these 100 plus releases have fully purged the deepest depths of unexplored sonic territories, with the inspired urgency and carefully honed strategic extraction of unheard sounds as his newest record, titled "Polyphonic Demo", to be released on CD and digital this November via Ratskin Records. On "Polyphonics Demo", Gedalecia abandons all notions of what experimental music is "supposed" to sound like to offer a exploding, tense, exuberant, yet refreshingly idiosyncratic take on synthesizer music. With forty-four one minute tracks, meant to be shuffled on CD or remain in their sequenced order, Gedalecia completely re imagines what is possible both compositionally and spatially within the confines of a sixty second track, or an electronic music album for that matter. "Polyphonics Demo" is the listening adventure of abstract, yet masterfully grounded take on electronic music we've all been waiting for.

“Headboggle splinters his typically all-encompassing style of synth composition into tiny one minute morsels & the results play out like fellow Bay Area legends The Residents on their Commercial Album: short and sweet, presenting each idea as a discrete miniature world and moving on. Derek presents a comprehensive taxonomy of the tones and strategies within his arsenal of synths and electronics, finding room for everything from glistening classical-informed harmonies to the bludgeoning rhythmic squelches that have become his signature. Across 44 tracks, Derek dilates time and sketches out some oblique narrative known only to him that seems to contain infinite details”. - Max Allison, Hausu Mountain

“ HOLY SHIT Headboggle has gone “commercial” with (44) one-minute jingles of brain-damaged intent. I can’t get over this joker’s Modern Ballroom Dancing © sound - puts me super smiley in the headspace of Mort Garson or The Residents. My favorite release of his so far.” - Bran (...) Pos

Derek Gedalecia, a.k.a. Headboggle, has been performing electronic keyboard-based soundscapes for several years in the Bay Area in over a hundred local performances at venues ranging from GTK to YBCA. Incorporating lowbrow with highbrow art, music, and comedy, Head Boggle’s intent is to fuse together a new ecstatic improvisational performance style with a carefully crafted musical underbed. In his formative years, Gedalecia studied classical and ragtime piano from noted ragtime composer/revivalist Dr. Brian Dykstra.

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