Harvesting #8: A familiar face if you know Nostilevo!

Once again, another edition of Harvesting. Since it’s been some time ago when I first started doing this, I’d like to tell you that number #10 will be celebratory. I’m not sure in which way, but I’m positive it’s going to be in a good way. Currently planning to release a double-interview on that day and harvesting. You’ll know what I’m talking about when it gets published, because I won’t let you in on the details. Now it’s time for Harvesting #8 and I’ve got some cool stuff in store for you in case you did wonder. The thing I’ve got in store is the following: Nostilevo, York Factory Complaint and Liable. In case you didn’t know, there’s going to be an interview with Khristopher Reinshagen about his one-man label Nostilevo. I will also do a review and introduce you to “The Grieving Process” by York Factory Complaint and “Dominati Kirche Und Mineralischen” by Liable. Even though popularity isn’t a significant factor for me, I’m always happy when people look these series up and find my blog. Hopefully these series will give some publicity to the currently disadvantaged and unpopular underground phenomenons. Not because they would need or desire popularity, but because their art and craftsmanship needs to be brought up on the agenda. Enjoy this edition of Harvesting and continue to follow this chronological path of variation.

Nostilevo is a continuation of your old label Nurse Etiquette, if I have gotten it right. What’s the difference between the two and how did Nostilevo form?

– Well, I began Nurse Etiquette in 2006 under the status of being a noise label. in 2004ish, I was getting tired of going to punk/hardcore shows and dealing with the politics and bullshit of that, so I began to check out noise shows that were happening seemingly all of the time in the S.E. Michigan Tri-County area. the noise scene in Michigan was really crazy back then. I had always wanted to start a ”record label” when I was a teenager, but had always assumed doing such things were far out of my reach. Going to noise-shows gave me a snapshot of how accessible it all was. Everyone had a tape label and everyone was sharing their works, and there were gigs all of the time. Everyone was always pressing records. It was really awesome to realize, “Hey, alright, I can do this.” so I began putting together my own cassette releases under various pseudonyms. I decided to try to get a little more serious/focused on it in 2006, which is when I began releasing cassettes under the Nurse Etiquette banner. So, Nurse Etiquette was mostly a noise/experimental-focused label. After doing maybe about 30 releases, I began to really hate the name. It wasn’t well thought out.

The name came from a spam email subject heading I received and I simply thought “whoa, cool, that’s my new thing.” I didn’t realize any of the connotation and/or innuendo that may be grouped by pairing those two words together. Plus I hadn’t taken note of the dozens of noise labels with medically-themed aesthetics. I tried to stick with it, but somewhere around release number 70, I knew I had to move on. Simultaneously though I was experiencing trouble attempting to breach the label as more than just somewhere for noise cassettes. I was initially going to begin doing a bunch of smaller, “sub-labels” to Nurse Etiquette where I would rotate which releases came out on which label, or potentially, reserve sub-labels for differing genres of sound. Though after rotating maybe 2 or 3 times, I lost interest in the idea and began focusing/sticking w/ Nostilevo as the new zone. after about a year, the label has taken direction to mostly titles that lean into minimal-electronic/synth/gothier-styled things, but, Nostilevo has no boundaries. I felt like I backed myself into a corner with Nurse Etiquette, where no matter what I was releasing, it would always be perceived as a noise label. Don’t get me wrong; I still love noise music and I’m still releasing noise tapes, but I wanted to get out of being peg-holed.

It seems like you’ve been quite productive in a short span of time, did you already have the October-releases planned before Nostilevo started?

– I had an idea early on in the year that I wanted to do a batch of releases that had one sharing trait; all being modern Minimal Electronic/Industrial/Cold-ish music active in the Americas. Which, actually, this was something I wanted to do years ago, around when I wanted to end Nurse Etiquette, but had too many other things to commit to. At that time, years ago, there weren’t really any labels releasing minimal synth/cold wave or the type of industrial/electronic music I’m most into on cassette. Nowadays, clearly, It seems like I wasn’t the only person that felt this way! The market for that stuff really expanded since I had that thought and I’m happy to be taking part in it.

So for these six tapes I’m doing now, I believe I had asked Travis from Siobhan for a master first, and shortly after talked to Hayden from Dream Affair & Ryan from York Factory Complaint if they would like to do something as well. Once everyone agreed, it began to take shape. I had picked up a really awesome tape from this guy named Craow from Florida, and I kept revisiting it over and over again through the year, so I sought him out for a release. then I met the dudes in Slaymaker Welding, and found some songs I wanted to release by my project Liable, and then it was done. I don’t think I can really wrap my head around doing more than 6 releases at a time any longer. I’m very proud of everything here in the fall 2012 catalogue. I feel like it displays a very colorful example of how vast the term ‘Minimal Electronic’ or ‘Industrial’ can be.

What are the driving forces behind this label?

– Listening to SPK records in the dark. or not in the dark. Playing Enema Syringe’s “305an På Västra Sjukhemmet” at parties. Watching japanese death match wrestling. Morton Subotnick album covers. Maria Zerfall. Most importantly, various friends and peers that are doing some of the best things around in my book. to name a few, Chondritic Sound, Something Cold, Blind Prophet/Heaven Street, All Gone crew, Paul Bancell & the Ritual Howls dudes, Hanson Records, Loose Meat/Everything is Terrible dudes & related crew, Robert & Leopold/DAIS, Tesco Industrial and Wierd Records. I’m forgetting so many more. They all consistently provide me with a strong level of passion, interest, intrigue, and general awesomeness that I favor most in my day-to-day audio/visual-ing.

I’m putting more and more time into the label constantly thanks to all of these things one way or another. I’ve gotten used to most of my free time going into working on something related to the label, or my project Liable, or these nights in Detroit that I’m involved with called Something Cold, which are these nites for fellow synth/industrial-obsessives to come out and party and listen to cool records. With all of these things that I’m incredibly passionate about, plus also actually having a real job outside of this, I can’t really sit around for long stretches of time.

You’re going to release quite a number of stuff now and have already put up new stuff in your shop. What kind of stuff is getting released?

– I’m trying to keep the label varied, so while like I mentioned earlier there is a slant towards industrial music, I’m planning to go a few different places. I had been talking to Hiver Noir, a french black metal band about doing a 7”… I have the tracks though we haven’t spoken in a while. It’s kind of hard to reach them. I’m also working on a really great noise record for Aaron Dilloway sometime over the next few months. That one will be an LP and may be the next of my vinyl releases. Stacatto Du Mal, Dangerous Boys Club, Mammal, Hive Mind, Tollund Men, and Wyatt Howland are additionally lined up for records. I’ve been talking to Mark Solotroff from Bloodyminded/Intrinsic Action for a couple years now on situating a 7” of solo material similar to the ultra-microphone-feedback style he performed with a few years back, initially as a part of Nurse Etiquette. Not sure when that one is due.

May the force be with you! What would you like to say here in the end?

– The fullest appreciation & respect for everyone that has supported me over the years. This can be an insanely difficult operation to run sometimes considering I’m just one person, and I’m working harder every day to make everything more stable. Right now are some of my favorite times I’ve had in the 8 years I’ve been doing this, so I have faith. Thank you.

York Factory Complaint – The Grieving Process

I really dig the cover a lot, it reminds me of the vicious but aesthetically pleasing industrial-covers of ye old. When it comes to the music, I do not dig it as much. But I can appreciate the sound of noise if I turn the volume down. While listening to “Side A“, the uncompromising sound of the artist is the first that comes to mind. It’s not trying to mask itself as anything, and it’s not trying to gather different more melodic genres together, it’s just pure and simple noise. I can also hear some martial industrial in the mix, but that’s mostly when it comes to the passage with the classic martial beat to it. Also, when I listen through it, things appear in my mind: it sounds like black metal, without the metal in it. The vocals could easily fit the picture in a black metal atmosphere. At least if you like the simplistic, yet provocative nature of the agonizing vocals. This would be perfect music to listen to if you want to brutalize your ears a little bit. Or yeah, the word “little” would totally undermine the fluorescent nature of it. It’s some of the most brutal, uncompromising and unconventional I’ve heard since I got into noise for real. If you really thought “Side A” would contain some of the most distorted stuff you’ve heard in your life, think again. “Side B” just sounds murderous, and I had to turn down my sound a little bit more. It sounded like I was testing out my newly engineered jet-motor. Now, since I’m a novice in these areas, it’d be fascinating to find out more about this, musically, when you have the real deal.

So if you can handle this sort of music, you should buy it. The standard prizes are cheap and bring you the amount of quality you deserve. If you want a download-only digital release of this album, you can buy it for 5 US dollars. But I’d recommend that you get the limited edition cassette instead. It’s up for sale for just 8 US dollars and will fit neatly into your collection of noise. By the way, if you buy the limited edition cassette, you also get a digital download. Also, it’s limited to only 100 copies so you should snatch one for yourself.

Liable – Dominati Kirche Und Mineralischen

A totally new addition in the Nostilevo-family. It was released today, so I have just had a listen to it and tried to base my opinion earlier. But since I listened through it some more time, I discovered things I hadn’t heard. Even though I don’t think the cover is as fantastic as the others, the music is a whole different thing. There’s never really been any experimental minimal synth around, and certainly not in this shape or form. I thought the first song “Churches & Minerals” was a little bit tricky at the start, because at first glance, I thought it would be painful for my ears once again. Fortunately, I was wrong this time around. It’s got a pretty rad beat that follows the deep bass around, as if it were its master. The lo-fi touch to it is nice and the monotone sound of the rhythms make a great company for the vocals. It might actually be the hardest song on the album, since it changes its array of beats around to fit the more conventional mold. But even when I say conventional, I’m a little bit damaged by the ultra-experimental and avant-garde things I’ve heard recently. So discard that term and add: pretty conventional, but unusual. The second song “Private Care” really brings out the nostalgic pieces of whats best with minimal synth, but with a german touch to it. I think German minimal synth have always been in the lead when it comes to experimentalism, and Liable is not afraid to challenge these conceptions. One of the more melodic tracks on the album, but it gets overshadowed by the nocturnal emission that is the vocalist and the almost arpeggiated muddy bass that dwindles in the background. So if you like a little industrial added to your otherwise too minimal synth-ish coffee, feel free to indulge yourself within this box with Liable. I’d recommend this album, it’s actually one of the more intriguing releases from Nostilevo, even though they have a few. I think its on the same wavelength as Aborted State. But I must say that this blew me away, at least if I look on it from an industrial standpoint.

You can and should buy this album via their shop over here on bandcamp. As usual, it’s 5 US dollars for the digital-only download version of this release. If you add three dollars, you’ll have a limited edition cassette of 100 copies only, for just 8 US dollars. So go over there and buy it, or do at least listen to it and make up your mind. I can’t wait until Nostilevo decides to fire up their machines again and release once again in the future. Hopefully, it will be even more intriguing and worthwhile.

In the next edition of Harvesting: invisible guy takes you back on a trip, but chooses a familiar way. but it’s going to be different from the eight edition, much more different. vive la differénce!

Tune in for that tomorrow and Au Revoir this time around.