Wednesday, 29 June 2016

Sky high and wide eyed.

 photo Skygirl.jpg
It's no secret to anyone who's familiar with this blog that we're huge fans of Laurent Richard aka DJ Sundae. His mixes and radio shows have been mainstays on our stereo for a very long time now, so it was with no little excitement that we greeted a new compilation album from himself and legendary French selector, Julien Dechery.

Even if their names aren't immediately recognisable to you,  it’s likely that you’ve already encountered them both without realising. Julien co-compiled the Tamil synth collection ‘Fire Star’ for Bombay Connection, while Sundae runs the Hollie imprint which salvaged the Arthur Russell produced-Bob Blank engineered Nirosta Steel rarity, as well as Ocelote Rojo’s balearic opus, but it’s their collective pool ‘Sky Girl’ that we’re most excited about now! 15 unmarked cuts of revelatory folk, techno-pop and art music.

Sky Girl is a mysteriously unshakeable companion, a deeply melancholic and sentimental journey through folk-pop, new wave and art music micro presses that span 1961-1991. A seemingly disparate suite of selections of forgotten fables by more or less neverknowns, Sky Girl forms a beautifully coherent and utterly sublime whole deftly compiled by French collectors DJ Sundae and Julien Dechery.

From Scott Seskind's adolescent musical road movie to Karen Marks' icy Oz-wave, the charming DIY storytelling of Italian-American go-getter Joe Tossini and the ethereal slow dance themes of Parisian artists Nini Raviolette and Hugo Weris, Sky Girl resonates on a wide spectrum historically, geographically and stylistically. It unites in a singular, longing, almost intangible ambience.

If the names sound wholly unfamiliar that doesn't matter, the nature of the compositions swiftly nurtures an intimacy with these lonely, poignant, openhearted wanderers. Most were available in a very limited capacity at the time of their release, some were never really released at all - Gary Davenport declined to release Sarra after he split with the girl for whom the track is named - years later a friend convinced Davenport to allow him to put 100 copies online to sell and DJ Sundae was quick enough to snare one. Beyond their scarcity, these tracks are bound together by a certain raw beauty that's achievable when music is made and no one is listening.

Sky Girl comprises of fifteen officially licensed songs, a two year international scavenger hunt through long-folded home label operations, the depths of internet forums and traceless acetates. Both compilers are well trained record sleuths - DJ Sundae's labels Hollie and Idle Press have reissued Arthur Russell affiliate Nirosta Steel and DIY relic Pitch, while Julien Dechery previously compiled 'Fire Star', a retrospective on Tamil film composer Ilaiyaraaja, for Bombay Connection.

Sky Girl is out next week on 'Noise In My Head' offshoot Efficient Space on a gorgeous double LP with artwork from Perks and Mini mutant Misha Hollenbach and appropriately elegant sleeve notes from Ivan Smagghe. As well as that package there's CD and Digital formats from all the usual places. X

Till next time.
Big love. Mark. X

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