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WATCH: Video For Gardener On Golden Ratio Frequencies
Christian Eede , September 21st, 2017 15:35

Gnod's Alex Macarte launches a new label with a record from producer Gardener

Golden Ratio Frequencies is the new label from Gnod's Alex Macarte, created in his own words as a platform for "trance inducers, stress reducers, sonic meditations, sun salutations, deep vibrations and drone emanations".

The first record on the label certainly fits the bill, coming courtesy of Dashiell Lewis, otherwise known as Gardener. The two-track record, entitled A Place Where Nothing Was is comprised of two extended pieces by the synthesist and field recorder, and expand out to reveal something that grows more and more soothing. Above, you can watch a video for one of the record's two tracks, the 15-minute 'Late Summer Lawn'.

A Place Where Nothing Was is my attempt at capturing the idea of place itself," says Dashiell Lewis who is based in Richmond, Virginia, where he recorded the record. "The pieces were worked out during a strange, wonderful tour in July of 2016 that covered a lot of ground in a very short amount of time."

You can pre-order the record which is out tomorrow (September 22), and keep up with the label's movements, via Bandcamp here, while you can continue reading below for a short Q&A with Alex Macarte on Golden Ratio Frequencies.

The label is in its infancy, but how would you sum up your aims for it with regards to sound and finding a common thread to connect the releases?

Alex Macarte: The ideals and aims behind it have been within (and without) me for sometime. I had wanted to start a little DIY imprint for years but my situation at one time or another prevented me in doing so. I've been playing in bands and touring for over 15 years now, and the idea of having a creative outlet, within music, but in a different medium, in a more curatorial role, is really appealing to me. And to start with cassettes is a real viable medium and an in-route to releasing actual physical music that won't break your bank. The other Gnod-affiliated label Tesla Tapes, started by Paddy, has shown that.

With Gnod we travel around so much and meet so many amazing artists from all over the world, whether directly or by association, I really felt like it was time I put my thoughts into action; to release short runs of music from artists I meet on my travels who's work I love, respect, and who I feel touches deeper frequencies within us. Some more established artists, some not so established, but all those who are tapping into that deeper realm of the human psyche and plugging into those channels that are both within and without this world.

For the past five years I have practiced daily deep meditation, and in doing this alongside self study, research and sound experimentation, in the realms of science, philosophy, healing and well being, it has reinforced my perspective on sound and music - that it has great power that can far out reach mere entertainment, and has the ability to really take the listener to places within themselves and help them transcend beyond their immediate physical reality. When this is done, to transcend ones ego and consciousness, whatever you may call it, one is able to directly feel something greater than themselves, which benefits all fields of existence and experience. There is a reason why music is an art form that touches the human soul like no other art form can.

Will the label be comprised of music from friends and associates or are you hoping to discover new acts further down the line?

AM: At first I guess I have been approaching people from a very large pool of friends and associates, yes. I'm very blessed and lucky enough to move within circles of some amazingly talented people, some established artists with much known work under their belts and others who are maybe not as established but doing wonderful work.

The universe seems to be constantly directing me to cross paths with people who share a sonic or philosophical quality that really vibrates on the same wave length as me and others, so there really is a wealth of "acts" out there within that pool. Having said that, I don't want the label to just be a platform for only my contemporaries or friends and become some kind of social bubble. I am open to all and I am constantly hearing and coming across music and artists new to my ears who I have not met, who I would love to contact and reach out to. I am also open to people reaching out to myself too. That is an open invite... old, new, borrowed, blue. It really is an endless open ocean to explore.

What is currently planned for the label?

AM: Well, Earlier this year I started a regular monthly residency with NTS' Manchester studio, linked with the label, where each month I play music of a vibratory nature as well as music I'll be releasing through Golden Ratio Frequencies.

And after much planning and learning curves, I finally have the first release for the label, A Place Where Nothing Was by Gardener, who is Dashiell Lewis, a modular synthesist and sound explorer based in Richmond Virginia, who for the last five (?) years has been making blissful loop heavy heady music sitting in the higher realms of frequency. He also used to work at Makenoise Synthesisers, which I use extensively in my own work with Gnod and such. That is actually an example of someone I had not met in person and reached out to, though he was loosely in my associated circle. I've been following his work for the last couple years, and really love what he does. Turns out we have a lot in common and he's a total lovely dude, so it really gave me immense pleasure to work with him.

In terms of other releases, still early days and pretty open, but I already have a small number of artists working on releases for the label, including Teleplasimiste, who released a superb album of synth drones this year on House of Mythology and Rose Kallal, a visual artist from New York City who I became friends with during my visits to the States. There are others who I have been in conversation with, but would rather wait until things are a little further in with them before announcing any names on that front. I'm mainly working within the cassette and digital format for now, but won't necessarily restrict the label to that format only.

I also have a rather special long form project that myself and London-based artist Mark Wagner [of H.U.M and Moon Ra] have been working on slowly for the last year or so with our AHRKH WAGNER incarnation, that is more focused on the holistic, spiritual and practical uses of sound and music, going beyond standard music formats and which was in many ways the impetus for me to start this label. Again, I wont give anymore away on this, but it's something I am very excited about working on with the label.

I eventually envisage Golden Ratio Frequencies as not just releasing music in future, but being an umbrella for supporting many forms of musical and holistic sound activity. I have grand ideas, perhaps punching above my weight, but I find it's best to aim high, all actions are born from thought after all. But hey, for now, I'm happy to simply be releasing small runs of cassettes for those artists who float my boat, vibrate my being and transport me beyond places and spaces.