Black Truffle

BLOCK, OLIVIA - The Mountains Pass

"Black Truffle announces The Mountains Pass, a major new work from Olivia Block. A key player in Chicago's vibrant experimental music scene since the late 1990s, Block has developed an extensive body of work grounded in a personalized, at times emotive approach to the studio-based practices of the musique concrète tradition, while also encompassing improvisation, orchestral pieces, sound installations, and a sustained engagement with the piano. On The Mountains Pass, recorded by Greg Norman at Steve Albini's Electrical Audio and meticulously edited and constructed over the course of three years, Block pushes into new terrain, introducing her singing voice and drums played by Jon Mueller into flowing assemblages that move seamlessly from ruminative organ tones and fragmented piano airs to explosions of sizzling synths and thundering percussion. Like many of Block's past works, which include, for example, a sculptural installation using the sound of oyster beds, The Mountains Pass draws inspiration from nature and the animal world. Time spent in a particular mountain range in Northern New Mexico informs this suite of pieces, whose lyrics and titles refer particularly to animal life in the area. The music sometimes suggests the great outer-limits works of '70s Italian prog figures like Franco Battiato or Arturo Stalteri in the languorous drift of synthesizer, organ, and piano tones and the meticulous yet organic flow of its construction. Block's crystalline voice and rich piano chords at times call up the restrained chamber songs of Janet Sherbourne, but fragmented and threaded through passages of woozy pitch-bent keyboards, hypnotic distant thuds, tinkling bells, and searing distorted synth tones. On "f2754," the freedom of the roaming wolf surges through dense layers of rapid keyboard attacks and long organ tones over a propulsive drum performance straight out of Animal Magnetism-era Arnold Dreyblatt. This distinctive sound world is then reencountered in a darkened mirror image in the uneasy, metallic shimmer of the closing "Ungulates," named in reference to a heard of elk roaming through the mountains. Like Battiato's Clic or Gastr del Sol's Upgrade & Afterlife, The Mountains Pass inhabits the underexplored terrain where the beauty of song coexists with a radical formal openness, illuminating the deep musicality and warmth that have been present in Block's work all along." - Black Truffle 
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After nearly a decade of false starts, multiple game plans veering off the rails, and a handful of shattered hopes and/or dreams, the odyssey is finally complete—the new Fusetron site is here.

This is the first phase of a multipart rollout that will span the next few months: the currently browsable stock includes miscellaneous new releases from the past 8+ months (we have a lot of catching up to do), plus approximately a third of our backstock. Note that we’ve reduced/slashed prices on many titles and will continue to do so in order to make room for new stock. We’ll also be expanding / tweaking / improving / debugging the site itself (for example, we still have work to do on the automated international postage system, not to mention the inevitable inventory discrepancies that come with transferring an ancient and massive database to a new system).

Over the next few months, as we take inventory, clean house, and delve into our storage, we will be uploading thousands of additional items, gradually, on a near-daily basis. This will include the majority of the LPs, as well as many titles, in all formats, once thought long-gone. Many currently “sold out” items are likely to resurface.

Finally, once our general backstock is up (probably in the next two or three months) we’ll begin making our extensive stockpile of rarities available online for the first time: tons of random out-of-print titles, "deadstock," warehouse finds, secondhand collectibles, etc., accumulated over the past few decades.

Frequent/returning customers will be getting early access to these items. Details to follow on how this will work (a priority mailing list? a 'frequent flyer'-like program?), but it will not be based on dollars spent. We want to reward those who consistently support us, especially in the discogs marketplace era (to those who show up trying to poach five copies of a one-off rarity, and nothing else, ever… ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ ).

So—we suggest you take some time to dig through the site—even we’ve been surprised by what’s been turning up, and there’s much more to come.
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