Room40

COOPER, MIKE - Rayon Hula

"Room40 offer a re-mastered, re-edited 2019 version of Rayon Hula, originally released in 2004. From Mike Cooper: "After several trips, beginning in 1994, to the Pacific and its Island Nations, Australia and subsequently to South East Asia, I conceived the idea of making an updated more 'now' version of some of the Exotica music that originated in 1950's America. Arthur Lyman and Martin Denny were the two I mostly had in mind at the time, but I didn't want it to sound like them and the two words 'Ambient' and 'Electronic' had to figure large. I was deeply influenced by the ambience of the places I was visiting (Australian birds are scarily creative) and lo-fi electronics were something I had been working with in my free improvisation gigs since the '80s . . . No-one was issuing recorded work by me, so I started my own DIY cd.r. label, Hipshot, and sold them via the internet. I was free to record whatever I wanted and I did, starting in 1999 with Kiribati . . . The summer of 2004 house sitting in Palombara, 40 minutes outside of Rome, at our friend Jo Campbell's house, in the company of several dogs and numerous cats, I set to work outside in the shed with a Zoom Sampletrack ST-224, two mini disc recorders and a Tascam four track cassette machine; a pile of Arthur Lyman and Martin Denny CDs and my lap steel. My intention was to create a kind of music that I had hoped to hear when we visited Hawaii in the early '90s (some kind of Hawaiian Futurism maybe?) which we never did. Rayon Hula appeared from the shed and was initially released as Hipshot c.d.r. HIP-007. I submitted it to the Ars Electronica awards in Austria and was very surprised when it received some kind of a prize. I think that David Toop had something to do with that, as he was on the jury (thanks David). It was picked up by Cabin Records, a new label initiated by Pete Fowler and Graham Erickson and released as a double 10-inch vinyl set . . . Although the idea was an homage to Arthur Lyman, it was also an homage to Steve Feld who introduced me to the concept of 'lift up over sounding' in his book Sound and Sentiment, a study of the Kaluli people of Papua and their relationship with their aural environment. From it I gleaned, among other things, the idea of looped sounds played simultaneously but out of sync. An idea which had in fact guided me from the beginning of the series."" - Room40.
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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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