Record Label: Kranky
Harmony in Ultraviolet is Tim Hecker’s sixth album, a continuation of Hecker's interest in spectral communications, noise, impressionist musics, thresholds of listening pleasure/pain, and the limits of digital composition.
This album is a significant development of his song-craft, challenging the usefulness of descriptors such as ambient, drone, metal, noise and even electronic music. If references are necessary it could be described as a sonata for the elements, songs of crackling embers, tidal pools, spruce skylines and autumn winds. Gerhard Richter's abstract paintings are also a fair orientation.
Materially speaking, it is a record of whirring drones, whispering fissures, dense disintegrating chords, late-night noise and truth-telling harmonics. Yet this record follows no overarching process, no underlying narrative. It is both a homage for the Italian partigiani and also not at all. It is songs about ghost writing and midnight whispers but then again it isn't. In many ways this album can be viewed as a work of total destruction, embracing indeterminacy as an aesthetic ideal.
This is the first proper vinyl release for Hecker’s breakthrough 2006 album. At the time of original issue, there was a small run of a few hundred vinyl copies done by a small German label, but this was pressed on an inferior sounding single LP which was much too short for the length of the album, not to mention the wide dynamic range of the recording. This new version is mastered at 45RPM over four sides for maximum sound quality.
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Joseph Abajian (DJ Jab) founded Fat Beats in 1994 with nothing more than a shoestring budget and an earnest obsession with the music, the culture, and the brotherhood of New York’s burgeoning rap scene. What began as a simple vinyl shop in Manhattan’s Lower East Side quickly became an integral hub for artists, both aspiring and established, to convene and collaborate on new projects. Joseph’s timing couldn’t have been more impeccable. When the 90’s cultural zeitgeist – and, in turn, the music industry establishment – chose hip-hop as its new arbiter of cool.
International tourists and touring artists alike flocked to Fat Beats for rare vinyl, kindred spirits, and exclusive in-store performances from Jay Z, Eminem, Gang Starr, Outkast, Slum Village, Mos Def, and more. One thing was clear: the Fat Beats phenomenon could no longer be contained in a single basement shop.
In the late nineties, Abajian proceeded to open new stores in Amsterdam, Tokyo, Los Angeles, and Atlanta. He further expanded the company’s profile to include global distribution and record label branches. Distribution has since proven to be the company’s strongest and most enduring enterprise. Today Fat Beats Distribution stands poised as one of the country’s pre-eminent distributors of vinyl & specialty item records: a proud survivor in an industry now famous for its mortality rate. Despite market fluctuations, technology innovations, and stylistic revolutions, Fat Beats has remained steadfast in its commitment to the timeless vinyl format and to the loyal community who keeps it spinning.
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