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Limited Repress! The second album from James Leyland Kirby's alias The Caretaker, originally released in 2011 following 2008's Persistent Repetition Of Phrases (HAFTW 003CD). By now regarded an absolute classic of haunted ambient music, An Empty Bliss Beyond The World returns the doddering protagonist to the deserted ballroom, wandering its waxed floor and dilapidated grandeur in an attempt to capture an era which has long since disappeared but still haunts the atmosphere. James Leyland Kirby conjures a quieter, more introspective spirit, lost in his own mind amidst a low-lit labyrinth of ever-decaying and antediluvian shellac phrases. Sourced from his mysterious collection of 78s, these vague snippets of archaic sonics reflect the ability of Alzheimers patients to recall the songs of their past, and with them recollections of places, people, moods and sensations. The effect is subtly amplified by the chronic mastering at D&M, allowing each memory to segue seamlessly and unpredictably into the next for an otherworldly and disorienting experience. An Empty Bliss Beyond The World is a highly potent transmission from one of the most singular characters operating in music today. James Leyland Kirby, is also known as Leyland Kirby, The Stranger and V/VM. Mastered and cut by Lupo. Artwork features another specially commissioned painting by Ivan Seal.
Everywhere At The End of Time is the first in a series of six albums by The Caretaker, aka James Leyland Kirby, slowly cataloguing the stages of early onset dementia. Each album will reveal new points of progression, loss and disintegration, progressively falling further and further towards the abyss of complete memory loss and nothingness. Viewing dementia as a series of stages can be a useful way to understand the illness, but it is important to realize that this only provides a rough guide to the progress of the condition. Drawing on a recorded history of 20 years of recollected memories, this is one final journey and study into recreating the progression of dementia through sound. As the first in the series - and despite its typically frayed loop construction, this volume is the most lucid - subsequent instalments will continue to move into faded obscurity and material erosion. Mastered and cut by Andreas Lupo Lubich. Artwork by Ivan Seal.
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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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