Bringing a bit of warmth to these darker times both seasonal and public healthy-wise, we’re proud to announce a new series of limited vinyl releases.  A series of vinyls dedicated to the strength of the soloist.  Limited to 100 copies and in a beautiful house-styled design by Rutger Zuydervelt and the impeccable liner notes of Guy Peters, each LP will feature a solo recording.  The LPs are on authentic black 140 gram vinyl and in a black innersleeve.

The first one is volume 1 out of seven records Dirk Serries is recording for acoustic archtop guitar.  The 2nd one is a beautiful solo record by Portugese double bass player Gonçalo Almeida.
Both albums are now available as a pre-order.  Due to the limited character of these vinyls, the price is sligthly higher then normal, namely 25 EUR per lp but if you order both albums the bundle price is 40 EUR plus postage.  This pre-order bundle offer is valid through January 5th, 2021.  Both albums are slated for an official release on January 15th, 2021. Order them through our shop or on bandcamp.

(nwoj0040, lp) 

“Serries’ specific background ensures he will always have his own angle. Mention the words ‘guitar’, ‘solo’ and ‘improvisation’ in one sentence, and pretty soon someone will mention Derek Bailey or John Russell, and that is fine. It is how our minds work. But despite some superficial similarities, Serries will never really sound like one of them, if only for the fact that his trajectory was radically different from theirs.” Guy Peters

‘Solo Acoustic Guitar Improvisations I’ is the first volume in a series 7 albums Dirk Serries is recording in honor of the Höfner archtop guitars.  A couple of years ago Dirk fell in love with the acoustic guitar and specifically the Höfner brand for its specific and unique harsher sound their vintage archtop guitars hold.  It’s definitely far away from Dirk’s electric constructions but at the same the acoustic approach is merely another way for him to express his fascination for sound in particular and how you can alter, transform and mutate its original tone by using different playing methods or preparing them with tools and/or tuning the guitar alternatively.  On this first volume Dirk Serries played a 
1957 Höfner archtop guitar. 
This series of solo acoustic guitar albums is also technically a statement.  All the albums are being recorded at the mighty Sunny Side Inc. studio in Brussels (Belgium).  This exquisite studio is already for a longer time part of the label’ story and philosophy but with these recordings artist and studio are taking a bold step in bringing this to you as pure as possible.  

This is what Sunny Side Inc. wrote on its recording process :
“The approach for this session goes back in time at the golden age of mono recordings, where often one RCA 44 ribbon microphone was used for the whole band. We used the AEA R44 Anniversary Edition for this.  Being a solo recording, it allowed us to place the microphone optimally for the acoustic guitar without having to take into consideration spill from the other instruments. Placement of the microphone was 50cm away from the body of the guitar, allowing for a generous upfront sound yet with the radiance of the whole instrument with some early reflections picked up. Being a ribbon microphone, only the louder dynamics bounce back to the rear of the microphone, dynamically expanding the sound with a slight roomy reflection for added air. « The choice of one microphone also aims to be in synchronicity with the adventurous and definitive nature of improvisation, as there are no myriad of options to recreate a sound in post production : what you hear is close to what you get; it is a commitment to the urgency and delicate nature of the moment, triggered by the musician. Mixing was done in the same spirit : as a spontaneous pass without redos. Only a touch of one band eq was used, and one brush of variable-mu compression was applied across the spectrum to smooth out dynamics. No other audio processing was applied.”

(nwoj0041, lp)

“You could translate Monólogos a Dois as Monologues for Two, with both the musician and the instrument participating. Not in a dialogue, but each within their own monologue. It quickly becomes apparent that the recording is a personal quest. Almeida’s very own ‘journal violone’, if you will. A dive into the musician’s resources and introspection.” Guy Peters 

Portuguese bassist and composer Gonçalo Almeida, based in Rotterdam the Netherlands, has been making a mark as one of the country’s most interesting new generation bass players. His projects involve the forerunners of the Dutch and Portuguese creative jazz scenes, bridging free jazz, jazzcore an​d free improvisation. Having shared the stage with improvisers such has Ab Baars, Balasz Pandi, Chris Speed, Carlos Zíngaro, Fred Lonberg-Holm, Jasper Stadhouders, Jorrit Dijkstra, Martin van Duynhoven, Rodrigo Amado, Tobias Klein, Wilbert de Joode, among others.   This doublebass solo recording (Monólogos a Dois) captures a series of improvisations, where Almeida explores instant composing, making use of a vast palette of sounds, textures and extended techniques. His inwardness and affinity with the instrument are beautifully represented here.  All music was performed and recorded on an afternoon session during the pandemic period at the Old church of Charlois, inRotterdam. Alone, with the church completely empty, Almeida plays a monologue between instrument and space.