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C. Reider and friends
Long Defeat Variations

     In 2003, I snuck into the abandoned industrial space which used to house the factory I worked at for 10 years, and I recorded there an hour-long set of improvised ambient music using guitar, frame drum and radio. "the Long Defeat" was the resulting release. In 2008, I decided to re-visit those sounds.

     At the end of February I invited three of my friends and peers to extract sound material from "the Long Defeat" and restructure those sounds according to their own compositional intents. Although they were each given only thirty days to complete the task, all three artists happily took up the challenge and created these radical re-imaginings.

      Download all tracks and cover art below.

     Please visit the websites of the contributing artists to learn more about them:
Track Listing:
  • Variation one by Mystified
  • Variation two by C. Reider
  • Variation three by Kirchenkampf
  • Variation four by Gurdonark
click the button
(84.31 MB)

Commentary on this release:
I don't have an established, comfortable vocabulary for sound/music like this. I can't describe it in the way you would, so I'm left somewhat mute. I can say I enjoy it. Beyond that, I don't know how to talk about the cool little squiggles of noise I hear, or the way the sound ramps up, subsides, builds again. Or how the reverse happens, too. It started out whole and by the end there was dust. But more than that, sound like this is personal. It's meditative, or can be, and what the hell can you say about that? "My fifth chakra opened." "I saw birds." "You hit a brown note in track three."

I've only had time to listen to the first three pieces, so far. All three were/are useful. Your music is useful. Not sure I can say the same for most things I hear. That stuff is entertaining and distracting. Your stuff is engaging. I listen to a lot of Godspeed You! Black Emperor (and various iterations) and get a lot of the same "help" from that sound as I do from yours. Theirs is full of more ready-made context - establishment instrumentation, etc - but I can work with and around that. That said, what I like most about ambient, drone, and exp music like yours -like this- is, that context is missing.

Which brings me back to my opening paragraph. I'm not sure I want vocabulary. I don't want to hear the cleverness. I don't want to know the inspiration. I don't want to know anything. I just want the sound because I want to see where it takes me, all by itself, stripped of those cultural contexts and preconceptions.
--David Porter
Despite the fact that 'The Long Defeat' is one of the most popular download from the Vuzh Music, run by C. Reider, who also recorded this, I don't know the work. I could download it, but I always seem to be tied up with physical music to hear - well, music on physical objects that is. 'The Long Defeat' was recorded in 2003 in an abandoned industrial space where Reider used to work and where he played an hour long session using guitar, frame drum and radio. This release is a sort of remix of that piece, by three of friends, Mystified, Kirchenkampf and Gurdonark, as well as a remix by Reider himself. I was thinking there is no need to hear the original, since these four pieces, which last also an hour or so, give me a pretty good impression of what the original could be like. This is the place where a remix is not something new, but more out of the same thing. Not the remix as marketing tool, but the remix as a place to meet up with old friends, who do the same thing. I am not familiar with the music of Gurdonark, but surely with those of the others, and the sixty minute work acts as a mighty drone in four parts. Not too much differences in approaches here, just subtle differences. Long sustaining sounds, scraps on metal and lots of sound effects to the music into. Kirchenkampf has the most hectic one, with sheets of metal bouncing around and Gurdonark the most subdued version. Quite a great bundle of drone music. (FdW)
--Vital Weekly
A few years ago, veteran sound sculptor and Vuzh label-master c. reider recorded a set of improvised ambient sounds in an old abandoned factory, and released this online to a fair amount of acclaim. That recording forms the basis for this remix project, and it succeeds handily where most traditional remixes don't. These 4 extended pieces all run at over 14 minutes apiece, and none feature any semblance of rhythm or easily-discernable structures. 'Long Defeat Variation one by Mystified' is a tense, metallic drone work that summons the dark and arcane vibes of prime Organum or Nurse With Wound's majestic 'Soliloquy For Lilith'. Beautiful and mystical, somehow. Reider's own mix is more dirgey, dank (that's a compliment), and nearly industrial (in the classic sense), suitable for use in a horror flick, perhaps. Reider's drones and deep reverberations summon visions of ghostly apparitions and eerie landscapes. Well-done. The third mix, by another Godsend/Goatsend favorite, Kirchenkampf, brings in percussive elements (what sounds like chains and metal being dropped/dragged/smashed) and smooths it out with reverb, creating an interesting mesh of ambience and unease. The final mix, by Gurdonark, is a more subtle and ambient variation, with light, swirly tones and shards of drone - more in a minimalist spirit. Overall, 'Long Defeat Variations' is a superlative release of contemplative and meditative ambience, with a dark streak that's undeniable and an ominous foreboding that's somehow inviting.
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