Tuesday, October 30, 2012
Record Label Round-up - Webbed Hand Records
Coffee speeds in boiling shades of strange neon dreams and sleepless nights through my veins. I've been awake, reading about strange aeons gone by and lost things, forgotten inside the rift millennia. I'm awake for awakes sake.
Nights like these call for a special type of soundtrack. Something to fit the mood, a cacophony of tension at times and a single calming drone at others.
The sound of rain falling.
The sound of the earth dying.
The sound of planets conversing.
The sound of tectonic plates copulating.
The sound of webbed hand records.
I found Webbed Hand about five years back, purely by chance. I was meandering around a legal torrent website and tried out a random smattering of things. WH stood out. An album called "Hasenpfeffer" by Djinnestan was the way I slept and woke up and went through my day in the winter of 2008. If you ever listen to it you'll realize that I've probably summoned a great old one, or two, in my time to be able to sleep to this stuff.
When people ask me what kind of music it is, I have a hard time answering. It's not "music," in the traditional sense, usually. It's usually a collection of sounds, or notes. It's moody, it's colorful, but I'm not sure if I'd call most of it music so much as sonic landscapes.
One of the coolest things WH does is the "rain" series. Most of the artists on the label have done at least one "rain" album. They usually consist of sounds reminiscent of rain. They're all unique though, they all have a specific touch. Every "rain" album is a full length recording. WH describes thusly: Each “Rain” is a CD-length ambient recording ideal for quiet listening while meditating, writing, or going to sleep. Typically the recordings in this series are minimalistic soundscapes, with motifs played out cyclically rather than progressively, in order to induce relaxed states.
Akashic Crows Nest's rain album, for example, conjures images of a lonely interstellar voyager, traveling, doomed, through an cosmic shower. Most of the sounds in ACN's rain are created using an image synthesizer, to translate pictures into sound. It works.
Webbed hand is everything from darkdrone, to acoustic ambient, to electronic soundscapes. There are several gems in their catalog, and they're constantly adding new stuff. The best part about it is that, you can listen to their entire catalog for free. Everything is creative commons licensed. They do appreciate donations, so if you enjoy what they do, spare a couple bucks for them.