- Here's a good reason to start your own label—not because you'd like to get paid twice, but because you'd like to release music that's too bizarre, too idiosyncratic or commercially unviable for anybody else to invest in it. Experimental guitarist and percussionist Oren Ambarchi has done just that. It's not as if there aren't labels keen to release his work—Touch, Editions Mego and Kranky are among them—but his label Black Truffle, which has been going for about five or so years, is home to some of his most out-there music, including a three-album series of collaborations with Keiji Haino and Jim O'Rourke.
The Stacte trilogy of LPs, the first of which was released in 1998 on Jerker Productions, helped define Ambarchi's expressive guitar playing, and was central to shaping the sound he would flesh out on the pivotal 2004 album Grapes From The Estate. For his latest Stacte record, Ambarchi uses classic rock as a catalyst, looping riffs until they become claustrophobic and foreboding. On "Milk A Cow With A Monkey Wrench" he takes a shredding blues-rock riff and accompanies it with his own singular guitar playing, unleashing Editions Mego-ish noise, thick ribbons of guitar drone and shrill harmonics. "Park It Where The Sun Don't Shine" loops a Led Zeppelin-style riff for eight minutes. If it sounds exhausting, it is, but it's also playful and deeply compelling. In the context of Ambarchi's wider catalogue, this is an entertaining diversion rather than a vital release, but in its own way it's rather brilliant, too.
A1 Milk A Cow With A Monkey Wrench
B1 Park It Where The Sun Don't Shine