Esc.rec. celebrates it’s 20th year this year! Which is quite an achievement for a small independent recordlabel, right? Proud to say we are currently working on the 115th release (not counting the many ‘side projects’). But there’s more.

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SERGEI DEMIN – DIGI-TONGUE TWISTER

‘Digi-Tongue Twister’ is a digital take on `Crirythme` (1958), a poem by François Dufrêne, a French pioneer in sound poetry and décollage art. The poem is meant to be spoken aloud and is a tongue twister that challenges how we pronounce words. In this version, TikTok`s text-to-speech engine takes on the challenge, reading some randomly generated text inspired by Dufrêne`s poem. This work looks at sound poetry in the era of technofeudalism, where speech synthesis has become a new form of voice and expression. Yet, it remains a tool — a sound that hides our real voices. These digital voices have become part of our daily lives, changing how we communicate and find entertainment.

Sergei Demin is a Netherlands-based, Siberian-born experimental artist. Sergei’s works combine elements of sound design, technology and music. See sdsdsd.cloud/digi-tongue-twister. This release was created in collaboration with visual artist Mayana Nasybullova, who translated the sounds into a set of ceramic sculptures. Her work adds a physical dimension to the digital nature of the release, creating a bridge between the digital and physical worlds. See mayananasybullova.com.

This release is presented live on July 21st at De Perifeer in Deventer, NL. See perifeer.org/agenda/annie-abrahams-sergei-demin.

‘Digi-Tongue Twister’ is released as: a 5″ clear lathe cut record with a ceramic sculpture and download (only 5 unique copies!), a 5″ clear lathe cut record without the sculpture (only 10 copies!). Also available as a download and on all streaming platforms. Released on 19 July 2024. Pre-order is up now!

More info / Order here


T’IJU T’IJU – THE DRAGON IS STILL ALIVE

Having hung his hat in the past on collaborative projects such as The Paper Ensemble, SOON and Silverbones, Jochem van Tol’s new project T’iju T’iju answers a long-held hypothesis: what would happen if he were to experiment with sound and music on his own? The answer lies partly in its moniker, named after the Bolivian word for grasshopper, an animal the Amsterdam-based composer and artist feels a peculiar spiritual connection to. T’iju T’iju’s debut ‘the dragon is still alive’ – a joint release by Esc.rec. and MOLK Records – was written and recorded by Van Tol during a retreat in Spain. The two tracks, ‘Blue Birds’ and ‘New Grass’, (a nod to Talk Talk’s seminal final LP Laughing Stock) were shaped by manipulating organic sounds with an assembly of synth modules and tape manipulations. Van Tol took on a tactile approach that felt novel and adventurous to him. In the past, he had completed works that were meant to be performed or vice versa, performances that were meant to put to rest on a recording. These recordings are more candid and personal, homing in on the moments themselves, music made with no audience in mind.

Released as limited edition 12″ vinyl in handmade cover, with letterpress prints and risograph inlay. Also available as a download and on all streaming platforms. Released on 28 March 2024.

More info / Order here


THANOS FOTIADIS – THE HOPE REALM

For the album ‘The Hope Realm’ Thanos Fotiadis recorded several piano phrases/loops onto tape of various qualities, from microcassettes to half-inch tapes. He then manually processed the loops through a 2-track tape recorder, using various objects and his hands to create new sound artifacts. The audio resulting from this process was recorded onto a digital sampler for further manipulation. The result is a hypnotic ambient album with minimal looping tape piano phrases that blend together. The album is split into two halves – two ‘ether’ tracks and two ‘earth’ tracks – and is released as two sides of an audio cassette, because tape played such an important role in the creation of the album.

Visual artist Teodora Ionescu made a 1,5m x 3m(!) charcoal drawing to the music of ‘The Hope Realm’. She sees this drawing as a ‘sketch’ for the live performance and album presentation that takes place on February 24th at Kelderfest – see perifeer.org/agenda/kelderfest-2024 – in which she makes another large charcoal drawing on the spot, in what can maybe best be described as a ritual performance to the live music of Thanos Fotiadis. Close-ups of the original ‘sketch’ are used as cover art for the limited edition cassettes, resulting in a unique cover for each cassette.

This album is released on 23 February 2024.

More info / Order here


JANNE ERAKER – MOVEMENTS FOR LISTENING

This groundbreaking tap dance album is a wild exploration of sound by Janne Eraker and friends, with borderless worlds of music, widening the horizon and moving outside of all boxes. The ambition of the project was to find ways to use tap dance as percussion in a variety of musical styles, genres and collaborations, and to make a state of the art album recording of this. Eraker has a group of stellar musicians with her on this project: Knut Reiersrud, Ivar Grydeland, Michaela Antalová, Harald Fetveit, Anders Kregnes Hansen, Hans Martin Rundberg Austestad, Juliana Venter, David Skinner, Roger Arntzen, Vegar Vårdal and Kristoffer Lislegaard. This resulted in 10 recordings with 9 duets and 1 trio.

All of this is also documented in a series of videos, to make it possible to see how the music was created. Together with the videos, the ten digital singles that make up the album will be released monthly; the first single came out on January 6th, the second single on February 3rd, the third single on March 3rd, the fourth single on April 7th, the fifth single on May 5th, the sixth single on June 2nd, the seventh single on July 7th, the eighth single on August 4th, the ninth single on September 1st and the tenth single on October 6th. The double vinyl record is released on November 3rd 2023.

Daan Botlek is a visual artist from the Netherlands. He created the cover of the double vinyl record and the ten digital singles. These are all unique murals made in his atelier in Rotterdam, as a part of his artistic project called Primitive Practice.

Much more information, videos and an extensive blog about this project can be found at janneeraker.com.

More info / Order here


More releases

There are many more releases to be discovered here. And to celebrate it’s 20th year of existence, Esc.rec. made all releases that came out in the first 10 years freely available for you (pay more if you want, your support is appreciated).

Check the complete catalogue here


Even more

Even more releases anticipated in 2024 and 2025, by the likes of Ontzieling, ? + France Dubois, Salmoni, Asvogel, Jeroen Diepenmaat & Frans de Waard, Snackbar The Ambassador.