Special Interest

GENERAL SOUND DISCUSSION => GENERAL SOUND DISCUSSION => Topic started by: NaturalOrthodoxy on October 19, 2020, 10:26:12 AM



Title: Posh Isolation (then and now)
Post by: NaturalOrthodoxy on October 19, 2020, 10:26:12 AM
Like (I assume) the majority of people on this forum, my interest in Posh Isolation has waned in recent years. But the oncoming autumn has brought some older releases back into rotation, as they seem perfect for this time of year. Releases like Croatian Amor - The World and Damien Dubrovnik - Europa Dagbog, as well as compilations like Port Out Starboard Home are a good mix of melancholy atmospheres, lofi textures, and ambiguous storytelling through interesting song titles. Let us not also forget all of the early Puce Mary material, Caucasian Colony, Sexdrome, Forza Albino, lofi black metal like Garotte and early Marching Church.

Croatian Amor especially were always a go-to band for me to listen to while commuting or for background noise at home as it was understated, minimal, and repetitive and seem to nicely imbue mundane domestic settings with some atmosphere. This is why I was sort of disappointed with the material after and including the 2016 album Love Means Taking Action. It was more polished, more technically accomplished, more "cut up" and therefore less of everything I wanted in that project (though I could appreciate it was an objectively well put together album).

Out of curiosity I checked out the newest album "All In The Same Breath" and found I could enjoy it as a totally new entity. Far more beat-driven, polished production, but still with an atmosphere that toes a line between melancholy and optimism. Similarly, their new collab with Scandinavian Star, entitled Two Autumns is concise, immediate, and atmospheric techno/ambient. Even all of the collaborations with Varg2TM have been hitting the spot.

In short, these new releases have prompted me to check out a load of newer Posh Isolation material I would previously had no interest in. Previously, the only project I'd really kept up with from the label was Vanessa Amara for being consistently morose and beautiful piano-led ambient. Maybe it's cos I'm no longer going in and expecting something in any way harsh and am now able to just appreciate it on its merits without disappointment that it's not what I had expected.

Has anyone else kept up with recent Posh Isolation material? Or perhaps used to be a fanatic and has now disavowed them?

I'm aware there are some previous threads about the label, but they were from quite some time ago and didn't particularly address the transformation of the label.


Title: Re: Posh Isolation (then and now)
Post by: Into_The_Void on October 19, 2020, 12:49:41 PM
Used to like this label a lot back in the years, they released some excellent industrial / noise (included the masterpiece from Kommando RJF "Sweet, slow, suicide"). I was also into the first Varg and Croatian Amor stuff, when they used to be more low-fi and less club-oriented. Nowadays I don´t like the new label identity that much, neither in the label´s aesthetic, nor the "evolution" of most of the older projects (like for example the new Croatian Amor or Varg stuff).


Title: Re: Posh Isolation (then and now)
Post by: ConcreteMascara on October 19, 2020, 04:31:41 PM
I was never a label fanatic but the releases were consistently good through 2014-2015. I felt the ethos was similar to Hospital Productions in that there were the major works which generally were very good and then lots of here and gone stuff that sketched out the developments in between the big releases. There were definitely gems among the sketches but for how quickly those tapes sold and for the prices they were re-sold, you'd think it was all solid gold and it's not. The style the label has now doesn't seem very shocking when you look at the whole trajectory, I'm just not into it for the most part.

Funny enough, I picked up the tapes from the first ever PI batch at Hospital way back when. I didn't think they were very good so I sold them a few years later, not knowing the cult that would surround the label soon after. I could probably get a pretty penny for them now, but their value is a collector's value, not based on the quality of the material itself.


Title: Re: Posh Isolation (then and now)
Post by: theworldisawarfilm on October 19, 2020, 04:49:33 PM
Huge fan of the 'early years' but have found the new direction to be pretty alienating. Some Croatian Amor releases like The Wild Palms are among song of my favourite/most revisited electronic music period. Thought the latest Croatian Amor was quite shit but I'm interested to hear this most recent collaboration with Scandinavian Star.


Title: Re: Posh Isolation (then and now)
Post by: NaturalOrthodoxy on October 19, 2020, 05:17:45 PM
I felt the ethos was similar to Hospital Productions in that there were the major works which generally were very good and then lots of here and gone stuff that sketched out the developments in between the big releases.

Yeah it's definitely a very Hospital-esque label. Even in that it is an entry point for a lot of people coming from other genres. I got into noise via black metal, but my brother who was getting deep into hip-hop as a teen while I discovered BM independently found Posh Isolation as a result of the wider electronic music scene. Interesting how we independently found the label with almost no music taste in common at the time.

Interestingly, Concrete Mascaara, it was your post in the playlist thread about Port Out Starboard Home that prompted me to spin some Croatian Amor.


Title: Re: Posh Isolation (then and now)
Post by: Warfare Noise on October 19, 2020, 08:55:22 PM
I felt the ethos was similar to Hospital Productions in that there were the major works which generally were very good and then lots of here and gone stuff that sketched out the developments in between the big releases.

Yeah it's definitely a very Hospital-esque label.

Well, the very first releases of this label stole and repurposed layouts of another label, but it wasn't hospital.


Title: Re: Posh Isolation (then and now)
Post by: NaturalOrthodoxy on October 19, 2020, 09:30:57 PM

Well, the very first releases of this label stole and repurposed layouts of another label, but it wasn't hospital.

do tell


Title: Re: Posh Isolation (then and now)
Post by: W.K. on October 19, 2020, 11:20:51 PM
There should be an interview with them in one of the Special interest zines, I think number 7.

But old releases, yeah, great stuff!

  


Title: Re: Posh Isolation (then and now)
Post by: esoteric_criminal on October 20, 2020, 04:33:56 AM
i was a huge fan of early material. what was not to like it was almost perfection at its best description. The early sexdrome, angry aryans, garrotte all had a raw atmosphere that only the likes of bone awl/raspberry bulbs did before. Over the years its been a huge disappoint, almost heartbreaking that the label is what it is now. I wish they would go back to their "mayhem" days but im afraid thats all done, new releases are tarnished to say the least. I have no interest in varg at all, dude is garbage. Loke will always be an excellent songwriter, his early work really spoke to me and alot of others i know but for me its a huge miss. Im a bigger fan of janushoved and mikkel but even the last few releases ive been done with.


Title: Re: Posh Isolation (then and now)
Post by: teenagelightning on October 20, 2020, 07:32:48 AM
I still listen to first few Damien Dubrovnik full lengths, some of LR tapes, pre 2015 Croatian amor, Caucasian colony, war, old lfy tapes, port out starboard home comp. what they are doing now is clearly geared toward a different audience. Some of it is cool/good, just not my cup of tea, feels a bit sterile. But rather than people on here “disavowing them” it seems more like PI the ones want to distance from their PE and noise origins which contained some less than politically correct material..


Title: Re: Posh Isolation (then and now)
Post by: TS on October 20, 2020, 02:35:03 PM
I concur with what seems to be the prevailing opinion here: some of the earlier releases are proper bangers. Especially Forza Albino - Black Dog is a favourite of mine. However, there has always to me been a sort of annoying "aloofness" to this label that I just can't shake. To be honest I'd I had mostly forgotten it.


Title: Re: Posh Isolation (then and now)
Post by: ConcreteMascara on October 20, 2020, 04:19:32 PM
I would say of the new era I really like the Scandinavian Star album. It somehow feels like 'Virgins' era Tim Hecker meets Croatian Amor. Or maybe an alternate soundtrack to 'Neon Demon' by Refn. And "I Musik" by KYO is good too. As someone who listens to a lot of electronic music I can easily enjoy a lot of recent era PI material, but my issue is it doesn't really rock my world, it's just fine. And there's so much music out there that's better than 'just fine'.


Title: Re: Posh Isolation (then and now)
Post by: W.K. on October 20, 2020, 06:17:05 PM
As someone who listens to a lot of electronic music I can easily enjoy a lot of recent era PI material, but my issue is it doesn't really rock my world, it's just fine. And there's so much music out there that's better than 'just fine'.

That's definitely true! But they had this underground aesthetic going which is more in vogue with the rock/indy/alternative/noise crowds than most electronic releases do.


Title: Re: Posh Isolation (then and now)
Post by: sunandsteel on October 20, 2020, 08:11:24 PM
PI's fall from grace is pretty interesting. Recently, stumbled upon what the label is up to these days.

https://youtu.be/2i3-f1soLH4

I try not to be too harsh or judgemental as its obvious the label is going for something completely different now. I can't help but think this is your average American Boomer's idea of Scandinavians.

I'm quite big on the early to mid period stuff. It evokes a sort of romanticism mixed with a healthy dose of self-indulgence/decadence. Main highlights for me are the Caucasian Colony tapes, Forza Albino - Black Dog LP, Var releases, LFY, Puce Mary stuff and Slaegt - Ildsvanger LP. A lot of the projects/artists associated with the label seemed to fall off along with the label itself. I'm still very into Puce Mary and LFY's current output, although those projects kinda transcended the label. As with the labels past, it seems like there's a somewhat conscious move for PI to move away from the more un-PC stuff as stated by others. Now they're into male ballet and black lives mattering. Whatever, people change.

On the bright side, there are people in Denmark continuing to release quality PE/noise such as Sektion 1 and Brutalist Tapes. Salutes to them.


Title: Re: Posh Isolation (then and now)
Post by: holy ghost on October 21, 2020, 01:17:06 AM
Really into the Puce Mary records I’ve purchased from the label, I had a few others I had picked up, a comp LP with a naked dude on the cover holding a book? that was okay and a.... Croatian Amor LP? Looking at my discogs account they’ve clearly made it into my discogs sell pile as I haven’t seen them in years.

tbqh I actually hadn’t thought about the label in forever and didn’t realize they were still around. Clearly they’ve shifted demographics (or I have refocused my interests) as I haven’t heard anything about them for years until this thread popped up.....

EDIT: didn’t realize they reissued the Sweet Slow Suicide LP - picked up the CD recently and would love to pick up an LP copy


Title: Re: Posh Isolation (then and now)
Post by: FreakAnimalFinland on October 21, 2020, 04:28:24 PM
Having done interviews and written a lot about the early days, my favorable opinion is probably known. One can search topics such as ”Danish supremacy” from this forum!

While I see plenty of people trash PI, already then, and certainly now, I still stand firmly in opinion that there is plenty of great releases. It is certainly visible how they had all the obvious influences, instead of creating something  very unique, yet I’m fairly confident that PI is one of the last ”phenomena” that happened in noise. Of course there are now some tape labels that have instagram success or such. Who have grown to penetrate out of the ”noise ghetto” so to say. Phenomena beyond ”artist” or ”label” - ability to create something that is vastly bigger. One does not have to like it, to acknowledge they did it.

That linked dance video, with droning instrument sounds, I’m sure not everybody is into cock bulge in pantyhose, but for me, this is welcomed element in form of somewhat ”underground experimental sound” teaming up with video art, dance/body art, etc.  To me, that video is like very positive example of what PI is doing now. I am certainly not fan of their computer dance music or current aesthetic approach what gives me literally nothing, but it also underlines quite good question. Do I rate PI by what is the best things they do (or did) or things I did not/could not like? I know it may sound almost heritical to give such example as Alchemy Records, but consider this:
Do you value Alchemy Records based on the absolute best noise releases (Merzbow, Incapacitants, Hijokaidan,...) or do you need to think about countless and countless Japanese indie music bands on same roster, that I have certainly given a try so many times... but almost without exception, can not get into.

yep, I would vote on approaching in what is good on label, not what are the things you simply could never appreciate based on your own taste.  So, while I do have huge collection of early PI, and am more than happy to ignore most of the things they did within last years. If they happen to do some noise related, I might be giving it spin if I just manage to get the album.

(This is one of the nuisances of growing labels. In short, PI no longer sold wholesale directly. One would have to order from Cargo (uk). Cargo does not accept wholesale orders from Finland, since they have Finnish broker. Finnish broker does not carry PI stuff as there is ”no demand”. So, if there is item I would like to sell, I can’t. Same thing applies for few other bigger ”industrial” labels. They won’t sell directly, wholesaler won’t sell to your country, your local wholesaler won’t carry items.)


Title: Re: Posh Isolation (then and now)
Post by: TS on October 23, 2020, 05:02:22 PM


I try not to be too harsh or judgemental as its obvious the label is going for something completely different now. I can't help but think this is your average American Boomer's idea of Scandinavians.



I think you've identified what annoys me. This kind of stuff, (despite the bulge) gives me the same vibe of Scandinavian "melancholy" that saturates everything in at least Norwegian popular culture. It's a very premeditated kind of aesthetic, like a distant vulnerability. You can see it in Norwegian music, in Norwegian movies, etc. it's everywhere.  It's got no power, no oomph! You can't escape it and it's boring as hell.


Title: Re: Posh Isolation (then and now)
Post by: NaturalOrthodoxy on October 24, 2020, 03:18:05 PM
the same vibe of Scandinavian "melancholy" that saturates everything in at least Norwegian popular culture. It's a very premeditated kind of aesthetic, like a distant vulnerability. You can see it in Norwegian music, in Norwegian movies, etc. it's everywhere. 

ha, funnily enough I would identify this as part of why I like this label. Maybe because I'm not exposed to it every day, being British. It certainly is an identifiably Scandinavian trait but to me seems less ubiquitous and therefore more novel and appealing. I can certainly understand someone more familiar than this finding it grating.

If you'll indulge me though, here's my take on that "Scandinavian melancholy" aspect:

With certain projects on the label, it feels like they export this vibe to other regions. Perhaps because of titles like The Palermo Protocol, Monaco, Damien Dubrovnik, snippets of dialogue in Russian etc, and the comp title The Maritime Trade, it conjures the image of pan-European travel. In some contexts it feels like the diary of some depressed and wealthy playboy engaging in decadent acts in exotic locales, in others it feels like the menacing soundtrack to some shady trafficking activities (like the other side of the Caligula031 coin). Especially when you introduce the techno sounds, but still within an industrial context (see the aforementioned Palermo Protocol comp), it brings to mind the setting of seedy clubs playing shitty Eurodance in some Godforsaken port town, full of gangsters.

Obviously, I'm referencing a lot of older stuff here. I think that cinematic feeling is what a lot of people here enjoy about PI, even if they wouldn't put it in such specific terms.


Title: Re: Posh Isolation (then and now)
Post by: TS on October 25, 2020, 02:46:31 PM
Ah, haven't had the chance to check out the releases you mention, so I can't comment on that. However, what you're talking about sounds more Lilya 4-ever-ish, which of course I'm not opposed to at all. Will have to track down some of these with that in mind!

It isn't exactly what I was getting at when I was trying to describe this "Scandinavian melancholy" though. It's more related to this pressing need everyone seems to have to expose their "tenderness" in a vaguely "northern", distant way which seems to me to have birthed a certain kind of aesthetic that has now become ingrained. Hard to put in to words! Sorry about that.





Title: Re: Posh Isolation (then and now)
Post by: NaturalOrthodoxy on October 26, 2020, 05:52:38 PM
Hard to put in to words! Sorry about that.


No need to apologise, I certainly understood what you're getting at. I see that "tenderness" thing in some of the sad boy rappers that Varg2TM has collaborated with, like Yung Lean and Bladee. Not my thing at all, total Urban Outfitters vibes.

I've heard of Lilya 4 Ever but never seen it, from my understanding though it's a good reference point for what I was talking about. I'm sure a still from that film is the cover of Prurient's Cocaine Death, which was obviously a huge influence on this. I'd even give the same rationale as I gave in my last post for my enjoyment of Cocaine Death and Bermuda Drain.


Title: Re: Posh Isolation (then and now)
Post by: TS on October 26, 2020, 09:16:02 PM

I've heard of Lilya 4 Ever but never seen it, from my understanding though it's a good reference point for what I was talking about. I'm sure a still from that film is the cover of Prurient's Cocaine Death, which was obviously a huge influence on this. I'd even give the same rationale as I gave in my last post for my enjoyment of Cocaine Death and Bermuda Drain.

It's well worth seeing, despite some unfortunate Rammstein here and there. You're right about Cocaine Death. Killer album! However, this is getting off topic. To get back on it: this thread has really made me wanna track down the other Forza Albino releases too, Black Dog is the shit. If anyone here has em', do they have a similar sound as Black Dog?


Title: Re: Posh Isolation (then and now)
Post by: Sektion1 on October 27, 2020, 11:20:15 AM

I've heard of Lilya 4 Ever but never seen it, from my understanding though it's a good reference point for what I was talking about. I'm sure a still from that film is the cover of Prurient's Cocaine Death, which was obviously a huge influence on this. I'd even give the same rationale as I gave in my last post for my enjoyment of Cocaine Death and Bermuda Drain.

It's well worth seeing, despite some unfortunate Rammstein here and there. You're right about Cocaine Death. Killer album! However, this is getting off topic. To get back on it: this thread has really made me wanna track down the other Forza Albino releases too, Black Dog is the shit. If anyone here has em', do they have a similar sound as Black Dog?

The Infestation 12" on PI is pretty solid, same style and sound as Black dog, perhaps a bit more clear in sound


Title: Re: Posh Isolation (then and now)
Post by: TS on October 27, 2020, 12:26:15 PM

I've heard of Lilya 4 Ever but never seen it, from my understanding though it's a good reference point for what I was talking about. I'm sure a still from that film is the cover of Prurient's Cocaine Death, which was obviously a huge influence on this. I'd even give the same rationale as I gave in my last post for my enjoyment of Cocaine Death and Bermuda Drain.

It's well worth seeing, despite some unfortunate Rammstein here and there. You're right about Cocaine Death. Killer album! However, this is getting off topic. To get back on it: this thread has really made me wanna track down the other Forza Albino releases too, Black Dog is the shit. If anyone here has em', do they have a similar sound as Black Dog?

The Infestation 12" on PI is pretty solid, same style and sound as Black dog, perhaps a bit more clear in sound

Had a brief listen on the tubes. Sounds good! And fairly cheap too. Thanks!