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Noveller Desert Fires LP
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WEIRD-064 Noveller - Desert Fires LP

The solo project of Brooklyn-based guitarist and filmmaker SARAH LIPSTATE (Rhys Chatham's Guitar Army, Glenn Branca's 100 guitar ensemble, Parts & Labor, Carla Bozulich / Evangelista, Cold Cave), follows up her Red Rainbows CD (No Fun 2009) with this compositional evolutionary step from layered, loop-based drones to more expansive formal arrangements of swells, throbs, tones and shimmer.

"Almost Alright" explores territory charted by Fripp & Eno or synth-heavy contemporaries Emeralds. "Kites Calm Desert Fires" is a sandstorm of rich, percussive guitar, warm humming bass and swirling rhapsodic chimes. "Toothnest (for Chris Habib)" arrives at an idyllic sonic plateau of windswept fuzz and tremolo, then charges blindly with a soaring guitar solo evocative of bagpipes triumphantly marking a return from battle.

Art by Sarah Lipstate. Originally released on CD by Saffron Recordings.
Limited edition vinyl comes with 11"x11" insert.

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Noveller Glacial Glow LP
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WEIRD-068 Noveller - Glacial Glow LP

Sarah Lipstate is Noveller and Glacial Glow is her most assured, accomplished statement to date. Lipstate largely sheds the distortion and feedback present in much of her earlier work. Instead, she relies on instantly memorable melodies, a wider sonic palette, and excellent pacing to deliver arguably her best album.

Noveller announces her intentions from the opening track, appropriately titled "Entering", as the syncopated rhythm of the melody represents a new twist from her previous guitar work. This is only the hors d'oeuvre for the stunning "Glacial Wave", which drifts along serenely until Lipstate rains down gorgeous arpeggios like icy shards from the heavens. Other pieces feature sparse arrangements anchored by pulsing throbs which evoke a subtle, creeping anxiety more menacing than the feel-good retro-horror soundtracks making the rounds these days.

Throughout Glacial Glow, Lipstate exercises restraint and a fleeting melancholy feeling pervades the album. It says something about an album's quality when the closing track, "Ends", is chosen as the lead-off video. Ocean sounds combine with the lovely chord progression and guitar lines to create an uplifting, yet slightly wistful feeling and a perfect bookend to the record.

Design/layout by Chris Habib & Sarah Lipstate. Mastered by James Plotkin.
Limited edition clear vinyl comes with 11"x11" insert. CD release available directly from Saffron Recordings.
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