His Name is Alive/Time Stereo S/D

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They have released so much stuff... can anyone tell me about it?


g, Wednesday, 21 November 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link


Kodanshi, Wednesday, 21 November 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

I like Stars on ESP myself. Saw them perform in London a few years ago--they were lovely.

cybele, Wednesday, 21 November 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

ARGH!!! Did you just see the sisters thread on ILE or what?

Can be very patchy, but when it's on, it's brilliant.

My favourite is probably Home Is In Your Head - it's the most textural and treads the goth/spacerock border like you'd never think was possible. Stars On ESP is probably my second favourite, because Warren lets his Beach Boys fixation go mad, and it's very 60s girl groupy and poppy.

There is a "greatest hits" compilation thing on 4AD if you're interested in an overview, but I've forgotten its name and it's all the way downstairs.

Does anyone remember Elvis Hitler? That's what I wanna know.

kate, Wednesday, 21 November 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

nah, I was just thinking about it because I saw some TS stuff in a local shop. looks interesting, but somewhat scattered i guess. While I like some stuff on 4AD, it has never been one of the labels that I have to get everything on, and HNIA always seemed like it would be a bit typically 4AD-goth for my taste.

g, Wednesday, 21 November 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

They're not actually stereotypially goth, tho. A bit etherial in the earlier stuff, but far more weird and acid-fried and all over the place than your normal 4AD goff. Bit of psychobilly and textural spacerock and girlypop and weird noise interludes and Beach Boys take- offs and even free jazz intervene.

kate, Wednesday, 21 November 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

thanks kate. i think i will check out stars on ESP as the pop/girl group angle interests me most

g, Wednesday, 21 November 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

"Are We Still Married?" from Home Is In Your Head = creepy genius that plants itself permanently in your brain. Has to be heard.

"Universal Frequencies" is one of the very very few exact cribs of 60s music to take as much poignancy from its retroism as it wants.

Robin Carmody, Wednesday, 21 November 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

since no one else has talked about time stereo i will chime in, most of it has some novelty value and to see a time stereo act live is quite the experience. when you see man machine with electrodes all over his body while he basehes a piano like a jackhammer can't but help to make you smile, or the little princess with her 14 dollar amp and two chords yelping a spirited squeal or princess dragon mom scaring you to death with their noise or mog stunt team(rip) and their flaming helmets and guitars it is all great. but the tapes are not much to write home about. i have a few including the ian masters solo record 'pail saint' which sounds as if it was recorded in one take on a dare, the pdm tapes are good for frightening your neighbours, the godzuki solo tapes are actually really great especially dion's, the alice cooper tribute record is bizarre, noise camp is a bit of a mess though i remember seeing them live and all they did was build a campground while a constant hum played int he background still this was miles beyond what the dead c proceeded to do as headliners. there is lots of time stereo stuff that has never seen the light of day like 'monster island' who used to play live often but i don't think ever recorded any of their acoustic songs for monsters or even his name is arrive which is his name is alive done japanoise style with my friend chelle marie singing, i've actually heard some of this and it was fabulous. the hnia live tapes are all pretty good, the demos for the first two hnia albums which used to be available are also interesting to see how Ivo from 4ad made them much improved. warren originally sang half of the songs but ivo convinced him that he could not sing, good man. they were going to be dropped after livonia but home is in your head was so good ivo changed his mind. one of the few bands to get on 4ad without being referred by a friend on the label, at the time at least.

keith, Wednesday, 21 November 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

oh i forgot a couple other interesting time stereo things warren's first couple esp.beetle tapes are really very good, and so are the dirt eaters(melissa dirt eater-sigh-)and of course the fabulous esp.summer/continent/dolphins collaboration between warren and ian masters which was reissued on cd not so many years ago.

keith, Wednesday, 21 November 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

also check out Warn's primitive country album, I Hope You Live 100 Years on Lo Records.

Stars On ESP is brilliant, as is ESP Summer.

If you are interested in extreme moog noise, check out any of the Mystic Moog Orchestra stuff.

He has also producer a lot of material around here, check out the Go Sonic Records stuff for more.

As for Time Stereo, I think the Electric Bear video is great as well.

I used to go see all the shows that these guys would do at the original Record Collector on 8 mile rd. When I was a young pup that store was run by Davin who runs Time Stereo, When I was about 14 (1991) or so I would go in there and he would always give me a hard time about the records I would buy. I have to give him credit though, I never would have gotten into Throbbing Gristle or Stereolab without him giving me such a hard time. I remember how strange and exotic it all was back then, back when "alternative music" was just about to break.

I ran into him at Stormy Records in Dearborn about this time last year when he finally stopped managing Record Collector(I am 24 now). I brought up how he would always be really mean to me, and how I thought that was so great. He felt kind of bad, but it is one of those memories on Detroit in the 90's that I would not trade for anything. The thing I love about those guys and their music is that they are such utter Detroit characters. They are the kind of people that can only exist in this city, and they made the last 10 years so colorful.

Michael Taylor, Thursday, 22 November 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

Stars On ESP is as good as everyone says it is. There's also a single from _Ft. Lake_ that has a SMOKING 17-minute version of "Wish I Had A Wishing Ring."

Favorite thing on Time Stereo is the CD of the '60s Indonesian guitar band whose name is presently escaping me. Lovely.

Douglas, Thursday, 22 November 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

mouth to mouth is my fave hnia lp. garbage ripped backing vocals offa this.

bob snoom, Thursday, 22 November 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

HNIA has the pleasure of being one of the few musicians I dislike. There was that one song I liked... which made me buy all his records. Biggest mistakes I ever did.

helen fordsdale, Thursday, 22 November 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

I ran into him at Stormy Records in Dearborn

Run of course by Windy and Carl! Woohoo! Everyone go to the store site and make them rich.

I have always thought this and still believe it: if you take "Are You Coming Down This Weekend?" and then after letting it run through once create a monster building techno track of some sort, the vocals then looping and cascading throughout the mix, you'd have an instant classic.

Ned Raggett, Saturday, 24 November 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

one year passes...
Douglas wrote: Favorite thing on Time Stereo is the CD of the '60s Indonesian guitar band whose name is presently escaping me.

The Steps...that CD cracks me up. That one guitar player - good lord. BEE-DEEP! BEE-DEEP! For the ENTIRE...ALBUM...

Ned wrote: if you take "Are You Coming Down This Weekend?" and then after letting it run through once create a monster building techno track of some sort, the vocals then looping and cascading throughout the mix, you'd have an instant classic.

Although it's not exactly what you're describing, King of Sweet has a pseudo-dance remix of that song that's 10 minutes long (but it goes off on tangents midway through, as HNIA are apt to do).

HNIA have been dropped from 4AD, for better or for worse. I've seen little promotion regarding their latest album, Last Night, despite it being great as usual. Sigh.

Big, big recommendation for HNIA's The Emergency LP on Time Stereo, which has some unbelievably good covers ("Ain't No Lie," "Sunshine on My Shoulders," "When the Lovelight Starts Shining..." by the Supremes). They even cover Unrest's "Imperial," which makes my head spin...one of my very favorite bands covering another of my very favorite bands. There's even a pseudo-reggae version of Beethoven's "Ode to Joy."

Ernest P. (ernestp), Saturday, 22 February 2003 03:47 (eighteen years ago) link

HNIA have been dropped from 4AD, for better or for worse. I've seen little promotion regarding their latest album, Last Night, despite it being great as usual. Sigh.

Oddly enough, I just listened to that album today -- very enjoyable, Warren and company still have it. I guess it's just Time Stereo on its own now, but that seems to have been his primary focus anyway these past years.

Ned Raggett (Ned), Saturday, 22 February 2003 03:55 (eighteen years ago) link

The videos the Brothers Quay did for them are mad creepy. Anyone ever see those?

ejad (daje), Saturday, 22 February 2003 04:00 (eighteen years ago) link

YES!! The two videos ("Are We Still Married?" and "Can't Go Wrong Without You") are on the Brothers Quay collection DVD on Kino. Another mind-boggling combination. (OT: Their somewhat recent short "In Absentia," not on the DVD, has music by Stockhausen...music's great, but the film was actually a bit disappointing.)

Ernest P. (ernestp), Saturday, 22 February 2003 04:46 (eighteen years ago) link

This Night is stellar. What was the consensus on Someday my Blues...?

I'll go with Stars On Esp as the best album, but Ft. Lake has had the best success among friends new to the band.

derrick (derrick), Saturday, 22 February 2003 08:13 (eighteen years ago) link

The last time I saw them at the Spitz, I was rather unimpressed. I'm not keen on the new singer, she sings ten notes where only one would do. And I'm just not a fan of blokes that just sit there with acoustic guitars and no texture. That's not what I love 4AD for!

kate, Saturday, 22 February 2003 16:42 (eighteen years ago) link

"Don't glue the world", from Fort Lake, is tops. I've always wished Deferver would be collaborator/producer with an established band. Although their are occasionally great moments, sonically unpredictable, tempo shifts, crazy transitions, as a songwriter he's not that consistent or memorable.

theodore fogelsanger, Sunday, 23 February 2003 00:46 (eighteen years ago) link

three months pass...
Only heard 'Last Night'. Is the other stuff vastly different? I wouldnt even know where to start.

Gunther, Thursday, 5 June 2003 02:09 (seventeen years ago) link

previous one is similar, prior to that they were Beach Boys-ey, again prior they were indie schmindier, even prior they were archetypal 4AD

electric sound of jim (electricsound), Thursday, 5 June 2003 02:11 (seventeen years ago) link

two years pass...
the new album, Detrola, is GREAT. I'm really surprised. I like Last Night well enough but haven't had the patience for the lo-fi half finished stuff he's put out since then. This really goes back to Mouth by Mouth but adds some...funk? something.

kyle (akmonday), Friday, 10 February 2006 20:32 (fifteen years ago) link

it's getting a lot of praise but it's pretty mediocre really. i don't like erika hoffman's singing on it, she's too deadpan. i miss karin oliver. the other singers on here are nothing to cheer about either. he needs to release the his name is arrive stuff, of course he's released so much he may already have.

keyth (keyth), Friday, 10 February 2006 23:24 (fifteen years ago) link

I hear Prince in some of "Detrola." and Brill Building stuff too, Todd Rundgren...and I like it OK, not as much as "Mouth by Mouth." I suppose it comes across as pastiche plain and simple, to my ears, and I don't think the vocals are as strong as what Karin Oliver did, either. I find it entertaining enough but somehow offputting and half-realized, ideas that he's jammed together that ultimately don't have too much resonance--not half as "mysterious" as Warn, or Warren, would have us believe, I guess.

edd s hurt (ddduncan), Friday, 10 February 2006 23:33 (fifteen years ago) link

I actually really like the new album! (Best song, I think: "Seven Minutes.") I didn't expect a thing; just put it on out of duty more than anything else. I've never listened to them before, at all, and have no reference point to compare it to. Guess I need to catch up now,

xhuxk, Friday, 10 February 2006 23:40 (fifteen years ago) link

That would take a while, so be warned.

Ned Raggett (Ned), Friday, 10 February 2006 23:40 (fifteen years ago) link

yeah, they've done a lot of stuff. I've only heard "Mouth by" and "Stars on ESP." I've always loved "In Every Ford" from "Mouth." and "Seven Minutes" is really good on the new one, that's the one that reminds me of the Time or Prince. and quite like "Your Bones," especially the little acoustic-guitar bit in the middle that reminds me of "Wild Honey" Beach Boys. it's one of those records I seem to have a completely different reaction to, depending on time of day--works best for me at night.

edd s hurt (ddduncan), Saturday, 11 February 2006 01:35 (fifteen years ago) link

I really don't feel like there's pastiche in this -- the whole thing seems wrapped in Warn-world, each of those elements moving pretty naturally through it all.

nabisco (nabisco), Saturday, 11 February 2006 01:43 (fifteen years ago) link

i once I argued they had the best three-record run in the 90s and no one disagreed...

my name is john. i reside in chicago. (frankE), Saturday, 11 February 2006 02:16 (fifteen years ago) link

damn. gotta learn how to proofread.

my name is john. i reside in chicago. (frankE), Saturday, 11 February 2006 02:17 (fifteen years ago) link

I actually really like the new album! (Best song, I think: "Seven Minutes.") I didn't expect a thing; just put it on out of duty more than anything else. I've never listened to them before, at all, and have no reference point to compare it to. Guess I need to catch up now,

rockin' in the same boat. a friend of mine put it on in the record store (he's a long time fan) and i had no expectations. i love the looks on the customers' faces when the applause goes dintastic.

blackmail (blackmail.is.my.life), Saturday, 11 February 2006 02:21 (fifteen years ago) link

one month passes...
has anyone seen them live recently? I saw them several years ago and it was just Warn and Lovetta and it was dull (made worse by the audience hating it so much though); they're on tour with Arab Strap so I'm wondering whether I should bother going.

kyle (akmonday), Wednesday, 22 March 2006 22:29 (fourteen years ago) link

still think the new record is dismal but i've been goign back to Ft Lake recently and I now love that record dearly. Maybe I will have the same epiphany with the boring new record in 10 years time. they've never been that great live. I liked them as a trio early on then it all became about the guitar solos and the crowd longing for the whale and electric giraffe.

keyth (keyth), Thursday, 23 March 2006 03:19 (fourteen years ago) link

Kyle: If you're concerned about the sparsity of their lineup, you needn't worry. The current incarnation of HNIA is a fairly large hodge-podge of musicians, several of whom Warn is borrowing from the afrobeat ensemble Nomo (who, in their own right, are also worthy of investigation). Thus, even the more eccentric HNIA material gets worked over live with a bottom-heavy amalgam of funk and soul. These shows are engaging, but I personally prefer the nervous 4AD space-folk of old.

Sexy MFA (Hexy M.F.), Thursday, 23 March 2006 04:03 (fourteen years ago) link

two years pass...

I'm listening to 'Mouth to Mouth' for the 1st time in more than ten years and I can still not believe how weird it is.

baaderonixx, Monday, 12 May 2008 16:58 (twelve years ago) link

two years pass...

How did I miss their 11 CD release?

djh, Friday, 6 August 2010 06:42 (ten years ago) link

Concur with the poster above who preferred the early 4AD stuff. Defever had a lot of promise but I can't help feeling he lost sight of what made him good with the proliferation of styles and identities he chose to play around with. I remember the 4AD week at the ICA at which his performance was shockingly diffident. Also I saw them at some basement club in Islington at which they all came on in Kiss makeup.

margana (anagram), Friday, 6 August 2010 08:05 (ten years ago) link

Personally have trouble comprehending the notion that HNiA peaked around Home is in Your Head.

litel, Friday, 6 August 2010 08:55 (ten years ago) link

it isn't a difficult notion to embrace as it is their best album. is that a controversial opinion? the new record or the newest bit of that 11 cd thing is very nice as well. i have come to reduce my antipathy towards hnia 3.0 still, am i the only one wishes it was still karin oliver and not a clone. of course hiiyh had loads of singers but she sang the hits.

keythhtyek, Friday, 6 August 2010 17:42 (ten years ago) link

"hits" 8)

the one that keeps sticking in my head is the Stars On ESP. Can't Always Be Loved was the last thing i heard that i liked though.

koogs, Friday, 6 August 2010 17:54 (ten years ago) link

Detrola is my favorite for having the best pop songs

I remember liking the Gamelan disc from the 10 cd box set because I was studying Gamelans for a college paper around the time I heard that disc. Hardly characteristic of real Gamelan music though

@( * O * )@ (CaptainLorax), Friday, 6 August 2010 21:55 (ten years ago) link

two months pass...

new album anyone? I quite like it. My wife eternally hates this band, every note they have recorded and released, regardless of the singer. I kind of adore all of it, when I remember to listen to it.

akm, Sunday, 24 October 2010 15:26 (ten years ago) link

Eternal hate, that's pretty extreme!

Ned Raggett, Sunday, 24 October 2010 15:53 (ten years ago) link

she pretty extremely hates them. I think it's the sing-songiness of it, and the often flat and not very good girl vocalists. she hasn't heard last night, someday my blues, or when the stars refuse to shine though...she might tolerate those albums since Lovetta was a much better vocalist than anyone else that has even worked with the band, I've now realized. I think those records might be the best ones, honestly, now; I certainly didn't think that at the time.

akm, Wednesday, 27 October 2010 07:10 (ten years ago) link

your dismissal of karin oliver hurts my heart.

keythhtyek, Thursday, 28 October 2010 03:41 (ten years ago) link

she is good, just not as good a vocalist as lovetta, and whoever it was that sang the bulk of stars on esp (erika hoffman?) was really flat.

was karin oliver in velour 100?

akm, Thursday, 28 October 2010 06:38 (ten years ago) link

Bizarro 4AD HNIA >>>> Blues & Funk HNIA

except for Detrola, which is its own thing entirely

Hugo Stiglitz, a rich young man in search of romance & adventure (Pillbox), Thursday, 28 October 2010 08:16 (ten years ago) link

one year passes...

Home is in Your Head still rules.

john. a resident of chicago., Tuesday, 31 January 2012 16:18 (nine years ago) link

it does.

keythhtyek, Wednesday, 1 February 2012 04:18 (nine years ago) link

five years pass...

wtf is 'in every ford' about and does it make anyone else uncomfortable?

akm, Thursday, 21 September 2017 23:28 (three years ago) link

"Sick" is sick.

(weedle weedle weedle)
(weedle weedle weedle)

Hideous Lump, Friday, 22 September 2017 00:53 (three years ago) link

three months pass...

i can't claim to understand proggy metal, can someone tell me what Patterns of Light is doing well or poorly? it's just outside what i normally do. i mean, the vocals don't seem to be a fit for this, for example. i sorta get it, but i'm not sure i really know what these songs are pointing at. the tandems are ...? are they meant to be scary? i need a docent.

Hunt3r, Tuesday, 9 January 2018 23:20 (three years ago) link

OMG Black Wings lol


Hunt3r, Tuesday, 9 January 2018 23:34 (three years ago) link

Oh man their cover of This World Is Not My Home on the Stars on ESP record is one of my very favorite songs.

kornrulez6969, Wednesday, 10 January 2018 00:15 (three years ago) link

Look up the 85-89 collection on youtube, it is so fucking cool.

I like tons of their shit from several styles, but i lost track after detrola and this is like a soundblast from an fm station after hours of my early childhood, in some ways.

Hunt3r, Wednesday, 10 January 2018 00:44 (three years ago) link

two weeks pass...

the bandcamp blurbage notes vocal stylings are similar to Free Design, and i was "YES. that's exactly the 3rd component of this set i was missing that goes along with the progginess and proto metal stuff!" it's so obvious, but my brain couldnt bridge across to what it was. this album is good weird.

Hunt3r, Thursday, 25 January 2018 17:35 (three years ago) link

i have a ton of residual teenage love for Ft Lake. It's all over the place but the arrangements/production are/is fabulous

brimstead, Thursday, 25 January 2018 17:42 (three years ago) link

Stars on ESP too

brimstead, Thursday, 25 January 2018 17:42 (three years ago) link

seven months pass...

Weird. Don't think I'd noticed Kozelek's involvement on Stars on ESP until this week (though his name is clearly on the cover).

djh, Saturday, 1 September 2018 21:30 (two years ago) link

I always assumed that Kozelek’s involvement on Stars on ESP is limited to co-writing "Across the Street". If he and Warren jammed on more, it just never made it to the album.

Melomane, Saturday, 1 September 2018 22:40 (two years ago) link

eight months pass...

Three albums of unreleased early Defever/HNIA are coming out - here's the first ("All the Mirrors in the House") to be released in June:

ernestp, Saturday, 4 May 2019 14:14 (one year ago) link

^ Ordered! Curiously excited about this.

djh, Tuesday, 14 May 2019 20:12 (one year ago) link

That 86-89 thing that is out there is so cool and loco, i’m tempted by this.

Hunt3r, Tuesday, 14 May 2019 23:14 (one year ago) link

When I met Warren Defever and got a chance to talk to him for a while, I was surprised that he actually studied modern composition for a brief time before dropping out. But when I have thought about his earliest instrumental works – and now this sample of new early Defever – I feel we are lucky he dropped out. If he had made a career in contemporary-classic circles, he might have just ended up as yet another forgettable post-minimalist composer among many. Working in the pop world let him instead take that post-minimalist experimentation and create albums like *Livonia* and *Home is in Your Head* that sound like no one else.

Melomane, Thursday, 16 May 2019 15:51 (one year ago) link

one month passes...

There is now a review of "All the Mirrors in the House" on The Quietus. The author raises the possibility that these ambient tracks do not actually date from Defever’s youth, but rather that back story is just another one of the lies and fabrications that Defever is notorious for.

Melomane, Friday, 21 June 2019 13:56 (one year ago) link

What are his other lies?

Robert Adam Gilmour, Friday, 21 June 2019 19:36 (one year ago) link

Here is a list of some of them up to 1999. There have been a fair few since. Warren Defever is not a bad man, he just likes having some fun with interviewers and publicity.

Melomane, Saturday, 22 June 2019 12:14 (one year ago) link

two weeks pass...

Someday My Blues Will Cover the Earth is still an incredibly beautiful record and if you'd never heard it and someone told you it came out this year you wouldn't bat an eyelid.


Funky Isolations (jed_), Monday, 8 July 2019 01:05 (one year ago) link

yeah it's really good. frankly most of the albums are good if not great. Blues got a raw deal at the time, so much backlash from 4ad fans that was frankly racist in nature. I saw Warn and Lovetta play a duo show in SF and the crowd was fucking terrible.

akm, Monday, 8 July 2019 02:52 (one year ago) link

i don't understand how that album happened just like i don't really understand most of his stuff, but i appreciate the hell out smbwcte, the combo is remarkable.

Hunt3r, Monday, 8 July 2019 03:37 (one year ago) link

two weeks pass...

All through 2000–2001 it was claimed that the release of Someday My Blues Will Cover the Earth was delayed because the designers hadn’t finished the artwork. Then, a few years later it was revealed that 4AD was actually sitting on the release of the record because they didn’t know how to market it. I can’t help but feel that they weren’t trying too hard. Upon the album’s release I was surprised at how no advertising was being done in R&B and soul media – 4AD just couldn’t go beyond the indie music circles it was used to – and so is it any surprised that it was a flop sales-wise?

That said, Someday My Blues Will Cover the Earth is at the bottom of my HNIA album rankings. Warren praised Lovetta for never singing a song the same way twice, but I see that as a flaw in technique, not a plus. But even within Lovetta-era His Name Is Alive, I found the Time Stereo release When the Stars Refuse to Shine a lot more moving.

Melomane, Friday, 26 July 2019 16:39 (one year ago) link

one month passes...

Interview with Warren: https://therecoup.com/2019/08/07/beauty-only-lingers-a-conversation-with-warren-defever/

"I vaguely remembered having six or seven new age or ambient recordings that never really got released so I got Shelley from Tyvek to do the transfers for me. I really can’t listen to much of that stuff, like the tapes of me adding harmonica to Bob Dylan songs that didn’t have harmonica when I was 12 or all the U2 covers. She did a great job and didn’t judge me too harshly. We’re still friends."

The new tape is coming out September 19, "6teen Ok": https://hisnameisalive.bandcamp.com/album/6teen-ok

The postage (shipping from the U.K. to the U.S.A. in my case) is almost the cost of the tape unfortunately. Total price via PayPal is just under $20, FYI, but since it's Bandcamp, you'll also get high quality downloads.

ernestp, Sunday, 15 September 2019 18:37 (one year ago) link


ernestp, Sunday, 15 September 2019 18:50 (one year ago) link

four months pass...

Hmm, so actually if you buy the "6teen Ok" tape like I did, you WON'T get digital downloads of the whole thing...just 3 tracks.
But just now I discovered that the whole thing is streaming on Soundcloud: https://soundcloud.com/d_i_s_c_i_p_l_e_s/sets/hnia-mixtape

ernestp, Thursday, 23 January 2020 03:29 (one year ago) link

seven months pass...
five months pass...

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