In late April, Emeralds will release a new album on Editions Mego, the Vienna-based label operated by Peter Rehberg.
It’s perhaps a surprising partnership, with Emeralds known for their mellifluous, new-age-influenced and – dare we say it – hippyish brand of synth-psychedelia, and Mego traditionally a home for more agitated digital noise and power electronics, but it makes a kind of sense. There seems to be an interesting and ever-growing alliance right now between the “traditional” noise scene and more ambient-leaning synthesizer music, with Carlos Giffoni, for example, releasing ear-kissing material from Oneohtrix Point Never, Conrad Schnitzler and indeed Emeralds on his generally ear-splitting No Fun label.
Anyway, Emeralds’ new album is called Does It Look Like I’m Here, and it’s their third official full-length to date, following Emeralds and Solar Bridge (the band have released numerous small-run cassettes and CD-Rs as well). According to Mego it finds the group “moving from playing single oscillator analog synthesizers to really complex analog and analog/digital hybrid as well a great deal of guitar synthesizers, not to mention fine tuning their skills as brilliant tunesmiths”, with tracks tending towards “shortened pop format”.
Does It Look Like I’m Here features several tracks from Emeralds’ limited 7” vinyl series on Wagon, as well new compositions exclusive to this release. The tracks were recorded in Cleveland in July-August 2009 and January-March 2010, and mastered by James Plotkin. The album will be released on CD and double-gatefold vinyl; the picture above is a detail from the cover art.
Editions Mego has one of the most admirable catalogues in contemporary experimental and electronic music, having released classic fare by the likes of Jim O’Rourke, Russell Haswell, Kevin Drumm and KTL (Peter Rehberg and Stephen O’Malley). The jewel in its crown is Fennesz’s elegiac masterpiece Endless Summer, one of FACT’s albums of the 2000s. Originally released in 2001 by Mego, Touch brought out an edition in 2006 with new artwork. This April Mego re-issue the album on CD, restoring the original artwork. More info on this and the Emeralds LP here.