MONASTRAL is excited to announce that its inaugural release will be the third solo album by Chicago percussionist/sound artist Mike Weis. SOUND PRACTICE follows 2014’s DON’T KNOW, JUST WALK on Type Records and LOOP CURRENT / RAFT on Barge Recordings in 2011. Weis may be best known as the drummer in the decade-plus band, Zelienople as well as other acts including Kwaidan and Good Stuff House. He has also collaborated with Scott Tuma, Mind Over Mirrors, Jasper TX, Black To Comm, Xela, The North Sea and Haptic. In addition to his experimental projects, Weis has studied and performed West African rhythms with Ghanaian master musician and High priest of the Yewe cult, Gideon Foli Alorwoyie. More recently, he has been studying Korean shaman ritual music with the Korean-American group Ilkwanori and with master drummer Sora Kim from Seoul, Korea.
For this new album, Weis eschews the use of digital loops and samples that were the backbone of his previous releases opting for a direct, present moment interaction with his instruments. The two long-form pieces were recorded directly in the studio in one take without overdubs or edits using his signature unorthodox drum kit made up of a large bass drum, Chinese gong, Tibetan singing bowls, cymbals and traditional Korean folk drums—changgo and buk. Weis augmented these percussion instruments with a tabletop guitar (prepared with aluminum rods, gong and vibrating dildos) and real-time manipulations of tape recordings of his gongs, bells and cymbals.
SOUND PRACTICE will be available in October 2016 as a download and limited LP release, edition of 300, pressed on virgin vinyl with a sleeve designed by Common Name.
released October 14, 2016
Side A 19'36"
Side B 17'21"
Recorded in January of 2015 at Jira Productions, Chicago by Justin Mayer
Mastered by Alex Inglizian at Experimental Sound Studio, Chicago
Design by Common Name
"Perceiving sound means everything is universal sound: birds singing, thunder, dogs barking - all this is universal sound. If you have no mind, everything will be perceived just as it is. When you and the sound become one, you don't hear the sound; you are the sound. At the moment of true perceiving, there is no thought, no separation, only perceiving sound. Just perceive this bell or drum sound, and cut off all thinking. Then your wisdom-mind will grow, you will get enlightenment and thus save all beings."
-Zen Master Seung Sahn