Tiny Vipers Archive

Back To School – Summer 2017

Back To School, our new playlist and digital collage featuring new releases from this past Summer.

Back to School 2017 - digital collage and GIF by GoodMorninCaptn

Back to School 2017 - digital collage and GIF by GoodMorninCaptn


  1. Will Stratton (NY, US) — “Some Ride” from ‘Rosewood Almanac‘ out on Bella Union.
  2. sóley (IS) — “Never Cry Moon” from Endless Summer’ out on Morr Music.
  3. Seabuckthorn (UK) — “Near Translucent” from ‘Turns’ out on Lost Tribe Sound.
  4. Raoul Vignal (Lyon, FR) — “Hazy Days” from ‘The Silver Veil’ out on Talitres.
  5. Juana Molina (AR) — “Cosoco” from ‘Halo’ out on Crammed Discs.
  6. Do Make Say Think (official) (Toronto, CA) — “Bound And Boundless” from ‘Stubborn Persistent Illusions’ out on Constellation Records.
  7. Noga Erez (ISR) — “Dance While You Shoot” from ‘Off the Radar’ out on City Slang.
  8. Orval Carlos Sibelius (FR) — “Cœur de verre” from ‘Ordre et progrès’ out on Born Bad Records.
  9. Jason Loewenstein (of Sebadoh, US) — “Superstitious” from ‘Spooky Action’ out on Joyful Noise Recordings.
  10. Palm (Philadelphia, PA, US) — “Walkie Talkie” from ‘Shadow Expert’ EP out on Carpark Records.
  11. Tom Adams (Berlin, DE) — “Sparks” from ‘Silence’ out on Kowloon Records.
  12. Arca (VZ/UK) — “Anoche” from ‘Arca’ out on XL Recordings.
  13. Jessica Moss (of A Silver Mt Zion, Montreal, CA) — “Glaciers I (Pt I)” from ‘Pools Of Light’ out on Constellation Records.
  14. Tiny Vipers (Seattle, WA, US) — “K.I.S.S.” from ‘Laughter’ out on Grapefruit Records / Ba Da Bing! Records.
  15. Orson Hentschel (Düsseldorf, DE) — “Paradise Future” from ‘Electric Slutter’ out on Denovali.
  16. Mutual Benefit (USA) — “Glow Worms” from ‘Just Another Diamond Day’ (Vashti Bunyan cover album) out on Turntable Kitchen’s Sounds Delicious vinyl subscription service.
  17. Yoke Lore (Brooklyn, NY, USA) — “Only You” from ‘Goodpain’ EP.
  18. H. Hawkline (Wales, UK) — “The Last Thing On Your Mind ” from I Romanticize’ out on Heavenly Recordings / [PIAS].

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Tiny Vipers’ Life On Earth: The Transfiguration Of Jesy Fortino

Snaking away from the indie pop accents of her debut Hands Across the Void, Jesy Fortino aka Tiny Vipers releases her second full-length album on SubPop and risks her folk inheritance to higher spheres: an immense step up.

Tiny Vipers - Life On EarthThe first play of this sixty-four minutes record will most certainly leave the hearer at a loss to tell one song apart from another, or to even discern any sort of conventional pattern in the composition of the eleven tracks. But if you think this sounds boring, the young viperidae from Seattle may prove you wrong.

Her influences include Townes Van Zandt, Neil Young, Nico, and Micheal Cashmore, and yes, from its mere primitive shape to more experimental ventures, the folk spirit quietly walks through the full length of the record. It is nevertheless difficult to label Life On Earth as a folk album, unless you think of it as a distorted and elongated entanglement of Joni Mitchell’s “Tin Angel” and Melanie Safka’s “Pebbles In The Sand“, remixed by Aidan Baker in a “Green and Cold” fashion. She inherited the almost medieval austerity of the first’s earliest works, the proto-Joanna Newsom-esque vocal figures and untechnical spontaneity of the second, and the surprising neo-classical approach to grimy contemporary pop of the last.

Yet, few comparisons will let you grasp the full horizons of Fortino’s Earth.

Only a long and worthy intimacy with her voice and minimalist guitar will help unravel its uncatchable personae and ever-changing sceneries. From the disarming introduction lyrics, “Do you remember when the world was still young…” in “Eyes Like Ours”, and the airy timelessness of “Dreamer”, to the nihilist sense of emergency and confusion of “Outside”, she ushers you through an imaginary mythology for an imaginary people, a lost volume in-between the Bible and the Verda; she tells you about death and ghosts, about the origins and future of the world, and of otherness, but, at the same time, through some fascinating and unaffected trick, leaves you the serene and immobile witness to the nearly organic attachment to memory, to the doubts and fears, and fascination for the beyond, to the unbearable self-consciousness and isolation of a thousand individuals, whose faces become blurred as centuries are swept by around you. If “Cm” sounds like a recess and is more in the traditional style of her early songs, the darkness and deconstructed frame of the following tracks, and especially the sinuous sine waves of “Twilight Property” will only hit you as a more fatal blow. There is no poison distilled in this nest of vipers though, only a miracle recipe of how to turn casual yet mysterious singing and songwriting into a mesmerising and modern ambient work.

Undoubtedly, Life On Earth is not an easy-to-share experience, but if it has not played a special part in your Summer already, it is high time you gave it a special place in your life, for it is a true and very secret gem.

Listen to “Dreamer” (MP3) on Sub Pop.

Buy Tiny Vipers “Life On Earth” on CD or digital release from Sub Pop Records.

Visit Tiny Vipers’ MySpace.

Balmorhea “All Is Wild, All Is Silent Remixes” (2009)

Balmorhea - All Is Wild, All Is Silent Remixes6 months ago, Balmorhea released their 3rd album, a praised effort that explored the raw landscapes of 19th-century America, in a way that furthered the path of Rachel’s. From the 9 epic songs that owe as much to post-rock and folk as they do to chamber music, 8 have now gone through the hands and ears of 11 of today’s finest sound artists, resulting in a surprising new re-interpretation of the album, now released on double-LP vinyl and digital download by Western Vinyl.

With a 17+minute opening, Eluvium sets the tone, muffling the original melody of “Settler” as an underlying guiding thread for layers of choirs and strings with looped acoustic guitars. As many of the artists here, he has chosen to strip down Balmorhea’s song, and shape their raw sound material into a much more ambient direction. Rafael Anton Irisarri and Tiny Vipers keep on with this introspective approach, both calming down the vigor of “Harm & Boon”, while Bexar Bexar’s guitar samples open up to a slightly brighter sound on his short “Elegy”. After a couple minutes of organ and creaks, Machinefabriek playfully introduces a deep, vibrating double-bass halfway through his vision of “Remembrance”. The Fun Years are the first to use a more straight-forward drum rhythm on “Coahuila”. Library Tapes has also kept the drums for that same track, but the beat gets more hesitant, as it supports an acoustic instrumentation, remaining closer to Balmorhea’s sound than any other remixer on the record. Jacaszek adds a peculiar DIY touch, with cheap percussions, and interweaving waves of organs and guitars. Helios comes next and drags “Truth” into indietronica spheres (Get the MP3 here). Quite unexpectedly, Peter Broderick litteraly addresses a letter to his dear friends from Texas as he builds on a motif of piano and choirs to which he adds his own voice and violin. On the other side of the sound spectrum, Xela eventually slowly lets “November 1, 1832″ drown into a growingly overwhelming feedback.

Compared to the Austin band’s original album, this one may sound drier. It is indeed much more abstract and experimental, the lyricism and complex song structures being left aside to the benefit of feelings and ambiences. Tearing apart and stretching out tiny bits of melodies, resonating strings and sound accidents, those 11 remixes, though illustrated with a black-and-white cover, really reveal myriads of shades through the headphones, and bring the attentive listener into a worthy contemplation of a rich and wild inner nature.