All posts by kramtones

Harlan Mark Vale is a prolific modern composer and sound designer. His composition talents uniquely draws from the pallet of an improvisational approach to electronic, experimental, jazz, classical and world stylistic musical elements.

Pillars of Light Music is now on

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Improvijazzation Nation review of Harlan Mark Vale – INVISIBLE INK FROM THE THINK BOTTLE

Harlan Mark Vale – INVISIBLE INK FROM THE THINK BOTTLE:  If that album title doesn’t capture your curiosity, you’re a dead cat already, to be sure.  As frequent readers here know, Mark is a very prolific artist and long-time playing friend of mine who gets reviewed here often for his drawings from the well of creativity – and in his case, as evidenced by tunes like the percussion-driven “Hunting Snakes“… the little “sneaky” vocal snippets will definitely remind you of your last encounter with the slimy ones (lol).  If you’re looking for something a bit more bright and inspiring to listen to, you’ll totally dig “Nostalgia Airport“… simple, yet beautiful.  The key thing about his new release, though, is that there are no “pigeonholes” to shove his creations into… you’ll hear on the slow-paced “Country” that he’s totally talented in a variety of styles.  My personal favorite of the fifteen “invisible” sonic creations is the 6:54 closer, “Emotional Algebra“… yes, there are moments when it’s complex, but if you keep your thinking cap (and your headphones) on as you listen to this, you’ll realize that you’re in the presence of true musical genius.  Mark gets a MOST HIGHLY RECOMMENDED from these old ears, with an “EQ” (energy quotient) rating of 4.99 for this fabulous music.  Get more information and purchase this CD at Mark’s Bandcamp page for this release.         Rotcod Zzaj

Recovering Cassette Archive Masters

I cleaned up the old Denon DR-M1 cassette recorder. I have started transferring a few of the remaining master cassettes that have survived all these years. The 1st one was a solo piano compilation I did back in 1986 with live performances dating from 1979 -1986. Almost all tracks were performed at The Gnu Deli, Olympia, WA. One improvisation was done on my 25th birthday.

Also today I transferred the last two songs from “Dreams of a Submariner” cassette 1996 release featuring Jeffrey Morgan / Harlan Mark Vale / Pete Leinenon. Morgan and I had a recording session at Arcade Digital with Bruce Whitcomb as engineer on July 12, 1996 for the bulk of the album.  But there were two songs on the cassette release that were from another session.The other session was Pagan Agents recorded live on Sonarchy Radio at Jack Straw Productions, Seattle, WA July 20,1996 by Doug Haire. This power trio was Jeffrey Morgan – Alto Sax, Pete Leinonen – Bass, Harlan Mark Vale – Drums. Blazing hot and not for the timid performances. Whew!


There were a couple of other finds that were noteworthy to me anyway. One was a copy of my TESC Winter 1980 Project in the Electronic Music Studio 1 with the Buchla Modular Synthesizer. That was the session where my first “single” came from; namely, “God God Almighty” which was later released in 1982 on a Palace of Lights (Marc Barreca) release called ‘Regional Zeal / Mouth Music From Olympia’. Can’t wait to hear that again.

Second find was copies of “Harlan Mark Vale Electronic Music Cassettes 1 & 2” from 1986. Seminal Kramtones electronic music compositions from the studio and live performances. 1979 – 1986.

More to come.


Audio Post

Audio Post

I am trying out the audio file posts on WP today to see how it works.

Here is a composition I wrote on 7.11.2012 called “Moog Day”. It is, as of now, unreleased but it was recorded around the time of my “For Every Life Upon This Earth” & “Plateaux of the Strong Hearts” album era. I was invited to do a home concert / interview with Rev Darlene Dunning for her Alive! “For Every Life Upon This Earth” video broadcast series where I performed this piece live but the audio for that song was too distorted to hear well. So I thought I would post it here. Enjoy.