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Hands To (Jeph Jerman): Scrine (Notice Recordings)

Sound explorer and composer Jeph Jerman created the 11 pieces on this release while living in the Knob Hill neighborhood of Colorado Springs, using unusual recording techniques he refers to as "guerrilla recordings" like tossing tape decks off buildings or putting them inside running clothes dryers, inching tape manually over the heads, exploiting creative field recordings, &c. &c.

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product information:

Label: Notice Recordings
Catalog ID: NTR050
Squidco Product Code: 28073

Condition: New
Released: 2019
Country: USA
Packaging: Cassette
Recorded in November and December, 1988.


Jeph Jerman-composer, performer

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Artist Biographies:

"Jeph Jerman is a musician who began his musical career drumming and playing in bar bands. In the 1980s, he became aware of other sonic possibilities for his drum kit and started learning to improvise and record his own music. During this time Jerman was a frequent collaborator with other musicians who were also exploring improvisational techniques. In the mid-1980s, Jerman founded a cassette label for the distribution of music by himself and friends. The label released over 50 cassettes, several LPs, and a short-lived magazine.

After relocating from Colorado to Seattle, Jerman continued playing with local groups of improvisers and began giving solo performances where he improvised with mostly natural found objects, a practice he continues today. He founded the first animist orchestra dedicated to making larger scale works using natural object play. In 1999, Jerman moved to Cottonwood, AZ. He continues to investigate sound and recording in many forms including field recordings, the building of crude sound making devices, and the effects of age and other damage to analog tape. Jerman's 2014 Grants to Artists award funded recording and touring with Tim Barnes. Jerman continues to collaborate with Dave Knott in a band collectively known as The Yes, Well, and with Tim Barnes, with whom collaborated on an FCA-supported record released in 2015 (Erstwhile Records.) Other CDs and works are available on Anomalous Records, Semperflorens, and Trait Media Works."

-Foundation for Contemporary Arts (

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track listing:


1. Whag 4:30

2. Milpic 2:00

3. Sethube 1:40

4. Tind 4:32

5. Thraal 4:23

6. Plathers 5:33

7. Firad 8:37


1. Sinc 4:30

2. Scrine 4:27

3. Mastic 4:34

4. Biasis 2 17:04

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descriptions, reviews, &c.

"Jeph Jerman is a respected and significant player in the mid-to-late-'80s American cassette scene, his prolific Hands To project dwelling in the non-representational, highly textural, abstracted field recording realm of sound work during that time. Notice has been a long-time admirer of Jerman's work, and we are honored to present this newly remastered reissue of Scrine, originally released in 1988 on Memphis' Harsh Reality Music. Both sides of Scrine have a measured pace, with sequences reminiscent of primitive noise and skewed interior/exterior domestic ambience wildly flailing amidst jagged cuts of inscrutable loops and statics. Featured throughout are uncomfortable layers of blown-out and magnified object abuse, some of which were gleaned from a junkyard and alley behind Jerman's apartment at the time in Colorado Springs. Here he recalls a few insights about various approaches to some of the recording techniques on this album: "I remember doing quite a bit of 'guerrilla recording', things like tossing tape decks off buildings or putting them inside running clothes dryers ... whirling the mic overhead like a lasso and adding some plastic crunching and squeaking. ... inching tape: pulling it over the play head manually. ... an old shop sign which screeched and got blown about by the wind." Tapes like this are one of the reasons we initiated Notice Recordings back in 2009, and we are completely smitten to have this reissue of Scrine stand as our 50th release."-Notice Recordings

"When this tape was recorded, I was living in an apartment above a used record store in the Knob Hill neighborhood of Colorado Springs. Surrounded by businesses and transient housing, it was deemed a "high crime area" by the local law enforcement. The alley behind my building was a repository for anyone's cast-offs: building materials, car parts, etc, and a fenced-off junkyard full of beautiful rusting detritus which I often took advantage of.

I can't recall everything about these dispatches, but a few things come back to me upon listening. I remember doing quite a bit of "guerrilla recording": things like tossing tape decks off buildings or putting them inside running clothes dryers - "Whag" was one example. I whirled the mic overhead like a lasso and added some plastic crunching and squeaking. "Tind" (tape wind), was made by inching tape: pulling it over the play head manually. The main sound in "Thraal" was an old shop sign which screeched as it got blown about by the wind.

There isn't a lot of sampler use on this particular tape, meaning I may have even then been tiring of the limitations of lo-fi looping. "Firad" consists of layers of field recordings of the neighborhood. The voice heard poking out between a few tracks is that of Albert Einstein, recorded off the TV. Also included (during "Sinc"), are remnants of the HCA project tape, playback of various recordings in multiple rooms one afternoon. Listen for the fire bell. "Scrine" (scribe whine) is layered recordings of pencils marking papers, and the last two bits are attempts at HNW before the term existed. "Biasis" is layered recordings of A. Smith's Metastasis LP, which I had access to several copies of. Later on I would make a whole tape of that nonsense, but that's another story..."-Jeph Jerman, 2019

Related Categories of Interest:

Electro-Acoustic Improv
Improvised Music
Organized Sound and Sample Based Music
Field Recordings
Sound, Noise, &c.
Solo Artist Recordings
New in Experimental & Electronic Music
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