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Sista Maj (Segel / Tuominin / Axelsson / Wiberg)

Localized Pockets of Negative Entropy [VINYL 2 LPs]

Sista Maj (Segel / Tuominin / Axelsson / Wiberg): Localized Pockets of Negative Entropy [VINYL 2 LPs (Adansonia)

A joyously intense and hypnotic double vinyl album of instrumental improvised rock with a prog/psych orientation from the Swedish Sista Maj quartet of Jonathan Segel (Camper Van Beethoven) on guitars, violin, computer things, Mikael Tuominen on bass, Andreas Axelsson on drums, plus Mattias Olson (Anglagard) providing additional percussion and synth.

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product information:

Limited to 233 handnumbered copies,

Label: Adansonia
Catalog ID: AR 03
Squidco Product Code: 27331

Format: LPx2
Condition: New
Released: 2018
Country: Germany
Packaging: LP - Gatefold
Recorded in the garage and Roth Handle Studios.


Jonathan Segel-guitars, violin, computer things

Mikael Tuominen-bass

Andreas Axelsson-drums

Per Wiberg-keyboards

Mattias Olsson-additional percussion, synthesizers

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Artist Biographies:

"Born in Marseilles, France, grew up in Davis, California (with a year's side trip to Tucson, AZ.), went to college at the University of California at Santa Cruz, studying with Gordon Mumma and Peter Elsea.

In Santa Cruz he hooked up with Camper Van Beethoven, apparently for life. He moved up to San Francisco in 1989, then to Los Angeles in 1997 to work for Dane Davis at Danetracks, a film sound post production facility, then back to Oakland in 2001, where received a Master's Degree in Music Composition at Mills College, studying with Fred Frith, Pauline Oliveros, Alvin Curran, and Joelle Leandre.

While in Santa Cruz in the 1980s, he played with Camper Van Beethoven, Eugene Chadbourne and various other semi-musical projects, while in San Francisco in the 1990s with Sideways, Virginia Dare, Granfaloon Bus, Dieselhed and his own band Hieronymus Firebrain, which dissolved and reformed as Jack & Jill, which later led to various records of rock music under his own name.

While in Los Angeles, besides playing and recording with Eugene Chadbourne, he played with Clyde Wrenn (as Clyde Wrenn and the Container), with Mike Marrt's Beaumont, occaisonal shows with Mark Goodman's group, Magnet, and spent a great deal of time touring the globe with Mark Linkous' group, Sparklehorse.

Returning to the Bay Area in 2001, Jonathan began playing rock shows with his own eponymous band, as well as a newly reformed and revitalized Camper Van Beethoven. He has made several guitar-centric rock music CDs since then and has performed this music in scattered California shows, including opening slots for such acts as Built To Spill (he has also sat in with Built To Spill and Yo La Tengo onstage as a violinist!) and occasionally plays solo acoustic shows still.

In 2004 Camper Van Beethoven recorded a new studio album, "New Roman Times", their first in 15 years, and a then put out a Greatest Hits package in 2009 ("Popular Songs of Great Enduring Strength and Beauty"), both followed by much touring in the United States and Europe, which continues to this day. A new CD of Camper Van Beethoven music arrived in early 2013, "La Costa Perdida" and its companion CD, "El Camino Real" in 2014.

In addition to all of this, leaving Los Angeles and the film and music industries and studying at Mills College led Jonathan back to the world of improvisation and electronic music, and he has been performing improvised music for instruments and computer around the world, including shows in the SF Bay Area, New York, Europe and Japan.

2003 saw the CD release of several improv collaborations with notable artists such as ​Fred Frith​ and Joelle Leandre, and with Shoko Hikage, and the first of many electronic music CDs. In 2004, after various shows as both a rock and an improvising duo with Dina Emerson, Chaos Butterfly formed and began recording and touring. Several CDs have been produced worldwide, as well as performances in the US and Europe with many collaborators. Chaos Butterfly is now a moniker for Jonathan performing electronic or otherwise avant-garde improv with a host of other potential musicians.

In 2012 Jonathan relocated to Stockholm, Sweden with his family, where he currently resides. Here he has been sitting in with bands such as The Plastic Pals, and even once with Gösta Berlings Saga, working on recording his own albums and with others, including Sista Maj, an improvised rock ensemble, as well as recording, mixing and performing with the Øresund Space Collective from Copenhagen."

-Jonathan Segel Website (

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"Mikael Tuominen is a Finnish guitarist."

-Squidco 4/7/2021

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"Drummer Andreas Axelsson is a longtime member of pianist Lisa Ullén ́s critically acclaimed quartet and plays in a number of fixed and fluctuating constellations ranging from jazz and free improvised music to collaborations involving dance and electro-acoustic music. He has performed throughout Europe and Scandinavia and appears on 20 plus recordings released by labels in France, Germany, Norway, Japan, Denmark and his native Sweden."

-Wikipedia (

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"Per Jonas Wiberg (born 8 June 1968 in Borlänge) is the former keyboardist of Swedish progressive death metal band Opeth, and a member of Michael Amott's stoner metal band Spiritual Beggars. Wiberg toured with Opeth from the 2003 Deliverance/Damnation tour onward, and joined Opeth officially in 2005. Wiberg provided backing vocals for Opeth in addition to his keyboard duties. Before joining Spiritual Beggars he was a member of Death Organ, a band based in Borlänge. He has also fronted the band Boom Club, of the same area.

Wiberg played the keyboard in the intro to "Enemy Within" by the melodic death metal band Arch Enemy. He has also played piano on Swedish progressive rock band Anekdoten's 1993 release Vemod. In 2007, he collaborated on a project called King Hobo with Clutch drummer Jean-Paul Gaster and Kamchatka guitarist Thomas Andersson.

It was announced on 6 April 2011 that Wiberg was leaving Opeth as part of a mutual decision between him and the other band members. Since 2012 he has been a live musician for the Swedish doom metal band Candlemass as well as joining Swedish band Switchblade on selected dates as a keyboard player. In 2013 he joined Swedish trio Kamchatka as a bass player and full-time member. He plays on the Kamchatka albums The Search Goes On and Long Road Made of Gold."

-Wikipedia (

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"Mattias Olsson (born 9 January 1975) started his career as a classical percussionist playing in orchestras and big bands on Ekerö outside of Stockholm. As a sideline to recording and producing bands Mattias Olsson writes articles (music related) for several Swedish Magazines.

He was born in Hong Kong to Swedish parents. In 1981 he moved to Stockholm. Starting as a drummer at eight years old he started off playing in big bands, pop and classical ensembles.

When he was 17 he joined progressive rock band Änglagård. Änglagård consisted of musicians from Ekerö as well as Waxholm. The band was heavily influenced by bands such as King Crimson, Yes and Genesis but also listened to less famous bands such as Shylock, Cathedral and Yezda Urfa. Änglagård quickly became known for their instrumentation skills and their dynamic range often reminiscent of classical music. When the band started the current trend in progressive rock was to use the newest digital equipment. Änglagård decided instead to use old classic prog equipment like the Rickenbacker bass, Minimoog and the Mellotron. Änglagård recorded two studio albums in the 1990s, Hybris (1992) and Epilog (1994). They also recorded a live album called Buried Alive (1996). The title was a joke from Mattias, the worst title for a live album must be ...Buried Alive. After a long hiatus the band released their third album Viljans Öga in 2012.

He also did some sessions with White Willow and Pär Lindh.

After Änglagård, he joined Swedish pop band Pineforest Crunch who have so far recorded three albums: Make Believe, Watergarden and Panamarenko. The band's influences ranged from R.E.M, American Music Club to King Crimson and the Sundays. Pineforest Crunch had a very strong D.I.Y ethos and recorded six demos before getting signed to Abbas old label Polar. The band had a hit from the first album, "Cup Noodle Song". The single was a hit in Sweden and Japan[citation needed] and lead to intensive touring. The second album, Watergarden, was recorded in England with Radiohead producer Jim Warren. Watergarden mixed orchestral textures with Mellotrons and experimental guitars. Parallel with Pineforest Crunch, he started playing drums and occasional keyboards with Reminder.

He has since then played in numerous projects and is now active as a record producer. He has recorded albums with Deadwood Forest, Devi, Clockwork, AK-Momo, Nanook of the North, Vijaya and others.

Together with musician and composer Matti Bye, Mattias Olsson has written music for both film and theatre. In 2009 they wrote music for productions at both Dramaten and Stadsteatern in Stockholm. They have also played together at silent movie festivals and showings both in Tromsö and Stockholm. They have written and played music for Berlin, Nanook of the North and Fritz Langs Metropolis.Studio

Mattias Olsson runs his own studio outside of Stockholm called Roth Händle Studio. The studio started as a simple home studio using an Akai Dps-12 and a handful microphones. There was no plan to become a producer but as bookings started to appear albums started getting recorded. The small home studio is where the Swedish pop band Andreas & Jag started recording three albums. Andreas & Jag was Mattias Olsson and Andreas Morland. Other bands that recorded at the home studio are Pineforest Crunch and Nanook of the North. The first real location was at Finnboda Varv just outside Stockholm. At this studio location bands like Kit le fever and Clockwork recorded early EPs. The Studio has a collection of musical artifacts including claviolines, pipe organs, Stylophones, Mellotrons, Celesta, Orchestrons and Talentmakers.

In 2010 the location in Sundbyberg closed and the studio went into storage for a brief while before being relocated to Sollentuna."

-Wikipedia (

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track listing:


1. How Thick Is Your Veil Today 14:51

2. Owls Part 1 7:31


1. Owls Part 2 5:27

2. Far From Nothing 8:57

3. Yet More Veils 5:24


1. Hi, Who Are You? 11:41

2. High Salvage 10:17


1. Another Owl 3:18

2. The Bridges 12:01
sample the album:

descriptions, reviews, &c.

"'Sista Maj', according to the band, "is colloquial Swedish for 'the last day of May'. Literally, it's 'final May', which leaves the potential meaning that it may be the last May...ever".

I really like this idea, and certainly in our seemingly fragile times it has a particular relevance. It plays into, I think, my thoughts around staring into the distance while the waves crash onto the shore... thinking into an abyss perhaps. The question, though, is whether this is reflected in the music.

Well I think that I have been led down this path because the tracks here seem to be to be considered and thoughtful... there is a certain depth to them that I really appreciate... they make me want to dive fully into them... I want to be immersed by them.

Starting from the top 'How Thick Is Your Veil Today?' is a long drawn out track with begins with some rudimentary folk patterns before drawing you out into a sort of kaleidoscope of space and Krautrock-tinged free-jazz. The key word here s 'free' because this sounds just so free, after the somewhat regulated holiday period I feel liberated by this music... it takes me away from the mundane and everyday... to zone out and delve. It's hard to describe but as I listen to it now I get a huge sense of relief and escape... a chance to be alone with my thoughts and the music that catalyses them.

After that I welcome the fact that 'Owls' takes me off at a similar languid pace while also revelling in the hints of funky bass that for me is heralding something different here. Then there's the violin which is providing such a contrast and it taking me to the edge of comprehension and back. This is such an amazing number for me because there is a real edge to it... a sharp serrated sonic edge that seems to cut away at you and hits you where it matters. After around twelve minutes it fades out and you are left with the feeling that you haven't as much listened to something... you have experienced it.

'Far From Nothing' is absorbing in a different way. The slow, considered, beat coupled with some wonderful guitar and organ give me the feeling of floating above the shore, getting an altogether different view of the sea and shore... It is a track that grows in intensity as it progresses and yet despite how it makes me soar, also feels very grounding... maybe earthy is a better term.

After that comes the relatively short track 'Yet More Veils' which grabs me straight away with its intense jazz patterns and a guitar that seems to be mixed almost out of the room, at least on my system, giving it a strange disembodied feel. There is a great coherence to this track though, and I have the feeling that it is going to take many more listens before I've peeled back the layers as it careers towards its end.

'Hi, Who Are You?' starts much more slowly, and perhaps with a sense of trepidation. There feels a genuine sense of uncertainty here... how is this going to develop? I've certainly no idea as I sit here wondering where it will go. This starts to get resolved around four minutes in when the band pick up the pace and we are once again away into a flight of sonic wonder. In some ways it feels like space rock, at least in the way in which the sound is being constructed, but that would be slightly misleading because there are other elements at play here... again that mix of being grounded and drifting away... interesting, I'm yet to resolve that... maybe I don't need to.

The set is brought to a close by 'High Salvage' which seems to me to have a slightly more industrial feel to it. I do not me musically industrial... more a sense of infrastructure on the horizon, and closer. I again imagine that I am walking along the beach, but now there are cranes and towers in sight... the worldview here feels more complex, less pure... until it fragments rather marvellously adding a hitherto undiscovered darker side which closes the album on a rather uneasy note, something that's never a problem for me.

If you like having music on in the background don't bother listening to this album, because it is one that has to be digested and absorbed. It is an album that seeps into your musical being and provides you with the building blocks on which to think and reflect. It is an album that encompasses different moods and emotions, but - like water flowing over rocks - will only leave its mark on you over time. Put it on, stare into the middle distance, and let it do its thing!"-Simon, Psych Insight Music

Limited to 233 handnumbered copies,

Get additional information at Psych Insight Music
Related Categories of Interest:

Vinyl Recordings
Rock and Related
Progressive Rock
Improvised Rock
European Improvisation and Experimental Forms
Quartet Recordings
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