Inside No. 9, Episode #4: Black Truffle Recipes (part 1) 2016-2022

Episode #4: Black Truffle Recipes (part 1) 2016-2022

I have been a fan of the musical works of Oren Ambarchi for a long time. I discovered his work through releases on Touch Records and his collaborations with both Sunn O))) and Jim O’Rourke. I got heavily into his Black Truffle label about 5 years ago and I’ve amassed quite a collection over the years. It’s one of those labels that I get very excited every time a new record drops. He has released some of the greatest Keiji Haino records, some sublime works from Jim O’Rourke, and a plethora of releases from the best of the world of experimental music; including favorites of mine, Joe Talia, Tatsuhisa Yamamoto, Francis Plagne, and Crys Cole. This label, operated from Australia, is a benchmark for the best in avant-garde music. I couldn’t pick just nine so I’m going to do this month’s mix in two parts. Here are the first nine recipes that include generous shavings of black truffle magic.

Part one opens with a track I should have concluded the mix with, but it made too good an opener. This live performance from London’s best music venue, Café Oto, is a demonstration of many a Black Truffle contributor in full-color improvisation mode. Ambarchi’s solo music is incredible, showcasing a mix of his percussive, stringed, and electronic prowess. His discography is filled with so many glorious collaborations I could have easily skewed this mix as an audience with… [Oren]. Like his most recent release ‘Sagittarian Domain’, ‘Live Hubris’ is a Krautrock rooted long-form thumping explosion of sound with the addition of free jazz and improv flourishes. The lineup on this one is incredible, and I’m so miffed I didn’t get to witness it live. It includes many of the musicians I have mentioned earlier, with the additions of other label members such as Eiko Ishibashi, Will Guthrie, and James Rushford. It’s a kinetic blast and somewhat at odds with a lot of the more contemplative releases on the label.

A large number of the Black Truffle discography contain either one or two tracks per release, and more often than not are long-form compositions split over two sides of vinyl. For this reason, you will see that both mixes stretch to almost two hours apiece. This is what I love about the label; the fiercely independent nature of every release, the avant-garde mind at the forefront of delivery, and the patience to allow music to breathe over sparse singular spaces. With the cavernous space left by the tragic passing of Peter Rehberg, Black Truffle stands as a torchbearer for the wonders of the obscure. I hope you enjoy this strange journey through these first nine oddities and find some new favorite artists to add to your collection. All recordings come directly from vinyl.

In the next episode, you will hear pieces from Richard Youngs, Kassel Jaeger, and David Behrman.

Recipe One
Oren Ambarchi (and friends)
Hubris Live – Part 1

Recipe Two
3/4 Had Been Eliminated
I Am A Prune Cake On A Background Of Corn Semolina

Recipe Three
Joe Talia
Clouded Night Pt 2

Recipe Four

Recipe Five
John Duncan

Recipe Six
Judith Hamann

Recipe Seven
Tatsuhisa Yamamoto

Recipe Eight
Ora Clementi
Dialogue Between a Grandmaster of the Knights Hospitaller and a Genoese Sea-Captain

Recipe Nine
Francis Plagne
The Refrain

Inside No. 9 is an attempt to share unique narratives through the mixing of 9 songs. Every episode will showcase a new theme, opening up new tributaries of discovery. Inside No. 9 is presented by Peter Taylor, a former features writer for Foxy Digitalis from back in the late 2000s. Peter is a visual artist and musician and has been creating music as MAbH since 2008. 

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