Inside No. 9, Episode #8: Nine Tons for Free 1975-2922

Inside No. 9, Episode #9 Nine Tons for Free 1975-2922

This has been a joy to put together. Spurned on by some recent reissues of crucial records from the avant-garde. This mix is almost 3 hours of some of the most eclectic, far-out, full-on, and subtle experimental music you’ll ever hear. From classic improv sessions to intricate modern compositions, each and every piece of music is epic in sound and scope. Here are nine tracks that dwarf any aspirations I have as a musician, but also inspire me to tread new ground. I dedicate this mix to Peter Rehberg, as I was making this during the anniversary of his untimely death. There are voices from beyond the grave and voices of those still with us. What unites them is their power to transport the listener to somewhere entirely unique. These are sounds from very special humans. 

The title is a nod to Rehberg’s 1996 record and represents the weight of this mix. This is, as they say – ‘heavy shit.’ This is not easy listening, and don’t drink too much coffee or drop acid beforehand! These pieces are transformational, inspiring, and challenging, and that’s what makes them so fresh and powerful. This is the sound of art at its most abstract and also emotionally impactful – which is a superhuman feat. As someone who lives with quite severe depression and anxiety, this is a soundtrack to my tormented mind, but not in a cliched way. This is complicated, intensely human, and exciting. 

This mix originally came about after spending a lot of time with Julius Eastman, after he was brought to my attention with the Blume reissue in 2018, which totally blew my mind. It’s a collection of piano pieces that leave you completely breathless and anxious. Artists included on this mix, like Jerry Hunt and Yoshi Wada, have a similar impact. As time went on and I found/rediscovered works of a similar magnitude, I had to create this. I have tried to find moments of calm in the din of complex compositions with works from Crys Cole and the classic improv session from Ichiyanagi/Ranta/Kosugi. These are not refuges but places of a quieter intensity. 

Peter Rehberg has left a huge chasm in my life. His label, Editions Mego, helped shape a lot of my musical interests. His music has always challenged me, and I wish I could have got a chance to meet him. I hope he would have enjoyed this mix and felt a connection with the artists I have selected. When I finally leave this earth, I want everyone to sit and listen to this. This is the sound of me at my most explicit and vulnerable. 

I own all the following on vinyl but have mixed this from digital to give you the best sound I could. If you dig any of this mix, please pick up this stuff on a physical format and support the labels and artists.  

This is in honor of those no longer with us: Peter Rehberg, Jerry Hunt, Julius Eastman, Yoshi Wada, and Takehisa Kosugi. 

Get One

Get Two
Jerry Hunt
Bitom (Stream): Link

Get Three
Jim O’Rourke
Too Compliment

Get Four
Crys Cole
A Piece of Work

Get Five
Thomas Ankersmit & Valerio Tricoli
Zwerm Voor Tithonus

Get Six
Julius Eastman
Crazy Nigger

Get Seven
Toshi Ichiyanagi, Michael Ranta & Takehisa Kosugi
Improvisation Sep 1975

Get Eight
Yoshi Wada
The Appointed Cloud

Get Nine
Peter Rehberg
At GRM (2009)

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. 

Foxy Digitalis depends on our awesome readers to keep things rolling. Pledge your support today via our Patreon or subscribe to The Jewel Garden.