002. Collections of Colonies of Bees - Stuck CD

Help! I'm STUCK!

One track, that's all they need. OK, so the track clocks in at 33 minutes, but still. Hot on the heels of 2002's fa.ce (a and 2003's Meyou, this record shows a group that's constantly evolving and this time around, founding members Chris Rosenau (guitars) and Jon Mueller (drums + percussion) added laptop-fondler Jon Minor to enrich the sound. Stuck ranges from sparse sounds to full-on damnation and these kings of Milwaukee prove that they can do no wrong.

Between the recording and the release of this record, their "main" band Pele broke up. So Collections of Colonies of Bees are now going at it full speed and with this, yet a new member has been added to the constellation; synth/laptopist Jim Schoenecker.

Limited to 500 copies. 175 of those have slightly different covers and they have handnumbered inserts. Available through mailorder or directly from the band only.
Covers designed and silkscreened by Mat Brinkman of Fort Thunder fame. Please check out his amazing comics and buy his book Teratoid Heights, published by Highwater Books.

Selftitled CD [the Rosewood Union, 1999]
Rance CD [Crouton, 2000]
fa.ce (a CD [Crouton, 2002]
Meyou CD [Crouton, 2003]
Stuck CD [Pillowscars, 2003]
Customer CD/LP [Polyvinyl, 2004]
Customer CD [Some of Us, 2004]
Birds CD/LP [Radium, 2008]
Six Guitars 12" [Radium, 2008]
split with Toe CD [Contrarede, 2009]
Giving CD/LP [Hometapes, 2011]
Set CD [P-Vine, 2014]

For more information about these releases, please visit: the hive.


Tjuvlyssna (in swedish, will be translated when I get the time)
Det här var inte det lättaste att skriva om. Collections Of Colonies Of Bees består av medlemmar från Pele (som jag aldrig har hört) och spelar väldigt tyst och sparsmakad musik. Gitarr & dator är vad som huvudsakligen används. Ingen sång.
"Stuck" består enbart av en enda lång låt, ca 33 minuter, som tydligen är inspelad i tjejernas omklädningsrum 26:e februari (som på tal om ingenting råkar vara min och Fats Dominos födelesdag) i år.

Tempot är otroligt behagligt och allt är väldigt försiktigt till en början. Ibland är det så tyst att alla toner nästan tynar bort helt. Feedback. Olika ljud sveper in och ut och allting känns väldigt löst sammanfogat. Det känns härligt improviserat oftast och musiken kräver för det mesta full koncentration av lyssnaren.

Eftersom det handlar om en väldigt lång låt hinner det hända en hel del på vägen. Det börjar ganska oskyldigt och enkelt. Efter ca tio minuter glider dom ut i ett långt parti som påminner lite om något mina favoriter Black Dice skulle kunna ligga bakom. I dom sista tio minuterna på "Stuck" höjs volymen avsevärt, trummor kommer in och ljuden sköljer över lyssnaren från alla hål och kanter. Man väntar på någon form av explosion i musiken men det bästa är att den aldrig riktigt infinner sig. Istället balanserar dom hela tiden på kanten tills det nästan är olidligt att lyssna på. Fantastiskt.

Gillar man This Heat, Cabaret Voltaire och nämnda Black Dice kommer man definitivt uppskatta det här. "Stuck" kräver tålamod men den som är villig att ge Collections Of Colonies Of Bees lite tid kommer att få utdelning.

Moviementa (in italian, you can try babelfish for a translation)
The Collections Of Colonies Of Bees presentano un nuovo album, questa volta sulla piccola e promettente etichetta svedese Pillowscars, questa volta accompagnato da un silk-printed artwork curato e realizzato da Matt Brinkman/Forth Thunder (cfr. artwork di Arab On Radar). Ma chi sono i The Bees? Questo progetto era nato come side-project dei ben più noti Pele (Polyvinyl), con il passare del tempo The Bees hanno iniziato a fare istallazioni, concerti, dischi...

Durante la realizzazione di "Stuck" Pele si sono definitvamente sciolti e The Bees con il loro recente tour in Giappone hanno preso completamente il posto di Pele, lasciandosi alle spalle l'immagine del progetto "altro", della band-laboratorio.
"Stuck" è un brano lunghissimo, composto in circa un anno di lavoro, oltre 33 minuti di drone chitarristici, percussioni, elegante elettronica. Utilizzano tradizionali folk/bulegrass stumenti combinati con moderni processori e tecnologie. Ne esce qualcosa di fresco, attuale, piacevolmente inclassificabile, che risente di influenze avant jazz, dell' ultima elettronica minimale e di sonorità vicine al sound Kranky. Un buon disco, apparentemente non facile, colmo di silenzi e atmosfere indefinite con una stupenda parte conclusiva di percussioni!

This trio uses only percussion/feedback, guitars and computers to create one of the strangest CD's I've heard in awhile. Only one track, "Stuck", makes up the entire disc, and the whole song is very quiet and sparsely arranged, with the instruments almost never really playing at the same time as one another (unless a lot of effects are used to manipulate their natural sounds). It all ends up being very, very minimal, and the percussion is really only used incredibly faintly - to the point where you can only barely recognize the snare rolls under some light distortion with a few ambient hums in the distance. The piece starts quietly (which sets the pace for the rest of the composition) with some random guitar noodling that's spacious and improvisational, somewhat experimental/progressive influenced, but dryer and using few effects. Eventually the guitars sort of cut out and a bunch of electronic glitches and such take over, still very calm and spacious, implementing lots of breaks of silence (or close to it). Things sort of move to and fro from there, and the aforementioned percussion starts to ever so slowly build up to recognizable "beats" with around six minutes remaining in the song. It never really "comes together" though, if that makes sense… it feels like a 33-minute buildup that never quite hits the apex. It's strangely anticlimactic, but somehow interesting because of that fact. As for the recording, it seems fine to me. It's clear and bright (when the volume reaches such a level), and some of the slight rawness feels either intentional or potentially due to effects. For instance, the drums sound rather dry, but some of the computer effects and drones are very smooth and flowing. It's well done, I have no real problems with the sound I don't think. The CD comes in a bright orange sleeve with bright orange and brown printing showing weird illustrations of honey and honeycombs and other stuff associated with bees. Inside is a little insert printed on red paper, and that's about it. I can't say it's the most interesting thing I've ever heard, mainly because it's honestly not all that engaging to me. However it is a nice piece of work, and if you're interested you should act now since this is limited to 500 copies.
Running time - 33:04, Tracks: 1
[Notable tracks: there's only one]

STNT (in french, you can try babelfish for a translation)
Nouveau cd pour le trio américain composé de JON MUELLER (percussion), JON MINOR (ordinateur) et de CHRIS ROSENAU (Guitare). Dans la droite suite du précédent Opus, on retrouve ces climats proches de GASTR DEL SOL utilisant aussi bien la mélodie fragile de la guitare séche que l'expérimentation à base d'électronica et les hautes fréquence chères au label autrichien MEGO. Un mixage entre l'inquiétude électronique et la chaleur du bois. L'arrière plan tout en couche électronique pourrait aussi plaire aux afficionados des disques de GUNTER MULLER de FOR 4 EARS RECORDS. C'est très expérimental et dédié aux fans du JIM O'ROURKE englué entre son "TERMINAL PHARMACY" et le GASTR DEL SOL de "Crookt, Crackt or Fly". A découvrir.

Pophooligan (in japanese, you can try babelfish for a very confusing translation)