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hellothisisalex | The Stump Act

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CANADA - Newfoundland and Labrador

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Electronic: Experimental Pop: with Electronic Production Moods: Type: Experimental
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The Stump Act

by hellothisisalex

Fuzzy analogue tones and jaunty pop beats for fans of catchy electro. Instrumental electronics for warming the winter and cooling the summer.
Genre: Electronic: Experimental
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Popular Lane
2:00 $0.99
2. Minister of Conversation
2:00 $0.99
3. A Little Girl's Taxidermy
2:02 $0.99
4. Bible Camp Road
2:00 $0.99
5. Long Naked Violets
2:00 $0.99
6. Atheist Mine
2:00 $0.99
7. Haunt the Bear
2:00 $0.99
8. Breath Donor Clinic
2:00 $0.99
9. A Year of Eating Dangerously
1:53 $0.99
10. Swedish Adventure Church
1:54 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
In the heat of 2004’s summer, hellothisisalex drove the entire length of Ontario's Yonge Street — 1,896 km from the shores of Lake Ontario to the US-Canada border at Rainy River, not far from Manitoba. Along the way, they put up twenty rectangular wooden signs depicting tree stumps, dividing the street into twenty sections. The whole experience inspired this new collection of music — a brief and seamless travelogue taking you along Yonge Street at a scale of approximately 8 km per 5 seconds of music. From Popular Lane to Swedish Adventure Church, we’ll guide you through ten different sites of activity.

Historically, Yonge Street was a massive military undertaking. The first Lieutenant-Governor of Upper Canada, John Graves Simcoe, intended the street to lead from York (now Toronto) to Lake Toronto (now Lake Simcoe). It was to be a north-south access route for military use, later named by Simcoe after his friend Sir George Yonge, the British Secretary at War, in 1793. But Simcoe did not intend to start with nothing—he scouted the Humber-Holland Trail and eventually built Yonge Street along the Don Trail, both of which were considered ‘Indian Trails’ by the Europeans. At first, the street was nothing but a twenty-foot-wide, “narrow, twisting trail dotted with ugly tree stumps and treacherous holes with steep hills and unabridged streams.” This prompted one York magistrate to enforce “the Stump Act” circa 1800, which set the penalty for public drunkenness to the removal of at least one tree stump from Yonge Street.

hellothisisalex is Melissa Creasey and Mark Prier, two new-school analogue kids from smalltown Ontario currently living in Corner Brook, Newfoundland & Labrador. Together, they write bizarre electro soundscapes infused with whimsy, non-linear narrative, and a love of pop music and experimental audio. In February 2001, they christened themselves ‘hellothisisalex,’ both a greeting and being (with both male and female reproductive organs, no less).

Their music has been described as “simple, yet effective, and without any pretension” by Electroage, and as “fuzzy analogue tones and jaunty pop beats” by Ben Rayner of the Toronto Star. The music the duo write is primarily electronic, filled with raw analogue synths and otherworldly noises carried by melodic bass lines. Substancezine places their sound “somewhere between Isan and minimalistic Air without the drug problem”.

The duo has been featured on EPs, compilations, MP3-only releases, and three albums—‘the anachim thorn,’ ‘the canadian spelling program,’ and ‘across the river twin.’ They performed at MUTEK 2002 in Montréal, Québec alongside Felix Kubin and Nova Huta, and in 2005 they re-worked an old film score for C0C0S0L1DC1T1 and the National Film Board of Canada’s -40 project. Their latest recording, ‘The Stump Act’ will be released October 18, 2006. As usual, they are also working on yet another release tentatively titled ‘the other coast’.

"Stump Act is a sweet 20-minute EP of electronic pop instrumentals by hellothisisalex (Corner Brook, Newfoundland and Labrador-based Mark Prier and Melissa Creasey). Each of the ten two-minute vignettes immediately segues into the next, making the ride seem as continuous as the 2004 summer road trip that inspired the release. ...

The music itself is jubilant instrumental synth-pop that might be likened to a Solvent-Isan fusion. The ten cuts are intricately layered, ultra-melodic vignettes dominated by bright synthesizer melodies and buzzing bass lines; even better, they're almost entirely free of ponderousness. Subtle differences in character and mood abound, from the lightly funky swing of “Haunt the Bear” and the slightly more aggressive “A Year of Eating Dangerously” to the rather melancholy “A Little Girl's Taxidermy” wherein a lonely melodica calls out over sparkling tinkles and a roving bass line. Apparently, hellothisisalex is working on a release entitled The Other Coast which suggests that the duo will connect it in some thematic manner to British Columbia and Vancouver." - Textura (http://www.textura.org)

"In just under twenty minutes, Hellothisisalex present ten tracks of what is now their trademark sound: analogue synths hiss and generate a fat sound of quirky uptempo songs, that sometimes seem to start right in the middle, rather than having a finished off beginning and end. It's a bit less sombre than 'Across The River Twin', but there are still faint traces of things melancholic, but there is at the same time also the robotic cheerfulness of electro music. The shortness is a bit of a pity, but it gives the short album also an extra strength: too much is no good either." - Frans de Waard, Vital Weekly



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