So, I thought I would attempt to recap 2011 as I feel it was a banner year for me on so many different levels:
First and foremost, the highlight of the year (by a landslide) was the birth of my son, Archer Brian Valles. My beautiful wife, Heidi, gave birth to this wonder on the morning of November 24th and it’s already hard to imagine what life was like without him. I do make a point to keep this site dedicated, primarily, to artistic endeavours without revealing anything too personal; however, I couldn’t start without mentioning one of the greatest achievements I could ever strive toward.
Secondly, as I am going over what 2011 meant to me as an artist, I am completely blown away by all of the opportunities that allowed me to create and release so much music. It was, without a doubt, my most prolific year so far - two full length’s (Fixtures & Skeleton Taxa), two EP’s (The Waves That Destroy & Old Tin Will Cry), five compilation appearances (Hidden Landscapes, Just A Moment, Kanshin, Sequence 1, & Sequence 2), and a couple of collaborations (The Clyde Parker Project Session 4 & A Silent Swaying Breath). In addition, I was able to produce my first musical score for the short documentary, Three Walls.
I owe a huge amount of gratitude to these fine people who facilitated such output and have shown great support to my music, without them the aforementioned would not have been possible: Gabriel Carazo (Leftfield Recordings), Jonathan Thompson (Drifting Falling), Jonathan Lees (Hibernate Recordings), Timo David Brice (Twisted Treeline/Somehow Recordings), Harry Towell (Audio Gourmet), Michael Waring (futuresequence), Daniel Crossley (Fluid Radio/Stashed Goods), Jeremy Bible (Experimedia), Ron Schepper (Textura), Alex Durlak (Standard Form), Zaheed Mawani and Heidi Hazelton.
Furthermore, it looks like 2012 is already shaping up to be another great year with many projects starting to take form. Unfortunately, it’s still too early to divulge any details, but I am particularly excited about a split release with an artist I really respect. Also, there are a few solo releases in the works, including vinyl, as well as a couple of collaborative efforts. 2012 will also see the emergence of Boars (a group consisting of myself, Alex Durlak, and Jeff McMurrich) and Komino Records (an experimental label founded by Standard Form alumni).
Lastly, I will end this post with my favourite releases of the year. I found it extremely difficult to choose a “top ten” so I decided to make it a “top twenty” and that wasn’t any easier, but I had to stop somewhere. I also made a separate “top ten” for hip hop releases. I’ve always been an avid listener of hip hop and this year there seemed to be a ton of really great records. Anyway, thanks for reading and happy new year!
20 favourite releases of 2011:
01. The Necks - Mindset
02. Chris Watson - El Tren Fantasma
03. Loren Connors - Red Mars
04. James Blackshaw - Holly EP
05. Demdike Stare -Elemental Pt. 1 & 2
06. Bill Callahan - Apocolypse
07. Talvihorros - Descent Into Delta
08. Sandro Perri - Impossible Spaces
09. Fire! w/ Jim O’Rourke - Unreleased?
10. Æthenor - En Form For Blå
11. Roly Porter - Aftertime
12. Simon Scott - Bunny
13. Locrian - The Clearing
14. Lawrence English - The Peregrine
15. Picastro & Nadja - Fool, Redeemer
16. Andy Stott - Passed Me By/We Stay Together
17. The Haxan Cloak - S/T
18. Mika Vaino - Life…(It Eats You Up)
19. Sphereleus - Voyage
20. Hummingbird - Our Fearful Symmetry Remixes
10 favourite hip hop releases of 2011:
01. Oddisee - Rock Creek Park
02. R.E.K.S. - Rhythmatic Eternal King Supreme
03. Random Axe - S/T
04. Action Bronson - Dr. Lector
05. Action Bronson & Statik Selekteh - Well Done
06. MED - Classic
07. Roc Marciano + Gangrene - Greneberg EP
08. The Dopplegangaz - Lone Sharks
09. Torae - For The Record
10. Danny Brown & Black Milk - Black & Brown