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Golden Retriever was formed in Portland, Or. in 2008 by multi-instrumentalists Jonathan Sielaff & Matt Carlson, both long time participants in the city’s potent music scene. Focusing on the relationship of two primarily monophonic instruments (Carlson on modular synthesizer & Sielaff on bass clarinet), and utilizing layering with a deft balance of improvisation & composition, the duo has created an infinitely varied approach to their sound world: dense, spacious, overwhelming, soothing and completely alien in equal measure. After their debut release on Root Strata in early 2010 (a small run CDr) they continued to perform steadily in Portland, slowly refining their dynamics and releasing a number of small-run cassettes and another CDr. We’re extremely happy to be working with Golden Retriever again, and even more so to release their very first edition on vinyl.
Light Cones is unique in the Golden Retriever discography as it’s their first release more akin to their live performances, with each of the LP sides consisting of one extensive track. Both sides find the group exploring the various colors of their pallet. From the electronic bog that opens side A, to the more zoned out meditations of the first half of side B. Sielaff’s bass clarinet continues to be an anchor for the duo, with its lower organ-like register providing a wide earthly gravity for the layering of sound. Carlson’s modular synth responds with everything from soft bass throbs to bursts of high-end, slipper keyboard runs and electronic blinks of colored noise, all filling up the stereo field. When the two build pace in unison, their energies head upward towards a hot magnetic peak, merging into one indistinguishable mass of sound, brilliant and shimmering. The come-downs are also sweet. Long dark passages bathed in echo and west coast twilight.

Golden Retriever: Light Cones

Light Cones Golden Retriever 20'10''
Observer Golden Retriever 20'52''

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