In the world of electronic music, Kieran Hebden (aka: Four Tet) is one of the good ones. Timeless, incredibly consistent, and impervious to trends, it’s always worth looking into anything new that is released with the Four Tet name stamped onto it. Highly respected as an innovator in his field since the late 1990s, albums like 2001‘s PAUSE -his breakthrough sophomore release under the Four Tet moniker- showcased Hedben‘s continued reimagining of the genre through the incorporation of acoustic instrumentation and such unorthodox samples as clicking typewriter keys. It also resulted in the media pinning Hebden as the posterboy for another catchphrase movement that was being referred to as “Folktronica.” A decade later, he is still the one to watch. Even when the musician/producer isn’t releasing his own solo material or working with Fridge (his pre-Four Tet post-rock outfit) he’s remixing music by everyone from Aphex Twin, Madvillain, and Battles to Beth Orton, Explosions in the Sky, and Black Sabbath, or collaborating with the likes of Burial and Thom Yorke.
His latest work, “MOMA” [posted below] is an exclusive track created for an upcoming Japan benefit compilation curated by Blonde Redhead‘s Kazu Makino.
Titled, We Are the Works In Progress, the album was not only compiled in benefit of Makino‘s homeland of Japan, but it features one of the most impressive lists of talents that I ever remember seeing on any compilation; benefit or otherwise. Along with Four Tet’s lead off track, other compilation-exclusive tracks have been donated by artists like Deerhunter, John Maus, and Nosaj Thing. There’s even an appearance by experimental minimalist composer/legend Terry Riley, who offers up an exclusive complete reworking of one of his older 1970s tracks. Many Westerners may have already forgotten about the horrendous tragedies that struck Japan earlier in the year, but there is still an endless amount of post-tsunami aid that needs to be given to the country and purchasing an incredible album that you should probably be picking up anyway is a great way to do it. The fact that all profits will be going directly to Japan relief is only a tremendous bonus.
The album is 14 tracks deep and will be released in both digital and double vinyl formats January 10th 2012.
Pre-order the vinyl through THIS LINK.
Here are the complete details (via the press release):
WE ARE THE WORKS IN PROGRESS is a 14-song benefit album to support Japan and it’s ongoing efforts to heal post-tsunami. Born in Kyoto Japan, Kazu Makino wanted to help her homeland and turned to her friends and colleagues to ask that they donate tracks for the album. The response was unbelievable, and Kazu has collected an amazingly cohesive group of songs.
The album is the first release on the Asa Wa Kuru label, which Blonde Redhead created together for this album. It is Japanese for “Morning Will Come”.
Proceeds from the album will initially go to Japan Society and Architecture For Humanity, and more will be added. It’s important to Kazu to add additional charities as the situation keeps developing and worsening, and people’s needs keep changing. Her hope is that they can work with agencies that also help changing the way we live and think and help us become less reliant on nuclear power.
Kazu writes: This album contains exclusive material by artists that I admire. It took a while to make it this way, but it was worth the wait. We wanted it to be something special – something you don’t normally put on and album, and therefore many of these tracks are works in progress….hence the name. They are ideas that we became very attached to…versions of music that aren’t right for release, but ones that we love. Unfinished things often carry more energy….the possibility of it eventually becoming something great is infinite without having to be quite yet. I’ve noticed that each songs relates to one another. Like my friend Scott Mou said, “it sounds like each song is passing a baton to the next one”. I feel the same way.
1. MOMA – FOUR TET exclusive
2. NO FACE – KARIN DREIJER ANDERSSON Fever Ray/The Knife, exclusive
3. G SONG – TERRY RILEY exclusive reworking of a song from the 70s by Terry himself, including new vocals
4. NIGHTCRAWLER – NOSAJ THING exclusive
5. BERCEUSE – JOHN ROBERTS exclusive
6. PENNY SPARKLE – BLONDE REDHEAD Drew Brown exclusive remix of album track
7. BIRD ON A WIRE – PANTHA DU PRINCE exclusive
8. IN HERE THE WORLD BEGINS – BROADCAST re-release of a tour vinyl-only track
9. DRIP – LIARS/BLONDE REDHEAD previously released track remixed by Blonde Redhead
10. CURVE – DEERHUNTER exclusive
11. STALAGMITE – STALACTITE Susumu Mukai of Zongamin + Drew Brown, exclusive
12. CASTLES IN THE GRAVE – JOHN MAUS exclusive
13. BAMBOO HOUSE – DAVID SYLVIAN/RYUICHI SAKAMOTO previously released
14. SONG SEVEN – INTERPOL previously released b-side