already dead tapes & records


Joe Newlin

Sea of Tranquility

November 25, 2014

Artist Location:
Los Angeles, CA


“Simplicity and the strange are two qualities that I enjoy in music. With simplicity reaching out to the common listener and the strange dragging in the weirdos. To expound on this idea, we bring to you our latest release by Joe Newlin, “Sea of Tranquility.”

With beeps, drones and drums that sound as if they’ve been converted into the sound of a keyboard, the ‘Sea of Tranquility’ opens up. Most of the songs on this album refer to geographical places, (“Arizona”, “Catland”, “Mars Hill”) The striking characteristic that rings true for a good listen, is how Newlin makes an audible correspondence of the sounds in the song to each one of the track titles. For example, track two, “Carlights,” one can ‘hear’ the beams and picture the lights.

Newlin takes the majority of his sounds and dabbles them in minor key structures. Inside each tune, there is a dark harmony. It’s minimalistic and seemingly improvised, with breakdowns that usually change the direction by eliminating the drones and creating a melody. Tracks consist of whirring sounds, percussive notes, rays and other kinds of gadgets that move the listeners through each track. (A favorite is “Mars Hill.” There is this weird mixture between reggaeton and something reminiscent of those scary noises you hear on a Halloween tape – totally something describing a ‘Mars Hill’.)

Even though there are only six tracks, it is safe to say: you need this.”
-Ray Jackson, Already Dead Tapes, 2014


Edition of 50

Design: Joe Newlin