News

  • Following up on their recent performances at MUTEK, Stefan Jós & FDG - will be visiting from Montreal with a pair of New York-premier sets downstairs at 915 Wyckoff. 

    Live sets from:

    Stefan Jós (Opal Tapes / Flau // MTL)
    FDG - (Where to Now? / No Exp. // MTL)
    Austin Cesear (Proibito / Public Information / Opal Tapes // NYC)
    Motiv-A (French Grey 90% // NYC)
    Solpara (BOOMA / Other People // NYC)

    +
    DJ support from Nathaniel Young (Blankstairs // NYC)

  • We are extremely excited to present our next release from Portland’s Chloe Alexandra Thompson. ‘Unnaming Permissibility’ marks our first release of a none musical medium and further emphasizes the importance of cross-platform modes of expression. Be on the look out for more work from Chloe in the coming year as well as other incredibly talented visual artists.

    BST010 comes from the Portland based, Canadian, poet and visual artist Chloe Alexandra Thompson. 'Unnaming Permissibility’ facilitates both written and visual artwork to describe a transitory period in culture brought about by new media. The work was created during her residency with Littman & White Galleries, was produced by Publication Studios Portland, and is the first publication to be released by Blankstairs Records.

    Purchase 'Unnaming Permissibility’ directly from us here: https://goo.gl/6HXIrc

    Naming is an act of representation. To represent is to claim or own. The act of unnaming serves to remove this sense of ownership. Permissibility, which suggests consent, also appears interchangeable with acceptability. This is most apparent with regard to the personae we adopt as the result of societal norms. Forming part of our Identity, such aspects of ourselves often serve as vessels of navigation or communication.

    The present work seeks to express awareness of a transitional cultural period shaped by the collective promise of new media. Mediation may be considered a means of denying death through the construct of memory, a collective history that affords a sense of continuity to social groups and subcultures. Through our individual and collective histories, particularly as filter through socially constructed norms, and which are presumably based on the choice between acceptability or deviance, we create our own timelines and develop Identity. This information, which is today largely deemed public and is essentially inerasable, brings into being the notion of the Internet phantasm. Through a form of ghosting, or trail marking by way of our interactions with social media, we provide a detailed account of our personal history and ultimately contribute to the cultural DNA.

    This cultural process is marked by the partial failure of representation: rather than greater communicative intimacy and a sense of collective transparency, a palpable distance and dissatisfaction may arise. Perhaps the greatest symptom of this sense of failure is the romanticization of the past, a nostalgia for prior historical periods during which less-mediated forms of social interaction were seemingly enjoyed. This dissatisfaction with new media in turn authorizes a contemporary Luddism: a refusal to engage with the proscriptive channels of social media stems from a loss of faith in such interactions, which seem to play out as distant, spectral connections. Such haunting is replaced by a simulated familiarity.

    Such symptoms expose the cultural unconcious. The parallelism described by the project’s images might therefore be taken to express the relationship between the capitalist economy (as unconcious 'base’) and the cultural forms (or symptomnal ‘superstructure’) produced by it. Integral to the cultural superstructure is new media, which promises to represent the world and the desires of its citizens. Cultural theorist Slavoj Zizek has therefore emphasized human desire in this connection, analyzing the relationship between the individual unconscious and our broader cultural situation. Adopting the concepts of the Real and Symbolic as given in Lacanian psychoanalysis, he has applied them to new media: the gap between the unconcious (the Real) and our lived, collective experience (the Symbolic – or that which is mediated by language and social convention), implies a fundamental, psycho-cultural distance tht serves to frame this project, particularly where desire and its negotiation in the language is emphasized.

    The role of the artist therefore emerges as one of bridging the divide implied by the failures of representation. In some cultures, the role of the mystic is to traffic back and forth between cultural and transcendental realms, or between the Real and the shared symbolic of the established, domestic world of lived experience. Our media technologies promise to unite and collectivize us, yet often sustain a sense of dissatisfaction, one that the artist might give voice to, serving to diagnose or address.

    - Chloe Alexandra Thompson, ‘Unnaming Permissibility’

  • We are proud to present our third release of 2015, BST009: ‘Marble Room’, from the ever talented LA based producer and DJ, Queen Leaf. These fantastic tracks have been in the queue for awhile now and we are overjoyed for them to be seeing the light of day.

    BST009 will be out 05.26.15 in digital format. Stream the title track via XLR8R below.


    BST009 comes from the talented LA producer and DJ, Queen Leaf. Joseph Craig presents 'Marble Room’ as an unrestricted alternative interpretation of contemporary bass and club music that exists somewhere between dance floor ready productions and leisure listening. The sound that Craig further explores on this release finds him feeling more at home than ever. 'Gone’ starts things off with crawling and spacious percussions loosely held together by drifting pads and the satisfying consistency of a subtle vocal sample. 'Marble Room’ accelerates from the comfortable head nodding groove of 'Gone’ and toys with constant and aggressive deconstruction and reconstruction while sustaining the listener’s interest through its dynamic and metronomic qualities.

    On remix duties are No Secrets affiliates Patrick Brian and Moiety. Brian, a recent Terror Rhythm alum, helms the remix of 'Gone’, and rebuilds it into a cavernous club ready piece that typifies the sound of No Secrets. Moiety takes the rhythmic and percussive elements of 'Marble Room’ and restructures them to fit comfortably on a 4x4 grid, turning the original production into a churning dance floor work out.


    Pre-Order 'Marble Room’ directly from us here: http://goo.gl/qGd27T

    Tracklist
    1. Gone (5:36)
    2. Marble Room (6:00)
    3. Gone (Patrick Brian Remix) (5:18)
    4. Marble Room (Moiety Remix) (6:26)

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  • Sanctuary Sunday: Blankstairs Label Showcase

    05.17.15 / 7-10pm / Free
    at XHURCH
    4550 NE 20th Ave
    Portland, OR 97211

    Performances from:

    BEN GLAS (Blankstairs // NYC)
    Ben Glas is an Interdisciplinary artist based in Portland, Oregon, where he is attending the Pacific Northwest College of Art, contemporarily. In his work, Ben is attempting to slow down, even to write this passage, and continue the age-old conversation between life and art. Through multimedia installations, sound and video work, Ben seeks to add to an ethereal dinner conversation that may be read as a guide to life’s mysteries. Or not. He is human. Blankstairs will be releasing Glas’ stellar sonic debut later this year.

    DAPPER DAN (Blankstairs / Pastel Voids // PDX)
    Dapper Dan is the industrial/noise project of Charlie Perez who often performs as Metropol. Charlie has been experimenting with rhythm and the outer reaches of musical and sound manipulation for a few years now and has successfully crafted an idiosyncratic sound drawing on inspirations from dance and club music, to early musique concrete compositions as well as celestial and psychedelic experiences. Perez’s work has primarily manifested itself via his tape imprint, Pastel Voids. Blankstairs will be releasing the debut 12” from his collaborative project, Dream City, in the coming future.

    WARREN MATTOX (Blankstairs // PDX)
    Warren Mattox is the co-founder of the PDX/NYC based record label, Blankstairs. His sound consists of visually informed production influenced by experiments in visual art which have lead to arrangements with an emphasis on texture and color. Sonically, warmth and repetition manifest as a means of conjuring the comfortably hypnotic with inspiration from the modern edge of industrial landscape as a counter-weight, leading the listener into states of duality resting somewhere between induced psychedelia and the clarity of sobriety. Presently Warren and Nathaniel are working on a collaborative musical project to be released in the coming future.

    visual work from:

    NATHANIEL YOUNG (Blankstairs // NYC)
    Nathaniel Young is the co-founder of Blankstairs and lives and works in New York, NY. Growing up in Portland, OR Nathaniel is highly influenced by his environment as it manifests itself through nature and urban landscapes. Creative inspiration is also realized through a highly spiritualized upbringing, and his obsessive fascination with the minuscule and seemingly meaningless observations of his present domain. This immense satisfaction with the mundane affords him the ability to visualize and conceptualize in ways others may consider unconventional. When not working in the sonic medium or managing the logistical demandings of Blankstairs Nathaniel works as a photographer.

  • BST008 is currently available at the following NYC shops:

    Co-Op 87 Records

    Rough Trade NYC

    Halcyon the Shop

    BST008 is currently available at the following online US retailers:

    Experimedia

    Apothecary Compositions


    more shops to come

  • UPCOMING SHOWS

    Josef Gaard at Q Nightclub / SEATTLE / 4.21.15 / 9pm-late
    w/ John Talabot and Marc Piñol

    Nathaniel Young & First Circle at TAG TAG TAG Magazine Launch / NYC / 4.23.15 / 7-10pm

    Archivist (live) at Machine House Brewery / SEATTLE / 4.24.15 / 10pm-4am
    w/ Refracted, WNDFRM, and Raj 

    Warren Mattox at Renn Fayer / PORTLAND / 5.1.15

    First Circle at Bossa Nova Civic Club / NYC / 5.12.15 / 10pm-4am

    Blankstairs Showcase at Sanctuary Sunday / PORTLAND / 5.17.15
    w/ MMH, Ben Glas, and Warren Mattox

    Josef Gaard at Kremwerk / SEATTLE / 6.5.15 / 9pm-dawn
    w/ Shifted, Blackhat, Fugal, Nick Bartoletti, Knifecream, and Dr. Troy

  • DOUBT DJ set at Information Warehouse / PDX / April 2015

    (image by Kristen Dalen)

  • We are proud to welcome two incredibly talented DJs to the Blankstairs family. First Circle and Mapes have been exploring dance floor iterations in New York City and the surrounding areas for a number of years now with their captivating sets and intense attention to detail and selection. We couldn’t be more excited to be collaborating with these two fantastic individuals and we’re excited to watch them flourish and set bodies into motion in and around New York City and beyond.

    Take the time to visit their artist pages and familiarize yourself with their quality output.

    + www.blnkstrs.com/first-circle

    + www.blnkstrs.com/mapes