Hafler Trio

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Simply Superior – Offical Site

Hafler Trio (or H30, for short) is a project of Andrew McKenzie, who explores various sonic phenomena through his records. Another issue that the project explores is a blurred line between the fact and the faction and various ways of mass manipulation – initially the band claimed that Dr. Edward Moolenbeek was its founder, but he turned out to be a fictitious person.

Initially, Hafler Trio included Moolenbeek, McKenzie and Chris Watson from Cabaret Voltaire, but eventually McKenzie became a center of the project. Throughout years, McKenzie also collaborated with numerous other musicians/artists, including Steven Stapleton (Nurse With Wound), Adi Newton (Clock DVA), David Tibet (Current 93), Michael Gira (Swans / Angels Of Light) and many others.

McKenzie’s first “group” was Flesh, which he started when he was 14 years old and it produced one single – 1979 “My Boy Lollipop / Flesh”, which came out on Dancing Industries label.  A track  by Flesh called “Hesitate” appeared on Touch label 1982 compilation “Feature Mist” (he also recorded two tracks to other Touch compilations – “Meridian 1” and “Touch 33” – under the moniker Not I).

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Bang! - An Open Letter - 1984

Hafler Trio debuted in 1984 with “Bang! An Open Letter”, which was supposed to demonstrate that the band was a part of ROBOL, a research organization and worked on issues related to perception with Dr. Robert Spirgeon (al of which, of course, were also fictional).

All Music Guide pointed out that “Bang!” contains different types of material, including arsh ambient music, which H30 would explore in depth later, as well as  looped and layered news and radio broadcasts. AMG concluded that “The album’s overall effect is a spectrum of recognition, from overt to subliminal, and the relative brevity of the tracks makes for an overall disorientation, requiring more active listening than the group’s later works.”

Further on into the 80s, the band released “Seven Hour Sleep”,  “The Sea Org”, “A Thirsty Fish” and a collaboration with Nurse With Wound entitled “Nurse With Wound And The Hafler Trio Hit Again” (later reissued as “The Murray Fontana Orchestra Play The Hafler Trio”), among other material.

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A Thirsty Fish - 1987

Korm Plastics bio described “A Thirsty Fish” album as “An impressively accomplished work of considerable complexity”  which is “dense, choppy and overloaded with information.”  Boomkat catalogue described the record as “an obdurate smear of ominous growls, subterranean emissions and creaking intent; all coaxed forth through by the Hafler Trio with such consummate ease that you’ll have to double-check the recording date.”

In the review of 1995 reissue of “Seven Hour Sleep” AMG pointed out that “the album’s progression from the early disorientation to the closing drones succeeds in putting the listener in another state, making this one of the Hafler Trio’s more effective collections.”

90s saw the band producing two sex-obsessed records – 1991 “Masturbatorium” and 1992 “Fuck” (both of which featured sex educator / former pornstar Annie Sprinkle) and a trilogy of albums that included 1991 “Kill The King”, 1992 “Mastery Of Money” and 1994 “How To Reform Mankind”.

AMG compared “Kill The King” to a work of PGR, a solo project of Kim Cascone, the head of Silent Records, which released the album. They also described the record as “an hour of fathomless space music, reliant on field recordings as well as various electronic” and “The beginning of a new period for Hafler Trio, and an excellent christening.”

By the mid 90s, Hafler Trio stopped recording and mostly relied on reissues of old material, including “Intoutof” (originally released as an LP in 1985), “Seven Hour Sleep” and “Three Ways Of Saying Two” (which was originally released as a set of two vinyl EPs and turned into “Four Ways Of Saying Five”, a set of two long tracks comprised of extracts from lectures and live performances that the band given throughout the 80s).

The band also released “One Dozen Economical Stories”, a record which was based around work of painter / filmmaker Peter Greenaway ( a collection of 12 short texts “corrupted, manipulated and accompanied” by the Hafler Trio). AMG pointed out that “Perhaps because the individual pieces were recorded over four years, this collection doesn’t hang together as well as some of Hafler Trio’s other work and is one of their less successful recordings.”

Late 90s saw the band producing a series of 7″ and 10″ records and a new millennium saw even more of Hafler Trio new output – part of it had to do with the fact that Andrew McKenzie stated that he have hepatitis B and no money to fight the disease.

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The Name Of Someone - 2009

More recent years saw the band collaborating with Autechre, Jonsi Birgisson (Sigur Ros), Andrew Liles and David Tibet (Current 93), among many others. The band’s latest release is 2009 “The Name Of Someone”, which includes three previous H30 releases – “Brain Song”, “Antarctica Brahma” (which was originally released as an accompaniment to a book of the same name and “Kuklos”, which was originally released in 1988.

Hafler Trio collaborated with Autechre on two releases – 2003 “æ³o & h³æ” (on Phonometrography label) and 2005 “æo³ & ³hæ” (on Die Stadt label). Milk Factory website commented on “æ³o & h³æ” – “If this album is likely to disconcert Autechre enthusiats due to the lack of the pair’s usual structures, fans of the Hafler Trio should feel at ease here. Drone records can often appear to lack emotion or substance, but it is far from being the case with these two tracks; all it takes to appreciate the full impact of this record is an open mind and a feel for vast spaces.”

Outside of Hafler Trio, A. McKenzie was also involved in a number of other projects, including Cosmic Trigger (with Zbigniew Karkowski), Mother Tongue (with Doro Franck and Stefan Weisser / Z’ev) and Psychophicist (with Adi Newton from Clock DVA / Anti Group).

Discography:

Bang! – An Open Letter CD / LP (Doublevision, 1984 / The Grey Area, 1994)

Hotondo Kiki Torenai Cass (AQM, 1985)

Seven Hours Sleep CD / 2XLP (Laylah Antirecords, 1985 / The Grey Area, 1994 / Korm Plastics, 2006)

Soundtrack To “Alternation, Perception And Resistance” – A Comprehension Exercise 12″ (Laylah Antirecords, 1985)

Brain Song 12″ (Touch, 1986)

Redintegrate CD / Cass (Touch, 1986 / Staalplaat, 1991)

The Sea Org CD / 10″ / 12″ (Touch, 1986 / Korm Plastics, 2004)

Three Ways Of Saying Two – The Netherlands Lectures LP (Charm, 1986)

A Thirsty Fish CD /2XCD / 2XLP (Touch, 1987 / The Grey Area, 1992 / Korm Plastics, 2005)

Hafler Trio / Luciano Dari Split LP (Musica Maxima Magnetica, 1987)

Dislocation CD / Cass (Staalplaat, 1987 / 1990 / Korm Plastics, 2008)

Nurse With Wound And The Hafler Trio Hit Again! / The Murray Fontana Orchestra Plays The Hafler Trio CD /  Cass (Staalplaat, 1987 / 1995)

Protection LP (Touch, 1987)

Untitled (with Thee Temple Ov Psychick Youth) Cass (Crippled Frog Music, 1987)

Intoutof CD / LP (KK, 1988 / Soleilmoon, 1990 / 1998)

Ignotum Per Ignotius CD (Touch, 1989 / Korm Plastics, 2007)

Present Brion Gysin’s Dreamachine (with Thee Temple Ov Psychick Youth) CD / LP (KK, 1989)

A Bag Of Cats CD (Touch, 1990)

Alaura / Slave Priest (with Genesis P-Orridge) CD (Stampa Alternativa, 1990 / SIAE, 1991)

Brion Gysin’s Dreamachine (with Thee Temple Ov Psychick Youth) VHS (Staalplaat, 1990)

Kuklos Cass (Touch, 1990)

Kill The King CD (Staalplaat + Silent, 1991 / Korm Plastics, 2003)

Masturbatorium CD (Touch, 1991)

The Hafler Trio Play The Hafler Trio CD (Anckarström, 1991 / Staalplaat, 1991)

The Hafler Trio Play The Hafler Trio Play The Hafler Trio Cass (Tragic Figures, 1991)

Fuck CD (Touch, 1992)

Mastery Of Money CD (Touch, 1992 / Korm Plastics, 2004)

Snuff (with Willem De Ridder) CD (Touch, 1992)

All That Rises Must Converge CD (The Grey Area, 1993)

Four Ways Of Saying Five CD (The Grey Area, 1993)

Resurrection (with Sons Of God) CD (Touch, 1993)

Designer Time (with Reptilicus) CD (Staalplaat, 1994)

How To Reform Mankind CD (Touch, 1994 / Korm Plastics, 2004)

Negentropy LP (Ash Internation + Anckarström, 1994)

One Dozen Economical Stories By Peter Greenaway CD (Sub Rosa, 1994)

Walk Gently Through The Gates Of Joy CD (The Grey Area, 1994)

Unentitled (with Zoviet France and Jim O’Rourke) CD (These, 1995)

An Utterance Of The Supreme Ventriloquist CD / LP (Soleilmoon, 1996)

Hafler Trio / Stilluppsteypa Split 7″ (Musical Tragedies, 1996)

Infidelity To Reason 7″ (Syntactic, 1996)

Right Here Where You Are Sitting Now 7″ (Povertech Industries, 1996)

The Day I Married The World 7″ (Fire Inc., 1996)

Who Sees Goes On #1: Timerape 10″ (Die Stadt + Walter Ulbricht Schallfolien, 1997)

Who Sees Goes On #2: Broadcast In White 10″ (Die Stadt + Walter Ulbricht Schallfolien, 1997)

Who Sees Goes On #3: Lipchamber 10″ (Die Stadt + Walter Ulbricht Schallfolien, 1997)

Who Sees Goes On #4: Godfood 10″ (Die Stadt + Walter Ulbricht Schallfolien, 1997)

Who Sees Goes On #5: Solvitur Ambulado 10″ (Die Stadt + Walter Ulbricht Schallfolien, 1997)

Who Sees Goes On #6: Dream Adjustments 10″ (Die Stadt + Walter Ulbricht Schallfolien, 1997)

Who Sees Goes On #7: Avec La Vide Les Pleins Pouvoirs 10″ (Die Stadt + Walter Ulbricht Schallfolien, 1997)

Who Sees Goes On / Hand Wave CD (Die Stadt + Walter Ulbricht Schallfolien, 1998)

Hljódmynd CD (Die Stadt, 2000)

Cleave: 9 Great Openings CD (Nextera, 2002)

La Chanson Dada 10″ (Raft, 2002)

A House Waiting For Its Master 10″ (Rossbin, 2003)

A Small Child Dreams Of Voiding The Plague CD (Important, 2003)

How To Slice A Loaf Of Bread 3XCD (Phonometrography, 2003)

Kisses With Both Hands From Gods Little Toy Minimax (Important, 2003)

No Man Put Asunder: 7 Fruitful And Seamless Unions CD (Die Stadt, 2003)

No More Twain, Of One Flesh: 11 Unequivocal Obsecrations CD (Nextera, 2003)

Normally 2XCD (Soleilmoon, 2003)

The Birds Must Be Eliminated 10″ (Dekorder, 2003)

The Man Who Tried To Disappear 10″ (Ossossnossos, 2003)

The Moment We Blow The Flour From Our Tongues 10″ (Crouton, 2003)

Hafler Trio / Ditterich von Euler-Donnersperg / Thomas Köner / Asmus Tietchens Split 2×7″ (Die Stadt, 2003)

Whistling About Chickens 2XCD (Fire Inc., 2003)

æ³o & h³æ (with Autechre) (2xCD) (Phonometrography, 2003)

Anything That Anyone Else Tells You Is Not Good Enough 12″ (Phonometrography, 2004)

Exactly As I Say 2XCD / 2XCD + DVD (Phonometrography, 2004)

How To Slice A Loaf Of Bread (Lengthwise) 3XCD (Phonometrography, 2004)

I Never Knew That’s Who You Thought You Were CD (Important, 2004)

Only The Hand That Erases Can Write The True Thing 2×10″ (SmallVoices, 2004)

Scissors Cut Arrow 2xCD + DVD (Phonometrography, 2004)

The Concentrated Recapturing Of Thought 10″ (Slapart, 2004)

Where Are You? CD / CD + DVD (Phonometrography, 2004)

Wolf Sheep Cabbage (Evidence Pertaining To The Creator) 7″ (Somnimage, 2004)

Wolf Sheep Cabbage (Evidence Pertaining To The Destroyer) 7″ (Somnimage, 2004)

Wolf Sheep Cabbage (Evidence Pertaining To The Preserver) 7″ (Somnimage, 2004)

Being A Firefighter Isn’t Just About Squirting Water Minimax (Important, 2005)

Exactly As I Am 2XCD (Important, 2005)

Exactly As I Do 2XCD (Important, 2005)

If Take, Then Take: Tricks, Half-Tricks & Real Phenomena LP (Crippled Intellect Productions, 2005)

No One Remains (with Willem De Ridder) 10″ (Crouton, 2005)

The Explanation (with Fovea Hex) CD (Die Stadt, 2005)

The Water Has No Hair To Hold On 10″ (Dekorder, 2005)

Á Ég Að, Halda Áfram? CD (Important, 2005)

æo³ & ³hæ (with Autechre) 2XCD (Die Stadt, 2005)

3 Eggs (with Colin Potter and Andrew Liles) CD (Important, 2006)

A Pressed On Sandwich CD (Nextera, 2006)

The Discussion (with Fovea Hex) CD (Die Stadt, 2006)

An Answer (with Fovea Hex) CD (Die Stadt, 2007)

Who Gave You The Ability To Envisage Perfection? 7″ (Plinkity Plonk, 2007)

The Name Of Someone 2XCD (Korm Plastics, 2009)

Compilation Tracks:

“In The Cradle” on Devastate To Liberate (Yangki, 1985 / United Dairies, 1987 / RRRecords, 1987)

“Strata Definition Test 10” on Here We Go (Sterile, 1985)

“Blanket (Level Approach)” on The Fight Is On (Laylah Antirecords, 1985)

“Restimulation” on Q.E.D. (N.L. Centrum, 1988 / Staalplaat, 1990)

“Report” on ..And The Wolf Shall Lick The Jewels From Your Belly (Cold Spring, 1990)

“A Thirsty Fish / The Dirty Fire” on The Tyranny Of The Beat – Original Soundtracks From The Grey Area (The Grey Area, 1991 / Elektra, 1991)

“Gladness Becomes Weeping” on Απο Μηχανής Μουσική (Ano Kato, 1991)

“Untitled” on CD Voor De Instabiele Media (V2 Archief, 1992)

“Report” on The Aerial #5 (The Aerial Magazine, 1992)

“Bread & Shit” on Anckarström Live (Staalplaat, 1993)

“Öruggt” on Mind The Gap Volume 2 (Staalplaat + Gonzo Circus Magazine, 1994)

“Sóluturn” on Ciro Lamarco (8-5-1962 / 12-9-1993) (Staalplaat, 1995)

“I Remain…” on Touch Sampler (Touch, 1995)

“KREV Spiricom Transmission To The Other Side” on The Nordic Sound Review (Siksi, 1996)

“Replacement” on Touch Sampler 2 (Touch, 1997)

“This Is Why” on Die Stadt Compilation (Die Stadt, 1998)

“The Most Beautiful Breath (Extract)” on And I’ll Be The Wind (Soleilmoon,2003)

“Placing The Seed (Extract)” on Sometimes Silence Is An Answer (Soleilmoon, 2005)

“The Work Of Washing” on Not Alone (Durtro + Jnana, 2005)

“…And Fall Backwards” on Listen To Something Different (Ars Macabre, 2007)


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