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Recordings from Sydney's vibrant exploratory/spontaneous music scene.

Go to our shop to purchase any of our 23 releases - postage included to anywhere in the world.

Or download many of our releases at Subradar.

Splitrec is honoured to release a legendary recording from 1972.

Tokyo 1972 - Teletopa splitrec CDX2 23 and limited edition of 300 LPX3 23 Buy the CDs or LPS. Samples of the group on soundcloud or buy the download as a 24bit hi res file.

In the early 1970's, Sydney had a group at the forefront of musical experimentation with a unique take on free improvisation.

The discovery of a box of lost tapes hidden away in a garage for over four decades has led to the first ever release of substantial recordings from Teletopa – Tokyo 1972.

Teletopa was founded in Sydney in 1970 by the late David Ahern with Peter Evans and Roger Frampton. (great article here on Ahern.)

Tokyo 1972 - The Triple LP or Double CD release - features two 50min improvisations from a radio session at NHK studios Tokyo.

In 1968 the young Sydney composer David Ahern studied in Germany with Stockhausen where he met Cornelius Cardew. The next year he travelled onto London attending Cardew's classes in 'Experimental Music' at Morley College and – in a mammoth seven-hour concert at the Roundhouse on 4 May – participated (with Cardew) in performances of La Monte Young's String Trio and also took part in the realisation of Paragraph 2 of Cardew's The Great Learning which proved to be the catalyst for the formation of the Scratch Orchestra. These were revolutionary and defining moments in C20th music.

Liner notes for the release include a manifesto by Ahern from a 1971 pamphlet, and a newly penned Potted History of Teletopa by Geoffrey Barnard, who had been a member of the group from September 1971 until July 1972.

"It's a great recording, sound wise and artistically," Jim Denley told Resonate Magazine. "It will, I hope, put Teletopa where it should be: as the most important development in 1970s Australian serious music."

This document is not just important for Australian music – it should establish them posthumously as one of the most interesting improvising collectives in experimental music anywhere in the world at this time.

Frans de Waard reviewing Tokyo 1972 in Vital. http://www.vitalweekly.net/943.html
"Here Teletopa seems to be in almost Zen like mode. This is some strong 100 minutes of improvised music. Music that comes like an endless stream sound, subconsciously improvised on a wide variety of instruments and objects. If AMM and MEV were already on your list, then this double CD by Teletopa should not be missed. An essential historical release."

"The suitably pure white album design, with a selection of black/white/grey photographs of the group, lend weight to the idea of the album as a once lost relic – the great manifesto of a mythical musical organism – now recovered for new generations to appreciate." Joseph Cummings.

"D'une certaine manière, on pourrait parler d'installation improvisée, ou plus simplement d'improvisation in situ au sens le plus littéral du terme. Que ce soit avec des instruments, des objets ou avec l'espace lui-même, Teletopa se propose, dans ces deux improvisations de cinquante minutes (les dernières avant la dissolution du groupe), d'improviser l'espace et l'environnement dans lequel il joue. L'espace résonne, les bruits se multiplient, l'environnement est transformé. Je n'ai rarement entendu d'improvisations aussi ancrées dans le présent, dans la spontanéité. Rien ne pouvait produire cette musique sinon là où elle avait lieu. Et de ce fait, jamais plus elle ne pourra se reproduire. Il y a quelque chose de magique, d'unique. Septembre 1972, NHK, Tokyo, Japon, les quatre membres de Teletopa ont à ce moment produit une performance sonore hors du commun, une performance longue, dure, bruitiste et brute, archaïque et austère, mais une performance présente, sans passé ni futur, une performance qui avait tout son sens à ce moment, qui n'en avait pas avant et qui n'en a plus aujourd'hui, sauf à travers le témoignage offert dans cet enregistrement. Un témoignage dont on se contentera et se délectera avec avidité et nostalgie. Car il est juste superbe"


This project has been assisted by the Australian Government
through the Australia Council for the Arts, its arts funding
and advisory body.