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Janek Schaefer Skate/Rink

One look at the scarred surface of Skate and you know this is no ordinary LP. In an effort to confound phonographs everywhere, UK sound artist and turnablist Janek Schaefer has carved deep concentric gouges into the vinyl. With every play of the record, your stylus takes another torturous path, creating different patterns of hiss, pop and scratch. The record is most interesting when you forego normal playback and manually isolate patterns by varying speed or creating loops. On the companion 3-inch CD, Rink, Schaefer does just this, playing the record on his custom triphonic turntable, focusing on specific stuttering phrases, and mixing the sounds with ambient noise. Compelling, but not for the passive listener.

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