Mixing noisy, pretty, gentle and disorderly peculiar music

Wondering what mixing strategy could possibly work for your recording of noisy, pretty, gentle and disorderly peculiar music? Hit me up if your left-of-field recording is in need of some in-the-box (with a little out-of-the-box thinking) mixing work.

recordings featured above

Coming soon: Gonggong 225088 (wa008)

Personnel: Han-earl Park (guitar), Yorgos Dimitriadis (percussion and electronics) and Camila Nebbia (saxophone).

Track listing TBA. Total duration TBA.

© 2024 Han-earl Park. ℗ 2024 Waveform Alphabet.

cover art (copyright 2021 NEWJAiM)

Of Life, Recombinant (NEWJAiM9) [details…]

Personnel: Han-earl Park (guitar) with Anne Wellmer (voice on track 4).

Track listing: Game: Mutation (5:38); Naught Opportune (≥ 10:42); Are Variant (≥ 8:06); Of Life, Recombinant (≥ 29:22). Total duration ≥ 53:48.

© 2021 NEWJAiM Recordings.
℗ 2021 Han-earl Park.

cover art (copyright 2020 Han-earl Park)

Peculiar Velocities (BAF002) [details…]

Personnel: Han-earl Park (guitar), Catherine Sikora (saxophone) and Nick Didkovsky (guitar).

Track listing: Ballad of Tensegrity I (≥ 5:12), Ballad of Tensegrity II (2:28), Peculiar Velocities I (3:46), Peculiar Velocities II (3:36), Sleeping Dragon (5:22), D-Loop I (≥ 6:16), D-Loop II (5:13), Polytely I (≥ 5:01), Polytely II: Breakdown (5:33), Anagnorisis I (2:09), Anagnorisis II (2:19). Total duration ≥ 46:54.

© + ℗ 2020 Han-earl Park.

QLH: Only Regrets (cover artwork)

QLH: Only Regrets [details…]

Personnel: Quentin Tolimieri (synthesizers), Luca Marini (drums) and Han-earl Park (guitar).

Track listing: Pattern Clash (18:50), Linoleum Studs (3:10). Total duration: 22:00.

© + ℗ 2023 Tolimieri/Marini/Park.

disc art (copyright 2023 Ramble Records)

Juno 3 (RAM-163CD) [details…]

Personnel: Han-earl Park (guitar), Lara Jones (saxophone and electronics) and Pat Thomas (electronics).

Track listing: Orbital Dusk I (6:04), Orbital Dusk II (4:20), Orbital Dusk III (2:29), Orbital Dusk IV (6:03), Diel Vertical Migration I (6:31), Diel Vertical Migration II (4:38), Diel Vertical Migration III (4:33), Diel Vertical Migration IV (7:36), Metastability (7:24). Total duration: 49:36.

© and ℗ 2023 Ramble Records.

The unknowability of connection, and a little science fiction (Free Jazz: Sunday Interview)

Violence and cruelty? Fantastical, twisted, dark, deeply affectionate humanism? Improvisation as embodiment and personification? Place, subjectivity and interiority? As part of the Free Jazz: Sunday Interview, in response to a question about the joy in improvised music, I talk about the “ambiguity of action and reaction; the unknowability of connection”, and that:

The pleasure of play is when trust is a choice, and we choose to trust. When we don’t take each other for granted. When we are fully cognizant of the potential for violence and cruelty, but we choose to take compassion, affinity, consent, desire and agency seriously.

What quality do you most admire in the musicians you perform with?

It’s not one thing for me. It’s never one thing. What you bring to the stage is your humanity—messy, beautiful, dysfunctional, joyous, contradictory, mutable, stubborn, insecure, fractious, but also empathetic and compassionate.

Each musician is different, and each group is different. It’s good, I think, to be sensitive to who the group is, and what the group could be; to be open to what is possible, but cognizant of the differences and inequalities that exist in any ensemble. [Read the rest…]

By the way, I responded to the question, “if you could resurrect a musician to perform with, who would it be?” by saying that “I could only answer that with a cautionary piece of science fiction.” Here’s my draft sci-fi answer that I did not, in the end, hand in to Paul Acquaro, editor at Free Jazz:

An answer by way of a cautionary story:

The noise was unbearable, the light, harsh, blinding. And then.

The machine went silent, dark. The arcs of electricity now only a vague echo of persistent vision. The only sign that there had been unnatural activity was the ozone in the air. As my eyes slowly adjusted, I could make out the bewigged corpse—pale, contorted—but undead presently on the table.

And so now the doubts: What would the masses of the cultured think of their celebrated composer reanimated? Would, as I had hoped in exhuming their idol, they—the patriarchal, white-supremacist colonialists—(re)examine their dreams and pleasures? Would they recognize the violent scaffolding around which they, and their institutions, erected European Liberalism? Or would the Culture Machine masticate these truths, and come to admire their Zombified Idol as a Strongman-Savior in this Post-Truth condition (a Wolfgang Frickin’ Trump)?

Should I have reanimated instead some marginalized or minoritized artist? One who had been forgotten, perhaps, exoticized or tokenized, or footnoted in our Introduction To Music textbook? What would I tell them as they woke to The World 2.0? What would they see? What would the Culture-Industrial Complex of Western Modernity do to that undead being? How would that Complex (re)rationalize the artist’s story and their existence and their purpose?

If you’d like to know more about my concerns about the role of narrative and narrative form in improvisation, or my interest in shifting improvisative play towards a kind of acting, please read the rest of the interview.

Juno 3 (RAM-163CD)

disc art (copyright 2023 Ramble Records)
Art by Han-earl Park. Design by Atharwa Deshingkar. © 2023 Ramble Records.

Juno 3 (RAM-163CD), the debut album by the trio of Han-earl Park, Lara Jones and Pat Thomas, is out now on Ramble Records!

The music on this album transports me to scenes from retro-scifi stories to those of present-day mass transit. It is, to my ears, the sounds of junction crossings, signals from space, and mysterious telegraphy; sometimes evoking impressions of walking by streams under footbridges, at others, of rushing through Manhattan Chinatown. Recorded live at Cafe OTO during the trio’s first meeting, we knew then that we had something special.

I think the sounds and the performances on this disc are all ’round captivating, gripping and fascinating, and the production work, exceptional. Take the journey with us: I’m super proud of the music, and I am thrilled to finally share this with you!

[Get the CD/download from Ramble (Bandcamp)…]

CD: $18 AUD plus shipping. Download: $8 AUD.


Get ready for the latest release of challenging and imaginative music from Ramble Records with Juno 3, the debut album from the trio of Han-earl Park, Lara Jones and Pat Thomas. Recorded by Shaun Crook live at Cafe OTO, London, and mixed (refracted and rephrased) by Han-earl Park, the album is a particle sim of sounds which spelunks from derelict urban ravines to cybernetic rainforests, while catching auditory glimpses of crashing robotic waves, and strange telegraphic messages from space.

Nautiloid capsule tumbles
across field lines.
An impracticably agile,
graceful derailment.

Juno 3 is Han-earl Park (guitar), Lara Jones (saxophone and electronics) and Pat Thomas (electronics). The eponymous album document the first meeting—interactive, relational—by this trio as it takes a journey: launching from the familiar of the Hackney club space into future imagined By Others. We coax it into our space.

Motion and motifs. (Switching gears, shedding engines.) Modes of transport change from first principles: future-past transit networks give way to bioengineered surfboards.

Bodies collide, unwind, and we’re up again. Reaching crossings; navigating junctions.

Intermodal is the only game we know. Networks (and bodies and vessels) weave, twist, cross then interweave, intertwist and intercross. (We, nocturnal monstrous shapes, turn and return to the deep.)

And, as the album comes to a close (thump’n’snap—bodies unwind), we find ourselves awakened back in the familiar club space. Or: half familiar. The same chairs, the same tables, the same staff. But not the same chair, not the same table, not the same staff.


Han-earl Park (guitar), Lara Jones (saxophone and electronics) and Pat Thomas (electronics).

track listing

Orbital Dusk I (6:04), Orbital Dusk II (4:20), Orbital Dusk III (2:29), Orbital Dusk IV (6:03), Diel Vertical Migration I (6:31), Diel Vertical Migration II (4:38), Diel Vertical Migration III (4:33), Diel Vertical Migration IV (7:36), Metastability (7:24). Total duration: 49:36.

recording details

Music by Han-earl Park, Lara Jones and Pat Thomas.

Recorded live March 20, 2022, Cafe OTO, London.
Recorded by Shaun Crook.
Mixed by Han-earl Park. Mastered by Chris Sharkey.

Art by Han-earl Park. Design by Atharwa Deshingkar.

Thanks to Richard Barrett, Heather Frasch and Richard Scott; to Fielding Hope and everyone at Cafe OTO, Laura Cole and everyone at Fusebox, Wesley Stephenson of Jazz North East, and Peter O’Doherty of Northern Lights Project. Shoutouts to Corey Mwamba, Graeme Wilson, rit. and Una Lee. The performance was presented with funding from the Berlin Senate Department for Culture and Europe.

© and ℗ 2023 Ramble Records.

Berlin Senate Department for Culture and Europe

Funded by Berlin Senate Department for Culture and Europe.

Coming soon: Juno 3

Juno 3 by Han-earl Park, Lara Jones and Pat Thomas will be released by Ramble Records in September 2023! As I said to Chris Sharkey, the mastering engineer, this album exists somewhere “between an audio play and a soundtrack album, as if Bernie Worrell had been tasked to create a score for a Douglas Adams produced radio adaptation of Space: 1999.” More soon!

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Berlin Senate Department for Culture and Europe

Funded by Berlin Senate Department for Culture and Europe.