Cuneiform Records News

Cuneiform September Releases. Click For Infos.




NeBeLNeST – ZePTO (Rune 234)                    [ROCK/ AVANT PROGRESSIVE]




Dear friends and colleagues in press and radio:

If you wish to receive promo copies of any of these releases for potential press review or airplay, please ask me (Joyce).

Please list your requests in order of PRIORITY, because we may not be able to give away as many promos as you request.

If you have an imminent DEADLINE and need promo cds ASAP, please write *URGENT re New Releases* in the subject line of your email.  (Please do NOT use the word *URGENT* if you have a routine promo request.)

IMPORTANT: if you are in FRANCE, ITALY or GERMANY, you must follow the following procedures
to receive promos of our new releases. But regardless of who you get your promos from, please stay in touch with us, if possible; we enjoy hearing from you and appreciate feedback on our releases etc.

(1) If you normally receive Cuneiform promos directly from ORKHESTRA (our distributor in France),
then please ask them for the new promos. Bruno is our Orkhestra contact; his email is
(2) If you traditionally get promos directly from Cuneiform/USA, then ask me for promos.

NEW PROCEDURES: ALL of our press and radio contacts must now request promos from Roberto Valentino, who handles promo for our Italian distributor, IRD.  Roberto can also supply you with some bio info etc from our office.
Roberto’s email is
Please continue to inform me of press, radio play etc; thank you!!!

ALL press and radio contacts must request promos from Ulli, who handles promo for our Germany distributor, FENN MUSIC SERVICE. Ulli can also suply you with some bio info etc that he receives from me.
Ulli’s email is

Thank you for your interest in the artists on Cuneiform!!!!!

Now for the detailed info:

Richard Pinhas – Metatron (Rune 228/229)            – GENRE:  ELECTRONIC
Ceaselessly innovative in a career spanning more than 30 years, Richard Pinhas is recognized as one of France’s major experimental musicians. A composer, world-class guitarist and electronics innovator, he is a key figure in the international development of electronic rock music. Pinhas’ work over the past decade, featuring his “Metatronic” system of electronically treated solo guitar compositions, is as radically innovative as anything in his early career with the pioneering electronics-fused rock band Heldon. Aggressive, emotional and seductively hypnotic, Pinhas’ music intertwines philosophical, literary and musical theories at its core. Metatron, Pinhas’ newest release, is one of the most ambitious and significant projects of his career – an artistic tour-de-force in which music, meaning, word, sound and process find full integration, or unity. It contains 2 CDs containing more than 2 hours of music composed by Pinhas, performed by Pinhas, with additional instrumental contributions by Didier Batard (‘splendid bass’), Patrick Gauthier (minimoog), Chuck Oken Jr. (of Djam Karet, on synth), Antoine Paganotti (of Magma, on drums), Alain Renaud (lead guitar), Jérome Schmidt (laptop and loops), and Philippe Simon (violin), and spoken word contributions by William S. Burroughs, Maurice Dantec, Philip K. Dick, and others.

NeBeLNeST – ZePTO (Rune 234)                      – GENRE: ROCK/ AVANT PROGRESSIVE
NeBeLNeST are one of the most adventurous and energetic young bands to emerge on the international post-rock / avant-progressive scene in recent years. This young French band is noted for its dark symphonic rock, influenced by King Crimson, Shylock, Pink Floyd and Univers Zero / Present, laced with psychedelia and improvisation, and played with a riveting level of energy and intensity derived from the hardcore and noise scenes. ZePTO, NeBeLNeST’s 3rd CD and 2nd release on Cuneiform, reveals their “dense, dark and urgent” post-Crimson sound grown slightly edgier through the use of electronic processing, noise and found sound. Over the course of ZePTO’s creation, the band saw that their music “evolved to something more experimental. This was the desire of the band since the beginning.” In NeBeLNeST’s words: “ZePTO is for us the album so far, which best expresses the true identity of NeBeLNeST.”

Soft Machine – Middle Earth Masters (Rune 235)               GENRE: ROCK / PROGRESSIVE/ JAZZ-ROCK
1967 was a momentous year for the British band Soft Machine. As the influence of psychedlia spread worldwide during “The Summer of Love”, Soft Machine thrived in the center of the storm, rivaling Pink Floyd as the most influential band on the UK Psychedelic scene. This CD, Middle Earth Masters, features the Soft Machine trio-lineup of Kevin Ayers, Mike Ratledge and Robert Wyatt on their first performance back in London following their triumph over both live and televised audiences in the Netherlands and France. Recorded live at the Middle Earth on Oct. 13th, 197, it shows how the trio had come into its own in a short time, transforming its music away from pop, towards a more keyboard-oriented and improvised sound that would define their most renowned work. Middle Earth Masters is the 7th Soft Machine CD released by Cuneiform. Each of Cuneiform’s Soft Machine releases have focused on rare and previously unreleased recordings from the late 1960s–early 1970s, a tremendously dynamic period for the band, documenting evolutions in the band’s lineup and sound. Tracing the evolution of Soft Machine’s music over personnel and time; presenting rare tapes to the public, often for the first time, and helping to expose this legendary band to new audiences in the 21st Century, Cuneiform’s Soft Machine recordings are essential listening for long-time Soft Machine fans and captivating introductions for those approaching this legendary band for the first time.

The Microscopic Septet –                              GENRE:  JAZZ
History of the Micros, Volume One: Seven Men in Neckties (Rune 236/237)
History of the Micros, Volume Two: Surrealistic Swing (Rune 238/239)
The Microscopic Septet distilled the essence of jazz as a popular music into a sound that swung, a music that was intelligent, confident and fun. Active from 1980-1992 as part of New York’s Downtown Music Scene, the Microscopic Septet was founded in 1980 by Phillip Johnston, a composer, soprano saxophonist, and improviser on NYC’s Lower East Side. Cuneiform’s 4-CD retrospective of the Microscopic Septet puts the spotlight back on a band that should have never left the stage. Called History of the Micros, this retrospective is released in two volumes, each containing two CDs. It contains the music from all 4 of the band’s albums and an additional 11 tracks never released during the band’s lifetime. Part 1, titled History of the Micros, Volume 1: Seven Men in Neckties, covers the band’s early history, from 1980-1985. It contains 2 CDs, featuring reissues of the band’s 1st LP, Take the Z Train, its 2nd LP and only live album, Let’s Flip!, and several previously unreleased tracks, including a live recording done at the same time as Let’s Flip! and the most common version of their theme for Fresh Air with Terry Gross. Part 2, titled History of the Micros, Volume 2: Surrealistic Swing, covers the years 1986-1990. It features reissues of Off Beat Glory and Beauty Based on Science (The Visit), the band’s 3rd and 4th releases. It also includes previous unreleased tracks from throughout the band’s career, including two tracks from an early recording by the band’s first lineup with John Zorn. It also includes an unreleased single with vocals by Paul Shapiro and two alternate versions of the theme for Fresh Air with Terry Gross. The CD artwork for both volumes is by Pulitzer Prize winning New York cartoonist Art Spiegelman, creator of the graphic novel Maus.

Birdsongs of the Mesozoic with Oral Moses – Extreme Spirituals (Rune 241)  – GENRE: SPIRITUALS
Dubbed “the world’s hardest rocking chamber quartet” by the New York Times, Boston’s Birdsongs of the Mesozoic has become legendary for creating innovative instrumental music that fuses rock, classical, minimalism, punk, garage/pop and jazz. Extreme Spirituals, Birdsongs’ 12th release, is their first release with vocals, and first release consisting entirely of arrangements of traditional music. A collaboration between Birdsongs of the Mesozoic and internationally acclaimed bass baritone Oral Moses (from Atlanta), Extreme Spirituals fuses the traditional melodies of 19th Century spirituals – a song genre developed by African-American slaves – with radical 21st Century arrangements by Birdsongs. Simultaneously spiritual and deeply human, classical and popular, traditional and modern, Extreme Spirituals is a work whose beauty, grace and spirituality defies convention, confinement and easy definition. Despite this, the music is unmistakably ‘Birdsongs’ in sound and aesthetic. Extreme Spirituals includes the contributions of vocalist Oral Moses (bass baritone), Birdsongs (Bierylo on guitar/programming, Field on saxophones, flute & percussion, Lindgren on acoustic grand piano and Scott on synthesizer), and several guest musicians, including Larry Dersch (drums), Jason Marchionna (percussion), Terry Donahue (conga) and Ken Winokur (djembe).


– The Cuneiform Records webpage ( has been updated with an exciting new feature that allows visitors to view upcoming gigs by Cuneiform bands in a calendar format. Simply visit and scroll to the bottom of the page to see tour dates listed in calendar format! You can click on a specific show to view show details and find links to pertinent information about that show. (This new calendar format supplements the listings-by-band format of shows on our webpage.)

– Cuneiform Records welcomes to the staff Ben Eiserike and Javier Diaz, both former interns from the University of Maryland, College Park. Both Ben and Javier will be assisting Joyce and Joe in the Promotions & Publicity Department; Ben is also helping as a technical/IT assistant in the office. In addition to their myriad diverse skills and breathtaking looks, they are both totally awesome dudes and they look forward to working with you in the future! [Joyce’s note: LOL!!!!  Ben compiled this announcement and wrote the Cuneiform Record Notes & News and slipped this in, expecting me to delete it while editing – however, I left it in to coerce those new guys to live up to their own, self-generated hype.]

– This summer, Cuneiform launched its first Summer Internship Program. We had a team of 3 interns in the Publicity and Promotion Department:  Caroline Aston, a Business major at the University of Maryland, College Park, MD; Kathy Bernal, a Visual & Media Arts major at Emerson College, Boston, MA; Lauren Wong, a Communications major at the University of Maryland, College Park, MD. All three worked on developing our new Concert Calendar / Calendar of Events (see above), and on concert promotion, promoting summer tours and concerts by Cuneiform artists and updating our concert promotion manual, in addition to other tasks. They did excellent work, and we were sorry to see them leave at summer’s end! We wish them the very best in their future studies and subsequent careers.

– We are in the slow process of switching email servers from AOL to our own web-hosted service. While some of our staff is already set up on the new servers, we have not yet completely switched the entire office, which is causing some duplicate emails to accidentally be sent out when we send email notices. We apologize to those of you who are receiving our emails twice, but we hope you will bear with us as we grow. If you have any questions or concerns about this issue, please be in touch with Ben Eiserike ( or with Joyce (

– On a somber note, we sadly announce the passing of drummer Pip Pyle (1950-2006), member of Hatfield and the North, National Health, Gong, and Delivery, among many others. Pip passed away on August 28th, 2006 in Paris, France.
He will be greatly missed and fondly remembered by his friends, family and fans.

Many thanks to those of you who’ve done radio tributes for pip, or who have written features/obits/memorials about him. If you’ve done a tribute, or have personal memories to share with the family, please visit his website, and tell his family about the tribute/memory/etc in the guestbook.

pip’s official website:

some obits on pip:,,1876282,00.html

video made at pip’s funeral:

some blogs/ newsgroups/misc that mention pip’s death & anecdotes of his life:

The Artist News is a Microsoft Word.doc compiled by Joe, at