No Beginning, No End: Our first release of 2018

Leimomi and I recently started work on a new project that we hope comes to fruition this spring. In the meantime, I won’t tell you much about it other than our research led us to the field of acoustic ecology, and the field’s founder, R. Murray Schafer, who muses in this video that “in a way the world is a huge composition, a huge musical composition that is going on all the time without a beginning, and presumably without an ending.”

Those words resonate with me mostly because even though 2018 has been a fresh start for me, the flow we’ve found ourselves in feels like there wasn’t ever really a beginning, nor will there be an ending. We’re working, living, and breathing in this moment right now, a culmination of everything that’s come before us and will transpire after this.

Schafer continues, “We are the composers of this huge miraculous composition that’s going on around us and we can improve it or we can destroy it. We can add more noises or more beautiful sounds. It’s all up to us.”

There’s certainly a lot of noise out there. Even here in Honolulu, I find myself wearing earplugs to counteract the mix of rude city sounds which non-residents might not associate with our islands. My goal (my hope!) is that our efforts to produce quality releases will add to the composition of “beautiful sounds” of the world.

Aloha Got Soul’s first release of 2018 is a “throwback” of sorts: two of the most powerful tracks from Aura’s self-titled 1979 LP, available this March on 7-inch in black and white colors.

AGS-7008 accomplishes two-fold: it aims to tide fans over while we wrap up new music projects with young artists from Hawaii (follow @alohagotsoul for Stories and updates).

Secondly, it gives DJs the chance to bring a much more portable version of these top tunes from the band’s now sold-out LP reissue, which enjoyed play from the likes of Theo Parrish, DJ Muro, Gilles Peterson, and Red Greg.

At the end of 2017, we sold out of all our Aura LP stock. You might be still able to find a copy online, and I’m not yet sure if we’ll repress it. So in that regard, 7008 keeps their music available to all in physical format.

Better still: 7008 is priced as an affordable entry point for any newcomers to the label; long-time fans can comfortably grab an extra copy to gift or trade (that’s our hope, at least!).

Admittedly, I head straight to the B-side at gigs. “No Beginning, No End” is undeniable disco/funk heat smattered with “fly-by-night, freeform psychedelia,” as Juno put it.

Fans of DJ Muro and DJ Nori’s Captain Vinyl label will know that the A-side’s “Let Me Say Dis About Dat” received a 7-inch treatment in 2017 with a limited, Japan-only run of 500 copies. I’m pretty sure those sold out real quick!

A welcome contender in the ever-flowing stream of funk 45s that constantly begs the attention of DJs worth their salt, 7008 is a solid addition to the AGS catalog — and (if you’ll allow me this) our first contribution in 2018 to the compilation of “beautiful sounds” in this moment. More contributions to come.

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