Kendra Steiner Editions

November 14, 2015

DANGEROUS MEN (dir. John S. Rad, completed 2005—-distributed by Drafthouse Films)

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 12:39 am
Tags: , ,


produced, directed, written, and music composed and performed by John S. Rad

worked on for 26 years, completed in 2005

re-released by Drafthouse Films


Originally DANGEROUS MEN played at four theaters in the Los Angeles area in 2005  and soon after became a midnight movie phenomenon. It’s now getting a national re-release via Drafthouse Films this weekend, and if you have an Alamo Drafthouse in your neighborhood, it’s probably playing. The late Iranian-American director/jack-of-all-trades John S. Rad created the film, and worked on it here and there for over 20 years. It’s essentially an attempt to make the kind of straight-to-video action film which would have come out from, say, Action International Pictures in the late 80’s or early 90’s, during the period when Rad began production on the film. I’m glad for Mr. Rad that DANGEROUS MEN is getting an audience now, even though he is not alive to see it. However, I’m not sure who the intended audience is for this re-release.

The critical quotes seen on the poster above and below simply are not accurate. Only some MST3K fan who has not really seen many straight-to-video z-grade action films would consider this “mind-boggling WTF-ery.” Yes, the film is technically slipshod in many ways, but clearly Rad had had some experience in film-making. Despite the cut-in dialogue and the laughable fights and the odd fetishistic emphases here and there, this is NOT really an “outsider” film like MANOS: THE HANDS OF FATE. Anyone who’s seen, as I have, dozens and dozens and dozens of the kind of z-grade action fodder reviewed at MONSTER HUNTER blog will wonder what is supposed to be WTF about this film. I’ve seen Ed Wood’s name mentioned, but if we want to mention Wood, this would be more akin to JAIL BAIT than to Plan Nine. The folks at the Drafthouse-Ritz in Austin show much more radical and incompetently-surreal films than this during their VIDEO VORTEX screenings, and compared to a film by a Nick Millard or even an Andy Milligan or a Doris Wishman or a Lou Campa or a Coleman Francis or a Godfrey Ho, this plays like a TV movie. Let’s not even mention something like BLACK DEVIL DOLL FROM HELL, which really IS mind-bending and a piece of WTF-ery.

If you are a serious fan of Z-grade VHS action films, you will enjoy this….I certainly did…and I’m glad it’s getting exposure. Maybe it can function as a kind of Trojan Horse of the multi-plexes if anyone bothers to see it. Maybe those who see it will start looking for films starring Ted Prior or Frank Stallone…or renting the straight-to-video things Steven Seagal has been making.

However, if you are expecting something gloriously radical or something which is truly a piece of “outsider” film in the way a Nick Millard or Andy Milligan film or MANOS or Dwain Esper’s MANIAC or NARCOTIC is, this is not that. Find a copy of BLONDE ON A BUM TRIP or RED ZONE CUBA  or RUNAWAY NIGHTMARE or borrow one of Ray Dennis Steckler’s porn assemblages instead. I enjoyed DANGEROUS MEN, but it does not live up to the hype.


November 6, 2015

Jerry Warren’s THE VIOLENT AND THE DAMNED (1954/1962)

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 8:13 pm


With the surfacing of Jerry Warren’s THE VIOLENT AND THE DAMNED on the Kit Parker/VCI DVD set THE JERRY WARREN COLLECTION Volume 3, the only remaining Warren film missing in action is BULLET FOR BILLY THE KID, so Warren fans have a lot to rejoice about. THE VIOLENT AND THE DAMNED should satisfy any Warren aficianado and has the additional virtue of following the usual formula for a Warren foreign acquisition but NOT being a horror film.

Readers of this blog should be familiar with Jerry Warren, but for any visitors or new blog readers, let me summarize. While Warren did make a number of original films, he is best known for odd hybrid films which he created from foreign (usually Mexican) source films, which he cut up and re-assembled along with cheaply shot footage of his own. He tended to eliminate the dialogue sequences (to avoid the problems of dubbing), or when he kept them, he had English narration OVER them by one of the characters who explained what was being said and/or the significance of the scene. Of course, the footage from the original had been re-contextualized so much and then inserted into an all-new “plot,” so that what is being described as happening in the original scene probably IS NOT what was happening. Having seen the Spanish-language originals of some of his films, I can attest to that.

I’m too young to have caught Warren’s 50’s/60’s output in theaters, but the films were staples in TV horror packages and on late-night UHF TV, so I saw them that way initially. I would think that after any TWO of Warren’s patchwork films, the average viewer would figure out his method of film-making. His American-shot scenes do not look at all like the original source film and he tends to use the same actors in film after film. Long before I read anything about how Warren made his films, I’d pretty much figured it out on my own.

THE VIOLENT AND THE DAMNED follows a similar formula to films such as CREATURE OF THE WALKING DEAD or ATTACK OF THE MAYAN MUMMY, but this time Warren did not use a foreign horror or sci-fi film as his source–instead, he used a violent jungle-set prison-break film, made in Brazil in 1954 called MAOS SANGRETAS, with location shooting done in Panama. This source film had the extra advantage of featuring an international star, Mexican actor ARTURO DE CORDOVA, who’d even starred in some American films in the 1940’s, giving Warren a “star” name to include on the poster (making the hiring of John Carradine un-necessary).

As with the 1930 roadshow American version of Abel Gance’s LA FIN DU MONDE (aka End of the World), where the plot and any depth of characterization were thrown out and all that was left was the spectacle, the special effects and the destruction, it’s clear (even without having seen the Brazilian original) that Warren edited out the backstories of the characters involved in the prison break and essentially kept the violence, the atmospheric scenes of abuse in the prison, the exciting escape sequences, and the scenes of the men wandering in the deserted savage areas and eventually falling apart. These scenes are truly exciting and vivid, even ripped from their original context. Warren was savvy enough to know that they’d play well in HIS film too.

So what he did then was to shoot some talky scenes with regulars Bruno VeSota and George Mitchell (and two others who’d been in other Warren films) DISCUSSING the problems at a prison in the Panama canal zone, making reference to actions depicted in the scenes preserved from the original film. There is a long Warren-shot sequence in the first section of the film and then a few others of varying lengths cut in here and there. Those familiar with Warren’s films will know the technique. They DO provide some kind of frame for the action scenes, which was clearly Warren’s intent, and on that level,  he achieved what he set out to.

Of course, what is lost is any sense of the original. Clearly, as star of the film, Arturo de Cordova would have been playing a character with some depth and some personal history, but all of that is cut out. However, I don’t think Jerry Warren lost any sleep over that. HE DID NOT CARE ABOUT PRESENTING THE ORIGINAL FILM. He was essentially purchasing stock footage; the only difference from that common practice was that the stock footage consisted of MORE of the completed feature than what he’d shot himself! The effect is not unlike a group of people talking about a subject and then randomly cutting in newsreel footage to exemplify and illustrate it.

It’s common nowadays for people to ridicule Warren, and if you are expecting a film on the level of THE WAGES OF FEAR, then you belong in another universe. This was an exploitation quickie….PRODUCT meant to fill a slot in the lowest rung of the marketplace. And people who were not around during the golden age of drive-ins really do not know what that market was like….and today’s Blu-Ray remastered reissues of “grindhouse” features do not give them any idea, really. This was a market with foreign melodramas with non-matching American-shot skin sequences spliced into them; a market with semi-coherent films such as Roger Corman’s patchwork film THE TERROR; a market with the films of Al Adamson, such as DRACULA vs FRANKENSTEIN and HELL’S BLOODY DEVILS, which are almost avant-garde films with their jarring mixture of footage from different years and different projects, shot in different circumstances; a market where awkwardly dubbed and cut foreign films were common and not a problem for most viewers. This was a market a distributor could tell a film-maker to shoot another ten minutes of footage to turn his werewolf film into a rat-and-werewolf film. Surreal continuity wrapped around chunks of violence or sex or horror was quite common. And the drive-in audience was used to this sort of thing….guys who brought a six-pack or a few joints and were probably loaded before the first film started….couples who were making out and would come up for air if a monster or a murder happened on-screen. The tolerance for oddness was quite high….and in the eyes of the teen male horror-loving market, a market that thrived on cheap thrills, how good it was was often measured by how outre it was (after all, Jerry Warren himself once said that you did not need to make it “good,” you just needed to make it “weird”). At least, that’s how MY friends and I perceived it back then. A relatively non-linear experience such as Russ Meyer’s CHERRY, HARRY, AND RAQUEL worked PERFECTLY if you were on your fourth beer.

I would imagine that if I were in, say, Goodland, Kansas or La Junta, Colorado, in 1963, just getting off a hard day’s work in the produce section at the grocery store….or a dirty and greasy week’s work at the transmission shop, sneaking a six-pack into the drive-in and wanting to wind down, THE VIOLENT AND THE DAMNED would have satisfied me. After all, it has exciting action, there are people TELLING ME what the plot is so I don’t have to worry about figuring it out, the location shooting is exotic and takes one out of his/her everyday life, the Brazilian music here and there has a delicious flavor and also is suitably exotic, it has a gritty feel, and it doesn’t go on too long. It’s also so much UNLIKE a studio-made “B” movie that it provides the kind of “outsider” thrill which indie drive-in and exploitation films have always banked on.

Interestingly, Warren himself DID make a original jungle-set film not long before he released this one, TERROR OF THE BLOODHUNTERS. And while that one featured a fine actor, Robert Clarke, in the lead and also offered interesting, semi-philosophical dialogue, I’d guess that most viewers of the day would have found THE VIOLENT AND THE DAMNED to be the more entertaining film of the two in terms of delivering action and excitement, and I’d guess Jerry Warren himself probably recognized that.

Love him or hate him, Jerry Warren had a method which worked for him. He usually brought it to horror and science fiction source material, but here he brought it to a prison-break action film. He also brought it to a western, but that film, A BULLET FOR BILLY THE KID (which played theatrically here in the US),  is presently lost. However, having seen the Mexican original he used for BULLET, I was able to speculate what Warren probably DID with it, what footage he’d have used, and what plot he might have grafted onto the Mexican footage. When BULLET  surfaces, as I’m sure it will, we’ll see how accurate my speculation was.

Those who enjoy Warren’s horror films such as CREATURE OF THE WALKING DEAD will enjoy this too…and will appreciate seeing the Warren “method” brought to another film genre. I still contend that Warren’s FACE OF THE SCREAMING WEREWOLF is an amazing creation. Had I seen that in 1964 at a rural drive-in as an impressionable teenager, it would have blown me away…and it might have made ME want to become an exploitation film-maker with a bricolage technique….or maybe a poet….

If any of the above seems interesting to you, be sure to score a copy of THE JERRY WARREN COLLECTION, VOLUME 3….ordering details can be found below….



.                                             The rare US release poster (sorry, no larger resolution scan available)                                                 for Jerry Warren’s THE VIOLENT AND THE DAMNED


The new third volume of Jerry Warren films, presented by Kit Parker FIlms and released by VCI ENTERTAINMENT, featuring THE VIOLENT AND THE DAMNED and another Warren presentation, TIME TO KILL, a Swedish crime film starring John Ireland

You can order it here, and it’s highly recommended!


Dutch release of the original source film


Brazilian release of the original source film

new poetry chapbook, BILL SHUTE, “Inventing One’s Own Land” (KSE #317)

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 4:18 pm

“Inventing One’s Own Land” (KSE #317, poetry chapbook)


composed in September-October 2015

edition of 43 copies


($6 US ppd   /   $7 elsewhere ppd)

payment via paypal to    django5722(at)yahoo(dot)com

Please include a note with your paypal order including the items ordered AND your mailing address (which Paypal often fails to provide me)….thanks!


“A poet almost has to invent his own land  and then has to defend it.”     –Jack Spicer

Jack Spicer’s lectures (as with Olson’s “Projective Verse” essay) are of great value to this working poet because they toss off intriguing ideas and fruitful possibilities—-Spicer hands off the ball to us and we run with it, maneuvering our way down the field, around those trying to block us, and always trying to keep our balance enough to continue running toward the goal of the fresh and original poetic work. At that point, we can touch the ball to the ground in the end zone, and prepare for the next game-play/poetic work.

The above lines from Spicer helped to inspire this creation, INVENTING ONE’S OWN LAND…. Shadows from the roses….lost….to the genius of the fog….deciding whether or not to confide in the outlaw taxidermists….God’s trombones pawned after the latest flood…beneath the drones, Lot’s wife scavenges for discarded roofing tiles….Incorporate the unintended, embrace the accident.

When asked by a friend who read INVENTING ONE’S OWN LAND how it fits into the work I’ve done in the past year, I explained that, to use recent Dylan albums for comparison,  it was my TOGETHER THROUGH LIFE, not my TEMPEST. My TEMPEST would be the GULF COAST TRILOGY, written in May-June of this year, before/during/after my two weeks on the Alabama/Mississippi/Florida Gulf Coast, between Biloxi and Panama City. That will be coming out early next year, I hope, and we’re exploring some alternate forms of publication for those works: DOWN AND OUT IN GULFPORT AND BILOXI; THIRTY SECONDS OVER PENSACOLA; and PANAMA CITY BLUES. Stay tuned for more details on the Gulf Coast Trilogy. The form of INVENTING is halfway between that of the two Cassette Poems chapbooks and that of something like SATORI IN LAKE CHARLES.

I’ve moved on and am now working on some new entries in the old CREEL PONE SOUND STUDY series. We published ten chapbooks in that series between 2006-2008, and as writing directly inspired by experimental music is always a discipline that tends to wipe the sediment off my slate and to act as a “head cleaner” (as they used to say back in the age of VHS and cassette tapes), I’m finding the work on a new Creel-inspired piece to be stimulating and refreshing. I’ll hold off on discussing the revived series until I get the first one finished and edited…maybe by Christmas…

Until then, I have invented my own poetic territory, my own open-field construct, and I plan to both reside in it…and defend it.

Edition limited to 43 copies. Grab one now.

Other poetry chapbooks still available….all $6 in the US and $7 elsewhere, postpaid….

KSE #302 (poetry chapbook), BILL SHUTE, “Satori In Lake Charles”

KSE #297 (poetry chapbook), BILL SHUTE, “Lines and Fines,” Sound Library Series, Volume 77 

KSE #311 (poetry and photography chapbook), BILL SHUTE, “Liars in a Strange Rainy World: Cassette Poems One”

KSE #313 (poetry and photography chapbook), BILL SHUTE, “Flags No Longer at Half-Mast: Cassette Poems Two,”

Also, don’t hesitate to score a copy of the final installment of Pittsburgh poet Jim D. Deuchars Three Rivers trilogy, truly a major and gravity-defying work!

KSE #301 (poetry chapbook), JIM D. DEUCHARS, “Ohio Connecting Railroad Bridge”

As always, thank you for your support of KSE (both the music and poetry sides of this operation) and of all independent low-fi/DIY artists and arts organizations, proud to be part of the so-called “no-audience underground.”

And don’t miss the amazing MIKE BARRETT/TOM CREAN album, “Casual Luddites” (KSE #320). Just scan the blog below this entry for the write-up on that.

We have five more albums scheduled for release in late 2015….

KSE #322 (CDR), WEREWHEELS (Sir Plastic Crimewave and Dawn Aquarius),  “Live, Raw and Psycho in Japan” (our next release, in a week or two)

KSE #324 (CDR) FOSSILS, “Modern Architecture,” cover art by Wyatt Doyle,  late November 2015


KSE #326 (CDR) MORE EAZE, “Abandoning Finitude,” December 2015

KSE #327 (CDR) BELLTONE SUICIDE (Mike Barrett), “Wave Table Erotica”, December 2015 (and Wave Table Erotica will be our final release of 2015, in mid-late December….it will be the final release of the year because NOTHING could possibly follow it!)

We’ll be starting afresh in early 2016 with the ten-artist KSE 10th ANNIVERSARY compilation album…hope you’ll all still be along for the starry ride in 2016….



October 17, 2015

DOLLAR HALLOWEEN by Wyatt Doyle (New Texture Books)

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 7:27 pm

wyatt book

Wyatt Doyle’s photography (one of his works graced the cover of the KSE Doug Draime chapbook “Dusk With Carol” and another one will appear on KSE’s next FOSSILS album) casts a fresh eye on the overlooked, seemingly throwaway aspects of contemporary life and culture, decontextualizing the images and making them resonate, producing works of tragic beauty that also function as a barometer of the age in which we live. This new hardcover collection of dollar-store Halloween photos is classic Wyatt Doyle and highly recommended….what an eye he has!

Order limited hardcover edition of DOLLAR HALLOWEEN from Amazon: BUY DOLLAR HALLOWEEN

Read more about DOLLAR HALLOWEEN at New Texture: more on DOLLAR HALLOWEEN

Read my review of Wyatt Doyle’s 2010 book of fiction set in the world of the Los Angeles bus system, STOP REQUESTED: review

dusk with carol

October 11, 2015

MIKE BARRETT & TOM CREAN, “Casual Luddites” (KSE #320), new album now available!

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 7:10 pm




CDR album, KSE #320, released 12 October 2015

Mike Barrett: Electronics

Tom Crean: Guitar and Banjo

ALL RELEASES ARE $8 each postpaid in the USA and $11.50 each postpaid elsewhere.

Send funds via paypal to django5722(at)yahoo(dot)com

Please include a note with your paypal order listing what items you are ordering and your name/mailing address


Nice to welcome back two of Western Massachusetts’s finest, TOM CREAN and MIKE BARRETT, for a new duo album which pairs Tom’s unclassifiable guitar and banjo work with Mike’s electronics. Tom appeared on KSE two years ago with WIRED LOVE (KSE #260), one of our best-received albums, and an album which STILL gets positive comments when I meet people who are familiar with the label (“You put out those KSE albums? That Tom Crean album was great….when’s he going to do another one?”). I first became familiar with Tom through his association with Anthony Braxton, and Tom represents the same kind of combination of extreme discipline and absolute freedom (and mixing/overlaying of genres) as his former teacher, along with the dry humor and the logical programmatic approach. Tom can play in any format, and he can do everything from street busking to participating in contemporary avant-garde ensembles. I asked Tom to do two new duo albums in 2015-2016, and this one is the first (stay tuned in mid-2016 for the next).

Mike Barrett is well-known and widely respected for his work under the BELLTONESUICIDE moniker, and we’ve issued two of his albums previously, one solo and one paired with Mike Griffin (aka Parashi). Mike is also a visual artist (Mike and I are going to be doing an art-and-poetry chapbook in the next year too), and he brings that painterly approach to his slash-and-burn electronic improvisations. However, Mike can also be a sensitive player, as we see in these duos with Tom Crean.

On some level, this album is an extension of the tradition of the 70s albums by Anthony Braxton and Richard Teitelbaum and by Marion Brown and Elliott Schwartz, where a free-thinking musician on a traditional instrument performs duets with an electronic musician (our two GIFT FIG albums where Alfred 23 Harth has been paired with Carl Stone are also recent work in that same tradition). It’s an exciting pairing, and with Tom having such a wide variety of techniques he brings to the table, both on guitar and banjo, and with Mike being an absolute master of the analog synth and able to use it with the creativity and precision that a John Fahey or a Steve Lacy brought to traditional instruments, these duets are a pleasure to experience. There is a Southeast Asian feel to the material, as a number of the pieces were influenced by the film Apocalypse Now, and the album also captures the tensions and explosiveness and pre-and-post-battle calm of that war….the beauty and the pain of the place and the time.

CASUAL LUDDITES is an album that gets richer with each listen. Tom and Mike have played together extensively and did a previous duo album for Gilded Throne (see below), but this one will reach a wider audience and for me has deeper roots. Don’t miss CASUAL LUDDITES, and if you live in Western MA or east of the Hudson in NY state, keep your ears and eyes open for announcement of a Tom and Mike duo album-release concert later in 2015 or in early 2016.

We still have copies of the extended reissue of the BELLTONESUICIDE “Non-Conformist Sessions” album, and as stated above, Tom will be back next year with another duo album, which we’ll keep a surprise for the present time. AND….Mike Barrett will be back with an all-new Belltone album for KSE in December of this year, WAVE TABLE EROTICA (KSE #327).

Get your copy NOW….

PS, Tom Crean recently issued a fascinating book, TOM CREAN’S GUITAR JOURNAL, documenting ten years of work in a unique creative format that’s part poetic daybook, part conceptual programmatic text. You can check it out and order it here: …

visit TOM CREAN  at


hear more from MIKE BARRETT  at     and



Their previous duo album for Gilded Throne


and while ordering CASUAL LUDDITES, why not pick up some of our other recent releases of potent experimental music on CDR albums…..all hand-assembled and homemade editions of between 48 and 125….and when they are gone, they are gone….



KSE #310, MORE EAZE (aka Marcus M. Rubio), “ACCIDENTAL PRIZES”





KSE #305, RAMBUTAN, “Remember Me Now”


KSE #296, THE GARMENT DISTRICT (featuring Jennifer Baron), “Luminous Toxin”

KSE #298, GIFT FIG: ALFRED 23 HARTH and CARL STONE, “Stellenbosch,” live in South Africa, September 2014

KSE #275, ALFRED 23 HARTH, “China Collection”

ALL RELEASES ARE $8 each postpaid in the USA and $11.50 each postpaid elsewhere.

Send funds via paypal to django5722(at)yahoo(dot)com.

Please include a note with your paypal order listing what items you are ordering and your name/mailing address.

As always, thank you for your support of Kendra Steiner Editions and all independent, non-aligned arts organizations who operate under the radar of the established “underground”/”alternative” channels….

October 4, 2015

Grab the 11 (!!!) Summer 2015 KSE releases while you still can!

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 3:52 pm

We’re getting ready to bring out another half-dozen new albums in Oct/Nov/Dec, so be sure to grab our amazing Summer 2015 releases while they are still available…



Beautiful reeds-and-vibes duo album…an excellent entry-way into A23H’s work if you’re not familiar with him

massimo 2015


Bracing, thoughtful soprano saxophone and snare drum duets…post-Cage studies in “controlled” improvisation


KSE #310, MORE EAZE (aka Marcus M. Rubio), “ACCIDENTAL PRIZES”

Second album in Marcus M. Rubio’s exciting MORE EAZE series…masterfully prepared slice-and-dice assemblages from a variety of sources (many of which are Rubio’s own pieces), creating new forms from the chunks of previous compositions and performances, “accidental prizes”



The ultimate post-Metal Machine Music guitar and feedback album….a longtime fave at Blog To Comm….



original chamber pieces and deconstructed languid almost-pop songs from this North Texas composer/multi-instrumentalist who gave a great performance at the KSE 9th Anniversary Concert in Dallas this summer

belltone reissue


extended reissue of one of our original 3″ mini-discs from five years ago–25 short gonzo-analog-electronic improvisations in a radio studio after midnight, in that altered night-shift netherworld, from Western Massachusetts noise-king Mike Barrett….one of my personal favorites back in print with a lot of new material added to the original 3″



legendary Canadian outsider guitar-monger and sound artist Brian Ruryk joins Hamilton, Ontario’s Fossils (the only band that matters) for an edgy abrasive absurdist sound-collage you NEED


KSE #305, RAMBUTAN, “Remember Me Now”

we’ve followed Rambutan (aka Eric Hardiman, of Albany, NY) for many years, but even by his high standards this is a classic, as he moves into melancholy rococo territory not unlike Matt Krefting…I can’t recommend this one high enough….



Texas psychedelic visionary Lisa Cameron once again teams up with west-coast guitar-shaman Ernesto Diaz-Infante for a series of deep and primal spiritual-jams….some of these tracks were also used in the soundtrack to the acclaimed film THE CULT OF J.T. LEROY


KSE #296, THE GARMENT DISTRICT (featuring Jennifer Baron), “Luminous Toxin”

This uniquely Jennifer Baron instrumental blend of luminous psychedelia and atmospheric soundtrack-ism has been getting rave reviews and “album of the month” awards all summer! It’s available directly at many record shops across Pittsburgh and, of course, directly from us at KSE! Don’t miss it.


KSE #298, GIFT FIG: ALFRED 23 HARTH and CARL STONE, “Stellenbosch,” live in South Africa, September 2014

The acclaimed reeds-and-electronics duo of Harth and Stone, two absolute masters at the height of their game…

ALL RELEASES ARE $8 each postpaid in the USA and $11.50 each postpaid elsewhere.

Send funds via paypal to django5722(at)yahoo(dot)com.

Please include a note with your paypal order listing what items you are ordering and your name/mailing address.

All albums are home-made hand-assembled releases of between 48 and 150 copies (any particular release can be found in a number of colors, also….who knows what you’ll get!) and most sell out in a few months, so act now if you want a physical copy of these experimental music gems.

Thank you for your support of independent, non-aligned arts organizations such as Kendra Steiner Editions, coming at you from beautiful San Antonio, Texas.

September 19, 2015

new poetry chapbook from BILL SHUTE, “MANIPULATING AMBIGUITY” (KSE #306)

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 2:09 pm



poetry chapbook, KSE #306

composed in February 2015, issued in September 2015

edition of 41 copies


($6 US ppd   /   $7 elsewhere ppd)

payment via paypal to    django5722(at)yahoo(dot)com

Please include a note with your paypal order including the items ordered AND your mailing address (which Paypal often fails to provide me)….thanks!


MANIPULATING AMBIGUITY is the third and final chapbook in a series composed in Jan-Feb 2015 during and immediately after my weeks spent in Southwest Louisiana. LINES AND FINES and SATORI IN LAKE CHARLES (the first and second works in that series) have been getting an enthusiastic response from readers (thanks!), so this seemed like a good time to complete the sequence.

As I continue to produce new works year after year, I sometimes think back to my teens and twenties, when I read voraciously the avant-garde works of the then-past, and I sometimes wonder how those works inform and find their way into the pieces I write today. As I was proofing this MANIPULATING AMBIGUITY text for publication, I was reminded of the novelist John Hawkes, especially his second novel, THE BEETLE LEG, which I read a number of times. Hawkes’s writing in that book consisted of rich poetic passages written in a post-Melville flow, passages that contained extreme close-ups which seemed on the surface to be divorced from an understandable context or continuity, but which had a kind of continuity of tone and which worked on the level of a montage sequence in a film. Hawkes later evolved into novels with a strong erotic element and which tended to be more accessible, but the early works such as THE BEETLE LEG and THE CANNIBAL still are lodged just out of reach in my long-term memory, but planted deep enough to provide me with some kind of faded set of directions which I half-remember and which I use as the base for my own literary gumbo. I’ve never been the world’s biggest Harold Bloom fan, but he was onto something with THE ANXIETY OF INFLUENCE, and the above explanation is how the process works with me. Of course, we’re talking about in many cases there being 30+ years between the reading and the influence. When I was in my 20’s and closer to the source, I tended to write LIKE the writers I admired, whether it be Kerouac or Hawkes or Stein or Richard Wright or Paul Blackburn or whatever. In a sense, the distance has made all the difference. I’ve always felt that the poetic quality in any form of writing comes out of life experience, not out of books, although literary study  can help one to interpret and spin the life experience in a more artful and precise manner. Of course, I should point out that MANIPULATING AMBIGUITY will probably not remind ANYONE of John Hawkes’s work….it’s just that something in my memory of Hawkes’s work has been mixed with my own poetic strategy, and that mixture alchemically mutates into MANIPULATING AMBIGUITY. And my poetry, like the BEETLE LEG, is concerned with the question of the title….MANIPULATING AMBIGUITY. As a poet, that’s what I do for a living. That’s the wheel which I constantly re-invent.

beetle leg

So….after that long digression, what do you get in this new poetry chapbook MANIPULATING AMBIGUITY?

Peanut butter flakes from the invisible empire fall from a fluffy sky, while we wear ridiculous uniforms to degrading jobs which we are happy to get, the Austin police quickly (and without calling attention to themselves) quell any potential cracks in the uniformity, the lady next door is saving up for a portion of Renewed Hope In A Jar, British clergymen are solving fictional murders in romanticized small towns, and we’re enjoying truckstop coffee and buttermilk pie on the highway to Debtor’s Prison…but hey, SLOW DOWN and DROP IT TO A LOWER KEY…

Edition of 41 copies, so get your copy now. Only $6 in the US and $7 elsewhere, postpaid. Remember, while these poems may appear in some future collection, this limited KSE hand-made chapbook is the ONLY place you are going to get the works in their original context, with the intended art and formatting and epigraph and font, etc. These works are, literally, from me to you, whoever you are, wherever you may be. Each chapbook is an artifact, something NOT available online and not formatted for your e-reader or tablet or Kindle. When technology crumbles and the powergrid goes down, you can still find a comfortable rock to lean against and read my three-dimensional poetry chapbooks on a lazy afternoon…and discover how some people lived and thought and experienced BACK THEN….  That’s my story, and I’m sticking to it!

While you are picking up a copy of MANIIPULATING AMBIGUITY, while not pick up a few others of our recent KSE poetry releases. My last few chapbooks are almost sold out, so grab them while you can. They are…

satori in lake charles

KSE #302 (poetry chapbook), BILL SHUTE, “Satori In Lake Charles”

KSE #297 (poetry chapbook), BILL SHUTE, “Lines and Fines,” Sound Library Series, Volume 77 

KSE #311 (poetry and photography chapbook), BILL SHUTE, “Liars in a Strange Rainy World: Cassette Poems One”

KSE #313 (poetry and photography chapbook), BILL SHUTE, “Flags No Longer at Half-Mast: Cassette Poems Two,”

Also, don’t hesitate to score a copy of the final installment of Pittsburgh poet Jim D. Deuchars Three Rivers trilogy, truly a major and gravity-defying work!

KSE #301 (poetry chapbook), JIM D. DEUCHARS, “Ohio Connecting Railroad Bridge”

As always, thank you for your support of KSE (both the music and poetry sides of this operation) and of all independent low-fi/DIY artists and arts organizations, proud to be part of the so-called “no-audience underground.”

September 12, 2015

new duo album from ALFRED 23 HARTH & JOHN BELL, “Camellia” (KSE #318)

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 5:26 pm




KSE #318 (CDR album)

$8  US  postpaid / $11.50 elsewhere postpaid

payment via paypal to django5722(at)yahoo(dot)com

please provide a note with your order listing the items you’ve ordered and your mailing address….thanks!


Harth: soprano saxophone, taepyeongso, piri, trombone, percussion

Bell: extended vibraphone, tenorhorn, buk

Recorded at LaubhuetteStudio Moonsun, Korea, 2015


KSE’s long-term relationship with experimental music pioneer ALFRED 23 HARTH has resulted in more than a half-dozen albums, some documenting his working groups such as the duo GIFT FIG (with Carl Stone) and the quartet  THE EXPATS, along with others which have allowed Mr. Harth to create bold and complex conceptual works, such as the MICRO-SAXO-PHONE series and the CHINA COLLECTION. Harth’s KSE albums are a major body of work, and we’re proud to continue our fruitful relationship with Mr. Harth with this new album….CAMELLIA (KSE #318), a beautiful series of duets with vibraphonist JOHN TREVOR BELL, who is from New Zealand and presently works out of Seoul, Korea. The “Camellia” concept came out of a tour Harth and Bell did in early 2015 in the South coast area of Korea, where A23H included his art installations including the Camellia flower.

And the Camellia flower somehow captures the understated beauty and elegance of this (primarily) soprano saxophone and vibes duo. Harth and Bell are tapping into a long chamber-jazz  tradition–from the 1920’s duo and trio recordings of Bix and Tram (Bix Beiderbecke and Frank Trumbauer) such as Singing the Blues or For No Reason At All In “C” to the small recordings of the 30s with Benny Goodman, Teddy Wilson, and Lionel Hampton….to the wonderful reeds and vibes recordings of Gunter Hampel and Marion Brown and the small Chico Hamilton groups . Of course, Harth and Bell come from the post-modern side of the street, but the lyricism, the attention to small detail, the darting back-and-forth, the intuitive thursting and parrying of the duo (the music provides the same kind of joyous strategy one finds in first-rate fencing or tennis….the difference being Harth and Bell are on the same side, working TOGETHER) provide a playful but profound series of pieces rooted in DUO UNITY.

There are 19 pieces, some composed by Harth, some composed by Bell, and the Harth pieces include ones dating back to circa 1980 and, in the case of “Waves Of Being,” the seminal THIS EARTH album where Harth worked with Paul Bley, Barre Phillips, Trilok Gurtu, and Maggie Nicols. The compositions are extended and developed in what Harth and Bell call a “time-lapse” method of “playing clouds.” Bell explains that  “Thanks mostly to Alfred’s guidance, but perhaps also due to the ironic peace and quiet of the Laubhuette studio (situated right next to the Demilitarized Zone) we stretched the tempos of those pieces to a cloud like slow motion.” However, there is a wide variety of tempos and rhythms here….from the languid dream-like haze one would associate with a late-period Chet Baker session to playful, spiralling quick-paced pieces reminiscent of Ornette Coleman. I’m also reminded of the live performances of Wayne Shorter (on soprano) and Herbie Hancock on the tour in support of their 1 & 1  duo album, where they would take pieces that ran 6 or 7 minutes on the album and extend them to 15 or 20 in concert, developing and deepening the pieces in ways that seemed so natural….and so inevitable!

Yes, there are other instruments in use here—-Korean instruments, trombone, etc (and the ways in which Bell “extends” his vibes open the instrument up in surprising and lovely ways)—-but it’s essentially a Soprano Saxophone and Vibraphone album, which is why I’m making so many references to the tradition here, as I feel that people who enjoy that tradition, whether it be Bix and Tram, Brown and Hampel, or Shorter and Hancock, will LOVE this album. If they are not too familiar with Alfred 23 Harth’s body of work, this album may just be the perfect door of entry to it! It’s also great to welcome John Trevor Bell to the KSE family. He is performing with forward-thinking groups all the time in Asia, but of course, we don’t hear a lot about the Asian scene here in Texas!

Harth and Bell will be doing another duo performance later in September in Seoul….see the gig poster at the top of this post. CAMELLIA is an album of rare beauty and fierce creativity….you need a copy. By the way, the Chinese characters on the cover represent the concepts which in English we’d call luck, bliss, or blessing….a perfect symbol for this album! Ordering info is at the top of this post…and don’t forget we still have copies of two other A23H albums: CHINA COLLECTION and STELLENBOSCH (the latter a duo album with Carl Stone)–ordering info for thosehis at the end of this post.

Mr. Harth will also be appearing on our KSE 10th Anniversary compilation, which will come out early in 2016.

Bell & Harth


Alfred Harth: Bell & Harth started working as a duo at the Paju Festival in 2013 where Harth also brought in some of his poetry. In spring 2015 the duo had a so called „Camellia Tour“ along the South coast of Korea, Namhae, where Harth partly implemented his art installations including the camellia flower that is very common in that beautiful area along the islands of the South Sea. The CD Camellia is mainly about beauty and transitoriness and contains Harth’s compositions that date back to 1980. The duo developed a time-lapsed way of stretching the themes, what they call „playing clouds“. Bell & Harth both admire Korean traditional music, Gugak, and they refer to it in their improvisations by also playing traditional Korean instruments, Bell the Buk and Harth the Piri and Taepyeongseo.

John Bell: I first met A23H in 2007 during my first music tour to South Korea. Previously I was not familiar with the vast and varied artistic output of Alfred Harth. I kept in touch with Alfred after returning to New Zealand, and was pleasantly surprised when he agreed to perform an improvised duo with me at ‘Yogiga Gallery’ in Seoul shortly after I moved to Korea with my wife in 2013. We performed again as a duo in the Paju Free Music festival also in 2013. I spent much of 2014 in the Southern Hemisphere, but upon my return we resumed the duo project. In 2015 Alfred suggested we record some improvisations, but also some compositions of his (mostly from the 1980s and 90s). I was somewhat apprehensive about interpreting these compositions which had already been recorded by luminaries such as Maggie Nicols, Paul Bley, Sunbae Choi and Soojung Kae. Thanks mostly to Alfred’s guidance, but perhaps also due to the ironic peace and quiet of the Laubhuette studio (situated right next to the Demilitarized Zone) we stretched the tempos of those pieces to a cloud like slow motion. There are other moods in the duo sound, but I mostly think this cloud, even thick syrupy stratocumulus reflects some aspect of living in South Korea.

A23H Camellia poster 1

Over the years, Mr. Bell has performed with a wide variety of heavy-hitters including Steve Lacy, Han Bennink, William Parker, Marilyn Crispell, and Trevor Watts…..and now Alfred 23 Harth. You can follow his activities and learn more at his website,, and you can hear more of his music at his Bandcamp page,

Alfred 23 Harth, of course, is well-known internationally….and especially to readers of these pages. You can connect with Mr. Harth at his website:

While ordering CAMELLIA, why not also pick up some other of our recent CDR albums of experimental, forward-thinking sound art…..all $8 in the US and $11.50 elsewhere, postpaid (see above for ordering instructions):


KSE #310, MORE EAZE (aka Marcus M. Rubio), “ACCIDENTAL PRIZES”





KSE #305, RAMBUTAN, “Remember Me Now”


KSE #296, THE GARMENT DISTRICT (featuring Jennifer Baron), “Luminous Toxin”

KSE #298, GIFT FIG: ALFRED 23 HARTH and CARL STONE, “Stellenbosch,” live in South Africa, September 2014


and we still have a handful of copies left of this classic (we just made some fresh copies for A23H’s Fall 2015 European tour)….

KSE #275, ALFRED 23 HARTH, “China Collection”

A23H ChinaCollection

As always, thank you for your support of KSE and of all independent, non-aligned arts collectives…

September 7, 2015

The Garment District/Jennifer Baron/KSE featured in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 5:01 am

Garment District leaks a ‘Toxin’

With its second proper album, The Garment District already takes a departure, spinning off into an ambient world that would work as the soundtrack for a suspense film.

The Garment District is the Pittsburgh-based project of Jennifer Baron, a former member of Brooklyn indie band Ladybug Transistor. In Pittsburgh she is also known as a coordinator of Handmade Arcade and co-editor and contributing photographer for the book “Pittsburgh Signs Project: 250 Signs of Western Pennsylvania.”

Last year’s full-length Garment District debut was a dreamy synth-pop record topped with the airy vocals of her cousin Lucy Evans Blehar. She returns with “Luminous Toxin,” an all-instrumental piece commissioned by Kendra Steiner Editions, a San Antonio, Texas-based company specializing in poetry and experimental music. Poet/founder Bill Shute introduces the record with an essay saying the Garment District’s soundscapes “evoke a world … where I’d like to live,” comparing it to the work of Brian Eno.

That’s “a massive honor,” Ms. Baron says, calling the electronic pioneer “a lifelong artistic inspiration and cultural hero” and an artist who is “forward-thinking and progressive.”

She met Mr. Shute several years ago in Pittsburgh, passing along to him a copy of the Garment District’s debut cassette “Melody Elder” and full-length “If You Take Your Magic Slow.” He admired her work, and she loved his.

“Bill’s aesthetic and approach is all about supporting the artist’s vision for a release, so there are absolutely no imposed, preconceived or projected notions of what KSE is looking for. I felt encouraged to explore new — or further develop — music that’s a bit more adventurous, ambient, longform and experimental.”

“Luminous Toxin” took shape in part when Ms. Baron was asked to compose and perform music as part of the SYNC’D series at The New Bohemian gallery on the North Side, pairing local musicians with filmmakers and videographers. She was asked to write music for five short films, then perform the pieces at the former North Side church.

When she was invited to make music for Kendra Steiner, she says, “Concepts for the album had been swirling around in my head for quite some time, allowing me to revisit some of the music I had composed for SYNC’D, begin brand new compositions, finalize demos I already had in progress, dive into using my newly acquired Roland JX-3P synthesizer, and pick up my bass guitar again.”

She recorded at home over the harsh winter while binge-watching episodes of Rod Serling’s TV series “Night Gallery.”

“A lot of thought and care goes into my process,” she says, “even if the end result is more free form or experimental. Each individual bit is how it’s communicating itself to me. I’m very interested in an intersection of orchestrated pristine pop music, and the vibe and feel of more ambient experimental stuff.”

The record release show will feature songs from all of Garment District’s works, with a lineup that also features guitarist Dan Koshute (Dazzletine), drummer Shivika Asthana (Papas Fritas) and singer Ashlee Green (Butterbirds).

The Garment District release show is at 9 p.m. Friday at Howlers, Bloomfield, with Herbcraft (from Maine), Sagas with guitarist Matt McDowell and DJ KMFD (Keith DeVries). Admission is $6;

(originally published in the PIttsburgh Post-Gazette, 3 September 2015)

August 30, 2015


Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 4:25 pm



KSE  #316 (CDR album)

Massimo Magee: acoustic, amplified and feedback sopranino saxophone

David W. Stockard: snare drum

recorded at Goldsmiths, 25 May 2015

cover art by MP Landis

$8  US  postpaid / $11.50 elsewhere postpaid

payment via paypal to django5722(at)yahoo(dot)com

please provide a note with your order listing the items you’ve ordered and your mailing address….thanks!

massimo 2015

Proud to welcome saxophonist and theoretician-of-improvisation MASSIMO MAGEE back for his fourth release on KSE, this time giving us two extended sound-paintings of sopranino saxophone and snare drum with percussionist David W. Stockard, recorded in London in late May 2015.

“With this translucid, volatile substance, the surface…is stripped as bare as possible, its monochrome ground heightened to near transparency; lines become faint threads, figures white traces like membranes of infinitesimal thickness. This minimal, almost residual painting—-almost risking vacuity—-is defined as a space of physical pulsation, of visible, tangible palpitation, open to every sense and perception.”  Agnes de la Beaumelle, from “The Challenge of Miro’s “X”.”

INTERROGATORIES is a logical next step from Magee’s previous KSE album, SOPRANINO SOLO. Working in a range above the soprano saxophone (which many players disregard feeling it is too high-pitched and difficult to control), the sopranino saxophone is an instrument that is rarely used and even more rarely featured. It provides Magee with a distinctive palette for his paintings in sound—-I am reminded of the scratchy, astringent canvases of Cy Twombly, full of life-force but somehow muted in tone, appearing clipped yet bursting with energy at the incisions, capturing the process of creation with their erasures and over-writing. I doubt you’ll hear anything else this year which SOUNDS remotely like this album.

Partnering with Magee on this set is percussionist David W. Stockard, who limits himself to the snare drum here, yet manages to find a universe of potential within this unique instrument, not like any other drum. I’ve heard some Austin experimental musicians such as Lisa Cameron and Sarah Hennies (the latter based in Austin for many years, now in New York state) do some amazing things with the snare drum via extended techniques and the loosening of the snares. There is of course a metallic element inherent in the snare drum, thus providing a potentially rich and unexpected range of possibilities for the imaginative player. Stockard manages to evoke everything from Cage-esque prepared piano to gamelan-and-gong with his snare, yet also works very subtly in the quieter passages, playing with the lower limits of auditory perception, creating almost inaudible “waves” that crackle and hum….or is that my nervous system I’m hearing?

This is a totally original album from artists who question EVERYTHING. If like me you feel that a lot of the “free-improv” out there has as much wanking to it as the worst 70’s fusion, why not try this thoughtful but dynamic duo album which explores new areas-in-sound art with both concentration and abandon.

The only album I can think of to compare this with would be FACE TO FACE by The Spontaneous Music Ensemble’s duo format, but it’s 40+ years and a million miles from that….as John Ashbery once observed of Gertrude Stein, MAGEE and STOCKARD are attempting the impossible, because nothing else is worth doing!

And let’s not forget another beautiful original artwork by MP Landis on the front cover, perfectly evoking the album’s content. Please check out Mr. Landis’s website for a wide variety of exciting and life-filled paintings.

massimo new


massimo dave


I asked Massimo Magee for a brief statement regarding this album, and he produced the following, as always an example of both the intellectual rigor he brings to any project and sense of play, of wonder, and of an openness (indeed, an excitement) to work whose form is ever-becoming: “As it plays in the background now, what can I say of this music that it doesn’t say for itself? That it is improvised is probably obvious; that it owes a debt to the influence of Eddie Prévost via his weekly improvisation workshop is less so, but no less true. It is, outside of the workshop, a first meeting. Although the exact set-up that I brought to this meeting (in particular the electronic element) was a configuration I had not used before, I of course have a significant history with the sopranino saxophone. To say that it is a recording of two people ‘searching for sounds’ within the materials before them is not the whole story, but I think it is a useful frame of reference for considering our actions – actions that are an attempt at what, by this point, several generations have done before us, but that gets no easier the more it is attempted. Each time we resume the struggle. What the listener has is a document of selected facets of those actions at that time and in that place. What those actions mean is a more difficult question. – Massimo Magee”

While ordering INTERROGATORIES, why not also pick up some other of our recent CDR albums of experimental, forward-thinking sound art…..all $8 in the US and $11.50 elsewhere, postpaid (see above for ordering instructions):

KSE #318, ALFRED 23 HARTH & JOHN BELL, “Camellia”

KSE #310, MORE EAZE (aka Marcus M. Rubio), “ACCIDENTAL PRIZES”





KSE #305, RAMBUTAN, “Remember Me Now”


KSE #296, THE GARMENT DISTRICT (featuring Jennifer Baron), “Luminous Toxin”

KSE #298, GIFT FIG: ALFRED 23 HARTH and CARL STONE, “Stellenbosch,” live in South Africa, September 2014

As always, thank you for your support of KSE and of all independent, non-aligned arts collectives…

Next Page »

The Rubric Theme. Create a free website or blog at


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 36 other followers