Over the years there have been some truly great collaborative albums between members of Causa Sui and other amazing, like-minded artists. Albums that El Paraiso Records offered up to the universe so we could partake in those magical vibes as well. These albums stand for what El Paraiso was created for in the first place, to create and share music for the love of the art. I can dig that.
So here’s just a few of those amazing collaborative albums.
Ellis Munk Ensemble : San Diego Sessions(2020)
A few years back Jonas Munk made the trip to Southern California for some surfing, tacos, and hangs with some of the best in the So Cal psych scene. Brian Ellis, along with a who’s who of next level musicians hosted Munk for a few days of some amazing jam sessions(though not without some hiccups along the way.) Those sessions became Ellis Munk Ensemble, seven tracks of next level improvisations and acid-burnt psych explorations. Touches of electric Miles, early Santana, and garage rock luminaries like Blue Cheer, early Grand Funk Railroad, and Radio Moscow come thru, but with Munk and Ellis putting their own, unique spin on things. A must-have LP.
Astral TV : Chrystal Shores(2017)
In 2017 Causa Sui keyboardist Rasmus Rasmussen debuted his electronic project Astral TV, one he started with musician Keith Canisius. With analog electronics and shimmering guitar the duo created the stunning Chrystal Shores, and album that locks into the cosmic vibes of Tangerine Dream, Klaus Schulze, and the all-encompassing Berlin School scene in general. Slow-moving songs that reveal a depth and a meditative heaviness that allows you to fall into their sonic world and lose yourself.
Videodrones : After The Fall(2022)
The heavy synth duo of Jakob Skøtt and Kristoffer Ovesen started this project in 2016 as an ode to those classic sleazy horror scores of the 70s and 80s. Those scores that accompanied late night video watching under the cover of darkness. The kind of music that was far better than the movie they were created for. Using modular synths to summon the darkness, Skøtt and Ovesen made three records of circuital madness over three years.
Just this year Videodrones released their fourth outing called After The Fall. They’ve added drums and guitars into the fold and the results are nothing short of stunning. They can still lock into the creepy vibes but have added a bit of light into the mixture, giving Videodrones a whole new sonic outlook.
Sun River : Sun River(2012)
Possibly one of the first collaborative releases from El Paraiso Records, Sun River was the folksy project of singer/songwriter Martin Rude(guitar, vocals) with Jonas and Jakob of Causa Sui filling the sound out with drums, bass, and whatever else. Touches of CSNY, Nick Drake, and contemporaries like Iron and Wine, Grizzly Bear, and Father John Misty, Rude gives us a sweet and soulful acoustic-led album with dusty and melancholy tracks.
This is truly unlike anything that’s come since on the label. From the simple album sleeve(reminiscent of Neil Young’s Harvest) to the finger-picked guitar, elegant organ, and sweeping but subtle drumming, Sun River comes together like a future classic in the making. An ode to 70s singer/songwriter albums with moments of Allman Brothers Band musicality.
Martin Rude and Jakob Skøtt Duo : The Discipline Of Assent
Another, more recent collaboration between Martin Rude and Jakob Skøtt is the Martin Rude and Jakob Skøtt Duo releases. Two albums released in 2020, The Discipline Of Assent and The Dichotomy Of Control, the duo cover a scope of free jazz, dusty acoustics, and a sense that you’re listening to some dystopian score for a desert landscape and desperate marauders. Wonky electronics buzz and burst over Skøtt’s frantic drumming while Rude lays down groovy string bass and acoustic guitar flourishes. The results are a stunning collection of songs that would feel just as much home on the ECM label in the early 70s as it would playing over some apocalyptic cinema.
You can’t go wrong with either 2020 release, but for today I went with the amazing The Discipline Of Assent just because “Flails and Strands” is doing it for me this morning. But dive into both and see where they take you.
Jonas Munk & Nicklas Sorensen : Always Already Here
Another amazing collaboration over the last few years is the one between Jonas Munk and Papir’s Nicklas Sorensen. Starting with Sorensen’s first two solo guitar outings, Solo and Solo 2, the two created lush, Krautrock-inspired guitar albums that mixed Sorensen’s amazing looped guitar lines with subtle electronics. Munk and Sorensen took it to a new level on 2019s Always Already Here, a full-on deep dive into Komische music of the 70s. Lush guitar lines are covered in warm, bubbling analog synth for a collection that is part German experimentalism, minimalist classical like Terry Riley and Steve Reich, and just an absolute drop off into the heady deep end of instrumental electronic music. An absolute joy from start to finish.
This is just a few of the amazing collaborations over the years released and curated by El Paraiso Records. Go dive into any of these and you will not be disappointed. Tomorrow we’re covering solo releases. So come by and celebrate tomorrow on the last day of El Paraiso Records week here at Complex Distractions.