The InstrumenTales Records Masterdisc Library
"A clearinghouse for thought-provoking creative music."
Everything - $8.oo postpaid

    In the most widely understood definition and expectations attached to the term, we are not exactly a "record company".  In practice and in fact, we have more in common with a small library or rural reading room than with any commercial or independent label.
    The InstrumenTales 'catalogue' consists of a wide array of masterdisc recordings from many genres, predominantly Improvisation and Song, recorded with available means in small commercial or home studios.    High fidelity 16-track and lo-fi 4-track rest, "shoulder-to-shoulder", on our shelves, peaceably.
    InstrumenTales does not ridicule those working in poverty through the common American business practice of excluding unintentionally noisy things from our listing.
    CD-R  preview and review copies of all are available for a pittance.
    When an item is licensed by a second party, it becomes available exclusively through that party.
To discuss the licensing of an InstrumenTales master, click here 
    Let me be abundantly clear about this for the benefit of those submitting sonic material to InstrumenTales for our consideration.
InstrumenTales Records expouses only that which fosters cooperation and tolerance.
    InstrumenTales distances itself from hatred, blind rage, violence-as-entertainment, and from any ideology which places Self above one's community.
Submissions received by InstrumenTales which are in conflict with this method will be discarded.
-Bret Hart
[head honcho & decider of how we do things around here] 
hear some MP3's 

Bret Hart / Jeff McLeod: "Dynamic Negativism"
"Dinner Music for the Bulemic"  Hart solo improvisation combined with McLeod multitracking.  One step denser than the acclaimed Improvisational Duets Series of discs; many steps less dense than Jeff's own "Ye Shall Be Cut Into Many Pieces"

The Cat's Pants: "Live in a Coffeehouse in Eden"
Live and typical TCP gig, only months before the county consumed yet another groovy business.
Jim Eanes: banjo/ac.gtr, Scotty Irving: structured clatter, Christine Hart: vox/ac.gtr, Bret Hart: vox/gtr. Hear what this Bible Belt town fears!

Bret Hart: "solo improvisation - 2001h"
"There is nothing I can describe about this music that would communicate what this talented and imaginative artist does without you seeing for yourself so be sure and check out the link below to see Bret's homemade instruments. Think you know what a dobro sounds like? Think again. In Bret's hands it's like an avant-garde take on traditional ethnic sounds... and played like a percussion instrument." - Aural Innovations
Bret Hart: "solo improvisation - 2001g"
Bret Hart: "solo improvisation - 2001f"
Bret Hart: "solo improvisation - 2001e"
Bret Hart: "solo improvisation - 2001d"
Bret Hart: "solo improvisation - 2001c"
"Sections of intriguing beauty interspersed amongst his convoluted musings." - Cadence
Bret Hart: "solo improvisation - 2001b"
Bret Hart: "solo improvisation - 2001a" 
Frank O. Polizzi Band: "Da Basement Tapes"

Post-Beefheartian loop-splatter/musique concrete Pop
"D.I.Y. & proud, but more importantly, a jaded sense of musical humor that shoots him to thee TOP o' th' heap for this twisted set of aural appendages!" - Improvijazzation Nation 
Frank O. Polizzi Band: "Da Molasses Tapes"
More post-Beefheartian loop-splatter/musique concrete Pop
"For those musical aficionados who have "heard it all" - you ain't heard NUTHIN' until you lissen ter' THIS!...This is quite simply - NUTS!" - Improvijazzation Nation 
Fondling Giblets: "Wun"
Lawrence, Kansas crashes into Eden, North Carolina and mayhem ensues.
Featuring members of Turkey Makes Me Sleepy and Magic Potty Babies.
"Very industrial strength, feels like gargantuan steel forges coated in sticky glue, tryin' to dig deep into your brain cells."
- Improvijazzation Nation 
SOME PIG: "Wilbur"
A new folk music, requiring focus, from Ernesto Diaz-Infante and Bret Hart.
"These guys can wrench more sounds from their guitars than most electronic artists can produce with their high tech synths, and are no less mindfucked and freaky. The set opens with a bang with a guitar (and violin?) assault on which bowed, scratched and scraped strings duel to the death." - Aural Innovations
SOME PIG: "Templeton"
Stacked-improvisation "songs" from Bret Hart and Ernesto Diaz-Infante.
"We hear avant-improv guitar strums and attacks, quirky frenetic electronic percussion, freaky space electronics, and vocals that seem to crossover between folk and psychedelic." - Aural Innovations
SOME PIG: "Charlotte"
Ernesto SINGS!  [10/2001]

Bret Hart: "Mount Rushmore" (dbl-CD)
"I hear a lot of interesting takes on the avant-rock/RIO school, though some travel down its more abstract hallways. Nice guitar work and loads of sounds I couldn't begin to identify, though Bret provides a laundry list of the instruments used, both Korean and Western. The guitar work is creatively varied and beautifully atonal. I noted in a couple other reviews, and it's also the case on Mount Rushmore Vol 1, that much of this reminds me of what Fred Frith was doing on his Gravity and Speechless albums. I also hear a few bits that remind me of Robert Fripp, but only in the most demented Bret Hart way." - Aural Innovations 
Camera Obtusa: "TURTLE"
Soundscape and ambient-translations. Island arrangements of red dirt sourcetapes.
"Has much to offer listeners who are able to immerse themselves in th' energies generated.  The sense of tortoise is pervasive, "plod" leaking thru into your imagination & "heavy" th' keyword for the experience.  That does NOT mean it is "slow", or "lacking" in energy... the nuances (if you listen carefully) are clearly framed & enunciated." - Improvijazzation Nation 
ALONZO PHILLIPS    "Teeth in my Mind"
Reissue of tribal-psychedelic lo-fi classic from 1981.
"I puzzled for MONTHS as to who'n'l this Phillips character was.  This '90's outing features B.P.P's very agile acoustic guitar blooz', with some odd (& at times quirky) chords & percussives you won't BELIEVE thrown in.  His lyrics will FEEL like a dentist (mental or NOT) yankin' 'em out from th' rootz! " - Improvijazzation Nation 
Bret Hart: "Horsefly"
Hart calls it 'mountain music', but the North Carolina hicks who've heard it don't agree. 
Francis Woodbridge:   "GORED"

Dramatic and two-fisted imagery. Deeply seasoned with history and allusions to classic literature and Philosophy. 
Tina Hart  "Gettin' Over It"

Bare bones and extremely spartan presentations of songs old and new. 
BRET HART    "Bullwinkle Pond & The 5"

Extended technique and layered time-signatures abound, making this like an aural quilt of many colors.
"Sort of bridges John Fahey and Derek Bailey." - Pop Locker

"First released in 1988, the entire set consists of acoustic guitar workouts that run the gamut from John Fahey influenced to avant-improv, though despite the expected dissonance this is relatively accessible music." - Aural Innovations

AUTOMATIC MUSIC    "For Your Information"
Live recordings of undiluted electro-acoustic improvisation were hammered relentlessly into glimmers of the sourcetrax.  Fearlessly (and beerlessly) mixed by Bret.
CLANG QUARTET   "CQ: 4/15/00"

The only available whole-show live document of North Carolina's own Clang Quartet, aka Scotty Irving.
Scotty was recently featured in Modern Drummer magazine.
"Clang Quartet is the musical project of Scotty Irving (drummer for Geezer Lake, Eugene Chadbourne, Elvis X, and others). Live, Clang Quartet is predominantly an improvisational percussion/performance-art show, based metaphorically on the life of Jesus Christ. The recorded output features standard instruments like guitars, keyboards, and drums as well as Irving's own electrified hand saw/stapler/water bottle and cicadas mixed with sound collages of family tape recordings from his childhood. Truly experimental music in the spirit of Swans, Whitehouse, Merzbow, and AC/DC." - SilberMedia

Bret Hart    "INCISOR"
The Surgeon General has determined that listening to this CD with headphones may cause the growth of a second head. 
BRET HART   "Rice"

These compositions have been composed for performance using only instruments of home/homemade origin: The Bend-Guitar, The Boing-Guitar, Joe, The Howler, Saddam, The Arc, El Slab.
"The way that Hart approaches playing his Asian/alien-sounding home-made electric instruments is so thoroughly 70's Rock Radio that what results is a feeling that you've heard these melodies before...maybe while tripping." - EarChow ('91) 
HipBone:   "DECOUPAGE"
Maniacal guitars with biscuits and, post-dense, post-twinkling, post-imploding.
"From North Carolina, Hipbone plays songs that are very much in the mold of Dire Straits, T-Bone Burnett, The Band... you get the idea. The songs are well written, the vocals passionate, and the guitars are non-flashy but well played and keep the music that backs these fine songs interesting and rockin'." - Aural Innovations

"Those who first discovered Bret in the "old daze" will hear a new Hart here... solid compz', some very rawk/volk-oriented pieces that will make all th' retired hippies teary-eyed. His vox are uniquely his, & the lyrics totally thought-provoking. If yer' lookin' for background music, go somewhere else! Hart is able to capture the joys & sadnesses with a punch & vigor that hearkens back to th' HOTTEST groups of th' '60's!" - Improvijazzation Nation
"Piper at the Gates of Neil Young's House." - Bret Hart
Hear Mp3 of "BIG HEAD" 

 HipBone: "Cho-Rok"
"A beat-heavy rock-'n'-roll freak- out...more fun than a live badger in your ex-wife's gymbag." - SNIDE
Hear Mp3 of "Our Love is Green"
Hear Mp3 of "Bet'cha Never Knew" 
HipBone:  "Grandfather's What?"

Combines all of the BIG EARS record with live versions of several songs from this disc, as well as a few surprises that only folks at HipBone gigs could have heard. 
BRET HART    "Duck or Mask?"

"Duck or Mask? boasts a more conventional approach...with elegant and earthy chops filling the project.  Vibes of The Band and early-70's Eric Clapton filter out the mix.  Hart and crew still throw down some challenging compositions, but the musician's pop sense is never buried deeply" - Scott McLennan (Worcester Telegram & Gazette)
Hear Mp3 of "It Just Don't Lend Itself to Words" 
BRET HART    "Walrus"

Electronics-laden acoustic folk music. With a strnge tribute to John Fahey, and a contemporarily pertinent biblical quote-soundscape that'll chill ya bones.
"Hart dives, chin-first, into some sort of dreamy Bob Dylan-in-Jujuland digital breeding pool." - CyberSong Quarterly     
CAMERA OBTUSA    "Pillar o' Salt"
CAMERA OBTUSA's  third collection of "headphonic transportation music." 
CAMERA OBTUSA    "Whistling Rufus"

Everyone we know thinks they're being insulting when they say,
"This ought'a be used in monster movies."Sure to frustrate Eno afficionados and Tangerine Dream deifiers.
READ entire Aural-Innovations REVIEW OF "Whistlin' Rufus" 
"What's becoming apparent as a trademark of Camera Obtusa's music is the scenery created by percussion and a dancing, bouncing variety of sounds, many of them having a strong percussive quality too." - Aural Innovations 
CAMERA OBTUSA    "Beating the Devil's Fiddle"
Sounds of strings, percussion, island field recordings, and domestic appliances gather for a strange and unnerving joyride. 

Progressive folk-Rockabilly and soundscapes from this adventurous, tho' short-lived "post- R.I.O. trio from rural North Carolina.
"FAUST meets Jerry Jeff Walker!" - SHAN'T RANT

"Features some nice guitar solo work & some very interesting Korean percussion instruments... there are so many rhythmic challenges on STEGOSAURUS that you'll miss over 50% unless you listen to this with headphones - about 20 times." -  Improvijazzation Nation 

WADE COLDWATER    "Minotaur on Toast"
"If you liked Pink Floyd's The Wall, steer way clear of this bizarre and turbulent instrumental metaphor.  Not as sappy and no cartoon. If ya like the music on recent Tom Waits or old records by The Band, this may make your brain smile." - The Galactus Guild

"Asteroid Schoolhouse guitarist Wade Coldwater steps out on his own for a guitar and space noise/electronic set that really held my attention with its avant space wildness packaged in a thematic presentation and feel. Many of the tracks are brief noise and ambience pieces that utilize sounds in a way that communicates a soundtrack of the Minotaur's story" - Aural Innovations
READ Aural-Innovations REVIEW OF "Minotaur on Toast"
Read  review from Jim Santo's DEMO-UNIVERSE   

ALONZO PHILLIPS    "Bee-Spit Architecture"
Got Rockabilly, got SpaceRock, got experimental folk music, got some stompin' artsy's all here.
Hear MP3 of "Bee-Spit Architecture" (title track)
BRET HART   "No More Bandages!"

The 1st CD release by Bret Hart.  A collage of musical interactions while living in Worcester, MA (1996-1998).
Hear MP3 of "So, Whut Now!?"
Hear Mp3 of "Marcel Duchamp"
Read  review from Jim Santo's DEMO-UNIVERSE 
HE TALKS TO GIRAFFES    "Live 2/19/98"

Improvisations venture into rocking Beefheart/Monkees/Jeff Beck approximations, as well asinto gently collapsing universes of sound and ethnicity.  A fractal-jam. 
KUDZU    "Swamp Gothic"

"More women have bought this CD than anything else I've ever recorded.  Howcum?  I dunno." -bhh
Hear MP3 of "Dummy Down" 
KUDZU    "Incest is Bad"

A collection of songs centering around the national tragedy of child abuse and neglect.  Not many punches pulled.
Hear MP3 of "You Are a Great Container" 
TINA HART   "Planting That Seed in Their Heads"

"Killer slide guitar and session playing can smell the swamp gas!" - Raygin Cajin Tunepage

"Some TUFF sound here... Christine has th' vocal chops to pull off, & does some pretty mean acoustic as well... Ms. Hart clearly has her own feelings to express & a style all her own! " - Improvijazzation Nation
Hear MP3 of "I Wanna Fly"

Metcalf/Diaz-Infante/Hart   "Fowl Turbulence"
"A pandemonium of sound". - Pax Records 
BRET HART    "Malaysia Tamed"
"Possibly the most aggressive electric guitar album  Hart's released to date" - EarChow. 
ASTEROID SCHOOLHOUSE    "Blame Your Parents and Move On"
harsh guitar/electronica space noise
"Asteroid Schoolhouse play lo-fi instrumental improvised space noise rock. Harsh stuff indeed." - Aural Innovations
READ entire Aural-Innovations REVIEW OF "Blame Your Parents and Move On" 

lo-fi instrumental improvised noise rock
"Fans of the avant-guitar experimentations of folks like Fred Frith, Henry Kaiser, and Derek Bailey will enjoy Asteroid Schoolhouse's noisier, and often spaceier, take on the genre." - Aural Innovations
READ entire Aural-Innovations REVIEW OF "Mind-Drill" 
ASTEROID SCHOOLHOUSE    "Two Big, Fat, Bass-playin' Dudes"

ASTEROID SCHOOLHOUSE are a collective of idiosyncratic musicians who live and craft in Southern Virginia. Three of them, who were art school classmates during the 70's, live in conjoined treehouse studios, connected by wooden bridges. The rest live near them and share a common vision uniting art, friendship, and on-going constructive criticism, into a strange and unique music-making force..
"Definitely not for the faint-hearted but if you're the type that likes to listen to improvisational guitar music in one ear and Hawkwind and Ash Ra Tempel in the other, then Asteroid Schoolhouse will gladly mix the two into one channel for you" - Aural Innovations
READ entire Aural-Innovations REVIEW OF "Two Big, Fat, Bass-playin' Dudes" 

Initially, while Faced was in production, Phillips stated that the record "would never see the ears of day".He has since acquiesced, mentioning that the new record "is as sparse as a catfish".Members of the space-rock band, Asteroid Schoolhouse, are featured on many songs.
Hear MP3 of demo version of "Morning Dove" 
PENGUIN    "Halloween with Penguin"

One-pass improvisation recorded in the HipWorks ArtSpace in Fitchburg, MA on Halloween 1994.
"It's almost beautiful, at times; grisly and visceral at others." - OINK!

Ordering InstrumenTales:
Until we get some CREDIT CARD ACTION happening, you'll need to mail your payment to the following address:
InstrumenTales Records
428 Patrick Street   Eden, North Carolina  27288 USA
Every disc in our library is available for $8 ppd, anywhere.
Please be sure to write your mailing address legibly.

Thank you.        CONTACT InstrumenTales
                                                                                   HOME                                                                                                                                        hear some MP3's

on Szum Music
[bhh performs with A.M. using stringed and homemade instruments/live electronics/percussion]
Automatic Music: "Carnival of Light" [CD]
Automatic Music: "(Outtakes from) Music from Eden" [CD]
Automatic Music: "Music from Eden" [3" CD]
Automatic Music: "Spiffy" [CD]
Automatic Music: " a dollhouse" [CD]
Automatic Music: "let us go into the open country" [CD]
Automatic Music: "A Package For You - Live 3/3/2000" [CD]
Automatic Music: "This is More Automatic Music"

Compilation Appearances:
'I'm Eighteen'  (w/ Nick Didkovsky) on "Thinking of Alice: A Tribute To Alice Cooper" [Scatboy Records]
'Devo Corporate Anthem' (as Alonzo Phillips) on "Spudsuckers!: A Tribute To Devo" [The Facility]
'Simple Song' (w/ El Freezepops) on "FESTER: A Tribute To The Residents" []
'Bullwinkle Pond & the 5" on "Delicate Furies: a collection of guitar-oriented performances"
  This compilation features: Fred Frith, Nick Didkovsky, Ernesto Diaz-Infante, among many talented others.  [Homemade Music]