Monolithic Undertow – Exploring drone in a new book featuring the Master Musicians of Joujouka

Monolithic Undertow: In Search Of Sonic Oblivion by Harry Sword will be available on 4th February 2021 published by White Rabbit Books.

Monolithic Undertow, the first book of its kind to focus solely on drone, takes an in-depth look at the history and origins of the “mighty drone” and is available to pre-order now.

Master Musicians of Joujouka manager Frank Rynne and group leader Ahmed El Attar meet minimalist musician and composer Terry Riley (centre) on tour in Japan, November 2017

Master Musicians of Joujouka manager Frank Rynne was interviewed by the author about working with and recording the group over 25 years, the Musicians’ history and music.

The book also features The Beatles, Ravi Shankar, John Coltrane, Alice Coltrane, The Velvet Underground, The Stooges, Ash Ra Tempel, Melvins and Sunn O))), to name a few.

A statement from White Rabbit Books said: “Monolithic Undertow alights a crooked path across musical, religious and subcultural frontiers. It traces the line from ancient traditions to the modern underground, navigating archaeoacoustics, ringing feedback, chest plate sub-bass, avant-garde eccentricity, sound weaponry and fervent spiritualism. From Neolithic beginnings to bawdy medieval troubadours, Sufi mystics to Indian raga masters, cone shattering dubwise bass, Hawkwind’s Ladbroke Grove to the outer reaches of Faust and Ash Ra Tempel; the hash-fueled fug of The Theatre of Eternal Music to the cough syrup reverse hardcore of Melvins, seedy VHS hinterland of Electric Wizard, ritual amp worship of Earth and Sunn O))) and the many touch points in between, Monolithic Undertow explores the power of the drone – an audio carrier vessel capable of evoking womb like warmth or cavernous dread alike.”

The book is described by Beck as “An inspired and intuitive navigation of the drone continuum . . . with a compass firmly set to new and enlightening psychedelic truths.”

Read more via White Rabbit Books here

Pre-order your copy here

Master Musicians of Joujouka tour in Japan postponed

The Master Musicians of Joujouka with Boujeloud dancing at WWWX in Shibuya, Tokyo in November 2017

Following the postponement of the Master Musicians of Joujouka tour in Japan this year, Festival De Frue promoters have announced that the appearance would be rescheduled for 2021 or 2022.

The decision not to travel to Japan for the shows was due to ongoing uncertainty around the Covid-19 global pandemic.

Festival organisers announced that any ticket holders for the shows would be contacted with details of refunds, or to carry the tickets over to the rescheduled dates when confirmed.

The tour was set to see the Master Musicians of Joujouka return to Japan for the first time since 2017.

The Master Musicians of Joujouka were scheduled to appear with The Orb in a continuation of their collaboration debuted at last year’s Dior Cruise Show 2020 in Marrakesh.

Dates affected included scheduled appearances at Festival De Frue in Shizuoka 31st October to 1st November and a concert at WWWX in Shibuya, Tokyo on 3rd November.

Festival De Frue was able to go ahead with a line-up of artists from Japan.

A statement from Festival De Frue organisers said: “Festival De Frue 2020 will be held carefully, taking measures against infectious diseases in line with world standards, such as wearing masks, temperature measurement, disinfection, hand washing and calling and ingenuity to keep things from becoming dense. To do this it may only for artists living in Japan.”

The Master Musicians of Joujouka arrive at Shibuya in downtown Tokyo, November 2017
Master Musicians of Joujouka at WWWX venue in Shibuya, Tokyo

The Master Musicians of Joujouka would like to thank the promoters and everyone who had planned to see them play in Japan and look forward to seeing you at a later date when it is safe to travel.

Master Musicians of Joujouka at WWWX in 2017

For more information about the festival visit the Festival De Frue website