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ashes in the brittle air (2020 remaster)

by Black Tape For A Blue Girl

supported by
Chris Fox
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Chris Fox I rarely like music with female vocals but this is excellent. None of the melisma that destroys most singing nowadays, no vibrato, just voice as instrument and very beautiful Favorite track: ashes in the brittle air (2020 remaster).
ultra // dave
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ultra // dave Sam is truly a remarkable artist. Ashes brought me great comfort during my high school years and I can only hope it does the same for future generations. You have to listen to the LP from beginning to end to appreciate his compositional artistry. Oscar and Sue-Kenny added greatly to the atmosphere of this LP. From its release it still remains one of my favorites. Favorite track: you tangle within me (2020 remaster).
Scott thumbnail
Scott Ashes in the brittle air was always an interesting work, and the 2019 remaster truly sounds fantastic; the improvements to the clarity of the vocals and depth of the instruments are quite remarkable. Favorite track: the scar of a poet (2020 remaster).
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    ☂️ 🔥 ☂️ 🔥 ☂️ 🔥 ☂️ 🔥 🔺 🔥 ☂️ 🔥 ☂️ 🔥 ☂️ 🔥 ☂️
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  • Record/Vinyl + Digital Album

    Repressed in 2022: Limited 2nd edition of 300. 140-gram Gold in Ultra Clear. With b&w lyric card. First 11-tracks of download. Interview fanzine included with your order

    Includes unlimited streaming of ashes in the brittle air (2020 remaster) via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.
    ships out within 4 days
    Purchasable with gift card

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  • Compact Disc (CD) + Digital Album

    Remastered 2CD in 6-panel digipak with 16-page lyric/photo booklet. 21 tracks on bonus 2nd disc. Limited edition of 500. New reduced international shipping rate: $8.75. See note above, with LP.

    Includes unlimited streaming of ashes in the brittle air (2020 remaster) via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.
    ships out within 3 days
    Purchasable with gift card

      $17 USD or more 


  • 8x5-inch journal. 160 lined pages, with colored ribbon bookmark & document pocket on interior back cover. The logo is debossed. Very nice!

    Includes unlimited streaming of ashes in the brittle air (2020 remaster) via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.
    ships out within 3 days
    edition of 100 
    Purchasable with gift card

      $15 USD or more 


milan 03:05
we return 03:05


Hi. Black Tape For A Blue Girl's 1989 third album ASHES IN THE BRITTLE AIR is now available in a deluxe edition remastered from the original 1/4” tapes. The remaster is warm and clear, and the album retains that dreamy, romantic quality you remember from the 80s.

ASHES contains angst and trepidation in the lyrics yet also beauty and hopeful melancholia in the mood and music. It’s an album of existential, ethereal, and gothic musings. ASHES was the release that brought the band out of the fanzine-based underground to listeners of what in the 80s we called “college radio.” “Across a thousand blades” on CMJ's CERTAIN DAMAGE compilation CD went to stations across the country and garnered regular airplay. In fact, many of you have mentioned that ASHES was your first exposure to Black Tape For A Blue Girl.

Alternative Press: “This is hurting, romantic lament. Herrera’s vocals suddenly ram me with image-brimming, griping vacancy of the precariously desperate soul hanging beneath hope by a frayed thread.”

As I wrote in the original album description: “Bursting forth like a lucid dream, this release unearths powerful connections to deeper truths. Sue-Kenny’s folk approach and Oscar’s intense voice guide the way through Sam’s tales of existential personal introspection.”

Oscar sizzles with dramatic and passionate vocals. Sue-Kenny Smith’s voice brings a softer, sensitive & spontaneous English-folk quality to the album. Mixing Sue with my electronics and ambience — and Oscar’s vocals — created a diverse collection of songs that arrived at just the right moment. There wasn’t really anyone else in America doing this ethereal style.

ASHES was the first BlackTape released on CD; the improved sonic quality of the medium over the previous two LPs really benefited the music. With this expanded rerelease, my mastering guy went back and worked from the original quarter-inch mixdown tapes. In 1989, I thought the original sounded great, but this new mastering sounds amazing! There is so much subtle detail now, everything feels warmer and more present. I really love it! I added six completed tracks (on the second disc) from that era — something special for the album’s fans. There’s no way I can go back in time and write more pieces in this exact style. These tracks are completed songs I never released for artist-angst reasons; they make a wonderful addition to the album. Also included are a bunch of demos and early mixes to round out the 21 bonus tracks.

Disc 1 contains the remastered 11-track 1989 album. Disc 2 contains demos plus six songs that have never been heard before: tracks from “the first version” of ASHES. There’s a lengthy backstory about how those songs evolved, my stressing about it, and cutting them from the album. The tracks remained in my archive, unmixed, all these years. With modern equipment, THE SOUND OF WAVES ep (the first 5 tracks on disc 2) finally sounds the way I had hoped back in ’88. There’s a total of 21 bonus tracks on the 2nd CD & download (including demos, acapella versions). “Across a thousand blades” has a new 2020 mix on disc 2, using only original sources.)

Option Magazine: “We’re talking deep European existential despair here, the fevered outpouring of a tortured soul.”

• Remastered from original 1/4” tapes.
• 21 bonus tracks on the 2nd CD: demos, acapella versions, includes 6 completely finished songs from back in the day that have never been heard before.
• “Across a thousand blades” has a new 2020 mix on Disc 2 using original sources. CD+LP version is the original mix, of course.

There's also a limited edition "Aska i den skor luften" journal.

🔪 ★ 🔪 ★ 🔪 ★ 🔪 ★ 🔪 ★ 🔪 ★ 🔪 ★ 🔪 ★ 🔪 ★ 🔪
This was my 12th Kickstarter; it’s the way I fund my albums in the modern version of the music industry. Crowdfunding is a wonderful connection I make with people who love the art I create. I meet more and more fans from back-in-the-day this way; I enjoy chatting with you and hearing your experiences with my music. So often, I'm told that my albums were there for you at a tough time in life. A breakup, a death, a personal crisis; it’s very rewarding to know that the sounds I created for my own emotional reasons were helpful when you needed them.


released May 6, 1989

Original release date approx: 9/27/1989

All physical sales include the 20 page Memorabilia booklet. It can also be read here: www.blacktapeforabluegirl.com/ashes


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Black Tape For A Blue Girl Portland, Oregon

Black Tape For A Blue Girl creates darkwave, ethereal, neoclassical, ambient, goth albums. This page also includes my ambient/electronic music, as well as side-projects. Thanks for listening. Sam

Patrons receive exclusive music: blacktapeforabluegirl.bandcamp.com/patron

Formed in 1986
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