> B20_07 Penalune – Not All Clouds Are White

Catalogue Number: B20_07
Release Date: May 21st 2012 on digital and DVD

Purchase links are below – click to jump

Christopher Ernst, aka Penalune, clearly doesn’t want for inspiration – in the 18 months of his project’s lifetime he’s delivered two well-received albums for STL’s Something imprint, the only outside artist to feature on the label; a further 40-minute collaboration with violinist Kenny Wang and the inauguration of his Voodoo Down label demonstrate Ernst’s prolific nature.

With Ernst’s fourth missive, Broken20 follow on from John Cohen’s ‘Tar River’ DVD release (B20_05) in bringing Penalune’s cinematic drone to the screen, as ‘Not All Clouds Are White’ will constitute an album-length audiovisual experience, with imagery courtesy of visual artist Reid Bingham.

Sonically Penalune plumbs murky depths, retrieving meditative groans, queasy washes and near-hidden ritualistic rhythmic patterns, providing a Lynchian backdrop with devil in every detail. Opener ‘Feel Of Red’ sweeps in with squashed, oppressive pulses before thick fuzzy synths announce an eerie whole-tone scale that both elevates and subjugates. ‘Taste of Blue’ evokes early Scorn, Terry Riley and Angelo Badalamenti in equal measure, while ‘Stars and Satellites’ piles the pressure ever more with sheeted white noise and reverberation ad infinitum.

‘Not All Clouds Are White’ follows, conjuring rain-soaked hauntologies and wasps’ nest antagonism. ‘Outrun The Sun’ harks back to the album opener, with slo-mo reverse gasps and morose bass pulses etched in pristine sound design, whereas ‘Cthonic’ allows the pulse to slow with a more melodic drift and some closer, tangible textures. ‘My Gang Will Get You’ rounds matters off with fifteen minutes of tension, threat and eventual release through punishing industrial drum work.

‘Not All Clouds Are White’ is a severe, unfriendly and brutal listen, but as a whole it represents purity of vision and precision in execution, generating exactly the sense of distraction and unease its creator intends.

Each purchase of the physical DVD will ship with a download code for mp3s of the piece.


Coming from the deranged mind of Christopher Ernst and visual artist Reid Bingham, ‘Not All Clouds are White’ sounds something like a minimal techno record without any beats. That doesn’t make a lot of sense I know, but it’s the feel you get from the album; while it might be made up of gassy hisses and low-frequency pulses, there’s so much density in the details you begin hearing rhythms that may or may not be there. It might be a boiling, clattering tap or a throbbing hum but the rhythms are there, somewhere. One for fans of Thomas Koner’s cavernous ambience or the stark loner-acid of Plastikman – this is gonna take you to some weird places, and that’s got to be a good thing.

– Boomkat.com

“…The work of sound artist Christopher Ernst, Not All Clouds Are White is an unsettling listen. Ernst manipulates the listener’s spatial awareness through careful layering and variations in volume – at times it seems as though his blizzard-like drones are lurching into the listener’s personal space, constantly vibrating as though comprised of innumerable particles. Not so much drones, in fact, as swarms. Penalune shares a textural depth with GAS, but Ernst’s music is aggressive rather than elegaic – it frequently sounds like something determined to break through from another dimension, akin to the malevolent spirit in Tobe Hooper’s Poltergeist or the revenant child-killer in controversial 1992 BBC drama Ghostwatch. The sense of disembodied dread is palpable – when a strident rhythm emerges during “My Gang Will Get You”, it instils a sense of panic comparable to that of Akira Yamaoka’s sound design for the Playstation classic, Silent Hill…”

– Joseph Stannard, The Wire magazine Jul 2012

Audio Previews


Direct from store.broken20.com

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> Introducing Broken20

welcome to Broken20.

Broken20 is a new label from ruaridhTVO, with assistance from production unit and erstlaub

Broken20 will release all sorts of music. Rather than be genre-tied, we will be releasing music rooted in a particular aesthetic – releases concerned with decay, erosion, entropy, mistakes and errors, line noise and tape hiss, hum and buzz.

We’ll primarily be a digital download label, although there will be forays into highly limited cd- and dvd-r variants of our releases. We hope to eventually release some vinyl editions.

> Forthcoming Releases

November 19th Production Unit – There Are No Shortcuts In A Grid System

TVO/Covered In Sand – Red Night Variations cassette/DVD
Orphax DVD
EP Series 1: Semtek

further: Spatial, Tengui, Mick Finesse, DJ Votive/Dour Tonic Input, and a reissue from the 1950s

> There Is No Grid

To accompany the amazing new album from Production Unit, we’ve developed a microsite to go with it featuring all of his past work, to give context to his debut album. As well as four full EPs, there are dj mixes and interviews to examine.

You can find it at broken20.com/grid

> B20_10 Production Unit – There Are No Shortcuts In A Grid System

We’re very proud to have reached our milestone 10th release proper (15th in total).
Our 10th release is “There Are No Shortcuts In A Grid System”, the debut album from label co-founder Production Unit.
It comes on standard digital and deluxe boxed USB stick set, with art prints and additional material.
Full details, including clips and reviews, can be found on the dedicated release page.

> B20_09 Mick Finesse – Spatial Anxiety EP

Our 9th release is out now. It’s a digital release of gritty, broken techno from Denver resident Steve Penders aka Mick Finesse, and is accompanied by remixes from Cassegrain, Tengui and our own TVO.
Full details, including clips and reviews, can be found on the dedicated release page.

> b20_08 Erstlaub – Marconi’s Shipwreck DVD/digital

Our 8th release is out on August 27th. It comes from our Art Director and resident drone guru Dave Fyans, aka Erstlaub, on DVD and digital.
Full details, including clips and reviews, can be found on the dedicated release page.

> Podcast 22: The Outer Church


Our 22nd podcast is now online from label friend and sometime host of our music, The Outer Church. A weird, double edged trip to the depths of the forest – simultaneously soothing and terrifying – it fills the listener’s head with crackle and flame. Grab it from the podcast tab above.

> b60_02 TVO – Red Night

Red Night, label boss TVO’s 6th solo album, is out now on cassette and digital on our tape sub-label Broken60.
Clips, details and a couple of great reviews already – including a stellar one from The Wire magazine – are available over at Broken60 along with those all important purchase links. You can buy it direct from our store at store.broken20.com

> Podcast 21 : Penalune


Our 21st podcast is now online from our own artist Penalune. A dark, intense journey through the experimental side projects of metal musicians, it exemplifies the spirit of the label. Grab it from the podcast tab above.

> b20_07 Penalune

Our 7th release is now out. From NYC artist Christopher Ernst, aka Penalune, it’s an hour of dark industrial drone and noise
Full details, including clips and reviews, can be found on the dedicated release page.

> b20_07 is coming soon

Not content with releasing the amazing ‘ICU Tracks’ from Production Unit, we’re moving straight on to our next, very different release. From Brooklyn’s Penalune, it’s a DVD/digital release that touches on classic British industrial sounds, noise and drone to mesmerising effect.

Check out the full release page here

> b20_06 Production Unit

b20_06 is now out. It’s a digital release, ICU Tracks, from Production Unit, which comes with remixes from Perc and Paul Purgas from Emptyset.
Full details, including clips and reviews, can be found on the dedicated release page.