NOW ON BANDCAMP 50+ Exclusive Tracks on the Electronic Explorations Compilation

“We were born and raised in Panevezys, the city surrounded by the industrial sites, that were left abandoned after the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991. This is why we decided to present expressive records that had (from our subjective perspective) perceptible mood of confusion, obscurity, propaganda and harshness that dominated at that time. In this collage there are 35 mixed works and various additional sample cuts. Every move, even the most radical or extreme, in this mix has its own meaning – Compiled & mixed by Justinas Mikulskis & Lukas Petraitis

Secret Thirteen is the interdisciplinary internet journal, presenting exclusive mixes and interviews by influential and original artists, musicians, label owners, record collectors as well as overviews of contemporary art works and various imprints. The journal specializes in Experimental, Drone, Ambient, Abstract, Techno, Contemporary music genres, but lately Secret Thirteen also have many guests from Goth Rock, Post-Punk, Minimal Wave, Industrial, IDM, World, Jazz scenes.

Number 13 symbolizes the death of the matter or of oneself and the birth of the spirit – it is the passage to a higher level of existence. In day-to-day life it is not easy to distance yourself from corporeality. Even more challenging is to find the way to fulfil the emotional needs and express inner feelings. Aldous Huxley once said: “After silence that which comes nearest to expressing the inexpressible is music”. By analysing the depths of sounds ranging from academic composition to expressive electronic dance music, by suggesting deeper and more emotional understanding of art and presenting both famous and no-name artists, Secret Thirteen offers to accompany you in your journey in search of passage of a higher level of existence.

Understanding the development as the main vital force, Secret Thirteen always leaves space for unpredictability.

“We wanted not to avoid resonating pieces and selected more experimental records with a strong dynamic atmosphere. This audio collage indirectly reflects the gradually growing global militaristic tension, the search for supernatural signs in the modern society and diverse art movements ranging from Constructivism, Bauhaus to Dadaism, Suprematism. Also, publications of the honourable Lithuanian philosophers such as Algis Mickūnas, Arvydas Šliogeris, Leonidas Donskis made a big impact as well”

History:

The birth of the journal was determined by its founders constant intellectual development, increasing amount of knowledge, the aim to be a significant participant in Lithuanian and foreign cultural worlds, personal ambitions and the lack of concentration of specific and relevant information. The disappointingly small amount of systemized and unique information in the internet was also a major factor for the foundation and developing of the journal.

However, the main reasons of the journal birth were the love for art in general, the aim of helping the often overlooked talented artists to find their audience, the understanding of the importance of art. The educational aspect is also of prime importance as there are many links to various external sources and key information in the constructive texts. Thus, the reader can find more relevant information himself.

“We tried to reflect a mixture of intelligence that was maturing inside our minds for some time and ranges from Socrates democratic fundamentals to cosmic consciousness studies. The interest in politics and technology issues, sociology and different ancient cultures also strongly influenced the formation of whole ideological and emotional concept. All forms of resistance of the 20th century inspired to create an unadorned narrative, a dramatic vision that holds the sense of anguish, stress, conspiracy, faith and chaos. All in all, it is a subtly eclectic selection that requires musical sophistication, patience and desire to perceive its coded message”

Secret Thirteen – 10 top Mixes

Founding:
The founder of Secret Thirteen is Justinas Mikulskis, music producer and critic, who actively observes and analyses the cultural world as well as participates in it. Having started as a music maker under S13 alias, he suddenly turned to journalism and founded the journal. However, Mikulskis is still active as a musician and DJ and his eclectic sets can be heard in various Lithuanian festivals and cultural events. Apart from Justinas Mikulskis, there are other contributors including music journalist and linguist Paulius Ilevicius, who also writes in Suru.lt blog, Radvile Nakaite, professional cultural manager, producer, event organizer, journalist and art critic. In July of 2013 Experimental, Drone artist Lukas Petraitis (aka Luke Marvel) complemented the team. Shortly after, the journal was joined by professional photographer Laima Stasiulionyte and moderator Evelina Atkociunaite. The major role in the founding of the journal was also played by Margarita Niedvaraite, a lawyer with the huge interest in art, who encouraged Mikulskis to target international audiences, overcome the language and cultural barriers and discover the place in the market. Unfortunately, in the Autumn of 2012 Niedvaraite left the journal for personal reasons.

Mixes:
This section of the journal is updated every week and gains the most attention. The original idea was to present Drone, Ambient, Noise, Electro-acoustic compilations, based on rhythmless structures, wide soundscapes with the tendencies to minimalism and abstractions. However, this idea was gradually rejected and instead the criteria of unique emotional emphasis and conceptual integrity were applied. It became clear, that in home environment most composers, artists, record collectors and label owners listen to much wider variety of music, ranging from Industrial to refined electronica to Avant-garde, Jazz or Folk.

The main criteria of mix selection are their conception, the development of material and emotional narrative, their relation to journal’s idea and other minor factors, that determine the final result. Apart from presenting the important artists, another significant aim of the journal is to establish the contacts between labels and artists as well as between artists and their audiences. The journal often serves as a diplomatic platform, based on long term communication and the development of cultural relations, thus being able to present the most recent and interesting visual and sonic material from its partners.

The most intriguing part for the listener is to discover an entirely opposite stylistic scope in the mix from the artist of certain genre. The artists undertake the most unexpected musical voyages, presents very personal sonic experiences and their secret discoveries. The idea to present early influences is also important here.

“This compilation is all about the essential choices we did in our controversial lifetime and how we evaluate/interpret its consequences. We hardly believe in a friendly, tolerant and cosmopolitan future society, so this is like a manifest against wars based on religion and resources, popular media, monopolism and selfishness.”

Interviews:
In this section various unique and interesting artists are presented. The scope of the questions is wide and includes art, philosophy, social issues, personal experience and achievements. The respondent list already contains such names as Joachim Sauter (CEO of ART+COM), Haus Arafna, Scanner, Adam Fowler, Kreng, Tropic of Cancer, Amanda Brown, ASC, Orphx, Loscil etc. There are also plans to interview people from non-artistic backgrounds such as NASA scientists, physics, coffee experts etc.

Spotlight:
This section presents record labels and the people behind them. Interviews reveal the specifics of their activity. Moreover, every entry goes with the exclusive mix, compiled from the tracks by label artists.

Audience:
S13 journal has visitors from all around the globe, ranging from Australia and Japan to Canada and Mexico. The contributing artists are also globally scattered. The places include Singapore (Xhin), USA (Tropic of Cancer), Japan (KK Null), Turkey (She Past Away), Israel (Ran Slavin), United Kingdom (Emptyset), Norway (Biosphere), Australia (Oren Ambarchi, HTRK) etc. The cultural diversity provides the journal with sonic variety, eclecticism, constant unexpectedness and the most surprising sounds.

Team:
Justinas Mikulskis – Ownership, reviews, website design
Radvile Nakaite – Editorship
Paulius Ilevicius – Interviews, editorship
Laima Stasiulionyte – Photographer
Evelina Atkociunaite – Moderator
Lukas Petraitis – Moderator

Tracklist

  1. ELECTRONIC EXPLORATIONS - 281 - Secret Thirteen
  2. _______________________________________________
  3. 01. Pain Teens - Hands In Fire [Anomie Records, 1989]
  4. 02. Jannick Schou - Emptiness Waiting To Be Filled [Experimedia, 2011]
  5. 03. Excerpt from Various - Viva Negativa! - A Tribute To the New Blockaders Volume 1 [Vinyl-on-demand, 2006]
  6. 04. Nordvargr - Tordön [Cold Spring, 2008]
  7. 05. Excerpt from Various - Viva Negativa! - A Tribute To the New Blockaders Volume 1 [Vinyl-on-demand, 2006]
  8. 06. Goblin - Witch / Sights [Cinevox, 1977]
  9. 07. Combative Alignment - Loathing [Eternal Soul Records, 2003]
  10. 08. Alberich - No Mistake [Not On Label (Alberich Self-released), 2012]
  11. 09. Bad Sector - Alpha [taâlem, 2011]
  12. 10. Bellows - Untitled 07 [Entr'acte, 2012]
  13. 11. Daniel Menche - She's A Slaughterhouse [Side Effects, 1997]
  14. 12. Mika Vainio - Berns [Raster-Noton, 2009]
  15. 13. Panzar - Wirbelwind [Old Europa Cafe, 2006]
  16. 14. Pete Swanson - Do You Like Students? [Type, 2012]
  17. 15. Thomas Köner - Nieve Penitentes 3 [Barooni, 1992]
  18. 16. Primeaux, Mike & Attson - Healing Song #10 [Canyon Records, 1998]
  19. 17. Nocturnal Emissions - Raindance [Soleilmoon Recordings, 1988]
  20. 18. Kozmonaut - Die Stimme Aus Dem Universum [Vier Productions Inc., 1986]
  21. 19. Comando Bruno - Erwartung Part 1 [Graf Haufen Tapes, 1984]
  22. 20. Asche - Goldenday (Version) [Ant-Zen, 2002]
  23. 21. Monte Cazazza - Distress [Industrial Records, 1980]
  24. 22. Mz.412 - Unhealing Wounds [Cold Meat Industry, 2006]
  25. 23. Vivenza - Mécanismes Opérants [Drag & Drop Industrial, 1995]
  26. 24. Prurient - Terracotta Spine [Blackest Ever Black, 2013]
  27. 25. Helm - Arcane Matters [Pan, 2012]
  28. 26. Rafael Flores & Lezrod - 3 am [Standard Klik Music, 2007]
  29. 27. Galerie Schallschutz - Phoenix II [Tesco Organisation, 2005]
  30. 28. Steel Hook Prostheses - Those Who Endure The Suffering [Chondritic Sound, 2003]
  31. 29. Esplendor Geométrico - Trybuna Del Lavoro [Linea Alternativa, 1991]
  32. 30. Silk Saw - Hinterland [Ant-Zen, 2000]
  33. 31. Lockweld - I Don't Care [Gameboy Records, 2003]
  34. 32. Propergol - Bleu Nuit [Tesco Organisation, 2012]
  35. 33. Plastikman - Inside [M_nus, 1998]
  36. 34. Wanda Group - Pans Out In The Afterlife [Opal Tapes, 2013]
  37. 35. The Boats - Invisible Orchestras [Our Small Ideas, 2011]