Casiotone for the Painfully Alone is the beats-and-keys solo project of 31 yr old singer, songwriter and Chicago resident, Owen Ashworth. Drawing heavy influence from traditional Americana as well as 80's synth pop and commercial hip hop, the music of Casiotone for the Painfully Alone is a curious mix of austere character studies and playful electronic programming.
After recording three albums of cassette-recorded, two-minute exercises in pop minimalism, Ashworth's most recent album, Etiquette, changed the focus from a decidedly utilitarlian aesthetic to a broader production spectrum that finally gave his affecting song writing the space it deserves. In collaboration with producers and musicians like Jherek Biscoff (of The Dead Science and Degenerate Art Ensemble) and Jason Quever (The Papercuts and Pan American Recording Studio), the sound of Casiotone for the Painfully Alone has grown to include pianos, organs, strings, flutes, drums, and pedal steel guitars in addition to Ashworth's signature electronics and drum machines.
Live, Owen Ashworth recreates his recordings using a makeshift dub soundsystem. Glitchy drum machine rhythms, battery-operated synths, melodic loops, and hand-triggered samples are routed through various echo boxes and filters to accompany his slow, deliberate vocal style.
Recently, Owen Ashworth has been quietly releasing a steady stream of new tracks by way of limited edition vinyl singles for a number of small labels, meanwhile remixing songs for friends like Dudley Benson and Headlights, and contributing music to several independent American films, such as Medicine for Melancholy and Stay the Same Never Change. Two different CD compilations of his limited vinyl releases and soundtrack work are planned for the coming months, with a brand new album to follow in early 2009.