split-notes is an online music label. Our ‘netlabel’ focuses on music written using microtonal or xen scales – a new attitude to intonation.

You could say, we have crazy ideas about what it means to “be in-tune.”

Xen is short for xenharmonic, a word which has been used to describe experimental intonations and tunings. If it all sounds a bit unusual, then head straight to the music archive to hear for yourself.

Xen is not a genre. Over the last few years xen music has been played in all kinds of styles. Blues, death metal, J-pop, avant-garde folk, whatever… If it sounds like music, you could make it xen. No exceptions. The thing that ties xen music together is: The melodies and harmonies sound exotic, as if they came from a lost culture or a tangent universe of the imagination. You couldn’t play those melodies on a standard guitar or piano, because those objects don’t come from this imaginary place.

split-notes promotes musicians playing a funkier kind of xen – something with a beat. Many styles of music are welcome here, though much of our output has been electronic (that’s just the way things are).

If you’re a musician, we encourage you to try playing xen/microtonal music for yourself.

Why free?

split-notes has already made available many releases for free. Today, anybody who is discovering xenharmonic/microtonal music for the first time now has a place to go to HEAR many examples of it. This is much better than just reading the Wikipedia page on microtonal music!

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