Thursday, May 22, 2008
A few releases what's come in seem to drag/wear/emblaze a lot of mid to late 90's sound trinkets & non essential bling rather prominently. I reckon from my side of the fence the 90's ain't so far away & boy was there a lot of shit to ingest! If it weren't Grunge & it's miserable minions suckin or blowin hard for the better part of the decade, the drum & bass, house + electronica schmaltz what followed was even more putrid. In light of all that one can almost forgive folks for buyin into the cottage industry what became Blew Beard Blamerica. But that old horse done been flogged to death around here. Personally I ain't one to welcome back most of the 90's, either w/reunions or influences. Not yet anyways. You might think otherwise. I've found that those what tend to be contentious about my opinions don't know much about much in the grand scheme of things so it ain't worth worryin about. Besides, my side's been around longer than there's been a fence, but that said, I'm glad it's there. Better to keep the ninnies & neophytes contained till they's wise up. What am I ramblin on about? Oh, just a little somethin called......
FREEer by an outfit called Gulls. See, on this 12" you get to see the crux of what I'm goin on about. The a-side is a luminous squall what brings to mind a backdrop've early 70's Miles Davis psychedlic fusion crossed w/the downtown, late 70's post funk pulsations found on labels like 99 or Y. It's not bad. I was never one of them what went ape shit over none of that sorta urp, but it was always 'cool' enough & I could dig it in a pinch. The flip though is where the flies start to swarm; a one man retelling of the a-side track, this time via effects, computers, drum box, it sounds like a Little Darla cocktail party, minus the tail, minus the party. I couldn't hang. Maybe your made of swishier stuff. http://www.soniclozenge.com/
My initial reaction to just lookin at this lp by Soft Location called 'Diamonds & Gems' was something akin to a dismal flashback when I 1st came into contact w/the post Krautrock/Stereolab worshippin wurst wank of Windy & Karl or Flying Saucer Attack. I was really preparin for a dreadful parcel of time to follow. But guess what.....it never come to pass. Instead what got encountered was a pleasant, just off kilter pop rumble that called to mind a similar output from the Otago Peninsula's great Jay Clarkson or some Pastels friendly racketeers who once recorded for the Bi Joopiter label. There is some twee debris that resembles (maybe) an unknown Harriet matrix taker or a forgotten gazer of shoe but what brush w/goodness don't come w/a price anymore? You don't have to be Kendra Smith to figure this one out.
Contact; firstname.lastname@example.org for availability.
I'd done lost track of Dan Melchior, pretty much tossin his baby out w/the bathwater left by Billy Childish & Holly Golightly. I know, I sound like a Goddamn sour puss but jesus, how much of that Kent/Medway sound do you have to buy before it becomes an old dog? And when I ask that I mean to them's who don't sport a wallet chain, cuff their denim jeans or wear pork-pie hats at a jaunty angle. Like me. Fuck it, the answer don't matter, hey, the main thing is this Dan Melchior und das Menace lp don't seem burdened by the trappins of click uniformity. You can take a fella outta Kent, but I reckon you can't take Kent out the fella. 'Christmas For The Crows' surely exhales great plumes of hempish wry from the Hangman chillum-like a spit & polish take on that old rapscallion, Sexton Ming-but also devours w/great success lost tins've indica laced biscuits purloined from stash mongers pining for tunesmithery & pluck that harkens back Syd Barrett, Viv Stanshall or that Oliver fella. So you might say I got a bit of egg on my face in regard to ol' Dan Melchior. But that's okay, he can pelt me with'em by the dozen so long as he keeps makin records of this caliber. www.myspace.com/daggermanrecords
Thursday, May 15, 2008
Rosemary Krust is a duo hailin outta Baltimore that is self proclaimed Shoegazers. I guess that should come as no suprise since the whole Maryland/Greater WDC area was the breedin ground for so much of that stuff back in the 90's. But what a difference a decade can make. Rosemary Krust don't seem as precious as all them Slumberland bands what come before'em, I dunno, maybe it's the lo-fi starkness but they remind me of a marriage of DR503 Dead C & Our Bed Is Green era Charalambides. Or maybe the American equivalent to Garbage & The Flowers. I sure don't hear no MBV influence which is fine by me. Sonically introspective, slightly fuzzed + guiltlessly twee'd =A GOOD THING. Small pressing & nice handmade sleeves too. Check'em out at www.myspace.com/rosemarykrust
S-S Records continues to dominate the 7" landscape w/2 new winners, the 1st one I layed into bein the debut from XYX who is presumably buds w/Los Llamarada. You might call XYX the dancefloor version of LL. They share the same pulsing energy but while Los Llamarada dredge into darker spaces, XYX bask in the gas glow of strobbing neon. The blown out bass riffs light up this dogie w/serious post punk glare, Gang Of Four style, while the fem vocals, drum propulsion & additional electo swagger calls to mind the most salaciously charged moments of Maximum Joy, tempered w/the bloodlust abandon of El Chupacabra. They's definitely onto somethin. Lookin forward to more. www.myspace.com/xyxs
This was also my 1st exposure to Hiroshima Rocks Around, why I do not know. I seen their name around, probably via S-S postings, but I just never got the bug. My loss. These guys seem custom made for the S-S crew, revellin in a chaotic carnage that till now seemed exclusively hand zonked by Gallic outfits such as Cheveu & Crash Normal. Hard to know who did what 1st but I think it's safe to say no one's gonna blame none of it on Catherine De Medici this time. Aggressively twisted & fun for all. Now I gotta go look up their back catalog.
Both this & XYX available via http://www.s-srecords.com/
Naked On The Vague is also battin 1000% & on this 7" for Skulltones, their patented brand of Apocalyptic melancholia is runnin at a fever pitch. The A side cracks & peels behind a 'Discipline' styled drum beat while Matthew & Lucy's vocal trade off's resemble the malaise akin to once upon a time Lee & Nancy ( aka, the original Chris & Cosey) recounting a night at Spahn Ranch, where they was sick from the tofu roasted over a kerosene bonfire & exasperated by the results of a Family hootenanny. The flip finds our hero's not a little wrecked from the copious amounts of Fromme procured dirt-cheeb they'd inhaled & who knows, maybe it'd even been 'dusted' w/LOVE by Charlie himself. It's a wild world babe, that's alls I can say. http://www.skulltones.com/
I remember seein The Electric Bunnies last yr down to SXSW at some ungodly time like 11am whiles the rancid smells of stale beer & fresh vomit was goin toe to toe w/new urinal mints & bucket've Pine-sol. It was gonna be hard to keep me there w/that much sensory overload goin on. I done my best, managed to stay long enough to realize they weren't just some clueless h/c wannbe's, in fact, they seemed very much akin to the Wombats, whose live shows was always more charged then them records what was released on Voxx & Homestead. Since that morning, Electric Bunnies have released two 7"ers. The 1st one garnered much acclaim but it never crossed my path so's I don't know what I missed. This 2nd one-a 4 song ep-is sure a melange of individual humdingers. Like the Wombats, they can extoll a hazy power pop vibe, but the EB's approach seems cut from a more anglo pattern. Listenin to this a couple times it was curious to pick up scent's that-inexplicable or not-recalled the tarnished jangle of Whaam bands such as The Mixers, Laughing Apple & even Revolving Paint Dream. The one track on here, 'Super Fluorescent Hippo Flashback' is a great caterwaul that's very much now, but I think if the Cappuchino Kid were to hear it, he'd be chuffed by the moves. And maybe even pony up a round of babysham's to boot. Charmed, I'm sure.
available via http://www.floridasdying.com/ who also run an excellent mailorder service. Give'em a holler.
Sweet Rot's got another new one on the streets, this time from a trio called Blank Its. Two tracks that's pretty straight up Killed By Death punk w/treated vocals to give it, I dunno, an edge? Catchy tunes though & if your smitten by yore boys such as Plastic Idols & Deprogammer, then start collecting for the future. As for the vocal trickery & spiney tingles, FNU Ronnies eat these guys for breakfast, but it ain't a competition, merely an observation. Don't kill the pogo!
There's lot's of student housing permeatin the cityscape've Columbus, Ohio. In most cases these abodes come w/ample porches & plenty of basement space. All's the better to croon your folk & practice your rock, usually w/nary a complaint from the neighbors. There's also troves of cheap records to dig through & seein as how thems what's wet behind the ears is willin to embrace things some of us more jaded sots would find unremarkable, it should come as no suprise that the goslings what make up RTFO Bandwagon seem to have fused the precious folk of Richard & Mimi Farina w/the precocious rock of Go Team on this 4 song ep for the Dull Knife label. Not that there's nothin wrong w/that, but from my vantage I can't tell if I smell patchouli or if someone turned on the oven but forgot to light the pilot. Guess we'll all find out soon enough. http://www.dullkniferecords.com/
Monday, May 12, 2008
I know the official release date isn't until next week, but we're offering up 'early' copies of the debut lp from Eat Skull entitled 'Sick To Death'. If you weren't lucky (or astute) enough to snag their previous singles or tour cassette, not to worry, they're all available on Ebay. For lot's of money! HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!
Sorry, I was trying to suffer fools lightly. Anyway, this lp is a great window into the world of Eat Skull, a world where psychic scars offer ponderous, trebly results. Is it Punk? Mister, I'd like to know just what Punk is these days. If your Punk is all about gnarly gnar-gnar rhythm hooks, organ fills that hang in the air like clouds of acid rain & radical, pogo frenzied tuneage then YES, 'Sick To Death' is the living embodiment of Punk. Remember the end of that movie 'Don't Look Now'? The part where Donald Sutherland-who plays some weird clairvoyant architect-corners the even weirder little dwarf character who pretends to be crying but then turns around & slashes Big Don's throat? He'd channeled all that, knew it was comin, but still couldn't stop it. Like c'mon, is that fucked up or what? 'Sick To Death' conjugate's the same vibe; you've heard these song before in your dreams, you've lived this stuff-no doubt-but when you finally confront them 1st hand, you know they're here to take you out. And that's when you realize the shit got deep. Shredders on fry dude, it doesn't get more Punk than that.
Copies Of 'Sick To Death' are 15$ ppd US ONLY. Overseas is 25$ per copy & Canadian residents pay 18$. Paypal to; email@example.com
PS-CD version coming soon, email http://www.midheaven.com/ for more info.
Saturday, May 10, 2008
More 'n more records show up all the time, what's an erstwhile philosopher to do? To them's out there that aren't afforded the luxury of promo's, or lads or ladette's without disposable cashish, all's I can say is.....been there. There's always seemed to exist some unwritten rule that if you's is the recipient of something free & you don't like it, better to ignore than to criticize. And I'd agree w/that on some level. Perhaps it's also that some scribes what pen reviews of the current underground just like everyting what comes their way or don't wanna burn bridges. But since I ain't one, I don't harbor them same feelings. Settin a bridge on fire can be highly exhilaratin & if I liked everything what waltzed down the pike I'd be an even bigger lardass than I already am. If you read this Blog w/any regularity then it's obvious I don't have no love lost on New Weird Ameriblah but I also hold equal disdain for retro punk & garage/budget rock. Bottom line; it's the obvious what sours the milk. Problem could be I'm too old for this racket; too much knowledge w/ accessible deep archives. But I doubt it. More like the old sayin what goes; "Youth is wasted on the young". Ain't it the truth?
There'a label outta Chicago what's started up called Tic Tac Totally that has inexplicably felt the need to powder the landscape w/a couple of run of the mill singles the 1st one I heard bein this by Snake Flower 2. I guess the whole Blank Dogs, solo vision thing was bound to take on it's share of imitators & here we go. It ain't terrible, in fact it's easily accessible if somewhat plodding but at no time did I feel the want to play it more'n a couple spins & can't say I sees much future in it's company. Even with global warming I doubt it'll ever rain hard enough to pine for this one again. Seemed very much a byproduct of late 90's fluff, like the Lily's or somethin along the lines've that band that had a fella what looked like one of the Banana Splits, the ones that had a hardon for Brian Jones. Maybe if I was dependent on nitrous & can've Sparks to keep it "up" this might seem glam or psychedelic, but I'm starin straight into reality & it's shootin back the finger. Later dude.
Also available from TTT is a 7" from Yokohama Hooks, a 3 song aggro sneerer that calls to mind the choppy angular post punk of Au Pairs. Can't say I was ever much taken w/Au Pairs, they always seems affected & toffee nosed while lacking the chops of contempo's like Gang Of Four, Gilrs At Our Best & so forth. The B-side cover of 'Bloodstains' is easily as embarrassin as Zonic Shockum's take on 'Bullet' yrs ago but not nearly as charmin. Pointless is the word I keep comin back to. Maybe a cover've 'It's Obvious' would've made more sense, but 'Inconvenience' is more like it.
Both records via http://www.tictactotally.com/
Lot's of pups is jacked about Fag Cop & I can just imagine the shirtless pit, 9 miles of cock locked together in a daisychain of hardcore reenactment & face pounding frenzy. Personally I never found the racket of Pussy Galore all that hardcore & when the 90's imitators rolled around, most notably Monster Truck 5 & the lesser grunge of the Pac NW it seemed more about head waggin & flannel flyin. But the youth of today will have their say & history has been reconstructed to show Fag Cop as bypassin all that glop & are the current embodiment of (sigh) The Reatards or worse,someone's idea've what somebody's brother's friend's shop teacher told them Antiseen was like in the late 90's.Me? I was never much cared for Dead Boys covers & thought the Confederacy Of Scum was some dumbass joke. The other day while I was dressin out a rabbit on the balcony I overheard a couple dirt punkers sittin down on our stoop jabberin. The one fella in ripped jeans & a flaccid mohawk was explainin "Just because you wake up with a dick in your mouth doesn't make you gay.Like dude....I didn't even like it"! His misguided "logic" makes sense though; you go Crusty! www.myspace.com/homosexualpoliceofficer
Thursday, May 01, 2008
Lot's of records been flyin in & I just ain't had the time to peruse'em all. One of these days I'll try & stay at it longer than a half hour or so, but that's about alls the free time I got right now. Tryin to get myself in shape for the annual Man's Man Contest, this year it's bein held on The Moon. I'm not sure how athletic ridin in a rocketship is but then I don't claim to be a professional astronaut. I is happy to know a couple though & am indebted to them for lettin me in to check out all the NASA contraptions & float around in a gravityless room. I think I've got the whole oxygen thing worked out too but I am a little concerned about havin to go to the bathroom in my suit. Maybe I'll just stick to them protein pills I hear so much about. At any rate, none of it matters much if I don't get enough sponsors or patrons to help pay for my trip there & back.The Moon ain't Pittsburgh, if you catch my drift. It's gonna require more than a bus ticket, a sack've clean duds & a toothbrush to pull this one off. Who know's, I might just have my own donation marathon to pay for it. But until then, here's some record I heard what I thought you should know about:
Not only is Montreal got an amazin array of boucheries to boast, now there seems to be a couple bands what're tryin to raise the awareness of the city as a destination for hog wild rockers to compliment them hog filled terrines. The Nymphets is the latest to stride into my sights by way of this 7" on the Psychic Handshake label, 2 tracks of fem/male vocality & grubby instrum aggression, both tunes comin across w/budget-like VU hum. If I didn't knowed better, I'd have figured this to be one of the lost recordings for the Pre B.S. Records label. That said, fans of (early) Mummies, Fingers & Supercharger won't be dissapointed w/these guys should they cast their coin into the till. Contact; www.myspace.com/psychichandshake or http://www.thenymphets.com/ for further info
What little I've read about concernin Francis Harold & The Holograms embellishes the band as the 2nd coming of Bobby Soxx & the like (you know where I'm goin, right?) so far be it for me to opine otherwise. But I gotta say, I don't hear hear all the "obvious" selling points, could be I'm just a contentious asshole or maybe I'm just listenin better (or just in closer proximity to the New Hope & Master Tape compilations-Capt'n Siltbreeze), who knows for sure. Initially I was intrigued by their moniker, figurin Francis & Co. to be real time livin embodiment of Dry Rib, The Desperate Bikes or somethin along the lines of any tried & true Brit DIY. That's just how their name rung out to me. So when I finally spun it & none of that was apparent, I didn't sob. No sir, I was much too smitten w/their style've hob, a completely no holds barred 2008 take on rat attacks that once assaulted ears 'n minds in the early 80's. So yeah, Stickmen With Rayguns & Flipper comparisons.....that'll sell records, 'cause sayin they's more in common w/Outerwear, PPG, The Pattern or Poison Center ain't gonna raise no eyebrows. Till now. This one floored me. Talk about your Sand In The Face.....I'm hip! Word is the label ain't got none to spare, try http://www.s-srecords.com/
& cross yr fingers.
The French they are a funny race. They like to do it with their________. Drum machines? Synthesizers? Baguettes? Aperitifs? I foget how that old chestunt ends, anyway, the Brut Direct label is doing a fine service to us all by providing the most wonderous noise escargot, seemingly feeding their potent Gros Gris a diet of petit greens & toxic earth. The 2nd release, this 7" from Minitel is a plump bugger ripe w/schizophrenic angst; the a-side is clearly borne out of the avant soil once trod upon by Ilitch & DDAA while the flip sounds like the band harvested an entire field of wormwood, distilling it into a noxious absinthe of Swans like potency. The blind carnage that follows, well what did you expect, A Saucer Full Of Secrets? Brut-Direct is growin real live monsters, no two ways about it. Go to http://www.bruit-direct.org/ & see what I mean.
While's I'm on the subject of France directly & Ilitch (indirectly) I think you oughta know about this reissue of primo Gallic swoon what was spawned by Ilitch mastermind Thierry Mueller. My details on Ruth is sketchy but I think this follows the Ilitch lp 'Periodicmindtrouble' when Mueller decided to drum up a rock ensemble with Ruth bein the end result. Not sure what they was channelin (or ingestin) but this 7" is as jake've an example of proto (Hearthan) era Ubu swoggle as I've ever heard. Considerin this is culled from some 1978 recordings, could it be they was locked into a similar street wave? Hard to know, there's also some aggressive Psychedelic Warlords "thing" goin on too & Francoise Portes vocals (esp. on Mescalito) sound like they's bein blipped in from another dimension. Really, besides Pere Ubu, I can't think of anyone back then KNOWN who was minin a similar shaft in a space/industro/punk vein. This one is impressin the hell outta me. Right up there alongside Angel Face as one of the greatest "lost" French bands of all time. Nice to have it around. Again.
http://poutreapparente.free.fr/ or email; firstname.lastname@example.org for availablity