Monday, August 31, 2009

Madagascar - Goodbye East Goodbye West (Gaarden, 2009)

Madagascar - Goodbye East Goodbye West

Goodbye East Goodbye West has been out since 2007. Why am I reviewing it now? 2 reasons. 1: I don't give a shit about release dates. 2: The fine folks at Gaarden Records thought Madagascar's second album was awesome enough to give it the vinyl treatment this year. So what I'm reviewing is the stunning LP and not the lame ass CD (no offense, Western Vinyl).

If you haven't heard Baltimore's Madagscar yet (like me), then you're in for a delicious treat. GEGW is a chill record with all of my favorite instruments. Accordion, singing saw, glockenspiel, bells and chimes, and the obligatory guitar/percussion/etc combined to make charming as fuck tunes for dancing with your lady in the ballroom or moping on your stoop in your raggedy ass knickers getting drunk on basement vodka. A little bit of Devotchka, some Beirut and Hauschka, throw in some subtle drone and you got yourself one hell of an album.

Now for those of you that have heard Goodbye East already and perhaps even own the digital version, it's time to wise up and get your hands on this hot robin's egg blue vinyl. Not to mention that it's got a super slick letter-pressed jacket with artwork from Justin Lucas. And, like most things Gaarden, this is limited. Only 500 copies available. Do yourself a favor and grab one before it's on Ebay for $150.

Sunday, August 23, 2009


I'm going on the yearly trip to Elise's uncle's cabin in Maine. I'll be gone for a while so, as usual, I made a mix for myself to listen to on my trip and for you to listen to while I'm partying. The "Surprise!" isn't, "Surprise! I'm going on vacation." It's more like, "Surprise Elise! I made a mix for you." She left for the cabin before me to hang with her parents, so I made this for her. And for you. Get it?

It's got some great fucking stuff on it and is very appropriate for a few days in a secluded, forested, cabin by the lake. Some banjos, Tuvan throat singing, an accapella Who cover, outsider weirdness, chill acoustic tunes, and good old fashioned garage rock. Everything should be right up your alley.

Surprise! Mix
Beach House - D.A.R.L.I.N.G.
Nathan Bell - Devil's Breath
Moondog - Chant
Hella - Biblical Violence
The Modern Lovers - I Wanna Sleep In Your Arms
Mugison - Murr Murr
Pete Seeger - Devilish Mary
The Dodos - Acorn Factory
Ilyas Ahmed - Out Again
The Monks - Higgle-Dy-Piggle-Dy
Jeffrey Lewis & The Junkwayd - Good Old Pig, Gone To Avalon
Herb Alpert & The Tijuana Brass - Walk, Don't Run
Huun-Huur-Tu - Eki Attar
Petra Haden - Relax
Neil Young - Guitar Solo, No. 2
Marissa Nadler - Little Hells
Manu Chao - Lagrimas De Oro

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Haiku Review: Pine Smoke Lodge - Kambing Utan (Existential Cloth, 2009)

Pine Smoke Lodge - Wake

Pine Smoke Lodge
Kambing Utan (download)
/floating through jungles/
/consuming vapors and mist/
/shimmer and twinkle/

Friday, August 21, 2009

OOPs: Bakersfield Boogie Boys - Bakersfield Boogie Boys EP (Rhino, 1980)

Bakersfield Boogie Boys - I Get Around

OOPs is going to be a regular (Weekly? Every Friday?) post where I'll upload copies of albums that I have that are out of print so that all you fine folks can join in on the fun.

The Bakersfield Boogie Boys were (are?) a semi-mysterious band from Bakersfield, CA. People thought they were Devo is disguise, or possibly the owner of Rhino. However all the rumors were turned out to be horseshit. They were just 3 farmer dudes who wanted to be like Devo.

Bakersfield Boogie Boys is the only record they ever put out. It's only got 4 songs on it and 3 of them are covers. There's Haggard's "Okie From Muskogee," the Stones' "Get Off My Cloud," and my personal favorite, "I Get Around" by The Beach Boys. The only original one is called "Flying Tigers." It's pretty cool, but nowhere near as awesome as the covers.

These guys must've worshipped Devo, which should be obvious for every possible reason. Just look at the album cover. That's fucking hilariously dumb. There's also some other inspiration going on too, I think, like The Residents and Talking Heads. This shit is just plain crazy though. I mean, I've heard some weird covers before, but nothing quite like their version of "I Get Around." It's bonkers. Totally nuts.

Yours thanks to Media Fire.

P.S. If you think the name OOPs is too stupid, I'm always open to suggestions.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Treetops - Eternal Sky (Monorail Trespassing, 2009)

Treetops - Side A (Hope Always / Arrogant Youth / Voice Of Man)

The opening track, “Hope Always,” sounds like the wind is breathing and “Voice Of Man” could be the sound of clouds meditating.

Full review on diskant.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Chicagojazzen - Brachiosaurus (Native Parts, 2009)

Chicagojazzen - Side A (Shaolins 140 nävar / Synthpop / Stadium IV / Burträsk / Kallt stål / Skotta isgrotta / PZ / Ulmer & Per / Benny har inga ögon / Doris Kiosk / Jag har inga pengar)

Chicagojazzen is not from Chicago. Chicagojazzen does not sound "jazzen." Just forget everything you thought you knew about this guy 'cause you have no fucking idea.

Brachiosaurus is a crazily charming record that will probably, at the very least, make you bob your head and tap your foot a bit. Even though it's just one guy, Erik Karlsson, there's still this artsy collaboration feel to it. Like a bunch of friends got together in their old preschool classroom and made bizarre pop music with whatever they could find. And by necessity, it ended up sounding completely lo-fi and blown out, as if they didn't have any real recording equipment and the instruments they used were busted to begin with.

I'm totally digging everything on this record. There's all sorts of synths, real and fake drum beats, ukuleles, records scratching, hand claps, movie sound bites, ghostly harmonies, tambourines, xylophones, and pretty much anything else you can imagine. The best part is it never sounds like a mess. It's 100% cohesive and keeps your attention for the whole hour.

Somehow Chicagojazzen made a tape that is, like, 10 times better than most of the other tapes I own. And this coming from some dude I'd previously never heard of. You guys better get on this quick, as there's only 60 copies of Brachiosaurus. As far as I know, Native Parts might be the only place you can get one for now but trust me, it's worth it even with the exchange rate.

Monday, August 17, 2009

The Monks - Black Monk Time (no label, 1997)

The Monks - Shut Up

The Monks - Higgle-Dy-Piggle-Dy

I've been listening to a decent amount of old garage rock lately, specifically The Monks and The Sonics. After searching around a bit for a copy of The Monks' Black Monk Time on vinyl, I found a copy at a record store while visiting a school in Rochester, NY, only to get home and find out what I bought was an "unofficial" release. Technically, it's a bootleg of the CD release by Repertoire. But whatever, it sounds great and has a few extra songs on it. Who cares if it's not 180 gram and doesn't have extensive liner notes.

I guess it's necessary to mention the fact that The Monks were 5 American soldiers stationed in Germany in the '60s who decided to make some music. Once they were all discharged, they just stuck around and kept at it. The songs on Black Monk Time are not your usual typical garage style and I fucking love it for that. The Monks are often called the founders of krautrock (even if they didn't know it at the time) and while the motorik beats are pretty unmistakable, I can't say I really hear it. Maybe it's just hard for me to distinguish the obvious garage sound with what I normally think of with krautrock.

Aside from the garage and kraut, there's lots of other crazy stuff going on. Strange sounds like fucked up banjos and organs, and crazy lyrics. I would put money on the fact that these guys knew exactly what they were saying and were just seeing if they could get away with it.

I think Black Monk Time is one of those records that's appealing on so many levels. There's the novelty factor (American soldiers dressed like Monks living in Germany? Really?), there's the forefathers of krautrock thing (which should be enough for anyone), and then there's the fact that this is just awesome as shit '60s garage rock. How could anyone not want to listen to this?

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Show Worthy 8/17 - 8/23

Since I'm going to Weirdstock (or Chaos First, haven't decided yet) and because there's not too much going on this week, I'll make this short.

Double Awake

Monday, August 18
Double Awake at Weirdo Records (ddddonate, 8:00, all ages)
This guy rules. Power drone at it's finest. Not sure how rowdy it'll get at Weirdo. Might be more chill stuff but whatever he ends up doing, I assure you it will be awesome.

The Needy Visions via

Friday, August 21
The Needy Visions, Hilken Mancini at The Milky Way (FREEEEE, 9:00, 21+)
The Needy Visions are the new wave of Boston throwback to jangly '60s garage punk and they are tons of fun. Mancini's done a shit ton of stuff and is well placed alongside The Needy Visions on the bill at the NEW Milky Way (same cool place, different location).

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Friday, August 14, 2009

Video: Cassettes Won't Listen - Into The Hillside

That pixely thing is called datamoshing. I guess. And the music thing is called instrumental laptop tropical funk. Or something.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Asher & Brendan Murray at Cafe Fixe

Brendan Murray & Asher

Brendan Murray


Photos by Susanna Bolle (my camera was acting up).
Check out more on Flickr.

Last night was the second "experimental coffee house" put on by Non-Event (who totally rule). The first was Geoff Mullen & Keith Fullerton Whitman (also at Fixe), which I sadly missed out on. But I was determined to check out this seemingly jive coffee shop who hosts cool music and HOLY SHIT YOU NEED TO GO. Let me break it down for you...

It's kinda like the Weirdo shows. It's a small space (though not nearly as small as Weirdo. Fixe has tables & chairs. Though to be fair, they don't have hundreds of records, either). You go early and hang out, instead of buying records you drink coffee, and see a single amazing performance. Cheap, intimate, go home early, what's not to love?

Asher Thal-Nir is a dude I had never heard of before this event but since he was performing with Brendan Murray, I knew the guy was at least awesome by association. Turns out he's pretty cool on his own, too, but whatever. The music is what matters.

It started out pretty simple, just a dried up ocean desert of white noise. Some alternating high & low long form sonar blips, perhaps of the piano origin. Very tranquil. Very desolate. Then someone passes out on their car horn, just laying on that thing, bleeding an electronic organ tone way out in the distance. Suddenly something that sounds like flowing water comes into ear shot, like a geyser is slowly bubbling up, refilling the ocean, although everything remains mostly peaceful for a period of time. But then shit turns dark and scary. Like the water coming back is threatening to summon the deep sea monsters as well. And that sonar returns, too, but this time at a more rapid pace. You realize it's steady, though, so whatever it is is staying put. Eventually, the bubbles fade, and one by one, the dozens of layers you didn't even know where there drop out. Total silence. Show's over. Applause. Curtains. Socializing. Home.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Gianni Rossi - Gutterballs Soundtrack (Permanent Vacation, 2009)

Gianni Rossi - Theme From Gutterballs

I think this marks the first time I ever listened to a soundtrack before I saw the movie, but when I found out about this, I just had to. I mean, Gutterballs sounded like an awesome enough movie on it's own (simplified: slasher set in a bowling alley) but when I saw that the soundtrack was basically packed with synth disco horror, there was no stopping me.

Gianni Rossi has made a score that will easily be enjoyed without any context in regards to the film. The songs on this are just so fucking cool. The beats are non-stop, the bass grooves are propulsive, and the '80s guitar riffs are so rocking. I haven't heard a soundtrack that sounds this cheesily amazing in forever. Most authentic '70s and '80s horror movies don't even have soundtracks this good.

However, it is still a soundtrack, with the whole variations on a theme sorta thing. So, obviously, if you hate that, then just duck out now. But if you're a fan of anything Goblin/Italo Disco/Horror then you're gonna eat this shit up. Either way, though, just try to forget that this is supposed to be from a movie because it doesn't even matter. I must've listened to this 20 times before I saw Gutterballs. But see the movie, too, because it's fucking ridiculous.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Weirdstock & Chaos First

Hope you guys don't have anything planned for this weekend because it is EPIC PARTY TIME.

First, there's Weirdstock, paying homage to the 40th anniversary of Woodstock. It'll be at the Cambridge YMCA and runs from 6:00 on Friday the 14th to Sunday night. Over 50 bands are going to be playing. All sorts of awesome stuff. Highly experimental drone, freak folk, plus video and installation art. Here's a partial list of who'll be playing.

Ducktails, Dreamhouse, Harmonizer (Greg Davis), Julian Lynch, Kurt Weisman, Keith Fullerton Whitman + Geoff Mullen Duo, Skeletons Out, Devil Music, Eat Cloud, Truman Peypte, Sore Eros, Lord Jeff, Cursillistas, Goat of Arms, Ricardo Donoso, Mudboy, Human Hairs, Cave Bears, QFWFQ Duo, Radio Wonderland, Many Mansions, Ophibre, Concord Ballet Orchestra Players, Peace, Loving, Metal and Glass Ensemble, Palm, Quilt, Omnivore, Duck That (Steve Norton), Son of Salami, Tooth Ache, Guatemala City

And plenty more. 1 day pass is $7, 2 day pass is $13, 3 day pass is $18. Buy them here. Buy them now. Full lineup and more info on the Whitehaus site.

Then there's Chaos First put on by WMUA at Umass Amherst. So, duh, this is going down at Umass Amherst. The Library Lawn and Student Union Ballroom to be precise. This show is going to be a bit more, um, noisey. And chaotic. The big name they got is Lightning Bolt, which is totally fucking rad. And if that's not enough to make your nips hard, here's all of the other bands that are playing.

Noise Nomads, Mallory, Sylphid, Belltonesuicide, Invisible Circle, Id M Theftable, Brava Spectre, Sords, Problem With Dragons, Gastric Lavage, Cellura Peptid, White Crime, Able Archer, Untitled Original, Sisters and Brothers, Yak Snot, Relics, Behaviour

So, I know like, half of those names but the ones I do know automatically guarantees this shit is going to be so so so amazing. The best part? IT'S FREE. Yeah, just show up and get your mind blown. But show up early, because there's no specific order that the bands are playing in and they said they're going to have bigger names play both early and late. And you don't wanna show up late to find out you missed Id M Theftable and Belltonesuicide do you? Starts at "2pm sharp" on the Library Lawn (rocking on the grass, love it) until 6, 1 hour intermission, then from 7 to midnight the party continues inside in the Student Union Ballroom.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

I'm Gone

And while I'm gone, you can listen to this little mix I made on Muxdos. BAM. See you bitches Monday.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Haiku Review: Dead Times - Midnight Glass (self released, 2009)

Dead Times - Warp Rhythm

Dead Times
Midnight Glass (download)
/avant freak gloom punk/
/fever ray plus nightmare noise/
/open eyes, clench teeth/

P.S. I'll be outta town this weekend. I'm going to the Brooklyn Electronic Music Festival tomorrow, hence the Haiku Review today. So no Show Worthy post Sunday. Sorry.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Nadja & Black Boned Angel - Nadja & Black Boned Angel (20 Buck Spin, 2009)

Nadja & Black Boned Angel - II

Well fuck. I only had to wait a fucking year for this to come out. May of '08, I reviewed Christ Send Light, the teaser EP these guys put out in anticipation of the full length, which was supposed to be out by the end of the year. Unfortunately, we ended up waiting until July for this bad boy to come out. The question is, was it worth the wait? Fuck. Yes.

Two epic 20+ minute tracks of raw doom bliss. However, these songs aren't quite as Jesu-esque as Christ Send Light and are much less accessible. They actually sound more like what you'd expect a collaboration between Nadja and Black Boned Angel to sound like.

The first track starts out all buzzing ambient, then it jumpstarts at about 6:30 and your walls start crumbling. Just gorgeous monster doom, tearing up your speakers. That doesn't last for too long, though. The beauty and percussion drop out and it morphs into a swarm of shrieking eels. An absolutely terrifying wall of sound that stays course for the last 10 minutes of the song. Like I said, much less accessible than the teaser.

As with the first song, the second begins with some ambience, an ocean breeze with a dark undercurrent, the impending doom easily recognizable. After what seems like an eternity of buildup, a slow drum beat makes it's way into the enormous mass of hiss. Seriously, this shit is fucking gigantic. Like a titanic black sun, pulsing in it's last moments alive, about to go supernova. Eventually you have no idea who's doing what. It's all one big fucking beautiful mess. But there is no final catharsis. Instead, all of that accumulation, the song itself is the explosion. And everything trickles out, loses steam, fades into nothing.

This doesn't even rank on a scale of epicness. It is too epic for labels. Regardless if you're a fan of Nadja or BBA or a total newb, this is fucking required.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

MP3: Andrew Douglas Rothbard - Wisely Wasted

Andrew Douglas Rothbard - Wisely Wasted

Holy shit I have been listening to "Wisely Wasted" constantly for the entire week. It's fucking gorgeous. It's like if Citay made an IDM record. Just thick, lush, electronic psych that wraps it's warm bear paws around me and I just totally lose myself in it. The part around 3:30 where it stutters gets me every fucking time. I love this song so much. It's on Rothbard's (digital only) Exodusarabesque that came out back in February on Peaking Mandala. You should download it, like, now because it's fucking fantastic.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Prehistoric Blackout - Stone Reaper (Pizza Night, 2008)

Prehistoric Blackout - S.R.1

You get all the joys of rolling around in grime and then you just get to stand up when it’s over and say, “That was a fucking blast” and not have to worry about taking a shower or anything. Your palette is somehow already cleansed.

Full review on diskant.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Greg Kelley & Jason Lescalleet, Ghost Grass at Wire Sounds

I showed up late (couldn't find the place) and missed most of Ghost Grass' set. I left early (to catch the last train to Salem) and didn't hear a single note of Graveyards. So instead of reviewing this show, which I only saw slightly more than a third of, I'll just say that Kelley & Lescalleet were mind blowingly amazing. Shrill, unnerving, kidney rupturing chaos. And here are a couple of pictures.

Ghost Grass

Greg Kelley & Jason Lescalleet

Greg Kelley & Jason Lescalleet

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Show Worthy 8/3 - 8/9

Monday, August 3
Daniel Striped Tiger, Get Laid, Planned Communities, Alocoholocaust, Fruit Salad at Charlie's Kitchen ($6, 8:00, 21+)
This show seems to be a bit of a clusterfuck right now. Not totally sure who's playing and who's not. It's most likely everyone is playing but don't be too surprised if you show up and Fruit Salad's not there. But this should still be a great show if only for ladykillers DST. Those dudes fucking rock. Totally worth going to just for them. Promise.

Animal Hospital via

Monday, August 3
Animal Hospital, Maine Coons at Weirdo Records (donate, 8:00, all ages)
I'm pretty sure Maine Coons is also playing this even though these Weirdo shows typically just have one performance. I know nothing about Maine Coons, though. Just the fantastically fantastic ambient experimental post rockishness from Animal Hospital.

Wednesday, August 5
Tech Noir, Yes Giantess, Treehorn, Road Apples at O'Brien's ($7, 9:00, 21+)
Hey! I just reviewed Tech Noir and now they're playing a show at O'Brien's. Sweet. Along with them are fellow local synth poppers Yes Giantess and sad bastard Treehorn. And Road Apples are like that red fruit you see when driving to your friend's house.... I dunno. I got nothing.

Casy & Brian by Dalton Blanco via

Friday, August 7
Casy and Brian, Unicorn Basement, Worldmap at The Cottage ($3, 9:00, all ages)
Woooo! Go celebrate the first show at The Cottage with some totally rad bands. Casy & Brian are coming all the way from San Francisco to play their synth drum dance fun for you. Unicorn Basement is a guy/girl duo that are a perfect touring match for Casy & Brian. The girl plays keytar, so that's cool. And there's a 4th band playing that they haven't figured out yet. Sure to be awesome, though.
Update: Rene Netherlands (formerly Guatemala City) has officially been added to the bill.


Saturday, August 8
Halflings, Perispirit, Sharpwaist, Corephallism, Pharmakon at Jacques Cabaret ($10, 8:00, 21+)
Fuck yeah dude. A night of pure drone noise awesomeness. How could you ask for anything more than this lineup? Well, except for the fact that Double Awake isn't playing anymore. But truthfully, that just might've been too much noise.

Haiku Review: Deastro - Orange Swimmer Red Summer (self released, 2009)

Deastro - Shield Whip

Orange Swimmer Red Summer (download)
/echo synth fun times/
/hypno rainbow space fractals/
/dance in your moon boots/

P.S. I really like this record. Like, a lot. And even though it's not quite as orgasmic as his other releases, I Haiku Reviewed it instead of other Deastro records because it's a free download. You should definitely make an effort to check out stuff like Moondagger and Keeper's because they're amazingly awesome and I personally like them more than Orange Swimmer.