Saturday, February 27, 2010

Haiku Review: Oreaganomics - Atlas Drugged (self released, 2009)

Oreaganomics - i don't want to b human

Atlas Drugged (download)
/warped, fucked, and busted/
/dried mud crumbles out speakers/
/beats from the badlands/

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Harsh Noise For Your Wall

Danny Milanese, who makes fucked up tunes under the Ultra Bonbon moniker, also apparently makes visual art. Paintings to be precise. And he’s got a new series that he’s working on called Harsh Noise For Your Wall, which, if you don’t know, is a terrible/hilarious pun referencing the idea/philosophy/genre Harsh Noise Wall.

Full article on diskant.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Dire Wolves - Magickal Mayan Age Of Musick (Dynamo Sound Collective, 2010)

Dire Wolves - Side A

This is like the most obscure supergroup ever, but it's still totally a supergroup. Dire Wolves is Jeffrey Alexander (Black Forest/Black Sea, Secret Eye Records), Dan Letson (Forest Dweller), Matt McDowell (Sagas, Bravepriest, a bazillion collaborations), and Ian Bonnet (Whitetail, In The Belly Of The Whale, etc). And unlike all of the recent bullshit "supergroups" like Them Crooked Vultures or Monsters Of Folk that totally suck ass, Dire Wolves fuckin kills it. These dudes are so awesome.

Magickal Mayan Age Of Musick is a drugged out spider's web of psych noise drone in the form of a 20 minute cassette. Sometimes it gets in a warbled bluesy groove that could be filtering out from some no-light smokey basement club, sometimes it'll dissolve into a empty hazy tin of nothingness before it jolts into a spastic on-off freak out that makes more sense as "noise" than it does as "psych jam." All 10 minutes of the A side, however, are fuckin nuts, scanning the radio and jumping all over the place from semi-ethnic garage meanderings with lazy drums to balls out The Heads-channeling to twinkling interludes to wah-wah blazin electronic static nastiness.

Not sure if these dudes actually know what they're doing or if they're just having a good time fucking around making absolutely ridiculous psych noise tapes but either way Magickal Mayan Age Of Musick is definitely not to be missed. Only 50 were made so grab one from Dynamo! (which just so happens to be run by the dude from Hunted Creatures. Bonus!) before they run out.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Hong Chulki - Amplified WC (Ghost & Son, 2010)

Hong Chulki - Amplified WC (excerpt)

Hong Chulki just became my new dude crush. He created a sound installation in a public bathroom consisting of 2 feedback loops. One of the elements had an exposed audio cable and aluminum foil attached directly beneath a ventilation duct, the idea being that all of the near imperceptible vibrations would cause the cable and foil to randomly come in contact and scream violent bursts of electronic feedback. The other loop, made up of an 8" monitor and piezo mic, oozes screeching metal and bone rattling buzz.

This shit sounds fucking AWESOME. I'm talking gut inverting drone and brutal squalls of demon static storms, throngs of beetles digging through your ear canals, all 3 heads of Cerberus snarling while the sticky blood of its last meal drips down the back of your neck. The best part of this is that it's purely improvised without Chulki doing a thing. "Improvised noise without improviser." Chulki fabricated an independent system that would create noise according to its environment. I know it's been done before, but I haven't heard it done like this. Because this is just too fucking cool.

Only 90 copies made on 3" CD-Rs with surprisingly charming artwork. It's Ghost & Son's debut release so show some support and grab this piece of history.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

V/A - Peeling (Gaarden, 2010)

Dustin Wong - Breezy Comfort

Compilations only interest me if they do 1 or more of the following: A) Introduce me to new bands while incorporating bands I already know and like, B) Have exclusive songs by great bands that I won't find elsewhere, or C) Generally have a cool "mixtape" feeling. GREAT NEWS. Peeling accomplishes all 3 in spades.

Before I go any further, I need to press upon you just how fucking PUMPED I am that there is a new (and exclusive) Et Ret track on this comp. Et Ret was the genius behind the unheard masterwork Gasworks and then he kinda fell off the face of the Earth. Never heard from him again. Apparently he's been hiding in Germany waiting for Gaarden to put out a comp that he could contribute to. His piece "Today's Cake" starts Peeling off with a subdued acoustic guitar with minimal processing and lots of resonance. It's a damn shame that it's not even 3 minutes long. Maybe it's just a diving board for his second album?

Ok, so, here are names you should already know and love on Peeling: Matthew Robert Cooper (aka Eluvium), Jason Urick, and Holy Sons, all of whose songs are fucking fantastic. That should be enough to get you jonesin for the other 10 tracks of magnificence. Like Tests' (don't say that out loud) skittering river of synth static. Or the Lexie Mountain Boys and their basement cult wall of trash can chants. One of my favorite tracks is Dustin Wong's (of Ponytail) "Breezy Comfort" which in two words is able to capture everything perfect about the song, something I probably couldn't do in 20.

The sequencing on Peeling is impeccable, too. Not only does it have ridiculous flow from one song to the next (the first 5 tracks, especially) but the album as a whole retains a general mood of joyful ease even while jumping from genre to genre. The transition of electronics to acoustics and back again is refreshing and seamless.

However, I have one singular problem with Peeling. Electric Kastle's (Martyn Leaper of The Minders) "Jubilee." UGH. It's not that it doesn't fit, because it kinda does, I guess, but I just can't get into it. Guy's voice just gets on my nerves. I think I wouldn't like Electric Kastle in any circumstance, but it makes it all the worse with him popping up in the middle of this otherwise totally fucking awesome compilation. Sorry dude. I bet plenty of people will appreciate "Jubilee." It just won't be me.

As if you needed any other reasons to buy Peeling, the Holy Sons song is only available on the CD version and completely absent from the digital download version (licensing issues or something, don't ask). And the artwork is fucking sweet: 4 color screen printed bi-fold cardstock (find the gnome!) and a letterpressed track listing insert. 150 hand numbered copies britches. ACT FAST.

P.S. I've got two sets of relatives visiting and my birthday on Saturday so things are going to be a little quiet on AGB for about a week or so. Make me proud and learn the words to this while I'm away.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Haiku Review: Josef Nadek - [zak] (TVK, 2009)

Josef Nadek - [zak]

Josef Nadek
[zak] (download)
/heaving rancid pus/
/masochist's empty workshop/
/ears leak yellow brain/

Friday, February 12, 2010

Tim Hecker, Mountains, David Daniell at Cambridge YMCA Theatre (Together Festival)

David Daniell was brilliant. Mountains played a song that sounded like the surf armed with a megaphone coming to turn your soul into water. Tim Hecker was deafeningly indescribable. He played "Chimeras" and I died.

Tim Hecker - Chimeras

Tim Hecker

Tim Hecker



David Daniell

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Dan Friel - Obsoleter (Spooky Tree, 2009)

Dan Friel - Pink Helicopters

It’s harsh and melodic, massive and hollow, gritty and lush, and creates hypnotically blissful ear candy that spans the grand desert jungle.

Full review on diskant.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Young Adults - Demo (self released, 2010)

Young Adults - Rip It Up

These are some dudes from Boston. These are some dudes who play music. These are some bad dudes.

Young Adults play rock and roll. Young Adults ARE rock and roll.

Their demo has 5 songs. One song is inexplicably not-so-hidden and it's called "Bummer Summer." It is good but not as good as "Rip It Up" which is the first song on the demo. "Rip It Up" RIPS IT UP. It is post power echo punk that will dance with you then punch you in the mouth.

You can buy a demo for $4. The packaging is nice (slim line DVD case). You can also download the demo for free. You will be a good person if you do either of those things.

Young Adults are playing some shows soon, Girlfriends will be playing some of them too. They will be good shows. Both bands will like you a lot if you go to their shows.

Monday, February 8, 2010

V/A - Whitehaus Family Record Family Record (Whitehaus Family Record, 2010)

Rene - Destination: Mars

Avi Jacob - Till The End Of Time

If you live in/around Boston, you should already know who and what the Whitehaus in JP is. It's a big place with lots of people and they all make stuff. It's a record label. It's a place where super fun shows go down. It's like something you see in a movie that is the most awesome thing ever and you want so bad to be a part of it but you realize it's way too cool to ever happen in real life (aka Empire Records). Well, these kids made it happen and the world, or at the very least Boston, is better for it.

The Whitehaus Family Record put out a 2xlp compilation, the Family Record. Clever, right? 27 songs, all different bands, all different styles, and one single cohesive mindset. Yes Wave.

This comp is full of the greatest non-noise Boston has to offer. Unnerving spoken word, dusty Americana, warped bedroom pop, whole hearted folk, tropical drone, expansion psych, hand clapping hootenannies, electro hip hop, delicate guitars, chilled out dance jams, intimate angel choirs, fiddles & banjos, Casios & drum machines, 100% FUN

I've given lots of love to these bands in the past so you should recognize plenty of the names on here. Many Mansions, Morgan Shaker, Prince Rama Of Ayodhya, Turtle Ambulance, Truman Peyote, Manners, The Needy Visions, The Great Valley, and Peace, Loving are the ones you should know. And love. And that means the other 18 bands are in great company and you'll instinctively open your heart and ears to them. The official release date is March 20, aka Blastfest 3!

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Show Worthy 2/8 - 2/14

Monday, February 8 - Sunday, February 14
Together Festival
If you haven't heard of this yet, you're living under a rock. Boston's got the biggest bestest electronic festival going down this week. Tons of awesomeness like DJ/Rupture, Sinden, Phantogram, and Neon Indian happening all over the place but there's 3 events I'm especially looking forward to. First is Tim Hecker, Mountains, and David Daniell at the Cambridge YMCA on Thursday. Then there's the FREE chiptune showcase on Friday at MassArt's Pozen Center with Animalstyle, Disasterpeace, Cathode Rays, Active Knowledge, Br1ght Pr1mate, and Radio Scotvoid DJing with visuals and lasers from VJ Beyonder. And finally there's the killer BOWAAC early (3pm) all ages Saturday show with Big Digits, Truman Peyote, Coralcola, Many Mansions, Wet Bandits (Ryan Durkin & Evaredy), and Dutty Artz for only 7 fucking dollars. Check out the full schedule here.

Major Stars

Monday, February 8
Major Stars, Fat Worm Of Error, Vile Bodies at Charlie's Kitchen (9:00, $5, 21+)
Psych punk noise insanity.

Monday, February 8
Sequoyah Leaf at Weirdo Records (8:00, donate, all ages)
I have no idea. Noise + clarinet? It's at Weirdo, that's all you need to know.

Brandon Terzakis

Tuesday, February 9
Brandon Terzakis at Cafe Fixe (8:00, donate, all ages)
One man drone dude will know you out with minimalism.

Wednesday, February 10
Ghost Grass and Retribution Body at Mobius (8:00, $10, all ages)
Organic electronic dronescapes to empty the useless shit filling your head.

The Beets by Nate via

Thursday, February 11
Christmas Island, The Beets, Beach Fossils, The Needy Visions, Maine Coons at The Cottage (8:00, donate, all ages)
The good kind of hipster stuff that's so good hipsters don't even know about it aka MAGIC FUN

Friday, February 12
Xiphoid Dementia, Bitchneck, Epaulettes, FRKSE at Outpost 186 (8:00, $5, all ages)
NOISSSEEE. Lots of it. All different kinds.

Ununi, Gaetana Brown, I The Eye by Kelly Alsheimer via

Saturday, February 13
Alto Jeffro, Ununi, Gaetana Brown, I The Eye, Black Steel Peacock at Outpost 186 (8:00, $5, all ages)
Nice showcase with bands from No More 60s. You got acoustic punk nastiness, harsh noise, pleasant folk, weirdo electronics, and pretty much everything your fucked up heart could ever desire from a single show.

Haiku Review: Chris Rehm - Salivary Stones (Chinquapin, 2010)

Chris Rehm - Don't Leave Me Blue

Chris Rehm
Salivary Stones (download)
/float in feedback bliss/
/pink party euphoria/
/watch mountains crumble/

Friday, February 5, 2010

Ava Luna - Services EP (Cooling Pie / Environmental Aesthetics, 2010)

Ava Luna - Cement Lunch

I hope you remember Ava Luna. Their synth punk gospel doo wop is not a sound you could easily forget. And if you did forget, you clearly weren't paying enough attention in the first place. Anyway, after shaking things up a little bit on the blogs and stuff, they're back with another sweetly handmade CD-R, the Services EP.

I have good news on all fronts about this one you guys. Most importantly, their number fetish is still going strong, with a song called "Eight Nine (Won't You Be Mine?)." And they still don't sound like anything else you've heard (unless you got their debut 3rd Avenue Island). They've taken their patented synth soul punk and smoothed it out. The girl harmonies are silkier than ever, the drums are doing more than just keeping time, and the gritty DIY sound has a thin glaze of cleanliness. And they threw in some violins to keep this shit classy.

In my review of their debut, I said they sounded like if "Todd Lewis of Toadies had some old fashioned glee club girls join him in his church of synth punk to sing hymns" and that's still very much the case. Ava Luna are fucking refreshing. And catchy. And goddamnit they're just making some of the coolest and original shit out there right now. GET ON THIS.

Psssst... you can "pay what you want" to download it on Environmental Aesthetics (or buy it from Cooling Pie).

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Machinefabriek - De Jonge Jaren (2001-2004) (self released, 2010)

Machinefabriek - Paracetamol

De Jonge Jaren sounds like Machinefabriek making a Notwist/Aphex Twin record. Yeah, tons of electronic beats, pretty poppy, kinda catchy, and really fuckin good.

Full review on diskant.

Download De Jonge Jaren (2001-2004)

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Kyle Bobby Dunn - The Intimate Rituals Of... (Songs From Under The Floorboards, 2009)

More images on Flickr. Click here to see full artwork.

Kyle Bobby Dunn - Bracebridge

How I had never heard of Kyle Bobby Dunn before I saw him at the Intransitive Recordings showcase on New Years Eve is beyond me. The guy fuckin blew my mind. Obviously, I went to the merch table to buy something, anything, that had his name on it. Holy fuck. I wasn't expecting this.

The Intimate Rituals Of Kyle Bobby Dunn is a piece of art. Literally. It's limited to 100 hand numbered copies, and every one consists of an abstract pen & ink drawing with a CD affixed to the back of it. And each one is drawn by hand (by Ashley Payne), entirely original, no duplicates or prints. No two are the same. You spend $20 and get an original piece of art along with Kyle Bobby Dunn's new release. Fucking WOW.

So the packaging is easily the most amazing packaging on anything I've ever owned but that's just the physical aspect of it. The music on Rituals is astounding. Dunn's weapon of choice is his laptop and he uses it to craft the most minimal twinkling engine whir wind drone ever. Listening to his music is like studying a canvas purposefully left blank. The canvas is beautiful and the longer you stare at it, the more beautiful it becomes. All of the tiny fibers weaving in and out, the seemingly solid color that shifts ever so slightly from thread to thread, these are the foundations that people use to create great art, but Dunn makes them the art itself.

This is some of the most nuanced and delicate drone I've ever heard. Listening to Rituals idly, or only giving it one of your ears is a severe mistake. It takes little to no effort to get immense joy out of this, just make sure it has your complete attention or you'll be doing both yourself and Dunn a great disservice.

The Intimate Rituals Of Kyle Bobby Dunn is the very first release from Songs From Under The Floorboards, a sub-division of Intransitive Recordings. Looks like it'll be a bit difficult to get ahold of, seeing how the label doesn't really have a proper web presence at the moment, but you could shoot Kyle an e-mail and he might be able to hook you up. And trust me, you want to get hooked up.

P.S. Watch out for the gator feedback attack at the end. He's pretty nasty.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Nick Hennies - Lineal (Sentient Recognition Archive, 2010)

Nick Hennies - Untitled 1

Nick Hennies' grandfather, Charles Nichols, would randomly recite poems and Nick's aunt insisted he record some of them, which he did, and eventually forgot about. Fast forward a few years, Nick found the tape and was enthralled, motivated to create something inspired by his late grandfather. Lineal "is not a memorial to Charles Nichols; it is an homage to memory."

Lineal starts out with a 9 minute track of some beautifully minimal wine glass tapping and rubbing sounds, soft high end drone with non-invasive clicks and dings. Glitchy in a smooth and relaxing way, the sounds of sunlight dancing on water.

While the opening track is super gorgeous, it's the second track that's the focus here, running for almost a half hour. It starts with Mr. Nichols, in his weathered and resonant voice, reciting "The Day Is Done" by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. We're told the poem is complete with a wine glass ding, like Reading Rainbow gone Masterpiece Theatre. The drones that follow are much less heavenly as before, instead sounding like a frosted winter wind, howling through power lines and open fields. The squeaking of blades being sharpened are heard in the distance and the storm is on its way.

Another wine glass rings, signaling an abrupt shift in mood. Birds chattering, trickling water, insects scarfing leaves, and a faint twinkling guitar precede "What I Said And What Christ Said" by George MacDonald. The sweet ambience lingers for a while once the poem is over, until it shifts gears again into something more sublime, more organ like, as if we just listened to nature and Nichols conjuring Belong, only what appears is merely the spirit of Belong, a bare bones version. Blissful, but 10 times more minimal, just a half dozen layers of tinny drone, waiting for Nichols to jump into "Home" by Edgard A Guest.

The last 5 minutes are spent slipping back into the wine glass drone on the first track, ending bizarrely with an old fashioned party song and one final wine glass ding.

Is Lineal your average drone record? Fuck no. And that's precisely why it's so awesome. Do yourself a favor and check this one out.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Ricardo Donoso - Zerovinteum (Semata, 2009)

Ricardo Donoso - Zerovinteum

Donoso is the head honcho of Semata, one of the best things Boston has going for it right now. He puts out records from amazing local noise/drone acts and he organizes/hosts some of the best noise shows in town. He also happens to make some noise himself, and Zerovinteum is his latest foray into dark ambient soundscapes.

The title track is a frightening affair, with giant sheets of metal gliding along, seeping long resonant tones through the atmosphere. Super awesome. The B side, "Plate Fourteen," starts out with a deep earth rumble, goes through a long stint of beautifully minimal bowed cymbal doom, and ends in a locked groove of hissing seismic aftershocks.

Highly recommended and totally fucking great. A limited edition 7" that's wholly worth your $7.