Wednesday, April 28, 2010

MP3: Skogar - Take A Holiday

Skogar - Take A Holiday

Sweden's Skogar is back with a brand new track that's a helluva lot more chipper than his last release. "Take A Holiday" is from the 3 song Golden Hits and is a synth heavy mess of blissed bedroom rock. All blown out drum machine loops and sweet Casio melodies, this one's a fuckin dreamer, sights set on cruising with the windows down on mid July nights.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Jakob Battick & Friends - Heavy The Mountains, Heavy Are The Seas (self released, 2010)

Jakob Battick - Nine Brothers & The Wolf

Jakob Battick (and friends), the creator of that dusty autumnal EP Hiding In The Orchard made of recycled bingo cards, is back with another piece of folky amazingness. Although instead of making another charming record, he tore a hole in the gray sky and twisted his folk roots into some unsettling black monster.

Heavy The Mountains, Heavy Are The Seas starts out normally enough with "Always Returning / Never Returning," a nice slow moving acoustic number. But that track quickly devolves into a screaming epic of soul wrenching, howling at the moon type stuff. Loud, abrasive, and nothing like what I was expecting.

The next 3 songs follow suit. Creeping through midnight meadows, with lilting guitars and deep throated vocals echoing in damp attics. There's lots of loud-quiet-loud moments, spun around in a Battick-afied whirlwind of emotion, even some horns thrown in to complete the massive kitchen sink crescendo. And the final track, "A Silent Prayer," is where the magic happens. Grand as grand can be, crushingly beautiful, intense passion pouring out of Jakob. Absolutely amazing.

This isn't your average folk record guys. I'm not even sure it should be classified as such. It is, however, damn fine, regardless of labels. Jakob Battick has made another truly great fucking record. And, thankfully, I believe a full length is in the works.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Coralcola - Egggirl EP (self released, 2010)

Coralcola - Egggirl (Kat Fyte Re-Rub)

I slept 11 hours and I'm still fuckin exhausted so what I need are some chill beats to ease me in and then wake me the fuck up. Lucky for me (and most likely you too because, after all, it is Monday) Coralcola has finally released his Egggirl EP, complete with 2 new jams and 6 title track remixes from Boston(ish)'s worthiest and most capable remixin dudes.

When "Egggirl" came out last July, I was listening to that blissy techno shit every day and was really looking forward to the upcoming EP, supposedly coming in the fall. Clearly that didn't happen. But you know what? It was totally worth the wait and for 2 reasons. 1: IT'S FREE so any argument is invalid. 2: It's just that fuckin slick.

Check out who lent their skills in making "Egggirl" all it can be: Die Young, Nooka Jones, Kat Fyte...? Yeah. This is it. They all take their own original style, warping the song into something entirely different, making listening to "Egggirl" 7 times 100% enjoyable.

What you need to do is go download this EP for free and then you'll be the head master of Party Town USA all week at work.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Haiku Review: German Shepherd - 203 (Sunrise Acoustics, 2010)

German Shepherd - A

German Shepherd
203 (download)
/righty gone lefty/
/white hum nestled in warm grass/
/sky high shimmer drone/

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Joseph McNulty - The Earth, In Veins (Sentient Recognition Archive, 2009)

Joseph McNulty - My Neighbor's Dog

Yes indeed this is another release from the infallible SRA label. No it's not the newest. Actually The Earth, In Veins was the first (and probably the last) cassette release for SRA. And it's still available! I think...

Joseph McNulty's tape is the stuff the sky is made of. Purely ethereal drones, it looks like something solid and tangible from a distance, but upon close inspection, everything fades away into bliss. Unbelievably relaxing tones, with twinkling layered guitars, gentle washes of static, and the occasional vintage sound bite. It has similarities to the pop click ambience of Christopher Willits, the sweet catchy loops of Et Ret, and lush drones of Eluvium, and McNulty is just as awesome as all those dudes.

You probably have a dozen euphoric chill drone tapes that you listened to a handful of times before it got lost in your couch cushions. But I promise you that you don't have one that sounds like The Earth, In Veins. This one is special. The drones are extra droney, the bliss is extra blissy, it's just extra fucking good on every front.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Video: Kira Kira - Bless

Kira Kira's "Bless" is somber & intimate, set to a suitably matched video with fantastic animation about a dude who dreams he turns to old man made of paper and meets some strange creatures like a llama Zen master and a flying horse with a squid tongue. Probably not the best thing to help wake you up this morning, but if you're already on your fifth cup of coffee, "Bless" should ease you off your buzz.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

NHK - Special (Important, 2010)

NHK - Mogra

Holy. Fuck. Guys. This is it. ROTY 2010. Callin it right now.

NHK's Special is a motherfuckin understatement and a half. "Special" doesn't even begin to describe the awesomeness of Special. This record is OUTSTANDING. Like infinite Reese's Cups amazing. No, like giant ridable bunnies amazing. That's how ridiculously good this record is.

This is some of the best electronic music I've ever heard. It takes noise, dubstep, glitch, some other mysterious sounds, and makes something unlike anything else I've heard (including NHK's debut, Ununumium). It's so fucking dirty & crisp, precise & distorted, like if Dan Friel did techno and put out a record with Kid606 in his Down With The Scene days. The sort of thing I would listen to every day for the past 2 months (hypothetically, of course).

Special is sold out at Important, but probably still available at various shops if you search around. And trust me. It is totally fucking worth it to search around. Only 300 of these bad boys were made. Maybe more will come later, but until then, do yourself a favor and make finding a copy of Special your number one priority 'cause NHK are fucking tearing it up.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Diagram A / Chrome Jackson Split (Spooky Tree, 2010)

Chrome Jackson - The Icicle Men March

Another one of the new Spooky Tree 7 inches, this one's got more fucked up noise from a Western Mass dude (Diagram A) and a surprisingly delightful track from an ex-Arab On Radar guy living in Rhode Island (Chrome Jackson).

Diagram's A side "Artery Drawing Anterio" is absolute insanity. Electronic squalls of vertigo and heaving piles of low end thrumming, it's like electro-shock therapy for your ears. It's strangely captivating, can't quite get away from it no matter how bad you want to look away, like driving past a car wreck. Guaranteed to make your gums bleed.

Chrome Jackson's half "The Icicle Men March" is just as fucked but a bit more pleasing on the ears. A catchy blown out guitar loops around like a circus is coming through town, except this circus is the kind that makes your eyes melt and gives you a bad acid trip just by hearing their clowns laugh. So so fucking good. Could listen to this on repeat all day long. #1 pop jam of the week!

Friday, April 16, 2010

OOPs: Pronouncing The Scientific Names Of Seashells Of North America (not on label, 1969)

Seashells Of North America Side A

I know a lot of you that follow me on Twitter were really excited about this when I mentioned it the other day. Probably about as excited as I was when I found this at Todd Farm in Rowley for FOUR DOLLARS. I nearly shit my pants when I saw this heaped in with the Asia and Humperdinck LPs.

Apparently this Pronouncing The Scientific Names Of Seashells Of North America LP was a companion to a book that was more in depth, with illustrations and descriptions and such. I don't have that book, though. Just the record.

Unlike a lot of the other weird old records I find and post on AGB, there's nothing I can say to pretend like this one has any musical qualities to it. Usually with vintage field recordings, I can hear similarities to legit music. But this isn't a field recording. This is a scientific/educational record with a highly specific audience. This is literally a dude reading, in the most straightforward way possible, seashell names of Latin origin. Unless you want to compare this to some crazy performance art, there's nothing else to it.

I wish I had something witty or insightful to say about this but I got nothing. It is what it is. It is just AWESOME.

2 technical notes: The B side has a couple of spots where it sounds like it skips, but it doesn't miss any of the seashell names. It's just a little hiccup. Also, included in the zip file is a stitched together scan of the back of the jacket which has a list of all the seashell names, in case you want to, you know, follow along with him or something.


Thursday, April 15, 2010

Wilt - She Walks The Night (Husk, 2010)

Wilt - Haunting The Chapel

Oooh Wilt. Did you really think that starting your new 7" off with howling wolves was a good idea? AWESOME. Just making sure we're on the same page.

She Walks The Night is a new piece of mini vinyl, the first 100 of which came with a bonus cassette (which is actually twice as long as the 7"). And these tunes are some of the bleakest minimal black metal noise to ever grace my turntable. Murky, desolate, and totally fucking pitiful, the type of sounds you hear wandering through a forgotten zombie infested graveyard in the middle of the night while fog rolls across the moon.

The tape has an extra 4 tracks, one of which is a reprise of the title track opening the vinyl, and it's more of the same. Which is a good thing, obviously. Creepy black ambience, Undead shuffling through empty mausoleums, the leathery flapping of bat wings, earth rumbling thunder, church bells ringing in the distance, the sound of utter hopelessness and grim filth.

Not sure if this is still available with the companion tape but it should be because it hasn't been out very long. Either way though, She Walks The Night is fucking essential for your collection of necrotic ambient 7 inches. Husk totally rules for putting this out (side note: and for putting out that origami style Mudboy LP)

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Tongues Of Mount Meru - The Delight Of Assembly (The Tapeworm, 2010)

Tongues Of Mount Meru - Side B

Download link removed by request.

Noise + black metal = hypnodrone... obviously. Jazzkamer's Lasse Marhaug and Jon Wesseltoft (of Thorns) got together and decided they need to chill the fuck out and throw some hardcore minimal drones down on tape. Hence Tongues Of Mount Meru.

The Delight Of Assembly has two sidelong pieces of static synth organ drones. Total existential revelation shit. Your eyes & ears get that foggy glaze and you hear the most beautiful, intricate insect hum. This is super textured stuff made of fuzz & buzz, while still being as soft and ethereal as clouds & dust. Seriously, this is the easiest way to attain enlightenment. Climb Mount Meru, bliss out, and become omniscient.

This is almost as minimal as it gets, at least when it's not being compared to artists like Phil Niblock. The best comparison would be Deceh's self titled LP on Important. Both are made up of similar sounding drones, long form, sidelong pieces, etc. But like all things Tapeworm, liiiiimited. Hurry!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Painforged / Gnaw Their Tongues - A Confession Of Worshipping The Depraved And Perverse Human Psyche... (Shadowgraph, 2010)

Painforged - Grotesque Revelation Of Anthropogenic Atrocitys Through Necrophilia And Cannibalism

The full title of this Painforged / Gnaw Their Tongues split is A Confession Of Worshipping The Depraved And Perverse Human Psyche In An Insalubrious And Pathological Context but Blogger can't handle titles that long so FUCK EM. Anyway...

You should remember An Epiphanic Vomiting Of Blood, the Gnaw Their Tongues album I reviewed a couple years ago, because there is no way you could possibly wash those sounds from your ears. And if you were somehow able to wipe Gnaw Their Tongues from your memory, I'll do you a favor and bring it all back.

This DVD-cased black CD-R split is the sound of your nightmares. Or rather, the sounds of hell. Nobody should ever have nightmares that sound like this. That's just too terrible of a thought.

Painforged's 3 songs (that have song titles just as long as the album title) are the yin to Gnaw Their Tongues' yang. While Painforged makes the blackest doom horror metal, his songs sound like he actually records (or samples) legit torture. Dudes describing the horrific things they're going to do to somebody, men & women being beaten and screaming for their lives, and haunting doom drone thrown beneath it all. Then there's some carnal inhuman vocals and maybe real instruments like drums and shit. Or maybe it's just the sounds of smashing skulls. I don't know. But fuck, man, this is really a metal record of people being tortured. Real or fake hardly matters. It is the most disturbing fucking thing I've ever heard.

So Painforged makes songs that are the sounds of torture, and Gnaw Their Tongues makes the songs to be played during the torture. He's like the conductor of the score to your death. GTT's 3 tracks are just as disgustingly demoralizing as anything else he's done. Cacophonous devil dreams of gut wrenching drones, buried zombie moans, and exploding puppy pinatas filled with acid bile and rusty nails.

Clearly Gnaw Their Tongues' reign of cinematic terror metal still stands. I bet he and Painforged are BFF after this split. They're probably at home comparing who has more satanic snuff VHS tapes. Maybe next time they'll collaborate on a sound/art installation where you lay down inside a coffin, they close it and pipe in their new song that literally makes you go insane and kill yourself. Fingers crossed!

Monday, April 12, 2010

MP3: Nikoo - Marquee

Nikoo - Marquee

5 dudes from the Netherlands call themselves Nikoo and made a free 6 song EP of '60s psych pop/rock, shoegaze, punk, and whatever else. Most of the stuff is really fuckin good but OMG "Marquee" is like the catchiest song ever. Kinda blissful, gets in a solid groove, climaxes, and all in just over 2 minutes. Plus, I work at a sweet movie theater so I'm always having more fun at the marquee.

I've been listening to Nikoo pretty much non-stop for the past week. It's getting harder and harder for me to pull myself away from it and listen to something else. If you need more convincing, check the track "You've Got A Strange Effect On You" on their Myspace and then fuckin download the EP already.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Haiku Review: Tanner Menard - You Had Not Changed But Your Cameras Were No Longer Indentical (High Linear Music, 2010)

Tanner Menard - You Had Not Changed But Your Cameras Were No Longer Identical

Tanner Menard
You Had Not Changed But Your Cameras Were No Longer Identical (download)
/lucid ghost haunts bliss/
/warm piano buzzsaw drone/
/golden air surrounds/

Friday, April 9, 2010

Noise Nomads / Urthquake Split (Spooky Tree, 2009)

Urthquake - Intra Muros

A nice slice of dirty weirdness from the latest batch of 7" splits on Spooky Tree. This one's got Western Mass' self descriptive Noise Nomads backed with Jersey's ambient black metal dude Urthquake. And put together they make for something that's maliciously enjoyable.

Noise Nomad's "Soaked Blanket" is an electronic squawk fest, with a non-stop FXed to oblivion guitar jam shredding over a bed of scratchy synths. Tons of grit and bloop, like the guy's equipment fell into some hidden quicksand and is going all HAL-9000.

Urthquake's piece "Intra Muros" is pure fucking evil. There's a sedated Goblin-esque synth track looped through the entire song that sounds like the bedraggled anti-heroes walking through wastelands on their way to inevitable doom. Buzzing guitars & crashing cymbals in the background, more & more layers of threateningly sinister synths, and no hope in sight.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Xela, Perispirit, Brendan Murray & Noell Dorsey at The Piano Factory

Brendan Murray & Noell Dorsey: whales, monkeys, & ghosts singing in an occasionally treacherous river of echoes & footsteps

Brendan Murray: hummingbird heartbeat pulse blast, murky sonar blip feedback, laser tag in space haze

Perispirit: I really don't remember, my mind kinda melted, there were birds & water sounds, CRAZY volume cuts, the end was bordering on black metal, and it seemed to last foooorevverrrrrr

Xela: Jim Siegel (Ning Nong) on drums, synthy sci-fi arpeggio/tremolo tape weirdness, fallen angel choir harmonizes with itself, spontaneously combusts, treads on static circuits & tribal clouds, all the while firmly rooted in euphoria

More photos on Flickr.





Brendan Murray

Brendan Murray & Noell Dorsey

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Video: The Boo Jays - Creepy Crawlin'

The Boo Jays play some hardcore new wave surf spy punk that make it absolutely necessary to throw on some Ray Bans and act like a badass. The video for their new tune "Creepy Crawlin'" has the trio grabbing a blonde blow up doll and a Cocker Spaniel to round out the Mystery Inc crew. The only other difference between The Boo Jays and Scooby-Doo's gang is that I don't think Shaggy and them ever found themselves in a Monster Mash whore house. Probably not too safe to watch at work, unless your boss is down with Dracula BJs.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Strotter Inst., Baker / Bisson Duo at 119 Gallery

Baker / Bisson Duo: paintbrush & Slinky on a guitar, wind up toys & spiky ball rolling on a turntable, bow & ribbed plastic tube on a bicycle wheel, rubber gloves plucking the wheel like a harp, shutter snapping interrupted hushed bang-clanking

Strotter Inst.: 3 turntables, 100 rubber bands everywhere, records with shit taped all over them, wooden blocks & rolls of tape revolving under stylus/rubber band pickup, continuously morphing looped mechanical drone, utterly incredible, 100% mesmerizing

More photos on Flickr.

Strotter Inst.

Strotter Inst.

Strotter Inst.

Baker / Bisson Duo (Bisson)

Baker / Bisson Duo (Baker)

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Easter Pop Mix

I'm going to Connecticut for Easter to visit the fam and made a mix for the drive. This is that mix. There's vintage faves La Roux & Ms Boots, new classics like Jónsi, CocoRosie, & Gorillaz, hipster hits from Tanlines, Kisses, & Pill Wonder, and hopefully some fun weird shit you might not have heard of before. At least, that was the plan.

This is going to make the trip tomorrow 100 zillion times more awesome, and maybe if you're going somewhere that's at least 1 hour and 10 minutes away, it will also enhance your trip.

I feel like a motherfucking genius coming up with such an amazing title for this mix. Easter Pop might go down as one of the best mix titles ever.

Major props to my bunny Hodge for being so inspiring and helping out with the custom album art.

Easter Pop
1. Boas - Reaching
2. Tanlines - Policy Of Trust
3. Parallels - Ultralight
4. La Roux - Quicksand
5. Little Boots - Stuck On Repeat
6. Lady Gaga - Bad Romance
7. Baby Sloth Spirit - UU7X
8. Kisses - Lovers
9. Gorillaz - Empire Ants
10. Glitter Bones - Race To Heaven
11. Panda Teeth - I'm Sick Of Chip Breaking The 4th Wall
12. Pill Wonder - Wishing Whale
13. Jónsi - Go Do
14. The Knife - The Height Of Summer
15. Dustin Wong - Breezy Comfort
16. Turtle Ambulance - Child
17. Yeasayer - Ambling Alp
18. CocoRosie - Fairy Paradise

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Haiku Review: Natural Snow Buildings - The Centauri Agent (Vulpiano, 2010)

Natural Snow Buildings - Phantom Twin

Natural Snow Buildings
The Centauri Agent (download)
/eras bend, drones glow/
/sprawling cosmic folk epic/
/star haze harmony/

Friday, April 2, 2010

OOPs: Songs Of The Humpback Whale (Capitol, 1970)

Tower Whales

From what I've read, these are some of the first recorded whale songs. And I paid 50 cents for this at a mansion-sized antique store.

This record works 2 ways, as I find most vintage field recording type records do. The first (and obvious) one is: this is what humpback whales sound like. Underwater. Talking and shit.

Then there's the eventual comparison to human music. You might automatically jump to the drone parallel, and you'd be right. Plenty of the sounds on this record fall under the ambient drone category. But there's also music that I never would have imagined sounds like whales. Minimal analog synth? TONS of that on here. Blips and bloops galore. Fuck, whales are like the original masters of early electronic music. There's also inklings of low end doom and tape manipulation. And I'm not even stretching with these comparisons, this is just what's glaringly obvious to me.

What blows my mind is that whales have made sounds like this for centuries (I assume) and we as humans made music that has so many similarities to it, before we even knew what it was. Mid 20th century electronic & tape music was being created well before those composers knew what whale songs were. I bet they'd be pretty pissed if someone told them, "Dudes, you think you're the first? Whales have been doing this for, like, EVER."


Thursday, April 1, 2010

Panther Modern - Last Judgment Machine (Danvers State, 2010)

Panther Modern - The Grave Is No Bar To My Call

A+ noise dude The Vomit Arsonist runs Danvers State Recordings, your place for all things fucked. The latest batch of tapes has Panther Modern's newest 60 minutes of sheer brutality, otherwise known as Last Judgment Machine.

If you like your tapes caked in industrial crust, then prepare to shit your yourself. This motherfucker is the harshest of noise. Coal engine pounding, black smoke spewing, rusted metal grinding noise.

I listen to a lot of noise. Well, maybe not a lot but probably more than the average music nerd. And in doing so, I've come to expect certain things from noise. But no matter how many times I listen to Last Judgment Machine, it always catches me off guard. There are parts that continuously make me jump, leave me slack jawed, and generally make me think "What the FUCK just happened." I expect the unexpected and still get face raped every goddamn time.

Danvers State shit usually sells out pretty quickly and Last Judgment Machine is no exception. You lost out bitches. This time. Keep an eye on the next batch of tapes coming out soon (Sharpwaist 2xCS!) and make sure your trigger finger is in good shape.

P.S. Digital promo + obscure tape label = shitty album art (sorry)