Sunday, 17 October 2010

Stereolab & Nurse With Wound/ GusGus

I haven't really contributed to this fine blog yet so I might as well start off with a few basic recommendations, to ease myself into this:

Stereloab & Nurse With Wound - Simple Headphone Mind (1997)

An excellent collaboration between these two artists, a true experience. It's incredibly catchy and quite hypnotic in all its minimalism. Get your headphones out and listen to this excellent, if short, album as soon as you can.


GusGus - Polydistortion (1997)

Incredibly danceable trip-hop album from the Icelandic group GusGus with quite accurate artwork. The warm electronic beats cloud your senses and transport you elsewhere. Just like when you're underwater, it gives off feeling a of freedom, loss of control and inhibition. It's as soothing as trip-hop's supposed to be, whilst being quite fun.


So there you go, two gems from 1997.

Thursday, 2 September 2010

Shoegazing Origins

Ok, so maybe I lied about doing this every week. How about I modify that to as often as I can. Some of you out there may look at a guy who reviews shoegaze albums and think, “Where's Loveless?” Well, I just won't do it. We all know how classic that album is and when My Bloody Valentine get off their asses to release a new album, I may honor them here with a review. Besides, how could you be arsed to read these entries if you had never heard Loveless before, anyway?

The classic:

Cocteau Twins – Treasure (1984)

I was going to go with a different album, but decided it wasn't obscure enough. Although, it's not as if the Cocteau Twins are very obscure. If you don't know about them, you should. This is also not a shoegaze album. Rather, it is considered “dreampop”, but shoegaze stemmed from dreampop and one listen to this album should show you how the Cocteau Twins most definitely inspired the development of shoegaze a few years later. Atmospheric guitars? Check. Intense dreamy melodies? Check. Indecipherable lyrics? Check. If there are two bands that influenced the genre more than anything, it would be the Cocteau Twins and the Jesus and Mary Chain (I was about to review Darklands, but you've already heard that, right? RIGHT?). The Cocteau Twins lent their melodic pop structures while the Jesus and Mary Chains inspired the wall of guitars that are so prevalent in shoegaze. Listen to this album then listen to Darklands and then check out Black Tambourine from my last entry. Pretty soon you'll be saying, “So THAT's where shoegaze came from!”

The Cocteau Twins started with a ton of gothic influence that slowly faded away with each album. Garlands could easily find a place next to a trenchcoat and black nail polish. The gothic influence fades a bit with Head Over Heels and with Treasure there is only a very subtle hint of it. It feels as if the band matured over each album and this progression really worked for them. They just got better and better. They made the kind of music that gets you thinking, “Where has this been my whole life?” Robin Guthrie is the master of dreamy guitars and Liz Fraser's unintelligible singing adds a level of mystery to the music that sets this band apart from any other. I would be very surprised if you listened to this album and it didn't inspire a feverish hunt to collect all of their music.

The whole album is great from top to bottom, but standouts are “Lorelei”, “Pandora”, and “Aloysius”. “Lorelei” in particular definitely has elements of later shoegaze in it. What does this album get? 9.5/10. Yep.


The new:

Asobi Seksu – Citrus (2006)

Asobi Seksu is a New York based band that has been building a reputation for themselves the past few years. They may not be as obscure as some of the other bands I will be reviewing in the future, but they are far and away my favorite recent shoegaze band. That's why they deserve a review, and of course your attention. This is a band I can credit the online radio Pandora for introducing to me.

For some reason, shoegaze seems like it would fit perfectly with some Asian influence. Asobi Seksu pretty much prove that one. Yuki Chikudate is so freaking cute. I want a cute Asian girl to serenade me with shoegaze everyday. If you couldn't tell, my mind wonders to unmentionable fantasies while I listen to this band. It doesn't help that their name translates roughly to “playful sex” in Japanese (which also fits in very nicely with the music itself). Emotional and playful at the same time, “Asobi Seksu” is the perfect name for them.

Citrus is another good example of how advanced production techniques can improve even a relatively unknown band's sound. The album sounds slick and polished with very clear guitars (yet still with plenty of crunch behind them) and subtle synthesizers. This is also a strange album as it sounds as if each good song that comes on is good only because of sheer luck. Then the next song is even better. That's when I think to myself, “Ok, but the next album will be crap.” I was wrong about that one, too. Hush is even more subtle and intricate (though it borders on straight ahead dreampop rather than shoegaze). Check that out if you dig Citrus. Asobi Seksu really know what they are doing. Standouts are “Strawberries”, “New Years”, and “Thursday”. Ok, well, the whole album really. I give it an 8.5/10. 


Thursday, 26 August 2010

Epic choonz: David Sylvian & Fantômas

As my first post here for quite some time, I'm gonna give you another one from the more difficult corner of my music collection. This couple of albums that may interest you are, as the title says, 'epic choonz'. In English, these are two albums which are comprised of one insanely long track each. Here we go then...

David Sylvian - When Loud Weather Buffeted Naoshima (2007)

1. When Loud Weather Buffeted Naoshima - 70:23

As the first epic I'm going to leave you with in this post, I'll be tossing a rather nice and very rare David Sylvian piece your way. While you may have heard his voice over some glammed-up new wave in the guise of Japan (probably his most famous work of all), and maybe a song like Red Guitar or Forbidden Colours, you should know that there's a whole different side to his songwriting, that being his various experiments with minimalist ambient music, often with the help of Can's Holger Czukay, the Future Sound Of London or King Crimson's Robert Fripp among others, often by himself. This here, originally commissioned in 2006 as an installation piece by the Fukutake Art Museum Foundation on the island of Naoshima (Japan), is probably about as left-of-centre as Sylvian's work in that (or perhaps any other) field got.

It's hard to describe this album as anything other than the the lame, allmusic-esque words I'll put in the tags regarding this (ambient, avante-garde and minimalist if you want to know), but overall I'd say it's among my favourite of Sylvian's releases. There's no hook that lasts throughout the whole length of the track, as there would be in most other ambient music. It's more of a 70 minute fluctuation of heavily-treated voices, sampled recordings of the environment of Naoshima itself, off-kilter synths, the occasional bursts of distorted guitars or brass, all melded together into one long, very minimalist and chilled whole - just get hold of it, whip out a good book, stick it on and find out for yourself I guess.

Fantômas - Delìrium Còrdia (2004)

1. Theatre Of Operations - 74:17

And as for the second epic I'll be leaving you with, here's one of the more hidden little treasures from Mike Patton's insanely varied musical career - a man I'm sure you've heard of before in some form or other, be it as the lead singer of Faith No More, Peeping Tom, Mr. Bungle or whatever. I haven't had as good a dig around his back-catalogue as I'd like to have done, but from having heard a good propotion of it I can say that, along with Mr. Bungle's mighty Disco Volante, this is probably as 'far out' so to speak as Patton's ever been.

So, like the David Sylvian album above, this is another obscure effort from a famous singer and songwriter and, also like the David Sylvian album above, it's as far removed from the kind of music you'd expect to hear from the famous singer and songwriter in question. Again, there's a lack of any kind of hook to reel you in, but in its place is a much more intense, unsettling and very dark atmosphere, drawing on a diverse range of genres including ambient, drone, metal, easy listening and so on. It's an album-long track with a specific concept as well but in this case, rather than it being something as quaint as the Japanese island of Naoshima as above, the concept is that of surgey without anesthesia (hence the single track's title). It's basically a horror movie soundtrack - one which uses sudden loud noises, nonsensical chants and screams, eerie instrumentations and a very creepy, dark ambient atmosphere to create such a brilliantly intense series of musical movements. It's just a labyrinth of highs, lows, mellow patches, scares etc.

Creepy stuff. Listen to it in the dark and enjoy!


Sunday, 22 August 2010

The Echelon Effect - Reunion (2009)

The Quiet Man in the Corner

Hello friend. My name is Tim. I'll begin with just a small run down of how I got here. It started with New Age and Native American music.. along with Trance and some Hardcore. Then I began to get into other forms of club oriented Electronica and also Black Metal. Then after a long time of trial and error I became a fan of pretty much anything that was either atmospheric, or very rich in whatever their sound was. If I was on the search for Black Metal I wanted the darkest, if I was looking for Post Rock I wanted the most gorgeous, if I was looking for Modern Classical I wanted the most expressive.. and so on. I'll pretty much give anything a try at least once. But without further adieu, my first review!

The Echelon Effect - Reunion (2009) 

The Echelon Effect is an artist I happen to find on accident, thanks to YouTube. It is the name of a solo project started by the man David Walters in the UK. His sound can pretty much be described as a mix of Ambient and Post Rock with a good heap of gorgeousness. The tracks are so bright and sunny it's hard to be sad while listening. Some songs may be slower or more quiet than others, but there is no darkness to be found. He utilizes a good amount of instruments which really help keep everything interesting. My personal favorite are the bells. They bring so much optimism to the table it can single-handedly reverse any negativity you were harboring before turning on any of the tracks that feature them; namely

In this album you can go from what sounds like the usual Post Rock (Summing Velocities) to songs like which is like a huge wall of sound and is, in a word, humbling. It starts quiet and then builds and builds and builds. The whole album is an experience and may have made The Echelon Effect one of my absolute favorite artists. He fills a niche I've been trying to fill for awhile now. If you are into Post Rock, Ambient, or anything gorgeous at all, you owe it to yourself to check him out.


Wednesday, 18 August 2010

Nothings Shocking: The Child Molesters, Feederz, Der Fuckemos

This is my expose of "shock" punk/rock...I have decided to concentrate on three bands....The Child Molesters, Feederz, and Fuckemos.....all three represent a hilarious politically incorrect morbid sense of humor which I think if you listen to with a good sense of humor you can really enjoy....take these with a grain of salt and maybe even find a new anthem!

The Child Molesters - Wir Lieben Die Jugendlich Mädchen (1981)

First off let me say that research a band call "The Child Molesters" was quite a feet and more than likely has put me on some weird Chris Hanson watch group....and to be honest there is little known about them....and most of the stuff I did find contradicted other stuff written about them...what I found was that The Child Molesters were a late 70s early 80s punk rock band from L.A....they were well known for their incredibly insulting lyrics about murder, homosexuals, and the obvious...they had a very hard time booking shows due to their name and the fact that they dressed in nazi uniforms all the way down to the arm band.

To start is an EP titled 'Wir Lieben Die Jugendlich Mädchen' this was released as 12" and basically consists of two early 7"s...this consist of four classic funny my surprise these are really good catchy punk rock songs....with just gut busting lyrics ranging from songs about being a fucked up person (I'm So (Fucked Up) ) to being in love with a 13 year old (13 Is My Lucky Number) and right into my personal favorite song I'm Gonna Punch You In The Face these are just great fun stupid punk songs....enjoy.

Feederz - Ever Feel Like Killing Your Boss? (1984)

I think out of these three bands Feederz are the most notorious due Kurt Cobain sporting a Feederz sticker...which read "Vandalism: Beautiful Like A Rock In A Cop's Face" on his guitar during Nirvana's tour with Sonic Youth in Europe of 91 (made famous in the film 1991: The Year Punk Broke) they were originally from Arizona but fled to San Francisco after their first show in which their amazing lead singer Frank Discussion pointed an AR-15 loaded with blanks at the audience and fired upon them.....they are also legends due to their infamous show at Gilman in Berkley where he played the entire set with a dead dog wrapped around his neck and threw other road kill at the audience.....Feedrz take a complete Situationist approach to punk rock with lyrics which are critical of all government, consumerism and religion.....this is their first full length release and was originally packaged in a sleeve made out of sand paper in hopes that it would ruin any other album that may come near was later re-released with less abrasive cover art.

This album is just amazingly good angry punk rock which are very much like the cover itself with songs about necrophilia (Dead Bodies) and the joys of terrorism (Terrorist) and their all time classic Jesus...which originally appeared on the Alternative Tenticles compilation "Let Them Eat Jelly Beans"...if your in the mood for fast well played subversive punk rock put this on and turn it up.

Fuckemos - Can Kill You (1994)

Noise rock from Austin Texas and like the other famous band from Austin (Butthole Surfers) they are incredibly unique....the singers voice reminds me of someone who has been up for days eating quaaludes and huffing compressed air....their name is actually gear towards a club in Austin called "Emos" not the stupid sub genre...although it works both ways.

"As is the case with a multitude of other bands from Austin, TX -- consider the case of the Butthole Surfers, Big Boys, Dicks, or Roky Erickson -- the Fuckemos reside in near-alien peculiarity, a hodgepodge of absolute originality, savant-wizardry, punk rock playfulness, and absurdity. The band owns the distinction of possessing a name not reprintable in most publications. Musically, this quartet is a hybrid of the aforementioned Butthole Surfers and the straightforward metal of acts like Judas Priest or Dio. With frontman Russell Porter pitch-shifting his vocals to sound like a 78 record played on 33 rpms and using themes that even Butthole Surfer Gibby Haynes might not have touched, the Fuckemos are perhaps one of the strangest metal bands to have emerged from planet Texas....(Patrick Kennedy) "

This is seriously one of my all time favorite records....every song on here is a hit.....these songs are catchy, funny and memorable....with great lyrics blanketed by warm fuzzy guitar noise and even the occasional horn.... from the opener "The Screams Of The Wild Women" where the singer repeats in almost mantric style "Pussy Photos" the fist pumping "FUCK EMOS".....there is even a sad ballad about a depressed führer who is trapped in a bunker and thinking about suicide....seriously these songs are just a fun rambunctious riot of bad taste....

"Mother Tell Your Children, Children Tell Your Friends:
That We Are Not One Of Those Pussy Ass Dipshit Trendy Rock Alternative Bands!"

Quickspace - Precious Falling (1998)

Here's another underrated and overlooked band from me that is hardly mentioned, this time from the 90s. Quickspace was a London band formed in the mid 90s by the ex-
Th' Faith Healers member Tom Cullinan. After releasing three albums and many singles they completely disappeared in the new millennium. And while they lasted they were pretty low profile band, releasing quietly their music on their own, a true indie band in the original sense of the word. Maybe all of this contributed to them being relatively forgotten (at least I have that feeling), but their music certainly deserves to be remembered. They were often referred to as "Stereolab that rocks", so it is perhaps understandable that in the mid-90s Brit-pop preoccupied UK they would pass under the radar. Like Stereolab, Quickspace was heavily influenced by kraut-rock, especially Neu! and can be seen as a part of that 90s neo-kraut scene that went hand in hand with post-rock scene. Their music could be described as Neu! meets Stereolab through The Fall and Spacemen 3 (Are you interested now?) But, to me, their biggest strength is a pop sensibility and the ability to always have a lot of fun.

'Precious Falling' is their second album from 1998. and is a great example of their versatility, experimenting with influences and general spontaneity. These 13 songs range from fun kraut-rocking songs with catchy, repetitive, noisy beats like 'Death + Annie', 'Quickspace Happy Song No. 2', 'Walk Me Home' and my favorite 'Coca Lola' to the more mellow, dreamy and moody songs like 'Mouse', 'Minors' and 'Melo' and in the end to some real cinematic tracks like electronic 'Habib', melancholic 'The Mountain Waltz' and excellent closing track 'Goodbye Precious Mountain' which has that desert, spacey feel of one Ennio Morricone. So, let us all remind ourselves what real indie 90s had to offer.


The Late Cord - Lights From the Wheelhouse (2006)

Bliss, happiness, gaiety, optimism, joviality, feelings of hopefulness, it's all overrated. What's the point in struggling and striving for these temporary forms of relief? The truth is, there isn't any. Staring down the abyss of nothingness is a bleak, but pleasurable way to live to your life. I think these despairing sentiments are what The Late Cord are trying to convey.

Sadly, this is their only EP. Five tracks in length. But five tracks that will endure through the loneliest of nights. The most outstanding track on this album in my opinion, "My Most Meaningful Relationships Are With Dead People" is truly one of the most mortifying tracks I've ever heard. The Late Cord's depressing tones and melancholic atmospheres are simply perfect for a soul in solace.

Tuesday, 17 August 2010

Doughboys - When Up Turns To Down (2006)

It's saddening and fucked up that these guys don't get the recognition they deserve. And they're out since the early 90's for Christ's sake. I think it's just that they've had their own string of bad luck, from internal problems, to poor marketing but if you give them the chance they deserve you won't regret it.

I came across them a couple of years ago, this being the first EP that I heard, and I loved them right away from that first beautiful melodic rift of "When Up Turns To Down". It's a great EP to start off with, being that it's a sparse five tracks in length. And every track is lovely. Definitely one of the best bands to come out of the 90's, so give this album a listen and I can guarantee you'll be rummaging through the depths of the internet for more of their albums. My recommendation would definitely be to start with their earlier stuff. And of course, you trust your Dr. don't you?


Monday, 16 August 2010

The Shoegaze Dichotomy

hHello all. This being my first post for this blog, I would like to take a moment to introduce myself. I am duga and though I have a very eclectic music collection, shoegaze is the genre that has captivated the majority of my attention. I have no qualms about reviewing other types of music (you may even see the occasional metal album pop up), but for the most part I would love to enlighten everyone in a type of music that is often overlooked despite its amazingly orchestrated and beautiful songs.

The first thing most people think of when they hear shoegaze (if they have heard that word at all) is My Bloody Valentine. If you think the pinnacle of shoegaze is Loveless, then you have sadly been deprived. Sure, there are emotive melodies buried in walls of guitar in most shoegaze, but there is quite a lot of diversity out there. It just takes a bit more digging than usual. That, or you can read my blog.

Despite its incredibly underground nature, shoegaze has seen a bit of a revival in the past decade. Though the main theme is still melody through noise, better recording tools have allowed for much more experimentation. There was a limit to the sounds that could be produced in the early 90's, made apparent by the ungodly amount of money Kevin Shields spent perfecting his tone. The result of this better technology is incredibly smooth and polished shoegaze, which the genre desperately needed. This, however, leaves a daunting amount of material to sift through. Should I go with old or new? Well, I say both. In my shoegaze blogs I will do quick reviews of two albums, one old and one new.

The classic:

Black Tambourine - Complete Recordings (1999)

If there was ever any confusion about who the shortest-lived-yet-still-influential band is, then let there be confusion no more. This is that band. Active in the late 80's and early 90's, Black Tambourine never even released a proper album. What we get is their Complete Recordings. Now, I know a new compilation was just released this year, but I haven't listened to it and I doubt it will shed much new light on this band.

So, what exactly did they do? They basically combined the pop sensibilities of New Wave and the crazed wall of guitars that the Jesus and Mary Chain were infamous for. That in itself isn't much, and in all honesty the band isn't anything absolutely earth shattering, but they influenced the scene all the same. Later shoegaze bands took their basic idea and ran with it. The length of time they actually had to write music together must also be taken into account. This band could have become something huge. Stand out tracks are “For Ex-Lovers Only” and “Pack You Up”. 7/10, yet still a shoegaze essential.


The new:

Soundpool - Dichotomies and Dreamland (2008)
Coming from New York, Soundpool is a band that really deserves everyone's attention. Dichotomies and Dreamland is the perfect title for this album. The dichotomy comes from the idea that they have droning guitars and synth while simultaneously having a very danceable rhythm section. Anyone vaguely familiar with this genre knows it is not particularly danceable. Soundpool pulls it off flawlessly.

The album kicks off with a short intro piece and a pretty decent opening number, but the album really caught my attention when “Butterflies” came around. I love the album experience and very rarely skip or repeat tracks, but that one got put on repeat a couple times. I would say all of the tracks are incredibly well written and there isn't a dud in the whole bunch. Though I would describe their album as “dance shoegaze”, that tag really does not do this band justice. You will just have to listen to the album to understand what I mean. Soundpool really hit on something magical and I am very excited to hear what else they can do. In fact, they recently released a new album this year that I have yet to listen to. Expect a post on that album in the near future as well. This one gets a 9/10.


*As always, links are for promotion only and will be removed upon request. And please let me know if there are issues with the links.

Zoinks! - Bad Move Space Cadet (1995)

Zoinks! was punk rock band from Reno Nevada which formed in 92/93 and played until 98....originally a three piece these guys play hundreds of shows is Reno and released a few 7 inches on Satans Pimp before signing to Dr Strange Records....this album is their first full length....this is 36 minutes of classic pop punk....and i mean good pop punk not watered down bullshit....being a little punk rocker in Reno during this time...these guys were in many ways my heros....and i saw them as often as i could...which was often!....i must have played this record smooth.....every track on this is classic....songs about love life and a healthy obsession with Uma Thurman....just expect good fun punk rock with no agenda....turn it up and let the good times roll
the sample in between songs are telephone call between the owner of a club called "The Fall Out Shelter" and a guy named Pete (who put on almost every show at the time) and Pete's zine called Enema...hiliarious

Saturday, 14 August 2010

Various Artists - Plague Songs (2006)

1. Klashnekoff - Blood (the Plague Of Blood)
2. King Cresote - Relate the Tale (the Plague Of Frogs)
3. Stephin Merrit - The Meaning Of Lice (the Plague Of Lice)
4. Brian Eno & Robert Wyatt - Flies (the Plague Of Flies)
5. Laurie Anderson - The Fifth Plague (the Death Of Livestock)
6. Cody Chesnutt - Boils (the Plague Of Boils)
7. The Tiger Lillies - Hailstones (the Plague Of Hail)
8. Imogen Heap - Glittering Cloud (the Plague Of Locusts)
9. Scott Walker - Darkness (the Plague Of Darkness)
10. Rufus Wainwright - Katonah (the Death Of the Firstborn)

Do you ever wake up some mornings thinking 'boy, I've had a really rotten week. If only I could listen to a concept album about the Biblical plagues! I wonder where one might be able to find such a shining bundle of joy online...'

Well, wonder no more, as it gives me something resembling great pleasure to give you the 4AD label's Plague Songs compilation! With each song initially commissioned by the arts organisation Artangel for the Margate Exodus on September 30th 2006 - an installation in Margate (Kent) that re-told the Book Of Exodus via the media of painting, sculpting, film and, apparently, music. This here is the musical portion of the installation, telling as it does of the ten plagues of Egypt in the original Biblical order. Some time after the installation, evidently 4AD thought it'd be a good idea to compile each of the ten songs commissioned for the installation and release them.

And a good idea it indeed was. I'm no Bible nut (true, I was baptised a Roman Catholic, but that was just so my parents could get me into a Catholic state school), but this album is still immensely cool, partly because it avoids the pitfalls of 99% of religiously-inclined music by being too preachy and irritating. In fact, considering the plagues of Egypt were doing the rounds long before Jesus was said to be born, none of these songs preach at all. In fact, the only mention of God I've heard in this is in Hailstones by the Tiger Lillies, saying simply that 'God is dead'.

Those three words sum up the mood of this compilation wonderfully. It's unrelentingly dark, basically. Even the 80s synth-pop echoing Meaning Of Lice has a very forbidding feel to it. So, it's all very nice and gloomy then, but a word summing up the mood doesn't account for the variety of genres represented here, from the freakish nightmare of Darkness to the ambient Flies, the dark hip-hop of Blood, the neo-soul of Hailstones and so on. I'm gonna sum it up in the tags by calling it art rock and avante-garde though.

I'd be lying if I called this easy on the ear, but it's one of those albums you just need to kinda dive into and lose yourself in. Click the link below, save it for a sober night in on your own and let it do what it does best...

Friday, 13 August 2010

Boyd Rice Presents: Music For Pussycats (2002)

Of all the people you would not expect to put together a happy and wonderful compilation of 60s girl pop would be Boyd Rice...but as he points out in the liner notes "this is the soundtrack of my life"...and what a soundtrack it is
This is the soundtrack of the hypnotic power of the siren.....these ladies will enthrall you and leave you begging for more....every track here is a fine example of 60s pop music...from the flirty playfulness of Please Don't Talk Top The Lifeguard by Diane Ray to the disturbing reality of the times with The Warrior by Honey Ltd and swinging right back into the groovy psychedelic sounds of The Love Exchange and their amazing song Swallow The Sun....
This is a great listen and a groovy testament to the times and the lovely ladies who graced it.

Battle of Mice - A Day of Nights (2006)

Variety in vocals is a near impossible thing to find in music these days. Especially when you come across such unconventional vocals that work so perfectly with the sound in which it is integrated. Battle of Mice integrates post-metal with noticeable elements of sludge and... screaming, perfect screaming by lead vocalists Julie Christmas originally of Made Out of Babies. Did I mention the screams? They're flawless by the way.

With rhythmic drumming, dark guitars, and equally dark lyrics, Battle of Mice, I guarantee, will not disappoint. Furthermore, apart from Julie's unconventional vocal styles, her voice is beautiful. In the track, "Sleep and Dream" (my personal favourite from the album) she boasts the full potential of how amazingly gorgeous her voice is. You'll notice why I'm raving so heavily about her singing voice when you listen to this track from 4:34. Just, sit back and prepare to have your proverbial socks knocked the fuck off.

The only bad thing I can possibly think of about this album, "A Day of Nights" is that I wish it had more tracks. However, despite it being seven tracks in length, each track surpasses the 5 minute mark. A truly lovely album this one is, you'll find yourself putting this on for repeated spins after your very first listen. Furthermore you'll find yourself quoting these lyrics at the most random moments. Even while typing this up I still can't get over the versatility of her vocal cords. Let's just hope she doesn't damage them with those forceful, perfect screams. But at least it won't be vain. She knows this album was simply worth it.


Medium Medium - The Glitterhouse (1981)

The Glitterhouse has to be one of post punk's most under looked, underrated, and under appreciated albums, which is a tragedy because it's certainly a masterpiece. Medium Medium has everything that's delicious in a post punk band, as well; bass bass bass, punchyourselfinthedick percussion, and a singer that sings like if he stops his head'll fuckin' explode. Not only do they have this, but said singer, John Rees Lewis, plays a mad sax and writes the fuck out of a song.


MX-80 Sound – Big Hits / Hard Attack (1976/1977)

MX-80 Sound, or just MX-80, were one of those very unique 70s bands that are often overlooked and always remain underrated. Formed in the early 70s in Indiana, their first influences were Captain Beefheart, Frank Zappa, The Stooges. They managed to release EP "Big Hits - Hard Pop From the Hoosiers" on their own in 1975 or '76, when they were a five piece band with two drummers. That led Island Records to take an interest in them, but sadly their first proper album "Hard Attack" (1977) was never realized in USA, only in England. Later, they hooked up with The Residents in San Francisco and released next two albums on Ralph Records: "Out Of The Tunnel" (1980) and "Crowd Control" (1981). These were more in the vein of post-punk, but too hard-rocking for the punk crowd.

This is a 1995. CD release that merged Big Hits EP and Hard Attack. The music here is so unique in its eclectic ways that no wonder they were so confusing to the listeners and labels at the time. It’s almost impossible to classify them. They’ve been called post-punk, proto-punk, art-dada-heavy metal, art-prog-punk, psych-hard rock, pre-punk noise rock, etc. All these terms sound even crazier than the band. The best one I’ve heard is Acid Punk, and that’s what I’m going to use. The sound was an unlikely marriage of hard rock/metal riffs and solos, prog-rock shifts, changes and odd time signatures and punk immediacy, simplicity and energy, all accompanied by a deadpan vocal delivery a la Jonathan Richman of Modern Lovers - like a cross between Television/Modern Lovers and Captain Beefhaert/Motorhead. Just imagine a punk band that not only knows how to play instruments, it also does it with such a virtuosic quality, but is never afraid to lose itself in a wall of sound, the grooving energy and a unique sense of humor are never compromised.

I suspect that MX-80 Sound’s music had a certain influence on noise rock of the 80s – Sonic Youth, Butthole Surfers, Jesus Lizard etc, especially on the latter two. At their time they couldn’t exactly find an audience. They were too complex and hard rocking for punks, too simple and energetic for prog-heads and too out there for hard rockers/metal-heads. Hopefully, now, in these times of post-this and post-that they'll be more appreciated. So, punks and prog-heads, this is something for both of you.

Big Hits (1976)

1 Train to Loveland/You Turn Me On/SCP/Till Death Do Us Part

2 Myonga Von Bontee/Boy Trouble Girl Trouble/Tidal Wave

Hard Attack (1977)

3 Man On The Move

4 Kid Stuff

5 Fascination

6 Summer '77

7 PCB's

8 Crushed Ice

9 Tidal Wave

10 Theme From Checkmate

11 Facts-Facts

12 You're Not Alone

13 Civilized/Demeyes

14 Afterbirth/Aftermath

Bonus Track

15 Sad Girls


Thursday, 12 August 2010

Fucking Werewolf Asso - Kid! Just Letting You Know We Are Doing It Again (2010)

In addition to the many people who embraced the original 8-Bit sounds of the Nintendo Entertainment System comes Fucking Werewolf Asso of Gotherburg, Sweden. After the demise of his previous 8-bit hardcore band GO! With Fourteen O (A.K.A. Vs. the Helicopter), vocalist/keyboard player/MIDI programmer Dennis Wedin teamed up with drummer Martin Svensson to create more speedy, infectious, synth-powered, pop songs. Several G!WFO songs have here been revived with Dennis trading in the previous screamo vocals for his high register shouting (I personally love it but I can see how some may not be so accepting of the change). With the album being little over 16 minutes and the longest song topping off at 2:20, each track is tightly packed with hooks that demand repeated listening.

Kid! Just Letting You Know We Are Doing It Again leaves very little room for filler (or room in your pants for that matter).


1. Made a Gun With My Fingers and Shot At My Friends

2. We Are Driving a 400.000 Dollar Car

3. A Bunch of Backpacks for This Wolfpack

4. A Whole Wolfpack in a Bunch of Backpacks

5. When It's Done As Evidence It's a Shirt Again

6. A Walros! Like a Vampire But Awesome

7. No, I Didn't Say the Keyboard Needed Flattery!

8. You Got Leave Shield (Goodbye!)

9. Stop Screaming! It's Just What the Bomb Wants Us to Do

10. Blade Braham Lincoln


Dalek-Absence (2004)

Hip Hop is dead? Impossible. Especially impossible with this dynamic duo of innovators on the scene. Consisting of lead vocalist MC Dälek and the Oktopus, this experimental hip hop duo brings to the genre a class that has yet to be recognized. With impeccable flows and a style of production that will rattle your sanity if you try to bring specificity in choosing a genre to this style, Dälek could be a glimpse of what future hip hop could be become.

With recognizable distortion noticed throughout their tracks, Dälek expresses their voice with dark undertones, not suited for the light at heart. This noisy, atmospheric treat will explode in your ears with a cornucopia of sounds in a way hip hop has never done before. Furthermore, touring with bands in the likes of Tool and Isis, Dälek is expecting to recruit an entirely new breed of fans to the hip hop genre. Of course, apart from their instrumental diversity, their rhymes are simply immaculate.

This album, “Absence” is the perfect way to start your journey into the world that is Dälek. Right away from the first track “Distorted Prose” (my personal favourite) you will immediately realize you are amidst greatness. With other amazing tracks such as “Culture for Dollars”, “Asylum – Permanent Underclass” (which possesses that old school turntable style in its beats), “Eyes to Form Shadows” (So dark, so good) and obviously your own choice favourites, this album will inspire you to explore the rest of their discography. One word of advice however, this album is NOT easy on the ears. So be prepared for an audible workout. You have been warned.


Stump-Complete Anthology (2008)

Stump were an interesting band. Part of the C86 scene, but not at the forefront. They didn't recieve much attention. The Anthology was long awaited as the band need as much love as they can get. Often called "The Irish Captain Beefheart" because of their random, crazy lyrics and unusual vocals. They are very underrated. The Anthology has 3 discs, the first consists of their first two EPs, the second is their only album release and finally the third disc is made up of unreleased songs from their later days.

The first disc starts with a bang, "Tupperware Stripper" is a fantastic song. Track 4 is probably Stump's most well known song, "Buffalo" is made up of statements spoken by American tourists, which the band heard in and around London. "How much is the chips? How much is the fish? How much is the fish? DOES THE FISH HAVE CHIPS?!" Mick Lynch screams down the mike giving the song an almost insane feel.

Disc 2 is the album "A Fierce Pancake", it's more Post-Punky as a whole and as usual the bass work is impeccable. Last time I checked Kev Hooper was #5 in my Top 10 bassists list.  This album is often called the spiritual succesor to XTC's Drums And Wires but I like it even more, this band are like XTC x1000. Andy Partridge's lyrics are like a watered down version of Stump's. Charlton Heston is the obvious standout here, the track is ridiculously catchy and I find myself singing it at least once a month.

But Disc 3 is the real standout here, it's outstanding quality considering none of this stuff was ever released. I'm 100% convinced that if this band had stayed together for another few months, they would be considered underground heroes. This stuff has a much larger Irish Folk influence with a few tracks having a more Irish feel as the band take influence from their homeland. After their relatively short career nothing went well for them with Kev Hooper releasing a couple of extremely obscure solo albums then releasing an even more obscure album with Glitch group Ticklish.

So yeah guys give this album a listen and think just what might of been if this band had stuck around.

Disc 1-Download
Disc 2-Download
Disc 3-Download

Mars-The Complete Recordings NYC 1977-1978

Mars is some weird motherfucking noise/no wave, that just kinda grows over you like a fungus

"Mars is best known in noise circles as the one band on Brian Eno’s No New York compilation that had no musical experience whatsoever. Mars first appeared on the New York noise radar in 1977. Originally called “China”, and formed in 1975, the band that would become Mars would play only a handful of shows in their short career and would be limited to a handful of recorded tracks. The band was headed for split up in 1978 — regardless of their appearance on No New York — but managed to stay together long enough to record material for an EP, a self-titled affair, posthumously released in 1980."

awesome, dudes


The Brain Saw-Open Up (2006)

Hailing from Detroit MI...The Brain Saw were a short lived noise power group featuring members of Thrall, God Bullies, Inside Out!, and Queen Bee.....following in the steps of these great noise rock bands...The Brain Saw play scary, aggressive, noisy rock n roll that dwells deep inside the hearts and minds of misanthropic madmen and women.....they self released one Ep in 2006 and broke up shortly after due to the plummeting economy in Detroit

Open Up consists of five anthems that descend the listener into a world despondent, self loathing, sociopathic narcissism...all along keeping a sense of wit, fun and humor.....and with a great soundtrack consisting of great noisy feedback riddle rock n roll.....and blood...lots of blood

This is misanthropic rock.
"Everyone Else Can Fuck Themselves!"

enjoy this rare gem

Carissa's Wierd - Songs About Leaving (2002)

Carissa's Wierd personifies the definition of sadcore. Truly depressing music done at it's finest moments, with lyrics that speak to your heart and gentle instruments that speak to your soul. Violins, cellos, pianos in an array that will leave melancholic fans with just simply a thirst for more. Personally speaking, Carissa's Wierd has done for me what no other band possibly could. If I could choose one band that has shed light on some of life's darkest moments, it would without a doubt be this particular indie rock band that originated in Seattle.

This album, "Songs About Leaving" I'd rate in their highest regards. To call an album perfect is a stretch to say the least. But to call this album perfect could possibly be bordering on an understatement. It is rare that we'll find an album where every track deserves repeated listens , but alas, we are in the midst of one. The first time I listened to this album, I was amazed that something could be so singularly amazing, and it quickly grew to be one of my favourites of all time.

The melancholic feel of this entire album never grows old, and it will take you for a thrill ride of gut wrenching emotion. You will definitely immerse yourself in your own favourites and this album is an instantaneous grower. With gems such as "So You Wanna Be A Superhero", "Silently Leaving the Room", "They'll Only Miss You When You Leave", Ignorant Piece of Shit" and basically every other track, you'll feel your heart ripped out of your chest. But you'll love that feeling. It'll be the best feeling an album can give you...


Alvin Lucier-I Am Sitting In A Room (1970)

Alvin Lucier is an American Avant Garde composer. The man is also a genius. I Am Sitting In A Room is one recording of a few sentences explaining the album, it is played into the room until it becomes distorted and eventually is just a drone sound. The album was obviously pretty influential. Lucier recorded more albums which are also rather interesting but for me this is the best. Music On A Long Thin Wire experiments with what you can do with a single piece of 50 foot wire and a magnet, while Music For Solo Performer revolves around brain waves. I wasn't expecting much when I downloaded this, but I was shocked. This is what Avant Garde music should be like challenging,  interesing and completely original.

At first it's just a normal recording, Mr. Lucier explains the purpose of the experiment and how it works. Gradually the recording gets more distorted as it's played and eventually just becomes an ethereal drone.

I rate this album 5 stars because it's so different, there's not any other albums like this one.

Download it guys, and if you like it support the artist.