Monday, April 18, 2016

V/A - Enlightenment 10"


Label: Soledad
Year: 1997

Four bands, each represented by one track. The common thread is written in the insert; "Tried to climb to new heights, but couldn't hold it together".
Thrones go first, and come out of he gate like a molasses covered lightening bolt. I assure you that the speed is correct, even though you will fight me about it for at least the first 30 seconds of this song. It's uglier than anything else you will encounter today (and knowing your mom, that's really saying something...ouch! Zinger!). Recorded by Justin Trosper of Unwound for extra points.
Spaceboy go second, and do a pretty convincing job of out-weirding Thrones. They go for a Breadwinner-after-a-hard-night-of-drinking sound that goes from here to there to back over there to out to the moon and then back under your thumbnail. All the metal in the world combined into all this metal.
Lice go third, and show no interest in making your day brighter or your whites whiter. They go wretched, they go gnarly, and I'm pretty sure they could give a shit if you go with them.
Toadliquor go fourth, and wrap this thing up with a slow motion bang. Psych resin that plods forth from within a collapsing star. Super fucked.

It's all super fucked.

DL

Friday, April 15, 2016

Victory Hands - Anderson 10"


Label: Headphone Treats
Year: 2016

In the long lineage of bands creating storylines, or wearing costumes, or adopting false identities or whatever, I'm not sure a more strangely esoteric concept for a band has been hatched that can top Victory Hands.
They are a band based on the presidency of Richard Nixon. Which is fair, I'm sure you agree?
Their lyrics are lifted verbatim from the White House tapes and Nixon's own speeches. Seem about right?
The plan for record releases is that each one (this being the first) will be centered on a reporter whom Nixon had "beef". Super normal? I'm just surprised that nobody has thought of this approach prior to these guys!

Luckily for you (us), this heady concept is being steered away from ridiculousness in the capable hands of some of Atlanta's most bestest musicians. Alumni from a long line of noisy, mathy, post-most everything bands. So what could be a mess of political in-jokes and nerdy fodder, is actually a concise and compelling two songs worth of premium rock music. It cuts through on the back of a Tar-like propellant pushing and pulling with an economy of movement. Nothing wasted here.

This is a brand new release, so step to! And if you're in Atlanta, they are playing at Wax N Facts record store in conjunction with Record Store Day this Saturday (April 16th...that's tomorrow) at 6:00pm. Get there.

DL

Spore - Giant


Label: Taang!
Year: 1994

Hey, look who's here!
Let's jump back into our old ways, alright? I'll write rambling non sequiturs about music, or my life, or what you could be doing for me, then I'll post a link to a record that I find enjoyable, and then you'll slink through the internets to download that album, and our business will be complete. No hugs.

And, what better way to get back on the horse, than to time travel back to Boston circa that city's high water mark of brutish, lumbering noise rock; 1994. Awash in ugly feedback, and fuzzed out low end stomp, Boston had a confederation of bands that were grinding alternative rock under their bootheels. Slughog, Pinto, Thrall, Black Helicopter, Green Magnet School, La Gritona, Luca Brasi, Bull-Roarer, Glazed Baby, Quintane Americana, Non Compos Mentis, and Tree. Tons of bands lurking in the shadows of that town.  Well, Spore were front and center, plying their trade of volume and mass, deafening rooms one show at a time. And while they certainly fit within the Boston scene from whence they were birthed, Spore had two elements that set them apart from their peers (almost said "Beantown peers"...but changed my mind); they incorporated a hint of Midwestern noise rock into their sound, and they had the bonus of both make and female vocals trading off (it's a noise rock X!). Both are pleasant additions if you asked me...and I imagine you did. Don't you always?

DL

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Gone Fishin'


More posts coming soon...just took a little time off to be a human and stuff.
Blogging (as dumb as that sounds) takes a lot of time and energy, and every few months I run out of both. But I went record shopping yesterday and got a little recharge of sorts. So, I'll be back in your life in the next few days.
Also still hoping our newly liberated exalted leader will join the fray as well.

Stay tuned. Or don't.

Love your body,
Gray

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Genki Genki Panic - Spooky Fingers


Label: self released
Year: 2016

We here have a soft spot in our hearts (which are, let's face it,  mostly cholesterol at this point) for Chris (last name withheld for legal purposes) and his musical incarnations. Uncle Touchy was a perennial favorite in my home (the band, not the man) and on this blog, and I've oft wondered if they had not been marooned in Tennessee would they have been a big deal. It's not the only thing I've ever wondered, but I did wonder it quite a bit. "Oft" I believe I said. More than a little.
But, whatever. Chris jettisoned the belt sander skuzz rock of Uncle Touchy years ago to focus on Genki Genki Panic, a hybrid surf/horror/luchador...um....thing. Band.
The last time around Genki Genki Panic was going full bore, hard charging surf rock creep-outs. But in a fun way. This time around the whole thing is darker and more sinister. The opening track sounds less The Trashmen and more 45 Grave than what the band has previously lead on to. In fact, the whole record has a distinct late 70s/early 80's post punk sheen to it, mixed with some Orange County early punk dirt. Like, less about the good time, and more about slashing the tires of whatever kook dropped in on your local shore break (is that a thing? I saw Point Break a bunch of times, and that seemed like a thing). Surf rock is still the basis, but this e.p. layers in a lot more than just reverb and hot rod references. They work in an atmosphere of swampy dread that skews more cinematic than kitsch. The snaking guitar lines are augmented with waves of synth and skittering drums.

I liked their Ghoulie High Harmony record, but this one is head and shoulders beyond that one. Only five songs, but they all smoke, and never once overstay their welcome. This will be perfect to soundtrack your next haunted house, so long as your smoke machines are on blast, you got a few extra strobe lights around, and your party punch is straight Mr. Bostons with a ground Adderall floater.
Highly recommended.

DL

Saturday, March 5, 2016

Sie Lieben Maschinen - June Gloom


Label: Haymaker
Year: 2015

Sorry that we've been "gone fishin'" or something lately, but....we have. Or, I have anyway. Needed a break for a minute. Life shit.
I'm still hoping that Ipecac will get back in the game at some point soon, but...we'll all have to wait. The world waits.

In the interim, how about we get back to some music? Which is presumably why you're here, right?

And how about we make that music in the post punk mold, with a little low end noise rock undercurrent, and a slight (very slight) goth-ish broken dance feel? And how about we ask ex-members of Season To Risk, Glazed Baby, Shiner, Replicator, Minot, and Roman Numerals to execute it?

Somebody should do that.

DL

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Zeni Geva - Disgraceland 7"


Label: Alternative Tentacles
Year: 1993

Precision mechanics, maximum overdrive, unflinching dedication to pain administration. That's the Zeni Geva doctrine.
Only two songs, but it's more than most bands could handle delivering. Not for those with heart conditions or weak constitutions.
This version of Zeni Geva has Tabata from Boredoms and Acid Mothers Temple, alongside drummer Noro, and Zeni Geva mainman K.K. Null. Brutal.

DL

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Vaz - Hey One Cell b/w No Leaf Clover 7"


Label: Reptillian
Year: 1998

Here's where we heard Vaz come out of the gates for the first time. The debut performance. Which is to say, the metaphorical gates of the loved and lost Hammerhead legacy.
At the time it sounded like a pretty linear transition from the nervy Hammerhead hardcore to the two man champagne jam of Vaz. They kept the twitchy propellant of their former endeavor and on this record merely streamlined the delivery.
No frills, but no frills needed, nor should any frill even be entertained at this juncture. Vaz comes straight at you frill-free and at deliberate pace. And while once they reach you, they might have broken into a sort of Ian Curtis-esque jittery dance to disarm you, you'll still wind up missing a tooth, or at the very least with a patch of hair missing.
Only two songs, and they blow by pretty quick, but an essential record nonetheless. Vaz has developed a fairly extensive discography since this record, and with it a sound of their own, but for this 7" you hear the band just emerging from the shadow of their previous mistress, still reeking of her perfume.

DL

Monday, February 15, 2016

The Tards - Rubber Room 7"


Label: Man's Ruin
Year: 1996

Who could be responsible for a moniker as unsavory and unscrupulous as "The Tards"? What type of monsters would do such a thing? Laughing at the misfortune of overs? How dare they?! Who on earth would do such a....oh....wait.
The Tards are Boyd Rice and Adam Parfrey. Boyd Rice of Non and sorta a professional dick of the "provocateur" variety, and Adam Parfrey, the man behind Feral House Publishing who have documented everything weird, sorta gross, and sometimes questionable.
And to make matters worse, they have employed Poison Idea as their backing band just to up the "eeeew" factor.

The band made a short career of covering songs that a group like this shouldn't be legally allowed to cover, and on this two song 7" they degrade a Porter Wagoner country and western gem, and a traditional (although I've never heard of it) folk song (guessing). Neither would be recognizable to their origins, but that's most likely the point.

Plenty strange.

DL

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

The Kill Van Kull - Human Bomb


Label: Handi-Kraft
Year: 1998

This is a really good one. I've been meaning to post it for years, but it took me forever to get around to digitizing, and then when I did, I fucked up the tracks, so I did it again and that time I fucked up the levels, and then...you know.
So if this sounds "off" in any way, let me know and in a few years I'll fix it and repost it. Ok? Deal?

This band served as a bridge between New York City's post hardcore world of frenetic grooving heaviness and the city's noise rock world. It's got the intensity and raw power of a band who came up in hardcore, but the scratchy, off-kilter attack of a band who gets uncomfortable playing it straight. So, like, a big fan of Burn playing Drive Like Jehu covers. Right?

The closest comparison sonically would be to JJ Paradise Players Club, which not coincidentally, James Paradise plays drums in The Kill Van Kull. Guitarist Cooper was also in JJ Paradise Players Club, just to add to it. But, the point being, a lot of what The Kill Van Kull was doing; mixing some post hardcore, a little emo (and you know what I mean, the Hoover style), and some straight to the throat hardcore bluster, JJ Paradise Players Club would amplify and make heavier a couple years later.

The personnel that made this record are all top tier dudes, no slouches. You got former and future members of (the aforementioned) JJ Paradise Players Club, Hell No, Citizen's Arrest, The Brought Low, Pigs, Animal Crackers, Manacled, Fresh Kills, Made Out Of Babies, Die 116, and something I'm forgetting. I'll remember it in a minute.

Sweet Diesel! That was it.

File this under "Lost Classics". Essential.

DL
 
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