Thursday, December 26, 2013

Kinski - Down Below It's Chaos

Label: Sub Pop
Year: 2007

Sometimes instrumental and sometimes not, which I imagine describes most rock n roll bands huh? But these guys and girl have a lot in common with some instrumental or instrumental leaning post-rock outfits like Mono or Purkinje Shift or Maserati, those driving drones, the gently rolling distant thunderclouds that threaten to erupt into a lashing torrent, and the jamming free-wheelin' fun. And when the vocals do show up, they are kept out of the spotlight to play a more supporting role than "lead singers" generally are able to do.
Also of note: there is a song here called "Argentina Turner", which, I mean, c'mon.
I think you'll appreciate the way Kinski can take you on a long ride from mellow to rocking to psychedelic to metal without ever breaking character. Everything evolves to everything else.
They are hitting the road in early 2014, which you would be wise to take heed of.


Crawlpappy - Temple Body 7" + 2

Label: Blackout!
Year: 1991

By popular (or singular...whatever) demand, here it is, the Crawlpappy 7"! And....AND, as an added bonus, you get their two songs from the Mentally Broken vol. 3 (yes, there were two preceding that one) Compilation. one of which was also featured on the split 7" they did with Sheer Terror that Suburban Voice fanzine put out. What a deal!
And speaking of deals, the 7" features Mike Sentkiewitz from Raw Deal. Sadly, nobody from Outburst was in the band, that would have been too much to handle I guess, but John Stanier of Helmet and later Battles played drums on it. That's good, right?
I only saw Crawlpappy once, it was when they toured opening for Quicksand and Helmet in Wilmington, NC. And talk about awkward, me and my buddy Rob (yes, "the" Rob-R-Rock if you must know) were planning on making the 3+ hour drive to see the show, but when I go to pick him up, he tells me he's not going, but in his place his girlfriend is instead. Huh? You mean the same girl that fucking hates me, and everyone else in the world? That girlfriend? Awesome, I was hoping I'd get 6-7 hours of alone time with her in a car to really bro down. Cool. Thanks.
Turns out we got along famously, and she was a lot cooler than I gave her credit for. Go figure. Also the show was fantastic and Crawlpappy held their own even against two heavyweights like Quicksand (who were about to put out their first album) and Helmet (who had just released Meantime), all three bands were arguably at the top of their game. Good fucking show.
This one's for you Phil.

Originally posted 08-12-10, reposted 12-26-13

Friday, December 20, 2013

Bitch Teeth - Fukkstorm

Label: Death Mask
Year: 2013

Well, now I feel like I've let you all down with yesterday's post, as it almost immediately garnered a "boring" comment from the difficult-to-please K.C. (you should try hosting dinner for K.C., that guy is never satisfied!). That's the kind of feedback that can really demoralize a man who is trying to brighten the world by sharing other's creativity and talents...sniff.
So, for K.C., and everyone else out there within the sound of my tapping keyboard, may I submit the band Bitch Teeth and their record "Fukkstorm" for your consideration? I am optimistic that you shall find solace and inspiration within the chaotic scree of their Cherubs by way of Hawks by way of Nirvana (the noisier bits). I have.


Thursday, December 19, 2013

Drunk Dad - Morbid Reality

Label: Eolian Empire
Year: 2013

Three guesses as to what a band who've chosen the moniker Drunk Dad, and who named their ep "Morbid Reality", and who are on a record label run by the dudes in Rabbits, and are from Portland, Oregon sounds like.
Did you go with Black Elk meets Red Fang meets Ufomammut?
You should have.


Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Pygmy Shrews - Lord Got Busted 7"

Label: Fan Death
Year: 2009

Two songs, the second of which is a Pussy Galore cover, that get taken on a really dangerous ride into the center of a burnt out industrial core of a bleak cityscape, whereupon the car they are being ferried about in is methodically rammed at speed into a cement column...again and again and again. The driver then exits the vehicle and proceeds to attack it with the tire iron he has pulled from the car's trunk for what seems like an unnecessarily long time. Once the damage has been assessed as, what, satisfactory(?), he then produces a length of garden hose with which he siphons gasoline out of the tank  to use as fuel for what is to become a bright and terrible fire consuming the hull of the newly wrecked automobile.
It's not clear that the songs survived the concussive assault of the accident, the tire iron attack, if they suffocated from smoke inhalation, or were ultimately burnt alive. Either way, their remains could not be positively identified.


Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Iceburn / Engine Kid - Split ep

Label: Revelation
Year: 1994

My appreciation of both Iceburn and Engine Kid have been duly noted in previous instances on this very blog. They are both examples of what you may refer to as "my jam".
I will grant you that Iceburn went from hardcore band to monstrous post-hardcore heavyweight band to jazzy heavy improve "collective"...uh, band, and that trajectory shook some of the luster from that glorious mid-period shine. But, I feel their evolution was as natural as any, and certainly afforded an interesting look at where a band can glean more massive sounds from, so I went with it.
On this record Iceburn gives up two renditions of the same song, a take on "Rite Of Spring" from Igor Stravinsky (I've got his first 7"), and pretty similar in ultimate delivery, but you you go. Be forewarned, there is saxophone involved, I want to be straight up with you, but otherwise you get taken on a creepy prowl through the woods where danger comes as crashing bombs of guitar chugging, and a fluttering rhythm attempts to airlift you out of the fray. Both versions of the song are over 10 minutes if that helps you at all.
Engine Kid continue as your guide through an ominous forest fraught with skeletal tree trunks, shadowy predators lurking just out of sight, and a quickly setting sun. The Slint comparisons are becoming more a milemarker and less a direct route as the band gets louder and more overtly "heavy" when they unleash the big dynamic thunder. They were just about to release their Angel Wings lp, and you can definitely hear those same sounds here. Ultimately though, they sound a lot like the band they are sharing this record with, and I'm not entirely sure who's zoomin' who here, but both bands were on a very similar path at this point in their careers.
Post hardcore like this can get pretty pretentious, but so can I, so fuck it, I'm in.


Thursday, December 12, 2013

Bummer - Milk

Label: Self Released
Year: 2013

This I like. This you like too. We all like all the time.
JJ Paradise Players Club v Unsane v Pissed Jeans v Fight Amp for a sum total of "eat shit". Post hardcore as noise rock that doesn't call back after that movie date you guys went on. The one where you thought you really "made a connection". You didn't get Bummer apparently. I'm sorry they hurt your feelings, but consider it a learning experience.


Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Queens Of The Stone Age - Live - Cotton Club Atlanta - 05-27-02

Label: Bootleg
Year: 2002

Two reasons for posting this one:
Reason One - This documents a band at the height of their collective powers, and chronicles their ability to "rock hard" beyond what the average band is capable. Queens Of The Stone Age has always ruled, but when they unleashed Songs For The Deaf, it catapulted them into an untouchable orbit of creativity and sheer fun. They were a multi-headed hydra of volume and heft that commanded total compliance to their whims, and paid in dividends of massive grooves and blazing heat. They could not be topped at this particular moment.
Reason Two - I was at this show, and it goes down in my personal Top Five musical things I've ever witnessed. Dave Grohl is a beast of a drummer, and seeing him in a small venue playing these percussive songs was a real treat. Nick Oliveri was in top form as the menacing dirtbag voice of the band. Mark Lanegan seemed to appear from a cloud of smoke to add an unspoken gravitas to the proceedings, only to disappear into the bowels of the venue (one can only assume) leaving a big, gravelly throated hole in your ears. Troy van Leeuwen was the best dressed man on stage that night, possibly even in the entire venue, and his coloring of each song gave depth and resonance to what are already heavy weight compositions. And Josh Homme was the guy you want him to be, cocky and self-deprecating all at once. His riffs and solos, alternately lazy and scalding, cannot be underestimated, they pile one on top of the next until you see no light but the sounds of the high desert psychosis. Each part of the puzzle fit perfectly into place that night in that club.
Reason Three (bonus) - While in the restroom at a urinal the concertgoer (and bathroom goer) next to me had the gall to wear flip-flop sandals (I believe referred to as "thongs" in some parts of the world) to a rock-n-roll show. This didn't sit well with me at the time, as an arbiter of high fashion, as a cultural critic, and as a man, so I did what his father should have done to him many years previous, I urinated on his exposed toes. I could not allow his transgression to go unpunished (and I was sliiiiiiiightly hammered). To my surprise (and probably to my good fortune) he was complicit in this hot liquid assault, nary making a sound or even so much as adjusting the position of his foot, simply going about his business as I did mine. I suppose he was a fetishist? Either way, it made me feel better about my evening, I had on some level administered justice, and could enjoy the remainder of the show knowing I had "done my part". Not something I necessarily recommend, but sometimes you gotta "take a stand", you know?
So, to fully appreciate this live recording, you may want to ask a buddy you can trust to open up and piss across your open toes...should heighten the overall experience for you both.


Tuesday, December 10, 2013

The Mono Men - Monster b/w You Must Be A Witch 7"

Label: Man's Ruin
Year: 1996

This is a good follow-up to yesterday's Pipe post (laying pipe). It's a greasy strain of rock-n-roll as filtered through the punker spirit of the local motorcycle club membership. Sort of a Turbonegro "deathpunk" vibe, which I believe can be referenced by it's other name, "New Bomb Turks". The kind of music that would fit nicely between GG Allin and AC/DC on your next jukebox selection.


Monday, December 9, 2013

Pipe - International Cement

Label: Jesus Christ
Year: 1995

All hail the Tarheel State, and her proclivities to produce such a tuneful racket! And all hail Pipe for commandeering the broken pop noise of the Chapel Hill zip codes and marrying it with the rebellious skuzz punk of the greater Charlotte metropolitan area, and then having the good sense to bring in O.G. N.C. songsmith Mitch Easter to reign in the whole mess into tight, cohesive blasts of catchy goodness.
There are tons of punk rock bands, and most of them aren't worth your time. I mean, let's get real for a moment, punk is kinda stupid when you get right down to it. The look and the phony attitudes and the ridiculous costume party mentality is all a bad joke (and I'm only being partly facetious). And we can be certain that while speeding up classic rocknroll is fun, and the Ramones are fun, and hell, even the Sex Pistols had a couple catchy numbers, that "punk rock" was only mildly different than "rock rock" until hardcore came along and kicked the whole thing in the teeth. So, finding a band that can brandish the punk bravado with aplomb and make you believe it, well, that's a fucking good find. Pipe is a REALLY good find.
Members of Superchunk and Small.


Thursday, December 5, 2013

White Guilt - White Guilt ep

Label: Feeble Mind / Video Disease
Year: 2012

Saw Hawks last night, and as usual they decimated all (20) in attendance (also, Late Bloomer and Mtn Isl played, and both were even better live than on their records...all the bands put on a fantastic show), further cementing their spot as "best band in Atlanta". But, the point is, Hawks got me on a noisy, chaotic, dense music type of jag today, which has lead me to the White Guilt ep. It's noisy, it's chaotic, and it's as dense as a wet blanket thrown over an old Void record. Four songs of blown out hardcore that sandpaper the smile off your face within the first 8 seconds (notice I didn't say "7 Seconds"? Too posi).


Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Mastodon - Live on WFMU - 07-08-01

Label: Bootleg
Year: 2001

From the legendary(?) Diane Kamikaze's Fun Machine radio program on the legendary(!) WFMU radio broadcast station in the legendary(you're reaching) Jersey City, NJ, on the legendary (it's my wife's birthday!) 8th of July,'s the legendary Mastodon!
Cycling through most of the demo material (later rebranded as Call Of The Mastodon) and a couple cuts off the as-yet unreleased Remission album, the band remind all doubters of their unbridled power and fury. The swampy haze of their sludge doing nothing to dull the blade of their finely honed metallic battle-axe, wielded with the jarring feral intensity of noise rock (they were originally billed as "ex-Today Is The Day" you'll remember). This is the band going all out in an attempt to suck all of the oxygen out of the room, crushing you under the weight of their merciless attack.
Bands don't get much better than these guys.


Hawks + Late Bloomer + Mtn Isl + The Big Dirty - 12-04-13 Atlanta

If you find yourself in or around or under or encased in, or banished to the immediate area of metropolitan Atlanta, Georgia, you could certainly do worse than making your way to this particular show. It's sorta snuck up on me, but there has been talk of attending (on a school night no less!), so hopefully I'll make it out the door.
Four bands, three of which have direct personnel links to the hardcore/post hardcore house show heyday of Atlanta circa 1994-97, with Scout and Wheeljack (among 20 other bands) representing.
This blog as featured three of the four bands playing, so I will spare you the descriptions of what's what, but trust me, the music tonight will be stellar.

Mtn Isl
Late Bloomer
The Big Dirty

Monday, December 2, 2013

At The Price Of The Union - The Mechanics Of Wind

Label: Buddy System
Year: 1999

Alumni of the Atlanta house show scene at a time when hardcore bands were adding in all kinds of non-hardcore elements, then spazzing out, or cleaning up...or sometimes both, there were a group of bands graduating from that period (thankfully...that period didn't age very well [that's what she said {gross}]), and into a more mature post-hardcore sound. The sound that could take them out of the basements and into the bars and clubs (all ages shows, 'natch), to play with the bigger touring bands coming around, like say, June of 44 or something.
At The Price Of The Union had that driving D.C.-ish sound that bands on Art Monk had, and you could tell they fell under the tutelage of local heros hal al Shedad, as you can hear some of that math-y groove as well. And historical connection: Ed Rawls (that's "Fast" Eddie Rawls to you) who played guitar in hal al Shedad recorded this record with Lewis Lovely at Red Lab studios which has since become Living Room recording studio, still under Ed's watchful hand.
Craig Dempsey, who plays guitar in this band, is a hell of a player, and this record shows just how well he could pull together serpentine lines with staccato riffing to forge way better song structures than the post hardcore bands in most every other city in America at that time were...forging. If you can get into some Hoover, or Glendale, or Crownhate Ruin, or Fuel, or whatnot, then you'll figure this out.
Hail Atlanta!

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