Monday, August 25, 2014

Ikara Colt - Modern Apprentice

Label: Fantastic Plastic
Year: 2004

One of the first records I posted on this blog was the Ikara Colt "Chat And Business" lp (still a go-to), and frankly, I'm really surprised that I never posted this one. Like, what was I thinking?
Sorry dudes (and that one girl).
If you missed the other post, and you're excused if you did, as it was from 2008, then here you go. Ikara Colt, total English post-punk perfection. The Fall ripped from Mark E. Smith's evil clutches and accelerated into the new millennium with slashing, searing guitars and that subtle dance beat now and again. It's art school snobbery that looks down it's nose at your philistine ways, even as it invites the lead singer of Fudge Tunnel to produce it's record. You're in, but you're out.
The band said they would break up after 5 years, and they did just that. Two albums and poof. Gone.
More bands should adopt that modus operandi.


Wednesday, August 20, 2014

V/A - Shiny Grey Monotone Radio - Show 13

Label: n/a
Year: 2014

It's been 10 months since I posted one of these radio show editions...which is weird, because I have so many of them already made and ready to go on my computer. Could it be that I'm just super lazy?
This time around we cover a lot of ground, surveying a lot of sounds (freestyle!). The opening Guzzard track is such a banger, it usually gets the repeat treatment prior to moving forward...and if you disagree with my listening habits you can take it up with my attorney. From there you'll careen straight through some contemporary noise rock, into some grungier territories (including the criminally underrated American Psycho Band), then get dragged around the dark parts of town by some irascible characters, prior to pulling yourself into the comparable "light" of more contemporary ugliness before a strange diversion through early 90's emo, and then the other shoe drops and Gus (Canadian Gus mind you) douses you in crippling sludge that you barely can shake off for the next couple of tracks, until your knight in shining armor, Soundgarden, rides through to carry you off to the gilded halls of Valhalla, but accidentally drops you off in some backwoods moonshine distillery, of which your only means of escape is hacking at your reluctant hosts with some noisy hardcore.
Phew. You're bushed. Cash, gas, or ass; nobody rides for free.

The bands:
Brain Banger
Stab City
Sweet Diesel
Dave Grohl
The American Psycho Band
Gunna Vahm
Native Nod
Alice Donut
Double Negative
Christ On A Crutch


Monday, August 18, 2014

Pipe - Slowboy

Label: Merge
Year: 1997

Further evidence that Pipe was/were/shall be a power(Fun)house of dirt-caked, riff-heavy, snarling goodness. This being the final piece of that evidence, as they broke up not long after it's release...but then reanimated a couple years ago and are playing here and there...without any new material that I'm privy to.
This record slows down the angry a bit (a sonic reducer?), and gets a bit more garage-y than the preceding records did, but it's still a rock album of the highest order, covered in grit, spat out in a thick, rich, full guitar tone, aimed squarely at their enemies (real and perceived). There's a Subsonics cover in the mix...and Elvis Costello as well, just so you know. But don't be fooled into thinking Pipe "got soft" (phallic joke redacted by request of management) or something, this band still specializes in bad attitudes and slinging ashtrays across the bar at your forehead (out of love, of course).
Hail NC! Hail Pipe!


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, reposted AGAIN 08-18-14 (for the last time)

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

V/A - Screaming Life - A Chronicle Of The Seattle Music Scene

Label: Sub Pop
Year: 1995

A nice, hand-picked, compilation from photographer Charles Peterson to soundtrack his book of photos that follow the rise of the Seattle (and greater Pacific NW) musical scene from roughly 1983 to 1995, which, when you think about it, was a pretty good scene to point a camera towards. And while you've no doubt heard all of these songs, you probably haven't hear them in THIS order...huh? Huh?
Flashback to a golden age and do it with windows down.

The songs:
Green River - Ain't Nothing To Do
Mudhoney - No One Has
Nirvana - Negative Creep
Tad - Ritual Device
Soundgarden  - Entering
Screaming Trees - Flashes
Beat Happening - Midnight A-Go-Go
Seaweed - Selfish
Fastbacks - What's It Like

*Link is fixed...I think...try it again. (08-14-14)


Honduran - Street Eagles

Label: Eolian Empire
Year: 2014

Oh my. These guys should be ashamed of themselves for producing what is patently offensive music to anyone with civil tastes and refined palettes. I graduated cotillion class, Honduras! Your crusty, hammer swinging, hellcore is NOT going to single handedly reverse what the honorable Floretta Baylin (RIP) taught me in her dance studio! I can Cha Cha, I know which fork to use first at dinner, I know how a receiving line must operate in order to facilitate a proper affair! And you think some feedback and roaring and ill-tempered attitudes are going to change all of that?! Not on your lives, buddies!

(real talk: Eolian Empire has quietly been releasing some of the best loudness in recent memory...most certainly you should all check into their catalog, it's ripe with beautifully ugly gems)


Wednesday, August 6, 2014

powertakeOFF - Unhinged

Label: Made In Kansas
Year: 2014

"You call THIS a church?!" of many, many, many accusatory screeds levied against you, fair listener, as you try to surface from beneath a dense fog of oppressive noise. Wielding songs like death threats, this band has returned to your front door to further mock your family and ridicule each and every life decision you've ever made. You'll never know what it is that you have done to warrant this type of harassment, as you feel that your life to this point has been just and right, but here you are, face to face with a menace beyond compare, which you certainly have not been prepared for.

I got my copy of this cassette in the mail just an hour ago, and thought that I would take a couple days to really get to know the songs, to digest their "true meaning"...or something. But holy fucking shit, after the false start of opening "track" "HELLO???" (essentially 54 seconds of barely audible sound), the brakes come off and this record veers wildly out of control, serving up three unbelievably gnarled attacks in a row that only relent when fifth and final track "I Promise NOT To Kill Myself" threatens to Love 666 you right off the cliff! The viciousness which powertakeOFF employ comes as a welcome respite after their previous lp of unabated sludge-fuck (a compliment, mind you) abuse. It's invigorating to hear them going for the throat and keeping the hammer down for the entirety of the three "traditional" songs on the album. Not to discount the apparent mental disorders at work here, because when they decide to "get weird", they drop the hammer on weirdness just as skillfully. The methodical nature of the barrage goes a long way in amplifying the glorious hate spilling out of each fucked up riff.

Highly recommended. Limited edition of 100 cassettes, mixed by Scott Evans of Kowloon Walled City, so move it fat ass.

Designed by mln3 designs & etc.