Wednesday, April 26, 2017

El Buzzard - El Buzzard

Year: 2004
Label: self released

I've posted another record by this band earlier on this blog, and I had this one cued up and ready to go a long time ago, but forgot to get it up here. Sorry about that. Not that you knew I was going to get it up here...but...well, you get my drift.
If you liked the aforementioned "Gringa" record then you'll like this one too. It was their first album, and it leaned a little heavier to the faster, more unhinged side of their songwriting prowess. Later in their "career" they slowed things down, started fucking with odd (anti)production techniques, and coated the punk with a creeping sludge. This version is kinda of a noise rock via west coast power violence attack. Whatever you describe it as, these motherfuckers were going for it, and the results were pretty alright by me.

*Originally posted 10.02.08, reposted 04.26.17


Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Bad Brains - Live - Wabash Hall, San Diego, CA - 10-11-85

Label; bootleg
Year: 1985

Pretty impressed that this audience-sourced bootleg does such a commendable job capturing (that you could) the whirlwind of blurred heat that was this era of Bad Brains. Certainly not "pristine" in terms of a recorded artifact, but, it's far better than it should be.
Did you (and I suppose technically, you still could) see Bad Brains? And if so, what was the general reaction when the band went from breakneck ass whipping into hackneyed reggae noodle? Mass exodus (pun intended) to the restrooms? Yeah. Were you ever lucky enough to catch the Bad Brains on a full irie mellow toke night? I was. So lucky. I count my blessings every time I think back on it. Either way, as per the deal, the set chronicled here gets a bit wonky in spots when the band take their foot off the gas and #blessup (historical footnote: I believe that marks the first ever hashtag in this blog's illustrious run. We've hit a new low). Soon-to-be-released 'I and I' jam "Hired Gun" takes some of the momentum out of the night, which they rescue, but then torpedo again with some extra Jah luv, but ultimately rescue again with also-soon-to-be-released 'I and I' stomper "Re-Ignition".
So, like every Bad Brains show ever, you roll the dice and cross your fingers that things go ok for at least 75% of the time, and on October 10th, 1985 in San Diego they seem to have.


Monday, April 24, 2017

Them Teeth / Sofy Major - split 7"

Label: Corpse Flower
Year: 2016

Volume one in a four part split 7" series by the quietly incredible Corpse Flower label (volume two came out this year with Gizzlor and Godstopper). Well, not "quietly" in the sense of decibels, but more "quietly" in the sense that their promotional machine seems to be running on two cycle lawnmower fuel. But believe me, their arsenal is deep well honed and poised for maximum damage.They put out a Playing Enemy record, they put out the Celan record...they aren't to be trifled with, let's be clear.
To bear, check out these two songs. Two big, grossly loud and over driven songs of ill repute. Two songs that haven't washed their hands or called their mothers in years. I mean, Sofy Major's contribution is called "Bed Intruder". Say it out loud, "Bed Intruder". Gross, dudes. And Them Teeth, good heavens, Them Teeth appear to have no manners whatsoever. It's terrible to think how they must treat their own bodies. Shameful even.
Only 300 physical copies. so good luck.


Sunday, April 23, 2017

Victory Hands -Bernstein 7"

Label: Headphone Treats
Year: 2017

It's been almost a year to the day that we posted the first record by this Nixon-centric Atlanta trio (which you can find here), and they are still charting the same bizarre course of releasing a record in tribute to each journalist who was considered an enemy of the Nixon administration (boy how things have changed...), and using only Nixon's own text as lyrical content. And thank god Victory Hands have taken on this challenge.
This time around they craft four uneasy math rock odes to Carl Bernstein and his exposes on abuse of power during the Watergate scandal which would eventually unseat Nixon and draw into focus the underbelly of the modern political machine (or maybe not so modern). Also, points for the first "Checkers" reference of the series!
Musically, they fall into the tense, roiling Arcwelder/Tar/Raymond Brake family of noisy math rock. Each song has something more to grab onto, a catchy melody buried in there. A hook. Victory Hands have been doing this a long time in various bands in and around Atlanta (and in some of the best bands to ever lurk in and around Atlanta if we're being honest), so they are very familiar with how this music works, and it shows. Full economy of movement, and precision to craft are their hallmarks. No wasted space.
You really do need the physical version of this record to get the whole picture. As with the previous 'Anderson' 10", the amount of detail and energy they have put into the packaging is beyond commendable. You'll need to see for yourself to get the full immersive experience.
Hail Victory Hands!


Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Blonde Redhead - Fake Can Be Just As Good

Label: Touch and Go
Year: 1997

Opening track on this album 'Kazuality' is near perfect in it's noise washed motorik pulse.
And from there it stays pretty great through the remainder of the record. I mean, great if you're into Sonic Youth and Unwound and stuff like that. are, right?
Oh, and speaking of Unwound, Vern Rumsey plays bass on this one, which is added "fun fact" factor.

Their next album got less noisy and rocky, and more dreamy and moody. And every album since has gotten more dreamy and less rocky, which depending on your disposition (private parts) is either very appealing or very yawn-inducing.

Super recommended. Maybe you AND your lady friend can enjoy this one together (paired with a full bodied chianti and a bowl of olives...that you feed to each other...allowing the juices to drip across your naked bodies...oiling your skin as your limbs become intertwined...heaving...breathing quickens...your now glistening forms melting together as her warm mound beckons you to slowly enter her...)


Monday, April 10, 2017

Hawks - No Cash Value

Label: Learning Curve
Year: 2017

"I don't like you. Well, some people do, but I don't".
- Hawks

Too early to make a call for Album Of The Year?
Over the past decade this band has cut a ragged gash of burly noise that will stand as one of the greatest discographies of our time. No shit. Hawks delivered something special every time. No compromise, no mercy.

No Cash Value is a fitting eulogy to one of the best to ever do it. Hawks go out at the top of their game, and we tip our hats in respect. Godspeed gentlemen, you will live forever.


Mathis Hunter - Countryman

Label: self released
Year: 2017

Sometimes your friends are doing shit that blows you away, and you kinda take it for granted cause they're your friends and you just sorta feel like, "yeah, well, that's what (s)he does".
Mathis Hunter is one of those friends.
Over the years he's been in the mix of a constantly evolving musical cadre of folks who all graduated from the all ages punk and hardcore scene, kept plugging away at what they love, and continue to pursue the sounds that make them excited. At some point you realize, "these dudes turned into really good songwriters".
Mathis Hunter has put out his first "solo" album in 2010, which was a psych rock homage to his favorite early 90's British bands, and the straight up rock that informed them. This time around, seven years later (but with a band or two in between), he's taking a more circuitous route to the rock. One that gets it's start balancing out the glam stomp of T Rex and barroom swagger of Faces with the fractured art rock of "Taking Tiger Mountain (By Strategy)" Brian Eno. From there he slides through some southern Edgar Winter Group swamp boogie before dropping back in on old British favorites Stone Roses, Happy Mondays, and Primal Scream. And then, and I don't know if he meant to or not, but then it sounds to me like some of the Replacements-driven early Wilco creeps in, Something distinctly American and laid back.
You'll hear it. The familiar sounds underpinning something that harkens back to a few different pockets of your record collection. Feels good.
If the Uriah Heep cum Hydra cover doesn't clue you in, then, it's a safe bet you should tune out. This one may not be for you. But, if you're down to get down, you want to be loose, then this one will do it for you.

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