7.31.2015

Wireheads


One of the great records I came to late last year was Wireheads' underrated creeper The Late Great Wireheads. The band followed on with a tape for Brisbane label Tenth Court, who also stand to release the band's sophomore album, Big Issues, next month. Traveling to the US to record with Dub Narcotic / Beat Happening guru Calvin Johnson, the record isn't so much a shift from their last as an extension of it. Still shaggy and barely holding its erratic gyrations in tact, but with just a touch of focused energy that puts a bit of pop thrust on their post-punk assault. There's a touch less of Tom Spall's violin to saw at your brain pan but thankfully they left plenty of raggy harmonica, blender churned guitar and Dom Trimboli's urgent vocal lamentations to sate ya. The energy spins the dial from the frantic energy of "Punk Song" and "Charlie Darwin" to the loping, squalled "Good Grief." As fates have it, its likely that people stateside will sleep on this yet again but here's hoping that a few good souls have the right sense to get one of these in their hands now. Its not often you get to feel the live wire crackle before others get wise. Here's your best chance.

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posted by dissensous at 10:34:00 AM 0 comments

7.29.2015

Blank Realm


Blank Realm are a study in developing a sound. Its a damn good thing that chances were taken on the band's scrawled psych musings because who would have ever believed that the band filtering noise through Not Not Fun and Siltbreeze would have emerged to lay Illegals In Heaven on us. The record is a far cry from those early days, channeling the hooks present on their run from Go Easy through Grassed Inn and polishing the hell out of them, even venturing into a studio this time with producer Lawrence English. The record that's developed from this chain reaction is full of gnawing new wave hooks that possess the band's near constant glow around the edges, chiming with a sound that's rooted in the Aussie/NZ pop but feels like a true step forward. Blank Realm have typically had a looseness to their songs that seeps into the listener, melting away agitation and while they tap deep into that here, they're also mixing those jangles with a whiff of neon and a punch of gnarled punk that sticks in the throat. Roundly, this is Blank Realm at their very best. It seems its all been leading here and if this is a first entry for you, then its a damn good place to start.

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posted by dissensous at 10:35:00 AM 0 comments

7.28.2015

Besombes-Rizet - Pôle
Long a collector's trophy in its original press, Pôle is the work of two synth carvers who have more known credits apart than together. Philippe Besombes was an academic, trained in organic chemistry, but fled the profession for a life in music contributing several
instruments here but he's most well known for works in Moog along his career. He's teamed up with Jean-Louis Rizet another talented multi-instrumentalist who brings keyboards, synths, flute, trumpet and guitar to the table on this collaboration. The duo's work in soundtracks makes a sizable impression (Rizet most notably contributed to the soundtrack for Besson's Subway) and the pair have a way with space and mystery that turns the whole record into a faded-edge composition of shots that evoke emotion without letting words get in the way. There's an appreciation of Krautrock / Kosmiche that they borrow from and blur that into the French avant-garde in a way that feels like those two genres should never part. Gonzai record return this to vinyl, where, frankly it belongs.

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posted by dissensous at 4:30:00 PM 0 comments

7.27.2015

Ashtray Navagations


Back from vacation here at RSTB and ready to dive into the pile of new releases, and what's better than to find a new Ashtray Navigations record in the mix. Phil Todd's never been one to rein things in. With a discography that leans towards daunting and is just on this side of exhaustive, it’s hard to wade into his world lightly. A Shimmering Replica wouldn't necessarily fit the lightly portion of that equation (clocking in at an hour, forty) but its not a bad place to jump in anyhow. Joined here by Melanie O’Dubshlaine, the record burbles with a seismic shake, doused with a hot ash rub that burns the nostrils. Zonked electronics quiver above saw-toothed guitars that cut jagged and gnarled and with an insistence that owes its roots to a long line of German Progressive forbears. Then, without too much warning, the record drops into subspace, subsisting on drones and tectonic vibrations before snapping back through a patch of polyrhythmic seances to no particular god. This record isn't for the flirtatious traveler, it’s made by and for heads ready to zip the cocoon and let the sonics kick your consciousness into shape.

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posted by dissensous at 10:08:00 AM 0 comments

7.15.2015

Jacuzzi Boys - "Happy Damage" Video


Man I never realize how much I miss Jacuzzi Boys until they make a return. Breaking away to form their own label, Mag Mag, the band has an EP on the way and from the sounds of "Happy Damage" great things can be expected. The track crackles with a huge energy, bouncing with the cherry Pez vibes and low hip swagger that have been trademarks of the band. The video captured the band in their live glory, looking like they've never been more at home anywhere else than under the lights in your town for just a night.

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posted by dissensous at 2:27:00 PM 0 comments

Hills


Sweden's got a handle on psych, from the early releases of International Harvester and Träd Gräs och Stenar to Bo Hansson and Dungen there's plenty of lysergic energy coursing through those valleys. Hills have been divining that psychedelic rift for almost a decade and yet, unlike the torrent of releases that come from so many, this is just their third album to date. But proclivity fades and each of Hills' three albums is just as strong as the next, proving that quality is worth the wait. Frid hangs well with their Rocket labelmates Goat and Gnod, finding a middle ground between the two; sanding off a bit of the former's excess with the doom-laden sense of space of the latter. The album is swirling with dry ice eddies of creeping dread that explode into the kind of clearcut guitar solos I've come to expect from Rocket Recordings. Heavy sounds with a lean on eastern mysticism and an expansive array of instrumentation; those looking to drop out into the meditative and heady expanses need look no further than this in 2015.

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posted by dissensous at 12:51:00 PM 0 comments

7.09.2015

Jane Weaver - "Mission Desire" Video


An excellently pulpy video stocked with space pirates and hazy animated overtones to accompany one of the standout tracks from on Jane Weaver's stellar kraut-pop masterpiece. The track picks up the reins left empty in the tragic wake of Broadcast and Stereolab and if it wasn't already in the lush arms of Finders Keepers, it would have been right at home in the backwards gaze of Ghost Box. The video captures the psychedelic intrigue dripping form every inch of this song and the tone of Weaver's longform odyssey.

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posted by dissensous at 10:14:00 AM 0 comments

7.08.2015

The Cairo Gang


Emmett Kelly's run as The Cairo Gang has seen him inhabit mostly noir shades, culminating in the brooding ominousness of 2012's The Corner Man. He broke stride and found his inner Byrds fan on the excellent Tiny Rebels EP from last year, embracing jangle like a second skin. As Goes Missing, opens it seems that perhaps he's retreated back into the shadows, "An Angel, A Wizard" has those old clouds gathering around its edges, but they part soon enough as the album throws itself headlong into a spiral of bittersweet strums and autumnal overtones. Its a true extension of Tiny Rebels' air of sighed relief, and the further the album unfolds the more it shows that Kelly can't be pinned or painted into the genre conventions we're likely to try put on him. He's a songwriter at heart and the ebullient grace of his comfortability with emotion comes beaming through this album. Repeated spins show Goes Missing to be a love letter to 60's folk and the haunted troubadour, but its core is Kelly's voice, a bittersweet knife right to the heart every time. Among an already stellar catalog, this may rank as one of his best.

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posted by dissensous at 10:36:00 AM 0 comments

7.07.2015

Peacers


Ah Mike Donovan, you glorious bastard, back again and all is right. That Sic Alps suffered on the periphery of the public consciousness is one of the true musical travesties of our times. Drag City did its best to up the awareness but the band couldn't hold together and alas Donovan's recent solo endeavor of country-fried jams spent not enough time on your turntable as well. Well hell, now's your time to right the wrongs of these many years, as good king Segall is involved and mayhaps this time people will turn their ears the right way. Peacers is built on the same hip-slung acousta-fry that's permeated all Sic Alps' releases and as such, the songs in this set writhe uncomfortably against the itch of their stitches until they pull a thread loose. Leaden with a kind of smoke haze that seemingly has no origin, the record tumbles, albeit with a surprising grace, through fifteen bay-area lost radio transmissions, surfing the ionosphere and catching the bent antennas of those with the right kind of short-wave mind to handle the payload of this eponymous affair. If you're sleeping on this, then all I can say is that I'm sorry for you. Get right with your fuzz gods.

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posted by dissensous at 1:42:00 PM 0 comments

7.06.2015

____________________________
Best Albums of 2015 (so far)
____________________________


Dick Diver - Melbourne, Florida (BUY)
Colleen Green - I Want To Grow Up (BUY)
Young Guv - Ripe For Love (BUY)
Sir Richard Bishop - Tangier Sessions (BUY)
King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard - Quarters (BUY)
Wand - Golem (BUY)
Thee Oh Sees - Mutilator Defeated At Last (BUY)
Ben Chatwin - The Sleeper Awakes (BUY)
Mikal Cronin - MCIII (BUY)
Twerps - Range Anxiety (BUY)
Warm Soda - Symbolic Dream (BUY)
Sean McCann - Ten Impressions for Piano and Strings (BUY)
Jacco Gardner - Hypnophobia (BUY)
Eternal Tapestry - Wild Strawberries (BUY)
The Hussy - Galore (BUY)
Love Axe - South Dakota (BUY)
Jefre Cantu-Ledesma - A Year With 13 Moons (BUY)
Moon Duo - Shadow of the Sun (BUY)
Sauna Youth - Distractions (BUY)
Föllakzoid - III (BUY)
Andy Human & the Reptoids - S/T (BUY)


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posted by dissensous at 10:43:00 AM 0 comments

7.03.2015

Rat Columns - "Fooling Around (Long Version)" Video


Rat Columns' album Leaf charmed us when it was released back in 2014 but its been pretty quiet on their front until recently, probably because like so many Aussies and Aussie exports members are splitting time between so many bands its probably hard to handle. But David West is back in the songwriting chair and releasing an EP on the unlikely outlet of Blackest Ever Black. The EP showcases an extended version of Leaf standout "Fooling Around" and the extra breathing room looks good on the track. The EP backs the track up with three new tunes recorded by West's San Francisco lineup of the band. The video compliments the track's tempered tension with some homespun wanderer vibes. 12" is limited and knowing BEB its gonna look nice.

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posted by dissensous at 10:45:00 AM 0 comments

7.01.2015

Sauna Youth


Often the barrage of UK DIY can be overwhelming. There are plenty kicking out fodder and it ranges from brilliant to retread but its always nice when a sparkle of genuine fun comes along. All the more worthwhile if that album has a bite to it, and Distractions has some to spare. The album's built on taught, gnashing guitars and a set of dark hooks that dig deep but bounce with more of a wild-eyed menace than joy. The anxious sweat fairly coats each and every bit of the band's spring loaded set. The nervy pummel is broken a few times by spoken word pieces that fit tonally with the record's raw vibe, but they come off just a touch pretentious. When the band sticks to kinetic bursts of fury and sandpaper riffs they keep this one jumping back onto the table every time. Easy to see why they were chosen by Wire to play the band's DRILL festival. No surprise that this one hits via UK DIY enclave Upset The Rhythm. Well worth more than a few rotations of your time.

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posted by dissensous at 2:51:00 PM 0 comments

6.29.2015

The Hussy


There were few albums that sparked as much joy around here as The Hussy's Pagan Hiss from 2013. The album took your standard, work-a-day garage rock palette and injected a looseness and skewed pop playfulness to it that bordered on infectious. On their third album, the Wisconsin duo spit-polish the push/pull of their pop dynamic even further. Focusing on a heavier guitar sound and incorporating violin, lap steel and a barrage of effects pedals, the album marks a turn of the duo's already bubbly songs into a headrush of fizzing hooks. Buzzsaw cascades of sound one minute and the next they blow the dust away to lean back into an orchestral tinged weeper. Its definitely the sound of a band finding footing and slotting themselves up nicely with some of their other ambitiously minded peers like Ty and Mikal who've taken those garage instincts and pop mindset and let the screen blow wide, making grander statements than anyone ever really expected of them.

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posted by dissensous at 4:50:00 PM 0 comments

6.24.2015

Hierophants - "Nervous Tic" Video


Hierophants have shown up here before on a number of singles but good news from the pipe is they have an album coming out in September on Aarght / Goner. First taste is a nervy, anxious slice of sci-fi punk that's augmented with an equally itchy video. The track picks up whiffs of Chrome and MX-80 then strains them through a more digestible brand of Aussie skronk that falls in line with their ties to Ausmuteants. Ears are perked for the the album for sure. Support the artist. Buy it: HERE
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posted by dissensous at 1:00:00 PM 0 comments

6.23.2015

Alejandro Jodorowsky - The Holy Mountain OST
As chaotic as Alejandro Jodorowsky's psychedelic epic The Holy Mountain is from a visual standpoint, the soundtrack gives back in equal measure, dialing all over the spectrum from plaintive folk to Tuvan
throat singing, epic orchestrals to noise and rock. If you've ever seen the cult classic, then you know that the movie is overwhelming to say the least and only really coherent to probably about 13% of the populace in the midst of an Ayahuasca comedown. Its heavy handed but also rather beautiful and since its release its legend has only grown. The movie's score finds a way to keep pace with the barrage of non-linear imagery, bursts of color and shifts in tone so adeptly that its a testament to its originators. Jodorowsky enlisted the help of Don Cherry and Ron Frangipane (he of The Archies fame) to bring the musical companion of the film to life. Along with Jodorowsky's own conducting, the team proves well more than formidable. Traditionally the score hasn't been widely available and certainly not on vinyl but RealGone have rounded it up on double vinyl.

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posted by dissensous at 12:57:00 PM 1 comments

6.22.2015

Michael O.


It would probably be pushing it to say that Michael Olivares is better known as the lead singer of San Francisco ramshackle poppers The Mantles. To be fair, The Mantles aren't exactly a household name either, but that's more of a testament to most people's poor taste than anything else. They should be a fixture in your record collection, as should Olivares' first solo LP for Fruits & Flowers. The album follows his previous single for the start-up label and lands on some of the same twinges of homespun pop but it also expands its scope into a much larger statement of new wave hat tips to Nikki Sudden's jangle comedowns, classic era Flying Nun cracked lens warbles and even a touch of sun-smeared folk that crinkles around the edges. Aiding Olivares in bringing this collection to fruition is Edmund Xavier of Horrid Red. The pair don't fill out a room but in their restraint, they find the nuance that makes Olivares' brand of honest, fluid pop feel familiar and fresh in equal measure. Plenty of other albums will come beating down your door in 2015 but Really? is the kind that lets you come to it, and you'd be well advised to seek it out.

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posted by dissensous at 12:46:00 PM 0 comments

6.15.2015

Andy Human and the Reptoids


Great news rains down in the form of Andy Human's new long player, this time augmented with a cast of other Bay Area freaks kitted out as The Reptoids. The record kicks through the same weird weeds of punk / new wave fodder that Andy Jordan has sunk his teeth into before, but this time all the senses are blown up and working overtime. Chewing on tin foil hooks that rumble through Devo infested jungles, littered with Twinkeyz ticket stubs, Roxy music posters and probably a worn copy of that Ozzie reissue; the eponymous LP is glazed with the kind of technicolor punk that only seemed to exist in b-movies. Splashes of Buckaroo Banzai / Dead End Drive-in / Repo Man chaotic hangover waft in from the irradiated guitar lines and razor sharp sax blasts, sickened keys fight for air with Jordan's demanding yelps and it feels like '79 again. That's the thing about Andy Human, its never felt like a hollow imitation but more of a method study in the sick and warbled fringes of 70's art-punk and he absolutely nails it on the head once again.

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posted by dissensous at 2:25:00 PM 0 comments

6.11.2015

The Holydrug Couple


The Holydrug Couple sink their teeth into dreampop and get lost in the vapor. Citing Air as a touchstone for the album, the Chilean group definitely takes up the reigns between the French band's high school comedown "Playground Love" and their wilder (by Air's standards) workings on Talkie Walkie. Draped in the kind of shimmer, soft lighting and billowing smoke that maxes out a fog machine budget, Holydrug make it sound like longing never resolves. They pine endlessly for a love that's always moving further out of reach. They swoon at the very thought of closure but, alas it seems that the game is forever played and while you're playing, they've got just the soundtrack to encapsulate that gossamer crush of heartache. Bigger than their last record by a mile, they build monuments of sparkling synth and sinewy bass, wriggling through the aforementioned smoke like serpents through water. Sacred Bones has built a reputation on darkness so The Holydrug Couple has always seemed like a bit of an outlier in their own stable and here they take a few steps further out of line creating a shimmering dose of pop that, while sometimes hard to pick apart in the individual pieces, builds to a larger statement of infatuation nicely.

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posted by dissensous at 9:11:00 AM 0 comments

6.09.2015

Popul Vuh - Letzte Tage - Letzte Nachte
The catalog of Popol Vuh is dense and rather intimidating to find entry points into. Sure, for the true heads out there the beginning of Fricke's universe, Affenstunde, only makes sense, but there are plenty of other nicely set
moments that don't necessitate charting the history of the band. Though up until now many of these have not been available on vinyl, but thanks to some stellar work by Wah Wah/Supersonic Sounds the band's later works have now found room on your shelf. The integration of guitar into the band's sound really starts to take over on Das Hohelied Salomos, where Daniel Fichelscher really starts to become an integral part of the group, but its here on Letzte Tage - Letzte Nachte that he really pushes to the forefront of their sound. Still balancing light and dark, psychedelic heaviness and a pastoral Eastern vibe that's central to the Popul Vuh sound, this record sees them stretch out and find place in the Krautrock canon that show's some love for their UK brethren in prog - feeling very versed in Floydisms and the grandeur of Yes. The band were in a very verdant period at this time also working on some of their numerous collaborations with Werner Herzog. These also appear in the newly minted series of reissues by Wah Wah/Supersonic and remain great points of entry into the band's psychedelic odyssey.

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posted by dissensous at 11:04:00 AM 0 comments

6.08.2015

Moritz Von Oswald Trio


There's been no lack of love for Von Oswald's trio here at RSTB but with this new chapter of the band he knocks an already exemplary band into a new level. Replacing original drummer with current touring drummer and legend in his own right, Tony Allen, the new album from the trio takes off from the group's usual stomping grounds of electronically bent jazz and dub then infects it with flecks of Afrobeat propulsion and synth darkness in a way that feels like the missing ingredients all along. Sounding Lines plays with space and rhythm. MVO Trio has always pushed forward the boundaries of their respective genres but here they delve headlong into a shadowy cave of echoes that tumble beats in all directions, synths that seek only to haunt and a kind of crushing heaviness that's as threatening as a coronary. Perhaps not one for the coming summer sun but when that swelter starts to bubble up from the soil itself, Sounding Lines will feel like just the answer.

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posted by dissensous at 9:58:00 AM 0 comments