Monday, May 24, 2010

Merry Christmas, Pussmonkeys!!!

James Ferraro - Feed Me (Muscleworks Inc, 2010)


Jim Ferraro - On Air (Musclworks Inc, 2010)


James Ferraro - Pixarni (Summer Headrush, 2009)



Kemialliset Ystävät - Harmaa Laguuni

Secret Eye, 2008

Underrated tour-only sequel to 2007's Untitled album. The ancient bog poppets rise to sing their songs, rife with algae-rusted paisley. Pentagonal kites blot the sky with night and day. Bizzarre paper owls stare through glowing eyes from holes beneath the waters. Sometimes like Robert Lowe playing his synth to Vibracathedral putting their instruments through Black Dice's effects, but in the land of no TV sets. But mostly it's just KY and they are them and if you know them you will love them and you will love this.


Willie Lane - Recliner Ragas

Child of Microtones, 2006

Serious back porch ragas for chill times, humid oceanside summer times. Yeah. Cornerstone brother of the Bummer Road bunch = MV + EE + Zuma + Willie. Masterly.


Yellow Swans - Mort Aux Vaches

Last port of call for starship Yellow Swans. Excellent place to leave things at before committing their sounds to the æthers of history. Great to see them on the label/series with such greats as Troum, Tim Hecker, every noise pro you've ever heard of. Guitar-led astral starsurge satori, like a rawer Going Places.


Friday, May 21, 2010

Ashtray Navigations - Six Imaginary Scenes From The Life Of Muhammad Al Aqil

Nashazphone, 2009

I don't know why I held off on Ashtray Navigations for so long, I guess the looming summer has me in the mood for gleeful overloaded sunshine psychedelia. Nothing much to say other than that this rules. Serious instrumental chops, not just monotony ad infinitum. Kind of like a freer version of Yellow Swans' Going Places. On Nashazphone, the probably fake Egyptian label that released kickass stuff like Hototogisu's Robed In Verdigris and Sun City Girl's Djinn Funnel.


Saturday, May 15, 2010

Sunroof! - Splat!

U-Sound, 2003

What do Fleetwood Mac, rocket-brain psychedelic guitar noise, and Kermit the Frog all have in common? Absolutely nothing. But they all do in fact exist, in the universe of all places, which is kind of what this Sunroof! album sounds like. Unbelievably high voltage electricity straight from Matt Bower's brain to your ears. Just fucking epic.


Kane Pour - Cat On A Paisley Shawl/ Wasp In The Silver Orbitstream

Cat On A Paisley Shawl (Housecraft, 2009)


Wasp In The Silver Orbitstream (Vanishing Hour Revival/ Rotifer, 2010)


Two secret engraved vhs backmaskings revealing hidden space temples, transcoded by one half of Tricorn & Queue, along with good friend to these ears Xiphiidae. Complex, hazy hypnagogic compositions, not just some guy humping a synth into a tape and releasing it under some Ferraro-ripped pseudo-new age name. Not unexpected considering the quality of his other acts. Wasp In The Silver Orbistream was actually released with a vhs tape, it is now one of my major goals in life to find a copy in order to sniff the secret vhs crystals. Diverse sound too, all of Cat On A Paisley Shawl sounds like it was put through some kind of digital bitcrusher, the kind of sound you get with crappy mpeg videos. Deliberately faded sounding and hissed-out but doesn't sound like a gimmick. Parts of Wasp In The Silver Orbitstream have a total Forbidden Planet soundtrack vibe, so good, it ain't all just pastoral dream-frolics.

Vibracathedral Orchestra - The Sun Balance/ The Open Knot

Qbico, 2007

One of Vibracathedral Orchestra's greatest releases, this is them in a particularly zoned heavy synthy birdsong-raga mode ala Sunroof! circa Bliss. Very little drums on this one. I don't know if Neil Campbell was still with the Orchestra for this release but it certainly owes alot to him. Total, complete bliss will be achieved by the end of this recording, I swear if you are not in some sort of nirvana when the beyond-thought white light vocal choir comes in on "Open Knot Part III" yer some kind of meathead.


Kawabata Makoto/ Anla Courtis/ Rokugenkin - Kokura

Riot Season, 2006

Found this one by investigating Reynols/ Courtis on a whim, what we got is a surprisingly musically strong outing, featuring cascades of shimmering Sunroof!/Birchville feedback, skeletal song miniatures, meditative noise, and treated guitar. Courtis' usual backyard-junk monotone-as-satori added to Makoto's shamanic space journey guitar, and whatever Rokugenkin does filling out the sound. Solid and really impressive.


Sunday, May 2, 2010

Zeni Geva - Nai-Ha

Nipp Guitar, 1993

Few bands may make you want to throw out your collection of hardcore and death metal records like Zeni Geva (although Big Black may come close). 'Cuz here it's just done right. Genius & brutality, as those Brainbombs would say. Intelligence & strength, pain and ecstasy are explored but this ain't no musical pornography, this is music for the thinking man's body. The Nai-Ha EP in particular puts this on show more than earlier records, with advanced compositions and sections of psychedelic scream-drone that move beyond the early Swans-isms of works like Maximum Money Monster and Total Castration.


Organum - Horii/ Sphyx

Horii (L.A.Y.L.A.H. Antirecords, 1986)


Sphyx (Aeroplane, 1994)


Organum is the experimental sound project of David Jackman, longtime player in the old UK underground of Nurse With Wound, Mirror, The Hafler Trio, etc. As would be assumed by the tendencies of his fellows and the length of his discography, his work covers vast territories of sound. The sound of these two works in particular is perhaps most adequately summarized visually by the back cover of Sphyx, that of a mysterious transcendent growth arising out of a din of sound. Here is peak meditative music created from the heavy, abrasive detritus of bowed cymbals, crushed metal, etc. All united with the singular flute or voice tone of om. Horii features frequent collaborator and wonderful artist of his own right, Andrew Chalk.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Thoughts On Air/ Xiphiidae - Split c20

Cloud Valley, 2009

Excellent split cassette from the very appropriately named drone-psych loner Thoughts On Air and Housecraft founder Jeffrey Astin's main trip Xiphiidae. Two slices of underrated and sublime drone alchemy. TOA works like a mini-GHQ in total psilocybin-rippled night sky mode, straight and pure bliss with both structured & droney vignettes, while Xiphiidae evokes Astin's usual genius at submerging the mic deep into the tape swamp. As always no one thing is ever going on in a Xiphiidae tape and his rumblings are masked in mystery.