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ElSaffar performs trumpet, vocals and santur (Iranian hammered dulcimer) on this intersection of Middle Eastern and jazz. It is inspired by his experience as an eye witness to events in Lebanon and the Arab Spring. Gorgeous rich tones, fine musicianship, and the use of ethnic instruments like the oud (a type of lute) and the buzuq (long-necked lute) make this approachable yet original.
bluesy folky blues
short, quiant improvs on
raw Cleaveland punk
spacious droney fuzz
Philly psychsters Grimace Federation team up with Aesop Rock (of Hail Mary Malone and Rhymesayers) to rip bongs and blow minds on this clear 12″ LP (a debateable title, given that the whole shabang clocks in around 17 mins.) GF coaxes the spirit from your body with trancendental intrumentals on Side 1, both a nod to post-rockers and hip-hop heads alike. Peaks and troughs, mountains and valleys, ebbs and flows to create a sonic soundscape both dense and warm, like grandmas homemade bread when she forgot the yeast. Aesop takes over on Side 2 for some bass-heavy remixes. B1 is a remix of A2, chopping and screwing the melody almost past the edge, with nods to the early days of breakbeats in the rhytym. B2 provides another 808 driven, low-end dose of tripped out tenderness. 3WR: Psych Rap Mania
Various tracks include noisy rock with driving guitars, a fair amount of feedback, wah-wah, crunchy goodness, psyche, electronic clicking noises, the occasional stuck CD sound, and innocuous vocals (Track 8 not so innocuous), presumably in Ukrainian. What stood out for me was the drummer’s obsessive use of the ride cymbal, which at times felt relentless.
It’s All In Your Head FM broadcasting warped sound collage into your brain thing. Offering a comparative religious studies course in a 2-disc set. Philosophy, fundamentalist extremism, intolerance, misinterpretation, hypocrisy, afterlife, evolution, science are all touched upon.
Australian pianist and electroacoustic tinkerer gives us a scrambled instrumental performance with a prepared piano. Rapidly moving hands and sounds create a residue of acoustic skittering in the back, giving the foreground activity a field to play on. Marimba, cymbal, percussion, bell sounds all being emulated with Pateras’ piano. Creepy, stressful ghost music.
Thomas Carnacki, Quattro, Jesse, Burson, Jesse, Brumit, Jon – “Far Voyage From a Placid Island” – [Alethiometer]
Thomas Carnacki is a group of artists who collaborate under said name, and these other names may in fact be those offenders. Ambient sounds float, walk, slurp, boop, warble, click, splash, loop, skip, through an apocalyptic mental soundscape. Long tracks that ebb and flow, but are mostly nightmare fuel.
Excellent surf music from Costa Rica! Mostly in the horror genre, well played, some keyboard and electronic punk/heaviness thrown in. Some vocals and shouts and what sound like movie excerpts, mostly in Spanish, only track 4 has vocals through out. (Pronounce los coo-CHEE-yos, meaning “the knives”.)
Lush, triumphant black metal from Michigan with some synth buried in the grimy mix. The anonymous performer is biracial Indian/white and this 2012 EP concerns the struggle for Indian independence from Britain, specifically the ‘Free India Legion’ exiles who fought for the Axis in Asia during WWII in the hopes of seeing the British defeated. “The lyrics on ‘Azad Hind’ ['Free India'] are from the viewpoint of a soldier who is fighting for the land he loves,” says the musician in an interview– but the Nazi uniform and swastika flag in the liner art lend the work an air of ideological ambiguity, or is it ambivalence? The title of the B side refers to Azad Hind provisional government leader Subhas Chandra Bose’s stay in Nazi Berlin, during which time he met with Hitler and Himmler. Does this make Dressed In Streams a Nazi sympathiser? Probably not; to the Indians of the mid-20th century, maybe the English were the Nazis. Confusing politics aside, this is gorgeous melodic Black Metal with occasional post-hardcore tricks not unlike some works from C.S.R. label head A Pregnant Light. The A side is more aggressive and the B side perhaps more sentimental. Each track is about ten minutes long. The lengthy intro on A and outro on B are samples of Indian traditional music. Literally Aryan Black Metal… how about it?
Killer 1982 desolate rock out of Germany, two guys Christian
Norweigian vocallete chameleon, filing this under jazz in part
Let’s talk about the term ‘murkcore.’ How retarded can metal critics get? I first heard it in an online review of Grave Upheaval, written by a person who had clearly never listened to Blasphemy. The British solo project Abyssal could definitely be called ‘murkcore’ by such idiots, but this 2015 release also marks a departure from the last album. Whereas the previous release was pure Blackened Death Doom, this one (on which our hero is joined by several guest musicians) veers into often jarringly experimental territory, especially in the direction of romantic Post-Black Metal e.g. Botanist, Clouds Collide (and T. 3 boasts a truly invasive Sleeping Peonies style babbling synth riff), as well as a little Second Wave Black Metal (Darkthrone) more occasionally. Despite the project’s newfound soft streak (e.g t.s 2, 3, 4, 6, 7), a strong Antediluvian influence persists, and the chaotic Death/Doom heaviness of Bethlehem, a band that must be discussed when reviewing this kind of band, is still present. T.s 2+5 have long ambient intros. The least fruity track is T.1, which is comparatively traditional. Despite the bizarre influences, I haven’t heard a lot of Black Metal bands that combine prettiness and heavy grime into such a profoundly disparate mix. It’s a strange listen, to be sure, and more’s the better, I say.
PGM: the last 50 seconds of t.4 are blank. T.5 starts quietly (building, before the metal starts, to a dark ambient crescendo that involves Gregorian chant samples).
Dana Schechter (from Brooklyn, NY) is Insect Ark on this release. Self-described as experimental/doom/drone, Insect Ark’s sound is created by Schecter’s bass and other instruments. It sounds intense, and I believe Cy Thoth would give it his approval.
This release from the St. Petersburg band is even more experimental than usual–all except the last song reflects a compilation of tracks recorded by each band member individually. Then the tracks were mixed together, and the result is quite bizarre, especially the vocalizations at the beginnings of the songs. Drones, noise, strangeness. Right up KFJC’s alley.
This self-released album from St. Petersburg born and Los Angeles based Vorontsova is simply lovely. The music has a distinctly world folk flavor, as well as rock, and it’s not just because she sings the lyrics in such beautiful Russian. The instrumentation is wonderful, including guitar, strings, kalimba, and ocarina. Enjoy your sonic travels on this one.
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