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Guitar player and singer from the West African nation of Mali. He became popular first in the 1960′s and fell out of favor in the 70′s and 80′s making something of a comeback in the 90′s when he resurfaced in France. Hard working guy who taught himself how to play guitar and never got any money for his music until much later in life. The sounds here are very mellow and beautiful. His style blends West African folk with Middle Eastern rhythms. Its the first record I listened to in 2014. Beautiful, soulful, sad, and lovely.
Yek Koo is Helga Fassonaki. This whole record sounds exactly like what happens to your hearing when hallucinogenic drugs begin to kick in. Slow, moody, and often chant-like. Big distorted guitar and vocal mumbles. I’ve heard this be referred to as East African chanting or even rap. There is nothing rap-like about this to me. not even in a Debbie Harry white girl way. It sounds more like a call to war for orcs or some other primordial ooze creature. Fun to call the corners with, sacrifice an unlucky infant to.. but it’s not the record you wanna bob around your living room to. Unless you are covered in infant blood.
Supposedly released in 1986. All female LA style metal band. These ladies probably drank A LOT of cheap whiskey and fingered each other to Lita Ford (which is cool if you’re into that) This wasn’t really my cup of Jack, but if you like sort of glammy 80′s lady-metal, this will for sure earn you your red wings. Lick it up, rockers.
Three piece punkers Ryan McGuffin (bass), Mikal Cronin (guitar), and Michael Ray-Von(vox). Word on the street is they met in art school. Art punks. This is dirty, loud and short. 8 energetic snotty bursts. The vocals have a sort of punky little barking dog quality to them that is fun at live shows, in small doses at home after a couple drinks or for after your mom grounds you and you storm off to your room. I ain’t mad at it. McGuffin is a visual artist and did the album art. Cronin is also a member of the bands Epsilons,Party Fowl,Moonhearts, and occasionally plays??bass and adds??backing vocals in Ty Segall’s live band. The two also released a couple covers for a Castleface Records comp. Nice boys.
Bish(n,sl)-bitch. Hieronymous Bosch(n)-16th century Dutch painter. Bish Bosh(sl)- job done or sorted out. Walker said this about the title for his latest, “I was thinking about making the title refer to a mythological, all encompassing giant woman artist.” Before I start in on this, I’ll give a brief back story. Besides being a genuine weirdo, Scott Walker is an American singer songwriter who’s creepy baritone voice along with some very user friendly hooks and such made him something of a 60′s pop icon. While The Beatles made their way to the US, Scott and The Walker Brothers became big news in the UK. Scott rode that train, but got off in the late 70′s and made a bunch of really pretty strange career choices, from guest appearances on other band’s records (Pulp, Bat For Lashes,etc) to a James Bond soundtrack. In 1995 he released the solo record Tilt which was described as, “an anti-matter collision of rock and modern classical music”. It got even weirder with the 2006 release of The Drift. Enough history class. Lets talk about monster women, multi-layered religious art and getting shit done. I’ve never had to hit up wikipedia more while listening to a record. Brown dwarfs, epizootic, Nicolae Ceaucescu.. this record challenged me musically and intellectually. Inasmuch as I love a good pop song or some dirty old punker stuff, I also love a good story and Scott can tell a story. Lyrically and sonically you go on a trip through history, space, and imagination. Among these stories.. Zercon, a real life jester of Attila The Hun imagines his only escape from??Attila’s court is up. From soaring with eagles to heaven and beyond only to freeze to death as a brown dwarf in SDSS14+13B (Zercon, a Flagpole Sitter). Epizootic! (an epidemic outbreak of disease in an animal population, often with the implication that it may extend to humans and track 5) is like dirty dancing in ancient high-born footwear through the leftovers of a Dionysian luau. “Narcrotic leis yanked down around melianomed ankles” You WILL catch something. The Day The Conductor Died is an ode to Nicolae Ceausecu, the Romanian communist dictator who was infamously murdered along with his wife by firing squad in the 80′s. As the story goes, they didn’t wait for the word “fire”, they just lit ‘em up. Its not all heavy. Someone lets one rip in the beginning of the first track and he’s got some one liners that deeply amused this sharp-tongued broad (“This is my job. I don’t come around and put out your red light when you work.”"I hear the only place you’re invited is outside” and “Does your face hurt, cuz it’s killing me.” are a few favorites). Dictators, disease, saints, sub-stellar space objects, trash-talking, farts, hula dancing, there’s even some lyrics in Danish. I’m not sure how this last part will come across in a review, but here goes. When I was a kid I used to have these dreams where everyone was made out of paper and I was able to see all different levels and dimensions sort of like a diorama. Hieronymous Bosch paintings have always reminded me of these childhood dreams and this record reminds me of a sonic version. Its almost too much to take in. It requires much more than one listen. I always thought that’s why my dreams were reoccurring. I imagine I will revisit this record in a month and find a new corner of it that I’m obsessed with. Eventually you get the full picture and you can appreciate all the action going on. Like Bosch, Walker paints such vast scenes, encompassing the physical, spiritual, and beyond. A strange trip
Posthumous 7″ from West Virginia weirdo, Hasil Adkins. Probably too much (or just enough) moonshine in utero for this one man band wreckin’ ball. There wouldn’t be psychobilly or probably The Cramps without him. He’s a bad mother fucker and a true original. He sited Hank Williams Sr, Jimmie Rodgers, Little Richard, and Col. Sanders as his major influences. Get drunk and make out with your brother-cousin to this.
San Francisco stoner punks (3 of them). There is a dirty garage, Blue Cheer kind of thing going on here. I’m told they named themselves Buffalo Tooth as a symbol of the power and resistance of Native Americans. I don’t know if the band is of Native American decent or they just thought that made them sound cool. For the record, that shit screams hopeless sf hipster trash to me. That said, this is really good. It stinks of medicinal marijuana so I think KFJC will be all over it. King of bay area garage hipsters (ok, maybe not king, but definitely one of the lords or something), Matthew Melton (Bare Wires) recorded it. I know I sound negative, but I don’t mean to. I didn’t take my meds today. By all means, roll this 45 up and smoke it, don’t cram it
This is pretty bad ass hardcore rock n’ roll from the Basque country. Their name comes from “escorbuto” which means scurvy en??espanol. Formed in 1980. Real and true punks. After being arrested in Spain and accused of being Basque militants, they received no support and subsequently gave their own country the finger. Much of their large catalog of hits was lost to time until now. Sort of a sad story about an under appreciated band that kicks ass. Like too many American 70′s 80′s??punkers, two of the 3 members were lost to heroin in the 90′s. They were one of the first Latin punk bands to sing in Spanish and have influenced countless Latino??punkers. A label owner who put out “radical Basque rock” eventually tried to recruit them. Their response, “Rock has no country, not even Basque.”
Ok.. I give myself about 3 sentences before this goes to shit. Tobacco is a former member of Pennsylvania experimental band, Black Moth Super Rainbow. This is his first solo effort. He plays analog synthesizers and tape machines, among other odd noise devices. Little is known about him as he is slightly reclusive (so mysterious and sexy!) I thought, based on my love of cigarettes, the album packaging, and song titles (“get my nails did”, “street trash”, “grease wizard”, etc) that I’d be down with this. I chose to ignore the warning that Aesop Rock was on one of the tracks (call me a racist or a traditionalist, a sweet old fashioned gal even.. whatever you want, but dorky white dudes shouldn’t be rappers). Rolling Stone (may the once great music magazine rest in peace) said of this record when it came out in 2008, “one of the year’s best stoner-rock records – only it’s powered by synths, hip-hop beats and vocoders??instead of guitars.” I say that if that is the case, 2008 was a rough year for stoner rock. The track with Aeosop Rock is sub par in my most humble, but the rest is just ok. Some interesting things I could get down with. Maybe what RS meant is that this is more interesting if you’re stoned. I don’t know.. So I got stoned and listened last night. To my dismay
I was not visited by that magic yeti in the blue button down on the inside cover. All I could think about was “is this what hippies are doing nowadays?” just out in the forest in Pennsylvania with a tape machine and some MDMA. This is the the new hippie, I think. And no offense but I never trust a hippie. Feel free to spray hate on me for this review. I can take it.
Wisconsin 3 piece. I read other reviews that call this “post punk”.. Naw. This is post grunge. These aren’t The Weirdos’ kids. The Ramones aren’t claiming them either. These are Kurt Cobain’s bastards, The Melvins illegitimate children.. Maybe Scratch Acid was involved, better yet, Jesus Lizard. I’m an early 90′s high school dropout.. These sounds are familiar to me. Noisy, moody, droning guitars. Head down, hair in face, empty PBRs by the drum kit when you see them play. I go for side B over A, but both are good if grunge is you what gets you off. Bobby Hussy (of The Hussy) recorded this one.
Straight outta Madison Wisconsin.. Trashy, garage-y, punker two piece. Old timey r n’ r chords done to sloppy perfection with bratty male and female vocals. Its a can shaker and the sort of music you would drink a bottle of hooch to. Maybe if you spent the night with this band you would get scabies, but its cool. You knew what you were getting into. No dirty words that i could decipher, just dirty rock n’ roll.
This is the solo project of Ohio based Lamont “Bim” Thomas, formerly of The Bassholes, This Moment In Black History, and Puffy Areolas. This EP is all kinds of good to my ears. Drums that seem almost tribal, fuzzy vocals and all kinds of soul are all wrapped up in this spacey, garage-y, rock n’roll good time. I wrote in another review about how something did not have the indefinable “it” thing that makes me really dig the music. This does. The side A first track is loud and thrashy and right at home with a lot of midwestern post punk. It sounds like a rock n’ roll train. The second song on side A (“Sleeping”) is slower and more melodic, but the drums keep it real. Side B sounds all Jimi Hendrix, but it’s got its own sound too. The last track “Home” is a fucking jam! I was all about this EP.
Garage-y pop punkers from Sacramento. This is good and catchy. These are two tracks that didn’t make the cut of their upcoming full length record. I go for the B side over A, but both are good.. URGH…The problem I have with a lot of these new garage bands isn’t their sound at all. I love the shit out of some catchy power pop. My thing is that a lot of it all sounds the same. Maybe I’m having an asshole moment, ??but indulge me.. This sounds just like everything other new garage band. A little moody.. they have more than 2 Fall records, they like Suicide, but they still like Nick Lowe.. I get it. I feel the exact same way. There is this sort of undefinable element to music I really dig that this 7″ lacks. I’m sorry. I’ll totally play this on the radio, because that undefinable element is different to everyone and maybe this really makes someone go from 6 to midnight. I like yellow birthday cake with white frosting, but it seems like thats all there is to eat these days and today at least, I’m over it.
This Italian trio has been recording since about 2003 so far as I can tell. I kept this record for a while in review because, while I liked this record when I first heard it, it is so layered. I needed a minute. I was also curious about this bands sound evolution. Earlier recordings have much more of a pop sensibility to them. I like bands that start pop and then go to the dark side. Like the Catholic school girl who starts off going to mass and ends up doing drugs in the bathroom and sleeping around with older boys. They already had a dark side when they started.. They site Os Mutantes as an early influence and its evident in the best possible way. They are currently touring with Dirty Beaches, who I love. Their blog has a lot of pictures of trees and of Hitler in a dress holding a kitten. Thank god! This record is sometimes spooky, often ominous, dirgy slow tempo rock doom. Mixed by Deerhoof’s Greg Saunier.
Australian noise punkers, True Radical Miracle are heavy, man.. Their sound has elements of hard core, punk, and noise and is pretty merciless. Heavy drums, angry, pacing guitars and bass, and a singer who must lose his voice after every show for at least a little bit. The instruments (guitar, bass, drums, yelling) move together like patients in a mental institution do. functioning well and every once in a while running into each other and causing a commotion deserving of some orderlies and a shot of Thorazine in your right ass cheek. Its dark and heavy, but in the right mood, I’m so down.
This record is a comp of two different synth/electro bands from the 1980′s.
Side A has 6 tracks from Vazz, a duo from Glasgow, Scotland. It was recorded at the Hellfire Club throughout 1982 and was originally released on cassette only. The band appeared on John Peel’s show a couple times, but are mostly kind of one of those lost gems in a sea of shitty 80′s electro-synth-pop trash. I really liked both sides of this record, and for different reasons. Vazz appeals to the Cocteau Twins lover in me. Drum machine mixed with guitars, bass, xylophone, clarinet, and beautiful female vocals..
Side B is 5 tracks from La Bambola Del Dr. Caligari (like the creepy German expressionist film from 1920), a trio from Bologna, Italy. I would categorize this as minimal synth. Keyboards, synthesizers, drum machines, effects, a creepy Italian chick haunting it all with her voice.. It really appeals to this depressed euro fag that lives inside my body, wears all black and long sleeves to cover up those marked arms. I’d penny dance to these jams for sure.
Synth punk pioneers, Nervous Gender have had a lot of line up changes in their 30+ years in biz. This 7″, recorded in 2009, features Edward Stapleton, Mike Ochoa, and Joe Zinnato and was mixed up and fixed up by Screamers alum and former Nervous Gender drummer, Paul Roessler. Maybe cool kids will say this 7″ is crap because they are older now. That is what I have been hearing when i tell people about this record. “Really? Thats lame.. I don’t know.. I like old Nervous Gender, but..” I have big black hearts for old Nervous Gender. Man, the balls on that band. Do i miss Phranc? Yeah. Kind of. But there’s one thing you can’t change. Getting older. Should they get out the synthesizers and start singing about having a bad back or their last colonoscopy? Or maybe they should just stop making music because they can’t top what they did in their youth. Hipsters are brutal. I opted to shove all that pretension up my ass and actually listen to this record. Old school synth punk with Nervous Gender’s signature sharp edges. Sounds good to me.
5 piece LA punk- new wave. This is some sloppy, garage-y goodness with some 80′s style keyboards thrown in to taste. These boys seem like a good time. You can tell they have some solid vintage punk influences. This is easily something Rodney Bingenheimer would approve of. I’m backing it.
Formed in 1980, this UK ararcho-punk band had about a million lineup changes. It basically sounds like Crass if they let a girl sometimes sing. They toured with Crass a lot and with the exception of this record, which is a compilation of everything the band recorded, were on the Crass Records label. Do you see a theme here? If you like Crass, you will probably like Dirt, but in my opinion, with the exception of female vocals, I don’t think there is much new territory explored. Don’t get me wrong, its good crusty UK punk, but nothing new here really.
This is some hardcore lady punk from Olympia Washington. Equal parts Riot Grrl and Black Flag. These chicks would probably think the Lilith Fair is a real drag. The music is pretty hard and fast. If any of that makes you so excited you want to toss a used tampon at someone.. This is the 7″ for you!
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