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Transfer’s theme is transitions and transportation. Moor’s lush speaking voice in rhythmic French combines with off-kilter guitar that is sometimes twangy, sometimes rocking. Beats come and go. Recorded words from events and movies are used to good effect. Topics include Princess Diana and Grace Kelly, transit stops, plane crashes, and suspected murderers from Agatha Christy novels. Very cool sounds, engaging, I liked this a lot.
San Francisco based Radio Free Clear Light (RFCL) does evenings of “invocational” improvised sound. This album mixes strings, vocals that are sometimes disturbing moans, noisemakers and electronics to make electroacoustic tracks that flow together. Some tracks (such as 7) have beats or at least a hint of beats. Intriguing, moody, introspective.
Formed back in 1993, in Finland. This release is from 1998-1999. Re-mastered tape recordings, unreleased studio stuff, and some live tracks at the end. Dark, power electronics, industrial noise. Pressure, intense, screamed unintelligible lyrics mixed with moody spoken words. Burning walls of sound, with growling underbellies. ‘Crushing, heavily repeating loops with near random metal junk noise and feedback on the top, with furious effected vocals and spoken word samples.’ Blasting and harsh sounds.
Liberez “Sane Men Surround”
Black Dolphin is the debut release from Dim Past. Mixed and mastered in Miami, Florida this release highlights the new and upcoming Negative Rave clique. Occult Circuitry (no computers) were used to create this album full of synth-heavy, beat driven, techno, industrial, post-punk underground palpitations. Rivers of winding electronic croaks rip through the opening track, whereas “Spectre in Wire” brings heavy delays and a progressive house-synth vibe. “Night Shade” shares eeire repetitive vocals and spooky pianos that reminds me of Wednesday nights at the old Trocadero in SF. 30 minutes of mind bending beats and scratches to satisfy your musical itches.
The full title of this release is Adrian Younge presents 12 Reasons to Die, and that is important to note. Adrian Younge is LA’s current head procurer of dark soul with his interesting style that sounds like he’s composing 70s movie score type jams on an Akai MPC sampler/sequencer and then having his resident soulburner band, Venice Dawn, replay his compositions (utilizing old timey recording techniques [read: protools plug-ins] I’m sure) with a careful intent not to lose any of the original dirty feeling that a sample-based rap jam has to have to be just that. This style was effective on Younge’s earlier projects (the Black Dynamite Soundtrack, Something About April, and AY presents The Dramatics) and his record remains unblemished here. Only the Roots, Dr. Dre’s Niggaz4Life opus, and Above The Law’s post-Black Mafia Life catalog pull off a live hip hop thing better. Younge is on his shit. Now to the raps. I wouldn’t say this is a GFK career defining lyrical presentation but it is way above par and he gets an A+ for a cohesive story throughout all 12 songs about a ruthless black gangster preyed upon and murdered by the evil DeLucca family with his remains being mixed into melted vinyl and pressed into 12 records to be held by the 12 heads of the family. Problem is when the records are played the spirit called the Ghostface Killah rises for bloody revenge. This is Elmore Leonard-Donald Goines-Blaxploitation on wax. On top of that the CD comes complete with a full instrumental version that should really be filed under dark soul rather than hip hop, it has a really heavy plot even without the crazy vocal vengeance. The CD also comes with a “tape” version of the first 11 tracks where up and coming Detroit producer Apollo Brown remixed the whole shit, which has affectionately been dubbed “The Brown Tape” by real rap heads who prefer Brown’s lo-fi all sample-based compositions to Venice Dawn’s attempts to interpolate Younge.
HIs Devine Grace (aka “Moonchild Erik”) is an elusive dark ambient artist. This was released in 2001, there hasn’t been a release since ’07, where did he go? Perhaps he slowly disintegrated into a pile of sand in a vast and desolate desert. This is 66 minutes of sleepy, dark drones. This creeps along for a full 66 minutes but only really develops towards the last few minutes. Its not much of a crescendo and the end leaves you wanting but if you are looking for a layering track of just a chunk of drone, this will fulfill your needs.
This is the re-issue of the classic late-70s novelty record and Dr. Demento fave: Larry Move Your Hand, about a backseat girl’s (or rather a male impersonation of a brazen female) struggle with her date Larry’s wandering extremities. The funniest part to me is when she guzzles the white lightning straight out the bottle, good long gurgle, ha! The classic is accompanied by its instrumental and 5 other burning and sexually insinuative 70s funk jams recorded by raw, funk-drenched session players during leftover studio time after real sessions went down. You Got The Makings Of A Real Freak (which also has an alternate remix version) could make any down-and-out disco dean into an all night groove-machine. Save your funniest moves for Penguin Feet & The Teardrop Kid, a lot of PG-13 Blowfly/Bobby Jimmy & the Critters going on here. Mann the General.
aka French electronic musician Frank Zaragoza. “Ocoeur” translates as “to the heart” and this definitely stole mine. Beautiful and lush sounds that are truly mesmerizing. Waxing and waning from dark to light, fast to slow, these soundscapes are so compelling. Classical instrumentation and delicate melodies, layers of rain and ambience interspersed with IDM beats. This release is too good to be true. I’m addicted.
This is a collection of noise from Spastic Colon’s Pinch a Loaf Productions label. Based out of Downey, CA, PAL has 18 releases under their belt and Adventures in Modern Electronics is #13. 10 tracks by 10 different noise artists/outfits, each between 5 and 9 minutes long. 1) Aube: notable for it’s use of silence after the initial crash. Those who wait thru it are rewarded like counting the seconds btwn flash & thunder. 2) Not Breathing: waxpaper-winged cicada, space probes, hallucinatory boiling meter-less jungle, ends humid. 3) Pain Jerk: industrial loop, harsh edges keeps steady metronome with competing plods then burns into total DHRish chaos, smolders and space phasers out. 4) Smell & Quim: industrial loop and dry beep distortion code, constantly morphing patterns, tempo-twists tight. 5) MSBR: piercer phases into electronic robot gatling gun and laser weld fades out with soft pierce. 6) dB Orgy: starts with effective silence and fades in extremely slow for a full minute then becomes a satellite floating the nebulous. 7) Kazumoto Endo: intemittent harsh blasts, with lower sounds between, bangs more frequent with friends joining in, goes insane for 2 mins then chills to catch breath then destroys again, chills at end too. 8) Thirdorgan: possessed fax machine/calculator watch combo, with a live contact slammed thru a raggy woofer cone. 9) The Haters: sheets of tin banging in a far off and cavernous warehouse. 10) Spastic Colon: the hosts for the evening created a beautiful and edible center piece to decorate and nourish their guests who are the main course with some bubble bath drill at the end. Eat yourself. Mann the General.
Marcus Fjellstrom’s “Epilogue-M” is quite an amazing piece of work. While staying mostly within the ambient / dark ambient genre, the BPM is all over the place. It’s spooky and haunting, cerebral and involved; it seems to have an ability to send piercing chills down your spine with precision stabs, while at other times completely engulfing the listener in a wall of ambient noise. It’s difficult to describe exactly, but if you listen to this at a higher volume, the music envelops you completely and takes you to its own strange, dark recesses of consciousness. It’s quite orchestral, in the sense that it creates huge open spaces, and then fills them entirely without ever resorting to using harsh elements, hard percussion or any overuse of what one would consider typically “dark” samples. Film samples, dreamy synths, piano harps, tympani drums and clever use of filters – Fjellstrom?? use of instrumentation and ambient electronics to create expansive moody soundscapes is quite brilliant.
This 2001 release from Siouxsie and the Banshees bassist Steven Severin is an collection of dreamy, cerebral electronica. For the most part, I consider this an ambient / downtempo album, with a few notable exceptions – the fast and drum and bass influenced “Sometimes” sounds like it could have been used on David Bowie’s “Earthling,” while “I Persuade You” is a cover of Throbbing Gristle’s “Persuasion,” and “Sometimes” is certainly a window into Severin’s past. The opening track, “Typhoid Mary” sounds a bit out of place on the album, and parts of this feel like unfinished outtakes at times. However, overall this is a very pleasing album and the ambient/downtempo tracks are quite good.
With 27 musicians uniting to create a musical collection of funk, fusion, soul and jazz, Mackrosoft has done a creative job. S.E.M.E is named after Steely Dan’s classic 1977 LP. You can hear Fagen’s influence along with the likes of George Clinton, Herbie Hancock and Bootsy Collins. Seductive and unpredictable, Mackrosoft winds through slick high-hat beats accompanied by synth joints and mythic horns. Juicy underground funk and borderline porn-flick score all in one creating an instrumental party of artwork to make you dance. If you need to get that funk out of your trunk, try this one on.
Two discs chock full of R&B nostalgia. I thoroughly enjoyed how this made me feel like I was doing domestic chores like my mother, listening to excellent music to help me through the mundane nature of what I was doing. The New Orleans native performed at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival from 1972 until his death in 1999. You can???t go wrong, no matter which disc or song you sample. Enjoy.
Fluffy little bits of music, it’s got a candy pop shell but
It is probably safe to say this was project carefully considered, compiled and wildly desired to be put together by the mighty S-S Records‘ Scott Soriano (maybe even ripped from the virtual arms of Seattle’s SubPop?). A project of all previously unreleased material by this Aussie noise rock outfit, formed in 1979, that ultimately crashed and burned due to the lead singer unable to keep it all together. Personally, as a serious fan of Amphetimine Reptile sounds of the 90′s, this thing completely schools all those fucking great bands and releases. There are three covers on here (Richard’s and Jagger’s) Street Fighting Man. Fear‘s blown out I Don’t Care About You and Flipper‘s Life. The rest is all feedtime including some ripping sax on nice and possums (the live versions). Overall, it’s a miraculously wreck-less (front-page, top-o-the fold headlines screaming “Unbelievable” where there should have been gallons of blood and gore, no survivors at all, after a horrendous jack and cocaine fueled vehicular manslaughter night on the town fiasco) straight up stripped down wreck n’ role affair. In other words, the whole thing is as dangerous as a rabies infested grinning possum let loose in a kindergarten (have you seen how many fucking teeth one of them bastards has got?). Thank you SS Records for your labors of love.
The Fuxedos are an interesting band to classify, to say the least, as is their album “The Fuxedos”. Is it art? Is it high school nonsense? Is it good? The answer to these questions is really up to the listener. They have a somewhat obsessive following of dedicated fans that eat up the stage antics and theatrics, and for good reason. It’s all pretty silly, crazy stuff. But is it good? Again, it’s up to the listener. Pretty much the brain child of Danny Shorago, he writes the music and the lyrics. He produces, directs and edits the video. He does all the vocals. He is almost every character on the cover. He’s equally comfortable in a dress as he is in a 70′s/80′s tuxedo with ruffled shirt. But what is this all about? Think Zappa with the adolescent lyrics. Think Mystic Knights of the Oingo Boingo (before they were Oingo Boingo). Think Firesign Theater and Polkacide. It’s theatrics and extremely accomplished musicianship and lyrics about cephalopods and robot vampire wombats and jellybeans and Disneyland. The band is tight. Constantly changing time signatures, different tempos within the same song, and saxophones and sousaphone. The members are experienced, coming from Sleepytime Gorilla Museum and Morris Tepper. They know what they are doing. Try it. See if you like it. Who knows.
Belgian conjurer of demons Maurice de Jong is the disturbed mind behind this most evil of dark ambient nightmares. Murky death drones that emanate from the deepest recesses of bog-filled caverns. Bleak and barren despite the overwhelmingly dense layering, or is it that the sounds figure so prominently on their own? Cataclysmic eruptions of ritual exorcism burst forth, bolstered by the vague drums that linger in distant tunnels. At times we sink deeper and deeper to the molten center, where the drums pound with metallic, omnidestructive fury like a blackened hurricane of smoke and disease. At other times we blast to the outer edges of consciousness, eerily drifting along the ether. Organic sounds of grimy cesspools and viscous mires give birth to parasitic creatures echoing poisonous incantations. Morbid, grisly and at times terrifying, this is an ancient evil come to haunt us.
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