Music Reviews

Bessel, Eric Angelo – “Visitation” – [Lore City]

humana   5/24/2023   12-inch, A Library

The liner notes written by Bessel himself are a perfect description of how this ambient music sounds: as if you are looking up through the depths of the ocean, watching the sun’s rays filtering dreamily through the water. Bessel composed and arranged these songs and played the mellotron that on some tracks (especially on Side B) make you feel as though you are present in some church or space where reverence is as natural as the sounds sifting through your ears. Dream on.

Sankat Mochan Sangha – “Shivaratri: Offerings from the Sankat Mochan Sangha” – [Sri Ram Publishing]

aarbor   5/24/2023   CD, International

Shivaratri is “the night of Shiva” it falls on the 13th (or 14th) day of the dark half of Phalgun (February-March). The ceremonies take place chiefly at night. This is a festival observed in honor of Lord Shiva who was married to Parvati on this day. People observe a strict fast on this day. Some devotees do not even take a drop of water. They keep vigil all night. At Mount Madonna they celebrate Shivaratri for 24 hours. The celebrations include pujas and singing. These 2 CDs capture the devotional energy of these celebrations. AArbor

Dragon Disc 2 [coll] – [Worm Interface]

aarbor   5/24/2023   12-inch, A Library

An early Worm Interface release that Goodwrench undoubtedly found in an obscure place. Tom Jekinson (Squarepusher) offers 2 memorable track here along with two from “Dunderhead” (Nigel Smith) – his debut as it turns out. Jenkinson is better known – perhaps deservedly. AArbor

Bodikhuu – “Tokyo” – [Farsi]

aarbor   5/24/2023   12-inch, Hip Hop

Bodikhuu lives in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia and creates hip hop in his home with “the luxury of my own privacy and space”. This is his newest release which is about Japan – which he has never visited. “I wanted to portray the ’80s Japanese atmosphere through my style… it represents the tremendously busy lifestyle of Tokyo – subway stations, roads, towers, factories, monotonous and lonely lives of people in it. Even though I have never been there this is my way of saying that I have seen the place. All the samples come from city pop, j-pop, Japanese jazz & funk music”. Don’t miss! AArbor

No Visitors – “100,00 Years” – [Rural Isolation Project]

whngr   5/17/2023   A Library, CD

Amplified Vestibular Neuronitis

More Like a hundred thousand ears… bleeding collectively into a haunted missile silo. Many varied sounds, abstract and without meter; layered perversely that growl, pierce, screech, thump, whine and drone. Weaving between moderately uncomfortable to thoroughly unnerving and intermittently is absolutely appalling; the latest release from No Visitors is a solid candidate for album of the year in the weaponized sound category. Leaning into the suffering, however, has elicited a mild psychedelic response for this miserable volunteer.

No Visitors is one Matthew Turner, the driven entity behind Rural Isolation Project and currently is avoiding whngr’s attempts to explain his aberrant behavior and motivations in a Mayhem special. Why won’t anyone fucking talk to me?!

Austin, TX – 2022

Panfilov, Misha – “The Sea Will Outlive Us All” – [Miraaz Records]

Albion Moonlight   5/17/2023   12-inch, A Library

This album may be best described as underwater space music. Consisting of 9 sea-themed instrumental tracks, Estonian multi-instrumentalist and composer Misha Panfilov and his small cohort delve into the nexus of electric lounge, psych jazz, ambient, and a little bit of surf. Ranges from soothing and dreamy to more defined grooves. Nice touches with the Mellotron and Wurlitzer. Maybe we are skating at an underwater roller rink?

The subtitle of the album says ‘Musical patterns by…’ , and Panilov incorporates patterns heavily into his music. A couple of the tracks sound like there is a human voice but it may just be the sounds of sirens beckoning you to a watery demise. Stay a while, dip in your toes. Favorite tracks: #2 (dreamy) #3 (groove) #5 (dreamy) #6 (surf) #8 (catchy) #9 (most orchestrated – wurlitzer?).


Mint.Beats – “LVLZ” – [Needle to the Groove]

MSTiZA   5/16/2023   Cassette, Hip Hop

Mint.Beats is a Bay Area based multi-instrumentalist and producer. Tracks carry a nostalgia of spring mornings and petrichor, misting you with small samples and manifesting simpler times. They briefly dazzle with twinkling keys and easy vibes. There are subverted references to boom bap, jazz, soundscapes, analog, noise, and vocal samples, pulled together with thoughtful production. The tracks piece together as short snippets to create a window to look out of in bedroom production. Tracks are brief, just enough to wet the palette. So tickle your taste and bite into a few tracks to get a greater feel for the subtleties.

FCC: 3

Cerebral Rot “Excretion of Mortality” [20 Buck Spin]

atavist   5/15/2023   A Library, CD

You might be wondering what is going on in that first track. Some sort of slasher film-style narration? The repeating crawling-spider motif will burst forth with riffs like a full arachnid assault; the walls and floor pulsate with the horde. Death has many faces, and here it is really filthy, leering as you squirm. I do appreciate that weird chorus-like effect on the guitars, particularly on “Spewing Purulence”. “Bowels of Decrepitude” gets the guitars lined up in formation while the drummer throws in an unexpected snare hit on occasion. If it’s crooked and nasty, just keep it in there. Weird guitar effects, perhaps some keys (though no one on the album is credited for it). So much rot. This band is really after that one thing. Their relentless pursuit of putrefaction has led them to innovate, or in other words, engage in some bizarre behavior, while straining to maintain the colossal mass that modern death metal extracts from its subjects. Satan be praised, this release upholds the mass ritual; see “Drowned in Malodor” and “Retching Innards” for further details. They close out with an eleven-minute epic, complete with a strange intro, in which they throw in a bit of everything in the arsenal.

Sightless Pit “Lockstep Bloodwar” [Thrill Jockey Records]

atavist   5/14/2023   A Library, CD

A crackling, twitchy descent into a maze of subterranean passages reveals thrumming beats and gentle washes of abrasive noise, ringing voices and hard words. A collaboration of Lee Buford (The Body) and Dylan Walker (Full of Hell), Sightless Pit’s antecedents are well-represented in the KFJC library. But much like recent additions by The Body & OAA and The Body & Thou (there’s even a Full of Hell/Merzbow in there), the motor for most tracks on “Lockstep Bloodwar” is the collabs and guest appearances. Midwife adds ethereal, reverb-drenched dulcet vocals that set the weighted words spinning. This sets up YoshimiO, a Japanese multi-instrumentalist, and Gangsta Boo, a Memphis-based rapper who sadly passed away earlier this year. This might be the last thing Gangsta Boo put on tape—she completely slays it, and it’s worth as much heavy rotation as safe harbor will allow. Staff might recognize Lane Shi Otayonii from the Nadja CD added late last year; here she contributes to another great track with an FCC to be mindful of. The title track is a lighter interlude with legit dance floor beats forming a respite between two massive trios of collab tracks. The Frukwan & Industrial Hazard track has a definite machine-chiseled vibe going, like hip hop falling apart and reassembling itself from scrap metal; halfway through it really locks in, and Frukwan’s vocal stylings ratchets things up a level. The Claire Rousay track “False Epiphany” is so “Mezzanine”-era Massive Attack until the vocal track snaps us into the present. By the time the death-doom vocal track floats in on an uneasy summer evening breeze, Atavist has discovered his favorite track on the album. Excellent lyrical delivery from Crownovhornz on “Shiv”. The harshest approach from Buford and Walker is reserved for “Morning of a Thousand Lights”. “Futilities” brings it down, with black metal vocals drifting through and entwining with the ghostly vocals of San Francisco’s Foie Gras. FCCs tracks 2, 3, 7.

Negativland – “Speech Free: Recorded Music For Film, Radio, Internet and Te” – [Seeland]

karma   5/10/2023   A Library, CD

Negativland is very popular in the KFJC library. They are a Bay Area based experimental music collective that is known to sample a lot of vocals. Their latest release is their two previous albums – with all vocals removed. The speech-free album is seamless. You wouldn’t know there were supposed to be vocals unless you’re a Negativland fan (as you should be) or I just told you. The tracks vary in length and tone. Very fun album that will fit into pretty much any program here.

Copyright © 2023 KFJC 89.7 FM
12345 S. El Monte Road Los Altos Hills, California 94022
Public Inspection File