Show #189 – 4/27/13

April 28, 2013 at 12:35 am | Posted in The Answer Is In The Beat | Leave a comment

mic break music = mark fell: periodic orbits of a dynamic system related to a knot

3:01 AM geof bradfield ~ kansas city child ~ melba! ~ origin records
3:05 AM lonnie holley ~ earthly things ~ just before music ~ dust-to-digital
3:15 AM dan deacon ~ konono ripoff no. 1 (version b) instrumental ~ record store day 7″ ~ domino
3:17 AM peaking lights ~ subterranean brainblow ~ sub pop 1000 ~ sub pop
3:21 AM the van allen belt ~ songs ~ 7″ ~ self-released
3:26 AM pressed and ~ haus ~ stone candles ~ mush records
3:29 AM rollin hunt ~ you ~ the phoney ~ moniker records
3:32 AM sad souls ~ truest assurance ~ apeiron ~ plop/nature bliss inc.
3:34 AM jetman jet team ~ deepspace ~ we will live the space age ~ saint marie records
3:39 AM cakes da killa ~ operator ~ esopus 19: customer service ~ esopus magazine
3:41 AM enduser ~ waking upside down ~ enduser shares needles with the teknoist ~ ad noiseam
3:47 AM half japanese ~ hey romeo ~ 1/2 gentlemen / not beasts (4lp reissue) ~ fire records
3:48 AM half japanese ~ 10th avenue freezeout ~ 1/2 gentlemen / not beasts (4lp reissue) ~ fire records
3:49 AM daniel johnston ~ ain’t no woman gonna make a george jones outta me ~ continued story ~ homestead
3:52 AM toecutter ~ i milk myself ~ toecutter ~ system corrupt
3:54 AM the klf ~ last train to trancentral (live from the lost continent) ~ the white room ~ arista
4:06 AM ocdj ~ trip trip ~ hooray! ~ wildfire wildfire
4:08 AM pikoboy featuring haruka ~ twilight city ~ bits of love ~ piko piko detroit
4:12 AM softreset ~ riptides ~ softreset ~ piko piko detroit
4:16 AM monotony ~ supression vs repression ~ 2012 demo ~ piko piko detroit
4:17 AM the one electronic ~ finster x ~ poutine split ~ piko piko detroit
4:21 AM pierre schaefer ~ toccata et fugue ~ le triede fertile ~ recollection grm
4:26 AM guy reibel ~ granulation 2 ~ granulations-sillages / frange du signe ~ recollection grm
4:41 AM colin stetson ~ hunted ~ new history warfare vol. 3: to see more light ~ constellation
4:47 AM quicksails ~ bemus has wings to fly ~ mayville dream ~ spectrum spools
4:50 AM locust ~ oh yeah ~ you’ll be safe forever ~ editions mego
4:52 AM james blake ~ voyeur ~ overgrown ~ republic
4:57 AM cosmin trg ~ semipresent ~ gordian ~ 50 weapons
5:03 AM voice of eye and thomas dimuzio ~ themisto ~ the unveiling of darkness ~ record label records
5:09 AM keiji haino/oren ambarchi/jim o’rourke ~ only the winding “why” expresses anything clearly ~ now while it’s still warm let us pour in all the mystery ~ black truffle records
5:15 AM john parish ~ les billets ~ screenplay ~ thrill jockey
5:18 AM lilacs & champagne ~ le grand ~ danish & blue ~ mexican summer
5:23 AM dump ~ never comes ~ i can hear music (reissue) ~ morr music
5:36 AM implodes ~ prisms and the nature of light ~ recurring dream ~ kranky
5:40 AM no joy ~ lunar phobia ~ wait to pleasure ~ mexican summer
5:44 AM wire faces ~ happiest man ~ king cataract ~ hot congress
5:48 AM bazooka ~ koritsi stin akti ~ bazooka ~ slovenly
5:52 AM akron/family ~ sand time ~ sub verses ~ dead oceans
5:56 AM black pus ~ fly on the wall ~ all my relations ~ thrill jockey

Crush Collision 4/25/13

April 26, 2013 at 9:29 am | Posted in Crush Collision | Leave a comment

Hour 1
10:00 PM pye corner audio transcription services ~ electronic rhythm number eighteen (retransferred by the advisory circle)
10:07 PM starforce ~ gradient hues
10:09 PM the destiny orchestra ~ spring rain [HEY NEGATIVLAND SAMPLED THIS COOL HUH! LOUDER AND FASTER LOUDER AND FASTER!]
10:14 PM dj koze ~ royal asscher cut
10:21 PM faltyDL ~ she sleeps (martyn rmx)
10:24 PM arcade high ~ crystal dreams
10:28 PM el ten eleven ~ lullaby (mad v rmx)
10:34 PM fhloston paradigm ~ chasing rainbows
10:36 PM pursuit grooves ~ code nexion
10:40 PM moire ~ lose it (actress rmx)
10:47 PM akufen ~ bos indicus
10:51 PM funkineven & fatima ~ phoneline
10:55 PM k. hand ~ candle lights
Hour 2
11:02 PM gold panda ~ burnt-out car in a forest
11:07 PM perturbator ~ eclipse
11:11 PM dj eleven ~ last beat (dj ayres rmx instrumental)
11:15 PM bonobo ~ emkay
11:19 PM ikonika ~ pr812 (tech house is boring mix)
11:22 PM mondkopf ~ fading rainbow (kangding ray rmx)
11:27 PM young meat ~ golden light (op1_dx_mpc_spceco)
11:32 PM terrence dixon ~ navigate
11:36 PM automatic tasty ~ báisteach
11:39 PM xander harris ~ the driver
11:42 PM schedule 3 ~ break u down
11:46 PM cardopusher ~ so what u want me to do
11:50 PM pixelord ~ freeze the star VIP
11:52 PM silvanian families ~ mugip’11
11:55 PM drexciya ~ aqua worm hole

Gay Cat Park: Synthetic Woman LP (Medical Records, 2012)

April 21, 2013 at 10:33 pm | Posted in Reviews | Leave a comment

Gay Cat Park: Synthetic Woman

Gay Cat Park: Synthetic Woman

File under Records Paul Never Imagined Would Ever Exist But Now They Do And Paul Is Overjoyed. Sometime shortly after graduating college, I got really heavily into Italo-disco, and thanks to the Internet being a lot faster than it previously was, I was able to hear all sorts of incredibly obscure records I never would’ve known existed otherwise, and I absolutely fell in love with all sorts of ’80s Euro-dance oddities. Particularly exciting to me were the sort of obscure, cult-classic one-shots like “I’m A Vocoder” by Gary Cat Park, who apparently were group of teenagers from Italy in the early ’80s. The track was the first release on legendary label Il Discotto Productions, and it’s such a simple, catchy song, with charmingly mispronounced English lyrics (“circulator” instead of “calculator”, “microprocessor” pronounced “microprochessor”) about, well, being a Vocoder, a synthetic voice. The track’s about 8 minutes, has an extended instrumental intro, and maddeningly fades out mid-verse, like the album version of Talking Heads’ “Life During Wartime”. It’s an absolutely classic song, and I was so excited a few years ago when Clone Classic Cuts reissued the song on a 12″, along with new vocal and instrumental mixes which truthfully are not better than the original. For 30 years “I’m A Vocoder” was the only released Gay Cat Park song, and now Medical Records (a reissue label that I absolutely need to check out more releases from) has released a see-through red-splattered LP of GCP material. Of course “I’m A Vocoder” is on here, but now we can hear what else was up these guy’s sleeves. Turns out the rest of their material isn’t quite as dancefloor-ready as “Vocoder”, it’s more uptempo and minimal-wave. I know, dumb made-up categories, whatever. The point is, it’s more synth-pop and less disco than I expected. It’s still every bit as amazing as I expected, though, of course. The LP comes with a huge sheet of liner notes, explaining how they modified cheap toy-like keyboards to function as real synthesizers. The first track on this LP contains a Speak ‘N’ Spell saying the band’s name, so you know this was such a homemade lo-fi project. Eventually they got hold of proper synths, but all the songs were still recorded lo-tech in real time; the liner notes state that “no sequencers were harmed in the making of this song” next to every track, although one of them contains a TB-303 bassline. Musically, Depeche Mode is definitely a major influence (the bands claim to own the entire discography and have seen them every time they’ve played Italy), and while it’s definitely easy to hear the early DM sound in this band, they still did something really original and creative. Aside from “Vocoder” my favorite track has to be the romantic instrumental “A Bunch Of Flowers”, which is just smiling-ear-to-ear synth-disco bliss. More than anything else, I just can’t believe they did all this stuff when they were teenagers, and that only one of these tracks actually ended up getting released at the time. How do you just come home from school one day and hook up some cheap keyboards and drum machines and record music like this? And why does it take 30 years for anyone to realize how brilliant it was?

The vinyl is probably all sold out by now, as it was limited to 650 copies, but you can stream and purchase the digital version on Bandcamp. And the fact that Medical Records has a Bandcamp means I have a ton of catching up to do now.

Dan Deacon: Konono Ripoff No 1 7″ (Domino, 2013)

April 21, 2013 at 9:39 pm | Posted in Reviews | Leave a comment

Dan Deacon: Konono Ripoff No 1 7"

Dan Deacon: Konono Ripoff No 1 7″

So, Record Store Day. I waited a half hour in line at Wazoo Records to see if they got the reissue of the first Half Japanese album, and they didn’t (I found it somewhere else, maybe I’ll review it soon), but I got this Dan Deacon 7″ instead. The title, of course, is in tribute to Congolese group Konono Nº1, who create amplified percussion instruments made from salvaged junkyard parts. Dan Deacon’s own recent music has been heavily percussion-based and polyrhythmic, so it’s easy to see the influence of Konono on his music. This 7″ has two versions of the same song, the A-side featuring regular Deacon collaborators Jeremy Hyman (ex-Ponytail) and Kevin O’Meara (of Videohippos, are they still around? I only saw them once briefly during a Wham City Round Robin and I always wanted to see them again) on drums, and some typical Deacon vocals layered (some wacky and pitched, others majestic and chanty). The B-side version is instrumental and has Denny Bowen of Double Dagger and Dave Jacober (Future Islands collaborator) on drums, and a bit of buzzing electronics. Both sides go by quickly and put a smile on your face (as would be expected of a Dan Deacon 7″), but I think I like the B-side version better.

Show #188 – 4/20/13

April 20, 2013 at 1:12 pm | Posted in The Answer Is In The Beat | Leave a comment

Hour 1
3:02 AM lower plenty ~ close enough ~ hard rubbish ~ fire
3:06 AM dead can dance ~ sanvean ~ in concert ~ [pias] america
3:11 AM zomes ~ little lucid dreamer ~ time was ~ thrill jockey
3:15 AM dolores boys ~ south to north ~ tape ~ psychic mule
3:17 AM dolores boys ~ miracles in bloodprint ~ tape ~ psychic mule
3:19 AM life coach ~ into the unknown ~ alphawaves ~ thrill jockey
3:24 AM bushman’s revenge ~ kill your jitterbug darlings ~ electric komle – live! ~ rune grammofon
3:32 AM lilacs & champagne ~ danish & blue ~ danish & blue ~ mexican summer
3:37 AM quicksails ~ a late realization ~ mayville dream ~ spectrum spools
3:41 AM locust ~ strobes ~ you’ll be safe forever ~ editions mego
3:45 AM james blake + rza ~ take a fall for me ~ overgrown ~ republic
3:49 AM ilaiyaraaja ~ ilasa sirusa ~ ilectro ~ finders keepers
3:53 AM maria minerva ~ black magick ~ bless ~ 100% silk
Hour 2
4:00 AM profligate ~ videotape ~ 12″ ~ not not fun
4:09 AM sensate focus ~ y ~ sensate focus 10 ~ sensate focus
4:19 AM nommo ogo ~ the ancient ones ~ endless dream ~ record label records
4:24 AM V/Vm ~ M0nE(y) 4 Not|-|ing\\\ ~ HelpAphexTwin/3.0 ~ V/Vm test records
4:31 AM bad news from houston ~ make it fall ~ in the valley of the cloud builder ~ post-consumer
4:38 AM barbeque ~ cruze ~ barbeque ~ piko piko detroit
4:41 AM snesei ~ button mash ~ 0004080c ~ piko piko detroit
4:43 AM the one electronic ~ monday ~ the lethargic ep ~ piko piko detroit
4:47 AM hot & cold ~ uighur pop ~ border area ~ moniker
4:49 AM connections ~ cindy ~ private airplane ~ anyway records
4:51 AM saturday looks good to me ~ parking lot blues ~ tour ep 2002 ~ ypsilanti records
4:54 AM wild belle ~ twisted ~ isles ~ columbia
4:58 AM twinsistermoon ~ order of the dreamt ~ the snowbringer cult ~ ba da bing
Hour 3
5:03 AM barn owl ~ blood echo ~ v ~ thrill jockey
5:08 AM sujo ~ gaol ~ ondan ~ inam records
5:15 AM fluorescent grey ~ sorcerers ~ ambiente (disc 1: the harmoniums reside in the caverns of mercury) ~ record label records
5:18 AM blanche blanche blanche ~ pain station ~ wooden ball ~ nna tapes
5:20 AM liz christine ~ two seconds ~ sweet mellow cat ~ flau
5:22 AM bonobo ~ jets ~ the north borders ~ ninja tune
5:26 AM sonogram ~ cosmonaut ~ how we saw tomorrow ~ simulacra records
5:32 AM justin walter ~ red and brown leaves ~ dark matter ~ life like
5:37 AM fwy! ~ 710 again ~ any exit ~ moon glyph
5:41 AM winston edwards & blackbeard ~ downing street rock ~ change the beat: the celluloid records story 1979-1987 ~ celluloid/strut
5:46 AM fall of saigon ~ she leaves me all alone ~ fall of saigon ~ dark entries
5:50 AM s-haters ~ canal ~ thing from the crypt ~ dark entries
5:54 AM informatics ~ underlife ~ dance to a dangerous beat ~ dark entries

Quicksails: Mayville Dream LP (Spectrum Spools, 2013)

April 19, 2013 at 10:20 pm | Posted in Reviews | Leave a comment

Quicksails: Mayville Dream LP

Quicksails: Mayville Dream LP

Continuing Spectrum Spools’ quest to unearth the best of the current American underground experimental scene, we have an album from Quicksails, AKA Ben Billington of Tiger Hatchery, Moonrises, Circuit De Yeux and others. He’s already put out tapes and LPs on Digitalis Limited, NNA Tapes, Pizza Night, 905 Tapes, and more. At times, this effort has kind of a slick, almost jazzy tone that I wasn’t expecting, but it’s very welcome. There’s plenty of distortion and smeared guitar noise, and of course analog synths, but there’s some clean pianos (see “Institute’s Innards”) and hand percussion (as on opener “The Many Roads Towards Mayville”) along with the sparky synths. “As High Above The Lightning” contains several layers of synths spouting off radioactive shards arrhythmically, but still in kind of a melodic way. “Only Escape” is a quiet melty-chime ambient track. “Bemus Has Wings To Fly” has clicking arpeggiated synths with warped, wacked out dialogue. “Closer To Towanda” is where we get into some slow, dramatic, down-and-out organ, drums and clapping, which ends up getting fast and freaky with some flutes and tweeting synths for the last 45 seconds or so. “Night Bats” has a cool new agey melody, a slow 3/4 beat, live drums with lots of cymbals, and plenty of synths buzzing and blooping around. “Dancing By Yourself” is a straight-up Krautrock synth rhythm, but with tons of hand percussion, and all sorts of bizarre noises whizzing around underneath. “A Late Realization” ends the album on kind of a strange downer note, with frowning synths and rapidfire noises which sound like the electronic equivalent of several sticks of dynamite going off in succession, but it ends up with with a fuzzy abstract rhythm over some strange disconnected synth sounds. Overall, a varied, exciting and sometimes classy (sure, why not) LP.

Troller: self-titled LP (Holodeck/Light Lodge, 2013)

April 18, 2013 at 12:34 am | Posted in Reviews | Leave a comment

Troller

Troller

TROLLER! Easily one of my favorite new groups right now. Brad Rose is already calling this as the best album so far this year (regardless of the fact that it actually came out on tape last year), and I am entirely in agreement. And of course, the cover and band name make you think it’s going to end up being either doom or stoner metal, or something close to that realm, so first hearing a preview track online shattered all those preconceptions and really got me interested. I wasn’t sure what I was hearing, but it sounding incredible. So I was really lucky to score a review copy (especially since it sold out FAST, and probably will do so again when the second pressing comes out this summer) so I can enjoy this in all its full vinyl glory.

So what does it sound like? Well, it’s slow, dark, heavy, and haunted by some sort of ghosts. There’s six songs listed on the back, but there’s a few untitled instrumental interludes. The drum machines are evenly-paced (pacing is crucial here), seemingly basic but reverb-covered to the point of being almost explosive. There’s some gritty bass guitar lurking underneath. Heavy, heavy black atmosphere, and on the interludes (which unfortunately are truncated or left out entirely on the vinyl version), there’s a few reflective periods of kosmische synth meditation. Most importantly of all are the banshee-like vocals by Amber Star Ormand, which float spectre-like above the synths, but still ground them as structured songs. No clue what she’s actually singing (not at all a problem in my book), but they perfectly convey the sort of dark, sad, hope-possibly-lost-forever feeling the music works at. For some reason I keep getting the vocal melodies on this album mixed up in my head with that of the last track on Silver Dapple’s slept-on 2011 LP English Girlfriend (it’s not even on Discogs for some reason, jeez), mostly because of the pacing, vocal effects, letting-it-all-go feeling, and the fact that I can’t tell what she’s saying. Except the Silver Dapple song is fast, guitar-driven indie-pop, and Troller is dark, slow electronic music. I should also mention that I saw Troller live twice (in the same afternoon, actually) at SXSW this year, and the vocals sounded way different live. Instead of the sort of ethereal blur that they appear on the album, they were harshly distorted, almost industrial-sounding, and there was plenty of screaming, adding some violent terror to their sound. You’ll probably have to make it down to Austin to actually see them, but if you dig the album, their live show will still surprise and possibly frighten you even more. Also, one of the members of this band is also in S U R V I V E, who I also saw at SXSW, but I didn’t hear their album first and was overwhelmed at what I saw and heard. 4 musicians, mountains of synths, and more lasers than I could process. Unbelievable.

Anyway, this Troller album, seriously, get on this, now.

Lower Plenty: Hard Rubbish (Fire, 2013)

April 17, 2013 at 10:23 pm | Posted in Reviews | Leave a comment

Lower Plenty: Hard Rubbish

Lower Plenty: Hard Rubbish

Domestic issue of an LP from last year. Australian lo-fi indie-pop, which is curiously quiet and laid-back considering the other bands these folks are in (Total Control, Deaf Wish, UV Race, Dick Diver). The songs are mostly acoustic, scruffy-sounding, and short (the entire album is 23 minutes long), and alternate between male and female vocals. There’s kind of a nervous demeanor to these songs, with the occasional cryptic lyric (such as “Strange Beast”‘s “the mirror is science fiction”) and a few bursts of controlled noise, like the guitar mess underneath “Dirty Flowers”. “How Low Can A Punk Get” (which has nothing to do with the Bad Brains song of the same name) has some sort of rattling or scraping sound in the background, and sad yet hopeful lyrics. Really the main reason this caught my attention is the last song, “Close Enough”, which is just awesome. Awkwardly crashing cymbals, nervous girl vocals, buzzing strings (not really bass-like), and great lyrics (variations on “I was close enough to the light just to see the fading of the dark”, “In my mind you had no legs to stand on”), and some more controlled guitar noise at the end of the song. Charming and strangely hopeful in spite of its sadness and uneasiness.

Radiozilla 4/14/13

April 14, 2013 at 6:34 pm | Posted in Radiozilla | Leave a comment

Radiozilla 4/14/13
2:02 PM isao tomita ~ sunrise ~ the grand canyon ~ rca red seal
2:07 PM masayoshi fujita ~ river ~ stories ~ flau
2:12 PM el fog ~ the fog of the far small town ~ reverberate slowly ~ flau
2:17 PM nobukazu takemura ~ icefall ~ scope ~ thrill jockey
2:30 PM hyu ~ egg plane ~ *wild cards ~ childisc
2:35 PM hot troche ~ blue sky ~ yopaakuyu with me ~ illegal art
2:39 PM merzbow ~ pier 39 ~ animal magnetism ~ alien8
2:48 PM government alpha ~ perceptual juncture ~ sporadic spectra ~ ground fault
2:55 PM tadahiko yokogawa ~ duna ~ volo interno ~ sleepy mammal sound

Barn Owl: V (Thrill Jockey, 2013)

April 13, 2013 at 9:05 pm | Posted in Reviews | Leave a comment

Barn Owl: V

Barn Owl: V

I saw Barn Owl a few years ago at a Not Not Fun showcase at SXSW, and they were okay but didn’t really hold my attention. But since signing to Thrill Jockey (both as a group and for solo projects), their work has been getting unbelievable as of late, and this is easily their best album yet. Previous Barn Owl works were a little more rustic and acoustic, sometimes maybe a bit post-rock, sometimes a bit doom-metal. This one feels a bit more electronic and synthesizer-based, creating a really dark cosmic sound. “Void Redux” opens the album with a slow, deep pulse, sparingly used guitar notes and keyboard trills, and a whole lot of dark atmosphere. “The Long Shadow” is similar, with a clear, melancholy guitar part guiding ghostly atmospherics, distortion, organ, and more slow frozen-heartbeat pulsations. “Against The Night” is a really dark, desolate moment, with more ringing guitar, and bass and synth sweeps that wouldn’t sound out of place on a Burial track. “Blood Echo” has a slightly involved drum pattern, definitely a bit more than just a pulse, guiding the dark, haunted droning. “Pacific Isolation” is a short, slightly doomy instrumental beginning the second side of the album, and then we get the 17 minute epic “The Opulent Decline”. This one starts with a few minutes of layers of dark synth, with some heavy distorted bass tones. Then a slow, minimal drum machine takes over, sounding like drops of water dripping into a well. As the synths and guitars layer, after the 10 minute mark things start to get really heavy, with lots of tremolo effects, lots of thick, sludgy distortion, and a constant slow, thudding heartbeat. Dark and almost overwhelming, and truly stunning.

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