Tales from the Attic
Revolutions of a 33 and 45 kind….
Second of three quickly convened musings.
Currently wooing the Sunday Experience sound shed – connect_icut ‘small town by the sea’ via Aagoo, Beau’s forthcoming set for Cherry Red ’fly the bluebird’, a host of preview tracks from the little crackd rabbit imprint, new albums from Owen Tromans, the diaphanoids, eat lights become lights, joane serrat and the horse party as well as band camp briefings from shitty weekend, Singapore sling tapes, the flenser imprint, saduj natas and can can heads.
Featured this missive – deep intake of breath…..
Candy Says, Roadside Picnic meets Maurizio Bianchi, Anthony Donovan, Brandstifter, Chester Hawkins, Fluid, John 3:16, Margitte Holtz, PAS Musique, Philippe Petit, Tashkentique, the Whip Angels, dark horses, black bananas, the great park, UMA, Veto, perth, flashback magazine, sky picnic, formes, the love errors, Asx, el grumpos, co pilgrim, creepoid, Ant, Luxembourg Signal, collapse under the empire, the wands, the fabulous fairies, falling stacks, swaying wires, pelotons, young things, mellowphant
Described as an Oxford based lo-fi chic pop garage recording collective, Candy Says are shortly set to release new full length ’not kings’ via the spinney imprint with this the lead track being sneaked out as a taster. a gorgeous multi tracked lunar waltz equally poppy and peculiar with it and traced with the kind of addictive ingredients that once firmly under your skin lay fond little eggs that cry withdrawal when this cute thing is out of earshot. Channelling both broken disco, electro folk (there is – I kid you not the distant kinship to Serafina Steer, Laura J Martin and Stealing Sheep is buried deep amid these grooves) and a kooky form of minimalist electro kissed crookedness whose refreshingly odd and quirky melodic mosaic skip between white town and the tom tom club to adore it in a cleverly creative vibe that playfully tumbles with seductive prowess into the realms of the much missed shortwave set. Begging letters for the album are being dispatched forthwith. http://www.soundcloud.com/spinneywood/not-kings
Strictly limited to just 250 stickered copies – ours being #154 – via the Singapore based imprint 4iB, the latest release bearing the ominous aural autograph of Justin Wiggan finds his explorative sound art alter ego Roadside Picnic paired up with the Italian godfather of industrial and out there technological sound advancement Maurizio Bianchi for what is, even by Roadside Picnic and Dreams of Tall Buildings standards, a colossal sonic immersion into sounds un-chartered inner space. Comprised of two lengthy and starkly contrasting suites this face off charters the disquieting voids of dark ambience. For those with meeker palettes the atmospherically chilled 24 minute ’dictatorship of dead labour’ might prove the preferred listening option. Graced with a disquieting chill that doefully permeates throughout. What first appears to sound like the equivalent of the lost sea scrolls transcribed into binary signatures and locked in a time capsule hurled forth through the endless cosmic seas from a long since dead star quadrant situated far beyond the reaches of mans eye soon translates to something akin to walking through some sand storm blizzard only to happen upon a calmed place wherein before you the hallowed ruins of a once mighty civilisation now reduced to deathly decay. Haunting and uneasy in terms of listening appreciation it evokes images of spirits trapped and damned, cursed forevermore to relive their worst days until salvation shows mercy. Here a strangely tranquil spiritual calm weaves through the grooves with the appearance through the sun bleached haze of whispering vestiges of lost archaic Tibetan ceremonial folk tongues buried deep in wells of hiss, and though we are prone mention noise manipulations, frequency adjustments and sonic skree clouds, its not your occasionally expected sonic brutality that emerges here, instead something far more disconcerting that connects with your primal instincts more so an ingrained ancestral flashback to our past or indeed as the case might be a future vision of ourselves in a future to come, whatever the case there’s no denying the haunting dread impression it leaves in its wake. Of course should sonic terrorism be your bag and chosen listening poison then ’the clearing’ might well prove a testing examination of your tolerances. At 40 minutes in length ‘the clearing’ appears to be sub divided into several distinct movements – from the of it falsely lures you deep into its lair by way of its opening greeting of chilling atmospherics, leviathan like textures and bleak ambient curvatures and from therein everything is sombrely serene until that is without warning tripping the 4 minute your suddenly buried deep an under siege by a white hot caustic cauldron of harsh noise whose only remit one assumes is to fry the contents of your headspace whilst clearly melting your ears as it seeks to enter the power electronics sanctum of Merzbow. Afforded no hiding place the intensity is pitched at levels where animals cry and speakers literally splinter, both crude and unforgiving its noise at its purest undiluted form. Once satisfied that your listening tolerances have been bleached into submission everything abruptly halts and at the 13 minute the ambient folds which greeted us upon our entrance re-forge though this time graced in reality fracturing psychotropic dream states before again terra-forming at the 24 minute point to emerge into something truly tranquil and meditative and seductively framed in all manner of gaseous shimmers and cosmic tides whose elegantly stilled neo classical appreciation admirers of both old school Tangerine Dream and new school Hibernate recording subscribers might find a common head nodding ground. http://www.4ibrecords.com
Well sexy this, in fact I’ll go as far as saying the sexiest thing on our hi-fi right now and something that should by rights only be experienced by the donning of shades and cool black skinny wear, the latest outing from Dark Horses is a teaser single cut giving hint of what to expect from a forthcoming full length set ’Hail lucid state’ arriving soon on the crystal castles imprint last gang. Tapping directly into the core matrix of the likes of maudite dance nee the clerks, rubicks and kaputt from many years back albeit as though rephrased through the lysergic viewfinder of primal scream, ‘live on hunger’ is an uber cooled chill waved Velveteen cutie darkly spun in a purring seduction that’s primed to a locked groove motorik underpin voyaging into stratospheric raptures. Nuff said – coolest thing on the block. http://www.soundcloud.com/darkhorsesmusic/live-on-hunger
Getting a curious funky rash just for being in earshot of this babe, new thing from Black Bananas whose ranks are headed up by former Royal Trucker Jennifer Herrema are about to break cover with the release of the smoking gun floor frisky groover ‘electric brick wall’ via drag city this June. By way of sneak peak beneath the covers ‘physical emotions’ finds itself prized from the set and pressed upon 7 inches of super sexy wax with the intention of serving notice as to the fat funky smoking hot seductive sorties to come, in short a super cooled freakin and throbbing get down channelling deep into 70’s funk classicism to sound like a hulking glittering mirror ball purring and pouting to a lights dimmed turntable feast freebasing on lost grooves by Rick James, Emperor Penguin and Gary Wilson.
Shortly to play a rare one off showcase evening at the hoxton bar and grill on April 1st wherein guests how about beth and bassman will be in attendance, husband and wife duo UMA are about to delight and captivate all with the arrival of an imminent debuting self titled full length platter from the highly admired enraptured imprint. Previously appearing in these pages some while back the pair had us cooing affectionately to the demurred sounds peeling their way from a debuting limited and dare we say eye catching clear vinyl 7 inch entitled ‘drop your soul’ which featured upon its grooves a rare appearance by the Silver Apples. This time around we’ve been treated to a sneak MP3 preview of ‘calm / easy’ – a cut from that aforementioned set – alas no links, all hush hush you understand – and a distracting cutie it is to featuring dreamily lazy eyed motifs, the merest electronic applications and scale rising and falling harmonic lilts succulently threaded and filtered through a woozily airless vacuum both playfully and alluringly dappled in heavenly almost hymnal haloes all left to hop and shimmer to forge a unique listening love which all said sounds to these ears like a passing cosmic visitation taking time out to find a picturesque West Coast spot for a chill out moment to swoon over the more ethereal trimmings from a wealth of Of Montreal et al back catalogues.
Those with recent recall might well remember us cooing over the latest twin set from Reading’s Tail Feather, well here’s the video, damn fine…..
Been a while since we had visitations and felicitations from the adored hidden shoal imprint, so it was with much welcome that we happened upon a message from head honcho Cam alerting us to a specially curated remix set entitled ‘where’s my dystopia’ pencilled for May release that finds Perth’s recent ‘what’s your utopia’ set rewired by a select gathering of guests. Featuring re-appraisals by seams, no.9, valerio cosi, usurper of modern medicine, mei saraswati and tame impala whose Jay Watson assumes the moniker Gum and here refocus’ ‘drank and kites and tomorrow’ into a gloriously shade adorned shadow playing soft psych teardrops-ian dream drift collage replete with oceanic fanfares all caressed in an ice framed ethereal glazing frosted in poise and stateliness. http://www.soundcloud.com/hidden_shoal/perth-drank-and-kites-and-1
Every so often something comes along to blow the competition clean away. Something that can truly be called a classic in waiting. Something measured, quietly immense and with it deeply alluring and soundwise ahead of the curve. Something for instance like ’a song about trees’ by Veto. Taken from a strictly limited 250 only white wax 6 track set entitled ’Broadway’ via small bear records, ’a song about trees’ is prime packed with a majestic austere gravitas clipped in tension and scored in panoramic glory, on first visits Joy Division and the Wild Swans are in easy reach of recall, even Zerra 1 flitter the reference markers, but there’s a softness here, an almost regretful reflection sours the groove lines giving it a bruised soulful persona not to mention the kind of prowling cinematic sheen that these days appears to grace the choreographed soundtracks of John Murphy.
Must admit to be slightly embarrassed at having so far missed out on the output of woodland recordings who recently celebrated the release of their 50th outing with a five disc retrospective that digs deep into their roster to serve up a host of new and unreleased material from their extensive repertoire. That said a quick earful of their sound links revealed something of a delicate talent by the name of Stephen Burch though here going under his chosen nom de plume the great park. We’ve been taken by ‘when the animals follows the gunshots’ – here teasingly previewed by way of a short 1.26 excerpt which brief as it might be reveals something of a musical kinship to a youthful Oddfellows Casino by way of the slender strum and wintry melodic framing, that said we urge to shuffle along down the page to the quite deceptively delicious ’deserter deserter’ which had us much calling to mind a subdued and accusatory Lupen Crook in cahoots with Darren Hayman and Dan Haywood. http://www.woodlandrecordings.com/news.html
Sitting comfortably on bookshelves sharing space with the likes of Shindig and Ugly Things is the highly readable and authoritative Flashback, a colossal coffee table journal now up to issue #4 is a heavy weight 200 plus page bible for those obsessed on all things underground and slightly left of radar from the 60’s and early 70’s. edited by Richard Morton Jack, those familiar with his rock tomes Galactic Ramble and Endless Trip will spoil to the publications extended close focus subject missives. Current issue of this quarterly feast includes an extended conversation with Beverley Martyn as she talks openly about her career, her loves, her traumas, Drake, Simon and Martyn. Cover stars the Trees are treated to an extended overview of their career as are July and the Mandrake Memorial with all three extended appraisals coming replete with thoughts and commentaries from original key note players in the story. Rummaging around the dusty loft copies of the 60’s stateside pop weekly Go are unearthed for a trip down memory lane to spotlight one of America’s pioneering music journals whose staff writers roster included the first teeth cutting critiques of Lorraine Alterman. Elsewhere an overview of the exploito genre and a debate raging over the merits, shortcomings and sound enjoyment worth of your mono vs. stereo variants of the late 60’s among the chosen aural artefacts drawn into the critical crossfire tomorrow, pretty things, the deep, growing concern, mad river and ill wind.
I won’t deny the fact that the new set from Chester Hawkins – ‘semisolids’ be its name – has been holding our turntable ransom in recent days. Those unfamiliar, Mr Hawkins was once an integral cog in the aural project blue sausage infant, who I do believe featured in these pages to much admiring fondness, who after 28 years in existence was put into retirement last year. ’semisolids’ arrives fully fluent in kosmiche contours, astral ambience, tripping back to a spacey golden age and generally occupying the hypno drone vapour trail left in the wake of radiophonia kraut experimental blip boffin Sonic Boom‘s sonic collages. Now if both Jarre and Moroder had ventured towards the dark side then simply put ’semisolids’ would be the album they’d have hatched with the latter mentioned clearly referenced as such on the psychosis fracturing pulsing shimmer cloud ‘proximity fuze‘. Last appearing in these pages courtesy of having ’from away’ (incidentally it serves as the parting shot of this dream dazed cosmic suite)grace the digitised grooves of Alrealon Musique’s 5th birthday collection this set comes via those nice folk over at Intangible Arts. A full on total immersive headphonic experience set across nine movements and book ended by perhaps the sets sore thumbs so to speak, the aforementioned ’from away’ and ’Iodine’ – both clearly serving as a sharply oblique contrast to what lies within, the latter of whom, as ominous as it sounds chipped in binary blips and humming dronals that once paired together sound like the inner working of the ‘Nostromo’ at rest, is soldered to a deeply hypnotic pulsar mainframe with the former very much informed by all things EAR and BBC Radiophonic Workshop. From therein its off for a cosmic head trip as Hawkins traverses a more mellowing trance like state both rich and nostalgic in 70’s electronic appreciation (as evidenced on the deeply engaging and quietly grand and expansive celestial dream machine palette of ‘the brood’) though with that said ’plasmid’ with its two pronged arrangement of looping lock groove motifs ushering through one channel and all manner of busying happenings shimmering the other you might be forgiven for thinking you’ve entered the lair of a youthful and wide eyed n’ playful Warp wannabe, shall we agree to say Aphex Twin playing in Plone’s sonic toy room. Those preferring their listening experiences on familiar footing such as classic era Vangelis for arguments sake ought to fast forward at your earliest convenience to ’isle of dogs’ while admirers of ice sculptured lunar lullabies prickled and hinting of the kind of softly dappled tension of John Carpenter albeit as though rephrased by Echoboy will simply be mesmerised by the edgy ’slender loris’. Heads and shoulders above all though ‘malattia del sonno’ with its softly alluring lunar tides and crystalline keys waltzes encroaches the kind of musical worlds which at first deceptively tune in Goblin territories but scratch a little deeper and through repeat exposure reveals something of an affinity for not only Magnetaphone but the darker and more considered cinematic stirrings of a latter career FortDax. http://www.chesterhawkins.org
Alas only a teaser excerpt but this is the forthcoming twin set from shimmering 60’s darlings Sky Picnic ahead of their appearance at Fruit de Mer‘s crabstock festival. As yet both cuts are untitled – in so much as I can’t find a title for them and as teasingly brief as they are you do get a sense and measure as to what their about with the former shimmered in softly purred sun setting auras sprinkled in lightly dappled reflective psych folk breezes while the latter (even shorter teaser by the way) is a cooled spectral late 60’s love in dreamily flashbacking and freebasing on the vibes of legendary flowery psych festivals which by our ears sounds like a smoked out Jefferson. If that’s whetted your appetite and it should have the band recently released a jam take for their new as yet untitled and completed album the first fruits of this work in progress being ‘Old Cromwell’ which has surfaced on their band camp page and by our reckoning sounds well stoned out voyaging as it does into Cranium Pie / Earthling Society environs with just a taste trace of Supersister buried deep in the mix. http://www.soundcloud.com/skypicnic/sky-picnic-new-sngle-teaser
Absolutely no information on this and what little info we do have appears so secretive and under wraps it may have well be written in Martian for all the sense it makes, but hey we are persistent blighters and nothing like a bugger all information press release has ever deterred us thus far. From what we gather there’s an album approaching our sonic solar system due to pass by in the Summer by trio the comet is coming who identify themselves thus – Shabaka Hutchings, Danalogue and Betamax – the latter of whom we believe is the drummer and not the much maligned video cassette from the late 70’s. Before that though aural debris has broken away in the guise of ’neon baby’ a spazz jazz freak out which in truth is grooved in the kind off frantic and frenetic gouging we’ve come to love and expect from Terry Edwards yet here cosmically aligned to a critical meltdown motorik underpinning flashed through with a seriously skittish buzz sawed electro vibe that at points veers into space disco mode, cutely kitsch the video is a collage of a legendary early 70’s sci-fi show that if reports are to be believed cost so much per episode that it pretty much sunk ITC, of course we talk of Space 1999 or for UFO heads, the once proposed UFO II which by our reckoning was always the best Anderson creation ever – UFO that is not Space 1999.
Tripped over this on a jaunt around band camp world as you do, this lot hail from Leeds, are a three piece going under the name Formes who describe who describe themselves as a metal, drone, progressive rock, kraut, psyche, psychedelic band which I guess pretty much covers all bases and keeps their options open. New posting ‘lights’ produced by Mark Gardener – what that Mark Gardener – is I guess best described as progressive dream pop. Skirting around the edges of 70’s cosmic ambience and sharing a kinship sound wise to the frankly immense Static Caravan starlets Tokolosh, the atmospheric ’lights’ navigates a route way dappled in the gaseous swirl of dream dipped oceanic swathes and silken harmonies that soon find themselves ruptured and impacted by a pulse purring surge of staccato riffage before galloping forth to charge towards some unseen utopian clearing. In short we need to hear more . http://www.formes.bandcamp.com/track/lights
Staying with band camp a second or so longer, something else that caught our ear is a new EP from Austin based beat pop combo Mellowphant entitled ’the peanut butter jean company’ aside that alas the information trail runs cruelly cold. That said it features 6 cuts that to these ears sound as though they’ve been stewing a fair while on a simmer setting atop a 60’s hotplate, opening brace are indelibly indebted to the Stones or more precisely Jagger given that the vocals whoop and yelp distractively aligned to a killer duck walking riffage cast in raw lo-fi beat blues while the proto power pop punk stomp of ‘tiny apartment’ crosswires the DNA of the Ramones and Supergrass. That said it’s the emergence of ’honey bee’ that piqued our interest, a gorgeous slice of acutely cool 50’s bubble grooved teen beat smoulder pop deceptively coiled in a killer smoking strut swooned motifs. Sounding like the work of a completely different band the scuzzy garage gouged ’undercover officer’ tastilty finds a mid way stopping off point between the Dead Boys and the flamin groovies while the slinky gospel blues swagger of the delicious ’rain on your parade’ – frankly the best thing here – is your love crushed drink at the last chance saloon. Which leaves 60’s garage psych heads in tune with those vault digging compilations from the mid 60’s such as Crypt et al will swoon to the primal rock-a-hula purring from the grooves of the swagger toned ’makin waves’ . http://www.mellowphantmusic.bandcamp.com/album/the-peanut-butter-jean-company-e-p
Due out on RSD14 where it’ll arrive on 12 inches of purple wax limited to just 250 copies will be a celebratory 7 track gathering of Battle Worldwide Recordings talent entitled ‘my 1st record, my 1st store‘. The idea was inspired by memories of growing up in Australia and being turned on to strange looking and sounding platters imported by Caveman records a by all accounts much trusted local independent record emporium. So says Darren Smallman BWR’s head honcho. So the seeds were sown to keep a sound and digital diary of artists commentaries of their first records bought, where they bought them from, why they meant so much etc…so with that in mind the project kick starts with this aforementioned set, seven bands from the BWR roster tasked with covering a track that means so much to them and connects them to their youth and their earliest exposure to the record buying bug. First up young things opt for slugging it out with Kinks ’dead end street’ – always a favourite around at our gaff, remembering hearing this for the first time as a youngster – so feral and hooligan – the record not me, here in the hands of the YT’s faithfully re-trimmed and scalped with a blistering scuzz scowl. Now anyone will tell you that to even consider covering Mazzy Star’s ’fade into you’ warrants a visit to corrective centre, actually seeing the threat through is I believe in some territories considered a burning at the stake offence. So step along the Pelotons who not only through whatever means of sleight of hand techniques be at their beck and call manage to wrestle said gem as their own, well not quite their own in so much as having it sound like a youthful Butterflies of Love – which as far as we are concerned is pretty much the musical equivalent of heaven. Alas no info on ASx except to say their version of Warpaint’s ’undertow’ – the original of which I’m embarrassed to say has never troubled our listening space – or at least I don’t think so – I’ve kind of lost touch since they went stellar, anyhow this is sumptuously chic sophisticat loveliness. Red Kross are another combo we’ll admit to being a tad clueless about somehow they’ve remained to date out of sight on our radar, here El Grumpos who we assume are Mr Smallman’s latest kick botty combo cut loose with the jarring and sparring garage growled fierce some resetting of ‘Annette’s got the hits’ and sounding not unlike an early career queens of the stone age to boot. One of life’s let downs aside having a crap badly paid 8 to 5 job from hell is that we rarely get to hear Gedge gear around these parts these days, one of the highlights from the Weddoes legendary ‘seamonsters’ set ‘dare’ is here found dismantled and glued together into a fracturing and unravelling dispirited howl by falling stacks which admittedly edges the original believe it or not. Those of a certain age might well remember a long running wheeze of Peel’s – the ensuing ‘play some Stiff’ in retort to the hundreds nay thousands of young spiky tops sending in blackmail lettering requests for the great man to play Ireland’s finest on his show, ’suspect device’ and ’johnny was’ still stand the test of time pissing from a great height over the heads of the wannabe so called punk pups today. I’ll admit I was never a fan of ’go for it’ from which ’silver lining’ covered here by the co-pilgrim originally appeared, I guess the youth in me wanted to fingers to remain insolent, loud and edgy forever so going pop was a see you later moment – looking back perhaps I misjudged having now revisited it mainly after being blown away by this re-appraisal which I should say now all bona fide Fingers fans would struggle to recognise given its completely redressed in a gorgeously opining countrified mellowness ached out by the silken swoon of pedal steel dimples. Last up and by no means least Swaying Wires perhaps serve up the sets best moment with their take on Nirvana’s ’something in the way’ here hurtfully crushed and traced in a naked vulnerability that’s threaded in the kind of spectral majesty you’d readily expect Glissando to turn out in the blink of an eye. Essential in a word.
I’d love to put the whole sound cloud file up here but I’m suspecting there’ll be grumpy faces and even grumpier missives some with anglo saxon words I suspect…..oh to hell with it – we’ll risk the wrath……rock n’ f-ing roll…
Now for some pure electro pop so indelibly in awe of all things Howard Jones, Lightning Seeds and New Musik, this murmur toned Moroder mash up dinked in monochrome lunar lilts is from the love errors and is quite the most irresistible thing. Entitled ’the cure’ it’s the first fruits from the South London combos studio recordings which per their press release are hoped to see the light of day sometime this summer. In short a bliss kissed love note sweetly harvesting old school electro minimalism all seductively threaded in orbital shimmers, west coast peppering replete with ether drifting harmonies and an appreciation for pure pop melodica, admirers of the Warm Digits and Beach House will no doubt swoon to it. http://www.soundcloud.com/the-love-errors/the-cure
Also primed for RSD14 action is a limited one sided 4 track 12 inch set from Creepoid via the crucially cool grave face imprint, the band formed in 2008 have in recent years seen their stock potential risings having shared stages with – quite frankly anyone and everyone on your must see live wish list. The release pretty much coincides with the quartets short stateside tour which opened yesterday with an appearance at the Graveface festival Gorgia. From the set (incidentally titled ‘wet’) ‘wet bread’ has loosened itself from its shackles and elected itself to be sent ahead as a herald, a near perfect stoned out dream pop cutie that sounds to these ears like the Pixies getting high and light headed on the stratospheric vapour trails left in the wake of my bloody valentine, factor in the showers of snow busting euphoric eruptions and its oddly off centred slo-mo warping and you have something that ought to raise the eye lines of chapterhouse and slowdive enthusiasts from their shoes. http://www.soundcloud.com/noisyghostpr/creepoid-wet-bread?mc-cid=545c80af66&mc_eid=a245be6d3c
Those among you preferring their garage beat tunes rivalling the kind of basement production that often adorned releases by the mummies and to a fair degree most of the estrus records back catalogue might well be advised to flip wigs and get down with the fabulous fairies. Again no information on these, or more the case this, dude/s other than to say they / he appears to reside in Russia and does a neat line in scuzzed up three chord rock-a-hula whose primitive thrug owes an oversized debt to the Heartbreakers and the Dead Boys. Five cuts feature on this lo-fi Spartan bleached slab of bastardised blues which incidentally goes by the name ‘the thing thing’ – each clocking in well below the sub two minute mark and proving to be the kind of primal gruel that Lux Interior would have dug on his vault digging radio broadcasts. And while we here are more than a little smitten by the scalding twisterella that is the savage punked out belch of ‘correction class’ it’s the parting ‘krakin up’ that had us a go go, a sonic shredding two chord bad boy over you like an itchy rash and sounding not unlike a wired up evil Eddy Cochran. http://www.thefabulousfairies.bandcamp.com/album/the-thing-thing
New 7 inch from Danish based psych flower duo the Wands entitled ‘the dawn’ due to spread much lysergic love shortly via levitation / fuzz club records with a debut full length platter to follow. A gorgeously hazy kaleidoscopic dream coat replete with hallucinogenic haloes, mesmerising crystalline codas primed in lsd tipped Byrdsian motifs all steeled in a multi coloured fantasia of sound that aside causing your wig to flip and your third eye to stir cocoons you in mallowy hazes revealing rare trip-a-delic delights which only goes to make it all the more depressing that we missed their long since sold out 10 inch debut ‘hello I know the blow you grow is magic‘ – ah well. http://www.soundcloud.com/thewands-the-dawn/s-HOZqF
Immense. Both threatening and tender, beautiful and brutal yet absorbing and atmospheric, this monolithic masterwork is the latest single from collapse under the empire entitled ‘stairs to redemption’. prized from the duo’s imminent ‘sacrifice & isolation’ set due this May, the track blends a formidable cross wiring of panoramic ambient serenity and storm summoning post rock overtures, its to this end that gives birth to its light to dark personas and terraforming calm to turbulent atmospherics as it presses back and forth through the aural gear changes, in short best described as a sonic super structure.
And so we return to Alrealon Musique for the third and final part of that epic celebratory set ‘frequencies of existence – 5 years of Alrealon Musique’. Again another collection of aural adventures featuring a 8 strong gathering of strange suites pulled from the distant edges of pop’s ever expanding universe. Again the formula as ever is simple with the collection drawing from a familiar to not so familiar pool of talents tinkering around the edges of drone, industrial, weird electronica and aural abstracts. For a label who pride themselves on offering safe haven for an ever expanding musicians collective defiantly at odds with easy categorization, the musical equivalent I guess of square pegs in round holes, its safe to say that no one and no work admirably fits this remit quite like the sonic collages cooked up by Brandstifter. Last appearing in these pages courtesy of an excerpt we picked up from his tour collaboration journal shared with PAS Musique entitled ’lost and found in Europe’, Branstifter occupies a genre bending dark star hermetically sealed or so it would appear from influence or contamination from his peers. ’RGE loops for Yoko (down)’ is a curiously reality altering trip, what first appears like some mind wiping dream machine could likewise be viewed as a euphoric congregation of chiming cathedral bells in bliss kissed jubilant rapture, the point being all is not what you think you first hear, repeat exposure of course opens the notion of something sinister lurking which while sharing space with Sonic Boom’s EAR a subtle cautionary difference becomes apparent in so much as where Boom’s radiophonic experiments are pure electronic noise all bleakly binary and machine coded, this on the other hand is the technological equivalent of big brother observing, recording and assimilating a hum drum daily life. Stranger still and so far left field its in danger of falling off the map, Anthony Donovan here stepping aside from his Murmurist alter ego whose ‘I cannot tell where I am until I love’ an excerpt from therein I seem to recall mentioning briefly in despatches with fond anticipation of hearing more. ‘07_elements’ may well be the most disquieting thing showcased here, a filmic collage replete with commentary and narrative threaded through by insectoid shivers, weird wind montages and darkly woven noir classicist timbres whose reference markers skirt the abstract palettes of Moondog and Stockhausen, not I hasten to add easy listening by any stretch of the imagination. PAS Musique – mentioned in passing a second or so ago cosy up with Chester Hawkins for ‘sleep the storm’ – Mr Hawkins of course you should be all to familiar with given his current ‘semisolids’ set reviewed in earlier dispatches has been wowing and indeed hogging our hi-fi since arriving here. On this occasion their pairing mite crafts out a deeply psychotropic slice of cosmicalia that’s very much designed on the classic early 70’s krautrock chassis though spliced with a cinematic sense of occasion and dimpled in all manner of celestial forbearance as though aboard a Vangelis piloted hyper craft voyaging beyond the realms of the universe and heading deep into the next life. Similarly grizzled in apocalyptic wastelands and dark drone is the previously unknown to us tashkentique’s oblique doom drilled macabre mantra that is ‘yishki-leibo’ – veering precariously into the micro verses of Roadside Picnic and Wizards Tell Lies not to mention straying close to the edges of gnod networks extended family as found on their cassette sub imprint tesla tapes, there’s a morbid sense of defeat and dread permeating heavily amid these grooves, its slavish industrial coiling and skree frosted submersion extinguishes light and hope from the proceedings in an apocalyptic existence shredding plight of servitude. Much admired around these parts Fluid’s ’XII’ is by his usual standard playful and light, a progressive ambient dream coat refined, purred and poised in the demurring starry eyed cosmic curvatures of a beguiled Tangerine Dream mosaic wherein at each turn the textures, depth and density appear ever more sharply focused detailed and defined. Another of whom we hold our hands high in saying we were until now previously unaware is Margitt Holtz whose ’entschuldigung’ really is a most curious listening experience which ought to appeal first port of call to admirers of those drilled holed sleeves bearing the early entries to Fat Cat’s legendary split series from many years back, elements of Janek Schaefer, pan-american, pimmon and fonn emerge, form, dissipate and dissolve amid this delightfully skewed and distracting mutant glitch grooved carousel as it speed dials through the radio frequencies sucking in whatever life signs it trips across. You know instinctively that a pairing of Philippe Petit and John 3:16 has the potential to translate into something truly special, both are blessed with that rare sense panoramic vision, in Petit’s case the lighter tonalities and appreciation for lush classicist structures and John 3:16 informed by dark detailing and a more Spartan though none the less alluring application. And so with ’lethe’ the expectation blossoms into full flowering view, in essence a genteel and lulling melodic mirage albeit slyly bruised that imagines the willowy gaseous heat hazes rising and falling on distant sun bleached horizons replete with milky mosaics of lilting snake winding riff codas and arcing arpeggios that purr it with an expansive dream drifted majestic aura that pretty much ushers into the domains of a thoughtful Roy Montgomery and Yellow6. Depressingly bleak a title as it might first appear the teasingly brief ‘death is nothing to us’ by the Whip Angels is a seductive glacial transmission from the heavens delicately dimpled in a sepia braiding sweetly haloed in playful lunar skips all of which makes us desperate to hear more. http://www.alrealonmusique.bandcamp.com/album/frequencies-of-existence-5-years-of-alrealon-musique–alrn038-part-3
Seems so long ago but wasn’t Ant – Anthony Harding to give his full electoral roll name – the erstwhile sparring partner of Darren Hayman in the much missed Hefner. Seems even longer since we had Ant grooves serenading our hi-fi so smiles threatened to break out at the news of a new Ant album ‘by the yellow sea’ approaching in the distance though not before being served a little hint at what’s to come via a new single ‘(this is just) the calm before the storm’. according to the press release friends feared for Ant when he announced his imminent divorce, they rallied, they worried while he scampered off to his childhood roots on the isle of wight re-found his mojo and started skipping merrily to the record label – on this occasion the we were never being boring collective imprint – with a sack load of newly penned tunes whilst in between signing up membership papers to join a thriving divorcee group of old and new friends. the single tied finitely in a sub three minute bow is breezily affectionate arriving dimpled in a Roddy Frame doing Go Betweens standards type way whilst tumbling along effervescently to the lightly spun ramble of spring time tweaked rustics which gathered together give a homely resonance that’s both touching and casually lazy eyed. Alas no sound clouds just yet, rest assured we’re working on it. http://www.antpop.com
New from Shelflife who in the deepening mists of my memory I seem to recall once upon a time being on their mailing list receiving along the way oodles of dandy discs. And then – zilch. We had feared that they had ceased to be. However seems that hey are buoyant and in fine fettle possessing a bulging catalogue upon whose roster we eye with interest the inclusion of Aussie psychedelicists Flyying Colours whose band camp album / EP you might recall we mentioned in dispatches a little while back, not that the band themselves acknowledged such – ho hum. Anyway the point of all this is the announcement of a debuting 7 inch from Luxembourg Signal, a name agreed that mightn’t urge you to hang out the bunting with immediate effect until that is we tell that the ensemble are made up of members whose collective resume reads like a dreamtime indie super group to include such hallowed players as fonda, trembling blue stars and Aberdeen. Audaciously addictive from the off ’distant drive’ with its needling crystalline chime chirping riff sirens swoons, swaggers and struts to a pulse throbbing quickstep that’s primed with all manner of coolly arresting sighs with Beth’s vocals caught upon swirling dream drifts lushly dipped in the softening underpinned glaze of surrendering string symphonies. Class. http://www.soundcloud.com/crashingthrough/luxembourg-signal-distant
Next Tales from the Attic due over the weekend…..
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As ever take care of yourselves…..xx
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