Tales from the Attic
Revolutions of a 45 and 33 kind.
An extended and much delayed missive. Its not like we’ve been lazy and not reviewed we have and we’re not, its just that we hate scribbling things in thee opening passages, I mean life is rough enough without you having to hear me waffling on about total bollocks which is why we got a little canny and thought why not get someone else in to do it for us. Inspired eh, you see Messrs Cameron, Clegg and Mr Bean that what you should be doing rather than letting some beer swilling oik with questionable and frankly moronic views heading a party which as the old saying goes – if it speaks like a fascist, acts like a fascist, then it’s a fascist and who runs a campaign based on one sentence politics as opposed to the consensus politics that grown people like and engage with – clearly he misheard all this.
So where were we – ah yes – guest editorial. So for what is we reckon will be a regular / permanent feature – a guest editorial who on this auspicious occasion is Brian Shea of the Bordellos who as it happens have an album out shortly (look I’m sure there’s no self promotion here and that its all purely coincidental) via the lovely Small Bear imprint with artwork done by a certain Mr Phil Wilson of June Brides fame. So while we all dart off early down to the boozer while the new boss is busy adjusting his soap box we’ll leave Brian in the hot seat to deal with queries, complaints and the bills….
‘here I stand head in hand and turn my face to the wall…or so said some Liverpool minstral. Well here I stand head in hand wondering what to write to introduce this ‘tales from the attic’. me to being a minstral from Merseyside both front bands beginning with the letter ’b’. but that’s where the similarities end. They sold millions of records and influenced the world. We on the other hand have sold seven copies and influenced my wife to shut the door while I wax lyrical with guitar in hand. She says it sounds better that way through a closed door. Maybe we should supply a door with every CD, we may sound better that way or at the very least get a sponsorship deal from B&Q. Anyway whilst I waffle about our lack of sales how about getting your eyes primed for a wonderful instalment of ‘tales from the attic’ by Mark Barton another poet from Merseyside, a man who reviews the unbelievable and gets me spending far too much cash on CD’s he has recommended through his mighty nib (or laptop) his knowledge of the underground should not go unheralded, he comes up with some gems and that’s how I discovered Schizo Fun Addict and Fruits de Mer records, we even ended putting out some tracks on Fruits de Mer one of which got some plays on BBC6, it was an instrumental which speaks volumes about my singing voice and lyrics. But Mark always finds something nice to say about us, I just wish there were a million more like him. And so here’s the latest ’Tales from the Attic’ and here I am with cash card in hand ready to see what he has to recommend this time…..’
Many thanks Brian – almost blushing – cheques in the post our kid.
Turntable treats this time of asking…….
This sect, arrowwood, uffomammut, ghast, noctum, volume IV, Well, albino python, ministries diabolus, cauldron black ram, dread soverign, wounded kings, NYMF, Demonhead, wild smiles, evil tones, black light white light, kill city creeps, the dandelion, proctors, cranio, OvO, Black bombain, anthroprophh, damien olsen, Danbury lie,SAL, insect surfers, memory band, belbury park, grantby, 555, hail spirit noir, majister templi, acid, demon lung, sophie and the bom boms, saliva flats, wind up birds, tusmorke, hare and the moon, mark and the clouds, strange turn, crystal Jacqueline, mordecai smyth, icarus peel, kreidler, LAW, whiz kid, khuda, deja vega, satan satyrs, adder all canyonly, james, Johanna glaza
Stumbled across this little cutie while having a nose at the latest happenings emanating from the Shelflife imprint. Just out via duffle coat records is a dainty little 7 inch by the Proctors entitled the ‘kaleidoscope’ EP. Issued on limited vinyl which if you order via band camp arrives accompanied by badges aplenty. Now we here were much taken by lead out cut ‘kaleidoscope’ whose bittersweet dimpling and sighed surrendering forlorn framing had us cooing and arrested like nothing we’ve experienced here since the immortal ache of trembling blue stars ‘abba on the jukebox’ left our turntable an emotional wreck after its passing, add in the delicate dusting of prime era Sarah motifs a la the field mice and the orchids and the quietly euphoric rush that appears at the 2.51 mark and you have yourself an irresistible shy eyed classic in the making. http://www.dufflecoatrecordsuk.bandcamp.com/album/kaleidoscope
Many thanks to Luca who quickly despatched not one, but three copies of the self titled debut full length platter from Cranio in super quick time – via furry heart records in case you are taking notes – and you should be because in truth this is shaping up to be one of the best things we‘ve heard all year (so far). Cranio are a noise-niking Italo duo who caught our ear a little over a week ago when we cast our lobes upon both ‘problem’ and ‘I like fishing’ (the opening brace of salvos from this immense set) and of whom such references to a Doolittle era Pixies in case of the latter and agit popping art gouged math rock for the former were uttered joyously. Wouldn’t mind they’re not even the best cuts here as playing this here finished copy pays testament. Case in point ‘invada’ which runs out side 1 and appears to cover so many bases its dizzying, aside trying to pummel your headspace in to the middle of next week for the best part its curdled in moments of psychotropic delirium wherein everything goes all woozy and kaleidoscopically wired, kind of Shit n’ Shine with tunes freewheeling between passages tripped out voodoo groove and spooked out with flashes of seriously deranged off the radar schizoid freakish spasms. Over on side B lurk four similar slabs of spazzed out dementia with the claustrophobically heaving ‘monsters’ rearing shoulders high above all (with the exception of ‘Vida Criminal’) being blessed with a sludgy mutant sub-tronic dub vibe that one suspects hints irrefutably at someone in the ranks adept at cross pollinating the darkening essences of ‘metal box’ era PIL and a youthful early 80’s styled Killing Joke. ‘sob town’ on the other hand is acutely nailed with a warping riff snake wind of the type that had us scurrying for our record collection to re-acquaint ourselves with those essential early days Clinic 7’s for comparison. The post punk references aren’t lost on us with the appearance of the truly wired and weirded out ’drain’ – a hulking blistered blues bastard whose primary DNA picks the bones from This Heat and then wires onto it, in a cannibalistic fashion, Captain Beefheart motifs only to then fling the resultant brew through a sonic spin dryer to bleed in traces elements of Part Chimp and Hey Colossus. As hinted earlier – clearly – and by some distance – the best moment of the set is the parting shape shifter ’Vida Criminal’ – a ground throbbing dance floor decimating psyched out discoid replete with edgy primitive minimalist monochrome shadow playing motifs and monastic chorals lifted straight out of New Orders ‘blue Monday’ all lassoed to a most addictive loop grooved bare boned riffage. An utterly formidable set.
And many thanks to Andrea at Corpoc for sending us a finished copy of the imminent 500 only twinset from OvO. An immaculate looking thing coming housed in a thick screen printed sleeve replete with inserts inside which sit’s a seriously heavy duty slab of wax with one side bearing two tracks stamped upon its hide while on the other a highly attractive picture disc / gold design etching – you have to see it to truly appreciate it. Anyhow if I recall rightly these should be available at the forthcoming Ovo shows when they step upon these shores very shortly with Gnaw. Both ‘Averno’ and ‘Oblio’ originate from the same recording sessions that gave birth to the duo’s unforgiving ‘Abisso’ full length. Those thinking cast offs – think again – for this is not for the faint of heart. An epic feat of brooding mutant tribalism grizzled in grind core electronics with ’Averno’ rising ominously from the depths of despair gouged in all manner of apocalyptic stoner bleaching in its wake casting a choking cloak of unearthly disturbia which even after listening re-visitations still sounds like a face off between Helmet and Helios Creed. More forbidding still is the feral and nightmarish ’Oblio’ an unflinching and bleak end of days blackened ceremony coded in a slickly sick and slavering negativity wherein all your worst fears coalesce into a dread consuming slab of futility where hope is extinguished and all light and salvation is sucked dry, brutally epic though rest assured a hellish experience that will leave its mark. http://www.corpoc.com
Imminent on the hipster grooved psych imprint Cardinal Fuzz shortly is a new two song set from Portuguese psych overlords Black Bombaim. For those previously unaware and for the casual among you requiring such things as references and credentials as to their exacting relevance and worth then we’ll rest the argument by saying that these are the dudes who in the very recent past teamed up with the mighty Gnod as Black Gnod. Alas we don’t have full downloads at present and only have one half of the set to judge by. entitled ’far out’ – as good a title as any to describe the wigged out happenings at work here between the grooves – we‘ve admittedly been much taken by the 16 minute freak out that is ‘Africa II‘ – this hulking slab of heavy psych blues ticks all the boxes, a tightly screwed psychotropic workout gouged by a locked grooving underpin over which above all manner of shape shifting unwieldy sonic mastery terraforms and mutates. In short a humungous fringe flicking third eye popping trip is what’s on offer that one minute hones in sumptuously into big bearded mutant beatnik territories, the next invites all to be intoxicated by flashes of deeply woozy Marrakesh shoe shuffling interspersed by schizoid attacks of fuzzy riffage with dials turned to maximum before finally exiting the solar system all together at the 11 minute point and going heads down on a sun scorched flight to out there oblivion. Awesome doesn’t cut it. http://www.cful.bandcamp.com/album/black-bombaim-far-out-cful028
Only 350 of these beauties in orbital reach, two exclusive cuts from Heads’ man Paul Allen’s latest project Anthroprophh just ahead of an imminent album for rocket recordings. These recordings feature Big Naturals Jesse Webb and Gareth Turner both of whom are now onboard full time and finds Anthroprphh voyaging ever deeper in to celestial waters. Two lengthy workouts feature here ‘precession’ clocking in just shy of the 15 minute marker sounding not unlike some bleakly daubed slice of post apocalyptic cinematic futurism which had we not known better by way of its intricately layered lunar tribalism sounds to these ears like a cosmic re-visitation of Fleetwood Mac’s ‘Tusk’ albeit flashed through and remodelled by a gathering of Neu and Amon Duul II types which once satisfied your under its spell after seven minutes of weaving its hazy and woozy primitively cradled ceremonial styled hypnotic mantra suddenly takes it upon itself to instigate a spot of fuzzed out eastern snake charming before edging towards the end grooves for a spot of reality collapsing critical meltdown. Over t’other side ‘EBBH’ is a 17 minute headlong trip to mind expansion-ville very much entering the lair of Add N to X albeit that’ll be Add N to X having hoodwinked themselves into BBC Maida Vale and found the famous room that is home to the Radiophonic Workshop wherein they’ve proceeded to tinker with looping tapes, oscillators and analogue gadgetry to cook up something in the style of a wasted and out of it White Noise, that is before discovering that the gaff has a canteen whereupon they’ve gone in search of watering and sustenance mistakenly leaving the tapes a-rolling only for Mugstar to impishly nip in and for a wheeze lay some seriously wired out progian cosmicalia in the sonic signature of Mountain. Fans of everything from classic era Tangerine Dream, Vangelis and Craig Padilla will adore. http://www.cful.bandcamp.com/album/cful023-anthroprophh-precession
I’m fairly certain we mentioned Damien Olsen in recent despatches, here’s his latest fresh off the workbench and out of the sound shed, a beautifully lulling 11 minute mind expanding odyssey entitled ‘clitoria borealis’ – ice sculptured loveliness , refined and steeled in stilled elegance coasting upon ethereal nothingness, deeply mesmeric and transcendental and best experienced for full dream like effect with your cans on and the volume hiked to maximum, that way you can truly loose yourself and be immersed into its astral glides – admirers of those dream sequences that occasionally woozed their way through Barry Gray’s TV score for UFO will no doubt delight……
Now this little curio came by our way via a message posted on our word press site by Robert Loncto who much engaged by our mentioning of Geist and the Sacred Ensemble thought we might similarly love his project the Danbury Lie. Described in passing as a ‘musical mindfuck that takes the listener on an eerie journey deep into the mind of a freethinker’. okay agreed it doesn’t really sell it like ‘liable to drop bollocks’ or ‘redecorate your listening space in wild lysergic tropes’ but that said there’s something here ticking a variety of boxes deep in our melodic psych for Danbury Lie sit somewhere in the twilight shadows that mark the bridging cracks between softening psychedelia and spell crafting wood cut folk, limited to just 200 physical CD copies and available as an unlimited download ‘the Danbury lie’ doesn’t immediately jump out at you but rather more plants seeds that blossom slowly, much like a magicians sleight of hand Loncto and Co cross weave a sometimes haunting magicalia that nods with equal measure to the likes of Beatglider (as on ’witches’) and Tex La Homa (via ’in the rain’) and while we’ve only dipped in and out for a sample taste while we send forth begging missives to secure hard copies it’s the airy mathian grooved ’last day’ that caught our ear proving to be one of sets highlights teetering upon a sonic seesaw sitting somewhere between a youthful Death Cab for Cutie and Billy Mahonie. http://www.thedanburylie.bandcamp.com
And now for something that by rights ought to be high on our radar of those among you so admiring of the sounds that emanate from sound houses such as boltfish, smallfish and rednetic. From what we can gather the debut release from SAL, a Turin based producer and musician who armed with just a sampler, drum machine and a mixer has turned in a highly engaging and style wise varying dub doused four track nugget entitled ‘achtung, banditi!‘ via the Edison box imprint. Opening cut ‘Toussaint ouverture’ is your shape shifting audiac species blending minimalist drum n’ bass textures to a mutant dubtronic glitched out deep Detroit technoid hybrid and found veering into sonic soundscapes once upon a time explored and mined by the likes of Cheju and Minotaur Shock. Sparsely seasoned upon a minimalist thread ‘Malik’ reveals itself as a slo-mo psychotropic lunar lovely trip wired by booming dub pulsars, twinkling lullaby chimes and hulking elephantine fanfares which all said collectively gather like some fleeting visitation from the far reaches of the galaxy of a heavenly body. Elsewhere the playfully busy and multi textured ’elephants’ playfully skirts the kind of subtronic territories once visited upon by the more saner sound structures breaching the Tigerbeat6 confines, though scratch a little and the playful lo-fi lunar waltz at play here courts the kind of affectionate classicism that one time or another was the art craft of the likes of casino vs. japan and kimonophonic. Best of the set by our reckoning is the parting ’Kaiser doc’ – a dubbed out radiophonic workshop carousel – thinks that’s about as much as you need to know. Go seek.
This surfadelic stereophonic shocker comes pressed up as an ultra limited 300 only green splatter wax variant (the CD and download versions come fleshed out with 4 additional bonus cuts) via the adored Green Cookie imprint and features the latest bad boogie from the Insect Surfers titled ‘infra green‘. On and off since the late 70’s these dudes fronted up by David Arnson have been breaking the surf twang rule book for over thirty years cross wiring the predictable trademark signatures fusing elements of punk and psych to craft out soundtracks for films yet to be conceived yet alone scored. Amid the riff rumbles gouged amid these grooves the unmistakable signature glide of Will Sergeant albeit appreciably fed speed is evident on the opening power popping surge of ‘bay of Bengal’ while had Gerry Anderson been western minded as opposed to being sci-fi fascinated then the cool shimmer toning Link Wray meets smoked out Johnny Kidd stylings of ’DelMarVa’would have headed up the kind of sonic templates being primed into the minds of the late 60’s kids by Barry Gray. Elsewhere ‘orion canyon’ imagines some secret studio soiree forged by Neil Young and Johnny Marr while those of you missing your one time regular intake of man or astro man grooviness should venture forth at pace to the rampant ‘sea scorpion’ – thoroughly recommended and something that’ll be visited upon again once we nail hard copies. http://www.greencookierecords.bandcamp.com/album/infra-green-lp
Bewildered to think that there may be a few rogue copies of this still doing the rounds. A record store day special from those patrons of good musical taste – Static Caravan – who celebrated said event with a limited 500 only 10 inch vinyl cut from the Memory Band and friends, those friends being Belbury Park and Grantby. ‘further navigations’ was a re-visitation of sorts and an accompanying after glowing set to last years critically acclaimed ‘on the chalk (our navigation of the line of the downs)’ album, featured here three cuts – two of which guest remixes the other an exclusive previously unreleased nugget from the Memory Band. Belbury Park need no introductions here, the alter ego of one Jim Jupp of ghost box fame and he who on occasion has a tendency to retune old Radiophonic signatures, re-trim weird old school public information films and lost library sounds in a vintage pre-decimalised monochrome setting and who by all accounts lives in the seventies only appearing in the modern day by request or summons through a magic portal behind the big apple tree. Here surrounded by all manner of aural analogue arcadia he’s let loose on ’hobby horse’ and fashions it in a desirably dizzy display of kooky carousel waltzing pagan pageantry, mayday merriment and Summerisle signatures, the effect is trippy part regal part floral seasoned in Tunng tonalities, Discordia breeziness and the delicate echo of ‘strawberry fair’ vibes which viewed as a whole ought to appeal first hand to those much loving of the Seahawks seafaring kaleidoscopics. As for Grantby, better known to sonic scholars and close acquaintances as Dan Grigson who along with Memory Band-er Stephen Cracknell once forged repute by way of posting tracks for the likes of Mo Wax in the 90’s before bowing out and disappearing off radar for several years. Here found rephrasing ‘the ballad of imber down’ upon who core template he endows a sense of cinematic grandeur courted in a noir tinged down tempo tongue all seductively serenaded by corteges of twinkle set string arrangements dimpled by momentary flashes of sampled narratives from what sounds like Bugs Bunny’s arch rival Yosemite Sam. or their part Memory Band serve up the acutely affectionate ’walk along it’ and find themselves sitting somewhere between early career Pickled Egg era Go Team flip side vintage and those public service broadcast dudes as though gathered together and colluding hatchling plans with the Cuban Boys, an ode to the joys of that great rock n’ roll past time – rambling – which includes cantering marching counts or as the press release prefers to call them salutes to the mysterious phenomena of the shortwave numbers station broadcasts which for those among you possessed of a conspiracy theory bent was recently superseded by the appearances of some 80,000 colour coded video shorts on you tube in recent months. Deserving of a loving home – purchase on sight – many thanks to head Static Caravan man Geoff for sending over finished copies.
New loveliness from the ever adored Moon Glyph imprint comes courtesy of 555 which for those unaware of such things is the alter ego of one Christopher Farstad here found taking time out from heading up the amazing Food Pyramid. We haven’t, admittedly, had time to hear the whole of ‘nine gates’ set straight through but have so far been much taken by the two showcase cuts posted up to herald its arrival. ‘Som Hassell’ in its initial moments sounds like some Herbie Hancock meets Ric James subtronic funk floosy with discoid electronica accoutrements brought to a modern day footing and rephrased by Gary Wilson before seductively jettisoning off radar into heavenly kissed environs aboard some celestial carousel showered in dissipating wisps of shape shifting serenades of euphoria. ’killing joke’ (alas not the band – though it should be said they will appear in these musings if not this missive then the next) is a wonderfully delicately demurred slice of busy beat buoyed dream weaved Meek-esque mosaics which when unpeeled and left to fill your listening space with its hybrid Balearic swells does manage to translate like some lost and unclaimed remix of a mid 80’s New Order nugget somewhat overlooked from the finalised groove edits of their ’(rest of) new order’ remix compilation from the mid 90’s. http://www.soundcloud.com/moonglyph/555-som-hassel
Described by the label as ’treading the line between new age and dream pop’ there’s much of interest here for those electronic purists among you with your heads firmly calibrated and tuned into the sparse minimalist dustings of post punk psychedelia to have you positively purring. As with the aforementioned 555 outing another sonic jewel from the bijou Moon Glyph imprint this time from Sativa Flats whose self titled 150 only cassette debut had us much misty eyed in reminiscing lost days from our youth being swooned the cool crop of new sounds emanating from forward thinking labels such as Zoo and DinDisc the point not least being brought into sharp focus by the cut ‘internet’ whose darkly monochromatic ice shivered mantra had us scurrying to re-acquaint our headspace with Modern Eon’s misplaced classic ‘fiction tales’ while elsewhere the disarming ‘cha cha’ taps ever so seductively into the spacious sonic folds of an at rest and lilting orbital ‘organisation’ era Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark with Paul Humphries stepping up to the plate to take up vocals leads. http://www.moonglyph.com/releases/mg72
Rising from the same politically abandoned concrete playgrounds and council high rise tenement blocks as the Fall, that’ll be the North you southern jessies, emerge the Wind Up Birds, under their collective arm a second album ‘poor music’ is imminent via Sturdy and from it on early release comes ‘the gristle’. hard as nails and pissing attitude, its arrives tailored in the kind of panic attacking art gouged agit angst that releases once upon at time heading out of sound houses such as marquis cha cha and art goes pop were fire glazed in though here kissed with the kind of finger poking truculence and wiring cockiness that demands immediate attention as it freewheels into the same edgy territories oft veered into by the likes of David Cronenberg’s Wife and Johnny Foreigner – which kinda makes it essential then.
This caught us on the hop just as we were about to power down for the night, out shortly on the critically cool Svart imprint is the latest opus from Tusmorke entitled ‘riset bak speilet’ who are described in passing as a collective of Scandinavian acid rockers. When I say opus – I mean opus in every true context of the word, an amazing magicalia of sound of which in truth we’ve just caught an earful of the opening brace of cuts but so impressed and allured that we’ve fired off urgent begging letters to land physical copies for imminent future review. I swear on having heard these two tracks that Tusmorke either live in the 70’s and teleport their sounds by means of some time travelling contraption or else have had their way of life, radio, television and any other form of polluted contact from the outside world shut out and free from influence as a result its as though with regard technological advances, styles and sound mediums that the last 40 years have never happened. ‘offerpresten’ the opening salvo is the case in point, so 70’s sounding it arrives on a chopper bike in a cheesecloth top and loon pants whiffing heavily of patchouli oil wearing its Jethro Tull fondness on its sleeve, a gorgeously arranged floral folly rippled in a progian folk tongue that skirts around the outer edges of the Acid Mothers and Dungen had both parties ever had a mind to trek up the path of jubilant enchantment to sample exotically flighty brews stirred in the strange dialects of the Ukranians channelling as were the Winston Giles Orchestra. Similarly touched is the wonderfully woody sounding ’gamie aker kirke’ which eases off the rapturous reverie opting instead for a spot of delectable pastoral hippy dippy airy fairy folkiness that should arrest the Love adorers among you. Rest assured there will be more of this soon…..
Not sure whether we’ve featured this previously I’m erring on the side that suspects not, new video accompanying the Hare and the Moon’s simply eloquent and eerily chilling slice of supernaturalia ’the bard of eve’ – a total spooks-ville experience immersed in a lost though familiar gothic tongue spoken in archaic dialects and seductively swathed in bewitchment, here folklore and ritualism collide and coalesce in a dark celebration of Brit horror grandeur to occupy amid the twilight hollows that separate Preterite and Dead Can Dance.
Last missive out (that’ll be Tales from the Attic #37 young folk – Ed) we made mention of a free to download sampler set from those fine folk at mega dodo available to grab via their band camp site. We’re happy – or should I say – as chuffed as hell to have received through the mail a full CD of said set sent by Mega Dodo head honcho John. Now I think I’m right in saying that this is a much sought after release having only been available in the goodie bags handed out at the recent Crabstock events put on by Fruits de Mer. A delightful sonic shop window of strange delights await inside with the CD comprising of seven nuggets three of which are previously unreleased with a further three culled from forthcoming mega dodo happenings and an old gem from Crystal Jacqueline. (‘Sun Arise’ in case you are wondering). It also gives us a chance to hook up and sample something from the much anticipated Mark and the Clouds album courtesy of the adorable ‘blue skies opening’ – a softly dreamy slice of slow drift intoxica sumptuously shimmering upon serenely seafaring horizons gliding lazy eyed beneath sun dimpled skies towards secret hideaways wherein chill Gram Parsons and Gene Clark. And talking of Mr Clark, found here are Strange Turn who aside flipping our wigs courtesy of their recent ’pink litmus paper shirt’ single have its flipside – a cover of Clark’s ‘elevator operator’ doing nifty things across the dansette getting it on in a most addictively sly and wiggly way. And then there’s Mordecai Smyth closing the set with ’out in the stars’. pulled from his forthcoming face off with Icarus Peel this dream dipped 60’s apparition arrives shimmered in a kaleidoscopic lounge glow, a kind of super chilled Pink Floyd if you like twinkled and tingled in Keith West smarties – a bit of a gem all said. Check the little Easter egg stashed at the end – 10 minutes or so after the final track waltzes out to hear a brief but welcomed short snatch of Ivor Cutler.
Update – message from John at Mega Dodo to say that there are only 100 CD of the Evolver set – 90 of which are residing somewhere in Finland following the Crabstock on Ice gathering.
And talking of that Mordecai Smyth / Icarus Peel face off here’s the ‘Barnburner’ EP. Described by the Mega Dodo publicity house as the world’s first double b side split 10 inch this outing comes strictly limited as a 100 only pressing on – yep you guessed it 10 inches of heavy duty wax. Upon the grooves 4 cuts of smoked sixties seasonings with each of the contenders admirably acquitting themselves and stamping their weird psych credentials with two tracks apiece. First up Icarus Peel tunes your head inside out with the kookified kaleidoscopia ‘Auntie powders her nose’ which aside being warped and wonky sounds like tomorrow channelling the spirit of Syd albeit here as though refried by a not so much chameleonic but magpie nicking Deram era pre spaceboy 70’s glam deity Bowie. Stranger still is the weirded out ‘almost murder ballad’ – the Peel ones take on a Mr Smyth gem – an impishly macabre murder ballad inscribed in a coolly creepy ‘dark shadows’ styled wonkiness, an Addams Family variant on Nancy and Lee if you must featuring CJ herself hatching dark deeds to the frying backdrop of funhouse sounds of disturbia – quite priceless and much in need of hearing if you ask me. The breezy eyed and coolly tranquil ‘Crystalline Jacqueline’ rounds up Mr Peel’s trio of tasters all succulently dimpled in murmuring early 70’s trippyness. Mr Smyth opens his account with the aforementioned ’out in the stars’ (see the previous ’Evolver’ critique) whilst his take on Mr Peel‘s ‘plastic people’ finds his normally crooked though demurred colouring somewhat dulled and in its place a spiky if not impatient irritation seething in desperation through the floral forays – themselves finding bedfellows with the likes of freed unit and the beatnik filmstars. Last but by no means least ‘drifted along’ is cradled in a becoming bruised baroque / gothica majesty that succulently glides head bowed to a waltz time withering and darkly set grandeur – scarcely a dry eye in the house.
Culled from an imminent set for Bureau B entitled ‘Abc’ – an advance copy of which is fighting for turntable space at the moment with an equally fine Bureau B future offering from Moebius Story Leidecker – this is Kreidler with ‘Alphabet’. channelling directly into sound worlds once upon a time visited upon by Cabaret Voltaire in their minimalist funkoid period a la ‘just fascination’ – this strangely orbiting super chilled lunar flotilla weaves in and out of consciousness purred in a syncopating symmetry wrapped in subtronic tribal rhythms and alluring cosmic dub mutations that court and coalesce to weave a coolly hypnotic mantra much reminiscent of old school Front 242 flipsides.
Described by her press people as a ‘rising primal soul queen’ following reception met in the wake of her debuting ‘haters and gangters’ EP earlier this year – which I must say we are grinding teeth at missing out on – arriving shortly via showlovenowpeoplekiss LAW is set to release her second EP ‘Cowboys and Hustlers’. the work of Edinburgh based Lauren Holt ‘hustle’ pulled from that aforementioned set is a gloriously chilled slice of experimental elegance cultured in minimalist electronics, orbiting oscillations, down tempo beats, celestial chorals and sepia traced noir sounds capes all ushered in a murmured glacial rubbing oozed in a nocturnal sultriness that finds a midway refuelling point between the sonic outer posts of grimes and no ceremony.
Thunderous and head bowed epic happening pulled forth from the forthcoming Khuda full length ‘molasses constricts the clinostat’ due soon on prugelprinz recordings. Already gaining a formidable and enviable reputation the long distance separated duo (Leeds / Jyvaskyla) with board sharing spots with the likes of and so I watch you from afar, mono and Russian circles, his twin set manage to craft a full on panoramic sound despite the limitation of numbers in their ranks, case in point being the previewing track ’phi am’. a vast storm gathering slab of intricately metered big bearded mathian post rocking grizzled groove balanced upon a finite teetering line that freewheels upon the brooding and the sonically pyrotechnic all serviced by moments of splintering aggression and delicate lulls of pulsing watchful patience, admirers of Hey Colossus et al will swoon. The vinyl version of the album arrives in a specially limited edition gold on black screen printed sleeve. http://www.soundcloud.com/sheltered-life-pr/khuda-phi-am-prugelprinz-record/s-XXu2p
Oh yes we are loving this, quick email from their manager Tom announcing the imminent arrival to record store frenzy courtesy of his latest protégés Deja Vega. This lot hail from Cheshire or thereabouts and ought by rights to be on the radar of those much attuned to latest Static Caravan trendsetters Victories at Sea and the Grafham Water Sailing Club. We here have been treated to fresh recordings emanating from their secret studio basement in the shape of ‘the test’ and ‘sleep’, the former curdled in an austere sonic magma fused out of Will Bunnymen-esque stratospheric riff opines that flash skywards like cloud parting siren lights against a pulsing tension snagging panic attacking edginess clipped in a razor like jagged urgent primal gouging all indelibly cut with 80’s brushstrokes. As to ’sleep’ in sharp contrast less fried in hysteria that its sibling and more coded in a northern post punk landscape much catalogued by early releases founding their way out of Factory and Zoo whilst fleetingly showered in a darkening soft garage psych purr that finds it situated on an axis left of centre from the Wild Swans.
Here’s a little something that I’m certain the alt math post punk purists among you will be (or ought to be) flocking in droves to check out. Hailing from Oslo, Norway, This Sect are a collective made up of five Norwegians and one Swede, together they craft needle hot intricate art groove bastardised in all manner of post rockist signatures that sound for all the world as though they’ve be shock treated, in case of reference markers Rough Trade likened the bands 2nd EP to a hybrid of ‘fugazi and Interpol crossed with Devo and PIL…and maybe a touch of Flying Nun indieness…’ which for the best part nails succinctly what these dudes do. New album ’shake the curse’ is certainly grounded in Fugazi and Interpol apparitions but less obvious and more apparent is its imagining of a youthful pre peek a boo make up Cure muddying the brew especially on the cut ‘lines on a trail’. that said there’s plenty here to keep the most curious admirer of the Playwrights suitably satiated and while we go off in search of hard copies we’ll just wrap up matters for now by making mention of the forthcoming single ’make shit shine’ – the albums sore thumb all said, cowed in a withering after burn between the friction and angst there’s a forlorn bruising breaching the normally frenzied sonic punctuations wherein the full panoramic vocabulary of their alt post punk credentials come into sharp head bowed focus. http://www.soundcloud.com/thissect
Pulled this from a music blob posting mourning the parting of the folk police imprint, amid the celebratory recap of some of the finest slices of nu-folk to emerge upon these shores we discovered this little nugget shy eyed and reclining in the undergrowth. Arrowwood is the alter ego of one Chelsea Robb (aka Arrowwdodd – gets awfully confusing), this spectral beauty emerged from the twilight sometime last year (much to our embarrassment having only heard it now) and is the opening greeting call of her strictly limited vinyl release ’beautiful grave’ via merlin‘s nose. ’Under root a winding stair’ is the kind of ethereal happening that one time or another we’d have expected to appear on the much missed Autumn Ferment imprint, in short the most disquietingly beautiful thing we’ve heard here since Lisa O Piu’s delectable ’whisperers, wavers, hunters and sailors’ 7 inch for the label way back in 2008. Ghostly ether breaching murmurs transmit from beyond the veil, elegant, elegiac and above all enchanting, dronal incantations, shimmering chimes and hymnal harmonics steeled in a reverential stillness press upon something drawn deep from our consciousness as though a forest dwelling siren calling forth her spell forming love craft, utterly bewitching and irrefutable adoring. http://www.merlinsnoserecords.bandcamp.com/album/beautiful-grave
The link for that Folk Police bit – http://www.musicblob.wordpress.com/2013/12/25/tales-of-rabbits-and-pixies-the-alt-folk-reinassance-in-the-u-k-
And its back with Tusmorke whose ‘all is lost’ features on a mammoth feast of sonic Satanic soirees courtesy of a hulking pod cast put together by Soggy Bog for his doom metal show which across a three hour play list rummages the aural underworld for mentions of the horned one to cook up a witching hour pagan tapestry of devilish delights. Among the chosen few here you’ll be chilled to the ice cold eeriness of the mono grooved homage ’lucifer’s song’ by Uffomammut which apart from anything else sounds like an aborted work in progress early primer for Tubeway Army‘s ‘replicas’ discovered abandoned and rephrased many years later by a ‘Scene 30’ era Echoboy with the assistance of Add N to X. doom prog is the order of the day for Black Doom who stoner sludge ’lucifer rising’ claws with a toxic chemistry of Ozzy upon its shoulder. Ghast actually sound as though they crawled and scraped their way from the very pit of hell with their blackened apocalypsia ‘spiritless hell’ while Rose Kemp offers up ‘the unholy’ – a darkly woven slice of wyrd and warping tranced out progian psych blues scratched through with moments of monastic mosaics. Those of you whose listening loves centre around the catalogue of rise above will do well to check in to noctum’s fuzzily beatniked ‘the séance’ while part chain crank up the crusted misfit-ian monitors for the hell blues stoner ‘voyage to hell’ while black hole dink your listening space with some damn fine hybrid of equal parts hawkwind and Sabbath for ‘demoniac city’. too brief for its own good is Volume IV’s ‘save your prayers’ though rest assured in its 1.37 duration reveals more ambition than most bands ever summon in a whole career – especially tasty for those adoring of slide riffage, preacher blues grooves and images of dark pacts at the fabled crossroads, oh and Neil Young. Floyd’s ‘Lucifer Sam’ gets some seriously psychotropic garage treatment by the Well while the demonic ‘to hell we ride’ by Albino Python really does have a sense of the Bolan one venturing the dark side. Those preferring your sounds doomed and damned might be best advised to find a sofa to hide behind when the 20 minute doom trip that is Sinistrous Diabolus’ ’Aeon Tenebris Aeon Lacrimis’ rears in misshapen head, seriously grim stuff wretched in despair and futility which for the best part is spared to a slow sludge like stoner grooving that at time rises up from the pit and drags you by the hair into its cyclonic oblivion. Depressingly immense in short. More death / black metal looms with the emergence of Cauldron Black Ram’s foreboding and forbidding ’devil’s trotters’ while the frankly killer named Bongripper bring to the altar the revelations ju-ju ’Satan’ – a hulking behemoth of post everything retribution which ought to find kindred spirits with the likes of Circle and Heavy Winged. Veering ever so closely into the Witchcraft and Electric Wizard sonic coven is Dread Soverign’s ’pray to the devil in man’ while Magister Templi do a neat line in spell crafted magicalia on the gothian blues ‘Lucifer’. bedevilled in a bleakly bleached brooding aura looms the swamp dragged and solemnly deadheaded ‘sons of belial’ by the wounded kings – a punishing end of days mantra. Admirers of all things reverb worship will be advised to head to hail spirit noir’s ‘satan in time’ and Sabbath assembly’s ‘Lucifer’ as both appear wrapped in the same lost mercurial folk tongue as befits that imprints hallowed catalogue. Somewhere else there’s the psychosis forming dread of elliotts keep’s ‘days of hell’ while demon eye opt for some classically raw blues boog-a-loo for ’devil knows the truth’ while old school metal in the image of iron maiden rears up on Acid’s ‘lucifera’. galloping towards the track listing end is NYMF’s squalling and punitive razor cut ’lucifer takes the crown’ while we’d be none to surprised to hear that Demonhead’s ‘demon head’ was some wasted and lost big bearded bastard unearthed from the early 70’s given it Sabbathian prowess. Elsewhere demon lung howls with a disquieting dread chill courtesy of ‘devil’s wind’ with it imparting their blackening sickness to all it touches leaving Satan Satyrs – who it should be said – aside serving up one of the best platters this set sound like latch key reprobates reared up on an estrus / sympathy for the devil diet – ‘lucifer lives’ is just off the radar – wired, freakish and riddled in wah wah’s aplenty, uber garage psych to go. http://www.thesoggybogofdoom.podomatic.com/entry/2014-05-07T10_08_07_07_00
Blimey this is gorgeous, daydreaming 50’s bubble grooved west coast fuzz pop viewed under a kaleidoscopic spector-esque lens and kissed with the cool effervescent pop rush of the Monkees albeit refitted in a soft psych shimmer toned chassis assembled from Ramones and JMC spares, its by Wild Smiles, its called ’fool for you’, its on Sunday Best and you need it.
More mega dodo – here’s a sound clip video to that ultra limited and well dandy Strange Turn single currently wowing lysergic pop lovers up and down these fair isles….
Best described as a surreal daydreaming lunar sea ride undertaken by a particularly celestial exotic land venturing Vini Reilly though not before stocking up on all manner of radiophonic workshop trappings and then casting off to create murmured milky mosaics in the style of a kosmiche ‘Sailing by’. what can it be pray tell us I hear you cry in unison, well it appears on – from what we can gather – an exclusive EP recorded specially for the Wyrd Daze online resource / magazine, issue #6 to be exact and its by Adderall Canyonly of whom I’m certain we’ve featured in previous musings, the track is called ’never let me go’ and is a bit of a cutie much deserving of pride of place next to your Discordia, Busy Signals and optiganally yours releases. http://www.soundcloud.com/adderallcanyonly/never-let-me-go
Attached to the press release announcing the first single (‘moving on’) from James’ forthcoming ’la petite mort’ album – due June via Cooking Vinyl there’s a short behind the scenes script by video animator / director Ainslee Henderson were he talks of his earliest memories of James, what they meant to him and how he came to create the moving video for their new single. I must say I’m in total agreement on all points about James for they were and – judging from the tracks we’ve heard thus far – still are that rarest light in the dark in pop who speak to the outsider, the dispossessed, the crushed and the forgotten, their craft has often sparkled and touches deepest when phrased as a show of defiance and a way forward against the onset of adversity. ‘moving on’ is steeled as such turning despair to hope the core theme a discussion of death turning to birth typically channelled and fortified by the bands trademark anthem cheering call to arms gusto. We were forewarned that this was a bit of a tear jerker and so it proves to be, a most amazing video accompanies the song, a ball of wool artfully modelled to represent the characters at play in the song, the interconnecting scenes – the saddening letting go and the departing of a loved one and the joyous celebration of new life, it’ll have you smiling through tears – but then isn’t that the point of a James song.
Almost bordering on the supernatural, certainly not of this world and something usually confined to dreams and tales of enchantment which reference wise wanders ghost like into the fancifully twilight environs of a classically youthful Kate Bush landscape whilst dimpled in the same spectral yearn and touching elegance that these days appears to attach to releases finding their way out of the Gizeh sound house with alarming regularity. The latest from former Joana and the Wolf front woman Johanna Glaza ‘letter to New York’ is cut of that rarest of craft, the ability to at once lift and allure whilst similarly able to penetrate a bruising hurt. A beguiled beauty aglow in a spectral resonance frosted, purred and framed upon a melodic axis that draws the invisible dots between chill tipped symphonic grandeur and baroque folk mystique all metered out by the softly lulling canter of Brontean braids paired with the silken caress of the genteel sweep of string arcs, key twinkles and swirling heavenly chorals, between these points is housed the demurred whispering of a spell crafted love note – utterly unreal and seductive with it.
Quite something else this, all jiggly wiggly and frisky. The debut single from duo Sophie and the bom boms ’woman’ is pulled from a forthcoming ’the schmixtape’ EP and comes sporting its own radiating rainbows and feel good pop-a-hula, draped in a subtle calypso cool and teased ever so slightly in an addictively infectious candy coated shelling this honeyed gem manages to dip and dive with much distraction to nibble away at a centre ground existing between a youthfully effervescent Jackson 5 and a loved up exotically funky Go Team, cute as a button and liable to cause hopelessly adoring rashes through repeat plays – consider yourself warned. http://www.soundcloud.com/sophieandthebbs/woman-1
Super cooled terror twang from thee eviltones ripped from their ‘beat macabre’ full length, ‘surf rider’ is your prime packed b-movie boog-a-loo shimmered in all manner of 60’s surfadelica very much framed in the kind of vintage rock-a-hula once upon a time transmitted through the ether waves by man or astro man and shadowy men on a shadowy planet. Set stereos to stun.
Teetering between moments of lucidity and lunacy, Whizz Kid have always held a very special place in our listening space since first rearing their heads above the aural parapet and clearly knocking us for six with the frankly skittish ‘the yellow and blue’ EP from 2009. We made comment at the time to their uncanny indecision at falling between seducing and spooking the would be listener while appealing to a listening spectrum that found their way sneaking to adore everything from Raymond Scott to Pop Off Tuesday and quite possibly everything else in between. Impish was the byword, the all covering warts n’ all descriptor you’d imagine created with these dudes in mind, it proved to be one of our most favourite surrealist left field releases that year exiting stage left leaving us wondering whether its skewed nature was a deliberate and calculated act or simply the work of the deranged. Several years have flown by since then and now, our moods being buoyed a month or so ago at the news of new Whizz Kid sounds afoot, an album in fact from which ’the kid santa’ was sent forth unto the world as a teaser taster and mentioned here along the lines of childlike disturbia running amok in fischer price fantasia – or at least words to that effect. And while it came primed in the kind of weird wonkiness we’ve come to love and adore about Whizz Kid it didn’t quite prepare us for hearing the set in full. That said having now heard ’there’s conjuring to be done’ I’m of the firm belief that its authors (Yo Yo Nielsen and J-Kane) are mischief makers and that what lies within astound, amaze and amuse all who enter its fried domain. Out via the esteemed Bearsuit – themselves purveyors of the peculiar this set gathers together 10 sonic play charms that just might elevate this bijou label to the deserving attention of a wider audience. A playfully intricate bouquet of bizarro bric n’ brac, the Whizz ones craft out, to much delight, an at times delightfully purred and affectionate aural cocktail of hauntologist kookiness and soft psych shadow plays all schooled in lounge lilts, lunar waltzes (the serenely ornate ’charly stories’ being the case in point), lost lullabies and even archaic hued homely folk with ac touch tasting of francophile flair (‘trapeze’). From the crooked bandstand wheezes of the sleepy headed toy box umpah of the opening ‘clones’ to the mellowed oriental seafarer that is the dreamily dinked ‘I fall in the grandad bus’ (think youthful ISAN shimmying up to minotaur shock and Cornelius whilst ‘ballade a chaud fontaine‘ is similarly flavoured in old school Melodic imprint motifs), ‘there’s conjuring to be done’ never ceases to entertain and have you pressing the repeat button to re-imagine the experience all over again. ’summer bubbles’ and ’falling out of trees, falling down hills’ but emerge from a classically arched noir script, the former a fused mosaic of emperor penguin and busy signals smoothness, the latter once awoken from its yawning slumber a Gnac styled slice of spectral spy themed eeriness that courts to the lighter side of wizards tell lies albeit re-tweaked by the overseeing eye of Meek. Those adoring of oriental incantations and bowed chimes may find ears engaged by the crooked south sea shimmered flightiness of ’Burlington’. And while the mere mention of glitch electronica may have you thinking upon these chaps as strolling along tuned into all manner of Warp like madness, ’there’s conjuring to be done’ instead reveals an ear subtly au fait in the Birmingham underground scene c. mid 90’s tapping along to the kind of 60’s channelled sounds hatching out of Wurlitzer Jukebox so much so its easy to imagine a reworking of Kirchin viewed through the eyes of a child which on the likes of ’circus juice’ is revealed an informed and affectionate love for the likes of L’augmentation (see ‘trapeze’) and Pram which if stretched a little in the imaginations ear could easily be viewed as a spectral and skeletal Broadcast framing.
Two uber slabs of killer psych to mess with your heads…first up…..
New thang ‘high like a hurricane’ from Black Light White Light due for touch down next month on their own record records imprint has been turning the heads of no lesser dude than Simon Raymonde whose already premiered it on his amazing radio show. The trio are about to break cover following a period of lull following their debuting long player platter ‘Infrared Daylight’ way back in 2011 with word abound that recordings are being laid down for a follow up album as we write. Blessed with a swooning cool ‘high as a hurricane’ comes ablaze in the kind of shimmering strut gouged shade adorned pout and soft psych vapour trailing spidery licks that’ll have the Dandy Warhols set smoked out and bliss kissed whilst primed to go with a fringe flicking swagger that sees them freewheeling into aural orbits more accustomed to the sounds of the Lucid Dream. That said main crowd attractor here is to be found on the flip side for the ‘sex and fury’ sees them emerging from an Air like cosmicalia daydream to shed its skin a reveal itself as a chemically enhanced slow weaving stoned out mantra sumptuously bedded upon a killer shit faced dust ravaged arid dry snake winding motif looming large sporting a deep long stare and smoking its own – voodoo lysergia to go.
I can’t really recall the Kill City Creeps doing bad things on our turntable which is a shame because I’m suspecting we’ve thus far missed a treat. We mention this not because we like the look of our typing – which now you come to mention does look quite dandy tonight – but because this next ‘un is a cover of their ‘I got a letter’ as re-phrased by the Dandelion as ‘I got another letter‘. For those of you not quite up to speed with these things the Dandelion is that dude from the Dolly Rocker Movement Daniel Poulters who earlier this year fried our headspace with a psyched out 12 inch EP – the first in a planned series of wax platters from those cool cats over at bad afro. ’I got a letter’ is pulled from a forthcoming second 12 inch set pencilled in for release later this year and finds the Dandelion one twisting the original and adding something of a psychosis forming sinister edge to proceedings whilst simultaneously threading it in the kind of swirling and smoking shadowy 60’s cool that upon first hearing you’d be forgiven for thinking it had been cooked up by Cheval Sombre in a studio alliance with Sonic Boom’s Spectrum. Simply ultra cool. http://www.soundcloud.com/thedandelionmusic/i-got-another-letter
Just in case you were wondering what the Kill City Creeps original sounds like here it – just listen to those grinding rock-a-hula riffs kinda lene lovich fronting the cramps – enough to give you kiss curls and sideburns……
And so to the end credits, many thanks once again to Brian Shea of the Bordellos for stepping in at the last gasp to take up the Editorial, the Bordellos are available for wigged out sonic happenings and can be found at http://www.bordellos.bandcamp.com – they are this nations saving grace.
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As ever take care of yourselves…..xx
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