Tales from the Attic
Revolutions of a 33 and 45 kind.
Welcome to another regularly irregular missive and another to feature a guest editorial. Such was the success and interest in our last one which was headed up by Brian Shea of the Bordellos that we’ve been literally beating people with sticks as they swarm around the hallowed tree stump atop which is perched the balsa wood and gaffer tape constructed Sunday experience listening shed. Of course the neighbours were none to impressed, people amassing around a stump all muttering the Sunday Experience, they feared that tree hugging religious evangelists had threatened to take up camp in the village. Letters of complaint were published in the parish gazette, some mildly amusing others worrying pagan in attitude with talk of stoning and other such middle ages game playing.
And so we went the conventional route. Just ask someone. Jet we thought, he had after all been peppering our in box with mad conspiracy theories of a secret Stone Roses master plan whilst hinting at a recently laid track sent to Keith Fruits de Mer which promises to be a ’raw ripping psych blues freak out’ – would he send it, no. would he talk about it, no. and so since hearing this news I have not slept. I just wanted you to know that Mr Wintzer.
And so over to Jet…..
‘The Wild Pink Yonder.
Their name conjures dual images of radical kaleidoscopic sunsets on a desolate rugged beach….and the infinite ecstatic promise of blessed sex. This is the sound of the Wild Pink Yonder, a dynamic duo of stalwart indie rockers who’ve quietly etched their names into a lot of really cool shit through the years. Ilona Virostek (aka Ilona V) and Patrick Flynn have been at the head of multiple sonic projects in their own right, whilst also having been teammates to various legends of the underground.
Among other, Ilona has worked with Anton Newcombe (Brian Jonestown Massacre) and Adam Franklin (Swervedriver), who were both enchanted by her silky blissful voice. She is equally skilled with the guitar, bass, keys or even tanpura which she recently killed with on my bands last single for fruits de mer records, where Ilona and Patrick have been featured on multiple releases.
I have been making tracks with Patrick Flynn for over twenty years, starting back in the early 90’s when we were in rival bands during the height of New Brunswick’s cool era, when Matt Pinfield was spinning three nights a week at the Melody Bar (RIP), and cool national acts regularly came through the Court Tavern. Patrick Flynn was everywhere – jamming with everyone – and making everything he touched better. Until I met Ilona V (more on that later) Patrick was the most passionate and dedicated musician I knew in my life – and I know a lot of cats.
But this kid was different. He lived in music and used it as a life raft. When the ocean threatened to steal his sanity, he fought rogue waves by writing hundreds of intriguing pop songs about strange characters and their artifacts. He is one of the most creative drummers I’ve ever heard, but he’s an even better lead guitar player. Yet, his strongest skillset is in production. Whether he’s using a boom box, cassette four track, reel to reel, or in a big studio – the canvas matters not – you are going to get a truly innovative piece of music. Patrick has released on Fruits de Mer with Neutron Drivers, as well as a multiple of recordings with my own band Schizo Fun Addict.
I met Ilona Virostek via the Bracken records connection in 2008. This was the pre-cursor label to the mighty Fruits de Mer. Schizo Fun Addict had just released our shoegazebossanovadronecore styled 7 inch ’dream of the Portugal keeper’ (with Patrick laying down a silky bossa beat), and the follow up on Bracken was a stone cold classic psych / folk gem by Ilona V ’good morning’.
I ran over to Patrick’s and threw this on the deck. I think we listened to it swooning about fifty times in a row. ’who the freak is this chick?’ There has never been a more hypnotic sexy drone. And the more I listened to Ilona’s golden tone, the lyrics made me feel as if she wrote the tune about our Patrick, even though the two had never met. It was then that my sister Jayne Schizo and I hatched a romantic conspiracy to entangle these two musical photons with what Einstein called ‘spooky action at a distance’. if you don’t believe science condones miracles, just search that phrase right now! It blew Albert’s mind and it will certainly blow yours. And its definitely at play in the Wild Pink Yonder. Because our conspiracy worked.
Ilona joined the Schizo collective back in 2008 and appears with us on the first record released by Fruits de Mer. She’s bee contributing ever since. During those various recording sessions, she and Patrick fell in love, moved in together, raided antique shops along East Coast, and completed a very unique 8 track reel to reel recording studio above a funeral home in Perth Amboy, New Jersey. We hardly ever see them anymore.
Our loss is your gain. Welcome to the truth about quantum physics. Enter the Wild Pink Yonder……’
Sonic delights grooving this particular missive…..
Eyryx, john 3:16, black Saturn, saint agnes, the bordellos, Cambodian space project, peter Broderick and greg haines,igores tamborista, AK/DK, you are wolf, principe valiente, kreidler, paume, stephen Steinbrink, pony and trap, kidd feather, kill for company, echo and the bunnymen, francis macdonald and henry pye, dead hippie squadron, craig ward, dexters, plaid, yob, mountain bird, godflesh, mikey georgeson and the civilised scene, vomit face, bill Pritchard, greasy licks, Josephine and the Artizans, clara barker, pere ubu, set in sand, eyot, jon simons, automat, lui bei, powder blue, c’mon tigre, the moons
A couple of things from the Alrealon Musique extended family – after all it has been three missives or more since we featured anything by the label – I’m sure your suffering stereophonic withdrawal syndrome….
Busy at the moment with various collaborative projects which ought to see the emergence into light and onto turntables sometime this year by way of pairings with Robert L. Pepper as Eyryx and Mark Harris as well as putting the finishing touches to a new John 3:16 full length, Philippe Gerber has also been sharing studio space with Christophe Gilmore under he collective guise of mNIPK from which ‘cDNA 02’ has been leaked into cyberspace as an early warning call. Edgy and minimalist, this slice of subterranean hypno drone electronica weaves amid the ice cold margins of terminator territories, haunting and pensive, a lonesome pulsar journeying deep into un-chartered regions of cosmic nothingness, disquietingly alluring though not, one suspects, for easy night time listening. http://www.soundcloud.com/mnipk
And upon mentioning John 3:16 this arrives by way of cyber space travel, a new video collage crafted together by Jan Swinburne for the track ’through fire through water’ which originally appeared on 2012’s ‘visions hereafter’ album – still sounds sumptuous to us and still an exquisitely detailed and dimpled slice of transcendental dreaminess that manages to touch base with an as were seafaring and mellowed Manual adrift upon softly bathed sun stroked exotic waves.
Been a while since we featured anything by Black Saturn but here’s a rare set recorded live at the Pyramid Atlantic Art Centre sometime last month, abstract, minimal hip hopping drone electronics is what you get for the time and affection, a distant relation on the muslim gauze family tree – its cut to an austerely bleak tongue that talks to the forgotten and the unseen of the blank generation – we especially love the Tubeway Army-esque drums samples on the last of the three offerings on show. http://www.soundcloud.com/alrealon-musique-stream/black-saturn-live-at-the-pyramid-atlantic-art-center-md-april-2014
This smoking daddio comes from Saint Agnes – a cinematic psych duo (quoting from the press release) Jon and Kitty who’ll soon be swooning those much admiring of the Delgados and Mazzy Star (at least on the flip) when their ‘old bone rattle’ 7 inch steps out via the energy snake imprint early next month. A reverb soaked boot stomping slab of coolly cut 60’s soul blues scalped with a dust dragged dialect and the kind of old school snaking hot grind that sounds as though its been waiting at the fabled crossroads for the greyhound bus to oblivion to pass and comes picked in a devilish prairie howl all stoked up by some killer spectral organ motifs and fuzz fried twangs aplenty. Flip side is nifty to for ‘roadhouse blues’ is coyed in breezy honky tonking harmonicas and the type of shadow playing spectral smoking cool soft psych vibe that you’d only ever find sitting perched upon a release bearing the name Kull upon its hide. Alas no sound links just yet.
An early warning call alerting us that a new Bordellos full length is shortly due for instant listening adoration with the imminent arrival of ‘the gospel according to Julian Cope’ via the ever so wonderful small bear imprint drops courtesy of its title track being sneaked out into you tube land. A three minute wig flipping deadbeat groover is what’s on the table with the Bordellos going full tilt in all manner of weird pop and fried psych a go. This distressed honey comes swooned in what can only be described as out of it wiring swagger toned riffage all detuned and damaged in the kind of ultra cool dark weary soul psych that of arrowe hill occasionally excel at whilst simultaneously finding itself thickly curdled under the freakish kaleidoscopic 60’s viewfinder of a c. mid 80’s Fall. twisted beat pop for a fucked up generation – which incidentally does it for us.
In love with this in an instant, smoking after lights out sultry electro sophistication from latest Melodic signature signing Paume – better known to the French electronic underground cognoscenti as one Hugo Billionet. Culled from a forthcoming debuting EP entitled ’transalpine’ this is ’follies’ – a serene dream weaving triptastic tropicalia that imagines a combined task force of future sound of London and 808 state types lost in the aural undergrowth and stumbling upon the inner circle of the KLF hive mind – need I say more. http://www.soundcloud.com/melodic-records/paume-follies
Equally adored around these parts is the debuting Melodic outing for Stephen Steinbrink’s ‘now you see everything’. this comes pulled from the forthcoming ’arranged waves’ album which is due to land early July. This honey glowed lovely has the purring radiant bliss kiss of a breezily beguiled Go Betweens upon its fragile framing, softly lulling it tumbles and canters breathlessly hushed in an affectionate west coast whisper of the type that might have admirers of Brigadier and Kevin Tihista fondly cooing about. http://www.soundcloud.com/melodic-records/stephen-steinbrink-now-you-see-everything
Don’t know about you but I can normally tell within the first five seconds of a track whether its going to have us all a ga ga or swiftly reaching for the remote to hit the next track button. With its abrupt open chord strum Pony and Trap’s debuting EP lead out track ’time to engage’ soon starts tumbling out crookedly weaving its way past the blind side of your defences to burrow deep under your skin. A skittishly adorable warping riff which in truth ought to come repacked with jabs and come to think of it sun lotion given it radiates with such a sun shiny aspect with its jagged calypso like jab combinations all the time throwing angular curveballs your way. One for the art rocking skinny jean wearing generation – all said I dare you to find a more ridiculously infectious cut this summer.
I’ll be honest in saying that we do love receiving emails out of the blue from musicians and labels alike who’ve took the time to track us down, done their homework and arrived at the conclusion that what their crafting may well be of interest to us. And so its with that in mind that we introduce Kidd Feather whose debuting release ‘sirene’ is the cause of hearts a skipping in our gaff not least because of its demurely dimpled soft psych warping and trippy trimming which crushed in a bitter sweet mellowness is gently swooned in daydreaming shuffles of mallowy kaleidoscopic ripples which by our reckoning is the loveliest thing we’ve heard since David Bridie’s fragile ‘tender pray’ first reared itself upon Aussie teen angst soap ‘the secret life of us’ all those years ago, of course admirers of Paul Kelly are strongly advised to check in. http://www.soundcloud.com/kiddfeather/kidd-feather-sirene
No sooner do we file away one nugget then in quick pursuit along comes another. Alas no information on this just a heads up from their press folk saying we’d love it. Damn they were right. Opening cut from the new EP from Kill for Company – incidentally titled ‘bag of doubts’ – is ripped in the kind of gnarling grind gouging that once upon a time bled through the stoner grunge blues grooves of no lesser band than Nirvana, this babe cuts pout cool shapes across a seriously damaged and wiring riffage courting the kind of animalistic sleaze swagger that occasionally reared its head on platters bearing the name the Make Up upon their hides, add in to the mix the presence of some killer beatnik growled glam and the dimpling of some nifty garage styled 60’s keys and you have yourself a purring and pouting pebbles throwback.
Getting beyond the ridiculous now for here’s another drop dead dansette dandy this time courtesy of Mikey Georgeson and the Civilised Scene. The fourth single via pop-z by all accounts which for us depressingly means we’ve missed three thus far but hey ho there’s the promise of three more in the forthcoming three months. Is this dude mad or what. ‘till it’s over’ – blimey what can I say – quite possibly the most perfect thing on planet pop right now and something that ought to be tuned into immediately by all those of you who’ve lain awake at night imagining Divine Comedy rummaging through a Bacharach and David sonic cook book channelling Anthony Newley and Tony Christie, an outsider brat pack carousel dreamt up by Jarvis Cocker swirled in cabaret, big stage, big band, lush symphonic noir sophistication all drizzled in a glitzy easy pop 60’s classicism. http://www.soundcloud.com/popianosz/till-its-over-reviewer-copy
If you were to pinpoint Vomitface’s ‘sloppy joe’s’ on pop’s great map or better still a Pete Frame family tree it would lurk somewhere grimacing and jabbing two fingers aloft as the fucked up sibling of Nirvana’s ’sliver’. scowled in a swamp dragged grizzled blues petulance, it draws upon the fraught dislocated fuck you gouging of pussy galore in collusion with a serious attitude issues Babes in Toyland. Edgy, unloved and blatantly feral it arrives suffocated in a thick throat throttling grind that impacts like tiny seismic eruptions all curdled in a killer sluggish big bearded stoner growl that veers from moments of tranquil prowling calm to fractured vents of wiring psychosis. Comes pulled from their self titled debut EP out via bad companion where it’ll arrive as a strictly limited edition of 133 7’s of which just 33 will come pressed up puke green splatter marbled vinyl – one of which we want should they be reading. http://www.soundcloud.com/prescription-pr/vomitface-sloppy-joe/s-c09rQ
Really must nab a copy of the latest Bill Pritchard album ‘a trip to the coast’ – I swore we had a copy but I’ll be buggered if we can lay hands to it. Anyway second download single from the set gathers together ‘in June’ and ‘yeah yeah girl’ – the former – which I should add here we just can’t get enough of – is deliciously decorated and dandified in the murmured afterglow of a ‘respect’ era Robyn Hitchcock and the Egyptians and comes adorably quivered in snaking struts and a subtle waft of honey glowed west coast drizzled sumptuousness that admirers of both the Weather Prophets and the Loft may do well to check out. In truth I can’t really call it when recommending the best side for the flip ‘yeah yeah girl’ is crushed in a distantly reflective paisley pop hue rippled in a sweetly caressing chime chirping bitter sweetly curdling fading beauty that much recalls Kevin Tihista and Michael Shelley. Via tapete records.
Alas no sound links or information for that matter on this, new thing from the Greasy Licks ‘into the night’ is the lead out cut of a spanking three track nugget and shuffles along curdled in a tight as a gnats back passage wiring side winding gouging to come on like some dust croaked preacher blues beauty that’s fallen from the late 60’s and in a sun baked haze is afoot doing the rounds around the Mississippi belt serving soul smoked sermons. Copies are being sought for full review as I write.
We here are of the belief that you’ll be hard pushed to find anything as quite off the radar as this in the current crop of new releases circling planet pop. Again no accompanying info on this which is a shame but to make up for the lack of detail you can apparently download this honey for free from the web links on the you tube page. A quite bewildering release from Josephine and the Artizans – ‘dies irae’ is a tempestuous rollercoaster buckled and braced in a formidable culture clash of opposing melodic worlds where punk zoid string arrangements, storm warring operatic chorals and street cool hip hop rhapsodies come colliding to craft a frenzied carnival of sound that forms a flame hot bridge between classical and modern sonic tongues.
New album ‘meteorites’ is looming close on the horizon, judging by the press seen so far its had a mixed reception and as mentioned in previous missives from what we’ve heard its shaping up to be the Bunnies most accomplished set since ‘reverberation’. heralding the albums imminent arrival is ‘lovers on the run’ – which we are happy to say finds the Bunnymen rediscovering their mojo and turning the clock back to the halcyon days of the early to mid 80’s. now in truth I’d be the first to pour critical scorn, they pretty much had it all – peerless live – in fact only the cold grandeur of the Banshees ‘ju-ju‘ tour ever compared close in terms of electricity and celebration, in McCulloch a front man not only blessed with an acid tongue but someone so cocksure and arrogant he made later rent a quote ‘pop stars’ seem positively Saturday tea time and tame and tardy to boot (hello Morrissey) and a band whose first four albums are without question probably the finest quartet ever to have graced a turntable. however there’s been something depressingly lacking and amiss in recent years, even ’flowers’ – a particular favourite around here was at best patchy and at worst a ghost treading former glories, while McCulloch’s last solo album – was – and I’m being mindful that impressionable young folk may be reading – f****** woeful. maybe we’ve all grown up still clutching to our former youth and always expecting so much more – I’ll leave that with you to decide. And with that when ’market town’ reared up on our radar a little while back – there was a good deal of – not anticipation – but rather more anxiety afoot in our gaff, an anxiety which I’m happy to say quickly dissipated. Likewise with ’lovers on the run’ – more immediate this time of asking this finds the Bunnies time tunnelling their way back ’87 into 5th album environs, darkly mercurial and adrift in shadowy 60’s honeycombs, the waltzing John Barry styled Venetian arpeggios cast a shade adorned soft psych dinking for Mac to impart his trademark smoked croon across.
We are in the middle of putting together a wordy begging request in the hope of securing a copy of this ‘un – in truth I’m suspecting that in the coming days, weeks and no doubt months – this set will be vying for turntable love with Electric Citizen’s debuting long player platter. Now in truth we used to get loads of metal postcard releases until we fell off their mailing list and they stopped replying to our emails – how strange – so there was admittedly an air of we’ll give that one a miss then – ha ha – until we actually had a sneak peak of the cuts inside. Third album from the Cambodian Space Project entitled ’whiskey Cambodia’ is due to surface sometime July and we suggest those of you who are adoring of 60’s psych folk – think Jefferson, Grateful, Curved Air and the sounds of the legendary summer loving beatnik festivals – ought to be putting cash aside in readiness to exchange for – for this is something else. This collective headed up by Julien Poulsen and Srey Thy has had its ranks bolstered by the inclusion of some notable motown legends – Dennis Coffey for one and mix up their repertoire by covering classic Cambodian covers from the 60’s along with original penned material as away of preserving the lost sounds of that region. We here have been a little smitten by the albums parting cut – the title track as it happens – a gloriously sultry and trippy mantra that’s guaranteed to blow minds and set wigs alight mainly for its seductive snake charming tablatures and hotly swarthy middle eastern mosaics all dimpled with spectral soft psych codas which in truth sound as though emerged through the lysergic transcendental haze of a bong tooting session of the master musicians of the bukkake. Utterly stunning and out there.
No sound links with which to serenade you with I’m afraid but we managed to root this out of you tube just for you dear reader – here’s the band performing said track at last years world village festival
Doe eyed and demurred in a sweetly hazel chipped bouquet of velveteen chimes rippled in a faraway floral framing and dreamily twinkled in a lazy eyed love note there’s much affection in our gaff for the fragile ‘the bees song’ by Clara Barker. Pulled from her second album ’fine art and the breslins’ out now via small bear. The set itself comes with an additional 4 track selection when purchased through band camp as a way of saying thanks. As to ‘the bees song’ itself – well simply put – four minutes of beautified spring hued blissfulness softly courted, teased and dimpled in affectionate crushes whilst reclining thoughtfully on a sun showered porch, which if I’m not very much mistaken ought to find adoring homes with the Spit n’ Polish and Shoeshine brigade.
This is edgy stuff and creepy with it, so creepy you can feel the beads of tension coursing down your spine. Safe to say you’ve probably never heard Pere Ubu sound this minimal, sparse and un-pere-ubu. ‘road to Utah’ is your 50’s styled b-movie shock of paranoia and dark psychosis cast upon a monochrome mooring spooking the listening space in mutant mosaics that chill loosely to a ’human fly’ like vibe whilst slung in the boot there’s the squirreling jazz detailing of shadowy imps mooching about playing peek a boo, like a darkly macabre Tom Waits circus driven into an unsuspecting town by Beefheart. One freaky dude and rumoured to be appearing on Fire this coming winter as part of their ‘carnival of souls’ set. The video incidentally is lifted from the horror flick of the same name.
And there we were a review or so ago mentioning Spit n’ Polish and Shoeshine and who should rear up on our radar but Francis Macdonald – head honcho of said imprints and one time Teenage Fanclub and BMX Bandits sticks man. This came our way via a face book message from Harry Pye who collaborates with Mr MacDonald on ‘sympathy for jean-luc goddard’ – a devilishly dainty slice of sunny soft pop that the likes of which these days trundle at alarming pace from out of celebrated sound houses such as Matinee and Elefant – the latter of whom we’ll be mentioning later at some point. Kissed with a wistfulness that sits shyly somewhere between the butterflies of love and the trembling blues stars, this lulling honey crusted nugget is caressed in a carefree flightiness shimmering and radiating feel good vibes throughout your listening space whilst speckled with a lazy eyed aura that’s subtly drizzled in an alluring 60’s toned Francophile pop aura. The video incidentally features art by such luminaries as Beefheart, Byrne and Crumb as part of the ’this is our art, this is our music’ exhibition earlier this year.
Email received from the ensemble / artist with just a sound cloud link, nothing less nothing more – rather mysterious and enigmatic don’t you think with the only clue to be found that he / she / they may or – as the case may be – may not reside in Vancouver. ‘chilling spree’ be the name of the track and its by dead hippie squadron, a drifting dream weaved slice of otherworldly ambient apparitions sweetly dinked in ghostly harmonium chorals (or is it an accordion – never can tell) from out of which wheezes a Parisian flavouring that softly nods to a lights out and demurred clandestine meeting happened upon by Landshipping and L’Augmentation all metered out to a lolloping backdrop of campfire signatures and lost and wandering bitter sweet western themes – incidentally can be downloaded for free – the words loosely assembled thus ‘don‘t‘ -‘look’ – ’a’ – ’gift’ – ’horse’ – ’in’ – ’the’ – ’mouth’ readily spring to mind. http://www.soundcloud.com/dead-hippie-squadron/chilling-spree
Looks like being a busy time in the forthcoming weeks for the abandon buildings imprint what with outings due imminently from the likes of Wolke and Melodium (the latter of whom we’ve not had the pleasure of hearing for many a year and feared had disappeared). Before those descend however something of a little cutie from set in sand is due to land shortly and with it no doubt to follow a primary directive to seduce turntables and headphones alike. In a label collaboration with Audio Dregs, ‘what is this place’ is a murmuring glitch glowed gem which judging by the evidence heard via ‘sifting in sans’ ought to send admirers of a youthful ISAN and Plone into listening delirium. This ice thawed clock working charm harvests dinky oriental motifs to its sleepy headed frame to weave them in hypnotic orbs of lonesome sweetness which by these ears sound not unlike delightfully fragile toybox chuckles.
Sent ahead on a reconnaissance detail ahead of their forthcoming ‘similarity’ album for ninety nine records, ‘how shall the dust storm start?’ reveals a mercurial spectrum of sound at play from progressive Mathian heavyweights Eyot. across seven minutes this cascading gem reveals its headspace located in panoramic post rock landscapes with its hand indelibly tutored and informed in classical and jazz instruction. Both tender and free flowing, its an intricate sonic symphony that veers from mellowing moments of idling tranquillity to busying braids that threaten a tempestuous turbulence that never quite arrives, measured and romantically dimpled its arced by cantering key flurries and breezily swirling Brontean pastorals all armoured by swathes of needling lock grooved riffs which once assured and assumed in detail, depth and density converge for a climatic finale much in the style of Mountain. http://www.soundcloud.com/eyot/how-shall-the-dust-storm-start
New from the much admired Jezus Factory imprint is a collection of guitar based improvisations from Craig Ward. Entitled ’new third Lanark’ the set comprises of five suites recorded way back in November 2011 in a bedroom and brought to life by being run through a series of processing devices. For those not quite up to speed on these things – me included – a truncated view of Mr Ward’s resume would read one time memberships of Deus, Ih8 Camera, the summer of Mars, the love substitutes and the excellently named though quite possibly politically incorrect Elton Genocide. ’new third Lanark’ finds Mr Ward voyaging into territories more commonly associated with the likes of Wil Bolton, Yellow6 et al. ambient dream sequences hollowed out and sculptured into stilled glacial montages. Like passing visions in the night, Ward for the best part crafts a crystalline and mesmeric star twinkled lullaby suite drawn together by a waltzing courtship of bowed instruments and flotillas of spacey
celestial opines rippled in minimalist fanfares (as on the seafaring on lunar tides like title track ‘new third Lanark‘). Here you’ll encounter the bitter sweet ache of the forlorn drone swathes of ’the Tenant’ and the crystal tipped opaque splendour of the murmured ’tropic of bennett’. these cavernous leviathans sumptuously coalesce to manifest into all manner of lunar lilted tripping woozy montages on ’blazes as in Dixon’ wherein things take on a glorious spectral sci-fi route very much traversing a glacial axis as that found on the end credits for Barry Gray’s ’UFO’ score after that is having been flashed through the BBC Radiophonic sonic spectrum and tweaked, one imagines, by Louis and Bebe Barron. Darker still, the parting ‘Lemo’ spirit walks beyond the veil, or so it would seem, ghostly apertures, dislocated and fracturing chorals drifting momentarily through the ether, there’s a stilled elegant reverence present throughout though even that fact can’t help you dislodge the feeling that once submerged your adrift and floating in the minds sub-consciousness. Comes housed in a dinky looking digi pack sleeve replete with, as the press release points out, a portrait of a little boy on the front.
I’ll let you in to a little secret, but shhh – don’t tell anyone. Automat’s self titled debut for Bureau B is well on the way to being our favourite album of the year so far. There I’ve said it. This is smoking hot and as mentioned in previous despatches earlier this year, when we got an early warning call about its imminent appearance, it is something else and dare I say the finest thing put out by Bureau B to date. Not only that but well worth seeking out is their Record Store Day split 12 inch with Kreidler (who as it happens appear here a little later). Automat are a dubtronic hyper craft headed up by Jochen Arbeit, Achim Farber and zeitblom – their collective resume is a who’s who of vital underground sounds – Einsturzende Neubauten, Die Haut, Prag and Sovetskoe Foto. Automat have influential friends among whom count Lydia Lunch, Blixa Bargeld and Genesis Breyer P-Orridge. These friends appear as guest readers on three of the tracks narratives. So that’s the introductions done with. To the album then. Seven track, total listening time 43 minutes, the best 43 minutes you’ll experience all year especially if your musical radar is transmitting on frequencies picking up PIL, Astralasia, Orb, Depth Charge and many more besides. Automat operate under the principle of less is more. They do this by the exquisite navigation of narrow sound structure confines and like musical magpies create melodic mutations that drift between dub, space groove, ambience, post punk and beyond. ’Automat’ opens to the locked down dub Dadaist groove of ’THF’ – a smoking hot mooching subtronic nugget curdled in arabesque mantras and spaced out in a hyperreal hypno grooving all gridlocked in soft psych shimmers and sounding not unlike a face off between Depth Charge and John 3:16 with Loop refereeing the melee. ’SXF’ is sumptuously cradled in a sparsely grounded cosmic funk coiling all trip wired with kind of trance teased mind expanding mosaics that once upon a time was the given remit of the Magick Eye imprint and here dinked with lushly treated tropicalia mosaics whose purr nods to the aural odysseys once crafted out by Banco de Gaia. Up next the frankly spanking ’the streets’ is a killer slab of grizzled dub psych noir that finds Lydia Lunch lost in the moment and cutting cool shapes in the shadows of the ghetto grime. Stripped to the core and gouged in a hollowed minimalist shelling Genesis Breyer P-Orridge does his best Burroughs impersonations on the sparse and muted pulsar prowling Suicide like ’mount tamalpais’ which frankly has to be heard not least because it just sounds so off the radar, one for those attuned to the wares of the Revolutionary Corps of Teenage Jesus methinks. Those of you having ever found yourself haunted by sleepless nights imagining up dream team band collaborations – say for instance the Shamen and Cabaret Voltaire for arguments sake will do well to hook up to the stoned out and playfully robo-funky studio 54 meets mid 80’s hacienda head trip that is ’TXF’. by the time ’am schlachtensee’ arrives your already resigned to having lost your headspace in the third eye voids, Blixa Bargeld takes up the reigns here for something that might have older readers reaching for their stash of New Fast Automatic Daffodils platters for closer comparison. ’CWW’ wraps up matters bringing things full circle to revisit the middle eastern environs visited upon by ’THF’ for a bonged out full on panoramic tripped out fringe flicking hit. Awesome in a word.
Plying his trade since 1999, I’m a tad embarrassed to say that as far as I recall we’ve never had the work of American singer songwriter Jon Simons grace our listening space and turn on our turntable. But that’s about to change with the emergence in to view of ’the love troll’. a ghostly toned love note cradled in eerie enchantment and cut to such a frail and fragile framing that it descends and departs in the blink of an eye as though an apparition. Add in the spectral dimpling of a soft psych tongue and the hollowing macabre murmur of shadowy 60’s motifs a la the Autumn Leaves and you have something disturbingly divine that ought to allure the oddfellows casino brigade.
Punch you out effervescent toe tapping pop from Dexters. ’I’ll never find another you’ is by all accounts the Sun’s England anthem and apparently the people’s choice as the unofficial World Cup theme which begs the question what is the official song because I don’t know about you but there’s been a distinct lack of expectant cheer for the forthcoming gathering of the football nations which is due to start in a matter of weeks. Much like the Eurovision song contest (just passed) there’s plenty of flag waving until the event starts and we quickly realise how under whelmed we are. Still console yourself with the fact that our over priced ’soccer stars’ will be out by the time we face Italy and hot footing to their holiday destinations leaving us to mourn another 4 years waiting for the next disappointment – or am I being a bit optimistic. Now World Cup / football songs are a tricky thing, career suicide – there have been many – okay ’three lions’ caught something of the nations optimism and lead the flag waving britpop brigade, but ‘this time’, ‘back home’ and ‘world in motion’ – come on – Scotland always fared better – wasn’t it the Big Yin who did ‘we have a dream’ while I never realised that it was down to Lonnie Donegan to be the ’66 mascot with ’world cup Willie’. Colourbox all said wins hands down all the time for ’86’s unofficial World Cup Theme. And so to Dexters – well whatever ’I’ll never find you’ lacks in finesse it more than makes up for in all out attack no nonsense footwork, it might be acute, direct and a tad n your face rippled as it is in premier league power punk popping motifs nut megged with dinky stratospheric riffs and anthem fervour in a bullish 4-4-2 formation but hey its our unofficial footy theme and that’s that. http://www.soundcloud.com/dawbellpr
This is quite the most gorgeous thing we’ve heard – today that is. New thing from the legendary and around here at least utterly admired and adored Plaid. Ripped from their 10th Warp album ‘reachy prints’ – incidentally out today – the video for ‘wallet’ is directed by Sabrina Ratte and is inspired by things found in – you guessed it – wallets – pre digitised nick nacks such as receipts, photos, business cards and such like. The track applies Plaid’s minima maxima detailing, gloopy motifs dinked in crunchy glitch and adrift in the orbital belt of Stereo lab’s ‘cobra phases’ slowly yawning, stretching and waking wherein the dainty melodies cascade to play an affectionate star twinkled game of peek a boo all the time tumbling seductively to the fanciful pastoral cosmicalia flurries of fortdax as was.
Seems an age since we had cause to mention Peter Broderick in these pages, but breaking cover soon is a collaborative mini album with Greg Haines whose denovali ’where we were’ full length we mentioned to much praise a little while back. Out via erased tapes ‘greg gives peter space’ finds the duo sharing a love for all things spacey and dub like, from it ‘the drive’ has been sneaked out as a taster and a trippy blighter it is to smoked in minimalism and cooled in the kind of spacious nocturnal murmurings that used to hog the remix flip sides of platters by Dark Captain Light Captain and Seeland for the admired Loaf imprint once upon a time which just when you least expect unfurls into a gloriously homely campfire rapture that just might have Tunng green with envy. http://www.soundcloud.com/greg-gives-peter-space-the-drive
Out in a few weeks via paradYse records is the debuting 7 inch from London based collective Liu Bei. Both haunting and majestic you can’t help but be swept along amid the emotional cyclone exerted by ’infatuation’ – all at once elegant, entrancing and epic, its panoramic spectral symphonia aches with such defence crushing force the likes of which we’ve rarely encountered this side of a Low Anthem opus, and that’s without mentioning its hymnal cradling. http://www.soundcloud.com/liubeiwins/infatuation
Latest signatures to the Neurot imprint YOB have unveiled details of their forthcoming slab of grimness due to rise sometime this Autumn. Titled ’clearing the path to ascend’ the video below has surfaced by way of an initiation into the sonic inner temple, a sickly swamp dragged stoner slo-core slab of un-fun heavily claustrophobic and sewn together into a hulking and slavering life sucking aural black hole. So fucked up I reckon they kick puppies for fun. Seriously – not for the feint of heart.
One of these days I swear I will get around to indexing these some 400 plus missives of course for simplicity and practicalities sake for you dear listener / reader but also for, not quite my own amusement, but in order to aid what is of late becoming a fading and failing memory that can instantly recall the most ridiculously obscure cuts from some hitherto long forgotten mid week Peel play list from the summer of 1987 and yet will be buggered to call to mind something he played scarcely three days ago. I waffle on like this because I swear at some point or another we’ve encountered Mountain Bird on our musical travels. Mountain Bird hail from the land of enigmatic pop – Sweden – a nation who i swear are cloning pop starts at a phenomenal rate in a secret bid to take over the world. ’the visitor’ arrives culled from a forthcoming Universal released EP entitled ’Cosmos II’ and finds the collective bending (mercurially) the boundaries between atmos (pop), post rock, progressive and dream pop, a beautifully svelte and tenderly crushed quiet epic is what’s on the table. Now back to the opening ambit for if we did have a neat index listing for these reviews we’d be able to tell you in an instant what this reminds me of – I might need help here – but way back around 2004/5 there was a single ’iris’ put out I swear by rough trade by quite possibly plumerai though I’m erring towards a name similarly spelt – its annoying not being able to reference it exactly. But there you go one for the puzzle breakers among you. As to ’the visitor’ itself a delicate feast of whispering garlands teased out by cantering keys trimmed by needle light mellowing siren strobe riffs all punctuated by moments of endearing emotional arrest, a captivating cavalcade of sun glowed hope set to a divine sonic stage that seductive unfurls and blossoms from out of vapour trailing spectral ghosts into full on vividly rich panoramics. Simply put – crushing. http://www.soundcloud.com/adam_ohman/thevisitor-1
Taking a leaf out of Crystal Jacqueline’s note book who happened to cover the same cut last year for the esteemed Fruits de Mer imprint, here’s Powder Blue stamping their own indelible shimmering psych seal on one of the Stones finest moments that being ‘play with fire’. in the hands of this Saskatoon four piece this cornerstone of darkly weaved spell crafting is seductively swirled in mind expanding mosaics and left to trip out to the smoked out and sultry blossoming of Asiatic brass fanfares – between all that a hazy stoned out psych carnival is afoot weaving its potent mysticism. Loved in a word. http://www.soundcloud.com/powder-blue-play-with-fire-cover
Can definitely picture this setting pulses a racing amid the coolest club floors, more of that subtronic dub house that we love so much around here this time providing a welcome return to these pages for Igores Tamborista courtesy of the sub ten minute original mix of ‘last party’. this Balearic cosmicalia spirals and shape shifts with such seductive audacity its like a one stop party mix gathering together the best moments of electronic dance in all its multi hybrid forms, amid the pulsar beats and motifs of the 90’s underground trance / techno and house scenes the old guard elements Vangelis and Moroder are sveltely dream weaved into this lush panoramic lunar odyssey as it purrs on cruise control with its stereophonic settings turned to wow. http://www.soundcloud.com/fantasista2016/igores-tamborista-last-partyoriginal-mix
We made brief mention a few days ago about the various collaborative projects being undertaken by Philippe Gerber / John 3:16. Mr Gerber kindly sent over links for the forthcoming mnipk release which will be getting love and attention and indeed a review sometime next week. However for now here’s sneak peak from a forthcoming set that sees him joining minds with Robert L Pepper as Eyryx. ’seuls contre tous’ is a nifty slice of kosmiche wooziness the type of which at one time or another Echoboy used to engage in, however scratch a little deeper and what emerges through the psychotropic haze is a weird and warped manifestation of old school Jean Michel Jarre classicism as were rephrased through the crooked lysergic viewfinder of the Astral Social Club and something which makes the expectant arrival of the completed set something to red letter on your calendar. http://www.soundcloud/eyryx/eyryx/2-eyryx-seuls-contre-tous
Believe me when I say this is likely to be the most infectious thing to hit your head space since the last slab of aural addiction we mentioned. From AK /DK – a Brighton based duo whose debuting long player ‘synth + drums + noise + space’ is just out to rapturous applause (cue begging missives being fired off in an attempt to nab a copy), this is the mind blowing head phonic trip that is ‘Maxwell’s waves’ – in short 4 minutes of reality bending wooziness that manages to mutate mercurially lock grooving elements of Moroder’s ‘I feel love’, Lipps Inc’s ’funky town’ and the ministry into an acid psychotropic sonic paint bomb replete with kaleidoscopic hazes and all manner tab dropping trippiness that all said is liable to have you all a gaga . http://www.soundcloud.com/projectamusic/ak-dk-maxwells-waves
Would it really be unfair to call C’mon Tigre a twelve headed musical hydra, this dozen strong collective certainly appear to swerve and shimmy the usual – for simplicity sake – generic boxing on their quietly masterful debut single ’federation tunisienne de football’. blending Pere Ubu like dialects, this strangely addictive nugget shuffles and zigzags its way past your defences cooled in angular white funk motifs dinked in jazzy mosaics and studiously courted in irregular time signatures that skittishly bop and weave to a stuttering mutant post rocking carnival that mooches crookedly around your headspace to reveal a collective mindset indelibly informed of the mid 90’s Chicago scene. Add in the occasional soulful licks and the frankly jaw dropping spidery rock a hula riffmanship that briefly emerges to wow you at the 3,34 mark and you have something that ought to raise the eyebrow of those purists among you so digging of tortoise and the sea and cake. Flip side cut ‘fan for a twenty years old human being’ weaves into worlds more commonly found populating the much missed Picked Egg imprint, drizzled in noir-ish jazzy atmospherics swirled in Arabesque charms this slightly out of it slice of late night smoking jacket bliss takes its cue from Bablicon and weave its mind expansive mosaics into worlds not so uncommonly found on platters from the likes of Tubby Hayes.
Due soon on stone tape recordings a by all accounts genteel willowy fairy dust speckled folk gem from you are wolf who is to friends, admirers and various relatives better known as Kerry Andrew. ‘hawk to the hunting gone’ is a beautifully frail ode to the countryside that’s sweetly harvested upon the same traditionally sourced fragile murmurs as the recent ‘dapple’ set by Dan Haywood, catching our ears, attention and affection the collection parting ‘the bird’s courting song’ hints at a faraway sensitivity whose lineage draws its roots to the Watersons and further still back to Vashti Bunyan, a beguiling bouquet of tranquillity chirped and teased in poetic nursery folk all lovingly signed off by a little chuckle. Guess we’ll be needing to hear the whole thing now – I suspect likewise, you to. http://www.stonetaperecordings.bandcamp.com/album/hawk-to-the-hunting-gone
More enigmatic Swedish pop, sounding not unlike a doomed and bruised Walker Brothers channelling the Wild Swans themselves paired up mournfully with Zerra 1 tapping out emotionally crushing last stands. Well that what the parting ‘flower in you’ had us in mind of which in case your wondering is from the new album ‘choirs of blessed youth’ by Principe Valiente. This tender and tortured epic comes glazed in the same hymnal stately grandeur of Joy Division at their most haunted and bleakly beautiful, an absolute tidal wave of jaw dropped bruised euphoria steeled in tear stained tribulations and an overpowering ache. Atmospheric, majestic and utterly transfixing – stunning in a word. Somewhere else the crystalline ‘temporary man’ has an air of dark delights being conjured by a classic era early 80s Sisters of Mercy in a sonic séance with the March Violets with Gene Loves Jezebel skulking in the shadows taking notes.
We don’t mind admitting that this set has been burrowing sizable holes in our headspace since arriving here to tantalise our turntable. Much like label mates Automat (see elsewhere here) Kreidler’s latest Bureau B opus ’ABC’ operates in deliberately forged restrictive mediums, from these minima settings a maxima sound is drawn forth. Divided up into 6 suites there’s no denying that ‘ABC’ finds Kreidler on top of their game, the production slick and swarthy, the rhythmic detailing tightly disciplined almost hypnotic with the reference markers undeniably forged as though through wired from out of the hive mind of Warp only to be retuned and skinned down by an early 80’s club sound pioneering Cabaret Voltaire (case in point being the intricately layered and lazy eyed space dub glitch garland that is ’ceramic’). ’ABC’ doesn’t grab you by the balls or veer out of the starting blocks straight into your face up close and personal. No there’s something more distracting here. Instead there’s a more subtle reasoning afoot, its more to do with the lock grooving rhythmic mantras laying tiny eggs in your headspace that hatch and silently party in your psyche at 4am in the morning when all is at rest. More fluent and fleshed out than previous Kreidler adventures, here drifting subtronic futuro funk flurries mooch out mind expanding mosaics that skirt ever so subtly with dub dialects so ably evidenced recently on the sets heralding track ’alphabet’ whose super chilled lunar flotillas had us in mind of the mesmeric workouts committed to flip sides by Front 242 (the Front 242 markers are in sharper focus on ‘modul’ – perhaps the sets stand out track – presaged as it is into the dark modular pulsar waves transmitted by a playful Add N to X here found tuning into Pan Sonic frequencies and getting jiggy with it not to mention having its dance floor lasers set for stun). Elsewhere ’nino’ opens the proceedings laying down a soothing smoking hot and sultry snake charm whose side winding motifs come choked in the thick incense of head swirling Arabesque aromas. Showered in a softly purred elegance ’destino’ is possessed of an alluring earth beat braiding whose milky lunar mirages moonwalk to a robotoid funk tongue that recalls Herbie Hancock leaving everything to coalesce and conclude on the skittering earthy ju ju jamboree that is the flighty and clearly flipped ’tornado’. classy.
Let you in to a little secret, late 80’s we kinda adored Godflesh – you can blame Peel for that and his erstwhile obsession of playing earache sonic fodder on a regular basis. So here I am now in 2014 picking myself up off the floor on hearing the blighters are back with their first fresh recordings in over 13 years. Bugger me. Out via Broadrick’s own Avalanche imprint first week in June looms the ’decline and fall’ EP. Featuring four new cuts from which the Godflesh ones have sneaked out lead track ’ringer’. 6 minutes of post everything tribal ju-ju, this dark and brooding cheerless bastard flatlines the voids and comes rippled in a withering and choking futility of locked grooved serrated chop chop riffs the kind of which old school admirers of Killing Joke will get evil to not to mention those of you who cut your ears upon the industrial grimness of 1919 and play dead will raise inquiring lugs and dig, stunningly oblique. http://www.soundcloud.com/godflesh-2/ringer
Last time out they were stealing peaks at the ‘diamond dogs’ songbook over Bowie’s shoulder whilst decorated in glitter and platforms for ‘heart and soul’ – it was an audacious blast of clinically threaded cool as you like retro buzz that pouted, purred and punched out your speakers with stardust zaps. This time of asking the Moons go all biff, bang pow on a pop art odyssey to the golden age of sci-fi b-movies for ‘body snatchers‘, its your classic space adventure ripped straight out of a strange tales comic book all speared in suspense, cliff hanging danger and the unknown replete with dramatic noir shredded kooky bubblegum glam gallops and hulking church key recitals dimpled in paranoia and acutely swirled in a dandified daubing of kaleidoscopic beat pop. Out via schnitzel and pulled from their forthcoming ‘mind waves’ full length. http://www.soundcloud.com/andycrofts/body-snatcherss-Niqkk
And so to the end credits, many thanks once again to Jet Wintzer of Schizo Fun Addict for stepping in to the breach to take up the Editorial reigns, Schizo Fun Addict are a rare pop species who mix weird folk, mind frying melodic mosaics and acid addled psychedelics they can often be spotted on rare occasions venturing briefly into pop world courtesy of fruits de mer records, current sonic happenings are a freaked version of Goblin’s ‘suspiria’ and a near album of the year ‘the sun yard’.
They can be found by tuning into http://www.soundcloud.com/schizofunaddict
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