Look what we sneaked online while you were sleeping…..part 7
more of the same, only different sounds…..and even stranger spellings….
Ah Christmas, don’t you just love it, contrived TV, crap films on the flicks – this year’s being the typically unseasonal heap of naffness that is Stars Wars and the dreaded Christmas song. The Christmas song first appeared 6 months before lil ol’ Jesus was born proving that the advertisers were a savvy lot even back then, no doubt sung by Clifford Richard because lets face it he’s been around forever and we’re none to blessed for the fact. These days the whole Christmas record market and chart has been hijacked by what can only be best described as karaoke from hell, the twisted crystallising of Warhol’s infamous 5 minutes of fame hawked around by TV networks descending upon right minded folk a fear of Saturday night telly and a loathing for formulaic pop trash. But let us not dwell on the horrors brought to bear by Cowell and the likes for we have by our side a seasonally adorned doll made in the blighters likeness which on occasion we jab with very sharp needles. I’m thinking those dudes over at Burger are similarly minded for they’ve gathered up a seasonal smorgasbord of Santa shimmering sing-a-longs courtesy of a humungous 5 and a half hour – yes you read right – a five and a half hour holiday mix tape featuring reputedly 124 tracks though ours only grumbling cues up 92 of the blighters. A tree gathering parade of artists you’ve probably have heard and adore some perhaps not so, though with a little nudging you may well, all in hearty spirit and belting out covers and originals alike with much gusto and merriment. But where to begin poses a problem, perhaps it seems about right that we should start our snowy sonic soiree by mentioning the two most popular cuts here – based of course on the listening stats, the honour of which in terms of affection appearing to go to Elephant Stone whose ‘christmas time (is here again)’ is a sitar shimmered soft psych smoker replete with tripping Santa’s and Beach Boys-esque harmonies. Following a short distance in the listening loves is Cassie Ramone’s ‘run Rudolph run’ – this sepia trimmed lovely is gauzed in a dreamy 50’s vintage all ghosted in the floaty ethereal willowyness of a youthful Animal Collective. Also eyed here, psyche alchemist Jacco Gardner visits upon us with ‘magic of the cold’ – a gorgeous lounge sentimental frosted in a hyper gliding magicalia of snow globed lullaby lilts not unlike, it has to be said, those etched out by the palace of swords all trimmed and decorated in ‘the box of delights’ murmur tones. Sounding like a familiar echo harking back to those much prized releases once upon a time issued out of the filthy little angels bedroom, the much loved around here, wax witches impishly arrive with ‘santa’s on the drugs, he’s got the xmas buzz’ – a slightly muted and sparsely cooled take on the Raincoats which does it for us while in sharp contrast the Hollyberries go full on hip shimmying and Spector-esque with the ever so cute ‘(I wanna go) surfin’ with Santa’. One of many personal picks is the smokily dinked ‘snowflakes fall’ by Juniper Rising which unless our ears do deceive is kissed with a Nancy Sinatra-ish demur beneath which the lolloping drift of a 50’s styled Cash shuffle smoulders. Also up there in the affection stakes is ‘regina caeli’ from the three o’clock – this babe coming curtsying in adoring hymnal chorals and the kind of glam psych wiring that admirers of mirror, mirror will do well to get their lobes around. Elsewhere those of you ever found wanting to wake up on a Christmas morning to hear the sounds of some Fuzztones meets the Mummies happening might well fancy Marshmallow Overcoat’s garage greeting ‘santa fuzz’ while there’s power punk a frolics aplenty gouging the grooves of blag dahlia’s ‘drinking up christmas’. Of course some of you may prefer some tinsel toned transcendentalism in which case Sitar outreach ministry’s lazy eyed Fahey-esque ‘rudolph’ should do pretty neatly. Also included here are the muffs with some nifty 50’s rock-a-hula ‘nothing for me’ and the mellow and lazy eyed ‘what is winter good for’ by the sudden death of stars found here sounding strangely like a super chilled Superimposers. Somewhere else more sepia bowed beauties comes in the shape of Idiot Glee’s re-telling of the immortal ‘white Christmas’ – this one arriving adorned in all manner of hazily glazed sleepy head steel opines while spruced up in Raspberries-esque motifs pizza time swagger in with ‘tu regalo’. Been way too long since dressy bessy invaded our listening space, nice to see the passing years have not diminished their craft in turning out tinglesome and tasty morsels of ear candy loveliness as ‘all the right reasons’ so ably provides evidence of. Those fancying a spot of three chord day-glo pop gruffness might be minded to park your sleigh somewhere by Hard Left’s ‘skinheads home for christmas’ a kind a seasonal slam dance around the wobbly tree by an assortment of Serious Drinking, Leatherface and Rezillos types. If 8bit wonky pop is your bag then jib kidder’s weirdly wonderfully warped ‘jingle bells’ might just fit the bill and distractively attract the odd passing listener. And be honest did you really think we’d part without mentioning an appearance by the cleaners from venus, here courtesy of the affectionate Alan Price-esque ‘cymbeline way’. And while R Stevie Moore’s shambling and slightly off road and rambling ‘santa claus on a cross’ might well on any given day be opted as the favourite moment here the honour instead goes to Shannon and the Clams’ acutely purred and lovelorn 50’s bubble groove ‘fat daddy’. https://soundcloud.com/burgerrecords/sets/burger-records-holiday-mix
I’ll be signing up for one of these when they finally emerge early 2016, the latest limited release from handstitched* will be graced by the appearance of, what sounds on initial listens, like the finest Maps and Diagrams moment to date. ‘the cloud chorus’ arrives in a strictly limited 50 only CD-r pressing ,these crystalline musical ice sculptures collectively assemble like a dreamy collage of bowed lunar carousels, shimmer toning starry orbital lullabies and deeply immersive surround sound sensory into the voids of mind space. https://soundcloud.com/handstitched/maps-and-diagrams-the-cloud-chorus-preview
Came recommended by the guys at the esteemed headquarters of Fruits de Mer, this is Mancunian combo Cabbage with their debuting salvo ‘Kevin’ – a pulse popping slab of strut gouged effervescence coolly coded in sci-fi psychotronic day-glo dimples all whacked out upon an itching and infectious bedding of fringe kaleidoscopically parting freaky frenz. Nuff said. http://ahcabbage.bandcamp.com/releases
Again no information on this, in truth I really wish I had the time to invest in this, a free download which I can tell you now is a whopping 1.3gb in size featuring 164 tracks contributed by artists from a wide spectrum of sonic disciplines ranging from ambience to experimental noise stopping at all points between. Entitled ‘the Xmas compilation 2015, this mammoth set comes issued courtesy of Norwegian imprint Petroglyph and features amongst its grooves a new cut from Sonologyst who you may well recall us mentioning briefly a little while back (fear not those long promised mentions for the year end experimental sound releases will soon be populating these pages). This is a newly peeled track entitled ‘the waiting ground’ – a leviathan like Tibetan mantra ghosting the desert dry wastelands like some watchful celestial, the bowed flute arrangements braided by foreboding heralds of scorching white hot dronal tides opine and harmonise with a becoming forlorn siren-esque mystique imparting the kind of euphoric riptides much recalling John 3:16. Elsewhere here you’ll encounter Colin Stevens quite divine ‘a frosty Sunday’ which in truth sounds not unlike the imagined passing through the veil into the white light, very serene, ethereal and dare we say elegiac, similarly touched with the unworldly, Autumna’s ‘heavy glow’ is something of a bittersweet apparition cradled in loss and retrospection set upon a head bowing tear streaked epitaph ached in memories in regret. As said iu really wish I had more time to savour the delights within, however as a parting shot we cosy toed alongside tim kay’s ‘victorian christmas’ – not a Dickens message or sleigh bell in sight, instead a poised slow forming 8 minute odyssey, a liunar carousel of sorts emerging slowly and we should say teasingly briefly from the dark side of some hulking celestial to momentarily populate your listening space in a yearning radiance before quickly returning to the starry shadows. . https://archive.org/details/petroglyph416TheXmasCompilation2015
‘nurvel durd’….sounds like a character that Anthony Newley would have dreamed up, anyway this is Benbo who too much embarrassment we haven’t featured in a long while, in fact make that a long, long while, this is his latest in a line of monthly musical soirees,, this one being a catchy sunny day slice of floral trippiness accompanied by a quite amazingly surreal animation that portrays our protagonists falling down a kind of Wonderland rabbit hole, very classic era ‘Vision On’ if you ask me. http://benbo.ninja/blog/nurvel-durd/
On any ordinary day we’d have happily doodled oodles about the merits and keynote highs and lows of a two and a half hour podcast / mix tape but alas time constraints and a grumbling pile of releases and tracks that eye me eagerly waiting for a ear turn make it an unfeasible request / mission, which is a shame really because Odd Box’s best of 50 of the year reads in some respects like a much missed Peel festive 50 but without the annual occurrences of the Fall or the Wedding Present. Casting an eye on the list we did note selections from flying saucer attack, evans the death, ghostpoet, fever dream and sauna youth not to mention the inclusion of the manhattan love suicides who we thought had parted company many years ago to much sadness here. All said from what we’ve heard thus far, sitting pretty among all the fuzzy fizzing riffola you’ll encounter the near perfect and pristinely purred eerie summer who if I recall rightly we mentioned a little while back when they appeared on the box bedroom rebels imprint – who we will do our damnedest to feature in more detail having previously forgotten in all the excitement of last August. Anyhow this nugget is called ‘weird around you’ is your dogs danders love note hymn for all those of you suffering at the hands of shyness, you know those moments when your speaking to someone you adore from afar and it’s as though some imp has switched your bonce for the stupid head – been there and its painful, anyway this is gorgeous to the maximum all steeled in shade adorned 60’s shimmer kisses, look just listen to the blighter, third track in just after flying saucer attack and before two white cranes. https://throwthedogabone.wordpress.com/2015/12/06/podcast-favourites-of-2015/
Staying with oddbox records just a moment longer, the label are now taking pre-orders for the Wolf Girl full length platter ‘we tried’, due to cause frantic squabbling at the coolest record emporium counters this coming spring, the album comes pressed on a strictly limited wax – 300 in total – first 100 on yellow the rest on your trademark bog standard black. Of course its not the first time this punk pop pups have featured in these pages, much adored was their limited cassette outing on Soft Power way back last year going by the name ‘mama’s boy’. Serving as a teaser treat for the new platter ‘deep sea diver’ is one of those slow to burn cuties that’s carved in a sonic image much recalling the Shop Assistants, all spidery Fall-esque riffola bedded upon crookedly angular C-86 motifs which gather density and depth to assume a razor sharpening itching and infectious indie buzz towards its finale of the kind which frankly even Helen Love would admire with ever green envy. http://oddboxrecords.bandcamp.com/album/we-tried
In our spare time in between being spent building miniature replicas of the skyline populating London’s Thames waterfront out of piles of CD’s whilst writing a detailed monograph on the merits of the Nicaraguan nose flute in popular music, we do like to relax, ponder and cobble together lists of fantasy pop bands. We mention this because we’ve oft found ourselves musing on an alternative time line where Siouxsie Sioux had somewhere in ’76 taken a left turn and instead of hooking up with Severin and the Pistols anarchic circus, instead found herself in cahoots with the Au Pairs and Delta 5 as her backing band. Enter stage left Bent who hail from Brisbane, a trio who we suspect may well have been sneaking looks over our shoulder at said cobbled lists for ‘skeleton man’ is possessed of a bloodline that can trace its way back to ‘join hands’ gouged as it is in a edgy and twisted shadow cloaked psychosis while ‘where’s the fire’ is oozed in all manner of early fracturing Bauhaus-ian grooving and the kind of playful scab picking impishness that imagines Clare Grogan’s darker twin press ganged into katastrophy wife. Talking of Kat Bjelland, the fraying and unravelling ‘sock holes’ – incidentally the best thing here, creeps with glooming discontent like a prowling babes in toyland. http://moontown.bandcamp.com/album/bent-7
And it was only a day or two ago when we were wondering to ourselves – what the hell – or more is the point – where the hell did the Truth about Frank get to. In truth such wandering thoughts were provoked rather loosely by a television screening of the much maligned Hitchcock classic ‘the trouble with Harry’. But then as coincidences so do occur we happened across this slice of strangeness, if only we could pre-empt winning lottery numbers, taken from another of those hulking compilations posted up on the archive.org site – I think this one is 2gb in size, this is track 73 entitled ‘in articulo mortis by the truth about frank. Not quite your happy clappy family gathering pop music unless of course your chosen family happens to made up of mechanoids with gloomy depression issues and a fondness for morbidly gouged post apocalyptic dystopian death disco industrialonics all dinked in Dadaist binary pulsars – quite eerie and unsettling in an appliances are taking over mankind type way. Anyhow the collection entitled ‘Necktar 2017 volume VII’ – features 128 tracks drawn from across the globe harvesting offering from everything from dream pop to noise abstractia – a quick rummage through the list and we eye old friends Ummagma with a previously unheard nugget called ‘balkanofellini’ which finds them straying from their usual dream dazed orbital platform and swimming into the tripping oceanic worlds of down tempo noir dub which to these ears had us imagining a three headed hallucinogenic sonic hydra collected of Discordia, Massive Attack and Le Bleu personnel. Now clearly time being of the essence we’ve impishly opted to mention the sets parting shot which you probably won’t be to surprised to note is a 17 and a half minute sore thumb from Twin Realities Dreamers by the name ‘watching the surface from beyond oblivion’ which for the best part of its sonic gestation admittedly does sound like a melodic mausoleum spirited away in a glooming detachment pin pricked by progressive industrial grooves by the communicative chatter of sparring circuit boards, but stick with it for slowly emerging out of the psychotropic stoner droning fog at around the 10 minute mark a curious thing appears in the shape of a head-shrooming classical mystical folk arabesque of the type that might make even Anla Curtis coo with enviable admiration. https://archive.org/details/Necktar2017Volume7
Okay not that we are making excuses or any of the sort, but you might have to forgive our ears on this one for we’ve kinda lost our hearing momentarily and everything is sounding – rather annoying – as though its being played under water. But afflictions aside, current issue of the essential Vital Weekly is out and about, well I say issue, it seems they’ve dispensed with the old school reading booklets that they used to publish and send out and now – for want of a better word or phrase – reach out via a craftily cobbled together podcast, upon whose grooves you get to delight in the must have releases heading record emporium way shortly. One such release featured on #1013 is the very early 80’s inspired ‘playground’ by sad parade who do a pretty neat re-take on Magazine although here spiked a tad by Scouse angular posters Ellery Bop. Astrowind in sharp contrast serve up some slow to thaw astral ambience courtesy of the delicately dinked ‘kerosene seller’ which if anything out to have the radars of those admirers of early kranky releases buzzing frantically. Astrowind appear again a little later with the readily more animated ‘kedr’ and into the bargain serve notice of their monolithic cosmic credentials – think Aiden Baker. Similarly dreamy though opting for more celestial climes are Moloch whose ‘abstraktor wald 7’ is trimmed in a tear stained yearn that frankly you might feel advised go sit with hankies to hand. Arsene and Cisak and Oleksinski’s ‘3’ on the other hand appears to have clawed its way from the very depths of a bleak and forbidding dark Father Murphy psyche while there appears to be something off split personality afflicting mindvoid’s ‘yikilmayan adam’ as it lurches from edginess to disturbia. Now if my struggling hearing has it right then old man of the desert’s ‘a wolf’ – perhaps or favourite moment here – has something of Mountain about its wares, though that’lll be Mountain recaliberated by Van der Graaf Generator no less. While riding matters out to the end grooves are low cave sounds who if we didn’t know any better are obviously fans of Louis and Bebe Barron and why not I ask. https://www.mixcloud.com/vitalweekly/
Those of you with a squeamish disposition when it comes to pure white out terror might do well to turn away right this moment for here looms and lurks the latest cranium blending behemoth from extreme noise alchemist Bergegas Mati who on this occasion comes aided and abetted by Prinka Saraswati. ‘tiny number man’ is a searing sub seven minute aural atrocity, a true end of days doom draped tormenter filleted in crudely gouged scab scarring howls of harshening sonic brutality atop of which a grimly macabre monologue mockingly weaves its dead headed spell craft, truly disturbing stuff via the ever essential gerpfast kolektif imprint and available as a free download no less . https://soundcloud.com/bergegasmati/tiny-number-man-prinka-saraswati-x-bergegas-mati
Mentioned this lot way back here https://marklosingtoday.wordpress.com/2015/05/27/pokal/ when we found ourselves a tad smitten with a cut by the name ‘fancy lights’ from their ‘lights’ EP – well Stockholm based pokal have just dropped the rather fetching ‘one of those days’ which had memories of old fortuna pop and more pertinently track and field releases of old reawakened in our minds ear, gorgeously adored in a summers falling Autumnal rubbing and pressed ever so sweetly in the kind of mercurial pop twisting that much recalled the much missed Le Mans. That said leave the sound player track list rolling and you’ll encounter the aforementioned ‘lights’ EP whose leading cut ‘lighthouse’ passes for a remarkable take on the much loved and adored around here Oddfellows Casino. Frankly we need to hear more. https://soundcloud.com/pokal
word reaches us from afar, well facebook as it happens given we are currently quarantined from the outside world whilst labouring not only with hearing issues but both tooth and headaches making it a full set in the unholy trinity of annoying ailments. Still we eyed a little posting from moon dust, the gist of which was alerting us to the fact that he is planning a new release for the new year, tomorrow if I recall rightly, entitled ‘new year’s day’. Hopefully not the U2 version we hasten to add. Also there was mention of collaborations afoot, the details of which we’ve foolishly mislaid but can with a deal of certainty recall one of the chosen conspirators as being Tante Meli whose sound cloud page has recently burst into life with postings aplenty with this one catching our ear. ‘Cosmic dawn’ features a recently reworked remix between Tante Meli – Melanie Schieffer and Guitarphil7 – Phil Currie – a gorgeously floaty dream weaving astral ride softly seduced in lunar wisps and murmur toned love notes which together caress and coalesce like some divine transcendental space spiritual. https://soundcloud.com/guitarphil7/cosmic-dawn-by-guitarphil7-tante-meli
again another release where for the life of me I can’t recall where exactly or from who this came recommended. This comes issued by, as far as we can tell, a new Greek imprint by the name in the cities of your eyes, a compilation cobbled together from which proceeds generated therein are going to charities offering assistance to refugees. Anyhow as per usual we’ve scarcely had time to sample its fullest charms though can say it features a gathering of talents currently occupying the experimental / ambient / drone and out there margins of the sonic spectrum all shoehorned into a 23 track groove space. Time restraints aside we did immediately veer towards three of their number, first of which the much admired Edward Ka-Spel chips in with ‘the ministry of disinformation’ – a slice of darkly woven dystopian shadow play, typically ghosted in shadings of Barrett-esque psych unravelling whilst oozed and bleached in clawing and gnawing paranoia the type of which finds it looms ever watchful on a axis with ‘1984’ at one end and ‘V for Vendetta’ at t’other. Also spied on the track listing a superb slice of haunting noir beauty from the Hare and the Moon found here in cahoots with Alaska for ‘black shores’. This shimmering visitation, a ghost light of desire, softly emerges as though a mysterious Siren looming from the twilight enchantment spell crafting love charms to assume an ethereal sonic nether space sitting somewhere between dead can dance and this mortal coil. Book of shadows you’ll find bolstering up the rear end of the grooves, an eerie 16 minute titan, ‘peace star’ is frankly a dark star beauty uttered in archaic tongues, a distant cousin of Nico’s ‘frozen warnings’ here as though fed through some ghostly (p)séance happening by Laurie Anderson and emitting woozy mind wiping psychotropic pulse primed spirituals from some secret cosmic hide away. http://inthecitiesofyoureyes.bandcamp.com/album/in-the-cities-of-your-eyes
Trip-a-delic kosmiche kool aplenty, there’s something so classically rubbed in a late 70’s vintage about ‘space lamp’ that I can almost hear the static crackles Catherine wheeling off its polyester tank top, this comes from astronauts of empty of whom we have diddly information about but who describe their sound as droner stoner kraut space psychedelic progressive rock – always a good idea to cover all eventual obstacles don’t you find. We here are assuming ‘moon burn’ is their debuting release, a dandy slice of astral gliding head gear oozed in motorik murmurs and woozy lunar lilts and something with which by rights ought to appeal to those much admiring of groove heading out of the likes of deep distance, FdM, rocket girl et al….with the aforementioned ‘space lamp’ sounding not unlike a hulking Tangerine Dream hyper craft taking off for cosmic pastures previously unpiloted powered by mind wiring Fuxa / Spacemen 3 pulsars. That said ‘moon burn’ is pure fringe flopping shade adorned psychedelic space grooviness much like the kind of hypno-grooved smoking bliss blues occasionally visiting Earth pop courtesy of space cadet Sunray. ‘starscope’ brings up the rear, best of the trio by our reckoning, a desert dust rattling mantra daubed in hypnotic locked grooved mosaics sounding much like a super chilled Mugstar with their stellar surging edge somewhat calmed, curbed and cooled under the influence of Cheval Sombre. http://astronautsofempty.bandcamp.com/album/moon-burn
Endless summer mirages, memories fondly resumed and re-found set to a demurring dreamy carousel trimmed in bucolic bubbles and the arresting murmur toning glaze of lulling lullaby recitals, we did eye this on a dream pop top 10 headed up by Ummagma, this being the very special Death and Vanilla with ‘Californian Owls’ pulled from their ‘to where the wild things are’ – in short a Broadcast-ian magic land…..
listening interlude – radio transmissions 1 – Stockhausen ‘hymnen’
rare recordings and a complete performance of perhaps Stockhausen’s most celebrated work, aired on new year’s day this marks a landmark transmission with regions 1,2 and 4 being drawn from the original 4 channel tapes with region 3 being performed by the London Sinfonietta – the recording / transmission is also available in surround sound 4.0
Musical interlude – found sounds – season 2 :1 – the sinister ducks
Bet you all forgot about this nugget, the sinister ducks’ ‘old gangsters never die’ – a little bit of moonlighting by Bauhaus’ David J with Alan Moore….
First cool record of the year, there’s many contenders for that honour given some of the killer releases we’ve sampled these last few days, but this dandy has found itself sneaking to the top of the playlist with irresistible impishness. Shortly to head out of the dream soundz and moon sounds imprints, this is a sneak peak of the Mercury Rockets debuting full length ‘mindbenders’ which is due to appear as an ultra limited 30 only cassettes. Anyhow ‘oh yeah’ has been sent ahead on scouting duties – a bliss kissed lazy eyed lysergic garage groover if I’m not much mistaken, all twang opining reverbs daubed in kaleidoscopic swirls and kissed in uber cooling strobe psych shimmies, the missing link between MBV and the Velvets anyone, ah well just me then. https://moonsoundsrecords.bandcamp.com/album/mindbenders
Something else that’s been adoring the turntable these last few days, another small slice of greatness being cooked up in the moon dust sound house. Think I’m right in saying that this is still a work in progress, but be honest does this not just hit the spot. A beautifully demurred slice of lunar lulled chill toned ice pop that manages to fuse itself, or so it would seem, to emerge from what initially could easily pass for – on one side – a majestic slice of post apocalyptic dystopia groove that imagines Vangelis’ original ‘blade runner’ score retooled by John Carpenter only to hoodwinked and hypno-grooved by Zombi – all the time traced and subtly underpinned by a divinely dreamy down tempo Balearic swoon. https://soundcloud.com/petri-kiviniemi/moon-dust-dissolve?utm_source=soundcloud&utm_campaign=share&utm_medium=facebook
Dinky twinklesome purring pop tastiness from that man Gruff Rhys, truth is we should have been onto this ages ago but hey stuff happens. Anyhow a double album about to surface via rough trade by the name ‘candylion’ – his second solo effort no less from which the title track has already been and gone and done the introductions given it was a single a little while back. But do you know you just can’t keep this kind of cuteness bottled up especially when it’s this day dreamy,, lazy eyed and lolloping, a pretty little pastoral bouquet and we didn’t even mention gorky’s zygotic mynci once. D’oh…..
Been a fair old while since them use them graced these pages, if I recall rightly the last occasion was courtesy of a quite remarkable outing via the much missed first fold imprint. These days aligned to the Arell imprint – who we hope to hear more from in coming months, this is a preview taster from their recently released ‘the mountain opens its eyes’ set, in short four minutes of poise, elegance, exquisite use of space and tonality not to mention intricate layering longingly crushed, moulded and teased into a gorgeously thawing, expressive and sleepy headed neo classical cavern of sound. https://arell.bandcamp.com/album/the-mountain-opens-its-eyes-preview
a tad fond of this, eyed on the milligrid records sound cloud page this is the so far unreleased new thing hatching from the creative mNIPK hive mind, entitled ‘C/EBP’ it finds the duo engaging to forge a sumptuous slice of hyno-grooving cerebral cool referenced by an all most super chilled Orbital as were scanning the artificial intelligence highways for Biosphere foot prints and into the bargain concocting a bliss blowing beauty tempered by the silken drift of celestial wave forms all doused in demurring dub-tronic dialects. https://soundcloud.com/milligridrecords
Birthday wishes to Andy Pyne of foolproof projects. Not that we need any reason to play anything remotely connected with the Pyne dude but he does have a solo album currently out and doing the rounds under the alter ego Ugly Animal entitled ‘panic button’ which described rightly as drum and synth delirium we strongly suggest you check at your earliest convenience not least because it plots the kind of subtropic post punk spectrums that one suspects would have tumbled out of some smoke soaked shadowy back alley studio in the late 70’s had classic era PIL, Neu! and Cabaret Voltaire cobbled together following an accidental studio collision. Full reviews to follow shortly but feast your lobes on the opening cut, the intricately layered, minimalist flared and rhythmically hypnotic ‘magnetized’ and you’re immediately back in that imagined late 70’s alternative space. Wired though strangely accessible stuff. https://uglyanimal.bandcamp.com/
A Bowie interlude……
Was it the Times that I spied a top 10 Bowie tracks which had ‘life on Mars’ agreeably sitting at the pole position but erroneously neglected to mention these…..
A Bowie interlude….II…
The more I’ve read about his quickening demise, his fear, his desperation…the more I’ve saddened….shine on the prettiest star…….x
Buddha of suburbia,,,,
Boys keep swinging….
Lest we forget to mention a few well collated compilations put together by God is in the TV’s Ben P Scott….
long lost rarity recorded during the ‘low’ sessions and left to gather dust until its emergence in the 90’s, described in passing as sounding not a million miles from throbbing gristle’s industrial sonic species of the day, this subterranic beauty reveals a future gazing dystopian aura that sumptuously blends immersive ambient textures with a shadow playing kosmiche grooving that shifts the cold detached Kraftwerk mechanoid template several paces into the darkening outlands of technoid cool.
Again another cut left languishing in the vaults until it appeared on a fan club only CD in the early 90’s, again recorded during the Berlin sessions notably ‘heroes’, this is ‘abdulmajid’ – this is a decade and a half ahead of the psych trance grooves heading out of the Delirium stable in the early 90’s and the kind of stuff populating the grooves of stuff by Ozrics and the magic mushroom band, its free flowing dub-tropic mysterio etchings nodding to the oft overlooked Embryo.
A star special broadcast from 1979 – a two hour set featuring Mr Bowie playing his favourite tunes.
The entire ‘all saints’ collection……
A superb live show recorded in Tokyo in December ‘78’……
A finally, we’ve sourced a killer compilation of cover versions put together by the god is in the tv team a few years ago that’s well worth revisiting…..
the weird ear among with a fondness for all out searing skree sonic saturation might be minded to cover your faces, ears and other bodily extremities for fear of them melting in the eye of ‘necro noise ov thee living law of the dead’, the latest slab of aural cruelty from Mammalian Degeneration dragged kicking and screaming from a full length set entitled ‘it’s a disaster are you prepared?’- these dude (s) hail somewhere from Californian – a white noise tornado that’s brutal, scalding and agreeably fierce some by our reckoning if only for the spectacle of watching your listening space literally disintegrate around your sound player. http://mammaliandegeneration.bandcamp.com/track/mammalian-degeneration-1-necro-noise-ov-thee-living-law-of-the-dead
one of those eagerly awaited type releases in our gaff, debuting full length from public memory readying itself for Spring time appearance…….mentioned here https://marklosingtoday.wordpress.com/2015/11/30/public-memory/ a little while back and well worth checking out……
this is quite superb. Something that we tripped across on a face book feed, it’s from [fallen] and it goes by the name of ‘tunnel of light’ – apparently prized from an as yet project entitled ‘against the storm’ – it’s minimalist noire etching and sleek shadowy jazz subtleties impart an irrefutable feel of a sound track to a lost Roy Budd scored 70’s cold war spy flick, its classical lines, poise and impeccable use of space, pace, tension and atmosphere dove tail dreamily to arc the kind of majestic astuteness of yellow6. https://soundcloud.com/fallenproject/06-tunnel-of-light
not all together certain as to where exactly we picked this up from, our google chrome has been having an annoying habit of crashing just when we’re in the middle of listening to all manner of grooviness, still thanks to whoever for posting because this quite trippy in a lazy eyed and stoned type way, listen a little closer and the subtle weave of Television breaks through the haze, and is that a didgeridoo we hear swooning in the back ground doing all mystical things – whatever the case this is smoking peace pipe tooting psych lovliness super chilled with woozy wafts of Beefheart-ian braids for good measure – incidentally its by the Citizen and it’s called ‘ship docking to Hades’….. https://soundcloud.com/aaron-finkle/the-citizen-ship-docking-to-hades-now-with-gretchen-on-bass?utm_source=soundcloud&utm_campaign=share&utm_medium=facebook
now I fear that we could be unwittingly opening up a new species of feline freak pop by posting this, however undeterred we did happen across this little nugget earlier today and thought it might be worth a share. Posted by James Hamilton, this would you believe is the work of his recently departed cat Muff of whom was oft on hand with critical support and additional ideas taking up residence alongside Mr Hamilton during those solitary hours cobbling out sonic compositions with one such session getting so terse and strained that Muff felt compelled to apply his so far unrealised talents to traipse across the abandoned Hammond organ and dabble in a spot of tensely tuned fear evoking prowling b-movie styled horrorphonia. With this in mind we’ve taken to introducing our own feline buddy Dylan to the joys of the Harmonica with thus far little taking though judging by his want for scratching at quicksilver pace anything with fur on it that sits still for more than a minute we are at present knitting furry tassles on the house banjo in the hope that a similarly untapped artistic streak awaits awakening. Anyway for now the joys of Muff’s ‘extreme music for cats’ can be found here….. http://keraunograph.bandcamp.com/track/extreme-music-from-cats-vol-1
a radio interlude……
two excellent documentaries rescued from the BBC radio vaults, the first ‘the sound of fear’ centres on the strange trickery and manifestation of the mind of both found, natural and processed sounds and discusses the reaction, psychology and deep rooted primitive alarm signs triggered by an instance of sound.
Secondly, a little something first broadcast this time last year, ‘free thinking’ hosted by Matthew Sweet explores the strange sonic universes of BBC’s legendary Radiophonic Workshop providing a potted history and a discussion of Room 13’s lasting legacy as well as providing some stark insights into the collectives key members – a la Delia Derbyshire.
another nugget we tripped across via the sound cloud page, this is forthcoming from the Lanterns’ second full length ‘black highways and green garden roads’ due out of sophomore lounge and fixture sound houses, this woozy slab of succulent psych loveliness entitled ‘we are here’ emerges from the fracturing halos of a ghostly séance that weaves elements of the Byrds ‘eight miles high’ and superbly twists and shape shifts itself with deft devilment amid the gloaming shadowy psychosis of Floyd’s ‘lucifer Sam’ and ‘Astronomy domine’ – the first must have release of the year anyone? https://soundcloud.com/fixturerecords/lantern-we-are-here
BBC have done Bowie good in delving into their extensive archive to source a collection of rare and special sound and vision recordings featuring the great man, our personal faves are Mitch Benn’s recently aired fan swooning comedy tribute ‘mitch benn is the fat pink duke’ and Mark Radcliffe’s heartfelt and fond farewell note to his lifelong hero entitled ‘thank you David Bowie’…..
The pop brain behind the hive collective that was Kraftwerk, there’s no arguing that Karl Bartos was the tuneful McCartney one occupying a place in Dusseldorf’s finest during their most creatively ground breaking period, his melodic ear and hand diluting the servile future world chill of the machine men’s cold war austereness, 2013’s bureau b released ‘off the record’ provided testament enough of his shape shifting deftness for a crafty pop hook. Before that though there was ‘communication’ a lost release overshadowed and out raced by being pitted against the ‘tour de France’ soundtrack released by his former charges at the same time and unfairly handicapped by a lack of promotion at the time. Now re-modelled, re-mastered and bolstered by the appearance of a previously unreleased cut, this lost nugget is due to resurface via trocadero with ‘life’ being sent ahead as a limited 7 inch pressed scouting herald and into the bargain oozing of melodic electro pop kudos and sounding not unlike a mid 80’s classic era New Order with a touch of the B-Movie’s.
Blessed with a knack for making the bleak and bruised sound so beautiful, Suede have over their splintered career lain with the forgotten, the abandoned and the outsiders of society; a lyrical landscape tortured in societal taboos locked behind lonely doors. To a pop vocabulary littered in endless sunshine, teen crushes, and boy / girl hand holds, Suede have oft reflected back to their audience what lies behind those painted smiling masks when no one is looking, the anxieties, the panic, the isolation and the depression. Theirs is a dialogue only hinted at by the Smiths yet while Morrissey penned directly to the disaffected through perhaps a personalised score settling retribution, Anderson and Co have persistently voiced a darker and more explicit conversation whose scars are caressed in tenderness and empathy. And lest we forget to mention the sound, joyous and euphoric, even traced upon its most bleak of narratives – say ‘the next life’ and ‘sleeping pills’ – amid the grief and hopelessness there’s a sense of bitter sweet grandeur that melts the ache. A new album due in the shape of ‘night thoughts’ promises to be their finest and most mature to date, from it has been culled ‘no tomorrow’ – a blistering call to arms of sorts dealing at its heart with the very real haunting shadow of acute depression and suicide, it doesn’t offer a cure and neither is it a hasty quick fix plaster however it’s a realisation that you’re not alone all back dropped typically with a sonic flair kissed and caressed with a hook laden panic attacking euphoric ferocity – devastating in short.
Mentioned a little while back in these here very pages, forthcoming bruiser from Hawk finds them in emotionally torn dream draped pastures…..
Just in case you missed the earlier mention….
we have had problems aplenty in trying to hook our ears around this un, windows player devices freezing, sleeping and then just plain refusing to play, all said such churlish hurdles strewn in our path do little to deter our determination especially when the sounds hint of such liberated beauty. Latest lovely listening treat from the castles in space imprint – who may actually one day get around to sending us actual records – finds black channels’ Simon heading up the mixing and producing duties on a cut that may well be called ‘4 in vuh’ or rather more could well be the name of the ensemble / alter ego – as always with these releases the information is still in its infancy stage. one thing is for certain though an album is looming, plenty of vocoder on it we are promised though slightly noted for its absence on this particular cut which as the title / name hints distantly skirts around the high brow classicism of Popol Vuh albeit that’ll be Popol Vuh as rephrased by La Dusseldorf with the baton passed down the line for a spot of redefining and re-envisaging through the ears of both fort dax and magnetophone. A cantering sweetie, undulating pastoral lines and the deft intricacy of a subtle shimmer toning adore this gem with a sweetly arresting lights lowered svelte sophistication whose romantic pulsars and soft dream draped ebbing and flowing contours take on a super chilled vibrancy that imagines a gathering of free school, the art of the mind palace and warm digits types collectively camped out in an afterhours studio setting swapping love notes. Alas no sound clips just yet – goes without saying we are furious twisting arms.
Additional note – the band are called the correlations – the track – ‘4 in Vuh’ – the album is ‘before the heat’/
Trust inconsistent jukebox to cobble up by far the best of the Bowie tributes we’ve heard thus far, ‘white duke’ comes littered aplenty in samples and references though I’m sure Major Tom would admire the fact that this zonked out sub seven minute salvo arrives from a distant place out of the blue to smoke with the kind of freakish finery of the great man’s most out there period falling headlong into terrains that dislocate, trip and fracture from the fault lines of ‘the lodger’ and the Kurt Weill influenced / obsessed ‘Baal’ and Moon of Alabama’ period with just a hint of hint of ‘Diamond Dogs’ for added unhinging. https://soundcloud.com/barry_snaith/white-duke-the-inconsistent-jukebox-song-for-bowie
While we spend time introducing our, as yet, so far unconvinced turntable to the existence of 5 inch vinyl platters, a tedious learning curve that involves trying to talk it through the fact that the start of it is not as it thinks the end, the record in question that’s causing all the grief being the latest super limited salvo escaping the secret sound bunker of the polytechnic youth imprint by the Assistant – which should you want one you better get your sonic skates on for there’s only 125 of them – and by all accounts going fast the way of the online auction sites and enviable record collections alike. Still while we sort out the gremlins an early heads up to a new Great Pop Supplement 7 inch – a debut no less for Lake Ruth whose ranks are swelled variously by members of the eighteenth day of may, holy fuck, enon and the new lines – a gathering that admittedly raised eyebrows here when trying to imagine what kind of sounds were locked away awaiting release from the grooves in truth one of the finest outings to have appeared in recent times on the illustrious GPS imprint, ‘the inconsolable Jean-Claude’ – of course an ode Mr Vannier, whose standard bearing ‘l’enfant assassin des mouches’ which is set to appear in a luxurious vinyl form to celebrate its 10th anniversary appearance on the esteemed finders keepers label shortly this so ably pens love notes to as it simultaneously emerges from the kind of rarefied 60’s haze that first attracted Broadcast to keener eared among us. A simply exquisite of vintage sounding groove calling to mind that excellent debut from the Soundcarriers many years back all tripped with a funky tripadelic swing that softly purrs and murmurs to imagined lost soundtracks of classic late 60’s ITC TV shows whilst lulled to the cooling caress of an on the mark St Etienne. That said we here are more than a tad taken vy the flip cut ‘the prisoner’s dilemma’ which described by the labels press release as evoking pentangle and the left banke – the latter of whom whose ‘pretty ballerina’ swirls in the hypnotic hazing, a daintily prettified baroque folk ghost light posy that haunts as much as it enchants to sweetly serenade your listening space in the kind of magical fairy dust rarely heard so elegantly crafted outside of a lost Ooberman gem.
I’m not convinced that we’ve fully overcome the gremlins and glitches that are blighting our listening experience of Polytechnic Youth’s latest salvo but hey ho we’ll press ahead with mentioning it anyway which despite it playing faults still looks quite desirably splendid to just look at. Now it’s not As though we’ve just given up the ghost through lack of patience, we have actually tried running this on four – yes you read right – four different turntables, three of which just plain refuse to play it with the fourth – would you believe a cheap knock around portable turntable you plug into the PC / Telly etc…- at least showing willing but still proving a tad contrary in offering up the delights within. Anyhow 125 of these are about, pressed up on thick hand crafted label less lathe vinyl in a 5 inch variant replete with oodles of inserts, alas no information on the Assistant, the story goes that Polytechnic Towers received a mysterious package containing master tapes of three cuts that sound as though they’d been rescued from some lost Radiophonic / testcard treasure trove which from what we’ve briefly manage to salvage by way of a brief peak of lead cut ‘ways of seeing’ sounds not unlike a gloriously minimalist analogue carousel piloted by Ghost Box’s Belbury Poly. Rest assured we will pester for sound links and return with full reviews.
Recommended to us by Brian Bordello, this is Greek sound collective Cryptanthus with ‘white reptiles’, a track taken from their recently released ‘black lesbian fisherman – ectopic aviary’ set which we must admit has been the cause of many admiring glances since popping up on our sound player, a sub six minute dark star teased in brooding leviathan like gloomed drone detachment both eerie and haunting in a Wizards Tell Lies as though showcasing for a spot on the ever excellent Boring Machines imprint. Yet stay the course and keep following the ghost gouged darkening path wherein spectral apparitions shimmer and stare with unsettling stillness and along the weary off road trail emerging from the groaning fog an as were impish Siren woos and weaves a surreal nursery rhyme posy to enchant and warn in equal measure. https://cryptanthus.bandcamp.com/track/white-reptiles
More returning listening loves, in fact we mentioned this a few months ago here – see link below, with a new album heading out via club ac30 set to dock soon entitled ‘grandfeathered’, the ever adored pinkshinyultrablast will shortly send ahead a scouting love note in the guise of ‘the cherry pit’ – a crystalline star crossed gem of a cut that swoons and swirls amid a euphoric vapour trail of heavenly honeyed sonic sun spot showers to enthral and echo to the majestic arc of the Cocteau’s at their most sublime whilst rupturing upon a haze haloed bliss kissed axis where meet the kitchens of distinction and ummagma.
We’ve been beset by gremlins aplenty these last few days, aside the ridiculous unwanted feature or having chrome crashing every three seconds, our windows media player started closing itself down making it nigh on impossible to listen to WAV / Zip files. No worries we thought, we’ll consult the forums and came across a – so we thought – a curing fix for the issues via Microsoft which when we ran it managed to disable our Word files making them inaccessible. Getting better by the minute or not as the case may be. In a final act of stroppiness we ended downloading Windows 10 which has been annoyingly greeting us at regular intervals asking if we wanted to try, and well, our mind set was at this point – what’s the worst that can happen, so in for a penny we tightly shut our eyes, prayed, finger crossed and clicked download. Takes an age to download, I have five o’clock shadow at 3am in the morning, but happy to say its cured the ills and into the bargain got rid of Windows 8 which for all its niggling faults we were actually growing accustomed to. So with in mind – finally back to the sounds, shed loads to get through one of which is this one…..
Sneaked through in the final weeks of December, the much admired Tara Experiment’s latest opus has been getting an admiring earfuls here, ‘what the sky listens to’ might be realistically best described as a collection of binary chatter undertaken by your electronic devices when its user is all a kip, a playfully, sometimes kookily odd other times eerily detached sonic playground whose landscape is littered in ghostly echoes that veer between lost Radiophonic Workshop dialogues and would be surveillance recordings culled from your laptop scanning your sleeping mind for forgotten and buried memories only to twist them into minimalist melodic mausoleum which on the oblique and quietly distracting ‘the strangers’ almost offers a reversing darkening reflection of the Assembled Minds’ creaking haze’ set. Elsewhere ‘the flat earth’ is pure ghost box-ian groove as were fed through the isolationist chamber of a youthful Clock Dva while the tripping void space that is ‘project 13’ has you entering into the very heart of the nerve centres consciousness of cyberspaces hive mind and dare we forget to mention ‘in the before time’ a wonderfully whirring carousel of pure kosmiche vintage. http://thetaraexperiment.bandcamp.com/album/what-the-sky-listens-to
More than a little fond of this cutie, not least because it appears to come from a sound place that once upon a time used to seduce our listening space at regular intervals courtesy of releases heading out of the much missed boltfish and smallfish imprints, it’s by urbandy and it goes by the name ‘citron’ – the type of dream dimpled demur that the late great Mr Peel would have likely have stuck on between bouts of Finnish death metal and releases by unpronounceable Eastern European bands to have you literally in a state of hypnotic wow in front of your crystal set, reference wise think of a sleepy headed lights lowered gently coming down 808 State in bliss heaven, nuff said. https://soundcloud.com/urbandy/citron
Talking of Mr Peel here’s two more bands that would have met with his nodding approval by our reckoning, more ear blister forming hard core grind I’m afraid this time from a split band cacophony entitled ‘que libertad, hija de puta’. This release is heading out of El Paso and features the becoming charms of psyche sin and money hater both of whom are dissatisfied souls with unresolved issues to bear, comprises of 20 tracks which, and I’m not kidding here, speed through with untamed atrocity that the set has finished before you’ve scarcely had time to down a hot coffee brew leaving you ample time for a reflective smoke before returning to the drudgery of 9 to 5 hell/. Where money hater lack in aplomb they more than make up for in all out aural assault, a fierce some war like armoury which happily side steps the basic rudimentary of verse / chorus / verse and instead fly out of the traps with all the annihilative finesse of a clearly unhappy Discharge, a feature that crystalizes with searing doom dread retribution on the sets longest cut ‘dear america’ – one of only three tracks that breach the one-minute barrier. As to psych sin, maybe it’s just me but I do get the distinct feeling that these chaps like or love no one, the hate and anger literally boils, of course what ruins things is the production which makes the Mummies by comparison sound like they were given the Abbey Road treatment, still they drop the spike topped anthem ‘stereotype’ and the squalid and squalling ‘my country’ which ought to prick the passing ear of the crass and anti pasti loving types among you. http://moneyhater.bandcamp.com/album/qu-libertad-hija-de-puta
something else we’ve been smitten with since it veered into our listening orbit, this lot hail from Portland, Oregon – they number five in the ranks describe their sound as ‘intricate guitar work, bangin trip hop percussion, psychedelic soul and mystical vocals’ which sadly underplays their strengths and certainly hides well beneath the bushel the lead cuts utter beauty. Anyhow this is Shannon Entropy with their debut EP which comes pressed up on a limited to 200 only cassette – a copy of which we frankly want. ‘caves’ the best thing here opens the set, a strangely alluring slice of soft psych bewitchment that pulses bitter sweetly between a duelling melodic persona that finds the aching folk seduction of Tamsyn’s conversation weaving ghost lit spectral shapes across a deliciously hypnotic snake winding groove that oozes and echoes to the subtle cool of a heaven sent studio face off engaged between beatglider, working for a nuclear free city and dark captain light captain. ‘pimpilla’ is no slouch in the affection stakes either, exquisitely detailed in noir traced soul sophistication which to these ears had us of a mind to re-familiarise ourselves with the much missed ROC. http://shannonentropy.bandcamp.com/album/tamale-ep
and here’s that rogue release from polytechnic youth that you may recall was giving us a fair amount of – shall we settle for – technicals – the other day, indeed it’s been a strange week with all our technologies somewhat conspiring against us what with the issues laptop glitches the day before. Anyway to recap matters this is the latest polytechnic youth outing, by the Assistant, a three track lovely pressed on thick – almost door step like – slabs of wax in a 5 – inch variation – no labels, plenty of inserts, a cute looking blighter hand numbered in an edition of 125 upon whose grooves sit three fondly smitten melodic idents which for those of certain vintage will have you swiftly transported back to a silver age of sound wherein craft show interludes and Open University broadcasts, usually of the Mathematics variety as I recall, where charmed by a chirping and daintily dinked future pop strangeness as is the case revealed by lead out track ‘ways of seeing’, a gorgeously wistful and impishly minimalist monochrome musical mosaic whose prettified pastoral portrait is found preciously pressed on a Belbury Poly like orbital carousel,. Over on the flip ‘peg doll ballet’ is what it says on the tin lid, a wonderfully woozy and acutely cute clock worked pirouetting waltz which should find admirers among the Resource Centre loving community while the parting ‘opta carrot and the spider’ is – well – pure John Baker radiophonic goonery – nothing more, nothing less to say, other than essential time capsule turntable groove. Sound links to follow shortly.
Mentioned this a wee while back – this is the newly chipped video to Kiran Leonard’s quite excellent ‘pink fruit’ cut culled from his forthcoming ‘grapefruit’ set – alas not the full on 16 minute behemoth but a rather more 4 minute side serving….
The original mention https://marklosingtoday.wordpress.com/2015/11/30/kiran-leonard/
Oh this blighter has been pinging around our headspace since popping up on our radar late last night just as we were powering down for the evening, so damn coolly contagious the bugger ought to come pre packed with jabs and clearly marked with health warnings. Granted it’s possessed of the electro pop flair of the Paris Angels at their finest whilst additionally twinkled in purring lunar lilts and cutely crafted pouting hooks all kissed with the subtle rub of a slinky strut grooved shape cutting coolness, which all gathered together craftily eke out something that agreeably burrows its way beneath your skin. It’s by EMF main man James Atkin, it’s called ‘love blind’ and comes pulled from his debuting solo set ‘a country mile’. https://soundcloud.com/soundaffectspr/james-atkin-love-blind
Okay now for something quite strange and surreal (be warned this won’t be the last time you’ll see the phrase surreal appearing here today – we have the benji hughes cued up for listening action). From New York based pop psychedelicists Chappo, this appears to be the fourth animated video that’s meant to serve as a parallel story board I guess, heralding their recently released ‘future former self’ set on caroline international, an album that we’ve had a brief peak of and can report without hesitation that it’s quite possibly the happiest and sunny release we’ve had the pleasure of hearing in an age, a psych tropicalia funk stew that clearly has all its feet and its head space deep in an early 70’s cosmic vintage whilst lounging on an exotic far flung beech rewiring pop’s back story to imagine an alternative time space where Air and 70’s electro groovers Space had been reared on trippy Hawaiian greetings cobbled together in the loosely distant image of Sly Stone. Heads down then for strangeness aplenty……
Now we were initially minded to give this a wide berth, I think it was the title that kind of put us off, us thinking it was going to be pure pop tat. But hang on, what’s the worst that can happen, we clicked the video link, fearing the worst and gave it a stray listen. Well wow, truth is it’s the kind of pure pop tat that we here love. Heading out of Merge records shortly this strangely becoming slice of cool cold waving minimalist groove replete with kookily surrealist video is by Benji Hughes, tis called ‘girls love shoes’ and comes prized from a full length set entitled ‘songs in the key of animals’. Again another cut that appears to have its head space fried and fused somewhere in the 70’s, best described as a ridiculously addictive west coast soft psych funked up post punk,Dadaist discotheque darling which manages all at once to tie up the once thought disparate sound spectrums where loiter and lurk the likes of 10cc, beach boys, cobra killer, flaming lips, gary Wilson and Cornelius and morph them into a hugely tripping slo-mo dream hazed mirror ball.
Just chilling out to the exquisitely cool sounds of the hanging stars new album ‘over the silvery lake’ due March time via the ever excellent great pop supplement – so while we do that here’s an oldie but crucial goodie from the dudes entitled ‘the house on the hill’……
emerging from darkening wastelands like shadowy dust cracked post punk preacher men, Stockholm based then comes silence return to the fray and out of the smoke with the formidable ‘strangers’, this stare you down goth graced slab of shades adorned post punk preened psychedelia purrs with all the dark hearted brooding beauty of a Sisters of Mercy / Fields of Nephilim love in. available through novoton and ripped from the full length ‘nyctophilian – then comes silence II’
Been a while, we feared they’d forgotten about us, an anticipated release in our gaff – deux furieuses debut full length on its way….
Past Deux Furieuses visitations….
musical interlude – found sounds – season 2:2 – ‘the lost exorcist score’…
the rejected Lalo Schifrin score in full along with the banned trailer for the iconic film ‘the exorcist’ – very Bernard Hermann for the most part
a bit of Bowie…..always very fond of this…
More melodic feastings from the underside of the record store counter courtesy of the latest weekly round-up of essential ear gear inhabiting the Vital listening room, perhaps their most out there offering in a fair old while #116 is a weird ear delight that opens to the shuffling and head tripping woozy earth beat blues of Keda whose ‘swordfish’ serves as a masterclass in third eye tickling mystical dub which admirers of Ry Cooder should well drool over. More dubtronic loveliness heads up next this time tweaked in a subterranic variety with the teasingly brief appearance of tuner’s ‘prelove by bit’ mind you that could well be bit and tuner prelove, whatever the case some very chilled muslim gauze like work out is going on. If alien landscapes and strangely detuned aural apparitions are your bag then Matt Davignon’s ‘lepidoptera’ might fit the bill, eerie electronic etchings positively oozing in jazz noir ghost light tingles as were located in the coldly sparse depths of an ocean floor. Stranger still the remoteness applied to the minimalist drone scapes of Brgs whose skittering percussive patterns on ‘46’ may well find appreciative nods from the foolproof projects community. Disappointed to say it’s been too long since we had the pleasure of Celer exquisitely wooing our listening space and ‘Alagi’ hits the spot perfectly providing a moment of reflective porcelain carved quietly lulling beauty. Prized from a recently released EP titled ‘senor trainwhistle’, ‘pingray 2’ by the sand rays is a strangely becoming glitch gem amid whose dub dimpled detailing a celestial carousel emerging from the shadows of an eclipsing mass. Again strangely affecting is Gintas k’s ‘blind man tale 2’ which amid the distressed distorts appear by seductive shimmer of neo classical flotillas whilst somewhat touched by the spirit of Stockhausen, Michael Vorfield, Richard Scott and Frank Gratkowski collide to craft out ‘kurs haltend’ and into the bargain stray ever so close into the kind of sound spectrums once explored by Chris Cutler and Fred Frith. Up next the mysterious post mortem who appear happy hiding behind hulking walls of white noise leaving Masda’s ‘river going south’ to lead matters out to the close though not before tweaking the ear fondly with its bruised youthful sounding black heart procession like ache.
This is up there with that rather spiffing Lake Ruth single (see earlier), a forthcoming treasure from the mighty mega dodo imprint due at the end of March wherein when it appears it’ll come adorned on 10 inches of white wax. We’ve momentarily lost the press release so the promised oodles of information might have to wait a little, but this is Le Super Homard and the ‘maple key’, an instantaneous rush to senses all at once showering your listening space in euphoric twinkles, its sunny 60’s lines literally beaming soft psych floral psych effervescences whilst adored in a crystalline craft that’s dreamily hazed in cool seduction, sound wise imagine a trip-a-delic picnic gathering of Broadcast, Remington Super 60, Double Francoise and Free Design types, essential then.
Musical interlude – found sounds – season 2:3 ‘Top of the Pops covers’
Much derided for ever, is it time to take pity on those compilation albums found stuffed at the back of boxes in the local thrift shops staring up unloved hopeful of rescue to a loving home. We are of course talking about the celebrated Top of the Pops albums issued throughout the 70’s, you know the ones adorned in covers of skimpily clad ladies and sold in newsagents at the kind of bargain prices that many unsuspecting felt obliged – nay – compelled – to take a punt on only to return home and feel they’d been swizzed upon hearing some tone deaf back room employee hammering out ‘I feel love’ badly on a bontempi organ that had clearly seen better days. But before you all get dismissive and snobbish, the Top of the Pops album are part of our psyche, much like the show, sure they are laughably kitsch-y and little more than painful karaoke experiences, but hey forget not that we live in an age of pop idol, the voice et al….touche. but there’s a hapless quality that prevails which for those who remember the days when supermarkets piped out oddly off putting versions of the day’s classics which aside distracting you from what you were putting in your shopping basket, had you fearful of the poor soul consigned to the naughty step, then there’s a nostalgic glow that stirs, not altogether good agreed, more likely on the radar of say rickets, german measles or star spangle-y tank tops. We only mention this because we happened across three cover versions which deserve a moment of your time, mind you they come with health warnings – the Jam totally misses the point in such a cutely innocent way, the Pistols cut – well let’s just advise that you re-introduce yourselves to the unjoy of ‘floggin a dead horse’ before you pass comment while most interesting of the unholy grail – a slightly twee version of tubeway army’s ‘are friends electric?’ (a medley featuring a strangely listenable take on ‘Cars’ – a version of ‘complex’ and ‘we are glass’) – I’ll leave it to you to decide then….
Sex Pistols ‘pretty vacant’
Jam ‘going underground’
Gary numan ‘are friends electric?’/ ‘cars’
Mentioned in previous despatches, like deux furieuses another debut full length set that we are eagerly awaiting with anticipated expectations, this is cold cold heart who we first mentioned way back this time last year when their greeting card ‘megan’ near knocked us bandy and jaw dropped. Due to break hearts this coming March, ‘how the other half die’ emerges fully formed on the fluttery imprint and from it tenderly frail and forlornly bruising ‘mountain’ has been sent ahead on early reconnaissance, utterly arresting, its measured poise and delicate detailing aches as much as it woos straying to the kind of thoughtfully tender classicism that seduced and tearfully teased the more intimate moments of Swimmer One’s last adored set while simultaneously finding itself perched on an axis where sits the Workhouse at one end with Shady Bard at the other and Vini Reilly ever watchful posited somewhere in the middle. https://soundcloud.com/cold-cold-heart/06-mountain
Both healing and hurting, phoenix like rising triumphantly showered in euphoric shimmers and purred in a pristine pop vocabulary that sees it unfurling to reveal itself in all its colourfully vibrant dream dazed glory. ‘ablaze’ comes teased from a forthcoming School of Seven Bells full length due soon on full time hobby, that the album managed to find its way to completion is a feat in itself given that Benjamin Curtis was diagnosed and later died of a rare T-cell lymphoblastic lymphoma leaving partner Alejandra Deheza to painfully forge on to complete the recordings as a tribute. With that knowledge in mind, ‘Ablaze’ assumes a curious shift in dynamic, scratch beneath the purring dream pop fluffiness and this paean to their relationship is crushed by the weighted coming to terms with loss, its undeniable ache revealing an open wound vulnerability that’s both tellingly touching and tearfully bruised. https://soundcloud.com/schoolofsevenbells/school-of-seven-bells-ablaze/s-YSKnL
This is quite something, its glacial etchings and soft seductive murmur tones delicately detailed in a lights lowered noir sophistication purr and pulse with a love noted romantic airiness that had us vaguely recalling the more intimate tones that occasionally escaped the tummy touch sound house, that said there’s a ghostly flavouring of the exquisitely drawn shy eyed classicist hush of Musetta adoring the grooves which is no bad thing. It’s by Leiik, a track entitled ‘split’ prized from an imminent EP due to surface on the squareglass imprint, a copy of the limited vinyl pressing we’d dearly love. https://soundcloud.com/leiik/split-1
Much like Melmoth the Wanderer, Moon Wiring Club take you gently by the hand, guiding you down lost paths and into forgotten spaces, yet while the former concerns with night tremors and secret worlds appearing after witching hours when daylight yawns, MWC’s sonic worlds are dreaming dissipates fusing broken memories and misfiled received information. Crooked and eerie the hour long ‘wrap up warm’ mix is a dusty gathering of child hood memories and a pre internet Britain weary of change and riddled in the old ways not to mention custom and arcane beliefs, imagine if you will Chris Morris’ ‘blue jam’ sets overseen by the Man in Black, contrast that with Melmoth’s headed up by Poe / Lovecraft – and that’s before we’ve even had time to turn our minds to the back dropping sounds – some nuggets here headed up Vivian Vee’s ‘blue disease’ and 23 skidoo’s forgotten ‘Mary’s operation’ – perhaps a long overdue re-appraisal is due for both. https://www.mixcloud.com/MoonWiringClub/wrap-up-warm-mix/
Alas our French isn’t so good and there’s no track listing so I’m struggling, but lovely stuff all the same for the latest edition of Planet Claire – that’ll be #37- is oozed in lost 60 / 70’s moments of sun shining pop cuteness, among the cuts on this hour long ear candy listening treat the Bordellos’ ‘melody inn’ ripped from their recent long sold out split ‘kassette’ outing with Schizo Fun Addict, elsewhere tasty morsels from Cat’s Eyes, a smattering of cuts from the recently passed Mr Bowie and can anyone please put me out of my misery by telling me whose responsible for the parting track – ‘hate bomb’ I think it’s called, ‘tis driving me nuts.
a moving picture interlude……the bordellos
blimey they do videos…….one of the topper most cuts from their recent split ‘kassette’ release with the Schizo’s – this is the criminally underrated the Bordellos….
(another) moving picture interlude….the innocent vicars…
There was a time when in my youth, the mere hint of a slinky twang tuned guitar would have us slavering, somehow we must have had an off day when this was doing the rounds because I swear it’s the first time I’ve heard it…honest guv….damn fine all the same a cover of Lipps Inc’s ‘funky town’ no less…
The man on the internet told us to ‘cop our ears around this’ so we did, and rather thankful that we did because emerging out of bliss kissed psych fuzziness (be warned Flying Saucer Attack spoiler alert) there’s something here that superbly manifests to wooze your headspace whilst have you kissing your shades imagining it to be a secret studio summit meeting gathering together members of the Telescopes and the ultra vivid scene with added control deck nob twiddling by a certain Sonic Boom. It’s by Tim Chaplin, it’s titled ‘the last thing’ and comes pulled from a full length set called ‘boy to make me worry’ via bleeding gold records – a copy of which we’ll be trying to source as of now. https://soundcloud.com/tim-chaplin/the-last-thing
Had you sold me this saying it was a thought lost forgotten release from the late 70’s, you know the kind that appear variously on vault clearing compilations and you tube, then I’d have mourned and no doubt scratched my head as to why I’d missed it originally before pondering a little closer as to why it had failed to make the necessary impact. That it’s a new release suggests its authors have either just been thawed from some cryogenic state or more pertinently, as is the proven case, have a more than adept knack where the crafting of an authentic sounding vintage is concerned. This, folks is Brie with a full length set ‘brie brie’ just out through the admired kitchen leg imprint of Berlin, who across nine tracks engage in the kind of angularly sparse post punk edginess that might have you sniffing at your prized delta 5, au pairs, raincoats et al in favour of their edgy isolationist nag nag nag gouging – none more do they do it with such admirable aplomb than on the see sawing spidery sore thumb that is ‘hip hop’. Reference wise they emerge from the shadow of controller. controller’s more market friendly polished retroism preferring to eke out a scab forming edginess that skirts and scowls around the shadow playing virgin passages and to a lesser extent the much missed Quickspace – as exemplified on the kraut grooved ‘gehacktes’ – while math-ian detailing aside ‘nachtmilch’ is groomed in deliciously distressed opines whose head cutting atmospherics chillingly chime to the sound of lost Bauhaus flip sides. All said we here are more than a little fond of parting salvo ‘screambo’ a psychosis seeped slab of bad boogie blistered with blood curdling screams and charmed with the kind of dark hearted venom that imagines the more fracturing and deathly quiet groans of the Birthday Party’s ‘junkyard’ being revisited upon by Katastrophy Wife. https://kitchenlegrecordsberlin.bandcamp.com/
Staying with kitchen leg records a little while longer, a posting eyed today on the interweb had us redirecting ourselves to a secret sound space where lurk Xantene with a quartet of cuts that appear to have recorded over two night’s way back in September which by the judging of things find them having way too much for their own good, catching our lobes rather acutely the Au Pairs and Slits in a fist fight ‘failure’ is graced by the kind of discordant disharmony that you fear may end up in a chaotic state of collapse as it teeters ever so closely towards impish calamity. That said some neat no nonsense heads down motoric mainlining is the happening thing on the gruff grooved psychotronic ‘motorische’. https://soundcloud.com/kitchen_leg_records/sets/xantene
Just what the bad groove doctor ordered, the latest in Fuzz Club’s acclaimed ongoing split series finds White Hills sparring with Radar Men from the Moon across 10 hulking inches of psych soaked wax. Such has been the intense interest in Radar Men from the Moon that their debuting ‘radar love’ debut full length has been repressed on both green and white wax variants and sure to sell out fast. ‘decadence’ is a shock treated slab of future wave industrial cooled psych noir, all at once edgy and oozed in suspense much like some lost shadow playing 60’s spy theme that veers ever so closely into the kind of sonic terrains ventured into by the likes of the blue giant zeta puppies or shadowy men on a shadowy planet. Over on the flip White Hills serve up ‘as you pass by’ which by our reckoning you ought to pre-prepare yourselves by rolling up a fat one and sparking up because this gem is an out there mellowing cosmically cooling bliss trip that steers, shimmers and hypnotically freebases upon a mind fracturing and stoned grooving whose free forming trip-a-delic mantra fries in the hallucinogenic haze of the Walking Seeds ‘bad orb……’
Alas no sound links but pre-orders are doing brisk business over at http://fuzzclub.com/collections/featured/products/split-single-8-white-hills-rmftm-fuzz-club-exclusive-vinyl?mc_cid=47eb520ab1&mc_eid=095f18a2ec
Additional….throw down bones review arriving…..
Somewhere in a parallel time line just about now, drinks are being served, shared and plans are being hatched to forge alliances and set forth crafting a super psych opus of mind gibbering wooziness. The names of our fated souls are the Clientele and Clock Strikes 13. Only there’s a slight snag for somewhere on this particular version of Earth some blighters have pulled the magic carpet from beneath where they stand and beaten them to it. They are called Sons of the Void and they have an album of the same name due for imminent release on Sunrise Ocean Bender limited quantities of which are at present being pressed up on cyan shaded wax accompanied by eye catching inserts. Sent ahead as a herald as to what to expect, ‘absorption’ arrives lazy eyed and adrift in a seductive seasoning of hazily glazed crystalline chimes and west coast after glows that coalesce succulently traced upon mind morphing 60’s halos that shimmer and hover for the best part much like some tripping groove cooked up by the missing in action of late Sunray until just before the four-minute mark whereupon they sky rocket off to journey into the psych void. https://soundcloud.com/sunriseoceanbender/04-absorption
More moving picture interludes – strange sounds.
The new sound of music….
With titles like ‘gruesome macabre slime’ and ‘morgue paste’ not to mention calling yourselves Crematory Digestor, there’s little chance of you haplessly tripping across this only to find the sweet sunny sounds of the West Coast chiming happily from its grooves, even less likely that approving nods will be the order of the day should you impishly select it for playing during a lull in the proceedings at a dull dragging Sunday afternoon gathering of the family. Still you can always keep it in mind for within this collective 90 second brace of blistered bedlam there’s the guarantee of clearing fast from your vicinity all those who ascribe to a chirping melody and the tedium of teen pop, in its place a speed freaking warring cauldron is afoot that literally torches the first five layers of your face skin, doomed, damned and suffocated in darkening gloom, we here are most taken by the impromptu throat gurgling greeting the forbidding apocalyptic fury of the second cut ‘gruesome macabre slime’. Available via a split outing with Embalming Theatre who again sound like a bunch of happy chaps. http://crematorydigestor.bandcamp.com/album/upcoming-split-7-with-embalming-theatre-searching-for-labels
We can’t right now lay our hands on our prized cassette copy of this lots debut, which I’ll admit is a wee bit trying and annoying, the reason for the search being to check whether or not the newly chipped vinyl version via burger is indeed an expanded version of the tape or not. Anyhow grumbles aside this is the Lemons who the keen eyed train-spotters among you may well recall we mentioned on numerous occasions (to the point of annoyance I suspect) many moons ago, who attracted and wooed our lobes with their acutely infectious craft for kicking out lo-fi’d twee cutesy bubble grooved power pop at the drop of a hat much in the likeness of a youthful Olivia Tremor Control albeit found cobbling out Pooh Sticks homages for fun. As said the album is finally getting the full wax pressing treatment some on coloured vinyl – what’s to betting sherbet lemon – and a whole load more on bog standard black, ought to fly off the racks in nanoseconds though if you’re still sitting on the fence wondering what all the fuss is about here’s a little taster courtesy of the 50’s shoo bopping dizzily day-glowing darling that is ‘ice cream shop’. https://soundcloud.com/burgerrecords/the-lemons-ice-cream-shop
Now I was about to take great issue with point of reference to the ‘doomtronica’ tags accompanying this cut, its initial moments curiously weaving crystalline serene dream like mirages, what’s to fear we thought, and then step forward the vocals and suddenly the temperature, the dynamic and whole nature suddenly shifts about turn, what was first encountered as lulling and lilting assumes an ominous focus that’s chilled in a subtly toned disquieting eeriness as though the conversation is being conducted séance like from behind a deathly veil. Incidentally it’s the latest offering from Rammsier who really needs to get a wiggle on and put out more of these shadow playing lovelies, this one by the way entitled ‘hail’. https://soundcloud.com/rammsier/hail
Concluding two episodes of the 6-part head tripping animation cobbled together by Chappo to serve as a parallel back story as to how they come to find the sounds adoring their recently released ‘future former self’ via caroline international – a kind of surreal acid induced crooked conversation as were between the infinite monkey cage and the mighty boosh entitled ‘the singularity’ which gets ever more at each corner it turns, kind of mazes within mazes where lead protagonist finally gets to discover – oooh spoiler – we’ll leave that for you to tie yourself into knots trying to discover. Anyway as an added treat ‘mad magic’ becomes the second single lifted from this frankly incurably addictive set, an uber grooved funk fuelled slab of vintage kaleidoscopic psych tropicalia that smokes seductively to a sonic cocktail that imagines Sly Stone heading up the flaming lips.
Okay there we were minding our own business when we stumbled upon this teasingly brief nugget from the sexy world stable entitled ‘Friday’ which aside much reminding us of the of late missing in action Dalmatian Rex and the Eigentones, barely gave us time to hit the pause button at it finish which is just as well for we’d have been blissfully ignorant of the existence of McDonalds, at least that’s what we think their called. Alright admittedly this has been apparently doing the rounds for about a year, but hey goes to show you just can’t put a supressing lid on a well turned prickly punk pop nugget. ‘mr glasses’ is a rumblesome raw pogo potent sonic squabble, a slab of impishly rowdy bubble groove that might allow for restful nights for those who’ve lain awake at night cobbling up imagined fantasy bands from assembled bits of the Rezillos and the Popticians. https://soundcloud.com/sexyworld/friday
This little lovely caught our ear courtesy of a posting we eyed by the quiet of late Planting Seeds imprint who if I recall mentioned therein something about a mix tape being cobbled right about now for online airing. Anyway they recommended this, fair dues it looks as though it’s been around for a while and yes all good minded folk well-tuned in these things are probably well familiar with its becoming charms, by the Tambourines this is the lightly mellowing ‘another day’ – an affectionately breezy porch lit pretty hazily honeyed in the subtle and sunny caress of west coast vibes and teased by a shading bitter sweet sting which aside adoring our listening space had us much minded of a three way campfire gathering of moviola, mayflowers and milltown brothers types.
Musical interlude – found sound and vision 1 – electronic music….
Now it goes without saying that the dudes over at Finders Keepers – that’ll be Messrs Mitchell, Shipton and Votel have a knack of consistently pulling out the stops when it comes to cobbling out playlists that adorn their podcasts, but quite frankly the latest might well rise the bar considerably for future transmissions to follow. Their finest to date, a krautrock special – two hours of motoric murmurs all typically detuned by appearances of the quirky, the classy, the eclectic and the bizarre, abridged by studio conversation and oozing in kosmiche kool, amid the grooves for your listening pleasure several appearances in varying forms of Dave Tyack, Amon, Cluster, jc heavy, I drive, vampires of Dartmoor and more, plus a few eye brow raising surprises – like for instance, is that really Bureau B’s Pyrolator doing all manner of trippy goofiness at the 30 minute mark – we need to told which while you’re there we missed the title of the tasty ‘are friends electric’ meets Stereolab meets agents aren’t aeroplanes sortie. In addition, the trio are joined telephonically by Can’s Malcolm Mooney for an extended transatlantic chat whilst best moment of this extended head popping broadcast is the appearance at the beginning of, as Andy Votel rightly notes, the finest of all kraut grooved ensembles, Embryo who if you’ve never heard or had the pleasure of – are perhaps best viewed as a collective continually responsible for pushing the envelope and reaching out beyond kosmiche / krautrock’s strict confines to offer a mutating melting pot of sound that incorporates everything from tropicalia, jazz to cosmic. https://soundcloud.com/finderskeepersrecords/finders-keepers-radio-show-krautrock-special
While with Finders Keepers there’s also a late call for their Christmas special which alas we initially missed in all the seasonal dithering, view it as an early call for the this year’s 2016 parting festivities – https://soundcloud.com/finderskeepersrecords/finders-keepers-radio-show-krautrock-special
Musical interlude – found sound and vision 2 ‘Krautrock’
As a famous film poster once ominous noted ‘in space no one can hear you scream’, teaming in life and potential, the beauty and sense of the unknown offered by space contrasts with its isolationism and stilled deathly silence, out in the void life and death perilously duel to preserve a finite balance, its size and enormity reduced to meaningless numbers that mere contemplation and consideration cannot begin to comprehend, an oceanic drift space with our planet a mere speck or sea like microbe. ‘uncharted worlds’ described by its author Moon Dust as a ‘kind of space opera of discovery and adventure’ perfectly encapsulates in sound form the many aforementioned facets, a genteel serene moment tempered at its outset in tension and anticipation, celestial waveforms usher forth a sense of mystery, beauty and forlorn fascination, the textures desire laden and colourful coalesce seductively forming heavenly harmonic haloes of tenderly teased transcendental orbitals, reference wise imagine a chill toned cruise controlling hyper craft traversing to the beyond piloted by a super mellowed Tangerine Dream. https://soundcloud.com/petri-kiviniemi/uncharted-worlds
Similarly touched with a sense of the atmospheric, ‘altered states of consciousness’ by Sensitive Space aligns itself to the more isolated aspects of space, detachment and a perceptible sense of being alone and adrift are intricately explored amid the grooves of this lightless dark star, the textures sparse and minimal exude a chilling subterranean quality that’s etched in both a softly pulsing eeriness and a gloomed majesty from the depths of which darkly stirs an awakening leviathan. https://soundcloud.com/flyingrhinofrm/sensitive-space-altered-states-of-consciousness
musical interludes – found sound and vision 3 – krautrock
Bowie in Sound and Vision…..
Many thanks to the guys over at gerpfast kollektif for posting this previously unseen and unheard – by us at least – gem from Lamp, just beams hazy sunshine vibes whilst dinkily traced in an easy pop sumptuousness that sits somewhere between a surrendering Le Mans and the faintly teased charm swoon pop of the Free Design, yet scratch a little deeper and it’s clear that this lot have something of a shared fondness for Burt Bacharach with a straying affectionate eye for Fugu.
Stumbled, as you do, across this on the sound cloud page, strictly speaking following a wandering off and making a coffee moment whilst listening to a completely different track and leaving the playlist selection list running on its own accord. Now I understand that by posting this I’ll no doubt get a deluge of complaints from clever folk sniggering as how I’ve never heard this before and that it was their bedroom listening in 1978 as they watched rain drip through the ceiling whilst surviving on a tin of soup a week and making paper mache bomb shelters from copies of the red star in perceived advance of some cold war assault (in fact the more I play the more I’m suspecting it is a lost relic from yesteryear). Really you kids today don’t know how hard it was, agreed a persistent diet of reality TV and concerning yourself that your shoes match your hair are the teen woes that dreams are made of but hey nobody ever forced you to wear starry tank tops and cut your hair with a set rule so stand down. Anyway the cause of all this malcontent or should that be discontent is this little gem, a demo by Hard Bodies entitled ‘getaway’ whose ice cold sparsely wired post punk cold wave textures sound to these ears like a lost Passage recording under the influence of a seriously distant Joy Division and something we wager ought by rights to be on the radar of all those whose minimalist pop barometer swings minimally to the sparse sounds eked out by those polytechnic youth and weird imprint dudes. https://soundcloud.com/hard-bodies/getaway-demo
Many thanks to Matt Bower for posting this, may or may not be Mr Bower himself in any number of guises adding already to his alter ego curricula as Wizards Tell Lies and the Revenant Sea (both of whom we’ve done a massive injustice to of late for not featuring – rest assured more words are coming). Whatever the case this is apparently heading out of the aetheric label, it’s called ‘a step in the dark’ by hole house, a brief but all to chilling slice of disturbia whose apparent back story probably raises more questions than it answers and runs along the lines ‘captured on tape from within the walls of the now infamous derelict former VHS rental shop in West Yorkshire’ which ought to appeal first hand to those with a fondness for Nigel Kneale’s ‘the stone tape’ and ‘Quatermass and the Pit’ in as much as to the scientific belief that structures retain ghostly impressions of former occurrences which you’ll find in abundance here courtesy of the ghostly echoes and aural apparitions which all in all chime perfectly with something similar that was explored by Dreams of Tall Buildings on their excellent though ridiculously limited rare as hen’s teeth ‘residuum’ set from a few years back. https://soundcloud.com/aetheric-records/a-step-in-the-dark-by-hole-house
Mentioned this a few months ago wherein it tripped out creating bliss hazed Sunray-esque dream drifts upon the headspaces of record buying adventurers following its limited edition appearance on the Deep Distance imprint, seems only fitting we mention it again as Northern Star records are celebrating 10 psychedicised years of expanding minds an event that’s due for celebration in May when the Windmill in Brixton plays host to a gathering of melodic mystics accompanied by far out strange tunes of the fringe parting and shade adorned kind
So what that he promises to send CD’s and we never get them, do you think we run a naughty step list around here, of course not, we are more grown up than that and instead we haven’t got the time to wallow and grumble as we whittle out tiny dolls in what many might note, are the likeness of said folk, out of old wooden pegs and then suspend them over open fires. So as the latest fruits of our a-whittling singes on a naked flame, here’s a sneak peak of new Klaus Mortlock grooves, who shortly will be releasing two albums for strange minded folk to feast upon, one a band camp self-release, t’other through the esteemed reverb worship imprint. This, folks be entitled ‘penumbra’ – a sweetly lolloping pastoral posy hinting rolling greens of spring hued innocence and play with flutes and keys chiming cheerily with yearning abandon traced to a sound dusted in a forgotten vintage – Douglas Gamley did I hear you say, yet amid its becoming beauty you sense danger lurks peeking from behind the overhanging shades. https://soundcloud.com/les_baxter/penumbra-opening-creditsby-klaus-morlock
A nether world where dimensions, realities, dream states, time and altered spaces or whatever you prefer to call it blur, lost in the twilight, the momentary flicker out of direct vision in the corner of your eye, the chill upon your shoulder as though some unseen presence is behind you; these are the unexplained from whence ‘descent (on the up staircase)’ emits, the latest broadcast from Septimus Keen. An eerie ghost light pulsar emitting mind clouding mesmeric murmurs cocooning all in a stilled surveillance like sci-fi-tronic disquiet – reference wise file alongside the magnified field recording experiments engaged upon by aural alchemists the Revenant Sea and Roadside Picnic. http://septimuskeen.bandcamp.com/track/descent-on-the-up-staircase
And did we just mention roadside picnic and the revenant sea, well the former should be appearing in these musings fairly soon with two releases via static caravan and 454545, while the latter in their Wizards Tell Lies guise appear on what is / was the last release from the quietly admired Jehu and Chinaman cassette only imprint – a compilation entitled ‘#003….and then a painless end’. We will rest assured be checking out the rest of the gathering in due course but for now the aforementioned Wizards Tell Lies who open the set with ‘Minotaur Falls’ and finds Mr Bower (here aided and abetted by John Lunny on sax duties) entering – sound wise – the temple of Muslim Gauze whilst simultaneously navigating sonic worlds more commonly associated with John 3:16 and aligning all to an atmospheric and deft constructive detailing that irrefutably tips a telling nod to Barry Adamson. Perhaps the most free sounding we’ve heard Bower in a long time with this expansive slab of arabesque grooving courting elements of industrial, kraut, noir, jazz, dub and psychotropia to create a hulking slice of hot swarthy head re-arranging aural hypnosis that teeters ever so subtly around the outer spheres of Embryo’s exceptional sound world. http://j-and-c.bandcamp.com/album/j-c-sampler-003-and-then-a-painless-end
These days Wizards Tell Lies / the Revenant Sea can be found jointly overseeing the Arell imprint with Laica (Dave Fleet) who have just released their seventh outing in the shape of the quite divine ‘order of service 534’ by Steven Hay. In short 16 minutes of lulling perfection that pretty much defies easy or glib classification, certainly pulling from a sound spectrum where comparisons to yellow6, wil Bolton, david a jaycock are loosely called to mind in an instant, yet there’s something more to this delightful 16 – minute suite that reveals itself with each passing listen, amid its genuflecting lullaby arcs and rustic flurries there’s a genteel hymnal whispering where tiny ripples of euphoria briefly shine only to retreat to await their next call. The opening passages presage a softly thawing winter-esque yawn that hints of the stilled majesty of a mark 1 era Earlies, yet what makes this release such an essential listening experience is the way the varying sub-suites evolve seamlessly, the way it gathers in depth, detail and dimension with the onset of the playful lolloping rush rearing into view at the 5-minute mark and the way it dissipates back to its mistily cloaked twilight anchoring and the rustle of frosty murmurs only to emerge ever more resolute at the 11 minute mark with almost Vernon Elliott like craft albeit as though Mr Elliott where working to a post rock sound script with the rudimentary sparse basics of a tweaked metronome and a shuffling guitar strum before returning to rest to the sleepy headed fanfare of a sepia trimmed dream motif at the close. Quite something. https://arell.bandcamp.com/album/order-of-service-534-preview
Musical interlude – found sound and vision 5 – XTC at the Manor
Couldn’t resist giving a very brief mention to this, fear not we will be revisiting it in full in the coming days, however we were quite smitten by a track by Omaloma taken from a forthcoming compilation of Welsh folk, ambient, psychedelia sounds being put out by the Cae Gwyn imprint. Obviously taking a leaf out of the much missed book from which once upon a time sprouted the creatively adept Ankst Musik imprint, ‘swooshed’ is a gathering of ten like-minded souls currently navigating beneath the populist radar, familiar names such as Dann Amor and Gorky’s John Lawrence feature (last appeared in these pages as the excellent Infinity Chimps), however for now as said we’ve been somewhat taken by Omaloma’s cut ‘lutra’ which unless our ears do deceive teasingly traces around the more vintage crafted floral posies emanating from out of the admired Ghost Box imprint notably by Belbury Poly, its wistfully wind swept desolate romance chiming ever so subtly to the earlier outings put out by the much missed Stylus for Ochre a few years back.. more info via http://www.recordiaucaegwyn.com/
Musical interlude – found sound and vision 6 – datblygu
The excellent Datblygu hosted as it happens by Mr Peel….with Jools cameo…
Alas no links on this just yet, rest assured we will work on her press folk imminently, but this is quite superb. By Istanbul based experimental electronic alchemist Ipek Gorgun taken from a forthcoming set entitled ‘aphelian’, we’ve been much taken by showcase cut ‘kairos’ – an exquisite exploration into the insular and oft isolated tonalities found amid the unchartered regions of sounds inner space, navigating an aural trajectory familiar to admirers of both Astral Social Club and a youthful Pimmon, Ms Gorgun cross wires elements of drone, noise and glitch into a deeply engaging mutant psychotropic suite whose detachment is both eerie and alluring. Here glassy timbres and the whirring shimmer of glitch bubbles stretch and contrast crafting out a subterranean alien landscape ghosted in oscillating metallic murmurs and shivering silvery bowed.
Couldn’t resist keeping this under wraps any longer, teaser taster from the Hanging Stars whose debuting full length platter ‘over the silvery lake’ is fast approaching release time via great pop supplement / crimson crow. I’ll make no excuse or attempt at denial that this particular track has been hogging the listening plays since appearing on our sound player late last week for ‘crippled shining blues’ croons and swoons with a tweaking vintage mellowness that’s hushed and coolly kissed in a sumptuous psych folk radiance whose teased West Coast inclines and lazy eyed smokiness lushly arrests to a classic era Buffalo Springfield albeit as though retooled and rebranded by a happening early career Summer Hymns, utter bliss in other words. https://soundcloud.com/thehangingstars/12-crippled-shining-blues-3/
As the announcing tag line rightly states ‘everything you ever wanted to know about Sendelica but were too afraid to ask’ – Jay Muffin Junkee invites Pete Sendelica to wax lyrical on the history of Wales’ answer to the Acid Mothers as the ensemble celebrate 10 years of turning stereos space wards and headspaces to mush. Amid this extended broadcast the two chat about ‘the village’ play records, get weird, get surreal and then return to earth space after a fashion, as to the sounds a brief discographic plundering of the vaults to air rarities aplenty including the bands debuting rare as hen’s teeth ‘the owls have eyes’ and the soundtrack for ‘sleepwalker fever’ as well as the very spacey and stoned out Floyd doing ‘war of the worlds’ esque ‘twelve shades’ before of course going all weird, out of it, fried and mega mind melting while towards the end, through the medium of tape producer Colin and bassist Glenda share their thoughts.
The band are set to release a version of Bowie’s ‘Ziggy Stardust’ via fruits de Mer shortly, the track initially appearing – if I recall rightly on FdM’s quite spiffing ‘fashion’ covers disc mailed out to label subscribers just before the year waltzed out. Now in the light of Mr Bowie’s untimely passing the release will take on a new significance and will come backed by a by all account head -frying remix of the same cut by Marc Swordfish.
The band also recently sneaked out ‘I’ll walk with the stars for you’ – still available and still limited – frankly you just have to hear the mind blowing trip-a-delic cosmicalic ‘I once fed peter green’s pet albatross’ – a head expanding 15 minute journey into the centre of the huge ever pulsing Ozric hive mind. https://sendelica.bandcamp.com/album/ill-walk-with-the-stars-for-you
Apologies time, no sooner do we put to bed the brief mention about Sendelica with a passing nod to their latest album, then we discover that Peter sent over download codes, like light years ago, along with video links for the sets opening track ‘black widow man’ which features legend Twink. Mortified we are I can tell you. So while we start prepping the album for full review here’s that aforementioned video, in short a seriously wasted and uber cooled shade adorning psychedelicised Sabbathian sermon had that is, Sabbath been mainlining and tripping high on a Hawkwind transfusion.
Not for the first time in as many reviews have we had cause to recall the Earlies, but it has to be said that there’s a maturity and a subtle song craft majesty attaching to the sound of Vukovar and while we here are a little cautious to cause swelling of heads when describing a band still in its relative infancy, they are it has to be said, the jewel in the Small Bear records crown. An album (‘Emperor’) under their belt which immediately endeared itself to us to such an extent it made our top 3 list of last year not to mention the release of one of the finest debuting singles (‘new world order’) we’ve had the pleasure of hearing in a long while, the band are currently applying the finishing coat to their much anticipated second full length – ‘Voyeurism’. By way of a taster ‘the blood garden’ has been sent ahead to cause swoon action amid the record shop aisles, an event which is these days becoming something a label family affair given in house mates Postcode are duly present in the mix. But hang on, the Earlies, sounds a bit wintry, a vibe that hints of yuletide campfires – perhaps it’s the hymnal chorals – are we pitching this in the right season we wonder. But then ‘the blood garden’ is a curious outing, sure enough its immediate but similarly it’s a slow burner, a song for all seasons, a love song that arcs perfectly between restraint and intensity, possessed of a myriad of reference markers most notably the Dream Academy and the Wedding Present (that’ll be the Weddoes doing their own take on the Dream Academy – in all their full frenzied glory) not to mention a cameo from the Bunnymen upon which they throw in everything including not so much the kitchen sink but a ringing telephone. All said though as is the case with these things the ear hugging sore thumbs are to be found on the flip side with the appearance of two radically reworked versions of ‘Ms Kuroda’s lament’ – the former subtitled ‘the sailor’ mix is sparsely bedded upon a strobe pulsar motoric grooving giving it a starry psych haloing much likening of that of a youthful Echoboy while elsewhere a blistering post everything live rendition ripped from a recent Glasgow set finds the trio veering ever so closely into the hallowed territories of Joy Division.
C Duncan returns to release action following acclaim brought to bear upon his exquisite ‘Architect’ debut full length. Accompanied by a mainland tour, a new four track EP is shortly due for release featuring something familiar, something old, something borrowed and something new. The borrowed incidentally a cover of the Cocteau’s snow trickling and crystalline love note ‘pearly dewdrops drops’ – a version of which you can catch below when Mr Duncan was invited to partake in the let Glasgow flourish – the covers Scotland sessions and chose said track citing it as a massive influence on his style and musical personality. In addition, the US version of the ‘Say’ video has been unwrapped – mentioned as it happens many, many moons ago…… https://marklosingtoday.wordpress.com/2015/01/20/c-duncan-3/
Been a while since we had any Pye Corner Audio groove doing strange things on the sound player, last time out if I rightly recall was a rather dandy outing sneaked out by the front and follow imprint several moons and a half ago. A newly chipped set for more than human is about be ushered out entitled ‘prowler’ – 500 mind so you better act fast. Anyhow a video teaser has been leaked out and finds the PCA one, transmitting as were, binary distress calls from the very depths of some long forgotten and thought abandoned celestial outpost, builds seductively in stateliness and stature casting mesmeric field resistances cultured from glitch graveyards, dub dumping grounds and techno tomb sights which coalesce momentarily upon emerging from the lunar shadows to craft a head expanding Aphex-ian pulsar plaything scalped in Plaid sonic off cuts.
Musical interlude – found sound and vision 6 – landscape
A forgotten gem, this macabre creeping pop gem actually made the lower reaches of the Top 40 in its day, hasn’t dated and still stands the test of time…..
Takes me back to times huddled around the radio player listening to the latest shy eyed lovelies about to embark on record shop road trips as they headed out of the celebrated dream pop / twee indie sound houses of bus stop, summershine and wilde club – to name just three – as they drifted dreamily from off a Peel running order and through the speakers and into our listening space. As reported previously, there seems to be a buoyant appetite for all things dream pop in Indonesia these days, the latest such ear hugging slice of tastiness coming from Seahoarse whose ‘cricket choir’ is possessed of the kind of swoon factored adoring indie kiss that trembles and teeters to sit sweetly somewhere between the cute pop rush of Heavenly and the graceful faraway detachment of the Sundays, tag on the obligatory shoe gazey trims and the slyly seductive shimmer of vapour trailing sun spot burns and you have something that ought by rights to appeal to those of you much admiring and adoring of ummagma. https://soundcloud.com/seahoarse_seahoarse
Anyone got an email contact for rock action press, really want this, just judging by the teaser cut ‘u-235’ this forthcoming Mogwai set is shaping up to be one of the early end of year contenders. Out in April, this gem comes lifted from their ‘Atomic’ full length, a kosmiche ghost light traced in tear stained melancholia and rippled in the haunt of regret, a lonesome opine dreamily mellowed in ache, its precision and progression simply exquisite, the effect expansive, cinematic, elegant and elegiac all curvaceously lilted and trimmed in the subtle purr of a pulsing orbital murmur. Utter beautified bliss. https://soundcloud.com/rock-action-records/mogwai-u-235
And swiftly back with the more than human imprint, well sort of for transmitting out of Vancouver’s CITR you can grab a downloadable hour long podcast / radio soiree devilishly populated by some of the finest cool cuts heading out the melodic margins of trance, electronica, ambient and more besides. Hosted by Gareth Moses this head tripping journey into sound beyond features a plethora of happening sounds from the likes of Duke St. Workshop whose latest acclaimed Static Caravan platter has been mentioned briefly here in passing and should by rights be arriving shortly for full adoring critical assessment. Also featured are selections from Assembled Minds excellent ‘creaking haze’ full length – a release that been so loved and overly played to death here that we’ve thus far erroneously forgot to review in all the distracting affection our turntable has heaped upon it. Elsewhere admirers of the Alrealon Musique label might well be advised to get your lugs around pinch’s ‘no justice’ non least because it appears to be ploughing the same kind of hybrid glitch dub margins much evident on releases by black Saturn. Elsewhere we here are much taken by Daniel Avery’s ‘sensation’ – a nifty slice of hypnotronic mind wiping trance toned dream machine Dadaism if ever heard one. Also catching the ear lobes, not waving’s ‘no kill’ is possessed of a delightfully vintage grooving that would suggest it being a distant distress call from some far flung orbital outpost tapping out call sign welcome fanfares from out of vaguely warped locked grooved analogue echoes while kosmischer l?ufer’s quite alluring old school 50’s sci fi dazed theremin-esque ‘der traum des jungen’ is a beautifully beguiled slice of waltzing futurism seen through the eyes of yesterday – something which we suspect ought to lapped up by admirers of both fortdax and early career isan. http://www.citr.ca/radio/more-than-human/episode/20160131/
One thing we are going to do in the forthcoming weeks is try and instil some modicum of order in our record life, its utter chaos you’ll be happy to hear and sometimes bordering on a miracle that half of these reviews ever get to the finishing line. We really must also try to hold back from flitting from one listening session to another which ordinarily has the adverse effect of us stock piling a ridiculous amount of reviews currently, as they say, in working progress. To give you an idea as to just how bordering on mayhem this has become, we currently have 37 opens tabs featuring stuff we’ve either heard or plan to hear just from getting home little over 90 minutes ago. And zip files – don’t get me started – it’s not a good spectator sport seeing a grown man cry. I mention all this because we’ve an apology owing to Rhys Marsh – and about three dozen others as well, for we are certain we’ve been sent download files for his new album which has in all the musical melee we call a listening space, temporarily gone walking somewhere on our bells and whistles honking laptop whose files management we are suspecting is applying some kind of symbiotic alignment to our own disorganised nature in a foolhardy attempt to curry favour. So while we wrap up the longest introduction to a solitary track ever witnessed this side of a fawning Brit pop award acceptance speech and go forth to hunt down the errant files here’s a little something from his current album ‘the black sun rising’ which is currently doing – one would hope – brisk business via the burning shed imprint. ‘I hear, I know’ finds Mr Marsh venturing darkening pathways, this is the sun tipped pastoral landscapes of Oddfellows Casino’s ‘yellow bellied wonderland’ gloomed in twilight shadows, unattended, overgrown and left to form disfiguring shapes in the illumination of moons glow, all at once haunting and brooding, there’s a strangely nightmarish psychosis etched to the grooving as the densely torn musicality groans and drags with dead headed suffocation casting a macabre bewitchment and withering all in its path with its ice gripped deathly touch much like a dark hearted Mr Almond plucked untimely from his Mambas incarnation.
Many thanks to the guys over at the let’s make your ear bleed, will you facebook group who gave a heads up to this little gem, this dainty delight is by exkouhai and beyond that the information trail goes cold. Safe to say ‘spirit’ is quite divine, an ice sculptured lovely dinked in oodles of undulating flurries of pastoral posies all sweetly sighed in a rare expressive beauty that hints ever so subtly to Ryuichi Sakamoto’s ‘forbidden colours’. https://soundcloud.com/exkouhai/s-p-i-r-i-t
Musical interlude – found sound and vision-ish 7 – Vivian Stanshall
The much missed eccentric talent that is Vivian Stanshall narrating ‘Sir Henry at Rawlinson’s End’
As we write, we are downloading an advance copy of what, if the track we are currently listening to – ‘tachyon deep’ is anything to judge by, a frankly killer set in listening waiting, it’s the fourth album from Stockholm collective new keepers of the water towers. Entitled ‘infernal machine’ its described as a loose concept set inspired by the sci-fi novel ‘the forever war’ and features the aforementioned cut ‘tachyon deep’ – a beautifully crafted lunar odyssey freefalling sumptuously into the hallowed terrains of a youthful Porcupine Tree, preserved and purred in an intensely stricken classicism that doesn’t quite achieve critical meltdown turbulence, yet cleverly teeters with vivid detailing between the mystery, the unknown and the doomed, this gem embarks on a sonic trajectory that slow burns to gather in density its initial emissions whose woozy pastoral florets at the beginning come traced in the starry eyed opining vapour drift of a hulking Floydian head trip soon begin to fracture and fragment with glowering deft craft to jettison with stratospheric muscularity into the oceanic netherworlds of cinematic post rock. Alas no sound links for now though rest assured full mentions will transmit over the coming days.
Another release we here are expectantly looking forward to is the forthcoming Duophonic released set by the Cavern of Anti-Matter entitled ‘void beats / invocation trex’ – a collective headed up by ex Stereolab-er Tim Gane who across several ultra limited releases (last time featured in these pages courtesy of that spiffing twin set for the adored ghost box) have been populating the grooves with a minimalist old school hybrid dinked to the cross wiring vibes of the Radiophonic Workshop, vintage kooled kosmiche, 60’s lounge and dream dazed psychotropia. By way of a scouting reconnaissance trip ‘liquid gate’ has been leaked out to serve as a taster of what to expect from the six sided full length, featuring Bradfiord Cox applying the vocal duties, this two-minute slice of pure pop comes slyly dimpled in a luxuriously curvaceous funky kiss all adored upon a coolly smouldered retro 70’s soul psychotronic vibrancy with disco underpins which ought on first hand to appeal to a wider listening audience whilst satiating the old guard especially those much admiring of the Lab’s ‘margerine eclipse’.
Mentioned this lot, oooh ages ago, where were you. As said much adored around these parts was their ‘you’ track from a few years back, between then and now they kind of fell off our radar, perhaps to hibernate no doubt given their sound appears, one might assume, to be set in a fragile and frail hermetically sealed bubble. And then this. They are of course, to put you out of your teasing misery, Gidge – a Scandinavian duo no less who are about to release a new full length via Atomnation entitled ‘lulin’ from which has been sneaked out is an excerpt of the lead cut ‘hon’. In short immaculate, elegant and amorphous, trimmed to the thawing tenderness of No Ceremony, this hushed ice sculptured sweet heart emerges from a twilight fog as were like some stilled, statuesque ghostly apparition ushering and uttering a celestial love note all the time graced in a frosted perfection only previously encountered on a this mortal coil visitation. https://soundcloud.com/gidgeofficial/gidge-hon-18392241/s-YdVqh
Pictorial interlude – objects of desire 1
Occasionally regular glossary / picture book / links featuring must have weird looking vinyl, strange cassettes and other rarefied oddities from planet pressing plant……
Feast thine eyes on these cuties…….
pictorial interlude – objects of desire 2
super limited, super gorgeous and super expensive…….
pictorial interlude – objects of desire 3
strange desirables from the pressing plant floor
many congratulations are due to the ever adored and highly esteemed Static Caravan records for reaching their landmark 300th release, a specially pressed outing featuring two cuts lifted from the third full length ‘each other’ by Aidan Knight. Now of course Static Caravan scarce need no introduction in these pages, impeccable taste and an enviable release roster have seen this essential imprint / sound house continually peaking around the corner to sonically surf ahead of the curve continually surprising and never hindered by the rut of laziness and gone in a flash bandwagon hopping scene stealing, quality has always been the by word, a varied palette that has seen it dip its toes into electronica, Americana, fuzzy glitch, folktronica, hauntology, drone, dream pop, pure pop, old pop, psych pop, you name it and the Static Brothers have probably been there already, it’s this indiscipline or refusal to tie itself to a particular generic mast that has seen it standing proudly today when all their contemporaries (barring your Earworms, enraptureds and one of two others momentarily slipping our minds recall). Compared in passing to Sufjan Stevens and Andrew Bird, we here like to think Mr Knight evokes the kind of joyfully mellowing bitter sweet toning of June Panic, it’s something that catches you off guard, not an instant fix but more a retiring earworm craftily placing its alluring hooks in your psyche, for what passes on the ‘the arp’ mushrooms out of the haze of a wearily minimalist hum drum introspective reflective shading to transform succulently into radiant showers of panoramic sun shining hope euphoria all this softly turned in a blissfully lazy eyed countrified yearn that hooks sneakily beneath the skin. That said we here were somewhat taken by flip cut ‘what light (never goes dim)’ – unsettlingly disarming, as though an armoury / a shield / a wall – peeling away to reveal a fragile and momentarily vulnerable and reflective side to the author studiously anchored to the plaintive strum of a guitar, measured and articulate as it revolves ever deeper into an tender inwardly revealing with each passing note. The release comes limited to just 78 copies all pressed on 8 inches of lathe cut wax available at Mr Knight’s forthcoming UK dates. http://www.staticcaravan.org/item.asp?Ref=300
first of a bunch of key note fruit de Mer grooves shortly to be descending upon discerning record counters in the coming weeks. The newly unveiled Spring collection features three essential and crucial additions to any progressive psych head’s record collection. First up to connect to the Sunday Experience stereophonic stylus a quite remarkable twin set from Austin, Texas based long hairs Proud Peasant who serve up a brace of well-heeled covers, the lead cut of which – and I know I’m on perilous footing here when I say this – out wigs even the mighty loons Cranium Pie and the Earthling Society. A furiously freaky version of Eloy’s ‘daybreak’ here progified within an inch of its very being and retuned with a galloping acid blues grooving which to these ears sounds not unlike a stoned n’ freakin peace pipe sharing gathering of the Mountain and Supersister clans. That said for the purists it’s the flip side retelling of Manfred Mann’s Earth Band’s ‘saturn, lord of the rings / mercury, the winged messenger’ that’s liable to be the cause of many a listener not returning all parts intact from this mammoth out-there sub seven-minute head trip. A colossal prog bad boy dream weaved under the converging influences of Embryo and the Ozrics all gorgeously tailored in a truly authentic vintage tasting that at various points incorporates dreamy soft psych florals a la Komeda, thunderous head battering space rock-a-hulas and hallucinogenia phrased trippy fringe flipping mind wiping warping sequences. Off the radar in short.
Think I’m right in saying that this is the first time Claudio Cataldi has featured on a Fruits de Mer stand-alone following several exceptional appearances on various compilation collections for the label. Again as with the previous outing, this comes adorned on 7 inches of coloured wax all limited to just 600 copies – all of which one imagines will fly the coup in blink of an eye fashion. Alas our prized CD promo version only gave up the first two tracks before hitting a defiant wall which means we’ll have to source ‘final’ and ‘ropes and strings’ by way of alternative avenues. Fear not though for the two cuts we did manage to rescue are bonafide nuggets the first of which is a drop dead smoking cool re-phrasing of the Velvets ‘here she comes now’, so good in fact that I’m almost of a mind to sack the Nirvana version which in truth I always maintained was the final word on the song, this honey comes psychotropically weaved in kaleidoscopic mosaics wearing its own trip-a-delic shades whilst succulently trimmed, haloed and hazed in fuzzing countrified glazes. ‘all my friends are here’ is a newly penned nugget from the Cataldi workbench, a bliss kissed lazy eyed smouldering gem tripped in arcing and genuflecting opining slides dissipates and reference wise sounding admittedly to us not unlike a slipstreaming fan note exchanging meeting point hit upon by a cool reflective Robyn Hitchcock and a ghostly Paul Roland apparition.
And before you all start crowing, like you I’m a little perturbed and somewhat disbelieving of the cash in’s following Mr Bowie’s passing, but fruits de mer had this release long planned before the thin white duke slipped his mooring (its vinyl pressing set to celebrate the bands 10th anniversary) having initially featured on the excellent subscribers only CD set ‘fashion’ – a gathering of FdM folk paying homage to the great man that slipped out to fond reviews at the tail end of the year. In the light of Mr Bowie’s departure, Sendelica’s acoustic version of ‘Ziggy Stardust’ assumes a hitherto new found significance, a band playing outside of their usual comfort zone melodic maxim dismantling and rephrasing anew one of the corner stone moments of Bowie’s career. To the mercurial Sendelica touch, ‘Ziggy Stardust’ is re-visioned as a ghost light – displaced, detuned and reforged fit for purpose into a disorientating dream dazed vapour trailing hymnal of fracturing folk motifs and shimmering star gazed wooziness, all said a most perfect and fitting celebration of the man. Over on the flip Astralasia’s Marc Swordfish assumes the remix duties to reposition the Sendelica head trip upon a more ethereal footing jubilantly tweaked in cosmic serenades, celestial string chimes and a deliciously head tripping bliss trimmed orbital trajectory. Stunning.
small apologies are due to happy orange balloon who for reasons best known only to our chaotic filing system, or lack of therein, sent over a little while ago, download links for a proposed forthcoming album which thus far has managed to avoid our usually dependable seek out and find radar seeing fit to ensconce said self in some secret corner on our hard drive. So while we rummage around in an attempt to re-join ourselves with said errant files here’s a little taster of what to expect. ‘hello?’ offers the more chillingly ominous and dare we say darkly daubed shadow casting side to the happy orange balloon psyche, a brooding slab of leviathanic doom draped hypno weaving drone toned ambience, a distant call sign emitting from the vast voids of deep space perhaps or maybe a skin tingling death touch choked in suspense and glooming portent, whatever the case its best viewed by our humbled reckoning from the relative safety afforded by the rear of the sofa. https://soundcloud.com/happyorangeballoon-happyorangeballoon/happyorangeballoon-hello
hours of fun, well minutes as it happens, 7 to be precise, hardly time to bop around the bijou confines of the kitchen as we multi tasked ourselves to death making coffee, having a quick cigarette and tapping our foot or should that be feet at the same time – ambidextrous see. Anyhow this spiteful slab of hit anything, anytime to whatever takes your fancy timing anger management salvo reared up on our player with the kind of impish poke you in the eye followed by the odd impromptu head butt that we here do occasionally thrill to. Now this is billed as a split between shit noise bastards and psychotic sufferance though I’m guessing that the former is in fact the label and the latter the actual tormentors of this spew goo primordial sludge, safe to say that where psychotic sufferance studiously lack in tact, finesse and playfulness they more than make up for with gusto in reigning all asunder a veritable feast of freeform, no wave, rule disregarding chaotic mayhem, a positive aural car crash of doom grooved white hot carnage that irresistibly flouts the verse chorus verse pop idiom in favour of all out destructive assault, in short I fear we could go on to love them. http://shitnoisebastards.bandcamp.com/album/split-with-psychotic-sufferance-mal
more Moon Dust loveliness to be found seducing the sound cloud airways, we here are thinking an album must surely be looming given the recent sonic activity emanating from the Kiviniemi sound bunker, ‘I’ll be waiting for you’ pulls out all the seductive stops, a nocturnal free spirit ghosted in the soft slow drift of cosmic soul whispers all pursed in a svelte tenderness that coolly smoulders with an astute love lilted sophistication whilst abridged to a lush desire like cinematic crush. https://soundcloud.com/petri-kiviniemi/ill-be-waiting-for-you
musical interlude – found sound and vision 8 – John Cooper Clarke….
Can’t beat a little a JCC……
And the immortal ‘beasley street’
Musical interlude – found sound and vision 9 – Kenneth Williams
Now at this point you might well be thinking….kenneth Williams – him from the carry on films – what’s he doing here and then questioning our judgement, but in the 60’s Mr Williams was known to wander perilously close to the censors ire whilst appearing in the anarchic ‘round the horne’ radio show, donning various guises aside it was rambling syd rumpo who perhaps revealed Messrs Took and Feldman as comedy writers of a rare pedigree pushing forth Williams into the spotlight bastardising distantly familiar folk follies tempered with double entendres aplenty….
In celebration of what would have been Mr Williams’ 90th birthday here’s a wee selection of saucy salvos by the great man…..
In addition Radio 4xtra broadcast a three hour special which features Syd Rumpo along with some classic Hancock and Round the Horne shows and a rare just a minute outing with Williams taking up the chairman role and pointedly going for Nicholas Parsons in a most hilarious way. However keep an ear out for the very darkly distressing ‘diary of a madman’ which finds Williams unravelling amid Gogol’s terrifying journey into madness.
must admit to being mildly smitten by these pokal types, latest cut from these Stockholm based sound alchemists – incidentally titled ‘know your name’ – breezily shimmers to one minute seductively freefall into the deft pastoral divides of a youthful Oddfellows Casino whilst simultaneously hooking upon the astutely pop whispered classicism of the missing in action of late Beatglider to align itself to an acutely cute sonic chemistry that’s trimmed in a spectral airiness not to mention an outer-worldly soft psych dream weaving surrendering. https://soundcloud.com/pokal/know-your-name
new ear gear imminent from the much fancied riot season sound house will find Italian sound collective menimals doing all manner of weird hair shadowy shape cutting on the hi fidelity player if that is the track ‘in this unforgiving heat’ is anything to judge by. Pulled from a self-titled set in conjunction with the phono sphera imprint and limited to just 300 wax copies, this album on early previews may well be preening itself to being one of the early year stalking horses, described by Riot Season’s head honcho as being ‘quieter than most of the stuff I’ve put out of late, but definitely fitting in the weird / psychedelic bracket’ – this six-minute salvo emerges from the stoned haze of an as were Acid Mothers come down, a mutant mantra forged in the ways of the old, spiked and spliced in dub cultures and the sultry snake wind of arabesque charms oozed in off balanced folk rituals and primordial psychedelics resuscitated from a late 60’s outsider scene one whiff of which and your flying and certainly something that ought to appeal to those who prefer their melodic mystical eye tweaked and fried by the tripping tonalities oft found heading out of the shadowy backwaters of both the boring machines and rise above imprints. https://soundcloud.com/riotseason/menimals-in-this-unforgiving-heat-2016
and from unforgiving to the ‘forgiven’ – who says we can’t do seamless links, sheesh the kids swoon in the aisles which might well be a good thing because this sneak pre-release teaser from Mrs Magician is a bit of a dandy, indeed yes I was going to squeeze in the errant Warhols to that but hey we resist being the obvious. Culled from a forthcoming set entitled ‘bermuda’ heading out May time via the Swami imprint this cut you to the quick slab of jingle jangling power pop throb struts, swoons and swaggers with all the acute coolness of a classic era Kevin Tihista’s Red Terror with a side serving of elephant 6 collective styled 60’s shimmering courtesy of the Apples in Stereo for good measure. https://soundcloud.com/mrs-magician/forgiveness/
we have a listening center latest currently doing locked stare things across the room at us from the turntable, which all things being well will be loved, listened to and no doubt waxed lyrically about this coming weekend along with a few well-heeled outings from the 454545 imprint whose year-long Southall Riot and beyond retrospective is fast approaching closure and a overly delayed in depth mention of that excellent Duke St Workshop full length via Static Caravan whose landmark 300th release we might squeeze in a little later is currently wowing the Sunday Experience sound shed. Anyhow here’s an oldie from the highly essential and desirably collectable sound resource Polytechnic Youth in the guise of XYZips and ‘satanic estate’ – a bleak horrorphonic trip to an age of cold war paranoia and ice tipped electronic minimalism that reimagines the soundtrack to 79’s Quatermass re-tooled in the spirit of Malcolm Clarke aided and assisted by a youthful Human League by Concretism.
Incidentally the listening center set – which alas quickly appeared and disappeared in a gasp via polytechnic youth – is entitled ‘aural assignments’ – as said previously – words of fondness here weekend time – however for now here’s a rare delight rescued from the LC vaults, first found appearing on a very limited cassette release that accompanied ‘the twilight language of Nigel Kneale’ tome way back in 2012 this is ‘teleplay’ – a Kraftwerk-ian lunar lullaby showered in celestial chorals, powered by analogue kosmiche calibrations all daubed in a sweetly alluring silver age electronic vintage. http://listeningcenter.bandcamp.com/track/teleplay
There’ll be more mentions about this superb compilation before the week is out, collated by Manchester’s Vanguardista records entitled – er – ‘various artists vol. 2’ which means there’s an errant volume 1 we’ve yet to disturb from its slumber, it’s a gathering of talent currently venturing beneath the radar and out of sight of the prying pop masses. For now though we are centring attentions on a featured cut by the much loved midwich youth club whose ‘misery vampires’ finds him patrolling Dadaist devo-id meets the Voltaire terrains for some bleak hypno-grooving dystopian diode doodling robo-trance, a kind of death disco for toasters if you like. Be warned there will be more MYC related grooviness later today. https://vanguardistarecords.bandcamp.com/album/various-artists-vol-2
Eyed on a quietly sly posting by those Eat Lights Become Lights dudes, fairly certain this hasn’t appeared previously on anything release wise despite the posting date clearly indicating it’s a year old. Anyway a little early call treat and a chance to peak into their secret sound lab to see what’s being cooked up new album session wise via the unveiling of a demo take of ‘nature reserve’ – a crafty earworm that insidiously burrows its way into your head space to retool, polish and recalibrate as were lost La Dusseldorf-ian lunar chassis templates. Imparting a classically eared kosmiche vintage this honey veers from dreamy orbital lullaby call signs to motoric maxima in a single gear shift its twinkling tonalities dissipating seductively to reveal an acutely arresting star gazed binary bop grooving as though the handiwork of some cosmically tripping aural docking tryst enacted by Slipstream and Fly. https://soundcloud.com/eat-lights-become-lights/nature-reserve-demo
I’m fairly certain we’ve featured Ian Hawgood previously, yet a quick rummage through the search engine vaults suggests otherwise. Still this is quite simple exquisite and something that should by rights appeal to those attuned to the grooves crafted by the likes of Wil Bolton, David A Jaycock, Oliver Cherer and many more besides. Out via folk reels from a set entitled ‘sketches by the sea’ this is ‘liberty restrained’ which I must admit caught our ear initially mainly due to its expressive openness and sense of a free spirited nature, both intimate and inviting its deft strum shimmers coax a dreamy delirium that hints at times of the more measured and isolated moments of Yellow6’s recent back catalogue not to mention evoking the tranquil faraway drifts of Vini Reilly, yet draw up a little closer and amid the chiming bird calls and the soft serene ebb and flow of wave patterns a lushly colourful portrait of landlocked hideaways peppered in greens, yellows and blues is imagined with rich sensitive artistry that may well appeal to admirers of the floral posies dinking the ‘wicker man’ soundtrack. https://folkreels.bandcamp.com/album/sketches-by-the-sea
70’s children’s TV was a scary place, locked in a past ghouled in legend, rumour and paganism and a future hinting of a new age yet periled by the danger and caution of the unknown, between wizards and space monsters. And while most might these days be considered a kitsch folly and the preserve of those to invest spare cash in reliving their child hood through the purchase of DVD sets its often their theme tunes that have long since lodged in the psyche, theme tunes that were more often than not more memorable than the shows they back dropped. These legendary themes poured their macabre through the idiot box, ghostly lullabies and woozy fairground recitals danced an eerie jig with cold wave dystopian future sounds and ghost lights from the twilight, they hinted adventure, mystery, bewitchment and beyond, one distant whiff of ‘Armchair Thriller’ has me at an instant connecting to my 5 year old self peeking out from behind the sofa through fingers of hands covering my face. It’s a hauntologist playground ripe for the picking of weird ear alchemist Melmoth the Wanderer who ventures forth with his wobble-o-meter to craft a fracturing daydream of eerie tea time disturbia for a half hour soiree entitled ‘the after school club’ wherein blurs and echoes the manifestation of sound ghosts from the goggle box of days gone past from timeslip to tomorrow people and wurzel to box of delights and more besides. https://www.mixcloud.com/Melmoth_The_Wanderer/the-after-school-club/
Despite the eager expectancy lavished in patrolling the letter box in the hope of goodies from the label arriving in the gaff, to date we have for our troubles been rewarded with cramp and a crooked spine not to mention receipt of a restraining order from our mail man who has on occasions resulting from desperation found himself accosted with questions as to the whereabouts of said goodies. Ah well we live in hope and for now, though still on the naughty step so to speak, oh how can we resist them when they sneak out gems like this ‘un, the latest lovely from Castles in Space comes in the shape of a debuting full length platter by Correlations entitled ‘before the heat’. Indeed regular visitors may recall us mentioning this lot a little over a month ago, this very track in fact, here spruced up and given the extended tweaking and sounding for all the world like a mellowing and softly cured pop purred lunar classicist slow burning nugget deftly drawn as though a hitherto mid-way sonic intersection point where free school, fort dax, dark captain light captain, sennen, art of the memory palace and fort dax all converge. For added measure dare we omit to mention its tailored trimming of svelte pulsar murmurs, cosmic pastorals and distractively sublime serene melodic etchings.
Mentioned a little while back here at https://marklosingtoday.wordpress.com/2016/02/01/the-hanging-stars-5/ – the album will be getting the critical ear sometime next week when we are off – so for now here’s a newly cobbled video type moving picture extravaganza accompanying one of the sets finest moments – we say one of the finest, blighters packed so tight with tastiness we’ll be needing a crow bar to separate the buggers……
Musical interlude – found sound and vision 10 – Sigur Ros
I’ll be openly honest in saying that Sigur Ros have rarely bothered our hi-fi in recent years, you might say its snobbery on our part but we’d defend ourselves in saying there was always something else to listen to, and well let’s be straight here, they never quite made the beat of our heart stop anything quite like the first time we heard ‘Svefn-g-englar’ – I remember the time as though it was yesterday, a low point in my life, homeward bound from a late night at work making my way down a lonely escalator of Liverpool Central station, a cassette in my bag had been languishing there for days, sent ahead by the guys at Losing Today, they’d been a little mystified by its contents and thought I might like a listen – of course it was the album ‘Agaetis Byrjun’ – it was this track in particular – a rare moment in pop where your touched by something truly God like evoking memories of the first time I’d encountered the Cocteau Twins and Dead Can Dance – to name just two – sublime, stately and tear stained in hope, here was something softly bathed in the kind of quite reverence and elegance that pop rarely ever dares touch. Under its spectral spell I was transported to a different place. A true fork in the road moment.
Far be it for me to say, but from what we’ve heard thus far, it seems to us that Maps and Diagrams are certainly pulling on the emotional strings on a forthcoming set entitled ‘Delta’ for the French based imprint VoxxoV. Currently seducing our sound player and bathing our listening space in an adoring purr, ‘Zink’ is proving to be his most tenderly realised composition to date, an oriental ghost light sighed in bowed arrangements and the genuflecting arc of surrendering strings, it’s quite a delicate thing shyly giving and lush in yearning yet bitter sweetly tear stained and bruised not to mention quite mesmeric. Begging letters are at present being cobbled for the hopeful return of full download codes perchance to sample more of its mercurial murmurings. http://voxxov-records.bandcamp.com/album/delta
A much welcomed message from Ian of the Truth About Frank telling us that they’re busy recording material for near future release, though before that alerting us to the small though consequential that a new Nektar 2017 has just appeared on the archive site – volume 8 no less – upon which they contribute a newly peeled track entitled ‘soul hunger’. Unless my ears do detect, the Frank ones appear to be straying slightly misty eyed into pop terrains, well by their standards at least, a hypno grooving psychotronic Dadaist beauty by our reckoning oozed in their typically weirdly wired schizoid visioning, mooching with almost pathological glee like some oddly pop prettified dream machine worked by a youthful Clinic under the watchful instruction of Psychic TV which let’s face it is a good thing right. As to the rest of the compilation, okay at 117 tracks in length we are going to have to work through this in a piecemeal fashion, so expect the odd impromptu re-visitation just when you least expect it, however for now we’d like to draw your ear gaze to the excellently named the one eyed tricycles whose ‘where the baby is?’ is one of those moments of oddly shaped surrealist goonery that oft invaded the playlists of the much missed BBC Radio 3 ‘mixing it’ show many years ago causing the raising of critical eyebrows and studio squabbles between the hosts Mark Russell and the late Robert Sandall. Of course admirers of the sounds tripping out of the sound houses of those impish souls Bearsuit records might equally delight in its playful Volcano the Bear-esque musical mischief making not to mention its slightly deranged eerie manipulation fracturing. https://archive.org/details/Necktar2017Volume8
Did we just mention Bearsuit records a second ago – a little something that’s being primed at present for turntable love in the coming week is an album by Annie and the Station Orchestra – a split release in fact, with Ippu Mitsui sharing the groove space. For now we suggest you train your ear lobes upon the quite delightful ‘heavy artillery ward’ a gorgeously ghosted celestial down tempo dream weave swirled in the kind of abstract magicalia that used to occasion once upon a time releases by Takako Minekawa though here spirited between ripples of serene murmurings and foreboding dramatics. https://soundcloud.com/annie-the-s-orchestra/heavy-artillery-ward
Words about that a new Map 71 full length is about to break cover with news that ‘sado technical exercise’ is about to scatter from the confines of the much adored foolproof projects imprint and pollute the tiresome preening pedestrian pop malaise with their brand of scab picking post punk minimalism. A sample dose of what to expect in the shape of ‘evovaniss’ has been dispatched to spread its weary charm, set to a hypnotically weaving afro-beat grooving, this no waving sore thumb flatlines obliquely to a prickling stream of prose consciousness setting out its bleakly blank reference markers with nods to Ludus, This Heat, the Creatures and the Native Hipsters. https://soundcloud.com/andypuffinboy/map-71-evovaniss
One of those releases that we here suspect ought by rights to appeal to those of you fully subscribing to the vintage grooves emanating from out of such esteemed sound houses as ghost box, polytechnic youth and patterned air, this little curio was stumbled across on a ramble around bandcamp – the backstory being a recently found forgotten soundtrack composed by Stefano Leproto sometime in the early 80’s. okay its heads out of Preston which I’m fairly certain rules this out from being one of the many alter egos of Midwich Youth Club (though the sleeve design has me thinking – well maybe) this cassette – which we are gathering is in a strictly limited pressing is entitled ‘dance and mood music 1981 – 83’ of which two tracks have been made available as showcase treatments as were – both very much skirting into the terrains of the aforementioned Midwich Youth Club though leaning ever more into the eerie twilight soundtracks dreamt up by the likes of Villa9 crew and Klaus morlock, ‘love theme from Sewer Baby’ particularly chiming to the former with its ghost light seduction and sounding more late 70’s Hammer Horror than Radiophonic Workshop albeit haloed in the kind of cool late 60’s mystery melody that greeted Edwin Astley’s more out there scores for ITC (a la Randall and Hopkirk (deceased)). All said we here are quite fond of ‘theme from black pyramid’ with its mooching pulsars navigating and reinventing strange sound worlds as though 70’s French electro dudes Space had been commissioned to sonically choreograph the ‘Quatermass’ TV series. http://stefanoleproto.bandcamp.com/album/dance-mood-music-1981-83
And talking of Villa9, a by chance happening that we tripped over this, obviously we’ve fallen off their love list of late. Villa9 as you all should know is the secret lair of the goat man and the seventh cyrkle among the many as well as magus whose ‘kensington gore’ TV series has just been lovingly exhumed, sprayed down and spruced up for audio admiration. Now from a personal point of view we here are really loving the whole structure and vintage sound of these soundtracks – the little touches such as the Villa 9 ident hark and echo back to the Gerry Anderson TV21 trademarks, admirers of the much missed Shado imprint from Italy will equally sigh to the abundant harpsichord motifs while anyone obsessed in late 60’s ITC TV soundtracks will be left swooning in the aisles, ‘inside the dream house’ particularly nodding to the Mysterons motifs that spirited throughout Captain Scarlett. With an acute ear for late 60’s / early 70’s futuristic spy themes – I mean Astley and Gray are all over this there’s even a brief passing nod to Space 1999 via ‘the intruders’ while ‘speed chaser’ is so Patrick Williams ‘streets of san fransisco’ meets Roy Budd ‘get carter’ that it might take a quick double glance to convince you otherwise. ‘psychic machine’ is pure vintage Delia goonery while the psychotronic ‘inner dimensions’ is a pure slice of dream dazed disturbia that takes you to places existing between wake and sleep with ‘beyond the mind’s eye’ providing for a devilishly eerily surreal mind wiping slo-mo psi-psyche mosaic straight out of the Barry Gray ‘UFO’ bottom drawer. http://villa9.bandcamp.com/album/kensington-gore-music-from-the-tv-series
And no sooner do we mention Midwich Youth Club then along comes an album, which should our theories on the matter indeed prove to be the case then expect a flurry of mentions on a weekly basis thus ensuring a busy but bountiful harvest of strange sounds to emanate from the out of time oddball sonic workshop of Mr Murphy. Primed for fuller inspection later in the week we’ve opted to mention by way of a teaser taster ‘gum machine’ from the box of curio delights known as ‘orphans from the electronic landfill – volume 3’ – tracing a similar sonic bloodline as the much admired Assembled Minds, MYC venture upon a crooked cosmic carousel whose vintage waltz whirrs to a delightfully clock working coda calibrated and cannibalised from a play box of toy room droid spare parts, the resulting charm effect an affectionately gloopy 70’s kaleidoscope of bopping binary brigades and diode chatter and chuckling fisher price mini-bots all marching like rats to a pied piper like Fort Dax-ian mosaic. https://midwichyouthclub.bandcamp.com/album/orphans-from-the-electronic-landfill-vol-3
More head turning groove with the appearance on our sound player of a smoking cool twin set from Scouse rapscallions Rob Clarke and the Wooltones. By our reckoning ‘iron eyes cody’ may well be coolest thing in pop land this side of the Hanging Stars debut full length, mellowed in the softening haze of sun filtered west coast after glows and the bliss fused kiss of lazy eyed inclines trimmed in the coalescing caress of fuzzy kaleidoscopic arrests and the laid back purr of campfire conversations, this hushed honey trips to a lost 60’s mosaic colourfully primed in Byrds-ian and Monkees motifs. Over on the flip the ‘horse opera’ variant of the same cut, rather more an instrumental revamp teasingly trip-a-delically tailored in a subtle hip shimmying glam grooved mid-west tangy sassiness. Essential as if you hadn’t already gathered. https://robclarkeandthewooltones.bandcamp.com/album/iron-eyes-cody-single
How time flies, little under a year ago we were getting messages from Phil Macy of Southall Riot fame revealing plans to start up a subscription service by way of hand selecting prime picks from his sonic vaults and with the aid of a recently acquired lathe cutting machine, exhuming said gems onto precious pieces of wax in limited press variations (45 numbered copies) with a promise that said releases would trip out to a hectic schedule each fortnight so that by its completion there would be 45 7 inch gems for the taking (hence the 454545 label title). Well this exhaustive schedule is nearly at completion running now into the final straights with the tail end roster pulling up some serious curios, first of which finds Roadside Picnic re-imagining lost salvos from Azimuth Co-Ordinator. Now as an impressionable young thing, I was an avid comic reader who looked forward to Saturday mornings skipping along to the local newsagent for my fix of Valiant, Lion and Thunder and TV21,,however as good as English comics were they never quite sparked the imagination or attracted the gaze like the old Marvel Comics (or Weird Tales, tales of suspense and the variously gory Italian Vampire publications that we’d occasionally be passed by older cousins, colour aside, these tomes built sub plot after sub plot, cross referenced other titles, featured characters whose personalities deepened in frail and fragile detail. And then there was the artwork – the colours, the shapes – reading through old copies of Dr Strange (a first experience of psychedelia) was enough to give a youngster the illusion of tripping without the need for chemically extreme sugar rushes the type of which Spangles (the cola and orange ones) would give. You may be wondering where is he going with this, weren’t we talking about records a second ago. Well yes we were yet opening track ‘funeral music for the silver surfer’ had us momentarily returned to our younger self, sure enough we loved Dr Strange, Vision and Deathloc – yet above all the mere mention of Silver Surfer would have us scampering pennies in hand to swap in exchange for our hit of this most-coolest and tortured of Marvel creations. This re-visioning by Roadside Picnic is afforded a sighing grace and a reverential treatment, the heavenly harmonic hushes instil a sense of the celestial lights going out as though in mournful head bowed respect, in short a touching drone drifted cosmic requiem. Over on the flip waits ‘notes attempted 1’ – a pure ghost in the machine curio etched by the eerie cross conversation of binary chatter and cathode crackles, likely to impress disciples of Sonic Boom’s EAR project not to mention early career Pimmon, its Radiophonic interfacing courting minimalist inner spaces and secret cyber space netherworlds. The set comes pre packed with two randomly inserted vintage posts cards ours incidentally a holiday card addressed to Dr Arnott of Kent the other post-dated July ’73.
Next up on 454545, release #39 features one lost and one unreleased cut from the criminally undervalued Southall Riot. Again limited to just 45 copies, ‘how flies survive the rain’ first appeared on the long deleted ‘tell-tale signs of Earworm’ compilation at the close of ’99, blending sonic nods to Soft Boys, Syd Barrett Floyd and Wire, this short sharp slice of post punk angular psychedelics steps straight out of the lo-fi academy of cool, bubble grooving kaleidoscopia ducking beneath the wings of Guided by Voices displaying and incurably incessant knack for skewif three-minute pop phrasing. How did they avoid greatness you might well ask. Over on the flip the previously unreleased ‘louise got terrapin eyes’ polishes up like a scuffed up slice of beaten around the edges day-glo punk bubblegum much like a prime time Violent Femmes in a face off with the Pooh Sticks all haloed and spruced up as an Elephant 6 collective style.
One of the key note releases of this celebratory and hectic 454545 release schedule is the appearance of Junkboy. Release #42 finds Hanscomb’s Rich and Mik recalibrating a brace of lost Azimuth Co-Ordinator tracks into two dream weaving lovelies, ‘fulfil’ – a rephrasing of ‘the JR Control’ – originally recorded in 2001 – is succulently serviced by an exquisitely mellowing sea breeze lilt whose dream woven pastoral posies sneak silkily between the soft translucent divides that separate a lazy eyed yellow6 and a thoughtful David A Jaycock. Over on the flip ‘streets of dobuita’ – a retelling of ‘to the right of your picture you will see a man smiling’ is a breathless flutter by, a momentary stepping out from the maddening chatter of life to pause, rest and sit in a secret secluded place of solitude and peace to beneath a tree and watch the world pass by. Adorable in short.
The last scheduled release of this mammoth year-long project is PhilMRiot’s ‘time for riot’ – just out in fact – after that the catalogue will be deleted – all enquiries / information – go to http://www.345rpm.co.uk/catalogue-1.html and http://www.345rpm.co.uk/454545.html
I’ll have to regretfully admit to not having any information or worse still any idea how we came to stumble upon this little gem, but to use common parlance it’s a ‘bit of a good ‘un’. Now don’t quote me on this but I think they may hail from Italy – though I’m sure I’ll get grumbling emails saying otherwise. This folks is Stella Diana and this babe is a cut lifted from a debuting release ‘Nitocris’ entitled ‘Sulphur’ – a gorgeously softly fracturing dream drifting love note which in truth sounds for all the world like a cruise controlling Victories at Sea, All at once majestic, aching and panoramic, this honey just smoulders and shimmers emitting delicate psychotronic distress calls all the time crushed and yearned in a gloriously hushed tapestry of celestial cosmic rushes which had we not known any better would have mistaken it for a purring pulsar issued forth by a bruised returning a flock of seagulls retooled by a coolly withdrawn Kitchens of Distinction. https://soundcloud.com/stella-diana-1/sulphur
Stumbled over this irresistible gem courtesy of the latest sampler set from Active Listener – volume 40 – if you are taking notes and not we admit the originally intended cause for our obsessing which again for the interested among you is ‘red eden, white nights’ – but more about that a little later as they say. Instead we followed the links – as you do – to their band camp – who you might ask – why the pulselovers – whose debuting self-titled full length has I’ll admit, been stealing the listening ear all day, an album that pleasingly defies categorization given it appears to skip, hop and jump across a number of generic spectrums refusing to sit and settle into any defined or regimented groove. For now we’ve been most taken by the track ‘phantom cinema’ – pure old school retro-sonic kosmiche, all motoric pulsars, cosmic whispers and crystalline vintage future visions from an 70’s analogue age which ought to appeal first hand to those polytechnic youth admirers among you whilst likewise tuning itself superbly and dare we say deftly into sound worlds voyaged upon by Echoboy c. ‘Scene 30’. As an added attracting detail the collective features a certain Allan Murphy of Midwich Youth Club fame. https://pulselovers.bandcamp.com/album/pulselovers
We aren’t going to beat about the bush about this, simply superb – compiled by French producer Arandel – this 45-minute mix set shoehorns five decades of cutting edge ahead of the curve female sound alchemists into one mind morphing melodic mosaic – listen, love and lose yourself in its outer worldly inner space mesmerics.
An interview with Arandel can be traced here – http://www.the-drone.com/magazine/arandel-bog-bog-the-electronic-ladyland-mixtape/
Angelic, demurring and ethereally eerie, this is the showcasing cut from a forthcoming set ‘still life’ for carpark records by young magic entitled ‘lucien’ – utterly enchanting much like a ghostly visitation, according to the press release it blends gamelan field recordings from singer Melati Malay’s native Java with electronica, the effect is quite transfixing and mesmeric as though a sonic love tryst engaged upon No Ceremony and Alt-J crafting desire laden amorphous lovelorn whisper tones as were remodelled by Fever Ray . https://soundcloud.com/carparkrecords/young-magic-lucien/s-iUWZB
Another label that we’ve regretfully lost touch with in recent times are Scotland’s Soft Power records who it seems have been on something of a sabbatical of late though happily returning to the fray with a by all accounts killer album from the Witching Waves entitled ‘Crystal Café’ from which the cut ‘flowers’ has been sent forth to charm the masses. What first like something endearing itself to the sound of a ‘Faith’ era Cure soon begins to weave its magic and what emerges is something seductively refrained and cut in the likeness of a classic era Quickspace which believe you me is no bad thing. https://soundcloud.com/soft-power/flowers-by-witching-waves
And here’s your early morning fix of minimalist cold waving body popping groove, new album on the way from these folks whose last appearance in these pages came courtesy of the coolly essential polytechnic youth sound house – it is of course Dadaist dystopian duo Mitra Mitra who delight in sparse technologies and icy stares much like a spooky Sparks sporting Cabaret Voltaire badges, anyway ‘opportunity’ has found its way into the open, a nifty thing it is to sounding as though its escaped the cold wave icy confines of New York’s Weird imprint and then plugged itself into the temporal lobes of a 70’s era fearfully shivering beneath the threat of cold war attrition and Saturday night TV, very Mark 1 Human League with dashes of Client for added chill effect.
I guess you are all onto this and have long since overdosed yourselves on its cool cut cosmedilics to the point of stereophonic saturation, yet before we went off radar for a week or three this babe was getting things very groovy and spacy in the Sunday Experience listening space – did I say listening space – oh my we should have said shoe box, seriously – I can now claim to live in a place where you indeed do not have the space to swing a cat. Anyhow enough grumbling, this is the Horror’s Tom Furse, who fortunate for us listening, decided to take it upon himself to cobble together a rather nifty 17-minute dream draped distillation of the latest Cavern of Anti-Matter full length ‘void beats / invocation trex’ which let’s be honest all cool homes should already own – here re-imagined as ‘void beats minimix’ – Furse sets about doing one of those breeze block type rewires that used to grace mid 90’s Mary Ann Hobbs radio shows by the likes of death in vegas, the propellerheads and spiritualized, the final three minutes where everything goes ‘emperor tomato ketchup’ are alone worth the entrance fee. https://soundcloud.com/cavern-of-anti-matter/tom-furse-the-horrors-void-beats-minimix
Another of those happy curios we’ve oft stumbled across whilst rummaging through the musical thickets of band camp. This folks is the essential wax sounds of Leeds based collective the magnificent tape band – an operation headed up by Messrs Innes and Williams who on this occasion are ably aided and abetted by Rachel Modest. Capturing the feel and vibe of a late 90’s Birmingham scene – and here we are thinking L’Augmentation, Pram and Broadcast and courting a sultry cinematic noir tasting that hints of the mercurial appeal of classic Bond themes of yore, ‘patterns in my mind’ seductively weaves a curious out of step timeless tapestry trimmed in library lounge, jazz and 60’s noir colourings, at once you have to double take that it’s not some Superimposers alter ego at work culturing some strangely demurred Soundcarriers / Laetitia Stereolab sonic strain. Over on the flip ‘golden shades’ is the Ms Modest-less instrumental variant of the same cut. Absolutely essential ear gear. http://themagnificenttapeband.bandcamp.com/album/patterns-in-my-mind-featuring-rachel-modest
Musical interlude – found sound and vision 11 – ‘Thunderball’…..
Always been obsessed with the Bond soundtracks, John Barry’s finest work was committed to these iconic mosaics, meticulous, intricate and lush, he perfected the ability of sculpturing sound that accentuated and described the imagery at play, for most ‘goldfinger’ might be the favoured of the dozen or so he scored whether that be the stricken tension unfolding from ‘golden girl’ or the gorgeously Herrmann-esque flotillas that dimple ‘pussy galore’s flying circus’ whilst not forgetting the energised razzmatazz of ‘into miami’, and yes we could mention Matt Munro’s uber cool ‘from Russia with love’ the space flight docking sequences of ‘you only live twice’ not to mention Nancy Sinatra’s formidable title take or indeed the strangely loose set that accompanied ‘diamonds are forever’. However, the set we always find ourselves returning to is ‘Thunderball’ – maybe it’s the spectral oceanic motifs of ‘finding the plane’ or ‘search for the vulcan’, the exotica dream sequencing of ‘bond meets Domino’ or the heavily indented ‘007’ pipping throughout the epic pulse racing gusto of the militaristic ‘underwater mayhem’ whilst not forgetting to mention the kooky ‘death of Fiona’.
Musical interlude – found sound and vision 12 – Joy Division
Rare live footage of the immaculate Joy Division….
Isn’t this the most delectable thing, shyly retiring and hushed, like an awakening and defrosting Mum or an impish Hafdis Huld, this sparsely coiled slice of wood crafted loveliness comes from Kathryn Joseph about whom we have alas no information on except that she hails from the North – that’ll be Scotland way, it’s called ‘the crow’ – frailly sighed upon a twinkling piano thread so cosy toed, fragile and wintry sounding we feel occasioned to keep peeking out of the window expecting to see some winter wonderland transformation alas it hasn’t happened, pardon me did she just say the f*** and s*** word – even that sounds cute – blimey can this do any wrong we wonder. https://soundcloud.com/kathryn_joseph/the-crow?utm_source=soundcloud&utm_campaign=share&utm_medium=facebook
Love this, blending mystery and chic, minimalist tones usher in a fragmenting chill, shuffling phasing beats and the ghostly eeriness of seduction all the time drifting in and out of touching distance like some spell weaving arabesque apparition devilishly growing and shape shifting in stature and density to mushroom your listening space in smoking dark desire. It’s by Haty Haty incidentally going by the name ‘parakeet’.
I don’t mind admitting that this has really been getting under our skin since appearing on our sound player. Culled from a forthcoming set for Daddy Tank entitled ‘disco kill disco’ this is the ultra-sexy ‘VU meter’ by Mikimo Sosumi – aptly described by the label as techno via a brothel house, this naughty slice of throbbing erotic minimalism purrs and probes with cold wave seduction much like a sonic peep show drawn from elements of classic old school Grace Jones, Client and Cobra Killer, so slinky and sleazy it’s enough to have your electric appliances blowing fuses. https://soundcloud.com/daddy-tank-records/mikimo-sosumi-vu-meter-dadd16
Mentioned this previously, though in truth not all together sure whether it’s actually ventured out yet into the physical world. But this is the chilling by Hole House of unworldly manifestations occurring at an infamous now derelict former VHS rental premises, as hinted in previous despatches this ominous slice of out there ghosting emanates from a place beyond the normal understanding presets out of portals from behind the veil where Nigel Kneale’s ‘Stone Tape’ and the ‘Quatermass’ series lurk, a perfect companion should you be hanging around for one for Dream of Tall Buildings ridiculously scarce ‘residuum’ time capsule. Incidentally via aetheric records. https://soundcloud.com/aetheric-records/was-she-a-tape-recording-excerpt-by-hole-house
Bad Afro’s 20th anniversary celebrations kick start in typically trip-a-delica fashion with news of the imminent arrival of a new full length from Telstar Sound Drone by the name ‘magical solutions to everyday problems’ which is being primed for head phone listening love later this weekend. In the mean-time do you fancy a taster you crazy kids, of course you do, then jump aboard the hulking ‘drugs help’ the first single lifted from what promises to be a bliss kissed white out affair. As though a youthful Black Angels finding themselves jettisoned straight into heart of the mind warping kaleidoscopic woozy charms of a classic era Sunray, this honey comes lysergically treated in shade adorned eastern mystics, a head popping happening trimmed in snake charming arabesques all smoked in sultry hip shimmying motifs blurred and fractured in acid flashbacks. In short the dogs.
Pictorial interlude – found images 1 – Martin Sharp’s ‘psychedelic tarot cards’.
An incredible find from one of psych’s prime artists……a complete set of his 1967 Tarot cards…..
Plenty of Castles in Space groove pencilled for inclusion in these pages over the weekend, a new set – in fact a debuting full length – from Correlations is currently doing adorable damage on the hi-fi. According to the label sandwiched between that, a new set of grooves from Concretism and a three tracker from Julian Cope – I’ll just say that again in big letters – JULIAN COPE – by all account a killer thing and primed to get the eye catching coloured wax treatment and beautified art work – a tri fold packaging or something similarly tasty sounding – there’ll be something quite alluring from K(laus) who as it happens have just made available a sound cloud featuring – in their words – a short five track set from our desk recordings’. In short a 25-minute journey into inner space and kosmiche wooziness, and quite a beautifully mellowing thing it is to, tripped in dream drifting cosmic ambience and turned in a telling old school silver age vintage which through starry eyes views the future with hope hued ambition rather than comic book imagination. Alas no track listing from what we can surmise or find with which to navigate you through this seamless journey, initial embarking moments come graced in the kind of swirling celestial flotillas that suggest a cosmic tryst engaged upon between Kraftwerk and Tangerine Dream which through fluid skin peeling ease shimmer and dissipate into moments of ghostly and unworldly transience of the type that once upon a time in the late 70’s engaged the grooves of critically cool outings by Jean Michel Jarre and La Dusseldorf. Piloting through the oceanic sprays and hybrid techno curvatures some expansively spacey future wave progian head tripping ambience manifests a la magic mushroom band and the head shrooming ear gear happening out of Delirium in the early 90’s which in the blink of an eye slipstreams sumptuously into 80’s styled sci-fi soundtrack kitsch. For us personally the best moments are held back for the last 5 minute, intricate, mellow and traced in a subtle Oriental phrasing, it’s here that k(laus) really open and get loose to craft a hypno grooved neo classical tapestry tempted in jazz dialects and smoking cool sophistication, admirers of Bureau B are advised to seek out at your earliest convenience. https://soundcloud.com/only1klaus/the-dark-outside-and-all-around-us
Just to confuse matters a little sampler #39 (we briefly eyed #40 earlier) from the Active Listener features a dandy cut from the Most entitled ‘gatecrashers’ which had us thinking momentarily trying to pick out the facts from the fuzz of our memory, was there not a band in the early 90’s called the Most – hailing I think from Australia way who had a nifty little 7 inch out on one of those hipster imprints Summershine / bus stop around the time, a copy of which right this minute I frustratingly can’t lay my hands on. Anyway probably not the same dudes, though this cut is pretty groovy wearing its irrefutable adoration for Love clearly on its sleeve whilst with the added tang of some Monkees-esque playfulness manages to shape up to reveal a keenly astute knack for the kicking out of vintage vibed shimmer-toned radio friendly garage beat groove. Of course both volumes of these Active Listener samplers will be getting full attention before the weekend disappears. Honest. http://theactivelistener.bandcamp.com/album/the-active-listener-sampler-39