Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Thee Oh Sees - Help

(LINK REMOVED 04/01/2009)

I wasn't going to bother posting this one since it's already all over the internet and I had posted a link in the shoutbox when it first leaked, but, goddamnit, I love this band and it would just be strange to me to not have this album on this blog. Longtime readers/listeners of this blog are already aware of my love affair with John Dwyer, and this album only strengthens our bond. I'm not sure if I would take this one over their last, but it's certainly on par in terms of consistency. I desperately need them to come back to DC or Richmond.

- Dan

Monday, March 30, 2009

Pink Mountaintops - Outside Love

Another fine release from Black Mountain frontman Stephen McBean. Instead of the 8 minute extended psychedelic jam sessions common with McBean's other band, we're treated to much more mellow and introspective tunes. If Black Mountain is an all night drug fueled party, Outside Love is the the soundtrack for the hangover the next day. I should also mention that the list of guest musicians on this record is incredibly impressive as well. They include, but are not limited to, Sophie Trudeau (Godspeed You! Black Emperor), Ted Bois (Destroyer), Josh Stevenson (Jackie O Motherfucker), Ashley Webber (Bonnie "Prince" Billy) and most of Black Mountain.

- Steve

Download Outside Love

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Double Dragons - s/t

It's hard to find very much information on this guitar/drum duo. I came across this live session a few days ago and was pretty impressed. My first impression was that they really wanted to be Hella, but after getting a few tracks into the record, I realized that the guitarist reminds me more of Ian Williams of Don Cab/Battles, which is what makes this record so good. They also ditch the math occasionally and break into some great Lightning Boltish slap chop action. The photo above is not the actual album cover. I just burgled it from their myspace cause I thought it was cool. If you have any idea if this record has an actual name, let me know, because I think this is the release they have coming up on Unluck Recs, but the site only refers to it as "double dragons cdr".

- Dan

Download Double Dragons

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Lotus Plaza - The Floodlight Collective

Lotus Plaza is the moniker used by Deerhunter guitarist Lockett Pundt to showcase his solo work. I have mixed feelings about Pundt's main gig, but I've been spinning Floodlight Collective on a regular basis since I first snagged a copy last week. The lush guitars and hazy compositions give the record a great deal of depth. Each listen reveals new, interesting nuances buried in the tracks. I suppose the most obvious comparison here would have to be to Deerhunter (Bradford Cox even makes an appearance on the record) but overall, Lotus Plaza does stand alone as its own musical entity. You won't hear too much of Microcastle on this album. Worth checking out, especially if your NCAA bracket is already busted and you're looking for a nice soundtrack to self-medicate to.

- Steve

Download The Floodlight Collective

Thursday, March 19, 2009

RTFO Bandwagon - Dums Will Survive


Catchy homemade lo-fi folksy pop with country leanings from Columbus, Ohio. Their sound has the same sort of nonchalant greatness that reminds me of Thee Oh Sees, Women, or Woods Family Creeps. Maybe a little Elephant 6 in there too. The album is only 7 tracks, which is unfortunate because I want more. A must get for my vinyl collection as well. I'd imagine these guys would put on a killer hootenanny.

- Dan

Download Dums Will Survive

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Francis Harold & the Holograms - s/t 7''

Incredibly loud lo-fi noisy punk from Arizona recorded inside Oscar the Grouch's trash can. It's a mixture of Flipper and Brainbombs, but with a stronger hatred for your eardrums. This 7'' is their only release, but I'm looking forward to hearing more. They're going on an insanely large tour this summer, which is stopping in Richmond, VA (Attn: Steve, Kzoo, MI as well). It takes a few listens to get through the noise, but you'll discover on your very first listen that Francis Harold & the Holograms may very well be the first of the seven signs of the apocalypse.

- Dan

Download Francis Harold & the Holograms

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Death - ...For the Whole World to See


Quite possibly one of the best reissues you'll come across. Originally an RnB trio, these three black dudes decided they would be better off rocking the fuck out after having their minds completely blown at Alice Cooper, MC5, and Stooges shows. This 1974 demo boasts the same sort of raw power typical of the late 60's early 70s Detroit music scene. Perhaps even more explosive than a lot of those bands. Really good stuff.

- Dan

Download ...For the Whole World to See

Friday, March 13, 2009

Hot Lava - Lavalogy

(LINK REMOVED 03/14/2009)

I saw this band open for Monotonix back in October, and I wasn't necessarily impressed with their live set. Then again, they were standing between me and a Monotonix set, so It was hard to like anything at that point, and I just wanted them off the stage as soon as possible. Well now I feel like an asshole because this is actually really good stuff. Catchy, lo-fi-ish pop with surprisingly memorable lyrics. Frontwoman Allison Apperson's tech savvy and ridiculously catchy lyrics won't be leaving your mind anytime soon (I've been singing "apple, option, apple, option, option, fire, fire" all day). This one was released back in October via Bar/None and it's a fun and catchy little record from one of the best bands from Richmond, VA I've come across so far.

- Dan

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Michael Gordon - Decasia

Bill Morrison's Decasia: The State of Decay is probably one of my favorite things ever created, and if you've never seen it you need to rent or buy it immediately, but the visuals wouldn't be nearly as haunting/beautiful if it wasn't for Gordon's score. The detuned instruments and intensity of the orchestral sounds perfectly accompanies the pre-1950 neglected and rotting nitrate-based archival footage. The soundtrack is strong enough to stand on its own however, and it's progressive intensity will definitely test your patience as a listener. If you don't have access to the film, listening to this while closing your eyes and watching the swirling colors on the back of your eyelids could result in an equally hallucinatory experience.

Download Decasia

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Gay Witch Abortion - Maverick

When my girlfriend randomly brought this home from the radio station she's been working at, my knee jerk reaction was "oh... with a name like that...probably grindcore or something." Well, color me impressed--not only is this not a collection of songs by steakhead idiots playing blastbeats, this is really fucking good. Will they be played on the radio anytime soon? My guess is no. Buzzsaw guitars are complemented by a drummer who seems hell bent on smashing through his kit with every rhythm he plays. More importantly this duo knows how to work a groove and get your head bobbing. Who knew something like this could come from Minneapolis of all places?

- Steve

Download Maverick

Surf City - S/T

Part Dick Dale, part Jesus & Mary Chain, all done while worshiping at the throne of Flying Nun Records. Surf City makes the sort of dirty and simple pop music that I've come to love insatiably over the past few years. No major complaints with this release, I just wish there were a few more tracks--the entire record clocks in at just over 15 minutes.

- Steve

Download S/T

Monday, March 9, 2009

The Super Vacations- s/t

Someone was finally generous enough to rip this LP. I caught these guys at a boutique here in Richmond a few months ago, and it was quite possibly the most awkward show I've been to. I'm not entirely sure if their lineup had changed or what, but the frontman was now handling both the drums and the vocals, the bassist had his back turned to us for the whole show, and I was one of 10 people there. I still have faith in this band though, and hope that they get their shit together because this is still a strong debut. It's the Brian Jonestown Massacre-esque riffs, muddy production, and sloppy vocals that keeps me listening. "Mr. Mystery" and "Van America" are undoubtedly the highlight tracks, and make this well worth the download.

- Dan

Download The Super Vacations