Thursday, October 29, 2009
Released in 2000, this is the only full length from this relatively short-lived band from Philly. Three of its members went on to form Need New Body (which I've just released it's been far too long since I've listened to them). Influenced by Soft Machine, Neu!, Syd Barrett, and the 1970s prog/psych/kraut movements in general. It also sounds like a mixture of old Elf Power and Circulatory System if you're looking for more modern similar artists. A few of the tracks feel like extended interludes, but there's a general entrancing quality to them that will keep you listening. I used to jam out to "Mousey/Lone Gunner" on repeat my freshman year of college. In retrospect, this was a very impressive debut.
Download Bent Leg Fatima
Thursday, October 22, 2009
We received an email a while back from Kevin of Solar Coaster informing us of a band he was once in with Mike, the drummer of Thee Oh Sees in Kingsport, TN back in the early nineties. He had come across some old cassettes, and was in the process of transferring them over to digital format. He shared these three tracks, which had not been heard by anyone else but the band in almost 17 years. A very cool thought. Their sound, and as you can see in the photo above, their wardrobe, are pretty much what you would expect from the early nineties. Containing mostly elements of shoegaze and indie, there are moments that took me back to my Heatmiser-loving emo days. I'm not sure how often you or I will come back to these tracks, but it's interesting to hear the lo-fi/basement beginnings of musicians who went on to make bigger and better things, and we're honored that Kevin chose to share these with this blog specifically.
Download Shatterproof Basement Demos
Wednesday, October 21, 2009
These guys/gals opened for Thee Oh Sees up in DC last week. An appropriate opening act for them, and they'll suffer the same B-52s comparisons as well. Seemed to have a genuinely good time on stage. Tambourine-heavy with double female vocals, but it's the male vocals, which are slurred and exasperated and accompany the initial pop of the female vocals quite well, that keep me interested. A quick but fun EP to get your party started.
Download Golden Triangle
Sunday, October 18, 2009
This limited edition CD is available on their current tour with Atlas Sound, which I was able to catch last night in DC. Although it's disappointing Broadcast is no longer the same band I had once seen back in Detroit years ago, they're still still going strong as a duo. Their set was incredibly interesting with some amazing visuals and intense looping synths. If drugs had been involved, I think my head would have exploded. I could, however, sense a good portion of the crowd growing restless with their new sound, but I was loving it. I picked up this CD hoping to delve deeper into the rabbit hole they created during their set, but the material found here isn't quite what I was expecting. This is some of their most relaxed material to date. Atmospheric samples (including a completely random Kurt Schwitters sample?), splicing, and the standard Broadcast sound you've grown to love. I desperately want to hear a release showcasing the newest material, but this is a quick and interesting listen that even a newborn child would enjoy.
Download Mother Is the Milky Way
Friday, October 16, 2009
A few weeks ago, I received care package of sorts from OngakubakaSteve which included one can of Beer 30 Ice, a watered down and hideous disgrace to alcoholic beverages that Steve was incredibly excited for me to try, one can of Vernors, a barrel aged ginger ale born out of Michigan and not available down here in Richmond, a 7", some various snacks, and this album/demo/CD from Robin Parrent. Steve has been providing floor tom abuse, backing vocals, and overall sex appeal for the last year or so in Robin Parrent & the Revenants. This album is a mix of solo tracks from Robin and tracks that the band has made as a collective, and the most promising thing about this release is that it's incredibly difficult to find a comparison. You can certainly hear Robin's influences, as one of the first things I thought to myself when listening to it was "hmm Robin must listen to Scott Walker". The haunting and strained vocals will bring bands like Joy Division, Bauhaus, or The Smiths to mind, but musically this is more so an acid folk record, reminding me of bands like Comus, Pearls Before Swine, or Pentangle. Many of the tracks are dark and looming, and can even be a bit taxing on your emotions, but there's a beauty buried beneath it all (a damaged beauty perhaps? see what i did there? that's right). The most enjoyable moments on the record are when Robin is supported by the female backing vocals, giving the record a bit more variety. After a few spins through, "First Pain-Then Joy" is my personal favorite. There's a more collaborative album from Robin Parrent & the Revenants in the works, which I'm sure you'll be seeing here in the future.
Download Beauty Damaged
Friday, October 9, 2009
Ben sent us this link to the final remastered mp3ified version of their EP I posted back in June. It now has a name, but no official cover yet, and...yup it's still fucking cool. Here's what I said about it before: I'm not sure what's in the water in "Melbz", Australia, but I want some. This is some gritty good ol' fashioned garage goodness, with some elements of surf and shoegaze mixed in. This EP would make an appropriate soundtrack for a dirty and sweaty high school prom in the middle of the desert.
Download Forbidden Delicious
Wednesday, October 7, 2009
As you may recall, a few months ago I had posted this band's debut release after months of trying to track it down. A playful lo-fi psych throwback record that has been getting a good amount of attention on my ipod. Well, they've released a new incredibly awesome cassette through Moon Glyph Tape that might be one of my favorite things I've heard this year. Lemon Drop Square Box is a quick listen and will have you craving more, but the band accomplishes quite a bit in a short amount of time. The usage of the sitar (or sitar effect, I can't tell) and organ in "Drop", or the slow moving melodies of "Lemon" will have you closing your eyes watching the universe unfold on the back of your eyelids.
Download Lemon Drop Square Box
Tuesday, October 6, 2009
While I was out in Chicago last year, an acquaintance of mine played the Netherfriends' Feathers and Dots single for me while drunkenly screaming "THIS IS THE CUTEST FUCKING SHIT EVER! I WANT TO GIVE THESE MOTEHRFUCKERS A HUG THEY'RE SO FUCKING CUTE!"
I know what you're thinking, and yeah, I don't generally like my music to fall into the cute/hug category either. Just trust me on this one. Netherfriends manage too succeed where 99% of indie pop groups drop the ball. The music is upbeat and poppy, the lyrics light and occasionally tongue-in-cheek, but without that kitschy fluff element to ruin it all. While the tracks on this EP are undoubtedly pop tunes, there aren't many other albums out there with so many layers of sound in such a short running time. That's what really makes this album special-- the bursts of horns, plinking keyboards, and percussion that create beautiful and musically dense songs. This had to be a real labor of love for the band, and the effort definitely paid off. Still not sold? Parts of this EP remind me a lot of Animal Collective. Now I know you'll download it.
Download Calling You Out EP
I received this submission in the mail all the way from Madrid last week. It was an overwhelming listen the first time through, but with a little patience and an attentive ear you'll find some pretty infectious moments on this record. A good majority of the samples used are aurally illegible, the SNES-inspired synths are deeply buried beneath the somewhat afrobeat basslines, and all the other various noises are so heavily layered that much of this album comes across as pure noise. In other words, this is highly entertaining release for those who enjoy a challenging listen. For fans of Black Dice, Wolf Eyes, and all the other noisies out there.
Monday, October 5, 2009
I'm not sure why I haven't yet shared this one with all of you over the last few years. I first saw these guys about 7 years ago at a Halloween show in Holly, Michigan. They had grown a pretty strong reputation in and around Detroit and have been the opening act for countless of solid touring bands. They've gone through a breakup or two over the last few years, but I believe they're back to making tunes and touring once again. The band has been making rowdy good ol' fashion sweaty rock and roll before it was the cool thing to do. Wailing vocals, blaring trumpet, and the ever-essential tambourine makes Lee Marvin Computer Arm one of the more energetic bands to come out of Detroit in recent years. I think this 5 track CD EP from 2004, a 7 inch from a few years ago on Cass Records, and another 7 inch from Italy Records pressed this year, which I have yet to hear, are the only actual releases they have. Hopefully a full-length someday?
Download Lee Marvin Computer Arm