Tuesday, July 31, 2012

SFV Acid - #2 | Album Feature

This is some totally baked stuff right here. SFV Acid make bonkers dance music for the 21st first century. It''s as if the 80's and 90's MIDI craze has come full circle  and back in style à la a more acidic (duh...) lens. I'm not trying to say Zane  Reynolds (the mastermind beyond SFV Acid) is on that tip. Honestly he probably has some sweet analog gear or something, who doesn't love that stuff these days) It must be something about the compositional structure mixed with the tones that's creating the reference to me. Each seem to have just the right amount of child-like playfulness and lack of pretension.

It's not all weirdo hysteric vibes though. When you get down to the nitty gritty Zane Reynolds has an understanding of the history of dance music, a knowledge that extends past the dawning of dubstep and ceaseless amounts of club ready minimal techno & house records that can make one want to vomit. There is a similarity here to adventurous techno pioneers such as Juan Atkins seen through a hypnogogic veil. A fun trip.

SFV Acid's #2 is available now via PPM Records

Monday, July 30, 2012

Michael Evans & David Nuss - Natch 6 | Album Feature

Michael Evans and Dave Nuss create a percussive jungle of sound unlike any others. It's not a surprise that when the two musicians came together they'd leave behind an beautiful mess of music in their wake. They are pushing the gamut for sure but how else could they get it done really?  Their entry in the Natch music series touches upon key elements of each musicians work over the years recalling moments of Nuss's involvement with the long running free improvisational group No Neck Blues Band who have become nothing more than an institution in New York's "underground" music community, while it touches upon any number of moments from Evans career with a vast number of collaborators over the years. 

Throughout Evans and Nuss's contribution focuses on what the two do best in the percussive alleys of their minds while also opening up their compositional reach into some fully formed song craft.  such as with track highlight "Dancing Stars". Beyond some loose thematic thread of dark hippie-isms gone awry into a psychedelic nightmare. A devotional air runs throughout creating an sonic atmosphere and vibe that similar attempts of a dark free improvisation can often lack when in the wrong hands. Definitely a keeper in the series. 

Michael Evans & Dave Nuss's entry into the Natch series is available now via Black Dirt Studios. Did I mention that it's free as always? So really there is no reason not to dig in and let the good times roll! 

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Loren Nerell - Point of Arrival | Album Feature

As synthesizers continue to whirl, in these times perhaps more than ever (or so it would seem), more unearthed gems of synthesized beauty continue to leak out of the crevasses of time. It's only natural I presume as the dust often needs to settle before any real understanding and excavation of the scene can take place. Loren Nerell's album Point of Arrival is one of these cases. At the time of it's original release being lost in the fabric of the day what with the original, and at the time totally unhip, New Age movement going strong and synthesizers being embedded within the popular music world's everyday language. There are always diamond's in the rough though and thanks to the folks at Forced Nostalgia Nerell's work has been given a second thought and all the 2.0 New Age kids (or had the number greatly surpassed this) can dig there mind body and soul into what came before.

On Point of Arrival a Nerell blends a myriad number of influences coalesce into a well thought out and entrancing adventure.  The album takes off with cold precision in opening track "Eldolon". It mixes bits of industrial elements and dance music, coming off like a serious cousin to the work of Chris & Cosey at the time. Things continue in this vein at moments dipping into the psychedelic end of electronic drones and even further into another post Throbbing Gristle act Coil came to be known for, if slightly more melodic in execution. The epic composition "Waves of Time" takes over the second half of this album. "Waves of Time" slowly builds over it's 22 minutes beginning with a quite hush of the ocean scape at dawn before the sequenced synthesizers and drum machine pulse fully takes form. It's the ideal ending for this adventurous record.

Loren Nerell's Point of Arrival is available now via Forced Nostalgia.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Herbcraft - Flowering | Album Feature

Herbcraft are presenting some next level stuff right here. The action is in full bloom, minds are racing at a snails pace, and smoke is filling the room. It's a journey to the center of your third kind of trip and one to be taken seriously as Herbcraft has already settled into some serious psychedelic adventures with two LP's on Woodsist offshoot Hello Sunshine already under their belt. Maybe the group's name gave all of that away already though...

"California Poppy" and "Journey To The Center Of Your Hive" go far in demonstrating what's really going on here. In each track one can only imagine the lights were dimmed almost immediately letting incense guide whoever was present through their surroundings as the vibe sets in. Spiritual in nature, psychedelic in execution, it's hard not to relax and let the world wither away before all the smoke settles bringing you back into reality. A heavy trip indeed.

Herbcraft's Flowering is available now via Julia Dream Recordings.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Eric Copeland - Flushing Meats| Track Feature

Eric Copeland is back with yet another solid 7" mind melter. The phase shifting, beat infused, audio trickery is still in full swing here, little surprise there. Copeland has built his entire solo career slowly advancing his unique blend of ADD riddled and THC infused music to new heights. His recent string of 7" singles has  given ground to him being a true connoisseur and purveyor of some the most experimental and accessible music out there today.

"Flushing Meats" reflects past efforts, most notably Alien in A Garbage Dump from 2009, while not necessarily retreading any ground. A tapestry of sound and intertwining rhythmic elements keep some forward momentum while never revealing in what direction anything is actually going in. The B side of "Gutterhouse" continues the perfect audio remedy for those looking to turn their reality into a oozing sugar sweet syrup mess. This is beyond noise, this is beyond crazy beats, settling on a new alien terrain. Copeland may be out of the garbage dump but he is still holding onto the key ideas that were fermented there in the first place.

Eric Copeland's "Flushing Meats" 7" is available now via Calico Corp.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Trabajo - "Bodega Cat" | Track Feature

Traversing some almost ancient ground here. Trabajo create a nice blend of electronics that seem to take a grab bag of influences before putting them all into the juicer for our delight. There are hints of musical fruits from all over the map ranging from kraut-rock like exercises in kosmiche introspection and moments of electro-ethnic forgery my mind readily associates with early Gang Gang Dance to name a few without ever really hitting the nail on the head.

The track highlight "Bodega Cat" from the group's EP (2012) is a foray into some pseudo-minimalist kalimba compositions. This ode to every corner store's feline friend is exacting in it's percussive precision building up the energy until some atmospheric vocals enter calling for a heavy drum breakdown. The rest of the album follows suit weaving in and out of a the blur of the a hot and busy street.

Trabajo's EP (2012) is available now from the group's bandcamp.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Volunteers Park - Tragic Pote | Track Feature

Stepping out on his own, Aviram Cohen (formerly of Silk Flowers and Soiled Mattress & The Springs), finds his own voice just fine. Volunteers Park acts as an extension of his former projects an eventual progression of the sound really developed with Silk Flowers hues of black comedy & an electronic music full of sequenced synths and drum machines whirling. The proceedings are now a bit more loose and dare I say intimate than any group can ever really pull off.

It seems like natural selection or progression has led to Volunteers Park. A statement that may seem funny when considering the almost entirely electronic nature of this music. But funny indeed as Cohen croons in "Tragic Pote" with all sincerity while speaking of some school-age trouble full of cavities and murdered bus drivers (which is way more endearing than how that may sound thanks to Cohen's particular singing voice). This is a short treat and hopefully there is more to come.

Volunteers Park's "Tragic Pote" is available now as via De Stijl.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Sidi Touré - Ni See Ay Ga Done | Video Feature

Again the sounds of North Western Africa, and more specifically the Sahel region in Mali in particular here, bleed out into the world's musical vocabulary. This time it is Sidi Touré who is stepping out and shedding light on the beautiful heritage and roots of real blues music. "Ni See Ay Ga Done" offers an energetic look into the acoustic folk of the region. Guitars strum and creating a weave of complex picking patterns, the pitter patter of percussive elements float in the background while Touré's voice comes out front and center leading the listener through it all.

The video in all it's highly saturated color creates a blurry montage of Touré's homeland. Through all the beauty and exotic (at least to these American eyes) landscapes and architecture the region seems to stand at a dichotomy of vast introspection and deeply communal living. A way of life made out of necessity rather than some idyllic vision of escapism and romance. This fact is driven home when we are able to address to the true horrors that northern Mali and Touré's home country are facing. Severe drought, revolution, and extremist political and religious thought have dominated Mali's northern country forcing even the longtime Tuareg inhabitants who have been engaged in a decades long conflict with the government over creating a sovereign state to enter into an even fiercer battle with Islamist extremists vying for control of the area. A sad state of affairs and one that does not aide the plight of the local people in such a time of hardship.

Sidi Touré's second full-length album Koïma is available now via Thrill Jockey.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Samara Lubelski - Wavelength | Track Feature

Samara Lubelski seems to do no wrong. Whether she's behind the board helping engineer and record some classic recordings by any number of fantastic "underground" groups such as Black Dice or Oneida to name just a couple or in the limelight with her own extensive body of work solo and with her previous group Hall of Fame there just always seems to be something there. The right blend of gentle, melodic folk and bits of all of psychedelic noise seep into everything she has a hand in.

"Wavelength", taken from Samara's upcoming album of the same name, stands out in her catalogue as one of the most upbeat fast tempo songs she has yet to release with any of her previous albums or projects. Yes the floral guitar passages remain but it's as if she's had a strong cup of coffee before setting out on this work. It suits her too, the instrumental track soars into the ethers of space and time before returning home bringing with it a small gift from the universe straight to your home speaker system.

Samara Lubelski's Wavelength will be available via De Stijl Records this July 24th.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Tin Horses - American Radiance | Album Feature

This is some Rock N Roll stuff right here, capitalized in all it's glory. Ramshackle to a tea and with a total unpretentious attitude that can catch you off guard if you're not looking out. Tin Horses hailing from Philadelphia, PA let their guitars blaze and their classic flags fly high. Coming strong out of the gate with tracks such as "Amphetamine" & "You Took Care of Me While I Was Dyin" showcasing some touching moments of narrative story telling that seems to be quickly vanishing or being obscured in the current musical landscape.

It may be worth mentioning that the group share main man Kiel Everett with the dirge fueled rockers Purling Hiss. Where that project usually tends towards an overblown fury that takes in hard psychedelia and noise-rock to great affect Everett and the rest of Tin Horses set out on a dusty road of americana rock. A more restrained Crazy Horse come to mind with Everett's charming nasal drawl keeping everything in focus and the guitars keeping everything moving.

Tin Horses American Radiance is available now on CD & free download on their bandcamp.