Monday, October 15, 2012

Keel Her - Riot Grrrl | Track Feature

Keel Her give us a supple and thoroughly charming off-kilter lo-fi pop music. There is enough nostalgic punch to keep any 20 something year old satisfied for a few hours pleasure. Rose Keeler-Schäffeler's soaks her ram shackled songwriting in references of the past with a tongue in cheek mentality that seems to honor and poke fun at all the moments in pop culture which she could seemingly hold dear.

"Riot Grrrl" kicks starts everything here and is Keel Her's first "hi-fi" musical statement. She leaves her comfortable, presumably smokey, bedroom and enters an actual recording studio. The guitars are still jangling away and Keeler-Schäffeler's recognizable melodic hooks are all in place. There is a clarity and accessibility that her own home-recorded output can only hint at. The more professional attitude and recording quality could be a factor of this being one of her most widely available releases to date but also feels like a natural progression the DIY pop songsmith.

For Keel Her's US debut Gnar Tapes go back into Keeler-Schäffeler's demo vaults from the past year or so to dig up some of the best treats that may have gone overlooked. "Steve Holt" is a fine example of what she is capable of committing to tape all on her own. It is falling apart while simultaneously congealing into perfection. Yum...

Keel Her's "Riot Grrrl" 7" will be available this December 3rd by Critical Heights while her self-titled US debut is available now via Gnar Tapes

Friday, October 12, 2012

Chris Cohen - Monad | Video Feature

Even if you are not familiar with his name you have most likely heard the work and playing of Chris Cohen at some point in the past fews years. He has been in the background, both as a live member and active contributor, of countless memorable groups such as Deerhoof, White Magic, The Curtains, Haunted Graffiti, & Cass McCombs to name only a few. It is easy to understand why so many folks seem to gravitate towards him as his own music is a thoughtfully crafted affair that is sip away into. There is nothing abrasive that strikes out at the listener, everything seems to fit right into place, & moreover "Monad" feels like meeting an old dear friend for the first time in years. The song feels is perfect for slipping into the 

Chris Cohen's cohesive and sonic mastery as displayed throughout "Monad" are mirrored in the subtly breathtaking beauty of its visual accompaniment.  The music video directed by Kate Dollenmayer creates a visual cohesion through it's sly reference to Cohen record jacket for Overgrown Path. The abstract and shifting black and white patterns evoke only the album cover and shifting nature in Cohen songwriting. Someone can get sucked into watching this on repeat and may come out it feeling as though they've been to some hypnotist and unloaded all of their emotional baggage without realizing it. A fresh start perhaps...

Chris Cohen's "Monad" is taken from his debut full-length album Overgrown Path available now via Captured Tracks.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

DIVA - Inverted Image | Video Feature

Diva returns with a refined version of the lullaby atmospheric song craft that she has previously presented on The Glitter End. This time Diva Dompé has updated her recording process or something as "Inverted Image" offers a much clearer and dare I say studio sounding version of her work and it suits her well. The subtle and haunting melodies created here all rest upon the bed of a slowly grooving bass line & the small flutter and squelch of synths.

The video does a fantastic job at capturing Diva's fairytale nature. It is presented through a monochromatic lens that creates a sharp vision of a world that could be taken from the dreams of a child. Dompé travels throughout singing and swaying throughout the lullaby groove and shimmering world that has been created around her.

Diva's album Moon Moods is  available now on cassette via Leaving Records and CD & Vinyl via Critical Heights.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Neil Young & Crazy Horse - Walk Like A Giant | Video Feature

It's a strange thing to begin discussing Neil Young & Crazy Horse's latest offering in the form of the video for "Walk Like A Giant". There are few words or adjectives that feel comfortable using while writing this. These are folks that need no introduction to almost anyone alive in the western world today. These guys are walking legends, influenced others influences, have created lasting records that will continue to grow in their scope for days to come. To top things off is that their new material stands on the same ground as anything from the past. 

The video for "Walk Like A Giant" starts out depicting grainy images of legends of the North American landscape of a real and cryptozoological nature before slipping into some psychedelic kaleidoscopic visions. The video only features a portion of the song's  epic track length but maintains the same punch if in a condensed "5-hour energy" kind of way. It may just be small shot to consume but will keep you going for some time to come. Young and company prove that they are able to pick up whenever they last left off and the searing guitar solos only cement this fact. It is hard not to sit back and bask in the glory this classic group are still able to conjure up. 

Neil Young & Crazy Horse's newest album Psychedelic Pill will be available via Reprise Records this October 30th.

Panache Booking + Last Nights Showcase w/ Gap Dream, MV & EE, Paperhead, & Herbcraft Saturday October 20th 2012

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Last Nights & Panache Booking Present

Gap Dream

Saturday October 20th, 2012
Big Snow
89 Varet St. Brooklyn, NY
Doors 8pm | $7 | All Ages

RSVP on the Facebook Event Page

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Earn - Performance II | Album Feature

This is not a new direction for Matthew Sullivan's Earn. His droning, shimmering, and often cinematic compositions are at the forefront of some new breed of underground ambient music. This is ambient music for the generation that has come after hardcore and noise music have been assimilated rather deeply into musical culture. Sullivan has built a back catalogue of music that is knee deep since adopting the Earn moniker in 2008.

Yet has no been since  Performance II and its predecessor putting him into a prestigious tier of experimental composers by the shear fact through a focus on live recordings. I had the fortunate experience of seeing him perform, a rare treat for the east coast, and was blown away. This process showcases his mastery of live mixing away from the tools of studio control. The ability to control and subtly shift the ambient / noise environment requires attention to minute rhythms and builds of momentum and is what Sullivan excels at. This is some deep listening.

Earn's cassette Performance II is available now via Ekhein.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Slim Twig - Altered Ego | Video Feature

Slim Twig has the flair of a 60's showman without question. Perhaps he was born into the role as fate would have it but that may be a different story altogether. "Altered Ego" taken from Twig's latest album makes its entrance with an energy drum solo before mellowing out into the song natural pace. Anyone that begins a single with a drum solo is definitely making a statement and probably knows how to use an exclamation point. The demented Elvis croon (a compliment in this instance) which comes afterwards ushering in the song's structure breaths over a slinky bassline that etches a deep groove in the listeners eardrum.

The video itself, which was directed by George Fok, presents Twig putting on full rockstar regalia. Set in a strange space reminiscent (or maybe it is! Only those who know know) of an art-gallery making Slim Twig and his creepy companions seems that much more epic in the nonchalant rampage that follows. "Altered Ego" displays the same classic pop sound on mood stabilizers vibe that he's been building up too with his recent work. It is a sound that will stay bouncing around your head long afterwards.

Slim Twig's full length album Sof' Sike is available now via Paper Bar Records.