Sunday, May 22, 2011
Hard to describe this one but goddamn is it good. It drones, it rocks out, it lulls, it awakens. Do not miss this if you know what's good for you. It will rip your fucking face off. Unlike anything out there right now.
Meet the sandwich meeting the sun
Thursday, March 3, 2011
This is some groove music right here. For anyone that enjoys people who do something different with hip-hop, this is for you. Highly highly recommended and free to boot! So...what are you waiting for again?
Tuesday, November 16, 2010
From the label...
"Recorded in 1970 as part of the First Biennale of Arts and Culture for the Young in Mali. The Regional Orchestra of Mopti was a state funded orchestra that participated in country wide music festivals and competitions. A hypnotic band featuring electric guitars & a large horn section. This is the first in a series of six Mali music LPs we will be reissuing this summer from Sterns. A serene and droning record that is both sorrowful & celebratory." - Mississippi Records
Recently reissued on vinyl. Mississippi Records are always incredible while also affordable so buy it HERE
Try 'er out
Monday, November 15, 2010
There's no introduction necessary, is there? I mean, he's MILES. But I wanted to draw some attention to this one, which kind of seems like one of those "lost" albums that a minority discover in a classic musician's massive discography. I'm probably wrong but that doesn't change how fucking incredible this is. Possibly more psyched out than "Bitches' Brew." Essential.
Vote for Miles
Wednesday, November 10, 2010
From the label...
"Purling Hiss has recently released records on Richie and Woodsist and garnered rave reviews from just about everybody who's heard 'em. This eponymous album is where it all began! Here's the story: Purling Hiss is the side-project of Holy Mountain recording artists Birds of Maya guitarist Mike Polizze. Birds of Maya are a full-on psychedelic rock band from Philly. Apparently, Birds just aren't full-on enough to satisfy Polizze's far-out tendencies. On his debut solo record Polizze plays bass drums and guitar relentlessly as if he's playing to save his life. For Fans Of- Birds of Maya Earthless, Loop, High Rise, Les Rallizes Denudes, and lo-fi, blown-out psych. Obviously, this one comes highly recommended." - Permanent Records
If you are fiending for some over the top guitar driven psych, this shall surely do the trick. Intense
Buy it HERE
White noise machine
Monday, May 17, 2010
"Athens weirdcore trio Harvey Milk is a blessedly difficult band to “know.” They frustrate category, aesthetic response, and heavy music scene politics in estimable, admirable ways. On the heels of their feedback-saturated return to recording – first the somewhat tentative Special Wishes and then 2008’s Life . . . the Best Game in Town – they return with A Small Turn of Human Kindness, an album named after the very first track on their 1996 debut.
A seven-part dirge, this album continues to refine their mixture of heavy riffage, sheer noise, and unexpected detours into introspection and delicate, emotional instrumentalism. But there’s something about the long form here that brings these elements out really vividly, freshly, in ways that suggest new discoveries and new paths taken. They remain a very patient, un-showy group, happy to let the heaviest of heavy chords – you can hear the speaker cones straining, their detuned strings flapping – simply wash over the spare shapes that make up these compositions. But what gives this music greater power and urgency is vocalist Creston Spiers’ dark dreamings.
His rattling holler is like the croaky sound that Neurosis’ Scott Kelley has recently unearthed, crossed with the phrasing of Sonic Youth’s “Marilyn Moore.” The album’s themes of lovelorn despondency might seem about as innovative as dirt, but the music breathes inspiration into them. The slow moving notes of the opening “*” – big major motifs moving in vast space and amp resonance, flirting with the anthemic – form the basic materials that are layered and layered in patient pursuit of the line. As the music emerges to form a mid-tempo crawl in “I Just Want to Go Home,” the fuzz and decay left in the wake of each crashing punctuation, each howl, create their own context beyond “heavy” signification. Things don’t so much move forward as bloom darkly, as feedback floods the pulse or as a brief staccato pattern cups a descending line (“I Am Sick of All This Too”).
It’s compelling from the start, particularly insofar as they not only avoid genre clichés but also cheap drama. Instead, they play emotionally ambiguous stuff – shifting modes and dynamics, or rather simply smashing them together until the edges are indistinct – that makes room for tart harmony (“I Know This is No Place for You”), cheeseball ‘80s keyboards (“I Know This is All My Fault”), and even some pitch-bending Southern-fried riffs on the closing “I Did Not Call Out.” None of these elements stands out or calls attention to itself; they simply emerge organically as the basic materials (not just the motif of the opener but the “I” of the titles) are continually revisited and reworked.
Singular and absorbing, Spiers chronicles his – his character’s? – beaten but not broken hope for some buried treasure from the wreck of a relationship (“In the dead gray ashes there was grace” he sings in the end). And Harvey Milk once again shake the dust from labels and produce music that’s heavy by virtues of its convictions and emotional integrity. In their music it’s easy to hear the roots of feted bands like Baroness and Kylesa, but I’m increasingly likely to think of this music – with its dark stew of minimalism, repetition, and abjection – as the blues."- Dusted
I am in complete awe of this band, and for good reason. When reference points include the Melvins, ZZ Top, and Leonard Cohen, how can you not be intrigued? This album marks Harvey Milk's return to the off kilter lumbering heaviness of their first two albums (or three, depending on how you count 'em) and is stronger throughout than either "Special Wishes" and "Life..." both of which I enjoy thoroughly. This is a legitimate contender for album of the year. Get it.
The milk of human kindness
Thanks to Lucidmedia for the link
"If Faust announce a last record after 40 years then it might be a good idea to open up the ears, especially when the cover art is one big reference to their first record. The x-rayed "fist" appears again, this time with the fingers slightly more opened. 40 years lie between the two records. 40 years of many different line ups, record companies, financial disasters, artistic failures and successes. Whatever can happen to a band has happened to Faust. In that sense they are not an unusual group of musicians. What is unusual is that each project, each record, each concert over the last 40 years has been different. On the very first record they made clear (on clear vinyl) that they were in it for destruction. "All you need is love" and "Satisfaction" symbolically were set fire to. That same fire you will hear on this new & last Faust record. The circle will be closed by more circular
music. A music that seems to come out of nowhere, sonic descriptions rather than songs. Timeless and not rooted in specific places and/or traditions. Maybe influenced by Cage's idea of chance, Dada, cut-ups, Sun Ra's free jazz organ playing and the second attempt after the German-American Monks to represent "a rock group as total artwork". faust in 1970 and in 2010 sound aggressive and 100 percent oriented towards the future. There is not a glimpse of nostalgia in "Faust is last". Turn up the volume and listen to this first, new and last Faust record very loud!" - Klangbad
Haven't had a chance to fully digest this yet but goddamn, what I've heard is on par with their entire career. It should be noted that is Hans Joachim Irmler's (founding guitarist) conception of Faust, and not Jean Herve Peron and Zappi Diermaier's (founding bassist & drummer) Faust that toured last year. This one seems to run the gamut stylistically, from grungy classic rock to the chilling noise passages we've all come to love over the years. Frankly, they still sound full of piss and vinegar and if that isn't reason enough to give this full attention, then I don't know what is. Highly recommended.
Saturday, May 8, 2010
Made using his own and another band's samples along with help on two songs, it encompasses melodic vocal drones, krautrock psychedelia, pounding rhythms and crushing experimental rock. I should also mention that it is open source audio and those looking for higher quality downloads should go HERE. The album begins with two relaxing drone pieces. "Calm Your Bones" in particular has a warm feeling with a gorgeous interplay that almost takes on the sound of an organ in some places. "Sirens Part II," my personal favorite, takes cues from the Neu/Harmonia/Cluster family in that it is swirling ambient music but always feels like it's constantly moving. Noises fly in and out over a hulking wall of sound. A beautiful, cosmic song to say the least. "Sirens (Urban Music For Guitar and Drums)" is a vicious, unrelenting beast that refuses to let it its hand off your throat. Each time I've heard it, I cannot shake the feeling of urban paranoia, but perhaps I shouldn't listen to it surrounded by filthy urban people. Throbbing rock gives way to chaotic noise freakout. Awesome. "Way of the World," the final track, starts heavy as hell. Noise creeps into the mix as the song progresses, keeping the cosmic quality found throughout the other songs. This gives way to a filthy, fuzz-laden industrial drum beat that pounds at your consciousness before coming full circle back into cosmic heaviness. It feels like an adventure that takes you farther out than the 24 minuets of total music. Highly highly highly recommended.
Calm your bones
Tuesday, April 20, 2010
"When my all-smiling, all-visionary, all-grimming partner in sonic grime Stephen O’Malley (Khanate, Sunn0))), Burning Witch) sent me this Sleep album as a gift late last year, I immediately thought it was the most ground-breaking record in years because it took an essentially unmeditational musical form (i.e. early Black Sabbath) and sacralised it into the highest form of barbarian sonic code you could ever wish to trip out to. It monged my senses within the first five minutes, then set about my inner structures with sheer weight of adamant repetition and monotony. The CD featured one 60-minute long Sabbath Re-hash plus a nine minutes live-in-concert extra to wake you at the end in case you’d fallen asleep under the sonic assault of the main track and your home was burning down. What pragmatic motherfuckers, I thunk to myself. You could chew up some of the good hash and neck a few beers and lie in bed and sleep to it, leave your body to it, probably even shag to it though I was too busy to set up such an experiment. But it was such a forever trip that the whole room, nay the whole of my life, soon became secondary to this one seemingly eternal track. It was neither fast nor slow, operating somewhere between Black Sabbath’s own self-titled track from their first LP and the Flower Travellin’ Band’s own more ambient sludge-trudge version of the same song from their 1970 LP ANYWHERE, then gradually building into a rhythm something akin to MASTER OF REALITY’s ‘Lord of this World’ and ‘Into the Void’. However, there was herein an added bonus in the drumming of Chris Hakius, whose utter relentlessness allowed the sound to transcend Sabbath considerably and obtain a total hold on this listener’s mind. After hearing so many recent so-called Sabbath imitators whose muse really appealed to me intellectually but always ultimately failed to make me instant replay the suckers (Boris, Electric Wizard, Gonga), this Sleep album seemed to be the realest of real shit and then some… And as a Krautrocker who’d always professed to have preferred UFO-period Guru Guru’s extended Sabbalongs more than the real thing, I realised that these San Jose lunatics had taken their own proto-metal into much the same ‘LSD-March’ type territory, then continued out of that track’s city limits across the railways tracks and out into nether lands that even Mani Neumaier woulda never thunk to venture. Furthermore, the lyrics (all ten repeated lines or so) were the kind of accessible pseudo-religious genius that started genuine religions:
‘Drop out of life with bong in hand
Follow the smoke to the riff-filled land
Drop out of life with bong in hand
Follow the smoke to the riff-filled land…
Proceeds the Weedian – Nazareth
Proceeds the Weedian – Nazareth…’
New lows in redundant amphibian shamanism or watt, Motherfucker! Gimme gimme gimme, and then gimme some more. When I was a kid making 1/72 scale model plane kits by Airfix and Revell, I used to paint flies with Humbrol gloss and watch them drag themselves around slower and slower until they… finally… dried up underneath the sheer weight of the glossy overalls I’d painted them into. Now, listening to DOPESMOKER, I was a fly dying of paint inhalation and loving every exoskeletally en-crisping moment. Lying comatose and aware of nothing but the thousands of glow-in-the-dark stars on my bedroom ceiling, I wondered what could have been behind such a fundamentalist statement as DOPESMOKER. Of its three creators, I visualised them (in my hash-mashed mind’s eye) inhabiting a world in which the first four Black Sabbath LPs - BLACK SABBATH, PARANOID, MASTER OF REALITY and VOLUME 4 – had become sacred testaments on which to base their entire belief system (this wasn’t really too hard to envisage – Mormonism and Rastafarianism were based on far less). But then, as I sunk deeper into Sleep’s San Jose psyche, I began to think… imagine that you first came to these four Sabs LPs not in their British Vertigo swirl guises, but in their U.S. Warner Brothers versions, with the first LP losing its gatefold and (therefore) controversial inverted cross, but (more positively) side two opening not with the original slightly incongruous Fontana 45 ‘Evil Woman, Don’t You Play Your Games with Me’ but with the far more typically doomaholic stop-start Iommi-heavy multi-parted B-side ‘Wicked World’ – an altogether more auspiciously damned beginning to side two of such an iconic rock’n’roll debut. Imagine, if you will allow me to continue this metaphor, that being a teenage American stoner and already of the opinion that, being in possession of the aforementioned 4 LPs, you have your hands on some sort of holy sonic reliquary umpteen times greater than Islam’s piece of sacred meteorite at the centre of Mecca’s Haram enclosure, you begin as time goes by to read more and more into the titles of those ‘extras’ that Warner Brothers had insisted Black Sabbath added to their tracklisting to stop the general public from thinking they wuz buying some too-short LPs. And imagine that the addition of those extra U.S.-only titles on BLACK SABBATH (‘Wasp’, ‘Bassically’), PARANOID (‘Luke’s Wall’, ‘Jack the Stripper’), MASTER OF REALITY (‘The Haunting’, ‘Step Up’, ‘Deathmask’) and VOLUME 4 (‘The Straightener’, ‘Everyday Comes and Goes’) to the already murky official Sabbath tracklisting contributed further confusion to the thorny question of exactly when songs ended and others began, so much so in fact that each already oft-changing riff-o-thon now appeared to meld seamlessly and tidally, each into the next until your teenaddled stoner cranium saw, heard and inhaled it all as a single ever-undulating ever-spiralling ever-squirming Midgardian Worm of sonic oil spill building and building layer upon relentless layer on a seashore until the whole beachscape, complete with sunbathers, coastguards and concession stands, had been lacquered under a one-metre-thick obsidian black layer of petrified chemo-gunk… I visualised Sleep in their pre-Sleep configuration, their teenage stoner minds fixating collectively on these first four Sabbath LPs to such an extent that certain repeated words in the song titles became iconic mantras to be treated (Brigit Riley-stylee) as repeatable motifs almost in the psychedelic manner of 6,000-year-old Western Atlantic passage grave art. In this mood, titles such as ‘Sweetleaf’, ‘Behind the Wall of Sleep’, ‘Planet Caravan’, ‘Under the Sun’, ‘Warning’, ‘Snowblind’,1 ‘Luke’s Wall’, Supernaut’, ‘A Bit of Finger’, ‘Tomorrow’s Dream’, ‘The Wizard’; each becomes a useful jugglable commodity on which to hang your own variant of Geezer’s lyric, of Iommi’s heavy up-the-neck wound-string S.G. riffs and of Bill’s Bible-throwing drum fills. I heard evidence within these Sleepian grooves that a genuine cult had grown up in San Jose, a cult dedicated to the results of Black Sabbath’s controversial decision to rip off2 a song title (‘Sweetleaf’) from Clear Blue Sky, their eighteen-year-old Vertigo label-mates, and write it not as a soft homage to grass but as a riff-heavy ‘Pot as THEE Sacrament’ John Sinclair/MC5ian-type Odin-receiving-the-wisdom-of-Urd’s Well thank you thank you you-saved-my-life Shaman’s gift to the Goddess eulogy. I imagined that on hearing Ozzie’s echoplex’d coughs at the beginning of the song, and the desperation in his voice when he sung to Sweetleaf ‘I love you… you know it… my life was empty… my life was down… my life is free now’, the Cult-that-would-become-Sleep had heard it as such a rallying cry from within that it finally motivated their otherwise Total Pot Refusenik Butts enough to get up from the couch long enough to lay down some extreme sonic monotony on behalf of the Vegetation Goddess who had spoken so eloquently to them, their few close stoner mates, and Messrs. Osbourn, Butler, Iommi and Ward. But after I’d imagined all of the above, I had to stop imagining such things because this thing had actually happened and the results were amazing.
Then came the cruncher… this DOPESMOKER album was an old recording from 1995CE, and was the culmination of years of Sleep’s collective (and terminal) Sabbophilia. Yup, there was loads more great Sleep stuff AND they’d stuffed their record company (London Records) with this sucker by scoring unbelievable amounts of the green, inhaling it all then buying even vaster amounts of the Orange (amplification, that is) and recording one 52-minute track entitled ‘Jerusalem’ which they then delivered to London Records on a DAT tape contained in a porcelain skull bong wearing a U.S. military police helmet. Legal wrangling took over and miserable London Records suits wearing extremely brown trousers eventually dropped the band, who had on their hands the greatest bootleg since High Rise’s aberrant live double NOT WEARING A HARD HAT IN A HARD HAT AREA (THAT HARD). I needed to do some sonic investigation and I knew it would be one of the great joys of recent history. Indeed, it was…" - The one and only Julian Cope, Head Heritage
What can you say about a classic that hasn't already been said? So sludgy, so droney, so amazing. Mandatory for those looking to be pummeled with epic stoner riffs and guitar tones that could start an earthquake. And that bass rig, holy shit. Tasteful tribal drumming to top it all off, what more do you need? Wow.
Tuesday, April 13, 2010
"Inspired by the aural collage of the Beatles' "Revolution Number 9," as well as the musique concrete of composers such as John Cage and Terry Riley and Bob Dylan's conscientious rock lyricism, Bill Holt quit his straight job in 1972 to follow his musical muse, hoarding various electronic gadgets and an acoustic guitar and holing up in his basement. He emerged a year later with Dreamies, one of the finest pieces of experimental pop from the era. Unlike the Beatles' White Album collage, though, the pair of sidelong, 26-minute epics -- "Program Ten" and "Program Eleven" (as if progressing directly from "Revolution Number 9") -- that Holt created were much more than symbolic representations of the chaotic times. At its heart, the album is a blend of folk and pop/rock, and in many respects, Dreamies fits in with the singer/songwriter scene that flowered in the early '70s. Instead of relying simply on the juxtapositions of his sound samples to impart subjective meanings, Holt composed lovely, downhearted melodies (very much recalling John Lennon) and trippy lyrics as a jumping-off point for each collage and then let acoustic guitar guide them through the gauntlet of sound. In fact, "Program Ten" is a combination of two identifiable songs, "Sunday Morning Song" and "The User," the two melodies weaving in and out of the cacophony of noise-crickets, atmospheric sounds, a John Kennedy speech, NASA chatter, news reports, glass breaking, a thunderstorm, sports broadcasts, and gunfire while a synthesizer spits out spacey alien sounds or cuts like a kettle whistle, and an ominous bassline oscillates beneath it all. "Program Eleven" exchanges that white noise for airport sounds, creepy Sgt. Pepper-style chants that bubble up from beneath the single melody fragment ("Going for a Ride"), game show catch phrases, and popping corn. Of the two pieces, "Program Ten" is the more socially charged commentary, setting the innocent recollections of youth -- the sounds of summer and nature -- against the misanthropic confusion of war and politics to powerful effect. "Program Eleven" is more psychedelically eerie and haunting, aurally dense, and thick with bad vibes, but wonderful nonetheless. The spoken samples are mostly more buried in the background and difficult to make out. It adds both intrigue and mystery to the piece, a foreboding end to what began optimistically. The music, in other words, ingeniously mirrored the sort of evolution of consciousness that was so much a part of the era. Dreamies went virtually unheard when it was released, perhaps because it was the antithesis of commercial rock at the time, but, despite its grounding in the ambiance and issues of the '60s, it still sounds outstanding decades after the fact." - Allmusic
A wonderful piece of music. Found a section of Program 10 on Beyond The Wizards' Sleeve "Ark 1" and had to track this down. One of the earliest examples of sampling in modern music as well. Another highly recommended album.