NEW. MUSIC. FRIDAY. with 15(!) releases you just might like
As always, it gets a little LOUD in the end. Although there is always (we hope) something for everyone.
Combining the sheen of French Pop and the primal sensibility of Garage Rock, Dutch band Fleur is out of the gate like a reborn Shocking Blue. Swinging (“La Tribu Des Trompettes”) songs that are not afraid to throw in a burning guitar solo. Singer Floor Elman is little Bobbie Gentry and little Francoise Hardy, and fits perfectly into these Sixties-inspired productions where twangy guitar (“Sans Toi,”) tack-like piano (“Plus de Rouge”) and other instrumental wonders are well placed by Arjan Spies and Dave Von Raven a/k/a Les Robots. With their crisp songs and Elman’s personality, “Fleur” is only beginning.
PAUL JACOBS - Pink Dogs On The Green Grass [LP](Sony Canada)
After following Jacobs and his cool cassettes for a few years, “Pink Dogs” marks a huge leap forward in terms of songwriting and production. Still a one-man show, Jacobs’ brand of shoegazing Psychedelia is neatly adorned with just the right touches of effects to make you feel like someone just slipped you a little something. Since joining Pottery, his drumming is so consistent which really drives the songs on “Pink Dogs.” The acoustic guitar spiral of “Cherry,” the nitrous-oxide breath of jet propulsion on “Christopher Robbins,” and the stone(d) cold groove of “Kathy’s Bible” all cannot miss. “Pink Dogs” deserves a huge boost as it could easily play on repeat for months.
WILL STRATTON - The Changing Wilderness [LP/CD](Bella Union/PIAS)
When you play quiet, meditative music there are two factors necessary. First, are the songs written like lost letters you unearthed in a box at the bottom of your closet. When you listen to the soothing Nick Drake-ian low voice of Stratton, his songs hit the confessional button and add an extra layer of thought-provoking and poetic quality (“Black Hole.”) Second, does the instrumentation fill out the sound image without distracting from the mellowing effects and digestion of words and melodies. “The Changing Wilderness” adds quiet, almost hesitant drums (“Infertile Air”) and subtle piano chords that are two degrees above hushed. The effect is freeing. As Stratton unfolds his tales of heartbreak and loss, you catch the details - have a moment to think about them yourself and let the musical rise in chords or volume ease their sorrow and deliver a soft landing that leaves you primed for more.
TIJUANA HERCULES - Mudslod and the Singles [LP/CD](SKiN GRAFT/Redeye)
This Chicago collective (20 musicians!) needs all hands on deck to conjure and continue its distinct voodoo groove. If you run their songs together, it resembles a blues incantation. Listening to them swing a little ("Chilanta,") then shambolically ramble into Zeppelin-esque Country ("The Way It Is,") makes you really boogie when they hit "ShaTooBog" right down the middle. With Tijuana Hercules, John Vernon Forbes could be on the cusp of giving us the next Cramps.
GNOD - Easy To Build Hard To Destroy [LP/CD](Rocket/Redeye)
Like Eighties Swans-meeting Eighties Spacemen 3, Salford’s GNOD is pushing the limits of Drone Rock. Each song quickly finds its space and then begins occupying it like a slow-moving fog. Organs waver, drums pound and in the heart of the guitar squall there are voices casting spells. This rich Psychedelic slow Rock works best when it overwhelms. “They Live” finds its cruising altitude and then never lets up.
Various Artists - CHERRYSTONES PRESENTS CRITICAL MASS 2: HEARTS OF CHAMPIONS [LP](Touch Sensitive IRL)
Maybe it is his source material and/or his skill at track inclusion and order, but Cherrystones (a/k/a Gareth Goddard) digs up some serious Industrial/Coldwave jams that all wisely use their minimalism to simply ride a groove (the very 80's Neon cut "My Blues Is You") or find tracks that boom - but never peak like "Bled Dry" by A Primary Industry. These mostly European acts all squeeze everything from their tracks and make Cherrystones, the Post-Punk DJ we should all be following.
DJM TRIO - Cave Art [LP](Paxico)
Amsterdam musician and pianist Dominic J. Marshall takes the most elemental portions of Hip-Hop songs and turns them into funky Jazz miniatures. With bassist Sam Vicary and drummer Sam Gardner, the three hammer out the groove and never let up. Marshall's instrumentation really accentuates the best parts of several of these songs (the sick organ on "Koolout Ish and the insistent bell-like synth on Dilla's "Let's Grow") and brings out the composition in songs you usually associate with looping. These tracks of the songs Flying Lotus, Pete Rock, and Jurassic 5 are even joined by an original composition, the stride-piano esque Hip-Hop of "Shapes."
MISC - Partager L'Ambulance [LP](Bonsound CAN)
Montreal's Misc is that new Jazz trio that is not afraid to find a funky part to cut loose on, let the atmospherics hang in the air, or even plug-in samples to their most melodic pieces ("Le preacher.") "Partager" only reminds you of The Bad Plus because the threesome is a bit postmodern in their look at Modern Jazz. What is really unique is their mixture of majesty and this hop-a-long loping rhythm that allows the giant piano chords of Jerome Beaulieu's to really crash. Misc is not gentle by any stretch of the imagination. Even the quietest moments ("Q-Line") are undercut with tension from snares rattling. "Partager" smacks of originality and shows great potential.
WILL GUTHRIE & JAMES RUSHFORD - Real Real World [LP](Black Truffle AUS)
In ways you may not yet fathom (or want to,) a good “noisy” Avant-Garde record is an experience that you relive when it is finished. On their first joint effort, drummer Guthrie creates walls of noise with his clanging cymbals, bells, percussion, and clearly anything in his path. Six minutes of “Slakes” is a brilliant mixture of the very loud and very quiet. Although, the hushed portion is technically more frightening thanks to arcs from electronics colliding with nature and a half-dozen totally unidentifiable sounds. This multi-layered vision of sound is accompanied by keyboardist Rushford on the coolest, hollow sounding organ and saxophone. After you listen the first time, “Real Real World” achieves its own blur where tracks evolve and grow like a human breathing in and out. Noise knows no bounds in their “World.”
MICHAEL WOLLNY/EMILE PARISIEN/TIM LEFEBVRE/CHRISTIAN LILLINGER - XXXX [LP/CD](ACT GER)
When instruments no long sound like they are supposed to, you hear an entirely new palette of sound. Pianist Wollny is quite the interpreter of music already. Joined by these three fellow improvisers, his first time on synths and electronic keyboards is mindblowing. His patterns tend to erupt like a geyser (the explosive Sci-Fi breakbeat Jazz of “Dick Laurent is Dead”) or run totally amok (the harmonics of the ring modulator on the furious “Doppler FX.” Bassist Lefebvre does not so much lay down a groove as lead everything in a direction (his synchronized repetitions on “The Fall” and the intensity of “Laurent.”) Saxophonist Parisien lends melody to most of the cuts but thankfully does get to race with chaos on “Michael V. Michael.” If forced to choose an MVP, it would have to drummer Christian Lillinger. Lillinger is busy on the kit - well, all over the kit. However, he knows not to challenge Wollny’s sequencer on “Too Bright In Here” and then to lock in on hummingbird wing speed to make every note count elsewhere. Lillinger’s performance would normally be the one you tire of the quickest. However, he manages to continuously invent even after setting the highest bar on the opener “Somewhere Around Barstow.” “XXXX” is an improv record with its strange multi-chambered heart pumping in Musik Kosmiche and EDM.
GINO AND THE GOONS - Do The Get Around [LP](Drunken Sailor UK)
SUBDUED - Over The Hills And Far Away [LP][La Vida Es Un Mus UK)
Two bands restoring Punk's reckless abandon. Florida's Gino and The Goons take the Ramones aesthetic miles beyond your limits with six funny and clever songs which either summarize their way of life ("Hard Way") or their devotion ("I'm Your Man.") While it is very elementary, when they lock in with each other - they cannot miss. If Gino and The Goons are a punch in the face, Subdued is a blow to the skull. The band mines those classic hardcore Punk motifs for places to roam into Metal (the Black Flag-ian "Over The Hills And Far Away") or rock anarchically with some great lead guitar ("Death Or Lies.") The real standout is "Problem of Evil" which opens with a two-minute long echoey but Gothic fade-in before unleashing a Killing Joke-esque riff that will slice you open.
CANYONS - Stay Buried [CS](Knife Hits)
With their AmRep slam and Metal yowl, Kansas City’s Canyons return ROCK to the Nineties fashion of overloading distorted bass and the slow nodding headbang. Like Cows, the singer stays out of the forefront screaming above Denison-esque guitar and the Mule-like kick of drums. Are they out to destroy you? Their epic "Oil Change” will test your entire being. If you have not moved a muscle by the end of these two-and-a-half minutes - consult your physician.
PERILAXE OCCLUSION - Exponential Decay [LP](Blood Harvest SWE)
This Toronto duo fuses Doom and Death into a bludgeoning three-song debut. Like Thrash, they construct their songs around the slowdown using grim vocals and ear-shattering riffs to wind it back up again. "Skeletal Bifurcation" achieves an almost Bad Brains-ian sense of madness, while the opener "Death Bias Alpha" perfectly introduces the stylistic prowess of the band. Mountains of double-kick led, Sabbath-ian chromatic climbs to bang your head to. A promising debut.
CVLT OV THE SVN - We Are The Dragon [LP/CD](Napalm)
Finnish Metal Murder Cult Strikes with Sinister Debvt. While melodious like a certain haunting band, Cvlt taps a different set ov synapses with their metallic Rock. The vnknown singer (all members remain mysteriously sans identity) has a tempting whisper like either Captain Howdy or Andrew Eldritch in a higher register. This demented rasp allows you to better understand their clever lyrics and spend even more time in their molten metal Sisters Of Mercy-esque sarcophagus of Gothic Metal. “We Are The Dragon” is a Glam slam while “My Venom” is a White Zombie-esque radio hit in waiting with the best couplets (“I tell you it’s no wonder/I wanna take a trip to six feet under.”) Their equally promising “Luna In The Sky Forever” EP (also included on the CD) says it best “You’re like rusty nails/I like the danger in you”
Quite the wrap-up. Think about how much we have learned. We looked within ourselves and discovered that music in whatever form (as long as it is good, of course) is transformative. We shift into other fun shapes next week. In the meantime, share and share what you like.
On a final note, T-BONES would like you to know that Record Store Day is coming in two drops - June 12th and July 17th. This list of exclusives, reissues, and just awesome products will be invading our time shared here for the next few weeks. However, it is just another guest at the party. There’s no slowing us down. Tell your friends about us.
Enjoy. Share. And check out the entire RSD list and even WISHLIST us if you like. RSD 21 with TBONES
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