Monday, September 26, 2011

OOIOO - Feather Float

OOIOO are a side project by Boredoms (best band ever?) femme fatale Yoshimi P-We. Their 2004 record 'Feather Float' is, well, one of the most colourful albums you're likely to hear. Cover art is fairly suggestive of this.

Just about as much fun you can have within the popular music sphere without losing your mind. Or whatever, lose your mind, who cares. Contains bits of Vision Creation Newsun, Neu! like trance pulses, rock experimentation that may make their peers embarassed, and repetition. and repetition. and repetition. and repetition. and repetition. and repetition.

be sure to loop

Big Blood & the Bleeding Hearts - s/t

in solitary darkness, in the companionship of drunken revelry, to cut through the delirium of last night's dreams, to lull oneself to sleep, to be sung as loudly as statutorily possible. these are songs for any occasion**

bleeding hearts

V/A - Cocoon Compilation J

Minimal techno that seems to have been made for the vast, vast depths of the ocean. Featuring most of europe's top techno gods, this compilation takes the german minimal sensibility and tops it up with a huge dose of hypnosis. Mesmerised, and reconciling.

disc 1
disc 2

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Optionselect - I wish I was at Blawan

My buddy Gus occasionally makes mixes when he's not busy ballin' out of control. Here's a pretty sick one, if you're into the contemporary UK electronic scene you should dig this selection

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Peaking Lights - 936

Peaking Lights are a husband-wife duo who have been around since about 2007. Their new record, '936' is off the hook.

Really, a fucking brilliant amalgam of neo-psych, dub, krautrock and techno. Bliss turned up to 11. Definitely one of the best albums I've heard this year. Beautiful intoxication indeed.

amazing and wonderful

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Lush - Split

Lush were a britpop/dream pop act that was active from 1988 to 1998. My favourite Lush era was their shoegazer era, their early EPs and their 1994 full length, Split.

Sweet, sweet, wistful dreampop full on yearning, longing and daydreaming. Berenyi/Anderson's vocal harmonies + beautiful melodies. Essential listening.

let me try to pull you free

Wipers - Youth of America

Wipers were undoubtedly one of the most influential bands for the American alt rock scene. Led by Greg Sage, they crafted what was essentially a mixture of hardcore punk's demolishing ferocity with prog rock's vernacular and a penchant for longer tunes. This is exemplified on 1981's 'Youth of America', which is just about one of the best albums ever.

Like injecting a raging bull with a barrel of coke. And then sitting on it. No other record would match this level of creativty and ferocity until Refused would release The Shape of Punk To Come, imo.

living in the jungle

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Luomo - Vocalcity

Sasu Ripatti's one of the most prolific and varied electronic producers in the modern scene. He hails from Finland, and his deep house/tech house moniker is called Luomo. Here's his record from 2000, the lovely Vocalcity.

Heart and soul with a steady pulse. 'Tessio' is in particular one of the best things that has ever happened to music.

i guess you make me warm, when you do the hum

Friday, September 16, 2011

Boris - Pink

One of the best rock bands out there at the moment. Japanese act Boris have been around since 1992 and have explored nearly every facet of the noise rock and sludge aspect of the genre. This is one of my favourite album entries into the noise canon, and in fact you'd be hard pressed to find much music in the 00's that rocks as hard as this.

Pink light, from the mouth of infinity. Let your senses be destroyed. Also, title track lasts 4 minutes and 20 seconds. You know what I'm getting at.

Bästard - Radiant, Discharged, Crossed Off

Radiant, Discharged, Crossed Off is a hidden gem when it comes to low key, fragmented, disjointed experimental rock music. Think This Heat but a bit less sinister, think Bark Psychosis for the industrial landscape. Lazy descriptors aside, this one is loaded with elegaic passages, subtle rhythms and just really cool riffage throughout, made from equal parts of chaos and silence. Enjoy, folks.

200 miles from Hanoi

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Love - Forever Changes

Monumental psychedelic 60's west coast act Love, with Arthur Lee (who Jimi Hendrix worshipped) at the helm, released their best record 'Forever Changes' in 1967.

And when the streets are paved with gold
And if someone asks you, 
You can call my name. 
I hear you calling my name.

One of the best 60's psych records ever. The two opening tracks are pure gold, the rest of the record follows suit. R.I.P Arthur Lee.

alone again or?

Low - I Could Live in Hope

Legendary American slowcore act Low formed in Minnesota in 1993. Their debut, 'I could live in hope' marks the beginning of a wonderful journey of one of the greatest american bands in recent times.

Good with: wines, pills, depression, suicide, oncoming winter weather, lying down and staring at the ceiling. Understated, gentle and devastating beauty.


Sunday, September 11, 2011

Bowery Electric - Beat

Bowery Electric were an NYC outfit, active from 1993 to 2000. They played a futuristic, spacey blend of trip hop, gazer and ambient, best highlighted on their magnificent 1996 effort - Beat

Somewhat bizarrely, Beat received a large amount of critical buzz over its supposedly groundbreaking fusion of hip-hop/techno rhythms and the band's older dream pop stylings. Anyone who had heard Loveless-era My Bloody Valentine or a fair amount of Chapterhouse's material probably had some things to say about that judgment, while in turn many dance mavens saw the band's efforts as already terribly outdated in terms of general sonic approach. Set all this aside and concentrate on enjoying Beat in and of itself, though, and the fine qualities of both group and album come through quite clearly. Bowery Electric may not be on the cutting edge, but Schwendener and Chandler aren't pretending to dwell there. The title track sets the album's tone from the start, an open-ended guitar drone from Chandler later accompanied by Schwendener's low-key bass and distanced singing matched with a crisp drum loop. Variations on this basic formula throughout Beat: slight rhythms are sometimes more prominent, sometimes buried, guitar lines are clearer here or more heavily produced there -- but taken as a whole the release is quietly intoxicating. Standouts include "Fear of Flying," with a strong guitar scream/wash from Chandler and a more upfront bass/drum combination, and the thoroughly but beautifully zoned out "Black Light," which features a rare Chandler vocal and an enveloping delay-pedal-produced atmosphere. Notably, the drumming on the latter track is more in line with, say, early Pink Floyd or Slowdive rather than the loops used elsewhere. Both performers are incredibly undemonstrative throughout the album -- Beat works best as something either totally concentrated on or left running as ambient music; a party record this isn't. At times Bowery Electric eschew percussion entirely, to lovely effect: "Under the Sun" is a brief but dark piece, a low bassline providing the only forward motion. 

black light

The Verve - The Verve EP + Voyager 1 EP

The Verve, fairly well known act. What's not that well known is that before they broke the mainstream with Bittersweet symphony et al they were a purely shoegazer, space rock act in their formative years. They literally made some of the best guitar music of all time with their debut EP and this live document, titled Voyager 1, is an amazing document of this fact. Props go to Nick Mccabe, one of the most underappreciated guitarists ever. So yeah, here you have it, one of my favourite EPs plus its live counterpart. They would never be this good again. 

she's a superstar

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Electrelane - The Power Out

Electrelane were an all girl quartet from the UK, Brighton specifically. They formed in 1998 and disbanded in 2007, but have reunited recently. I'm hoping for a a couple of records from their side soon. Here's my favourite of theirs, 2004's The Power Out.

Power pop? Post punk? Experimental Pop? Jazz? Choral Music? Nietzsche? Singing in 4 languages? Perfect krautpop that would make Stereolab jealous? Ladies and gentlemen, this is quite possibly the greatest album put out by an all girl band, ever. I'm actually surprised Arcade Fire was the big deal in 2004, because hey, as good as Funeral was, as far as pop music went in 2004; very, very few people were worthy of comparison to Electrelane.

you make me weak at the knees

Alphane Moon - The Echoing Grove

In their incarnation as their main project 'Our glassie Azoth', the Welsh duo of Dafydd and Ruth traverse the chaotic elemental heart of psychedelic music. Forgoing riffs for alchemy, OgA’s albums are nothing less than howling, hair-raising exorcisms of blinding white noise. When the squall of OgA’s feedback hurricanes subsides, Alphane Moon is revealed. As experienced in the opening swirl of “An Open Entrance,” these magic moments achieve a rare sense of consequence. We witness the total transfiguration of Dafydd and Ruth, their swaddling of Dionysian cacophony cast aside for the white robes of pastoral mysticism. The Echoing Grove was originally released in multiple cassette micro-runs. For most, however, this extraordinary CD will serve as a first exposure to Alphane Moon’s arcane workings. Prayer and incantation both figure within this duo's acid-gilded ceremonies, though not in any traditional sense. What few words are uttered owe everything to the tradition of British Isles folk-poetry. This is a ritual in sound, not text. Guitars coruscate and radiate, elevating tricky, Pink Floyd-ian noises to a state of luminescent drone/flux sublimity. From the glimmering “Circle Of Four” to the blazing psychedelirium of “Reap A Field Of Light,” the sound that floods The Echoing Grove is absolutely supernatural. This isn’t just music—it’s magic .

celestial influences

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Snowman - Absence

Snowman are an Aussie band, originally from Perth but based in London, until they disbanded in February this year. Which is kind of really fucking unfortunate, because they are one of the finest bands Australia had seen until now. This is their swansong 'Absence', released earlier this year.

Ethereal rock music is the best way to put this. Brings in the best bits of Liars, This Heat and Radiohead (for lazy comparison's sake) to create something singular and seductive all at the same time. Most underrated record of this year? perhaps.

Cranes - Loved

Cranes were a British band formed in 1986, whose style has ranged all over from dream pop, gothic minimalism, shoegaze, alt rock and trip hop. Alison Shaw's vocal delivery is the dealbreaker here, either you're going to fall helpless in love with these sounds or shun them altogether. Here's my favourite record of theirs, Loved.

James and Alison Shaw, the brother-sister songwriting team from Portsmouth, England that's best known as CRANES, are not without pretensions: They originally planned to make Loved a double album with half devoted to a musical interpretation of The Flies, the expressionist play by tortured French novelist Jean Paul Sartre. That plan was shelved (they had to settle for cover art by French painter Edgar Degas), and instead, their third album delivers 11 oddly seductive pop songs that mix brutally powerful drumming, a Cocteau Twins-like wall of shimmering guitars, and the lovable little-girl-on- helium vocals of Alison Shaw. Almost flawless. 

into the night

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Michael Mayer - The Immer Series

 Michael Mayer is an iconic dj/producer and electronic musician that co-runs seminal electronic label Kompakt with Wolfgang Voigt (Gas). He is a god of sorts when it comes to making mixes within the minimal techno/microhouse scene, as evidenced by the Immer series.

part 1
part 2

part 1
part 2

immer 3

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Tim Hecker - Harmony in Ultraviolet

Tim Hecker is an electronic musician and sound artist based in Montreal, Canada. He is by far one of the best ambient musicians working today, his use of texture in music is second to none, in my opinion. Here's my favourite of his works, Harmony in Ultraviolet. Sometimes I have trouble believing a living, breathing human made this, it's like a portal to another world.

Whatever became of the moment when one first knew about death? There must have been one. A moment. In childhood. When it first occured to you that you don't go on forever. Must have been shattering. Stamped into one's memory. And yet, I can't remember it. It never occured to me at all. We must be born with an intuition of mortality. Before we know the word for it. Before we know that there are words. Out we come, bloodied and squawling, with the knowledge that for all the points of the compass, theres only one direction. And time is its only measure.

 blood rainbow