A smattering of psych and a whole lot of garage popping up this week on the Jukebox. Mostly down and dirty, youthful and snotty - just the way we like it around here.

[MP3] The Distant Cousins - She Ain't Lovin You
Despite their semi-ridiculous name, The Distant Cousins can pump out a bit of sweet garage-tinged soul. With an acerbic sneer this track digs in the fact that you got dumped... but the DC's can sympathize. A great chorus kicks this up a notch and the rambling guitar give this a whole other flavor.

[MP3] Graffiti - He's Got The Knack
Enough 60's organ and fuzz to underscore the best psychsploitation film, Graffiti take the Ventures route on instrumental psych for the first half of this rocker then kick in a bit of vocal flavor that pretty much consists of singing the title over and over. Not a bad little rocker at heart though, then the band wind it down with style for the outro of this one.

[MP3] The Superfine Dandelion - Crazy Town (Move On Little Children)
This group props up some nice West Coast flavor with the open guitar twang leading into a breezy flute section. Very "counterculture" generic lyrics but not a half bad stab into the style here. The rest of the band's album is stuck just a notch below the quality of this track but here the band seem to have gotten it right.

[MP3] Meddy's People - Sha La La La Lee
This band of unknowns take a bubblegum staple and fuzz it up. Still an infectious chorus but the band put a bed of rumble and fuzz underneath it and a touch of swagger on an otherwise pretty innocent little number.

[MP3] The Music Explosion - Sunshine Games
The band best known for their "Little Bit O' Soul" didn't have too much else in the way of success but that doesn't mean you can totally write them off. Sounding here like a bit of a muscular Cat Stevens, with that same throaty delivery but a punch of garage pop replacing his usual folk fare. This has the tempo to get you dancing and had they not tapered off into obscurity this might be a more well known track.
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posted by dissensous at 9:20:00 AM 3 comments


Gang Gang Dance

An interesting new direction for the crew from Gang Gang. Technically coming in as their fourth full length, Saint Dymphna shares some similar territory with God's Money but seems to be leagues away at the same time. The album has moments of brilliance, decadence and straight up confusion. Though not shown on their recent Rawwar EP and on the more experimental leaning DVD they released, they've amped up the pop elements in their sound considerably in places. The move seems not unlikely but rather a bit ironic on an album named after the patron saint of outsiders. Still, with the exception of the "grime" moment that happens between the band and London MC Tinchy Stryder, which seems to be neither a straight-forward grime track nor a true Gang Gang moment and honestly breaks course with some of the rest of the album, the pop seepage seems to work. Their most brilliant moments retain a sense of GGD's history though, and there are plenty of them amongst the album's 11 tracks. It's just when the band gets lost in sheen that the confusion sets in. It almost feels as if the aforementioned "Princes" and "House Jam" could have shared a single rather than been dropped into the album. No matter, the rest of the tracks are hitting me squarely in the chest and packing the punch that I know Gang Gang is capable of.

[MP3] Gang Gang Dance - First Communion
[MP3] Gang Gang Dance - Dust

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posted by dissensous at 9:22:00 AM 2 comments


In a sense its hard to be objective about your friends so excuse me if I'm a bit biased towards The Pains. I've watched this band since their first show and each time it gets better and more euphoric. As the band's first single from their upcoming record this is definitely them at their most fully realized.

The Pains of Being Pure At Heart - Everything With You 7"
So like I said with the band's first full length looming on the horizon, now more than ever seems like a the time to put in a good word about this crew of miscreants. The record's really solid and this single
is only a taste. Biased as I may be, Kip here can write a melody and a damn catchy one at that. Now the real reason I wanted to get into this single is the b-side which has been a live staple for some time now and got (much to my disappointment) nixed from the full length. Thankfully those of you who missed the EP get a second shot at this track and a doozy of one at that. This song always seems to close a set and it works itself into a moment of pure youthful catharsis; drums rattling and the repeated mantra of "We Will Never Die" pounding at the back of your brain. This always gives me chills and though the record clues you in, the live version brings the real euphoria. So go see them if you get a chance. I'm sorry to gush but I've found that there are very few times in life when you can walk up to friends at the end of a show and truly have nothing but good things to say. This is one of those times.

[MP3] The Pains of Being Pure At Heart - The Pains of Being Pure At Heart

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posted by dissensous at 9:46:00 AM 2 comments


Is it just me or do Grails continue to top themselves with each new release? Starting with last year's Burning Off Impurities and continuing straight on through a powerful EP release on Important already this year, it would seem almost impossible to improve that much, but Doomsdayer's Holiday checks in as one of their most varied and captivating releases yet. Still pumping a bit of the lost world/ eastern vibes that permeated the last two releases but no longer using them as a centerpiece, Doomsdayer continues the band's journey into nightmarish worlds that tug at the limits of imagination. The album starts out crushingly dark, with distortion barreling in and a sonic texture that matches the imagery of the album's title, before taking one more visit to their past desert haunts and onto a plane of calm unease and psychedelic nuance. The band moves thematically from track to track, wiping clean the feelings from each previous vignette with disorienting results. It might appear that the band have been catching up on their Lynch catalog and fusing his scope nicely into their already heavy arsenal. The entire album feels like a terrible dream in the best of ways; I'd much rather experience this in waking times but if this were to play out under closed lids I might not be so eager.

[MP3] Grails - Reincarnation Blues

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posted by dissensous at 9:36:00 AM 0 comments


Ty Segall

Ty Segall plays garage fuzzed up and dirty; just the way we like it around here. Sounding like it was recorded with an SM-58 that's seen far better days and blasted to tape, Segall's eponymous solo outing leaves aesthetics to the pros and grabs the garage rock flame with a gusto that's nothing if not admirable. Segall has the true heart of rock beating to his core and underneath the rough production and frantic pace lie some pretty catchy tunes. Segall kicks some new fury into the concept of a one man band, manning the drums with his feet and tearing ragged shreds from his guitar simultaneously. Typically hitting up a bit of the same territory that King Khan & BBQ have torn through but with a definite lack of the soul that Khan spills from the mic, Segall's white boy blues still fume with earnest emotion and while he may not have the soul he's certainly got the passion. I've said it before and I hate to repeat myself but 08's shaping up into a banner year for threadbare garage coming in from all corners of the country. Be sure to add Segall's name to that rag-tag pile while you're keeping score.

[MP3] Ty Segall - The Drag
[MP3] Ty Segall - So Alone

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posted by dissensous at 9:26:00 AM 0 comments



So I'm torn (a bit, not too much) on this record. Major personalities involved in this record aside, it has a great pop heart. Each track, given the almost notoriously side project nature or aura of this project, is solidly built and can stand on its own in both upbeat fun settings and darker, more sinister ones. The latter being where the record shines the most brilliantly. When the claws come out, or the melancholy turns a darker shade of purple the ideas and players behind the curtain become irrelevant and everything clicks into place. My concerns, ok well lets not go so far as to say I'm all that concerned but my reservations, lie in the more upbeat songs that take on a jocular tone (ahem "Duck People", "Mister Meat" I'm looking at you). Though I can't be all that surprised since let's be honest Monsignor Banhart's never been the straightest of players and there does lie among the ranks of this ensemble one comedian by trade. I'd say this dichotomy downplays the shinier moments of the record but again its pretty evenly split and no pretensions were made to be serious. They do split this dynamic nicely on the upbeat and almost theatrical "Theme From Hollywood". Only here do they find the ability to swing both camp jocularity and a pop hook into a cohesive product. Elsewhere in happier meadows the tunes outshine the lyrics almost every time. However the overall record can't help but be kinda magical; its a solid musical base and the performers involved truly step up to the challenge on this one. Honestly I'd love to see the same cast fully engross themselves into the darker side of this record. Until then I'll just have to grow a sense of humor because I'll be damned if this record was ever meant to be taken this seriously.

[MP3] Megapuss - Older Lives
[MP3] Megapuss - Theme From Hollywood

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posted by dissensous at 8:50:00 AM 1 comments


I've always found it odd that Christianity had some popularity amongst countercultural artists. Or maybe that goes the other way round as it seems that though mysticism and occult were popular enough as dabblings for the hippy community some chose to merge their familiar upbringings in Christian households with their newfound love of freedom of expression. Creating a new outlet for religion and a new form of Christian rock in the process the first few definitely teetered on the edge of what it was to be both a religiously based artist and a psychedelic artist.

D.R. Hooker - The TruthD.R. Hooker - The Truth
Now its debatable whether Hooker considered himself a Christian artist, there isn't too much information that surrounds this release mostly because of its private press origins. However, an artist who takes to performing in
robes, writes a scorching psych ode to The Bible and calls his album The Truth isn't exactly out of the running for the origins of Christian rock. It's true that Hooker more often veers into the hippy centered mysticism than he does hardcore pulpiteering but the case remains. Aside from the debatable message, this album is of a ridiculously high quality musically and production wise for a private recording and this fact more than any others has led to its desirability among collectors and to further interest in the re-issue circuit. Hooker's grasp on psych guitar is one of his main assets and the straight up fuzz rockers are the highlight here, though he does dabble into some overblown horn parts and a bit of jazz noodling. All in all this is well worth tracking down whether you're interested in its historical significance or just simply a great 60's album.

[MP3] D.R. Hooker - I'm Leaving You
[MP3] D.R. Hooker - The Bible

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Kristyl - Kristyl
Another release that saw little release (only 200 copies were pressed) this Louisville group merged their positive message upbeat rock with a Christian leaning message and became popular with the youth in their community. The
group seems to owe a great debt to the West Coast musically as this sounds more like it emerged from San Francisco than Kentucky any day. Again as with Hooker the "message" is more ambiguous and as I mentioned rings more as hippy positivity rather than the outright Christian rock that was to follow and this is to the album's credit as it lends it a universal feeling of hope and adds a snapshot of the time and place it was recorded. There are some strikingly anti-hippy ideals that pop up such as the anti-drug/satan anthem "Deceptions of the Mind which do tend to fall more into a more preachy category though. The breeziness of this album is probably its most striking benefit and though it's usually cited as having been recorded around 1975 the style sounds much earlier. This of course probably has to do with the slow stylistic crawl from the coast to Louisville. Another album that though lost to time has some serious credit due.

[MP3] Kristyl - Deceptions of the Mind
[MP3] Krystyl - Together

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posted by dissensous at 9:16:00 AM 1 comments


Tenniscoats & Secai

Following last year's pairing with Tape, Tenniscoats prove their flexibility in collaboration once again. This time the duo team up with Secai, fellow compatriots from the Majikick collective and label. The collaboration seems to be another perfect match with both members of Secai adding some extra vocal magic and abstract imagery to the loping beats and dreamy atmospherics that Saya and Ueno have been pumping out for some time. The results of which are fused in a languid cloud that pulses between the worlds of electronic, ambient and bits of jazz (ala The Drift). The perfect accompaniment to the end of summer, the album is full of warm breeze and salt air but with hints of exhaust. The album has a way of evoking an urban respite like a welcome patch of grass amongst endless asphalt. Once you ease yourself into Tenniscoats world you may quite possibly never want to re-emerge.

[MP3] Tenniscoats & Secai - Svenska
[MP3] Tenniscoats & Secai - Touch On

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posted by dissensous at 9:41:00 AM 1 comments


Sporting probably one of the silliest names since Fun Boy 3, The Jacuzzi Boys are far less rooted in effeminate disco than you might imagine. Bridging instead the gap between nineties psych rockers and the current new wave of garage, the band put a little bit of haze into the mix.

Jacuzzi Boys - Island Ave 7" The title track evokes The Dandy Warhols at their most ferocious and blown out, but then the Boys slow down for a few spaced out riffs and some languid jangles poolside elsewhere on this 7". This is another great HoZac release and probably the trio's best work
to date, though their split with King Khan's not to shabby on the riffs or the cred. Two shakers and one to cool off in this package, this is a perfect mix of spice and flavor. I'll be eager to see what the Boys pull off in the long form but until then this hits just right.

[MP3] Jacuzzi Boys - Island Ave

Support the artist. Buy it HERE Sold Out.
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posted by dissensous at 9:42:00 AM 1 comments

Gary War

Yet another entry into the warbled pop that has melted all over 2008. Gary War takes a slant on the lo-fi synth bath but oozes with a bit more charm than straight up burnt embers and gasoline fumes that some others have stumbled into this year. More akin to the (Ariel) Pink Warrior than to say Herr Blank Dogs; War seems firmly rooted in the lounge style that both Pink and to a lesser extent John Maus have perfected as filtered through the confines of a second hand tape player and a good bet on a large 70's leaning tape collection. All comparisons aside though Mr. War does have a pretty good handle on his sound and flits between the dark corners of tape-his flourished crooners shifty of synth anthems with palpable ease. New Raytheonport comes courtesy of new Brooklyn upstart SHDWPLY records who have brought forth releases from the formidable Teeth Mountain among others. However it should come as little surprise that he's got a 7" and LP scheduled on RSTB favored label Sacred Bones. Here's hoping for another stellar LP design from that camp shortly.

[MP3] Gary War - Healthy Living
[MP3] Gary War - Good Clues

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posted by dissensous at 9:38:00 AM 1 comments


Bird Show

Never let it be said that Ben Vida isn't a versatile musician. On his latest album under the guise of Bird Show, the man manages over twenty instruments; droning, clanging and swirling them into a concoction of mantra-like meditations. This time around though, Vida opens his formula up a bit by letting in a few collaborators, including his brother Adam, Greg Davis and Robert AA Low. The songs on Untitled bounce back and forth between aptly titled studies and more traditional Bird Show songs. In the end this proves to make the songs a bit more interesting than the studies, but both have their own merits and some of the more expanded exercises such as "Mbira, Harp and Voice" break out of the mere study stage with the addition of song structured vocals. However when Vida and his crew do hit their peak, its still as elevating an experience as he's captured in the past, mixing exotic instruments into a whirlpools of dizzy sounds and topping them off with his low-key vocalizations. Kranky has been cranking (uh no pun intended there) out the records this year and there are quite a few more still rolling out. Great to see them back in form after a bit of a lull.

[MP3] Bird Show - Clouds and Their Shadows
[MP3] Bird Show- Green Vines

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posted by dissensous at 9:31:00 AM 0 comments


Eddy Current Suppression Ring

Whew, another great record from down under this year. Oh sure, with two great entries already coming in the form of Siltbreeze's Fabulous Diamonds and Naked on the Vague it seems like the Aussie records making their way stateside couldn't get much better, right? Well wrong you'd be as Memphis' Goner Records has issued the stateside version of Eddy Current Suppression Ring's 2nd album Primary Colours and this thing hasn't left my turntable in quite a few days. The band play off the 70's punk vibe that's been tearing through Memphis, Atlanta, etc.; pairing incessant thudding bass with shreds of guitar and vox that fall right down the Verlaine highway but with a tinge of that Aussie accent. And I know, "sure it's another garage punk album out in '08" but this one grows on you and grows quite fast. It's those VU bass lines and the disaffected charm just clicking like a past classic unearthed that does it. However you want to categorize it though this is simply just a good, solid, fun record and what more could you ask than that anyway? Goner's still got this on wax and honestly that's the way you want to hear this one, so head there soon before they're gone.

[MP3] Eddy Current Suppression Ring - Colour Television
[MP3] Eddy Current Suppression Ring - Which Way To Go

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posted by dissensous at 9:36:00 AM 1 comments


The frustrations around getting signed plagued many artists and as it was almost unheard of to really go the independent route in the late 60's/ early 70's the pressure to impress labels no doubt built up a good deal of stress. However though both these artists played unsuccessful label showcases and would later attain cult status (some more than others) their routes to a second fame were extraordinarily different to say the least.

Charles Manson - SingsCharles Manson - Sings
By now the subtext to Manson's music is so much more widely known than any of the actual songs that it's hard to divorce his name from that context and into a purely musical one. The fact remains though that prior to all the
hullabaloo in Laurel Canyon, Manson was just another struggling songwriter; showcasing to labels and being turned away. Through his widely publicized friendship with Dennis Wilson one of his songs did turn up on his album and it pops up here under its original title of "Cease to Exist." Had he not come unhinged its quite possible that these recordings would be making the rounds on the reissue circuit and getting the usual untapped talent praise. Of course that's not really possible now and Manson's choices leave him forever associated with cult's, cover-ups, murder and re-trials. Despite all this there do remain a few gems in the bunch and divulged from their roots they're another example of wasted talent from the era.

[MP3] Charles Manson - Don't Do Anything Illegal
[MP3] Charles Manson - Cease To Exist

Support the artist. Buy it HERE

Rodriguez - Cold Fact
Sixto Rodriguez's early ambitions were met with the same industry cold shoulder as Manson's. Some of this was attributed to Rodriguez' behavior; playing with his back to industry audiences, an affinity for dive bars as venues. However
the real shame to this is that unlike Manson, whose songwriting was decent but not stellar, this remains truly a lost classic. Sixto's tales evoked social unrest, inner city turmoil and racial inequality in a way that seems unforced; paired with some unbelievably captivating musicianship underlying it all. Following a very poor initial reception to this album and a follow-up, Rodriguez left music and eventually took day jobs in labor. Inexplicably, over the years Rodriguez built up a huge international following especially in South Africa, and though some demand began to exist he himself was lost to rumors of death, over-dose and mental illness. However he was eventually tracked down in Detroit and has since re-issued this long lost album. Truly a different path for the shunned performer, instead of resentment and hate as a response, Sixto's music has become an inspiration and an eventual success.

[MP3] Rodriquez - Only Good For Conversation
[MP3] Rodriquez - This Is Not A Song, It's An Outburst: Or, The Establishment

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posted by dissensous at 9:16:00 AM 4 comments


Boduf Songs

Mat Sweet's latest work under the Boduf Songs name continues to fall like the essence of darkness on anyone who listens. Pessimism becomes Sweet though, as his songwriting exudes the very core of isolation; hushed, haunted and excruciating to the very end. But such isolation acts as the perfect companion to the listener, and though his themes of death and darkness seem disheartening, there's a certain solace to be found in sentiments like the album's opening line, "All of my heroes died the same day." Especially in such seemingly dour times its nice to know that Sweet is out there shouldering the pain for us. The production on How Shadows Chase the Balance is fittingly claustrophobic, lending Sweet an inner monologue closeness especially when headphones are implemented. Truth be told, this album seems a bit heavy for the tail end of summer but as winter nears Sweet's haunted passages may take on more comfort. The crushing depths of despair were never so comforting as they are here.

[MP3] Boduf Songs - Mission Creep
[MP3] Boduf Songs - I Can't See A Thing In Here

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posted by dissensous at 2:00:00 PM 0 comments

Downloading problems.

OK since there have been a few comments about problems downloading I've decided to clear out a bunch of files from my host. Let me know if you still continue to have problems after today and I'll contact the hosting service this week. I apologize for the inconvenience. - D
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posted by dissensous at 1:48:00 PM 1 comments


Black Moth Super Rainbow

A little dessert to last year's Dandelion Gum, the upcoming Drippers EP from 70's synth masters Black Moth Super Rainbow picks up some post-Dandelion outtakes, some Pre-formation demo action, a remix of Laura Berhenn (of Georgie James) and a collaboration with Mike Watt? Sure why not? True to the BMSR aesthetic through and through, and with the exception of the pre-BMSR track "I Saw Brown" its all on par with their high quality output. Particularly interesting here are the glimpses of the band working outside their usual boundaries such as the Berhenn remix, which like the Tobacco track feat. Aesop Rock, showcases the band as soundsmiths, able to lend their gritty aesthetic to any performer's outlet. The EP will come packaged as a CD and 10" with artwork that continues on the themes started in the "Zodiac Girls" 7".

[MP3] Black Moth Super Rainbow - Milk Skates

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posted by dissensous at 10:01:00 AM 0 comments


Donovan Quinn & The 13th Month

Quinn's second record under his own name leaves him close to his work with both Skygreen Leopards and Verdure but at the same time striking out in a more melancholic and solitary vein than either. This is a pure bummer psych record in the best of terms, but with just a touch of the setting sunlight that dappled the Leopards' meadow. This has been said to be Quinn's breakup record and the lyrical themes hint at such, but as usual he has a way of wrapping sorrow up in a surreal coat of colors; sad and slightly tattered but utterly handsome in its state of disrepair. Donovan has a barroom charm that comes through underneath his air of California calm, though the bar he occupies may well be slotted outside the normal scope of linear time and space. He's constantly strumming a weathered guitar in the corner of that same velveteen curtained stage, lamenting girls with sun in their hair that have long since aged, while he remains forever 25.

[MP3] Donovan Quinn & The 13th Month - Quarantine
[MP3] Donovan Quinn & The 13th Month - Dark Motel

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posted by dissensous at 9:53:00 AM 3 comments


Well, since there was a fairly positive response to a RRITW post on Power Pop I figure why not list a couple more tracks. The trade in lost Power Pop seems to range right up there with garage, psych and the lot, and there are certainly plenty of overlooked classics. These are a few of my favorites. (minus of course The Shoes and Milk n' Cookies featured a little bit ago)

[MP3] The Colors - Growing Up American
This has to be one of my favorites, right up there with Milk N' Cookies in the sorely overlooked bands category. Like M n' C they came up in the CBGB's scene but didn't take off, even after they became the club's official "house band". They've just recently had their sole album and a preceding EP reissued by Italian label "Rave Up Records".

[MP3] The Sponsors - In And Out of Love
Another New York band that embraces some great vocal harmonies, and though they may lack a bit of the Power in the Power Pop formula, they certainly make up for it with their jangly, catchy pop leanings. Again one sole LP that fell on many a deaf ear at the time.

[MP3] Green - Gotta Get A Record Out
This band hailed from Chicago and they touch on the common Power Pop themes of music, and recording that sometimes bubbled up in the place of constant yearning for love. The snotty vocal delivery on this one ties it closer to the garage tunes that preceded it but at its heart its a total Power Pop stunner.

[MP3] The Toms - (I Wanna Be A) Teen Again
Ringing in as probably the most soft and melodic of the bunch is this entry from The Toms. Though this captures the true spirit of what Power Pop was all about, and if you weren't actually 18 when you were in the scene, it seemed like most bands were trying to recapture that feeling. The Toms were actually just the solo project of Tom Marolda, and due to poor distribution this one fell quickly but sadly by the wayside.

[MP3] The Trend - She's Hi-Fi
The Trend hailed from the unlikely home of Columbia, MO though from the delivery it almost seems hard to believe that they weren't British. The band again taps into the snotty garage predecessors that lead the way to Power Pop. This band as with many others issued just one album before disappearing until some reissue attention of late.

[MP3] Chris Bell - Get Away
Well it wouldn't be fair to run up some Power Pop tracks without one inclusion from either Bell or Chilton and since I tend to like Chris' post Big Star work a bit better I'd have to pick this track. A definite echo of his former band runs through this track from the excellent "I Am The Cosmos" record.
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posted by dissensous at 9:37:00 AM 7 comments


Larkin Grimm

It seems like an almost natural occurrence for Larkin Grimm to end up associated with Michael Gira's Young God Records. She's certainly a kindred spirit to the acts that have flowed through its doors over the years. Parplar is by many accounts her most conventional record but as with many artists borne out of folk experimentation, eventually the essences of melody and form have to peek their head from the clatter and clang sometime. Gira acts as co-producer here and his hand may have had something to do with the calming of Grimm's waters but in all honesty he's never really been one to instill convention in an artist, so maybe not. While the noises and outbursts that accompany her songs have become more cohesive her singularly entrancing voice hasn't changed a bit. Larkin's high warble soars above a beautiful mix of instrumentation that churns melodically as if forged from the sounds of native winds. For an artist with such a tumultuous past she resonates an unmistakable connection to nature and her surroundings that might only be matched by artists like Mariee Sioux and Buffy St. Marie. This is Grimm at her best, fully reaching the potential she'd always possessed.

[MP3] Larkin Grimm - Dominican Rum
[MP3] Larkin Grimm - Be My Host

Support the artist. Buy it: HERE
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posted by dissensous at 9:28:00 AM 4 comments


There's no doubt that Vivian Girls have captured the attention of quite a few this year, even with their self-released debut sold out. But with a few lingering 7"s and the impending In The Red reissue of said album on the way it appears that that attention will only grow larger as this year moves forward.

Vivian Girls - Orphanage 7" Three tracks from the Girls' excellent debut record show up on this 7" from the folks at Woodsist and though the fidelity dips a bit from that of the final record versions it does little to render these tracks any less delightful. The group's stripped down
pop and sing-a-long female choruses bring to mind a host of nineties lo-fi stalwarts and their harmonies catch a glimmer of the girl group era's charm; though the overall effect leans much more to the Vaselines than the Rondelles every time. I'm eagerly awaiting the reissue of their album as I missed out on the vinyl version the first time around and need to grace my turntable properly with the full length in its intended form, but until then this will have to tide me over.

[MP3] Vivian Girls - I Believe In Nothing

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posted by dissensous at 9:50:00 AM 0 comments

Vikki Jackman

Like collaborator Andrew Chalk, Vikki Jackman's compositions retain a calm thread of memory. The album's tranquil passages seep into your brain as if staring at the sun and closing your eyes tight, following the flashes into your childhood, with the seared edges blurring the line between memory and reality. Whispering Pages floats on a film of imperceptibility almost too thin to grasp. Her tones are translucent at their meatiest but often less so, and though the pieces are evocatively titled they all bear more resemblance to the void than to the objects identified. This is a beautiful album but may evoke sleep in those who are not easily swayed by microtonal shifts and subtle piano, however, for those with patience there are hues of grey rain and soft green filtered sunlight. For fans of Chalk's work and likeminded minimalists, though this will come as just one more sweet respite from the flurry of daily life.

[MP3] Vikki Jackman - Empty Rooms
[MP3] Vikki Jackman - Two Clear Eyes

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posted by dissensous at 9:49:00 AM 0 comments


Religious Knives

This is another band I feel like I've been writing about all year, but I'll be damned if they don't just top themselves with each new release. Following a stellar 12", album and singles collection this year the Knives are now kicking in a release for psych's preeminent label, Ecstatic Peace. This is the most refined and clear headed I've heard the Brooklyn foursome sound yet, eschewing some of their former murk but without losing their grasp on sprawling sweat stained jams. The renewed fidelity only strengthens their hold on the roots of psych and classic rock's lurching past, with a played up emphasis on organ swells and the insistent buzz of feedback looming constantly in the corners of every track. The songs on The Door stretch death march drums and molten guitar lines into exploratory channels probing the inky darkness; peeking out only slightly to wipe the salt flecked sweat from their brows before plunging headlong again into the fire. A terrific credit to both Religious Knives and Ecstatic Peace, as if there was any doubt to either's credibility.

[MP3] Religious Knives - Major Score

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posted by dissensous at 9:30:00 AM 0 comments


Snake Flower 2

Following up fast on their great "Talk About It" 7" from earlier this year, Snake Flower 2 don't disappoint with their debut LP, Renegade Daydream. Primary songwriting force Matthew Melton is a Memphis expatriate whose raw blues-garage adds just one more accolade to that scene's fervent mix. Though now decamped to California, Melton's taken more than a bit of Memphis with him and sewn it deep into the roots of Snake Flower 2. Frantic but somehow still saddled with blues cool and imbued with a sense of California's psychedelic past, the guitars on Renegade Daydream chug, the drums sweat blood and Melton's voice gusts by in reverbed swirls and fuzzed flashes. Melton's made an earlier description of his music, affixing the biker psych tag, which seems oddly perfect as this is a pretty good distillation of the sound of the soundtrack to the Hell's Angels' entire history pistons flaring with turmoil burning in their veins. This arrives again via his home at Tic-Tac-Totally which is racking up the track record for itself with releases from Thomas Function and Lover in their catalog.

[MP3] Snake Flower 2 - I Woke Up In A Dream
[MP3] Snake Flower 2 - No Way Home

Support the artist. Buy it: HERE
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posted by dissensous at 10:00:00 AM 1 comments


Seems like there hasn't been any folk around here in a while so I figure why not, lets hit it up this week. While The Incredible String band didn't really hit stateside, it did spread its influence to a few outlets in the rest of England and onto Europe with followers echoing their penchant for baroque strings and delicate fingerings. These two seem to stand out amongst the rest.

Forest - ForestForest - Forest
Probably the ISB's biggest followers were the English trio Forest, who at the urging of BBC DJ/ Rock Legend John Peel, were signed for two records to Harvest. The band rode the baroque folk style but crossed it over into a bit of progressiveness
lyrically and through their varied use of instrumentation. Peel, however, was in the minority among the group's fans and after this, their debut and one follow-up they disappeared from sight. The albums however do stand up as great representations of the 60's Brit-folk's obsession with their countries historic forms of music and it's rife with Olde English flavor and middle aged aesthetics.

[MP3] Forest - A Glade Somewhere
[MP3] Forest - Nothing Else Will Matter

Support the artist. Buy it HERE

Subway - Subway
The French/ English duo Subway were another distant follower of the ISB, but as a band living in Paris at the time they weren't directly involved in the same circles. Actually it seems unlikely that they recorded at all, as they performed more often
as street and subway buskers than stage performers, hence the origin of their name. The band pressed a tiny amount of their debut record (around 200) but even this paltry amount sold poorly due to nonexistent publicity and backing. The record would have been all but lost, due to a common French practice at the time of melting down unsold record stock, if a few personal copies hadn't been recovered and recently reissued. The spooky atmospherics mixed with baroque folk stylings make for a wonderfully rich record and still retain a bit of medieval flavor despite their Parisian surroundings. Plus the band tread into inexplicable freakout territory, winding their way away from the stringed pastoral feel into a maelstrom of sound which is definitely an interesting highlight of the album.

[MP3] Subway - Song For Sinking Shelters
[MP3] Subway - All The Good Things

Support the artist. Buy it HERE (might have to try eBay)
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posted by dissensous at 9:27:00 AM 4 comments



Building off the same hypnotic repetition that marked his work in Lungfish, Asa Osborne aims to lull the mind into a constant waking dream in his solo work as Zomes. The instrumental project, which is inexplicably named for an odd construction choice in homes, is built around looping structures that become more meditative than monotonous, flowing with languid precision over the course of his album. It seems that these could easily be swapped out for a few of the presets on FM3's Buddha Box, each composition is short (though not as short as the B Box's clips) and could easily repeat on their trajectories for a good twenty minutes if you were in the right frame of mind. Though as their set up on the album, they work as a kind of loping landscape that bears constant resemblance to itself but with a few key changes every so often. Like cascading hills after hills moving from lush greens, to burnt yellows and dirt browns, the hues may change but they always retain the wavering motion of nodding up and down. This is pretty much what the journey of Zomes' self-titled album feels like; a view of peaceful beauty out the window that blows by you just out of reach.

[MP3] Zomes - Sentient Beings
[MP3] Zomes - Cosmovital Force

Support the artist. Buy it: HERE
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posted by dissensous at 3:00:00 AM 0 comments