10.31.2008

S-S continue to bring the best of the Mexican Underground to the U.S. with this 7" from XYX

XYX - Sistema de Terminacion Sexual 7"
Coming out of the same Monterrey scene as the excellent Los Llamarada, XYX tap the twitchy post-punk with a ferocity that is unmatched by many of their peers in the States and UK. It seems like so
much of the bitter edge from post-punk was worn away over the years, its nice to see a few bands injecting a bit of venom in to the sound once again. Terse, jagged and perfectly acerbic; though the 7" is only a handful of tracks it still gets more done in its time than many larger bands can accomplish on a whole album. This makes me want to hear more from the band and definitely has gotten me geared up for the new Los Lamarada LP (which is up on the S-S site as well) go grab it now!

Download:
[MP3] XYX - Nunca, Nunca

Support the artist. Buy it HERE


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posted by dissensous at 12:36:00 PM 0 comments

Expo 70


Another great release from the tireless Justin Wright, otherwise known as Expo 70. He's pushing double digit releases now and has two more 7"s following up the release of Black Ohms, and this is one of the best I've heard from him since Mystical Amplification. Hauntingly dark and practically filling your nostrils with the inky night, this set of songs reverberates the desperation and unease of the surrounding void. Not quite as krauty as some of his past work but still an unheralded masterpiece of ambient psych. Wright's been making further waves out of Kansas City, not only in his dealings with Kill Shaman but now also in recording local acts like current RSTB faves Mythical Beast. Gotta watch out for the heartland because the new dark center of the universe seems to be migrating here. I'd say I can't wait to hear more from Justin but I don't think I'll have to, grab this or one of the other two 7"s he's got coming up.

Download:
[MP3] Expo 70 - Mind Echo Unit

Support the artist. Buy it: HERE
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posted by dissensous at 9:46:00 AM 0 comments

10.30.2008

Hush Arbors


Keith Wood's Hush Arbors gets the Ecstatic Peace treatment in what seems to be a growing trend of great underground artists turning out their most polished pieces for the label. Less shrouded in the ether than Wood has ever been before, but still hitting the same melancholic psych troubadour persona he's worked in the past. This is a good chance for those unassociated with Wood to get a sense of his abilities as a solid songwriter before delving into the misty nooks and crannies of his back catalog. The surprise here seems to be a slight newfound electric emphasis, with tracks like "Gone" almost approaching upbeat frivolity (at least by Hush Arbors' standards). Overall though the album is still streaked with the same translucent gray sunlight that's lit his career and still with the same whiff of wood smoke on the horizon. Another triumph from the Arbors.

Download:
[MP3] Hush Arbors - Water II

Support the artist. Buy it: HERE
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posted by dissensous at 1:08:00 PM 1 comments

10.29.2008

Valerio Cosi - Collected Works


So we mentioned a few weeks ago one of Cosi's new albums that popped up on Digitalis, and hinted at the fact that Porter Records was compiling a collection of some of his out of print works. Well said collection is turning out to be one of the more essential releases of the year. Spanning most of his short recording career and with an emphasis on his solo work, the disc is a great recap for those who missed out on a lot of these limited releases in their original forms. Cosi plays every instrument on these pieces, ranging from his mainstay of saxophone to anything from percussion, processed tape loops, flute, synth, bass and quite a few more. Again the most impressive bit of Cosi's career, aside from the absolutely stunning pieces themselves, is that he's accomplished so much before the age of 23 and honestly he shows no signs of giving in. If you haven't been introduced to the Italian's works this is certainly the best and most essential place to start.

Download:
[MP3] Valerio Cosi - Hoboland
[MP3] Valerio Cosi - Making Love In Lhasa

Support the artist. Buy it: HERE
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posted by dissensous at 9:50:00 AM 0 comments

10.28.2008

As I was browsing my collection I came across two albums that exemplify the idea of overlooked classics. Both bands were rooted in garage to be sure but they lead the charge in a transition into more ambitious territory. Definitely the best of the class of 66.

The Misunderstood - Before The Dream Faded
Widely recognized for their efforts and innovations now, at the time The Misunderstood were sorely overlooked by many. The band moved to England with the help of John Peel, who happened
to be living in Texas at the time. Once there they recorded the first half of this collection, 6 songs that while lauded by the British press and some notable contemporaries, failed to "break" the band. Eventually the band ran into some visa/ draft troubles from the States and was forced back out of England ending short their budding careers. This has been reissued and repackaged a few times over and the best of these pairs the six more exploratory tracks paired up with earlier moments from the garage days. Truly an essential release in every respect of the term.

Download:
[MP3] The Misunderstood - Find A Hidden Door
[MP3] The Misunderstood - I Unseen

Support the artist. Buy it HERE

Blues Magoos - Psychedelic Lollipop
Ah The Magoos, probably one of the more underrated bands out at the time. They, as with The Misunderstood have righted this status in later years. Their second album is widely considered to be
their peak, though Electric Comic Book is pretty great too. Rooted in snarled garage but allowing themselves to wander into the broadening areas that psych was starting to offer, this is a perfect album to observe the transition between the two camps. They romp through old standards like "Tobacco Road," putting to shame those who'd taken a swing at it prior to them, amping up their ferocity with a quavering dose of organ. The band, in its original form split shortly after the third album but there did exist a version headed by Emil Thielheim into the 70's that never matched the luster of the full group. Thankfully though, their legacy has been documented in their earlier work and finally acknowledged.

Download:
[MP3] Blues Magoos - Tobacco Road
[MP3] Blues Magoos - I'll Go Crazy

Support the artist. Buy it HERE
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posted by dissensous at 1:25:00 PM 4 comments

10.27.2008

U.S. Girls


Megan Remy's alter ego, U.S. Girls, rattles along with a sublime mechanic clatter and minimalist spirit. Her original compositions are sparse tug-o-wars between hollow drums and her strained vocals with little patience for production. Dark corners of isolation and rubbed raw emotion bristle up into sonic forms leaving visible marks on your skin from their caustic movements on her Siltbreeze debut, Introducing. Even more interesting is seeing her tear into others' work; as she dismantles, re-tools and re-assembles the remnants of Bruce Springsteen's "Prove It All Night" and The Kinks' "Days" into bare reminders of their former lives. A decidedly static crust free Siltbreeze release but where her label mates use blunt force to pry open your psyche, Remy creeps in through your pores and takes over before you realize what's happened. A wonderfully sinister record that reveals much more than its simple pieces would have you believe on first listen.

Download:
[MP3] U.S. Girls - Prove It All Night
[MP3] U.S. Girls - Outta State

Support the artist. Buy it: HERE
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posted by dissensous at 9:34:00 AM 2 comments

10.24.2008

Little Claw finally land a release on Siltbreeze and turns out it's their best release yet.

Little Claw - Race To The Bottom 7"
Seems like Little Claw's ragged femme fatale rock was perfectly made for Siltbreeze, and now this grand meeting of forces has finally come to fruition. The title track is probably Little Claw's most fully realized track yet; noisy and rough
but shot straight through with a catchy rock pulse that can hardly be denied. If the next album duplicates this spirit there'll be no stopping total domination and and loads of praise. Then again if they just keep on doing what they do best and don't try to over think anything it'll probably turn out just as brilliant. Go with what works.

Download:
[MP3] Little Claw - Race To The Bottom

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posted by dissensous at 10:02:00 AM 0 comments

Digital Leather


Just when you think you've got a label pegged they throw ya. Though Goner records trades in their heaping share of spastic punk, garage punk and all around dirt rock - they've pretty much maintained presence as a guitar label. Well Shawn Foree's Digital Leather has plenty of dirt rock and a dose of garage floor aesthetics but they bring the synths to the Goner party in a pretty huge way; splitting hairs between brooding garage and contortionable (rather than danceable) synth-punk. The first half of the record is the key here, being made up of bedroom recordings that lock into just the right mix of 80's keyboard gods and frayed guitar torrents. The second half dips in quality a bit but mostly because it's a lumping of live tracks that are sometimes heavier on the strange lyrics than on the plasticene rhythms. Digital Leather should fit right in at Goner though, despite their affinity for buzzing keys and future punk, and hell Jay Reatard even mastered it so at least the future is in good hands.

Download:
[MP3] Digital Leather - Simulator
[MP3] Digital Leather - Styrofoam

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

10.23.2008

Koen Holtkamp


Koen's name may not sound all that familiar but his aliases as Aero and as one half of Mountains may hit a little closer to home. His work with the apestaartje collective and label have brought forth many releases that utilize a combination of new composition and sound design, and his first solo record expounds upon this theme. Holtkamp's ability to merge delicate instrumentation with natural surroundings creates worlds of tenuous balance and echoes of fragile memories. He weights each element of field recording with trimmings of instrumentation that seem like the two are dancing rather than merely being looped over one another. It's this ability to carve natural harmony from such unnatural machines and sources that gives Holtkamp his brilliance, and is often the factor that brought such praise to his work in Mountains. Field Rituals is out on Type Records, who add this to an astounding year and a return to form as one of the more innovative labels out there.

Download:
[MP3] Koen Holtkamp - Half Light
[MP3] Koen Holtkamp - Walker

Support the artist. Buy it: HERE
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posted by dissensous at 10:04:00 AM 0 comments

10.22.2008

Nice Face


In a year full of scuzz, fuzz and general lo-fi theatrics it would seem difficult to one up the heavyweights already out, but this barely released cassette by Nice Face is making a pretty good case for itself. Hitting the shelves on Jerkwave Tapes in a minuscule edition of 100, this little beauty takes the blueprint that his Sacred Bones 7" sketched out, kicks it up a notch and knocks it out for 12 full tracks. Fuzzy but not as obscured/destroyed/damaged as some of his contemporaries, Nice Face wipes the oil from the garage floor with 2" tape and then lays down a few gritty guitar solos over them. If these two releases are only the beginning then I'm interested to see where he goes from here because bedroom dystopia hasn't really snarled like this all year. The one man project feels like a full band's worth of scratch and squalor, and thankfully, even though both his works are out of print Nice Face takes the Robin Hood route and both the Can I Fuck It? Cassette and Thing in My Head 7" have been upped for free on his myspace page. Grab both because the price is right, though this would have been well worth the entrance fee the first go 'round, and look out for an upcoming LP, TBA.

Download:
[MP3] Nice Face - Hawkfin
[MP3] Nice Face - Rotting Around

Support the artist. Buy it: HERE
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posted by dissensous at 9:24:00 AM 0 comments

10.21.2008

Another worldwide sampling from the Jukebox this week, culling together a couple of Brits, a couple from the States and hitting the lesser known psych hot-spot of Indonesia along the way.

[MP3] Ipsissimus - Hold On
A hard tinged British single that shows the direction moving from psychedelics into hard rock territory. Full of pounding drums and thick riffs and that high wail rising over the top that would soon set the standard for front men.

[MP3] Nimrod - The Bird
Another British single that gives a glimpse into the future of hard rock. This one starts out breezy but breaks into a huge guitar solo and later even a dash of flute. Owes a debt to the Small Faces school of songwriting for sure and in the same way it shows that bridge between worlds that the Faces often did, where there existed bravado and tenderness at the same time.

[MP3] The Great Society - Girl
Winging over to San Francisco, The Great Society muster up a bluesier version of the scene's typical sound. A bit snotty and rough for the Summer of Love set but still a very good Frisco band that got glossed over in the ensuing wave of bands to come.

[MP3] Yellow Balloon - Baby, Baby It's You
Yellow balloon split the difference between The Beach Boys and Cyrkle but tended to lean towards the former much more. The influence is entirely obvious in this, one of their better tracks that echoes the multi-part harmonies and wistful summer stylings of Brian Wilson.

[MP3] Ariesta Birawa Group - Terimalah Cintaku
This Indonesian group synthesized the Western influences into a mix of heavy psychedelia and loose groves, often coming close to sounding like a pac-asian version of Santana. This track gives them a bit of a harder edge than they usually take and its much to their credit. Had the band taken this line more often its possible they might have built a stronger reputation.
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posted by dissensous at 9:45:00 AM 1 comments

10.20.2008

Sun Araw


Cameron Stallones is another human being whose ability to crank out ambitions works at an astounding rate bewilders me. The man's already 3 releases deep in his Sun Araw project (a CD-r, 3"/12" and now this LP) this year and still he's capped off a limited cassette release and full length debut with his band Magic Lantern! Well in case there was any doubt to quantity overtaking quality, one need only take a listen to Beach Head, the latest Sun Araw LP. Also released, as his previous CD-r was, on Not Not Fun but where that disc traded in heavy amplifier burn; this takes a trip further into the muggy tropic inroads that Stallones first breached on his Boat Trip 3". Starting off in a dry, sitar styled darkness, the LP quickly turns jungle fueled delirium into peaceful tropic-synth hallucinations. The keys lighten the tone through the end of the first track and float on into the second, making this a very strange trip even for a man of Cameron's background. The blissful waves of sun and dub turn back towards the darkness as the album comes to a close though, easing in a creeping feeling of anxiety and disorientation that almost makes you doubt if you really were floating on that glass raft through steam clouds for the last 20 minutes.

Download:
[MP3] Sun Araw - Horse Steppin'

Support the artist. Buy it: HERE
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posted by dissensous at 9:00:00 AM 2 comments

10.17.2008

A chip off the Reatard Family springs up their own little piece of the pie on everybody's favorite - Goner Records.

The Barbaras - Summertime Road 7" Well they might not quite have their leader's penchant for pop genius but Billie & Stephen of The Boston Chinks/ Jay Reatard's band still have a knack for melodic garage pop. The namesake of this here 7" is a burnt piece of garage fuzz that
loses the melody in the production just a bit, but underneath that nasty row of fuzz boxes and tape hiss lies a 50's soul ringer that's been given a bit of an updated tour of Memphis' new class. The nicest ditty on this platter is probably the clean cut slice of blue-eyed soul, "Flow," but if you give the rest a good scrubbin', the doo-wop vox and jangle beat are a winning combination that show some great promise. The band has an upcoming full album on In The Red (ITR's really bringing the heat this year) so be sure to watch for that.

Download:
[MP3] The Barbaras - Flow

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

Wavves


Thanks to the guys over at GvsB for alerting me to this one (must be sleeping on my Woodsist updates). Nathan Williams is tapping heavy into the West Coast slacker crust vibe under his assumed name of Wavves. This cassette snuck out in limited numbers but has just been picked up by Fuck It tapes and sister label Woodsist will issue the CD/LP version of this lo-fi gem. Lo-fi being a bit of an understatement here as Williams may have recorded this one straight to the crustiest of cassette 4 tracks imaginable, though its the rough edges and flippant creases that make this so endearing. The cassette may lack fidelity but it reaches out of the fuzz with catchy bits and amateur bravado befitting the best of The Smell set. It would appear that following this release/ re-issue Wavves will collaborate with several other noiseniks edging into view (splits w/ Christmas Island and Ducktails forthcoming) hit up the royalty of lo-fi labels (upcoming full length on Destijl, 7"s on HoZac, Tic Tac Totally and Release The Bats) and generally dominate the limited circuit. Given the strength of his debut I can guarantee you'll be hearing more from/about him in the coming months.

Download:
[MP3] Wavves - No Hope Kids
[MP3] Wavves - So Bored

Support the artist. Buy it: HERE
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posted by dissensous at 9:33:00 AM 5 comments

10.16.2008

Earthless/ King Tuff



Earthless are about as much an example of a sprawling space rock band as there could ever be and as such the album format often does them little in the way of justice. Their debut for Tee Pee was two lengthy originals and a scalding cover of The Groundhogs, while their previous EP was equally steeped in lengthy jams. So with the band's penchant for excess in mind, the fact that their recent performance at Roadburn (a Dutch festival with a bias towards huge amplifier stacks and bigger riffs) was captured to tape, leaving a two hour live document of the band fully unencumbered by restraint, seems to have come as an unexpected bit of fortune for the band and fans alike. The performance is nothing short of a sacrifice to the gods of electric sweat; 4 songs stretched over 2 hours of physical endurance and inspired sonics. It's a very close run between this and Endless Boogie for guitar record of the year, but both records ought to inspire every sixteen year old alive to find a way to make six strings ring like this. Live at Roadburn is the definitive Earthless record, a band at their peak, among their people and completely absorbed into the joy of sound.

Download:
[MP3] Earthless - Blue/From The Ages (excerpt)

Support the artist. Buy it: HERE

Now since we here at RSTB love to see our unsung favorites finally make good, I have to include one other Tee Pee related note. The label's subsidiary Colonel has just recently reissued one of last year's great overlooked records, King Tuff's Was Dead, and on vinyl no less. The
record was out on CD last year from Vegetable Records and seemed to fall on nothing but deaf ears so here's hoping that a wider release will clue a few more into their pitch perfect 70's power pop. The band is a side project of Kyle from Witch and Feathers so this may explain how it landed in the realm of Tee Pee's dark recesses. Here's hoping the band kick out a new record as well, courtesy of their new home at Colonel.

Download:
[MP3] King Tuff - Freak When I'm Dead

Support the artist. Buy it HERE
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posted by dissensous at 9:27:00 AM 2 comments

10.15.2008

Headless Heroes


Much in the same vein as this year's other time-quake mixtape, Vetiver's Thing of the Past, Headless Heroes' album of covers attempts to knit disjointed past influences and lost gems together into one singular voice echoing from the past. Though this collection was dreamed up by Eddie Bezale; it's definitely his wisely chosen vocalist, RSTB fave Alela Diane, that steals the show here. Bezale's choices are no less varied or inspired than that of his counterpart in crate digging, Andy Cabic. The collection careens from such disparate sources as The Jesus and Mary Chain and Nick Cave to more obvious kindred spirits Linda Perhacs and Vashti Bunyan. The most surprising factor in this project is that Bezale had the idea long before he'd ever even heard Alela sing a note. Reportedly putting together the band and stumbling on her through Myspace. Well the lucky stumble proved to be well in his favor, and though the tone of these songs doesn't always come close to her arresting originals, it's definitely her voice that takes The Silence of Love from mixtape to a more refined vision.

Download:
[MP3] Headless Heroes - To You
[MP3] Headless Heroes - Just Like Honey

Support the artist. Buy it: HERE
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posted by dissensous at 9:24:00 AM 0 comments

10.14.2008

Two bands from opposite coast that both showcased a mix of psychedelia and powerful blues as cut through the prism of powerful female vocalists. Following in the wake of Janis and Grace many second tier bands stepped up to the plate with this mix and these two are both deserving of more adulation.

Gold - Mission Rock
Hailing from the West Coast, Gold were somehow without a deal but slated in to open for Ten Years After, Big Brother and the like. The band recorded this LP live and it definitely showcases them in their element. A potent mix of heavy
blues guitar, plentiful percussion and the powerful voice of Robin Sinclair. Sinclair had a bit of success with her own band Saloom prior to joining Gold's ranks but she's decidedly the ingredient that takes this from lost obscurity to overlooked classic. The band had some influence and help from "Country" Joe MacDonald who wrote two of the songs that appear on Mission Rock and even had a hand in producing it. However, despite all their help, talent and promise the fact that only a handful of collectors and anyone present during their height at the Fillmore may remember them speaks to the sad fate they suffered. Thankfully this classic has been resurrected from time. Well beyond the "worth a listen" ranks, this one is a lost piece of San Francisco history.

Download:
[MP3] Gold - You Can't Judge a Book
[MP3] Gold - Can't Live Enough

Support the artist. Buy it HERE

Spirits and Worm - Spirits and Worm
Taking the formula to the other side of the country, Spirits and Worm hailed from New York. The group released this album in a small run but it was reportedly pulled from distribution because the cover was
somehow feared to be linked to Satanism and the Occult due to the goats/tombstone imagery. This despite the fact that the album itself contains no such references lyrically, not even if you try to stretch your imagination. The result took a relatively obscure album into almost non-existent status. This is unfortunate because the combination of the laidback (and decidedly non-East Coast) playing with some decent horn arrangements and the high powered voice of Adrianne Maurici proved to be a worthwhile mix. Its hard to say if proper distribution would have moved this at the time but its lucky that someone picked it up and Akarma had the sense to reissue it.

Download:
[MP3] Spirits and Worm - Fanny Firecracker
[MP3] Spirits and Worm - All I Need Is A Little You

Support the artist. Buy it HERE
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posted by dissensous at 9:37:00 AM 2 comments

10.13.2008

Magic Lantern


Magic Lantern return from The Mountains of Madness and finally grace us with a full length, following some great limited CD-r's and Cassettes. Not Not Fun puts up for their debut album, High Beams and it's turned out to be not only one of the band's most compelling works to date but one of NNF's greatest releases yet. Smoldering with ash and caught up in an inferno so thick I'm not sure how survivors were able to be pulled from the wreckage; this album plugs straight into the band's live abilities and translates them to wax. Consisting of five mostly lengthy jams that stretch out and sink their claws into the woodwork, High Beams makes good on a lot of promises that early works hinted at. Nothing's quite as sinister as the aforementioned "Mountains" track but the band grind out gritty amplifier sweat jams and cut them with a bit of the dubby ambience that guitarist Cameron has been cooking up in his side work as Sun Araw. Definitely one of the more essential releases out in '08 so don't let the 500 pressing slide by you, cause I have a feeling you'll kick yourself if for sleeping on this one.

Download:
[MP3] Magic Lantern - Deathshead Hawkmoth

Support the artist. Buy it: HERE
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posted by dissensous at 9:08:00 AM 1 comments

10.10.2008

A rare female entry into the ranks of Sacred Bones' warbled army. Melted soul never sounded so good.

Zola Jesus - Souer Sewer 7" Zola taps into the tortured spirit of soul wrung through an inky mimeograph on her first single for Sacred Bones. Shuffling waves of noise rumble in mechanized factory rhythms over her lonesome croon while playhouse piano taps out a crumpled melody below.
Definitely a new piece to the Sacred Bones puzzle, pulling away from so many nihilistic tones that have preceded her. The flip ramps up the pounding beat and obscures her croon in sheets of distorted synth but still keeps her passion in tact. Upon second and third listens to this I'm definitely eager for more from this morose voice from Wisconsin.

Download:
[MP3] Zola Jesus - Souer Sewer

Support the artist. Buy it HERE
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posted by dissensous at 9:35:00 AM 1 comments

Kemialliset Ystävät and Sunroof! - Splinter Series


The good people over at FatCat have resuscitated their long lingering split series, now dubbed the Splinter Series. First up in the new series sees Jan Anderzén's wily band of Fins, Kemialliset Ystävät pitted against the harsh soundscapes from Matthew Bower of Skullflower, here in his Sunroof! guise. As could be well expected, both sides of this platter are chock full of chaos; but somehow each band's eccentricities nicely counterpoint the other's. KY is lighthearted and experimental where Sunroof! is dark and foreboding, likewise Sunroof! cuts straight and deep, focusing steady with his singular weapon of modified static force; while the Fins as usual grab anything with strings or mallets or wires within reach to achieve their effect. If it were a tossup I'd have to, of course, give the edge here to Kemialliset Ystävät, but then again I always was a sucker for the Finnish underground. All in all an eclectic though and a damn good return to the label's classic pairings with surely more to come in the near future.

(*ed note* - The Split Series and Splinter Series are actually two different entities. The split series has ended but will soon be available digitally from the FatCat site. The Splinter series is released on FatCat's sub-division Splinter)

Download:
[MP3] Kemialliset Ystävät - Tässä Maassa Kun Näin Makailen

Support the artist. Buy it: HERE
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posted by dissensous at 9:30:00 AM 1 comments

10.09.2008

Viking Moses


The Parts That Showed is the second "official" full release from Viking Moses, though there have been a few other non-albums, 7"s, tapes and whatnot between the fist and this. Apparently, or at least according to the band, they've tapped Dolly Parton as a huge musical touchstone on this album - "A tale of a teenage part-time prostitute who spends her earnings on ice cream for neighborhood children, and of the man who obsesses over her from afar"? Oh and with for some reason, a cover of Whitney Houston's "I Will Always Love You" thrown in for good measure. Well I'm perhaps not as up on my Parton discography as I should be, but the influence escapes me. Nonetheless, this just like the first album, rides well on a mix of melody and sparse production. And even if I'm not sure how the cohesive product turns into such a sordid tale, the individual results are lovely. Brendon Massei's songs are buoyed by Paul Oldham's less is more production and recording. Shuffling drums and lazy guitars sway underneath Massei's voice, sounding alternately upbeat and crushing as the whims take him. Viking Moses were a bit unscrupulously lumped into the (free, freak, acid) folk revival of the last few years but they certainly seem to have more in common with Oldham (and more specifically his brother Will) than the crop of Devendra offshoots they became associated with. This album, finally out of the shadow of those associations, should establish them as a formidable force in songwriting.

Download:
[MP3] Viking Moses - Sole Command Of The Day
[MP3] Viking Moses - Jones Boys

Support the artist. Buy it: HERE
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posted by dissensous at 9:30:00 AM 2 comments

10.08.2008

Heavy Hands


At first listen most would probably flag the derivative card at Heavy Hands and call it a day. They evoke late 70's proto-metal to the very core. Where they pull into their own right is that they do it so completely and so convincingly within the aesthetics of that certain place and time that it blows away so many acts today who simply throw Blue Cheer in as a reference point in their liner notes. Heavy Hands' debut album Smoke Signals could easily be pressed to vinyl, beat up and slipped in amongst a few second tier 70's bands on the shelf; effortlessly fooling a few collectors into finding a long lost gem. From the album art to the dusted recording process, everything about this album echoes a lost generation of amplifier sweat and extended drum solos - which is kind of a beautiful thing. Once the complete package is all taken into consideration it's easy to see why Weeks would slot them in as the first true "rock band" on his Language of Stone label. Oh and Greg I'm serious man this one has to go on vinyl, it would be a travesty not to complete the facade.

Download:
[MP3] Heavy Hands - She Got It
[MP3] Heavy Hands - From Stonehenge to Saturn

Support the artist. Buy it: HERE
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posted by dissensous at 9:17:00 AM 2 comments

10.07.2008

It seems like the indie community suddenly discovered that Africa has a rich musical past (and present) thus proliferating the love for African artists high and low. However there have for years existed great comps of African psych from David Byrne's Love's A Real Thing compilation to the constant stream of Sublime Frequencies discs. Though in all fairness this year has seen two of my newer favorites from the region.

African Scream Contest: Raw & Psychedelic Afro Sounds From Benin & Togo 70sAfrican Scream Contest: Raw & Psychedelic Afro Sounds From Benin & Togo 70s
This has to be one of my favorite of the recently unearthed African Psych classics. The overall vibe reminds me of Byrne's West African Comp in that it shows how the combination
of funk, psych, salsa and soul all hit the African continent right about the same time, fusing them into a potent mix of rhythm and headspace. Whereas most American funk veered to cleaner production, the African styles were dirty, fuzzed up and mixed a garage feeling with polyrhythmic beats to create a whole new genre. This comp focuses its efforts solely on the areas of Benin and Togo, giving it a regional picture of that specific scene, which was evidently quite prolific and stacked with talent. The cuts on this disc burn with an intense sense of cathartic beat and dusty rooms filled with dance and sweat. Ben Redjeb's Analog Africa label is one of the leaders in unearthing the quality lost classics from this continent and African Scream Contest is just further proof of this.

Download:
[MP3] Gabo & Orchestre Poly-Rhythmo - It's A Vanity
[MP3] Ouinsou Corneille & Black Santiago - Vinon So Minsou

Support the artist. Buy it HERE

Amanaz - Africa
Now where many African artists fused the incoming soul and psych sounds with their own rhythmic history to create a potent funk, there was a great underground rock movement as well. Few other bands can contend with the sound of
Amanaz, whose mixture of heavy fuzzed out guitar and clean production make it a great lost 60's psych gem. The band certainly had a handle on rhythm but they down played this more than others, instead opting for a kind of laid back psych soul that would erupt into torrents of stoned out fuzz. The band grabbed a lot of comparisons to British counterparts like Cream and you can certainly hear a bit of this influence in the heavier moments on the album. Though the band does showcase a softer side that's equally as compelling, its really the power tracks that stand out here and make this an essential release from this region.

Download:
[MP3] Amanaz - History of Man
[MP3] Amanaz - Easy Street

Support the artist. Buy it HERE
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posted by dissensous at 10:09:00 AM 5 comments

10.06.2008

The Jewelled Antler Library


In some circles the words Jewelled Antler bring with them reverence and a bit of knowing envy. Though many arms of the mighty collective till continue in some form or another, the core works of the Antler were released in small runs and are now all out of print. Unfortunately for many this means that a lot of the collective's best material is far from accessible and even if you can find a digital copy you're sure to never lay eyes on the beautiful hand-packaging that accompanied quite a few. Though this applies to larger releases like The Birdtree album (a personal favorite), early Franciscan Hobbies, Child Readers and Dead Raven Choir albums; nowhere is it more painfully obvious than the short lived 3" series that the label did in monthly installments. To own The Jewelled Antler Library Series is a holy grail among some and until now would have necessitated some pretty astute collecting when it was released or long hours on ebay. However, for the many that were not so lucky, Porter Records is about to release a beautiful 4-disc retrospective of the series along with new recordings by Loren Chasse and The Ways of God to Man. 1000 Limited editions sets with chipboard packaging and a foil stamped logo on the top, how can you say no to that? The box will include near impossible to find recordings from Fursaxa, Uton, Tomes, The Ivytree, Hala Strana, Dead Raven Choir, The Famous Boating Party, Claypipe, Muons, Thuja and Kemialliset Ystavat. I for one am extraordinarily excited. If you're unfamiliar with the collective there's a good article HERE, which includes some mention of Library Series by none other than Mats Gustafsson.

Download:
[MP3] The Ivytree - White Sun
[MP3] Muons - Space Man

Support the artist. Buy it: HERE
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posted by dissensous at 9:49:00 AM 0 comments

10.03.2008

Dead Luke continues to scorch the wax on another Sacred Bones release. This time he's taken one more unlikely cover through the melted wringer paired up with a Luke original all wrapped up in a pretty sleeve.

Dead Luke - Record Two 7" Dead Luke's second Sacred Bones single sees the Wisconsinite taking on The Stones in an unconventional fashion. "Jumping Jack Flash Drive" isn't your parent's Stones and purists will probably shit when they hear Luke's rendition, however for those of you
with sense of the absurd and a love for twisted electro of the melted cheese variety, this one's for you. The flip is another DL original and it pulses and squirms with the best of his output. Still, I think that take on The Troggs can't be beat but this comes in a close second. Be on the lookout for this and that first platter to get boxed up in an upcoming release from the folks at the Bones soon.

Download:
[MP3] Dead Luke - Jumping Jack Flash Drive

Support the artist. Buy it HERE
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posted by dissensous at 9:32:00 AM 1 comments

Valerio Cosi


At only 22, Valerio Cosi has a catalog and collaborative track record that would make most older musicians blush. With well over 40 releases in his catalog already the kid is nothing if not seasoned at this point. He's shared releases with luminaries such as Fabio Orsi, Uton, The North Sea, Heavy Winged and Ashtray Navigations. The future doesn't look to be slowing down a bit for the saxophonist and this release on Digitalis sees him pull away a bit from his more free jazz leaning past, though its certainly not as "rock" as the album's Heavy Electronic Pacific Rock title would imply. This release moves Cosi out into Krautrock's rippled waters, pairing the genre's love of repetition with some well placed atmospheric electronics. Cosi's playing is as spot on as ever and proves, as he has on past releases, that experimental instrumentation doesn't have to be overly grating or without a pulse. Cosi's quickly becoming a star in his own right both in the worlds of free jazz and the more experimental leaning electronic world. This record marks one of his most widely available releases yet so don't hesitate to snap it up. Lovely artwork by Ernst Haeckel as well.

Download:
[MP3] Valerio Cosi - A New Vipassana

Support the artist. Buy it: HERE
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posted by dissensous at 9:09:00 AM 1 comments

10.02.2008

Mythical Beast


Following a couple of great splits on Not Not Fun, Mythical Beast finally have a full length under their belts. As the fates would have it they've landed on Philly's finest; Language of Stone, for their first album Scales. The band recorded it with Greg Weeks at his LOS headquarters/studio in Philadelphia and to be honest these are some of the strongest Mythical Beast tracks I've heard yet. Still steeped in the darkest recesses of psych's heart, the tracks smolder with scorched earth and the black taste of doom. While atop the slow churn of guitars and the death march of drums, Corrine's vocal wail heralds in end times with the passionate force of a call to arms. But there is light at the edges of Mythical Beast's universe and though the themes are dark there's a sad hope that looms present behind the clouds of destruction. Again I'm earnestly awaiting the issue of so many of Language of Stone's releases on vinyl and this is no exception; music of this caliber deserves nothing less. The band has pulled itself to the forefront of modern psychedelia, and this album will more than likely serve as a jumping off point for great things to come.

Download:
[MP3] Mythical Beast - Cycle/Circle
[MP3] Mythical Beast - Live To Live

Support the artist. Buy it: HERE
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posted by dissensous at 9:50:00 AM 0 comments

10.01.2008

Benoit Pioulard


On his second full length for Kranky, Thomas Meluch (better known as Benoit Pioulard) sticks with his winning formula of darkly shaded Laptop pop and atmospheric electronics. Meluch's aesthetics remain hushed but at the same time fill a room with his swirling microcosm of creaks and close mic-ed strums, and of course his mournful but pleasing croon anchored squarely to the top of the mix. His recordings have a way of being both pleasingly catchy and subdued at the same time, and Temper doesn't stray from this pattern. Few artists can evoke both Boards of Canada and Iron and Wine without sounding muddled or stretched. Meluch on the other had finds the tenuous balance between the worlds of melody and atmosphere and he lives there most comfortably. The two halves of this record represent two halves of this year, one half spent at his home in Michigan and the other after moving to Oregon. There remains a pretty obvious shift in tone between the two halves with the latter being much more upbeat, but just as with his balance of aesthetics, this shift in tone happens so fluidly that it seems only natural. A beautifully serene life journey that Meluch invites you to take along with him.

Download:
[MP3] Benoit Pioulard - Ahn
[MP3] Benoit Pioulard - A Woolgathering Exodus

Support the artist. Buy it: HERE
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posted by dissensous at 10:03:00 AM 1 comments