Tuesday, December 30, 2008

the finns aren't known for their free jazz...

maybe they should be?

rauhan orkesteri are a free jazz combo (featuring a tolvi brother or so...) that spit and sputter through four tracks of sparse and spluttry reeds. really interesting, and never boring. this is a good listen. it's short and it's a fresh take on a genre that isn't seen too much from the folkers of there region. they had an lp on Qbico too. yeah.

sorry for the little update. i'm on a weird computer (the keys stick. i hate that.) and just don't feel like typing a lot.

Rauhan Orkesteri - Felix 3"cd-r

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

my last post before christmas... sniffle

i know, you are all sad.

it's ok, i'll be back soonish... maybe. this might be the last update for the year! i hope not, but it all depends on my willingness to do this when i am away on a vacation of sorts. i'm getting out of the basement, folks. hopefully the daylight doesn't blind me.

that being said, here's the musics.

this is Neil Campbell's solo lp released on that awesome Finnish label Lal Lal Lal entitled "Sol Power." this lp is different than Astral Social Club in that there are no demented dance beats and tranced out laserbeams, no, this is classic droning peace, an ethereal blast of organs, guitars, and various other instruments that will take you away. at times this reminds me of Roy Montgomery, at other times Richard Youngs' more experimental sounds, and still others it's just straight up Campbell. flutes chime in and disappear, guitars are chopped up and droned out, and everything is just straight up blissful. it's amazing this guy can do anything but make soothing beautiful music.

uber rare and way deleted, get this here now. sorry, this one isn't chopped into tracks just sides.

Neil Campbell - Sol Power

knowing nothing ain't easy

Michael (Mick) Flower would know. or wouldn't. either way.

this is his Qbico album "Returning To Knowing Nothing" put out a year or so ago. on this release you find Mick noodling his guitar, fiddling and sawing away, humming and hawing, and totally blissing out with some raga-drone. a lot of this is close territory to his Vibracathedral Orchestra stuff, but way stripped down and less noisy. this is really good and very diverse. it sounds like there are at least 7 people on these tracks, but there aren't.

definitely recommended.

Michael Flower - Returning To Knowing Nothing


the first time i heard of a gamelan orchestra was through the Sun City Girls on their album "330,003 Crossdressers From Beyond The Rig Veda." naturally, i thought they had made up a thing called a gamelan orchestra and figured it was one of their jokes. then i listened to the album and wondered what the chimes were. a little research led me to all sorts of interesting info (wikipedia gamelan orchestra. it's pretty cool.) so then i tracked down some gamelan music. did you know Pauline Oliveros is a big fan of gamelan and recorded a bunch of music with them? pretty good too. there's also this little group from new york that writes new pieces of gamelan music called Gamelan Son Of Lion, whom i am featuring here.

This two disc collection is expansive and awesome. gamelan music is very pleasing to the ear and easy to listen to. it relaxes me in a way few musics can. if you are at all interested in musics from another country or sounds you have never heard then, please, check this collection out. you won't regret it.

Gamelan Son Of Lion - The Complete Gamelan In The New World
disc 1
disc 2

Monday, December 22, 2008

a bit of glitch for the masses

Alva Noto should be well known to most of you who like the glitchier musics, and Opiate should be well known to a much wider audience because of his work with Bjork. but, their collaborations are fucking incredible, taking electronic sounds and making them have a very organic edge, a sort of crunchy sound that breathes and moans. this is the first of their collaborations, simply titled "Opto Files." its fairly short, only 5 tracks, but what it lacks in length it makes up for in ingenuity. this is dark, ambient, and lush in sound, with pops and crackles provided by Noto and huge washes of melodic waves provided by Opiate. this cd came out a few years back on the always awesome Raster Noton label, which if you can afford their releases you should get them cause they are not only packaged beautifully always but i have not been disappointed by one yet (and i'm not even a huge fan of electronic music!)

Alva Noto & Opiate - Opto Files

drones for siberia!

to continue with my love for some Birchville Cat Motel, here's his 1998 cd released on that wonderful label Drunken Fish (you know, "Harmony of the Spheres" boxset?) entitled "Siberian Earth Curve." this cd opens with a long low drone that is layer upon layer of noise piled up until it's a slow boil of churning bubbling drone that only BCM could conjure up. then, he adds melody to the mix on the second track, a sort of backwards raga with slide-whistles. the next track sounds like a plane going down in a buggs bunny cartoon for ten minutes, but if you listen closely to all the goings on, you will be rewarded; it's much more than a plane going down. next, he brings the static back full force, with a piercing attack of high end noise that sounds like the recording of a hundred kettles boiling and put through a distortion pedal. brilliant. finishing the cd off comes the title track, shifting tonal experiment that adds and subtracts high frequency tones for 15 minutes.

this cd is great. Campbell Kneale never disappoints, and if you are a fan of drone music you will really enjoy this cd.

Bircville Cat Motel - Siberian Earth Curve

there is magic to be seen, on earth and in space.

Ben Reynolds really is a magician. the songs he crafts are truly otherworldly and magical. his drones are among some of the best out there, and yet he doesn't rely simply on droning his cd-rs out, there is diversity in every release! his is the definition of "space music." well, it's definitely out there at least.

this is his cd-r "Earth And Space Magics" released on the mighty Pseudo Arcana label. it starts with a spaced out raga that has chirps and voices all over it with weird echoes and reverb everywhere and a low hum of his voice holding out one note for the entire track. then he gets a little new-agey "hearts of space" territory, but that isn't really a bad thing. in fact, it works because it's not done with synth, so it sounds very organic and fresh. then, when you might be getting a little droned out, he comes back with a steel-stringed piece that will make all you Six Organs Of Admittance fans swoon, with bells and chimes laid all over his sweetly plucked guitar. he finishes the cd off with another drone piece, this one getting close to Ashtray Navigations territory, a great way to end a really great cd.

check it out, a very peaceful and spacey listen.

Ben Reynolds - Earth And Space Magics

Sunday, December 21, 2008

i'll admit it: i love cat power

i really really do. but i am a bit mad she re-recorded my favorite song of her's.

here's a 1998 video proving why it was better the old way. it makes me want to do heroin.

i'm moving to finland.


Lau Nau



Hertta Lussa Assa

(note: i mean this not in a lecherous way. maybe just a little...)

exquisitely bored?

Skullflower's got the answer. this is the album "Exquisite Fucking Boredom" that came out in good ole 2002 (that was a fun year, eh?). this is a much different Skullflower than many of you may be expecting. this was Bower's first release with this name in over six years after putting it to bed in 1996 in favor of Total and Sunroof!. this Skullflower is less of the crushing doom-sludge that you might have found on releases like Xaman or IIIrd Gatekeeper and more of a Sunroof! feel, but it's like Sunroof! smoking mad amounts of weed and hanging out with Black Sabbath. the core of the album revolves around the four part suite "Celestial Highway," opening with a seventies rock riff that just grooves and grooves, with overdubs and extra parts coming in here and there. but, each part of the song adds another element that is trademark Bower action; by the time you get to part three of the Highway you'll think it really is a Sunroof! record.

this is a strange unearthing of a beast many considered to be one of the heaviest acts ever, but it certainly does not disappoint. no, in fact this ranks up there in my favorite Skullflower releases, as well as anything Bower has done.

definitely recommended. after this release, by the way, Skullflower remembered it was heavy as fuck again (Tribulation was terrifying!)

Skullflower - Exquisite Fucking Boredom

i'm just a big softy today...

The Softies, a duo of wonderful ladies, crafted short songs about love and heartbreak. their recordings are very simple: two guitars, two lovely voices, good recording. pretty straight forward, but excellently executed. both of the ladies did some time in twee pop bands (including the underappreciated Go Sailor!) and you can really hear that in these songs, with octave chords and strummed rhythm lines.

this is their last album "Holiday In Rhode Island." the songs are short, simple, and heartbreaking. get ready to cry, motherfuckers, these lyrics are sad. their voices are evocative and personal, giving these lyrics more effect even than what they already carry, with lilting harmonies and quiet emotion.

i highly recommend this album to anyone who likes solid twee pop.

The Softies - Holiday In Rhode Island

finland doesn't freeze all hearts

Lau Nau... oh boy, what a sound. sparkling and crisp, rich with humming drones and vibrating voices, this is some of the most lovely folk music you could ever want. at times sparse, other times overflowing with sound, this ice princess will make you swoon over her tiny voice and delicate folk sensibilities. it makes me wish i could speak finnish, really.

this album, "Kuutartha," is chock full of lovely songs that are unlike some of her fellow finnish free-folkers because she relies much less on noise and random instrumentation and sticks to a more "traditional" approach. that's not to say these are traditional folk songs at all, you just don't find a wall of electronics and reverbed voices populating every song like you would with, say, Kuupuu or Islaja.

oh, and she's also played with such groups as Kiila, Avarus, Anaksimandros, Paivansade, Rauhan Orkestari, is married to one of the Tolvi brothers, and is one of the members of the awesome trio Herta Lussa Assa (with Kuupuu and Islaja, a dream trio if you ask me!)

totally great finnish free-folk that will warm your heart on cold days.

Lau Nau - Kuutartha

Friday, December 19, 2008

oh, can there really be more Qbico? pt. 5

ok, the last qbico upload of the day belongs to none other than Neil Campbell and his Astral Social Club. for those who don't know nothing, ASC is Campbell's post-Vibracathedral project, usually finding him solo or with one or two friends helping. of course it's a drone based affair, with shimmering guitars and highly processed glitchy drum machines usually with the bpm being cranked all the way. it's like the drone music ravers would listen to.

this is a great record to come down off drugs to. opening very peacefully, Campbell lulls you in with shiny guitars and synth effects that are repeating and swelling until about minute 14 when the volume is so huge that your brain is only filled with it. if i close my eyes and listen to this i think of being in a blue room with little dots of bright light going ever faster until they explode everywhere and you just want to smile and embrace them. fantastic.

side b opens with a glitchy delay pattern that shifts and repeats over and over with sprawling guitars behind all the sounds, a wonderful and faded melody that sits in the back of your head while you focus on the clicks and tinkles of the processed electronics. then, almost out of nowhere the track changes completely, with the guitars coming forward and getting the processed treatment, sounding like lasers firing and a dj spinning acid house records at 16rpm. the two ideas come together and it is just fantastic, making you want more and more and you are only about halfway through the track. then, the drums fall out and you are left with a processed click and just the laser-like guitars humming and shimmering softly, rising and becoming louder and louder until it is just a beam of processed feedback and beautiful distortion, ending with more processed sounds and a strange ufo-like spinning sound that gives the whole thing an otherworldly feel.

this is an incredible record. Astral Social Club has been one of my favorite projects of any musician for a while now, any genre. it's just so pretty and sparkly and makes me wish everything was in a blacklit room.

drone music for the out there folks, or those wishing they could be even further out than they already are. lovely.

Astral Social Club - Star Guzzlers

keeping the Qbico coming to the masses, pt. 4

ok, this next one will be a much easier to stomache release for most of you. Coffee's "Pissing Contest" sounds just like that: a free jazz ensemble who are trying to outdo each other in making a sonic bombardment that will destroy your sentiments of what you think traditional jazz should be. this is truly free music, with horns being echoed and overdubbed, and a drummer that sounds like he's playing two kits (though that could be the echo...).

the b-side, however, is a MUCH different affair, being mostly electronic. there are synthesizers here bleeping around and making a repetetive siren-esque moan that will fry your brains just enough to make you think the horns are synth as well, and then when you can't think anymore they fuck with your head EVEN MORE with scrapes and scratches and reversed recordings.

this is a truly strange record. it's pretty awesome though, and really pretty to look at (besides the black and white cover). for fans of noisy free jazz freakouts.

Coffee - Pissing Contest

more qbico for all!

most of you kraut-heads should be familiar with Conrad Schnitzler, what with his part in the first Tangerine Dream album and his involvement with Kluster (who became the seminal kraut electonic band Cluster after Schnitzler left the group) and Eruption. this is an archived recording that sat in the vaults for 30 years before it was issued by the great qbico.

this recording is a tough one to sit through, sort of like any early synth recordings, a veritable wankfest of synthesized bleeps and blurps. but don't let that fool you, this is way better than many other synthesizer albums of the period, having more of a range of sounds and feelings than most bands that did this sound, and for 1972 it's pretty impressive. still, sitting through 40+ minutes of just synth is tough for anyone but the true kraut enthusiast and avid schnitzler fans.

i like this record, it's intense and at times it can fool you into thinking there are sirens going off. it sounds like a crazy soundtrack to some 70's futuristic movie, but i can understand that this is definitely not for everyone.

Conrad Schnitzler - Con '72

Qbico appreesh pt. 2

the next round is done by a group many of you should be very familiar with by now: Double Leopards. featuring one of my personal favorites (marcia basset!) and the duo who went on to form Religious Knives, this brooklyn quartet craft a drone music that on this release was focussed and intense, starting with a plinking sort of electronic scrape sound and disembodied wordless singing building into less of a hum and more of a screech as the A-side continues, sounding like highly distorted whale noises at times. the B-side starts quietly with only and amplifier hum and some weird clicking, but you know it will build into something a lot more moaning than this. quickly the hum is joined by distant sounding metalic whirs and horn-ish sounds, with voices and echoes joining in. the whole mood of this record is eerie and sparse, being less about shredding eardrums and more about freaking you out.

the picture disk art is fantastically trippy, being done by one mr. greg lambkin (you know, the shadow ring?). this is an old qbico release and the only place your gonna find it is the bay.

oh, and turn this one up LOUD!

Double Leopards - Urban Concussion

qbico records appreciation pt.1

today's round of posts centers around qbico records, an awesome european imprint focussing on releasing small, elaborately packaged, and beautifully crafted runs of vinyl releases ranging from free-jazz to noise. i've already posted the Family Underground picture disk (download it!), so if you were a fan of that then check these next posts out.

the first of today's posts is the Vibracathedral Orchestra (what a shock, right?) lp qbico put out a few years back. on it's bright green vinyl you find two long buzzing and droning pieces that will not be any kind of suprise to the fans of this band. there seems to be a lot more electronics on these tracks than on other vibra releases, with lots of chirps and electronic hums, but as you get deeper in the tracks the usual free-clattering circle of guitars, pipes, and strings come to the humming forefront. the flip side opens with a huge organ drone that sets the tone for a side full of ur-drone goodness that only this crew could bring.

this release marked a load of changes for the group, as there were a few line-up shifts coming right around this time (flower, campbell, and hayden all left the band for periods around this recording). it's good to hear that even if the band didn't have the same membership they weren't losing focus or straying from a path they laid out so well in the past. this lp is long gone, so good luck finding it out in the real world.

Vibracathedral Orchestra - The Sun Balance/The Open Knot

Thursday, December 18, 2008

but really, who doesn't like The Homosexuals?

ah, The Homosexuals. formed originally in 1972, these crazy cats took many cues from garage, surf, glam, and punk rock to create an angular and "arty" sound that went on to influence many a band out there. their sound was fresh and unique for their time period, but by today's standards these songs would sound pretty formula. there's a reason for that: they created the formula. with most songs clocking in around a minute and a half and with ridiculous esoteric lyrics, they were loved by the new-wave and punk crowds alike.

they were also pretty well known for their insane amounts of side-projects and spin off bands, probably about 25 bands in the late 70's and early 80's could be said to have a member of the Homosexuals in their ranks.

this is their collection cd of their lp and a few eps released in 2004 by recommended entitled "The Homosexuals CD." one of my all time favorite songs, "Kiss With Venom," should be put on repeat for a while after you download it.

won't you fall in love with a Homosexual?

The Homosexuals - The Homosexuals CD

time to get TOTALed

for today's dose of matthew bower, i bring you Total -Sky Blue Void. this release was recorded in 1993-1994 and was a big departure for bower at this time, where he was mostly just destroying minds with skullflower. to me it sounds like he was laying the basis for what would later become hototogisu, many undercurrents of static hums underneath the main focus, which tends to be the guitars. on this album, Bower is credited with playing "guitar, classical guitar, vacuum cleaner, metal, radios". that should give you an idea of what this might sound like. he is also joined by some guests, including one of richard youngs' favorite collaborators, Simon Wickham-Smith.

this is a great album and fucking hard to find. i kind of wish Bower had stuck with the Total project, it's an interesting departure for him, because instead of just trying to crack your skull with feedback he's trying to lull you with prettiness as well.

for fans of Bower's other bands, Family Underground, the noisier moments of Thuja, and the ring of New Zealand bands that also like to use vacuum cleaners as instruments (Dead C, Sandosz Lac Technicians, BCM, etc.)

Total - Sky Blue Void

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

the moon may be shrinking. but death's still not your friend

Wooden Shjips, one of the buzz-bands in the california psychedelic revival going on today, are fucking sweet. the singer may sound like jim morrison, and they may have an organ player, but trust me - they sound nothing like the doors. instead, they are a raw as fuck rough edged heavy psych group that relies as much on improvisation as compisition. fast becoming houshold names to those with good taste, these guys are tearing apart eardrums all across the states and crafting tunes that make you want to trip as well as boogie.

this is their highly limited 10" (which is reissued on their "Vol. 1" lp). it starts with the scorching track "Shrinking Moon For You," one of the rawest and most blown out recent psych tracks i've heard come out in a while. it sounds like they fried their amps and then recorded on a boombox (it's that good!). totally worth it just for that song alone.

Wooden Shjips - Shrinking Moon For You 10"

BORIS (no natasha here)

ah Boris. drone/psych/metalers that are all virtuosos at their instruments and who love to collaborate with people (and sometimes those collaborations are even good!). fucking crushingly heavy at times, others full of radiant beauty. but, they are absolutely at their best when dealing out loads of shimmering feedback, which is why i am posting this album (my favorite of their's), "Feedbacker." technically one long ass song, it is captivating and brilliant, showing that they can not only deal out the punishment, but also the beauty and still remain very japanese in sound. Wata shreds whenever she is not doling out walls of noise (a combination of an e-bow and boss feedbacker pedal does wonders!), Takeshi shreds that double necked geetar better than sting ever could dream of, and Atsuo is one of the most solid drummers i've ever seen/heard.

this is a document of the core trio at their very best. if you like this album, you can handle all their albums and collaborations (though some of the dronier stuff, like the sunn 0)) collabs will bore you).

oh, and don't bother watching the live dvd of this album/song. it's a great performance but it is shot terribly and cut together worse. it never stays on a single shot longer than 10 seconds and you never get to see any of the members really shred. it almost made me seasick when i watched it.

Boris - Feedbacker

in an emergency you can shit on a puerto rican whore

ah, harold pussy. i mean harry pussy. what a group. who couldn't fall in love with such a simple and primal concept? make as much noise as you can with your instruments as fast as possible. these guys and girl are probably some of the best at making terrifying and crazy loud grindcore-esque music without appealing to the grindcore crowd at all. seriously, unbelievably bombastic and ear-shredding loud, they alienated crowds and listeners alike for years, while carving out a small but dedicated niche of fans that loved them. how couldn't you? it's ineptitude at it's best, but they knew what they were doing with their instruments.

always offensive, never nice, and totally insane, without this band Black Dice wouldn't have known who to steal their early sound from.

for fans of Melt-Banana, west coast No-Wave bands (Coachwhips come to mind), insanity, and grindcore. HAVE FUN!

oh, and there's a Kraftwerk cover on this record too.

Harry Pussy - In An Emergency You Can Shit On A Puerto Rican Whore

circle around the forest people

there are a lot of bands out there that do the krautrock thing today, but really none of them recapture the spirit of the early 70's as well as the band Circle does. Hailing from finland (yay!), these gents really really channel Can and Harvester well, especially on this album ("Forest"). more recently they have been falling into the "NWOFHM" territory, mixing a little Judas Priest with their Can worship. Live, they are not to be missed (the one time i saw them my head was hurting by the time they took the stage so i really wasn't enjoying anymore, but knew they were insanely good. the other bands on the show were Urdog, Dead Meadow, and Sword Heaven.)

since they are channeling Can and Harvester remember one thing: repetition is key. this album can be a little tedious, but it pays off and is a very good listen.

for fans of the afore mentioned Can, Harvester, Finland, the more peaceful moments of Acid Mothers Temple, No Neck Blues Band, and many other free rock bands.

they have like 50 albums out. they gotta be doing something right, right?

Circle - Forest

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

mixtapes make your ears go sad

music has a lot of power. a certain song can stay with you for years simply because of where you hear it or what the situation is. some songs can bring you to tears with the first notes, others can make you laugh even when the song itself is sad. man's greatest emotional outlet is his voice, but the greatest way to let those emotions flow and be heard is music. heartbreak is probably the most common musical topic, i mean hell, there are genres named simply for the sadness of the music they encapsulate.

sad songs are my favorite type of music. i search for them, you know, misery loves company. it's uplifting in a way, to know that someone else is feeling the way you do and can put your emotions into an outlet so clearly and focussed. sad songs give me hope for better days, strange as that may sound.

here's probably the best mix i have made in years. it's not necessarily my favorite songs by the artists or even their best, but it flows as if each song was written to go with each other on this. get to downloading folks, and keep the tissues close.

"Hopelessness Of Youth"
1. GAS - untitled
2. The Microphones - The Moon (Song Islands version)
3. Ida - Post Prom Disorder (Post Marked Stamps version)
4. Linda Perhacs - Hey, Who Really Cares?
5. The Ivytree - White Sun
6. William Basinski - Because
7. Antony and the Johnsons - Bird Gehrl
8. Low - Tired
9. Pearls Before Swine - Our Lady
10. Golden Hotel - The Blame
11. Flashpapr - Please Think Of Me
12. Ilyas Ahmed - This Dust
13. Of - Voice Through A Cloud
14. Michael Gira - My Sister Said
15. A Silver Mount Zion - For Wanda
16. Tim Hecker - Incurably Optimistic

"Hopelessness Of Youth"

mixtapes make your ears go happy.

this is the first of two mixes i will be posting tonight. it's title is "For A Friend" because it is just that: for a friend. now, i don't necessarily mean one of mine (though it is), it can be for anyone. this is a great mix to make copies of and give to people for a few reasons: it's fairly accessable in content and sound, it's pretty fun and thoroughly enjoyable, and it's a great way to expose people to new bands and sounds that they may never have previously heard (and much easier than getting them to sit and listen to a whole album). so make a copy, or even better, MAKE YOUR OWN MIX and give it to someone you care about.

also, for those of you who may have downloaded my other mixes you will notice that this time i unified them and made the tags for one album so you can listen to the tracks in order without having to search your itunes (or whatever program) for each track. dumb dee dumb dumb.

"For A Friend" tracklisting:
1. Faust - It's a Rainy Day, Sunshine Girl
2. Hot Snakes - Braintrust
3. Sonic Youth - Junkie's Promise
4. Henry's Dress - (Title Forthcoming)
5. Cat Power - Rockets
6. Angels Of Light - New York Girls
7. Manitoba - Jacknuggeted
8. Hirsche Nicht Aufs Sofa - Das Dynamische Dreieck
9. Crystal Castles - 1991
10. 23 Skidoo - Coup De Grace
11. Alva Noto - Obi One (Edit XS Version)
12. Astral Social Club - untitled 6 (from #12)
13. Tim Hecker - Blood Rainbow
14. Charalambides - Lexington
15. Simon Finn - Very Close Friend
16. The Homosexuals - Kiss With Venom
17. Amon Duul II - Cerberus
18. Jack Rose - Spirits in the House

like i said, accessable. it's a great mix, full of a lot of my favorite songs by those artists, and it flows really well. give'er a spin (so to speak).

"For A Friend"
Part 1:
part 2:

finland, oh how i love thee...

and all the fucking weird folk music you sprout. it must be something about desolate winter landscapes that makes people want to record such personal and beautifully strange sounds.

Islaja is one of my favorite artists coming from the current crop of finnish free-folkers. being one of the more prominent voices from the scene, male or female, she crafts an otherworldly brand of folk that sounds as if fursaxa were backed by an orchestra playing children's instruments. this album, "Palaa Aurinkoon," is much more of a serious affair, unlike her cd "Meritie" which is much more light-hearted and fun seeming. this is dark, wistful, and lonesome music, much like the wintery lands she hails from. truly, this snow angel is capable of something most musicians wish to achieve: true catharsis and emotional range. her heart is in all of these songs, and it makes me want to cry a little bit.

absolutely stunning and crystalline in it's beauty, this album is the perfect soundtrack for a bitter cold cloudless winter's day. wonderful.

Islaja - Palaa Aurinkoon

verdigris will never grow on these sounds...

Hototogisu sure do make a loud bunch of noise for two people. this lp, "Robed In Verdigris" is testament to this. gone are the lulling sounds of early hototogisu light touches ("the white wind of autumn" is almost like easy listening), this release finds them sounding a lot like an amplified plane taking off. to me, that's a good thing. bower's guitar work is way in the forefront for much of the recording, with much knob twidling and static firing being done by basset. the recording is spacious and clear, so much so in fact that you can hear switches being flipped and objects being dropped. the din swirls and hums along on two long untitled tracks (how the hell would you name this shit anyhow? evil droning death skree #1?) someone once described this band as liquid heavy metal. i like that.

this sounds to me like bower is getting comfortable with feedback again, sounding much like late 80's skullflower with hive mind doing the backing drones. fucking awesome, huge, and ear-shattering. turn it the fuck up!

Hototogisu - Robed In Verdigris

lino hi, lino low

as requested, here is Vibracathedral Orchestra's "Lino Hi." this release is very tough to find, and as such is worth the trouble. it opens with scraping violins and flutes and bells tinkling and such as any other vibra cd, but this one has an early quality of a band finding it's stride with each other, each of the musicians seeming very at home with each other and able to improvise off each other well. the drone is in high effect here, with emphasis on the high. loads of static and feedback from one player overlaid by the melody of another person's playing and never sounding dull or contrived... this is the drone music of the gods, my friends. Vibracathedral have never once disappointed me, and i've heard all but 3 of their releases (anyone have the 10" puh-leaze!)

this isn't far off from releases like "Versatile Arab Chord Chart" or "Long Live The Weeds" (posted earlier here!). if you like anything by any of the musicians involved, the drone, or just plain out good gettin' high music, then check this shit out and feel the vibrations!
(sorry, no cover scans, but it's a pretty boring cover anyhow.)

Vibracathedral Orchestra - Lino Hi

Monday, December 15, 2008

good news for people who like good news

fuck you modest mouse.

anyway, there is a lot a cookin here at the killing time camp. first of all, there is going to be another blogee posting albums here, so there's gonna be a much greater diversity to appeal to a wider audience. the whole purpose of this blog is to spread good music to people who want it, and good music spans no genre.

also, to those of you who are already reading and loving and sending me flowers and get well candies i've got a whole slew of posts coming tomorrow including some requested vibracathedral and more hototogisu, as well as what i think is the best mix i've ever made. ever. so get set and pump up your nike's because you're gonna need the extra support to help hold all the good shit i've got coming to you.

and now here's a video from one of my very most favorite live bands ever: Sword Heaven. not only are they amazing live and recorded, they are the sweetest, nicest people ever and hibbz can swing a mean hula hoop.

(note: the sound quality isn't fucked up. i was at this show, this is what they sound like.)

burning stars and mockingbirds...

hototogisu means mockingbird... didn't know that, didja?

anyhoo, here's a noise fan's wet-dream team up, hototogisu and burning star core. i am a big fan of everything c. spencer yeh does, but i always think that his collaborations are better than his solo releases (he recently played with jandek and stole the show in my opinion.) this is the first cd (of two) of their collaborations, this one released on drone disco (spencer's label) and the other coming out on heavy blossom (hototogisu's label). this one is great, though it suffers from a murky recording that makes it pretty hard to distinguish what is what... it's all just one huge maelstrom of noise, a swirling howl that makes the violin and guitars almost indestinguishable.

basically, most of this release sounds like hototogisu with a drummer (the dude from hair police and eyes and arms of smoke), but it is capped off with a final freakout of a track that really kicks you in the face and lets you know that these boys and girl can mush your brains as well as grind your teeth.

if you've liked the noisier stuff on here, or are a fan of spencer or bower or basset, then get this.

Hototogisu and Burning Star Core - Drone Disco Fig. 87

bacon tomorrow

Harvester was a strange collective of musicians from the swedish lands. they went through four different names for their project (Parson Sound, International Harvester, Harvester, and finally Trad, Gras, & Stenar). focussing on having fun, their recordings sound more like parties than the usual prog that their contemporaries were releasing, having much more in common with a drum circle than emerson, lake, and palmer. because of this, they have a much more tribal and primordeal sound to their music, and that gives them a much more spiritual feel. it really sounds like someone turned a microphone on during one of this band's drug-fueled freak outs more than an actual recording session, with strange chanting, repetetive drum and bass lines, flutes and clatter, and an air so thick with smoke that you can hear it.

this album, "Hemat," is especially ethereal, with loads of indeterminate chanting and yelping, and a definite feeling of spiritual release going on with the musicians. it sounds really cathartic and intense.

for fans of Circle, Finnish Free-Folk (like Avarus, Kemialliset Ystavat, and Anaksimandros), and Krautrock bands (whom i think may have had a certain affinity with these guys more than most prog rockers.) oh, and they also got a mention on that ever-so-pretentious nurse with wound list.

awesome sturf.

Harvester - Hemat

that vibrating cathedral needs a sunroof!

how was everyone's weekend? mine was boring and lonesome. sniffle. anyhoo, enough about my mopey ass, you all want to get to the noize!
here' the Vibracathedral Orchestra / Sunroof! split put out by the lovely vhf records a while ago. i'm pretty certain it's oop, but if not you should run and grab it cause it's essential listening.

the cathedral lads and ladies are up to their usual drone and moan business, with loads of high-end violin scrape and random percussion clatter, but there seems to be a lot of singing on this recording, which isn't always a mainstay in the songs... if you are a fan of any of their releases, then you'll really dig it. really, they have never put out anything anyone could call remotely bad, and this release seems to be much more upbeat, mostly because of the ever-present percussion.

Sunroof! for those who are not "in the know" is matthew bower and whomsoever he decides to invite to play with him (richard youngs, neil campbell, tirath singh nirmala, the skaters, etc.) this project of his tends to be much less noisy than most of his other projects (skullflower, hototogisu, total, mirag, etc.) and more concerned with a melodic-sort of drone that carries you far into the high end, with drum-machine loops and singing bowls and loads of his usual distortion, but not in the usual blow your eardrums out fashion (though it's still loud as fuck!) this release sounds to me to be much akin to his cloudz cd or maybe ussa, not the intense wall of guitar skree to be found on silver bear mist (also on the spotless vhf, get it now.)

for fans of the drone for certain, this is a great split 2xcd and well worth your time.

Vibracathedral Orchestra / Sunroof! - Wings Over America 2xCD

Thursday, December 11, 2008

there's something droning in denmark...

Family Underground, a band of free-musicians hailing from denmark, are known for their releases being fairly hard to get. mostly putting out cd-rs or limited lp runs, this band is one that is tough to find, especially here in the u s of a. well, it's a good thing you got your old friend kills to help you out, eh?

this is their qbico lp entitled "Ancient Shadows." anyone familiar with the band will instantly recognize their clatter, a free noise drone scape that puts them into the same territory as bands GHQ, vibracathedral orchestra, the skaters, and double leopards. the drones scrape and blur, bend and shift, sounding cloudy and murky yet still fresh and exciting (well, as exciting as drone gets...). it's really no wonder that they mostly put out cd-rs, as this music tends towards that format, as i am certain that most of these "songs" are never performed again, each release is more of a time-period document than a set-list.

for fans of the aforementioned bands, the finnish free-folk scene, qbico records, my cat is an alien, and the noiseier moments of jackie-o motherfucker. definite good stuff, but not for everyone.

Family Underground: Ancient Shadows

oh, those glittering salon worlds...

more swirlies!

this is their 1996 cd "They Spent Their Wild Youthful Days In The Glittering World Of Salons," a much crunchier and more guitar oriented album than "Blonder...", which is saying something. this one draws a line much closer to Sonic Youth territory than "Blonder..." as well, with strange tunings and blurry guitar lines. but, the fun is still on a high level, with skits and nonsensical song titles. the band was really hitting their stride about this time, and this is my favorite album of their's. highlight tracks: "in harmony a new found freedom," "san cristobal de las casas," and "two girls kissing."

the world needs more bands like swirlies. we would all do a little better if we took ourselves less serious.

Swirlies: They Spent Their Wild Youthful Days In The Glittering World Of Salons

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

drifting off on the cloud of a dream i once dreamt...

sheesh, i'm poetic!

Once Dreamt were a one-off project of Windy & Carl and Fuxa members, a sort of dream-drone supergroup. this 1995 album is the only (i think) document of their existence, and boy, what a document. this is as good as you are hoping, a lush delicate wall of noise that shines and shimmers like the best of either band's recordings, but better somehow. shifting, weaving, and sparkling, the guitars are the definite focus, with Windy's understated vocals coming out of the din like a gust of wind during a warm spring rainstorm.

like windy & carl with drums, or Fuxa with better drones, this album will be a gem that fans of both bands will enjoy highly, or new-comers to the catalogues of either band will find to be a great introductory point. ultra rare, this is one of the albums Windy & Carl nuts dream about.


the knit separates

couldn't think of a better title... sorry.

the knit separates were a band centered around jason honea and glenn donaldson, both of later jewelled antler "fame." they released many singles and an album under this moniker. it was sort of a stripped down shoegaze sound, a more bedroom pop feel than the huge wall of guitars most bands went with. truly, this band found more in common with the bands of the blackbeanandplacentatapeclub (my favorite label of all time!) than of any other label, even doing a split lp with blackbean heart-throbs orange cake mix (who i will post some stuff from later, love em!). these fellas enjoyed minor success and were more well known for their post knit projects than this, but i think that these recordings stand on their own and are very solid, a sound of musicians finding themselves and learning who they are. members went on to be in such bands as (long deep breathe...) mirza, blithe sons, thuja, ivytree, birdtree, flying canyon, child readers, skygreen leopards, famous boating party, james bloodbeard, and probably like 5000 more...

if you like any of those bands, their track on the jewelled antler comp "windswept trees and houses," or lo-fi home recorded music, then check this shit out!

The Knit Separates: Swords, Then Diamonds

to keep you from crying, here's first utterance

see what i did there?
anyhoo, if you are a fan of psychedelic music, folk music, and things that are genuinely scary, then this post is for you.


yes, comus, a band from the uk in the late 1960's through about 1973 (though they played a show this year apparently) were the essential missing piece in the psych-folk puzzle. whether it was their angelic singing, virtuosic musicianship, or simply the disturbing lyrical content, this band has become legendary in the circles of obscure music everywhere. these guys and gals did the pagan folk thing better than anyone, but it wasn't just for show. they were serious! this album is almost totally about satan, rape, murder, prisons, and other highly disturbing topics. when they talk about killing christians it doesn't feel cheesy or tongue in cheek, it makes you wonder if they were the backing band to some secret pagan rituals out in the british countryside. and when singer Roger Wooten sings about getting shock treatment in a prison, you can actually believe him (rumors were he was actually institutionalized for a period in the 1960's).

this band is incredible. their influence is huge, bands ranging from opeth to current 93 have cited them as an influence, even david bowie was a fan. lacking much of modern recording technology and techniques, this album is otherworldly and terrifying at times to hear, with vocal echoes and seemless transitions that would require hours of overdubs now. this is probably the most necessary psychedelic folk album around, anyone who is a fan of the style should already know about this, but in case you don't it's time to learn.

a truly beautiful, strange, terrifying, spectral, and ethereal listen. light some candles, burn some incense, and make a sacrifice to your favorite diety, comus is here!

the first download is the 1971 album "First Utterance." the second is a reissue of the single for Diana, which includes two other songs from that recording session.

Comus: First Utterance

bonus 12"


ok kraut fans, here's another dose of tripped out hysteria from those whacky germans AMON DUUL II. this is my second favorite of their albums "Wolf City." why not post my favorite, "Yeti?" simple. you can find that on a million other blogs, but i have yet to see this one anywhere. this is their third album, and they had finely tuned themselves. gone are the long sprawling jams (which is actually a downside) but they replaced that with a folkier edge and a more experimental breadth. they were truly hitting their stride as a band, and i really think that this one and Yeti can be interchanged in my top spot. an incredible album all around, and definitely one for fans of the Kraut sound, prog rock, and pink floyd (they definitely tread into the early 70's floyd territory here.)

great album.

Amon Duul II: Wolf City

we all BELONG together...

(i couldn't resist, really)

ah, Belong. gauzy, deteriorating walls of guitar and keyboard, processed crumbling dreamscapes that are warm and hazy yet hopeless and lost. this is the music of decay. i love it. these two new orleansers are true masters of their craft, taking cues from other decay masters basinski, GAS, fennesz, and tim hecker, but crafting something completely their own. this music is much more organic than their glitchier counterparts (though their first album was falling more into fennesz glitch territory than the one posted here.), filled with a warmth and a humanity that makes me wonder why everyone in the world hasn't heard of them. truly, this is one of the most beautiful droney soundscapes you will ever hear, a true testiment to hot days, humidity, and ennui.

normally i wouldn't post something so recent, but the band themselves posted this on their myspace so i figured it would be ok-ish. this is their entry into table of elements radium series, a bunch of one sided lps that have amazing etching on the other side. this is my favorite of the lps thus far (and that's saying something, with artists like oren ambarchi and collections of colonies of bees being other featured artists), this is one long track (14:16) called "Same Places (Slow Version)" that sprawls and fades beautifully. it begs to be played loudly, so turn this fucker up, lay back, and let the drones take you to somewhere sad yet hopeful. it's rare that you can hear such emotion in a drone piece, but this one song really evokes a response that most bands only wish they can achieve, and these guys have only been doing this for about two years. i can't wait to hear more, and you should go and pick up their excellent ep (four covers!) and cd (titled october language). i'm pretty sure this album is out of print already.

this is, in my opinion, the best release of 2008. breathtaking, beautiful, and absolutely necessary for anyone who likes pretty music.

Belong: Same Places (Slow Version)

passing time, passing the distance

originally released in a very small quantity in 1970, Simon Finn's pass the distance lay in obscurity and was sort of a record for those in the know to brag about owning. sounding partially deranged, yet totally honest, finn's vocals remind me most of the charles manson lp that was released in the same year. oddly enough, both albums tread similar ground, but finn didn't start a death cult (to my knowledge, at least). both albums are folky in vibe, political, and feature mostly the named artist and his guitar. but, this album is very personal, the songs sounding more like a man pouring his brain out onto tape and desperately crying for an audience.

the highlight track is the song "Jerusalem," which has an air of utter desperation to it, with finn's voice getting a sort of rough edge as if he were almost yelling instead of singing the lyrics (pretty much because he is doing that). this album is incredible, really worthy of the cult status it achieved. in 2004 david tibet took it upon himself (with finn's permission, of course) to reissue this album on his durtro imprint, and i think it may have been reissued on vinyl this year... not certain though, because i haven't seen it.

this is a great album that will appeal to fans of late sixties folk artists like donovan (yes, donovan), and the current crop of freak-folkers (devendra banhart obviously loved this guy). finn tours occasionally, released a "new" cd a few years ago, and even appeared as a "member" of current 93 (though by now that band has had about 200 members, so really that doesn't mean a whole lot, but i still LOVE current 93.)

get it. you won't be sorry.

Simon Finn: Pass The Distance

Tuesday, December 9, 2008


yeah, i am nuts. i'm also on a bunch of painkillers. which causes which i wonder sometimes... chicken or egg so to speak.

anyhoo, this one is a little more of a downer, hence the title:

"seasonal affective"
1. Teenage Fanclub - Star Sign
2. Deerhunter - Lake Somerset
3. Women - Lawncare
4. Secret Stars - Haphazard Joy
5. Nurse With Wound - Ubu Noir
6. Swans - Where Does A Body End?
7. Ov - Song Inside The Bower
8. The Tallest Man On Earth - Into The Stream
9. Roy Montgomery - Rock, Sea, Muse, Seek
10. Hellvete - Vrouwe Des Kwaad
11. Velocity Girl - My Forgotten Favorite
12. No Age - Teen Creeps
13. Joshua - Lilac Moon White
14. Islaja - Pete P
15. Esmerine - Why She Swallows Bullets And Stones
16. Death Chants - Mush!
17. Skygreen Leopards - All Our Plagues Were Rainbows
18. Greg Malcolm - The Bells
19. Michael Gira - Servant Of God

a little of a downer, but still fun and lively. no duds on this one, i think. check 'er out!

yet again, in two parts for your downloading pleasure.

Seasonal Affective pt. 1:
Seasonal Affective pt. 2:

(as a sidenote, if you like some of the songs and want me to upload full albums i can do that, or at least let you know where to find them.)


i'm the only one excited about this i think... here's another mix. i don't know, i really like the idea of bloggers making mix cds/tapes/playlists for people to check out. you know, before this thing called the internet this was one of the best ways to find out about new music, and i have always been excited to get new mixes even if i have all the songs. so check it out, you may just like it!

this one is dubbed "waiting for summer" cause all these songs make me think of warm days...


1. All Girl Summer Fun Band - Later Operator
2. Sandpit - Helicopters
3. Broken Social Scene - Cause = Time
4. Swirlies - Pancake
5. Cloudland Canyon - Carolina Foxtail/Sea Chirp
6. The Lickets - Rabbit Moon
7. Es - Harmonia Rakkautta
8. Colleen - I'll Read You A Story
9. Microphones - I'll Not Contain You
10. Hot Chip - We're Looking For A Lot Of Love
11. Lovage - Sex (I'm A)
12. Olivia Tremor Control - A New Day
13. Can - Mother Sky

another very flowing mix, i think these songs compliment each other well and go together even better, but yet again, you be the judge! kids court! download and leave me feedback, if you like the mixes i'll make more!

broken into two parts for your downloading pleasure:

waiting for summer pt. 1:
waiting for summer pt. 2:

Monday, December 8, 2008

what to do about them...

a few years back my best friend died. he and i saw eye to eye on almost everything musically, but i didn't always check out the bands he told me to. after his death, his parents didn't know what to do with his large music collection, so i took most of it to dole out among his friends, sell some, and kept a large amount. one of the bands he was in love with that i knew nothing about was this little group from boston named Swirlies. i popped in a cd (the one down at the bottom of this post) and proceeded to shit my pants. poppy shoegazey goodness unlike anything i had ever heard! it was like the best moments of sonic youth melded with the fun of fellow boston-ites fat day (without the hardcore) and the HUGE guitars of my bloody valentine! i was hooked! i couldn't believe what i was hearing and wanted more, which i got. every single cd i found was incredible, even the techno remixes.

this is their cd entitled "blonder tongue audio baton," a fun little romp through pop-shoegaze territory that will leave you misty eyed and wanting more. the highlight is the noisey two-step hit "pancake," with it's uber-catchy "oooh ooooooh ooh oooohh!" final verse that will get caught in your head for the next, oh i don't know, seven years or so. it's been a mixtape stalwart of mine for years (finding it's way onto a mix i'll be posting in a little while as well) and i hope you love it as much as i do.

Swirlies: Blonder Tongue Audio Baton


so the first time i heard of Birchville Cat Motel was from my friend neil... he asked me if i was going to see them play at a local venue... i said i wasn't sure. i didn't go. this was a few years back, maybe 3 or more. a few weeks after the show i downloaded with maples ablaze... i started kicking myself then. how could i have missed something so beautiful yet so LOUD?!?! i was pissed at myself. i wrote a band off because of a weird name... dumb.

Birchville Cat Motel (now known to the world as "Our Love Will Destroy The World," which is the title of another incredible bcm cd...) is basically the astral projection of one man, Campbell Kneale. Mr. Kneale uses such things as feild recordings, pedals, guitars, laptops, contact mics, pieces of metal, and vacuum cleaners to make his music, which usually goes toward the dronier side of things (though not as a rule). his drones are warm washes of lush guitar, excrutiating swells of static, walls of delicate noise, and decaying waves of sonic light. if i had to choose one word to describe birchville cat motel it would be beautiful, whether it is the walls of high end skree or the warm lush blankets of drone, it is all beautiful and space-altering.

if you like drone, experimental, ambient, noise, black metal (yes, black metal), or any other type of music you really owe it to your soul to listen to everything by this wonderful project and you should all be sending mr. kneale buckets of cash so he can continue to pump out more of his incendiary and exciting slow music.

this is the album "Summer's Seething Pulse." it's a good starting place, but be warned: the songs ain't short. get real high, put it on, and watch as you float into a universe you never knew existed.

exceptional, amazing, and absolutely essential.

Birchville Cat Motel: Summer's Seething Pulse

sex, drugs, judaism, and health food?

YaHoWa 13... what a wild bunch. formed in the early 1970's (though their roots start earlier), they were the musical outlet of a group called the source foundation, a sort of sex/drug cult centered around a man who called himself father yod (yod in hebrew means hand, or more appropriately hand of god.) they holed themselves up in a california mansion doing the lord knows what, procreating, and recording absolutely amazing primal psychedelic/kraut music. one review i've read of this band stated that they were the closest thing in america to krautrock at the time... while i'm not sure they were the only band sounding like that, they sure as hell were fucking close to the sounds of Can, Amon Duul, Gomorrha, Brainticket, Grobschnit, etc. but they had a different message than many "cults" of the time. having more in common with early judaism, they never really preached to join them or give away all your possesions, the only purpose of their music was to praise god and their father and to open your mind to the outside forces that act on your everyday life. never being quite open about the drugs, there is definitely an obvious psychedelic influence (look at the front cover of contraction or the back cover of to the principles... if you doubt me.)

but lets get to the music... primal and inept at times, yet cutting and urgent in sound, this band centered around the chanting of father yod and his timpani, yet the churning and buzzsaw guitar of djinn aquarian is the usual focal point. there songs were usually sprawling and unstructured, mostly just jams, but for jams this band sure could kick em out! (plus 10 lameness points for the mc5 reference!) always threatening to fall apart, yet never quite getting there, this band was incredible simply because they came from nowhere and were shut off from the world, yet made such a primal and rocking psychedelic sound unlike the usual religious fare, which tends towards folk. truly unique and utterly strange, this band is positively necessary listening for anyone who likes krautrock, psychedelic music, and cult bands. for fans of acid mothers temple, any of the bands i mentioned before, and most of the early independent artists catalogue (13th floor elevators, monks, etc.)
for more info google the source or yahowa 13. the source foundation is still around, and they just released 2 "new" albums, one being unreleased yahowa 13 material and one being a new recording which i am dying to hear... anyone?

father yod died in the mid 70s from a hang gliding accident. how fucking awesome is that?

here are two albums, my two personal favorites (though of the 13 released, it's hard to pick a favorite sometimes...) 1974's "im gonna take you home" and 1975's "to the principles for the children"

yahowa 13 "i'm gonna take you home"

yahowa 13 "to the principles for the children"

minimalism at it's finest... sounds easy, right?

well it's not. it takes tons of talent to make a minimalist album that retains the listener's interest throughout. unlike drone albums, minimalism usually tends towards one or two notes or chords and makes some kind of "song" or structure of sound for you to listen to. la monte young, tony conrad, notably phil niblock, and (my personal favorite minimalist composer) charlemagne palestine.

usually focussing on the piano and the octave structures therein, charlemagne palestine crafts minimalist compositions that feel more like experiments in sound, yet are absolutely gorgeous. rarely will you find 3 or 4 notes so engaging. here is his 1973 album (which was reissued in 1996, good luck finding either issue for cheap...) "four manifestations on six elements." this album is organic and pleasent to the ear, like elevator music in the guggenheim or background music to a surrealist movie about shapes. breathtaking in it's simplicity, yet utterly complex in idea, this album will open your eyes to a world that shows you it's not how many notes you play, but what you do with them. essential listening for anyone who is into drone or experimental music.
he's released music on michael gira's young god label and has connections to current 93. amazing stuff, yet so simple.

charlemagne palestine: four manifestations on six elements

part 1:

part 2:

Saturday, December 6, 2008

a softer side of noise.... not really

so my roommate and i went to see wolf eyes a few years back and we had no idea who was openning for them. these two nordic goddesses wearing neckties and dress pants walked out onto stage and set up a table of ridiculous amounts of cords, knobs, clattery shit, and even a broken french horn and proceeded to shatter everyone in the building's mind with one of the most intense display's of harsh noise i have ever seen (and i've seen most of the "greats" many times, most being disappointing). truly, maja rattke has an uncanny ability with her bellows and shreiks, and sofie tafjord can twiddle some knobs like no other. their 10" is brilliant, and maja's solo vocal cd is amazing (i'll post it when i find it... it's in a box somewhere). in any case, they blew minds that night and my roomie and i didn't even stay for more than 5 minutes of wolf eyes... they were doing that billy bass shit and then connelly pulled out a guitar. wolf eyes doesn't have a guitar.

if you like harsh sounds a la wolf eyes, merzbow, emil beaulieu, prurient, or panicsville this'll be up your alley, but there are some industrial/power electronic moments that remind me of bands like bloodyminded or even nurse with wound at times (they shift in other songs and there is a strange stapleton-esque feeling at times... though fleeting).

don't listen to this if you have a headache.

fe-mail featuring lasse marhaug: all men are pigs

vibracathedral orchestra... what more can be said?


i really don't know what to say about this band of brits. ultra prolific, always spot on (i've heard something like 20 releases of their's and none have been stinkers.), the members record great stuff (astral social club, a band, anything mick flower touches), fuck even the almighty matthew bower does time in the band! psychedelic and experimental, their drones take hints from eastern music as well as european classical standards, but don't think it's classical music at all. these guys and gals can sure make one hell of a racket. clinking and clanking around at times, or focused and beaming a shot of ur-drone (yeah, i stole that term from aquarius but it sure as hell applies here) straight to your pleasure centers.

this cd is probably one of the better documents of the band's live sound around the early 2000's. it's rare as hell, being a self-released cd-r, so the only other place you're gonna find it is e-bay. burn baby burn.

vibracathedral orchestra: long live the weeds!

Another day, another lifetime...

The David lp... considered by some psychedelic collectors to be a "holy grail," but unlike some records that are just rare as hell and sought after because of that, this one is actually worthy of the praise. This album differed from the usual psychedlia of the late 60's, in that it didn't focus only on the fuzz facotr but on the actual structure and notes. beautiful at times, but still retaining a rough edge, this album really is worthy of the stature it has gained. influential as hell on most of the pop crowd (elephant 6 bands love this shit), and cited by today's modern psych crowds as a classic lp you never heard. for fans of the aforementioned elephant 6 crowd, aphrodite's child (hell, vangelis in general), bands like Love and Quicksilver Messenger Service, hell even the Beatles... ugh.

heavy (at times, though not really how you might think of heavy), poppy, orchestral, and just plain rockin', this album is a genre bending destroyer of worlds and you owe it to yourself to check it out.
the david: another day, another lifetime

Friday, December 5, 2008

and to finish the day, CAN videos!

ok, i'm pretty certain that i'm gonna talk about this band a lot on here. CAN rules all. without CAN there would be nothing. ok, maybe that's a bit of an overstatement, but CAN are quite possibly one of the most important bands EVER. influential in so many ways and areas, this band pioneered the kraut sound, paved the way for bands like this heat, circle, pretty much any drone band, and even made it onto the NWW list! WOW!

not convinced? check out these videos. the first is for the song "Mushroom" off the incredible album Tago Mago (which there are hundreds of reissues of, go pick them up now!). another of those weird post-communist german television videos, it makes you wonder what damo suzuki was singing about...

next is a live performance of the song "Mother Sky" (my favorite of the early CAN material), performed on a german talk show. watch the audience's reaction to what is happening. priceless.

heavy blossomming noise (get it?)

ah, marcia basset. how we love thee. UN, Double Leopards, Hototogisu, Zaimph, GHQ, and who knows what others... this lady knows how to make some crazy noise. don't forget steve gunn, who releases cd-rs under the moniker moongang, and pete nolan tears the skins in magik markers.

here's a ltd. cd-r put out by heavy blossom a few years back entitled "la poesia visiva". it's an intense forray into the psyche of the three members (marcia basset, steve gunn, pete nolan), consisting of clatterring objects, random electronic hums and buzzes, violin scrapings, deep organ drones, accoustic guitars, throaty wordless singing, harmoniums, and other esoterica that makes this a much less noisey affair than one may expect, but don't let that fool you. the lack of harsh noise means that the drones are more earthy and organic, drones you can feel in your chest as well as soul. turn this puppy up, the recording quality isn't the absolute best.

for fans of any of the member's other bands. this shit is gold.

ghq: la poesia visiva

there and gone in a flash...

ah flashpapr. slo-core at it's finest, in my opinion (besides the almighty ida, who lends a member to flashpapr, and, of course, low.) this band was pretty much a side-project of one mr. fred thomas, who sings and plays guitar on these songs. fred also did time in the wonderful band lovesick as well as being a main member of saturday looks good to me, but i think this is his best project. these songs are personal, heartfelt, and sad (though hopeful).

the highlight of the album is the song "free rides on the bus" which is a happy jaunty number that truly capsulizes a hazy summer day riding the bus with a friend and just having not a care in the world. the rest of the album is much less upbeat, though no less good. fred's warbly voice lends a charm to these songs that would make them sound half-hearted if sung by someone else, and the overall folky vibe is fresh compared to the other earlier flashpapr albums. this is no lo-fi affair, however, these songs are recorded crystal clear and beautiful, which is quite a difference from slgtm (which tends to go towards a blown out, bedroom sound).

sad songs that make me long for summer... this cd means a lot to me, and i really hope you all download it and cherish it as much as i do.

this cd gets my highest recommendation and it's a crime that no one knew of them when they were around (are they still around? the website hasn't been updated since '04)
flashpapr s/t

more from the mountain (AMT!)

so you are sitting in your room staring at a wall and seeing purlple indecipherable words jump out at you. you open your eyes a little wider and see the lines between the real and non-real, fractal images of reality. quickly you wonder if your brain is melting or if you are just on drugs... then you pick up your guitar and make a wonderful splatter of progressive acid-fried goodness.

i figure that must be pretty much the daily routine for anyone in acid mothers temple. here's some more sounds of their's to fry your brain, a tour cd from the 2003 tour. this cd features no actual acid mothers temple songs! on it is a different solo version of "pink lady lemonade" done by kawabata, a track from tsurubami (kawabata on guitar, higashi on bass, and emi nobuko as drummer), and a track from a project called "pardons" which is hiroshi higashi and cotton casino both on synthesizers. this cd is pretty out there, but the pink lady lemonade version is worth the download alone. ultra limited, you won't find this many other places!

acid mothers temple: soul collective tour 2003

california california...

ah residual echoes... i remember when their second lp came out someone in a record store i was in picked it up and looked at it. he asked me if i knew anything about the band cause he liked the cover art. i told him "if comets on fire were a shoegaze band." i think that was a pretty good description, personally.

this album, however is a little different. it relys on more of a folk element than blown out loudness, though the rock outs are definitely there. these four songs are sprawling and long, with accoustic and electric moments. altogether, though, i think that it is a fantastic album (ep?) and definitely worth listening to, especially if you are a fan of comets on fire, the holy mountain catalogue (wooden shjips, mammatus, etc.), blue cheer, amon duul II, etc... it was a vinyl only release (i think?) and came on thick ass smokey-clear vinyl. pretty certain it's long OOP, so here's your chance!

check it out!

residual echoes: mfigbsp

Friday, November 28, 2008

germany strikes back

to add another axis power to this blog, here's a video of amon duul II. don't know em? go get their earth shattering, genre defining album "Yeti" if you can, there's an awesome cd reissue floating around, though i think it's out of print. the vinyl is a bit hard to come by. this band helped in creating a sound that most would call progressive rock, but those "in the know" would refer to as "krautrock" or "komische music." an offshoot of the much drone-ier and seminal german band amon duul, amon duul II just wanted to rock out instead of drone out. and rock they did. 12-string guitar, violin, knob twidling, and an insanely great drummer. they also got themselves a mention on the uber pretentious (but awesome) resource of unknown music: the nurse with wound list (check it out, tons of bands you have never heard of and much of it is incredible, more on that another time). check the groovy psychedelic video shit. this came from german television, they would run music videos after hours. oh, the post-communist bloc must have been a strange place.

the japs do it better...

it's true. japanese people do everything right (except porno, that's usually just weird. who wants to see a live eel coming out of a girl? ewww.). don't beleive me? listen to their music. the best noise comes from japan (keiji haino, hanatarash, hijokoidan, massona, etc.), uh... BOREDOMS, the almighty BORIS, classic bands like flied egg and flower travelling band (satori is one of the best albums ever. ever.), japanese hardcore (there is an awesome band called DEFIANCE OF SHITBASTARDS! COME ON!), j-pop of all sorts, and of course the current batch of psych bands pouring out of japan, centered around one of the truly greatest and most prolific bands of that genre, the all powerful acid mothers temple. mysterious and elusive, it seems like their sole purpose is to do drugs and record ridiculous amounts of music followed by short spurts of touring. if you get the chance to see them, do it. doesn't matter if you like the style, they are bombastic, spontaneous, and incredible live. you never know if your gonna get a set of scorchers (like "blue velvet blues" or "mammary intercourse") or if kawabata makoto (the shamanistic guitar playing guru centerpiece of the band) is going to serenade you with his shimmering walls of beauty as in these videos shot live at terrastock 7 a few years ago. check em out.

(ok, apparently youtube no longer has the second part of this video. so here's a different amt vid. stick past the throat singing (which is sweet by the way) and wait till the song. watch hiroshi higashi (the guy in the hat) go nuts. the other guitar player is kawabata, he freaks out near the end.)

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Introduction of sorts

so, you all may be wondering something about me?

tough, it's an anonymous blog.

but, you may be wondering about the music i post here. well, not all of it will be folk. i plan to span the gammut, you know, everything i can think of. obscurity will be the focal point, since it's easier to not get shut down that way. so plan on some of this stuff being things you haven't heard of, and some being things you know well. i don't like no crap. only good stuff here.

of course, good is a subjective opinion, so you may not like everything. tough.

to give you a teaser, here's a mix of stuff i got on this computer. sorry, since this is a different computer than my own (mine's in the shop. this is my parent's. like i said, broken leg. living with mommy and daddy till i heal. fuck off!), i don't have everything so this mix isn't very diverse, but i like it a lot.

here's the tracklisting:

01: Grinderman - No Pussy Blues
02: Amon Duul II - Jailhouse Frog
03: Swirlies - In Harmony New Found Freedom
04: Liars - There's Always Room On The Broom
05: Slowdive - When The Sun Hits
06: Black Moth Super Rainbow - Smog In Cities
07: Es - Twenty-Five Twenty-Five
08: Hala Strana - Cutting Durmast
09: Charles Manson - People Say I'm No Good / Cardboard Houses
10: Jandek - Down In A Mirror
11: Swans - Black Eyed Dog (Live)
12: Fursaxa - Cle Elum
13: Aidan Baker & Tim Hecker - Hymn To The Idea Of Night
14: Ilyas Ahmed - Black Midas
15: The Ivytree - Churches
16: The Knit Separates - Journey To Love
17: Windy & Carl - Living Things And Ghosts
18: A Silver Mount Zion - For Wanda

so yeah, diverse (sort of). starts out rockin, goes all folky, drones out, then finishes all sadlike, but it flows all good 'n shit. give 'er a listen, you may like it. i'll post other mixes later too. i like em, not enough blogs do this. MIXTAPE INTERNETS!

uh... enjoy?

(split into two parts for your downloading pleasure)