Friday, August 15, 2014

EIS Review: Love Among The Mannequins "My Uncle's Ball of Lightning Will Put an End to Your Warped Psychology"

Love Among The Mannequins
My Uncle's Ball of Lightning Will Put an End to Your Warped Psychology
Sonic Anhedonic Recording Company; 2014
Review by Cameron Stewart

According to Love Among The Mannequins, My Uncle’s Ball of Lightning Will Put An End To Your Warped Psychology was inspired by The Three Christs of Ypsilanti. In practice, the EP functions more as a sonic rendering of the schizophrenic experience with concrete imagery drawn from Rokeach’s study/manipulation of three men convinced that they were Jesus Christ.

Love Among The Mannequins accentuates the psychotic switch between reality and insanity with song structures that go from pretty to dark and quiet to loud with little to no warning. “Dr. Domino…” wanders its way in with delicately plucked acoustic guitar before a dissonant hiccup unleashes a flurry of fuzz and cymbal slams. “My Name’s Benson Clyde…” delivers its verses with a rhythmic, near spoken voice before leaping into a chorus of gang vocals. These elements never entirely leave the mix, but wait patiently for their turn in the spotlight: glassy guitars hide under hefty, heavy chords and harsh harmonic feedback stabs at the quieter parts from a safe distance.

My Uncle’s Ball of Lightning… makes frequent use of scratchy, distant recordings as introductions, transitions, and conclusions. Despite ranging from a sarcastic rendition of “My Country Tis of Thee” to a reverberating PA announcement, they consistently paint a haunted, disintegrating air. The wide-eyed, anxiously paranoid droning whispers of “Joseph Cassel” and “Madame Yeti Woman” occupy a space somewhere between Swans’ torture dungeons and Sonic Youth’s grimy, decayed streets.

Throughout the EP, Love Among Mannequins keeps an instrumental sound that mixes the Cribs’ crunchy melodic chords with At The Drive-In’s hurried, angular snarl. Despite running between each extreme of its possibilities, My Uncle’s Ball of Lightning… consistently delivers a solid brand of fuzzy British rock that doesn’t let itself be ignored.

EIS Review: Ringo Deathstarr "God's Dream"

Ringo Deathstarr
God's Dream
Noyes Records; 2014
Review by Stephen Pierce

I read somewhere that Ringo Deathstarr isn't in love with the idea of being referred to as a shoegaze band. Well, yeah. I wouldn't be either, especially if I were drawing from as vast a sonic palette as they do - it just seems so reductive; so restrictive. So, to get it out of the way: Let's not cage this in as a shoegaze record. Whatever that even means in 2014.

Maybe you're familiar with Ringo Deathstarr's last full-length, Mauve. Maybe your expectations are tempered by what you thought you knew of the band at play on that one - mine were. Mauve, being an incredibly varied record with huge guitars and mountains of effects, had as much violence to it as it did beauty, most eloquently stated in the balancing act of its first song, "Rip". More than anything on that much-beloved record, "Rip" set the expectations that Deathstarr completely burned down on God's Dream. The guitars are bigger, the drums punch with brass knuckles, and the vocals are delivered with a greater confidence. It ebbs and flows in vibe and tone, while retaining a wholeness; a union. For a record that jumps around quite a bit between different sounds and ideas, it's a super cohesive and immensely powerful statement.

Let's talk about how varied a record it is: you have the all-out guitar attack that forgets all the bullshit of 90s radio and hones right in on the most evocative and visceral material of that era on "Chainsaw Mornings" and "Nowhere," juxtaposed neatly around the slowdown of "Shut Your Eyes," a delicate drone-pop respite, the calm before the storm of "Romantic Comedy," possibly Deathstarr's most hammer-on-nail moment of their existence thus far.

The balance of abrasion and melody is still very much present - take, for instance, the titular track and album highlight "God's Dream." Alex Gehring's layered, reverbed-out vocals segue into a scorching noise lead, reminiscent of the noises Ira Kaplan's guitar makes that make my coworkers cringe when a YLT freakout comes on at work. Seamlessly and without losing any steam or momentum, the vocals come back in and the dreamscape washes over you again. The song - and really, the album as a whole - is disorienting and loud, grounded in a poppy narcotic haze.

The "dream" motif suggested in the title is only appropriate: the record hits at times like a dream, others like a nightmare, and mostly like a fever dream. There's a distinct other-worldliness throughout. You may find that, after repeat listenings, you will find yourself still amazed and surprised at times by where God's Dream ends up.

Windhand Debut "Orchard" Video + Tour Dates

[press release] Richmond psyche-doom practitioners WINDHAND have revealed a video for the track “Orchard” from their sophomore full-length Soma. The video which was compiled by Jordan Vance can be viewed via Revolver Magazine and via YouTube below.

The band has also announced an Australian/New Zealand tour with Beastwars this October. These dates mark the bands first time in the region and will immediately follow their three week run of headlining North American tour dates with psychedelic Nashville outift, All Them Witches plus Jex Thoth and Ilsa on select dates. The band has also been hand picked as openers for the legendary SLEEP’s sold out show in Philadelphia on August 26th and as a headliner for this year’s Day of the Shred Fest in Santa Ana, CA along with Red Fang, Weedeater, Graves at Sea and many more. 2014 has already seen the band traverse North America and Europe with Relapse label-mates Inter Arma and Indian including appearances at SXSW, Maryland Deathfest, and Roadburn. A complete listing of dates is included below.

WINDHAND's latest album Soma, which is out now on Relapse Records and has received praises from NPR, Pitchfork, MetalSucks, Decibel, Spin, Stereogum and many more. Stream Soma via Bandcamp HERE. The band has been writing new material for their next full-length and will be playing new songs on the road.

Windhand Tour Dates:

Aug 24 Richmond, VA Strange Matter*
Aug 26 Philadelphia PA Union Transfer w/ Sleep [SOLD OUT]
Aug 27 Washington DC Black Cat w/ Disciples of Christ & The Citadel (members of Ilsa)
Sep 04 Baltimore, MD The Ottobar*
Sep 05 Pittsburgh, PA 31st Pub*
Sep 06 Akron, OH Musica*
Sep 07 Columbus, OH The Basement*
Sep 08 Indianapolis, IN Melody Inn
Sep 09 Iowa City, IA Gabe's*
Sep 10 Chicago, IL Cobra w/ Jex Thoth*
Sep 11 Minneapolis, MN Triple Rock w/ Jex Thoth*
Sep 12 Milwaukee, WI Metal Grill w/ Jex Thoth*
Sep 13 Ferndale, MI Loving Touch*
Sep 14 Toronto, ON Coda*
Sep 16 Ottawa, ON Cafe Dekcuf*
Sep 17 Montreal, QC Petit Campus*
Sep 18 Cambridge, MA Middle East (upstairs) w/ Ilsa*
Sep 19 Providence, RI AS220 w/ Ilsa*
Sep 20 Brooklyn, NY Saint Vitus w/ Elder & Ilsa*
Sep 26 Austin, TX Red 7 (Outdoors) w/ Dead Meadow, Harsh Toke*
Oct 02 Brisbane, AU Crowbar^
Oct 03 Sydney, AU Hermann’s Bar^
Oct 04 Melbourne, AU Yah Yah’s^
Oct 05 Melbourne, AU The Tote^
Oct 08 Christchurch, NZ Dux Live w/ The Hex Waves^
Oct 09 Dunedin, NZ Chick’s Hotel w/ Space Bats, Attack!^
Oct 10 Wellington, NZ San Fran w/ Mermaidens^
Oct 11 Auckland, NZ King’s Arms w/ Greenfog^
Nov 01 Santa Ana, CA Day of the Shred @ The Observator

* w/ All Them Witches
^ w/ Beastwars

Zorch Cover The Beatles + Announce Tour Dates

[press release] Austin, TX hyper-kinetic duo Zorch premiere their B-side/outtake of The Beatles' "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band (Reprise)" recorded for the Flaming Lips' upcoming tribute to that album, titled With A Little Help From My Fwends. Zorch's initial contribution of the album track "Good Morning, Good Morning" will be on the final release, but Lips frontman Wayne Coyne also later asked the band to record 2 additional songs. By the time the duo submitted this song, several other artists had also covered it. Some form of those recordings will make the final cut. With Coyne's blessing, Zorch's rendition of "Sgt. Pepper's..." is available to hear and share via SPIN (or below).

This track features guest vocals in which every syllable of the lyrics has a different combination of voices, which never repeats. Vocalists are: Holland Andrews (AU, Like A Villian), Emma Ruth Rundle (Marriages, Red Sparowes), Karla Manzur (Dana Falconberry, Alejandro Escovedo), Ben Aqua, Rich Aucoin and Zorch drummer/singer Sam Chown.

Zorch once again hit the road later this month for a set of North American tour dates, which includes a run with Fujiya & Miyagi. The duo also plays Fun Fun Fun Fest in their hometown in November. Please see complete dates below.

Zorch recently premiered a live in-studio performance video via Earmilk. The dual perspective clip for album track "Zut Alors" is available to watch/share HERE. And, a high quality multi-camera live video from SXSW 2014 of the band's "We All Die Young" is available to watch/share HERE.

The band's full length debut Zzoorrcchh was released on CD, LP and download via Sargent House on July 23rd, 2013.

ZORCH LIVE:

08/21 Dallas, TX @ Sons of Hermann Hall w/ El Ten Eleven
08/27 St. Louis, MO @ The Livery
08/28 Chicago. IL @ The Burlington Bar
08/29 Pontiac, MI @ the Pike Room *
08/30 Toronto, ON @ Lee's Palace *
08/31 Montreal, QC @ La Vitrola*
09/03 Boston, MA @ Brighton Music Hall *
09/04 Washington DC @ Rock And Roll Hotel *
09/05 Philadelphia, PA @ Johnny Brenda's *
09/06 Brooklyn, NY @ Brooklyn Bowl *
09/08 Richmond, VA @ Gallery 5 Arts
09/09 Nashville, TN @ Queen Avenue
09/10 Texarkana, TX @ The Silver Dollar
09/28 Dallas, TX @ Index Fest
11/08 Austin, TX @ Fun Fun Fun Fest

* w/ Fujiya & Miyagi

...Trail of Dead Ready "IX" For November Release

[press release] …And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead is thrilled to announce the November 11th US release of their ninth full-length studio album aptly titled IX. The new album, which was produced by long-time collaborator Chris “Frenchie” Smith at Sonic Ranch Studio in Texas, will be released on October 20th in Europe where …Trail of Dead recently announced a run of tour dates. The EU trek kicks off on November 3rd and has the band on the road through Thanksgiving. In addition, …And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead is revealing the album’s intricate and stunning cover art (courtesy of Trail’s very own Conrad Keely) via a digital jigsaw puzzle. Fans can head HERE and piece together the album artwork.

When asked about the new album, the band had this to say:

From the crowded streets of Phnom Penh to the vast empty landscape of West Texas... we have cut through... burned through... and followed through to reach you... From the heat of the desert... to the heat of your city's sprawling squall... This transmission is here to transport and ruin you. It is the release of your mortal coil... Just let the rain wash it away from the mountains... down to the motherfucking sea... wash it away... blow it all away and check this moment out.

On the upcoming European run …And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead will be joined by Canada’s Your Favorite Enemies as well as Midnight Masses – a band featuring and formed by Autry Fulbright and Jason Reece of …And You Will Know Us By The Trail of Dead. Midnight Masses released their debut album Departures at the end of July and the fall run will be the band’s live European debut. You can check out the Midnight Masses video for “Broken Mirrors” (featuring Haley Dekle of Dirty Projectors) HERE.

This fall European tour comes on the heels of an extremely successful Spring US tour that had …And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead playing seminal album Source Tags & Codes in its entirety and the new album, IX is the follow up to the band’s critically acclaimed 2012 LP release Lost Songs. Look out for more news in the coming weeks!

All Confirmed EU Dates Below:

03-Nov Germany, Marburg - KFZ
04-Nov Switzerland, Bern Reitschule-Dachstock
05-Nov Switzerland, Winterthur - Salzhaus
06-Nov Switzerland, Luzern - Konzerthaus Schuur
07-Nov Austria, Linz - ahoi! Pop Festival (Posthof)
08-Nov Switzerland, Laufen - Biomill
09-Nov Germany, Munich - Ampere
10-Nov Germany, Berlin - Bi Nuu
11-Nov Germany, Hamburg - Knust
12-Nov Germany, Cologne - Gebaude 9
14-Nov UK, Glasgow – The Art School
15-Nov UK, Coventry - Kasbah
16-Nov UK, Manchester - Ruby Lounge
17-Nov UK, London - Dingwalls
20-Nov Germany, Hannover - Café Glocksee
21-Nov Germany, Bielefeld – Forum
22-Nov Netherlands, Eindhoven - Speedfest
23-Nov Belgium, Brussels - VK
24-Nov France, Paris - La Maroquinerie

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Fugazi to Release "First Demo" This Winter

[dischord.com] Later this year, Dischord will release Fugazi’s First Demo.

In January 1988, after only ten shows, Fugazi decided to go into Inner Ear Studio to see what their music sounded like on tape. They tracked 11 songs, ten of which were ultimately dubbed to cassette tape and distributed free at shows, with the band encouraging people to share the recording.

The only song from the session that has been formally released was “In Defense of Humans,” which appeared on the State of the Union compilation in 1989. Now, some 26 years later, Dischord is releasing the entire demo including the one song (“Turn Off Your Guns”) that wasn’t included on the original cassette. The record has been mastered by TJ Lipple and will be available on CD and LP+Mp3.

This release will also coincide with the completion of the initial round of uploads to the Fugazi Live Series website. Launched in 2011, the site now includes information and details on all of Fugazi’s 1000+ live performances and makes available close to 900 concert recordings that were documented by the band and the public.

Bedhead Ready "1992-1998" Box Set For November Release

[press release] The complete studio recordings of Dallas, Texas, slow-core pioneers Bedhead are finally being reissued on vinyl, both as stand-alone albums, and as part of a gorgeous box set (direct to consumer only and limited to 2000). This comes to you from who else but Numero Group, on November 11th. Every cymbal crash, guitar brush, and whisper can be heard across five LPs or four compact discs.

The deluxe box includes WhatFunLifeWas, Beheaded, Transaction De Novo, and an additional disc (2xLP in the vinyl box) overflowing with singles, EPs, and outtakes, alongside a perfect bound book dissecting the quintet's nervous slouch through the '90s.

Watch a preview of Bedhead: 1992 - 1998 below. Pre-order the box set HERE.

"I met them in full flower, in the depths of their mania, pursuing contemplative music with the kind of intensity normally found in psychopaths. No detail was too small to sweat, no crack in the veneer not worth gluing and clamping. We built a common language, equal parts philosophy, rock music, and disdain for the dullness around us." - Steve Albini, on recording Transaction De Novo

WhatFunLifeWas

Liferaft
Haywire
Bedside Table
The Unpredictable Landlord
Crushing
Unfinished
Powder
Foaming Love
To The Ground
Living Well
Wind Down

Beheaded

Beheaded
The Rest Of The Day
Left Behind
What's Missing
Smoke
Burned Out
Roman Candle
Withdraw
Felo De Se
Lares and Penates
Losing Memories

Transaction De Novo

Exhume
More Than Ever
Parade
Half-Thought
Extramundane
Forgetting
Lepidoptera
Psychosomatica
The Present

Singles/B-Sides/Etc.

Heizahobit
Dead Language
What I'm Here For
Disorder
The Dark Ages
Inhume
Any Life
Bedside Table (7" version)
Living Well (7" version)
The Rest Of The Day (7" version)
I'm Not Here
Intents and Purposes
Golden Brown
Leper

EIS Review: BLUFFING "Sugar Coated Pills of Wisdom"

BLUFFING
Sugar Coated Pills of Wisdom
PaperCup Music; 2014
Review by Emilio Herce

The songs on BLUFFING’s Sugar Coated Pills of Wisdom seem to disappear before they leave a dent, but you wake up with bite marks, and know that you’ve been infected. This is ostensibly what the band, consisting of the two core songwriters Olivia Drusin and J Boxer (on guitar and drums respectively, they share vocal duties pretty evenly), is aiming for, but it’s only with repeat listens (not a major feat, considering that the entire thing clocks in at under 18 minutes) that you'll understand why Sugar Coated is so virulent. The ten songs on the EP are short but maximalist. They never quite cross over into cagey claustrophobia, but live on that precipice, each one a glorious interplay of trim guitar and delirious vocal harmonies on top of machine gun ride patterns and sharp snare patter. The songs are pithy and spry, a myriad of ebbs and accents which I’d compare to leaves in a gust, swirling and eddying upwards, except for moments, no more than a second or so, which are left relatively empty for the notes to fall where they may before they’re swept up again in a fury.

My favorite songs on the album come towards the end, conversely the love song “Salad,” (“Make me a salad of all your favorite vegetables around / I’ll make you dinner so you know that my love is true,” a closer approximation of what love is than 99% of songs that make the attempt) and “O.B.E," which opens with the heartbreaker “One day I won’t even know you anymore,” the only true thing that can be said about most relationships. Sugar coated these pills are not, though there’s also no histrionic bent, no foray into disillusionment and disappointment, which along with the tempo and furiousness at which these musicians play, is sometimes a marker of this usually angst-ridden genre. Instead the album speaks plainly to the pangs of coming “adulthood,” and that entire, mostly nebulous period. This isn’t to say that the album isn’t fun, at times mindlessly so. The slinky, sharp turns on “Circles,” make the song almost a skateboard trick, and “Tonka Toy” perfectly captures a child-like, single-minded fascination, if with a more mature retrospect.

BLUFFING wears its influences on its sleeve, and this initially worried me. It is obvious Sugar Coated Pills of Wisdom is an attempt to take the “pop song” formula and re-purpose it. These fears were unfounded. This is a band successfully playing with form, “playing” being the operative term. Though fully aware of what they’re doing, they never intellectualize the genre, and the songs remain loose and enjoyable. I can describe the feeling of the record akin to that third cup of coffee, a certain, semi-elated buzzing of the blood for no reason whatever, but certainly not a placebo effect.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

EIS Review: Warehouse "Tesseract"

Warehouse
Tesseract
Self Released; 2014
Review by Cameron Stewart.

Tesseract opens with “Figure in Bronze” as guitars shimmer in the foreground while a diaphanous mist of oohs and ahhs creeps into the mix. This ambiance eventually envelops the listener, but pretty as it is, it’s far from representative of what the album has in store. High-hat eighth notes start, followed by jagged chords that gradually turn the mood in a brooding and sinister direction.

Warehouse’s temperament tangentially recalls the Dead Kennedys. Vocals transition from vibrato to gruff screaming, but without the sardonic goofiness. Both bands take punk’s speed and general hostility, but eschew its simplicity in favor of musicianship and influences from a variety of other genres. Post-punk, jazz, bossa nova, and art rock grate against one another in a mixture of disjointed tonality. “Heterochromia” finds itself ending in Branca-esque deconstruction, while “Omission” opens with new-wave rhythmic interplay. Their sound isn't noisy or distorted per say, but it does have a perilous, sharp-toothed edge.

Lyrics, when I could make them out, dealt with existential angst curated by self-aware uncertainties. Musically, the compositions tend to skirt any rosy crest of resolution, leaning away from conclusion and toward ambiguity and dissonance. Watching the band perform live, I got the impression that songs were written only in regard to bare progression, leaving plenty of space and opportunity for members to willfully explore non-choreographed possibilities. Tesseract is very much the product of a band far less concerned with offering definitive answers than continuing the journey. Thus far, it’s been a graceful excursion through dissimilar influences, all coalesced in a knotty, barbed package.

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Teardrop Factory Ready Full Length Debut "Thrash in the Heart" For September

[press release] Picking up from where they left off with last year's much-loved Topshop EP, Brighton based duo, Teardrop Factory have returned with their debut album, Thrash In The Heart [pre-order]. The album falls into existence in a swirling haze of broken sleep, streams of consciousness and teen despondency.

Lead track, '3am Coke Dream' is the album's prelude; an indulgent lo-fi number that oozes with grit and scuzz, highlighting the entire creative journey and setting the tone for the record, literally and musically. Thrash In The Heart was made at home by the band and recorded in their bathroom, then mixed with Julian Tardo (Church Rd Studios / Bowlegs) and finally, mastered with MJ (Hookworms) at Suburban Home.

The band also started their UK tour with Soft Walls this weekend, playing at Canterbury, Manchester, Leeds, London and Brighton:

3rd August - Leeds, Brudenell Social Club w/ Soft Walls
8th August - London, The Shacklewell Arms w/ Soft Walls & Feature
9th August - Brighton, The Prince Albert w/ Soft Walls, Feature & visuals from Innerstrings Psychedelic Lightshow

Thrash In The Heart will be released on 15th September via Faux Discx.

"Buoyed by a shattered, fuzzed up guitar riff and pounding, Mo Tucker style drums, there are subtle pop moments hidden beneath [3AM Coke Dream]'s black stare." - Clash

"They’re already winning approval from the DIY scene and surely with a brand of scuzzy summer rock, they’re deserving of plenty more." - DIY

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Ex-Breathers Debut "Pocket" from Upcoming "EXBX" EP + Tour Dates

[press release] Tallahassee, Florida's Ex-Breathers are getting ready to release their new EP, EXBX, a brash, chaotic, and explosive 12 tracks that roar by in just under 12 minutes. It's safe to say the hardcore/punk trio is wasting no time. Every last twist and turn of their punk meets math rock meets hardcore sound is well crafted and delivered with an enormous fury and destructive perfection. This is not your typical hardcore band. Ex-Breathers are far more than that and EXBX is a dynamic record with skull crushing riffs that demand repeat listening. The EP will be released on October 7th via Texas Is Funny Records (Hawks (of Holy Rosary), Glish, Vetter Kids). EXBX is the follow up to the band's triumphantly harsh self released full length debut Collision.

Today, Stereogum are sharing Ex-Breather's first new single "Pocket" together with the bands tour dates (see below for complete dates). Stereogum called the song, "44 seconds of charging guitars, David Yow-influenced yelps, and still plenty of unpredictable twists and turns," while comparing the brevity of the EP to recent punk favorites White Lung and Perfect Pussy.

Ex-Breathers are kicking off a two week tour starting today, July 31st with Birmingham, AL's Deism that will take their explosive live show from Alabama up to Brooklyn and back down to Florida. Ex-Breathers are a band that truly needs to be seen live. Having formed in early 2011, and sharing influences of hardworking punk luminaries Minutemen, Fugazi, and Husker Du, the trio have played well over 200 shows in the past few years throughout the country including packed audiences at The Fest and Macrock Festival. There is a great DIY scene of punk bands emerging from Tallahassee, and Ex-Breathers are leading the way, one blistering riff at a time.

Tour Dates:

07/31 Birmingham, AL @ The Forge w/ SLUR & Withheld*
08/01 Columbia, SC @ New Brookland w/ fk mt*
08/02 Harrisonburg, VA @ Spaghetti World w/ Yellow King*
08/03 Washington DC @ TBA*
08/04 Philadelphia, PA @ Golden Tea House w/ The Weaks & Sneeze*
08/05 New Brunswick, NJ @ Circuit City nbnj*
08/06 Brooklyn, NY @ Death by Audio w/ Sneeze & Vulture Shit*
08/07 Baltimore, MD @ Keith House w/ Hive Bent, CP/M, & Birth (Defects)*
08/08 Richmond, VA @ Haus Addy w/ Springtime, Brief Lives, Cross Eyed*
08/09 Asheville, NC @ Skanktuary*
08/10 Rock Hill, SC @ Piss Mansion*
08/11 Panama City, FL @ A&M Theatre
08/13 New Orleans, LA @ TBA
08/14 Pensacola, FL @ Sluggos

* w/ Deism

Ex-Breathers is:
Jack Vermillion - Bass/Vocals
Adam Berkowitz - Drums
David Settle - Guitars/Vocals

Ex-Breathers - EXBX
October 7, 2014
Texas Is Funny Records

1. Big Hand
2. Want
3. Pocket
4. Invisible Man
5. Stuck
6. Hang
7. Off On
8. Flowers
9. Void
10. JC
11. Auto-Correct
12. Drop

Ausmuteants Debut "Freedom of Information," Announce New Album + Tour Dates

[wonderingsound.com] On their debut album, Australia’s Ausmuteants sounded like an even more deranged Devo, combining hyperactive synths with panicked vocals and barbed-wire tangles of guitar for a net effect that was as harrowing as a runaway roller coaster. They’ve maintained all of that mania on the blistering “Freedom of Information,” while ramping up the aggression. The guitars have longer fangs, and the synths feel razorlike and menacing. The song has the merciless chug as Suicide’s “Ghost Rider,” but its more tense and anxious — right up until the moment it explodes at the halfway mark.

The track is taken from the group’s forthcoming Order Of Operation, which will be issued in the U.S. by the always-excellent Goner Records. As if all that isn’t enough, the group will be supporting the record with a U.S. tour, which, if it’s even a fraction as manic as their records, is not to be missed. Stream “Freedom of Information” below, and scroll down for U.S. tour dates.

Ausmuteants US Tour Dates:

9/20 – Tempe, AZ @ 51west w/ Detached Objects, Womb Tomb, Blanche Beach
9/23 – Austin, TX @ Beerland
9/24 – New Orleans, LA @ Saturn Bar w/ Buck Biloxi and the Fucks
9/25 – Memphis, TN @ GONERFEST 11 w/ Grifters, Radioactivity, So Cow, Golden Pelicans, Ross Johnson’s ‘Like Flies On Sherbert’ Revue
9/26 – Louisville, KY @ Cropped Out Fest
9/29 – Durham, NC @ Duke Coffeehouse
9/30 – Philadelphia, PA @ Johnny Brenda’s w/ Dan’l Boone, Lantern
10/1 – Boston, MA @ Midway Cafe
10/2 – Brooklyn, NY @ Death By Audio
10/4 – Detroit, MI @ PJ’s Lager House w/ Odonis Odonis
10/5 – Chicago, IL @ The Owl
10/6 – St. Louis, MO @ Melt w/ Lumpy & the Dumpers
10/7 – Minneapolis, MN @ Hexagon w/ Real Numbers
10/10 – Portland, OR @ Dante’s w/ King Khan & BBQ Show
10/11 – Seattle, WA @ The Crocodile w/ King Khan & BBQ Show
10/15 – San Francisco, CA @ Hemlock Tavern
10/17 – Los Angeles, CA @ The Smell

PC Worship Ready New Album "Social Rust" + Share New Single

[press release] PC Worship announces new album, Social Rust, out September 9th on Northern Spy Records (digital, CD) and Dull Tools (vinyl). Pre-orders are available HERE.

After a trifecta of mind-blowing junk-fi albums thick with an intrepid cocktail of revelatory, detuned guitar interplay and Noise music-influenced clatter, PC Worship, the nascent Brooklyn-based collective, is taking its staunchly DIY, experimentally-minded art-rock to the next level.

Social Rust, PC Worship’s fourth LP to date and Northern Spy Records debut, may very well be the closest this innovative quartet, led by multi-instrumentalist Justin Frye, has gotten to the conventional rock formula. But don’t be alarmed—PC Worship has, by no means, abandoned its inherent avant-gardist roots. In fact, Social Rust portends a familial group hell bent on blending its own vision of fully realized songcraft and contagious melodicism into its trademark chaotic din. And on Social Rust, PC Worship effortlessly accomplish just that, demonstrating why they are at the forefront of the underground warehouse and loft space landscape in New York City.

Frye, mirroring his band’s schizophrenic leanings while waxing poetic with a dark humored touch, says this about Social Rust:

Wow 6 months down the drain
dogs wrapped in chains
went to da carribean,
recorded an LP
it's about how when you lose your sheen, you still gain the green

Notwithstanding Frye’s tongue-in-cheek jargon, Social Rust doesn’t qualify as a sell-out, nor was it recorded in “da carribean.” Fittingly, Frye and his crew assembled inside the spacious environs of downtown Brooklyn experimental/jazz hub Roulette on the same day as the Super Bowl in 2014. The end result shows PC Worship putting to tape the perfect amalgam: the raw, ubiquitous noise heard on its previous output still intact but rife with the No Wave leanings of Rhys Chatham and Glenn Branca, Flipper and Butthole Surfers’ gloriously messy punk rock, the screeching jams of White Light/White Heat-period Velvet Underground and the mangled Americana folk of Bill Orcutt. Meanwhile, Frye pilots the ship with a lazy, yet poetic, whine reminiscent of Thurston Moore and Jim Reid of The Jesus & Mary Chain.

A little background for those neophytes entering PC Worship’s otherworld: Frye first hatched PC Worship as a home-recorded solo project but has since steadily morphed his vision into a collective of studied musicians and improvisers, with Michael Etten, Jordan Bernstein & Shannon Sigley as the core unit and an array of dystopian instrumentalists often showing up to jam on Bongos, circuit bent electronics or any number of horns, all of whom have resided at the Bushwick neo-recital hall "Le Wallet" and, ultimately, forming a full-on, proper band as heard on Social Rust. If you've been present at DIY underground shows in Brooklyn and beyond, chances are you've been exposed to PC Worship’s shambolic brilliance.

PC Worship stand at the threshold of many worlds, yet they operate at the center of their own pantheon and without abandon. They are crucial eclectics, distinct in sound and consistently adventurous. Like Sun Ra, PC Worship transmit alien, helter-skelter sounds seemingly from another universe—a truly rare trait these days.

On Social Rust, PC Worship is:
Justin Frye - vocals, guitars, tape manipulation and piano
Michael Etten - guitars, sax
Jordan Bernstein - bass
Shannon Sigley - drums, vocals

With additional contributions by:
Pat Spadine, Mario Maggio, Billy Bratt, Jessica Papitto, Adam Markiewicz, Nathan "Squis" Whipple, Boston Bongo Dan

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Quick Notes: Bad History Month, Baked, Rivergazer + The Lees of Memory

*[bostonhassle.com] Sean/Jeff heaves a sizable mass of his potent and singular existential melancholy in our direction once more, this one set to video. BAD HISTORY MONTH is the moniker he has used since his guitar playing in the duo FAT HISTORY MONTH ceased. It’s also an FHM album title. His is not a straight line.

But who the fuck wants a straight line? What we have is the video for “Staring At My Hands” from BAD HISTORY MONTH’s split LP with DUST FROM 1000 YEARS. They call it FAMOUS CIGARETTES and it was recently released by heavy duty rock champions EXPLODING IN SOUND (and was recently written up Hassle-like by James Moore). Everyone involved is kind enough to allow us to premier the video. And so here we are.

The song is a stunner. Sean/Jeff lays down a strange path of song, chopped and spliced solo voice and guitar, crunchy ambient electronics, nude piano, shambling indie rock, serious riffage… it’s all so seamlessly woven together, that once you step back to scope the whole for its pieces, it’s almost revelatory. The many different colored threads used to create this patchwork shouldn’t make as much sense as it does. But it does. Oh it does! And throughout Jeff/Sean further weaves in his lessons and stories and the other mis-remembered ephemera that constitute the poetry of truly one of Boston’s finest in that department. Shades of Phil Elverum lurk here yes, but that’s only because he’s one of the few that have traveled any kind of comparable musical path, or at least that’s all that I have to communicate to you some small part about what this music is and does.

A haunting and dreamlike pop thing that gets me on the perfect day for its grey approach. The guitar sounds and vocals sound so great here. Boston’s very cool MONDO FIASCO video crew created the draining video above which I must say works so incredibly well for this song. More precisely that would be Ethan Long and Adric Gilesthat filmed the video, under strict artistic direction of Jeffery Meffery. I feel… good.



*[thefader.com] On August 19th, Exploding In Sound—the off-kilter rock label that has released projects from bands like Krill and Porches.—will put out the new full-length from Brooklyn five-piece Baked. It’s called Debt, and album cut “Codec” has traces of warm, old-school psych delirium. There’s a cloudy-eyed, slacker edge to its production (I mean, the band’s Facebook URL is We-Are-Baked), but it’s also a very melodically sharp and compositionally sound piece of rock music. “I wrote Codec in 2010 while I was living in an apartment in Rye, NY,” says guitar player and vocalist RJ Gordon over e-mail. “The lyrics are about the peaks and troughs of interpersonal relationships and the excitement and terror of life in flux.” Listen to it below, and catch Baked’s Debt release show at Shea Stadium in Brooklyn on August 22nd; that lineup also includes Porches. and Celestial Shore [EIS note: and Ovlov and Bueno].



Pre-order Debt HERE. The first 150 copies are on "milky clear" vinyl.

*[wonderingsound.com] “Lonely,” from the New York band Rivergazer (led by Kevin Farrant of Porches.) opens like a haunted house mariachi. A single, wiry guitar line works its was slowly up the scale, jutting and darting at odd angles. When Farrant enters, it’s not to chase the dark away — it’s to add to it. “I am not afraid of anyone/ all I worry about is my own ego,” he croons. “So go kiss your best friend on the mouth/ it doesn’t make a difference anymore.” The song progresses from there, a melancholy lullaby full of eerie minor-key instrumentation and backing choirs that enter and vanish without warning. The net effect is absolutely hypnotizing. “All of my friends are all lonely,” Farrant laments midway through. The song is the perfect encapsulation of that rare, inconsolable sadness.

Random Nostalgia will be released by Father/Daughter Records on August 12. Pre-Order HERE.



*[press release] Just a few weeks after SideOneDummy announced the pressing of Superdrag’s quintessential headphone album Head Trip In Every Key on vinyl for the first time ever, the Los Angeles-based independent label is happy to announce the signing of The Lees Of Memory. Formed by John Davis and Brandon Fisher of Superdrag, The Lees Of Memory is the kind of happenstance project that is born solely of the individual members fusing their creativity together at the exact right moment. SideOneDummy will release the band’s debut LP Sisyphus Says on digital/vinyl September 16, with Burger Records releasing the cassette version the same day.

Today, Stereogum is premiering the video for the first offering from the record, an atmospheric wall of sound entitled “We Are Siamese," which you can watch below.

Produced by Grammy-winner Nick Raskulinecz (Foo Fighters, Alice In Chains, Deftones), Sisyphus Says stands with the best of Davis and Fisher's past work... and points the way to a very bright future. Sometimes blanketed in a dense fog of swooning Jazzmasters and Jaguars, channeling Twin Peaks with ancient samplers powered by floppy disks, the songs on Sisyphus Says are pierced through with keening melodies and rich with harmonic colors. The lead single "We Are Siamese" is a sterling example. Elsewhere, thick slabs of guitar put down live on the tracking floor with Nick Slack's drums are layered over with lush organs, synths, pianos, pedal steel, Taurus pedals, 12-strings, a whole kitchen sink of sound anchored by John Davis' fuzzy electric bass--and topped with a veneer of breathy, heart-on-the-sleeve vocals drenched in reverb.

Purling Hiss Debut "Learning Slowly" + Tour Dates

[press release] The time has come to unlearn what you thought you knew and relearn the weirdness of Purling Hiss. The Hiss returns with the bliss of "Learning Slowly," the epic guitar-slangin' masterpiece off the new collection of songs, Weirdon. Upfront guitars and drums shine through the 5 minutes of windows-down, steering-wheel slapping jouissance. It's a pure laconic anthem in the tradition of all those unnameable guitar wizards (unnameable because comparisons are for suckers). Add Mike Polizze to the list, maybe with a bullet and in bold. Weirdon is out September 23rd on Drag City.

Also, remember those unnameable guitar heroes mentioned above? Ok, we'll dish, one of them is J Mascis, who Hiss will support on some select dates in late September. Following that will be a co-headline tour with the mighty Meatbodies (Mikal Cronin band, Fuzz), so the opportunities to see the Power of the Purling will be a-plenty with more in the making.

PURLING HISS TOUR DATES:

Wed. Sept. 24 - Hamden, CT @ The Ballroom at Outerspace w/ J Mascis
Thu. Sept. 25 - Philadelphia, PA @ World Cafe Live w/ J Mascis
Fri. Sept. 26 - Baltimore, MD @ OttoBar w/ J Mascis
Sat. Sept. 27 - Chapel Hill, NC @ Local 506 w/ J Mascis
Sun. Sept. 28 - Asheville, NC @ Grey Eagle Tavern w/ J Mascis
Tue. Oct. 21 - Kingston, NY @ BSP Lounge w/ Meatbodies
Thu. Oct. 23 - Brooklyn, NY @ CMJ
Fri. Oct. 24 - Brooklyn, NY @ CMJ
Sat. Oct. 25 - Toronto, ON @ Silver Dollar w/ Meatbodies
Sun. Oct. 26 - Montreal, QC @ Il Motore w/ Meatbodies
Tue. Oct. 28 - Allston, MA @ Great Scott w/ Meatbodies
Sun. Nov. 2 - Richmond, VA @ Strange Matter w/ together PANGEA, AJ Davila, Mozes and the Firstborn
Wed. Nov. 5 - Atlanta, GA @ 529 w/ Meatbodies
Thu. Nov. 6 - Nashville, TN @ The End w/ Meatbodies
Fri. Nov. 7 - New Orleans, LA @ Siberia w/ Meatbodies
Sat. Nov. 8 - Austin, TX @ FFF Nites w/ Meatbodies