a weekly digest from the staff and contributors of brainwashed
V06I37 - 09212003
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Not only is it going up half-way through the week, but it's about a half-sized brain. Sorry for delays and we'll try better next week!
dresden dolls release party on friday
The Dresden Dolls celebrate the release of their debut full-length album at the Paradise Rock Club on Friday, September 26th. Also scheduled to appear are Count Zero, World/Inferno Friendship Society, Eugene Mirman, Les Freres Corbusier and visual installations by The Empire S.N.A.F.U. Restoration Project and Michael Pope. Try and get your tickets in advance cos it will most likely sell out.
lpd lineup changes (again?)
The Legendary Pink Dots were deeply saddened by the departure of Martijn de Kleer and Bert Nijmeier in Spring 2003. Martijn, who originally joined the band back in 1991, wants to concentrate on making folk music and on playing shows in and around his home town of Nijmegen. Bert maintained the Pink Dots merchandising stall and operated the lighting console over the last few years. For Bert it was simply the time for a change. He is presently looking for openings in theatre companies in The Netherlands . The new face in the Pink Dots belongs to Erik Drost. Erik endured a real baptism of fire performing in front of a packed house in Moscow last August. Erik had never played outside his home town before this debut with The Dots, and spectators could be forgiven for thinking that the blood on his guitar at the end of the show was the result of heavily chewed fingernails. More detailed information is available at the LPD website.
diamanda double double release announced
From the Mute web site:
Defixiones, Will and Testament
La Serpenta Canta
Two Double Album Releases - Out 24th November 2003
Plus Rare Live Dates in London and Glasgow - October/November
Diamanda Galás releases two double albums on 24th November, her first releases since 1998's Malediction and Prayer. For both of these albums, Galás continues her forensic acts of identifying long buried hurts.
One, Defixiones, Will And Testament, investigates the little known Armenian, Assyrian and Greek genocides carried out by Turkey between 1914 and 1923, with the singer articulating the anger and sorrow of the dispossessed through the words of exiled poets and writers alongside her own texts. La Serpenta Canta (aka The Serpent Sings) is a song recital recruiting blues, R&B, Motown, southern soul, Country & Western and her own "Baby's Insane" (from This Sporting Life, her duo album with John Paul Jones) in Galás's ongoing campaign against forgetting. Between the two albums, Galás covers a whole lotta dying ground in a babel of languages (Defixiones alone sets poems by Belgian writer Henri Michaux, Romanian-Jewish Paul Celan, Italian filmmaker Pier Paolo Pasolini, French symbolist Gérard Nerval, Peruvian Cesar Vallejo, Armenian Siamanto, Syrian Adonis, Assyrian poet-martyr Dr Freidoun Bet-Oraham and more) and traditions spanning Eastern Orthodox liturgy, American roots and the rembetika songs of Greece and Asia Minor.
Both sets are sung by Galás accompanying herself on piano, tape and a minimum of electronics, though you'd be forgiven for thinking that there are more of her out there coming at you from all sides, as her formidable voice rises to its full power and rattles the walls with its reverberating echoes. "My voice," she said in 1988, "was given to me as an instrument of inspiration for my friends, and a tool of torture and destruction to my enemies. An instrument of truth." With its much-touted three and a half octave range, Galás's voice is the most powerful weapon in her self-designed musical armoury.
Diamanda Galás will perform Defixiones, Will And Testament on Friday 17th October at the Royal Festival Hall in London as part of their Mind Your Head 2003 - Exploring new meanings in Sacred Music series.
A second date has been announced on Sunday 2nd November at Glasgow's Royal Concert Hall as part of the city's Glasgay Festival. Frenzy: Concert For Aileen Wuornos is dedicated to Wuornos, who was executed on death row last year. The performance will include new arrangements of Galás' older recordings, plus songs from the new album La Serpenta Canta as well as brand new songs.
Friday 17th October - Defixiones, Will and Testament
8.00pm at Royal Festival Hall, London. Tickets available from the Box Office: 020 7960 4242 or book online at rfh.org.uk
Sunday 2nd November - Frenzy: Concert for Aileen Wuornos
8.00pm at Royal Concert Hall, Glasgow. For ticket information, check www.glasgay.co.uk - 0141 353 8000
After nearly ten years of releasing music, Trans Am still find a way to make their music original and their shows fun. The Brain caught words with each of the three members on June 14th of this year, downstairs at the Middle East in Cambridge, MA.
26 Minutes, Quicktime Streaming Video
- A current web browser
- A modern computer
- The latest quicktime plugin for streaming media (hint: use the latest Netscape if other browsers aren't working)
- A fast connection
- A willingness to learn
If you see a blank window without anything streaming, don't complain to us. You don't have the latest version of Quicktime for streaming media. Go download it. It's free.
|MUSIC IN REVIEW|
MATMOS, "THE CIVIL WAR"
Upon first listen, The Civil War sounds completely unlike anything I've ever heard from Matmos. Initially, it is quite a struggle to place this new album in context with their previous work, which is characterized by minutely detailed electronica full of samples constructed from non-musical objects and field recordings. In stark contrast, most of the tracks on The Civil War are non-conceptual, traditionally structured songs with easily digestible melodies and chord progressions. Many of the medieval, folk and symphonic instruments on this album reach the listener untouched, without the usual precise surgical edits and digital processing that Drew Daniel and MC Schmidt have built their career on. This will be quite a shock for those who have become acquainted with Matmos through albums such as Quasi Objects and A Chance to Cut is a Chance to Cure. Even The West, though it was purportedly an exploration of country and blues, still shared the same fascination with sample-derived audio minutiae. So, it's fair to say that The Civil War is quite a departure. Luckily, the gamble pays off. I believe The Civil War is a singularly original record, effortlessly merging the medievalist whimsy of late-60's British folk revivalism with the collective unconscious of America's folk music past, all glued together with Matmos' incredible ear for sonic detail. On The Civil War, Matmos dares to allow simple melodies and crisply reproduced instruments to assert themselves as the primary element of the music. For the most part, Matmos have masked any obvious laptop editing and sequencing, preferring instead to let the digital processing underscore and accentuate the songs, rather than deconstruct them. Drew Daniel and MC Schmidt have spoken about the influence of The Incredible String Band on the new album. With classic albums like The Hangman's Beautiful Daughter and Wee Tam, the Incredibles created a new musical lexicon with their unorthodox, free-form combinations of medieval, Celtic, American, Oriental and Indian folk traditions, which were blended with amazing fluidity and imbued with a pastoral, psychedelic mysticism all its own. With The Civil War, Matmos are creating an ISB-like amalgam for the post-techno generation. "Regicide" opens the album, a lovely tribute to "Chinese White," the opening track to the Incredible's 5000 Spirits or the Layers of the Onion - a hurdy-gurdy drone highlighted by a stately recorder melody and gently fingerpicked acoustic guitar. "Zealous Order of Candied Knights" is a rollicking Rennaisance symphony complete with horn fanfare, courtly drumming and some curiously Appalachain fiddle playing courtesy of guest Blevin Blectum. Throughout the album, instrumental tropes of the American Civil War are resurrected, along with the incongruous drone of synthesizers, including a vintage Buchla expertly played by Keith Fullerton Whitman AKA Hrvatski. These compositions have a free-form looseness, gradually finding themselves within the chaos, morphing into bright, patriotic concertos for piano and electric guitar, or gentle acoustic tributes to John Fahey or John Renbourn. The disarming "YTTE" utilizes samples from a fireworks display, expanding into a shimmering symphony of chimes, autoharp and guitar. "For the Trees" is the repeated musical motif of the album, a sweet, loping melody redolent of a breezy Fourth of July picnic. "The Stars and Stripes Forever" is an odd pastiche on John Philip Souza's patriotic marching-band classic, mixing a sampled instrumental rendition with throbbing beats. "Pelt and Holler" is constructed entirely from samples derived from a rabbit pelt, and as such is the only time Matmos engage their well-known propensity for constructing music from microcosmic sound events. After this brief tangent, Matmos tune into the British folk influence again, this time on "The Struggle Against Unreality Begins," where a majestic steel guitar melody is subtly intensified by sampled sewer pipe, blood and glass. Matmos' unexpected cultural cross-germination of folk traditions has yielded an album of exquisite beauty, an album that on repeated listens becomes more complex even as it affirms its simplicity. The Civil War is simply amazing. - Jonathan Dean
Guapo/Cerberus Shoal, "The Ducks and Drakes of,..."
North East Indie
Guapo have a reputation as instrumental prog artists that evoke a variety of influences to produce ambient structures that are known to cross the ten-minute mark. Cerberus Shoal are no stranger to long pieces with myriad styles themselves, and their collaborations of late with a wide array of artists have done more for their palette than can be measured. For the third in the Shoal's split-EP series, both of these left-of-center bands contribute tracks over sixteen minutes and then a third of the same stature is created from their tracks. It is the longest, most freeform and ethereal release in the series, and in places the most impressive and frightening. Guapo's solo piece, "Idios Kosmos," is a wall of sound dirge of guitar, cello, and electronics that swells and expands like a lung: taking in air and using it, then pausing before taking in the air again. There seems to be nothing that will distinguish it for the first ten minutes, and the quality changes to a crashing plane's whine. Then, the lung springs a leak, and the inner processes and air spill out in a whirlwind of pounding percussion. It takes a while to get where it's going, but the track is ultimately fulfilling. Ceberus Shoal's track, "A Man Who Loved Holes," is a chilling piece with no rhythm or structure, with scattered passages of singing and a ghostly voice that passses from one speaker to the next and back again. Prose and poetry are recited, eerie sound effects escape and intertwine, and everything maintains an evil calm. The Shoal have approached this kind of strangeness in the past, but never this extended madness with little music to speak of. It's confusing while fascinating, and worth a listen even though it is clearly not for everyone. The third track, billed as Guaperus Shoalo, is an appropriate puree of both tracks, with ambient and eerie vocals converging before mighty percussion and electronic whines. It is the most collaborative song on these EPs so far, and eclipses both previous tracks in its atmosphere and bizarre melody. As they continue with this series, the material from both artists gets stranger and stranger, but also more collaborative, as each artist seems to feed more off of what the Shoal is putting out and vice versa. - Rob Devlin
T. RAUMSCHMIERE, "RADIO BLACKOUT"
NovaMute / Shitkatapult
Marco Haas, founder of Berlin's Shitkatapult label and the man behind T. Raumschmiere, has become somewhat notorious for his uniquely crowd-pleasing, fist-pumping techno. On last year's The Great Rock n' Roll Swindle, Haas delivered a record filled with raucous, repetitive party jams that dared to bring some sorely-needed fun into the German minimal scene. Haas' merging of gutter punk and arena rock to the comparatively academic world of microhouse and minimal techno was a revelation, and an idea whose time had come. Not since The KLF unleashed The White Room a decade ago have I heard such beautifully simple, slam-dancing, stadium rave beats. T. Raumschmiere's new album certainly does not disappoint, meeting and exceeding the bar set by his previous work. Radio Blackout is a willfully dumb, loud and aggressive album full of rave-up anthems, like the IDM version of Andrew WK, or better yet, a Kompakt Records tribute to Gary Glitter's "Rock N' Roll Part 2." T. Raumschmiere wants us to rock out hard, and he's channeling the memories of all those Nitzer Ebb and Front 242 records he listened to as a teenager, rolling out 11 big, dirty punk-electro jams. Just try not to jump up and tear the roof off when the concussive beats and big chunky power chords of "Monstertruckdriver" hit you across the face. Miss Kittin, the Eurotrash club girl whose unpleasant monotone has graced so many electroclash records, provides vocals for the album's first big 12" single "The Game is Not Over." It's unrelentingly awesome, weirdly reminiscent of 70's-era glam-rock anthems like Slade's "Cum On Feel the Noize." Actually, glam rock is a very illustrative comparison, as Marco Haas, like T. Rex and Kiss before him, prefers to concentrate on surface concerns, rather than depth or encoded meaning. Everything you need to experience in T. Raumschmiere's rave-rock is floating right on top. Inside is just an empty husk, devoid of meaning other than that initial aesthetic thrill. Depending on the listeners sensibilities, this is either a critique or a recommendation. Ultimately, the vapidity that makes T. Raumschmiere's brash techno so appealing also gives rise to that cold, empty feeling that sets in after a few listens. - Jonathan Dean
Oren Ambarchi and Martin Ng, "Vigil"
I had a very tough time making it all the way through "Vigil." For this album, Ambarchi and Martin Ng (a guitarist and a turntablist, respectively, though no instruments are listed here) let some feedback drift aimlessly for an hour across four tracks, each track only slightly more eventful than the last. The irritatingly piercing, mid-volume feedback that comprises most of the sonic conent here is punctuated every so often by a bell-like chime, which seems to decay into more feedback... but feedback is such a transparent and uncompelling sound that it resists pure listening. Events are obviously not the point here, but even non-event with substanceless sound has been done more effectively already (Otomo Yoshihide and Sachiko M's Filament live album leaps to mind, as does Sukora's "Tower") and it's a point that doesn't demand being made more than once. I don't feel challenged by "Vigil"s icy restraint, just bored. If there is anything subtle happening with the composition here (I don't believe that there is), it went right past me as I struggled past the ambivalence of the sounds used. The only (relatively) interesting section is the fourth and final track, in which the bass swells a bit. I can't recommend that, though, since it's such a meager reward after the hour that's passed. I found "Vigil" to be merely tedious, a real let-down from two guys whose other work I so look forward to hearing. There are some Tina Frank videos on this disc as well, comprised of some shapes and lines moving around... also, not terribly compelling. - Howard Stelzer
Alexander McGregor, "Part One: Aguirre Returns"
The liner notes make a convincing argument that this record is not autobiographical or escapist or even existential; it is "political without the pulpit." I'm not entirely sure what that means but what I do know is that in the twenty-eight or so minutes that this record runs I am completely held in its hands and give away all my thought to it. It's simple in a haunting way. Alexander McGregor plays nearly every instrument so that they don't just produce notes and melodies: they become an extension of his voice and his lyrics whether they be muddled or quite clear. There is a sense of awe and wonder in each song that is established by way of contrasting melodies, basic production, and the combination of Latin sounds with more familiar rock n' roll feelings. It's a hard aura to pin down. It's surreal and at the same time something that isn't so alien that it becomes void or nullified by its strangeness. But enough of that: the music is fun, too. The opening sounds of "Calibrate" are formless and unidentifiable but somehow serve as the perfect introduction to the wavering, watery, and druggy "No Nine." Drinking a very fine wine and watching a troupe of dancers seems an entirely appropriate activity to accompany this song and at the same time it has an incredibly romantic horn solo that brings to mind thoughts of making love. "Nothing Wrong" is a simple acoustic guitar piece that somehow captures an ideal of innocence through its lyrics and sighing vocals. The center lyrics, "I don't know about you lil' girl / But there's nothing wrong / Nothing wrong with me," are of a kind that manage to be uplifting, resentful, and hurt at the same time; it's a truly human song that I've become more and more fond of as I've listened to it. The closer, "Making Movies," combines all of the elements of the previous songs and adds overdubs on the vocals, flute, and what I think is a cello to the mix. It's a dramatic and lilting end and serves as the perfect way to end a night. Part of the beauty of this album is that it can be played anywhere and at anytime and be completely entrancing. - Lucas Schleicher
The Ebb and Flow, "Murmurs EP"
The Ebb and Flow sound like the setup to a great joke: an Iranian, a Russian, and a New Yorker start a band, drawing on their individual influences to make a new sound. The joke's on anyone who takes that description at face value and expects to hear a trainwreck, though. This San Francisco band employs a clever mix of styles, rhythms, and instruments, forming an interesting melange that never quits or gets sloppy. The Ebb and Flow use guitar, drums, and a variety of synthesizers and organs as a base coat, then use whatever methods necessary to take the song to the next level. As it stands, theirs is a unique jazzed up prog synth pop sound, with two vocalists that bring out different strengths as the songs progress; and Murmurs is a solid piece of work from a band destined for excellence. Guest musicians provide everything from touches of flavor to necessary components: the band is billed as a trio, with guest bassist Dmitry Ishenko, but I think they should just invite him to join, as I can't imagine these songs without his confident low end. "4 Track Mind - Dusty Crickets" starts with arpeggio guitar and solid rhythm, then adds trumpet and keys, building towards release. Then, it all dissolves in electronic chirps, only to be reborn as a power pop shuffle. Sara Cassetti and Roshy Kheshti have smooth voices like icing on this cake, and they play their instruments with just as much passion and heart. "Me and My Twins" features guitarist Sam Tsitrin's turn on vocals, and a more indie rock sound to boot, just as easy to swallow as the first track. It threatens to fade out, but then comes right back in again for one last taste. "Routes and Roots" and "Throop" are the high energy rocking out double shot, with "Throop" approaching boogie territory as the trumpets blare. Then "Contra Verse" puts all the pieces together with male/female vocals and a blend of all sounds previous. Too short but solid, Murmurs shows a band in their prime that deserves a real shot at the prize. Hopefully they won't have to wait too long. - Rob Devlin
CAURAL, "BLURRED JULY"
For his latest release for the Chocolate Industries label, 24-year old Chicago hip hopper/multi-instrumentalist Caural (aka Zachary Mastoon) presents Blurred July, an EP of three new, original tracks plus a remix track from his full length Stars on My Ceiling disc, courtesy of Savath + Savalas (aka Scott Herren). The EP unfurls with the gradually headnodding "Goodbye May Kasahara" - a mixture of subtle vibraphone flourishes, brushed snare rolls with sloshy hi-hat swells, keyboard and tight beats (complete with handclaps) that pulse to rhythmic bass end, conveying a positive mood. The soulful sounds of the Fender Rhodes spin their way through "Blacktops and Plains," featuring lines and rhymes from label mate and fellow city dweller, MC Diverse, over crunchy, distorted beats. The evocative patter of rainstick opening "Visuals" falls into a soundscape of subtle electronic waves and cymbal swells which bring in compressed beats, peppered with live drums and keyboard progressions which are heavy on the reverb. A relaxed track of shimmering keyboard and upright bass lines, Scott Herren subtly adds his signatory syncopation on the laid back groove of "Sipping Snake Blood Wine (Savath + Savalas remix)." With summer now left behind, the Blurred July EP is a great selection of compositional beats and instrumental sounds to conjure up the warmth of those fleeting days. - Gord Fynes
Carla Bozulich, "Red Headed Stranger"
DiCristina Stair Builders
What's missing in modern country is true grit. In all of the glossed-up beauty makeover tractor hunk nonsense they've missed the true point, as country started as the music for poor man's plight and economic blight. There's no dirt in New Country's teeth, no black under its nails, and no liquor in its veins. Just a vacant, vapid three part harmony and some political nonsense that can't come close to the real issues at hand. So leave it to country-obsessed former Geraldine Fibbers/Ethyl Meatplow vocalist Carla Bozulich to bring it back by covering Willie Nelson's landmark concept album in its entirety. Sure, it's not original grit, but it's authentic nonetheless, so much that Willie himself guests on guitar and vocals for several songs. Bozulich has the right voice for the material, raising hairs left and right with the tale of a preacher who killed his wife and her new beau. Nels Cline, Devin Hoff, and Scott Amendola also get points for their bare but chilling instrumentation that sets the perfect backdrop for these songs. There was a conscious decision to make this all sound authentic, I feel, from the nylon string guitars to the minimalist production and the sparse nature of the music. It doesn't take much to bring across this raw and rusty tale, and no lavish production could have made it sound better. "Time of the Preacher" is just as gorgeous as when Willie himself sang it, and "Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain" is better than the original, with Leah Bozulich providing harmony vocal. The best, though, is the impact of "Medley," where autoharp and radio buzz are joined by electric guitar and drum shockwaves. It shook me to the bone, the perfection of it all, and I felt like I wasn't going to make it out alive. Country needs to sound like this again, to take chances and try for a complex thought. It says it all that a singer went back twenty-five years to find the right music for her soul. If others followed suit maybe we could be spared. - Rob Devlin
Minus, "Halldór Laxness"
It borders on impossible to reccomend a CD that pretends to be metal but can't get past the whole "loud" aspect of the music. Sure, the whole thing is intense and the guitars sort of wail and screech along with pounding and sometimes sloppy drumming, but nothing of the attention paid to particulars and subtleties by the best metalheads is to be found on this disc. The guitars don't grind and annihilate so much as they just vomit and expend themselves in drones and whines of feedback. The drums are always quick and heavy, but they never change and simply keep the beat flat and simplistic. There's little to no variation in the all of song's structures and the vocalist seems to have an affinity for straining his voice in a way that is more dramatic than it is threatening or truly violent. Speaking of the vocalist, much of the lyrical content stays to the "nobody understands me and I'm going to rebel against them" theme. However, on songs like "Flophouse Nightmares" and "Angel In Disguise" the lyrics seem to be near meaningless practices in rhyme and rhythm: their topics seem nonsensical or they are just plain boring. I know, lyrics have never been the creative focus of metal but at least the simplicity of some of the better material conveyed interesting ideas or controversial topics worth thinking about. There's simply nothing like that on Halldór Laxness and so it pounds and moans on into what seems like infinity without surprising, shocking, convincing, or provoking. The puerile lyrics only serve to attenuate the sound of the album. It wants to be powerful and exciting, but it can't be without some kind of focus and discipline. It doesn't need to be calculated but to be truly angry it needs to sound more distinct than it does. - Lucas Schleicher
Ilios, "Old Testament"
Generally speaking, when I listen to music that I don't like, I put some effort into understanding why that is. It can become a kind of Sherlock Homes mystery, albeit without the humor. Sometimes it's just a genre thing and at others it's a semiotics thing. Sometimes its the emotion or attitude that's being projected that I revilef-ing hippies, for example. But not infrequently it turns out that I just don't get it; I don't understand the language the artist is speaking in. And those cases can be the most interesting. It's clearly stupidity to say "this poetry sucks" if it just because it's in Finnish and sounds meaningless to ones ears. The language must be learned before an aesthetic opinion can be formed. And so it is with Old Testamentthe language is deliberately obscure and the emotion, semiotics etc. are therefore opaque. The digital sounding noise on this CD mostly has rather little immediately pleasing quality. Track 1 is long slowly moving low frequency noise and doesn't go anywhere at all. Track 2 is more interesting and even fun in parts but what's appealing about its trajectory of electronic skitter, principally its rhythm and sonority, is not found elsewhere. The remainder is just plain painful without either the cathartic pleasures of, say, Merzbow or the humanity of Due Process. So I work on the language; give it many a listen; see if I can get it. And when I do, an all too common outcome to the detective work is that there isn't anything there but technical experimentation that shouldn't have left the studio. (In this case that's not entirely fair; a reduced version of Track 2 deserves to get on a comp.) Apart from that, the obscurantism of the language is all there is. The underlying problem (and it crops all the time) is that weirdness in music is used as a cover for lack of musical talent. There's noting inherently wrong with the experimental approach, tinkering with equipment until something of value is achieved, but novelty, weirdness, or extreme out-there-ness is not good enough. Ilios may be proud of making a very strange sounding disk but strange isn't intrinsically good. The effectiveness of experimentalism as a substitute for talent derives from that lingering fear one has, that possibility that one may not have grasped the language and therefore should reserve judgment or confer the benefit of the doubt. But give it enough time and effort and what you hear on Old Testament is nothing other than the process of tinkering with equipment and certainly not the artistic object that should have been the process's output. - Tom Worster
THE MAJESTICONS, "BEAUTY PARTY"
There tends to be a fine line drawn when dealing with concept albums that separates the obvious and self-indulgent from the conveying of a general theme throughout an overall good and fair recording. With Beauty Party, the second installment in NYC poet/MC Mike Ladd's hip hop trilogy of the Infesticons/Majesticons, the line tends to be purposely blurred by the ongoing battle of style vs. substance. Tongue-in-cheek themes are exposed early on by each of the fifteen tracks titles, all of which contain the word "party" yet the tunes themselves are steady and strong with great performances. Musically, more of a mainstream hip hop/R n' B feel based around vintage synths, drum machine sounds and samples, Ladd brings aboard a plethora of male and female vocalists and MCs for some memorable tracks. The laid back R n' B feel and rhymes of "Brains Party" revolve around a clever play on the Pet Shop Boys chorus from their "Opportunities." The steady beats of "Platinum Blaque Party" move through distant synth swells and syncopated bass lines, providing the breathy male vocal chorus that includes witty lines such as "I got so much access to excess/Words can not describe my success." A continual, arpeggiated synth line propels "Suburb Party" along to funky bass and drums, featuring Def Jux family members El-P and Vast Aire of Cannibal Ox for one of the disc's strongest tracks. Monstrous bass drum and cross-stick beats and buried bass progressions kick "Parlor Party" along with bright-sounding keyboards and female vocalists/MCs trading opposing views on the values of beauty that could be summed up with the line "Love yourself 'cuz the truth is attractive." Enjoying a concept album would include, though not necessary, an understanding of the overall theme and direction. Overstating it tends to detract from its full effect. Although a good disc of individual tracks, Beauty Party's obvious concept makes it feel like there's no room for interpretation as a listener. That and the fact the promo copy I had for gleaning purposes was interrupted with an annoying, sped up voice quoting the project name and the sound of a cash register ringing off every thirty seconds. Having to tune that shit out made it all the less enjoyable as a whole.- Gord Fynes
We know that our music picks may be somewhat challenging to find, which is why we have a community section which can be used to obtain nearly everything available on this site.
This is simply this week's highlights from the NEW RELEASES provided by Greg and Feedback Monitor.
WEEK OF SEPTEMBER 21 - SEPTEMBER 27
Accelera Deck - Ipsissima Vox CD (Scarcelight/tbtmo/Skylab Operations, US/Austria)
* Alexkid - Mint CD (F-Comm/Beggars, Canada)
Auburn Lull - t.b.a. CD (Darla, US)
Daniel Bell - Blip, Blurp, Bleep: The Music of Daniel Bell CD (Logistic, France)
Books on Tape - Books on Tape Sings the Blues CD (No type, Canada - Greyday Productions, US)
Chronomad - Chronomad CD (Alien Transistor, Germany)
Chugga feat. Terre Thaemlitz - A Big 7" (Klanggalerie, Austria)
Cookie Monster & the Girls - C Is for Cookie 12" (Ninja Tune, Canada/US)
Dykehouse t.b.a. 12" (Ghostly International, US)
Europa 51 - Abstractions CD [members of Stereolab & The High Llamas] (Lo Recordings, UK)
Fetish 69 - Retox 7" (Klanggalerie, Austria)
* Funki Porcini - Hed Phone Sex CD [reissue] (Ninja Tune, Canada/US)
* Funki Porcini - Love, Pussycats and Carwrecks CD [reissue] (Ninja Tune, Canada/US)
Guided By Voices - The Best of Jill Hives CDEP (Matador Europe, UK)
The Herbaliser/Various - Solid Steel CD/2xLP (Ninja Tune, UK/Canada)
KMFDM - WWIII CD (Sanctuary, US)
Koop - Waltz For Koop: Alternative Takes CD [mixes by Richard Dorfmeister, Nicola Conte, DJ Patife, D'Malicious, Carlito, Rima, Hird and 2 Banks Of 4] (Compost, Germany)
Laibach - WAT CD (Mute, US)
Laminar - Nozzle CD (Asphodel, US)
LFO - Sheath CD/LP (Warp, UK)
* Loka - Beginningless 12" (Ninja Tune, Canada/US)
Lotek Hifi - Percolater 7" (Big Dada/Ninja Tune, UK)
Madrid - Warm Waters CD (Aporia, Canada)
Mahogany - t.b.a. CD (Darla, US)
Mantra - Neutralmonsim CD (Neferiu, Canada)
Matmos - The Civil War CD/LP (Matador UK/US)
Meat Beat Manifesto - Storm the Studio R.M.X.S. CD [mixes by Twilight Circus, DJ Spooky, Merzbow, Scanner and more] (Tino Corp, US)
Mr. Scruff - Chicken In A Box 12" (Ninja Tune, Canada/US)
Nettle - Firecamp Stories Remixes EP2 12" (theAgriculture, US)
O Linea - t.b.a. CD (Final Records, Canada)
Peaches - Fatherfucker CD/LP (XL/Beggars, Canada)
Pest - Chicken Spit 12"/CDEP (Ninja Tune, UK/Canada)
Pink Grease - All Over You CD/LP (Horseglue/Mute, US)
PJ Pooterhoots - Barf (Liebe Meine EP!) 12" (Proptronix, US)
Ghislain Poirier - Beats As Politics CD (Chocolate Industries/P-Vine, Japan)
Plastikman - Disconnect CDEP (Mute, US)
Polmo Polpo - Like Hearts Swelling CD/LP (Constellation, Canada)
Rednose Distrikt feat. Raffaela - Crazy About Your Woman 12" (Rush Hour Recordings, The Netherlands)
* Russian Futurists - Let's Get Ready To Crumble CD (Upper Class, US)
T. Raumschmiere - Radio Blackout CD/2xLP (Mute, UK/US)
Themselves - The No Music of Aiffs: The No Music Remixed CD (Anticon, US)
Ty - Upwards CD/2xLP (Big Dada/Ninja Tune, UK)
Paul van Dyk - Time of our Lives 12"/CDEP (Mute, US)
Various - t.b.a. 12" [with Twine, Kiln, Kosik, Mifune] (Ghostly International, US)
* Various - Megasoft Office 2003 CD (F-Comm/Beggars, Canada)
David S. Ware Quartet - Threads CD (Thirsty Ear, US)
For a more detailed schedule stretching into the future, please check out the page,
since release dates can and will often change.
September 6-7, 2003, UK
"Oh beloved woman of liberty, come to me, burn away all my impurity," beseeches that preacher of individuality Jaz Coleman on the primal invocation of the awesome new Killing Joke album. No big surprise that he didn't grace Ladyfest Manchester with his presence, busy as he is hailing the Fall of the US Empire, but a lot of women of liberty did. There was no death but at least one resurrection at the show. The organisers, including Heena the librarian, Jo (lynchpin of the Blame the Parents collective) and Lee (of Help Yourself Manchester) did a flawless job of creating an impressive new alternative environment. The only shame was that the carnival could last for just four days, and I only caught the second half. The music had some fantastic moments but the social scene was perhaps even more interesting. I spent time in the company of a PR plugger who'd make a better sultry rock star, a subtle Canadian guitarist with magic effects, an angelic elfin dancer, a jolly girl convinced of granny mentality, a straight edge lad with an open mind, a new student of music technology, and various artists, writers, cartoonists, activists, punk rockers and DJs. There were films, workshops, zine and CD stalls, an ultra-cheap vegan cafe, and the largest exhibition of girl penned cartoons to while away the days. The first surprise was to see a familar man on stage, the humble Seth of numerous Leeds 6 bands. He was playing double bass in folk influenced duo Macwatt, helping the accordionist to shine. Ithaca Art Ensemble is another Leeds scene stalwart, Rosie from Linear Negra and Month of Birthdays, playing complex solo new-folk songs on an acoustic guitar. She sings as if oblivious to the mesmerised crowd and although quiet summons a majestic intensity. Music For One is guitarist Sherry, a dreadlocked Canadian living near the former haunts of Robin Hood. She's passed through Manchester a few times, improvising with such talents as Shalabi Effect and Daniel Weaver, and her solo spot was my main reason for attending the event. She drew the crowd into her orbit by asking if she was loud enough, but her calm reflective instrumental twangs and loops weren't something that needed dominating volume to transform the dark room. She plays with innovative techniques, often lying the guitar flat and using unconventional objects to coax sounds into various effects boxes where they morph magically. At one point she laid down the guitar and played a harmonica over a pedal powered guitar loop. During her set the Spirit of Ladyfest rose, and my enthusiastic clapping earned me some enlightened laughter. I realised that the look in one face could be more informative than libraries of words. Little Girl With Cherries were another revelation from Nottingham, two school matronly types cranking out complex heavy math rock that certainly appealed to all the Shellac and Don Caballero fans who caught their kick ass set. The Sunday party spun off to a good start with Delta Saint playing perky pixiepop with clever living lyrics. A bit of slide guitar and a few driving solos suggested they were at the start of a cool trip. Their newest song "Troubled Mind," on which the bassist switched to keyboards could be a big hit with fans of Boston rock groups like Madder Rose. Zero Pretties showed off their admiration of Babes in Toyland by covering "Bruise Violet" and rocked out with enthusiasm and grace. Halfway through their set they switched singers, and when the still tall one with dyed pink hair took over from the raggedly flailing one, she sounded like Lori Barbero. Even though they offered cookies to make people move forward, the crowd didn't bite and remained a little off to one side. Linus drew everyone in, with big smiles and uplifting tunes. I thought they'd dropped off the face of the earth, but obviously they're the kind of band who just get on with their own thing away from all the bullshit of the spotlight. They closed with a calm confident song that confided warmly that love is the law. If there was a motto for the weekend they seemed to have found it right there. The savior's of the UK pop punk scene, Liverpool's Flamingo 50, rocked the finale, bringing dance energy and a little much needed chaos to the exceptionally polite auditorium. Louise their guitarist keeps reminding me of Pete Shelley in appearance and style but chucks herself around the stage like a bull in a chinashop on a breaking mission. The drummer has that famous Scouse humour and luckily his drum kit didn't keep falling apart like the last time I saw them at a CND benefit. As a large group of us made our way over the singing bridge to Rusholme for the comedown party, Flamingo 50 flashed past in their little car, cheering and honking - total punk rock! Is it too late to give the whole world to anarchic feminists? Wouldn't it be a shame to let the rats and pigeons have their day so soon. Burn brightly emerald empresses. - Graeme Rowland
The omission of HURT from the lsit of fave cash tunes iis regrettable. YEsh,
it was originally penned by Trendy Trent Reznor who copped more licks than kids
with cones, yes it's all oveer the popular airwaves, yes it's al over mtv, yes
it's on a major but MOTHERFUCK if it is not a kickass tune annd having it
covered by Johnny pretty much wipes all the other shit out.
Yes, but did you see how many people voted for Falco?
Subject: the eye
the eye with four tet and manitoba was great! the editing is improving and i
think this one had the best balance of talk/action. nice!
Thanks! If we're not getting better, we're only getting worse, right?
Subject: brainwashed staff
godspeed you black emporer changed my life and i think they deserve to know.
So write them a fucking postcard but learn how to spell their name right next time.
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|WHAT'S IN YOUR PLAYER?|
been caught speeding
Wire - Ideal Copy / A Bell / Silk Skin Paws
John Foxx - Crash and Burn
King Crimson - Red
Killing Joke - Killing Joke (new one)
Kraftwerk - Tour de France
Last Exit - Headfirst into the Flames
Jon Foulkes, looking out for speed traps on the A63 near Hull (UK).