Friday, November 30, 2012

I.M.A. Pelican here.

Hi, I.M.A. Pelican here. This is my debut Cassette Gods review. One Kind Favor sent a bunch of interesting tapes my way and I'm going to give you my thoughts on them over the course of the next few weeks. Thanks for having me on your great site.  Unfortunately the this first tape was so bad, I would feel poorly to reveal the name of the band.  Rest assured, these words correspond to one of the tapes you sent me Nick, thanks a lot.

It's unlistenable! Starts off as a reasonably well-crafted (but boring) pop-punk song.  After a minute or so, another song is layered over the top of the first one.  This creates an entirely unlistenable shitty headache recording.  After 10 minutes had to turn it off.

"Experiment Fail!"

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Pride of Lowell - S/T - (Dirty Pillows)

The real fun of writing about tapes and LPs isn't about snarky reviewer tendencies or the "collector" habits of music obsessives like myself, but the true discovery of new music. Dirty Pillows Records is new to me and I'm already a big fan. I recently received the label's fifth release, Pride of Lowell's self-titled album of contemporary free jazz. The duo of Max Goldman and Patrick Breiner make for some raucous sax bleating and drum beating music. Fans of John Coltrane's Interstellar Space will probably enjoy this duo (though they don't reach the unreachable of Coltrane, they do very well for themselves). The album's seven cuts were recorded in one day back in August 2011, and it must have been a hot one from the sound of these performances. 

Check out: "Trophallaxis" -- Highly recommended for jazz fiends.

Buy and Listen HERE.

follow me on twitter: @teflonbeast

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

CONTAINER "LP" (Spectrum Spools)

The new Container full length is out now on Spectrum Spools.  This record as well as recent live sets have gotten me pumped again for the up-to-date sounds of Ren Schofield.  I first met Ren when he was doing much harsher sound stuff under the name God Willing.  The Form A Log trio took his stuff in a more danceable direction, but it's with Container where he really let's his inner club kid shine.  Along with Profligate (formerly Night Burger), newer Lazy Magnet and only a slim handful of others, Container is just about the only artist working in a field that I would unknowledgeably call "Techno" that I can actually get down with. Get down we must...

Order direct from the label if you're in Europe, but US fans might want to order from Forced Exposure.

Is "unknowledgeably" a word?

Monday, November 26, 2012

Year of the Lips - Cannon Street Road's Feedback Rituals (Teflon Beast)



“Cannon Street Road’s Feedback Rituals” is a collection of songs by Year of the Lips (Gab Marras) put to tape. The tape starts off with a quick electronic whir that leaves the listener defenseless, I like! “Cannon Street Roads” the first track on the tape is a relentless onslaught of avant garde electronics mixed with guitar that makes for sensory overload. Marras continues to trick the listener throughout side A by lulling you into drone slumber then immediately hitting you over the head with aggressive drum machine patterns. This stuff reminds me of an infinitely more melancholy dark wave Aphex Twin, with fewer hooks. There are vocals and organ like things that pitter-patter in on the b-side but I don’t think it benefits this tape.

This tape is best when it is raw, visceral and aggressive. A distant memory the crushes you every time you think about it. Check this work out! 

Listen Here

6 LPs from Haute Magie

It's Sunday night in America as I sit down with laptop and record player. I have football on TV muted. I have the lights out. The colors from the brute graphics and splashy ads dance uncomfortably in my periphery as I type. My record player is turned up loud, but the music is soft, mysterious...like low hanging fog on a Monday morning. There's a stack of six LPs on my floor and I intend to play all of them in one night, back-to-back-to-back.
My fellow Austinites at Haute Magie have a great catalog for those interested in melancholy, spectral acoustic music that is vaguely psychedelic (as well as a touch cultish witchcrafty). The label also releases electronic music for those who need glitch/beats, but more on that later - for now I'll dive into the folkster stuff:

Mike Bruno, Bad Braids, The Black Magic Family Band and Ross Major represent some of the best spooky mental graveyard "folk" I've heard in years. Bad Braids could be a lost treasure from the lonely reel-to-reel early 70s era. Megan Biscieglia's Bad Braids album Arrow and Orb is the most reminiscent of that lost in a dream of the decaying "peace and love" time for me. Songs like "Upward, Onward, Deep Into the Night," sound amazing and scare me a bit.

Ross Major's exquisite guitar playing on his Horatio Hymns LP is my favorite of this bunch of Haute Magie circle slices of vinyl. Drone/psychedelic noise waft over and around his chiming guitar figures while his vocals whisper in reverb. His album and Mike Bruno's The Sad Sisters are frighteningly intense listens. Really all of these albums seem cut from the cloth of isolation and only by chance they have been captured & preserved or all of us to listen to. Fans of songwriting and acoustic darkness should immediately add these LPs to their collections.


The same goes for the The Black Magic Family Band except taken to an electric edge...basically cool music made with the vibe of a freaky cult. I've written about, and will write about, this band so I'll save words, but in the end it comes down to taste...I like this band and recommend them.
The game has been over for a couple hours. I couldn't care less who won - I've been listening to music. I want to end my night and go to sleep, but I cannot. I still have two LPs to go. More black coffee? At this hour? Madness...then the beat hits me and I have to keep going. Bestovitch's Ritual De La Haute Magie: Kiss From a Witch is just what I need to hear at this late hour. Great sample-delic, instrumental hip-hop, Irelands' Paul Best is on solid terra firma with this record. Classic form the start and I loved the jazz bits. I'm spinning Bestovitch during my next party.
Finally, I want to wrap up with a fine split from Bunrage and Footpaths. Bunrage's (aka Gary Brents) side is electronic soundscape wondermint. Melodies and beats collide, but more often it is the moody ambience of instrumentation that makes his electro-mash so effective and engaging. Conversely, Footpaths dark side of music makes all too clear the going and coming of my own witching hour. Jon Rosenthal's project (ie Footpaths) uses minimal, treated guitar to create a spooky desolation. I'm not feeling right tonight...was it something I ate? Is it just the grinding minimalism of Footpaths' guitar? The morning will let me in on the secret. The final record of the night was as haunting as the first...Haute Magie has a vibe and they stick with it.

Recommended: HIGHLY...Ross Major, Bestovitch, Mike Bruno...meh, just try and listen to everything  on Haute Magie and decide for yourself!

Buy and Listen HERE.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

BANG! BROS. "Hard Rocks Vol.3: Psissywuss"
C31 Ydlmier


This is a great new tape by this recently formed group.  Bang! Bros. is the duo of Foam from the long running performance band Peace, Loving and Mark from the messy glitter noise crew Hunnie Bunnies. Together they play old drum machines manually (no preset beats) and use some mixers and pedals too.  It's a totally cacophonous mess and I love it.  Saying that these two boys together make up one Rashied Ali is by no means an insult. Will they find their John Coltrane or will they remain a percussion ensemble for all time??? Doesn't really matter...

Ydlmier also has new tapes out by Cruudeuces, Funny Money, Little Emperor and Friendship Ceremonies.  As always, all the releases are limited to less than 50 copies and will go quick.

These guys have an insane release schedule, with 14 tapes recorded and planned for a variety of labels. They're also planning on breaking the world record for most cities played in one day this coming December. More info on all that below:

BANG! BROS." is planning on breaking the world record for playing 12! cities in under 24hrs!!! (record previously held by flaming lips (8) and prev prev by jay Z (7)). we are doing this on 12/12/12. starting at 6am.

DECEMBER 12th 2012
06am Quincy, MA @ The Beach
08am Boston, MA @ Whitehaus
10am Cambridge, MA @ City Hall Lawn
12pm Somerville, MA @ Starlab
02pm Medford, MA @ Steve Norton's House
04pm Salem, MA @ TBA
06pm Newburyport, MA @ The Mansion
08pm Lowell, MA @ 119 Gallery
10pm Worcester, MA @ Firehouse
12am Pawtucket, RI @ ???
02am Providence @ PR Matrix Hex
04am New Bedford, MA @ TBA
and an encore . . .
06am Barnstable, MA @ The Beach

THIS IS THE RELEASE TOUR ALSO FOR BANG! BROS HARD ROCKS VOLUMES 1-14 PUT OUT BY THESE LABELS:

Hard Rocks 01: Hard Rocks Vol. 1 (out soon on 'anonymous dog')
Hard Rocks 02: BANG! of America (out soon on 'moss archive')
Hard Rocks 03: Psissywuss (out soon on 'YDLMIER')
Hard Rocks 04: Still Hard! (out soon on 'space idea tapes')
Hard Rocks 05: Live From youtube (out soon on 'hymns/canada goose tapes')
Hard Rocks 06: VOLUME sex (out soon on 'tusco embassy')
Hard Rocks 07: Live at Raw Meet 7 (Nov Tour CD-R, out soon on 'Spring Beauties')
Hard Rocks 08: Volume SL8 (out soon on 'Teen River Tapes')
Hard Rocks 09: Ab Scrapped Concrète (out soon on 'Faux-Pas')
Hard Rocks 10: Future Tense (out soon on 'Hidden Temple Tapes')
Hard Rocks 11: Produced by Pebbles (out soon on MAANG Disc)
Hard Rocks 12: Bangaroo! (out soon on 'Lungbasket Recordings')
Hard Rocks 13: 3rd Degree Birthday (needs a home!)
Hard Rocks 14: E-13, The Controller (out soon 'Cellar Hits') 

Thursday, November 22, 2012

THE SHADOW RING "Remains Unchanged" 2LP
(Kye Records)


The Shadow Ring were a strange bird. A 1990s band from the UK that featured unsettling monologues set to strange hermetic music. There were very few precedents for their sound and it's hard to imagine many others mining the rich vein of weirdness they struck. All of their albums are currently out of print (which is a shame), but lucky for you there is a new archival 2 LP set out now on Kye Records. Remains Unchanged is a collection of unreleased music in chronological order that can definitely work as an introduction to the group. It comes in a nice gatefold with a huge poster. If you can, you'll also really want to track down Lindus and Lighthouse, my two favorites.


Tuesday, November 20, 2012

HAPPY JAWBONE FAMILY BAND - "The Silk Pistol" c52


  Amazing new collection of weirdo folk/pop tunes, from Brattleboro's (see also: Blanch Blanche Blanche, Bruce Hart, Chris Wiesman, Son of Salami) most celebrated collective of folk/pop weirdos, Happy Jawbone Family Band. The Silk Pistol is their third, and possibly even their most eccentric full length to date, and it couldn't have found itself a more suitable home than on Shawn Reed's(Wet Hair) Night-People label. With two previous LP's on Feeding Tube Records, Happy Jawbone Family Band continue their quest into jangly garage/psych revivalism, only to float further away from a place that's overgrown with pretentious rehash, and drifting toward their own colorful hideout on a wave of loose arrangements and collaborative charm.
   
  The Silk Pistol hangs somewhere in between carefully crafted pop album and all out free-folk jam, dipping it's toes in just about everything else along the way. HJFB still conjure up more than a few moments of Nuggets style freak outs at times, but aside from the wide range of possible flower-era influences, this gang is generally pushing things in their own direction. The entire album has a sort of busted charm, and things tend to stay slightly out of tune in the best possible way. Group vocal harmonies, infectious guitar parts, and the occasional horn arrangement are definitely in their bag, but their bag is proving to be an odd shaped and constantly evolving one. Another giant notch in Brattleboro's musical bedpost, and another stunning HJFB release, perfect for late night back porch hangs.Highly recommended. Get a copy from Night-People.

Mothers News - Providence, RI


Mothers News is a great monthly paper that is run out of Providence, Rhode Island. Published by Jacob Berendes, who used to have a cool little shop in Worcester called HBML, the paper contains lots of quirky and literate writing, exclusive comics by Brian Chippendale and CF, some music related gossip and tons of ads for awesome businesses both near and far.  If you live in a few select cities there's a chance that you can pick up a free copy in your local record store, comic emporium, book shop of cafe (find out where). You can also head over to the Mothers News website and get a yearly subscription for the low low cost of $23.  Berendes also runs a highly curated print/comic/music distro called Chipsylvania, where you'll find Noise Nomads tapes, Muffy Brandt patches, and old issues of Paper Rodeo, among other things. Get hopping froggies.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

HIDDEN TEMPLE TAPES


Hidden Temple Tapes is a great new(ish) label that's really stepped up their game this year.  My favorite thing so far on the label is the Speedy Ortiz EP. Matt plays the fucked up backing guitar in the band and runs the label so you know he likes the band!  You may have seen these rockin' rockers a few months back when they toured the whole goddam country. They've also been on some top of somethingorwhatever lists recently.  What do they sound like? Use google you suffering simp! I guess I'd describe them as a grunge band fronted by sexy Sadie singing sexy songs about sex.  You'll like it.  For the most part, Hidden Temple does really small editions of 25-50 copies, so don't think twice.  The cooling synth sounds of Ice are also more than alright.  ONLINE LINKAGE

Monday, November 12, 2012

Annie Shaw - "Shanty Awe" c30 (Old Frontiers)

For a while now I've admired Old Frontiers graphic design and quality experimental releases. The label struck me first as almost an art project that happen to be connected to spacey music, but I've come to appreciate a great many of their cassettes on purely musical terms. Annie Shaw's album, Shanty Awe, is a very good piece of collage drones & bits o' melody smashed together in a true trip of a listen. Old Frontiers describes this tape as a, "... 30 minute album containing so many shades of conjoined melodic and dissonance colour which lay its body somewhere within the realm of innocent improvisation and premeditated alchemy. This is DAUNTINGLY HAUNTINGLY GORGEOUS music..." I have to say, I pretty much agree...

Buy and Listen HERE.

follow me on twitter: @teflonbeast 

Sunday, November 11, 2012

HURRICANES OF LOVE


Frank Hurricane has become such a ubiquitous presence on the underground touring scene that I would find it surprising, dear reader, if you haven't met him or seen him play at least once during the last couple of years.  The man is a force of nature, complete with his own lingo and peculiar customs.  As Hurricanes of Love, Frank blends American Primitive fingerstyle with talking blues, all while maintaing a holy psychedelic vibe.  This guy is the real deal.


You can check out the Hurricanes of Love discography here and pre-order the upcoming tape on Scissor Tail Editions here.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Christian Filardo - "Forgetting" and Potions/Ghostandthesong - "Split" (Pretty All Right)


Pretty All Right Records is stepping out of their Midwest/Chicago base with a release by Arizona's Christian Filardo. Fan, writer, and tape label operator (Holy Page) Filardo's Forgetting is an album of mighty ambient/noise grumble and Twin Peaks style synth wash. Seriously, David Lynch's body of work in film and TV continues to influence musicians more than he probably intended, but the synth colorings of Filardo definitely recall Lynch's noir nightmare scenarios. Elsewhere on the tape the grinding churn of electronic overdrive adds depth to the mood music chords of the keyboards. This is an evenly balanced collection of sound compositions. Its also one of the darker releases from PAR. Personally, I've come to expect a lighter home-brewed electronic (at times fun/funky) music from the label, but this release adds a bit more murk. Good show!

The split release from Potions and Germany's Ghostandthesong is a good, if oddly paired tape. Potions' music is light dance-vibed electronic music with some smooth tones. Good stuff as usual from the man behind PAR. Ghostandthesong is a completely different experience and one helluva listening side. Berlin's Matthias Kanik mixes 60s trippy grooves, free jazz, and audio manipulation on his side (which, apparently, is something new for him as a musician) and wow...I dig it! Three jams aren't enough for me...I'd recommend paying attention to Kanik and hopefully we'll hear some more quality sides from him in the near future.

Buy and Listen HERE.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Kirschstein - S/T (Brave Mysteries)



Brave Mysteries is one of the first cassette labels I remember reading about when I caught the tape label/music thang awhile back. This label cares about their releases and artists. Kirschstein's eponomyous album is a very bizarre ride. Acoustic guitar mountain music riffs are mixed with electronic beats are mixed with loops and samples that sound kinda like latter period Can without the "rock" backbone. According to the label it took some eight years to complete the album as it was, "
originally started in Essen, Germany, in 2003. Kirschstein features a small circle of kindred spirits hidden throughout Europe, many of whom  seem to wish to remain in the shadows, and these songs were slowly assembled from a combination of free jam sessions and long-distance collaborations." I would say this is a successful long distance relationship. Dig in to the mystery...

Buy and Listen HERE.

Monday, November 5, 2012

HERBCRAFT "Flowering" (Julia Dream Recordings)


Herbcraft is a psychedelic ensemble from Portland, Maine that have been making brain waves over the last few years with their releases on Woodsist sub-labels Hello Sunshine and Fuck-It tapes.  Rising from singer/guitarist Matt Lajoie's mostly solo project Cursillistas, Herbcraft explores a much more dynamic and electric space from behind the coastal fog.  This quintet (give or take a few members here and there) is making new progressions in jam trance space as well as paying tribute to the past triumphs of Haze purveyors worldwide, be they European (Harvester), Japanese (Denudes) or American (Dead).  You'll want to take a trip on the Herbcraft if you like your psych expansive and weightless, but not without a hint of menace.

Flowering, the first release on UK based Julia Dream Recordings, is the newest Herbcraft offering and I recommend you try to track down a copy of the cassette before they vanish entirely.  Both Herbcraft LPs appear to be in print as well. Order from Hello Sunshine direct.  You can sample tracks from all their releases on bandcamp.


Lajoie runs the interesting and lovingly curated label L'Animaux Tryst (Field) Recordings.  You can also catch him playing bass with MV&EE these days.

Friday, November 2, 2012

LAZY MAGNET "Crystal Cassette" C45 (Night-People)


I feel like I said this last time, but the new Night-People batch really is the best one yet, not least of all because of this fantastic new tape by Lazy Magnet, a man of the world of I've ever met one.  What world that is I'm not so sure, but any world that he's welcome to is better than the one that I come from.  Take a gander at all the new releases at the label's website.  At the very least you'll want to get three of 'em...

"Sounds like a paraplegic singing a love song to his computer in the middle of the night"

And "only slices all the way open on the tenth listen."

XXX predicts: "people are going to like it."

Jeremy says "Since day one this effort was a dedicated salute to Shawn Reed and his excellent label. I knew for years "this material will comprise my night people tape and I WILL SOMEDAY COMPLETE THIS RECORDING. Remember I'm the best under these conditions"

And if you haven't got the sole Lazy Magnet LP on Corleone than you're probably missing the best album of the 21st century and I'm not even kidding.


Thursday, November 1, 2012

Matthew Dotson - "Excavation" (self-released)



Matthew Dotson brings to mind my enthusiasm for the eclectic works of Jim O'Rourke. Not the melodic guitar/pop, but the found sound, noise, esoterica collage experimental stuff. Dotson's Excavation is a challenging listen and with two side-long pieces of music, patience is key. If this kind of electronic music is your kind of thing, listen to this album because it exudes quality. Side A is an unedited live performance of found sounds from around Japan. The rise and fall of the gurgling electronics creates a forward momentum that seems composed. If recordings of frogs from Connecticut and guitar & bass feedback sounds like a dynamic duo, you will LOVE side B. For me, I'm more a side A kinda guy. The B side is just as well-crafted as the A side, but less compelling. Either way Matthew Dotson is a talent and someone to pay attention to.

Buy and Listen HERE.