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Podcast Episode 395: October 21, 2018

Loon Mountain in Vermont by Kenneth Brainwashed Radio: The Podcast Edition is live now with Episode #395.

It features new and old music from Chris Corsano & Bill Orcutt, Future Museums, Kristin Hersh, Low, The Fall, Stereolab, Janek Schaefer, Beak>, Papa M, and Drew McDowall.

This episode's stunning photograph was was taken near Loon Mountain in Vermont by Kenneth. Thanks for the submission!


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Forced Exposure New Releases for 10/22/2018

New music is due from Olivia Block, Tess Parks & Anton Newcombe, Carla Dal Forno, and Factory Floor, while old music is due from Spacemen 3, Tangerine Dream, and Nadie La Fond.

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Qluster, "Elemente"

https://i1.sndcdn.com/artworks-000385424448-73rter-t500x500.jpgElemente is a dynamic and hypnotic record, not at all reliant upon listener knowledge of the three incarnations of K/C/Qluster nor of the relentless creativity of Hans-Joachim Roedelius. The trio play a range of analogue synths and tracks are coherently sequenced into a whole album: two elements which combine to give a richness, depth and balance to their expression.

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Bob Bellerue, "Music of Liberation"

cover imageIn four lengthy segments, each inhabiting its own side of vinyl, Brooklyn based Bob Bellerue presents a record that draws from his multitude of styles, from carefully constructed drones and outbursts of harsh noise, to less traveled territories, such as subtle melodies.  Combined with experimental strategies learned from Bellerue’s work as a sound technician and Music of Liberation becomes a fascinating work in the canon of experimental sound and music, exceptional from both its composition as well as the production.

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Heather Leigh, "Throne"

cover imageThe Heather Leigh that recorded 2015's excellent I Abused Animal seems to have split into two separate artists this year: one who plays wild experimental guitar in a duo with Peter Brötzmann and another who is something of an outsider art-pop vocal diva.  This is the latter Leigh.  Ostensibly "a record of late-night Americana and heavy femininity," Throne is quite a bold and radical departure from expected territory, often resembling a bizarre and hallucinatory collision of Lou Reed and Kate Bush.  That is only the tip of a very strange and intimate iceberg, however, as Leigh also has a curious approach to structure and a bent for confessional subject matter.  For the most part, Leigh manages to make this experiment work, as Throne is a memorably unique album, but it only truly catches fire when her guitar playing bursts into the foreground.

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Murderous Vision, "Voided Landscapes"; "Darkness Descends"

cover imageAs Murderous Vision, Ohio's Stephen Petrus has been one of the pioneers in the US death industrial/power electronics scene for over two decades now.  It is a stylistic variation that has largely managed to avoid many of the pitfalls of its European counterpart ("provocative" political ambiguity, rampant misogyny, etc.) but retained the more creative, occasionally occult-tinged, depressive darkness.  On Voided Landscapes, he continues this trend with a bit more environmental influence, both overt and subtle.  Darkness Descends is a compilation for a festival Petrus curated this past summer in Cleveland and, while produced for the festival itself, stands strongly apart as a compilation of artists that have defined the style.

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Brainwashed Premiere: Future Museums, "Closed Eye"

cover image Brainwashed and Holodeck Records are proud to premiere "Closed Eye", by Future Museums, from the album Rosewater Ceremony Pt. II: Guardian of Solitude coming out October 19th. Following up the first installment from earlier in 2018, Neil Lord (Thousand Foot Whale Claw, Single Lash), "Closed Eye" is awash with lush synthesizers and pensive, plaintive guitar work delicately unfurled over haunting ambience. The title specifically refers to how Lord recorded the song:  live, in one take, while blindfolded.  The full cassette is even more multifaceted, capturing everything from pulsating synth arpeggios and bubbling keyboards to introspective, expansive atmospheres. Rosewater Ceremony Pt. II: Guardian of Solitude is available to order now on tape and digital via holodeckrecords.com.

 

Drew McDowall, "The Third Helix"

cover imageThe trajectory of Drew McDowall’s recent resurgence as a solo artist continues to be a compelling and unpredictable one, as The Third Helix is quite a bit different from either of his previous Dais outings.  If Collapse felt like a lost Coil session and Unnatural Channel felt like a vintage noise tape, Helix feels like the assimilation of those two sides into something more forward-looking and unique.  It does not quite unseat Collapse as my favorite of McDowall's albums, but a couple of pieces easily rank among his finest work to date.  More importantly, the album as a whole cumulatively casts a wonderfully immersive and disorienting spell that is ideal for headphone listening.  This is the first of McDowall's albums that makes me feel like he is currently in the midst of a fresh new creative phase rather than merely unearthing and reworking a deep backlog of unreleased material.

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Rudolf Eb.er, "Om Kult - Ritual Practice of Conscious Dying, Vol. 1"

cover imageI have never been all that deeply immersed in the international noise scene, but I have certainly been aware of the scatological insanity of Rudolf Eb.er for a couple of decades now.  I always viewed his work like an anarcho-punk might have viewed GG Allin: a compelling spectacle, for sure, but in a completely different category than the serious music that truly mattered.  After hearing this singular and bizarrely brilliant mélange of "psychomagick spells and occult yogic instructions," however, I definitely need to go back and cautiously revisit more of Eb.er's previous ouevre: he clearly grasps something elusive and profound that most other people do not.  This release may be the birth of a transcendent and entirely new phase, however, as Eb.er has allegedly "conquered the nether scatological regions" and moved onto "psycho-spiritual cleansing rituals."  As a listener, I did not feel particularly psychically cleansed by this album, but I did not feel coated in filth afterwards either, which is an unexpected step in the right direction.  With Om Kult, Rudolf Eb.er seems to have emerged from the grotesque purification ritual of his previous work as some kind of wild-eyed and uncomfortably intense shaman operating at an unusually high plane of consciousness.

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Klara Lewis and Simon Fisher Turner, "Care"

cover imageThe news of this intriguing collaboration delighted me, as Klara Lewis has carved out quite a wonderfully idiosyncratic and incredibly constrained niche over the last few years by largely avoiding any recognizable instrumentation.  Consequently, I had no idea at all what would happen when her surreal collages collided with Simon Fisher Turner's formidable talents as a composer.  As it turns out, a pure collaboration resulted, as Care does not particularly resemble either artist's previous work.  Instead, it feels like several divergent albums have been deconstructed, warped, and obliterated to leave only some lingering shards in a shifting and hallucinatory fantasia of drones, textures, and field recordings.  That fundamental disjointedness can admittedly be a bit challenging at times, but Care ultimately comes together beautifully with the lushly rapturous closer, "Mend."

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The Eye: Video of the Day

Beirut

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Review of the Day

Davide Balula, "Pellicule"
Active Suspension
Now this is what electronic-tinged folk is supposed to sound like. After all the hype that this sub-genre has received, after countless hit-and-miss or just plain miss releases, let it be known that Davide Balula gets it right. Pellicule is his debut full-length and it shows a tremendous gift for melody and mixing it all together just so, with no glaring errors or flaws from which points should be deducted. Balula doesn't just write songs: he creates atmospheres for his little organisms to cohabitate or war against each other or form parasite-host relationships. The emphasis is on the notes that are played, and what is used to create them is almost incidental. Most tracks do not even feature vocals, and it's of little consequence, as the warm tones and noodling devices still sound like the outpouring of a very genuine heart. When there are words they are in English or French, and those on the album's opener are convoluted and random at best, but then that's kind of the point. This is supposed to be music that requires examination before its ultimate purpose is realized. Every time I listened to this record I picked up something I hadn't heard before, and it differed when I was playing it in my car, on my home stereo, or on my portable with headphones. These are just pure, sweet, guitar-based laments with pulsating beats and processed breaks galore. At the end of it all, it's a compelling and heartfelt creation, one that is sure to infect anyone who takes it on. 

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