BLECTUM FROM BLECHDOM, "DE SNAUTED HAUS"

Combine immaturesemi-formulaec predictable electronica with girly teenage drama and youtoo can release an album it seems. Okay, I love Kid to death and I'veloved his judgement in the past but I've got some issues with thisrelease. While I've heard word that the other release by Belctum fromKit Clayton's label is great, this disc makes me somewhat sour. The CDremains playing however, while I've already written it off. Painfully Ilisten on as high school girls pull off poorly faked English accents,sandwiched between unexciting techno babble, waiting for somethinggreat to happen. I feel guilty listening on. It's almost like drivingby an accident scene, you stare, fascinated at ugliness and destructioneven though you know you really really really shouldn't be staring.Unfortunately the cable carrier in my town doesn't offer The AccidentChannel yet. "Oh honey, look an accident." "Don't worry dear, we'lljust drive on and not slow down traffic and catch the highlightstonight on The Accident Channel."

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  3095 Hits

surface of eceon, "the king beneath the mountain"

Don't let the unpronouncable band name or low-tech cover put you off,this here's one of the best space-rock drone-pop records of the year.The five member group of D&D players includes Adam from Yume Bitsuand three members of Landing. It's patient, emotional, climactic andintense. Don't expect quietness however, as the barrage of guitarsenvelopes you like a cloud of the most potent marijuana smokeimaginable. You can get a contact high from this smoke however withoutdirect contact with the bong. Get comfortable on the livingroom couchin your rattiest flannel with a comfortable old blanket, turn the musicup really loud, stare up at the ceiling and daze for a few minutes.Minutes turn to hours, nightfall comes early and the lights go down allthroughout the house. Staring through glazed eyes the LED on your clockshows a time you can't figure which is AM or PM. Suddenly visions ofwalking through 4-foot drifts of neopolitan shaving cream enter yourhead. A plaid talking yak leads the way under the orange sky of anIndonesian sunset. Bubbles form and fail to burst, you stumble on LauraDern action figures and fall through a stitch in an oriental rug. Youwake with your mouth open, completely clothed, drool on the pillow andtwo fuzzy cats on your belly. The phone rang. Goddamnit.

 

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  2640 Hits

maximillian hecker, "infinite love songs"

There's something undeniably irresistible about Maximilian Hecker's sugary sweet breathy falsetto and captivating pop melodies. The love for his music is a vice, like cigarette smoking or alcoholism: your first exposure feels rather disgusting but at some point, it becomes quite addictive. Soon, you're not allowed to be around your friends who don't indulge while you feel the need to indulge. It's embarrassing.

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  2838 Hits

papa m, "whatever, mortal"

One thing nobody will ever accuse Dave Pajo of is recording the samealbum twice. Fans of the polished, sparkling instrumental melodic songswill be a little taken aback with his latest full-lengther. Unlike the'Shark Cage' or 'Aerial M' albums, this one is much less a continuousconcept, with variations in both musical and production stylesthroughout the course of the 18+ minutes. Pajo picks up where he leftoff from the recent 'Papa M Sings' EP, singing on many tracks in astyle not completely foreign to fans of his close friend and oftencollaborator, Will Oldham. A trucking anthem, "Over Jordan" opens thedisc, charming, yet shabbily produced songs like "Tamu" could haveeasily been recorded on a tape recorded in the kitchen. IntoxicatingMiddle Eastern and electronic elements come into play (via tablas andsitar) on the stellar "Sabotage." By the time this song is reached, I'mhonestly thinking Pajo's probably the most fearless man in indierock—unafraid to pick up new instruments and do whatever he wishes withthem. The disc ends with "Northwest Passage," which echoes last album's"Arundel." This variation, however is alternately colored with acousticguitar, harmonica, piano and drums. Guest musicians like Tara JaneO'Neil and Will Oldham add to the complex tapestry, but at the end ofthe day, this is clearly more Pajo than anybody else. To top it off,the deluxe 24-page CD booklet features various appealing originalphotos from the man himself with a thick stock and glossy finish. Thefirst few listens may be uneasy but give it time to settle in.

 

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  2772 Hits

lpd reissues: "the lovers" & "island of jewels"

'The Lovers' first appeared on LP in 1984, side one was recorded at aconcert earlier that year while side two were all new tracks recordedlive for VPRO Radio in Holland. When the CD was first manufactured in1991, both tracks from the "Curious Guy" 12" single were included.While the disc is often not considered to be a truly bonafide LPDalbum, it contains some of my favorite LPD songs. The four songs fromside one had only ever appeared on compilation cassettes (if anywhereelse). The excitement about the band's current lineup can be observedsimply by the volume of material that surfaced in that year (whichincluded both 'The Tower' and 'Faces in the Fire') and here they wantedto treat the older tunes to a newer live arrangement. Side two startsand ends with the timeless emotional, violin and piano heavy classics"The Lovers" parts one and two. It also features the entertainingclassic, "Flowers for the Silverman" right in the middle. Thefeverishly catchy "Curious Guy" is cute and always a crowd-pleaser andthe disc ends appropriately with the complex 11½ minute opus"Premonition 16". Bonus bits for the new reissue include a restoredcover (which includes all five faces through the flowers), printedlyrics and a thumbnail for the 'Curious Guy' 12" release inside thetray.

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'Island of Jewels' on the other hand is one of my least favorite LPDalbums. Recorded and released in 1986, it was the first full-lengthalbum recorded with Edward living in Holland and the rest of the groupliving in England. Incidentally, the album seems fragmented andunconnected, while the production seems rather sterile and thin. Theband sounds like a group of musicians not paying attention to eachother, all clamoring for attention without letting each other'sinstruments have a life of their own. It's somewhat painful to listento as the songwriting really isn't bad at all. Songs like "The Shock ofContact" and "Jewel in the Crown" would probably have benefitted from acompletely different recording approach. This reissue is probably oneof my favorite improvements on the other hand. The back cover has beenadopted from black and white images from inside the original gatefoldLP issue, photos have been included as well as lyrics—none of whichwere on the original PIAS CD release.

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  2926 Hits

cex, "oops I did it again" (CD version)

This full-length CD shares only a tiny amount from the 12" released earlier this year which bears the same name. (For my praise of those four songs from the first side, see issue 31 from this year.)

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  3816 Hits

HTRK, "Work (work, work)"

The Hate Rock Trio have resurfaced, following an unthinkable tragedy, to present a new full-length album which will undoubtedly be met with a degree of disagreement amongst listeners. The group, now a duo, has strengthened their sound technique, creating a listening experience undeniably original, challenging, and captivating; however, the absence of the riffs—which were an integral part of Marry Me Tonight—is noticeable and sorely missed.

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  6958 Hits

James Izzo, 1977 - 2011

Words can not describe how heartbroken and devastated we are by the sudden and unexpected loss of our friend James Izzo. James recorded primarily as Thread, with remixes of Coil gracing the first Brainwashed Recordings release. Additionally, Izzo recorded, performed, and remixed under his own name and as The Boy Without Hands, and collaborated with Jarboe and Neotropic.

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  23052 Hits

godspeed you black emperor, "yanqui u.x.o."

Fans and critics have uncontrollable tendencies to place far too many expectations on something they had no expectations of to begin with. Think back to the first time you heard this Canadian collective: there was something about that very moment which COMMANDED your attention whether you care to admit it or not, even if you like the band or not. The sound was fresh and warmly welcomed, grand and overwhelming at times. Transcending a number of genres, there was little room for comparisons or classifications. They achieved something which my friend, Jeremy, of Temporary Residence considers a mark of success: people started comparing -other- things to them. There was something more, however—something almost indescribable and intangible—which started out like a small mystery and has built to a frenzied, inescapable force-field which surrounds this simple instrumental rock group. Godspeed certainly could share the blame of setting the winds in motion—perhaps due to the choices of samples and the use of symbols and messages tucked inside artwork or projected on the stage screens. Couple these with a feverish, caustic and sensational media, aching for a soundbyte to exploit or an individual to single out, and things can easily spin out of control.

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  4042 Hits

i am spoonbender, "shown actual size"

Gold Standard Laboratories
The downfall of any musical trend begins at the point where the music becomes too easy to make. From there, hoards of immitators flood the market and are scooped up by any record label wanting to compete in the "new market" just like a lipstick company has to have the coolest color of the year to compete with their competitor or the trend-setting upstart who got a major break. I Am Spoonbender have not only remained relatively quiet through the electroclash explosion, but refuse to allow keyboard presets, generic production and predictable riffs drive their music. While this hasn't made them as popular as the biggest offenders of dullness like Felix da Housecat, releases like this, along with their previous EP, 'Teletwin,' will still be as listenable years from now and just as tasty as they are today. 'Shown Actual Size' is only three short songs totalling less than 14 minutes, the first thing they have released in two years, and serves as a teaser for the forthcoming DVD/album, 'Hidden Persuaders'. It opens with the forceful "I Went and Had My Knives Sharpened," where a ripping, sassy, distorted bass (thanks to Dave Edwardson of Neurosis) undercuts nasty, angular synths and strong vocals from the female and male singers. "Remover-Installer" relentlessly continues with the same energy while the closer, "Re-dial Meant 'Remember'" recalls to a darker side of 1980s synth music, left in the past thanks to the absence of radio hits and perky videos.

 

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  2506 Hits

Stephen Thrower, Little Annie, and Danny Hyde on Love's Secret Domain

Unfortunately the core duo of Coil can no longer reply to us but we are happy to feature three people who were present at the time. Attempts were made to contact other people involved: guests and collaborators, but responses were and are still waiting to be received. If more responses come in, this article will be appended.

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  28502 Hits

Coil, "Love's Secret Domain" - 20 Years Later

http://brainwashed.com/common/images/covers/torso181.jpg

Twenty years ago this month (July 1991) Love’s Secret Domain was finally released by Coil. Ten years ago the album was remastered and reissued in time for Coil’s first (and what was to be their last) US appearance and today the duo at the heart of it all are no longer with us in this existence. To honor the album’s birthday, we’re featuring reflections on the album this week and words from a few of those who were involved.

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  16352 Hits

Marissa Nadler

cover imageFor her fifth album, Marissa Nadler has started to let the light into her music. The reverb pedal has been left aside and her words have been put into stark relief by new instrumentation that gives her music a more country feel. This change in style has not diluted her vision; the move feels natural and sounds like it was meant to happen at some point in her career.

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  3892 Hits

Soundpool, "Re-Mirrored" EP

Soundpool follow their critically acclaimed 2010 album Mirrors In Your Eyes with this fantastic limited CD EP (Killer Pimp will only sell 500 copies) of six remixes and reinterpretations. Syntaks, Strategy, GTO, Screen Vinyl Image, Colder, and Lawrence Chandler (of Bowery Electric fame) have all twisted and turned these soon-to-be-classic pop gems around and infused them with new life. Available separately or FREE with a purchase of the Mirrors In Your Eyes LP while supplies last.

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  8461 Hits

HTRK, "Marry Me Tonight"

I haven't had this much of a hard-on over an album since Colder's Heat. Marry Me Tonight (actually from 2009) is an almost purely emotional experience, with nine songs that in various levels combine ominous and chugging bass lines, creepy guitar (imagine that sound Wire toyed with on "Single KO"), a cold 808-supplied rhythm, a particularly endearing crudeness, and perverse lyrics with a disaffected delivery. This is a wet dream of a teenager overpowered by his or her hormones with enough pent up angst to send most adults into therapy.

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  6735 Hits

Grails

Grails

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  11529 Hits

The Tear Garden, "Crystal Mass"

Like a few releases recently, I had to take my time with this one for it to make sense to me. I had to figure out what made me like and dislike the album all at the same time. The reason that makes the most sense to me is this: the members of both the LPD and Download camps have become excellent writers while the execution of the recordings seem entirely too rushed and careless.

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  4049 Hits

KID 606, "GQ ON THE EQ"


 Did you get the NEW Kid606 full-length CD yet? The eagerly anticipated follow-up to lastmonth's full-lengther, "P.S. I Love You" rounds up various songskicking around from out of print 10", 7" and unreleased songs. The moodthis time around is one step more bridging the gap between thebombastic noisey and the high pitched squealing sonics (or love songsas Kid seems to refer to them). For a single release, many artistsfocus more on an individual track than a 'concept' that would becarried out over the course of many many songs. In many ways singlescompilations can be perfect overviews of an artist's works. On thistasty CD it works! It sounds great and provides a great way to catch upwith your favorite wonder-boy electronica poster child without huntingdown all those old vinyl singles which are difficult to grab thesedays.

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  11870 Hits

AIX EM KLEMM


Fans of Stars of the Lidand Labradford need not be surprised as this album truly sounds likewhat a collaboration between the two groups would sound like. AdamWiltze from Stars has provided his lush soundscapes of symphonicmajesty while Bobby Donne of Labradford brings to the table echoingresonant guitar melodies and even the rare subtle vocals. This discbrings into perspective that Labradford wouldn't be the same withoutall three elements. Mark Nelson's Pan American project coupled with thelive experience of seeing Carter trigger pulses and noises whileplaying the keyboards pretty much completes the puzzle (if you wouldconsdier it a puzzle to begin with!). Aix Em Kelmm is quiet but notwithout forward motion, and growing to be one of my more favoritealbums of the year. Like most music from either camp, it's a charminglisten late at night and a solid record that would easily be able tointroduce fans from either band to the other side.

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  3377 Hits

MAGNÉTOPHONE, "I GUESS SOMETIMES I NEED TO BE REMINDED OF HOW MUCH YOU LOVE ME"


The folks over at 4ADhave the weight of two-decade legacy to bear, and Magnétophone is oneof the first new acts to the 4AD roster in years. This Frenchelectronic duo seems to float at the surface in the sea ofelectronicians who merge beats with minimalistic motives. Their firstfew releases consist of a few tape-only's and some 7" singles throughEarworm. This disc here is their debut full-lengther for the 4AD, butit leaves me wondering what the label's motives are for a group likethis. Are enough people paying attention to 4AD these days to getexcited over something that 4AD has never ventured with? I ask thisquestion because in the 80s, people all over the world would pick upanything from 4AD. Another thing I wonder about is if electronic musiclike this is commercially viable enough to warrant 4AD's tendencies togo overboard with packaging and artwork? The CD itself is beautifullypackaged, including a thin scrap of metal, cut in the shape of aMagnetophone logo and a back which half exposes the CD itself. Overall,I'm impressed as the music refuses to get the least bit boring oroverly repetitive. The disc almost sneaks into the genre of the currentelectronic trendy scenester type stuff, but brings with it a muchgreater variety in sounds. There's truly a wealth of sources used inthe creation of this disc. Absent from this disc is the recent trendfrom many to include dub elements. The music is subdued enough to holdyour adoration and punchy enough in spots to keep you awake. In mostparts, it's somewhat improvisational sounding, leading me to believethat a well-practiced live show would be something special to see. Thesongs themselves are rather sophomoric in terms of structure andcomposition, haphazardly tossing in samples and gated effects, almostto avoid boredom - grooves start and diversions are tossed in to breakany sense of monotony. The sounds themselves are matured andwell-defined enough to make me interested in the group to wonder wherethey're going next.

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  3001 Hits