Monday, 14 October 2013

VIDEO VACUUM - Scott & Charlene's Wedding, Lee Ranaldo, Angie, Cuntz

Sometimes it's hard to take life seriously. If you get thrown enough curveballs and low blows, you either shrug and laugh and find the stuff that makes your world go round, or you curl up into the foetal position whilst chewing a dogshit-stained shoe. Today could have gone either way. But a handful of Aussie degenerates and one sonic youth on his crystal ship(sss) got me across the line, just in time to neck a bottle of red, watch the new episode of The Walking Dead, and be thankful I get another day to get things right. Maybe these tracks will help you too, hmm?

Craig Dermody of Scott & Charlene's Wedding has a proclivity for suburban malaise and chagrin, yet on this latest video for 'Jackie Boy', he's taking no prisoners. A typically laconic take on the Rocky male fantasy, the clip sees Dermody jogging around NYC, looking decidedly weedy but with a puffed out chest and a decidedly grimy gray tracksuit (hopefully from Lowes),punching wet carcasses and looking to make a difference in this mixed-up world that we live in. And when Dermody mumbles-shouts 'When you've got nothing left you've still got rock'n'roll', goddamn if it isn't a mantra after my own heart. TKO, dude.

The latest solo album from Sonic Youth alum Lee Ranaldo certainly divided the pundits what with its somewhat traditional mode of songwriting (well, at least for this progenitor of no wave nihilism and explorer of atonal terrains). Between the Times and the Tides is more about looking for more nostalgic and referential ways of telling stories, as opposed to crafting something outside the proverbial box, and in the main I'm a big fan. This six-minute clip for 'Fire Island (Phases)' is an ode to the Berlin winter, an experience that brings goosebumps to my soul, and he also garners help from skronky folk weirdniks Crystal Shipsss, which is pretty ace too. Ive been lucky enough to interview him AND speak to him in person - still one of my all-time highlights - so the bias has only risen, but I really appreciate the guy for forever being honest and subversive (even if that means travelling straight on when everyone else wants him to zig and zag).

If you want to circle back on the olde days of Sonic Youth, this might be your best bet. Angie is the new project for Angela Bermuda, the outlandish performer who props up the likes of Circle Pit and Straight Arrows. On 'Parallels' she gets the dirty, warbled, hypercolour VHS no-fi down pat, whilst the track itself is both Aussie pub rawk guitar noodling, buzzbin fuzz, and disaffected lyrics. It's a killer track, one I didn't see coming, and spiked my will to live even further. Nice one, Angie.

And lastly, Melbourne's Cuntz deliver the knockout blow, ensuring that I've never felt better with, well, 'Never Felt Better.' Still giving out dark, despairing punk spirals, all the time. Despite the whole thing is a constant drunken shit-stir, you can't help but get swept up in the nihilistic charm of its atonal wares. This is actually a depressing song, isn't it? Fuck it. Scream to your heart's content, drink a shit tonne of beers, and hold the baby.


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