Thursday 30 June 2011

Black Angels @ HIFI

Super psyched about this. Austin, Texas' purveyors of all thing psych The Black Angels are finally touring Australia, and they are playing the Hi Fi Bar in Brisbane tonight. They are supported by up anc comers The Laurels as well as a DJ set by none other than The Brian Jonestown Massacre's Joel Gion! This is going to be amazing - Ive seen The Black Angels twice in London and they just flat out refuse to put on a bad show! You can buy tickets here.

The Black Angels - Ronettes
The Black Angels - Haunting At 1300 McKinley
The Black Angels - No Satisfaction (Black Mountain cover)

Wednesday 29 June 2011

Thee Oh Sees

Definitely as weird as you would expect, Castlevania, John Dwyer's Thee Oh Sees' squillionth release (this one through In The Red), is a cracker of a release. I know there are a lot of detractors of the San Fran band - just about every single one of those have never experienced Thee Oh Sees in a live setting, which indelibly colours everything Dwyer and co have ever put to tape - and this album isn't likely to change their minds. Castlevania may be a cracker of an album, but it is also decidedly cracked. C'mon, its a Fisher-Price smiley phone being answered by Nosferatu! And its named after one of the coolest platform video games ever created! Most of these tracks sound like they have been created by a demented children's variety band - the Wiggles on a heady dose of weed, if you will. Dwyer's vocals are reedy and helium-high, and with much of the lyrics focusing on laconic ennui and desperation, its without a doubt a strange journey. Musically though, the album comfortably straddles the skewed garage pop and the psych offerings that colour both sides of the Thee Oh Sees schizophrenic output. Plus the band has been fleshed out, adding The Intelligence/A-Frames member Lars Finberg, and the instrumentation hits a baroque inflection that further inflates the craziness. The guy puts out a stupid amount of material, and not all of it hits the right notes, but Castlevania is fantastic. Its the kind of bizarre pop that maybe The Kinks might have written had they been subjected to endless repeats of Eeyore and Spongebob. Surreal, playful, crazy as a bag full of rabid rats, and the most fun Ive had in a while. (Oh, and if this double LP isnt enough for you, there's another album due before the year's out, that Dwyer claims is "his best work yet". Let the speed freakishness continue...) Buy Castlevania here.

Thee Oh Sees - Corprophagist
Thee Oh Sees - Corrupted Coffin

Mewling Fondas

Is it just me that hears Mew's 2003 album Frengers all over LA band Fonda's Better Days EP, their first release in over eight years? 'A Love That Won't Let You Go' especially. It also reminds me of another album that I can't quite put my finger on... Maybe this isnt so weird, as Fonda all but disappeared in...yep, 2003. Coincidence? I think not...

Anyway, duo David Klotz and Emily Cook are new to me, and incredibly quiet to those who know and love their 2003 LP Catching Up To The Future, but they obviously havent been idle. The five tracks on offer here are replete with lush boy/girl harmonies and twee pop structure against a menacing wall of guitars. Its the epitome of dream pop, heavily ensconced in shoegaze excess - in short, beautiful. Thanks to Crash Avenue for being part of the process that got this out too!

Fonda - A Love That Won't Let You Go
Fonda - Better Days

Tuesday 28 June 2011

Batty Sleepwear

Toronto trio The Bats Pajamas offer a brand of irreverent discordant noise that shows no allegiance to anything resembling rock etiquette, flinging faeces in the face on some tracks, shameless aping on others. Their self-titled debut came out this time last year, recorded by Steve Albini, and they are prepping their second full-length. I received this in the 'mail, so assume this is a "touching base" kind of PR stunt before the next, new album hits us in the face. It will be very interesting to see how the three-piece has grown in the twelve months since these tracks were laid down - its is decidedly sloppy and (that word again...) irreverent, and Im hoping they have tightened the screws on that appeal without learning to play their instruments any better - it is the shmbolic nature of the band that has them at their height of their diabolical powers.

You can buy The Bats Pajamas in vinyl, or download digitally for free, on their Bandcamp site.

The Bats Pajamas - Downtown Nitty Gritty
The Bats Pajamas - Go Bowie Go

Second Quest In Search For Dreamy Inca Gold

Inca Gold (Talvihorros' Ben Chatwin's side project of sorts) have released the second of their triptych of EPs - titled Inca Gold II - through Color + Vision, and it follows the drone-pop template the initial release showcased. The synths are effusive and silkier than in the first account, as is the soaring guitar as in first track 'In Hiding'. The slight 10CC tinges of 'League' are amazing, and above it all truly soar here. The drumming here is incessantly syncopated genius - this is the sound of a band that are gelling. I wasn't expecting to love this as much as I am - and I enjoyed the first instalment.

You can download Inca Gold II for free from their Bandcamp.

Inca Gold - In Hiding
Inca Gold - League

Monday 27 June 2011

Nothing Like An X-Rayed Eyeball

Brooklyn hipsters Xray Eyeballs (OJ from Golden Triangle's "other" band) released their debut LP Not Nothing earlier this year on Kanine Records. You may remember the cassette they put out on the mega rad Night People label - well, its business as usual here, although very nice to have a full length release from them. Its a more maudlin, languid affair than Golden Triangle - as Kanine Records themselves ascertain, this is OJ's morning after Golden Triangle came through and ripped up the party. That's not to say there arent rollicking numbers here - opening one-two 'Crystal' and 'Nightwalkers' befits the debauched slouch of an all-nighter - but Not Nothing focuses on the grungier aspects of waking up after a bender, still pounding at times, yet preferring to stomp along to their own beat - which invariably is bloodshot and destitute. Its distorted, clanging, rambunctious, sloppy - all the trademarks of a good time. It isnt reinventing the wheel - at all - but is desirable in that this is the kind of band I wanna see live, drunk as fuck. You will too...

Not Nothing is out now - get it here.

Xray Eyeballs - Egyptian Magician
Xray Eyeballs - Escape From That Girl

Bozmo In The Highest

I mentioned the Golden Feeling 7" that discordant kids Bozmo put out recently. Well, today they release their debut LP Hosanna In The Highest with a release party in Boston - if you're around, get on it! Im still loving 'Milksnakes' - a punchier, punkier number tinged with 60s pop abandon and with Belle & Sebastian style acerbic lyrics, and it deservedly opens up the album. But there are so many more great tracks - the MOR easy listening Little River Band twist with an 80s Bowie chaser of 'The Lonely Ghost'; the unhinged wails that punctuate the fun as hell 'Witchy Wu'; the Radiation Vibes era Fountains Of Wayne aura of 'Golden Feeling'... Its the various 60s guitar pop guideposts that you hear littered throughout - is there Buddy Holly and Del Shannon in 'Kill The Beast'? The harmonies that are littered throughout Hosanna In The Highest are also mightily impressive, and help to elevate this release from a good to an inherently fun album, one that Ive gravitated towards playing at the end of a day of...well, listening to music, but the fun part, when Im listening to music for me. And that is a pretty good stamp of approval if you ask me - which you didn't, but you should have.

Bozmo - Witchy Wu
Bozmo - Milksnakes

VIDEO VACUUM - Explosions In The Sky, Fucked Up, Vitamins, Harmony Acapella

Its been about a fortnight since we celebrated a few moving images that accompanying a suite of sound otherwise known as a song, so lets get sucked up in the Video Vacuum and see what transpires, hmmm?

First up is monumental. Texan instrumental gods Explosions In The Sky have actually done their 1st ever video! Its for 'Last Known Surroundings' off this year's stellar Take Care Take Care Take Care, and it is an animated gem. Not that you need visuals with music this beautiful, but let's see what happens, ok?

Last Known Surroundings from Explosions in the Sky on Vimeo.

Next we have Canadian powerhouse punks Fucked Up, and the six-minute video for 'Queen Of Hearts' off their opus David Comes To Life. 80 minutes of Fucked up in a recorded environment, regardless of whether its conceptual or not, is heaven to me, so this video has certainly been on repeat the past week...

Denver group Vitamins have graced Video Vacuum a few times this year, and now its their time again. They have a video for the B-side of their current 7", called 'The Disappearance Of David Lee Powell'. Great. Now can you hurry up and put some more music out please? I love this 7", but two songs does not sate me!

Vitamins - The Disappearance of David Lee Powell from Motion Sickness of Time Travel on Vimeo.

Finally we have a special video of the three chanteuses that make up the backing choir of my new favourite Australian band - nay, just new favourite band - Harmony, doing some vocal warm ups in a stairwell. The acoustics are haunting, the intertwining vocals beguiling. A great way to finish methinks!


Sunday 26 June 2011

Hits From The Box #24 - Writing The Book On It

So Ive had another boring weekend of writing. Well, not boring - I enjoy it - but its not the hard living lifestyle that Sonic Masala espouses. Lots of liquid drunk and spilt - coffee. Lots of music listened to - through the shitty speakers of the laptop. Lots of "relations" - also courtesy of the laptop... Yet the writing has been fruitful. I will go all Hemingway on your arse in good measure, but for now, let's have another Hits From The Box, shall we?

Extra Happy Ghost!!! is an experimental pop group from Calgary, Canada that apparently like overusing exclamation marks. In late 2010 they entered Chad VanGaalen’ s Yoko Eno studio to record their first full length, Modern Horses. The project, conceived of almost a year prior, was spurred by a chance meeting at a 2009 Vic Chesnutt (RIP) show. The album is named for 9 horses that panicked and jumped off a Calgary bridge in 2005 while being corralled toward the city’s downtown. Modern Horses is concise, consisting of nine sparse and anxious pop songs, functioning as a whole and flowing seamlessly. It isnt out until late next month, but this track here provides us with something to really look forward to...

Extra Happy Ghost!!! - So At One

Australian multi-instrumentalist Mark Tulk moved to the US some two years ago. Im sure he has been up to a lot of things in the last 24 months, but musically he is preparing to display the fruits of his labour in the form of LP Central State. There is some musical acumen behind the scenes too, with the mastering engineer being the resident of Abbey Road Studios. The album sounds like moody Americana folk with classical leanings - it doesn't necessarily require the knowledge that Tulk is a foreigner in a strange land to relate to the songs at all. Though maybe it helps... Whether you like the spectral title track, or the distorted guitar/violin/piano combo on 'Rain', there is a lot to hear and take in - rich rewards to be gleaned also. You can stream/purchase the entire album here - it comes out July 1st.

Who's up for some Swedish psych rock that is more akin to Ted Nugent or Black Sabbath? Gordon Fights will ably fit that bill. Having just finished recording their debut LP, Gordon Fights looks set to take on the world with their brand of classic 70s rawk n roll. They are pretty straight ahead, no frills, they know what they want and they know how to get it. Want any more proof? Their influences, from the horse's mouth, are Led Zeppelin, Humble Pie, Jimi Hendrix, Free, Captain Beefheart, The Who, Buddy Miles, AC/DC, Wolfmother, Graveyard, The Movements, Lynyrd Skynyrd, The Allman Brothers Band..." And the music, of course. Let the music speak for itself...

Gordon Fights - Time Machine

EDM stands for Early Day Miners. Just call em EDM. The Indiana band used to be on Secretly Canadian (home of Antony & The Johnsons and Yeasayer, amongst many more) for the past decade, yet they have jumped ship to Western Vinyl. This brings the band full circle, as WV brought out their debut album of 2000, Placer Found. The new album, Night People, (out July 5 - preorder here) is heavily influenced by singer/songwriter Daniel Burton's experience recording the likes of Songs:Ohia. Its an attempt at rebirth - and on the whole it works well. Burton's vocals evoke The Frames' Glenn Hasnard, and even opening track 'Hold Me Down' echoes their warmth and pop sensibilities. THe majority of the album though harbours stranger instrumentation, more akin to the spikier moments in Mew's back catalogue. But as always we here at Sonic Masala are drawn to long, brooding numbers, and the penultimate track, instrumental 'Milking The Moon', fits that bill perfectly.

EDM - Milking The Moon

The last two entries are child-related - so their monikers maintain, anyway. KidCity are a Toronto based indie pop duo who have just released their self-titled EP. Whilst their self-styled genre - "clip-hop" - sounds derivative at best, the tracks on display do not, especially on the below track that juxtaposes a vocoder voice with Kelly Ann's angelic vocals. Well worth a listen - you can grab it for free here.

Kidcity - Blackened

A new member to the Slumberland fold, Oakland pop pranksters Kids On A Crime Spree are punching above their weight with their debut EP We Love You So Bad, 8 tracks of sugar-coated fuzzy guitar pop. Its not setting the world on fire, but it shows potential to do so. They arent attempting to reinvent the wheel - they just wanna take you by the scruff of the neck and make sure you have a good time. OK then...

Kids On A Crime Spree - Sweet Tooth

Happy Sunday!

The Imaginary BOBBY

BOBBY are a Massachusetts collective that delve into woozy, dreamy soundscapes. Although inadvertent, this ended up being the perfect moniker for the sounds the group makes, after the found a book written in 1985 called BOBBY. The titular character is imaginary, and the members found a kinship with the publication, so much so that they used bits of the artwork from the book for their album cover. The track below, 'Groggy', has been around the blog traps for a little while, but seeing as the album was only released this week I thought Id hold onto it until now. it is! Its a solid release, well worth the small amount of dough to turf out for it, believe me! BOBBY has been put out by Partisan Records - you can get it here.

BOBBY - Groggy

Saturday 25 June 2011

Weird Dance Mixtape, Anyone?

I feel like dancing. You cant question this kind of thing, so you just do it. But there's no dancing unless there is music, so Ive tried to create a weird little soundtrack to boogie around to half naked in full view of the neighbours. These tracks arent your regular floorburners, but they will get the job done in a myriad better ways...

We will start and finish with Motorboater, a Kansas City artist that is mining the same ground as Delorean. Sunny, insistent synth, pattering percussion loops and some lovely crooned vocals, all combining to really sink their teeth in and refuses to let go. All with a smile, a wink and no blood being spilled of course - this is all about a love-in! Both this first track and the closer 'Lessons' are off his freshly released album Sport...

Motorboater - Left LimbLink
Hooray For Earth, having been born from the afterbirth of Of Montreal, were always going to have skewed dynamics and off-kilter beats, yet this song really took me by surprise. I do love me some RnB when it isnt RnB, or tries hard not to be when it so blatantly is - and 'No Love' is transparent as they come. A lot of fun.

Hooray For Earth - No Love

UMO are Unknown Mortal Orchestra, a name that is floating about a bit lately. Their debut self-titled album is coming out on Fat Possum. This track has been around for a year or so, but is still damned addictive. Its somehow glacial, hypnotic and sundrenched in equal measure. They have a crazy formula that works - Im very keen to hear what the album sounds like... (And for those who want some kind of connection, the band is the brainchild of Ruban Neilson, one third of New Zealand's ace Mint Chicks...)

UMO - Ffunny Ffrends (New Bounce)

Doug Hoyer is among Edmonton’s premier pop practitioners. He is dropping his full length debut Walks with the Tender and Growing Night next week via Old Ugly Recording Co., June 30th. His songs tend to utilise a deluge of different instruments, record samples, and field recordings on every track. It feels like a long lost moody 80s number...

Doug Hoyer - Northern Lights

I really need to stick a Baltimore band on here - they always get me groovin - and you can't really go wrong with some Future Islands! The new single, 'Before The Bridge' isnt out in a physical format until July 19, but I couldnt resist... It still doesnt beat 'Seize A Shark' in my opinion - but then again, not much does - but the track utilises the dance beats, glam punk ethics and Samuel T Herring's vocals to great effect - plus Double Dagger's Denny is on additional percussion, so double ace!

Future Islands - Before The Bridge

We haven't heard from Camera Phone, Luftwaffe's Toby Altman's side project in a while! But here is 'Fauntelroy', a taster of some new releases he has up his sleeve that will be dropped very very soon. Its another easy, groovy number - maybe, rather than dancing, I should just be swaying with my eyes closed, a fat one clamped between my lips???

Camera Phone - Fauntelroy

If we are going for warped dance toons, but dont want to delve into devil worship or Italo disco, then riffling through the Not Not Fun catalogue is a must. And as its one of their newest releases, Ive decided upon Jonas Reinhardt, and a track off Music For The Tactile Dome. His an SF artist that has tinkered with synths for about a decade, but its only the past couple of years that he's music has been finding an audience outside the Bay Area. Hopefully this might get a few more hooked...

Jonas Reinhardt - Smokey Jotus

And, as promised, that other Motorboater track...

Motorboater - Lessons

Well, I hope this lifts your Saturday somewhat. I should add more, but Im floating to the bean bag now...

Drawing The Line

I spoke briefly last month about SoCal's Mothers Of Gut, and their album Unking. Ive been listening to another track off the album, 'Stalemate', and it more than lives up to that initial promise. There are elements of Neil Young's 'Man Needs A Maid' in the instrumentation surrounding the chorus, which is pretty ace in itself, but this is inherently psych rock, meandering woozily amidst spectral guitarwork, echoed mewlings, haunted strings and everything heavily reverbed throughout - its foreboding, drug addled, and vintage, and leaves an indelible shiver etched into your spine.

Unking is available now through Family Time Records - get it here.

Mothers Of Gut - Stalemate
Mothers Of Gut - Wizard Tree

Wavving Away That Trash Talk

What a strange match up. First we have Trash Talk, the bristling Sacramento hardcore band that blew all and sundry away in Australia earlier this year. Then we have Wavves, the perennially stoned Californian noise popsters. The guys from Trash Talk are rad, but I always thought that one cock-eyed comment from Nathan Williams would have them raining down vengeance on his doped-up ass. And yet here they are, splitting this 7" (first made available on Record Store Day). Wavves had already digitally released this track, 'TV Luv Song', but tis good to hear its shambolically rambunctious charms with the crackle and hiss of vinyl. And TT, well its just good to hear them full stop. So if you like either, or both of these dudes, you can try to snap up a pressing, although they are pretty low on the ground. Best just to get em below...

Trash Talk - Thorns
Wavves - TV Luv Song

Friday 24 June 2011

Friday Cover Up - Bowel-Crunching Ring Of Fire

OK, so I have to say that this week's cover is rather obscure. For one, it doesn't even share the same song title as its clear inspiration. Secondly, apart from the repeating, iconic lyrics, there is little similarities with the source material. The thing is, that is what makes Appetite's 'Fiery Ring' perfect for the Friday Cover Up. This bastardised version of Johnny Cash's 'Ring Of Fire' is incredible - elements of Animal Collective crossed with that song off Top Gun 'Take My Breath Away', plus other strange crossovers in between... It's truly mesmerising - one of the best covers Ive heard in some time. And when you think of all the seminal reworkings Cash did in his American Recordings sessions, I think the Rider in the Sky would be looking down on young Appetite with a nod and a wry grin. Well, at least until he unleashes the four Horsemen of the Apocalypse upon us. And if that is my fault, I apologise in advance...

Appetite (AKA Teddy Briggs) Is bringing out an album, Scattered Smothered Covered, via Crossbill Records in August. I will be watching out for this, if only to see if this is a one hit wonder kind deal...

Appetite - Fiery Ring (Johnny Cash cover)


Ive been talking to Andrea over at AVANT! Records, a vinyl label based in Italy. They are relatively new, focusing primarily on post-punk and wave-ish stuff. My interest was fully arrested when I went to the Bandcamp page and saw that a previous Cult Of Youth release was put out by AVANT!, and seeing as Im a COY devotee I delved deeper into their wares. Their last three releases are very interesting.

Contrepoison's Until Next Morning 12" EP is four songs of droning, depressing synth thrown out of whack by the out of tune, off-kilter vocals. Seeings as Contrepoison means antidote in French, then perhaps this is the counterpoint to love - the album to drag you off your heady highs into the heartless darkness?

Contrepoison - To Never, Forever

Lust For Youth is a Swedish duo that dole out a more industrial synth drone, and their album Solar Flare offers twelve tracks of it. The great thing about these songs though is the pop sensibility hiding underneath the static and murk - these are catchy songs, despite the dark hues they are painted with. Think along the lines of a less refined Fuck Buttons and you are getting on the right track. This album really appealed to me after I peeled back the layers.

Lust For Youth - Dreams

Finally we have Scorpion Violente. Ill let the press from AVANT! fill you in on what's in store... "A gay beast from France obsessed with trash electronics and bad sexual habits. Eight long tracks of a sort of sick mix between Giorgio Moroder italo disco and the paranoid minimal wave by Suicide and Cabaret Voltaire." Its funny, because its not as disturbing as that first makes it out to be. Oh, its still pretty twisted, but these beats-infused numbers are damn catchy, and will lurk around your mind for some time - if you can get rid of them at all. Bonus points for a track called 'Christopher Walken' too.

Scorpion Violente - Viol Et Revanche

Expect to hear a lot from AVANT! on Sonic Masala over the next few months. If you like any/all of these releases, you can purchase em here!Link

Longing Stares Into The Two Way Mirror

I kinda bagged out the first taste off Crystal Antlers' new album Two Way Mirror, 'Summer Solstice'. I did attest to the notion that 'Andrew' was, and still is, a killer track. Well, the titular song from the sophomore album has arrived, and for me at least, this is a much stronger step in the right direction. 'Two Way Mirror' is more akin to their blistering garage psych ways that we witnessed on last LP Tentacles. We love our insurmountable mountains of shrieking guitars, our pummelling drums and our iconic, blood torn vocals, and all are present and accounted for here. It will be interesting to see how this album fares - the Long Beach collective have taken it upon themselves to release it on their Recreation LTD label. I can state that now, my interest has finally been piqued.

Crystal Antlers - Two Way Mirror

Politely Give Your Attention To Boris

I came to Boris through my sister's iPod - another one of the bands that Im inexorably grateful to her douche ex-boyfriend for... Anyway, the album was Pink, and it killed. Still does. Since then Ive been able to appreciated the pendulum-like swings of each of their releases. The Japanese avant-noise trio are the epitome of eschewing expectations, for over the twenty or so albums the band has released since the turning of the new millennium (and if you don't believe me, check it out here), they have mined so many genres, albeit with a heady sense of intensity, that classification is a futile cause. They mix up dirge, drone, punk, no wave and pop with wanton abandon. You never know which Boris is going to come rushing out of the speakers at you, only that it will invade the senses. Most of the time this is a good thing - in the case of this year's Heavy Rocks (the same name of an earlier release of theirs - I dont understand that either...)

Attention Please, one of two Boris albums released simultaneously (the other being Heavy Rocks), is another bold directional tack, zagging where a zig would suffice. Wailing guitarist Wata, usually at the fringes of the back in a singing capacity, is the sole vocalist here, the first time she has taken the vocal reins for the entirety of a recording – and it’s amazing this hasn’t happened before. Her alluring voice soars, creeps, arouses and distances in equal measure. The breathy delivery of 'You', the punky sing-song of 'Les Paul Custom ’86', and the sultry swoon of standout tracks 'Tokyo Wonder Land' and 'Spoon', adds a new dimension to an already multi-faceted group. It is the minimalist slant that is most surprising - and most effective. By dialling down the noise to just the most opportune of moments, its impact is stronger in its suddenness, and equally as effective when it leaves hushed tones in its wake.

Attention Please is an incredibly effective album, one where the three musicians known for losing their shit are more about control here, therein offering a depth of focus that’s astonishing.
LinkAttention Please is out now through Sargent House and Other Tongues.Link
Boris -Hope

Thursday 23 June 2011

Booking In Nightfall

We told you about new French label Bookmaker a little while back - their first two releases were quality, in both the psych music that lay within, and the lovingly rendered artwork that housed it - check those out here. Well, it's time for number three, and the honours fall to Oxford, UK artist Seabuckthorn (AKA Andy Cartwright), In Nightfall. These instrumental acoustic melodies follow in the same vein as the Eastern inflected latter releases of Grails, and is a beguiling listen. Prepare to be sucked in, losing all sense of time and space as these tracks wash over you. Bookmaker have created only 100 packages for the album, all with silkscreen recycled cardboard. You can get your copy here.

Seabuckthorn - Journeyed Road

Art Fags Bleach Carter

No, this isnt a stuck up homophobic heinous act played out on my favourite 2 year old lil dude (so many in jokes there its ridiculous - for the handful of you who get it, good; the rest of you, shrug and move on), but a shout out to the new release from Art Fag Recordings. Bleached are a new LA band consisting of sisters Jennifer and Jessie Clavin (of Mika Miko), and their second release (but first for Art Fag), Carter. The two tracks on it, 'Think Of You' and 'You Take Time' which are both jaunty lo-fi punk rock party tracks. Can't not think of The Runaways, Joan Jett et al, especially when listening to 'Think Of You'. Very promising!

Carter isnt available until July 19, but you can preorder it from Art Fag here. They are playing some West Coast US shows in August with Heavy Hawaii, who we have championed here before also - well worth checkin out.

Bleached - Think Of You

A Brutal Punk To The Face

Ouch My Face are brutal. The above picture attests to that. In fact they have loads of kick arse band photos that attest to that. But it takes listening to the Melbourne trio's experimental punk to truly appreciate how much these guys and gal like to punish aurally. Their opening shows for the likes of The Bronx and particularly Shonen Knife blew pundits away with their eviscerating power. I have the guys from Brissie band No Anchor (who are privy to the occasional sonic explosion themselves) to putting me onto their current 7", which you can listen to and buy below. If you are in Brisbane at the back end of July, you can experience the blistering fury yourselves, as Ouch My Face venture north for a couple of shows. They are playing an instore at Tym Guitars July 24, after the Beetle Bar will have imploded under their anarchic presence the night before, July 23 (ably assisted by Butcher Birds).

Mercilessly Yakking Up And Down The Coast

Brisbane's The Mercy Beat are about to embark on their biggest tour to date, showcasing their roaring rock all along the East Coast. Their debut album How To Shampoo A Yak is an accomplished affair and perfectly encapsulates the strength that infuses these ballsy tracks. Its their maiden voyage, kickstarting in Melbourne tomorrow night, so get along to one of the following shows and support a great up and coming act.

The Mercy Beat - Eagle Throws Goat Off Cliff
The Mercy Beat -Arouzin Yispouse

Wednesday 22 June 2011

Mr Heavenly Aren't All Out Of Love, Are They?

There has been enough lyrical waxing generated everywhere around the indie supergroup Mister Heavenly. Nick from Islands/The Unicorns (two very underrated indie pop acts of the past decade) with members from Modest Mouse and Man Man, and a guesting spot from Mr Quirky Lovable Geek himself, Michael Cera. Well, they are putting out their album Out Of Love though Sub Pop in August. Not sure if Cera is involved in any other way than a live setting. Doesnt really matter. With the calibre of talent on board, it will be very interesting to see how these guys fare. Im hoping that it is awesome, as Im sure y'all are too...

Mister Heavenly - Pineapple Girl

Listen, Baby, Its The Eeries!

Philly billies The Eeries have just thrown out this 7" through Evil Weevil Records, and it is some serious doo-wop surf pop whimsy. Id like to hear more, as these tracks are, whilst lovingly executed, not that exciting, yet Ive heard great things from some of my Stateside friends. They are touring the 7" now, see if you can catch em.

The Eeries - Listen Baby

Hits From The Box #23 - Cleaning Up

Ah, the 23rd instalment of Hits From The Box. Its almost been six months since we have had this segment flowing, and it continues to reap dividends. I have been very busy of late though, cleaning up loose ends, starting new threads of endeavour, all of which will reaer their ugly heads in this blog over the upcoming months. Exciting times ahead folks! Hence the lateness of this particular instalment. SO let's have at it then, shall we?

LinkBristol-bred UK band Towns released their debut single 'Fields' last month. With the love of early 90s music well in effect (look at the inexplicable excitement over Yuck...), Towns (brothers Adam and Miles Hastings (bass and drums) and childhood friends James Maclucas (vocals) and Jon Paul Beaumont (guitar)) instil the nation's love of shoegaze to infuse their pop leanings with some extra oomph. And they have only been playing live for four months...

TOWNS - Fields by TOWNSmusic

There isn't much that can be gleaned about Radioseven - he is a Vancouver ambient soundscape artist that wanted to remain unknown - very mysterious... Distorted Disco are putting out his eight track EP, An Escape, and its a solid release. Strafing music and art, there is a lot to get out of here. You can get the EP here.

Radioseven - An EscapeLinkRadioseven - Distance

Battle Flags is a one man project (otherwise known as Jack Budd) out of Richmond Virginia. The album Color Engine is a result of attending music school and creating sounds and rhythms stolen from pots, pans, shovels, empty kegs and living room chairs. Its an intriguing album filled with enervating loops and fills, and offers some great tracks.

Battle Flags - Siren Songs
Battle Flags - Le WolfLink
Double Denim Records are up to their sixth release, and this time it is Celestial Shore who are taking the stage. The New York-based Californians do an interesting juggling act between sunny beach rhythms and polyrhythmic angular riffs. Their 7" Pals/Place Aux Dames is out now - there's only 300 copies, so get in there quick!

DD006 A1: Celestial Shore // Pals by Double Denim Records

After years of secretly singing over records as a child in his native Victoriaville (somewhere between Quebec city and Montreal, Canada), Danny Provencher started playing bass in his secondary school band. He then moved to Montreal where he started writing and producing electronic music on his own as Under Electric Light. Blending his various influences such as New Order, The Beach Boys, My Bloody Valentine, Kraftwerk and Slowdive to achieve a truly personal sound, Under Electric Light focuses on melodies and arrangements to create well crafted pop songs. Waiting For The Rain To Fall is the first album.

Under Electric Light - Someone Somewhere

Picture a beautiful beach on a sunny day. Think of all the families, pets, children, joy, happiness and normality intertwining on those sandy recesses. Now imagine this saccharine boredom getting swamped by a tsunami of sludge, noise, waves and weirdness. That's what happens to rock and roll when under the influence of Crystal Swells. 4 laissez-faire hombres playing squalled out punk/surf/grunge rock, they shred and drone with the greatest of ease, making fans faint with their shirtless, onstage death stares. Loud Fast Hard Ready. Check out Goethe Head Soup for the full, swirling mess.

Crystal Swells - Patent Trolls
Crystal Swells - Mellow Californians

Happy Wednesday!