Monday, April 21, 2008
i am now a contributer to a collective blog started by some fellow messageboard friends. i figure this way the blog will be updated much more often, as i am unable to update my own blog on a daily basis.
the new blog is http://creepeepy.blogspot.com
However, it is invite only. If you're a poster on the messageboard i'm speaking of, you are almost guarenteed an invite to view the blog. If you're a friend of mine or something like that, I will probably be able to get you an invite.
if you need to get at me you can leave a comment here because i'll be checking back occasionally. otherwise, PM me or any other creepeepy contributer on the messageboard and we'll help you out.
Monday, April 14, 2008
Four gorgeous girls playing punked-up bursts of 70s rock
2007 debut release from this new French quartet. The Plastiscines are four girls, reminiscent of The Runaways, with lyrics primarily in French, despite the English song titles. The Plastiscines are part of the new wave of French talent consisting of young middle class kids picking up guitars and letting loose. There has been a large (and positive) reaction to the new movement in the French press and that news is starting to spread worldwide. Catch them before they catch you!. 13 tracks. EMI. 2007.
bikini kill- self titled
I'm not sure if these are the first two records that started riot grrrl, but I do know it did have a major influence on the scene. For those who don't know, riot grrrl (also spelled as just riot grrl) is a form of hardcore punk rock music, with militant feminist lyrics. It began and then died (having gotten unwanted attention from the media) in the early '90s. The record first starts off with 'Double Dare Ya' an urge for women to take control of their equal rights, which has one of my favorite lines 'Gotta listen to what the Man says/time to make his stomach burn'. 'Liar' is a song that attacks rapists and also mocks the typical redneck macho man (eat meat/hate blacks/beat your f*cking wife/it's all the same thing). 'Carnival' is an interesting song with its skipping drumbeat, while 'Thurston Hearts The Who' has Tobi reading a negative review which puts down the band, while Kathleen mocks the reviewer. 'White Boy' is another song which deals with rape, and 'Don't Need You' is a powerful feminist anthem. The CD closes with 'Outta Me' which sounds almost like a slow and sad '60s pop song. A striking contrast compared to the other songs. Included in the CD booklet is political essay written by Kathleen. Great CD, if you feel like there is a lack of feminist perspective in music nowadays, definately pick this up.
Imagine punk rock spliced with girl groups and the beach boys and you get bratmobile. What started out as a college project amongst friends, turned into one of the greatest grrrl bands around. Raw, fast and original, it is both a shame these women remain comparatively unsuing and a blessing (so they do not become victims of the media feeding frenzy)
Even though it is not an explict clairon call to feminist arms (like Bikini Kill or Julie Ruin) there is enough stuff included to provide a refreshing antidote to the returing macho posturing of the mainstream airwaves. That this was accomplished with the band members living in different parts of the country is a testament to their undying dedication and support of each other. This attitude translates into respect and effort for the fans.dolly mixture- demonstration tapes
A pop UK-based female trio formed in 1978 which comprised Debsey Wykes (b. 21 December 1960, Hammersmith, London, England; bass/piano/vocals), Rachel Bor (b. 16 May 1963, Wales; guitar/cello/vocals) and Hester Smith (b. 28 October 1960, West Africa; drums). The group was formed by the three school-friends in Cambridge who all shared a fondness for The Shangri-Las and the The Undertones. It was the Undertones who gave Dolly Mixture one of their first breaks by having the Dollys support them on one their first tours of the UK.
Wykes started collaborating with Saint Etienne as one of the band's regular backing singers. Saint Etienne's Bob Stanley became the new Dolly Mixture champion, re-releasing their untitled 1983 double album (this time titled Demonstration Tapes), as a single CD on the Royal Mint label, in 1995.
the go-go's beauty and the beat
When the 1970s punk scene was washed away by the undertow of '80s new wave, few bands surfed the transition as well as the Go-Go's. These Valley grrrls dressed up their punk heritage with a sense of glamour so that their music was at once ballsy and fanciful. The peppery singles "We Got the Beat" and "Our Lips Are Sealed" were their debut's chart climbers and glossiest tracks. The rest of the album has a tougher crust. For example, the jittery "Can't Stop the World" would make the Ramones proud. And take a look at the lyrical content of "This Town": "Change the lines that were said before / We're all dreamers--we're all whores / Discarded stars / Like worn out cars / Litter the streets of this town." Hole's single "Celebrity Skin" is a '90s rendition of the same theme: "When I wake up with my makeup / Have you ever felt so used up as this? / It's all so sugarless / Hooker / Waitress / Model / Actress / Oh, just go nameless." Just as Courtney Love has made a career out of publicly displaying her glam-trash lifestyle, the Go-Go's song about the self-eroding lifestyles of Hollywood revealed that they, too, were more hard living than hard candy. --Beth Bessmer
the runaways- self titled
When the Runaways debuted in 1976 with this self-titled LP, aggressive female rockers were the exception instead of the rule. With this album, the Runaways made it crystal clear that women (or specifically, adolescent girls) were more than capable of playing intense, forceful hard rock that went directly for the jugular. Produced by Kim Fowley. 10 tracks & a fold-out sleeve with extensive liner notes, photos & other memorabilia. Cherry Red Records. 2003
the shangri-las- leader of the pack
The bad girls of early spoken word rock debut album is finally on CD. The sound is very good. The liner notes are a brief long page introduction. The song selection is respectable considering singles were emphasized on album until The Beach Boys "Pet Sounds". Shangri-Las fans will like the mini-pictured pink colored badge and black patch included with the disc. If the question to purchase is based on the live material, don't bother. It's early 1960's ying-yang on par with a high school dance along the line of The Rolling Stones "Got Live If You Want It". Volume levels are inconsistent. Luckily the excellent bonus tracks finish the CD on a high note. There was always something different about Mary Weiss and company that set them apart from what was going on back then. Was it the (A) Harmony (B) Mystique (C) Dark Approach (D) New York Drawl or (E) Adolescent Issues? Try (F) - All Of The Above. Newcomers should best turn to the collected "Myrmidons" (Black Cover) which has some stereo versions as compared to muddy sounds of the (Red) Mercury "Best Of" before picking this up. Until Grace Slick and Janis Joplin came along, The Shangri-Las and The Ronettes were "The Leader(s) Of The Pack" in female rock.
the organ- grab that gun
Up in the Great White North, the buzz is palpable. Knighted the latest Canadian "it" band, The Organ have been riding a wave of attention and acclaim revolving around the band’s Mint/604 Records debut, 'Grab That Gun.' With cover stories in Canada’s biggest music monthly (Exclaim) and myriad reviews and features from coast to coast — including unanticipated yet welcome coverage in American mags Fader and Venus — The Organ are ready to take on the U.S. with the release of 'Grab That Gun' on November 2, 2004. Based around the warm, melancholic tones of Jenny Smyth’s Hammond organ, Katie Sketch’s Morrissey-meets-Alison Moyet vocals and Debora Cohen’s guitar that alludes to Johnny Marr, the band has been consistently compared with the best songwriters of the early ‘80s new-wave, writing structured songs around minimal arrangements and creating a nuanced, textured sound that is brooding and catchy at the same time. The best of many bands can be found here — whether it is the weaving counterpoint melodies between organ and bass, the lean bell-like intonation of sparkling guitars, the charmed tenacity of the snare, or the suspended lamentation of Sketch’s cascading vocals — and much excitement is borne out of the desire to name The Organ’s sound in precise terms.
Saturday, April 12, 2008
Formed by brothers Siayko and Boris Skalsky, Phaser is a Washington, D.C. based quartet that has been writing, performing and recording throughout the East Coast for over 2 years. Augmented by guitarist Paul Wood and drummer Rich DeJong, the band has been compared to the current British scene -- accoridng to the Washington Post "an auspicious preamble to a new D.C. sound." ..."An effortless glide between ringing shoegazer rock to sparse acoustic pop. Full atmospheric washes, chiming guitars, haunting refrains and elegant arrangements."
Phaser has played numerous venues and performed with British bands Gomez and Super Furry Animals as well as opening for American acts such as Black Rebel Motorcycle Club.
monochrome set- love zombies
The Monochrome Set were an English post-punk band originally formed in 1976 from the remnants of a college group called The B-Sides (whose members had included Stuart Goddard, a.k.a. Adam Ant). The band is notable for its witty lyrics, the laconic delivery of lead singer Bid, and the idiosyncratically retrogressive playing style of original lead guitarist Lester Square.
Trouser Press described the album as possessing "a smoother and more accessible sound" than the band's debut, "Strange Boutique", praising its melodies, as well as "lyrics that take sharp, light jabs at emotional traps and social mores."
The liner notes on the front of the original LP sleeve described the album as:
"An unashamed look at their weird lives.....their wild loves...in a jazz-haunted, desire-tormented world."
On the back of the sleeve was written:
"Once this record is in the house two's company and four is a party. Roll back the carpet, switch out the light and dance in the glow of the firelight as 'The Monochrome Set' provide your very own music far from the maddening crowd of the dance halls."
mew- half the world is watching
Second release from Danish alternative pop wonders Mew, and quite a fulfilling piece of work. The album kicks off with the intense "Am I Wry? No" which is followed by three pure pop songs, "Mica" being the most successful of these. Whereas the first half of the album, except for the opening track, is pretty straightforward pop music, the second half is more moody, starting out with the piano/guitar-driven "Her Voice is Beyond her Years", a duet between lead singer Jonas Bjerre and elf-like Swedish singer Stina Nordenstam. It's followed by the strange, but catchy "156", before entering la grande finale with the ballad "Symmetry", a sweet duet between Jonas Bjerre and American teenager Becky Jarret, and the last track, the majestic nine-minute epic "Comforting Sounds".
A bunch of these songs were re-released, in slightly different versions, as part of Mew's international debut album Frengers
lowdream- between my dreams and real things
Brazilian shoegaze. That's all i know.
the new rags- take jennie to brooklyn
If you've been waiting with bated breath for the resurgence of Ragtime as a force in popular music, your prayers have been answered at long last... Enter the New Rags, determined to resurrect the ghost of Scott Joplin for a new generation. Their sound is really more of a mash-up, a Ragtime-y aesthetic over a foundation of pure rock and roll - reminiscent of the Delta 72 at times, but with a much more freewheeling, party-time vibe. What's most impressive, there's only two guys behind this racket, banging it out on a Fender Rhodes and a drum kit, with nary a guitar in sight... Just check out the opening riff of "Your Room" to see what I'm talking about.
the icarus line- black presents
This CD EP features two tracks from the band's highly anticipated sophomore album on Dim Mak. Two rare tracks.
the shops assistants- self titled (will anything happen)
In 1997 the album was issued on CD by Overground Records with the catalogue number OVER62CD. It also contained two extra tracks which were Looking back and All Day Long (Slow Version) which were on the b-side of the 12" version of I Don't Wanna Be Friends With You
Known mostly for putting out great pop singles on C86, this is the bands only full-length. The split up soon after. They idolized the Shangri-Las.
Friday, April 11, 2008
Cursive- the Difference Between Houses and Homes (Lost Songs: 1995 - 2001)
An odds-and-ends collection of tracks from beloved indie rock Omaha quartet CURSIVE. Includes two previously unreleased tracks, along with ten sought after tracks taken from out-of-print singles. Includes a 24-page booklet featuring the story that is the album's namesake, written by frontman TIM KASHER and illustrated by Eastern Youth artist YURIKO YOSHINO.
Chuck Ragan- Los Feliz
Good-intentioned philosophers may try to boil life down to one universal truth or “secret,” but they’re missing the point. Ultimately, life is composed of so many experiences, emotions and relationships that it’s impossible to break it down like a chemical compound. Chuck Ragan has always understood that dichotomy, whether he was screaming over buzzing guitars in Hot Water Music or pouring his heart out over a bed of acoustic instrumentation as he does these days. Ultimately, the one constant in Ragan’s music is the way it personifies life’s beauty and struggles with equal aplomb.
Recorded on February 19, 2007 in Los Feliz, California, Los Feliz captures a very spontaneous performance of songs in a setting that isn’t contrived or overly scrutinized. “We set up the show and played it a week later,” Ragan explains about the impromptu performance, which spans everything from traditional songs to a HWM track to previously unreleased solo material and even a few covers. “A lot of good friends came out and played and a lot of people showed up and showed their support,” he continues, “it was nothing but good fun.”
Marathon- self titled
One of the best punk records you'll ever hear. Recorded by John Naclerio at Nada Studios (Shai Hulud, My Chemical Romance, Matchbook Romance). Marathon's debut full length is anthemic, political, catchy, soaring, and inspirational. It's not "if" Marathon will blow up, it's "when."
the Stereo- New Tokyo Is Calling EP
this melody-flush, weezy band of pop rock champions led by members of ANIMAL CHIN and the IMPOSSIBLES. master-driven anthems loaded with catchy guitar licks, full-throttle backbeats and vocal melodies so perfect you'd swear it was Rick Springfield the whole way.
4 songs. the title track is on their second full-length, No Traffic.
Wednesday, April 9, 2008
14 iced bears- self titled
14 Iced Bears were a British indie pop band associated with the C86 music scene. Formed in Brighton in 1985, by Rob Sekula and Nick Emery  the band featured a shifting line-up of musicians across their seven-year existence, centred around songwriter and vocalist Rob Sekula and guitarist Kevin Canham. The name came form a pack a biscuits that Emery and Sekula creatively changed from 15 to 14. Their jangly indie pop was characterised by a fuzzy protopunk-influenced guitar sound, and saw them receive modest critical acclaim in Britain's music press as well as prompting disc jockey John Peel to recruit them to record a couple of sessions for his programme on BBC radio.
A canadian shoegaze/noisepop-band formed in 1997. Last.fm says "Futura Black" is their only album, but i got this from somewhere and it's great. Heavy, epic shoegaze. The band and album name pretty much says it all.
the happy birthdays- self titled EP
Yet another band I have almost no info on. Three girls from Stockholm doing wonderful pop in the vein of american indiepop from the nineties and UK pop eighties style with nods to C86 and Sarah. 'sounds like it's self released.
have a nice life- deathconsciousness
Have a Nice Life is a two-piece outfit from Connecticut that includes a member of the hardcore band, In Pieces; although, this double CD collection has nothing in the way of sound that can compare to that outfit in any sense of the word. Instead, Have a Nice Life actually has a sound that pulls from a variety of influences like Joy Division, Swans, The Cure, etc. and is vaguely reminiscent of some "Brit pop;” but even trying to describe the band's sound in those terms does not fully explain it. The band also attempts to take on some fairly intellectual discourse surrounding a medieval heretical Christian group, called the Antiocheans, by including a thick booklet regarding the controversy, mystery, and persecution of the group over the course of their existence. The concept and execution of Deathconsciousness: The Plow that Broke the Plains & The Future is largely impressive and ambitious, specially so considering that Have a Nice Life funded, produced, and recorded the whole project on their own over the course of six years.
DOWNLOAD Part 1
DOWNLOAD Part 2
lassie foundation- face your fun
There are those albums that we encounter that bring us back to our youth. This happens to be one of those albums for me. The Cure, New Order, Psychedelic Furs, Big Country: these are the bands of my youth. Lassie captures the essence of the 80's and updates it for today. Face Your Fun is energetic, fun, and catchy. It is indie-pop at its best. What is more is that the musicianship is fantastic. Campuzano brings his signature bass work to this disc along with Happy's subtle use of the vibraphone. Shroeder's guitar is soaring and perfect with Everett's percussion and his vocals. Everett has definitely grown as a vocalist and shows his growth with powerfully effective vocals. "Money Money" is a great song.
loop- heaven's end
The Stooges first album. the MC5. Can. Suicide. Mix the aforementioned bands with late '60s psychedelia, droning fuzz, and douse the whole thing in washes of reverb and you'll get an idea of what Loop is about. Their albums are enigmatic, hipnotic, repetitive, and yes, that is a recommendation. Spacemen 3, Ride, the Telescopes, all these fellow so called "shoegaze" groups truly pale in comparison.
midnight oil- diesel and dust
Few would claim that Midnight Oil's Peter Garrett is the world's greatest rock vocalist, but he clearly means what he sings. On Diesel and Dust, Garrett and company serve up a collection of solid pop-rock songs that follow the groundwork laid by their early albums. Intrinsic to their sound is a guitars-bass-drums attack spiced occasionally with horns and keyboards and capped with Garrett's throaty vocals. Garrett's lyrics on Deisel and Dust are noteworthy because they are not about love or personal relationships but instead address larger issues. "Beds Are Burning" is a call to return the land expropriated from Australia's aboriginal peoples, while "The Dead Heart" and "Bullroarer" celebrate their rich cultural heritage. Many bands and artists have made some sort of political or social concern apparent in their work, but few have done so as consistently, dedicatedly, and tunefully as Midnight Oil. --Al Massa
saxon shore- four months of darkness
Saxon Shore is an American instrumental post-rock band consisting of members from Philadelphia and Brooklyn. Similar to Caspian and This Will Destroy You.
Chicago quartet Airiel has released a series of EPs, but this is the band's first album, and it is an ambitious one, running over 63 minutes (or over 61, if you subtract the two minutes of silence that separate the end of the final track, "The Big Mash-Up," from an instrumental coda that constitutes a hidden track). It isn't only the length of the CD that's ambitious, it's the music. On each song, Airiel fills the speakers with echoing, shimmering sound, so much so that it is the sheer sound that dominates the experience of listening to the album. On their own, they are sometimes despairing, sometimes descriptive, and, in "Stay," romantic to the point of amounting to a marriage proposal. But there's no way to tell that by merely listening to the album. Rather, the musical intention clearly is to create a sense of aural majesty that sometimes devolves down to industrial noise. In such a maelstrom, individual details don't count for much.
DOWNLOAD Part 1
DOWNLOAD Part 2
tough alliance- a new chance
The hottest electronic pop duo to come out of Gothenburg. This is the much awaited follow up to their debut "New School".
division of laura lee- das not compute
Don't confuse them with anybody else -- they're less angular than the Hives, and smoother and more complex than the Danish Raveonettes. Swedish quintet Division of Laura Lee is in fine form in their sophomore album. "Das Not Compute" is a spare, intense blast of punk rock that doesn't disappoint.
A catchy drum solo draws you in, right before the revved-up riffs start in "Does Compute." Following up is the cataclysmic rocker "We Are Numbers," the gentle spaciness of "Breathe Breathe," and the distorted bounce of "Dirty Love" and "Loveless." Finishing it off is a three-song cycle of raw rockers, followed by the startling, sad "There's A Last Time For Everything."
Division of Laura Lee has that rare quality in punk or punk revival music -- it has that elusive catchiness that bands like the Clash had, but it keeps that raw, explosive edge. They have the energy and darkness that sounds startlingly fresh, even when revamped with a slight new wave edge.
the honeydrips- here comes the future
Swedish acoustic electro outfit.
thrushes- sun come undone
Venerating Phil Spector as the patron saint of sonic emotion, the premise is strikingly simple. Rock music should be beautiful. Harvey's guitar work elevates grand canyon reverb to high art. More canvas than skeletal structure, its wall of sound is huge and enveloping. Giving form to these dreamscapes are Conner's simple, pretty vocal lines, which she colors with clean, clear guitar picking. Out of the sonic swirl, Tracy manages to distill a bass line somewhere between rock-steady groove and the root melody of a lullaby. Her parts construct a visible road map for drummer Davis to effortlessly meander through. With bells and shakers sitting on a table beside the hihat, his drumming is more orchestral than rock'n'roll and is peppered with beautiful triangle and xylophone melodies.
On Sun Come Undone, their debut full length, Thrushes craft gorgeous noise pop and swirling dream rock. Opening with the cavernous drumming of "Aidan Quinn" into the revved-up, fuzzed out Jesus And Mary Chain-esque "Heartbeats," and carried through the nods to Deadcan Dance in "Loyalty" and haunted claps of guitar thunder on "Ghost Train," to the final feedback soaked fallout of "The Hardest Part," this is the sound of blood on blood.
i might go see them at the Fire this Friday. here's the info:
Fri 4/11 @ 9pm $7
House of Fire
Music For Headphones
412 West Girard Ave Philadelphia, PA 19123
Tuesday, April 8, 2008
In a sense, after a slew of EPs, singles, and 2005's Howl Howl Gaff Gaff (the U.S. version of which was reorganized and augmented with various tracks from said EPs and singles), this is Shout Out Louds' first proper full-length, and the incessant touring seems to have aged their sound like a fine wine. While Howl Howl Gaff Gaff reaped much of its flavor from twee indie pop and sheer ebullience, Our Ill Wills dives headlong into the new wave influences that previously lay beneath the surface. The inspiration is immediately apparent--Brit classics like The Cure, The Modern Lovers, The Smiths (one song--not a cover--is even titled "Meat is Murder"), et al. OK, the accent's different, but the upbeat-but-melancholy hop is undeniable. The pop perfection here is due in no small part to the man behind the boards, Björn Yttling (he of the sandwich-acronymed Peter, Björn and John). Simple string arrangements and washes of texture are draped over each song. Percussion by Yttling's bandmate, John Eriksson, perfectly augments most songs (further solidifying those Head on the Door era Cure comparisons). Witness the woodpecker woodblocks on "Impossible," or the the samba-esque a gogo bells of the first single, "Tonight I Have to Leave It," cleverly decorating its dour sing-song. "You Are Dreaming" is a slinky, tom-driven, lost-love rocker. Later in the album, playful but gut-wrenching naïve pop songs recall Moe Tucker's vocal on the Velvet Underground's "I'm Sticking with You," like "Blue Headlights," with keyboardist Bebban's cracking question, "We are good people, aren't we?," and "Meat is Murder," a simple tearjerker with acoustic guitar, bells, and Adam Olenius' wistful tale. "Hard Rain" closes the album, its Cars keyboard lead no indicator of the upcoming noise jam to complete the album. Say what you will about influences on sleeves, this is pop music at its best: nostalgic and angst-ridden, but ultimately life-affirming. Shout Out Louds have found a winning formula. --Jason Pace
asobi seksu- citrus
It's hard to not like a good-looking, female-fronted, Brooklyn-based band whose name translates loosely as "playful sex." The obvious vocal comparisons are to shoegazers and goths of twelve to thirty years ago—Siouxsie, Spirea X, Lush, Kate Bush, and the Cocteauu Twins. Singing in Japanese and English, vocalist Yuki's heavily reverbed voice is sensual and strong at the same time. But there's more of a manic, vaguely garage band energy evident on Citrus, the group's sophomore release (a vast improvement over their scattered debut). It's clear now that they're far closer to Blondie than My Bloody Valentine or Loop. The band has a woozy sound, but it's also tightly controlled and highly melodic, propelled by Interpol-ish bass lines. It's not "original" music, but it is very pleasant stuff, the ideal soundtrack to a hot affair in some futuristic hotel tucked away downtown, or out near the airport. --Mike McGonigal
asobi seksu- self titled
shoegazey, pop from NY. band name means "playful sex". makes sense, i guess.
stratford 4- love and distortion
If modern rock seems to have sacrificed much of its forward motion for navel-gazing reassessments of its recent past, there are occasions when that back-to-the-future tack pays off with focused, compelling power. The second album by the psych-pop San Francisco quartet may draw on clear antecedents like Ride and My Bloody Valentine, but its tense sonic haze and the hypnotic lethargy of vocalist Chris Streng also variously evoke the urgent drama of early Psychedelic Furs and detached resignation of the Velvet Underground. Drenched in droning guitars and a production ethic where even the echoes seem to have echoes, it takes a forceful voice to pull off a line like "Everyone's talking about rock & roll/ But I just want to stay at home." But the band's dense, evocative textures can't disguise its impressively evolved sense of songwriting discipline, and the brave, self-referential worldview that allows Streng to commiserate on "Telephone" with a mom that's not only wiser than he, but considerably cooler. --Jerry McCulley
heavenly- le jardin heavenly
K. Records twee pop. female vocals. cut, minimal indie pop album.
manhattan love suicides- self titled
For anyone who loves fuzzed-up guitar assaults, feedback, hit-and-run gigs, female vocals, melodic pop, ear-splitting minimalist noise--and hates a hell of a lot of other things--we give you The Manhattan Love Suicides! Features members of the much-buzzed-about Leeds band Pop Threat, a group that sparked comparisons to Sonic Youth and Velvet Underground. Not much is know about The Manhattan Love Suicides. They have only played five gigs, none of which lasted longer than ten minutes--yet already they've recorded a debut album. For influences think Jesus and Mary Chain, Galaxie 500, Velvet Underground, The Rosehips, The Golden Dawn, Meat Whiplash, that kind of stuff. Expect to hear highly fuzzed-up guitars, pounding drums, and female vocals. Should be twelve noisy, fuzzy pop hits scuzzily produced by our friend Matt at his Random HQ.
the concretes- self titled
swedish, indie-pop. similar to Camera Obscura. i like "you can't hurry love".
ikara colt- modern apprentice
When Ikara Colt arrived in 2002, they were lumped (quite unfairly) with the new batch of bands like The Von Bondies, The Hives, The Kills and other prefixed bands as they had a raw garage sound. Funnily enough, two years later the above bands, whose debuts made most critics salivate, have disappointed us with their second albums, (Von Bondies being a notable exception) and had to change their musical direction. The point is: have Ikara Colt made the same mistake?
The answer is no - 'Modern Apprentice' is a great album, in many ways it is similar to the debut, but so much better and yes it is (dare I say it?) catchier. The album is very similar to `Sister' era Sonic Youth, except without the pomp. From the opener `Wanna be that Way', which sets the standard, to the closer, 'Automatic', this album is a rollercoaster ride of power punk with electronic tinges. These guys aren't modern apprentices, they are masters of their craft.
paris texas- so you think it's hot here?
Paris, Texas is a punk rock band signed to New Line Records. They were formed at 112 S. Hancock, Madison, Wisconsin in December of 1997 by their barefooted bassist, Matt Tennessen.
According to CMJ New Music Magazine:
- "Furious punk guitars that sound more rock than emo, backed by chaotic but somehow precise drumming...it's hard to believe Paris Texas were ever considered emo at all - there's much more bark than whine."
chokebore- black, black
|By||P. McCay - See all my reviews|
Buy this album.
It might change your life.
The slow songs lull you into a deep, somber, grey mood for most of your evening. Passionate, but exercising such restraint, this is elegant melancholy. When Troy sings, "I died in a fire, I died in a fireeeee" you inexplicably know precisely what he means. You can simply feel it. "Valentine," in particular is thoroughly seductive. And then once you feel like you know what's going on with this album, the fast, concise moster "Alaskas" comes crashing through the speakers. By FAR the fastest and most conventionally rocking song on the album, "Alaskas" is also one of the most powerful. The original recording of this song (released as a b-side a year or two earlier) was far slower and measured. I'm not sure how they came to decide to speed this up so much and include it on one of the slowest albums this side of Codeine, but it was a stroke of genius. This frantically sped up tempo just adds to the desperation 100 fold and its just the kick the album needs right where it needs it. Oh, and don't confuse 'sped up tempo' with 'upbeat song' with lyrics like "i've been swimming in the noises of all these other people, trying to hold it all together, pretend everything is normal..." the song is simply the one moment where the tension breaks into absolute catharsis.
pinehurst kids- bleed it dry
90's emo rock. similar in some ways to built to spill, sunny day real estate and old jimmy eat world. "the onceler" and "spinning out" are good tracks.
chisel- set you free
Ted Leo's old band. For its next album, the band enlisted Nicolas Vernhes and his Rare Book Room studio in Williamsburg, Brooklyn to record brand new material. The band first recorded a single, "It's Alright, You're Okay", in the studio and few months later booked Vernhes for 10 days. Within those ten days, the band tracked and mixed 16 songs. This new set of material found the band incorporating various Britpop influences, horns, Hammond organ, and thicker sonics into its sound. But the band also pared some pieces back to an almost minimalist rock aesthetic in order to push Leo's increasingly dark, personal lyrics to the fore. At the other end of the spectrum, Norborg contributed lead vocals to his own compositions "Oh Dear Friends" and "Morley Timmons". Leo also soloed on guitar more often on the album.
The band released its second and final LP/CD, Set You Free, in mid 1997, and set off on a well-attended tour with Boston band Karate. Chisel played its last show on May 16, 1997 in Knoxville, TN at the end of its tour. Plans to tour the West Coast and Europe were scrapped.
barkmarket- easy listening
Barkmarket was a rock music group formed in New York City in 1987. Personnel were singer/guitarist and main songwriter Dave Sardy, bass guitarist John Nowlin and drummer Rock Savage.
Barkmarket's music was usually loud and aggressive, touching on many styles (most prominently including heavy metal, hardcore punk and noise rock), but not resting definitely in any one genre. Critic Stewart Mason wrote that the band "can at times be frustratingly difficult to pin down, but their best work has a noisy, rattling power." There were also odd touches that demonstrated an experimental edge: the eerie banjo and tape loops on "(Radio Static)" (from Gimmick), and the nearly delta blues acoustic slide guitar on "Visible Cow" (from L. Ron).tar- jackson lp
The band released albums on the Amphetamine Reptile and Touch and Go Records labels before disbanding in 1995. During its career, the band released a total of four singles, four albums, two mini albums, and contributed songs to six compilations and split singles. Members of the band included original bassist Tim Mescher (only until 1991 and who also played for Shorty), bassist Tom Zaluckyj and guitarist Mark Zablocki, as well as Greenlees and Mohr. Zaluckyj and Mohr played unique guitars, crafted of aluminum. The band toured nationally and internationally with bands such as Jawbox, Arcwelder, and the Jesus Lizard. In 1994 the band made the decision to call it quits after releasing one final album. Over and Out was written and recorded over a period of a year and a half, produced by the band and engineered by Steve Albini and Bob Weston, and released in 1995.
favez- (from lausanne, switzerland)
This is a great album by one of the most underatted bands around. From Lausanne Switzerland sees the band take a more guitar - heavy rock orientated direction than their previous semi - acoustic Promise Ring-esque efforts. The likes of "Don't let the riot in" and "Son of Steve McQueen" show the band at their melodic best. Take a chance on these guys, you won't be disappointed!
Monday, April 7, 2008
Halfway through listening to L.A.-based Gwenmars's Driving a Million, you will have a headache. The band is often loud and crunchy, but the brain pain will actually result from the 100 times you'll smack yourself in the forehead wondering what song from alt-rock's late '80s, early-'90s heyday each track sounds exactly like. Sweetly howled Kurt Cobain-ish choruses ("Neon Tom," "Venus," "Train Song"), the fetchingly strumming romance of Echo and the Bunnymen ("She Hung the Moon"), the reverb-soaked shoegazing of a million bands that have since imploded ("Radio Gun")--the list goes on and on, but, thankfully, this is a case of imitation being the sincerest form of flattery. Driving a Million is the sexy, funky homage to the golden age of college rock that bands like Stone Temple Pilots promised, but never quite delivered. --Bob Michaels
the comsat angels- waiting for a miracle
Waiting For A Miracle is the Comsat Angels debut album, originally released on Polydor in September 1980, and contains the original recording of the classic 'Independence Day', as well as several songs that would be regarded as mini-masterpieces of the Post-Punk era, 'Real Story', 'Total War' and the title track. Renascent. 2006.
i like the title track. the production could be better.
majesty crush- love 15
late 80s/early 90s shoegaze. they have a song about Uma Thurman, but "penny for love" is my favorite track.
smashing orange- 1991
classic shoegaze. "my deranged heart" is my jam.
the oohlas- best stop pop
fuzzy and catchy. mostly female vocals. Three minute blasts of power pop with more hooks than you can shake a stick at and great shared vocals from all three band members; ex-Everclear drummer (don't let that put you off) Greg Eklund, his brother Mark and Olivia (Ollie) Stone. Whats not to like?
even as we speak- feral pop frenzy
A little bit new wave. A little bit twee. The band's music is an unusual hybrid of accessible pop and more experimental elements. Some commentators consider them to be key figures in the post C86 subculture in the UK, although their music breaks out of conventional pop moulds to experiment with forms.
magazine- real life
debut album from the Post-Punk band led by former Buzzcocks vocalist Howard Devoto.
young galaxy- self titled
Young Galaxy is the creative confluence of kindred spirits, Stephen Ramsay and Catherine McCandless. They formed in Vancouver and moved to Montreal to live and to record their self-titled, debut album. It's an impressive entry point for a group at the beginning of their ascent. Call it a spark in the dry air of a sub-zero city or the child of a love of making music and of making music with the ones they love. Recorded with Jace Lasek (Besnard Lakes) at his Breakglass Studio in the summer of 2005 and spring of 2006, Young Galaxy has borne something concrete of something abstract and ephemeral.
cranes- future songs
Future Songs is the seventh album from the Cranes, probably one of the most misinterpreted bands on the planet. The Cranes have often been portrayed as industrial noise merchants, more often as simple goths. One reviewer described singer Alison Shaw as "a baby trapped in a toolbox"; this was intended as a blithe putdown, yet, taken from a different perspective, it's strangely accurate. Deliberately juxtaposing her vocals--her plaintive, unearthly voice delivering painfully open songs of love and loss--with her brother Jim's often punishing soundscapes, the Cranes were always primarily concerned with the way innocents are bruised and broken by life's hard, cold machinery. With Future Songs, they continue along the same path, with Alison still clinging to childlike hopes of happiness, despite the collapse of her relationships, and again producing a heart-wrenching set of melodies. And Jim Shaw, no longer intent upon bludgeoning his audience into submission, creates an ingenious and deeply moving backdrop, ranging from the dubby ambience of "Don't Wake Me Up" to the delicate acoustic guitar of "Even When." Future Songs is another superb collection from a laudably diligent, gloriously idiosyncratic, and tremendously gifted band. --Dominic Wills
mojave 3- excuses for travellers
Neil Halstead is emerging as one of the greatest country singers Great Britain has ever birthed. Such a list might be short, but Halstead is leading it nonetheless. Having contributed two outstanding tracks to Manifesto Records' Tim Buckley tribute album, Sing a Song for You, Halstead and his band are on a solid creative roll. Excuses for Travellers, Mojave 3's third album, is arguably the band's best. Any previous tentative feelings have been replaced by the confident, delicate roll of pedal steel that sweeps through these bittersweet tunes. "In Love with a View," "Trying to Reach You," and "When You're Drifting" stick out immediately, but most of these songs unpeel slowly with each listen. Just as the Cowboy Junkies and Nick Drake--to whom they are not necessarily compared but definitely spiritually connected--quietly pleaded their case, Mojave 3 are determined to mature subtly. --Rob O'Connor
rockethouse- weapons of mass distortion
Rockethouse is loud, distorted rock from the mean streets of NYC featuring ex-members of the amazing Aerial Love Feed… With a sound that calls to mind such amazing bands as Primal Scream, Jesus and Mary Chain and Kasabian, "Weapons of Mass Distortion" is sure to leave its mark as one of the best and brashest albums of 2005…