Saturday, June 19, 2021

Opiate - While You Were Sleeping (2002)


First off: I've been off the internet because my parents have been in town. I hadn't seen them since Christmas 2019, so it was absolutely wonderful to see them, thank you for asking. Really wish we lived closer.

Second: I've been watching more TV than I normally would over the past, oh, year and a half or so, and I only recently noticed that one of the more prevalent trends in advertising is playing off of the viewer's anxieties around insomnia. Tons of ads in current rotation do this, and it's a real bummer because that means that focus testing/surveys/etc. have found that we as a society are having trouble sleeping, and it's probably because everyone's approximately one bad news story away from a panic attack at all times.

So with that in mind, here's a bit of glitchy, low-key, mostly downtempo IDM that is perfect both for sleeping AND lying in bed worrying about the future. Whatever fits your lifestyle. You'll recognize the opening track as having been sampled in "Undo", which might be my favorite Björk song.

Track listing:
1. 1% in 2/3 Speed
2. Srain
3. Late
4. Drømte mig en drøm
5. Last Dr. Pepper
6. GM Memory
7. Opto File 1
8. Insert


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Saturday, June 12, 2021

Keshavan Maslak - Loved by Millions (1981)



An oddball gem of an album from American saxophonist(/flutist/clarinetist/more) Keshavan Maslak, who I believe is better-known under his free-jazz moniker, Kenny Millions. Backed by two other phenomenal musicians, Maslak ventures from post-bop to noir-lounge to free jazz and elsewhere.

Track listing:
1. Compulsive Lust
2. Lovely Friends
3. Loved by Millions
4. Dida
5. Bukowski in Love
6. Romance in the Big City
7. When You Look at Me, I Want to Vomit
8. A Thrill a Minute


Also listen to:

Thursday, June 10, 2021

Corpsefucking Art - Splatter Deluxe (2003)


Nasty Italian brutal death. Short, frantic songs with the kind of raw, unadorned recording quality that, despite making for an even grosser sound, is pretty much unheard-of in the world of today's tech-y brutal death. Also, they sample both South Park and the theme from Dawson's Creek, and it's that kind of blatantly dumb shit that pushes records like this over the top.

Reminds me of one of the worst shows I've ever played: in Tijuana, on the third floor of this huge bar that was on a super-busy strip and had no parking out front, so we had to lug all of our shit for three heavily-trafficked blocks THEN up two flights of stairs to the show room, where maaaybe 15 attendees awaited a night of shitty grind. We and the band we were touring with were supposed to go on second-to-last and last out of 9 goddamn bands, but the show got started a few hours late and had so many technical difficulties that the second band didn't start playing 'til after midnight. So we told the promoter that there was no fucking way, and we'd either go on next or not at all, finished off our two complimentary pitchers of warm beer (which doubled as our pay, of course), played for a handful of utterly uninterested people, and left. Oh and this fat, sweaty, wasted dude kept trying to wrestle me all night. Terrible. The kind of show that makes you want to swear off of touring for good, which is essentially what I did.

Anyway, none of the bands were anywhere near the level of Corpsefucking Art, but one of them did sample Family Guy a bunch of times.

Track listing:
1. The Freezer's Monster
2. Necromantic
3. Splatter Deluxe
4. Pet(ting Sematary)
5. Robocorpse
6. Gore Mon Amour
7. Suck My Corpse
8. Dawson's Crypt
9. Corpsex II (The New Menu)
10. All You Need Is Gore
11. Four on a Meathook
12. Oblivious to Evil [Deicide cover]
13. Demented
14. Pig Pong


You'd also like:

Wednesday, June 9, 2021

Juno - A Future Lived in Past Tense (2001)


Adventurous, expansive indie rock/post-hardcore/post-rock from Seattle. Juno probably was very important to a number of people, and I can only imagine how hard they would have blown my mind if I'd seen them live, but unfortunately, I only found out about them a few months ago.

Track listing:
1. A Thousand Motors Pressed upon the Heart
2. Covered with Hair
3. When I Was in ________
4. Help Is on the Way
5. The Trail of Your Blood in the Snow
6. The French Letter
7. Up Through the Night
8. Things Gone and Things Still Here (We'll Need the Machine-Guns by Next March)
9. We Slept in Rented Rooms (The Old School Bush)
10. You Are the Beautiful Conductor of This Orchestra
11. Killing It in a Quiet Way
12. [untitled]
13. I'm Sorry You're Having Trouble... Goodbye

If you like this, check out:

Monday, June 7, 2021

Trinacria - Travel Now Journey Infinitely (2008)


First and only album from what essentially amounts to a collaborative project between the mighty Enslaved and Norwegian experimental/noise duo Fe-Mail. Dense, harsh, psychedelic post-black metal slow-burns layered with serrated sheets of noise. Now that I think about it, Travel Now Journey Infinitely kinda predicted the future of black metal, as by the end of last decade, everyone and their mother was making atmospheric, noise-infused post-black metal. Enslaved's creativity cup was really overloweth-ing, huh?

Track listing:
1. Turn Away
2. The Silence
3. Make No Mistake
4. Endless Roads
5. Breach
6. Travel Now Journey Infinitely


Also listen to:

Matt Mitchell - Fiction (2013)


Related:
MadLove - White with Foam (2009)

The proper solo debut of jazz pianist Matt Mitchell. Features just Mitchell on piano and percussionist Ches Smith, who's been involved with a million different projects, including Secret Chiefs 3, Trevor Dunn's Trio-Convulsant, and the above-linked MadLove. Anxious, discordant, arhythmic pieces in pursuit of a resolution that never quite comes. Over an hour of this stuff might be a bit much for some, but no one said that avant-garde jazz was supposed to be easy.

Track listing:
1. Veins
2. Brain Color
3. Upright
4. Singe
5. Wanton Eon
6. Dadaist Flu
7. Commas
8. Id Balm
9. Ohm Nuggets
10. Diction
11. Tether
12. Action Field
13. Specialty Hug
14. Nightmare Tesseract
15. Narcotic Bases


You should also hear:

Sunday, June 6, 2021

Fanger & Kersten - Interkosmos (1999)


A perfect piece of Berlin-school, progressive electronic magic from a coupla Germans. Utopian, synth-driven space music ripped, complete with vocoder, straight out of the 70s, but with a few elements -- slightly crisper, cleaner production, a breakbeat here and there -- that betray the fact that it was all written, recorded, and released in 1999.

Track listing:
1. Interkosmos
2. New Times (Betazoid Woman Mix)
3. Deep Sleep
4. Nightshift
5. Searched
6. Black Hole


Similar listening:

Friday, June 4, 2021

Flesh World - Flesh World (2013)


Deathrock/dream pop hybrid from SF. Echoing drums, reverb-washed guitars, creepy keyboards, and vocal melodies/guitar leads/overall songwriting approach right out of the punk rock playbook. Dream punk, maybe? I really thought this band was gonna take off, but haven't heard anything from them since 2017. And since I always hate on Pitchfork, I'm thinking it's only fair to mention that, regardless of how wrong they are sometimes, I have found a lot of great music through that site, including Flesh World.

Track listing:
1. Sturdy Swiss Hiker
2. A Trip to the Living Ice Age
3. Church of Flesh
4. Reckon and Know
5. Lost My Heart in Transit Thru the Post
6. Are We Saved Or Are We Damned?


You should also listen to:

Wednesday, June 2, 2021

Maladie - ...symptoms... (2016)


Excellent German avant-garde metal. A single, 8-part suite (that they call an EP, despite its 41-minute runtime) encompassing black metal, post-metal, and prog, and incorporating saxophone, piano, strings, and choirs.

8 tracks, titled "Divinitas - A Journey Part I" through "Divinitas - A Journey Part VIII"


If you like this, you should hear:

Tuesday, June 1, 2021

Eluvium - Lambent Material (2003)


The wonderful debut of Portland's own Eluvium, aka musician Matthew Cooper. Lambent Material introduced the world (or whoever was listening) to Eluvium's beautifully grainy, organic, guitar-originating abstractions, and, along with The Pearl, introduced me to the world of ambient music. Will always remind me of driving with a few friends through suburbia at like 3 AM to pick up a bag of weed that I'd left sitting by my bed; before deciding to make the trek, we called information and asked for "Towson, MD, weed dealer," then hung up and laughed hysterically for like 20 minutes. Good times.

Track listing:
1. The Unfinished
2. Under the Water It Glowed
3. There Wasn't Anything
4. Zerthis Was a Shivering Human Image
5. I Am So Much More Me That You Are Perfectly You


You should also hear:

Friday, May 28, 2021

Stereolab - Cobra and Phases Group Play Voltage in the Milky Night (1999)


Related:

There I am, watching a YouTube video about underrated albums, and of course, there's a lot in there that I disagree with. For instance, in what fantasy land is Darkness on the Edge of Town underrated? It's one of the most acclaimed albums by one of the most famous rock musicians of all time, and features at least 4-5 of Springsteen's signature songs. 

More relevant to this post, though, is the inclusion of Dots and Loops by Stereolab. EGREGIOUS. Everyone loves that record. If you're gonna talk about underrated Stereolab records, Cobra and Phases should be first on your list. It's maybe their most challenging, experimental record -- sonically layered to the point of impenetrability, full of awkwardly clipped grooves and angular melodies, and boasting an 11-minute drone-rock centerpiece that rides a single chord, in various forms, for its entire runtime. Essentially, Stereolab made their most Stereolab-y album, practically every critic took a big shit on it, and it's never really gotten a reassessment, even though it's a masterpiece imo.

Track listing:
1. Fuses
2. People Do It All the Time
3. The Free Design
4. Blips Drips and Strips
5. Italian Shoes Continuum
6. Infinity Girl
7. The Spiracles
8. Op Hop Detonation
9. Puncture in the Radak Permutation
10. Velvet Water
11. Blue Milk
12. Caleidoscopic Gaze
13. Strobo Acceleration
14. The Emergency Kisses
15. Come and Play in the Milky Night


Tonight I'm gonna make ornate indie rock like it's 1999:

Wednesday, May 26, 2021

Pighead - Rotten Body Reanimation (2012)


German brutal death, definitely on the more composed, technically proficient side of the subgenre. Disgusting and violent, but refreshingly devoid of the pointedly misogynistic violence that is generally par for the course with brutal death metal.

Track listing:
1. Dead Flesh Alive
2. Atrocious Determination
3. Radioactive Death Trip
4. Grub into Addled Meat
5. Rotten Body Reanimation
6. Kill the Living, Eat the Dead
7. Japanese Nuclear Holocaust
8. Resurrected Malignity
9. Ragged and Fractured
10. Breed of Genuine Destroyers

Tuesday, May 25, 2021

Mark Dwane - The Monuments of Mars (1988)


Thanks to everyone for the killer workout music recommendations, keep 'em coming! (They don't have to be tough-guy stuff, if that's not what floats your boat.) But since it's been getting so intense around here, let's cool off with some synth-tastic new age. Breathe in through your nose, out through your mouth, and become the alien.

Track listing:
1. Eternity
2. Pyramids of Mars
3. Metamorophosis
4. Solstice Ritual
5. Cydonia
6. Water Age
7. Pyramids of Mars (Reprise)
8. The Martian Sphinx
9. Another Eternity


Also give these a listen:

Monday, May 24, 2021

Benchpress - Stay Hated (2012)


6 tracks of tough, extremely heavy hardcore seemingly built for pumping iron. As I mentioned in a recent comments section, the breakdown in the title track is a frontrunner for greatest hardcore breakdown of all time, and it has seen me through countless planks. This is a fitness blog now, post all your favorite iron-pumping jams in the comments. Free/name your price via Bandcamp.

Track listing:
1. Hellbound
2. Out of My Mind
3. Better
4. Grudges
5. Misery

Other stuff on my playlist:

Saturday, May 22, 2021

Inverted - The Age of Harvest (2015)


Stellar, slept-on Italian death metal. Despite having released two excellent, fat-free albums that expertly split the difference between OSDM brutality and modern precision and atmosphere, I have never heard anyone mention Inverted in any context. Pretty sure that I only know about them because I accidentally clicked on them while searching for the Swedish Inverted on Metallum. And I have zero hope that this will amount to anything, but if anyone has a digital rip of their first album, PLEASE put a link in the comments because I only have the cassette and I can't find it.

Track listing:
1. Abiura
2. Across the Snow to Nowhere
3. Caves
4. Vexilla Prodeunt Regis Inferi
5. E.R. Weapons
6. Tunguska
7. Towards the Summit of No Return
8. Clear Sky


Also listen to: