Friday, September 28, 2012

Idylls "Farewell All Joy" cs

Farewell All Joy
Tapes of a Neon God

This is the best album of the year. Hands down. I know you liked something else but your taste is terrible. Idylls do what everyone in 1995 was trying to do but they do it very well. Idylls do what Converge was almost able to do but instead of undershooting that moon they somehow grab ahold and drag that fucker into a higher orbit. If you want a quick comparison I would say take the best 4 songs off of Converge's Jane Doe and You Fail Me, Botch with a better guitar sound, much more intense drummer and a little less of that light show style songwriting, a gigantic and epic version of Jenny Piccolo or maybe The Locust, and maybe Dillinger Escape Plan if they did the exact opposite of what they did after losing Dimitri. It's not exactly fair to make all those comparisons and I know that. Those bands do and did what they feel is and was right for them as song writers but this band, Idylls, could have been an alternate universe version of any of those bands had they gone the direction that would have made me constantly shit myself. The guitar sound is closer to Steve Albini's than just about anyone attempting this type of music. The bass is heavy and doesn't mind bending some notes and making some strange pick sounds happen as long as it never betrays the sound of being pissed. The drummer is right on top of everything and constantly moves the whole band down a huge fucking hill towards a giant pile of my hyperbole. The vocals, by both the vocalist and the guitarist, are never, ever anything but just fucking furious. They even somehow put guitar solos in a couple songs and it doesn't suck at all. The solos are actually completely insane and make so little sense that I just sit there and wonder why I bother playing guitar at all. I guess these guys are from some dumb foreign country so I will probably never be able to see them and trying to buy their LP will cost me about $900 with shipping so I count myself very lucky to have this cassette. You should buy it too and listen to it until the tape snaps. 

Japanese Women // Kamikaze Pilots cs

Japanese Women // Kamikaze Pilots 
Split cs
Tapes of a Neon God

Two amazing sides of a brutal fucking tape. I am so stoked TOANG finally got #3 out. I bet this was bugging the shit outta Anderson. Anyhow, Japanese Women start there side with two tracks that completely destroy the memory of Black Flag for anyone. You start thinking about how Black Flag were good and all but after you saw that live VHS from one of their last years, you were kinda over them. Of course Black Flag are the Beatles of hardcore and if you don't say they are the best then you stand the risk of having none of your opinions be deemed as valid ever again. Don't fuck with the sacred cow. Anyhow, Japanese Women start off with a song that has more violence and swagger in it than anything Henry ever sang over. Oh Dez was your favorite singer? Yeah, everyone says that. Everyone. Kamikaze Pilots deliver about 11 tracks of filthy power violence. It's like you take Cry Now, Cry Later Vol. 3 and make an audio police sketch of everything you love on there. Take a little Crom, a bit of Spazz and a whole lot of Despise You and you will get something similar to Kamikaze Pilots.

     Visually it's spot on. All the rules of typography broken well. TOANG always does great layouts and you would do well to study them.


Funerary Call "Fragments From The Aethyr" cd

Funerary Call
Fragments From The Aethyr
Crucial Blast

I have been in a pretty heavy Cthulu mood lately so let's just pretend this band has a lot of Cthulu references. I don't think they do but the music…  it works. It really does. The music on this–with it's violins, flutes and horns–really evokes an ancient orchestra. One probably not really into SUNN0))) which is what I think of most experimental music coming out these days. Whether the is true or not. Anyway, this album has some really twisted progressions and just enough noise, guitar and throat singing accompaniments to make me feel like playing this may actually cause the Elder Gods to wake from their slumber. It's good. It's dark. It's the definition of brooding. 

     The art is nice and creepy as well. Looks a bit like Scrawled's work but for a digipack this is a nice package. I don't usually buy regular cds anymore but Crucial Blast has been putting out some very nice work lately. Nice enough to make me reconsider. 

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Divine Shell "Cavity" 3" cdr

Divine Shell
Self Released

This cd gets better and better as it goes. The first track starts with a lot of screaming and noise. Screaming usually is the way straight into my heart but this sounds a little like someone from the Alleyway Crew decided to start doing noise. It doesn't totally work for me. After that though things really pick up and it get creepy with lots of swelling noise and skittering sounds. Pretty killer ending.

      It looks pretty cool. Not bad at all. The printing is pretty poor quality but that's not a huge deal and since I had never heard of Divine Shell until this I thought the band was Cavity and the album was Divine Shell based on the hierarchy of the typography. I was a little stoked at first that I might be getting a 3" cdr from Florida's answer to Eyehategod but it's cool. 

     I would probably buy it thinking it was Cavity from Florida but in the end I would not be that disappointed. 

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Krokodil "Crustacean Enlargement: Unsafe Acquaintance" 3"cdr

Crustacean Enlargement: Unsafe Acquaintance
Baby Smasher Records

This is pretty cool although it sounds a little "processed" to me at times. Weird, quiet swirling noise that has a heavy layer of digital wetness surrounding it. It's pretty interesting for sure but I am not sure if I like it or not. I think I do… It's different.

     The layout is okay. It's not bad, just sorta forgettable. Not much to say. Pretty cool cover but the back cover just doesn't do it for me. 

     I guess I wouldn't buy it? I don't know really. I may need to come back to this one. 

Pig Shrapnel "Bacon Worship" 3" cdr

Pig Shrapnel 
Bacon Worship
Baby Smasher Records

I am going to change my format a bit for this one. Let me start by saying that Pig Shrapnel wins the worst looking cover award of all time on Dead Formats. Worse than even that +DOG+ cd. This is the kind of cover that makes me a little sad for the trees that get chopped down for this future landfill. The back cover isn't so horrible but the strange thing is that it doesn't even seem to go with the front cover. Ugh. That cover. fuck…

     Anyway, the audio is pure HNW and I kinda like it. It sorta bubbles and scrapes on top of your speakers. It sound a bit like sliding violently ear first down a giant pyramid. It's pretty awesome.

     I would never spend money on this though. The cover is just taunting me right now with it's ugliness. 

Lester Ferox Music Orchestra "Splendid Party Mix" 3" cdr

Lester Ferox Music Orchestra
Splendid Party Mix
Shit Music for Shit People

This is perfect if you are even a little happy. It's like magic, crazy person crack music. Flutes, cymbals, tubas, harps, harpsichords… I have no idea really. What's in an orchestra? All that stuff, all playing outside, in a field, made out of drugs, just for you.  It's like running, falling and face painting all at once. It's nuts. 

     It's too bad the layout is nothing. A blank cdr in a fold-over black on orange paper sleeve with nothing of interest to look at. The type choice was pretty nice but it wasn't handled in any interesting way. 

     If I didn't know what a treasure the crazy pants, pixy stix music was I would not buy this. Tragic. 

Michael Muennich "Zum Geleit" 3"cdr

Michael Muennich
Zum Geleit
Fragment Factory

This is another 3" cdr I have not got around to reviewing and I fell pretty dumb for sitting on this. The music on this release is excellent. Layers of crackling fire, snapping sticks, bells and a sub bass swell of anxiety. This is one long soundscape by the artist that is really effective in producing a claustrophobic sense of anxiety and sadness. I don't know why but this is really hitting me in the right way at the right time. Dark and melancholy musique concréte sounds

     The packaging is in a mini dvd case (amray?) with some nicely printed black and white inserts. Nice type treatment for just all being center justified. It looks quite good. Nice work.

     I would buy this. This label has always been pretty consistent with the goods. 

Gravhund "Caffeine Overkill" 3"cdr

Caffeine Overkill
Shit Music for Shit People

Twelve tracks. There are twelve tracks on this 3"cdr so it's pretty obvious that none of the tracks are very long. That is a pretty good thing for me as about half of these I am not into at all. The other half though, are fucking great. It's weird. They are not that different. Some are spay fuzzed out wacky noise and some are bizarre cut up tape collages with tons of strange fuckery. It's very out there and I definitely like it for that but it's not really my thing. Burping kinda bums me out. 

     It looks horrible. I get why, it goes with the crazy nature of the music but the photo of the dachshund in a hot dog costume wit badly photoshopped out of it's picture, the type is gross and the color choices are grosser. I think that is all intentional and I am just not getting it but I am really just not enjoying it as much as I hoped to. I guess the dachshund gave me higher hopes. 

     I would not buy this. 

Autocancrena "Homo Sacer" 3" cdr

Homo Sacer

This is a release that I have been sitting on for awhile. Mainly it's because it isn't as easy for me to sit and listen to 3" cdrs anymore since my last iMac with a tray died. IN fact I think most people are finding this format dying faster than most. I love the shape and packaging for 3" cdrs and I hope people keep making them for as long as possible but it really is a bit of a difficulty. Anyhow, I am very bummed that I waited this long to hear this. Diazepam has connections to Italy's amazing UR and I should know that whatever they are working on is going to be pretty awesome. This is no exception. Huge, aching drones that sound like the demonic trumpets being heard from 100 miles away. Still sounding your imminent death but from a distance that only a fever dream could replicate. Both tracks are completely terrifying. This is staying in my collection for a very long time.

     The packaging is great. Its packaged in one of those mini dvd cases with black printing on red card stock and black and white tipped in plates. A fold out sheet inside gives you some amazing details about the audio's source. No spoilers. 

     I would buy this. 

マスクド・ダイオウド - 汚染 "Osen" cs

マスクド・ダイオウド - 汚染

This is some fucking brilliant noise from Japan. Feels a little old school in it's delivery and I fucking love it. Tape loops, screams, synths, grinding guitar sounds. It sits right on your desk top and howls at you. This is wonderfully refreshing. 

It looks great as Waterpower always seems to have killer layouts. Clean type with tons of decayed textures. It's a nice package. Limited to 50.

Buy this. 

Friday, September 14, 2012

Lord Time "Forgotten Future" lp

Lord Time
Forgotten Future
Universal Consciousness & Prison Tatt Records

I hope LT appreciates the upside-down picture

LORD TIME. The shining jewel of last year's onslaught of "bedroom black metal" has returned with a vinyl repress of the first cassette I had the pleasure of reviewing. It's fast, dirty and fully blasphemous. I bet owning this makes my living room larger and darker on the inside than it is on the outside. Maybe the coolest part of this one sided 12" is that the B side is not actually blank but covered in about 20 lathe cut lock grooves. They don't all play perfect but it sorta adds to the experience. 

It looks great. Dark and strange but totally clean and controlled layout. Pictures of who I assume is LORD TIME grace the front and back covers as well as the insert. Some elements are screenprinted, others seem letterpresses and some just came flying out of a stolen xerox machine. It is also covered in human blood. Gross.

I would buy this with both hands. 

Gnawed // Thin White Puke cs

Gnawed // Thin White Puke
Maniacal Hatred

Two hands in the air. 

The entire time this cassette is being played.

Fuck yes.

Destroy shit with noise and fire.

Not even the samples ruin this!

Cover has fire on it.

This is meant to be.

Buy it. 

Breatherholes "Come Home" cs

Come Home
Self Released

Breatherholes is some of the most beautiful and fucked up "bedroom" pop/folk I have had the pleasure of reviewing. This isn't the first cassette of his that I have heard and I hope it will not be the last. The vocals are so troubled and strained that I can't help but think that this person is really channeling something real. The random toys and boxes of rocks that make up the accompanying percussion try their hardest to obscure the beautiful acoustic guitar melodies but they just can't. Thankfully. This is the kind of music that Harmony Korine should be making movies to instead of Die Antwoord (although that "video" is awesome). Breatherholes is as tragic as Daniel Johnston and as honest and relevant as the first Ariel Pink record. 

The tapes have that Daniel Johnston look in that it is xeroxed sticker paper on poly cases. Little bits of highlighter betray the fact this was probably made at Kinkos. It's wonderful.

I would buy this. The first track alone will break your heart. 

Teenage Tasteless "Bartan Shumak" cs

Teenage Tasteless 
Bartan Shumak
Already Dead Tapes

This is thick as syrup noise. Not sweet but it really gets into your brain and just slowly moves around until its filled all the nooks and cranies. Sounds like it is made up of guitar, synth and field recordings that swing left to right across your speakers with the moment of saxophone. Maybe. It's pretty excellent. At times it has that awesome soundtrack vibe that some of the early filmstrips they would play in school in the 70's and 80's, if you are old enough to understand what that means.

The layout is simple but well thought out with some interesting font choices. Not much to say, but it looks nice.

I don't know how I would feel about this on sight. It doesn't really speak to me at all but the 1970's academic soundtrack sound sells me. If someone told me ahead of time, I would. 

Friday, September 7, 2012

Burial Ground "Disembodied" 2xcs boxset

Burial Ground
Disembodied 2xcs boxset
Worthless Recordings

Burial Ground have this strange fetish of releasing HNW tapes that are inspired by a fillm. They did the George R. Romero's Night of the Living Dead, Dawn of the Dead and Day of the Dead (released in reverse chronological order) and now this boxset. The first tape is based on The Haunting. A film that was poorly remade in the early 2000s. It starts with a little sample, which I forgive because it sets the tone, and then blasts into a massive HNW that just goes and goes. Unrelenting is the word that comes to mind. It's awesome. I don't know why but I could listen to HNW all day long. The second cassette is based off of Burnt Offerings which is a scary movie about a house that feeds on violence and death. Sorta like the evil things from Carrion Comfort but in house form. I guess this is a haunted house boxset and it fucking rules.

Simple, clean packaging. Looks great, works great. Nothing totally mind blowing but well done and inspiring. They could have done a little more with the layout but nothing here is offensive at all. Excellent work.

I would buy this tonight if I were you.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Drag Age "Mask of a Crushed Insect" cs

Drag Age
Mask of a Crushed Insect
Out of Body Records

This is pretty fucking evil sounding. Like 1980's sunglasses wearing, satanic drug lord evil. I like it. There is this industrial, Front 242 grows testicles and meets Throbbing Gristle vibe. It's dirty and heavy. It also has some pretty killer titles. The name of the album, and the A side "Lords of Bronze". Totally works for me. Fans of Self Communion will dig this. 

     It has the same Out of Body Records spine and design but this one works a lot better than the last tape I reviewed of theirs. This is tight and the cover, although a little odd with it's text placement, is pretty grim.

     Would I buy this? Yeah. 

Deign "Pencuniary Huckster" cs

Pencuniary Huckster
Out of Body Records

Deign immediately start to kick your ass with this crazy hybrid of noise and industrial. The second side is actually the most manic and brutal but Deign does a great job of immediately confusing with some very diverse sounds. 

     I love how Out of Body Records always uses the same font and design for their spines. When you get a bunch of their tapes in a row it looks very handsome. I think the cover of this one is kinda weak though and I really dislike the type treatment on the inside. It's a bit illegible and with an "outer glow" applied to the text I am just not into it.

     Would I buy this? Well, it's not the strongest Out of Body release but that still means it's better than most. So yeah, I think so. 

Crimes of the Crown "Royalty Statutory" cs

Crimes of the Crown
Royalty Statutory
Crimes of the Crown

This is, as it was described to me, scrap metal worship. It's a fucking amazing sounding field recording. No effects, no overdubs, just some guys destroying metal in the middle of nowhere and it sounds so alien and gigantic that I am pretty blown away to be honest. Imagine if you could be the Iron Giant and you were playing at a scrap yard just dragging your huge metal hands through piles of metal and debris… Got that? Well, this is what it would sound like. Awesome. Oh my favorite part is where it stops for a second and you hear someone say "oh shit, are you okay?" I am guessing someone bled for this tape. 

It looks kinda awesome and shitty at the same time. Totally perfect for the audio. The j card is the wrong size and it's cut poorly. The text is cut and paste, which is one of my favorite ways to deal with text but in this case it's just total junk and that is what is so perfect. I am strangely pleased.

Would I buy this? Yeah. I would. 

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Astromason + BlueSabbathBlackCheer "Endless Black" cs

AstroMason + BlueSabbathBlackCheer
Endless Black
Worthless Recordings

So I don't really feel the need to talk about how rad this is. Just buy it. You will not be disappointed. It's two sides of magnetic tape that somehow delivers the sounds of actual hell across your room. Hiroshi Hasegawa and Mason Jones (Astromason) got together with wm. Rage, Stan Reed and Crystal Perez to create some pure blackened hate. It's fucking amazing. 

     It looks pretty 1990's but in a way that works pretty well. I could critique some of the typography and mention that they could maybe adhere a little stronger to a grid when handling a lot of text, like on the inside, but it's not bad. 

     I would buy this… Hell, I was going to put it out but I just didn't have the ability. Thanks to Worthles Recordings for consistently putting out amazing work. 

Tuesday, September 4, 2012


Watch it here.

I would like to take a second to mention this film coming out about Craig Colorusso. He is the brain behind Sun Boxes which is my favorite thing I have never been able to experience. There was a 7" available (which Craig didn't send to me so I couldn't review it) and many installations around the planet (but not in Seattle so I can't see it. I am going to give Craig such a shake when I see him). It has also become an App for your phone that I mess around with sometimes. It turns your phone into a tiny drone box. Anyhow, take a moment to watch the shortest trailer ever and look into Sun Boxes if you get a chance.

I can't seem to get this video to embed. Working on it.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Boar "Craft" cs

Worthless Recordings

Boar plays blistering noise that exceeds in recreating the sound of speakers pushed to their limits. Even at a quiet volume it will sound like your speakers are twisting in on themselves to project the sounds that Boar has demanded of them. I actually really appreciate how each piece on this cassette all have a different sound. This artist seems to have a very large bag of tricks and wants to give the listener something interesting to hear overtime. Thank you. 

     The artwork looks great. Decrepit textures and simple typography work pretty well. The hierarchy is a little off though. The name of the artist and the name of the release are in the same font and same size so I had to double check that the artist wasn't called Boar Craft. There is a big space between the two words so that helped but it was a little confusing. Not a big deal though.

     I would recommend this.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Coma Centauri/Creature Feature cs

Coma Centauri/Creature Feature
Worthless Recordings

If I could invent a new subgenre of noise it would be for this Coma Centauri track that starts off this cassette. Squelch noise wall. SQNW. Maybe…  it's essentially your usual intense HNW but with this squelched out wet sounding vibe that make you just feel crazy. It's awesome. Creature Feature do some pretty straight up HNW but it is brutal. Right up there with Taskmaster and The Rita. Goddamn. 

Simple design that totally works. The display text on the spine is particularly nicely done.

I would say you should buy this.