Thursday, May 15, 2014

Hooves—Valley of the Craftsmen cs

Valley of the Craftsmen
Self released

Hooves are a 4 piece psychedelic/post rock band that hail from Spokane Washington. I have had the honor of playing with them a few times and seeing them change through the years. They started as a two piece and have since expanded and it has expanded their sound greatly. Joe Preston formally of These Arms are Snakes is an excellent drummer and he is really the conductor of sorts in this band. That seems to be common in instrumental bands, at least the great ones like Don Caballero or Hella. These tracks have a slightly Pelican vibe to them but I would say they go a lot deeper and further into the aether. Hooves is definitely a band to catch live and if you do you should buy this lovely cassette. It looks fantastic but I wouldn't expect any less from drummer Joe Preston who is also an accomplished graphic design/printer.

Chaostic Magic—3" dvd

Chaostic Magic
3" dvd
self released

My daughter did not enjoy this. I was actually a little surprised because it is filled with amazing visuals that bring to mind Paul Klee and Joan Míro meets this weird tape of visual experimentations that I found at a goodwill 20 years ago. She usually loves that stuff but she's also 4 so what are you going to do? The music is not really music so much as a guitar and a violin being tortured into something beautiful. It's a lovely little package and I hope you find one. 

Boar—Dead Existence cd

Dead Existence
Breaching Static

I received this a long time ago and I'm just getting to it. That's the truth of it all. I am way behind. It's not intentional but I have about 50 things to review and I am going to get to all of them but it's tough. I may just have to stop accepting things for a year or so. We shall see… Anyhow, this is awesome. I only really get to listen to cds in my car and this one has been such a nice, noisy companion for traffic that I think it may have increased my anxiety to an almost homicidal level. That is a high I can get behind. Seriously though this is an excellent cd that skirts the line between traditional noise and HNW quite nicely. There is grit here, and lots of it. I would recommend tracking down Boar's releases as soon as you are able. This cd may be all gone though because of my delay. Sorry.

Boar—You're all Lame Fucks 5" lathe

You're all Lame Fucks
Breaching Static

This lathe is so clear and beautiful I could stare at it all day. That's actually one of my two issues with this; the lathe looks so amazing that the packaging itself becomes very underwhelming. I really wish they had eight shown off the lathe with the packaging or done something nicer than a xeroxed sheet of paper folded in half. Imagine a letterpressed sleeve with the lettered pushed into the paper the same way the sounds are pressed into the clear plastic. It would make owning this mandatory and not just suggested. Suggested because Boar rules and the sounds on this, static broken noise, are fucking killer. Unfortunately for me my record player had a really hard time playing this. It took about a dozen attempts before I got it to play. This is my second issue although it may just be my record player. I think I am due for a new needle. The grooves are just a little light for my needle. Still when it landed right it sounded great. I need to know who made these.

I Watched You Die—I Want You All Dead 7" lathe

I Watched You Die
I Want You All Dead
Breaching Static

I love the names of both the project and the release. It makes me happy. Anyhow, this is another lathe from Breaching Static. More brutal noise from this label that is becoming a label to really pay attention to. The sounds on this are killer and I found it much easier to play than the Boar 5" lathe. Still I would run to this label and buy both of these right away. The packaging is pretty lacking on this release as well but hopefully their next releases will take as much care in the visual as they do the aural. I wish I had the time to offer my letterpressing skills at this point… maybe soon. 

One Master—Live in the Castle of Quiet cs

One Master
Live in the Castle of Quiet
No Visible Scars

This is a well recorded live cassette from a radio show on WFMU. One Master does this traditional Black Metal thing pretty well. Heavy, epic and dark with that tinge of sadness that all decent black metal needs. The vocals have a tragic quality that I always look for. I have never heard of this band but I think I will need to check out what other releases they have. 

Their logo is pretty unique. A little more clever than your average black metal logo while not looking at all fussy or over-precious. 

Cameron Michael Nichols-Rage—Let's Play! cd

Cameron Michael Nichols-Rage
Let's Play!
Readymade Tapes

This exists somewhere between too adorable to critique and pretty damn good regardless. This is basically a 2 year old making noise on things and really accomplished noise makers collaborating and expanding on the cutest source material imaginable. Some tracks are a little unlistenable but there are some stand outs on here that will blow you away. Most notably Magnetic Lucifer (who I think might be Crank Sturgeon), irr. app. (ext.) and At jennie Richie & Ressler. It's really worth hearing and I hope Cameron's parents keep doing this every year. I would love to hear how this progresses. 

The cd itself looks like something a grandma might put together around a birthday and I think that just makes it all the more adorable. Well done Cameron. 

Morgirion—None Left to Worship cs

None Left to Worship
No Visible Scars

Fuck! This is some crazy blackened grind/thrash. Fast, fast, fast. Seriously. Whoever this human is he seriously deserve to tour everyday until he can no longer grind like that. This has all the aesthetics of naive black metal but it's faster and with totally brutal vocals that are more akin to Discordance Axis. This is rad. 

Q///Q Azores Azul & Crude Gourds cs

Azores Azul & Crude Gourds
Skrot Up & Singapore Sling respectively

So I got a couple Q///Q cassettes within a couple weeks of each other so I decided to put these together. Q///Q is a nice Elecetro-experimental group that plays lovely music that is perfect for drawing too. I mean, it is for me because that is what I have been listening to it for. I am not super fluent in this genre so you will have to excuse me if I compare this to Cliff Martinez who garnered a lot of fame from his work on the Drive soundtrack but I hear a nice similarity with his work here that I really enjoy. Q///Q is a bit grittier and delves into some more interesting directions but I think I could here this group doing some really amazing soundtrack work if they pursued that direction.

Both tapes look pretty good although I am not that into the type treatment inside the one on Singapore Sling. The cover looks great but the inside is a bit of a mess. The cassette on Skrot Up looks amazing though.