Friday, December 18, 2009

Pop Dr(((O)))nes: Episode 31///The Year In 7 Inches, Pt. 2

Pens "Weekend Starts Here" (Art Fag)
Pheromoans "Revamper" (Convulsive)
Ganglians "Blood On The Sand" (Captured Tracks)
Thee Oh Sees "Friends Defined" (Rock Is Hell)
Sharp Ends "Crack Trap" (Mammoth Cave)
Crash Normal "Flying To NY" (Plastic Idol)
Nu Sensae "Mowgli and Sly" (Critiscum Internationale)
Pigeon Religion "Dead Boss" (Gilgongo)
VIBES "Psychic" (Not Not Fun)
Robedoor "Pagan Drugs" (Ketchup Cavern)
The Ramjac "Curserer" (self released)
Black Pus "Down The Drain" (Corleone)
No Balls "untitled, Side B" (Diskad)
solars "Nocturnal Circuit" (Soldierpumps)
Emeralds "untitled, side A" (Soundesign Recording)
Dylan Ettinger & The Heat "Smokin'" (Not Not Fun)
THE RITA "Shark Knifing, Side A" (SNSE)

DOWNLOAD Episode 31 (right click link, then Save As)

I've written about most these here before, so there ain't much more to say. Next week
we'll line up the best that 2009 had to offer in 12 inches and LPs.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Pop Dr(((O)))nes: Episode 30///The Year In 7 Inches, Pt. 1 (fixed!)

Crystal Stilts "Love Is A Wave" (Slumberland)
The Fresh & Onlys "I Saw You Seeing Me" (Dirty Knobby)
Woods "The Dark" (Captured Tracks)
Real Estate "Suburban Beverage" (Underwater Peoples)
Kurt Vile "Subliminal Message" (Skulltones)
Little Girls "Youth Tunes" (Captured Tracks)
Best Coast "Sun Was High (So Was I)" (Art Fag)
Dum Dum Girls "Longhair" (Hozac)
The Mayfair Set "Already Warm" (Captured Tracks)
Roman Soldiers "Warmer" (Captured Tracks)
Woven Bones "Your Sorcery" (Sweet Rot)
Flight "Flowers" (Sweet Rot)
The Dictaphone "Farfarfarfar" (Sweet Rot)
Sex Church "Dead End" (Sweet Rot)
Mother Of Tears "Little Ratty" (Hozac)
Idle Times "Million Miles Away" (Hozac)
Matt K. Shrugg "We're So SOL" (Plastic Idol)
The UV Race "Malaria" (S-S)
Watery Love "All Night Long" (Richie)
Charles Albright "I Wanna Hold You" (S-S)
Sic Alps "L. Mansion" (Slumberland)

DOWNLOAD Episode 30 here. (right click link, then Save As)

2009 has proven to be a standout year for the 7 inch, well, at least as far as I'm concerned. My collection practically doubled this year, which is mostly due to starting up the radio show and developing an appetite medium. It seemed as if a new band, label and a blog that loves 'em was popping up every damn week. And despite what the local press, who clearly had their collective head up their asses (or at least weren't willing to look beyond their pile of shitty promos), had to say about this year, 2009 was and continues to be phenomenal for music, particularly in the DIY end of the pool. 

The year started off great with the announcement of Hozac's first singles club, most of which have been pretty damn good so far (still waiting on the TeePee and Flight 7 inches). Next year they've already lined up the Fresh & Onlys for their singles club, so you can consider me signed up no matter who else they add.

Sweet Rot's another label that I'd probably buy blindly from, and 2009 was the second great year in a row from the local label, which, for the first time, released a local single. The Sex Church 7 inch got damn near universal acclaim (at least when it came to local rags and blogs) and justly so. Their darkly woven blend of Spacemen 3's aeronautical repetition and the Cheater Slicks garage grit, combined with their own ghostly and hollow twin guitar assault, resulted in a stunning live show and the best local 7 inch these ears have graced in some time. A record for Convulsive is rumored for release sometime next year (?!). Confirmation anyone?

Captured Tracks had a busy inaugural year, though there was plenty of filler from the overly-prolific label. The definite stand-outs were the warbled bliss pop of the Mayfair Set (Dum Dum Girls+Blank Dogs), the retro-futuristic post-punk of Roman Soldiers (Gary War+Blank Dogs) and the lo-fi and nasally anthems of Toronto's Little Girls. Looks like Captured Tracks will be focusing on full lengths next year, included a new LP by the Tim Cohen (Fresh and Onlys frontman), the UK's Wetdog and Dignan Porch, and, hey, looky here, a 12 inch and LP from Vancouver's very own Cosmetics. More on them in a later post...

Single of the year (pictured at the top of the post), and quite possibly their best track ever, goes to Sic Alps' L. Mansion off their Slumberland single. Sic Alps tracks have a tendency to get lodged in the skull for a day or two, but L. Mansion hasn't left the building since the day I heard it. A perfect slice of garage-psych-pop-whatever. Let's hope they can knock it out of my brain by playing it next week when they hit the Rickshaw Theatre with Magik Markers. Plenty going on that night, but yr certainly not gonna want to miss this one. The band's should also have their tour-only split 12 inch on Yik-Yak Records for sale.

The rest of these singles speak for themselves, and there's been plenty written about most of 'em. Part II of the 2009's best seven inches airs next week, followed by the best in LPs & 12 inches, then we should have some time for the year in cassettes. Until then, keep diggin'.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Pop Dr(((O)))nes: Episode 29

Things are a little more back in order lately--records are unpacked and the internet has been hooked back up. Not having moved in over three years, while collecting more voraciously than ever, made this recent move the most strenuous I've ever had to deal with. A good purging is long overdue. Anyways, the show is back to normal, and the next few will be dedicated to my favorite releases of 2009. Might even try and squeeze in a best of the decade for those out there interested in such lists. And don't get me started on how this isn't actually the end of the decade. Naysayers, listen up--2000-2009 is a decade. A decade is ten fucking years. 2010 is not included in '00s. You know why? Because 2010 is part of the '10s. Everyone out there who's saying otherwise can just celebrate/compile lists next a damned fool.
Now that that's off my chest, on with this week's episode.

Regular readers/listeners will probably have guessed that the Fresh & Onlys will probably take the top spot as my favorite band of '09. Despite that In The Red LP being delayed until next year, the band still had two killer LPs, a couple cassettes, and an endless onslaught of solid seven inches (not to mention that Tim Cohen solo LP) all of which have cemented them as the most consistent, hard working and exciting new band of 2009. The new split seven incher with the mighty Dan Melchior just added another notch. Two songs crammed on to one side, though one is a demo of Black Coffin from 'Grey Eyed Girls', of lower fidelity than normal, and they still come off better than half their contemporaries. Are you still sleeping on this band?

Permanent Records has been a monster this year, with full length releases by Anals, Mako Sica, a Drunks With Guns cassette re-issue (!), Purling Hiss LP, now they've dropped a new-ish Cheveau long player, which is comprised of discarded tracks from their recording sessions over the last few years. Damn glad these didn't end up in a dumpster behind their recording studio. Those who have been paying attention to these fellers can expect the same skittery drum machines, sharp bass stabs, and those possessed vocals. Limited press on this one, so you'd be wise to hit up the Permanent shop soon (they do mailorder now!).

The vinyl releases from our own fair city keep rolling in, making 2009 one of the most vinyl-friendly years in recent memory for Vancouver. Three LPs released this week on the newly launched Nite Prison label by N. 213 & Reflektionss, Modern Creatures/Twin Crystals and a Pompoir one-sided LP should help break the bank of the local DIY faithfuls. I know there isn't anything I'd rather spend my money on. You can grip all three of them at the release party at Honey Lounge December 3rd.

The N. 213 (Nic Hughes of Shearing Pinx/Pompoir)/Reflektionss (Jesse Taylor of Twin Crystals) split takes off where their INW cassette from last year left off. Nic spends his side bouncing around his bedroom with a drum machine and a microphone, while Jesse gets dark and broody with a Moog. The two sides compliment each other well.

The Pompoir one-sider is a nice reflection of the band's stop/start live set. Fans of Shearing Pinx, particularly the more Sonic Youth side of the band, should ease into this one nicely. There's also an undeniable L7 and Huggy Bear vibe. I dunno about you but I'm excited to hear the early '90s finally seep into contemporary music.

Not Not Fun has also had another banner year with full length LPs by Little Claw, Wet Hair (2 of them!), Ducktails, and Sun Araw, and not to mention several amazing cassettes. The end of '09 has been especially busy with new releases by Inca Ore, Eternal Tapestry, Robedoor, Topaz Rags, and Sex Worker, making this label difficult to keep up with, though its been more than worth shelling out for.

While NNF has been busy with LPs, they managed to release a seven inch and cassingle by Bloomington, Indiana's Dylan Ettinger, who also runs the quality mid-west cassette label El Tule (played some back here). Dylan fits in nicely with all those hypnagogic synth wonders that have been making quite the buzz recently. Playful synth squiggles and squirms wriggle across an imaginary neon-lit skyway.

The Sex Worker LP is a tick-tocking dreamscape, with the flip side sounding like a dulled and flattened (in the best way, natch) of this classic Aphex Twin track from 'Selected Ambient Works Vol. 2'

The best of the new bunch is perhaps the newest full length from Inca Ore (pictured at the very top of this post), which is her second for NNF this year (she teamed up with Heavy Winged earlier this year) and her third release with them in total. I wasn't the biggest fan of her last full length, 'Birthday Of Bless You', but this newest LP is a major leap. Fans of the more submerged end of Grouper's more recent work should get a hold of this one asap. A delicate patchwork of across-the-void vocals, stark piano wrapped in static, all tie up together to form an intense, yet warm and very personal record. Absolute highest recommendation.

Last but not least in the NNF run down is the newest dark jammer by Robedoor, who had remained relatively quiet over the last year after releasing at least a dozen things each year since their inception in 2005. The group is back and have added a third member, fleshing out the doom-drone vibe with a drummer. Their seven inch on Ketchup Cavern from a few months back was indeed an indication of the groups new path and, after over 50 releases of stormy drone, is a welcome change. The storm is still brewing, but with shredded vocals, caustic guitar stranglings and reverbed drums, this new storm sweeps in quickly, annihilating everything in its path. New cassette due soon on Belgian label Pluim.

That's it for new music this week, folks. Next week we'll start counting down our favorite releases of the year. Until then...

Download Episode 29 here (right click link, then Save As)

Splinters "Sorry" s/t 7" (Double Negative) 2009
The Fresh & Onlys "A Taste Of Hunger" split w/ Dan Melchior 7" (Volar) 2009
Sharp Ends "Loaded Hearts" s/t 7" (Mammoth Cave) 2009
Cheveau "Pangolin" s/t LP (Permanent) 2009
Wounded Lion "Creatures In The Cave (Ballad)" s/t 7" (Gilgongo) 2009
N. 213 "Ratiociation" split w/ Reflektionss LP (Nite Prison) 2009
Pompoir "Cut Ups" Exploding Time one-sided LP (Nite Prison/Isolated Now Waves) 2009
Reflektionss "Feeling" split w/ N.213 LP (Nite Prison) 2009
Dylan Ettinger "Bringin' The Heat" Bringin' The Heat w/ Cancer CS (Not Not Fun) 2009
Dylan Ettinger "Miami Heat (The Stakeout)" s/t 7" (Not Not Fun) 2009
Emeralds "untitled Side B" Fresh Air 7" (A Soundesign Recordings) 2009
Inca Ore "Adventure Of Light" Silver Sea Surfer School LP (Not Not Fun) 2009
Sex Worker "No More" The Labor Of Love LP (Not Not Fun) 2009
Expensive Shit "Dreamcatcher Culture" Powowow With Chopper CS (Not Not Fun) 2009
Robedoor "Indo Shadow" Raiders LP (Not Not Fun) 2009
Robedoor "Dragon Fang Burnout" Pagan Drugs 7" (Ketchup Cavern) 2009
No Balls "untitled" s/t 7" (Diskad) 2009

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Pop Dr(((O)))nes: Episode 28

Due to many of my records being boxed up in my new apartment, this week's show was strung together with a few records pretty much pulled out at random. Episode 29 update coming very soon. Things should be back in order now that my move is done, fundrive is over and internet access solidified. 

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Pop Dr(((O)))nes: Episode 27

No time for a serious rundown this week, folks. I'm in the midst of packing my apartment for a move next week and am in the midst of a job hunt (Local Readers: feel free to drop a comment below or send an email if you hear of anything here in Vancouver), which have both been taking all my free time. As if my plate wasn't full enough, the annual CiTR Fundrive is officially on! Anyone out there who has been enjoying the Pop Drones show, or any other show on CiTR for that matter, is urged to listen in over the next few weeks and give the station a call for a donation (any amount will do!). The Fundrive raises money for the station so we can get new equipment and do all the necessary upgrades to keep the station in top shape. Feel free to get a hold of me if you want to help donate towards this worthy cause. Help keep community radio alive...

One big recommendation this week goes out to Austin's Yellow Fever and their new forthcoming LP. After a few EP releases on CD, the boy/girl duo round up those releases and slap it to wax for the Vivian Girls' record label, Wild World (click this link to pre-order). Fans of those amazing Grass Widow releases from earlier this year should be able to slip into this one with ease.

That's all I have time for this week.

Download Episode 27 here. (right click link, then Save As)

The Mantles "Bad Design" s/t 7" (Slumberland) 2009
Spectrals "Leave Me Be" s/t 7" (Captured Tracks) 2009
Xmas Island "Nothing Ever Happened" s/t 7" (Captured Tracks) 2009 Pheromoans "Tattoo Boom" s/t 7" (Savoury Days) 2009
The Fresh And Onlys "Laughter Is Contagious" s/t 7" (Trouble In Mind) 2009
Yellow Fever "Rats and Cats" s/t LP (Wild World) 2009
Best Coast "When I'm With You" s/t 7" (Black Iris) 2009
Wounded Lion "Wyld Parrots" s/t 7" (Gilgongo) 2009
Pigeon Religion "Dead Boss" s/t 7" (Gilgongo) 2009
Sharp Ends "Crack Trap" s/t 7" (Mammoth Cave Co.) 2009
Woven Bones "Have A Soul" Minus Touch 12" (Zoo Music) 2009
Lawds "Don't Know When" unreleased mp3, 2009
Moon Duo "Killing Time" Killing Time 12" (Captured Tracks) 2009
solars "Nocturnal Circuit" split 7" w/Ahna (Soldier Pump) 2009
Odd Clouds "untitled" Deceiving Illusion LP (Not Not Fun) 2009
Up-Tight "A Song For Your Pain" The Beginning of the End LP (8mm) 2009
Padna "Siberia" Siberia/Hinterland CS (Stunned) 2009

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Pop Dr(((O)))nes: Episode 26

Yeeeeeeeargh. The CiTR turntables went on the fritz this week, which pretty much ruined the show I had planned. New 7"s by The Pheromoans, Spectrals, Pigeon Religion, Wounded Lion, and a whack of new LPs will have to wait until next week. I ended up playing some myspace tracks from some newer local bands and a bunch of CDs from the CiTR playlist. I also managed to plug the upcoming Jonas Reinhardt/Valet/Sinoia Caves show that Twee Death and yours truly put on last night. Thanks to everyone that showed up. The night was a success; bands got paid, plenty of beers and records were sold, and I didn't lose my shirt.

We'll be back next week with a batch of fresh wax.

Fuck Buttons "Surf Solar" Tarot Sport CD (ATP) 2009
Myths "Gold!!" unreleased, 2009
MT-40 "Isabella Rosselini" unreleased, 2009
Pre "Gang Of Wire" Hope Freaks CD (Skin Graft) 2009
Little Girls "Thrills" Concepts CD (Arts & Crafts) 2009
The Fresh & Onlys "I'm Gonna Be Your Elevator" Grey-Eyed Girls CD (Woodsist) 2009
Little Claw "Colors You Drown" Human Taste CD (Ecstatic Peace) 2009
Twin Crystals "Blacked Out Face" unreleased demo, 2009
B-Lines "Busy Man" Burnt CDrs 7" (Nominal) 2009
Stamina Mantis "Slug Over Slug" released?, 200?
Six Organs Of Admittance "Bar-Nasha" Illuminous Night CD (Drag City) 2009
Valet "Streets" Naked Acid CD (Kranky) 2009
Jonas Reinhardt "Port Lligat" taken from myspace, 2009
Treetops "Some Morning" Blue Flower CS (Tape Worm) 2009

DOWNLOAD Episode 25 here. (right click link, then Save As)

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Pop Drones & Twee Death Present: Jonas Reinhardt w/Valet & Sinoia Caves @ Little Mountain, Sat Nov 7, 8PM

Alongside Twee Death, Pop Drones is presenting a night of music at Little Mountain Studios this coming Saturday. Kranky recording artist Jonas Reinhardt (San Francisco) will be bringing their unique and driving take on synth-led kraut to the intimate confines of Little Mountain. If yr into the burning/floating kosmiche of contemporary acts like Oneohtrix Point Never, Cloudland Canyon, Arp, Infinity Window, or BCVCO, then this show is definitely for you. We managed to coax Sinoia Caves (Jagjaguwar, Black Mountain), who is an absolute perfect fit for this show, out of his lair for a rare live appearance.

Also worth getting excited about is the debut Vancouver appearance of Portland's Valet (Kranky Records and member of Nudge). This will actually be a rare live performance for Honey Owens, who, for all intents and purposes, is Valet, and we're more than excited to have the rare chance to catch a glimpse of her in action. She'll be accompanied with brain tickling visuals.

Doors are at 8pm and the cost is $10. You can get tickets at Red Cat, Scratch, Audiopile, Zulu Records or online at Twee Death, though there will be plenty at the door.

A merch table supplied by local distributors (myself included) will be there and it'll be stocked with brand new hard-to-find LPs, 7"s and cassettes.

See you there.

Interview with Honey Owens

Jonas Reinhardt video for "Modern By Nature's Reward"

Sinoia Caves "Naro Way"

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Pop Dr(((O)))nes: Episode 25

Captured Tracks continues to dominate 2009 (and our wallets) with their relentless release schedule of mostly top notch bands, most of whom have never released a thing. One of their best finds so far is Toronto's Bitters, who already have the amazing summer hit Warrior off their Wooden Glove 12". They follow up that great EP with an anthemic double-shot. Plenty of new material is on the way, too, including a 12" for Sacred Bones and a full length for Woodsist.

Also new from Captured Tracks this week is another Oh Sees album, which I got into here already. Anyone expecting the same amped-up garage stompers will be caught off guard by the weird and warm end of the pool that Thee Oh Sees are now wading in. A nice left turn when most were expecting them to keep plowing forward.

That Ganglians 7" is sitting nicely, too. A very necessary chunk of warm Cali pop in these days of relentless rain and grey that accompanies Vancouver for the next 5 months or so.

Oh hey, that Silver Pines CDr I raved about months back has made it to vinyl! Thanks to AQ for for stocking that one.

The Pop Drones show is normally dedicated to playing current music from the DIY underground and beyond, but when this cassette of an unknown group supposedly from the 60s came through the mail, I just had to share it. The Van Patterson Quartet, who play a shredding live set of organ-led psych garage on this release, are a bit of a mystery. No one seems to know a damn thing about them, and the only info online concerns finding out who the group was/is. The general consensus is that they didn't actually exist and this is a bit of ruse, which would make sense with the mysterious Tape Worm label. Though this may be out of print, I would highly recommend all fans of psych, past and present, to seek out a copy of this.

DOWNLOAD Episode 25 here. (right click, then Save As)

The Bitters "East" s/t 7" (Captured Tracks) 2009
The Splinters "Splintered Bridges" s/t 7" (Double Negative) 2009
Ganglians "Blood On The Sand" s/t 7" (Captured Tracks) 2009
Thee Oh Sees "The River Rushes (To Screw Me Over)" Dog Poison LP (Captured Tracks) 2009
Silver Pines "Timefather" Forces LP (Light Lodge) 2009 (re-issue of CDR)
Bronze "Sides" s/t 10" (Hobo Jungle) 2009
Factums "When" Flowers LP (Sacred Bones) 2009
The Pink Noise "Drab" Graffiti Youth LP (Kill Shaman) 2009
No Balls "untitled" s/t 7" (Diskad) 2009
Barn Owl "Ancient Of Days" The Conjurer LP (Root Strata) 2009
The Van Patterson Quartet "Part One (excerpt)" Live At F.W. (Tapeworm UK) 2009
Blue Sabbath Black Cheer "untitled" Dead Death, Death Dead LP (Troubleman Unlimited) 2009
The Jesus Lizard "Mouth Breather" Mouth Breather 7" (Touch & Go) 1990 *request*

Monday, November 2, 2009

Blues Control. Tonight! Little Mountain@8pm

Long time Expressway faves, Blues Control, will be making their first appearance in Vancouver tonight. Little Mountain Studios at 8pm. Gross X-Mas and solars will round out the bill tonight in support of this highly anticipated show. Make sure to pop by the merch booth tonight, as myself and a few others will be selling some LPs, 7 inches and cassettes, some of which cannot be found in local shops. See you tonight!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Pop Dr(((O)))nes: Episode 24

Still playing catch up this week, so we're gonna have to do a quicker than usual run through the highlights of Episode 24.

Woven Bones continues his singles onslaught of 2009 and the up and coming Zoo Music gives him the larger 12" format to play with. 4 tracks of JAMC-style fuzz rock in a pressing of 500 that sold out in days. Looks like there may be a repress of this one coming soon, so keep an eye on that Zoo Music page. I have to say that, though this 12" isn't quite as strong as his 7"s on Hozac and Sweet Rot, it is nice to see him switch up the vibe a bit. Definite odes to the Cramps and Jesus and Mary Chain, but with their own snotty touch, of course. Keep an eye on Hozac for the debut full length LP.

Check the video below to see the Austin 3-piece in action.

woven bones | yr sorcery from oswald james on Vimeo.

After some general ignorance on my part, I finally got around to snatching up a copy of the new El Jesus De Magico LP on Columbus Discount. A bit of left hook for those that have been following the group's meager amount of releases from the last few years. Rather than a refined batch of their lo-fi psych-punk, we get two hot sides of stormy kraut-rock dirges. Seriously so damn good. First press of 300 is done but there is, of course, a second pressing out there. In the meantime, nab all of their OOP previous singles free, courtesy of the WFMU Free Music Archive.

Most members of Harry Pussy of been pretty quiet since their 1997 demise. Finally, Bill Orcutt, lead axe-grinder, comes forth with a new solo record. Those expecting free form rock deconstruction may be a little disappointed when they find him destroying what kind of sounds like the blues. The always on point Mapsadaisical reviews it far better than I ever could. Highly addictive. Check the link here for some footage of Orcutt playing a beat up guitar with missing strings. Bonus: Classic interview of Harry Pussy interviewing themselves.

Despite being a relatively new term, Hypnagogic Pop has recently been praised in the Wire for it's reappropration of 80s cheese and slammed by critics for, well, the exact same thing. This new term, which suits groups like Skaters (and it's many offshoots) to a tee, is also being applied to lo-fi acts like Gary War or vintage synth maestros like Oneohtrix Point Never, which I think is stretching it a bit. In this week's podcast, I stuck with acts that define the genre for myself. Skaters related (Spencer Clark's Black Joker) and mysterious member of the Outer Limits Recordings known as Matrix Metals (aka Yoga, aka Explorers and who knows how many more?) are the highlights in the recent onslaught of music from mostly these mostly mysterious performers. Their music creeps around the edge of sleep and flits effortlessly from one eerie soundscape to the next. Matrix Metal's "Flamingo Breeze" is easily the most captivating and endlessly entertaining Hypnagogic Pop release I've heard this year. It's long out of print, but you can snatch it free here. (via Id Reverbations).

Also, check Hong Kong In The 60s for another great article and some samples of Hypnagogic Pop.

Thee Oh Sees "Coma" split w/ Paul Cary 7" (Stankhouse) 2009
The Mantles "Don't Lie" s/t LP (Siltbreeze) 2009
Woven Bones "The Minus Touch" The Minus Touch 12" (Zoo Music) 2009
Shearing Pinx "Xenophobe/Frostflood" Weaponry LP (Divorce) 2009
White Suns "My Form Fades" split w/ Shearing Pinx CS (Isolated Now Waves) 2009
Physical Demon "Air Canister" split w/ Shearing Pinx CS (Isolated Now Waves) 2009
El Jesus De Magico "Ancestor Worship" Scalping The Guru LP (Columbus Discount) 2009
Attestupa "Anglamakerskan" Utmarken 10" (Release The Bats) 2009
Bill Orcutt "Lip Rich" A New Way To Pay Old Debts LP (Palilalia) 2009
Matrix Metals "Rayban Meltdown" Flamingo Breeze CS (Not Not Fun) 2009
Explorers "Side A Excerpt" Bermuda Telepaths LP (Not Not Fun) 2009
Sunken Landscape "Other Side Of Space" split w/ My Cell Phone Is Better Than Your Cell Phone 7" (Nihil Underground) 2009
Black Joker "Side A excerpt" Watch Out! LP (Olde English Spelling Bee) 2009 *re-issue of cassette from 2008
Pax Titania "Action Research 21" Live In Phlorida CS (Chondtritic Sound) 2009

Download Episode 24 here. (right click, then Save As)

Monday, October 26, 2009

Pop Dr(((O)))nes: Episode 23

Ohhhhh, so sorry friends. Thee Expressway has been all kinds of busy these days and the blog has taken a real nosedive in updates. I'm here this week to help remedy that, so why don't we start off with a real quick rundown of Episode 23. The podcast can no longer be uploaded, so you'll just have to click them links to get a taste of what could've been.

Mentioned it here before but I just can't pry the newest tapes from Justin Wright's (aka Expo 70) new Sonic Meditations label from the decks. Umberto is a nice Goblin-style synth guru who would've fit in real nice alongside thee most infamous of Italian horror film shredders. Perfect soundtrack fer scarin' up the kiddies this Hallow's Eve.

Sounding The Deep have also been scooped up by Mr. Wright for the label and do they ever sit well with thee sonic rumblings of Expo 70. Anyone out there who likes their drone-doom in the slow, cinematic and glacial pace oughta be prickin' their ears up fer these fellers. Beautiful submersion.

Iowa City's Night People label show no signs of slowing down. Those gorgeous handmade LPs are coming out a little faster these days, but the cassettes are proving tough to keep up with. New one by Hochman & Hopkins (featuring Matthew Hopkins from Naked on the Vague) is an excursion into a brown rainbow of synth belches and farts. Took a few listens to really wrap my skull around, but it's proven to be a winner.

Okay, wrappin' er this week with the new one by D.A.(pictured at the top), an LA-via-Texas synth duo who, apparently, were totally unaware of the current vintage synth revival found in groups like Emeralds, Oneohtrix Point Never, Infinity Window, or Caboladies. Not that it's hard to miss these contemporaries, but the two kids musta had their heads down like Schroeder when they were conjurin' up the ghosts of Cluster, Eno and Tangerine Dream. We come out the winners in their ignorance, because this LP is rankin' well alongside all those new LPs by the above mentioned without soundin' like their rippin' 'em off wholesale.

Okay, Episode 24 comin' tomorrow, and then Episode 25 airs this Wednesday.

Umberto "Running Blade" From The Grave... CS (Sonic Meditations) 2009

Sounding The Deep "Cosmic Shore" Glacier CS (Sonic Meditations) 2009

Hochman & Hopkins "Peace Sausage" Live NYE CS (Night People) 2009

Weirding Module "Untitled Side A Excerpt" Timew33d CS (Night People) 2009

D.A. "The Owl" Odeon LP (Olde English Spelling Bee) 2009

Robedoor "Magic Tar Pit Ride" Exorcist Blues CS (Monorail Tresspassing) 2009

Infinite Body "And Will It Matter" split w/Emaciator LP (Monorail Trespassing) 2009

Spencer Davis "Side A excerpt" It Is Here CS (self released) 2009

ELEH "Homage To The Sine Wave" Side B LP (Taiga) 2009

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Pop Dr(((O)))nes: Episode 22

Mode Moderne "Radio Heartbeat" Ghosts Emerging LP (Lust Neuvo) 2009
Terrorbird "White Lights" Sociopaths Are Glam CS (Night People) 2009
Pens "High In The Cinema" Hey Friend! What You Doing? LP (De Stijl) 2009
The Fresh and Onlys "Horrible Door" Laughter Is Contagious 7" (Trouble In Mind) 2009
Sex Church "Dead End" Dead End/Let Down 7" (Sweet Rot) 2009
Cheater Slicks "Part II" Bats In The Dead Trees LP (Lost Treasures of the Underworld) 2009
Twin Stumps "Beyond The Door" s/t LP (Dais) 2009
The Halflings "Trigger Fixation" Self Esteem LP (RRR) 2009
Solars "Nocturnal Circuit" split w/Ahna 7" (Soldier Pumps) 2009
Expo '70 "Meetings Of The Lunar Eclipse" Corridors To Infinity CS (Sonic Meditations) 2009
Mark Lord "Obscene Supremacy" Mark Lord split w/ Morgan Egg LP (No) 2009
Mark Lord "Blair House Nosebleed" Blair House Nosebleed CS (Chondritic Sound) 2009
Hematic Sunsets "Im Bett Auf Pepita" Aroma Club Paradox LP (Dekorder) 2009

Coupla' new Vancouver releases in various analog formats worth funnelin' into yr ear holes, and first up is the outta-nowhere-real-fast LP by Mode Moderne. Sang their praises once or twice in this here radio show, so 'magine my surprise when some copies of the LP were hand delivered by a coupla' members to the warm and cozy record shop I call home. First off, bang up of an album jacket featurin' some kinda fool wrapped in a sheet thinkin' he were a ghost or some such thing. The music inside is definitely reminiscent of some icy goth type stuff that'll get an obvious comparison to the forefathers of said movement. Well you can ferget that and just get to listenin' with yr own two ears, as their are plenty of ghoulishly good songs to be had. No one's askin' anyone to reinvent any such wheel, but what we do appreciate 'round here is some toe tappin' music with a bit a the ol' flesh and blood heart in it. These here fellas got it in spades.

Also hot on the Vancouver tip is a new cassette by our favorite local songstress. You can keep yr coffee shop diva (dime a frickin' dozen in this here town) and I'll take Nikki Never any ol' day. Outside of that 7" released a wee bit back, this is the first we've heard from Nikki and the gang in some time. That's okay because she makes up for it with a dozen tracks of glammed up and frosty cool synth gloomers. Hell, we even get a straight up cover of Bronski Beat's 'Small Town Boy' and a pretty rendition of Jesus and Mary Chain's 'Nine Million Rainy Days'.

Looks like Sex Church, 'nother local fave, is getting a bit of love for their top notch 7". That cranky ol' bastard, Doug Mosurock, even dropped a heap o' praise fer the boys and our little city. 'Cept he does site a few of their influences but he didn't detect that big pulsin' one at the lead of this multi-headed demon--Cheater frickin' Slicks.

Speakin' of the Slicks, looks like they got themselves a brand spanking new one, and it is rankin' pretty high up on the '09 must have list. Four scaldin' tracks of dark, dark psychedelic garage blues, done only as these ol' fuckers know. Missed out on that 300 run of signed 'n silkscreened LPs but managed to grip the second batch of 500. And if you know what's good fer ya, you'll be heading to the local grocer asap to get yr own damn copy. They even tossed in a CDR of the only live recording of this behemoth. I'll let you know when I get there.

Things got a little ugly mid-way through this week's show, and I ain't talkin' 'bout no train wrecks. Twin Stumps LPs finally made it through the pipeline (get in line for a copy in the comments...they're going fast) and it's proven to be worth the hype after that great WFMU live set. The New York foursome are clawing their way down the same path that's been forged by groups like Lamps and, hell, Brainbombs fer that matter. Swirls of feedback and jack hammering guitars and drums with a burly lumbering bass towing the line. Love it or be afraid of it. Ugly. Noise. Rock. Very recommended.

Speaking of the hairy and ugly, after hearing plenty 'bout these two fellers from Yellow Tears, I finally managed to track down a copy of their full length LP on RRR. Vicious and macho (they play shirtless!) power electronics from kids probably raised on the stuff. Not quite the next Whitehouse but, then again, who could be?

Found some time to play the Solars flip of the split with Ahna. Nicely executed guitar droner that works as a fluffy pillow comedown to the meaner, muscle-y Ahna side. I heard some rumors that those Solars cats got some releases in the works, including a new cassette on the local Halved tape label. You'll hear about it here first when that little number is ready to wear.

While we're gettin' on the topic of guitar drone, Expo '70 has had a nice steady year, and the man behind the drones, Justin Wright, has launched his own label, Sonic Meditations. Lotsa' space-y, drone-y cassettes with the utmost respect given to the packaging. Should have some more Sonic Meditations cassettes to play next week, including the daydream drifters Sounding The Deep. Look for Sonic Meditations to do some vinyl releases in the near future!

Ok, that's all I have the time for this week. Get listenin'.

DOWNLOAD EPISODE 22 HERE. (Right click, then Save As)

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Pop Dr(((O)))nes: Episode 21

First up this week is the highly anticipated (well, at least by a few of us) full length LP from SF's Mantles (pictured above). With two super tight 7"s under their belts the four-piece come out swingin' and are hittin' e'ry one of these tracks out the park. Breezy psych-pop that ain't too reliant on one pedal or one piece of fuzz. Nope, just simple songs through and through. On repeat!

Three full length LPs in just over a year and a smatterin' a singles I don't care to count have made these SF's garage rock killers into one of the most prolific (don't ferget consistent!) groups currently putting the fuzz down. New one from Captured Tracks was sent my way for the previewin' (physical LP coming in about a week or two) and I still can't wrap my skull 'round it. The kids have made us expect 'nother blast from the Nuggets past, but instead we got a record crammed full a sounds I can't quite label. Definitely still on the lo-fi touch of things, but these here are songs are...kinda warped. It's like they took some of them ol' OCS folk-y type tracks then tossed in a heap of warble, and then sped these tracks up a touch to make you think helium was involved in there somewhere. Yr shakin' yr head. I know. But it's damn good and a new direction was in the cards if you've been holdin' 'em in yr hands since them Coachwhips days.

Shearing Pinx finally crawl back to the wax after spending mucho time on the micro cassette releases, and let me tell you, this one is worth all them recent cassettes plus some. Neck crackin' now-wave bruisers stand side by side with lengthier excursions into tightly wound riffage, all of which comes spillin' out like so many bleedin' fingers and broken strings. If that Modern Creatures LP weren't so good, this would be the top of the top here for Vancouver full lengths. Apparently there'll be another Sh. Px. LP released on Divorce in the near future. Might just knock them Modern Creatures down a notch, not that this is a competition or nothin'.

After some pretty steady cassette releases and some CDR action, Eternal Tapestry make it back to the full length LP and deliver their finest moment yet (promise). The surrounding buzz on this was enough for the 500 copy run to disappear in a week or two. Anyhoo, if you've spent some time with ET before then you know what to expect; monumental psych mountains climbed and conquered. Re-press, so I'm told, is on the way. Contemporary fans of all things psych are urged not to sleep on it.

France's Natural Snow Buildings have finally made it to full length vinyl. The duo have released scads of tapes and CDRs, most of which'll drain that paypal account post-haste if you ever spot 'em on ebay, but this here is their first big splash on wax. 3 LPs (comes with 2 CDs of the same thing) and a comic book courtesy of the kind, wallet breaking man over at Blackest Rainbow, and you've got yerself a weekend tucked in with their shimmering mix of folk 'n drone. Edition of 500 was scooped up within days, though you can still grab copies of the 2 CD edition. Better that than nothin'.

After a few weeks off, we got another great phone call from my man Josh Rose, and we spent some time pontificatin' the wonders of one of the best local bands to splooge up on local sand in recent mem'ry. We are talking about the mighty Fortress. They hardly played a show or two 'fore I was urged to take 'em in live. Disappointed I was not. Somehow the 4 piece have managed to take the sharp 'n shrill attack of them Big Black albums that we all love so much, coiled em up into some sorta' nasty spring, and then let the top offa' that jar real quick-like. Rhythm section locks in while the guitar scrapes at yr ears and the howlin' of singer/synth slammer Kelly frightens the crap outta ya. Elements of Tunnel Canary, Mutators and whole buncha post-hardcore bands creep in but somehow none of 'em really rises to the top. They got themselves a real hard to nail down sound, which is just how we like 'round this here blog. Honest to Abe, one a the best bets out there right now. CDRs available at shows. Hey looks like you can catch 'em on Friday at the Secret Space, then Saturday at Main and Pender (?). Whatcha waitin' for?

Oh yeah, looks like Spencer Davis (geetar and vocals in Fortress) also likes to make some electronic noise in a solo thing he calls Nervous Operator. Borrowed myself a copy and gotta sit with it for a bit before I try to put fingers to keys, but you can grab that cassette at Fortress shows too. Solder and Sons should also be able to help you out with that.

Ok, that's it for this week. Plenty of stuff to wade through this week for next show, which should be a good 'un. Tune in.

Download Episode 21 here. (right click link, then Save As)

The Mantles "What We Do Matters" s/t LP (Siltbreeze) 2009
Thee Oh Sees "The Fizz" Dog Poison LP (Captured Tracks) 2009
Dan Melchior Und Das Menace "Blue Tentacles" Thank You Very Much 2LP (S-S) 2009
Meth Teeth "I Was Wrong" Everything Went Wrong LP (Woodsist) 2009
Shearing Pinx "I Am Jim O'Rourke" Weaponry LP (Divorce) 2009
Nu Sensae "Mens Rea" 3 Dreams 7" (Critiscum Internationale) 2009
Little Claw "Frozen In The Future" Human Taste LP (Not Not Fun) 2009
Eternal Tapestry "Cathedral Of Radiance" The Invisible Landscape LP (Not Not Fun) 2009
Wet Hair "Mesmerized Glass" Fountain LP (Not Not Fun) 2009
Natural Snow Buildings "The Fall of the Shadow Kingdom" Shadow Kingdom 3LP (Blackest Rainbow) 2009
Nervous Operator "Side A excerpt" s/t CS (Self Released) 2009
Fortress "Otoro" unreleased 2009