Tuesday, February 8, 2011

The End Is Extremely Fucking Nigh

The Body is comprised of two demonic dudes from Providence, Rhode Island, notable for their big beards, bigger paunches and ridiculous gun collection, who play a particularly dour and dreary style of doom that fuses down-tuned droning dirges, overblown punch-in-the-gut drums and grief-stricken black metal vocal histrionics. They've run with this formula for about a decade, consistently doing it justice while still finding time to churn out extreme metal covers of songs by artists as disparate as Body Count, Danzig and Sinead O'Connor. However, it is on their newest album, 2010's All the Waters of the Earth Turn to Blood, that they have truly come into their own, crafting a collection of songs that are tighter, better constructed and even more brutal than before. The most apparent development in The Body's sound is the wealth of actually tasteful experimental flourishes they've incorporated (washes of noise, tribal chanting, moog, orchestral instruments, etc.), which transcend the superfluousness of the gimmicks many bands masquerade as "avant-garde." The Body understands that change is sometimes necessary, and they wear that change well. The album's first song begins with 7 minutes of all-female a capella choral music (courtesy of the Assembly Of Light Choir), and it only gets weirder from there. Check out song-of-the-year contender "Empty Hearth," the aural equivalent of SunnO))) and Ministry heading out into the night and curb-stomping some Tuvan throat singers.

In the download link I have also included the self-titled record by Dead Times, the totally rad black metal/noise project started by one of the two guys in The Body (the guitarist/singer, I think). Dead Times is the product of a seriously fucked up mind. It sounds like some lonely soul sitting in his basement, meticulously obsessing over the creation of his lo-fi sound collages and then trying to shriek them into oblivion. But, like, I guess that's exactly what it is...

Download: The Body / Dead Times!!


Sunday, February 6, 2011

Sieg Howdy

All right folks, this is my first post here so I thought I would kick things off with an album that is not only one of my favorites, but also one of the most joyfully deranged, darkly humorous, absurdly catchy and disgustingly overlooked records of all time.
Dory Tourette and the Skirtheads were a little-known late-'90s, early-2000s Oakland punk entity on S.P.A.M Records associated with other like-minded bands such as Bobby Joe Ebola and the Children Macnuggits, The Rabbis, and Fleshies. Dory Tourette (né Dory Ben-Shalom) was the band's singer, songwriter and guitarist, a drug-addled troubadour who subverted the best parts of Bay Area punk, twangy country and oldies à la Buddy Holly in order to craft melodic gems glorifying malt liquor, crystal meth, pedophilia and essentially everything else your mom told you was wrong. Unfortunately, the band's stint as resident accidental geniuses was as temporary as it was miraculous. They released an LP, an EP, and a song on a S.P.A.M compilation before Dory tragically passed away in October, 2007, at the age of 28, a victim of his longtime substance abuse.
DT&tS's aforementioned LP Rock Immortal was produced by none other than Matty Luv (shortly before his tragic death) in something like 1999, and it might just be the best album you've never heard. Listen deeper than its offensive, often cynical surface and you'll hear a very human--and humane--look at just what it means to be down on your luck and at odds with society. Equal parts existential crisis and celebration of life outside the norm, it is at turns wistful, vile, ecstatic, raunchy and truly beautiful.
Rock Immortal is very dear to me. It has helped me through some hard times and made many good ones that much better, and I can think of no better way of starting my tenure in the blogosphere than by sharing it with you.

Download: Rock Immortal!


P.S. As far as I know, the only place to buy this album is at Thrillhouse.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Daniel Johnston

I wish I knew how to talk to people. Instead I listen to Daniel Johnston, and think about how bad I fuck up any time I try.

Songs of Pain

RIP This Bike Is A Pipe Bomb

It greatly saddens me to know that This Bike is a Pipe Bomb will not be one day coming back on one of their extremely infrequent tours, according to a post Rymodee just put up on punknews.org.  I've spent a lot of hours hanging out with friends singing along to their records, and they've put a smile on my face in times that were much darker for me than these past couple of years.  Truly the final nail in the folk-punk-of-my-youth coffin.

Front Seat Solidarity

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Play Slow\-\Play Loud

I've got a couple weeks off from work, so this should be a period of great activity music-wise for me. I have a bunch of new records I want to listen to more, a bunch of mix cd's I promised I'd make, and a bunch of band stuff to do, so it's going to get kicked off with a powerful blast of sorrow and majesty four albums deep (plus two stolen links!).

Roughly 95% of the punks/metalheads/whatever I've met love the Misfits. You love them, I love them, it's actually a shitty contrarian move to not love them.  Out of these, another 80% or so love Danzig I, and perhaps another 10% chunk bother with both Danzig I and II.  For some reason, only about five of my friends love Samhain, but we together comprise a loyal and fierce army strengthened by our inner knowledge and surety that we are right to do so, for Samhain are simply little Glenny's finest expression of bleakness and creativity. These songs are weirder, slower, and have more character than anything else the guy did before III and carry a timelessness and lasting power in their production that no Danzig album has matched in my opinion.  Featuring some guitars from Minor Threat Lyle, this is the album that makes horror somehow sound wistful. Very wistful.  I'm not positive, but fairly sure that Archangel holds the current record for closing out the most mix cd's that I've made.  It's slow, it's simple, and it floors me every time.


To go with your Samhain, you should probably check out this demo that was posted to Terminal Escape a few weeks back from Funeral Parade. I know nothing about this band except they play the members-of game, and from the cursory listen I gave them whatever bands they're also in are probably awesome. This is just some rad sounding death rock with punk influences from all over the place, and since Terminal Escape is the only place on the whole internet I found this (without looking hard) I'm reposting so that everyone can enjoy it as much as I'm planning to.

Funeral Parade

To make things square for my (savage and nonconsensual) thieving of his links, I now feel it is my duty to post one of Mr. Collins' bands, so here's a two-song ep from No Statik also via stolen link. Their LP came out a couple weeks ago and has scarcely left my turntable since...the whole package presents as classic hardcore punk ought to with a great cover, colored vinyl, great sounding production from Greg Wilkinson, and of course RAGING songs with well-written lyrics thrown in your face by an awesome girl singer. This ep contains one of the songs from the LP(which occupies the whole of side B) and one more, and I hope will be enough to convince you to go see these boys and girl before they do something stupid like stop playing. Not enough good things to say about this band, go buy their records.

We All Die In The End

Since Thou rules so much, and because a couple folks have specifically thanked me for getting them onto Summit, I now present what may be their masterpiece thus far.  These songs are less pensive seeming, despite similar lengths and musical territory, and these riffs will break your heart and make you cry.  They play around with a lot more jazzy scales than the bluesy pentatonics in Summit, and the effects use is completely on-point and appropriate. The singer's writing bears a lot of Wes Eisold feeling, but carries an English Romantic wordiness that reflects a lot of time spent sitting around with his head in good novels instead of poetry. These guys are DEFINITELY invited to my birthday party.


To close out this festival of gloom, here's two different projects from one of the guys most directly responsible for the current state of American gloomy music, Weakling frontman John Gossard. 

After Weakling, he did a much more esoteric sounding group called The Gault, which musically hits somewhere in between the Dirty Three, Mogwai, and Cinema Strange.  I guess the best way to refer to this is as chamber music...it has enough ambient jam parts that you can lose track of what's going on pretty easily, but it seems like just the right bass riff always pops out of the mix at the right time to pull you back in.  This album will be represented extremely hard sometime within the next five or ten years, I would think. 

Even As All Before Us

Sometime around the release of the Gault record and their disbanding, Gossard joined funeral doom monsters Asunder in time to record their first LP, A Clarion Call.  This is some seriously slow and heavy stuff, harmonized into infinity like a Candlemass record from hell, and featuring some of the best pinch harmonic usage ever.  If you find yourself thinking that Dopesmoker is just the right length, but not technical enough, then you should probably go buy either of the Asunder records.  Their second is also a treat to listen to, and has soundtracked some serious hesh-sesh times.  Enjoy responsibly, and then go see his newest band Dispirit, who have a mega grim demo up on their website for download.

A Clarion Call