Posts Tagged ‘psych’

Threes and Will + Huerequeque

Friday, November 28th, 2014

blue thirteen C30
Blue Tapes, 2014

Threes and Will + Huerequeque

The UK’s Blue Tapes cassette microlabel (that now also serves vinyl, books, and film!) has steadily released noteworthy releases in small batches, each capturing wildly inventive takes on diverse genres. Acapella death metal, sound art, rock improv and whatever fits between, they’re always up to something interesting and always worth a listen, even if they end up being a bit of a novelty or one of those “challenging” listens you partake in when the mood is right. Their description of this mysterious Estonian duo links their expansive rock noise sound to the most focused LP from the long-running UK group Skullflower, IIIrd Gatekeeper, and holy fuck does it ever deliver on that promise. Starting from that sonic reference point, this 5-song (a solo track by each artist and 3 collaborations) tape stretches buzzed riffs into hypnotic, transcendent sounds that twist, turn, and drift for just over 30 minutes of blissed-out heavy psych. This link is not really a reference to Skullflower as much as a mark of quality on par with the greatness of that essential album, or the sublime quality of Skullflower’s 15-minute mind-melting “Diamond Bullet” from Obsidian Shaking Codex, a track so expansive that it could almost be its own genre. If you like your noise rock to push beyond the predictable and formulaic trappings of the form, prepare to meet this true form destroyer.


Threes and Will + Huerequeque on Blue Tapes website

Watch “Sea Fourth Pt. II” by Threes and Will on Vimeo

Lore City

Saturday, November 23rd, 2013

Absence & Time CD

Last spring when this album was released it was easy to escape the pull of this haunting disc. Now, as the last leaves fall and the palette of midwestern life is reduced to lifeless grays and browns, the soothing ache of Absence & Time is nearly impossible to ignore. There’s a sparseness and detached cool to Lore City that’s really seductive, as well as the sustained atmospheric haze that weaves through the 8 tracks on this Chicago duo’s debut. But there’s also an edge to what Lore City does that keeps them interestingly intense where most bands would be content to reflexively play by heart without pushing the envelope in any real way. With a monolithic, plodding pace that swells with occasional wave of exhilaration, Lore City has found a sound that fits somewhere between the preciousness of Zola Jesus, the warmth of Low and the severity of Swans. While the shock of Laura Mariposa’s haunting voice escalating to shrieking visceral growls is a bit unnerving, the deliberate manner by which they’ve inserted this texture into their sound gives Absence & Time depth and an experimental bite that refuses to be ignored.

Official Lore City website

The Prefab Messiahs

Thursday, March 1st, 2012

Peace Love and Alienation LP
Fixed Identity, 2012

It never ceases to amaze just how many buried gems are still out there. For example, check out this Worcester, MA postpunk psych romp from the early ’80s, reissued on Gary War and Taylor Richardson‘s Fixed Identity label. It’s a perfect infusion of Nuggets-style garage psych into the scrappy sound of early postpunk alá Swell Maps, The Urinals, The Homosexuals, etc. With small traces of ’80s collegiate guitar chime, The Prefabs assembled a timeless, killer sound that’s on par with the best sounds from any era. Why they haven’t been name-dropped incessantly over the last 30 years is a mystery.

Buy LP at Fixed Identity
The Prefab Messiahs on Bandcamp
The Prefab Messiahs WFMU interview


Black Angel’s Death Song

Wednesday, September 8th, 2010

Nothing Equals Nothing 7″
Dionysus Records, 1991

Following the line from the namesake Velvet Underground song “Black Angel’s Death Song” all the way to current Austin psych darlings The Black Angels, you’ll find a number of VU-inspired troupes carrying the underground freak rock flag. This loose-knit Los Angeles group from the early 1990s put out some inspired singles like this one, which falls somewhere in between the nonchalant scrap pop of Pavement and slo-mo guitar haze of Spaceman 3. The title track “Nothing Equals Nothing” is sneering ’80s So-Cal punk accented with ’60s bongo beats, neatly connecting the counterculture strains of each era to create a timeless hybrid that’s as relevant now as it was in 1991. In fact, it may be even more relevant today in the sonic blender of the MP3 age, where decades of rock genres and subgenres are so easily condensed and referenced.


Black Angel’s Death Song – “Nothing Equals Nothing”
Black Angel’s Death Song – “What Do You Mean?”


Black Angel’s Death Song on MySpace

Galloping Coroners

Monday, April 5th, 2010

Jumping Out The World / Instinct / Teach Death A Lesson CD
Alternative Tentacles, 1991

When you think of Jello Biafra, his antagonistic spoken word tirades and cult status as the brain behind the Dead Kennedys are the first thing to come to mind. However, it should also be noted that the man is a fanatically obsessed and rabid collector of music. I once witnessed him tear through the beloved stacks of wax at Love Garden Sounds with the deftness of a librarian on crank, nabbing an armful of choice selections all while bullshitting with the starstruck locals. And if you’ve ever read the second volume of the fantastic RE/Search Incredibly Strange Music books, you’d know exactly how hardcore a vinyl hound he is. So it should come as no surprise that this area of expertise has resulted in some of the more interesting documents of “punk” music from his Alternative Tentacles label, resulting in absolute classics from the Butthole Surfers, Flipper, The Crucifucks, Alice Donut, Victim’s Family, Phantom Limbs, and many more. Yet among all those well-known groups lurk some overlooked monsters. I found this CD reissue of this Hungarian band’s 1988 and 1990 LPs for a measly dollar in a cutout bin years ago and it’s easily one of my favorite records from the entire AT catalog. With over an hour of wild, tranced-out heavy psych glazed with shamanistic howls echoing at High Rise/Mainliner levels in the blissed out format of krautrock disciples like Wooden Shjips, this disc continues to get better—and weirder—with age. Although the Neurot label had the good sense to put out Dancing with the Sun in 2000, these early records have yet to garner the praise they deserve and have remained out of print for quite some time.

Galloping Coroners – Jumping Out The World+ CD (94.1MB Zip file)

Galloping Coroners website
Galloping Coroners on MySpace
Galloping Coroners page at Neurot Recordings