Spökraket – In A Witch Forest

spokracket

Should have posted this when I bought it.

Didn’t.

Posting it now.

 

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Gnod – Just say no…

gnodIn complete contrast to the previous two posts, here we have a whole heap of ‘AAAAARRRRGGGGHHHH!’ aimed right at your face.  And what a fine heap of grumpy-old-man stuff it is, too. Mind you, they’re probably a bit younger than me (I’m 46).

Gnod have made it their recent mission to try and re-politicise the alternative music scene. My own feelings on this are mixed because I have to admit I’ve never seen a tsunami turn back because of protesters on the beach, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be encouraging people to pull their heads out of their ****book feeds and actually look at the world around them and try to re-engage with other actual people, instead of relying on some commentator you will never meet to tell you that things are actually one way that suits them better than you. Also, people are actually nicer to each other when they talk to each other instead of when they argue on the internet, a pastime which only brings out one thing in people and that is the worst.

It reminds me in spirit of the last great outpourings of political music that I was aware of in the 1990s, particularly around the Criminal Justice Act that came in around that time. One of the main reasons for my mixed feelings is because the discontent from those times was one of the main reasons for Tony Blair, and I don’t believe I need to explain why we don’t want a repeat of all that, now. For all that we decry the current wave of so-called populism, it seems it was alright when he did it. But now I’m going all political and frankly I should leave that to this album, and I’m also giving the impression that I think political music is mistaken when I don’t actually think that at all.

So anyway, musically speaking, this is five tracks of loud done in the way that Gnod do loud, which is to say very well. There is rhythm and groove as is their wont, loud guitars, snarling guitars and vocals, and, er, well. You get the message.

I also wouldn’t be at all surprised if you weren’t to see this on a t-shirt or ten before the year is out.

But whilst we’re talking Gnod, I’ve also just discovered The Somnambulist’s Tale from 2012, which is completely at the opposite end of the sonic spectrum from this and demonstrates just how fucking good they have always been. And did you notice that I asterisked a particular web-resource, but left the word ‘fucking’ uncensored? Have it.

Cosmic Triggers – Homo Fractaliens

cosmictriggersSo whilst we’re in Russia, here are the Cosmic Triggers.

This is not wholly unlike Sonora, but a more cosmic sort of space rock, with a kind of 90s feel to some of it. I hear Spiritualized style guitar work, G.O.L. style female vocals overlaying the repetitive, circular rhytms (‘we are all fractals of ourselves,’ she intones at one point, which is right up my alley, philosophically). I hear Thee Open Sex, a little bit of Goat, Verma, a slower Our Solar System, The Myrrors again… you know, I could go on. And I mean that in the best possible way, trying to illustrate that there is now so much brilliant music everywhere, and the fact that they all reference each other – probably without actually trying to do so – is part of a larger point that I may do as a macro-post at one point. These are truly wondrous times we live in.

Mixpost 1!

I do have albums to tell you about, and I will do some of that again soon. But I just really feel the urge to do this:

Various appalling sonic viruses try and worm their way into my head and find a formidable defender, my very favourite piece of music ever made (at least, at this moment in time). So effective is it that when, say, the theme tune to I Can Cook wants to go around my head regardless of my choice in the matter, I simply have to summon up my memory of this and Boom! my head contains quality for the rest of the day:

Because of Nadja’s turn on Dusted’s listed feature, I’ve been seriously back in the love with Pharoah Overlord. The album from whence the featured track came (Lunar Jetman) has proven to be impossible to get hold of from all my sources – even Ektro Records doesn’t list it, and it allegedly came out via them! These Finnish avant-garde types are definitely originals; I can’t work out their distribution methods at all. Marvellous music, though. Any suggestions welcome, subscription services need not apply:

Thanks to the Can You Get to That blog, I now know about Kraftwerk doing a song about Heavy Metal (or something):

Back in the very early years of this century, I quite relentlessly played the self titled debut album from Sona Fariq. Since it was on a major label and everything, I thought it would be the work of a click to find my favourite track from that on Youtube. Not a bit of it. The best thing I can find is this live video which has appalling visual quality. What gives? Which means that I currently have to shelve the post I was going to do about this album unless I create a youtube account, figure out how to marry music to visuals, and upload it all myself. Ha!:

I’ve started toying with a cosmology that enfolds the idea that life as we understand it is functionally equivalent to performing on a stage, and that after it’s all over you go back to the audience and watch the rest of the show, maybe even jump back in occasionally wearing a new costume. This song has been going around a lot in my head. The two strands are related, though it may not seem immediately obvious:

Finally, this. Just because this song is fantastic, hasn’t worn off after nearly 20 years of regular playing, and is way more psych than much of the revivalist stuff coming out these days. Does anyone know if they ever did an album? Me wants to know:

 

 

 

Rise of the Echo Drone

rotedI have literally just discovered these. They remind me of Josefin Ohrn + The Liberation, who nearly made it into my best of 2015 (Pridjevi got there instead, and I have been caning that recently -it’s wonderful).

It’s kind of shoegazy dreampoppy probably psych but I’ve lost track of what that even means now. Very hypnotic.

It’s a home recorded collaboration but sounds very professional. They clearly know what they’re doing. I’ll be following these.

I have absolutely no idea how to pronounce this Réabhlóid word though.

Gram Rabbit

My favourite thing about time passing is when an artist you liked a while back but haven’t kept track of turns out not to have stopped just because I stopped paying attention. Item: on the mix cd in my car came on ‘Devil’s Playground’ by the wonderfully fun Gram Rabbit,  a piece of very high quality songwriting from a seriously good album, Music to Start a Cult to.  ‘Damn, I love that tune,’ I said to myself, and not for the first time, so off I trotted to the internets to find out what Jesika von Rabbit and Todd Rutherford have been up to since I last paid them attention.

gramrabbitThey have not been idle, and the good news is, they’re still bloody good.

I should first warn you that this is fun, first and foremost. Why do I have to warn people when music is fun? THAT is screwed up. Anywho, it is shit-eating grin levels of fun to my ears. Mixtures of Electro-rock, alt-country, psych-pop, western-music, and a bloody large sense of humour. Their version of ‘Song 2’ is outrageously good. But so is their own songwriting, and this is why they get to smear a sense of humour all over their music and still have you want to listen to more, and to listen to it again. Just because someone has a smile on their face is no reason to believe they don’t take what they do seriously.

So I bought the digital download of Braised & Confused (embedded below) and am going to check out their other post 2007ish output in good order, although it looks like I’ll have to order the CDs of some of it if I like it as much as I like that, as I really don’t like itunes.