Tag Archives: techno

Songs for a “Season of Mists and Mellow Fruitfulness”, or Something – Enjoy!

New lists, featuring some of our favorite tracks carried along the blustery drafts of the changing seasons.

The first:

And, if you dare, a sequel:

Slip the Surly Bonds of Earth with Gnoomes on “Cascais”

Screenshot from 2001: A Space Odyssey.

Gnoomes, “Cascais”

(Note:  headline borrows from the poem High Flight, by John Gillespie Magee, Jr.)

“Cascais” (which may or may not be named in honor of the Portuguese town of the same name) serves as a taster for Gnoomes’ forthcoming full-length, Tschak! (just the snare, then?).

According to the background note for the new album, its tracks were conceived amidst turmoil, both for the band’s members as well their hometown of Perm, Russia.  On this evidence, it would seem that Gnoomes’ focus was to make sense of these issues from a great height.  “Cascais”‘s interstellar techno meets drone vibe emits a narcotic effect during lift-off, a clear-headed guitar line slinging shards of light through the haze, racing towards a gorgeous, astral break at the 3 minute mark.  Like pulses through warp speed, it’s flashing lights and colors, a bit like Wire circa Ideal Copy and/or A Bell Is a Cup…Until It Is Struck (vocalist Alex Pyankov’s tone reminds of Colin Newman), mixed with Hot Chip.  From Russia with blurp.

Tschak! is due March 10 from Rocket Recordings.  Follow along:  soundcloud, bandcamp, fbook.

New Music: Andy Stott, Butterflies

Andy Stott, “Butterflies” (3/30/16, Modern Love)

Like fellow traveller Burial, much of Andy Stott’s earlier work is characterized by a palpable sense of decay and loss – paranoiac dub echoes, muted sounds, imploding beats, signs of brightness struggling to be heard from under dense layers.  Both artists, since, have taken their music out from behind these gauzy curtains, allowing more and more light to penetrate.  For Stott, this process began with 2014’s wonderful Faith In Strangers (check out our write up, here) and continues apace with his latest single, “Butterflies”.

Taken from forthcoming new album, Too Many Voices, “Butterflies” features bent, glassy synths over an insistent, almost playful beat – the whipsnap snare even threatens to go “full banger”, but holds its fire; breathy, hushed vocals in the Sampha mode more prominent in the mix.  Sounds a bit closer to the kind of outré r&b offerings of artists like Jessy Lanza, and sounds positively, er, luxurious compared to tracks from Stott’s 2012 opus, Luxury Problems…and it’s fantastic.  Another notch in the belt, then, for M. Stott; bring on the new album.

Upcoming tour dates:

April 13, @Patterns, Brighton, UK
April 15, @Church of St. John-at-Hackney, London, UK
April 29, @Echoplex, Los Angeles, CA, US
April 30-May 1, @Further Future Festival, Las Vegas, NV, US
May 7, @Pappy & Harriet’s, Pioneerstown, CA, US
May 8, @Music Box, San Diego, CA, US
June 11, @Funkhaus, Berlin, GER
July 15, @Ferropolis, Leipzig, GER
August 27, @FYFest, Los Angeles, CA

Too Many Voices is released April 22, on Modern Love.

Spotlight Dance: Girl Band

I’ve been onto this band since last summer.  No excuse why it’s taken me so long to get ‘round to writing something about them, but my recent good fortune seeing them absolutely destroy the stage opening for Viet Cong had me at least attempt to get some thoughts on (virtual) paper.  These guys are a breath of wonderfully sweet, stale, fetid air drifting forth from a newly opened basement, and should be experienced.

Girl Band are a four-piece hailing from Dublin (Ireland, not Ohio) who make an insanely appealing racket.  The music is tightly wound, claustrophobic, often without a cathartic chorus or change of key to relax the mood – you sit there, fidgety yet transfixed, until it stops.  Noise built around chaotic rhythms tripping over words that start out mostly stream of consciousness and then dissolve into yelps, howls and shrieks; guttoral discharges often signifying much about the emotional impact of the songs themselves.

The Wonderful and Frightning World of…-era The Fall, Ideal Copy-era Wire, the Throbbing Gristle of “Discipline (Manchester)”, elements of techno, drone, no wave; newer bands like Prinzhorn Dance School or Eighties Matchbox B-Line Disaster (RIP) – a swirling eddy melting through a cacophonous gloryhole of sound into your waiting brain.

Their earlier, self-released singles have been collected and released (cheekily, given the band was “founded” in 2011) as The Early Years on the fabled Rough Trade, which will also release their debut full length later this year (September, possibly).  Highlights include the churning, chugging “De Bom Bom”, “Lawman”, and their cover of Blawan’s techno slice “Why They Hide Their Bodies Under My Garage”.  If you can still find a download of the singles, the b-sides (particularly “Heckle the Frames”, from “Lawman”) are also splendiferous, as are earlier songs like “Busy At Maths” from France 98.  Gotta catch ’em all!

Challenging, rewarding.  Not often you can say something is overly “unique” these days – this is one of those times.  If they’re playing out anywhere near you, do yourself a favor and go see them – footage (courtesy of Youtube) of them playing in-studio for KEXP below for your aural and visual pleasure.

Go like them on Facebook and support them on Bandcamp – now!  Website here.