Yes it’s that time again……and with it being a very busy year I thought i’d better prepare the long-list early on…..so in no particular order the candidates for this years “Best Of…..” not jazz albums… I’ll whittle it down to a top ten in due course, and I may well include some other ones I have missed and some things in the pipeline which look like they make the list.
There are a couple of very strong front-runners at the moment and after that it all gets a bit difficult…………
The Seven Twenty – The Seven Twenty
Niche – Heading East
Heroin In Tahiti – Sun and Violence
Dilly Dally – Sore
The Holy Soul – Fortean Times
Mammoth Penguins – Hide and Seek
The Lancashire Hustlers – What Made Him Run
Moff Skellington – Scribnalls
Courtney Barnett – Sometimes I Just Sit And Think And Sometimes I Just Think
Robert Forster – Songs To Play
Bouquet of Dead Crows – Of The Night
Dave Graney – Once I Loved The Oceans Roar
Monkeys In Love – Take The Biscuit
Corrections House – Know How To Carry A Wip
Esmerine – Lost Voices
Dead Sea Apes – Spectral Domain
Moff Skellington – The Corkscrew Tongue
Liberez – All Tense Now Lax
Vienna Ditto – Circle
JD Meatyard – Taking The Asylum
Ken Mode – Success
Dead to Dying World – Litany
Myrkur – M
The Creeping Ivies – Your New Favourite Garage Band
Ought – Sun Coming Down
Big Brave – Au De La
The Happy Fallen – Lost and Found
Cryin’ Queerwolf – Diva
Alif – Aynama -Rtama
Dave Graney ‘n’ The Coral Snakes – Night of the Wolverine (Expanded)
ZX+ Don’t Drink The Water
Author & Punisher -Melk En Honing
Dave Graney & the mistLY – Play mistLY for me – live recordings vol 1
Flies On You – Etcetera
Brothers of the Sonic Cloth – Brothers of the Sonic Cloth
The Go-Betweens – G stands for Go-Betweens : Volume One 1978-1984 (yes I know it’s a box set but it’s too good to ignore)
In a world where music is mostly safe, anodyne and lacking emotion how refreshing to be able report on the second release by industrial metal “supergroup” Corrections House.
Described in their promo material as “Darker, denser, and more despairing than the predecessor, 2013’s Last City Zero ” the nine-track, forty-five-minute album was recorded by the band’s own Sanford Parker (Minsk) and recently institutionalized minister of propaganda, Seward Fairbury, in Vietnam. The record boasts a guest appearance by Negative Soldier and finds Corrections House – which features the lineup of Parker, Fairbury, Scott Kelly (Neurosis), Bruce Lamont (Yakuza) and Mike IX Williams (Eyehategod) — at their most intense, unforgiving and exciting.
This is bleak, industrial, and unrelenting in its delivery. A shamanic cacophony in the most part, but with one or two drops in volume to build the tension; this demonstrates that it is possible to produce music which challenges the listener and evokes passionate response in equal measure. The move towards a nightmareish version of country/americana on “Visions Divide”is shocking, and unexpected but completely fits the overall sound of the album.
There is a tribal feel to much of the material, as riffs build over rolling rhythms and attack with an unrelenting force that makes Killing Joke sound like a boy band, Declamatory vocals and thought provoking lyrics add to the heady musical brew to deliver a most enjoyable aural experience
This time around a pulling together of things that have been nestling in my in-box:
Since being championed by John Peel way back in 1986, The James Taylor Quartet have set the standard for the coolest sounds in funky acid jazz. On dozens of mighty albums and at their legendary gigs at home and around the world, they’ve become a byword for distinguished British creativity. The internationally-acclaimed titans of funk will work through their considerable back catalogue as well as showcasing new material. Renowned for their live performances, this will be a treat. Band of the Wall. Manchester 17th October, 19:30
Whomadewho drummer Tomas Barfod’s returns to the Friends of Friends label with Glory, featuring friends new and old and a sound bristling with youthful energy and slightly off-kilter dance floor rhythms. Kill J, Fine and Nina K feature as the record bounces from shimmering Scandinavian pop to dance floor numbers. A follow up to Barfod’s breakout ‘Salton Sea’ LP (FoF 2012 it releases on 16th November 2015.
Know How To Carry A Whip is the imminent new studio release from , Corrections House. A nine-track, forty-five-minute record it was captured by the band’s own Sanford Parker (Buried At Sea) alongside “recently institutionalized minister of propaganda”, Seward Fairbury, in a subterranean bunker complex in Vietnam.
Deeper, darker, and far more fluid than 2013’s excellent Last City Zero debut, Know How To Carry A Whip featurwa a guest appearance by Negative Soldier. The record finds Corrections House — Parker, Fairbury, Scott Kelly (Neurosis), Bruce Lamont (Yakuza) and Mike IX Williams (Eyehategod) — at their most intense. Releases 23rd October on Neurot.
Pseudo/Sentai‘s Bansheeface is clearly the work of deranged individuals. Coming across like a mix of The Residents, Todd Rundgren and Gentle Giant working on the soundtrack to a Troma movie. There’s also nod towards The Mars Volta and Zappa in terms of structure, dynamics and bombast but generally speaking this is unique and very refreshing and the comparisons are merely reference points. The best current comparison is my near neighbours Trojan Horse. It is released on 16th October independently. Check out the pre-order and while you are at it have a rummage through their back catalogue. So nice to hear a band that sounds completely unlike any of their contemporaries.
Talking of deranged the completely unhinged Die Choking have a new one out on 8th October. Eleven tracks in thirteen minutes sort of gives a clue as to what to expect. You get elements of hardcore punk and crust with speed/grind metal. Impossibly fast and completely up and in your face. It is called III which is not unexpected as it is their third release.
A couple of digital charity singles from those busy chaps at German Shepherd records. The first Socialists (are back) is in aid of he MSF Yemen Emergency Fund, the second The Unforgiving Streets will help local homeless charities. A couple of pungent Electro Punk ditties which are most suitable for leaping around to.
Still busy, more news stuff than album reviews this time mind you :
Those lovely people at The Active Listener are at it again with their 35th compilation of wonderful and psyche oriented musical sounds. There’s the usual eclectic mix including this time around music from recent favourites here Zx+ , Kingdom of the Holy Sun and The Seventh Ring of Saturn. Highly recommended as a place to dip your ear into some of the better things happening at the moment,
Llama Riot say they are proud to announce that their debut single “Live. Die. No Repeat.” is officially out now via all major download stores (iTunes, Spotify, Google Play etc) the world over. To celebrate this release they have unleashed a new video of which you can check out below. Touch of the Bunnymen I thought, nice,
Corrections House release their brand new full-length, “Know How To Carry A Whip”, this October via Neurot Recordings. The promo says the new one is darker, denser, and more despairing than the predecessor, 2013’s Last City Zero – featured on Sonic Attack 29 and my “Best Of Review of 2013“. The nine-track, forty-five-minute audio apocalypse was captured by the band’s own Sanford Parker (Minsk) and recently institutionalized minister of propaganda, Seward Fairbury, in Vietnam. The record boasts a guest appearance by Negative Soldier and finds Corrections House – which features the lineup of Parker, Fairbury, Scott Kelly (Neurosis), Bruce Lamont (Yakuza) and Mike IX Williams (Eyehategod) — at their ” most punishing, painting electronic mosaics of deviance and decadence with brushes made from bristles of the damned”.
The Melvins are back in Europe this September and October, with a series of live dates commencing Sept 13th in the UK in Bristol. The band will be performing as a four-piece, joining forces again with Jared Warren and Coady Willis of Big Business. Having released three full-length LP’s together, Warren and Willis also performed on the band’s “The Bulls & The Bees” EP, which was recently released as a split alongside the 2001 album “Electroretard”. This 13 song album features both releases on one CD, available for the first time as a package. The quartet also collaborated with a series of guest stars on their 2013 covers album “Everybody Loves Sausages”. The Melvins also released “Hold It” In last October, the 12-song album pairs Osborne and Crover with Butthole Surfers’ JD Pinkus and Paul Leary.
UK dates are:
Sept 13, 2015 – Bristol – Exchange
Sept 14, 2015 – Brighton, – Concorde 2
Oct 08, 2015 – Reading – Sub 89
Oct 09, 2015 – Manchester – Gorilla
Oct 10, 2015 – London – Electric Ballroom
I will be pulling together a dedicated Melvins retrospective podcast sometime in the near future to coincide with the tour.
With the impending release of the second album from BIG|BRAVE, titled Au De La, rapidly approaching through Southern Lord Recordings, the LP-opener “On The By And By And Thereon” has premiered through The Line Of Best Fit. With five expansive movements which transmit BIG|BRAVE‘s creative sounds with exceptional production values, Au De La was recorded at Hotel2Tango with Efrim Menuck (Godspeed You! Black Emperor, Thee Silver Mt Zion Memorial Orchestra) and mastered by Harris Newman at Grey Market (Front Line Assembly, Godspeed You! Black Emperor, C H R I S T). Presenting forty-five minutes of luminous, exploratory, post/avant rock, the album sees vocalist/guitarist Robin Wattie, guitarist Mathieu Bernard Ball and drummer Louis-Alexandre Beauregard delivering a layered, engaging, memorable, visceral voyage. “On The By And By And Thereon,” the lead track to this auditory journey, which is one of several on the album to feature shimmering nets of violin by Jessica Moss (Thee Silver Mt Zion Memorial Orchestra), can be enjoyed for the first time here. Previous material can be sourced via Bandcamp here. Here’s a trailer for the album. Once I get a review copy I shall fill you in on more detail about this release.
ANDREW R. BURNS & THE TROPICANAS debut ep (released May 2015 on Flowers In The Dustbin) was featured on Aural Delights 123. The label has announced the release of follow up ep ‘Delaydeez’. The band describe their music as “tropical dreamslop… lazy unpolished, reverb laden tunes.” The ep is out Sunday 18th October, available from itunes and all major digital stores via Flowers In The Dustbin. It is also available to pre-order now from their Bandcamp store with an instant download of Pop snuff-it.