Fascinating Things : Issue 27

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.

Forthcoming recommended gigs in Manchester

DEAD FADER  – 01/10/15 – Salford, Islington Mill
DISAPPEARS –   24/11/15 – Manchester, Soup Kitchen
DOPE BODY – 08/09/15 – Manchester, Academy
MELVINS  – 09/10/15 – Manchester, Gorilla
OUGHT – 02/09/15 – Manchester, Deaf Institute
UFOMAMMUT  – 08/10/15 – Manchester, Soup Kitchen

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.

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No trace of cunning or guile

Once again a busy week with much new material to consider……

First up, released on October 28th are Swedish trio Honeymilk who have been compared to The Strokes but sound a bit like a modern version of Pavement to me……

The ever excellent Dope Body have released a video to tie in with their new album “Lifer” which I mentioned a couple of weeks back….

….and here is “Hired Gun” also from the album

Isis are re-issuing their excellent album Oceanic and i’d like to share a track with you but the link i’ve been given doesn’t work.

The Art of Amputation unveil AA side ‘Californian English’, described as “a stunning, synth driven masterpiece and the perfect accompaniment to the intricately layered and uplifting melody of ‘Distorted Pop Song’.

The split 7” EP from Sierra Vista, Arizona-based Fuzz Evil and Southern California’s Chiefs is out now on Battleground Records. On the A-side, the former delivers a nearly five-and-a-half minute, solid, groove-laden, heavy psych rock track, “Glitterbones.” Hailing from Sierra Vista, Arizona, the band is comprised of Wayne and Joey Rudell of Powered Wig Machine on vocals/guitar and vocals/bass, respectively, and drummer Marlin Tuttle. Flip to the B-side, and the more than five-and-a-half minute big time jam of Chiefs’ fiery “Stone Bull” lets loose. The California-based outfit, on this recording consisting of Paul Valle on vocals/guitar and Stephen Varns on drums, delivers prime, hard-hitting desert rock, as declared from the opening riff of their side of the shared release. Limited to 300 copies, the heavy grey vinyl with white splatters is cut at 45 RPM, the FUZZ side featuring artwork by David Paul Seymour and the CHIEFS side by the band’s Joey Rudell.

The Actions are a London based alt-rock duo who have been busy touring Europe and supporting Green Day. After having worked closely with Warner Chappell on their previous material, Silty and Mo have decided it was time to mix things up a bit.  The Echo combines various elements of electronica, post rock and psychedelic ambience.  It is a sonic tribute to the likes of Garbage, Underworld and Sneaker Pimps. The Echo will be available for sale and download 8th December 2014 via Niteo Records. I was a bit conflicted on this one, but it is growing on me…..

There’s a new release from Vodun which introduces their new tour – they are at Kraak gallery Manchester on the 28th if you are into their particular blend of voodoo imagery and blues rock….

West Yorkshire’s Allusondrugs hammer home the release of their self-titled EP with a brand new track and video. ‘I Should Have Gone To Uni’ is a stomping, retro grunge single inspired by the anxiety of growing up and moving on that is available as a free download from SoundCloud.

No one knows when they’re young

This weeks incoming

As usual a serious amount of new material has been delivered here at Aural Delights HQ over the last week so there has not been much time for considered reviewing.

Three pre-release tracks from the new Sallie Ford album “Slapback” have arrived and they sound fantastic. The sound is a little more raw and increases the anticipation for the full release on October 13th.

I finally got around to purchasing the excellent album from My Little Brother “If we never came down” which is marvellous. I featured the band on the radio show a couple of years back and i’ve been meaning to get hold of the release – glad I did it’s fantastic.

My appreciation of the new Trojan Horse album “A World Turned Upside Down” is reflected in an interview with Nick Duke from the band on the Studeo Blog. Suffice to say that the quartet have overcome the “difficult second album” hurdle with some ease and have created something genuinely groundbreaking. Links and stuff are in the review in the other place. I also put together a special podcast to celebrate the album launch which features old and new material from the band as well as each band members musical favourites plus a few of my own choices to break up the mix.

Aural Delights Podcast reaches it’s 100th edition in a couple of weeks so I’ve been putting my mind to how I might celebrate that milestone – pending that here is the latest edition

The new metal and garage music keeps flowing and there have been some remarkable releases which I just have not had chance to write about so I’ll let the Sonic Attack Podcast  tell the story – although I will point out the new OHHMS album as a bit of a highlight

And here’s some quick one-lines on the rest of the new material…..all of which should be appearing on future podcasts at some point…..

Cable35 – Coconut Supply (Single) Free Download from Website – Out Now

Taken from the Fungus EP which was out earlier in the year. Fresh neo-grunge sound with a hint of Sonic Youth, Excellent

Roses Never Fade – Devil Dust (Album) Neuropa – Out Now

Remarkable mix of ambient textures and moody acoustic strumming with dark, brooding vocals. Featuring Ancient Wisdom’s Nathan Opposition, The Way To Light’s Austin Rathmell and Pale Creation’s Nick Fiction. Impressive.

Godflesh – A World Lit Only By Fire (Album) Avalanche Records – 6th October 2014

Slightly disappointing in that there is nothing new of note. The usual industrial metal tropes are here and it’s all delivered very well but I could have done with a bit of development maybe.

Positronik – Better Late Than Never (Album) German Shepherd Records – 17th October 2014

Post split compilation of the majority of their recordings. High quality soul-pop with electronica elements.

Dope Body – Lifer (Album) Drag City – 20th October 2014

Impressive second outing for this Baltimore Quartet. Excellent rock/punk and contender for album of the year.

Annhilated – XIII Steps to ruination (Album) Unique Leader – 28th October 2014

Debut, full length intense and unforgiving death metal with some technical elements

Atomzero – Surface (Single) Analogue Trash – release date unknown

Post punk electronica in an Ultravox and that ilk style, but with a touch of Moroder

Monster Jaw – Monster Jaw (EP) Cobra Kitten Records – 27th October 2014

Pop flecked ear-worm in an indie package – vocals seem a bit low in the mix, but good for all that

Surburban Myth – Crashed and Burned (Single) Self Released – 31st October 2014

One of those tunes which has a great verse but a disappointing chorus. The second single taken from the band’s debut Album ‘Welcome (If Only)’.

Public Service Broadcasting – The Race for Space (Album) Cargo – 23rd February 2015

A Teaser video for the new album, which is a long way off, looks to continue the work to date, I hope they will have developed some of there elements to freshen up the sound.

and finally a little treat with the new video from Le Butcherettes…..

Death Metal, Electronica, Aural Terror and Manchester Pop

I have to admit I have found it hard to sit down and write stuff over the last few weeks. Apart from the intense heat, there’s been the distraction of several cricket matches to attend, plus the Manchester Jazz Festival –  however the last 48 hours has seen a cascade of new material to talk about so I thought I’d better something down before I get so far behind i’ll never catch up with myself.

Anyhow – first up some exciting news – the excellent Dope Body , from Baltimore, have a new album out on October 21st on Drag City. It’s called “Lifer” and if the preview track below is anything to go by it should be a bit of a corker…..

San Antonio’s black death metal  band, Hod, release their long-awaited new full-length on 9th September  via Arctic Records. Titled “Book of the Worm” , the follow-up to last year’s “The Uncreated Demo”  teaser, which was likened to a “snake eating itself and a bigger snake eating the smaller snake, a kind of infinite and horrifically malign Ouroboros,” was produced by Dennis Munoz (Solstice), features the recording line-up of guitarist Necron, vocalist Vladibeer Reebs, bassist T.A. and former drummer Dennis Sanders and boasts eight blasting tunes  Comments the band, “Finally, it  is finished! Through Hell and back we went to get this completed. Comrades fell. Labels failed. Studios changed. But we soldiered forth with iron determination and it is done. Blood, sweat and sacrifice are the ingredients”. Listening to it on a hot summers night was a delightful experience. Here’s the aforementioned teaser which will give you a sense of what to expect – I will feature a track on next weeks Sonic Attack podcast

After just over a year of waiting Borland have finally released part one of their “Omar” self styled quadrilogy, and it’s been well worth the wait, and is remarkably refreshing. All of the usual Gregg/Breen things are here but it kicks off with a haunting piano ballad which is light years away from their usual output, I say a piano ballad it soon develops into something a little more than that,  with some remarkable tonal shifts, and trademark laminal morphing. After that it’s the usual attention to orchestral detail that sets them apart from the usual purveyors of electronica. Particularly notable is the chilling “Valentine” which manages to balance malevolence, eerie vocal utterances, and delicate tendrils of sound – coming across like a mutant version of Sigur Ros.  As with track one the excellent “Idea Diamond” takes the piano as it’s core instrument and builds a serial repetition of notes under a distant collection of voices – both epic and emotional. I await, with some anticipation,  the remaining three parts of this release.

You may remember radio show favourites Da Mutts who morphed into Boxhead & Gloves , and who released a remarkable concept album called “Soldier” which I featured on the podcasts. Well they are back with a couple of tracks “Naughtiness” and “Parades” – the former a mind-flipping switch in direction into motorik  electronica, the latter more of their usual output, with a delicious piece of Manc Pop which quotes Percy Shelley and reflects the rich musical heritage of the northern capital with echoes of 10cc. I ran into Stan from the band at Steve Hanley’s book launch the other week and I am pretty sure we had a good conversation about what they were up to, but a combination of cider and red wine on the evening appears to have wiped that from my failing memory.

Taser Puppets have sorted out their new line-up, and have a set of mostly new tunes to share in a live setting according the latest reports from Mr Maxwell.  As a bridging transitional type thingy they have released “The Ralph McTell Must Die Album” which features a bewildering array of tunes from across the recent history of the band – mostly acoustic, but notably the excellent “Revolution Wall” which is a blistering piece of pop-psych-garage, and another version of the cover of Bowie’s “Five Years” featuring itinerant troubadour and all round genius Dusty Moonan on guest vocals. Well worth checking out.

I’m slowly working my way through the aforementioned Steve Hanley (auto) biography which is called “The Big Midweek” – it is highly enjoyable, well written, and it does confirm some of my already well embedded views about life inside The Fall. As co-author Olivia Piekarski said at the launch it comes across more like a novel, there are some interesting hitherto unknown revelations which are remarkable in the context of the output of the band. Even if you are not a fan of The Fall the book is well worth a read in respect of understanding the internal dynamics of a band and the balance between “real life” and life in the music business. I am particularly impressed that it does not trade in on nostalgia but instead provides an effective perspective of the world of independent and alternative music over the last twenty plus years.

And finally – the second full-length release from Pig Heart Transpant — the solo works of Jon Kortland of Iron Lung — will be released this September, as a conjoined release between 20 Buck Spin and the band’s own Iron Lung Records. The album entitled “For Mass Consumption”  and is composed of twenty-eight tracks, each approximately forty-four seconds long, each song bearing a four-letter word. Electronic manipulation, no wave guitar noise, abrasive hammering and eerie synthetic ambiance remind me of early Swans on tracks like “Film” or “Pigs,” the pulsing throb of Brighter Death Now and IRM on “Coma” or even Robert McNaugton’s soundtrack work for Henry: Portrait Of Serial Killer on “1970” or “1980.”
Devotees of early Swans, SPK, Test Dept, Bastard Noise, Pharmakon, Godflesh and of course, Iron Lung, will enjoy this one. Again I shall feature this on next weeks Sonic Attack.

spin066_PHT_For_Mass_web

 

 

Leather Heads

The wonderful sound of Dope Body……I wanted to play this on the podcast but the encoding on the MP3 was wacky and fritzed the software….fortunately there is a nice video….they will be playing The Bay Horse, Manchester on May 21st……it’s from a new release called Saturday which is very good indeed……released today via Drag City  …..highly recommended

 

Aural Delights Radio Show – 30th May 2012

On this weeks show (which you can listen to here):

1 The Happy Fallen What Good Is Your Rock?  Demo
2 Zap Zap Zap Brick Windows  Demo
3 Stalagmites Zulu  Single
4 Saturday Morning Cartoons The Ditch  Single
5 Ruby Tuesday Spirit and Soul  Single
6 AAAK Regenerate Totalitarian Tip-Toe
7 Chastity Brown House Been Burning  Back-Road Highways
8 Bruce Bherman Big Sized Untagged EP
9 The Membranes Everything’s Brilliant If you enter the arena….
10 Dope Body Alpha Punk Natural History
11 Charlie Barnes This Boy Blind  Living Room EP
12 E-mute Flying (Turning Point)  Too Proud to say loud
13 Moff Skellington Bring it home to me Thorny Conduits
14 Fossil Collective Let It Go  Single
15 Captain Beefheart & The Magic Band Tropical Hot Dog Night Shiny Beast (Bat Chain Puller)

Notes in respect of….

1 -6 Featuring bands from this Sundays event at the Kings Arms – https://www.facebook.com/events/399012156788771/ – good local talent from Salford and the surrounding boroughs

7 – Excellent roots artist from the States – check her out! She’ll put a spell on you. Sweet as molasses and woodsmoke, clear and burning as summer sun, Chastity Brown casts magic. Her voice brings you to the crossroads with every turn, warms, comforts and challenges you. She is the inheritor of Leadbelly, Nina Simone, Bonnie Raitt and Roberta Flack. She is past, present and future. She is fire, earth, air and water. She’s a natural. http://www.chastitybrownmusic.com

8. Bruce Bherman is a singer-songwriter, fequent Europe-NY-Nashville flyer and a guitarafficionado deluxe. His backcatalogue consists already of 6 CD’s, some vinyl (12’ & 10’) and a load of singles – http://www.brucebherman.com

9. From the recent AAA single…..

10. From the excellent new album ….. http://www.dopebody.info

11. A recent EP of live stuff from the big voice of Charlie Barnes ….my favourite track from his album

12. As featured as last week – E-MUTE is a new band ready to shake the foundations of the rock scene! Some of the top musicians in London, who between them, have collaborated with artists such as Moby, TheDrifters, Scott James (Stereophonics), ChakaKhan, Vanessa Mae, Pip Williams and more, unite to deliver a new fresh sound under the banner of E-MUTE. E-MUTE is also the main singer and songwriter of the band. Great melodies, dark edgy rock, electronica and philosophical lyrics are the recipe of the band.  www.emutemusic.com

13. From the latest album “Thorny Conduits” – http://www.moffskellington.org.uk/

14. Playing Night and Day tomorrow night – Fossil Collective, a two-piece from Leeds, consists of multi instrumentalists David Fendick and Jonny Hooker. Their first recordings saw them taking inspiration from classic albums by Neil Young, Fleetwood Mac and Simon and Garfunkel and suggested comparisons with more contemporary artists such as Fleet Foxes, Midlake and Bon Iver. But in truth their exquisitely structured songs and glorious, rich harmonies owe as much, if not more, to a solid English song tradition, and their material holds that distinct English quality that many North American artists hanker after. http://www.FossilCollective.com

15. And a piece of magic from Don to conclude with….


Aural Delights Radio Show – 11th April 2012

On this edition of the show – listen here….

1 Opposite Sex Mary Lu Opposite Sex
2 The Reads Galaxy Egg Single
3 Mogwai San Pedro Hardcore Will Never Die But You Will
4 Quadrilles Noah The Drill Q
5 Dope Body Road Dog
6 Camilla Kill The Dusty Path Single
7 Mummy Short Arms Where’s The Mortuary Old Jack’s Windowless Playhouse
8 The Aluskas Where We Started Out
9 Kodakid Low 7 Shake Skin
10 Moff Skellington Crap and Ugly Toys Pukes of  A Hot Cloister
11 Natalie Indya-West Rebel Music Demo
12 Opposite Sex Le Rat Opposite Sex
13 The Blue Beat Arkestra Move On Single
14 Screamin Martini 1403 Demo