29 March 2017


no basement is deep enough 2016, edition of 67

"Aural brawls of ornamented space offal, occult bedroom buzz, wonky vocal cords expansion and heaps of klingklang - since 2005 Bart De Paepe and his wastoid troupe of crystal throats and all-seeing ears are steering Sloow Tapes far away from slick audiophile shark waters, dropping a zillion psych/pickled poetry cassettes in the green-brown puddle called life, all housed in his own eye-popping swirls and twirls just to free your fungi mind. Next to draining alien innards as a member of Sylvester Anfang II, Amanita Vulva, Sloowroad... the bearded oracle from Stekene also transforms into a human blowtorch solo and unmasked, caramelizing the magic march with merciless but always higher than a kite guitar slaying, disconcerting gargles, handicapped pork chops as drum sticks and a Korg so abused it is fleeing to the closest shelter for domestic hardware violence. Comes in a cloth depiction of the sour-sweet temptresses of the Alvinnenberg, turning revenge and retribution into a crusty handkerchief under your pillow." - NO BASEMENT IS DEEP ENOUGH via FUSETRONSOUND

another gem from revered SLOOW guru BART DE PAEPE, above and beyond even the heady highs of previous recommended works BLOOD CLOT IN THE BRAIN [REC #39] and SOLITARY MOON [REC #94] - safe to say i've crossed over into the "helpless fanatic" zone for his singular brand of zoned out sonic pathways, but i was an acolyte long before by virtue of his curating, artworking and proliferating SLOOW tapes - six across four recommendations and counting here, plus an additional couple dozen or so tapes (and a couple lps) on my shelf going back to 2006 or so - no doubt SLOOW was and remains one of the pillars of the weirdo cassette world as it has existed over the past decade and is still going strong

A/D is an unraveling trip gone so bad it somehow broke through some final barrier into this negative world serenity, a glorious seventy seven minute cosmic collision of FAUST, FRIPP and SCHULZE after being exposed to whatever is in the water that JANDEK has been drinkin for the past forty years - while assuredly in the same vicinity as previous solo efforts, there might be a stronger correlation to BDP's collaboration with BEAR BONES LAY LOW in AMANITA VULVA [REC #50] plus i get some of the same MAXIMUM AROUSAL FARM vibe from a now decade-old one-off duo with MATT VALENTINE as SLOOW ROAD, channeling some MV guitar antics with markers seeming left in the wake of a virulent strain of bluesy japanese psychedelic noise rock, all carried along on some blank-faced rock-steady percussion maintaining a cool head-nodding settled-in cruising speed

that might be the most of it as one might expect with BDP, but it isn't the whole truth - tape one begins and ends with unexpected trickling loner folk ballads, the latter incorporating some sweet desert fried electric lead but still plenty of squeaky acoustic strum - OJERUM's SANGE TIL DOENDE comes to mind as does anonymous masterpiece demo BELLS RINGING IN THE DELLS OF HAUNTED HOURS submitted to and lavishly pressed by TIME-LAG a few years back, eloquently depicted as "mesmerizing hushed, raw, bedroom acidfolk sounds, steeped in alchemical spiritual depth, profound lonesome melancholy, and seriously intense & haunting intimacy, magical poetic songs from a true searcher, battler of the spirit sorrows, and rejoicer in mystical beauties" - i think that goes a long way in describing BDP's music in general, but especially those "hushed raw bedroom acid folk" fragments found here on A/D

apparently out late last year but i just caught wind of it, this would have crashed my year end top ten tapes list like a wrecking ball

27 March 2017


ignorant gore 2010, edition of 100

"In late 2010 this came out of nowhere and blew our minds. Unfortunately it disappeared faster than a fugitive at a busted up coke party. We discovered it through an enticing review that Doug Mosurock over at Still Single / Dusted wrote - when we received the records and realized that there was absolutely no hyperbole or exaggeration in Doug's review: 'Little anonymous fuzz guitar rudiment blowdown from ex-SNAKE APARTMENT guitarist RYLAND WHARTON (also the man behind the Skulltones and Twonicorn labels). As King Blood, he lays down eight instrumental four-trackers rendered over a three-year period, nothing but guitar, bass and cymbal to keep time, and in that space the artist gets real, with simple themes repeated in a noisy, low-rent, yet meditative space. For as thick as these vibes get, the music itself is not necessarily aggressive, which is why these big, billowing songs sound gentle and bluesy and introspective, even in the overblown treatment most of them receive. Early Wooden Shjips or Purling Hiss (and above all, Les Rallizes Denudes) would be good signposts for this album, but without obvious psych moves like wah-solos and acid burn motifs, or the heavy drumming to keep time; King Blood wants to get you down by volume, and in that it is a drifting, uncompromising, diffuse and very loud success.'" - PERMANENT via MIDHEAVEN

"not to be taken lightly, but if you have the time to pull back the layers of hiss, saturation and distortion you'll find yourself pulled in. One for the heads, for sure." - BOOMKAT

"King Blood treats fuzzy guitar riffs not simply as ends, but as mantras to be chanted and monuments to be worshiped. Each track offers one simple figure devoutly repeated, as if musical nirvana is always just one more riff away." - PITCHFORK

this album broke my brain like nothin else ever has or probably ever will

i mostly agree with MOSUROCK that it is impossible to dismiss any influence the perpetual wave of post VELVETS japanese noise rock - LES RALLIZES, HIGH RISE, MAINLINER, etc - likely had on KING BLOOD, perhaps filtered through western translations courtesy SKULLFLOWER, early COMETS and GOSLINGS, but i don't hear EYEWASH SILVER in quite the same way - where noise rock often seems to create noise as a provocation, KING BLOOD employs noise as an invocation, as a key to unlock a hidden door - noise is only the delivery mechanism, the outermost layer of this onion, the first stage of this psycho-sonic moonshot for the ages

"Everyone needs some LRD on the shelf. While I love the sound of the records and mysterious nature surrounding them, I was listening to more Willie Dixon, Howlin Wolf, Agitation Free, Cactus, UFO, Toxodeth and Diamond Head. OZ Days Live boot from years back was probably one of my earliest exposures to LRD. I originally bought it for the Travellers though. Not sure if any of this comes through in King Blood, but my love of Nocturnus and Toxodeth probably doesn't come through either. Influences and references are funny like that: they get ingested, garbled up, and only sometimes does something resembling the original get spit out." - KING BLOOD via VICE

EYEWASH SILVER is -in- the world of noise rock but not -of- it

there was a surge of "noisy rock" at the turn of the millennium, categorically separate from -though perhaps informed by- noise rock lineages, but mostly rigging hardcore punk energy with hard rock heft and a grungy aesthetic into something askew to metal, which i refer to as "brute force psychedelia" - the common model used to label EYEWASH SILVER is comparison to this "noisy rock" scene - BIRDS OF MAYA, PURLING HISS, etc - and to so some extent validated by KING BLOOD's own words, but i (fanatically) believe it is an incomplete model, though it does lend some understanding

and there was (and still is, to some extent) a resurgence of "psych rock" in generic terms, adjacent to said notion of "noisy rock" emphasizing sharp hooks and energetic grooves - pop music, in a sense (and increasingly so), constructed from un-pop components - anthems for garage stoners and punk weirdos working and/or hanging out at record stores became ever more embraced by ever less marginalized listeners - by the time EYEWASH emerged, bands like THEE OH SEES and WOODEN SHJIPS were headlining festivals

"King Blood came out of a fascination with the riff. I was interested in distilling a song to its base element, seeing if it could be whittled down to a nugget that would then expand to fill the field of vision. I don't see the songs as really beginning or ending." - KING BLOOD via VICE

both "the riff" and "the groove" were pricking up more eager ears - DEAD MEADOW records doubled in value - i traded my OLD GROWTH for an IGNORANT GORE pressing - listeners looked beyond the STOOGES and CAN for more "pummel and throb", for something seeming mostly lost for a generation or two -- a real cool time, as IGGY put it -- this is a hurdle the listener must clear when approaching EYEWASH SILVER - on the surface it might seem like just another "noisy psych" record of its time - the form may be similar, but the function is not

i imagine KING BLOOD as quickly bored by WHITE LIGHT/WHITE HEAT then becoming obsessed with LEGENDARY GUITAR AMP TAPES and OUTSIDE THE DREAM SYNDICATE, finding salvation in the riff ad infinitum, with whatever confluence of influences, tapping into a deep spiritualism akin to KOI POND and BART DE PAEPE, on the same wavelength as YERBA MANSA's minimal maximal blues destruction, worshiping at the same altar as MIKE VEST - perhaps the closest comparison i can make strictly in terms of seamlessly merging primitivism and spiritualism is fringe folk guru JON COLLIN

it's the devout allegiance to mantric repetition that sets EYEWASH SILVER apart, separates this modern day private press monster from most if not all its peers and predecessors, managing to drown out almighty DOPESMOKER and rapturous DREAMWEAPON to my ears - there is something profound in the elegant simplicity of these crude groove-locked fuzzed-out lo-fi jams that stretch on toward infinity, a spirituality in these glorious singularities expanding to fill every corner of the room, of the mind - to employ an adage courtesy CRYPT RECORDS- it'll slay yer arse so hard you'll be left standin in the middle of a busy street naked and confused -- which, amusingly, cuts close to the literal translation of "les rallizes denudes"

"Q: if you had the chance to have a beer with anyone alive or dead in musical history, which would it be? A: Is it too much to ask for a roundtable with 1969 Edgar Broughton, 1980 Steve Harris, 1969 Don Van Vliet, and 1970 Vangelis Papathanassiou, and a couple of six packs?" - KING BLOOD via VICE

that sells EYEWASH SILVER better than i ever could -- to some extent i concede "facination with the riff" is an awful low common denominator here, but i do believe there is -something- to most of the music i present here, and EYEWASH SILVER is the best possible example i could ever submit - i may be proselytizing to the skeptics or else preaching to the choir, but maybe there's some folks attuned to the ripples emitting from this blog who have not heard EYEWASH SILVER or else so closely considered it from the vantage point of one of the central pillars of my philosophy- nirvana is always just one more riff away


23 March 2017


winebox press 2017, edition of 47

"Perhaps better known by aliases (Cursillistas, Endless Caverns) and as a driving force behind Herbcraft, this is Lajoie's second full-length solo release under his own name. The material here inhabits a few different zones: the swirling title track moves from textural overtonal drone to an ecstatic Vibracathedral/VU movement-in-stasis moment of climax, while much of the rest of the first side combines free blues playing with 'Eastern' drone strings. Lajoie is a collaborator / peer of MV & EE and his music is often possessed of a similar spirit in terms of its blasted take on pre-war blues. Some of the slide guitar material on the second side here is pure languid back-porch starkness. 47 copies from a telephone stand/cabinet, broken down and reconstructed as cassette-sized boxes with snugly fitting lids, with screenprinted covers and inserts – this will most likely not make it to general sale so please email to reserve/order. Also available as a standard cassette on Early Music (EM03) with risograph-printed covers and screenprinted inserts, by email or from earlymusic.bigcartel.com." - WINEBOX PRESS

an indulgent slice of heady fringe folk that stands alongside the best i've found and labeled as such, sparse flickering late night hill country outsider meditations of fingerpicked fragments of old crusty blues and smoked out fractals of electrified backwoods seances channeling less HERBCRAFTian mechanics than might be expected if unfamiliar with LAJOIE's previous "LAJOIE" tape courtesy CABIN FLOOR ESOTERICA which also adroitly sidestepped any notion of "lite" or "leftovers" that often find a home in solo outings - but i would say there is a certain inevitable mild HERBCRAFTian cosmic vibe, which to my ears differentiates from ENDLESS CAVERNS freak folk mysticism - this is tangential stuff to be sure, an impressive american counterpoint to the elevated works of uk fringe folk guru JON COLLIN -- it should be noted that EYE comes courtesy COLLIN's delectably diy imprint WINEBOX PRESS

the MV connection isn't too far off but probably better suited to LAJOIE's aforementioned CFE tape - EYE is more refined and focused, there's a sense of forward progress, into the wind, which i must concede is something that MV's music lacks despite my fanatic reverence for MV - EYE has some sonic proximity to OAKHILL's catalog, at times dropping anchor in decidedly more traditional (and technically proficient) waters, steeped in acoustic psychedelics (this is mr HERBCRAFT i'm talking about here), reminiscent of DOC DUNN and WILLIE LANE, dealing in the abstraction and deconstruction of "american primitive" guitar into a peyote folk styling of sorts, other times drifting further out toward bold improvisational twilight zones navigated by the likes of JON COLLIN and VINCENZO DE LUCE's avant folk duos DROWNING IN WOOD and WANDER, tacking into the storm a time or two just to get the blood flowing - i dig me some HERBCRAFT but i could go for more of these "pure languid back-porch" inventions for guitar

not sure if the WINEBOX box edition is still around but the EARLY MUSIC "standard edition" is readily available (and more affordable) from the EARLY MUSIC shop


found a sample on WFMU's THE AVANT GHETTO which i should probably tune in to more often than i do - looks like the EYE track starts around the 1hr 38min mark


21 March 2017


EXPO 70 (solo), NONCONNAH (formerly LOST TRAIL) and LAINE BERGERON (formerly SHAMELESS FRIEND) will be performing at GUESTROOM RECORDS OKC on record store day saturday april 22 starting at 1pm - free adult beverages as usual

needless to say i'm stoked

perused the rsd list, nothin i gotta have but there's a few reissues worth pickin up if you don't already have - CRUSHED BUTLER (69-71 acid punk and proto metal), RELAXING WITH THE HEADS (90s stoner space rock) and SPACEMEN 3's PLAYING WITH FIRE (of course) - i have my eye on TEXAS SOUL 66 and WE'RE GONNA HAVE A PARTY comps, have to see what they are all about but the titles sound promising at least

19 March 2017


autumn archive 2017, edition of ?

"Ranging from disorientating to complex atmospheres and soothing soundscapes, Cody L. Lobbestael delivers another beautiful record. To get lost and disappear. Life on hold." - AUTUMN ARCHIVE

sound more "life affirming" than "life on hold" albeit admittedly wrapped in a cozy-to-me blanket of "existential dread" - perhaps there is something lost in translation here or hell maybe -my- life is on hold and so i can easily cling to this while everything else passes by

this is the third tape (i think) from LOBBESTAEL - previously more in line with this apparent wave of predominantly post industrial wasteland proliferation courtesy the likes of AUTUMN ARCHIVE, CAPRICE & NECESSITY and STRANGE RULES - but CHERRY lies off that freshly beaten yet mostly hidden path, found in close proximity to similar artifacts from CATHEDRAL [REC #153], LOST AGE [REC #141] and ZEN ZSIGO [REC #175], respectively, as if these unforgiving oblivion noise gods continue to make breathtaking exceptions and deliver just enough to keep folks like me comin back for more - and i'm still not sure how these two seemingly disparate worlds can be so interconnected -- like magnets, i guess

CHERRY is an tantalizingly brief yet crucial twenty minutes of glorious harmonic shifts, smooth edged dissonance encased in a shimmering armor of gauzy atmospherics, set blissfully adrift in the cosmos, surrendering to the ebb and flow of a tide like energy quietly yet powerfully surging beneath and within this miniature masterpiece

other recalled points of reference - BRAINWORLDS / PLOSIVE split which is still available from THESE ARE NOT and somehow second hand for $4 on discogs, KURMA's FRACTURED [way back REC #23] and KJ's WAKE [REC #138], as this tries to settle alongside folks like TIM HECKER and CHARLEMAGNE PALESTINE - in addition to all these "riyl" indicators, a fellow avid listener might find similar sacred solace in recently discovered by way of LOBBESTAEL back catalog hunting 2016 sleeper TRENDING BLOOM's OF FLESH & VACANCY still (barely) available from winnepeg micro label MALE ACTIVITY, deserving its own proper recommendation but since i just found it, bought it and mentioned it, i will prop up this right-now endorsement to avoid the risk of it selling out at the source before i am able to muster up a proper post

speaking of "sold out at the source" - CHERRY went fast but there is one on discogs right now