The Drunken Draculas
Dead Sounds [CS; Old Monster]

Keen observers of our fair website may recall my hard-cool excitement over Richard Swift gone garage a long five years ago. It’s a trend I’ve continued to tail from a host of regional acts all hammering out three chords in grungy basements and dusty backyards, all trying to recapture an era none of us lived in but have read much about. Maybe we’ve even bought a few dog-eared records from yard sales and pawn shops. It has led me to the Drunken Draculas (or them to me, if you will). It’s a twisty, half-played mess of vibrant bass, oaken vocals and silly monster references (“The Tranny was a Zombie,” “Old Ass Troll,” “Dracula Stole My Gal”). All two minute blisters that begged to be popped so the 60s ooze all over your boil covered body. If you found this during a bin (dumpster?) dive, you’d be holding a classic that never existed. As it stands, 2013 is the year of half-assed garage rock and you know you’ve been waiting for it. No more outer space zones and intricate geometric trigonometry bullshit. Just guys and gals in small confines beating and strumming and strumming and smoking and smoking and blistering. It’s been prophesied in these very pages. The little critters of nature, they don’t know that they’re ugly…

Links: The Drunken Draculas - Old Monster

Luminance Ratio / Oren Ambarchi

DreamLES/Curfew

[7-inch; Kinky Gabber]

Oren Ambarchi personifies what we tend to dig over here at TMT, “Curfew” yet another reason to get acquainted with the Sydney-borne guitarist/percussionist, though there’s not much most would recognize as guitar or percussion (it’s there though). It’s a thick, milky drone, abetted by crotales, bells, and cello, all set to eternal-drift mode. I love Brian Wilson, but fuck ‘im; this is a middle-aged symphony to god. There’s not much Ambarchi can’t do, simply put. Luminance Ratio’s side whips itself into more of a Six Organs-style trance, with wisps of percussion sliding subtly in and out of the background as an ominous tone hovers like a shark of a storm cloud. When the wind whips up in Corpus Christi as it has these past few days you need immense records like this to pin your soul to the ground and blow back against the gales, and the luminous red pressing doesn’t do much to impede the joy within. Hand-numbered, hotcakes on the side (disclaimer: no cakes, hot or otherwise, come with this 7-inch).

Links: Luminance Ratio / Oren Ambarchi - Kinky Gabber

Rosy Parlane

Willow

[7-inch; Touch]

This one’s a game-changer. Seeing that my mom’s a kiwi, Rosy Parlane would be getting extra cred from me in the first place, recording in Auckland as the ex-Thela/Parmentier participant does, but he doesn’t need any charity. “Willow” overflows with color and just the right amount of crackle, cycling into itself and bubbling but never boiling. It’s a slow process considering the short run-time of the format, and I was surprised at how much Parlane got done in a small window of time. That’s Side A. “Morning,” the flip, is a straight-drift of a drone, and as 7-inch incarnations of the genre go, it’s pretty goddamn compelling. It’s like an angel opening her eyes first-thing in the early A.M., the light of eternity peeking into her cloud cottage. No, I’m not on anything, though it wouldn’t hurt to be, as this is druggy shit. Obviously if I were given the choice of letting one track live and snuffing the other out, I’d embrace “Willow” as my own (and raise him right; no biscuits after 11:30, young man!), but there’s a mighty balance being struck here. You just got Touch’d.

Links: Rosy Parlane - Touch

Abyssal Farmers

Find a Name to Call Me

[3-inch; Kimberly Dawn]

This looks like a fine hotel. It’s remote, no one find me here. I am a pretty woman, so who would peg me on the lamb? I’ll stay here for the night and continue north in the morning. The lobby seems eerily quiet. Where’s the hotelier? The fluorescent light sure do buzz in the calm. And the bell is deep and bellowing, not the happy ping of most hotels. It’s just my paranoia. I hear foot steps, that must be the desk clerk. Why, he seems young and nervous. Not so different from me. Something is amiss but I’m tired and need to sleep. Nothing but harmless peeping from that one. I can take a little spy for one evening. But what I really need is a hot shower. Something to calm me down and sooth my aching bones. Then sleep. Lots and lots of sleep. I want to sleep like a baby tonight. Or better still, the dead….

Links: Kimberly Dawn

Smokey Emery

Quartz EP

[7-inch; Indian Queen]

Daniel Hipolito is the Phantom of the Collage. As Smokey Emery, he heavies the pipe organ deep the theater’s recesses through Quartz. It’s a sad fugue, that plays with your mind as it loops ominously. Is it my turntable that’s faulty? Is the vinyl warped? Is the Earth’s rotation stuck on a skip? I like these mind games and clearly so does Hipolito. The black and white imagery, the Dust Bowl drones, a mysticism never to be fully grasped. The black oval obelisk is heavy with the weight of the world; full of the misery and anger of those abandoned, left to wail unheard in their own basement.

Links: Smokey Emery - Indian Queen

Олд Комм

Ventspils

[12-inch; Discrepant]

What a scintillating ride Олд Комм’s Ventspils is. At 45 RPMs it’s clear as a whistle, too, a crucial element considering how subtle the elements at play (few of which I can identify) are. From where I’m listening the second movement, which stretches out over 12 minutes as opposed to the relatively brief Side-A audio (six minutes or so total), is the pony to bet on here. Angelic synths drift into soft voice samples, instrument loops (wacky sax, etc.), classic drone elements, electric rubber-band-balls of energy, and laser vortexes that have no ending nor beginning. Just what your typical Mego/Spools enthusiast is looking for, taken down a notch and mixed into a warm bucket of fuzz. The first movement is a lot scarier. If you think you can get the keys into the ignition in time with this cut barreling toward you good luck. Whereas the flip is a sound-art experiment, Side A sports a steady beat and a more traditional array of soothing synths, though the end-result is anything but typical and oddly satiating. I’ll admit I checked the record player to see if it was skipping and I’m still not sure if it was. You’ll wanna check this one out if you’re a storm watcher.

Links: Discrepant

Bill Orcutt

Tic Fit / Bored With The Moon

[7-inch; Palilalia]

This one slipped through the cracks because I didn’t know what the fuck it was. No name on the label or sleeve and I had forgotten Orcutt HQ had sent a package over awhile back. So… you’re welcome? Ugh. Anyway, the former Harry Pussy founder really stretches his rubber soul out on this one, emoting vocally without lyrics to loose guitar strings that sound ready to SNAP and take out someone’s eye/ear. When I hear something this uncompromising I always know Mr. P has already been-there-done-that, but a guy’s gotta eat, know what I mean? “Bored With The Moon” is like a violent, abusive version of the palette used on that first Panda Bear record, primal and straight from the head like the best stuff often is. It’s like I always say: It’s nice to play solo guitar, but if you have vocal chops on top of that you can bust open more doors and raid more riches. (Seriously, I always say that.) This appears to be a tour-only edition of 200 but there are copies to be found at Discogs; 13 of them in fact. Recommended, and better late than never.

Links: Bill Orcutt - Palilalia

Various Artists

Whatever It Is You’re Doing Now

[2xCS; Mirror Universe]

Once told that to understand music, one must define it, labels began to segregate sounds. They fell into traps of genre, eliminating the science behind listening habits for specialized fulfillment. Mirror Universe will have none of it, and over the course of four sides of pop, noise, drone, synth and kitchen sinks, Whatever It Is You’re Doing Now promises the old lay of the land–something for everybody. Though the tapes do delineate along some familiar parameters (pop dominated Side A, throwback synth eats alive Side C), it all represents the eclectic palette and devil-may-curation of Mirror Universe. Familiar favorites (Noveller, Xander Harris, Foot Village) share space with spunky up and comers. I can’t get enough of Southern Femisphere, their classic pop rock infectious. Seriously, I have a delightful fever that grows when I play “Transgander.” M. Sage traps me in the Tim Hecker/Fennesz bubble, combining elegant waves of static drone with heavy rain and distant voices. Pariah Carey deliver complete 16-bit soundtrack–speed runs, boss battles and all–within 4 minutes of the kawaii cute known as “Smile From The Grave 4U.” SuR are down and dirty, a sludge of old garage and grunge, and unapologetic about your harsh criticisms. The fear of being burnt is heavy but don’t be daunted. The tempo changes, the mood waxes and wanes, and the smorgasbord of music will keep this stuck in your tape player. Though it’s almost certain that once you’ve stripped the tape bare, you’ll be forced to destroy and disavow its existence to maintain face when you introduce your friends to all these new bands.

Links: Mirror Universe

Gert-Jan Prins

Gert-Jan Prins

[10-inch; The Spring Press]

This is brutal. Way too brutal. I forgot how sheer force can change music into noise and noise into music. Dutch master Prins destroys 10-inches of lathe vinyl in a matter of minutes, splaying electronic guts across a pretty, clear wax package of minimalism. It’s angry and immortal, ripping apart the unsuspecting with each rotation until your innards tear from your insides and seek refuge outside of the body. And if you somehow survive the assault, Prins will be waiting to do the job your body was too cowardly to act upon…

FINISH HIM!

Links: Gert-Jan Prins - The Spring Press

Blanche Blanche Blanche

Scam / Press Dumps

[7-inch; Adagio830]

Ummm, Blanche? What happened baby? I thought we had a good thing goin’. Those keys/synths were soundin’ real nice, and now you gotta go and fuck with the formula just as everyone was coming around… I must say, however, that I like what I’m hearing from this ramped-up version of Blanche Blanche Blanche with Chris Weisman on guitar and synthster Zach Phillips now manning the drums like Peyton. It’s more of a scrappy, fun-‘n’-slappy hayride down Punk Lane than anything, Sarah Smith’s vocals unchanged and aided by others in the band for the first time (at least to my knowledge). “Press Dumps” falls apart like a shattered glass rainbow then picks itself up piece by piece until the train is back on the track, barely. You get a more visceral thrill from this one, very kaleidoscopic and vibrant, with an endless arpeggiator (OK I don’t know what the fuck that is; you got me) bludgeoning the middle of the mix with a skull-hammer as Phillips gets out-of-control on the demon drums. Good for them. Next?

Links: Adagio830
  

In this ever-expanding musical world, there's a wealth of 7-inches, cassettes, CD-Rs, and objet d'art being released that, due to their limited quantities and adventurous sonics, go unnoticed by the public at large. Cerberus seeks to document the aesthetic of these home recorders and backyard labels. Email us here.