Darren Cunningham, known best as Actress, has once again nonchalantly dropped a new track via Twitter. “ShockTherapy101,” which follows one of the year’s strongest releases, features cyclical beats and stuttering electronic chords searching for a center, a sort of outside-the-club quest for home. And the best part is that home’s never found, mirroring both the fleeting nature of this song’s release and our own never-ending search for purpose. Check out the track here:
After having released the scariest video of the year (for “Ass Swung Low”) and collaborated with the likes of Mykki Blanco and $hayne, Arca is back with a new track called “Self Defense.” The song features stuttering beats and claustrophobic electronics, all tightly wound up with mutated vocals rapping “Dumb luck, numb fuck/ Come out with your motherfucking hands up.” It’s freaky and suffocating and I love it.
Look for Stretch 2, his excellent debut release for UNO NYC, on August 6.
Idle [album stream]
From the hot, fresh, and juicy California cassette label Constellation Tatsu comes a new record from psyched-out rockers Cankun, called Idle. As reverberating, echoing guitars mingle with gentle, steady drum machines, a perfect summertime stoner album is conceived. A glittering guitar haze resonates throughout the record, helping you find Zion, express your love to dance, swim fast with dolphins, and perform several other aquatic activities. Joyful howls and hollers bounce off the jumpy power chords driving the trip, and backseat beats keep the journey structured enough to keep us on the road. Grab your noodles and innertubes, pack a bowl, cruise to the beach/lake, and bump Idle the entire time — it’s a great combination, I swear.
Order the cassette from Constellation Tatsu and get a free download, or bump it all on the Bandcamp for a limited time.
“Maroon Bells” may be recognized as the title track from Kevin Greenspon’s recent cassette contribution to Bridgetown Records’ impressive and ever-growing catalog. But it appears we must also recognize “Maroon Bells” for the lovely video presentation it also is, the first of a 10-track DVD called Folding Focus that Greenspon will have for his late-summer tour. The split-screen, pastel visuals were created by labelmate Paul Skomsvold (a.k.a. Former Selves), and they give new meaning to a term like “watercolor,” truly painting the frame with soft strokes of vivid shades while keeping the overall image in a decidedly aqua state. Greenspon’s guitar, meanwhile, is at its most fluttery and falsetto with this number, the melody softly gliding to the forefront before unabashedly chiming out its saccharine message, swimming through a gentle pond of tone before the entire thing crumbles as the beauty is rudely devoured in crinkling static — a tragic end to what was so angelic and pure.
Grab Greenspon’s latest tape over at Bridgetown, and check the site for upcoming dates in a city near you throughout August, September, and October.
VΞRACOM [album stream]
VΞRACOM (NYSE: VΞR), run by CEO Ryan Croch, is a Dallax-based corporation, in the business of producing chopped-up 80s/90s pop songs, reincorporated commodities for an alternate plane of surreality. VΞRACOM doesn’t choose just any old song; these songs are particularly grating, making this corporate experience a lush nightmare too sensual to pass on.
Check out VΞRACOM’s self-titled debut on AMDISCS below, and expect the THUG HUG mixtape soon.
Four years is too long to go by without some new Testament tunes, but on July 31, the band is slated to make its triumphant return with Dark Roots of Earth. Judging from the sound of “Native Blood,” we’re in for a treat: almost 30 years later, the California band continues to dole out pulverizing thrash with just enough melody to keep you humming (or growling, or yowling, or whatever) for days. After several years of waiting, that blistering solo at 2:47 is the lacerating, loving homecoming fans have been yearning for. Nuclear Blast has uploaded 90 second clips of most of the album’s tracks, so get pumped!