Mika Vainio
“Open Up and Bleed” [The Stooges cover]

Next month, Mika Vainio, the more easily pronounceable half of Pan Sonic (Ilpo Väisänen is the other dude), is releasing a new solo album. The album, henceforth known as Life (…It Eats You Up), is said to use guitar as the primary sound source. Check out Vainio’s bold cover of “Open Up and Bleed,” an Iggy Pop and The Stooges song. Then re-listen to The Stooges’ version for, you know, purely educational purposes:

Look for Life (…It Eats You Up) on July 26 on Editions Mego.

• Editions Mego: http://editionsmego.com

Barn Owl & The Infinite String Ensemble


“Levitation” is a beautiful slice of drone work from Ellen Fullman, Theresa Wong, The Norman Conquest, and Barn Owl, whose new collaborative album Headlands is out now on Important Records. The collision of electronics and acoustics is particularly exciting here, with the rise and fall of sound allowing overtones to creep in and out of the mix. It’s a very “big” sound. Watch the video below for an explanation of Fullman’s Long Stringed Instrument, which definitely adds to that organic bigness:

• Theresa Wong: http://www.theresawong.org
• Barn Owl: www.myspace.com/barnowlband
• Ellen Fullman: http://www.ellenfullman.com
• The Norman Conquest: http://www.thenormanconquest.net
• Important: http://www.importantrecords.com

John Maus

“Head for the Country”

A couple months ago, John Maus released a video for “Believer.” TMT writer Keith Kawaii wrote some bullshit about it here. While his new album, We Must Become The Pitiless Censors Of Ourselves, still isn’t out yet — it’s due June 28 on Ribbon/Upset the Rhythm — Maus has another video in the bag, this time for “Head for the Country,” which was shot in my neck of the woods.

• John Maus: http://www.myspace.com/johnmaus
• Ribbon: http://www.ribbonmusic.com
• Upset the Rhythm: http://www.upsettherhythm.co.uk

Jonas Reinhardt

“The Tactile Dome”

Jonas Reinhardt, who is not some obscure Danish dude who works at a small internet service provider in Copenhagen but has a Master’s degree in Composition, is actually an SF-based band that makes synth-driven electronic music. It consists of Jesse Reiner, Damon Palermo (Mi Ami), and Diego Gonzalez (Citay) — as one of my fellow TMT colleagues might say, “‘Nuff said.” Music For The Tactile Dome, the group’s third full-length, is out now on Not Not Fun.

• Jonas Reinhardt: http://www.jonasreinhardt.com
• Not Not Fun: http://notnotfun.com

Glenn Jones

“On the Massachusetts-Virginia Border”

Glenn Jones, formerly of Cul de Sac, is from the “American Primitive” school of steel string guitar playing. This means he’s a pre-modern human who loves to eat bananas, but boy can he play guitar! He has a new full-length, The Wanting, in the bag, and it’s due September 13 on Thrill Jockey. In the meantime, check out “On the Massachusetts-Virginia Border,” a track off his Record Store Day split with the Black Twig Pickers.

• Glenn Jones: http://www.myspace.com/glennjonesguitar
• Thrill Jockey: http://www.thrilljockey.com


Time Code

Bureau B is probably most recognizable for reissuing old Sky records. Now they’re dipping into 80s electronic label Cue Records’ back catalog for some extreme cosmic pop from the band You. Their album Time Code builds on the Kraftwerk template more than anything, adding a crystalline pop sheen with heavy doses of melodic sugar. That’s not to say that there aren’t some heavy synth-crazed moments. In my humble opinion, a pretty astonishing balance is met here between the corners of German electronics via 1983, making this somewhat of a lost classic.

• Bureau B: http://www.bureau-b.com/


CHOCOLATE GRINDER is our audio/visual section, with an emphasis on the lesser heard and lesser known. We aim to dig deep, but we'll post any song or video we find interesting, big or small.