Sandro Perri
“Love and Light”

These Constellation Records chaps are on a roll. Sandro Perri’s a Canadian dude who’s been going a fair while under a wealth of ingeniously named guises (the best being Continuous Dick, followed swiftly by Polmo Polpo [which means “Octopus Lung” in Italian, I’ll have you know]). But he sheds them all for his latest release, Impossible Spaces (TMT Review), which is all about minimal, shuffly jazz, and his vocal chords. Constellation’s SoundCloud taster is light and airy, making me feel like this when I’m cracking out the old 9-5. The star performer here has got to be the brutally syncopated percussion, which features more breathing than actual drums. Unfortunately, this is likely to cause severe hyperventilation if performed live.

• Sandro Perri:
• Constellation:

Sparkling Wide Pressure

“Cosmos Blues”

Again? Well, yes, there is a new Sparkling Wide Pressure video, directed by fellow Tennessean Geoffrey Sexton, and it pretty much rules. Pseudo-Buddhist temple offerings, plenty of incense, rich natural settings, glittering light superimpositions, ritualistic accoutrements, and some bitching handmade titles comprise the mise en scène. It’s the perfect setting for the damaged tape loops and distant melody of this track to flourish.

• Sparkling Wide Pressure:
• Ghetto Naturalist:

DJ Earl

“Yo Workz Dryy”

DJ Earl — no, not this DJ Earl — released an amazing footwork EP this week called MurdArchTEKture. Plenty of fantastic songs on it, but “Yo Workz Dryy” is about the only song I’ve been listening to for the past few days. It’s my jam, but you can pick your own jam from the EP, streaming in full here. Oh, and be sure to check out the latest Planet Mu footwork release, Ghettoteknitianz (TMT Review), which was also released this week.

Now ‘scuse me while I go footwork on my lawn.

• Ghetto Teknitianz:

Mike Shiflet

“Blessed and Opressed”

Mike Shiflet is this generation’s Bob Dylan, if poetry were a seashell and music was HD videos of grass. Here we have water and rocks and domestic life and industrialization and even Barbara Streisand (3:50). This is the work of someone who has held to his ear the conch of the digital age and heard the static buzz of the internet’s ocean of noise. Watching “Blessed and Oppressed” is something like witnessing the life of an oyster flash before its eyes, as you listen to the music of it sizzle, frying in the pan. Blessed is the diner, oppressed is the dinner. Anyhow, this track is from Shiflet’s new album Sufferers, out this week. Check out the video, and if it’s to your liking, head over to Type Records to hear more.

• Mike Shiflet:
• Type:

Colin Stetson

Those Who Didn’t Run EP

As our relentless and rigorously up to date news team reported, Colin Stetson has released a new EP. Now that we are able to listen to the two new songs, thanks to the valiant efforts of Constellation, we can indeed confirm that he plays saxophone on it. It’s the same story as before: one man, one huge hunk of brass, one take for every song. It nevertheless remains an undeniable mystery how he manages to make one instrument simultaneously produce throaty drones, weighty percussion, and the occasional soaring vocal melody. Simultaneously! And before you ask, there ain’t no tricks, and he isn’t fiddling around with any of that electronic nonsense (for the disbelievers, we have video evidence). So enjoy 20 minutes listening to a guy for which breathing is a secondary concern.

• Colin Stetson:
• Constellation:

Kurt Vile

“Life’s a Beach”

A veteran of The War on Drugs, Kurt Vile has now graduated to the war on manhood. As my monster colleague recently pointed out, age anxiety seems to be one of Vile’s central motifs on his upcoming EP, So Outta Reach. “I want to be a boy, don’t want to be a man,” he sings in this track’s first line; from there, it’s all about repression of the grown-up stuff. Musically, it’s more of the same Vile goodness that we’ve come to expect. “Life’s a beach,” the titular chorus, is a cliché lyric, but that’s the point — of course, we all wish that we could have an endless summer, but most all of us know we can’t, and ergo, alas: life’s a bitch. Vile’s not really offering a refutation to the bitchness, but a veiled, reluctant acceptance. The pretty drawl of it! The delicious haze! But, then again, I bet Mr. Vile doesn’t actually mean this stuff, because if he really wanted to hang with the kids, he’d surely be making some hairy, brolicious dubstep….

The So Outta Reach EP is out November 8 on Matador Records.

• Kurt Vile:
• Matador Records:

[Photo: Shawn Brackbill]


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.