Earlier this year, London producer AyGeeTee (also known as Actress Pets) released his third album, Fools. Featuring 17 tracks of diverse electronic beat permutations, the album has thrived on the contrast between its murky ambient tones and its crisp rhythmic interplay, a sort of lush, exquisite blanket of sound continually punctuated by dry, skittering beats, the sole reminder here that time is indeed passing. It’s electronic dance, essentially, cerebral and full-bodied, transient yet everlasting, “of its time” yet uprooted from any obvious geography.
“Amor Buscador” is, in my opinion, the album’s standout track. Not only is the beat at just the right tempo to push the song along without getting shit too hyped, but the ambient sounds are the primary focus here, their reverberations, delays, and overlapping tonal patterns obscuring the rhythm and producing a sense of being perpetually out of time, out of sync. Might seem like an aesthetic conflict on paper, but the actual music sounds harmonious, contrasted here a little by the video’s imagery of dated tech commercials, trippy Disney animations, and old race footage slowed to a crawl. There’s a disconnect somewhere here, but it’s often the disconnects that lead to unexpected connections. Check it out here:
Fools is out now on AMDISCS, which is gearing up for its second SOFT FREQUENCY event. More details coming soon.
Enter another slab of music marked “drift” — the ears aren’t perfect, but they pick up enough clues to spark some mental images of the scene of the drone: maybe synths spread out in crescent moon formation, a tape deck could plug into the chain somewhere, multi-multi-instrumentalizing, probably plenty of pedals, perhaps layering live input by looping (tones arrive and come back around with regularity), perhaps fusing multiple discrete takes together all studio-style. With gear and process obscured, the real Need To Knows become evident quick. Does it progress? Does it engage? Does it zone you out? Does it confound? What are you listening for? For what are you listening?
Trust in Rambutan, known to loved ones as Eric Hardiman, to rise way above “drift” standards and make each minute count. Inverted Summer marks his full-length vinyl debut after 30+ cassettes and CD-Rs under the moniker, along with dozens of releases with blown-out psych outfit Burnt Hills and omnivorous noise/drone duo Century Plants. “Topology” offers mighty details from its first moments. A low-end bas(e)(s)line all hiss and hum holds things down. Lead synth phrases between “sear” and “stain” shake up the atmosphere. Radar blips recur. We lock in. When the flute-ish samples drop into the mix, we climb higher. When an oscillator buzzes through a molten doom progression, we reach the peak, and find Hardiman’s flag already up there.
Inverted Summer is out now via Fabrica Records.
The most impressive overall attribute of Mykki Blanco, and what errrrybody is talking about, is her unflinching straight-fac… [sorry, no] pokerface. Physically. Figuratively. Metaphorically. Sexually. It’s all she’s about. Like, in “The Initiation” video, not only is she possessing my ears completely (with a little production help from Sinden), but the way she crawls and tosses away a random hat like they just lie around in this world — yeah, I’m convinced. Oh, shit, another secret club/entrance? Secret code delivered by a secret face? ‘_’ face. Mykki is queen of the iron fist? (Duhh). Anyone else begging the universe for a physical Mykki Blanco release? Just to reach out and touch a piece of her, amirite? More so, don’t y’all think she’d come out with something more than just a vinyl/CD/CS/DVD? Anyone else love how UNO NYC is flagrantly [non]existent when tuning into their homepage? Listen to Mykki Blanco’s new EP Betty Rubble: The Initiation here.
Hey, I just met you and this is crazy but “it’s SAINT PEPSI bitch” so “Call Me Maybe”!?
Gather round kiddies, because it’s time for another TMT Sic Alps premiere! A couple weeks ago, we gave y’all an inside look at She’s On Top,” the San Francisco band’s expedition into the world of strange old VHS tapes. Now, the guys are back with the clip for “Biz Bag,” containing more hyper-saturated psychedelia but with 100% more balloons! But where you and I might watch this music video and see only a white Mini Coop with balloons tied to the rear dash, those in the know will tell you that there’s more to the visual than meets the eye. As Drag City’s Rian Murphy puts it, “Basically, the theme of the video is, it’s a great life if you don’t let go of the balloon — and so the the players of life at large stand united in the semi-streets, working man and the itinerant alike, with the world on a string, sitting on a rainbow.” Here we see that the Tao of Sic Alps is a philosophy firmly rooted in oddball optimism. And really, what’s cheerier than a modern Prometheus spreading joy with wonderful, wonderful balloons? Nothing, that’s what — not even a Deee-lite reunion show.
She’s On Top is out now on 12-inch, MP3, and FLAC via Drag City. Stay tuned for the TMT premiere of the final new Sic Alps video!
Judging by the sounds that are sampled and the multi-lingual monikers and song titles used by vaporwave artists, it’s probably safe to assume that contemporary Asian culture, particularly that of Tokyo, was a founding inspiration for the conception of the genre. Now that vaporwave has been a “thing” for a while, new manifestations and sub-categories are sprouting up all over the place, now including south of the border! Tres Monitores is an artist who makes Latin-infused vaporwave or vaporachi (a term I just made up), and draws samples from Telemundo advertisements, mariachi ballads, and Mexican sports radio. But besides the hints of Hispanic source material, Tres Monitores’ new record from Fortune 500, Leyandas is instantly classic vaporwave tunage.