Kyle Bobby Dunn
“In Praise of Tears”
During the recording sessions of what may well prove to be the most impassive album of 2012, ambient composer Kyle Bobby Dunn crafted five fresh formations on his 1968 Jazzmaster at L’auberge de Belleville, Canada. Each piece was assembled with very little processing and the desire to propel the frontiers of what elongated torment might embody sonically.
The result is an arresting resuscitation of the sullen ambient aesthetic this sagacious composer has become so renowned for — a selection of calm, peaceful, and melancholic works that brood and dilate perfectly under the precise title of his latest record. In Miserum Stercus, or “Most Miserable Dung,” is said to embody the feeling of being more miserable than thou, a state one can only hope the artist does not truly find himself in, for these are some of the most seductive ambient compositions of the year.
Have a listen to “In Praise of Tears” in preparation for Kyle Bobby Dunn’s second release of 2012, which is out on November 27 through Komino.
LA Vampires and Maria Minerva
Like behind-the-scenes footage for some French New Wave-era film, the video for “Seasons Change” from the Not Not Fun collaboration between LA Vampires and Maria Minerva manages to take mundane, daily activities and make them look cool. Scenes rotate between black-and-white and psychedelic color schemes as Amanda Brown (LA Vampires) and Maria Minerva (who earlier this year released the fantastic Will Happiness Find Me?) make their way between empty apartment hallways and sunny Los Angeles streets. But the detuned piano loop, minor keys, and cloudy vocals give what could be a fan-submitted YouTube video to Len’s “If You Steal My Sunshine” that disconcerting quality of which only weirdos like LA Vampires and Maria Minerva are capable.
Watch the video for “Seasons Change” above and buy the LP collaboration, The Integration, from Not Not Fun. It’s a pretty safe bet: none of the LA Vampires collaborations have disappointed yet, and the woman founded Not Not Fun and 100% silk, for god’s sake.
• Not Not Fun: http://www.notnotfun.com
Lust for Youth
In this age of latter-day post-punk, what must a new track have in order to stand out? The genre’s forefathers got so much right from the start, meanwhile making so much obsolete in the process. The sound is quintessentially minimal, which means that in the subsequent years, there hasn’t been boundless leeway for variation. Instead, to find unwitled aspects, determined post-punkers must deal in the subtlest shades and finest degrees. The element that stands between a track that merely rehashes and one that fully re-energizes might be as slight as an extra layer of reverb or the shade of anguish nuanced in a voice.
Earlier this year, Holograms and Merchandise have found effective brews — now, “Behind Curtains” hints that Lust for Youth may have done it too. The act originated as the project of Hannes Norrvide, who hails from Gothenburg/Copenhagen, employing the sparse synth sounds through his sparse setup. The track is the lead-off from his upcoming Growing Seeds, which could prove quite good if the rest of the album follows suit. Unlike the Lust for Life of a certain Iggy’s proto-punk, which had an authentic lusty mania, Norrvide’s lust is more subdued, and the thing is a nostalgic spin through a severed youth, like the whole genre from which it hails.
Growing Seeds is available from Sacred Bones Records on November 13.
Guest Mix: LAKE R▲DIO
The Killer Lake
LAKE R▲DIO is the project of Caden Moore, an Illinois-based electronic artist who first rose to prominence two years ago with the coming of witch-house. Although the music of LAKE R▲DIO exhibits many of the telltale signs of witchery — screwed beats, shoegaze-y atmospherics, strange typographic symbols — Caden equally indulges his love of downtempo hash bar jams, resulting in a chill concoction that is not merely about the drag. For evidence, check out the recently-released Hypoxia, a sprawling, digital-only compilation of recent work. For his Chocolate Grinder mix, LAKE R▲DIO provides us with The Killer Lake, a 31-minute thematic trawl through a dark lagoon of mind-erasing weirdness. Caden had this to say about his mix:
Beneath the peaceful surface of this lake lurks a monster which has the power to wipe out the millions of people who live within its region. Deep in the bottom layers, the water holds a sinister secret. It has killed before and it can kill again. Scientists are now in a race against time to stop this serial killer from striking once more.
[00:00] The Killer Lake
[02:35] Clams Casino - “Angels”
[08:56] Jackson 5 - “I Want You Back”
[10:08] Aphex Twin - “Avril 14th”
[11:42] Sesame Street
[12:30] Kid Preachers - “Giant Killers”
[12:40] Unidentified Philip Glass track
[13:30] Jay-Z - “December 4th”
[14:30] Beach House - “Norway (Dkon Remix)”
[16:54] Grimes - “Genesis”
[17:10] Destiny’s Child - “Say My Name (Cyril Hahn Remix)”
[21:14] Evan Ireland - “Safe House”
[25:15] Spaceghostpurrp - “Lustful ‘97”
Stuttering light smears through a glimmer or two, and then blares of searing thought and site burn through eyes on fire. An ECCO UNLIMITED. Beyond what you can reach or experience on this plane, objects mingle with matter and materialize without form but in vibration of the internal senses, and not of physical touch. Ripping through all that can be stripped of nature and humanity, comes the last bastion of world: “Yo, is that ‘Thriller?’” Into the void through properties indescribable to the concept of thought. Swirling and matching hard to soft of the back on molecules into darkness upon stretched light spearing force and gravitation at the most agitated softness. This is where it becomes clear. The formation of all this substance and flickering provides an entirely new color. A color so vibrant it questions its own being through the array trying to keep it together. And this is just for this plane and area. Cleared upon the cloud of vision and existence. The world turned to you and away; into light came color and “LETTING GO.” The fragility of something new.
Prince Rama (channeling Hyparxia)
“Welcome to the Now Age”
If you didn’t already know, the world as we know it will be ending in about a month and a half. In celebration (?) of this event, Prince Rama has channeled the top singles of 10 of the bands that surely would have been a big hit had the world continued existing. “Welcome to the Now Age,” by Hyparxia is a real sensation filled with cerebral one-word stanzas echoed out over a bed of 90s instructional video beats. If this is the future, then I guess music really is doomed to repeat itself indefinitely. I guess Simon Reynolds was right with his concept of Retromania.
Listen as Prince Rama channels Hyparxia below, and buy the album from Paw Tracks on November 6.
If post-pop is possible, I guess this is it.