“The Wire, the Rag and the Payoff”
For Brokeback and the Black Rock, the first new Brokeback release in about 10 years, Douglas McCombs (of Tortoise fame) hired an entirely new squad to coalesce a more traditional rock configuration, where his penchant for dusty, Morricone-esque melodies could thrive. The style’s a far cry from the band’s earlier jazzy chamber-compositions of a decade ago, but some might argue that this is indeed the natural setting for McCombs’ pliable, whammy-bar tones. And “The Wire, the Rag and the Payoff” makes a strong case, especially as filtered through John McEntire’s sparkling production via the legendary Soma studio. The video for the track, however goofy, finds the band in true-to-form performance mode on a stage in front of wide open and expansive vista sceneries, furthering the Western thematic content the full record is already rife with. Thrill Jockey tells us the video was inspired by a Glen Campbell performance on the Smothers Brothers’ show (this one?). I guess I can see it, but that doesn’t really explain those mittens. Someone is going to have to explain the mittens to me. Guys… what’s the deal with the mittens?
Brokeback and the Black Rock is out now on Thrill Jockey.
• Thrill Jockey: http://thrilljockey.com
MTV Hive is so intense. With the possible exception of this extreme blog, I have never been bombarded with so many widescreen images and emboldened apple typefaces in my life. Nevertheless, it is there I must reluctantly direct you if you would care to gain deeper insight into the latest Idiot Glee release, which has something to do with relationships. His new EP, Life Without Jazz, is released late in February across three exceptionally well-named record labels.
When you talk, you hear from the other side
Bhob Rainey (nmperign, The BSC) finds some decaying spools of wire from the early 1950s in a thrift store. He discovers the sounds of a family playing with a new recording device over Christmas, making fake jingles, recording snippets of conversation, and attempting comedy sketches. He carefully toys with the material, playing different elements through different speakers to enhance the sense of space, looping background noises to add some timbral spice and chopping through the snippets of chatter. He finds a collaborator in Nancy Bernardo, who patiently compiles a series of glass collages in response to this bizarre segment of middle-class American history. He casually brings Jason Lescalleet over to build some dense and arresting musique concrète from the idiosyncratic noises that flitter through the recordings. He summarizes the development of the work in an eloquent and informative essay. What a scoundrel.
When you talk, you hear from the other side (excerpt 1):
When you talk, you hear from the other side (excerpt 2):
• Bhob Rainey: http://bhobrainey.net
One of my most-most favorite things to do now is play 45s at 33 speed. Like, anything I get on 45, I always try at 33, and usually it just makes a whole new kind of music. Landon thinks I’m crazy for doing this, but I dig it. Specifically, I LOVE listening to 100% Silk 45s at 33. And I’ve a feeling NY producer Sean Adams (No Glow) has done the same. Although Aussie label Rocket Machine put Sean’s new No Glow release No Hope (appropriately) on tape, and not a 45, there is no need. It’s as though Sean tries to replicate dance 45s in 33: the music is random and sporadic, yet enthralling in a deep-nodding sort of agreement, “recorded in real time using a Nakamichi CR-1 and a Nakamichi LX3 onto Cobalt Type II cassette.” What’s better is that this edition of 40 tapes will eventually reel itself in places unfamiliar to the No Glow musical intention and eventually add on a gritty feel to what sounds like pure HD bumble beats. Dig it now; it came out earlier this month. There’s also a nasty sale involving the release over at Rocket Machine. FEEL IT!
Public Spreads The News & Show Your Teeth
And out of a broken campaign class swirls a stream of vodka, Kahlua and chocolate liqueur of something expensive. Blood and broken glass. Class, yet not refined. In the way sitting naked on your couch at 1:14 AM to “get WORK done, kiid” ::: sorta class. Okay, so your mouth is wider today. Yet, is it Missing Nature? One thing I can appreciate is elusiveness. Like, at this point, do I want this split on cassette/the-physical? Or, can, like — can I let it go? I’m thinking about the beach, y’all. And Public Spreads The News & Show Your Teeth qualifies for that vast gaze. Just you and, like, maybe a comic, but NO subways, yah hurrd. This Missing Nature on tape, yeah? Y’ohhh, this is on Woozy, yeahhhh? Gadd dagg, I cannot keep up. This progression. Like, imagine the world spinning too fast, and it’s 12/21/2012 all over again. Wait, it’s “more than” again @apstyle #editorialhumor *people still use hashtags MORE THAN asterisks, why?* Ohhh, yes, this shattered cocktail is just ripe for the plucking. And I’ve NO idea what that means. Ima just be honest at you, lil Brahh. I had a dream, like, last night, that I was, like, at a summer camp dancing and lights in the swampland bugging out, like, swatting I mean, so I wake up all not-itchy thank goo-oodness and my gurl text me later reading like “we were hacked up in my dream from someone in the closet last night and the dog didn’t do shit, so check the closet tonight” or something like that, and now I’m naked William Carlos Williams-style, bloting or bloating [EDIT: not sure where this is leading] the door cause I’m all NAH-UGHN like that, like — like… get down to this wood-paneled basement digital muck-funk. “Disco Bits” get fuxxx’d upp @ around 1:35. Get it. HI~!!!!1
“Teen Paranormal Romance”
At first glance, I misread this song’s title as something involving teen pregnancy. A wince! Vicarious, American shame! But with that in mind, I now can’t help but blend my misreading with the actual title — “Teen Paranormal Romance” — which in turn yields the image of some brutal hybrid of Gossip Girl and Rosemary’s Baby. (Which actually sounds like it could have some profoundly life-affirming potential. Let’s make that happen, AMC.)
Matmos’ actual track — the music, that is — was born out of a similarly bizarre reliance on associations and the brutality of the human mind. Plus more. Or less, rather: Matmos’ upcoming album The Marriage of True Minds is the result of years of findings based on sensory deprivation, as dictated by Ganzfield experiments (check out the album’s cover to see a so deprived experimentee). Yes, it is worth reading about on Wikipedia, just as the music is very much worth listening to, directly below.
Matmos will kick off a North American tour next month, on February 11, and The Marriage of True Minds will be out from Thrill Jockey a week later, on the 19.