To the uninformed, the video above feels like obscure archival footage of a lost hillside tribe from the 70s that disappeared from Earth in the wake of a little-documented acid wave that swept through a meek Anglo province. But, in fact, the footage is from less than a month ago, and Way Through, the pastoral punk band whose music accompanies the video, uses it to illustrate their bucolic mission: to make an album born from rural England’s specific breed of soul. Watching the Abbots Bromley Horn Dancers make obeisance to their caboshed god, we witness the juxtaposition of ancient marginal music with the marginal music of today. What a strange reference for young punk — a cultural relic carbon dated to the 11th century. Despite the manicured, spherical shrubbery and the Velcro shoes, “Gallant Show’s” video gets at something olde, something visibly lost but spiritually indelible in Way Through’s world, which does as good a job of channeling ghosts as the punk of urban decay in London or NYC.
I will take any opportunity to discuss the brilliant, supple music of both Murfreesboro’s Sparkling Wide Pressure and upstate NY’s Rambutan. On this forthcoming split cassette from Eric Hardiman’s label Tape Drift, SWP continues his exploration of nostalgia-tinged guitar, encasing his evocative melodies in a bed of soft electrorganic textures, somehow always managing to flick all the right switches. And Rambutan soaks our heads in bubbling loops that are simultaneously deep and ephemeral, engulfing you and then evaporating into the air. The tapes are out in a batch this very day.
TKOL RMX 1234567 [full album]
C Monster (about): “Good for you. I don’t even know what to say about Thom York anymore.”
Mr P: “Thom Yorke…. Thom Yorke Thom Yorke. His name alone is really funny to me for some reason.”
Thom York or Yorke? Theater or theatre? G’rr-age or gah-ra’gshh? Anyway or anyways? In the context of internet language and slang, these differences really don’t matter much. But yo, to quote Yorke on remix culture, “It feels kind of healthy for music.” Seems as though remixing is what jazz and blues have always done with music. Like, how none of the songs Elvis sang were written by him. Thus, Elvis was king of [remix]! Um, I was unaware there was such a big culture surrounding “remixing at the moment.” But people adapt to culture and language all the time. And technology. Remixing just proves you have to be better with technology than musical skill in this universe. Oh shit, okay I made it to the end of TKOL RMX 1234567 and Jamie xx is on it. Maybe the remix culture is big these days. At least anachronistically. Though, this is the penultimate sentence, and relating “anachronism” and “remix” now would be too late. All-in-all, I’ve been meaning to give The King of Limbs another roll in the hay, and what better to re:up my interest by listening to XL Recordings’ double LP TKOL RMX 1234567 out October 10. (via The Hype Machine)
Natural History museums across the country just got their new planetarium soundtracks.
Read aloud at 00:12, á la George Clooney: “Earth. Fragile Earth. At the mercy of a giant ball of exploding gases, it sits tiny within a massive solar system, within a stupefying galaxy, within an incomprehensible universe. Earth… the third planet from the Sun. The first planet in our hearts.”
In her old band The Dead Texan, Christina Vantzou worked with Adam Wiltzie, a member of Stars of the Lid; with “Homemade Mountains,” it seems like Vantzou herself has a fair share of starry and lid-reverent sensibilities. This is unabashed night-gazing music, like sounds for hypnotizing Mercury or to seep from the boombox when you’re making late-night repairs on your Millennium Falcon. Really though, this track, along with the rest of Vantzou’s new album Nº1, does what ambient music is supposed to do: you know, actually lay down some ambiance; a new landscape… like, perhaps, some homemade mountains?
As we reported last week, this piece is the first slice of what was once a single 45-minute track, now divvied up into an album of proper cuts. Check out all of Nº1 when Kranky Records kranks it onto shelves October 24.
We Stay Together [full EP stream]
Andy Stott’s music took a massive leap into the unknown when he released the Passed Me By EP on Modern Love (home to industrial techno revivalists Demdike Stare, among others). His staple up until then was airy and ambient techno, but he must have decided that this was an over-trodden path when he crushed everything into a noisy, compressed, and thoroughly Dystopian musical vision.
We Stay Together takes this ideal one step further, with kick drums barely surfacing under deep and dissonant noise and vocals lurching unpredictably around a hugely pressurized soundscape. Modern Love is kindly streaming both EPs on its SoundCloud, and this new release is available for purchase on shiny vinyl here.
“I Feel As If Might Be Vanishing”
I’m glad this video is part of a trilogy. When I was walking my dog ‘round midnight Monday, I was giving An Empty Bliss Beyond this World (TMT Review) a re: listen, but forgot I had my player on shuffle. It totally worked with this album, like it do with Crazy For You. So it’s nice knowing the video trilogy will abed to my viewing/listening pleasure. Also, it’s The Caretaker, and his shit’s blowing up in twenty eleven because of this release, right? Well, it blew me up, and I can’t go down.
The trilogy was directed by Video Marsh, who also did clips for other C-named bands like Caribou and Crystal Castles. It’s all total smear stuff and you might see yourself in the video, or a humming bird, or a tree. I don’t know. There’s a grainy white noise effect to the image that presents the same kind of illusory hallucination, only, like, visually. Buuuuuuut, my girlfriend is painting her toenails, it stiiiiiinks, and I’m thinking about going “all work and no play” up in this bitch: cue me An Empty Bliss Beyond this World.