The PutBacks

“Kung Fu Pyramids”

Morse code travels the crusted wire grounded on the seabed. The wire coils like a snake, recoils, winds and unwinds, shifts directions. The code travels slower than a message in a bottle. Once that code is “dropped in the mail,” who knows where it will end up?

That might explain why musicians rarely send notes with explicit “send addresses.” Their lyrics are often vague, directed at a broad demographic, expressive of y’know’what’I’mean moods, based off generic experiences and recall. They often make claims concerning the “universality” of music, i.e. the “non-specificity,” like some Federal program bulging with ideology and lacking in detail and exception.

Along the wire, the coral loses color. To and from, to and from. It’ll only bother you if you believe in linearity.

The “Kung Fu Pyramids / Snake Eyes” 7-inch is out now on Hope Street Recordings.

Death Factory

“Angelica’s Reflection (slasher sequence)”

Upon waking up Monday morning, the first words out of my mouth were “they’re trying to kill me.”

“Who,” Z asked, “the beeps?” Our downstairs neighbors’ smoke detector needed new batteries.


“The mice?” Our cat had discovered a rodent leg wedged between our bedroom floor and the plyboard sealing off an old air conditioner duct. Upon closer inspection, the limb started twitching.

“No, work,” I answered. Nightmares come easy when there’s a real-life horror show running every weekday, from 8:30 to around 6. Gothic Marxist or not, Michael Krause aka Death Factory soundtracks the industrial hellscape of such drone work, with “Angelica’s Reflection (slasher sequence).” The monotony, the redundancy, the miserably outdated technology, the slow, painful torture: it’s all here.

“Angelica’s Reflection (slasher sequence)” appears on Nocturnal Dimension, Death Factory’s “first piece of vinyl, running the gamut of all he does, from harsh, long-form noise, to horror-inspired themes, to krautrock/minimal-style extrapolations,” says Wm. Berger, whose Prison Tatt Records will be releasing the LP sometime in the next few months. If you’re looking for some more Death Factory sounds to hold you over until then, check out Chilling Impressions (2011), Maschinen Unter Kontrolle (2012) and Invisible Aggressor (2014).

Jeffrey Alexander

Water Meditations

Jeffrey Alexander is a true head. After following and taping live shows of the Grateful Dead during the 80s, he began making music of his own, forming The Iditarod, Black Forest/Black Sea, and the still active Dire Wolves. He’s played in and toured with a litany of other acts, including his present possition as synth player in Jackie-O-Motherfucker. He also ran Magic Eye Singles, which eventually became Secret Eye Records, and currently hosts a weekly radio show. Oh, and he makes music as a solo artist, too.

On his latest offering, Water Meditations, Jeffrey explores churning swirls of shruti box drones, chord-organ moods, the noisy spices of a cracklebox and synthesizer, and some light acoustical accents from a marimba and psaltery. Each instrument equally contributes for a truly transformative performance, placing the listener’s mind in the clouds, and their soul in the streams.

In a meager edition of 30, pick up a copy of Water Meditations from Self-Help Tapes before they are all gone.

OBA / Nico Niquo


Phinery just dropped a doozy with Vessel. Split between Nico Niquo and OBA, Vessel comes between two lengthy tracks by each artist. Side A is Nico Niquo with “Glass Cypher,” a very patient and calculated shimmer of sounds, waving like a distant mirage, but it’s really just right in your face about it. There’s a story withing “Glass Cypher” that’s detectable, and one must venture this bard’s quest alone, as all outcomes will process the sounds differently, and may even end up sleeping on a pile of bath salts. Who knows!? “Glass Cypher” could be the next Ambien… or straight up calming narcotic. Side B is OBA, who’s “Under A Dark Ray,” which are the black spots one sees after getting knocked in the head too hard. Or hit the duster with too much force. “Under A Dark Ray” is part of the Vessel that takes one-to-know-one, really, harboring such distance and longing (within each note) on a peaceful vibe, streaming a pleasantness that flutters and tampers with listeners’ skulls like the cotton they actually put in some candies. OBA perfectly compliments Nico Niquo in Vessel, both in musical ability, production technique, and overall calming effects that window an audible hallucination throughout. Enjoy the Vessel streaming from Phinery below and head on over for the preorder TODAY:

猫 シ Corp.

Class of ‘84

We’re running up on Thanksgiving which means finals are just around the corner! And if you’re lucky enough to be a sort-of-super senior you’re graduating right after that! Congrats! You don’t want fuck up your finals, though. You probably already did that once or twice since you didn’t walk in the spring, but who’s judging! Here’s a plan on what your post-gluttony, pre-finals dance should look like:

1. Find the library again – it’s cram season and every time you sit at your crumb-covered desk at home you get distracted. Avoid your roommates, video games, and sex ads at the large building located in the center of campus.

2. Find a good seat – it can’t be right next to a window because staring longingly outside at the free, fun-having kids can break a man. Find a desk in clear view of other students in order to obtain the feeling of being looked down upon by everyone else. Motivation and anxiety go hand and hand. And if you’re a break-down-and-cry-er: top floor as far from everyone as possible.

3. Uppers! – now that you’ve found a proper cram seat, it’s time to inhale any and every study drug you can get your hands on. Spare no expense. Your body will hate you, but your mom might not. Hit up your dealers now, because caffeine alone is child’s play. Ravage your stomach and destroy that paper.

Great! Now you’re ready to finally leave college and join the underpaid real world! Is it always sad? Pretty much, yeah! Cheer up, dude, you’re still alive. If worse comes to worst you can Marty McFly with 猫 シ Corp., waterfront dining, luxury elite, ローマンRoman, and the Class of ‘84.


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.