ƒ sj J¶JF : Pq​~​; ?​?​?​/​a​/​a/ J#​(​. . a a9

Bilking blind devils with an immediacy that would make a fruit fly jelous, the man behind the infamous Susan Balmar project and way too many others to count is at it again, already. This time he’s performing under the moniker of /f, and it appears he’s still minding his S’s and P’s, and glowing with the hard work of sour-mash finger play. Then again, the 404 might be tucked out of sight. I completely doubt that, being that tape-echo quivers and his signature vocal sample "signum" (not his recent album on Beer on the Rug, but the Latin equivalent of "sign") are both present. On the other hand, with what the album description says (I guess?), all of this harmonious derangement could in fact be the product of just software. This is 100% unlikely in my mind, but there are never firm answers with the man. Obscurity isn’t just employed with Balmar: it is Balmar (peep the color choices/fact that none of the other artists exist online/lengths of time the releases stick around (already three gone, to my count) on the labels’s Bandcamp).

The other releases on said label — the newly emerged Psalmus Diuersae, which is Latin for "different song" (looks like somebody might be headed to a seminary with all this Latin being thrown around!) — all have his vibe, but appear to be the works of other artists. Does this matter, though? Of course not. In this realm, questions only need to be asked; never answered. Personally, I hope they are the products of different people — contemporaries getting light and whatnot — but such things are moot at this point.

What does matter is the vital now-ness of ƒ sj J¶JF : Pq​~​; ?​?​?​/​a​/​a/ J#​(​. . a a9. As soon as something is recorded, played, heard, etc, it becomes the past, so one might as well move on. Well, with that said, repeated listener that I am/we are, this is some of the densest Balmar related work to date, needing ample time and the aid of his past material to help be absorbed. But even though these tracks are basically roughage, and will take time to truly be appreciated, please do and try to keep up, ‘cause everything is about to change again… probably.

• Susan Balmar: http://susanbalmar.tumblr.com
• Psalmus Diuersae: http://diuersae.bandcamp.com

Dark Twaine

“Choice & Consequence”

Dark Twaine, you mother YOU! How’d you know i been had that deadly sweet tooth? Done gone and melted my goddamn gums off with this swank, vibey goodness. It’s like i ingested some holistic Lean mix, conjured up by some gully-ass street shaman. And it’s got me all like YESSS.

By the way, I’m pretty sure Dark Twaine is none other than the young beat-God himself, Ohbliv. I know right, what a G; the absolute embodiment of prolificacy. So start perusing the man’s soundcloud: it’s chock full of that DT dopeness, plenty of them organic, dank-drenched loops and hypnotic head-knockers for you and yours to enjoy.

• Dark Twaine: http://darktwaine.bandcamp.com


“Sunburned Kids”

Is Excepter going the route Animal Collective should have gone with their pop? I mean, AnCo got MAD side-release swag still, but Excepter is really flippin’ for real on “Sunburned Kids.” Shit, it’s like a mesh of routes musicians should’ve taken (Boards of Canada, Dan Deacon, Gang Gang Dance), but failed to or broke up before taking (Raccoo-oo-oon). Dare I even say Swans? LOL Never-the-less, fuck Excepter rulez hard.

Kinda disappointed I missed Excepter this past Saturday with my pal Seth at Body Actualized. Even though that place is peaceful by day, it’s like LOADS of anxiety for me at night. Although, I figured Excepter would have melted all that away. And considering “Sunburned Kids” is becoming my favorite summer jam this year – complete with woofer flaring bass, warped vocals wrapped in tape, lingering haunted moaning, and DAT BASS(!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!) – every time I click back to this YouTube tab to click REPLAY, I start to nod a bit different upon each new listen. Sorta like Excepter’s first jam “Maids,” but way more… seasonal!

A while back, I was listening to Excepter’s Tank Tapes CS from Fuck It Tapes in my Grams’ attic smoking LOUD and this side-A bit came one with stretched and slowed-down vocals that made me turn it off and leave it up there since. I just can’t. I bugged out and threw the player. Thus, Excepter still holds my fear entombed in an abandoned Walkman buried by fiberglass padding somewhere in Port Washington, NY.

So, as you can tell, I’m shitting myself both outta excitement and terror for Excepter’s new album Familiar this summer on BLAST First (petite). It can take it’s time, as there is no set-date for the release, ‘cause I’ma make a mess either way, you-know you-know. “Sunburned Kids” is above and was directed by the infamous Laid Eyes/

• Excepter: http://www.excepter.net
• BLAST First (petite): http://www.blastfirstpetite.com

Black James

Mountain Boy

A banjo is propped up against knotty pine panelling. Dawn is a beat away, but time is paralyzed. Natural light has limited access in the cabin; the banjo is in near darkness. Unexpectedly, a power strip kicks on, filling the cabin with LEDs, lasers, and backlights. Various animistic objects come into view. The lasers scan over the eclectic collection, 77 minutes of ups and downs. Black James, their owner, names each object: “MATURE NATURE KARAOKE,” “GASOLINE RODEO DISCO,” “KNOCK OUT GANG,” etc. They are cosmetic at first glance, like well-designed bottles of booze. But, once they are neatly sipped, things get spirited.

Black James’ adoration of retro gloss is genuine (not nostalgic). Her customization of the mainstream is personal (not commercial). One suspects that the seemingly neglected stringed instrument, propped up against the pine and overshadowed by the dazzling light display and color-soaked electronics, is at the root of the songwriting / ecology; it is out of focus but remains in the center of the frame. From artifice comes Earth, spitting dirt out from the tape deck. A plastic Earth with a feature-length life, mixed, as its orchestrator declares, “TIL IT SOUNDS RITE COMIN OUTTA MA BOOMBOX.”

• Black James: http://blackjamesmusic.tumblr.com

Web of Sunsets

Gin Tapes

Today is going to be just about me. I may share it with a few people. They helped me devise a list of things to do. Today we’re going to do things we’ve never done before but have always talked about doing when we run ‘em by on the way to other things.

In a place we’re going nowhere/ In a place we think we know

We went to the haunted house where the red weed-flowers grow in front. The front porch wraps around to the back of the house. The floor caves in there… when you pointed the flashlight at it two raccoons came rushing out of the floorboard teeth and escaped into the sunroom window before I plugged ‘em with the Daisy. There is a cone of light from a tree poking its head through the ceiling. Its eyes are branches are telescopes that blast yellow light into the sunroom and turn everything old and kill it. Kill the damn raccoons too, probably later. We aren’t going to wait around.

Before we left we lay in the lawn of red flowers (they were pink up close) and you hummed something. But I could hardly hear it.

I could hardly hear anything except a gentle strumming coming from underneath the flowers. I don’t know how long I was asleep for, but I woke up with an ball jar in one hand and the Daisy in the other, and you were long gone. Even the angelic impression you left behind had almost risen. It could’ve been years.

Gin Tapes by Web of Sunsets is out NOW via End of Time Records, so listen below and catch ‘em on tour immediately. If you missed em, you’d better catch up!

• Web of Sunsets: http://webofsunsets.bandcamp.com
• End of Time Records: http://endoftimerecords.com


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.