M AX NOI MACH
Much Like Blake’s “The Tiger,” plenty is left unanswered in “Creeper Sits.” Who is the Creeper? What’s his name? “Why is the man so gentle and quiet?” What’s in the garbage bag?
However, the mysteries of this brief character study need not be solved or elaborated upon, for M AX NOI MACH’s lyrics satisfy as they stir the listener with their brevity and salt. His night poetry glows in the dark at vaudevillian three-sheet size; it peels off from the steel under Market-Frankford’s El.
Where does the Creeper sit “looking at the girls in dresses?” At a bus stop? On a park bench? His front stoop? Behind a home computer? A television set? In the “Other Side of a Mirror” (where we find Coleridge’s Creeper: “ And in her lurid eyes there shone / The dying flame of life’s desire”)?
No more time for questions. We’re hooked, not only by the lyrics and red rhythm, but by the stark setting and choreography of this music video. In a bare basement, with force and animation, sometimes shirtless and always sincere, our narrator and his shadow interpret, sing, stomp, flail, and flex in sync with the dingy industrial and darkly merry music. When we are informed of the Creeper’s “squinting eyes,” we ourselves must squint to see the narrator, as he leans behind video8 grain and lo-watt lighting.
The masterful visuals, harmoniously in-tune with the music, are as nude as anatomy on a disk spinning in a zoopraxiscope. The editing keeps pace with the song’s throb; the zombie convulsions are captured and looped, cut with the shadowy singer’s recitation.
We see, we feel, but we never know.
Stuck in it; not knowing how to get out of it. Loaded up docks and packaged parcels might as well be past thoughts. How told can a story be before it loses meaning? Gettin’ good and lost with this one. Let those snaps snap and that buried kick kick. Hued like a two-toned shadow, these burnt snow globes eat polished dust for breakfast. Sorry, I just sniffed some glue. Anywho, what I was saying is this is goody goody, all drenched in the transformative power of loops, gutted of TRUE surprise, replaced with the comfort of familiarity and all the glory of minor shifts. Type of shit to remind you of being reminded. Water erodes the outer layer, but still leaves signs and traces. Memories collect. Hard to escape.
So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past…
Edition of 15 cassettes on Scenic Rhythms.
Two times Sontag Shogun on TMT 2014, now. And they just continue to crush it. “Jubokku” sounds a lot like Mpala Garoo mashed up with some Lucky Pierre sonics. As well, they sent me a wonderful press release on the track, including a description of their creative process, which is interesting, and how they changed from their original melodic sound to what we hear now, especially in “Jubokku.” Read a brief bit on it below:
[The narrative of] “Jubokko” lent us the imagery from which the album’s title came forth. It is both literally and figuratively the centerpiece of this album. We composed the tune around my newfound ability to accurately bend a sine-wave oscillation between F and Eb. This modulation whistles out eerily across a landscape of tones, then leads into the stasis-inducing introduction of a low-octave F, recalling the natural blanketing of nightfall. When the oscillations arrive again to complete the piece, entrenched in darkness, something sinister has awoken. The Jubokko in Japanese folklore, is a “Vampire Tree,” a youkai tree which grows upon former battlefields and nourishes itself on the blood of dead warriors. Thus, dictating the composition of this piece. - Sontag Shogun & Charlotte Hornsby
Personally, my creative mind stirs as a listener to this piece as a practice in patience. There are incredible sounds that spiral around “Jubokko” in a reoccurring way, and waiting for these sounds and sifting through others, makes the waiting game seem WAY more rewarding that a traffic jam clearing. The same is extremely well represented in the visuals of the video for “Jubokko.” It all revolves around the viewer trying to and then figuring out what they’re witnessing, as is the same with the sounds they hear. In a contemplative way, Sontag Shogun has metamorph’d into a being of pure imaginative journey, and their newest album Tale, featuring “Jubokko,” is exactly that in CD form via Palaver Press, CD form UK style via Luau Records, and Ricco Label just popped it off on CD yesterday, so GRIP!!!!!
TeenWitch copped it harsh outchea (ahem, Fantano), it was straight up scolded on some no-mercy shit by some, even reg’ SESH devotees were calling the mixtape out. I liked it for the most part, it certainly wasn’t on that CREEP level or that SCUMBAG level (2013 instaclassics), but i fucked with it.
Garbage aint garbage though, even if it is destined for Fantano’s recycle bin. There’s plenty o’ niceness on this thing, like that rare Spooky Black feature and that kitsch as fuck (in a tight way) Jayyeah beat. Bones and Xavier Wulf revisit that “Moshpits” energy again on “Trash,” which is pretty neat. But by far the most lively moment on Garbage is when your boy Kenshin Chris Travis comes through DOLO with that nasty, auto-tuned Godliness — each syllable like a liquid bullet straight through your cerebellum. Scoop it up here and/or stream it below:
Darq E Freaker
Darq E Freaker is a great moniker! It’s one of those names that’s got electronic musicians everywhere feeling down about their own monikers. It may even be the kind of moniker that induces weird power dynamics between beat-folk, perhaps making them realize that they are behind in the beat-race. How powerful is your beat name? Probably not as powerful as Darq E Freaker, who will win in a moniker fight, hands down. Also, he’d probably win in an actual beat-fight because “Minger” is an absolute HEAVYWEIGHT banger.
The video, directed by london-based graphic designer and filmmaker Sally Sibbet, is completely brutal and chock-full of traditionally “heavy” imagery – we got skulls, maggots, snakes, dark cloaks, and all kinds of things that appear to be bleeding uncontrollably. This is all (you know) dark stuff similar to the moniker of our new friend, Darq E Freaker. At first glance, it’s all definitely cool and definitely disturbing. You will like this video if 1) you’re down with visual vibes heavy on club-nihilism and horror, 2) if you dig distilled gallery aesthetics with a dash of DIY flair, or 3) if you totally feel mean, swaggy art-beats with drops popping off all over the place. Others might feel uncomfortable or bad because they don’t like those kinds of things, or because this vid might be NSFW (ha)?
Look, what I’m really trying to say is that depending on your tastes, you’ll either like this video, or not like this video (no way). But my vote is for loving it because it’s a wild ride ^_^.
BTW NSFW? NSFW (NOT-SAFE-FOR-WHAT?). Not safe for you? Take a chance…
The video and track are both out now on Numbers.