“Full Claw Lunar Surface”
Firstly: YEAHHHH !!! [はいいいいいいい !!!]
Had to get that off my chest. Gezan inspires me to get the F off of my bony A, get into the pit, and try to love someone. Across years of incendiary live performances, the Japanese noise lords / bar band from hell / death squad has amassed a cult following, and count Ruins mastermind Tatsuya Yoshida, Melt Banana shred god Ichirou Agata, and Acid Mothers Temple honcho Kawabata Makoto among their vocal advocates. The press copy for their upcoming album It Was Once Said To Be A Song, due March 25 from the ever-next-level Important Records, features a quote from Merzbow: “Gezan is awesome.” Uhhhhh ‘nuff said?
Have a listen to album opener “Full Claw Lunar Surface,” premiering below, and prepare yourself for the type of attention-deficit aural assault you’ve been missing since the early days of Boredoms. Gezan merge the scuzzy, DGAF rock aesthetics mastered by DMBQ with interjections of desensitizing harsh noise chaos. The four-piece band slops black paint onto their boxing gloves and rains randomized blows onto the canvas: alien gang vocals, fragments of fierce guitar soloing, a skewed rap verse. They match their grab-bag ferocity with a surreal sense of humor, achieving the balance between entertainment and alienation that makes antecedents like Pop Tatari and Scratch or Stitch such bewildering listens decades after their creation. Show by show, scream by scream, Gezan pushes the institution of Japanese extreme music down into new depths of joyous depravity.
I’ve never seen Gezan live. Maybe you haven’t either. We’re both in luck: the band is currently touring the US. They wrap up their dates with a performance at SXSW on March 12. I’ll be there. Maybe you will too. I’ll be the one howling “YEAHHHH!!” the entire time — be sure to yell “HEY!”
Just at the beginning of the year, toward the end of last year – that weird space between YEAR-END music journalism and “what’s classified as 2013 and 2014” – Starlight Girls popped off this single from their upcoming LP. And “Inhibitionist” is pure hyped indie-psyche meltdown. Like a combination of animal ferocity and spastic rhythmings, Starlight Girls finds the grizzle and eats it first. Shoot, that description is even coming from a vegetarian. I feel that jaw bone ache while listening too. It’s all chewy, and my adult braces are really jocking my swag. But this Friday at Cloudland starting around 8 or 9 – just hit up the Bizarre down the road before hand – (285 Kent’s neighbor), Starlight Girls is going to tare off the roof and uproot the venue to some place more stability underground, outside of the “residential” “waterfront” community of Williamsburg. So, I’m totally down for yuppie mayhem.
Anyhow, be on the lookout for Starlight Girls’ newest LP, and prepare for the shake down! It’s all about the boogie, yo!
Better Off Dread
They say don’t judge a book by it’s cover, and in the world of books that often holds true, but in the world of music many a digger will tell you the exact opposite. In record stores and blogs alike, great cover art is a near necessity. How else can a random record hope to nab the attention of someone fanning the shelves or scrolling the pages in search of something unheard?
Judging from cover art alone, as I was at first, Soopah Eype’s Better Off Dread is definitely worth a spin. Of course, it can’t hurt that Soopah Eype has a name that references Lee Perry and song titles that reference Spawn. Actually, as far as I’m concerned: anthropomorphic imagery + ’70s dub + Image comics = let’s fucking do this.
So I download Better Off Dread, and I listen to it one morning on my way to work, and I’m blown the fuck away. At 24-years old, straight out Portland, OR by way of South Central Los Angeles, Soopah Eype is an imminently quotable MC in possession of an effortless syllabic command the likes of which haven’t been heard since Madvillainy dropped. He’s “Isaac Asimov riding a massive moth,” and his off-the-top game is every bit as thorough as his writtens. It’s nuts … indescribably so.
Streaming below, Better Off Dread is Soopah Eype’s 8th mixtape created with the help of producers Steve French and Doogie the Lion. Together, the three form a crew called Plenny Tuff. And that, they are. That, they are indeed.
• Soopah Eype: http://soopaheype.bandcamp.com/
SNOW BEACH VOL. 01
As the cover art suggests, listeners should consider TMCT’s newest release SNOW BEACH VOL. 01 on Bootleg Tapes with a bit of lax and venture. The combination results in a stumbling pathway through alleys and dunes, crystal waters and peaks. There’s a duality to the movement in TMCT’s music here, and it definitely walks the pathway of both rough and smooth. It’s as if SNOW BEACH VOL. 01 is conscious of every tape player each cassette is being projected out of: considering the density of sound, acoustics of the room, hiss of the reel being magnetized, [brilliance]. Certainly, definition of each sense can be pinpointed and beheld within the reach of TMCT’s ability to mix and master tracks on a nearly seamless level of melt.
There’s a deep magic happening at Bootleg Tapes. They know exactly what you want, have a release for every mood, and haven’t even been around for a full year. And 100-percent NO strange occult or complex AWE factor. It’s straight up a label trying to remain composed with exceptional music and curatively within it’s on mindset and ambition. So grip that new TMCT SNOW BEACH VOL. 01 tape ASAP, ‘cause these tapes always plan on being released to completely sell out. Find out WHY? below:
However distant the notion of international marketing may have been for you previously, you’ve now come to the point of considering whether and how you can put globalization to work in your music. The “whether” part of your inquiry is relatively easy to answer: With the right product packaging, the right distribution tactics, and the right promotion, virtually any musical product should be saleable somewhere outside its home country.
Falling into a restless slumber beneath a tome of managerial fist-pump-prose, you wake up to imagine a world where GRIME was just a $$$-rich synonym for LONDON RAP and Tinchy joined N Dubz full time. This a dream worth fighting, and Ruff Sqwad are back on hand to nail hard, crisp tunes into Grime’s empty coffin.
“Prince” inverts the Biggie Smalls genre of hip-hop dream sequences, so instead of an expansive fuck you to the neighbours and teachers who couldn’t see any potential, Prince (not you Prince!) shows himself still at school, still grafting, still proud of his East London estate, still affirming Grime’s DIY collective ethos. The track is full of inversions, toying with tropes about hard upbringings, calling for dancefloor passivism, even reversing Flow Dan’s famous nurse/hearse verse from “Skeng” to more hopeful ends. Checking Zelda’s Swords and Bandicoot’s boundless energy, the video moves through a platform game of daily London life, a super-strength comeback of wit and skank.
Prince Rapid releases his new solo EP Turning Point out March 31 via Ruff Sqwad Records. This follows on from 2012’s crucial White Label Classics, a collation of rare Ruff Sqwad instrumentals from the turn of the millennium.