This is a confession. I went to a local Björk dance tribute show put on by Chicago choreographer Kasey Foster yesterday with zero expectations. Two things: I’ve lived twenty-four years and am afraid of everything because anxiety is weird [Editor’s Note: YES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!]. But this crowded dance tribute show was different: it was religious. Absolutely, I was shivering with fear, but that doesn’t matter since the show was in honor of Icelandic royalty Björk, who – until I sat down and watched the Spike Jones-directed “Triumph of a Heart” last month – I simply knew her as a pop enigma and not as the only modern wonder of the world. It’s was like searching for the answer when it was being suggested by everyone you know and influenced by; everything coming out of your half-working car stereo. I can’t ask forgiveness, but, Björk, if you’re hearing this over whatever MC Ride is yelling to you about, I am offering LLLL as penance.

They’re this heavy, driving j-gaze meets j-pop crew based in Tokyo who put an apt-titled stream of Paradice up on emerging internet-via-California label Zoom Lens. If you’re feeling it, Björk, you can preorder the debut full-length here. Please, you are a queen.

ILY Björk.

• LLLL: https://soundcloud.com/lllltokyo
• Zoom Lens: http://zoom-lens.org

Auburn Lull


What in relax’s name is this? Oh, perfect. Not only is the musician/band title Auburn Lull, but the release title is Hiber. As well, it’s on the label Geographic North (a.k.a. FUCKING COLD). So they covered all their thematic basis via name-sake to match sound. Again, perfect!

And what a better time to get frosty and lax’d than end-of-Spring-and-into-Summer. Legit, this tape will reel nicely anywhere outside on a humid or muggy or scorching or just-right day out. Tongue frozen synth licks that stick for such a length of time, you begin to wonder where the pole begins and your mouth ends.

Specifically, this release reminds me of the winter ghosts that follows me around on summer nights when things get JUST a bit to chilly and I do nothing about it but wrap myself in a blanket and call it a tee-pee. So skrill up some wampum for Hiber by Auburn Lull via Geographic North ASAP, and scope the stream of it below as you wait:

• Auburn Lull: http://www.auburnlull.com
• Geographic North: http://geographic-north.com

Blind Thorns

“A railway diversion”

When you picture a “power trio,” what comes to mind? For some, the term may conjure up a skronky nightmare of wailing neo-blues rock or failed teenage garage dreams. Even worse, maybe the term is so evil that it summons that one technicolor robot armadillo on the cover of Tarkus; and, once again, you’re forced to existentially battle against some hidden love for Emerson, Lake & Palmer. Sound familiar? Well, it’s time to put that baggage aside and embrace Blind Thorns – a group that’s probably less of a “power trio” and more of a friendly spar between three martial arts masters. Or it could be chess? Or it could just be a SICK new project featuring a guitarist, a drummer, and a demonically inspired Swiss improvisational vocalist?

The group originates in the musical dialogue between guitarist Shane Perlowin and percussionist Ryan Oslance of the avant-rock group Ahleuchatistas. That band blends both the cerebral and aggressive characteristics of Perlowin’s playing with Oslance’s tendency to use EVERY possible object as a percussive means to a transcendent end. Blind Thorns takes these sonic materials and adds vocalist Antoine Läng – a collaboration that probably has roots in Perlowin’s
knack for crafting impromptu records with some of the world’s great improvisors – among them Tatsuya Nakatani, Jacob Wick, and Läng himself.

Their new track, “A railway diversion,” has the trio incorporating some of Ahleuchatistas more abstract tendencies verbatim; however, the guitar and percussion take more environmental roles that help propel Lang’s wild howls in ecstatic directions. It’s a slow takeoff, but once Oslance’s preliminary chain-swinging grows into a driving, skittering rhythm the whole thing ascends beautifully.

Check out the track below and get hyped on their self-titled full-length LP and CD (preorder) out late July on New Atlantis Records.

• Blind Thorns: https://soundcloud.com/blindthorns
• New Atlantis Records: http://www.newatlantisrecords.com

Dolphin Tears

Respawn Heaven [excerpt]

The afterlife can be a bitch, maybe. -Err, who knows, really. Luckily, Dolphin Tears has ripped up a new bit of sonic blunders and wonders for y’all to contemplate on while reloading through Respawn Heaven. Think hard, though, on when YOUR Respawn Heaven exists. My best guess at mine is when I’m dreaming, right? That’s the PG version of my interpretation of WHEN that exists in my life. Maybe when I’m drunk and/or blasted beyond the point of keeping my eyes open. Fuck that, maybe it’s deeper. It’s possible that Respawn Heaven is just the limbo we’re currently in as humans. Or, something as trite as flipping the damn tape itself.

Though the title is one thing, the music on Respawn Heaven is a complete different being/world. It surpasses every tape you find esoteric at the thrift store, and takes a dimensional leap into a place similar to our universe: there are no corners or edges or end, just a constant mish-mash of new found objects colliding or existing entirely on their own. Thus is the case for MOST Dept Tapes. And them snagging Dolphin Tear’s for Respawn Heaven has brought them Mexican sons-of-guns to next level label shit, that hasn’t faltered since DT01.

Grip Respawn Heaven by Dolphin Tears on Dept Tapes ASAP, as it’s limited to 30, along with a new tape by Mother’s Breast and a split tape by Monte and Magnétophonique

• Dolphin Tears: https://soundcloud.com/departmenttapes
• Dept Tapes: http://departmenttapes.tumblr.com


Absence of Shitperson

Where did Shitperson go? Find out in the critically acclaimed documentary Searching for Shitperson. Just kidding, but anyway, here a compilation of previously used instrumentals from Richmond-based LIL UGLY MANE. Although the ALL CAPS, deliberately obscure song titles, and strange mythology of said MANE’s Bandcamp are highly reminiscent of one Dem Hunger’s deranged, shell shocked, and hysterical persona, the instrumentals together on display like this – in contrast – are stunningly smooth and trappy; the work of a capable producer who merely wears a mask of madness.

• LIL UGLY MANE: http://liluglymane.bandcamp.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.