Dope Body

“Weird Mirror”

Being from Baltimore, you get used to the same conversational points of reference. Crab cakes. The Ravens. The Wire. Occasionally, someone who’s done their reading will astutely mention that the indie gods of Animal Collective went to school in the area or that Tupac actually attended the Baltimore School of the Arts (alongside Jada Pinkett-Smith, just in case you were wondering). But Charm City probably isn’t going to come up in a conversation about killer up-and-coming punk bands. That is, until now.

Dope Body is the best noise rock outfit representing Baltimore right now, and possibly one of the best things to come out of the area since Dan Deacon’s trippy electronics. “Weird Mirror,” from their upcoming punk salvo Natural History (out May 22 on Drag City), is proof of that: you’ve got your ripping, chugging riffs; lyrics about cigarette hypocrites; and a feverish, Mission of Burma-esque feel throughout. It’s a tune metalheads and fist-pumping lacrosse bros (for whatever reason, two of Maryland’s largest musical constituencies) can come together and rock out to — and that’s how you know it’s great.

• Dope Body: http://dopebody.tumblr.com
• Drag City: http://www.dragcity.com

aaronmaxwell

“sunsets”

Astro Nautico, the label responsible for putting out solid releases by howse, Time Wharp, Kuhn, Obey City, and Paul Jones, recently dropped Atlantics: Vol. 2, a beastly (and free) 41-track compilation of bass-heavy dance tracks, suffocated hip-hop, and ethereal bathdub constructions. Each morning this week, I’ll pick one of my favorite tracks, so you can start your day off astronautically.

In less than one minute, aaronmaxwell takes you absolutely nowhere with “sunsets.” Which is why I love this track. This cut is so laid back you feel like any momentum you might have — while dancing, walking, fucking, whatever — is canceled out by its dragging aesthetic. aaronmaxwell recently released a nine-track album called Dianetics. Stream it at his Bandcamp and/or download it here. Then come back here and listen to “sunsets” again.

• aaronmaxwell: http://islandofcool.bandcamp.com
• Astro Nautico: http://astronautico.com

Padang Food Tigers

Ready Country Nimbus [album stream]

Now this is how I like my folk: not closed-off in some stuffy studio, but outside getting some fresh air. The sound of Ready Country Nimbus, the latest LP from the London ambient-folk duo, is steeped in nature: rain, bird chirps, and waterfalls permeate the fog of droney acoustics, with flourishes of bells and banjos. The taut two- to three-minute running times keep the relaxing mood from veering into the purgatory of monotony, and the absence of vocals allows the lush instrumentation to seep into every last crevasse of your skull. Put this on, slip two cucumber slices over your eyes, and get ready for one of the best musical relaxation experiences to be had.

• Padang Food Tigers: http://www.myspace.com/padangfoodtigers
• Bathetic: http://www.batheticrecords.com

Alphabets

“oceangun”

This treepunk shit is chaining itself up, ain’t it? I mean, totally in a good way. It’s super jovial and serious-mustache-face all at once. Like how T-buggs blends cute pop with grime. Are Alphabets leading a new craze? Hopefully not. Hopefully they can solely make it they’s own thing. For awhile now, I’ve had this idea that modern literature is defined in and of itself. Thus, something is only considered literature if it has to be adapted into another form of art, opposed to just copy and pasting. Maybe. But this applies to music too. Lil B got his corner of hip-hop. Lieven is poppin’ off his own style of field recording. Alex be drippin’ them mixes. Alphabets, please keep it leafy and punky in a fashion that nobody will dare try repeating, please.

• Alphabets: http://alphabets.bandcamp.com

Time Wharp

“Busy G”

Astro Nautico, the label responsible for putting out solid releases by howse, Time Wharp, Kuhn, Obey City, and Paul Jones, recently dropped Atlantics: Vol. 2, a beastly (and free) 41-track compilation of bass-heavy dance tracks, suffocated hip-hop, and ethereal bathdub constructions. Each morning this week, I’ll pick one of my favorite tracks, so you can start your day off astronautically.

My first pick? Time Wharp’s “Busy G.” I love this song with a passion. Hell, I love Time Wharp with a passion. It’s pretty much all sunshine here with “Busy G,” but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s not without the kind of rhythmic complexity that’ll permanently damage the brains of kids aged 0-6 . Listen to it. Think about it. Do something to it.

• Time Wharp: http://timewharp.com
• Astro Nautico: http://astronautico.com

  

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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.