Todd Lerew

Lithic Fragments [excerpt]

Daggg, sleeper hit! I purchased the Tigerbitch and Sudden Oak cassettes off Brunch Groupe and to this Lithic Fragments came too, and it’s way full of win. I mean, to the naked listener, this sounds like being naked listening to music. But if you listen for awhile, closely or not, you’ll hear bends and wobbles, rhythms forming and disintegrating, and tones that’ve always been and never heard. Lithic Fragments is quite the journey through sound and patience. What’s this? Fucking heat into sound? Also, the tape is in foil, so be careful not to scrape it (like I did) on the inside of your portable. Actually, that’s the only problem I see with Lithic Fragments. Other than that, it made my shelf. One. Long. Steady…

• Brunch Groupe:

Culture Dealer

One Hitter Wonders: A Collection of Song Poems [preview]

Ever thought of writing a song for a bunch of lo-fier musicians? Well, this is pretty much it. The project launched in the winter, I believe. On Culture Dealer. Which, I wrote an e-mail to the dude (who’s this dude) when the idea launched, axing him if it’d be solid to write a Chocolate Grinder post for this collection, and then turn the post into a song ON the collection. Awesome idea, right? Your response will be as loud and clear to me as his was. ‘_’ At least he made a solid business model and gave it a slick title: One Hitter Wonders: A Collection of Song Poems. But, I mean, $7 a song, and then it’s sold later as a $5 collection cassette? That’s brilliant. Blows Bored Fortress and split tape clubs out of the water. Feel free to scope what other listeners have to say on One Hitter Wonders: A Collection of Song Poems. Bottom line: it’s a funny idea!

• Culture Dealer:


“Step Right Up”

Back in the hollowed days of 1998, a little band by the name of Sonic Youth played at the Fillmore in San Francisco. Opening for the hallowed indie rock pioneers were these guys — a bay area noise-rock band by the name of rRope. It was their last show, and it’s a damn shame, because the California outfit are experts in the art of taking a little bit of pent-up energy, mixing it with whooshing guitar wails, and unleashing it on unsuspecting eardrums.

“Step Right Up” ditches the fancy effect pedals and amps for what can only be described as the liberation of noise-rock. The neutrino-fast riffs and bare-bones noise do what a $1500 doodad wishes it could, all set to a raging drum beat. It’s a lean track, coming in at two and a half minutes, but it’s enough to whet the appetite of any My Bloody Valentine or Swans fan. Consider it a letter-bomb from the 90s: unapologetic, urgent, and undeniably catchy.

If you’d like to get your hands on more rRope, Deathbomb Arc is offering a limited run of 300 vinyl pressings of the band’s discography over here, and you can read more about it here.

• Deathbomb Arc:

Abusive Consumer

Crumbling Portals [excerpt]

The entire Crumbling Portals cassette is the OST to when I walk away from family or friends going ape-shit on service/retail employees. It’s like when someone a little heavy gets wedged between two things, and you’re thinking, “If only they went on a walk a few times a week, wouldn’t be in this mess.” That’s why I started working out recently. Aggression gets weirder the more stagnant a situation becomes.

Back to this: here is the service/retail employee, and here’s the consumer. Here is one yelling at the other saying, “okay.” Here is the other at the same place 40 hours a week. Here is all the new technology that people have bought up. Here is the empty stockroom shelf. Here is the end of a day. Here is the person this effected the most. Here is the Crumbling Portals cassette from the latest batch on Retrograde Tapes.

• Abusive Consumer:
• Retrograde Tapes:

The Brian Jonestown Massacre

“I Want to Hold Your Other Hand”

It was by listening to an interview with Anton Newcombe that I learned to understand Sir Paul as the real Liverpool genius. (No offense, John.) In the same vein, one eventually learns to recognize Brian Jones over Jagger and over Richards, and to champion Syd Barrett over the rest of the flaccid Floyd. While Anton Newcombe has outraged many, and has evoked the label of puerile, even idiocy, on many fair occasions, the man knows his psychedelia mythology. So now, continuing his craft of overturning Beatles canon, Mr. Newcombe offers us “I Want to Hold Your Other Hand,” the first cut from The Brian Jonestown Massacre’s upcoming album, Aufhebere. The band’s album number 13.

The German name goes along with the Berlin studio where it was recorded, which goes along with the lore of The Beatles’ seminal days in Hamburg. Then, zooming out about 15 years, check out the title of Aufhebere’s track 11: “Blue Order New Monday.” What is this? A compendium of British rock? A hybrid mutant? A druggie’s blurred mind? Maybe! Which means what for this new BJM record? Absolutely nothing, unless it’s good. But hey, the sound of “I Want to Hold Your Other Hand” harkens optimistically to BJM’s earlier, superlative offerings — though not the earliest. (See 1995’s Methodrone, which, I believe, remains one of the best shoegaze albums of all time.) There’s a thread here that ties it all together, but for now just listen, and when you find that thread, give it a good hard tug. [via Consequence of Sound]

• The Brian Jonestown Massacre:
• ‘a’ Records:


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.