“With Out Her Hood”
I’m not the kind to wear headphones when I ride my bike. It’s dangerous to fall into the rhythm of a song when your safety depends so heavily on adapting to the rhythms of all the cars and stop lights and holes in the road. The layering of these sporadic rhythms is a soundtrack of its own — the crescendo of buildings and streets falling off into gaps of space allowing cropped pieces of noise and conversation room to play between the layers.
“With Out Her Hood” from the mysterious Sleep Fern, sounds like a field recording from the industrial-laden areas of inner southeast Portland, where only half of warehouses are still used for their intended industry purposes and the other half have been filled with artist studios and music venues. Pieces of mundane conversations breathe in and out between the waves of industrial noise and static bouncing between buildings and the soft guitars echoing out from alleyways and loading docks.
Listen to “With Out Her Hood” below, and buy the tape directly from Sleep Fern.
• Sleep Fern: http://sleepfern.blogspot.com
“A Place Where I Feel Calm”
Don’t try to ask me why this band is called 2muchachos instead of, oh, I don’t know, “Tres Friendos,” since there’s three of them. It makes even less sense given that they’re from Cherepovets, Russia. Anyway, these fellas have been doling out little gems over the past couple of years (a free EP here, a full-length CD over there, another free EP back over here, etc.), and now they have a fresh long-player on the way. Here’s a snuggly preview, a track with some chilly vocals wrapped in a blanket of intertwined guitar melodies amid a wooshy backdrop that is altogether super gorgeous (how typical, you muchachos, you):
No real release details have yet been shed by the band for the new album, but this track is also gently nestled into a lovely compilation of home-made Russian music called Be My Friend Again & Again from Russian Adults.
• 2muchachos: http://2muchachos-stuff.blogspot.com
“Ignore Dub” / “Molle”
A couple years back in a land far, far away (Canada), Constellation released an impeccable 3LP set called Musique Fragile 01, which featured full-length albums by the likes of Khôra, Nick Kuepfer, and Les Momies De Palerme. But we’ve since been spoiled by the label’s historical warfare and animal-tonguing, and so we wanted more. More albums, more sets, more everything.
And now Constellation seems to in fact be giving us everything they’ve got. Having already released several stellar albums this year (particularly Tindersticks’ The Something Rain), the Montreal label is set to release the second volume in the Musique Fragile series. And it looks SEXY. The set will be available as a digital bundle and as a limited-to-500, 180-gram vinyl box, featuring customized jackets for each record, three pull-out posters, and a screenprinted slipcover box, all hand-assembled and designed. And, of course, there’ll be music too, with albums by Pacha (percussionist/composer Pierre-Guy Blanchard, member of Black Ox Orkestar and Land of Kush), Hangedup & Tony Conrad (Hangedup is Montréal duo of Eric Craven and Gen Heistek; Tony Conrad is a god), and Kanada 70, the project of Toronto’s Craig Dunsmuir (Glissandro 70).
Check out Constellation’s mix of two tracks from Kanada 70’s entry, titled Vamp Ire. The two songs, “Ignore Dub” and “Molle,” showcase Kanada 70’s ability to go from serene, elongated stretches of atemporal drone to dissonant, fractured loops without losing aesthetic cohesion. Listen closely. This is music for the blood-sucking, for the unscrupulous extortionist, for the reanimated corpse:
Dawning the Image name as a solo affair, Scott Davis shit out deuce new tracks at the beginning of this month. Here’s the B-side track, “The Captain,” which — along with the A-side — was recorded in Scott’s home studio. And good for him, you know. Because fuuuuuuuuuuuck know’s we all just want to give up. It’s just all so fucking distant and never there. Quasi-ritual shit always making itself known and known, and nobody cares no more. Existence isn’t this or that. Existence is the word existence matched with whoever else cares about it or, or… It’s just distant. Distant in nature. Never there in reality. Constantly badgering thought. Pulled ashore by “The Captain,” he mouths to your mouth, and you mouth out water. Laying there on your side, you don’t reach out or ask for anything; you just feel like molding to the surface and staying stagnant forever.
• Images: http://www.images.bandcamp.com
E-40 (ft. Kendrick Lamar, Droop-E)
“Catch a Fade”
If you’ve ever wondered what it’d be like if E-40 ran Fight Club, it’s your lucky day: the legendary Bay Area MC has unveiled his shadowy new clip for “Catch a Fade,” featuring Kendrick Lamar and Droop-E (who, by the way, just so happens to be E-40’s son). There’s lots of boxing, lots of smoke, and lots of glaring light. But best of all is the track itself: Lamar’s snaky, monotone flow is the perfect partner to E-40’s more theatrical style. It would have been cool to see the rappers taking part in the brawls, too — seeing E-40 go to town on some poor fool would be too awesome for words — but the video and the song makes it clear that these three rappers are on a different level entirely.