May 5, 2005  




Marsen Jules
Konono N°1
Não Wave (Various Artists)
The Ponys
Mice Parade
Plainsong (reissue)


Gina X Performance (2 reissues)
The Exposures
Andy Votel (Vertigo Mix CD)
The Raveonettes


AFX (Analord 7)

MAY Sun 08 Mon 09 Tues 10 Wed 11 Thurs 12 Fri 13 Sat 14


Electronica's legendary trailblazers Autechre come to New York City this Sunday, and Other Music is giving away 5 pairs of tickets! You can enter to win a pair by e-mailing Leave a daytime phone number where you can be reached. Winners will be notified by 1:00 P.M. Friday, May 6.

Webster Hall: 125 East 11th St. NY, NY

MAY Sun 22 Mon 23 Tues 24 Wed 25 Thurs 26 Fri 27 Sat 28


Join us at our upcoming monthly party at APT on Tuesday, May 24, when we welcome special guest, Kim Hiorthøy. This well-loved Norwegian electronic producer crafts warm, melodic music utilizing weird beats, lo-fi and leftfield electronics, field recordings, electro-acoustic sounds and samples. We're not sure what surprises he has in store, but it's surely a night not to be missed!

Tuesday, May 24 @ APT
419 West 13th Street NY, NY
9 P.M. to 4:00 A.M.
Open Boru Vodka Bar from 9:00 to 10:00 P.M.







(City Centre Offices)

"Fanes D'Automne"
"Aile D'Aigle"

With Herbstlaub, newcomer Marsen Jules has created the finest electronic record this year. It is a beautiful amalgamation of classical instrumentation and modern electronics, and the results are simply breathtaking. Jules takes pieces from classical compositions such as slow string sections, muted horns, and the occasional piano melody, and builds new loops that rise and swell. Section by section, the layers swirl about one another, in a manner that is simply gorgeous.

The first track, "Fanes D'Automne," is an ambient masterpiece that rivals Wolfgang Voigt's GAS output. Yes, it is that good. As of late, there have been many artists that have combined classical music and electronics--Goldmund, Johann Johannsson and Ryan Teague, to name a few--but Marsen Jules takes it into a whole other realm. This record is a must for any fan of the aforementioned artists or ambient music in general. There has not been a more gorgeous album released this year. By the way, Google his name and you'll probably come across his first two albums that are available as free MP3 downloads. [JS]







$13.99 LP


The Milk of Human Kindness

"Brahminy Kite"

Since his first Manitoba album, laptop-popper Dan Snaith has always been a man about change. Ironically, we're not just talking stylistic change this time. Facing a silly legal threat for trademark infringement from the Dictators' Handsome Dick Manitoba, the Toronto producer returns with a new identity as Caribou, but more importantly, he makes yet another interesting musical transformation.

After trading in the post-IDM abstraction and jazzy textures of 2001's Start Breaking My Heart for the psychedelic-electronic pop of his second full-length, Up in Flames, the evolution found on The Milk of Human Kindness isn't quite as big of a leap this time. Snaith occasionally interjects his dreamy, kaleidoscopic flourishes, but in tracks like "Barnowl" and the seven-minute "A Final Warning," most of the sunny Beach Boy vibes of his last Manitoba album have been replaced by a focused, motorik pulse better suited for a long drive on the autobahn. Snaith also visits another interstellar highway closer to these parts, a road first traveled by NYC's Silver Apples during the late-'60s. In "Brahminy Kite," his sweetly understated vocal melodies closely recall Simeon's, and like the Silver Apples, are cradled by simple bass oscillations and hyper-drum rhythms going in every direction.

Snaith's greatest talent is effortlessly reshaping these aforementioned influences in imaginative ways. "Bees" is a perfect example as he juxtaposes a bluesy guitar riff against a steady Kraut-groove that could have been lifted from Neu!'s "Hallo Gallo." The track quietly unfolds as Snaith's breathy vocal and layers of horns and recorder melodies slowly join in one by one until the song suddenly opens into a playfully percussive, psychedelic jaunt. Tracks like this, as well as the hypnotic folk of "Hello Hammerheads," which is surprisingly straightforward, are everything one had hoped the Beta Band would have achieved with the albums that followed their watershed EPs.

As Caribou, Snaith has successfully blurred the line between electronic music and live band performance, however, that doesn't mean that he's always going to combine the two. The hip-hop bounce of "Lord Leopard," as well as the abstract and funky cut 'n' paste collage of "Pelican Narrows" would fit well on a DJ Shadow or RJD2 record. But these songs also remind us that Snaith is, first and foremost, a very flexible and skilled electronic producer. Identity changing aside, he's well on his way to becoming one of this decade's biggest names in the medium. [GH]







(Crammed Discs)

"Lufuala Ndonga"
"Mama Liza"

Hailing from the Democratic Republic of Congo, Konono N°1 are leaders of a musical movement known as "tradi-modern," a genre that is essentially electrified Congolese music steeped in the ancient traditions of Bazombo trance. This 25-year-old ensemble makes their radical sound out of homemade microphones and instruments assembled from car parts and kitchen equipment. Playing in front of a wall of speakers, this collection of makeshift instruments creates a unique saturation that, while originally not the intent of the band, has become closely associated with their style. In their press sheet for the recently released 12-inch split between Konono N°1 and Dead C. (currently out-of-print but being repressed), FatCat Records points out the unintentional connection between Konono's distorted sounds and modern experimental rock music.

The songs on Konono's Congotronics are more or less built around the ikembe (aka the mbira or thumb piano), an instrument of which Konono N°1 founder Mingiedi is a master. Vocal chants are sung through megaphones and compete with whistles and clanking percussive rhythms, it actually sounds a bit like a traffic conductor leading a marching band of automobiles. Each of the seven tracks begin with a short melodic intro followed by a four-count banged out on a pot or pan; then the tinny din begins. The songs end in a fashion similar to the way they begin, so it's as if there's a continuous sound, rather than seven separate long tracks, allowing a few moments to let their three dancers (and all of us dancing to the CD) rest. Fans of traditional African music as well as experimental rock and electronic music should definitely give this a listen. [CP]







The Further Adventures of Lord Quas
(Stones Throw)

"Closer" Featuring Madvillain
"Bus Ride"
"Raw Addict Pt. 2"

All right kids, gather 'round. Here's a little story....
Once upon time there was a guy named Otis Jackson Jr., who lived in the warm city of Oxnard. Late one night, while the stars sparkled in the California sky, he stumbled upon a box of electronic equipment, a collection of educational, theatrical, soul and psych records, a crate of bootleg DVDs, a forgotten bag of herb, a fresh bag of shrooms, and a post-it note stuck to the sampler saying that "Melvin Van Peebles called." Once Otis consumed the whole bag of shrooms, smoked all the herb, watched the DVDs, and sampled all the records, as well as calling Van Peebles back, something happened. He could only open his eyes about halfway and he began to grow pink fur and a snout. Excited about the transformation, Otis stared at his reflection in a mirror through his half-parted eyes and began to rap. It was here that he noticed a more startling change; his voice was higher pitched, as if he had inhaled a helium balloon. In order to deal with these transformations, he chose the name Quasimoto and took to the streets, butter knife in one hand, sampler in the other, in search of The Unseen. This was in the year 2000 and he has been sought after, and discovered, a few times since then.

First, the producer du jour was spotted wearing his Madlib disguise while hanging out with cohort Chris "Peanut Butter Wolf" Manak. Then he was reported posing as a whole band called Yesterday's New Quintet, looting the vaults of Blue Note Records. Of course, there was his appearance in Detroit, crate digging with James Yancey (aka Jay Dee, aka J-Dilla) as the duo Jaylib, and then he was spotted in London under the name DJ Rels. Most recently he could be found on a surveillance videotape, lifting comic books with the infamous Daniel Dumile (aka MF Doom), the clerk at the store says they used the name Madvillain.

In 2005, Quasimoto has resurfaced with yet another name, now simply known as Lord Quas. He was last seen in public spray-painting "Free Steady B" on the streets outside an area called "The Lost Gates." This is the further adventure of Lord Quas...if you see this man, don't fear, he isn't dangerous, just extremely cerebral, quirky, and skilled. He may appear playful at first, but he means business. Don't try to contain him, just buy a CD or two and let him be on his way. Oh yeah, make sure to ask him if he has anymore of his hip-hop and jazz mix CDs....

If you think this review is a mind twister, try listening to Quasimoto's new full length The Further Adventures of Lord Quas, then attempt to explain it to someone. All I can say is: RECOMMENDED! It is his most ambitious, challenging, out there, and enjoyable work to date. Weirder than anything you could have dreamt of. If you like Edan's psychedelics, you don't know the half of it.... hear for yourself. [DG]






Não Wave / Various Brazilian Post-Punk 1982-1988

"Sobre as Pernas" Akira S & Garotas Que Erraram
"Teu Ingles" Fellini

Just when I thought I had Brazilian music all figured out, Man Recordings drops the mind-boggling bomb, Não Wave, a compilation of Brazilian post-punk from 1982 to 1988. The CD starts off with the self-named track by Agentss, who, according to Alex Antunes (one of this collection's compilers), were the band that basically jumpstarted the Brazilian post-punk scene with their 1982-released single. What follows is a series of tracks haunted by eerie synthesizers, warped sounds that hint at psychedelic influences, and continuous jolts of energy. It would be easy to mistake this for a compilation of British or German post-punk, but the Portuguese vocals and occasional Latin guitars add unique warmth to the often icy genre. One of the standout tracks, Fellini's "Teu Ingles" is a bilingual song set to a samba beat--similar to the electro-samba that France's Antena were making during roughly the same time period. Recommended to anyone interested in exploring the more obscure facets in Brazil's multi-dimensional music scene. [CP]







The Wedding

"Run Through My Hair"
"The Eiger"

Brooklyn's Oneida return for their seventh record, and if you've kept up with their career, there's always a surprise in each one. The Wedding is no different. After the abrasive, monolithic psych slabs from 2002's Each One, Teach One and last year's slightly less assaultive, yet no less astounding, Secret Wars, The Wedding opens up with a slew of strings on "The Eiger." That's right, the trio has gone all sweet and romantic on us, singing songs about walking through Prospect Park and even opting to croon instead of shout. It's as close to a twee pop record as they may ever get, and fulfills the weird Flaming Lips-like promise of their Nice./ Splittin' Peaches EP from earlier this year. Call it their Hit to Death in the Future Head album.

The backstory goes that the structure of the songs correlate to an enormous music box built in their practice space. You won't hear the prodigious contraption here, but the ponging bass, churning drums, and off-kilter melodies ought to give you a good idea of what that monster sounded like. Their patented stuttering, cycling riffs and rhythms are still in abundance, just smoothed around the edges. Perfect for spring in the park. [RB]










"Men of Station"

Queue for Love
(Morr Music)

"Bunco" Featuring Matilde Davoli
"My Winter Vacation" Featuring Dose One

As if the Notwist and Anticon's Themselves were not sufficiently genre-bending, frighteningly broad-mined pop experimentalists when left to their own devices, the two artist consortiums decided to get together and form some sort of ear-tweaking supergroup, and now we give you 13&God. Almost exactly the sum of its parts, the record joins two distinct, yet not opposing aesthetics: Notwist's lovely brand of melancholy, with buzzes, scrapes and pops coalescing into sad grooves, and gently stroked piano keys, plucked banjo and haunting brass and string orchestrations that support Markus Acher's warm and cool vocal delivery, and Themselves' acid-drenched almost-hip-hop, with double-time double-talk folded into unlikely gurgling grooves. For a record with so much ambition and such a deep, vexing catalog of influences, the most surprising aspect is that the album actually works, and the majority of twists and turns we are taken on lead the listener not just someplace new, but someplace rather nice. Years ago the Notwist pioneered a pop-electronica hybrid that has since become commonplace, and the Anticon crew have pushed the boundaries of leftfield hip-hop since well before the charts beckoned freaky b-boys one and all. 13&God may not break any radical new ground that these artists have not already tread, but it broadens their palette and reaffirms that these musicians can never be painted into a corner.

Dose One of Themselves also pops up on the new Populous album on Morr Music, another record that blends samples, live playing, pop, electronica and hip-hop grooves. But while 13&God are pop songsmiths beneath their layers of obscuring sound, Populous' Andrea Mangia seemingly aims for an inviting display of sonic wallpaper. The production fits the now classic Morr formula, with lovely, almost intentionally forgettable songs that blend into a hazy dreamscape. Dose One's track, plus a couple of nice ones featuring Matilde Davoli's charming Laetitia Sadier impression, give the record just enough momentum to keep things interesting without waking us from the dream. [JM]







Celebration Castle
(In the Red)


Who let the Ponys out of the garage? Although Laced With Romance, the Ponys' debut, hinted at a mild Richard Hell and solo-era Johnny Thunders obsession, it was mostly all Stonesy-swagger and loud bombast. Nothing wrong with that, but it was the poppier moments ("Fall Inn" and "I Only Love You 'Cause You Look Like Me," in particular) that made Laced With Romance such a solid record. On Celebration Castle, the Ponys kick most of the '60s habit and fully embrace the two Richards, Hell and Lloyd. I'm not sure how much of an influence the producer, Steve Albini, had on this record, but the band sounds stripped down and raw, yet melodic and shimmering. The guitars chime instead of crunch, and clang like trashcan lids instead of going chug-chug-chugga.

While the Ponys might lift and borrow freely from the old history book of rock 'n' roll, they do it with such smarts and confidence that it hardly matters. Highlights include "We Shot the World," a song seemingly borrowed from the early-'80s Manchester songbook, the Velvets-y "Shadow Box" and the us-against-the-world anthem "I'm With You"; "Are you afraid to seem retarded?", they ask, in that patented nasal vocal style, over a guitar that wouldn't be out of the place on the first Orange Juice album. Garage purists will hate this record. Thank the Ponys for that. [AK]







Bem-Vinda Vontade
(Bubble Core)

"Nights Wave"
"The Days Before Fiction"

With every album, Adam Pierce redefines and even challenges what Mice Parade fans have grown to expect from his solo project. Though friends like June of 44/HiM's Doug Scharin and Dylan Cristy of the Dylan Group (who Pierce also drums with) are consistent contributors to both live and recording incarnations, Pierce is the primary instrumentalist, and you can hear him spreading his musical wings further and further with each album. Since day one, Mice Parade's sound has been one of continual change, moving from tightly drummed, textured post-rock and electronic instrumental improvisations, to more focused, song-oriented forays like last year's breezy Obrigado Saudade.

While Mice Parade has always shown more of a folk and Eastern slant than say fellow post-rockers Tortoise, who are more likely to utilize elements of jazz, Bem-Vinda Vontade makes it clear that Pierce's subtle flirtations with South American music and the addition of vocals heard on Obrigado Saudade weren't one-time only experiments. This album also proves to be Mice Parade's most accessible effort to date. That doesn't mean his open, improvisational approach to the songs has disappeared, but Pierce's conversational-toned voice adds an intimacy not heard on their earlier albums.

"Nights Waves" is a perfect example of the exotic, multi-hued excursions to be found throughout Bem-Vinda Vontade. With Pierce and the fairy-voiced Kristin Anna Valtysdóttir (múm) sharing lead vocal duties, the track's airy yearning finally lets loose with an intricate tapestry of nylon-stringed guitars and vibraphone. Then, right when you think it's going to take off, the guitars turn blissful and the song begins a dreamy descent back down to Earth. Thoughtful, lucid, organic yet otherworldly, you can't really apply the clinical post-rock label to Mice Parade anymore, this music is far more personal. [GH]








"Even the Guiding Light"
"The Fault"

From 1968 to 1974, Ian Matthews was arguably the hardest working-man in folk-rock. During that time period, he was featured prominently on at least 12 albums, including the first two records by the legendary Fairport Convention. After quitting that group near the beginning of the Unhalfbricking sessions, he formed a great group called Matthews' Southern Comfort. He also released a handful of incredible solo albums, most notably the great 1971 Vertigo release If You Saw Thro' My Eyes, which featured his former bandmates Sandy Denny and Richard Thompson, and the sublime Valley Hi, produced by Michael Nesmith in 1974 after Matthews' emigration to Southern California. It was an apt place for him to relocate.

While many of his fellow British folk musicians were anchored in their own nation's musical traditions, Matthews was magnetically drawn to forms of music from across the pond, as evidenced by the material performed by his short-lived group Plainsong. The band, which existed for most of 1972 and reunited for live performances in the 1990s, had a repertoire that included songs by Jimmie Rodgers, Merle Haggard, Hank Williams, Chris Hillman, and Gene Clark, as well as country standards like "Wreck Of The Old 97" and "I'll Fly Away." Plainsong may have practiced in West London, but their hearts were either in Laurel Canyon or Nashville. Their sound was much closer to Gram Parsons' Flying Burrito Brothers and International Submarine Band than it was to Fairport Convention.

Though they were together for only a year, Plainsong recorded two complete albums, both of which are included on this wonderful two-disc set. The first album, In Search of Amelia Earhart, is centered around the 1930s folk song "Amelia Earhart's Last Flight" and Matthews' original response "True Story Of Amelia Earhart." The second album, which has never been released in its entirety until now, included two songs that were lifted for his Valley Hi album a couple of years later. Aside from the albums, this reissue also includes a whole bunch of radio sessions, live recordings, demos, and singles. For those of you who are really into British folk-rock and Southern California country-rock from the 1960s, the two genres come together perfectly right here. [RH]







Oceans Apart
(Yep Roc)

"Born to a Family"
"Boundary Rider"

With only Robert Forster and Grant McLennan remaining from the original line-up, the Go-Betweens reformed in 2000, after a 12-year break. Only the greatest pop band of the 1980s (yes, better than the Smiths, and just as good as Felt), Forster and McLennan wrote six records during that decade, of which at least five are definite desert island discs. Permeated by an intangible sense of hesitancy and unease, the first two comeback albums (The Friends of Rachel Worth and Bright Yellow Bright Orange, both released on the Jetset label) sadly didn't quite live up to the standard set by the pair in the '80s, but Oceans Apart is a true return to form. With Forster as a literary and humorous Jekyll and McLennan as the dreamy and romantic Hyde, they seem to have finally challenged and whipped each other into shape again.

From the haunting Forster travelogue that is "Here Comes a City," via McLennan's "Boundary Rider" (sounding a bit like a mellower version of "Cattle and Cane" from Before Hollywood), to the swirling finale of "The Mountains Near Delray," this is a 41-minute testimony from a band born anew and on fire.

If Morrissey is the quarry, Forster/McLennan are the diamond mine. Shine on. [AK]





Nice Mover




Nice Mover

"Nice Mover"
"No G.D.M."


Two grails of early decadent, detached, cold, German synth-disco pop, circa '79(!) and '80. Although, it's sort of unfair to call Gina X "pop" since it cut such an imitated template in underground circles, both then and now. (Vocally: ADULT. and Miss Kittin. Stylistically: Appeared as the lead track in Andrew Weatherall's influential Nine O' Clock Drop compilation, plus reissue honors by the Tigersushi label.) In general, the best capsule description of Gina X is: decadent German Grace Jones with disco-Visage production. Vocalist, Gina Kikoine and producer Zeus B. Held created cold and lurching, yet glistening, hedonist disco that was to be in their own words, "the absolute union of music, poetry and travesty." If you wanna experience an actual personality and not just a 'persona' behind the detached female vocal style, look no further than here.

Nice Mover is generally considered the better of the two. It occupies a much more dimly lit room, but still has the dark and slinky Grace Jones groove mentioned earlier. The hits "Nice Mover" and "No G.D.M." (Gina's homage to Quentin Crisp) are on this one. Also killer is the chugging disco jam "Be a Boy" (predating Book of Love's "Boy" by almost 10 years), as well as "Exhibitionism" (another slinky sexplay manifesto) and "Black Sheep" (a prance-disco rally cry for the disaffected). Gina Kikoine's vocal style may have been copied many times over, but her lyrical audacity is hard to touch.

X-traordinaire is a tad more "synth disco" but still vintage enough to remain special. Included are the classics "Striptease," and the arthouse Xanadu epic, "Opposite Numbers." This album also includes a definitive Gina X jam, "Do It Yourself," which presents the most perfect reason to be a masturbation enthusiast: "I can do it myself very well / 'cause I know what I want!" The genuine poppiness and sheen of X-traordinaire" clashes with the subject matter and delivery in way that will make you laugh out loud. (I did.)

Both are classic and essential to listeners ranging from the hipster disco set (you'll play it out) to the Neu Deutsche Welle fan with a funny bone (you'll collect it and secretly love it), to the lingering electroclash torch carrier (this will blow your mind). [SM]







Lost Recordings 2000 to 2004
(Eastern Development)

"Collage of Digital Passion"
"Theme of Ifs and Buts"

Like fellow producer and now label head, Scott "Prefuse 73" Herren, Jan Jelinek (also known as Farben and Gramm) obviously likes a good alias, and he resurfaces here with his Exposures tag. His latest outing on Herren's imprint is a tasty teaser of crackly, loop-driven instrumental compositions that fit right in with the label's roster--past Eastern Development releases include EPs and mini-albums by Daedelus, Dabrye, Eliot Lipp, and AmmonContact. Jelinek has the great talent of being able to construct and deconstruct jazz melodies and sounds (think bell, bass tones, chimes, finger snaps, etc.) into new grooving, hypnotic down tempo numbers.

Unlike his last outing as the Exposures--where he added soft vocal textures to the mix on 2003's La Nouvelle Pauvret--Jelinek strips things down to the most minimal essence; but it is still rich and organic in texture and feel. His glitch-pop/stuttering-melody formula is also utilized to a nicely chilled effect. For those who long for the days when producers didn't need vocalists to hold things together or emphasize ethereal soundscapes, and nothing was better than a bunch of good samples and a thoughtful, sophisticated imagination, these "lost" recordings are for you. Recommended for those old enough to remember and appreciate the mid-'90s. Who says IDM is dead? [DG]







Vertigo Mixed / Various


"The main thing that separated Vertigo from its '70s rock contemporaries seemed to be the unabashed diversity and originality of the music played by groups with fantastic names that neither your friends or parents had ever heard of."
-Andy Votel

Britain's most collectable progressive rock establishment, Vertigo, shattered some serious boundaries and arguably laid the rough drafts for experimentation, exploration, and spearheading of (if not originating) heavy metal, glam, electronica, funk rock, and all things acid, amongst many other categories and subgenres. There is a delicious theatrical mystery surrounding Vertigo, more than anything due to the label's amazingly twisted and wayward musical palette. It was a kind of maniacal library that housed a colorful and dynamic host of artists, that existed somewhat arbitrarily and timeless in the musical gamut of that era. Surreal juxtapositions and soundclashes. A truly freewheeling, psychedelic exploration in sound. There was and still is an aura surrounding the label, from the intangibly epic drama-in-the-air that amalgamated the artists, to the sheer brilliance of Keef Macmillan's bizarre and devastatingly exceptional sleeves and packaging.

So, to be asked to curate a 'best of' Vertigo compilation must be a dream come true... or an absolute nightmare? The adventurous UK-based connoisseur, Andy Votel, definitely vibed on the former--lacking any sort of notion of uncertainty. This is, without reserve, one of the best DJ-style rock mix-tapes, ever, next to his equally cool-as-sh*t mix Songs in the Key of Death and maybe one or two other junk-shop-stylee mixes. Welcome to almost 75 minutes of killer jams including my all time favorite Vertigo cut, Colosseum's "The Kettle," Black Sabbath, Patto, Aphrodite's Child, Juicy Lucy, May Blitz, Affinity, Uriah Heep... amongst many others. These are forgotten, obscuro slices of rock history. Votel approaches these rock tracks as a DJ would, splicing together his favorite parts from his favorite tracks, creating a seamless, heavy rock party mix that echoes the endearing schizophrenia that this magical British progressive rock nest-egg specialized in. It is a paranormally vectored stylizing that is not only apparent through the Vertigo catalog, but also within the dialogue in-between-the-grooves within each unique artist's album. Absolutely amazing! [MT]







Pretty in Black

"Love in a Trash Can"
"Seductress of the Bums"

Call it a gimmick or call it inspiration, either way the Raveonettes make things easy for the reviewer, as for better or for worse they are pretty easy to pigeonhole. Since their inception, the band has reached beyond '80s revivalists, '70s rockers, '60s hippie retreads and fashionable garage influences, back to the simplest, truest rock and roll. The Raveonettes pay homage to that music's purest 1950s roots, with three chords, and three minutes of sex, cars and pop music's liberating force, albeit updated with a lyrical frankness that would surely have blacklisted Buddy Holly.

Pretty In Black, their third full-length, may take a few liberties with the formula (one of these tracks even tops the four-minute mark), but the spirit remains. Produced by the legendary Richard Gottehrer (whose "My Boyfriend's Back" they cover), the record also backs off a bit from the distortion and feedback that had graced their earlier records, and features several acoustic-based, sleepy country crooners. The core duo have also fleshed out their band into a five piece, and are joined by such notable guests as Martin Rev, Moe Tucker, and Ronnie Spector, but the real stars are the simple pop songs and twangy reverb guitar, as the band reaches for a joy and pop simplicity that is long gone, but not forgotten. [JM]








(Young God)

"I'll Be on the Water"

Brooklyn-based quartet Akron/Family are the first band to have an album released on Michael Gira's Young God label in the wake of Devendra Banhart's massive success. On the surface, these four bearded fellows in knit caps look like they probably have a lot in common with the current wave of psychedelic folk revivalists, but they're actually quite different. Sure, there are some flutes and jew's harps in the mix, and their mellowest songs utilize loads of acoustic guitar, but their influences are a bit more all-over-the-map than you might guess.

Their self-titled album actually sounds a little tiny bit like the most recent albums by Radiohead, albeit quite a bit more sparse and with a less extravagant budget. Another comparison that immediately comes to mind is Ugly Casanova, the mostly-acoustic one-off collaboration between Modest Mouse frontman Isaac Brock and his friends from Califone and the Black Heart Procession. The guitar solo on "Suchness" is totally Spiritualized circa Ladies And Gentlemen We Are Floating in Space, and when the strings and chimes come in on "Shoes," the influence of the Flaming Lips' beloved Soft Bulletin album is very much apparent.

At their finest moments, the band will explode into fun full-band singalongs a la the Incredible String Band, accompanied by off-kilter rock guitar stylings similar to those of Captain Beefheart sideman Zoot Horn Rollo. Sound good to you? Well, it is. Introverted, slightly experimental pop with interesting songwriting and well-executed production ideas. [RH]









"Crazy All the Time"

Many are calling 33Hz "New York's answer to Phoenix." That's partly correct, only this band aren't hopping on any music trends from France. They're going straight to the source, crafting glistening disco-pop inspired music, circa 1979 to 1983, that's funky, fun and guaranteed to make the boys jealous when they see their girlfriends shaking their asses!








Analord 7

Richard D. James delivers record number seven in the very anticipated and collectable Analord series. This edition features three tracks: "Lisbon Acid", "Pitcard" and "AFX Acid."




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[RB] Randy Breaux
[DG] Daniel Givens
[GH] Gerald Hammill
[RH] Rob Hatch-Miller
[AK] Andreas Knutsen
[JM] Josh Madell
[SM] Scott Mou
[CP] Carrie Pierce
[JS] Jeremy Sponder
[MT] Mahssa Taghinia

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