#22, DECEMBER 2006



reviews by Reggie Queequeg

Charlie Draheim -- March of the Slimes (no label)
Possibly the burliest looking CDR that I have ever seen. It is packaged in some cardboard spraypainted green, yellow, and black, and is held shut with electrical tape, which ends up getting on the CD itself when you close it... The CD is spraypainted, with some of the paint globbing onto the back, on the side that gets played. That side is also a bit scratched up, due to the cardboard being of somewhat rough stock. And yet, when I throw this in my CD player, it plays great! Not so much as one skip! How does this happen? Why does my CD player love this, but refuse to play my I Remember Syria discs? Maybe it's because Charlie is just that awesome. There's lots of those one man noise bands out there today, and they're all starting to sound the same. (Notice I didn't include women, the one women noise bands are usually much more interesting, probably because rather than feeding on bro-dog scenesterism they are dealing with the bro-dogs getting crushes on them all the time.) And Charlie does use some familiar elements, some rhythmic bass waves here, some guitar tinkle there, some recorder grot, some high pitched whine. But it's put together with a feel for dynamics and movement. The first track moves a little faster, and is a bit more "song" format (but at around a half hour, it's certainly not a pop style song), the second song is more droney and spread out, mostly layers of waves until the end of it when there's a part that reminds me of a sax solo, only it's prolly not a sax, it's prolly electronic, and is certainly made by twirling a knob. And I guess the CD does skip a little bit at this point, but nothing too bad, it never gets stuck in a skip loop or anything. This is the perfect record for a day when you were going to work in the backyard, but it's too hot out, so you decided to sit in front of a fan at the computer and write some reviews instead.....in fact, I don't think you can really get the full impact of this album unless you do so!

Max Eisenberg -- Internal Breeding (Oceans of Missouri)
Another album I got at that No Fun two years ago, and forgot to write about! This CDR comes in a really nice package, it's a big envelope with some mystical art on the front, and it also comes with a little photocopied zine of Max's drawings, of things like fat globulous men whose faces are melting, and wart-covered pretzel faces. The first track is this whapping noise, which I thought was the sound of a flag flapping in the breeze, probably a USA flag, but I asked Max and it turns out it's a police helicopter, which is probably a more accurate representation of what our country is about right now, with the big-brother nanny-state constant-surveillance movement gaining such momentum. The rest follows many other tangents, from the tiny computer monkey movement, to the crazed skreetch skwallow movement. Many movements. These days, Mr. Eisenberg is more on a squelch wet belch beat rap movement.....it's kind of hard to review him since I hear him practicing and putting together music all the time though.....it's like reviewing cicadas or barking dogs or broken glass, or other things I end up hearing all the time....So I am going to give up on this review right now. You don't really care that much, do you?

Thee Scarcity of Tanks -- NZ Metals (Slow Toe Records)
This is a tour release by that nut Matt Wascovich's band, which features "cover" art by Devendra Banhart, however, the cover is actually just a plain white slipcase CD cover! The cover in question is a piece of paper enfolded inside. Still, it's a pretty good cover. What's up with bands calling themselves "Thee" instead of "The" though? It seems to be mainly done by body piercing enthusiasts, and/or garage rock bands. Wasco can't rightly be placed into either of these two camps (exclusively at least, though I'm sure he likes the cooler garage bands, and I wouldn't put a dick piercing or two past him), so why is he using it? Does it mean anything? I tried looking it up on google to see if I could find anything, using real scientific style search techniques, like "what is the deal with bands saying thee instead of the," and all I could come across is that apparently many strip clubs in the south use it as well.....I remember bringing it up to Wasco when he first gave me the CD, but I can't remember the answer, I think he was a bit evasive about it. Needless to say, there was lots of alcohol (or hoolie, as I heard some teenager call it the other day -- I think I might start using it, it sounds pretty good, don't you think?) involved. Anyways, musically this would fall in the guitar, guitar and vocals, and drum rock improv genre (or "freak rock" as I'm sure some genius critic will start calling it one of these days). It's damn good too, parts of it remind me of Dead C, probably moreso their late period stuff (like that s/t double album, and that New Electronic Music one, I haven't heard that newer one they did on Starlight Furniture Co.). Is that where the "NZ" in NZ Metals comes from? (Oh yeah, if you are a toatal n00b POSER or something, I'm not even going to bother explaining to you that Dead C are from New Zealand!) Anyways, it's not a total Dead C rip or anything, for one thing Wasco's reading off some poetry in some parts. Cool stuff too, but I do not feel up to describing it at all right now. My brain's been pretty fried since a couple nights ago when I checked out a show in Allentown, PA, dudes were getting into refrigerators, and then their buddy would run up to it and kick it with both feet, knocking it over! Actually, maybe this would be more appropriate to write about it in a review of this band from Long Island who gave me their demo.

D.O.S. (Decline of Sanity) -- demo (self released)
So, my brain's been pretty fried since a couple nights ago when I checked out a show in Allentown, PA, I rode up with my dogs Lexie Mountain, and Wzt Hearts (pronounced wet hearts) to a show at that Jeff the Pigeon place. Man, what a scene that was! Dudes were getting into refrigerators, and then their buddy would run up to it and kick it with both feet, knocking it over! Also, you were allowed to throw as many bottles as you wanted at this one wall! And we threw a ton of them, it was super fun! I will probably get less angry when the bottle kids in our neighborhood throw bottles in alleys and parking lots. And I wasn't that angry with them in the first place, really, but I understand the fun of it even more now.
        Well, this D.O.S. band ended up playing first, and they are a modern hardcore band, which basically means they don't sound like hardcore music at all, they are pretty much a metal band playing exclusively "breakdown" parts of songs, mixed together into one song, with a growly screaming guy over it. But the dudes from the band were very happy, nice guys, and I burned one down with them, and then I was all "somebody's got to eat the roach," and they were like "you do it dude," and I replied: "alright"! They made me wait while one of them got a video camera, and cheered after I did it, and said things along the lines of "This guy is awesome!" The guy with the camera told me to "throw up some horns" but instead I put up a peace sign and was like "peace, maaaaaan." "Yaaaahooo!!!" they yelled, and said I was awesome even more, and gave me their demo. I don't know, to me eating a roach is not that big a deal, it's just something funny you do when you're dirtbaggin' it out. That is cool that they were excited though. The packaging of the demo is just the cd itself, in a slipcase, with no writing on it. I told them I wouldn't remember their name unless they wrote it on there, but they couldn't find a sharpie, and I DID remember it after all, using the mnemonic device "department of sanitation," which is unusual, because if I was sober I would've obviously thought of "disk operating stystem." DOS man, you ever use one of those? I was super good at it for a long time, but then I used a DOS emulator a while back, and I couldn't remember ANYTHING! I think I figured out how to list files in a folder, that was about it.
        Musically, this is pretty bad, actually it would probably sound decent if they used a shitty boom box to record with. Instead they most likely used some sort of computer. Note to band: next time you record an album on a computer, fill the computer with spackle first.

Herb Diamante -- May I Light Your Cigarette (Abduction)
Damn, what a weird one this is! The cover is some mug wearing white face paint, with a bright red pageboy wig, sucking his thumb on a couch, with some babe with her leg on his back, holding a tennis racket. Who is this Diamante clown anyways? Well, apparently he is some guy who has played w/ Vibracathedral Orchestra (or maybe I am misremembering that), so he's probably British. This album is fairly far removed from any sort of drone paradise, intead he is on a crazed psychedelic lounge tip. His voice is real nice n' smooth, he reminds me a lot of Scott Walker. The instrumentation is usually pretty 60s too, though there are a few weird laptop tic tic type tracks. Cool lyrics, about fish kings, wasps in jam jars, shining teeth, and half eaten hard boiled eggs. I just found out when he plays live he's usually singing along w/ a CD.....another karaoke style band, like Canned Hamm, Pleaseasaur, Arctic Universe! I dub this genre: New Weird Freak Karaoke! If you write for some hack publication, please start using this term immediately!

Poor School -- The Holy Master (Killer Tree Records)
Totally killer lo fi guitar jam madness. This is another band of that guy Bryan Ramirez who was in Universal Indians once upon a time, and is in the equally great Ex Cocaine now. The cover is super shitty/awesome, just some magic marker drawing on the plastic of one of those skinny CDR cases, w/ photocopied info inside. Completely unassuming, and gives you no idea of the madness that comes when you put it on. The first jam is a guitar/sax/drums thing that goes on for 16 minutes, but has not one dull moment, with lots of changes from quiet to loud, but not in that shitty style where the band just steps on some distortion pedals and keeps playing the same simple crap indie rock fake metal riffs. What's up with those bands still being popular these days? Fuck them! Anyway Poor School isn't like that at all, they are way more free, and they have actual chops. This album is almost certainly out of print right now, but I think Ecstatic Peace might be reissuing it on vinyl?

Alvarius B -- s/t (Abduction)
I'd wanted to hear this for a while, and here I get it in the mail for free to review, only on CD, and with bonus tracks! Thanks, Abduction! The only problem is it's very hard to describe, it's all solo accoustic guitar jams, of wildly varying styles, hardly any of which I can identify. The songs are usually around a minute or so long, and while they can be sort of ramshackle at times, are always gorgeous, I think my dad would be impressed by it. I generally hate it when people call albums essential, but this pretty much is.

various artists -- Love (La Troisieme Note)
So I ended up on the Forced Exposure promo list, and I can get all sorts of albums I would probably never buy otherwise! This is a French compilation CD, which the promo sheet describes as....hm, I seem to have lost the promo sheet, it was something along the lines of being a compilation for girls who never remember the names of bands, or something like that! It's true, I am sure if your girlfriend is a "girly girl," she'd probably like this comp a lot! The first song is a super beautiful song by Harper's Bizarre, who I know I've heard on the radio before (on this 70s theme show called Cosmic Slop, the only good radio show on the main Mpls college station at the time). I think they were a studio only band (I can't tell from the liner notes, they are in French). Anyways, the song is called "Witchi Tai To," which is also the main lyric, which gets repeated over and over. But then it goes to "water spirit, field springing round my head/makes me feel glad that I'm not dead"! Anyways, this is now one of my all time favorite songs, and I'll have to pick up some more Harper's Bizarre, even though their other song on here isn't quite as good (it's a cover of "Feelin' Groovy," that Simon and Garfunkel song. Which is still pretty good). The second song on here is the only sort of bummer, "You Showed Me" by the Turtles, which is a fine song, but a bit overplayed. Other highlights are "Get Thy Bearings" by Donovan, which is a mellow smoothy jazzy song but with a pretty rockin' drum beat, "Some Good Advice" by Bill Fay, who I'd never heard before, but has a pretty good rocking Dylan style, and "If I Were a Carpenter" by the Free Design, which is a very pretty version of this song, and also features female vocals singing lyrics that are coming from a male character. I always like when bands do this (Carter Family did it a lot), I wish more people would do it now, un-selfconciously. Oh yeah, there are also some brief spoken word field recordings (all of which seem to be from the same event) which are supposed to be about love, but end up being stuff like "there's a lot of fuckin' cute boys out there!," "if we believe in mother earth, she will always protect us," and "I supposed love is like a good ideal, but there's just so many cuties"!

Fresh Maggots - Hatched (Sunbeam Records)
What a great name for a dirtball metal band Fresh Maggots is.....however, this isn't metal at all. Well, maybe a little bit, there are crazy speedfreak guitar solos, but it's mostly on a folk tip! Real good English folk style.....2 dudes jamming. It's real solid. The first track "The Dole Song" is a stone classic, a song about being on welfare. I thought it was kind of bullshit at first, like hippies who would try and scam SSI checks by pretending to be crazy, which would make it all the harder for people with ACTUAL horrible mental problems to have that many bureaucratic hoops to jump through to get some money to be able to get by. But in the liner notes the guy says it was a song about how he actually WAS on the dole, and it was a response to people who thought he was rich just 'cause he got a record deal. It's still pretty fun though, barely anyone actually WANTS to be getting handouts, but if you are getting them, might as well enjoy it, and have enough of a sense of humor to say things like "come and have a drink on me!" and "let the other mugs do the work for you!" Sort of like "First of the Month" by Bone Thugs. Another real hot track on here is "And When She Laughs" which is nice 12 string (I think) and tin whistle track about being in love. Man, it's so cool when someone you are in love with makes you laugh when you're sad, and this song expresses that perfectly! Then there's some more bummer tracks, like "Everyone's Gone To War" which is about people going to war to fight for peace...it's a pretty powerful song, mainly because of how it's not very strident, it's just like "What's going on? This isn't a way to find peace!" Oh, and the guys who made this album were only 18 or 19 at the time! YOUTH POWER! FREAK POWER!

Optimo -- Presents Psyche Out
Techno, techno, techno...I am going to the techno! Here is a genre I don't review all that much...techno! I thought this would be interesting though, as it's got tracks by people like Hawkwind, Silver Apples, and Johnny Cash on it. And after a spaced out synth intro, Hawkwind is the first actual song on here, "Hash Cake 77"...it's a pretty good jam, it's one of their songs that sounds sort of like Can. Then it fades into a short version of that classic song "Oscillations" by Silver Apples, which is where it starts getting more "dancey." Like you can still dance to the Hawkwind song, but you'd have to get pretty creative to avoid looking like a dumb hippy. After that is a song by Gavin Russom and Delia Gonzalez, who got an Arthur cover a while back, you remember that one article about these artists, and the article didn't really talk about their music all that much, and was more about what cool shoes they were wearing? Well, they are pretty great, and have a nice spaced out trance style (though I am not sure if this song is actually part of the trance genre of techno). Also it is a remix, I don't know if Russom and Gonzalez actually have beats on their original songs. Thanks a lot Arthur! The album continues in this sort of vein, good techno with lots of strange sounds, but always danceable. There's even a remix of Throbbing Gristle "Hot on the Heels of Love" by Carl Craig, which isn't really as much of a stretch as it would seem. And there's a super fucked remix of "Papa Was a Rolling Stone" by the Temptations, which is about a million times weirder than half the "noise rock" bands out there these days. Next to last is a straightforward "Time has come today" by the Chamber Bros, and it all finishes off with "Sons and Daughters" by Johnny Cash, which is how it's listed on the case, only I don't think Johnny Cash had a Scottish accent. I Bet it's one of the Optimo dudes (it's two guys and I am pretty sure they are Scots). It's pretty awesome, I wonder if they sing it as a closer when they DJ live? This is a very good album if you like techno stuff now and then, but don't know much about it, like me!

G.F. Fitz-Gerald -- Mouseproof (Sunbeam Records)
This was described as "one of the strangest records ever made!" which was why I thought it would be interesting, but it's not really that weird at all. Well I guess it is a LITTLE bit, but the first song on here is just this nice little folk rock song called "April Fair." It's a very good song, though, and the chorus has horns and "la la las", the kind you don't hear so much anymore. Well, I guess there's all those bands these days that TRY to do that, where they have like 30 members and are all into being as "cheery" as possible. That shit blows though. The next track is a very short sort of opera type song, though it's a bit firmly entrenched in "wacky." Then it turns into the next song, a straighforward country song about getting stoned, which is mighty fine as well...then another short little guitar thing, and the song that apparently MCA (who originally put this out) said was too controversial to be released in the US (G.F. F-G. was from England), because it was about Kent State. It's kind of a dumb song though, "is that why the children are dead?" he sings in a pretty pussy way. It's no "Ohio"! Then it turns selfconsciously wacky for a while, with dumb vocal songs, and songs with cool synth (or maybe guitar with lots of effects) parts ruined by shitty "funky flute" jams that sound like mid 70s Traffic. It ends on a good note though, it's called "Opal Pyramid Drifting Over Time" which kind of reminds me of Neu!, only with the piano doing the motorik thing, while the drums are jazzy, starting off with just fills, then getting into a nice swing. Then the piano and drums drop out, and it's just synth/effected guitar/flute stuff getting all mellow and drifting. Then some "ahhh" vocals start up, and the song finishes up with all the instruments going, it's pretty nice! So, while this album isn't a total classic, or the weirdest album ever, it's still got some very nice songs on it. I guess after this Fitz-Gerald never recorded another album, but he's still making experimental music today! "Wot's he up to now"?

Jerk -- Reverse Vampire (Banana Seat Girl/Soundesign)
Nice Simpsons reference in the title! Albums with Simpsons titles are often quite good, like "Bloated Museum of Treachery" by Big Whiskey, or...I can't think of any others off the top of my head, but didn't Glands of External Secretion have one too? Anyways, this could maybe be lumped into that "noise rock" genre I was talking shit about a couple reviews back, hell, the second track even has one of those driving hi-hat beats that I hate so much! But I think this qualifies more as heavy dirtball psych, more in the vein of Monoshock. Only the recording quality on here is much....I don't want to say "better", and I don't know if I should call it "professional" since that might imply the wrong thing as well. It's recorded nicely though, it's pretty clean but the instruments are playing some dirty shit. Not many vocals, and when they are there they are super distorted and buried in the mix plus bass, drums, synth (or "electronics"). I think there's a guitar there too, but it might just be two electronics setups. Who can tell these days? Anyways, this is a good album to recommend to a friend if they are getting tired of the Load releases that Ben gave them for free, only they can't find them to review right now, because they probably threw them in a box somewhere.

Harrius -- Enter the Cotton Ring (Ehse Records)
Another roommate rock album! In that, one of my roommates is in this band as well, Chiara Giovando, who was in some other bands that didn't last too long, like Black Elf Speaks, Black Coitus Family, New Swords of Tomorrow, and PCPCG. It is a duo of her and Jenny Graf Bibulah from Metalux. As a running gag, my house always pronounces the band name Harry Ass, cause that's the type of geniuses we are. Anyways, this is a soundtrack of sorts to a Western movie that Chiara and Jenny are in the process of making, I guess. The first song "Enter the Cotton Ring" (or the "title track" as we call it in "the biz") starts of with some nice folksy guitar (still kinda fucked tho), and some also kinda fucked high pitch electronic blees, then some really pretty vocals. If I woulda played it for you and said it was a mid-period Tower Recordings song, you would probably believe me, that's how great it is. Also, I guess some/all of this is going to be a part of a movie entitled Proud Flesh, which features an appearance by none other than...ME! Is that enough nepotism for ya? Anyways, this is a stone classic, and like all Ehse releases, can be downloaded for free on their web site, which is a really good style I think. It gets the music out there to the people, but it also makes you think about how much better it'd sound on vinyl! So cough up some cash, you dorm room napsters!

Luc Ferrari
's Son Memorise (Sub Rosa) has lots of field recordings, with some occasional glotched out laptop sounding skitters at various intervals. Nice stuff, apparently telling some sort of story. Unfortunatly the sleeve has suffered some water (or more probably, beer) damage by sitting on our coffee table, so only the French liner notes are legible, a language I do not speak, monolingualism being a political satire statement of mine against the United States. The CD ends with some heavy synth damage, a nice journey to space after the more Malkuth-bound journey beforehand. Garage Indians have a real hot one on the (now defunct) Fine Wisconsin Noise label entitled Arrowhead, on this they come across as something like Cheesehead answer to Reynols, however I am pretty sure the singer of this band is of mere "normal" intelligence. This one features lots of phaser and echo abuse, all over the place, which lots of people say "are overused", and "cliched", but this I'd say is...I don't know if it could be called tasteful to most, but as someone who prefers the taste of Evan WIlliams to Jack Daniels, it certainly hits the spot. Boot Zombie is another Fine Wisconsin Noise act, and I believe it is 2/3rds of G.I. Anyways, this is some lo fi wooden/non distorted electric guitar and vocals, a style which seems to be on the decline lately. I don't find myself putting this on very often, but it is good to see people doing this non-fashionable style some justice.

Gossip queen Leslie Keffer has recorded a tribute to Twin Peaks entitled Northwest Passage (Action Claw Records), with three tracks of pretty much what you'd expect...Lynch and Badalamenti's sick scary noises, recorded for a fraction of the cost, and sicker, and longer. It comes packaged in a cloth case, with a print of the Red Room's floor on it, and certain copies came with one of those heart necklaces that break in two. However, mine did not. Freezerghost is a young Baltimore fellow, one of the new generation who have no trouble finding out about cool noise bands, thanks to the internet. His album Star Eater's Den (DH label) I think I remembered him telling me is made up on stuff he's working on for an album that will come out later, and it kinda shows. It doesn't hit me all that hard, and it's a little too obvious what he's doing to make the sounds (by which I mean you can hear the knob twiddling). Much better is his album Book Of Monsters, which won't work on my CD player right now! What a piece of shit! My CD player, that is, I got it for Xmas a while back, and it's one of those 5 disc changers, which adds so many more moving parts to what should be a fairly simple device. Planned obsolescence at it's worst! Anyways, I remember that the sounds were a bit more smooth, tho no less fuckt and it featured a "hidden track" (which is a stupid concept I thought was long gone) of some nice field recordings of some drunkards shooting off fireworks, while a dog is freaking out.

Neptune is a band who lots of people love, though the first time I saw them, I was NOT impressed. They play all home made instruments, but when I saw them, none of the instruments sounded unlike guitars, basses and drums, and they played their rock in an "angular" fashion which I hate. But then I saw them play a few months later in Donna Parker's living room while I was visiting my brother in Boston, and I was blown away! They were SICK! I saw them again recently, and was impressed again, and their new album Patterns (Self-Release Records) is sort of a mix of the two styles. Some of the songs I love, and some are just sort of "ehh, lame" angular shitfest rock. Hopefully they'll keep on going in the weird direction. Wolf Eyes and John Wiese have a new collab out called Equinox (Troniks) and...oh shit, this is what I thought was that Book of Monsters album by Freezerghost! Whoops, no wonder I thought it was so great! Yeah, it's got the fireworks and everything! I guess I WAS a little tipsy when I listened to it the other night, and I didn't listen to all of the fireworks track, where the boys' voices are clearly recognizable. Anyways, this album is great, and nowhere near as harsh as you'd expect, with Wiese involved. (Though he doesn't consider his music "harsh." I think that word is kind of changing its definition right now. Like remember when Power Electronics just meant like a certain style of harsh noise, and didn't need to have the serial killer vocals with it? People would call certain Merzbow albums P.E.! When did that change, I had forgotten all about it 'til recently!)

Monotract have a long-in-waiting album called XPRMNTL LVRS (Ecstatic Peace!), which I believe is supposed to be pronounced "experimental lovers," but which I like to think of as "experimental livers." It's got a real hot cover too, with some shirtless action by Roger and Carlos. Nancy's looking real good too, however just her head is showing. This album is pretty ROCK too! Actually the first song could maybe even be described as "angular," just like I was talking shit about Neptune for being in that last review! This song is great though, as are all of them, I think it's because of the great recording style, it's like it's recorded in a shotgun shack on the moon (if the moon had enough air to allow for sound, that is). Roger recorded and mixed it, good job! Dregs is a band I know nothing about. They have an apparently self-titled album on the SRM label, which is out of Wisconsin. They do some nice, gnarly noise, sounds like shortwave and metal things through some appropriate pedals, old school style. Space and grit galore! Even better from the SRM label (and Dregs was pretty damn good) is Cut and Paste Homework vols 3 and 4 (two separate tapes) by Loop Retard which is my old pal Steven, who looks like a chubby Dr Who (not just Tom Baker, I'm talking about ALL of em.) Lots of noisy loops, which kind of remind me of Rock and Roll Jackie's style, only a little more, uh, retarded. The noise parts are always real solid, but I really like when he loops jazz stuff the best.

One guy who comes totally out of left field is The Subliminator, an older hippy guy from Decatur, Georgia. And I am talking fried brain acid biker hippy style. He plays these five theremin things, with a boomerang pedal, and some spoken vocals. A lot of his songs end up being kind of technoish, but once again, it's a hippy biker version of techno. Fucking sick! His album Recalibrated (Scared/Stickfigure Records) is quite good, but a little disappointing after his live show. Keep your ears peeled, oh yeah, I think he's on myspace too...

The Beast has a DVD out called 031906 (which represents how this is footage of them playing live at No Fun Fest on March 19, aught 6), and boy oh boy, is it a mind melter. Even viewed sober, you can feel resin building up on your brain, and not just 'cause of the sick jams, either, even though you don't just have Wolf Eyes and Smegma, they brought in some ringers by the names of Tovah Olson, Angie Tarantism, and Joseph Hammer. The real "star" of THIS DVD, visually at least (and maybe the actual show too, I was in back and couldn't see what was going on), is Alivia Zivich's video manipulation, which I believe is achieved through some sort of alchemy involving video feedback, oscillators, and mirrors. It's totally psychedelic, but in a much different than usual way (i.e. none of the patterns you see are like anything you've seen while tripping your balls off, or at least, like nothing I'VE seen!). It's fuckin' SICK. Jandek's got a DVD out too, Glasgow Sunday (Corwood) is a recording of his live show in Scotland from 2004...was that the first show he played live? I think it mighta been, I can't remember. Anyways, it's great, while not the most visually interesting thing ever (it looks like a band playing a show) it's still cool to see Jandek's "stage moves," for being such a weirdo, his comportment is still pretty standard. The guy from Napalm Death looks WAY weirder than he does! Good sound, and some top notch guitar playing from Jandek, and a hot shit backing band. It's weird how all these indie rockers are into him these days...remember when it was just weirdos like Coley and Hagerty thinking he was any good? Now even the clowns who probably woulda thought Green on Red was hot shit back in the day (and probably still do) (though now that I think about it, I don't know if I've ever heard Green on Red...they probably still suck nonetheless!) are all over his jock! Anyways, it's a real good DVD, and it's packaged in the same jewel case as all the other Corwood CDs, so I assume it's reasonably priced as well.

Bullwackies was one of the best dub labels ever, and whatta ya know, they put out some good vocal "rootsy" reggae too! John Clarke's "Visions of John Clarke/Rootsy Reggae" (Bullwackies/BCP) is a solid 2-album-in-one comp. Some of the songs are repeated on the albums, but with different arrangements. Catchy songs, yet you still have plenty of echo/effect abuse going on. Cool lyrics too, dealing with such hot topics as "Recession," "Pollution," and um, "Abortion"..."Abortion/it is wrong/abortion/is wickedness/so back away from the abortion line/back away young girls/don't commit that crime"..."don't you kill that child/he might be the next president"...still it's a nice song to listen to, and I actually played this while DJing at a dance party at my house, hoping to stir up some controversy. No one even noticed, reggae is like that, even the songs about commiting hate crimes against gay people just make you want to get stoned and dance....Lexie Mountain Boys have a new album out called "Sexy Fountain Noise" that is apparently self-released. It is the first album by the band proper, the last album on Heresee was by Lexie Mountain but "Boys" was the name of the album. This is more like their live show, i.e. women doing rhythmic chanting, with fairly simple (but hard to pin down) melodies going on, with occasional dramatic elements, like crying or makeout noises. The packaging includes a booklet with some artwork and a "creation myth," and also a few "friendship pins," two of them in fact! And they come with EVERY CD, unlike what that cheapass Leslie Keffer does!

What more can one say these days about 'harsh' (or 'hard' or maybe 'feedback intensive', since I guess a lot of the harsh dudes deny being harsh these days) noise albums? How about words like 'tasteful' and 'well crafted'? I JUST BLEW YOUR MIND, didn't I? Well, Prurient's "Fossil" (Truculent) and Donna Parker's "Debutante" (Twisted Village) can both be described as such...Prurient's album dates from 2003 (is that 'mid period' Prurient?), and is a live show recording. I think that was back when I listened to some of his sets outside, which was still loud enough, as he was a bit too intense on the high end, if I remember correctly. But on a CD, which you can listen to at a lower volume, it sounds just great! And Donna Parker sounds even better, if you can believe that! And...hmm, how else should I describe this? <insert metaphors involving mechanical devices, and maybe a "lookout boys, there's some GIRLS making noise too" comment here> And we're done!

Aw fuck, ANOTHER harsh noise release? And a good one, that I can't just pan? O well, American Band's album "American Band's First Album" (Blossoming Noise) is yet another solid harsh noise album, that I would feel stupid describing, unless I ripped off Seymour Glass's style, in which case I'd feel like a rip off. It's good though, it features Matt Franco from Air Conditioning, Jason Crumer from that one metal band Face Down In Shit (a band name which REALLY pisses off Little Howling Wolf --"You know man, you got these bands like Face Down in Shit...you know, I live with my father who is gone in the head, and one morning last week, he wakes me up, holding a handful of shit! These kids today don't know what it's like, man..."), and Lee Counts, who used to be their boss, and who jams out on some power tools across metal sheets. Just like they did in the old days. Solid, grongos!

Aw, here we go, some folk music to review! And some non hippy folk music too! Yep, Corndawg has a new album out, called "Always Remember Never Again" (Punk Rock Payroll), and boy, you should see the cover. It's one of those shifting perspective things...I don't know what the technical name is. It's like those baseball cards you'd sometimes get where the dude is getting ready to bat, then is hitting it out of the park when you turn the card slightly. Anyways, Corndawg's cover is his face, which then changes into OSAMA BIN LADEN'S FACE! WOW! They have the same nose too, I don't know if they do in real life, or if it is all just computer tricks. Anyways, the music on the CD is pretty funny compared to the fancy packaging, it's all low fi acoustic guitar stuff, for the most part. Like pleasant folk music your friend who you always see at shows would make, and put out on his homemade label, which is not anything you'd listen to CONSTANTLY, but still makes you happy whenever you put it on. That's how this is. Singing backup on one especially nice track, "Chinchilla," is Colin Langenus who has an album that I think has been out for a while now called "Living With The Rock" (Corleone). Colin is mostly known for singing and playing guitar in Usaisamonster, but on his solo release he sets all that aside for songs about things like, uh, Usaisamonster playing in your town, on the 2nd song (after the first song, which just goes "living with the ROCK!") called "Usaisa is in town." It's pretty funny too, actually this whole album is in a more funny mode than Usaisa usually is..."drunks start drinkin, straight edge start thinkin, your daddy started sinking, the usaisamonster is in town!" Other songs deal with topics such as "AIDS in Africa" (which is also the lyric of the song, that's all he says), "Milwaukee Water", which is about getting the jake leg from drinking Milwaukee's Beast, and getting laid on tour (or at least getting a hot girlfriend) due to the rock, with "She's Young." Oh, and did I mention that the album also features Colin doing a karaoke version of "Do You Really Want To Hurt Me?" And it's a SUPER GOOD backing karaoke track, featuring "colored girl" backup singers and everything? And the whole album is only 20 minutes long, the PERFECT length for something like this? I didn't? Oh, that's cool then, I can understand why you wouldn't buy this, seeing you don't know anything about it and all.....

How about that new hip hop music that is all the beat of the streets and everything these days, dog? Where'd it come from? No one will ever know, but golly, they are sure putting out some good albums these days. Mic Mulligan & S. Future have a good one out, "Original Space Neighbors" (Abduction), and I think both of them are actually that Specs One guy who Doleman was speaking well of in a review a while back...this one is more on a Sun Ra style space rappin style, which if I were a shitty reviewer I would probably accuse it of being a Quasimodo ripoff. Fortunatly I am not, and I say the more Sun Ra influence in the rap game, the better! Also, he's from Seattle, home of the Space Needle, who's to tell him he shouldn't rap about space? Oh yeah, and how about an Uncle Jim cameo? That do anything for you, GUYS? Limited to 500 copies...get it while you can.

Finally, we got the first "post fire" release by Heresee, "Farewell To The Forest" by Triana. That album kind of sounds like a hippy album title doesn't it? WELL IT IS! DEAL WITH IT! Triana is half of this formerly Baltimoron duo called Abuelo Hongo who had a split cassette w/ Lexie Mountain a while back, also on Heresee. However, these folks ain't like some sorta fashion consious NYC/LA axis d-bags who would most likely EMBRACE the "freak folk" term...they're the real deal. "Adventure Hippies" I think Andrew Earles would probably call em. However, if he can't deal with awesome people who are super fun to take hikes in the wood with, because they can identify virtually all of the flora and fauna you come across, that's his loss. Who cares if they dress in clothes similar to what you could buy at REI? That stuff looks good, and is durable too! Anyways, this is another delightfully lo fi release, only this isn't like the Corndawg album so much as like a motherfucking SHRIMPER tape! Fuckin killer unhinged ROCKIN JAMS, which just happen to be taped lo fi, and with mostly accoustic instruments. Which just also happen to sometimes include such derided instruments as bongos, or the digeredoo. It's all good though! And my favorite song on this features the decidedly NON HIPPY sound source, a PHIL COLLINS SAMPLE! (I think it's Phil Collins anyways, it might be someone else...it's someone along that alley. But late 70s/early 80s...not any Dis sndtrk shitt). The song also features some BEAUTIFUL vocals singing "hey yaaaa", but not like that Outkast song, it's a different sort of hey ya. And there's some tape grunk noise along with it all. I wish Triana still lived in Baltimore, but she moved to Washington state a while back, with her man man/musical partner Andrew. They will sorely be missed round here...