Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Отстой- Сахара EP (2014)

So what if this thing came out back in April, Petrograd's Otstoy is a great summer soundtrack. Snide, off-the-cuff-'cause-who's-really-listening vocals, all the tone the Russian steppes can offer, and a drumbeat so basic it might just be someone tapping their foot against a tin can. That's it.

And man, is the one (ok, maybe 2) note guitar solo on the first song majestic! Majestic in the way you'd expect from a band that probably consists of one dude chainsmoking and sippin' on potato-mash vodka in the studio and bangin' out whatever comes to mind. The second song's even better. By song three you've probably moved onto your 5th beer of the night, so you won't remember it, but it's good too.

Go swimming, go drinking, go listen to Otstoy!

Sunday, June 22, 2014

бичкрафт- маскот LP (2014)

Grinding, excruciating noise rock will always get a fair hearing in these parts, and Kiev's бичкрафт passes muster. Wave upon wave of plodding, catharsis-denying feedback and clanging cymbals usher you into this echo chamber of squall.

Track two, "кроссовки," lightens it up a bit with resolutely, passionately meandering feedback, again. I could probably go on for a few more paragraphs wherein I try to extrapolate upon the subtleties and nuances of this slab of drone rock from the Ukrainian steppelands, but you probably get the idea. There's a weird pseudo-techno segment tossed in just to confuddle you. This probably isn't anyone's daily soundtrack, but it certainly does surprise. Proving once again that rock is probably the most versatile genre of music known to humankind, including classical, because it's amazing how much variation can be packed into mutilated, butchered and necromanced blues chords. Especially when you've got synthesizers and a shitload of drugs to help you out on said quest. Hell, this LP runs the gamut from electronica to metal and back without ever, i think, changing key.

All of that makes the LP out to just be a pretentious heap of clever showmanship, but it's pretty fun, like guzzling tallboys of bad German beer (i.e., all German beer) on a hot summer night's fun. That sorta fun. FUN.

Check out this hellacious squall HERE!

Saturday, June 21, 2014

1984-"Barranco" video (or, fuck the World Cup)

Everyone's going ga-ga over the World Cup currently, so 1984's debut EP is timely. Some of you may be following the on-going protests against World Cup spending in several Brazilian cities. If not, the basic point is that it's criminal to piss away millions of dollars/pesos/reales/whatever on a tourist circle jerk when millions of your citizens are living in desperate poverty. If you want a reminder of how little the money wasted on mass sporting events does for the cities concerned, take a stroll around the 2004 Olympics buildings in Athens, Greece.

In any case, 1984's "Barranco" is a savage bit of basic, direct hardcore. They sorta sound like Los Crudos, but with something approaching production (gasp!). The video intersperses footage of the band with shots from their hometown, showing some of the squalor that billions of people worldwide live in every day. I like football as much as the next person, but 1984's video is a timely reminder of what daily life is like in Brazil, and what it will probably continue to be like long after the 2014 Cup is over. Fuck JLo, check this out.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Milk Music-Beyond Living EP (2011)

So awhile ago two guys were sitting on some couch in Olympia, Washington. Neither of them had a job. But you don’t need a job when you can sell loosie tall boys of Olympia out of a shopping cart on the street, right? Right. And anyway, weed had just been legalized in California so they were enjoying the toasty vibes from south of the border and couldn’t believe how sweet it is to be at Evergreen College and gettin’ stoned and blasting Sabbath Vol. 4 on the MP3 player Dude 1 got from his big sister a few months ago. She had moved out of the house to drop acid and follow Phish’s reunion tour and said that he could have all of her material possessions (these mostly consisted of said MP3 player, a battered-but-serviceable hip flask, and something she had bought from some drug dealer in high school, thinking it was a book about Tibetan Buddhism but in fact turned out to be a ruined copy of Athanasius’ Life of St. Anthony). Anyway.

 Then some other dude came over with a vinyl record. These two dudes on the couch didn’t know that they still made vinyl, so they were pretty stoked. Suffice to say, Sabbath Vol. 4 was toasty fucking vibes, upon first listening, bro. A few songs into Vol. 4, dude Number One said, “hey bros, why don’t we start a band? I’ll bet these dudes in Sabbath get all the free herbs they want.” Dude two happened to be from British Columbia so he was like “yeah that’d be pretty cool eh, I just need to drink like 20 more Labatts and I’m as good as fucking Mo Tucker ever was, eh?” Dude Number Three, who had brought over that original vinyl copy of Vol. 4, then produced another hat trick: he had A SECOND VINYL RECORD! HOLY FUCK!  For the sake of conversation let’s say it was Dinosaur Jr.’s You’re Living All Over me. Dude Number Three was like “yeah dudes I can totally play a mean bass lick, sure I stole it from fuckin’ Glenn Matlock but if you crank the treble all the way past 10, it sounds like a Chuck Dukowski riff anyways!”

These three dudes were STOKED. Soon they figured out 3 chords and pretty soon after that they managed to scrounge a SuperFuzzBigMuff pedal or 4 from a local pawn shop. In fact I think I saw the bassist from Mudhoney selling his SuperFuzzBigMuff pedals at that pawn shop like a week before the three dudes of as-yet-unnamed-Olympia band walked into said pawn shop, but whatever man. Anyway, with four SFBM pedals and three dudes steeped in the traditions of…well, those two vinyl records and whatever guitar rock was on Dude Number One’s sister’s MP3 player (mostly Jimi Hendrix tunes but these dudes thought they were fuckin’ Aerosmith tunes, c’est la difference in the internet age), combined with a few SFBM pedals…shit man, you got Milk Music.

Beyond Living goes beyond living over here.  I'm not sure if this is out of print, but try to find it on Discogs!