Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Singles: Mogwai, Vaadat Charigim, Tara Jane O'Neil, Philip Perkins, Vex Ruffin, Be Forest, Girls Names

Mogwai: "Remurdered" (via Sub Pop)

Vaadat Charigim: "Odisea" (via Force Field PR/Pitchfork)

Tara Jane O'Neil: "Wordless in Woods" (via Rarely Unable)

Philip Perkins: "The Onion" (via Body Double Ltd.)

Vex Ruffin: "Prime of My Life" (via Force Field PR/KCRW)

Be Forest: "Captured Heart" (via Force Field PR/Impose Magazine)

Girls Names: "The New Life (David Holmes remix)" (via Force Field PR/Self-Titled)

Letters From A Tapehead

Friday, October 25, 2013

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Disappears: "Trans Europa Express" (Kraftwerk cover)

Post-post-post-punk band, Disappears, contributed a cover of Kraftwerk's universally loved "Trans Europa Express" for a split 7" being put out by the label, Sonic Cathedral.  I'm posting it because I really dig the cover.  Give it a listen here:

Info on the split release and links to some songs off the latest album from Disappears, Era, (released by Kranky in August), can be found below and were generously provided by Rarely Unable.


Disappears could well be one of the most prolific bands on the planet, certainly their frequent output of albums, 12" records and 7" singles would back up this theory. Following the release of their fourth annual report, Era (released on Kranky in August), Disappears are setting their sights for the UK with three shows confirmed amidst a broader European run. 

Era sees the band further refining their love of dub, minimalism and repetition into their most original and stark set yet, venturing deeper into insular and dark musical terrain. It harks back to the early 80ʻs post punk period, when almost anything seemed possible with the classic two guitar, bass and drums lineup, and exploration and expansion of what could be done with these elements was at the fore. Dueling wiry and squalling guitars lead the way while a lock-down rhythm section provides the perpetual forward motion. Era is Disappears at their most abrasive, contemplative, and paranoid – itʼs the sound of the void looking back.

Check out two tracks from the album via Kranky's soundcloud page:

In support of the upcoming tour, the Sonic Cathedral label, are putting out a limited 7" split single by Disappears and Kranky labelmates, Cloudland Canyon. On this AA side, Disappears take on "Trans Europa Express" which you can listen to and share via the following link:


Letters From A Tapehead

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Shopping For Records: O)))nline StO)))re...

This past Record Store Day, I saw a beautiful (still sealed, sharp corners, nary a fingerprint) copy of SunnO)))'s Black One on the shelves at Double Decker Records.  It was not so modestly priced at $50.  If I've never made it very clear as to the level of individual I am from a financial standpoint, it's a modest one to say the least.  That being said, $50 is a lot of money to spend on any singular item, even if I have in the past given in to impulse buys that were met with both immediate elation and remorse.

But, as SunnO))) has now opened up an online store and reissued Black One, I can have the album for a better price (which will happen soon).  This store will apparently serve separately from Southern Lord, meant to provide SunnO))) specific albums, merchandise and reissues.  Information is provided by Earsplit PR.

SUNN O))) Initiates Online Store; Black One 2xLP Reissue Set For Release

European Shows Confirmed

Today, SUNN O))) has unveiled a massive online entity through a newly-developed webstore/online presence.

The SUNN O))) (virtually/online) site is now the direct outlet for not only all releases from the long-running drone/atmospheric sect, it will serve as the source for an ongoing series of reissued merch/clothing designs. Every two to three months the band will reprint/reissue two out-of-print designs in an edition fit for the demand. In addition, SUNN O))) has and will continue to release rare and limited audio items available through this site exclusively, as well as all current catalog releases.

One of the first additions to this new web presence for SUNN O))), is an ultra-deluxe reissue of the now classic album,
Black One. Having just marked its eighth birthday since its initial release, Black One was issued in October of 2005, the sixth full-length from the band formed by Greg Anderson and Stephen O'Malley unveiling the darkest and most suffocating material from them to date, and arguably since. Featuring very special guests Oren Ambarchi, Wrest (Leviathan, Lurker of Chalice, Twilight) Malefic (Xasthur, Twilight) and John Weise (Bastard Noise), the tonal magma explosions created under the influence of the most utterly black atmospheres, here SUNN O))) endlessly seeks to push boundaries and demolish pre-conceived ideas of their eminence. Sinister vocal performances courtesy of Wrest and Malefic literally call from beyond the grave. Unorthodox and experimental recording methods were used to obtain the petrifying eerie tone of the voices on this album. For the epic side-4 piece, "Bathory Erzebet", SUNN O))) procured a casket then loaded it into a Cadillac Hearse, and locked Malefic inside with only a microphone and a severe sense of claustrophobia. The result is truly suffocating and disturbing; mammoth giants crushing valleys of the drowned. This album is as bleak, crushing, and devoid of light as only they possibly could have delivered.
This new pressing of Black One is issued in a 180-gram, 2xLP fashion, bound in a thick Stoughton style gatefold jacket in an exclusive Record Store Day edition of 1,000 copies on black vinyl, with an official street date of November 26th. As a special bonus fans can order the new pressing of the album on white or grey vinyl now, in runs of 1,000 each, a month and-a-half early. The white wax can be ordered now at the new SUNN O))) (virtually/online) presence AT THIS LOCATION and the grey vinyl HERE. A silver edition of 1,000 be available in Europe-only via Southern Lord Europe shortly.
Black One Track Listing:
Side A
Sin-Nanna 2:19
It Took The Night To Believe
Cursed Realms

Side B
Orthodox Caveman

Side C
Cry For The Weeper

Side D
Bathory Erzsebet 

Additionally, SUNN O))) has declared two brand new live incantations in the Benelux collective this December. The first performance will transpire on the 12th of December in Kortrijk, Belgium with support to be announced at a future date. The following night SUNN O))) will appear at State-X New Forms Festival in Den Hagg, Netherlands with The Orb, Amenra and others. The act's full live lineup for this duo of performances remains unannounced.

SUNN O))) Live Actions:
12/12/2013 De Kreun - Kortrijk, Belgium [info]
12/13/2013 State-X New Forms - Den Hagg, Netherlands [info]


Letters From A Tapehead

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Singles: Girls Names, Cut Yourself in Half, The Besnard Lakes, Cop Problem

Girls Names: "The New Life" (via Force Field PR)

Cut Yourself in Half: "The End" (via US/Them Group/Invisible Oranges)

The Besnard Lakes: "Colour Yr Lights In" (via Jagjaguwar) *NSFW!!!*

Cop Problem: "Bear Witness" (via Earsplit PR/CVLT Nation)

Letters From A Tapehead

What I Heard This Morning: Trouble Books & Moon Wheel

Figured I'd go ambient today.  Happened upon Trouble Books and Moon Wheel, both projects dealing in atmosphere and the experimental interpretation of such.

Trouble Books takes more of a traditional instrumental approach with their piece, "Chiaroscuro," from their upcoming new album, Love at Dusk, which releases on November 18th via MIE.  A minimal piano/guitar coupling, (the band comprised of husband and wife, Keith Freund and Linda Lejsovka), while mild static interference attempts to emulate the varying degrees of sound imperfection found in field recordings.  The video compliments the sounds pretty well as its focus involves abandoned (or vacant) urban structures.  Everything is more or less at rest, the film quality at points offering the only real visual movement.  

Moon Wheel is Olle Holmberg, formerly of PissypawWool Recordings is issuing a two-song Moon Wheel 7" featuring the songs "Surinam" and "Prosopagnosia," the latter of which is posted below.

This was posted with permission from Wool Recordings.

Normally I'm not too receptive to electronic music as a lot of what I hear fails to carry any signature uniquely attributable to the artists who create in this medium, but I was particularly drawn to Holmberg's electro-scapes.  Interesting tones and textures, shifts that sound improvised as if extracted from jam bands or jazz.

I was unfortunately able to post the A-side, which I find the better of the two songs, but I think this is still worth a listen. 

Letters From A Tapehead

Friday, October 18, 2013

"Father of the Music Video" Bruce Conner Mini-Doc...

"In my opinion, Bruce Conner's the most important artist of the 20th century."Dennis Hopper

MOCAtv recently debuted a four-part mini-documentary series on Bruce Conner, the visual artist hailed as the "Father of the Music Video."  Conner's piece, "Cosmic Ray," here featured in the documentary as a motion picture triptych retitled, "Three Screen Ray," is the first ever short film set to popular music ("What'd I Say" by Ray Charles), an innovation that obviously had serious impact on the latter half of the 20th century, most notably with the genesis of MTV and the continued dominance of video marketing in the music industry.

You can view the documentary series below.  Other videos featured include Toni Basil's "Breakaway," Devo's "Mongoloid," and "Mea Culpa" from the Brian Eno and David Byrne collaboration/masterpiece, My Life in the Bush of Ghosts.

This is posted with permission from Terrorbird Media. 

Intro & "Three Screen Ray"

Toni Basil: "Breakaway"

Devo: "Mongoloid"

Brian Eno & David Byrne: "Mea Culpa"

Letters From A Tapehead

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

No Ripcord: jesu

Everyday I Get Closer to the Light From Which I Came
Released: 9.23.13

Letters From A Tapehead

Wolf People: "When the Fire is Dead in the Grate" (Video)

Granted the arena rock blues jam and Jethro Tull vocal that courses through the six-something minutes of Wolf People's "When the Fire is Dead in the Grate," the title track from the band's upcoming four-song single release, seems an unquestionably authentic throwback to decades ago.  Still, somehow to me it sounds modern, and I think this is owed to the guitar sounds, which sound splintered next to the tracks rather clean rhythm section. 

Check out the info on the release, which was provided by Sure Shot PR. 

Wolf People announce New 12" When the Fire is Dead in the Grate on Jagjaguwar

Start Debut US Tour and Announce End of Year UK and European dates

Wolf People have announced their brand new limited vinyl 12", When the Fire is Dead in the Grate for 2nd December. The release includes two brand new tracks – ‘Become the Ground’ and ‘All Returns Part II’ alongside, ‘When The Fire Is Dead in the Grate’ and ‘All Returns’ which have become huge fan favourites since the release of their critically acclaimed album 'Fain' earlier this year.

'Become the Ground' is a slight departure for Wolf People, featuring a much more acoustic, almost traditional folk-esque backing with the most prominent feature of a female vocalist to date. It is a thing of beauty, showcasing Jack Sharp's knack for writing the most beguiling of melodies. 'All Returns Part II' was written at the same time as the 'Fain' album and originally intended as the full length version of the original.

Says Jack Sharp, "All Returns Part II” and “Become the Ground” were recorded in our tiny cold rehearsal studio soon after work on Fain was complete. Where the music on Fain tended to be about detail and carefully worked out arrangements, we decided to go the other way with these and just play a rough arrangement to see what stuck. The results are a bit more free than previous Wolf People outings. “All Returns” was always played in it's full incarnation when we wrote it, but the extrapolations never made it in the final cut. It takes a rough form that we never talked about.

“Become the Ground” was a song sketched out a few years ago and recorded in it's infancy for Steeple. The added instrumental middle section was quite carefully planned but we just kept the tape running for the ending. This is almost what we sound like when no-one else is listening."

Stream 'When the Fire is Dead in the Grate' here: http://youtu.be/K1L_J84iH1Q

The band are about to embark on their first ever set of US dates, opening for label mates Unknown Mortal Orchestra as well as playing a few of their own headline shows along the way.

They have also confirmed European shows for the end of the year, including a performance at Netil House in London for the final night of ATP's Take Over and will play the at the last ever ATP Festival the previous weekend.

Full Dates:
11-Oct - NY, Brooklyn - The Knitting Factory
12-Oct - PA, Philadelphia - Ortlieb
13-Oct - NY, New York - Mercury Lounge
14-Oct - MA, Boston - Brighton Music Hall
15-Oct - QC, Montreal - Cabaret Mile End
16-Oct - ON, Toronto - Lee's Palace
17-Oct - MI, Detroit - Magic Stick Lounge
18-Oct - OH, Columbus - Ace of Cups
19-Oct - PA, Pittsburgh - Altar
20-Oct - IN, Bloomington - The Bishop
21-Oct - IL, Chicago - Lincoln Hall
22-Nov - BE, Leuven - Stuk
23-Nov - NL, Haarlem - Patronaat

01-Dec - UK, Camber Sands - ATP End of an Era
05-Dec - UK, London - Netil House
06-Dec - NO, Bergen - Garage
07-Dec - NO, Oslo - Osly Pyche Fest at Revolver


Letters From A Tapehead

Wednesday, October 09, 2013

Singles: Drugs of Faith, Melvins, Kurt Vile & Sore Eros, Russian Circles

Drugs of Faith: "Insanity" (via Invisible Oranges/Earsplit PR)

Melvins: "City Dump" (via The Quietus/Rarely Unable)

Kurt Vile & Sore Eros: "Serum" (via Pitchfork/Force Field PR)

Russian Circles: "1777" (via Pitchfork/Sargent House)

Letters From A Tapehead

Monday, October 07, 2013

Shopping For Records: Poison Idea's Kings Of Punk Reissue

Poison Idea's 1986 release, Kings Of Punk, is getting the reissue treatment via Southern Lord, who had a hand in reissuing the Darby Crash Rides Again: The Early Years and The Fatal Erection Years 1983-1986 compilations.  It's neither "deluxe" nor "expanded:"  This version of the album is deemed the "Bloated Edition," which sounds appropriate.


Details of the release were provided by Earsplit PR.

POISON IDEA: Southern Lord To Reissue Bloated Edition Of Band's Classic Kings Of Punk Album

Following last year's resurrection of Darby Crash Rides Again and The Fatal Erection Years, Southern Lord is preparing to deliver the latest release in a series of reissues from POISON IDEA's potent catalog, with an expanded edition of the band's 1986 LP, Kings of Punk.

An unmistakable rager of an album by the Portland hardcore berzerkers, on their second full-length POISON IDEA had begun tightening their blazing nailbomb eruptions of noise of their earliest material reflected, and where they really began developing what would become their signature sound. Kicking off with the riff Discharge wish they had written,
Kings of Punk is a big, bold slab of premium American hardcore, with undertones of the hard rockin' bombast which would define their later works. From the crazed splutter of "God Not God," tripping over itself in a wonderful mess of distress, to the sneering blast of "Made To Be Broken," this is POISON IDEA at their unparalleled, grittiest, snottiest best.

Kings of Punk perfectly encapsulates one of the most important bands of the era who took the template of the early '80s and perverted it to fit their own twisted desires. The three live sets, taken from the years '84-'86, offer an even more revealing snapshot of POISON IDEA in their destructive prime, drawling insults at the audience, the world and themselves and filling two full CDs, brought kicking and thrashing back to life by Jack Control (World Burns to Death). As well as the unhinged audio content, this reissue is packed with liner notes, archive flyers and photos of the band from the era.

Fans of hardcore punk - this is a must. Southern Lord will re-unleash the 2xCD "Bloated Edition" of this beast in North America on November 26th.




Letters From A Tapehead

Thursday, October 03, 2013

Singles: Jungle, Widowspeak, White Lung, Huerco S., Sahg

Jungle: "The Heat" (via Noisey/Force Field PR)

Widowspeak: "Calico" (via Captured Tracks)

White Lung: "Blow it South" (via Enabler PR)

Huerco S.: "Ragtime U.S.A. (Warning)" (via Enabler PR)

Sahg: "Slipping Off the Edge of the Universe" (via Indie Recordings/Metal Hammer)

Letters From A Tapehead

Tuesday, October 01, 2013

The Mailbox Giveth: Agarttha

A Water Which Does Not Wet Hands
King of the Monsters Records
Released: 6.25.13

A meditation based in the premonitions of death detailed in a text from a Polish alchemist, A Water Which Does Not Wet Hands, the exploratory endeavor of which belongs to Agarttha (Architeuthis Rex’s Francesca Marongiu with the assistance of bandmate Antonio Gallucci and Reto Mäder of Ural Umbo and Sum of R), is supplemented by vastness and slow swells of droning instrumentation while ritualistic thuds confirm the music’s depth of space. From the opening “Lambsprinck,” distortion acts as a sonic tapestry from which to adorn each track vocal melodies that drape and flow as endless streams of sound. This characteristic is carried out for the duration of the album, Marongiu angelic against its otherwise ominous persuasion.

Tonal droplets color the steady field of wavering fuzz that remarks as dread throughout “Visions of Alina,” a gentle skip of percussion establishing its path. Though dreamy and mellow, there’s a metal connection here which makes itself apparent toward the last closing minutes of “Melusine,” a riff, though allowed to breathe, adds some gravity to its light, haunting strut. It’s the type of sound that’ll wake you from your trance, a calm suddenly immersed in anxiety.

A flip of the platter and “The Sphynx” pulses with a foreboding air and one of the stronger drum rhythms on the album. Shocks of chiming tones radiate. The chords of an organ are pressed into the “Storms As He Walks” as bells are tapped and static is strummed from a guitar. Waves of undulating sound emerge and a psych-laced and fuzzy tone harmonizes with Marongiu, allowed to improvise a little over the track’s cyclical motion.

A rumbling flatline of a bass note introduces the album’s final track, “Chymische Hochzeit,” a clean snare drum and icy cymbal splashed as Mäder’s fingers fall upon piano notes. Probably the most collaged song on the album, “Chymische Hochzeit” ties together its eerily droning bottom with the glowing embellishments that grace Marongiu’s vocal. The heavy dream is softened, made beautiful in spite of the chill that occupies Agarttha’s head, closed eyes revealing something both musically brilliant and captivatingly dark.

Letters From A Tapehead

Shopping For Records: Soundgarden's Screaming Life/Fopp to be Reissued

For those of us who remember Soundgarden as this unstoppable alt-metal force whose rep had yet to be sullied by Timbaland and ex-members of Rage Against the Machine, the power of their sound still finds resonance.  Granted, we're twenty and more years from Soundgarden's true point of relevance, so Sub Pop's reissue of their Screaming Life/Fopp EP will be most exciting to anyone whose teenage lives coincided with the release of either Badmotorfinger or Superunknown (as mine did).  Still, hearing the band at full-strength in the late 80s before MTV pulled them out of obscurity confirms how truly good this band was.  Inasmuch as Soundgarden's glory had yet to be realized from a commercial perspective, their SST/Sub Pop years document a span of time when they'd committed to mattering musically.  And, they did not disappoint.

All info comes courtesy of Sub Pop.

Sub Pop Reissues Soundgarden’s Screaming Life / Fopp EP on November 26th

Listen to “Nothing To Say” Via YouTube  

From the depths of the Sub Pop archives comes a reissue of Soundgarden’s thunderous opening salvo,
Screaming Life, plus bonus tracks from the Fopp EP and Sub Pop 200 compilation, to be released on CD / 2xLP / DL on November 26th. The album is now available for preorder at subpop.com. Please find a full tracklisting below.

Screaming Life / Fopp reissue marks the first time these tracks will be available digitally, and their first appearance on vinyl since the original, late-80s pressings (notwithstanding a long-gone, late-‘90s repress of Screaming Life). All tracks have been remastered by Seattle studio wizard and producer of the original Screaming Life and Sub Pop 200 sessions, Jack Endino, who had this to say about it:

“Ah, Screaming Life, Soundgarden's debut, and one of the first real records I made for anyone outside my own band. I already knew Soundgarden pretty well, since they and Skin Yard had shared the stage many times in Seattle's tiny club scene circa 1985-1986. Soon after opening Reciprocal Recording in July 1986, there I was with Soundgarden, trying to make the most of our eight tracks. Somehow, we found room for all of Matt Cameron’s 'bonus tubs,' Hiro’s primordial Fender bass, and a whopping four tracks to share between Kim Thayil's mad guitar psychedelia and Chris Cornell's still-expanding voice. 'Nothing To Say' was the song that made us all look at each other and go, ‘uh, holy crap, how did we do this?

Stuff started happening. A&M came calling. SST agreed to put out their next record. But Soundgarden was not finished with Sub Pop. They contributed 'Sub Pop Rock City,' about Seattle’s then-rising 'grunge' scene, to the Sub Pop 200 comp; and they threw everyone a curveball with Steve Fisk-produced Ohio Players and Green River covers on the Fopp EP.

The glorious vistas of a major label future awaited them. To quote Kim from an old interview, ‘It was karma, it was dogma, it was dog breath (read more at Sub Pop).'”

Screaming Life / Fopp EP

1. Hunted Down
2. Entering
3. Tears to Forget
4. Nothing to Say
5. Little Joe
6. Hand of God
7. Sub Pop Rock City
8. Fopp
9. Fopp (Fucked Up Heavy Dub Mix)
10. Kingdom of Come
11. Swallow My Pride

Letters From A Tapehead

Dylan Carlson: "Holly's Jeans"

Dylan Carlson, mastermind behind drone progenitors, Earth, will be touring solo and releasing "Holly's Jeans," a new single to be featured on a split 7" he'll be sharing with touring mate, Rogier Smal.  Those familiar with Earth and Carlson's penchant for meditative and lengthy instrumentals won't find anything really new here, but "Holly's Jeans" is still engaging enough a listen.  Carlson has an ability to sort of hone in on what will musically inspire an individual to sit and drift along, repetition and resistance to variation resulting in no true consequence to his vision.

You can listen to the track below.  All info is courtesy of Rarely Unable.

Apparently, there's also news of an upcoming Earth album.  If interested, you can find reviews on the following Earth albums below:

A Bureaucratic Desire for Extra Capsular Extraction (via Stereokiller)
Angels of Darkness, Demons of Light I (via No Ripcord)
Angels of Darkness, Demons of Light II (via Stereokiller)


Expanding on the far-reaching folkloric explorations of drcarlsonalbion’s solo tour of last year, the totemic figure and his celebrated guitar will be bolstered by the accompaniment of Rogier Smal on drums on the upcoming UK tour which commences on 14 October in Bristol.

Incorporating free playing whilst maintaining the sublime recurrent elements Dylan Carlson is known far, Rogier Smal (Dagora, Marshall Allen, Mick Pontius) brings his singly unique and drumming capabilities to the heady mix.

The duo will be playing material from a split 7” released in conjunction with the tour, as well as expanding and elongating material from drcarlsonablion’s recent Hackney Lass and Latitudes series releases.

Here are the tour dates:

Mon 14-Oct-13 Bristol, The Exchange
Tue 15-Oct-13 Leeds, Brudenell
Wed 16-Oct-13 Manchester, Soup Kitchen
Thu 17-Oct-13 London Lexington (w/Thurston Moore) *Matinee 5-8pm TICKETS STILL AVAILABLE*
Thu 17-Oct-13 London Lexington (w/Thurston Moore) *Main show 8pm SOLD OUT*

Earth will be playing an exclusive show at Unsound Festival in Krakow, Poland, on October 19th, alongside Monolake, King Midas Sound, Eyvind Kang and Altar of Plagues amongst others. The lineup for this show is composed of Dylan Carlson (guitar), Adrienne Davies (drums) and Bill Herzog (bass). In other Earth news, there is a new album in the pipeline, with further details to arrive in good time.

Find footage of drcarlsonalbion’s prior tour at this link - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bIBCU9CXK-k

Letters From A Tapehead

The Mon: "Doppelleben"

Acting somewhat contrary to his normal work with the doom metal colossus Ufomammut , vocalist/bassist Urlo performs as The Mon , whose new...