Active Music Listening Tuesday February 10, 2015

YTD recordings listened to: 115
Good music, not recommended for purchase: 66
Not good music: 39

Honorable Mentions: 7
Buys: 5

Possibles: Boyd Rivers, Chris McGregor, Alvin Youngblood Hart, Dave Arner Trio, Bill Horist, MAKU Soundsystem, Zomby, Retox, About Group, Jessie Mae Hemphill, Bone Dance, Defeater, Jonwayne, Okkyung Lee, The Ballantynes, Debruit, Slidhr, The Whammies, The Chewers, Alexander Hawkins, Cheryl Pyle, Toxic Holocaust, Equal Stones, Comeback Kid, Susie Iberra/Roberto Rodriguez, Lenguas Largas, The Coral, Spacesuits, T.O.M.B., Fofoulah, Lozen, Erase Errata, Mohammed Abozekry

@@@ Kid Wave: Wanderlust (Not sure, 2015).  A sneak peek from a record from this London quartet and I got to this via a music publicisit.  It looks like the Big Slack is back!  Waves of guitar noise in the chorus, some clean notes in the verse, and a dreamy white boy nestled in the middle of the mix.  Not really Nirvana-esque as it doesn’t have that underground fringer rising feeling, more of a gauzy, shoegaze thing.  Maybe that will be a new subgenre — shoegauze.  Sounds more like a product than a musical genre but it’s a thin line between a new music genre and a new product.

@@@ Jose Gonzalez: Vestiges & Claws (Mute, 2015).  Mr. Gonzalez has a new feelings based sound bomb he is detonating amongst us.  Solo acoustic guitar with very nice melodic arpeggios, at least in the first tune.  His voice is plain and pleasant.  Plain can be a good thing, a very good thing.  They name check Nick Drake in the promo blurb but I think he’s got more of a Simon and Garfunkel thing going.  Not both Simon and Garfunkel at the same time so I guess you would have to pick either Simon or Garfunkel for the gig.  He doesn’t have that fragile upper register voice of Garfunkel but I’m going with Garfunkel as I really like typing the word Garfunkel.

It is set up to stream over here at Ground Zero for serious feelings, the NPR!!

@@@ Godflesh: A World Only Lit By Fire (Avalanche Recordings, 2014).  I’ve seen this record all over the 2014 best of lists but I haven’t peeped it because I got these guys confused with the band Godsmack which I used to hate.  They open fat, stupid, fuzzy bass style in the first tune, New Dark Ages.  Here comes the singer and he’s pissed.  Not crazy pissed, reasonably pissed.  You can kinda understand and I always appreciate that option. They got a little NIN aggro-industrial goin here, but it’s light and I dig it.  It’s mostly in the drums which aren’t typical heavy music drums.  Oh my this guitar/bass whale is reelin’ and sloppin’ around.  Tasty.  They get more metallic in the second tune, Dead End, and again I’m not very bright and they’re rocking a drum machine here, which is cool but it definitely pulls a bit of muscle out of the record.  For me.  If they had an ill drummer I would be on this like stink on a monkey.

@@@  Gold-Bears: Dalliance (Slumberland Records, 2014).  The customer favs of 2014 are out at Aquarius Records and this one topped the first music nerd on that list.  Classic, noisy but friendly old school punk.  A little reminiscent of the early Lemonheads but without the static.  These are friendly punks who are making a pretty happy racket — I would bet their tour van smells but they probably clean it out once in a while.  They seem to be on the fringe of being decent members of society.  They wouldn’t ride around with some ill anti-social inch of tour funk on the floor of their van.



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