Being sick and hurting my back has put writing on the back burner a little lately. I’m thankfully going on vacation this weekend so hopefully I’ll be back re-energized and ready to knock some stuff out. Thanks everyone for the positive feedback and discussion on the other blog Strange Obsessions. It was fun to write and to read everyone’s response. The next one should be up sometime soon discussing the current state of compilations and some of the ones that have come out lately that I really dig. There’s been so much stuff coming out lately that I was pretty lost on where to start and know I forgot a million things I want to write about but here we go anyways.
Wiccans: Sailing A Crazy Ship 12” - I feel like it’s been a while since we last heard from Wiccans. Their new LP is definitely worth the wait. A blend of psych influenced soaring guitar leads with stompy hardcore that’s somewhere between NYHC and Negative Approach. Wiccans have always managed to stand out from the pack and this LP puts them ahead of it. Here’s a video from the great Will Mecca of their entire set at EINOK this year. It starts out with the great opening track from their new album.
Marc Cone: Now Showing 12” - Another home run from Urochromes frontman Jackie’s alter ego. Super tight drums with simple bass lines mixed with some very 16bit sounding synth. The vocals are definitely the key to how great these songs are though, full of sass and wit. Definitely a fun album all together. Here Is a sick video of Mark Cone playing on the awesome Highland Park TV.
Process of Elimination 7” - Industrial punk? Punk industrial? I’m not super big on industrial music myself, if it sounded like this though I think I would be a huge fan. This is dark and heavy with super raspy vocals that sound like they’re being sung from another room. The drums are a very 1-2 drum beat and everything feels pretty raw, not in a poor recording way or anything. Everything just feels dark and dirty. Definitely cool and unique.
The Bug: Humbug Or So Many Awful Things 7": A pure cacophony of aggression. Super chaotic and unhinged. Before you can wrap your head around what’s happening the song is over and the next one is halfway done. Residual Mope is definitely my jam on this one.
Various: Horrendous New Wave 12”: This is definitely a weird but cool idea for a comp. It’s a handful of musicians and bands playing under fake band names. A couple of the bands are obvious or didn’t change their name (the great Natural Man song Tie Me Up makes an appearance here) and then some are a complete mystery since the album contains no information. The songs range from new wave to minimal synth and some that could be released as KBD singles and nobody would bat an eye (well someone would since you know it’s the internet). Here’s one of the Western Civ song that sounds like some art school punk band from the 70s in a way that I dig.
SBF: Double Blind 7” – Yes! Two new SBF tracks. Two tracks that are both just straight fire. Lots of additional weird background noises are littered through out both tracks. The recording is definitely clearer than the first 7” and this feels more aggressive. The guitars definitely have a more chugging metal feeling to them. Lots of crazy solos going on sometimes simultaneously. Remember Highland Park TV which was mentioned earlier? Well they have a cool set of SBF playing which is pretty awesome and I think the debut of the title track.
Blank Spell: Miasma 12” – Ever since their promo tape for this album I have been anxiously waiting for this record. The wait is finally over and totally worth it. This LP is blazing. Some of the best dark punk going right now. The guitar is a shimmering light of treble coming over the bass which feels super dark and oppressive. The drums are super tight and keep the momentum of the songs at a constant fist pumping tempo. The vocals have an intensity that makes them seem more like commands being yelled at you in short controlled bursts. This is definitely going to be a constant on my turntable for a while. Here’s Vines which might be one of my favorites.
Modern Art: Oriental Towers 12” – A cool reissue of Modern Art’s second cassette. A cross between minimal synth and the poppier side of post-punk, there’s a lot of elements of the music world of the early 80s. The whole thing while being super upbeat and poppy has a gloom that seems to hang over it. It’s like walking through a dying industrial town on an overcast day. Here’s a music video for the very Echo & The Bunnymen esque title track