Tuesday, October 31, 2006

So I's been checkin out this new Jason Lescalleet on zee frickin great Celebrate Psi Phenomenon label(To The Teeth it's called.) Probly just so I can give that Nmperign collab, which is every bit as massive and stunning as everyone says it is, a bit of a rest. And I'm glad I did. You know, John Wiese is great and everything, and I've pried much enjoyment from various sides of his, but the likeliness that I'm gonna return to that kind of ADD assault on a regular basis is fairly slim. I'm not calling out the emperor's new clothes or anything. I mean, I think he's actually pointing out new directions in composition and everything, and he'll probably get his full due when all is said and done, but for now, it might be more suited to someone who talks on their cell phone while railing Meth and watching picture-in-picture tv. If I like a sound, I don't mind if it sticks around for a while.
So this Lescalleet side sounds like Wiese without all the choppy-choppy. Grey-scale noise, perfectly arranged and monstrously heavy, along with things I'm quite fond of, like dynamics and progression. And it seems like, with this deluge of "noise" diarrhea spewing forth from all these, well, assholes, and whatever that does to any notions of talent or ability, the ear of the behearder is what's important. And Lescalleet has a mighty fine ear. Indeed.

If that seemed uninspired, I'm really just posting as an excuse to put up YouTube crap. Clearly I'm putting my free time to good use. Sorry I didn't have the patience to find some A-1 backyard wrestling clips.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Paranoia is kind of an amazing thing. Even if you're aware that you've got it, it's completely impossible to tell where it starts or ends, whether you're feeling its influence too accutely or not enough. It's like an Ouroborous, you can't tell if it's swallowing itself or creating itself. (if that's how it works. whatever.) I should note that at the age of 25, I'm tucking tail and making preparations to move into Mother's womb, I mean basement. And the timing might be just right. My continued existence seems very frustrating to people, and they're not afraid to vocalize it. I've grown convinced the neighbourhood crackheads are planning some sort of an attack on me, although I'm not sure whether they have a pipe-beating or gang rape in mind. So I guess what we've got here is a confluence of circumstances. Fine, you all win, I'm out. Like Ghost said, "I don't wanna see 2Pac." And if anyone says I stood down I'm gonna fucking find them. All I've learned from 5 years in this beautiful, god-forsaken city is: fuck Vancouver, fuck the upper middle class, fuck sunshine and fuck anyone who thinks they've got anything on you. Fuck everyone. Surrey what! Surrey what!
Anyways, who cares. You're only good for what you're good for, right? Maybe I'll find myself or some such nonsense. The tunes, brother, the tunes.
If obscure is on your agenda, you might just wanna hit that back button. Right now I'm jamming J Dilla's The Shining and Converge's No Heroes pretty heavily. What can I say, they make me happy.
My man Kutcorners at Beat Street tried to tip me to Slum Village's Fantastic Vol. 2 some years back, but I wasn't hearing nothing but El-Producto and Illmatic at the time, so Dilla and I didn't cross paths till that Jaylib thing, and then he went and died of Lupus. (first hip hop artist to die of natural causes? anyone? i fucking hate myself.) And I won't be able to weigh in on Donuts for five years at least. Certifiable genius works from hospital bed, trying to say as much as possible while he still can? Seem overwrought? I don't know, it's a humdinger.
So this Shining disc is the posthumous cash grab, right? You can see a big pile of em at the Virgin fucking Megastore, right next to some guy with a fauxhawk. Busta Rhymes is involved. And, like the best hip hop, the foul reek of commerce just doesn't stick. They've subverted it. It's the underdog, pay up. And maybe contributions by the likes of Common, Guilty Simpson and Black Thought are workmanlike, but workmen built this goddamn house, and it's Dilla's house anyways. Versatility and a shocking amount of talent at whatever he does, that's what's up. This one's impossibly lush and psychedelic. See, I've spent too much time talking about "issues" and now I'm burnt out on talking about "music." This is why modern life is hell, there's so many layers to peel back before you get anywhere near the core of anything.
Wah, wah, wah, boo hoo.
More is more, The Shining is amazing. I'll still like it a month from now.
And while it's for a completely different set of heads, the name Converge carries a similar amount of weight. In the liners to the When Forever Comes Crashing reissue, when Chris Gramlich says they were considered "too heavy," "too raw," "too dark," "too arty," "too hardcore," "too metal," "too extreme," you know that for whoever didn't get scared off, they might've meant just about everything.
I mean, Botch and Coalesce are limited, Isis and Neurosis are boring, Mastodon and Lamb of God are on a guitar tech's sweatshirt, Meshuggah and Opeth aren't even worth mentioning (oops), the best part of Today is the Day's back catalogue is out of print (OOPs) and Earache only released so many good albums, so thank sweet Christ for Converge. Four masterpieces of truly abrasive rage under their studded belts, I don't think I'd be breaking anyone's heart to say their best work is behind them. They're still more potent than anything. No Heroes is the first thing they've done that doesn't try to redefine the universe, so I guess it's formulaic, but what I'm saying is the formula is good. The driving, hint-of-Fugazi anthemics of Petitioning the Empty Sky meet the jagged crush of Jane Doe. They may have made concessions to the public on the fronts of high end damage and willful ugliness, and lines like "I wanna live / without the guilt we give / I wanna die / without this pain" don't hit anywhere near as hard as "With a gun in my mouth / I pray for the sunshine," but I don't doubt I'll listen to this 100 times at least.
Also, Tonight's the Night, Sympathy for Lady Vengeance, and Season 2 of Wonder Showzen. Canucks are 6-4-0-1. Keep hatin.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

I've been meaning to write about this for a while now, but it always seemed like such a grand discovery that it should be saved for a grandiose occasion. And this is no such occasion, but who really cares. Just say whatever you feel needs to be said and do the embarassment and second guessing later. Such is the beauty of the internet.
So I read Valerie Wilmer's As Serious As Your Life this while back. And it really is that serious, lots of writing on Sun Ra, Albert Ayler, Ornette Coleman, giving proper due to controversial figures whose presence has grown more towering over time. I don't know, I think I mentioned it was a while back. I don't remember much, but it was fascinating. I returned it to the library on time and everything.
There's a section on the AACM, which stands for something, and which I always used to confuse with the Art Ensemble of Chicago. They're members, so it ain't all that dumb.
I just got worried that I'd written NAACP, which could've seemed racist to someone. It's cool, I've got a black cousin. I'm a regular Atticus Finch.
The AACM also has Anthony Braxton for a member, and the book quotes him saying something to the effect of, "The musicians of the future will play boxes of their own design, which will emit swirling sounds with little regard for Western tonalities." Or something. Now, I was listening to plenty Dub Leps and Wolf Eyes at the time, so to say my mind was blown does little to convey my shock and awe. Dude wasn't prescient, he was goddamn prophetic. Seriously, did anyone else notice this? Did I imagine it? And that Victoriaville thing happened like a half year later. If I'd blogged it or written it down and mailed it to myself, it would've been time-stamped, and I could've called up Byron Coley and demanded he hand over his record collection. Or even just a copy of Clyma Est Mort.
Even Braxton hasn't tooted his own horn (hah!) on the quote, but clearly he's got some class. I could learn from the man.

p.s. Many thanks to anyone who's passed along kind words. I'm kind of a pussy, so the validation helps.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Yes, I like these Warmers Milks. That Penetration Initials trimmed my whiskers a little while back, but you've read all about them, most likely, being the worldly men and women that we are. They're great. They don't seem to draw a line between the world of writing songs and making grand gestures and the world of jammin and gettin weird. Mikey T and cohorts will make a loose folk structure bleed atonal confusion, they'll rock a slow burning Sunburned Hand jam, they'll zone out on some Pelt drones, whatever. They've given themselves the freedom to play totally free or rein it in as much as they please. Stand up in your chairs!
Whatever ragged goddamn glory they've strung together, you can always sense the black clouds hanging in the distance. You know, kick at the darkness til it bleeds daylight and all that, until the darkness kicks back. Radish On Light finds them completely bottoming out in negative feelings and paranoid vibes, and it's an ugly little masterpiece. See, and this is why they disturb as much as they soothe, however deranged the Milks get, it's not as an attempt to project a certain aura or to cloak themselves in mystery, or even just to be trippy. It's a genuine, emotionally resonant expression of the things that claw away at your insides. And when I say bottoming out, I'm talking first Burzum depths. Almost Keiji Haino depths. Shit's fugly. I'm not even gonna try to describe the thing, somebody got their hands on some pretty Professional Tools and edited together one dark trip. Imagine the perfect Sunburned Hand album that Moloney and crew will never be able to make.
Third go around and the reviews are in from the neighbours. They don't like it. Looks like it's win-win for me. Right to the top of the heavy rotation pile*:

Warmer Milks - Radish On Light
Magik Markers - Don & Phil
Charalambides - Market Square
Richard Youngs - Advent
Harvey Milk - Courtesy And Good Will Toward Men
The Stooges - Funhouse
The Dead C - Vain, Erudite & Stupid
Wolf Eyes - Human Animal

*Heavy rotation pile not an actual, physical pile. I mean, I own most of these. Well, more than half

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Returned search results for search term air
Returned search results for search term sunshine
Returned search results for search term flor
Returned search results for search term blue
Returned search results for search term beat
Returned search results for search term anvil
Returned search results for search term man man
Returned search results for search term mexican
Returned search results for search term him
Returned search results for search term whitehouse
Returned search results for search term deep forest
Returned search results for search term beat
Returned search results for search term dark
Returned search results for search term bob
Returned search results for search term earth
Returned search results for search term never
Returned search results for search term seeds
Returned search results for search term dylan the way
Returned search results for search term easy
Returned search results for search term caravan
Returned search results for search term 1979
Returned search results for search term good times
Returned search results for search term kid
Returned search results for search term street dogs
Returned search results for search term hurt
Returned search results for search term lou reed
Returned search results for search term death
Returned search results for search term ildjarn
Returned search results for search term air
Returned search results for search term butthole surfers
Returned search results for search term rock
Returned search results for search term by the way
Returned search results for search term my love
Returned search results for search term jack
Returned search results for search term get up
Returned search results for search term blues
Returned search results for search term war

I used to be quite enamoured of "eat shit and die" as an elegant declaration of dislike, but lately I've grown quite sweet on "eat shit and fucking choke on it," cause then you get the image of shit in their mouth and them choking and them dying because there's shit lodged in their throat.

Who the fuck does a Soulseek search for "beat"?

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Things to remember while listening to The Goslings' Grandeur of Hair:
-you are lost at sea.
-the meaning of time seems to be decaying.
-you remember what momma said bout those sirens, but they coo so sweet.
-in your periphery, you could swear you saw a bug, but when you look there's nothing there.
-how bad can the afterlife be?
-jellyfish in the moonlight.
-oh, the jellyfish in the moonlight.
-the visions are tests. you have to see reality for what it truly is.
-god is a prick.
-another bug. still nothing there.
-coloured lights emanate from deep beneath you, drifting and pulsing, already a memory as you see them. they'll be gone for long periods of time, but when they return, the tears just roll down your face.
-maybe those sirens don't give second chances.
-she was in that dream. you were happy just to make out with her.
-you may never see daylight again, and the prospect doesn't seem to bother you.