Install Theme

Sounding the Deep - Glacier

If you got a sunburn from listening to Energy Gown (or any other sun-scorched psych rock), have some ice to cool your suffering. Glacier by David Williams (Sounding the Deep) is a search for life under the glaciers of Antarctica. The shorter opening and closing tracks serve as brackets for the two droning and cavernous main courses which serve as an imagining of Lake Vostok and similar lakes thousands of meters under the ice. Equally wonder-inducing and creepy, Glacier is an imaginary exploration of the reclusive, isolated worlds. One of the last on this Earth that has not been properly explored yet. Well, maybe with the exception of the Earth’s core, but we’ve already got a hilariously bad movie taking us there.

Energy Gown - I Watch the Sun

Isn’t it kinda ironic that in the age of broadband Internet and constant access to Fucking Everything some of the coolest bands I’ve listened to lately were found in a paper magazine? Turns out subscribing to The Wire was a winning move - reading it is like a goddamn Hitachi Magic Wand to my brain and sometimes I feel my thoughts speeding up to tachyon speeds. Anyway, thanks to this mag, I became aware of the existence of the Chicago riff diggers Energy Gown. I Watch the Sun is their debut 7” and it features a wonderfully stoned collection of three sunset-friendly songs that leave a smoky trail and keep the warmth in the listener’s ears even after the music is gone. Kinda like that warm feeling on the skin after spending the whole day outside in the summer. You know that feeling, right? Don’t ask me, I live in a fallout shelter.

And if you enjoyed this EP, make sure to check their newest 7” single, Round House.

Hobo Cubes - Apex Ideals

If you’re familiar with the work of Montreal based synthesist Francesco De Gallo and his Hobo Cubes albums, you probably remember him for his endess summer style beatific mind beaches of Timeless/Mindless, where warm drones washed all over the place like fragile ocean spray. Well, with this year’s Apex Ideals (released on Debacle Records) it would be wise to change your flip flops and swimming trunks into a lab coat. Or even a radiation suit. On the newest release, De Gallo eschews slowly unfolding pastoral psychedelia for a cold, sterile algorithms that jut out brutally from the metallic, ominous ambience bubbling underneath. There are certain echoes of Confield era Autechre shining through the formaldehyde glitchyness reminiscent of John Wiese's least spastic moments. Innocence is over. Go back to work. Your laboratory is waiting.

Christopher Merritt - Imaginary Colors

Great fractured, multistory fried electronics from the forward-thinking Brooklynite Christopher Merritt, who’s doing his damn best to one up Sean McCann’s game before he went all symphonic and compositional and shit. Imaginary Colors - originally released on cassette on Orange Milk Records is a stack of seemingly dissonant, yet smoothly working together enlightened, acidic synth notes that play together into a glitched & whacked out ambience somewhere between Caboladies, Sunroof! and Tim Hecker. There is a certain delicacy, even fragility of music between the roughed, razed edges that bear signs of heavy usage and frequent sonic, sensory overload assaults. Imaginary music for imaginary music videos with imaginary color palettes.

AKT¡! - Soundtrack Pour Une Révolution De Pierre Clémenti

AKT¡! is a super-sly droning krautrock collection of ideas from the Paris based traveller hiding under the nom-de-plume Brifo. Soundtrack Pour Une Révolution De Pierre Clémenti is his newest work, welcoming early spring of 2014 with organ-driven autobahn-friendly Faust worship and gleeful abandon of Terry Riley electronics with some slow, slinky ambience included to create a full visionary film soundtrack inside your head. For all the fans of the more beat driven Teutonic trippertronics, with a twist for some Düsseldorf synth boogie just drilling through your bones. Soundtrack… is a burner for sure, but once it burns all the way through, you end up being lifted to a higher level. A spiritual slam-dunk. Recommended!

Battery Face - What’s What Stuff

It seems like there’s something huge and noisy brewin’ up in the music underground of Northern England and Scotland, because some of the most guitar-damaged and unhinged psych acts of the last few years seem to be coming from that region - Desmadrados Soldados, Chalaque, Moon Unit etc. etc. The Glasgow based anarcho-noise unit Battery Face kick things off from the very start into a dizzying distortion worship, plunging into ampetaminic depths of Gravitar-styled formless hyper-rock improvisations, sprawling across several minutes and having no apparent beginning or end. Fully DIY, celebrating the spirit of ecstatic jamming with no limits stated from above. Rock on, stay free, smoke weed, fuck school. Highly recommended!

Geist & the Sacred Ensemble - Beyond This Vessel

The latest release by the Seattle based dark haunted folk unit Geist & the Sacred Ensemble was released on Moon Glyph on a cassette back in November 2013. It continues the path the ensemble have started on their debut tape In Search of Fabled Lands in the form of nearly gothic, swampy hymns that combine smokey, oriental-gazing psychedelia with almost funeral-like, plodding manner of the band that recalls the darker, more pagan acts of the freak folk/New Weird America movement - comparisons with Wooden Wand or Jackie-O Motherfucker might be irresistible. Walking a fine line between songwriting brilliance and freeform occult journey. Your body is just a vessel - go beyond it!

Various Artists - Phinery Compilation # 1

The very first release on the newly formed (“est. 2014”, as their Bandcamp page proudly presents) Denmark based label Phinery Tapes is a free compilation of music from the artist who may most likely release stuff from the label. Which is also a nice, handy guide as to what one might expect when checking out Phinery. The Bandcamp page states clearly: this is music to be listened to with open ears and carefully, the music here, falling within the general niche of ambient and rusty drone music (with certain psychedelic folk influences) is made to provide some lush background for the little meditation sessions, forgetting about the outside world and floating on the waves of sound. Keep an eye on this label and expect some very interesting music in the near future!

Genetics and Windsurfing - Audio Stream Continuum

Yet another oddity from the newest batch of tapes from the Brooklyn trippertronics label Orange Milk Records. “Genetics and Windsurfing” sound strange put right beside each other. Like a mis-match in the thick yellow pages book or a department in the shopping centers of the future. Anyway, as heard on the tape, fusing a watersport with one of the most advanced fields of science can prove in some sound mutations gone amok. The solo work by Poland’s Daniel Jaśniewski keeps on delivering explosion after explosion of glitched out confusion littered with harsh notes and disjointed rhythms, sandwiched between the coldest Autechre moments and the fucked up dada beat collages of NHK’Koyxeи. Certainly challenging, undeniably adventurous.

Jolana Havelková & Lucie Vítková – Návrh na změnu partitury

This modern classical/minimalistic work by Czech visual artist Jolana Havelková and composer Lucie Vítková might not be the target kind of material for Weed Temple musically, but it’s a mighty interesting experiment in a conceptual sense, and I’m a sucker for all things conceptual. In this case, it’s the work of 19th century classical Czech composer František Kmoch, whose original works are reworked into abstract, fragmented pieces. First, Havelková would take the notation of Kmoch’s pieces and rework them into abstract pieces of art. Then Lucie Vítková would come in to work on those notations, filled with topsy-turvy sounds that sound almost completely improvised and unstructured at first, but gradually become highly emotional pieces, as fragmented and detached as they might be. Silence and breaks between the sounds play a big part here, as if to magnify and signify the importance of the sounds themselves, torn out of their original time and source and reworked into either pieces of cold minimalism or strange, idiot savant-style semi-melodies for accordion, piano, harmonica, organ or voice. Released on CD and as digital download by the Slovakian experimental label LOM.

Mark McGuire - Organ Meditation (Winter 2014)

A spontaneous, one-off organ meditation recorded by former Emeralds’ guitarist Mark McGuire just a day before Valentine’s Day 2014 in his hometown of Westlake, Ohio. I haven’t been following McGuire’s work very closely for the last 2 or so years so I didn’t know that he used some phat syntszzz too. On this EP he drops the guitar and gets into some truly Emeraldic drones in the vein of the endless sound portals of Solar Bridge or Emeralds. It’s a shimmering, sprawling vista of seemingly frozen notes that change slooowly in time, throwing you into good ol’ ambient-infused stupor and distorting the time, stretching it into eternity. McGuire strives to give the mood of winter and succeeds, considering it feels more snowy and colder, at lest since the winter in the US was generally harsher than the extended autumn we had here in Poland. Organ Meditation is an astounding piece, considering it was most likely an improvisation, played merely as a method of killing time, maybe. And what a way to kill time it is! Available for free from Bandcamp.

Ancient Ocean - Wien

Oh, how wonderful was it one day to come back from work a little earlier than usual and find a fresh batch of tapes from the lyserigic-traum Austrian label Feathered Coyote Records. When I got myself to drown in the sound of the Wien cassette by Brooklyn based dronengineer John Bohannon, alias Ancient Ocean. He’s already done a split with Expo ‘70, so you can expect Bohannon’s sound to be pretty similar. The first side of the tape is a recording of a live performance given in the city of Wien, a wailing, echoing and ping-ponging nuclear desert shredding that gradually gets faster, more intricate and rawer, becoming something between monumental stoner rock held in formaldehyde and ringing, hypnotic black metal riff frozen in time. Side B was recorded in Brooklyn with some studio overdubs added. This is an exploration of a new territory, filled with rawer, almost tectonic swelling and falling drone-notes reminiscent of ELEH or (nearly) Lustmord. It’s much more spooky, kinda like Sunn O))) circa Black One stripped of hyper-amplified electric guitars and given analog synths instead. Well, they could get it much heavier than Ancient Ocean probably, but the formula and idea stays. This is some heavy droneage, even for the seasoned cloud-surfers;. But you should try it, anyway. Maybe you should check this out, if hardly anything blows your mind anymore. I dunno. Go for it.

Moan - Bookshelf Sanctuary

Before Ben Warfield’s Songs of Light and Dust, the Philadelphian plantable music label Data Garden released another hyperdelic nugget of synthesizer & guitar ecstasy by Shinji Masuko, the founding member of Japanese psych/prog band DMBQ and a member of Boredoms since 2004. Bookshelf Sanctuary is a ride through crystalline jungles and shimmering guitar chords that echo and bounce across the length of the album. Worth checking out for the opening track alone - the amount of sparkling, arpeggioing space madness packed in “Banded Agates” will make the straightest or the straight edgers high as a stratosphere in a matter of minutes. Somebody has a portrait of Manuel Göttsching hanging over their bed. Highly recommended!

Seaworthy - Sleep Paths

Brussels, Belgium CD label Slaapwel Records is a small enterprise which focuses primarily on, simply (and in their own words), “music to fall asleep to”. To expand on these simple words, the musical output of Slaapwel consists mainly of quiet ambient music, delicate guitar explorations or similarly dream-like sounds floating somewhere between waking life and sleep. The boat and the name might suggest an aquatic atmosphere, and it’s rather correct. Cameron Webb, alias Seaworthy, the Australian master of atmosphere crafts the ultra-delicate, fragile soundscapes of shimmering, echoing guitar notes floating in the sea of the unconscious. Quite in the mood of Fabio Orsi or Aidan Baker, this CD is the way to go when it comes for a great background to drifting off. In fact, I can hardly wait to finish writing this piece as I’m listening to this 40-minute soundscape right now. It’s so peaceful, my eyes are getting heavy… Good night!

German Army - Barrineans

The German Army continue their unstoppable march through the scorched earth of deep cassette underground dropping disorienting, sense-mixing sound bombs with every stop they make along the way in labels around the world. The newest Wunderwaffe comes from the Floridian label Lava Church with the Barrineans tape. They further enhance their rhythmical, industrially ambiental sound with tighter, more well-placed samples and more focus on building mood and strangely wandering melodies than just noisy, trippertronic clatter. There are plunderphonic and sample-based leanings mixed with krautrock’s electronic legacy with their Cluster-like soloes and the analog, bare-bones sound. Walk this strange soundscape by yourself, discover the Barrin Sonic Wasteland.