Summer’s over…but some of us have to do some clean up. If you’re doing time with the maintenance crew, a few things to make the wrap up go down a touch easier…
Dirty Blonde Asylum/Dirty Blonde Asylum EP
Debut EP from Shrewsbury’s Jack Chamberlain under the guise of Dirty Blonde Asylum was recently another fine valis Pick of the Week.A strong shoegaze pulse beats in Dirty Blonde Asylum, with thicker and meatier cuts like The Fall and Screaming Jesus, picking up some space rock chug. Other cuts mine a mellower drugged out haze that shoot for more bliss without losing any weight. A full production gives DBA plenty of space to move and ricochet around in. (Your Ignorance is) My Bliss uses that to full effect, easing out and layering up into an extended vibrating workout.
Montgomery’s Jeff McLeod goes in a different direction after Under Dim Selfwith Forthinking, Vol. 1, an ‘experimental electronic series using a minimal setup of an iOS MIDI control application, a Moog Voyager and an Ensoniq Fizmo. All takes were recorded live in one performance pass, after initial setup & testing of the entire rig as a playable instrument.’ Far more electronic obviously than Under Dim Self, Forthinking, Vol. 1 still has McLeod’s off-kilter aura, with many of the cuts sounding like the result of a sonic spasm. There are song bones under the skin, but Forthinking, Vol. 1 works best as a loose collage of sounds, compressed and decompressed through McLeod’s inner and outer filters. Though constructed through the self-described ‘minimal setup,’ Forthinking, Vol. 1 actually moves through a wide range of sounds and vibes. Shawtninhorn is a frenetic hummer that feels like a circus march gone awry, while Circulus bounces around more spacey chambers. McLeod also has Scalps of Godsavailable, which falls more in line with Under Dim Self, incorporating vocals and a thicker, more menacing sound.
Shawtninhorn :: Jeff McLeod :: Forthinking, Vol. 1 (2012, Jeff McLeod)
Turgidity :: :: Jeff McLeod :: Scalps of Gods (2012, Jeff McLeod)
Another valis Pick of the Weekvet, Cleveland’s The Volta Sound are putting their wares out under the umbrella of The Davenport Collective. With a pretty stripped down approach, Like Entropy is packed full of psych pop, moving from the dreamy (Meditation Station, Nobody Knew) to the driving (Don’t Bring Me Down) and a few detours along the way. With a bright, open production that keeps the record feeling up, Like Entropy uses the open circulating air to keep it crisp and elevated without losing any of the hooks.
An outstanding ‘electronic post-rock’ album from Cardiff’s Dementio13. El Lissitzky may fall under electronica, but Demetio13 works in many more textures and flourishes than one might expect when going down that pigeon-hole. There’s drone spaceways on cuts like Summerisle, hopped up frantic throb-runs like the fantastic Sameness and dreamy pop influenced gems like Collision Courses. Standout cuts Fatty Pork and Phallanx effortlesslywork in a bit more rock structure, adding another side to Dementio13 and rounding out their self-described tag of electronic post-rock in stellar form. Like its namesake, El Lissitzky seems to be at its best when threading and weaving in and out of more than one discipline. Wonderfully constructed, El Lissitzky provesDementio13 knows a few sides to discipline. An eclectic record at the very least, it never goes into the ditch of schizophrenic overreaching. Dementio13 keeps a certain level of moderation throughout that never stifles and by the end that emerges more as tastefulness than any kind of restriction.
Fatty Pork :: Demention 13 :: El Lissitzky(2012, Dementio13)
Kingdom of the Holy Sun/Jesus in India; Pharmacokinetics
The sun never sets apparently; two follow-ups to their self-titled in the coffers from Seattle’s Kingdom of the Holy Sun. Jesus in India and Pharmacokinetics take the druggy haze and seesaw bliss of their s/t’s foundation and build on it without forgetting what made it a great first step to begin with. KOTHS still have that teetering edge to their walk, but there’s something in how these play out that expands their mission while exerting more control at the same time. There’s still the shoegaze patina and the Brian Jonestown-esque narcotics of cuts like Dazed and Phased, while others dip into an interstellar Doors vibe taking more direct cues from 60s psychedelia.
"This show is 110% … one of the most consistently awesome programs we have come across."
The Sunrise Ocean Bender sets sail every Monday morning, 1 – 3 a.m. on WRIR lp 97.3 FM, to find something for your ears, and something for your head … From psych to prog to pop and whatever tributary we can find on the way … and right back around again. There might be a map, but the destination is up for grabs. If it all goes right, we may just get lost. Meet me at the muster station … it might be a long week.