We got a new batch of tapes in from the ever-faithful Cae-Sur-A! Check 'em out:
Science vs. Witchcraft – 300 Useful Sound Effects
Rochester-based four-piece Science vs. Witchcraft busts out this raunchy, live tape, which captures several crowd-favorites performed during a 2010 concert at the Western New York staple Bug Jar. On this release, they shrugs off all seriousness and kickoff songs like “200 Useful Sound Effects,” “Too Big for Pants” and the lewd “Sweatpants Boner.” This is obviously just rock for rock’s sake, but its lightheartedness seems to really allow them to loosen up and lay down some quality thrashing jams. It’s the kind of stuff that really works best in a live setting, which is refreshing in an era where too much production polishing can often result in some disappointing live shows. While the ringing guitars are really captured well, I only wish that the tape format was a little more forgiving for the drums. But in the live setting, I would want to be front row and center for this one, that’s for sure.
P.S. The artwork for this one is particularly charming. Enumerated on the cover are all 300 sound effects. If you can't see it here, you can check out a bigger image on their website.
P.P.S. Band name of the year?
These Feathers Have Plumes – All Cats Are Grey by Night
Short and sweet, this release from London’s very own Andie Brown is all dark drone atmospheres and smothering washes of overdrive bass peppered with some choice field recordings and even vocal loops. Always “active” and never lulling, this brings the best of label mate ThrouRoof to mind, along with contemporaries Wether and the bad boys over at Sonic Meditations. Overall, a top-notch drone release with some really intelligent song structures and masterfully-executed dynamic shifts.
Mold Omen – Blacktop
I listened to this tape first and it’s stuck with me the longest—it very well may be my favorite of the lot. Baltimore’s Mold Omen have brewed up some really quality compositions that are instantly likeable although they fall far towards the end of the experimental spectrum. Thatching themselves together with churning, rhythmic scribbles of sound these multi-layered instrumentals are made from only the finest in colorful synths, the rawest percussion, and subtle blasts of noisy power electronics. I found Blacktop to take a novel approach to noise music—one which coils, and builds itself up step by step, instead of instantly alienating you with run-of-the-mill penetrating blasts of static.The countless layers and overall refined details somehow work really well with its general lo-fi aesthetic. Ultimately, it's a release where the results are more organic that mechanical, and make you want to start looking up phrases like "bioelectronics" and "saltatory conduction" on wikipedia. Don’t sleep on this one.
While you hunt this one down, you can stream/preview/download a lot of their stuff here. Count your blessings.
Novoe Tsarstvo - Voda Naidet Teply Dim
International collaboration effort between a flexible group of forward-thinking Russians (including members of Love Cult, who run Full of Nothing) and their Finnish counterparts across the border. This release is very loose and open-ended, reminding me of the expansive releases of artists like Pine Smoke Lodge, Indian Weapons, and Ous Mal. It seamlessly integrates elements of drone and folk, and also has a nice spotlight on some Albert Ayler freakout sax and some truly gruesome percussion. Damn! Challenging, but so worth your time.
Their website is a real treat too, and has live performances and artwork, as well as side projects in dance music and film scores.