Browsing Category Bits & Pieces

Pinch Points – “Shibboleth”

Melourne’s Pinch Points fire back this year with another infected, squirming bout of post-punk poison. The first taster of their upcoming Moving Parts LP is an itchy-toothed bite into society that leaves blood on the bite mark. Hammered guitars herald their heavily coiled sound opening into a battery of drums and vocal venom that sees the band trading barbs between themselves shouting along on the chorus. The track ties the band’s tension around the listener like a steel-banded scarf, slowly tightening the pressure as they careen towards the close. The record is out May 31st through Roolette in Australia, Six Tonnes de Chair in France and Burger here in the States. Gonna want to keep an eye out for this one.



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Dire Wolves – “I Control The Weather”

Despite the band’s massive output over the last few years, you’d be forgiven for having missed out on releases from the mercurial Dire Wolves (sometimes appended to “Absolutely Perfect Brothers Band” or “Just Exactly Perfect Sisters Band”). The band’s been running the psychedelic small format mill ragged with tapes on Eiderdown, Sloow, Sky Lantern, Baked, etc and have been bouncing LPs between serious scene tentpoles Beyond Beyond is Beyond and Feeding Tube for a small stretch. Yet, this seems like the year and more to the point, the release, that splashes their heady maelstrom of psych-folk across your speakers.

Returning again to BBiB, the band have released the first cut from upcoming full-length Grow Towards The Light today. The track finds the band locked into sonic struggle with the eternal vortex – guitars lashing at the wind one minute, melting in thick candle wax runs the next. Fiddle slices through in a nimble dance with the percussive roil and atop the whole churning froth, Georgia Carbone incants a vocal spell with words that seem utterly not of this earth. This is the band’s first turn without original vocalist Lau Nau, and Carbone steps ably up to the task at hand, giving the song a mystical push towards oblivion. The track is just the beginning of the band’s descent into the fray, but it’s enough to captivate with repeat listens until you get your hands on the full cosmic journey.



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Matt Surfin’ & Friends – “Waiting On You”

New slice of shimmer pop out today from Matt Surfin’ and Friends, the collaborative project of Matt Serferian (Donovan Wolfington, POPE). “Waitin’ On You” on you slides in on Summer winds, catching some of the downdraft from The Cars as well as more contemporary pop diggers Sam Flax and Wyatt Blair. The band was conceived as a collective of friends and this track features Ross Farbe and Ray Micarelli from Video Age. Ross provides the vocal treatment that gives the band its seabreeze air to match Serferian’s musical pleather punch. Matt recalls the song’s incubation – “Waiting On You” is a collaborative work between Ross, Ray, and myself. I felt like I couldn’t do some of the ideas I had justice so I asked Ross if he would be interested in singing the song and maybe helping me rework some parts. We met up months later, rewrote the verses and changed the feel to something more like a dance version of the cleaners from Venus. We wrote and recorded it all in about 8 hours. It was a blast working with such talented musicians and song writers as Ross and Ray as they solidified and expanded my ideas.”

The Records is out May 3rd on Community Records, limited to 300.




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Curved Entrances – “Inscribe In Night”

Phoenix’ transcendental psych collective The Myrrors have birthed a new offshoot this year (two actually, but just gonna focus on the one for now). Guitarist Nik Rayne and drummer Grant Beyschau have drawn in The Night Collectors’ Connor Gallaher to form a trio that boasts similar vibes to their own brand of sweat lodge psychedelics. Gone is the sawed violin, though and instead the band locks into the séance slithers of deep-set drone – meditative, monolithic, and ultimately boiled into a guitar maelstrom that’s slipped out of time and into a zone beyond what they’re laying down in their flagship band. The first release as Curved Entrances offers up two side-long runs of improv insanity in extremely limited runs from Carinal Fuzz. Check the five-ton freakout “Inscribe In Night” below and snag one of the remaining LPs while you can.



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Constant Mongrel – “Experts in Skin”

Melbourne’s post-punk pounders Constant Mongrel follow up their excellent LP from 2018 with a double shot single in advance of their European tour. A-side “Experts in Skin” is a brittle, blistered cut that rolls in on Plasticine guitar needles before kicking over to a full-on hive of buzzing synths, sax and rhythmic rancor. The vocal bile from Tom Ridgewell captures their usual sneering, aloof attack, cutting through consumerism without an ounce of affection. The band’s long been one of the Aussie underground’s secret weapons, wrangling up players from Terry, Woolen Kits, and Nun and this 7” slab for Upset The Rhythm keeps their reputation solid. Nab a listen to the A-side below and look for the single in June or on the road in the EU.



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Jeanines – “Either Way”

Brooklyn do Jeanines have announced their debut LP for Slumberland today and the first cut wafts in on memories of classic Slumberland, Sarah, and Cloudberry singles gone by. Lead by Alicia Jeanine and aided and abetted by My Teeanage Sride’s Jed Smith on drums and bass, the band picks at a whole host of favorites from Marine Girls, The Pastels and Talulah Gosh to further outliers like Tiger Trap and Cub. Its sweet and simple and decidedly breezy, just the kind of jangle pop that brightens a day. There have been a lot of heirs to the jangle-pop throne, but the true secret is not to overthink it. So many of the originals shone brightly because they weren’t trying to overcomplicate the sound, and instead just got together with friends to knock out sparkling singles dipped in simple syrup and sunshine. Jeanines seem to capture the haphazard brilliance of the original set. Get this one on your list for 2019.



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Buck Curran – “War Behind The Sun”

Guitarist Buck Curran last landed here with his shadowy Morning Haikus, Afternoon Ragas LP in 2018 and he’s back with a renewed darkness on “War Behind The Sun.” With a parched approach the track spreads like the doom sprawl of war across the horizon, an all-consuming ache that can neither be reckoned with or ignored. The track takes its influence from Raag Marva, a Hindustani raag that represents sunset and ushers in a feeling of anxiety and solemn expectation. Those feelings are translated well by Curran, turning the raag into a high-plains exorcism of light and goodness as it sweeps through the speakers. The track is released in advance of Curran’s upcoming album Delights & Dangers of Ambiguity coming in June on Obsolete Recordings.

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ML Wah – “Santal”

New deep vibes today from Matt LaJoie, who downplays his guitar in favor of creeping drones, midnight creaks of percussion, keys, and brass as “Santal” unfolds slow and sacred, rising from the deep like smoke through a fissure. There’s a touch of Turkish folk in the mix, but at its core the track exudes bayou vibes – a humid, hungry creep of eyes, rough scarred scales, and scattered bones. When LoJoie’s guitar finally surfaces through the haze, it slithers through the slick with a possessed gate, ambling and roiling against the thick air. Contrary to some of his tighter works with Ash & Herb, Herbcraft, and under his own name, this record comes closer to the peyote pulse of cosmic entanglement – dislodging itself from the yolk of traditional song format. LaJoie and label Flower Room invoke Don Cherry comparisons, and that’s not a bad place to start or finish, to be quite honest. Very interested to see how the rest of this one shapes up. The record is out May 24th and comes in some choice deluxe options.


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Red Channel – “Demons”

Can’t go wrong with a new track on UK DIY powerhouse Upset the Rhythm and they’re offering up some prime post-punk/new wave goodness today. “Demons” is the first cut off the debut LP from L.A.’s Red Channel. The band has cobbled together an EP of stripped-down simmer that calls back to punk’s willingness to lop off the fringes. Atop a squirming beat the band backdrops the vocal magic of singers Melody and Casey who slash at singles from Blondie, The Go Go’s and We’ve Got a Fuzzbox and reassemble the pieces into their own image. The resulting track keeps its cool, never breaking a sweat but inviting dance and debauchery with a great detachment that pulls in some of their more Teutonic peers as well (Monopol, Starter). It’s a pulsating cut that positions the band as ones to watch indeed.



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Sad About The Times: An Exploration of North American 70s FM

Anthology is really digging in this year (not that last year was slouchin’) and they add another solid compilation to the collective wantlist. Compiled by Mikey Young, who’d previously worked on a comp of ’70s folk and psych tracks from his native Australia, the new compilation focuses on the barely there bands who breached the walls of FM in the ’70s. Young expresses the impulse behind the compilations as an extension of frustration with finding brilliant overlooked music and coming up short from sharing his finds with those in his immediate reach. I can relate, to be honest. And given Mikey’s already picked out a damn fine gem for RSTB’s Hidden Gems series, I’d trust his taste completely.

Mikey breaks it down, “”For nearly all my 41 year old life, my most constant joy has been to find new music to love. My next move is usually to force the people around me to listen and hope they feel the same joy. Teenage friends and crushes didn’t care at all about the knowledge I was imparting or the mixtapes I was laboring over, I’m pretty damn sure. City life was a little more receptive, though dj’ing what i heard as totally life changing, life affirming jams at bars to dudes requesting GnR didn’t always make it feel so. The occasional radio show gives me an outlet to continue sharing tunes but sometimes that feels like firing noise into a blackhole filled with all the other bazillion archival radio streams. Doing these comps with Keith (of Anthology) seem like the logical progression of what I’ve always loved doing. ”

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