Browsing Category Bits & Pieces

Les Halles – “Thresholds”

Not Not Fun has skewed more mutant disco in the last few years but its good to see there’s still some melted psych odysseys to be found among the band’s varied stable. French musician Baptiste Martin has been crafting psych landscapes for a few years in relative obscurity on labels like Constellation Tatsu and Noumenal Loom and now he’s bringing a double shot of languid washes to NNF. “Thresholds” melds drifting keys with Amerindian flute samples and views them through the undersea ripple of a Jacques Cousteau nature doc, bobbing and lolling in the waves and peering at the sun through the refracted surface above. For those looking to cool down summer days or just melt into the deep green of leaves against sky, this is probably a best bet for the next couple of months.



Support the artist. Buy it HERE.

0 Comments

Glenn Donaldson on The Television Personalities – The Painted Word

Hidden Gems is based on the idea of those records that are found along the way in life that you can’t believe you never heard about, the ones that just blow you away on first listen and seem like such a find. The kind of records that get left out of all the essential decade lists and 1001 records you need to hear before you die type of listicle. The ones that got away. In the first installment I tapped Glenn Donaldson (Skygreen Leopards, Art Museums, Jewelled Antler Collective) to have his pick at a record that fits the bill. Glenn’s Twitter feed alone is full of enough overlooked classics to fill this feature ten times over, so needless to say I was intrigued. He’s picked Television Personalities’ fourth album, the darkly shaded, The Painted Word. I asked him how the record came into his life and how its affected him and his music.

Continue Reading
1 Comment

Mozes & The Firstborn – “Great Pile of Nothing”

So it would seem that the EP that Mozes & The Firstborn released earlier in the year was a tease and taste of a new album on the way. The first eke out of that long player arrives with “Great Pile of Nothing,” as clean and sincere a slice of power pop that ever graced these shores. Somewhere out in the world a shudder just ran down Matthew Sweet’s spine because he knows there’s a challenger on the horizon. The track hearkens back to the best of the mid 90’s and early aughts indie pop w/ a budget and I for one, couldn’t be happier to return to the big, crisp sound of guitars blowing stacks over sugar sweet odes to love and loss and creeping inadequacy. Bring back well-funded slacker pop. Do it already! The album, also titled Great Pile of Nothing, hits in September so mark your calendars, and in the mean time this nugget should be duly dubbed to cassette and popped into the deck of your beat to gears Tercel to blast at stoplights all summer long.



Support the artist. Buy it HERE.

0 Comments

Walter – “Poetics Of Space”

A harder look for Walter, the L.A. band that’s made of members of Meatbodies and Ducktails. They’ve definitely absorbed a few of their fellow L.A. brethren, leaning into a storm-wrung psych cloud that dredges up Wand comparisons for sure. The song is the A-side to a new single out for garage well-spring Famous Class and hits in full in July along with a new b-side, “Like The Fly”. Ominous and doom laden, this is a good look for Walter and a step up in my opinion from their eponymous album from last year. The best change is that Chad Ubovich’s recording bumps up the fidelity and gives the band a bit more punch. The ozone fried volume paired with a headspun space rock bent lets the song fully embraces its title. Great to see this band developing along with some of the best bits of the L.A. underground. File it next to your Mind Meld, CFM and Meatbodies 7″s for maximum impact.



Support the artist. Buy it HERE.

0 Comments

Ben Chatwin – “Inflexion”

Ben Chatwin’s last record, The Sleeper Awakes was a grey-skied masterstroke of noise-flecked neo-classical. His solo works find the deep ravine of sadness and rub cold dirt into the wounds, feeling somehow achingly painful and coolly soothing at the same time. The first bit of his new record for Ba Da Bing is just a quick flicker of the match but it hints at another album of cloistered and creaky compositions. Sounding every bit like the slow creep up the stairs to a dark childhood secret, the track pads in on soft dulcitone feet and that creeping music box feel runs up the listener’s spine with icy expectation. It appears most of the album centers around Chatwin’s use of pianos and, like the dulcitone, piano-like hybrids. This is just a tiny morsel of the album, but few bites have ever left me so hungry for more.



Support the artist. Buy it HERE.

0 Comments

Cool Ghouls – “Sundial”

Its always good to have Cool Ghouls back in my life, and on the verge of Summer no less. The first peek at their upcoming album, Animal Races is steeped in the same ’60s jangle that has long defined them, bringing up thoughts of a more swooning Byrds or Flaming Groovies during their Cyril Jordan years. Kelley Stoltz continues to be the secret weapon in any band’s back pocket. He imbues the track with a sparkling view of the pop paradigm they’ve been itching at for the past two albums. The track practically pools with cool water harmonies and warm breezes and every note is ready to tug at a the heart with just a subtle twinge of nostalgia for lazy days with nothing to do but watch the waves. No doubt this is just the first thread to pull before the rest of the album unravels in cascades of sunny West Coast pop goodness.



Support the artist. Buy it HERE.

0 Comments

Acid Mothers Temple & Melting Paraiso U.F.O. – “Nebulous Hyper Meditation”

Why is it I’m somehow both surprised and not surprised that there’s never any clatter about a new AMT on the horizon? The long running (21 years!) Japanese psych lords are reaching a new chapter with the exit of longtime rhythm unit Shimura Koji and Tsuyama Atsushi, and with the addition of some youngblood players, Makoto Kawabata seems to be invigorated on this latest cut. It creeps in on sweeping synths, swirling and illusory as quasars, while Kawabata locks in his guitar to euphoric bliss. It seems that we’re never too far from one Acid Mother’s release or another, but that’s no reason to go taking ozone burners like this for granted. Someday there won’t be any more Acid Mother’s Temple, and on that day I assume there will be a collective funeral from the heads of the world, the band lifted off in a Sky Burial/Viking Funeral type situation that turns supernova overhead. But for now, cherish the gifts that come down the mountain.



Support the artist. Buy it HERE.

0 Comments

Frankie and The Witch Fingers – “6,000 Horns”

L.A. via Bloomington garage-psych slingers Frankie and The Witch Fingers are back and touting a fuller sound that’s buoyed by sun-streaked harmonies and a driving guitar wail that shows their 60’s allegiances but nods a head to their current garage trappings. The chorus is huge and swaying, the organ is wobblin’ and swellin’, the rhythm section makes it apparent that they have no intention of stopping for breath. It’s practically euphoric in its crest of the hill and by the time it all breaks down for a finish, everyone’s sweaty and ready for more. Lookin’ out for their longplayer, Heavy Roller, landing in July from Permanent.



Support the artist. Buy it HERE.

0 Comments

Miss Destiny – “Law and Order”

Following up on a single for Hozac last fall, Melbourne punx Miss Destiny are ramping up for a long player on the venerable R.I.P. Society in June. The first taste of the album is a bail jumping, octane burnt slice of rock that’s barrelling towards your ears on the gnarled strength of Harriett Hudson’s gravel and glam vocals. The track barely takes a breath, pounding at the pavement harder than a jackhammer and somehow evoking Shannon Shaw at her most accusatory (think Hunx’s “You Think You’re Tuff”) and The Donna’s at their most acerbic. That actually sounds like a pretty perfect combination to me, so all the more reason to be excited for the rest of this one.



Support the artist. Buy it HERE.

0 Comments

Le Villejuif Underground – “Since Everything Changes”

Ah man I’m slipping in my old age. France’s SDZ is a constant source of joy that I’d been remiss about checking up with, but this new slice of slackened and slumped pop via Le Villejuif Underground, who understandably know that their Velvet Underground worship is front and center, is a perfect antidote to what’s got ya down. The track is from their upcoming album for the veteran French label and it’s perfectly downbeat and shaggy, with mussed hair, rolling out of bed at three PM and wondering if it is, in fact a weekday. The band is headed by Aussie expat Nathan Roche and takes their name from the village of Villejuif in which they reside. There’s no shortage of bands that can’t get the Lou Reed monkey off their back but when you know how to inhabit those blues in a way that feels like a comfortable pair of shoes you’ve had all your life, then fuck if I’m the one who’s going to tell you that you can’t pull it off.


Support the artist. Buy it HERE or HERE.

0 Comments