Posts Tagged ‘Rocket Recordings’

Paisiel

Ramping up their focus from three massive tracks to one double-sided statement, Portuguese-German duo Paisiel rake the listener over an emotionally fraught trek on Unconscious Death Wishes. The title gives off a sinister air and the band doesn’t shy away from the angst inherent in that notion. The composition moves from stark, nervous synth rising in the darkness to the skittering rhythm that marked their last album. The drums don’t give much relief from the tension though, as they ring out like barking threats from just past a circle of light and security; the listener crouched in the wilderness that the pair have presented. Paisiel know there’s danger looming and with that title in mind, maybe they’re inching closer towards it out of irrepressible curiosity or maybe out of an unconscious need to let chaos do its work.

João Pais Filipe’s rhythms play coy until around the 12-13 minute mark when they become all encompassing, fighting Julius Gabriel’s sax heat for attention in the speakers. The pair become locked in a dizzying tempest of swirling, slashing phrases and knotted beats. Gabriel’s sax lines begin to unravel, howling and pawing at the air. The atmosphere grows thick with danger, dread, and pheromones that say fight or perish. Somehow the duo and the listener make it through the feeling of steel and bone against the neck skating to an ending that’s not necessarily serene, but not actively in peril. The vibes as the sun sets on the record are tensed and ready to fight the unseen dangers once more. Sleep doesn’t seem forthcoming, and the metallic taste of adrenaline is both a reminder of what transpired and of what might be again.



Support the artist. Buy it HERE.

0 Comments

GÅS – Epitaph

An absolute shredder is handed down from Rocket Recordings today. The label has a knack for unearthing UK/EU heavies and GÅS fits in quite nicely with their stellar catalog. The Swedish band’s first single, “Epitaph” melds heavy fuzz, pounding at the heart with a slight lilt of English prog to it. Aesthetically they’re mashing a bit of Danish sludge rockers Moses with Sweden’s own Charlie & Esdor, though once those vocals kick in I’m getting some Wolf People nods as well. Those English psych-folk tones feel like they might be key here, as the band covers an old nugget, Philamore Lincoln’s “The North Wind Blew South” on the flip. It sets them apart from your average smoke shoveler. A huge debut single that begs to keep an eye on these guys. Get this on the table next to some Goat singles and that new hard hitter from Ball and you’re all set. Physical pre-orders are up tomorrow and the single lands Oct 3oth.



Support the artist. Buy it HERE.

0 Comments

Lorena Quintanilla on Música Nueva Latinoamericana 2

I’ve been a longtime fan of Mexican shoegaze duo Lorelle Meets the Obsolte, and when I’d heard that the band’s Lorena Quintanilla had a solo album forthcoming (her second, sadly I’d slept on the first) I was incredibly intrigued what would arise. J. Zunz sophomore LP is a haunted, complex record that pulls as much from industrial spaces as it does experimental and concrete nodes. The LP focuses keenly on Quintanilla’s voice — echoing through spaces that seem cavernous and dangerous in the same light. I asked Lorena to contribute a pick to the Hidden Gems series, quite anxious to hear what treasure she might unearth and I’m not in the least disappointed. She’s given light to a series of Latin American electronic music that’s been sorely lost from the cultural conversation. Her pick centers on the inclusion of Jacqueline Nova, with whom I was unfamiliar, but quickly became quite intrigued by. Read on to see how the record has come into Lorena’s life and the impact it’s had on her songwriting.

Continue Reading
0 Comments

J. Zunz

I’ve long had a soft spot for the warm blast of shoegaze pulsing off of Lorelle Meets the Obsolete. The Mexican band has been warping pop through the fuzz-fitted filter for the past few years and have only solidified their place in the evolving canon of the genre. Though this album is connected by membership, this is quite a different animal from the confines of The Obsolete. Out on her own for a second solo LP the band’s Lorena Quintanilla has pushed aside the gauzy caverns of her usual sound for something darker and full of danger. On Hibiscus she lets her voice free of its playground of effects and loose from the haze. Underneath her vocals, however, the record is seething with anxious synths and repetitive elements that are doused in a chemical burn. The LP bears a stark minimalism that speaks directly to her renewed interest in John Cage’s ethos of stripping sound to its basics.

Like her previous works, there’s still psychedelia here, but it’s a more internal expression, working psychological angles rather than explicit auditory gymnastics. There’s a feeling on the record of constantly waking up in unfamiliar surroundings, surroundings that feel like they’re tipped with poison intent. Quintanilla’s voice comes racing from all angles, panicked at times, soothing at others, but always like a whisper in the back of your head trying to make sense of the quasi-industrial prison you’ve found yourself trapped within. That the album is an extension of personal and political strife for Quintanilla, makes sense the more it rotates around the speakers (though this is a headphone record, if there ever was one). The ghosts in her songs aren’t able to be defeated hand to hand, but rather neuron to neuron, trapped in the inner confines of the mind and looking for a hatch. The record is bracing, vulnerable, disorienting, and daring. Not for the timid, but worth diving into again and again.





Support the artist. Buy it HERE.

0 Comments

GNOD & João Pais Filipe

I’ve long been a proponent of the works of GNOD. The UK psych unit skims the line between pulsing, rhythmic psychedelia and noise so easily that they’ve let the colors run into one another over the years. On their latest they skirt into avant impulses fraught with a clangorous din and hypnotic polyrhythms. The band members are nothing if not consummate collaborators, having worked cross genre with everyone from Anthony Child (Surgeon), White Hills, and John Doran. Now they hook up with experimental percussionist Joăo Pais Filipe (Paisel), whom they met at Milhoes De Festa event in Barcelos, Portugal. The set was hammered out a short while after over four days at Joăo’s metal shop.

Like any other GNOD album it swerves away from its predecessors. The connection with Pais Filipe proves to center the album in hypnotic rhythms, a side that’s found its way into the band’s work plenty of times prior, but what the Portuguese artist brings to the set is a sense of foreboding atmosphere — haunting ripples, the ominous air of gongs. Guitars still scrape at the senses, but they too tend to ride the fluctuation of rhythm. As the air crackles with dissonant tension, scraping with feedback and woodwind howl, GNOD do their own part to match Pais Filipe’s calamitous atmospheres. The pieces remain instrumental until the second side tucks into the title track, and then GNOD enter the vocal fray with pained, fraught vocals that don’t direct anger so much as they have on the past couple of GNOD LPs, rather a lost frustration that’s fighting its way out of the rhythm haze. The band’s never stagnant and Faca De Fogo readily pushes them more towards the margins they were already occupying most of the time. Still haunted, still chewing on the bent cables of chaos, but also providing a satisfying body buzz at high volume in the right mood. No matter who’s in the co-pilot’s seat, GNOD make for a heavy hit.



Support the artist. Buy it HERE.

0 Comments

J. Zunz – “Y”

A new solo album from Lorena Quintanilla comes packed with a harrowing video for first song “Y.” Quintanilla is better known as the Lorelle half of Lorelle Meets The Obsolete, the shoegaze outfit that she’s maintained with Alberto González for the better part of the last decade. Under the name J. Zunz she’s exploring some similar atmospherics but carving well away from the some of the German Progressive and shoegaze territory that she’s been exploring over the past few years with The Obsolete. “Y” creeps in slow and menacing, building to an industrial blast of synth that’s corroded and cruel. In the same manner the clip grows from sparse images of Quintanilla to a violent end that’s as harsh as the music’s escalation. This skews much darker than her last solo outing under the J. Zunz name and seems poised to push her solo work further into the flickering floodlights. Loved what Lorena has long been laying down with LMTO, and this next chapter seems like a welcome evolution and departure. The LP, Hibiscus arrives August 21st from Rocket Recordings.



Support the artist. Buy it HERE.

0 Comments

OCH

Created out of the ashes of Rocket Recording faves Flowers Must Die, OCH picks up that band’s penchant for progressive grooves and repetition and pushes it further from the pop spectrum and closer to the heart of the cosmic cabal. Corralling rogue noise flares and all manner of psychic sonic creep, the band isn’t afraid to tumble headlong into the darkness. OCH embraces space rock as it was intended – a frictionless slide into the vacuum without a handle to pull yourself back in. There’s rhythm, of course, but it’s not a grounding force here, more like the constant pound of blood and bile threading through your system as you realize that there’s no returning from the vacuum once II is underway.

The band picks at a whole host of influences, from the motoik minded chaos of Guru Guru and the guitar melt of Richard Pinhas (oscillating between Heldon and Schizo). They pick through the bones of the Swedish psychedelic graveyards, using the blade of newcomers like Hills to dig back through Pärson Sound and Träd, Gräs Och Stenar bootleg brilliance. The record vibrates with a delirious energy, pulsing to infinity and slowly stripping away the layers of self as it throttles listeners into the dark recesses of quasar consciousness. The record is longform listening at its best – a corroded dystopia that loops over and over in waves, lapping at the listener with an incessant buzz and a deliriously delightful fry. Lock in and lookout.



Support the artist. Buy it HERE.

0 Comments

OCH – “NU:64”

Out of the ashes of Flowers Must Die springs OCH. Some (though not confirmed who or how many) members of the band have sprung forth under the new moniker and are working through the detritus of the German Progressive collapse. Locked to a groove that’s as insistent as a heartbeat, the band washes the rinds of their sound in synth tones that hearken to Harald Grosskopf playing homage to Cluster and Popul Vuh. While there’s a Kosmiche nature to “NU:64” its just smoke above the propulsive motor. The band’s album is hard to parse into pieces – winding up more of a soundbath that’s best experienced in the whole, but this nugget is a damn good entry point. Check out the video by Fredric Ilmarson above and begin to sink into the band’s primal ooze. The record lands 2/28 on Rocket Recordings.



Support the artist. Buy it HERE.

0 Comments

Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs – “Reducer”

Couldn’t be better news this morning than a new Pigs x 7 release on the way. Their breakout, King of Cowards commanded the turntable over here for quite some time. 2020 needs a little shake on the foundations and the thunder rumble of Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs is perhaps just what the universe ordered. They continue to give an inroad of accessibility to their sludge-huffer hammer throw, and while “Reducer” is bound to flatten a few to the floorboards, its also gonna get stuck in your head. The band’s long been exhuming the Monster Magnet x Sleep formula and this launches their stoner-sludge straight into space, lighting the way like a comet. The new LP lands at Rocket on April 3rd. Get prepped.



Support the artist. Buy it HERE.

0 Comments

Julie’s Haircut

Italian psych collective Julie’s Haircut have been operating under that name since the late ‘90s, but their sound is still evolving, rooted in the boundless cosmic expanse of psychedelia and the darkened recesses of the polyrhythmic groove. The band has collaborated with Sonic Boom and backed up Damo Suzuki, so they were bringing a fairly heavy resume to the table already when they jumped onto UK psych enclave Rocket Recordings’ roster last year. Their second LP for the label pushes their sound further into the recesses of rhythm-wracked psychedelic divination. In The Silence Electric pulsates with a seething intensity boiling beneath the skin. The band just barely contains the tension on tracks like “Emerald Kiss” or “Sorcerer“. When they do let the pulse lie, the album only feels like its pulled into the eerie call before a storm. “Lord Help Me Find The Way” emulsifies their groove into the kind of nebulous humid float that wraps the best Spiritualized tracks.

There’s something elemental about the record. It has a heartbeat hum, that the listener is either chasing down or being pursued by at any moment. Their vocals waft in on vapors that permeate ever inch of the brain, weaving between layers of gray matter while the rhythms work the body. There’s an air of incantation, a ceremonial throb to the record, especially on tracks like “Sorcerer” which embodies their mystic turbulence and spiritual calm. They lace the record with sax, but not in stabbing, bent harmonic hues (at least not until an explosion of violence in “Pharoah’s Dream”), rather it enters as another layer of creeping ambience slicing through the swirling sage. For a veteran band with almost 25 years under their belt, they’ve never sounded more bracing, or more alive. This is a crowning achievement in their catalog.



Support the artist. Buy it HERE.

0 Comments