Thursday, 19 June 2008

Mirag - Black Temple Carved In Smoke

Label: Battlecruiser
Format: CDR
Released: 2006

"“Black Temple Carved in Smoke” is Matthew Bower’s (Sunroof!/Total/Hototogisu/ et al) contribution to Campbell Kneale’s ingenious Battlecruiser label, an imprint that features black and doom metal releases created by the alter egos of various drone/free titans. Previous Battlecruiser releases have featured, among others, Pete Nolan, Antony Milton, CJA and Kneale himself in a variety of blackened guises. Along with Ming’s “The Kill” and Myrtu’s “The Burning Ground,” “Black Temple Carved in Smoke” is perhaps the most captivating and essential of these fascinating releases. Foregoing recognizable or parodic metal touch points, Bower opts instead to construct a singular, howling, polyrhythmic maelstrom of sound.

The first untitled track finds Bower navigating through thick, foggy vistas of feedback and chugging percussion, blasting through the chaos with his characteristically searing riffs. Sections of the piece are reminiscent of “Ghosts from the Sun”-era Hototogisu, all white electricity and blistering guitar pyrotechnics. Track two is less rhythmic than its predecessor, opening with a torrent of feedback squeals and de-tuned riffing before spiraling downward into driving gloom and murk. Both tracks are fantastically heavy and quite compelling, my only complaint is the length of the disc, a shade less than fifteen minutes. Lets hope this isn’t just a one-off for Bower." 7/10 - Alex Cobb, Foxy Digitalis


Thursday, 29 May 2008

Blue Sabbath Black Fiji + Helicoptère Sanglante - Untitled

Short post follows:

Format: CDR
Released: 2007

Five tracks of acerbic noise from this Parisian collab.


*Blue Sabbath Black Fiji's Lazer Saber from last year has just been re-released on Abandonship Records in a tiny pressing of 50. Don't waste any time.

Tuesday, 27 May 2008

Death Chants - Natural History / Valley of Light

Another couple'a Death Chants as per request.

Death Chants - Natural History

Format: CDR (ltd. 180)
Released: 2005

"As genres continue to liquefy into each other and separate out into individually crafted and organic mash-ups, the world begins to sound like a smaller friendlier place. As a band name, Death Chants a total misnomer, this collective are far too alive and remarkable to be soundtracking any repetitive marches to the graveyard.

It’s easy to find a lot of music that’s based in the worlds of free playing and traditional structures/styles, and Death Chants aren’t alone in giving heavy nods to country and folk. But where many bands give in to crapulous backroom antics or moonshine madness, Death Chants are endearingly rickety, yet undoubtedly focused. They combine loose playing with long drifts and tentative steps into areas like drone and free playing. There’s an immediately warm lo-fi atmosphere on Natural History that appears to be rooted in the traditions of early American music.

The opening “A Dog in the Ether” begins conventionally on acoustic guitar and cello before gracefully flowing into areas of what should be on the border of discord. Instead, the cello swoops like John Cale’s viola, creating a raga-drone through the song. Following the same basic tenets, “River Road” tiptoes along through smog-infested feedback. A strum-along acoustic section moulds the song whole, as shimmering peaks and falls roll through. An accordion tries to steer the song back into the traditional world, but its foothold proves too loose, and the composition melts away like buffeting drifts of snow. The movements between wandering adrift and core melody make this 11-minute ride arresting from start to finish.

“States” wraps things up with a short ramshackle take on beginner’s garage rock, a decidedly odd touch. The loose and shaky percussion follows a battered acoustic guitar and kazoo-like sing-along vocal. There’s an unexpected flute line that, while eerily ethereal, holds the piece together quite well.

Natural History has many of the hallmarks of a debut – fresh, devoutly amateur and full of potential. I’m looking forward to finding out if future Death Chants hold the same charm and bizarrely bright edges." - Dusted

1. A Dog In The Ether
2. River Road
3. States


Death Chants - Valley of Light

Cauliflower Dreams
Format: CDR
Released: 2006

"this disc will send you to the moon and back. 2 loooong tracks that sing about the deepest river on earth, your mind." - Cauliflower Dreams.

1. The Village & The Lake (37:57)
2. Distant, Faraway Suns (28:20)


Heavy Eye of the Sun - I & II

Heavy Eye of the Sun - I

Label: Self-released
Format: CDR (ltd. 100)
Released: 2005

Surging, melifluous folk dirges spanning a meal of instruments. Fantastic vocal interplay (sustained vs. fluid overtonation). "Three pieces to get lost in"

1. Forest of Cymbals,
2. Comme des nuages dans un fleuve
3. Eyesun/Solœil


Heavy Eye of the Sun - II

Label: Self-released
Format: CDR
Released: 2006

"The name Heavy Eye of the Sun inspires vivid imagery. I imagine Mayan temples erected toward the sun-borne gods, and ancient ritualistic dances performed in the fire light by feather-adorned priestesses. It's one hell of a name that insinuates something monolithic, something great. So it takes some guts to name your band that. Thankfully on Heavy Eye of the Sun's latest album (and their debut before this, quite honestly), they certainly live up to these lofty expectations.

Housed in a beautiful collage by the artist & photographer, Maryse Latulippe, "II" is the aural equivalent of a sacred talisman. It is enchanted with mystic spirits. This Montreal duo, comprised of Olivier Borzeix and James Schidlowsky, at times remind me of a more acoustic-based, freer version of The Skaters. Their voices bounce off each other like trees spiralling toward the sky. The opening track, "Comme les ailes des libellules," is an absolute mind-bender. Dueling, rapid-fire acoustic guitars destroy everything in front of them so that Borzeix and Schidlowky's voices can rise above the ether. It's perfectly executed and totally great.

After following a similar track on the second track, the duo unleash some absolutely hypnotic folk goodness on "Shivers." Their voices, again, are the key here. High-pitched wails sound as if they're conjuring the essence of long-dead gods. "Shivers" is thick with layers of acoustic guitars, like a neverending cosmic thicket. Hints of banjo rise from the haze to show you the path home. This is truly brilliant stuff.

"II" ends with the loose-blues of "Sun Spiralling Down." It's far more meditative than its three brethren, but is the perfect end to an excellent album. "II" is full of beautiful acoustic drones, steeped in decaying leaves and wrapped in walls of sonic ivy. It is masterfully organic in all the right places. "II" carefully carves out a niche like an archaic stream slowly etching its way toward bedroock. This is Heavy Eye of the Sun's journey to the sea. Recommended. 8/10" (Brad Rose, Foxydigitalis)

1. Comme les ailes des libellules
2. Dappled/Pommelé
3. Shivers
4. Sun Spiralling Down


Heavy Eye of the Sun III is still available through FoxyD's ltd. ed. line. And, I assure you, does not disappoint.

Dylan Nyoukis - The Shield That Pierces The Earth

Catsup Plate
Format: LP
Released: 2000

Limited release of 300 copies. My God this is incredible.

"Dylan Nyoukis, most known for his work with the Scottish sound
collage ensemble Prick Decay, has recently unearthed his first
solo full length. Self-described as a folk album, "The Shield
that Pierces the Earth" doesnt exactly mimic Dylanisms a
la "Highway 61", as Nyoukis instead explores otherworldly terrain,
inspired partially by indigenous music from around the globe. From
the gamelan-like percussion explorations to the howling monkish
chants (and so much packed in between), "The Shield that Pierces
the Earth" is a one-man tribute to a large portion of the Folkways
library. Nyoukis also incorporates odd looping bits of sound and
electronics, and with the lo-fi recording and crackle of vinyl,
these fragments could easily be mistaken for a lost recording of
classic concrete sounds. Seaming it all together is Nyoukis
ability to give each sound a distinctly old-timey feel, producing
a fluid continuity between folk and non-folk terrain. Packaged
gorgeously as a handmade gatefold LP (complete with pink
vinyl!) "The Shield that Pierces the Earth" drops from the skies
as a lost experimental classic immediately upon release" (

Excerpt From ‘Dead Pharaoh Vs Smeared On Monkey's Eyeball
Clay’s Festering Lungs
The Lonely Way To Go-Go (Variation On A Theme By Neil Campbell)
Release Me From Your Kung-Fu Grip
Return Of The Javanese Rod Puppet
Mohair Pants
Morgue, Newness
The Chicken Sees
The Snout Of A Zoom Lens


p.s. Absence explained by academic concerns, but all is over now.

Monday, 21 April 2008

Sunshine Has Blown - S/T

Label: musicyourmindwillloveyou (mymwly0048)
Format: CDR
Released: 2006

gorgeous solar aquatic noise scapes from this Joel Stern and Adam Park led ensemble, weaving tones amongst abstract structures...electric, meyeopic, static, streams of image noise like pictures...good to grow.

originally packaged in textured paper with inner sleeve artwork by velvet pesu.

joel stern (1,2,3,4) – electronics, violin, guitar, mbira, trumpet, objects
adam park (1,2,3,4) – reel to reel tapes, electronics
velvet pesu (2) – cello, mbira, percussion
joe musgrove (3) – turntable, voice, objects
scott sinclair (3) – drums, voice, pc

edited and mastered by Joel at Governor's House March 2006.


Governor's House Brisbane 25th November 05
Mormon Gibbon Brisbane 19th Feb 06
Muji Judith Wright Centre Brisbane 19th December 05
Governor's House Brisbane 25th November 05


Tuesday, 8 April 2008

Tirath Singh Nirmala - Blossom Dawn Freckles

Label: Self-released
Format: CDR
Released: 2006

Last oop TSN upload. And as a novelty, a (tiny) cover. It's been emotional.

Awesome variety on this release. Perhaps a little too much? Nah. There are more than noticeable traces of Neil Campbell on the final track. Ha. Here's some cryptic volcanictongue-isms for you:

"New limited edition CD-R from Astral Social Club collaborator Tirath Singh Nirmala aka John Clyde-Evans. Another schtoof straight through the third eye from this q-tip, with lycanthropic looped vocals and knotty violin rags that re-situate the milky cosmic romance of Tony Conrad and Jack Smith in a thatch-covered barn somewhere deep in the mud. Also features some unerringly piloted sheng singing, distorto sine wave tone momes, a buncha clouds raining steel shots of chanter, bamboo flute and a cascade of loomping doom. A mouthful of cotton wool butterflys, from a guy who knows how to gargle a buncha significant modern alphabets. Highly recommended, as is every toot from his peeper." -Volcanic Tongue