June 30, 2008

Total - Sky Blue Void (Freek Records, 1994)...

Total was the side project of Skullflower guitarist Matthew Bower, and actually predates his more well-known band (Total sprang into existence in 1982). It was originally the group that evolved out of Pure, with much of the early Skullflower's same lineup; some of them, particularly Alex Binnie and Stefan Jaworzyn, played in Zos Kia as well. Somewhere between 1985-1987 (depending on whose memory you trust best), Total mutated into Skullflower, and Total subsequently became Matthew Bower's solo project. At that point it served as a more "ambient" counterpart to Skullflower's wall-of-noise approach; in recent years, however, the dynamic reversed itself until Total's releases were often considerably noisier and more chaotic than Skullflower's.


June 29, 2008

Melvins - Joe Preston E.P. (Boner, 1992)...

Joe Preston (born 1969) is a rock bass guitarist and a former band member of Earth, The Melvins, Men's Recovery Project, The Need and High on Fire. Preston has also played with Sunn O))), and has a solo project called Thrones. Joe Preston learned bass from Alexander Giles. He is currently touring with Harvey Milk. Its rumoured Preston is the only person playing on this recording, apparently the other two members were a hoax?


Born Against - The Rebel Sound Of Shit And Failure (Kill Rock Stars, 2002)...

A posthumous collection of 24 live, rare, compilation, 7" and 8" tracks. The wit and bile of this nutty New Jersey hardcore band is appropriate for teen hobos and tenured academics alike.



Sam McPheeters' Photostream...



June 26, 2008

Darkthrone - Frostland Tapes, 3xcd (Peaceville, 2008)...

The earliest years of the band and the first official release ever to contain all 4 of Darkthrone’s demos in one place. Frostland Tapes also includes a rare live recording from Denmark in 1990 (one of only a handful of live appearances that Darkthrone has ever made) and perhaps most significantly, the previously unreleased version of the infamous 1991 Goatlord rehearsal session. These songs were intended to feature on the proposed second album, before the band changed direction and the tapes were confined to the vaults. Vocals were subsequently added in the mid-nineties, but they are presented here as the recording sounded in 1991.
Personally im stoked on the remastering of the 'Land Of Frost' demo (the first 5 tracks) from 1988 which i think was recorded in 87 when they still called themselves Black Death. On previous copies up to now the sound quality has been so low its really not worth listening to and although some say its not true Norweigian BM i don't give a shit, like Vikernes rubbishing his first Burzum album saying the same thing, fuck knows... sounds great to me.

HERE (DISC 1 & 2)



Dobri Isak - Mi Placemo Iza Tamnih Naocara (SKC NIS, 1984)...

Yugoslavian Joy Division


June 23, 2008

Skullflower - Desire For A Holy War (Utech, 2008)...

First in a new series from the Utech label, a curated collection of releases, each featuring original artwork from artist Stephen Kasner, a hand picked roster that seriously SCREAMS aQ: Aluk Todolo, Final, Skullfower and more!
First up is Skullfower, a brand new disc, which finds Matthew Bower embracing mayhem and chaos. He may have flirted with riffage and space rock for a brief spell, but he is back to creating huge caustic guitarscapes, with Skullfower seemingly a much harsher, noisier, more aggressive take on his Sunroof! project. Where Sunroof! traffics in blissed out ragas and soaring high end ur-drone, Skullfower is creating dense worlds of sound. Psychedelic, textured, layered, but blown out and ultra distorted, it's almost like a guitar orchestra, Bower conducting a symphony of Keiji Haino's, but he's doing this all himself (for the most part) - Aquarius Records


June 20, 2008

John Fahey - Yes! Jesus Loves Me (Takoma, 1980)...

Although not necessarily the sort of figure you'd have down as a conventional Christian, John Fahey in fact recorded his debut album Blind Joe Death on consecrated ground, at a church in his native Takoma Park, Maryland. Some twenty-one years later (in 1980) Fahey took on a full album of Christian music and 'guitar hymns', although the cover-mounted sleeve imagery suggests Fahey's grip on the religion was somewhat askew: check out the stags and scythe-bearing skeletons at the foot of the crucifix. Fahey's interpretation of the music collected on this album is often similarly irreverent, reshaping the hymns and traditionals into ragtime or bluegrass formats. Illustrative of this is the flamboyant swing given to the collection's opening song: 'Yes! Jesus Loves Me', from which the collection derives its title. On this album Fahey doesn't just arbitrarily corrupt sacred songs with 'the Devil's music'. Although the reverberating string bends of 'Oh Come, Oh Come Emmanuel' deliver a bluesy twang, other pieces, such as 'Holy, Holy, Holy' are beautifully plucked, sounding extremely comfortable in their straight-laced devotional format. Another magnificent entry in the Fahey catalogue, and one worth getting evangelical over - Boomkat


June 18, 2008

VON - Satanic Blood Angel (NWNP, 2003)...

Not only did VON never release an actual album, but they were spurned by the scene at the time for playing sloppy fucked up, super simple and repetitive metal, unlike the technical thrash that was popular at the time. Von took their sound from Hellhammer, Bathory and Venom, playing very simple trance-like riffs, over and over, with barked, super-affected gutteral vocals, and very little melody. Simple and raw and way more Satanic than most bands of the time. This droning grimness would become the blueprint for modern primitve black metal, but at the time, Von were pretty much it. Certainly around these parts(S.F. Bay Area). This disc collects everything, the Satanic Blood demo, the Satanic Angel demo, and a live show at the Stone in San Francisco from 1991. - AQ


SPAZZ - Sweatin To The Oldies (Slap A Ham, 1997)...

Why not?..

A collection of all the out of print stuff from 93 till 96.


June 15, 2008

Harvey Milk - Life...The Best Game In Town (Hydra Head,2008)...

Harvey Milk are celebrating their own renaissance by lauding the virtues of Life…The Best Game In Town. Spearheaded by the alternately burly and angelic vocal stylings of Milk mastermind Creston Spiers, Life… is both tumultuous and grueling, resonating with the glorious slow-motion radiance of Total Dirge Power. In layman’s terms: Yet another classic. Oh, and did we mention that they’ve since been joined by Thrones legend Joe Preston? Well, they totally have - Hydra Head


Flipper - Sex Bomb Baby! (Infinite Zero, 1995 Re-issue)...

In its prime, San Francisco's Flipper was a magnificent, fascinating entity, playing what might have been typical hardcore music at an unsettlingly slow speed: like a 45 slowed down to sub-LP pace, a flawless impression of a downed-out hardcore band. The harsh music lumbers and creaks, oozing feedback all the way. Sex Bomb Baby! compiles all of Flipper's singles (six sides) and tracks from sampler albums, going as far back as the group's 1979 recorded debut on Subterranean's first release, the SF Underground collection. (This cover is from the first pressing of the l.p. which were individual hand-drawn)




Grip It! On That Other Level (Rap-A-Lot,1989)

The Geto Boys (Rap-A-Lot,1990)



June 13, 2008

fIREHOSE - fROM OHIO (SST, 1989)...

fIREHOSE was formed in 1986 after the death of D. Boon brought an end to Minutemen. Watt and Hurley teamed up with the then 22-year-old Crawford, a guitarist and Minutemen fanatic. Crawford was from Ohio, and started the band when he found Watt's phone number in the phone book and called him, saying he wanted to play with Mike and George in California.
In the spring of 1986, Crawford traveled to San Pedro and the band went on from there. The name of the band was taken from a line in a Bob Dylan song, "Subterranean Homesick Blues" : "...Better stay away from those that carry around a fire-hose...".


v/a Last Kind Words 1926-1953 (Mississippi Records, 2008)...

Mississippi Records compilation of super rare Blues and Gospel 78’s. Tracks by Geechie Wiley,Kid Prince Moore, Robert Petway, Sister O.M Terrell, Lottie Kimbrough, Louis McDaniels, Lulu Jackson, Robert Wilkins, The Anglin Brothers, Blind Willie & Kate McTell, Cannons’ Jug Stompers, Isiah Nettles, and Edward Clayborn.


June 11, 2008

Washington Phillips - The Key To The Kingdom (Yazoo, 2005)...

Washington Phillips is one of the most intriguing and delightful figures in American music history. His style is completely unique, both in his warm, plaintive singing and his use of zither(?) for accompaniment. His treatments of early religious material is poignant and expressive and his zither playing backup is absolutely captivating. His complete output of 16 selections is presented here with brand new remastering that heightens all the irresistible characteristics of his performances. Included also are 4 bonus tracks of similarly touching early religious music by Mamie and A.C. Forehand -Yazoo Records




Avarus - III (HP Cycle, 2003)...

Avarus are a band from Tampere, Finland. They were formed in 2001 by members of The Anaksimandros and Pylon and soon absorbed members of other Finnish bands such as Kiila, Munuaissymposium 1960, Kemialliset Ystävät. Avarus' floating line-up varies between 10 and 20 members. They are considered a key element in the Finnish psych-folk/free-folk scene which emerged in the early 2000s.
Avarus III starts off with a lo-fi, rambling, ramshackle blues jam that mutates into wildly propulsive psych-folk with intensely strummed guitars and far-away flute melodies. And from there on out, Avarus dip their toes into whatever variant of their unique 'sound' that strikes their fancy. From atonal Jandek-ian campfire hippy hoedowns, to wild jams with spastic hand drums and sing-songy melodies plucked out on beat up, out of tune guitars, to wild clattery bursts of percussion splattered haphazardly over a Skullflower-ish skree, to stripped down, jangly hyperactive psychedelic rock to loose ambient soundscapes of whir and buzz and twang, with slithery, sitar-like guitars - AQ


June 07, 2008


Geronimo - s/t (Three.One.G, 2007)...

This is all the prehistoric horseshit that can be dug out of this worthless skull: Ruiz plays with Beck till the "Zankow zealot" gets signed sans band. Ruiz forms Sleestak, a quartet with Francoso, Gandara and Nelson (Man Is The Bastard + The Bastard Noise). Sleetsak releases two full length CDs then dissolves in the late 90's whenRuiz joins Slowrider till its demise in '04 (which included an unmasked member of Brujeria as well as Oiler/Sarah Spoden vet Gomez). Geronimo reunites Francoso/Nelson/Ruiz in '05 with the vision of a powerful minimalist sound for the purpose of a short Japanese tour. Upon return Geronimo works to complete the 2007 self-titled Three One G session that features vocals from Sandor GF, Pete Majors (both from now defunct Harassor) and David Yow (Jesus Lizard, Qui) accompanied by a peculiar hodgepodge of homemade trogotronic.com instruments.
Imagine Man Is The Bastard transported back to the early seventies and let loose in
This Heat's Cold Storage recording studio, or take the black hypno kraut noise of Aluk Todolo and strip it down to its bare essence, a sound based almost entirely on rhythm. A pounding, Neanderthal groove, pelted with squelches, and laced with a strangled inhuman mewling, huge chunks of grinding minimalism and long swaths of dreamy shimmering bliss, an ultra intense slab of kraut-doom power violence for sure.



June 05, 2008

Lucky Dragons - Widows (Marriage, 2006)...

"Widows" recalls the brittle homespun eclecticism of the first Lucky Dragons forays into the uncanny lightness of a very undigital digital music. The sixteen tracks on this long-player draw on a series of improvised group explorations (jams)--in kitchens, bedrooms, sidewalks, gardens and forests--and shatter into fractal rememberings of things: dulcimers, banjos, and fiddles, made up languages, splintering shifts and squeaks.


Jenks "Tex" Carman - Chippeha! The Essential Dixie Cowboy (1947-1957) (Revenant, 1998)...

Tex Carman was a walking anachronism, following his own rhythm, recording records for 4 Star and Capitol and delighting many with his television appearances and the sheer exuberance he brought to everything he touched. Until recently, he had been more or less forgotten. Yet, thanks to John Fahey's Revenant Records label and its devotion to putting out raw music by everyone from Harmonica Frank Floyd to Cecil Taylor, Tex is back with us - Flagpole


June 01, 2008

Men's Recovery Project - The Humans

Los Jaivas - El Volantin (1971)...

This album was first privately released, with free, freak-out and drugged like versions of music based upon Chilean Folk fundaments and dement percussion. Not always fantastic, but with fine moments. Especially "Cacho" is worth discovering. The rest might be a bit exaggerating. Almost the complete album was totally improvised.


JW Farquhar - The Formal Female (Shadoks, 1972)...

The Formal Female was recorded by Farquhar at home in his apartment in Philadelphia in 1972. He played all the instruments. In an effort to keep out alla the street noise and gunshots he sealed up all of his windows with foam and locked himself in. The whole arc of the album's concept seems to be based around a lambasting of womankind as a result of the fallout from a recently terminated ten year marriage. Whether it's a case of sour grapes or a genuine outcry against the materialistic nature of the woman during that time period of 1972 as Farquhar himself claims isn't immediately any clearer for listening to the record but either way it's a fascinating slice of ambitious, primitively lo-fi private press psych with an extreme lonesome/marginalised edge and some great fuzz and F/X. There are points where he gets into a whole schizophrenic exchange between two characters, one of whom talks in a weird fucked-up cartoon monster style, that almost makes you think of James Ferraro's Lamborghini Crystal broadcasts but the rest of the album is just great basement/loner jams with a huge fucking chip on their shoulder, just the way we like em. Another great one rescued from oblivion by Shadoks.