Thursday, May 31, 2012

Cementimental, Non Ferric Memories, Failed NASA Experiment, His Naked Torso, MXLX

Sunday 27th May - Mothers Ruin



One of the hottest days of the year, baking!... The lack of air conditioning turning the car into a sweaty slow cooker, eating into my sleep deprivation... The M4 'curated' wind through the narrow slits of window making demon voices... something I was trying hard not to listen to... the barely audible stereo not helping matters...Sometimes I'm really glad Bristol is only 45mins away...



Essentially a big old fashioned pub locked away on the fringes of St Nicholas's market, the Mothers Ruin's dark interior was really inviting, devoid of that corporate tack that passes for a pub these days. Felt perfectly happy with its tumble down Dickensian charms and dirt encrusted chandelier... sort of suited the evening's line up perfectly...





Cementimental was a brilliant opening act … harsh realities with lots of revelatory diversions… his assembled devices a crumbled crisp bag of angles, plying some tasty contrast to the ear violence… letting the lambs gambol in the picturesque eddies before slaughtering them in a flamethrower of howling banshee… The girl behind the bar stuffing paper tissues into her ears, thumbs up for the camera… A real quick fire set, that couldn’t have lasted more than 15mins, a randomised glare of crawling, scraping and screeching that periodically retracted in tape fed déjà vu and looped suckle…





We were a bag of frazzled nerve endings, having not played live since last August… but as our vague plan of action unfolded things seemed to fall nicely together in an improvised soup of lilting melody , scarring feedback and happy accidentals, the aural evidence of which will be put out as a limited DIY release in the near future... whilst clearing away the sprawling wares, Mardt took a snapshot of me basking in post-playing relief and exclaimed 'the aftermath’...





Next up was Failed NASA Experiment , a solo operation from Cardiff , the releases I have of his certainly prove him to have a real ear for cultivating the unusual, and the swirling cumulus of bowed guitar and cymbal shiver he was building up was just the ticket. A rich and heady tapestry, to which he later introduced a backbone of celebratory riffs … suitably washed through numerous pedals, going stratospheric, then all fluttering come down … The laptop vapours clinging round the chords similar to that of early Rothko, full of spacey imaginings and soothing energies…





These mellow vibes contrasted nicely with fellow Cardiff dwellers His Naked Torso who brought on an exhilarating 16min assault of barraging drums, mad guitar angles and plenty of screaming kandy... like a gristled Boredoms, chewing redeye chillies... totally in your face goodness of the highest order. Happily snagged one of those tasty 50p postcard cd’s from the lads too...







The headliner MXLX seemed to have became a troupe since I last saw him in action.... Matt on his usual electronic devices, dressed like a extra from Fame... Throwing out a heat haze of dronic action to which a trio of drummers ascended in a tribal fervour... Matt bowing cymbal thunders... lassoing the metallic tints and thumping skin into a hypnotically shingled tide... a swaying snake of hissing tempo dips, dissipating on a chant of voices...





Great night, fantastic people... rode all the way back home on a high, with Siouxsie’s ‘Scream’ blaring out at full tilt as if I was thirteen once more... 'Looking through your x-ray eyes a see thro’ scene, just something conjured from a dream...'

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Amalgam #1 - Mark Durgan, Dominic Lash, Stephen Cornford, Ekoplekz and Stuart Chalmers

The Cube Bristol - 19th May





This was a great night of collaborations... full of radiophonically bent, electro-acoustic noise shenanigans... Proceedings began with a stoic Mark Durgan (of Putrefier fame) throwing out some tasty modulated high-end scribble ... challenging sounds not dissimilar to live budgies being stuff down PVC trousers then mulched into taut collapse... really nice speaker dynamics boiling over in glorious abstracts, with Dominic Lash's double bass etching across, following the machine calligraphics in scrape, pluck and scamper... the odd bowed drone cut up in the spluttered darts and spiralled explosions...





The next duo, Ekoplekz and Stephen Cornford... was a soup of glitched balloon skins and static purr... Nick's reverbed springs cutting in with beautiful reparation... the loopage producing wordy dynamos... repetitions tortured down dronic freefalls... plenty of sci-fi'ed curls cordoning the itch of textures, breaking from within it....... This was a busy canvas of reaction counter-reaction that left me totally confused about who was doing what... but I didn't care less... this was great!







The intensity was an altogether subtler one for the next trio, Stephen Cornford, Dominic Lash and Stuart Chalmers...... A blend of broken flurries and shoaled spikes... walkman fragments filtered and pulsed into smeary stretches ... loose operatics and vague Arabics softening the rubbed edges of bowed jumping jacks and seeking angles... The sounds bouncing around in loose weaves and mirrored tangents... Totally ticked my boxes, to such a degree that details became a complete haze...I think there was another trio of sonic venture before the final showdown of Mark, Dominic Ekoplekz and Stephen... but that thunderous finale effectively wiped my short term memory clean away...





...guessing somebody was recording the whole kaboosh, no doubt for possible release?

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Mother's Ruin



The Non Ferric Memories have a rare outing at the Mother's Ruin this Sunday with a satisfying line up of fellow musical deviants... hope to see you there

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Thursday, May 17, 2012

The Lord - Collision Detection V3



This is bonkers, and without doubt one of the best in this series so far… a wonderfully surreal jig-a-thon of chopped source materials… a peculiar beast, of bent, filtered and thoroughly jittery phonics… The tubey brain fodder of the first track Dilligence is a Fish a mischievous play of percussive cut ins, a wash with Max Headroom automata and channel flipping distractions... It sets the benchmark for the tracks that follow in a tight klankenhaus of loopage... giving you a bad head day of circular-sawed trapeze... that ends in glistening gong molestations…

Next up Eruption of the 106, quickly fills the void with backward glances and piano nails… eerie Sapphire n Steel territories marred by a seizure of burping robotics… then catapulted back into some beautifully fried Louis and Bebe Barron space-age shirazzz… some other glassy salvations leaking briefly through before cutting to piano/vocal hiccups overcome by further robotic indigestions ...

By the third track, the hilariously entitled Parliamentary Crampons, The Lord plumbs for a drum n bassed sledge ride, that seems fixated on West Norwood Cassette Library's previous dancabilities, but quickly unravels them in favour of a tunnelled 'waaaah' and low slung battle of cross-edited highlights... until it's completely hijacked by a Smash get Smashed alien interlude that's intent on re-immersing you in a giddy groove of musical chairs....

Everything finally bows out with Reducing the Past a generous squeeze of agitations… a What a Day parody that gleefully goofs out on repetitions of itself, like a hall of mirrors reflecting ever briefer time-spans …. Strange linguistical out pourings mashing away in your mind… suck eggs , so gin(less), sir(slur) guinness... word transformations on a Star Trek door malfunction that saharas itself over some distant dune...

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Body Chandelier



Video installations from Marguerite Caruana Galizia and Rebecca Page

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Olan Mill, Eric Chenaux and Esmerine

Sunday 13th May - The Cube, Bristol



Sadly only caught the last two tracks from Olan Mill … A shame, as their keystoke/violin driven landscapes had that Harold Budd 'light sensitive' vibe that I simply adore… A strange brew that seemed to be caught in a perpetual mirage of itself, leaving your ear to grasp at a fading patchwork of impressions…



Eric Chenaux turned out to be a bizarre, pedal playing maestro… making his guitar bend, buckle and fizz with inventive zeal. His song style solid, wholesome beaming out the love… all the while imbued with a friendly informality that drew you in closer to his flamboyant excesses... At one point, I swear his guitar sounded like a Rolf Harris wobble board ... left me sitting there in awe and disbelief…



With Esmerine, everything looked so effortless, as their 'post rock' classical vibe surged off with dramatic intensity. A curling of colourful patterns, dispelling any twee misdemeanours... the ukulele giving over its associated chintz for a more mandolined joy... streaking luminosity across the cello's sad sinews with gambling glockenspiel/marimba bones bouncing between... The groups' meanders and gathering storms reflected in the layers of lace, ink, and ivy from Clea Minaker's delicate lightbox arts that accompanied the set.. differing tints of light gliding the scalpeled glaze like a 4AD diffusion of half erased cataracts caught in the music's tempo...







Monday, May 14, 2012

Kites



as cover versions go, nothing can top this

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Esmerine on Tour



Windmill Moth Glue - This Ol' Reptile's Rock



Hot on the heels of Windmill Moth Glue’s Wizard Entrails comes this limited sackcloth goodie … a tour (only) EP taster of future warped realities…loving the DIY vibe... it’s morbid jubilee-esque arts, enclosed recipe sheet and ciggie burnt typography goes somewhat to describing the caricatured glee it contains…

The first track Queenies Gonna Gitya drops you in the deep end , as little goblin children skip around in varying states of deranged merriment, throwing caustic gob balls at a scurrying piano mice backing… later falling over in a hilarity of Suspiria witch screams before dispatching the last rodent stragglers with baking trays…

The malevolent cabaret that's Walk on Christian Terrorist notches up the ante further in a Tiger Lilies styled tale of tongue in cheek anarchy, complete with skewered toy town musical backing and insanely visceral throat action … the lyrics skipping out a shadowplay of hunchback ghoulishness and grotesque reasoning…



By the third track The Politefully Perfect Piss Farm of Apathy things are given a jazzier edge, vocals turned down to a Virgin Prunes dementia… a snidely Dickensian ‘Pig Children’ sinister... complete with filthy habits and slippery floor glide… Some foamy mouthed intoxication of hoof piano, bassy scoops, and stray chopsticks that undulates nicely in the head... before it's hijacked in the damaged keyboard and mock weeping of the Starving Song, a strange sermon-like ditty that ends proceedings in a bucket of unresolved tears...





Monday, May 07, 2012

Sunday, May 06, 2012

Eftus Spectun , The Chasms and Cindytalk



The Cube, Bristol - Friday 4th May

The goods of the first band Eftus Spectun were too sparse for my liking... they took a fragmented notion of jazz to its ultimate conclusion... Abstract chord flurry followed by abstract chord flurry followed by broken drum skids... scuttles... some lovely combos were falling around but simply left unresolved ... Normally, I'm quite susceptible to this kind of thing, as anybody that knows me knows I have an undying love for abstraction and awkward listens...but here I found myself constantly expecting it all to fly off in a grand melt of textural chaos... it just never materialised... guess i wasn't in the mood... bet they slay album wise...



In contrast, The Chasms were a mouth full of wasps and gnarled explosion... those drums giving out 'Death Juned' rejuvenations, flying out in massive salvos... thudding through yelled poem fodder ... Evil guitars full of homicidal slides and riotous bats... Tom Bugs throwing out his gooey Komische claws... All those glorious angles coming at you... shadows of wings... Mustangs... weather complaints... Left my ears gloriously fudge tunnelled ... left quite a vacuum, into which Cindytalk later poured their electronically swirled soup...







Like some purveyors of a darkened effect-driven fairytale/nightmare, Cindytalk were a total contrast to the guitar driven meat they plied at last year's Supernormal... More 'spirit behind the circus dream' than full on 'memories of skin'... Gordon, the Dietrich figurehead calling forth an eddy of vocal spurs to which the band responded instinctively. Vocals getting more manic, shouting, commanding things to rise rise rise ... burning up on the personal. A flash of semaphorical arms, twisty fingers... sending out the shivers... making you feel voyeuristic as the bitter sweet delivery was impeccably wrapped in varying shards of musical debris...





Saturday, May 05, 2012

Microdeform - Mortlake



This is a baptism of swirling ambience, surface frictions and blinding textural weaves from Bristol musician Liam 'Microdeform' McConaghy … A true labour of love, where the melodic drugs are eased in and out on waves of mechanical abrasion, dishing out a rather special rhythmic sorcery in etched crackle and skip…

Monachos starts out in heavy gravitations and Gregorian swells. Touches of ritualised radio emerge as a percussion pulse draws you down an ominous road eroded in the fidgety mind fires of skipping needle... Like a lucid snake dream, growing louder, falling off the horizon in a wide expansion of aged vinyl, coupled with some lovely skim stones of electrification and broken piano gallows...

Submerged is a washed out spread of light. An 'Aphex reflective' of swollen gas and jangle shimmers... Exoskeletoned shadows touching powdery burnt paper... Diaphanous harmonics tied to a clubby euphoric chill, bespeckled in clambering filter fairies... a pleasant headphonic experience of muffled splinters overlapping the sound of foot falls on fresh 'aspirin' snow...

The Abyssal Plain is a nervous tread of watery worlds and the scrape of muted industry... As fleeting trams filled with syrup are tied to a heart pump squelch, like a trickle tide of distorted squid caught in a semi transparent jelly of half distinct memories...



The next track (seen above) is a repeated piano refrain soaked in a jazzy scatter cushion of rubbed locomotion and carriage shanty... everything weaves in multi dimensions of repetition, as drum scurries finger the languished ether of some diffused cymbal fallout... A sublime magic, to which Deep Narcosis supplies a short change of scenery …

A Massive Attack(ish) mutated dance... A gigi-shimmer on a loose bassy recoil and edged percussion. .. Something that's quickly sucked into the event horizon, as we are returned to the rising diffusion of the albums finale On The Shores Of Consciousness... A breaking dawn of drone and shingle coated breath, with curls of multiplied light that just evaporate in your head as all the best mind kandy should...

Balken Ego - Konstadinos Michail + Panagiotis Spoulos