Archive for July, 2011

Sightings: Eternal Summers, “On My Honor”

Thursday, July 28th, 2011

Some weeks make the idea of an eternal summer feel like the most heinous threat imaginable. These kinds of weeks leave you sitting motionless in your room in front of a small fan for hours trying escape the heat. Somehow, you always manage to break a sweat anyway.

Luckily, Roanoke, VA favorites Eternal Summers exist to remind you of the benefits of summer. “On My Honor” rides along a skateboard of swift, airy guitar chords intertwined with a bass groove seemingly designed for the sole purpose of shimmying the sweat from listeners’ brows. Nicole Yun’s airy croon washes over the track in a haze of sweat-fueled motivation – crying out against wasting summer daylight in front of an artificial breeze. Yun vows not to “cut the corners with anything [she does],” and after “On My Honor” fades out, you can’t help but promise the same. After all, summer won’t last forever.

Eternal Summers, “On My Honor” (Mystic Fortress Sessions Vol. 1, Funny/Not Funny Recordings)

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Sightings: Food Pyramid, “ATM”

Thursday, July 28th, 2011

We’re halfway through the year 2011 and December 21, 2012 is only 502 days away. No matter where we lie on the range of eschatological beliefs associated with the 2012 Phenomenon, it’s hard not to wonder about it as the day draws nearer. While some predict apocalypse, a New Age interpretation is that the 2012 winter solstice will be harbinger to a cosmically enlightened spiritual metamorphosis in which mankind will transcend both time and space.

Minneapolis kosmische-inspired trio Food Pyramid use synthesizers and live bioinstrumentation to “contact the Cosmic Beloved as Manifest in Light & Sound.” “ATM,” a track they contributed to Mood Glyph‘s 2011 Sampler of new and unreleased tracks, further prompts association with the New Age forecast. Elements of time and space are essential here, as prismatic, oscillating synth beats punctuated with delay effects act as points of departure for what feels like a ride down a road of dark clouds into unknown galaxies– and perhaps toward some “enlightened” entity. The void left behind by once-steady drum beat and the slowing of the synthesizer’s tempo toward the end allow for a kind of projection on the listener’s part. As “futuristic” sounds no longer seem to be coming from so far off into the future, we’re given the opportunity to inject our own nostalgia for dwellings past.

Food Pyramid, “ATM”

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Words: Mary Katherine Youngblood
Mayan Pyramid avatar: Antoine Verseley

Download the Moon Glyph — 2011 Sampler here. Food Pyramid/Deep Earth split 7″ and Food Pyramid full-length LP coming soon from Moon Glyph

Sightings: Regal Degal, “The Friday That Never Happened” Video

Tuesday, July 26th, 2011

Regal Degal – “The Friday That Never Happened” from regal degal on Vimeo.

Regal Degal‘s “The Friday That Never Happened” embodies the slacker aesthetic down to its last sing-spoken, blasé utterance. Fans of Beat Happening and certain items in Sonic Youth’s catalog will find some solace here. With its minimalist set and offbeat dance performers, the video they made for the track continues to pay homage to ’90s indie rock. What makes the clip stand out is its play on persepective. The screen is split to show us two video renderings of the same performance, supposedly shot with cameras attached to the performers’ heads. Framing the image on the top and bottom are squished bars, mirroring the two central image tracks. This is indeed a lo-fi play on latter day Hype Williams.

Words: Samantha Cornwell

Regal Degal’s Speckled Fruit EP is available for free on their website

Sightings: Green Gerry, “Celery Salt (Spider Man Quit Fucking With Me)”

Tuesday, July 26th, 2011

Supremely weird Athens singer/songwriter Green Gerry recently assembled a live band called The Jellyfish. He also sent over new demo called “Celery Salt (Spider Man Quit Fucking with Me),” which had about 20 seconds of unintended silence at the beginning (since removed) and some serious microphone clipping. Aside from that, it’s probably the loveliest missive I’ve received from him thus far — a cryptic prose-poem in seven stanzas, adorned equally by fingerplucked guitar, barely there sound washes and the squeak of his left hand sliding up and down the frets. Gerry’s refined a half-singing, half-speaking style that will appeal to people who like listening to Leonard Cohen’s “Suzanne” on repeat; but his voice has timbre and lumosity all its own, and it’s as magnetic on the senses as a UFO in the sky. Lyrics below, as per the artist’s request. 

Green Gerry, “Celery Salt (Spider Man Quit Fucking With Me)”

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Words: Emilie Friedlander
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Sightings: Kuroma, “The Magick Deed”

Thursday, July 21st, 2011


Kuroma is the creation of Athens, GA-based Hank Sullivant, founding bassist of The Whigs and former touring guitarist with MGMT. His new PsychopompLP, named after a mythological creature responsible for navigating the recently deceased to the great beyond, invites us on a psych-tinged, pop-fueled, celestially exhausting journey into the musical past. In “The Magick Deed,” beat band-influenced vocal harmonies glide across glittering guitar/organ/drum/bass/ synthetic/harpsichord melodies that simultaneously bring to mind early ’60s baroque pop and whimsical, late ’60s psychedelia– but also, somehow, Psychic TV’s 1985 track, “Godstar.” The track’s unconventional verse and melody structures play on those of “The Little Drummer Boy”— yet its connection to the traditional Christmas song does not easily reveal itself. Equal parts modish and camp, this Kuroma and Ash Sechler-directed video enhances our trip into the pop afterlife.

Words: Mary Katherine Youngblood

Psychopomp drops August 23rd on Holy Owned Subsidiary. Pre-order a copy here and check Kuroma’s website for more details.

Sightings: Dream Boat: “imissu”

Thursday, July 21st, 2011

imissu from Dream Boat on Vimeo.

The ever-mysterious male-female duo that is Dream Boat is dropping a second full-length on AMDISCS next week, and it’s full of the sinewy vocal loops and dexterous beat programming that first caught our attention around this time last year, when we posted the Providence producer’s “Your Beaches” single, and they came back at as with a video response. “Imissu” locks into a prickly, walking-pace groove until it gets stuck on a drum machine trill and kicks into another song entirely– a misshappen club banger with beefy bass drones on the low end and pitched up, sing-songy vox on high. Chromatic melodies can just sound so taunting sometimes.

Dream Boat: “imissu”

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Words: Emilie Friedlander

Widows LP is out July 28th via Amdiscs, on clear vinyl. Dream Boat Summer European tour dates here

Sightings: A R P, “From a Balcony Overlooking the Sea” Video

Tuesday, July 19th, 2011

ARP – From A Balcony Overlooking The Sea from Camilla Padgitt-Coles on Vimeo.

There are some memories that are alive with color. When looking back at these spaces in time, it is hard not to laugh. Sometimes the most vivid and rich recollections almost seem saccharine. Still, isn’t it nice to recall those times and embrace their magic? Camilla Padgitt-Coles‘ new video for composer ARP‘s “From a Balcony Overlooking the Sea” brings to mind those mental spaces of undeniable beauty. The track itself lays the strings on thick, creating a baroque, glamorous pop aesthetic. This is driven forward by a romantic male vocal that evokes Bryan Ferry or David Bowie at their most sentimental points. Coles’ image track features found footage that is bursting at the seems with warm colors. It takes me back to standing on the bridge in Monet’s garden. While I appreciated the natural beauty of that space, I longed for the painter’s impressionistic hues.

Words: Samantha Cornwell

ARP’s The Soft Wave is available now from Smalltown Supersound

Sightings: Clubglove, “Glow Stick”

Friday, July 15th, 2011

The bandcamp page of Brooklyn, NY outfit Clubglove features the group tagging themselves with tongue-in-cheek genre puns like “beachdub” and “laquerwave.” In truth, new track “Glow Stick” fits neatly in these fictional classifications. A subtle backbeat bounces from the tracks opening and introduces listeners to a beach scene lifted straight from a 1950’s surf movie. However it’s all a bit more complicated than that. The beach wonderland is coated over in a hazy laminate made of equal parts electronic flourishes, hazy guitar and backdrop of crooning “ooohs” that sound just a bit too haunting for a simple day at the beach. Eventually the disparate parts of “Glow Stick” give way to an all out jam with the right mixture of crunching feedback and catchy hooks to perfectly fit your aural beat-the-heat prescription.

Clubglove, “Glow Stick” (In It, Self-Released)

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Words: Marc Picciolo

Stream/Download “Glow Stick” for free over at the group’s Bandcamp.

Sightings: Julian Lynch, “Birthday Song”

Thursday, July 14th, 2011

According to Julian Lynch, his recently released Buffalo Songs cassette compiles previously unreleased and self-released recordings he “made from 2006 onwards, back when [he] recorded using the moniker Buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo.” Now that he plays exclusively under the name Julian Lynch, and has three proper album releases under his belt, Buffalo Songs serves as an archival showcase of his output thus far.

Hearing “Birthday Song,” which first appeared on his 2008, self-released Birthday CD-R, it’s hard to believe that Lynch’s 8-track recorder wasn’t submerged hundreds of feet under water. It may be bleak to associate social seclusion with a song about a birthday, but  this one helps us realize that being alone doesn’t have to feel lonely. Melodic layers of guitar, flute, human voice, and percussion thicken as the track progresses, relaxing us into our own minds, until — everything stops. After a silence, a voice — sampled from a spoken word cassette he acquired from a tape lot on Ebay — arrives, bringing with it a faster tempo and a choppier sound. It’s as though the voice has brought a helicopter to pull us back down into this realm of reality, and its words make for the only discernable lyric in the entire song. Though we’ve only been away for four minutes and 26 seconds, “Where am I?” seems like the appropriate thing to ask.

Julian Lynch, “Birthday Song”

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Words: Mary Katherine Youngblood

Grab the Buffalo Songs cassette from Goaty Tapes. The collection includes an alternate mix of “In New Jersey” [Mare, 2010], and two different versions of  “Terra” [Terra, 2011]

Sightings: The Rebel, “Prove It”

Tuesday, July 12th, 2011


It is clear that The Rebel have spent a decent amount of time listening to No New York. Their new single, “Prove It,” perfectly captures the atonal jagged nature of the sound documented on that legendary compilation. However, The Rebel have abandoned the brevity of their No Wave predecessors and have created a lengthy track with some honest to god atmosphere. The track kicks off with about two minutes of instrumental build up before the muted vocal simmers into the mix. The Rebel pull it off swimmingly by fusing the discordance of Teenage Jesus and The Jerks with the technology fetishism of Kraftwerk.

Words: Samantha Cornwell

The Rebel’s Five Year Plan EP comes out today on Monofonus Press.