Tom Hall's Beyond Light, his 2nd release under the AXXONN moniker, is a clear demonstration of his flexibility. Since relocating from Australia to L.A., his output has touched on a wide smattering of electronic genres. But despite the diverse pallette, the consistent factor of his work has been an ongoing dedication to experimentalism. "Sequel to Acid" is a maximalist track that melds big, synced-up synths with a hyrbid song structure and a live feel that eradicate the sense that this could be an out-of-the-can dancefloor banger. As the track begins to explode into a branching melodic mass, the video's layered projections and polychrome flashes drift behind, and then blaze forward with force. (via International Tapes)
Distill synth punk to its base elements and you will end up with a mess that, much like a piece of IKEA furniture, once you attempt to reassemble it, can never function as it once did. Matt Weiner's solo project TWINS fully embraces the chimeras and pipe dreams that result from this self injury prone process. While his previous work, especially with partner Elise Tippins as Featureless Ghost, often manifests this as obtuse extrapolations of the mensch-maschine-isms that you might find in mid-career Gary Numan, "Hush Hush" parades an intensely human sense of conflict through minimal, post-punk structures. Taken from his Clan Destine Records issued split LP with OS OVNI, the track grinds through its repetitive groove with zeal. This is Weiner taking his own game to the next level and Tippins and Fanstastic Lands' accompanying video provides the crushed-glass-under-your-sneakers grit and sense of decay that the track deserves. You can imagine an army of empty 99¢ Arizona Tea cans blowing down the color saturated avenues as Weiner vascillates between plaintive, half-whispered directives and an especially noisy brand of ennui.
The Os Ovni/Twins Votex To Void/Graphic Edition LP is now available in a limited edition of 250 from Clan Destine Records.
The new 7" from London three-piece Bomber Jackets delivers a clearer, crisper take on the syncopated Casio shock treatments of last year's Larchingcassette. Along with the revamped instrumentals from fellow Pheromoans bandmate Dan Bolger and Sian Dorrier of Plug, vocalist Russell Walker's droll delivery has taken on a more playful aspect, dipping around the beats with a careful awareness of melody and timing. Centurion Travel leaves one feeling that these tracks wouldn't be too far out of place next to your fav semi-balearic dance hit du jour if they cranked the tempo, slapped on some vocal effects, and played four times as many notes. Instead, the trio presents a gloomier reflection of the spare parts of pop culture they so avidly and selectively vampirize. As the only previously unrecorded track on the EP, "Male Bimbos" makes the most of their upgrade to mid-fi, expanding on their often misanthropic mystique. Give it a listen while you stare at a stranger on the street and see if the look that appears on your face doesn't creep them out. (via International Tapes)
The prolific New Brunswick popsters known as Honeydrum just released a video for "Can't Wait To Meet You," the second track off of their Do You Party? EP. The vid represents the bands' first stab at the "classic" music video format, cutting back and forth between the band playing/chilling deliberately on a stately lawn and a semi-narrative montage of a house party replete with the strange formality, obligatory free booze, and measured jubilation of one of those engagement parties that get increasingly common towards your mid-20s. That tale comes into focus, even as the track emerges from filters and delay to reveal a lazy day jammer that hits its stride and calls it a day just under the two minute marker. This blend of punk terseness and heavily affected NJ guitar music doesn't revolutionize either, but does represent an explorative approach.
Honeydrum's Do You Party? EP and Stranger Calls 7" are now available from AMDiscs
Olof Persson of Swedish duo Broken Boys made quite a splash this past week with Sea-Through, his first solo release as Heat and White. Where Broken Boys favor inventive sampling and passive aggressive beats in their ominous tunes, this new project relies on reverb-heavy guitar, reliably punchy drums, and a more relaxed sound palate at large. "Standing Wave" is a simultaneously pop-friendlier and more complex adaptation of Persson's conceptual multimedia project Stående våg, which translates as (you guessed it) "standing wave." It's highly conversant with the always trendy "beachy" guitar jam and semi-Balearic/Nordic tropicalia, but still manages to do its own thing. Wafts of highly melodic guitars, pianos, and melodicas mesh together beautifully while barely controlled synth arpeggiations threaten to break the song's delicate balance. Our advice: put on some good headphones, direct your eyes at the ceiling, and let go. (via International Tapes)
In the new video for "Do I?," the lovingly smoke-infused tones of Glasgow's own Lewis Cook, aka Mother Ganga, have met his visual soulmates in Rob Chabebe and Joe Perez of Eye Bodega. Splashes of ecstatic color manifest and fade as doubled vocals and non-Cartesian grids of arpeggios set about powering their way through the visuals' highly interpretive flux, creating many happy accidents along the way. By the time the last few breaks hit, form begins to give way to texture as if, when Cook was probing into the backrooms of his own head, we all momentarily landed inside the bloodstream of a purple-hued supreme being. This alternately funky and withdrawn piece of synth poppery that seems so intent on its titular question is an excellent introduction to Mother Ganga's boldly flavored premiere tape, Pineal Soup. Now stop looking at that Prince .gif and watch the video.
Mother Ganga's Pineal Soup is now available from Cook's own label, Instructional Media. You can also explore the rest of the tape on Bandcamp
Super fav Peaking Lights made International Tapes a mixtape entitled “20mix 12mix ARIES” brimming with modern hip hop and R&B stylings, with a little Bach and light hypnosis to kick things offs. It has no tracklist, but we can assure you that it's ideal Friday listening. For that matter, it would make fine Saturday-Thursday listening as well. Instructions for use: press play and let it ride.
Ç86 is a brand spanking new compilation of bedroom-recorded music from across Japan. Chiba-based four-piece möscow çlub conceived the comp as a celebration spring's coming and the heterogenous universe of DIY production technique.
The sixteen artists and bands yield a diverse array of styles and sounds, encompassing various branches of post-punk, tasty bits of house, and a rainbow-flavored assortment of sample pop and include both familiar names and new discoveries. To save you some googling, here’s the list, complete with linkage: möscow çlub, SUPER VHS, Occult You, Lilacs, Elen Never Sleeps, It Happens, Slow-Marico, The Moments, figure, OMEGABOY, coffee_and_tv, Breezesquad, women in the dune, ILL DAZE, edel & weiss, and Exccow. In addition to the original tunes, the mix also includes 7 covers that we’re still wrapping our heads around. There’s plenty here to move your feet, warm your soul, and fill your playlists. We have our favorites, but the best advice we can give is that you explore this landscape for yourself. Prepare for a crash course in independent Japanese music!