Sunday, October 14, 2007

Lanterns - Lughnasadh

Lanterns is a relatively new group that recently released an album on the Philadelphia label, Peasant Magik. The album is entitled Lughnasadh and features three tracks of moderate to long length. The group definitely has some unique vibes with a heavy influence of Indian Raga that seems to be permeating a good deal of experimental music these days.

The three tracks on this album are very well thought out and make good use of gradually developing elements. The drones elements are dark and organic with a nice sense of space. The music varies between very busy and very sparse movements and keeps the listener interested via many amorphous textures throughout the music. Overall, this album is quite well done.

7.5/10 more information and ordering at

Monday, October 8, 2007

By The End of Tonight/Tera Melos - Complex Full of Phantoms

By the End of Tonight and Tera Melos have had a common date with destiny for some time now. Their seemingly dissimilar brands of music have attracted many common fans and it was only a matter of time before these angular, complex bands collided to put out something as good as "Complex Full of Phantoms". The contributions from both bands feature their best material yet, which is certainly an accomplishment.

The material from BTEOT is their darkest, most complex songwriting yet. The same could be said for Tera Melos as well. Both bands have really outdone their previous selves with this record. The only thing to do now is to pray for a tour!

9/10 more information and ordering at

The Drift - Ceiling Sky

The Drift have just taken the common courtesy of releasing all of their tracks previously available only on the archaic (albeit better sounding) vinyl format onto a convenient 5" CD. This means that the songs I only dreamed of driving to before are now a very real possibility. For those who don't know, The Drift is a jazz outfit that formed out of the California music monolith Tarentel. Their music is probably one of the best, most interesting things going on in jazz today.

The cyclical trumpet coupled with the fine-tuned use of drone and noise leads to a unique blend of influences within the jazz idiom. The album ends with the two tracks off of the RMXS 12" featuring remixes by Four Tet and Sybarite. This is a must have for any fans of the Drift as well as someone bored with the same stuff coming from the typical jazz sources these days.

8.9/10 more information and ordering at

Sleeping People - Growing

Sleeping People have woken up from a strange dream and recorded their excursion via mathy, instrumental madness that transcends any of their previous work. This album explodes from the very beginning and pretty much refuses to give the listener any option but to follow the band into their dream, which is a good thing. This album is strange without alienating the listener, angular without cutting your ears, and any other clever euphemism I could contrive for avoiding the pitfalls of typical instrumental music.

This album avoids the so-called "sophomore slump" and, in fact, completely obliterates it. The music is mature, driving and damn catchy. The album starts out pulling you along and doesn't let up until Rob Crow shows up randomly and seals the deal on your musical addiction. Check this out if you are ready to wake up.

8.9/10 more information and ordering at

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Lazarus - Hawk Medicine

Lazarus started out as the solo project from ex-Tarentel member Trevor Montgomery, and has now exploded into a full band and a spectacular new album entitled "Hawk Medicine". After collaborations with The Papercuts and tours with Grizzly Bear, Lazarus has unleashed another album of either greater brilliance than any of his past solo efforts. His expansion to a full band could not have come at a better time, as its been a while since we've heard any new stuff from Trevor, who's been "hiding" on tours with EITS and the Castanets.

The new album is simply breathtaking in its scope and production. Montgomery's voice on this album is simply monumental, its just as likely that you hear these songs coming from mountains as from a person. The entire album is a trip into another man's soul, in fact you feel as if you're parting with a piece of yourself as the album ends. This album is a diamond in the rough, simply trouncing any preconceived notions of the singer-songwriter genre. GET THIS!

9/10 more information and ordering at

Don't Mess With Texas - Los Dias De Junio

Don't Mess With Texas is NOT a George Bush tribute band, as the name may lead you to conclude. Don't Mess With Texas is a group of fine Croatian musicians with a unique sense of humor. Their latest album "Los Dias De Junio" is a spectacular collection of post-rock masterpieces successfully blending the breadth and scope of GY!BE with the straightforward writing of Don Caballero without sounding generic. The production and recording of the album are very successful as well, with a great bit of attention on the atmospheric sound that makes this band well worth listening to.

Overall this band is definitely worth checking out if you too are suffering from the recent slump in interesting post-rock. These guys are really impressive players and composers and their chemistry as players comes through the recording more than usual. This album is a welcome addition to the post-rock genre and music in general.

9/10 more information and ordering at

Prizzy Prizzy Please - s/t

Prizzy Prizzy Please is a mainstay of the Bloomington scene, being one of the most entertaining live acts around the town. Their debut half-length is an album that exceeds most expectations for a local self-release, in fact its surprising that these guys are not signed already. They are well on their way to redefining the fate of punk in to a respectable genre of music again. This is not some poppy, watered-down bullshit, this is finally a legitimate direction for music that has either been repeating itself or whose performers have been listening to too much N*Sync to remember what good music is like.

This album is not just good, its great. There is a scary amount of potential in the music on this disc. I won't be surprised to see these guys doing some really big things in the near future. People have been feeding on all of this ridiculous, unfulfilling music for so long, its about time they have a real meal.

9.5/10 more information at

Ajilvsga - Thorazine to Infinity

Ajilvsga has been very busy lately and is gaining momentum with upcoming releases on Type and Rite as well as a Digitalis Arts and Crafts release. This release just came out on Peasant Magik in a limited edition of seventy-five. For fans of their previous work, this release won't hold too many surprises, but to the new listener Ajilvsga is a surprisingly unique force in the noise scene today.

The two sides contain some harsh, amorphous pieces that owe an equal debt to distortion pedals and Indian Raga. These sludgy drones posses a haunting quality that is lost on much of the noise music going on today. Overall this would be a good addition to the collection of any fan of their previous work, or anyone interested in where the noise scene is going these days.

7/10 more information and ordering at

Monday, October 1, 2007

Fantastic Magic - Witch Choir

Fantastic Magic is a group that features some newer names unheard of, but perfectly welcome in the movement that has recently been gaining momentum with the infamous cdr labels and the resurrection of the tape culture from the 90's. On this tape from Abandon Ship Records, Fantastic Magic offers a unique melding of genres that will catch just about any listener by surprise in a very good way. There is a barrage of diversity that is unmatched in recent memory.

The tape starts out with what sounds like children singing, and from there the music explodes with uncountable surprises and developments as both sides go by painfully fast. This is a new development in the type of music most of the contributors normally play. The closest I can get to aptly describing the catchiness and weirdness is that this music is as screwed up as "pop" music could get while still being desirable.

9/10 more information at