Archives for September 2006

Wolf Eyes – Human Animal

Wolf EyesHuman AnimalMichigan's notorious noiseniks, Wolf Eyes, have returned with a slightly different line-up and a brilliant new record called Human Animal. Although, with the numerous fetishized CD-R, lathe-cut laserdiscs, and vinyl only releases in the wake of Burned Mind it's like they never went away. This one's got all of the burnt out … [Read more...]

Two Ton Boa – Parasiticide

Two Ton BoaParasiticideIn 1999 one hit wonders Marcy Playground covered Two Ton Boa’s “Comin’ Up From Behind” on the Cruel Intentions soundtrack. It’s somehow appropriate that seven years later TTB would create an album so perfect for that movie’s pre-teen audience. After releasing one EP, also in ’99, the band and their chanteuse Sherry Fraser … [Read more...]

Brightblack Morning Light – Brightblack Morning Light

Brightblack Morning LightBrightblack Morning LightVariety isn’t always it seems - at least in the early years of a musical career - the spice of life. Whilst diversity is the sustaining elixir for many a classic band’s longevity, sometimes sticking rigidly to one, almost static, sound for a short-term spell can make for a long-lasting positive … [Read more...]

Interview with Sufjan Stevens

In the world of indie rock, there are few more enigmatic artists than Sufjan Stevens. Having followed up his debut release (2000’s A Sun Came) of twisting pan-ethnic indie folk with an ambitious electronic concept album based on the Chinese Zodiac (2001’s Enjoy Your Rabbit), he has already covered more textural and conceptual ground than most … [Read more...]

Sébastien Schuller – Happiness

Sébastien SchullerHappinessSébastien Schuller: a Francophone by name if ever there was one. If doubts persist, read this bit of prolixity from the press sheet: “Sébastien thrives on enhancing sounds of acoustic and natural resonance with touches of electronica.” It’s true: this statement, for all its talk of “acoustic and … [Read more...]

Hot Young Priest – Fiendish Freaky Love

Hot Young PriestFiendish Freaky LoveA lot of modern country music can be split into two broad categories. There’s the alternative-rock based country that cramps the commercial airwaves with shallow patriotism, questionable singing abilities, and often terrible covers of pop superhits that were already pretty terrible to begin with. We don’t care … [Read more...]

Park – Building a Better _______

ParkBuilding a Better _______I'm behind on the Park bandwagon seeing as Building a Better _______ marks their third release. While this can easily be deemed an emotional rock album, it's in a different league than what you might expect. The music exhibits more pros than typical throwaway emo with its sugary clean vocals, honest and relatable … [Read more...]

Under the Influence of Giants – Under the Influence of Giants

Under the Influence of GiantsUnder the Influence of GiantsUnfortunately extramarital aspects arise when listening to the kind of music as good, danceable and fun as the stuff presented on Standing on The Influence of Giant’s self-titled debut. First we have the self-conscious band name, two smirks away from They Might be Giants but modest … [Read more...]

Jai Agnish – Mechanical Sunshine

Jai AgnishMechanical SunshineIf there is one weakness I have as a reviewer, it is my penchant for steel drums. Whether it’s real steel drums or just a convincing synth effect, like Jai Agnish uses on Mechanical Sunshine, makes no difference. I love those things; they’re like the musical manifestation of a breezy summer afternoon. Agnish uses the … [Read more...]

Various Artists – Graciously, A Gulf Relief Compilation

Various ArtistsGraciously, A Gulf Relief CompilationReviewing benefit albums feels like a slightly duplicitous endeavour. On the one hand you could just say “buy it purely for altruistic reasons, artistic quality comes second” to make your conscience feel clearer and non-obstructive to the charitable cause in question. There of course, you could … [Read more...]