maandag 30 mei 2011

John Heckle to release debut

John Heckle is going to be releasing his debut record next month. This will be done via Mathematics Recording, and the album will contain ten spanking new tracks. The exact release date will be the 18th of June, and the album will be called The Second Son.

Ludwig Darnotz had little with leading notions in sociology that if the first son was successful, there would be such a burden on the second son that this son would be paralyzed. In his essay How much chocolate one needs when one cannot fail and other shopping list advice, Darnotz defended the following: The notion of a winning first son paralyzing the second son causing him not to have success is not the worst thing that can happen by a wide margin. Sure, you might not get the love and affection the first son might get, but it does allow one to stand in a relaxed manner by the punch bowl at the Christmas Family Party while mother is saying, Do you know what Randolph did the other week? Hmm? He bought another company out! That’s what Randolph did, yes indeed.

In fact the worst thing that can happen is quite the opposite. With a successful first son the pressure is off. You don’t have to be a success anymore, someone in the family already is, your parents won’t think they are a failure anyway. But imagine being the second son to a bum of a first? Now all the pressure is on you to do something. Failure would break your parents’ heart, it would stigmatize them and the rest of the family. You need to do it, you are their only hope (except if they decide to get yet another son, but at their age?). So all hail the first son and may thee fare well. Then I can succeed, or fail, or at least live without the pressure of being the only son that can achieve something in life.

Fennesz releasing new EP

Austrian artist Fennesz is on the verge of  releasing a new EP. This EP will be named Seven Stars and it will see daylight through Touch. It is going to feature four tracks, being the first official release by Fennesz since 2009. It will be released on the 5th of July.

The Seven Stars is a famous myth in Aztec mythology, but the myth had trouble coming about. Some people creating the myth were adamant that the myth would feature eight stars. Eight stars, Diminez fumed, that is not an odd number! It is like rectangular bread, mundane, and a myth has to sparkle, it has to be remembered! Besides, he said, we have enough trouble coming up with stories for seven stars, let alone if we have to come up with one more! At that last remark everyone started to nod furiously, and from that point on production began on the myth of the Seven Stars.

London Calling Report

Live Report - London Calling Friday (2011) - Holy Ghost!, Cat's Eyes, Miami Horror, and more.

It has been a while since I’ve been to London Calling. London Calling is a 2-day, twice a year festival that tries to showcase young bands. A young Editors, Franz Ferdinand, Blur, Bloc Party, Patrick Wolf all played there. I personally got my first taste there of bands like Los Campesinos!, Late of the Pier, Mystery Jets, and Foals. And I even fondly remember some bands that played there that since haven’t made the cut, but that’s all right. I used to feel excited about the new bands, and I sensed a certain excitement in the crowd to discover and hear and weigh for the first time these artists as well. On the Friday of the festival, the one day I visited it, I didn’t feel that excitement quite as much. Perhaps worse for the festival, I didn’t feel it in the crowd either, which might’ve been down to my personal musical development, but I fear it might’ve been down the programming as well.

Now, the bands. It is always an eclectic bill, and this time it is no difference. Braids tries to woo the crowd with their intricate, sensible pop. That must be what they want to play at least, but surely that what the crowd is treated to is something else entirely. Part of that though is the amazingly bad sound at the festival, which will be a downer on a lot of the gigs today. It gets so bad that I just have to leave, and I promise myself to listen to the album to get a sense of how it is supposed to sound.

In the small room Cat’s Eyes is next, and I must say it sounds pretty decent. It is a sort of mixture between a post-punk sound and a more sensible, perhaps a bit of a Western sound (or that might just pop into my head because of the train image in the background). It is Farris’s low baritone voice next to Rachel Zeffira’s more polished vocals and organ play. Some songs are more up-tempo, others are really slow. Too bad some of Zeffira (if not all) vocals and some of the structures of the songs are drowned by the second guitar. In my opinion, there is one guitar too many on the stage (and it is not the one dictating the rhythm, that’s for sure). That wall of noise doesn’t so much add as subtract from the songs in this case.

Then in the main room it is Miami Horror who is going to pop until they drop. Now, the band has got some tunes. ‘Moon Theory’ and ‘Make You Mine’ are very catchy (synth-pop) songs that can get a crowd on their feet. Terribly fun songs, too bad that the act is just not my cup of tea. I am constantly wondering if the singer is doing a parody on a pop star or is actually serious, and I am inclined to believe he is actually serious. I love over the top, I love extravagance, but  I love it with an attitude of cutting loose and lets all have a bit of fun today. The thing that I am getting out of it is more of a look-at-me vibe, and that just turns me off. So fun songs, but I rather not watch it live again to be honest as it somehow, personally, rubs me the wrong way.

Trophy Wife is a young band with lovely little pop songs, and that’s it. I can’t say anything bad about it, because the songs are nice and they are well executed and they have a rather charming demeanor. However, there is just not much that really stands out, that sets them apart, that makes me want to listen to this above other things. It is decent, nice, and charming and lovely for a small stage at a festival.

Ariel Pink is next up, and the thing about Ariel Pink is that I loved the album when it came out, then I saw the band at De Nieuwe Anita, and then not so much loved the album anymore. That was one of the worst concerts I have ever been to. So I sat down high up on the balcony, and I must admit that indeed by watching this it rekindled in me the feeling why I liked the album on the first go around. But talk about tainted vision, after that one gig I just can’t watch or listen objectively to Ariel Pink anymore. This gig was better though, no doubt about that.

And then there is The View. Now, you could tell by the crowd these lads were going to play, and that is both good and bad for the festival. It is good because it assures you ticket sales. It is bad because the vibe of that band takes over the whole festival, and that is not necessarily what one wants. Not necessarily what I want, at least. The good about The View is they can fill a (medium-sized) room. The bad about The View is that it is not cutting edge, it is not new, it is not particularly well executed, it is not really anything to me than a band with guitars and guys singing about mundane stuff. And why this crowd welcomes them as the band who is going to free punk/rock from its shackles is absolutely beyond me.

Now, after this Holy Ghost! sets up to play. So from The View you go to Holy Ghost!, and oh man, that must be terrible for that band. In a nearby venue SBTRKT and Friendly Fires are playing with The Revenge and 6th Borough Project doing DJ sets after. Slide Holy Ghost! in there and you’ve got a killer line-up for anyone fancying a dance, anyone fancying a bit of dance pop/house/disco. Now, there are a few kids dancing, and the rest (and we are now about seven hours after tip-off) is standing there with a few too many beers rushing through their veins. So wrong crowd for this band, who I find are really good. They are tight, they’ve got some good songs with some good choruses, and it is all analog so you actually see the additional drums and stuff being played. Again, the technical side is a bit rubbish, especially in the beginning when you simply can’t hear his voice. But all in all, for the few people who are there looking for a good time and for a bit of a dance, this is lovely indeed. So hopefully next time they play with The Revenge and 6th Borough Project and in front of a willing crowd who wants to have a good night out so that both the dancers and the band can feed off of each other. This situation is not ideal, but the band still shows why they are so highly touted, especially with closer ‘Jam for Jerry’.

Holy Ghost! (obviously) was the band for whom I was there, but whereas I used to enjoy scouring the festival for new sounds and bands, I found I wasn’t quite getting that this day. Maybe it is me, maybe it was the programming, maybe it was the crowd that consisted of the kind of people I don’t quite remember being there at previous editions. Almost surely a factor was the abysmal sound. There were some decent moments there (Trophy Wife, Cat’s Eyes, and the music of Miami Horror), but the only real satisfaction on a personal level was closer Holy Ghost!. And for a festival that runs from seven in the evening ‘till two at night that is just a bit meager to be fair.

News Items May

All news items that were published in the month of May on this site. All in our House style, so be warned or thrilled or whatever you think of it!

30 May:
John Heckle to release debut
Fennesz releasing new EP

26 May:
The Horrors announce new album
EP coming Forest Swords

22 May:
Azari & III unveils debut
Clap Your Hands Say Yeah to release new album

19 may:
Ladytron announces details new album
Memory Tapes unveils album details

15 May:
New EP DJ Shadow 
Booker T album streaming on Spinner

11 May:
New album Pictureplane this July
The War on Drugs to release second LP this August

09 May:
IKRS on Twitter
Incubate to bring Open Source Programming to its festival

08 May:
Com Truise readies debut
James Ferraro preps new album

05 May:
Zomby to release debut in July
New acts added to festival De Affaire

04 May:
Sufjan Stevens contributes music to inspiring doc
Retrospective Bowie in NY museum

01 May:
New Horse Meat Disco Compilation
diskJokke to release concept album

donderdag 26 mei 2011

The Horrors announce new album

The band The Horrors is about to release Skying, which is a new album. This will be done by XL Recordings on the 11th of July. One could’ve spotted the frontman of The Horrors in Paradiso last week Friday, when he and his project Cat’s Eyes played Paradiso. A report of that (and the other gigs played that day) will follow as soon as I have time to get that bloody edit done. The album (to get back to that) will count ten tracks.

One of these tracks is entitled Still Life. It is based on Ernie Bristonowitz, who ever since his fiftieth birthday woke up, and the first thing he said was, Bah, is this still life? Not that he was anticipating an apocalypse (although he had often wished for one), after fifty years he just thought, surely, I have to wake up some day and I will be somewhere else? Where he would be he wasn’t sure of, just anything to get out of this rut, though he had his preferences. He often dreamed he would wake up in a sort of cartoony land with penguins as waiters, carrousels whose horses suddenly start running free -- and they race! -- and sometimes there is a bit of a song. And a tap dancing chimney sweeper. Yeah, he thought, you’d never see such a thing in what we call life.

New EP Forest Swords

The band Forest Swords is gearing up to release a new EP. The EP will drop on the 20th of June and will be called Fjree Feather (and no, that is not a typo, not by me at least). It will be released by No Pain in Pop, and it will eventually lead us to the band’s official debut. This is slated for release somewhere this year. First the EP though, which will consist of six tracks, including one entitled ‘Trust Your Blood’.

The old sage said, Trust your blood, to which Klugenstein said, I would, but it talks with such a muddled voice I can’t tell the difference between good advice and gurgling. I would send it on speech lessons if only it wouldn’t cost so much, plus I need it to, you know, prevent myself from fainting. Not to mention what a horrible tan it would give me. The sage said, But how do you want to amount to anything if you can’t trust your own blood? It is the key to success in life. Well, dared Klugenstein, how about a blood transfusion? Not only would I have blood that enunciates better, I would rather listen to Bill Clinton’s blood than my own anyway. To which the Sage said, Really, a man who can’t control his own sperm, that is the blood you want to get advice from? Anyway, I am not sure whether he is up as a blood donor, plus with your run of luck you’ll probably get a transfusion from a 92-year old lady who pronounces celery as celeerie.

woensdag 25 mei 2011

Crazy Zany Radio Sunday - 'White Elephant' by Ladytron

Every week our contributors will voice their opinion concerning one song, it’s a simple as that! The more the merrier, so people are always welcome to join in, just leave a note, eh.

Track: ‘White Elephant’ by Ladytron! (listen here)
Average grade: 6.4

Craig: Ladytron really has a formula that works for their fans-- detached, cool sound of near-robotic vocals and leisurely runway-esque synths. This song is very consistent in terms of their repertoire. I do enjoy their addition of strings to this track, but unfortunately I think it lacks the dynamic of their songs I truly love. Something is missing that I can't quite put my finger on...

Linda: There's only a handful of Ladytron tracks I like. This isn't one of them. I don't particularly dislike it either, it's just... meh.

Ilse: Quite dreamy stuff! And the harmonious vocals work rather well in combination with the soft synth pop. Yet, seeing I'm completely minted and feel like bouncing around the room right now because I'm going to Primavera in a few days, I need something faster and with more balls at the moment.

Anna: I am loving the trembling melodies and the dreamy synths. Not sure why, but the tune makes me think of 70s Italian films, which is always a good thing. I went really cold over Ladytron after attending an atrocious show of theirs but now I'm really looking forward to their new album. Bring it. And learn how to put on a decent gig.

Stef: It feels to me rather uplifting. Dreamy, and indeed leisurely synths (sorry to steal all those words from the people above). I could listen to this while looking out over the river in the sunshine, I sure could.

zondag 22 mei 2011

Azari & III unveils debut

Azari & III, who played Paradiso just last week and I wasn’t there (no, I’m not bitter about that…) are readying their debut album. It is slated for an August release per Loose Lips Records. The prelude has already been delivered with ‘Hungry for the Power’, for which a vid came out not too long ago. The album will consist of eleven tracks, including the aforementioned single, a renewed version of 2009 release ‘Manhooker’, and ‘Change of Heart’.

A change of heart is a difficult thing, and no one would willingly decide to undergo this for all the extraneous effects it might have. For it is a sort of a discontinuity really. For you do everything with your heart. Do you like someone, hate  someone, love someone, and change hearts, and suddenly your prior fancies might be your new annoyances. How strange when you walk into the office, Leslie Mendelbaum is already waiting with a zinger to put you in your place, and instead you shake his hand, pet him on the back, and invite him for strudels? Not to mention that he must think it is a ploy, a set-up, a con game, and he accepts the invitation solely because he wants to know what you are up to and to reveal you for the fraud, the fake, the phony you are! However, some say that the change of heart is only a temporary state of affairs and your fancies and hatreds soon will return to the way they once were, certainly after an hour of awkward strudel eating.

Clap Your Hands Say Yeah to release new album

The band Clap Your Hands Say Yeah will be releasing a new album in September. The name of the album will be Hysterical, and in Europe the exact release date will be the 12th of that month. The band is going to self-release their third effort, which is produced by John Congleton. Just before the release date the band will play a gig at De Melkweg.

Hysterical was the word Germaine Greer used when first seeing Hirst’s skull. Pinter laughed, and Hirst punched Pinter in the nose. This led to a feud of great magnitude, and there are people who say Pinter put Hirst in the victim role in The Birthday Party, with himself and Greer embodying the interrogators McCann and Goldberg. At least, that was the idea that Hirst got when he heard the plot of the play, and he went to opening night to throw a tomato. Greer, however,  had heard of this idea and disguised as an immense cotton ball she waited outside the theatre and punched Hirst in the nose. At exactly that point Jerry Seinfeld walked by, saw what happened, and in an epiphany shouted, So that’s what you should do with a cotton ball!

donderdag 19 mei 2011

Ladytron announces details album

Nettwerk will be releasing Ladytron’s new album in September. The band has filled the tracklist with twelve songs, one of which came out earlier this year called ‘Ace of HZ’. The album has been named Gravity the Seducer and follows hot on the heels of a compilation album the band released not too long ago.

One of the songs is called ‘Transparent Days’, and days used to be transparent. Lucid, almost. Completely clear. Spotless. And so people could see what that day would bring them, and if it was a particularly bad day, they could decide, You know what, I don’t want to get hit by a vase and be in a coma for sixty days, I’m staying in today. This wasn’t a problem since such bad days were so sporadic that people could easily take that one day a year off.

However, this changed when Adam Proskiewski was bitten by a dachshund. Now, he saw that it would happen, but it is such a minor convenience he went out anyway. So he greeted Mrs. DuMaurer, amd the postman came by. The dachshund chased the postman. The postman, in a slick manoeuvre, jumped over the hedge. The dachshund, his animalistic instincts raging, settled for Proskiewski. Fuck me, Proskiewski thought in his ever poetic fashion, that actually hurt quite a bit. Not sure why I have to put up with stuff like this. So, Proskiewski basically broke the code and from that point on he started to stay home even with only minor inconveniences lurking. Other people didn’t see why they should suffer if Proskiewski wasn’t, and so a domino effect took place with Cambodia being the last to cave.

Memory Tapes announces details new album

Dayve Hawk, the man behind Memory Tapes, has announced the details of his upcoming release entitled Piano Player. This will be released by Carpark Records and Something in Construction, and they will do so on the 4th of July. Kazuki Takamatsu is responsible for the artwork (see picture). The album will count twelve tracks, and the first single will be ‘Wait in the Dark’.

Wait in the dark, he had said. That was hardly the proposal she had waited for when she first walked into his shabby office with a red dress and high heels to match. She waited. He ran off to where the noise came from. His rugged, manly hands had comforted her. But what was that noise at this hour? She could barely breath. She looks around, tries to make out what kind of room this is. Suddenly, a noise. She turns to see the contours of a man in the doorway. No, she is thinking, No this can’t be Eddie. The figure is taller, has broader shoulders, and is carrying a fairly large gun. She trembles. The man switches on the light. She gasps, recognizing the man.

Ernest Hemingway takes a step forward. The hairs on her neck rise. It had been common knowledge in the whole of Manhattan that Hemingway had just come from Africa where he had negotiated a new book deal and had come to NY to hunt for some trophies to decorate his Paris apartment with. Apparently he was going for pale colours and humanly decorations, as per Nate Berkus in the latest O Magazine. W-w-what do you want, she stammered. Hemingway wrote it down, but when she read it she could only come to the conclusion that he didn’t understand women very well and certainly was poor at writing them. When she said this, Hemingway became agitated, loaded his gun, a gunshot. Hemingway’s eyes rolled into the back of his head. He fell to the floor, and behind him stood Eddie. She was so happy she flung into his arms. Eddie dropped the gun and hugged her back. Suddenly darkness commenced again, except for a little heart encircling their kissing heads.

Toro Y Moi and Gold Panda at Bitterzoet

  Toro Y Moi / Gold Panda at Bitterzoet, Amsterdam (2011)

Human versus cattle versus finance. When something is sold out you can expect to be on top of each other, but personally I could’ve done with either a bigger venue or with losing thirty or so people in there (which is easy for me to say because I’ve been holding onto this ticket for yonkers and thus I’m fairly sure I would’ve gotten in anyway). The enjoyment factor is rather diminished by the fact that you are constantly aware that you are about to touch someone who either you don’t want to touch or they don’t want you to touch them. I don’t want any sweating backs coming to close to me, and adversely, I don’t want to touch the cute people as I don’t want to get the reputation of that annoying little shit who is always “making contact”. I’m sure that might all sound terribly anal to you, but my mind does wonder from the music when my hand accidentally grazes someone’s butt. So yeah, cozy is all good, and it may allow people to snuggle up really close to that other scenester they’ve always had their eye on, but I wouldn’t have minded some dancing space. Especially since Toro Y Moi went pretty funk with his latest, and since Gold Panda is pretty much electronic music anyway.

Some people might remember Toro Y Moi for all the chillwave reports that came into existence when his debut Causers of This was released. Now, though, it is less chillwave and more funk, and personally I think that is a good thing if that makes you churn out songs like ‘Still Sound’ and ‘Elise’, with which he closes the set and which is just really catchy and danceable and has a great chorus. There is a sense of melancholy in those songs, but they are funky tunes, perhaps ‘Still Sound’ even more so than ‘Elise’. The latter has this great wave like structure where it has a rather understated intro and then rollicks to and from the up-tempo chorus to more slowed down instrumental moments. A good choice as closer of both the new album and the set.

Two essentials jump out at me, namely Bundick’s vocals which are really, really ace, and that wicked bass that just thrives some songs forward like you wouldn’t believe. It just puts the funk right into those songs and makes you want to dance a bit and have a bit of fun. This isn’t the first time I’ve seen the band, and last time it wasn’t as catchy and dancey, which I reckon isn’t so much execution as that the band with this album moved more in that direction. That suits them well, as you just can’t help to bop along to the songs. ‘How I Know’ of the new album is another example of this. Again a song in which they play with the pace (up-and-down), some sparser moments, and then the chorus with Bundick’s vocals added to it. I really like his voice, and it really adds to the arrangements in my opinion. I think with the last album they took a step forward, and it rubs off on the live show, which was thoroughly enjoyable despite some cracks in the sound system.

Next up is Gold Panda. Now, to put this in some perspective and to give you some idea of where this interpretation of his music comes from; I’m more of a House guy. I do get the soundscapes and images experimental/ambient electronic music creates, I do get minimal, and I get a whole lot of other stuff in terms of electro music. But there is always some thing in my saying, Honey, if you have a beat, ride it. If you want the dancefloor to move (which I assume Gold Panda wants because it seems to me as a combination of experimental and up-tempo sounds), you want the kids out there to be able to pick up the beat and dance to that, and from that point to add and subtract for variety and momentum. That is what I am thinking.

Surely, that what is described above is not what Gold Panda is thinking at all. To my ears (and in that venue there were plenty who would disagree based on their reaction), what Gold Panda does is not creating an image or vibe or creating a moving dancefloor, but instead of creating he seems to be constantly disrupting. Whenever he gets a good beat going he always willingly destroys it. Either by speeding it up so much it becomes impossible to dance to, or sometimes just by suddenly putting in a one second delay which throws you right off the beat. In other songs he does some glitchy stuff and some crazy sequences which one can’t even start to dance on, let alone be thrown off from.

It is just that, you are dancing, having a good time, getting one with the beat, and then suddenly someone says, Dancing, well, that is not a very refined thing to do, we don’t dance here, and then just smashes whatever you are feeling completely. Now, obviously, some people were enjoying it (and in rebottle to this, feel free to explain what angle you looked at it and liked it), but maybe I’m a simplistic fucker who just wants to dance with all the cute kids there, and that wasn’t something that was going down. Also, in my opinion, if you do want to do ambient or whatever, there is a difference in creating intricate soundscapes and just have an outro of a minute plus consisting purely of noise. Whereas the rest I happily put down on personal taste, that I just can’t see anyone fancying to be honest.

dinsdag 17 mei 2011

Crazy Zany Radio Sunday - 'Baby Missiles' by The War on Drugs

Every week our contributors will voice their opinion concerning one song, it’s a simple as that! The more the merrier, so people are always welcome to join in, just leave a note, eh.

Track of the week: ‘Baby Missiles’ by The War on Drugs (listen here)
Average grade: 6.9

Linda: Everything goes into and out of fashion in cycles, and I guess at this moment in time it's rolled up sleeves and this song. It might be because I've been watching far too much Friend lately, but I actually like that song. Yes, I said it, I LIKE BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN. Or at least this one track of his. And I like this Bruce-reminiscent War on Drugs track as well.

Anna: This one sounds like a cross between Arcade Fire and Bruce Springsteen. I am not entirely sure if that is a good or a bad thing; all I can say is that it is not aurally offensive but I probably wouldn't listen to it again.

Stef: You know what, from all the levitating to electronic music that has been going on at my house, I really really like this song. It is catchy, it is well structured, I like the vocals, I like the guitar to the foreground at the half; and hey, call me crazy, but I rate this above all stuff I’ve been hearing from all (indie/folk/whatever) rock bands lately.

zondag 15 mei 2011

New EP DJ Shadow

Later this year DJ Shadow will release a full LP, but prior to that he is going to give a little preview of what we can expect. He does so in the form of a new EP, and this EP will be called I Gotta Rok. It will be released on the 1st of June. The album is in line for a few months later. The EP will consist of six tracks, including the title track and ‘I’ve Been Trying’. An ambiguous line, as is shown the following tale.

The ant was sad. The ant was sad because he had been trying to croak like a frog. “Have you actually tried,” said the frog? “Yes, I’ve tried,” said the ant, “but the only thing coming out of my mouth is mmmrrrriiii”. The frog looked ponderous. “But there is a difference, you know, between trying and not trying.” He croaked. First he croaked a simple tune. “You see, I don’t really even have to try for that”. He croaked a slightly more difficult tune. “That one already costs slightly more effort,” said the frog. The ant looked at him sadly. The frog bellowed out a cracking tune. He looked triumphantly. “Now,” the frog said”, for that I do really need to try.” “I do try,” said the ant. Mmmrrriii. “Hmm. I guess,” said the frog, “that perhaps I try harder than you. Then again, I’m a frog. I am supposed to croak. You are not a frog.” The ant melancholically nodded. “But can I be a frog?” “Perhaps. But you have to try. And skip. And swim. Croaking, really, is only the very first step to being a frog. And why, you can’t even croak! Can you hop?” The ant tried to hop. He would bend his six legs and then abruptly tried to come up. The frog shook his head. “It is,” he said with assured voice, “not easy to be a frog. I reckon it is much easier to be an ant”. “Why do you think that?” “Well,” said the frog, “even though you cannot be a frog, you can be an ant. So it must be easier. However, I am sure that if you really tried, you eventually will be able to become a frog. Or at least a very tiny one.” BANG, they suddenly heard, and the elephant that fell out of the tree slowly crawled on all fours again and slowly stroked the bump on his head.

Booker T album streaming on Spinner

On the Spinner website one can fully stream the new album by Booker T. Jones. Not only is Jones an iconic figure in the music scene (he made the classical piece ‘Green Unions’, the CD version of which is in my collection), but if he alone is not enough to make you have a listen then perhaps some of the guests on the album will be able to entice you. There is, for example, Matt Berninger, Sharon Jones, and Lou Reed. To listen, check this link:

One of the tracks on the album is called ‘Walking Papers’, a title taken from an episode in the history of Mail Service. During the infamous strike by the Postal Office in 1879 Richard Dimonov was asked to invent something that would make the postal service obsolete. Dimonov at that point was one of the most promising scientist in the field of animals and neurology, and thus he tried to work his expertise into this project. He at first tried to make an animal route, where animals would carry the letters to the right destination. Though in theory a good idea, unfortunately Dimonov (to no greater frustration than his own) found out that the animals could not be relied upon, and they were too easily sidetracked by bacon sandwiches and the promise of a bagel at a future time (Which, although promised, they some times did not get. This caused great unrest among especially the dogs, who themselves organized a strike which officially still hasn’t been resolved yet).

Well, Dimonov thought, if I can’t get animals to walk routes, then lets just invent something that would make paper walk. For, so he thought, paper has less of a will of their own, and surely would be more reliable if the orders were implemented correctly. So after three months he succeeded in making paper walk. However, the month this project was to start was November, and needless to say the paper often got wet and when eventually arriving at their destination often they had become unreadable. If only Mr. Potatohead would’ve been invented sooner, then those hands could’ve been attached to the paper and they would’ve been able to carry little umbrellas. As it was now though, the project became unworkable, and a deal with the Postal Service was made to resume their work. Finally now they could do their routes in shorts, a right they so valiantly had fought for.

woensdag 11 mei 2011

Pictureplane to come with new album this July

In July Pictureplane will release its new album. Travis Egedy, the man behind Pictureplane, will then unleash Thee Physical, as his new LP will be called. It will be released via Lovepump United, and the exact date is the 19th of July.

One of the tracks is called ‘Trancegender’, a term coined by scientist Lia Doroniev who eloquently stated that in Trance people are devoid of gender, as the music and the beat is made for a unification of the crowd and a loss of their individual self. Thus, there is no gender, there is only the Trancegender, in that everyone is the same, wears the same, acts the same. As opposed to House & Disco, which celebrates individuality and the flaunting of gender. So there is no one gender there, there are multiple forms of gender in that arena, flaunted by both boys and girls and everything in between.

Also a track on the album is called ‘Touching Transform’, which is taken from a previous article by Doroniev, who contended that in the Greek classic Metamorphosis the change from a man to a frog was a Touching Transform, as a frog is much more likely to elicit a response of, Aww, how cute, from the other party than a man. She states that, A frog is cute, it does that little thingy with his throat which is adorable, and you are more likely to kiss it as there is always hope that it will trigger another touching transformation, namely into  a Prince. With a man, that chance has hugely diminished ever since their superiority complex started when Eve took the apple, and you are far more likely to get stuck with a slimey, fat, burping, incommunicative toad. Usually, in libraries, one can find that article in the section Feminist Works in between Valeria Solanas and Ti-Grace Atkinson.

The War on Drugs to come with new album

On the 16th of August the American band The War on Drugs will release a new album. It will be called Slave Ambient, and it will be the follow-up to their 2008 release Wagonwheel Blues. It will be released by Secretly Canadian and it will consist of 12 tracks.

One of the tracks is called ‘Your Love is Calling My Name’, and this happened to Sarda DiMonteo. And Sarda found it a problem, first of all because he was there incognito, so that disguise went out of the window. Second of all he found it a bit awkward because, well, he wanted her to quiet down obviously. And he walks to Roberto, and he says, you know, Your Love is Calling My Name, can she stop that, it is embarrassing. But instead of understanding Roberto got jealous, and he first punched Sarda in the nose (and what a lovely nose that was, then he took his love by her hair and started to scold her in front of her children. Nothing like a little Italian love scene, eh?

maandag 9 mei 2011

IKRS on Twitter

Yeah, here we go, we are on Twitter! After valiantly thwarting all efforts to get us to be a modern website, here we are on! And it is primarily going to be used as just a thumbs up to great music especially, with a dash of other cultural outings thrown in there to make it all not too much of the same. Basically it will be a sort of on going tracks column with even less depth than the one we occasionally put out on this main site. Plus it will just be about what we are enjoying, as opposed to just new tracks. So be prepared for an occasional blast from the past!

So yeah, join us and lets talk about music and arts people! Because in the end, after all, all we ever ever really need, is Arts and Music. So why won’t you come along, and hopefully you’ll find something you like/liked/will like.

Incubate brings open sourcing to festival

The Incubate festival, a Dutch festival in Tilburg, is going to let the public speak. Literally. In what they call Open Source Programming the festival will allow the people to join the banquet with their own movies, radio shows, art works, and dance routines. In terms of the art, everyone can send in their own works of art, and that will be judged and then the people curating this part of the event will try and make a coherent exhibition out of it (and good luck with that).

You can also send in your own radio show as of a few days back. These shows will be played during the festival, and at the festival site there will be a spot with all kinds of equipment to host your own show. You can also go the director/actor route and send in your movie (with a running time of less than an hour).  At the festival site there will be a stage where one can strut their dance stuff. Not everything can/will be accepted in all events though, so be sure to read up on that.

I really like the idea of operating this kind of open source program alongside the professional event, and it kind of nudges everyone into the modern debate of how much the public has an effect on and can join in the Arts. Curious to see how it will pan out. The Incubate festival will run from the 11th until the 18th of September, and for more information you can go to their official website

Crazy Zany Radio Sunday - 'Victory Dance' by My Morning Jacket

Every week our contributors will voice their opinion concerning one song, it’s a simple as that! The more the merrier, so people are always welcome to join in, just leave a note, eh.

Track: ‘Victory Dance’ by My Morning Jacket (listen here)
Average grade: 5

Anna: Never been a MMJ fan, too classic rock like for my tastes and this is a slow burning number of their usual style with a bit of a 2011 sound to it. Doesn't really do anything to rock my boat.
Grade: 4

Craig: I can see why my hippie friends love this band. It's super Pink Floyd-y, with that doom-trip, something's-gonna-happen feeling. The only problem I have is that the song doesn't really go anywhere but a totally predictable freak-out jam that ends far too soon. This would be a good first track to an epic 70's rock album.

Linda: (no comment due to the sad circumstances in the Giro today)

Stef: I actually thought it was an okay track at first. Shows me what listening more than one time does to ones opinion. It is kind of a, well, it goes a bit too slow, and I’m not overly impressed by the jam out which sounded more like a jam out for good old jam out’s sake than actually telling a story or evoking an emotion they wanted to get across.

zondag 8 mei 2011

Com Truise to come with new album

Com Truise (really, that name…) is going to release his debut album later this year. This will happen somewhere in the month of July, and it will be released by the Ghostly International label. The album will be called Galactic Melt and will count 10 tracks, one of which will be called Brokendate.

A broken date can indeed by a hindrance. Prior to the current calendar system, the occurrence of broken dates was as frequent as it was annoying, not in the least for Peter Mortowitz. Whenever a date was broken, it would be skipped, so from the 3rd of March you would go to the 5th of March. This seemed to happen to no one more than to Mortowitz, as he tells in his books Random Events and the Life I Missed Out On, from which the following is an excerpt.

I had multiple job interviews being blown by “broken dates”, including one for the Ford company when the car industry was still viral. Not to mention a promotion to head clerk, which would not only have landed me a proper salary, but also an oak desk and a room with a view. Sure, the view was the back of a beaten down tenement building in the Bronx, but that is nothing to sneeze at if your office is localized in Hoboken. Furthermore the office had a window that was of glass as opposed to my previous office, which had one of paint with Elizabeth Taylor always peeking in. I also missed out on the big sell-out sale of my favourite shop, a concert by Frankie Valli, and a date with Lana Liebowitz, my high school sweetheart who I had yearned for many a night. Now, I wouldn’t have minded it all so much, except that never once, never once!, it skipped over my birthday except for the one time it collided with my much loved Reds playing the A’s in the finals, resulting in a shortened series that went to the A’s as decided by a ranking per alphabet.

James Ferraro preps new album

James Ferraro, who seems to be always releasing something or another, is coming with yet another album. The album will be called Far Side Virtual, and it will see the light of day probably somewhere this summer. It will be released by Hippos in Tanks. Ferraro will also be re-issuing his album On-Air, and he will do so somewhere in the month of June.

Now, the so frequent releasing of albums/projects/whatever luckily isn’t anything commercial. No sir, the proceeds of the album will go to a charity mainly aimed to raise money for Ferraro’s facial reconstructive plastic surgery. His face will be fashioned after CCTV’s satellite queen, Princess Diana. Ferraro, besides stating the former, also wants to add the iconic slogan, Always Coca-Cola, to that, which is related to his previous statement in many ways if only one thinks about it for a minute. So there you go.

donderdag 5 mei 2011

Zomby's debut to be released in July

Zomby is readying his debut album called Dedication, which will be released by 4AD on the 12th of July. This Monday he will release the first single for the album, called ‘Natalia’s Song’. Also floating through the blogosphere is the song ‘Things Fall Apart’, on which Panda Bear (of Animal Collective fame) can be heard on vocals.

And it is true, things do fall apart. Which was an annoyance to  Richard B. Offenbach as he was as brilliant as he was clumsy. He was a professor and an inventor and a three time divorcee (two of his wives left him because he weekly dropped their newly purchased china, and one he divorced because after he had dropped her china she would always buy the most expensive set around, and Offenbach thought she got a little too much enjoyment out of that). At one point he had had enough, and he started a quest to invent something that would cease stuff to break. It became his Holy Grail, so much so that when he found the actual Holy Grail he failed to recognize it, glazed it with honey, and made a sweet potato compote.

New names Festival De Affaire

For me there is nothing like a good De Affaire festival. It is held in walking distance of where I live, and if the weather is nice like last year then there’s not much that can beat seven days of sitting in the park with some nice and fun people waiting for the next proper band to take the stage. Now, this year who knows what the weather will bring, but at least the line-up is already coming along nicely. The first names were announced a whole while back, and now 25 (yikes!) new ones are added.

The ones really jumping out at me are Architecture in Helsinki, Dirty Beaches (we featured him in one of our Crazy Zany columns, not to mention contributor Craig has interviewed him as well!), and Washed Out. Not that the rest of the names are too shabby. To the line-up they’ve added Alexis Taylor’s side project About Group, Cloud Control (who once were the support act for MGMT, a band we interviewed what seems like AGES ago. And, in actual fact, it was.), high energy Scots Dananananakroyd, James Vincent McMorrow, Kap Bambino (take cover for that one if you don’t want to be in the middle of a raid), Mount Kimbie, Pete and the Pirates, The Phoenix Foundation, SBTRKT, Bibio, Black Breath, Crocodiles, DD/MM/YYYY, Hauschka, John Holt & Frankie ‘Dancehall’ Paul, and Mama Rosin. Also some “local” Dutch artists have been added , with perhaps “headlining” that bunch 2562, but also with Aux Raus, Black Bottle Riot, Palmbomen, en Pien Feith.

woensdag 4 mei 2011

Sufjan Stevens contributes music to inspiring documentary

Sufjan Stevens does not only not want to keep his influences secret, he wants to lend them a helping hand as well. The artist has made music for the documentary MAKE, which was one of the main influences for his Age of Adz album that was released last year. It is a documentary made by Scott Ogden and Malcolm Hearn and it is about four outsider artists. The DVD of this (with the music we assume) will be released on the 21st of June on Stevens’ Asthmatic Kitty label.

The Age of Adz is, in actual fact, a sort of dystopic future in which everything (and by that I mean EVERYTHING) is a sort of advertisement. Where everything is advertising something, one way or another. Whether it is a film, a product, or a certain religion: everything is presented in such a way as to make you think, Wow, that is great, I should do that/get that/be like that. What we are doing is really great, or What they are doing is really great, I have to be a part of that. Luckily in these times everything is presented in a much more objective fashion, thank God for that! For what would we be without him? You see what would happen if we didn’t have him, an Age of Adz, the horror! But thanks to this divine divinity we can be assured that none such manipulation will ever happen (though, on the one positive note, an Age of Adz would make everything a bit more glossier, and who wouldn’t want that?).

David Bowie retrospective in museum in NY

From next week until mid-July the Museum of Arts & Design in New York will exhibit a show about David Bowie. Under the name David Bowie, Artist, the show will have some multimedia areas where one can view and marvel at Bowie’s oeuvre. The Museum will also host a cinema program where one can view on the silver screen several of Bowie’s screen appearances.

One of Bowie’s guises during his career was The Thin White Duke. What a lot of people don’t know is that there once actually was a man called The Thin White Duke. In the history books we find the following report of an old duel in ancient Russia:

Heroically the commander Martinov looked up only to see his arch enemy: Ilya Vassilovksi, aka The Thin White Duke. Snorting like a bull Vassilovski came barging at Martinov, and before he even noticed what he was doing Martinov drew a large cantaloupe and swung it at the raging Vassilovksi. Vassilovski ate it, meanwhile seasoning it with a bit of honey-mustard dressing. Now, eye-to-eye with a man with a wild beard now including cantaloupe pieces Martinov did the only thing that one could do in such a situation. Thus Martinov resorted to the old European white man trick of holding up a mirror to confuse his opponent. After Vassilovski ate that as well Martinov decided to curl up and try to convince Vassilovski that he was more fat than meat and surely that couldn’t be good for his cholesterol. He repeated this so many times and he did this while talking so quickly that he forgot to breathe and passed out. Martinov was very happy when he finally woke up and found himself in a hospital instead of Vassilovski’s tummy. Even these days Martinov still tells the tale of how he escaped the Thin White Duke at parties and other festivities, albeit in a slightly different version involving scratching and hair pulling.

dinsdag 3 mei 2011

Crazy Zany Radio Sunday - 'Dinner' by Blood Orange

Every week our contributors will voice their opinion concerning one song, it’s a simple as that! The more the merrier, so people are always welcome to join in, just leave a note, eh.

Track of the week: ‘Dinner’ by Blood Orange (listen here)
Average grade: 4.7

Anna: I really don't have much to say about this one, except that it sounds like a Depeche Mode D-side. There are many new artists out there making inspired and inspiring music (see Anna Calvi), so it really is a pity to waste electricity on such mundane musings.
Grade: 2

Ilse: This is the most eighties-reminiscent song I've heard in quite a while. It's not the amazing kind of eighties song though, more the bad kind: a bit like a cheesy eighties pop song. Yet, I have to admit, those can sometimes have there charm too.... Also, still can't quite believe this is Dev Hynes of Lightspeed Champion and Test Icicles, what a difference!

Linda: I don't like blood oranges, and certainly not for dinner. Foodstuffs that are indecisive as to whether they are a fruit or a meat are definitely not up my alley. The only nutritional controversy I'm interested in is whether Jaffa cakes are cakes or biscuits (google it, you know you want to - there is a rather splendid Guardian CiF article on the subject).

Craig: This is some intriguing dance music. One part Michael Jackson, another part minimal electro. I love the sparse guitar parts and the sassy, echoing voice. How does one dance to this? I'm looking forward to finding out...

Stef: I actually thought this was a nice enough, funky little thing. For what it is it does feel a bit overlong though, but I like the vocals over the deeper sound of the beat/bass/whatever.

zondag 1 mei 2011

New Horse Meat Disco Compilation

The lads from Horse Meat Disco have collected enough discolicious tracks for yet another compilation album. It is their third one, and it features tracks by Sylvester, Suzy Q, Tom Trago, and many more. It features 28 tracks, and it will be released this July.

One of the tracks on the compilation is called ‘Sweet Dynamite’. Butch Cassidy was one of the biggest and baddest men of the wild wild West and is well-known for all the robberies, all the killings, all the escapes, and for being played by Paul Newman who made him amiable instead of the bastard he was. Or was he? Recent findings have suggested that frequently omitted from his legacy is his invention of what has since been termed Sweet Dynamite. In order not to kill people when blowing up safes (though the erudite professor D.H. Von Sweeten has recently argued that it mostly was to protect himself, not the “victims”), he invented dynamite which would only blow up material, as opposed to people. Which was safer, and quicker because he could stay close to the safe without being hit. This was the idea, however, in the experimental phase he soon found out that it wasn’t working when he had a fourteen year old boy stand next to it. The boy walked up there, the dynamite ignited, and the young lad was consequently blown to smithereens (this, in fact, was Von Sweeten’s main argument for his statement that Cassidy was, in fact, a bastard. However, others have suggested that he wanted to give the boy the thrill of a lifetime, comparing it to a rollercoaster ride these days. When Von Sweeten argued that he died the others waved it away pointing out ever so profusely that it doesn’t change anything about his intent).

diskJokke to release album this June

The cosmic disco/house artist diskJokke is gearing up the release of his new album Sagara. This album is a sort of concept album. It was recorded in Indonesia on the island of Java. There he worked with local musicians and he recorded sounds from the area, and the combination of that has resulted in this new album. It will be released next month.

One of the tracks is called ‘Sengon’, which means horse radish in an ancient Asian language. This proved to be a prominent word in the language of one of the local tribes who, at one point, converted to a horse radish only diet which would, so they thought, give them spunk, stamina, and more health. They died after four months, but not before they compulsively and collectively would imitate the Library of Alexandria. Because of the greatness imitation they did read in one of the books the ancient secret to Aztec Mysticism. Unfortunately they died soon after and the secret was lost forever until Errol Flynn chanced upon it, put his sable in it, and used it as a horse d’oeuvre.