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Brian Reitzell – Auto Music

June 13th, 2014
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Air Conditioning

Although they may often fly under the radar, musicians such as Brian Reitzell symbolize the sense of transformation and adventure that is inherent in good music-making; even when the music is not a revelation. Having started his musical life bashing the drums for punk pioneers Redd Kross, his journeys have brought him many different places geographically and sonically, including soundtrack work for Lost in Translation and Hannibal. Auto Music is a document representative of these travels, and though nothing here will get you jumping out of your chair, it has a subtle affecting quality that confirms the obvious care behind these compositions. Read more…

By Patrick W. DeLaney Posted in Reviews

Ambarchi, O’Malley, Dunn – Shade Themes From Kairos

May 27th, 2014
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Different Shades of Drone

As you might expect from a project that offers song titles such as, “Temporal, Eponymous” and “Circumstances of Faith,” as well as being the soundtrack from the mind bending film Kairos, this production by a triad of musical forces (Oren Ambarchi, Stephen O’Malley and Randall Dunn) offers some hypnotically powerful tracks of focused drumming and drone guitar. Read more…

By Patrick W. DeLaney Posted in Reviews , , ,

Mick Harvey – Intoxicated Man / Pink Elephants

May 10th, 2014
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A Submerged Seed

A reissue of a duo of tribute albums (1995’s Intoxicated Man and 1997’s Pink Elephants), this collection is absolutely bursting at the seams. If one wasn’t privy to the albums when they were originally released, and is only coming to them now with this reissue, be prepared. There’s a lot to listen to hear, and not merely in terms of quantity. Clearly, lots of care went into these versions of classic Serge suave. This wasn’t a project where a casual fan decided to do a few workouts of some unknown gems– this was clearly a labor of love.  Mick Harvey, whose off and on working relationship with the one and only Nick Cave has prompted almost as much memorable music for himself as for the latter, produces versions of these classic songs that are not only created with care, but also with the kitschy swagger of the originals. Read more…

By Patrick W. DeLaney Posted in Reviews ,

The Ghost Of A Saber Tooth Tiger (The GOASTT) – Midnight Sun

April 30th, 2014
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Son Continues to Rise

Though it’s impossible to omit a mention to his legendary father, Sean Lennon has certainly carved out a musical identity all his own over the years. Still, one cannot escape the influence of genetics, as even on a track like “Last Call” a beautiful psychedelic mini-suite that maybe seems a little more Paul than John. Sean’s voice just sounds so much like his father’s that you often get a chill. That said, the arrangements, production and everything else swirling around in the mix here do much to keep that chill there. A good chunk of this “everything else” is, of course, the partner ingredient to the  GOASTT proceedings, Charlotte Kemp Muhl, whose contributions to the album give a modern beauty to the vintage psychedelic landscapes. Read more…

By Patrick W. DeLaney Posted in High Fidelity, Reviews , ,

Man Forever with So Percussion – Ryonen

April 21st, 2014
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The Zen of Percussion

Sometimes, music really does speak for itself and leaves little else for discussion. This presents an issue– not a problem per se– when it comes to writing about the album, but one must give it a shot anyway, yes? So to begin, let’s put all the elements in the forefront. Ryonen is a collaborative effort between two highly respected entities: Man Forever, a New York based project that is spearheaded by percussionist John Colpitts (who also goes by the name Kid Millions) and So Percussion, an ensemble unit of percussionists out of Brooklyn. Ryonen is a work comprised of two pieces, “The Clear Realization” and the title track. Read more…

By Patrick W. DeLaney Posted in Reviews ,

Trophy Scars – Holy Vacants

April 14th, 2014
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Ambition Coming Up Roses

Five piece rock group Trophy Scars are a band of the people. After their former label went belly up, these Jersey boys took a more independent approach and have enjoyed a decent reception, critical and otherwise. Holy Vacants is their fourth LP and has the sound of heart-on-sleeve rock n’ rollers yowling out their dreams. And though they are at their core a blues-based act, they are not beyond kicking into heavier terrain– or softer, for that matter. However, there is an interesting tension at play throughout the album that seems to be organic to the compositions which compels more than it really has any right to. Read more…

By Patrick W. DeLaney Posted in Reviews ,

Mica Levi- Under the Skin (Official Soundtrack)

April 6th, 2014
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Shape and Tension

As architect of the fabulous Micachu and the Shapes, Mica Levi has made a quite a name for herself in the musical sphere, especially after 2012’s fantastic LP, Never. Levi’s style is unconventional, but addicting, and she is never shy about being challenging. So, it should make sense that she should pose a challenge for herself. Hence this project, the film score for the provocative Scarlett Johannsen vehicle, Under the Skin. Read more…

By Patrick W. DeLaney Posted in Reviews

Liars – Mess

March 26th, 2014
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Mess à la Mode

With several kinetic and kooky efforts under their belt, it seems as though Liars have become the most Liars they have ever been. And though that might seem like a standard and generic statement in most cases, it is prudent here when taken in context of their previous album, WIXIW, of which the newest record, Mess seems to be an elaborated extension. Though the compositions here are fairly tight and structured, the electronic buzz and fuzz feels a little messy, but in a Pollock-type way. In this way, Liars are clearly just being who they have always been at heart. “Facts are Facts, Fictions Fiction” goes one particularly catchy refrain from the bouncy, “Mess on Mission,” and that’s the essence of the music here. Things are often frantic as the vocals slur like melting caramel and scuzzy keyboards bleep and bloop in all interesting manners. Read more…

By Patrick W. DeLaney Posted in Reviews ,

Picastro – You

March 20th, 2014
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New Strains of Sorrow

Though it is not even the middle of the year, one could guess that you would be hard pressed to find a more bleak sounding album that Toronto-based Picastro’s fifth long player, You. That is not a criticism of any sort, but a seemingly ever present symptom of the music here. True, though one has come to associate the band’s name with this kind of mood, one must be perpetually befuddled when a new strain of it appears. Read more…

By Patrick W. DeLaney Posted in Reviews ,

The Unsemble – The Unsemble

March 7th, 2014
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Better Sums than Sketches

Often times, things are really just a sum of their parts. You look at the label on this record and see the name Ipecac Recordings. Ipecac– alright, it’s Mike Patton owned– interesting. Then you discover that the trio of musicians here, Alexander Hacke (Einstürzende Neubauten), Duane Denison (The Jesus Lizard) and Brian Kotzur (The Silver Jews) all come from musical universes unto themselves, with a diverse pedigree for sound, mood and chaos. You probably would be unable to “guess” what the album sounds like right off the bat, but to put it simply, The Unsemble is an intriguing proposition. Read more…

By Patrick W. DeLaney Posted in Reviews , , ,