Archive for the ‘Caspian’ Category

Noiseweek: Black Sabbath, Jessica Hopper, The Warriors, Caspian, METZ & Windhand

Sunday, September 13th, 2015

The sights, sounds and words of the week in noise.


Guitar hero Tony Iommi — Why Black Sabbath tour will have to be our last | Birmingham Mail

““We’ve been doing this for getting on for 50 years now,” says the guitarist whose innovative technique has influenced countless others. “It’s about time we draw the line, don’t you think? It’s been great but it’s time to stop now. Don’t get me wrong, I still love gigging. It’s all the travelling and the exhaustion that goes with it that’s the problem. That side of things has a big impact on me. Yes, we may fly in luxury, stay in the very best hotels, ride in the most comfortable limos but there’s still a physical cost to touring. Even when we build in rest breaks – I have to have blood tests every six weeks – I find it tough going. You take a long haul flight, arrive somewhere at five in the morning and book into a hotel. There’s the soundcheck, the promotional work, the gig itself, then you’re back at the hotel to collapse into bed. Then next day you get to do it all over again. I love being up there onstage, playing with Sabbath. What I don’t love is all the other stuff necessary to enable that to happen. None of us are getting any younger, you know.””

Meet the Man Behind the Distinctive Soundtrack of The Warriors | The Village Voice

“Barry De Vorzon has always enjoyed creating music; he certainly never expected to be revered for it. It was quite the shock, then, when the musician, composer, and songwriter found himself being fawned over like some kind of rock god at the music conferences he’s attended for the past three decades. “My gosh, I was treated like a hero!” De Vorzon, 81, recalls of his fellow musicians’ praise for his soundtrack work on the gritty 1979 film The Warriors. Adding to his surprise was the fact that the film was in many ways a critical and commercial flop upon its release. “I said, ‘Wow! How did that happen?’ ” De Vorzon recalls with a chuckle. “But it did! The film just became this cult classic.””

How Japan’s New Nightclub Laws Threaten to Decimate Their Club Culture | Pitchfork

“Japan’s fueih? (or “entertainment business control law”) code governs everything from dancing, to drinking, to sex work, to nightclubs. Since its inception in 1948, the set of laws has technically forbade the existence of nightclubs under 66 square meters in size to allow dancing or for any sized club to allow dancing after midnight or 1 a.m. (depending on the area). For decades, officials turned a blind eye to the code, but in the last five years, police began enforcing the laws, leading to the closure of many dance halls and clubs. That, coupled with factors like the aging of Japan, threatened to decimate the country’s clubbing culture. Fearing extinction, several promoters and club owners in the scene organized—through a coalition called Let’s Dance—to use the 2020 Olympics as leverage and put political pressure on the government to update the laws. After several failed attempts, they finally forced the government to rewrite some of the code earlier this summer. This revision loosened some of the dancing restrictions and now allows for certain clubs to be open past midnight or 1 a.m. (provided certain stipulations, like having the requisite amount of light in the venue, are met).”


Caspian — Arcs of Command

Caspian are never going to be one of those bands to break the post-rock mould, and that’s perfectly fine: they don’t really need to when they’ve developed a knack for wielding its tropes in the best possible way. Arcs of Command from the forthcoming Dust & Disquiet doesn’t get going until about halfway into its 8-minute runtime, but that build-up fields necessary as waves upon waves of riffs alternate between crushing and uplifting. At the end, the noise gives way to that crushing crescendo that Caspian do better than just about anyone else. Dust & Disquiet is out in Australia through Hobbledehoy Records on September 25.

Windhand — Grief’s Internal Flower

Windhand give a masterclass in rhythm on their third record. Grief’s Internal Flower isn’t your typical doom record — for one, it boasts Dorthia Cottrell ethereal vocals, offering a ghostly presence amongst the plodding riffs that drive songs like Hyperion and Two Urns. But there are fascinating interludes folk interludes here that recall Mark Lanegan’s post-Screaming Trees reinvention. Doom metal’s a genre prone to homogeny, but Windhand prove there’s still plenty more aesthetic territory to mine with gloomy and gargantuan instrumentation. Grief’s Internal Flower is out September 18 through Relapse.


METZ — Live on KEXP

No other organisation has crammed as many amazing, loud and vital bands into a tiny space as Seattle radio station KEXP. A Place to Bury Strangers, Built to Spill, Swervedriver, Nothing and Speedy Ortiz just scratch the surface of the station’s long list of alumnae. Here, Canadian noisefuckers treat listeners to a four-song set featuring Wait in Line, The Swimmer, Spit You Out and Acetate. How did a group of nice Canadian boys come to sound so mean?

Jessica Hopper’s Keynote at BIGSOUND

Don’t let the hour-long length discourage you; Jessica Hopper’s keynote this past weekend in Brisbane for BIGSOUND is vital viewing for everyone involved in music. Whether you’re working in the industry, playing in a band or going to shows, you need to watch this. Hopper — who’s been working in music for almost two decades, is currently a Senior Editor at Pitchfork and recently published The First Collection of Criticism by a Living Female Rock Critic — addresses the systemic misogyny she and countless other women encountered in her 20 years in music. She details her conversations on Twitter — which she projects behind her during her speech — with women around the world who’ve shared the same experiences — sound guys fucking with female musician’s sound because of rejected sexual advances, women having their interest or involvement in music constantly called into question by men, as well as countless instances of death threats, condescension and sexual harassment. Hopper’s message clear: these issues are not isolated to one sector of the industry or one country: they run deep in every aspect of the music business, and that it’s on men in music to address them. That means listening to women’s experiences of misogyny rather than doubting them them or justify the abhorrent behaviour of perpetrators, calling other man out on their bullshit, and understand your role to make sure you’re not a part of the problem. I can’t emphasize enough: this is required viewing.

Noiseweek: Dumbsaint, Caspian, Hope Drone and Marky Ramone

Friday, July 3rd, 2015

The sights, sounds and words of the week in noise.


X-Press and The Music Perth have merged. The July 1 issue from this last Wednesday was the last print edition of The Music’s Perth arm, and will now be fully digital going forward while becoming X-Press’ print portal. X-Press will continue to be published fortnightly. The Music Perth’s editor Dan Cribb penned a farewell to the publication speaking with past editors and eulogizing its nine-year run which you can read here.


Headline acts are getting old. Or at least so says the data assembled by The Economist amidst the deluge of Glastonbury talk over the last week. The average age of a festival headliner (using the age of the solo artist or the lead of a band) was just over 30 in 1996; now, it’s over 40. Glastonbury’s three headliners ran the spectrum of generations; Florence Welch is only 28, Kanye West is 38 and Roger Daltery of The Who is 71. It comes as no surprise seeing as fewer artists capture the zeitgeist in their salad days, and the demand for headliners to top the bills of the absurd number of festivals, combined with dwindling royalty figures and the lucrative allure of the touring market has brought about the reunion culture of legacy acts that dominates today.


Speaking of reunion culture, English comedian / writer Stewart Lee has been announced to curate next year’s ATP 2.0 Festival in North Wales next April. The event will follow ATP Festival’s return to the UK — and the first under this nebulous 2.0 banner — Nightmare Before Christmas, which takes place at the end of November. Though given that line-up is largely free of the usual reunion types — Courtney Barnett, Built to Spill, The Album Leaf and Lightning Bolt are all towards the top — perhaps ATP’s all about the salad days.


Where Have All the Music Message Boards Gone? | Noisey

“Mess+Noise, “A Local Music Magazine dedicated to showing Australian music in a different and evocative light,” hasn’t updated for a month, but its messageboard, nicknamed the Shame Cauldron for its boarders’ uncompromising attitudes, is still simmering. It’s the most visible example in Australia of the decline of music messageboards. Anybody could tell you why they’re dying — the people entering the music industry now came up on Tumblr and Twitter, reblogging and retweeting each other endlessly with additions to the discourse, or on Facebook with private groups sharing bangers and turning over festival lineups, or on subreddits like /r/music, listentothis, hiphopheads etc., upvoting quips about Kanye West – but why does it matter?”

I Went to Jame’s Murphy’s New Wine Bar and All I Got Was More Confused About the State of the Music Industry | Pitchfork

“Is it fair to poke fun at Murphy for cashing in on his cred? As an indie-label impresario, you never go Full Brand, right? Or do we just accept that this is the music industry and culture we live in now? “This is an industry that makes zero sense. It made zero sense ten years ago and somehow we’re [DFA Records] still chugging along, doing the weird thing that we do,” Murphy said in a 2013 interview with Billboard. “As long as we just hang out and don’t do terrible things that seem gross I’m happy.””

How Video Games Changed Popular Music | The New Yorker

“It’s hard to listen to some of these decades-old sounds and not feel a sense of giddy nostalgia. This fall, Data Discs will reissue the soundtrack for 1992’s beat-’em-up classic Streets of Rage 2 as a deluxe vinyl edition. It’s a spellbinding document of its time, full of the composer Yuzo Koshiro’s chirpy interpretations of the era’s bleeding-edge sounds: scaled-down club tracks, a nod to Public Enemy’s “Rebel Without a Pause,” an almost note-perfect interpolation of Inner City’s “Good Life.” It’s the sound of a familiar, age-old musical story: cherished genres translated into new idioms, young visionaries butting up against someone else’s constraints. It was the first time some heard techno, and it was the music they had been waiting for all along.”

The Last Ramone: Marky Carries the Punk Rock Banner | Observer

“All four original Ramones are dead. But the drummer for most of their records, Marky Ramone, who replaced Tommy from 1978–1983, was booted for alcohol abuse and band dysfunction for a few years and then rejoined in 1987 and remained until the end, including induction into the Rock n Roll Hall of Fame. Marc Bell was also a founding member of Dust, played with Wayne County and was an original Voidoid while Richard Hell invented the punk rock look. Born in Brooklyn, lord of the East Village, King of New York. We ate at DBGB’s.”


Caspian — Sad Heart of Mine

Caspian have always played the kind of post-rock that requires patience. Yes, there are build-ups and crescendoes and tremolo picking and pretty pianos, but where your standard fare Mogwai emulator would throw those elements around willy nilly, Caspian experts at moderation. When those tools are wielded well as on Sad Heart of Mine, the result is an exalting moment of serenity. This is the way great music is supposed to feel.

Hope Drone — The Chords That Thrum Beneath The Earth

The latest cut from Cloak of Ash certainly doesn’t feel ten minutes long, which is a credit to the maturation of Hope Drone’s songwriting between their last record and their upcoming Relapse debut. The opening three minutes of brooding guitars make for some of the most ominous music released this year, and the explosion of blackened fury that follows is so compelling and nuanced it both embody and transcend that genre’s tropes. I’ve got a feeling Cloak of Ash is going to be one of the best albums of the year.


Dumbsaint — Cold Call

DUMBSAINT — Cold Call — 2015 Short Film from Dumbsaint — Music & Film on Vimeo.

In a culture where effort is uncool, Dumbsaint’s ambition is admirable. Cold Call is the first track from from the Sydney outfit’s forthcoming long-player, Panorama, in ten pieces, and with the song’s debut comes an accompanying short film, a small portion of the 60 minute film that will accompany the full record. It’s beautifully shot, albeit a little student-feeling, and the song itself is a nervous and frenetic whirlwind of clashing guitars. Remarkably, the effort was self-funded; it’s reassuring to know that in a culture as small, insular and unprofitable as Australia, there are artists like Dumbsaint dreaming big ideas and following through. Panorama, in ten pieces. out August 7 and available for pre-order now through Bandcamp.