Archive for the ‘Melvins’ Category

Noiseweek: Tours and Reunions, Le Guess Who?, Miles Brown, Iommi and More

Friday, December 4th, 2015

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


It’s one of those so-crazy-it-has-to-work ideas: British grind legends Napalm Death, Washington sludge pioneers The Melvins and Japanese noise weirdos Melt-Banana teaming up for a six-week, 35-date North America tour, fittingly named the Savage Imperial Death March. The latest iteration of The Melvins will feature Steven McDonald (Redd Kross, OFF!) on bass, with a planned 10? War Pussy in the works ahead of the tour. King Buzzo and Napalm Death’s Shane Embury and Danny Herrera have previously collaborated as Venomous Concept – who’ve just released a new single from forthcoming LP Kick Me Silly; VC3, though without Buzz in the band this time around. Got all that? Good.


With the trademark dysfunction for which they were often known, Texas post-hardcore giants At The Drive In are reportedly reforming for Rock On The Range festival in Columbus, Ohio in May 2016, though original member Jim Ward claims the line-up announcement is the first he’s heard of it. He ran a similar line prior to ATDI’s previous reunion for Coachella in 2012, so there’s hope yet.


A cavalcade of punk icons have pledged support of US presidential candidate Bernie Sanders, with Jello Biafra, Wayne Kramer and Mike Watt all endorsing the the self-proclaimed socialist candidate. A lengthy list of ‘artists and cultural leaders’ have come out in support of the plain-speaking Vermont senator, whose policy platform includes an end to the federal prohibition of marijuana, fairer income distribution and a less-trigger happy US foreign policy agenda. With policies like that, it’s clear the Democrats and US media will never let him get elected, but it’s a nice idea.


Finally, Radio Adelaide – Australia’s oldest community radio station – is seeking support in the form of a petition, after news that licensee the University of Adelaide is considering selling or closing the station. The decision comes after the university sold the CBD property that houses Radio Adelaide’s studios. Show your support by heading to #SaveRadAd


Le Guess Who? Proves That Experimental Music Doesn’t Have To Be Lofty And Joyless | Fact Mag

“The most refreshing thing about Le Guess Who? is how it gives a platform to more experimental strains of music without any of the associated loftiness. Faust were first to marry a challenging approach with humour. Sure, their sound was a heavy, delirious mix of magnificent acoustics punctured by industrial crashes, gas canisters and hurdy-gurdies, but Jean-Hervé Peron was yelling, “Pinochet! Stalin! Kartoffelsalat!” and three women were seated front-and-centre stage, nonchalantly knitting for the entire set.”

The Essence And The Purity: Rob Halford Of Judas Priest’s Favourite LPs | The Quietus

“For over 40 years, Rob Halford has been one of the most singular figures to emerge from the metal scene, and while some of his contemporaries have struggled to age gracefully, Halford is still out-performing many singers a quarter of his age, and his recorded output is as vital now as it has ever been.”

The Sober Proprietor Of A Bar On Avenue B | New York Times
“He started out as a roadie, which eventually turned into a job singing for the Dictators, in 1975. After the band disbanded in the early ’80s, Mr. Manitoba was part of various groups that included various iterations of The Dictators. In the early ’90s, he found himself driving a cab, addicted to heroin. He attended meetings, got clean and ripped up the hack license.”


Miles Brown – ‘Space Cadet’

The first taste of The Night Terrors’ theremin genius Brown’s forthcoming solo debut LP Séance Fiction blends Carpenter-esque gloom with 80s synth-pop sensibilities.

The Rival Mob – ‘Speak With Power’

Boston’s The Rival Mob carrying the mantle of classic Clevo/NYHC on this tape release being put out by Adelaide’s Nopatience Records.


Tommy Iommi talks about his origins as a guitarist and what keeps him on stage after taking out the Q/Gibson Les Paul Guitar Award back a little while ago.

Peaches – ‘Rub’

Probably the most NSFW video since Rammstein’s ‘Pussy’. Enter at your own risk.

Peaches — Rub (Uncensored) from Peaches on Vimeo.

Noiseweek: Melvins documentary, Michael Gira on electronic music, Peter Bibby, Fait and more

Friday, March 13th, 2015

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


By now you’ve probably seen the trailer for the forthcoming HBO-produced Kurt Cobain documentary, but there’s another piece of film in the works on another tremendously influential Washington act and one of Nirvana’s greatest influences: The Melvins. The Colossus of Destiny is about halfway towards its $75,000 crowdfunding target on Kickstarter, and surely I’m not the only one who finds it absurd that the three-decade story of this band has yet to be given the feature treatment. Throw a penny or two its way over the next month and help tell a tell that absolutely deserves to be told.


We were bummed to learn earlier this month that blackened-doom Chicagoans Indian had called it quits, but it’s not all gloom as the currently-on-hiatus fellow Chicagoans Lord Mantis are resurrecting with two members of Indian, rounding out a previously liquid lineup and giving the now-quintet some forward momentum.


Swans’ Michael Gira Sounds Off | Electronic Beats

“We’re one of the best rock bands ever. I know that. I just know it. Swans have congealed and are one of the most volcanic, eruptive, virile rock outfits ever. I think one of the things that makes what we do so powerful is that it’s generous.”

33 Musicians Discuss Their Favourite Radiohead Songs | Stereogum

Mark Smith of Explosions of the Sky/Inventions:
“I always revisit Kid A and try to recapture the feelings I had when I first listened to it. It’s not possible — now I just hear the combination of experimentation and songwriting and depth that is somehow beautiful and scary and human and alien and illusory and random and planned all at once. But back then, my first listen was just confusing, my second was confounding, my third was love, and my fourth was infatuation. “Idioteque” in particular — the lyrics about scaremongering and “This is really happening” — seems like it’s pleading with us. I couldn’t get enough of it, and it hasn’t lost any of that effect for me. I love watching their old live performances of it, this insane urgent trance with Thom dancing and Jonny seemingly plugging and unplugging cables into a telephone exchange (or so I thought back then). It’s still my favorite thing Radiohead have ever done, but insanely, I still think they’re growing and evolving so I won’t be surprised if that changes.”

Brian Cook of Russian Circles Interviewed | Ponto Alternativo

“I find the more polished realms of rock music to be really fucking boring. The more you autotune, beat map, and edit music, the more it winds up like electronic music. It winds up being music made on a grid. No offense to electronic music meant there, it just seems to defeat the purpose of being a living, breathing rock band. I’ve brought this up in the past a bunch, but I’ll repeat it here: when These Arms Are Snakes recorded with Jack Endino, the guy who recorded all the early grunge classics, he had a very casual attitude towards our takes. The record we did with him (our split with Harkonen) was the loosest recording we did in our career. Jack’s theory was that the tiny inconsistencies in tempo and pitch were what made all the classic rock records so enduring. The brain recognizes the flaws on a subconscious level, and those imperfections keep the brain interested in the song way longer than if it had been polished and quantized to perfection. We want things to be tight. We don’t like obvious fuck-ups to slide by in our music, but if you listen closely to our records there are weird little mistakes and flubs all over the place. We had a particularly hard time finding the balance between making things sound raw and live in a good way versus a bad way when we were making “Empros”, but hopefully we’ve found a good middle ground now.”

“What are we to the Stars?”: Neurosis’ Steve Von Till Gets Deep on the Majestic Splendor of Idaho | Noisey

“I think some of those are the most powerful metaphors as poets and writers and songwriters, I think. Depending on your perspective on any given day, that which seems so important to us in any given moment is so minimal in the grand scheme of things. What are we to the ocean? What are we to the stars? What are we to the wilderness? Pretty pathetic little creatures, really. [Yet] part of that is the glory that allows us to create art and music, it’s this… I don’t know? Bizarre evolutionary trait to consider our own existence instead of just going with our instincts. I think art is a strange combination of both. I think it’s part instinctual and part self-reflective. I think the natural world provides not only these great metaphors—that’s probably how I use it most is emotional metaphors. It’s in nature where I, personally, find—with the one exception being making music, is where I find the most solitude and the most peace of mind. Walking through nature and just being, and soaking it in, and trying to be a part of it.”


Steve Von Til — A Life Unto Itself

Speaking of Steve Von Til, he’s just released the first cut from his latest solo album due out in May, the beautiful and folk-tinged A Life Unto Itself. Von Til’s voice is just as compelling singing what is essentially a ballad as it is exorcizing demons over the cathartic noise of his Neurosis bandmates, and on this seven-minute number he channels the soundscaping of Earth with just two guitar tracks and intoxicating story-telling.

Lightning Bolt — Fantasy Empire

NPR are currently streaming the new Lightning Bolt record in full, and at first listen it’s a rip-roaring collection of the duo’s most frenetic work to date. The mid-section on “Over the River and Through the Woods” might be the best three minutes of music I’ve heard this year.


Peter Bibby — Goodbye Johnny

Who would’ve thought that the foul-mouthed, gravel-voiced troubadour who once spent his weekends annihilating his lungs on Perth stages as one half of Frozen Ocean would be touring the world so soon? Bibby’s on his way to SXSW this week and with that journey comes the video for Goodbye Johnny, a lo-fi home video about being unable to farewell the song’s namesake thanks to potent influenza. Again, just think about this: Entertainment Weekly is writing about Peter Bibby. What a wonderful world.

Fait — Slow Glow

Fait seemingly appeared from out of nowhere last year with the moody Surrender To and they’ve now returned with their first fully-formed conceptual clip in Slow Glow, a brooding and striking piece of short cinema filmed across the sprawling West Australian landscape. From lush meadows to endless deserts to crashing waves on a violent coast, this feels like the visual track to the kind of dream you don’t want to wake up from. (P.S.: Fait play our five-year anniversary show at The Bakery on Easter Thursday.)