Even though I'm not around here much these days, let me just say I think of you all regularly and still try and get out to the groovy shows and happenings when I can. A couple weeks ago I had a blast checking out the Warmer Milks guys out at the HOT (all of em but head Milker, MT)--stellar sonic excursions, my friends. The closing impromptu drone metal jam was a thing of wicked beauty, and supposedly recorded, really hope so. Plenty more shows in the upcoming too, including Oakley Hall tomorrow, Melvins, Jesu, Silver Apples and more.
Couple nights ago I caught some of American Hardcore on cable, the recent doc about the emergence of US hardcore from Black Flag to 7 Seconds, Gang Green to Negative Approach. Pretty decent flick. I was probably most impressed though by the inclusion of a Flipper song over the credits called "Ha Ha Ha" that I'd never heard before. Did the ol' slsk search-snatch for the soundtrack, but mums the word, mmk? This reminds me I recently downloaded the new Om album, Pilgrimage on Southern Lord, and what I received was one track of slow moving molasses groan that sounded like Om at half-speed and three songs of wacky free jazz sped up to Alvin and the Chipmunk proportions. Either Om has gone insane, or somebody out there has a pretty funny sense of humor. Anyway, I swear I will buy the album when it officially comes out. Lesson learned.
Om is in fact playing the Wall of Sound festival happening in Ft Worth in a couple weeks. If you live within a 200 mile radius of the DFW area, you should try and make it out. Also on the bill, a lotta cool shit like Spectrum, Explosions in the Sky, Ian Moore, Peter and the Wolf, The Baptist Generals and many more local and non local acts that may or may not suck. The whole thing's a bit more indie than I usually skew these days, but it's fucking Om. It's being held outside in a big baseball field. It will rock like Thor atop the Holy Mountain. Also, I'm gonna be there with some mah homies, and we will be signing autographs.
Hmmm, what else? I've been digging rebroadcasts of the latest season of Big Love, the polygamy freakout on HBO which manages that rare feat of taking a fringe, cult group and populating it with real characters. Chloe Sevigny's Niki and Grace Zabriskie's Mona are prime examples. Both are of dubious moral character (like everyone else I know), but so charming and drawn from reality that I don't give a fuck. I like these ladies very much and would not want to get on their bad sides. I know there's a lot of anti-religious fervor out there today, but I think--Richard Dawkins and Chris Hitchens be damned--we need to recognize that religion isn't going anywhere any time soon, and we should maybe focus more on constructive debate as opposed to caustic dismissals.
Another tangent: Been playing catchup with weird Pagan and Black Metal spins, and figured I'd get in a plug here for Seattle's Kreation Records, specializing in swank vinyl reissues of every kind of metal record under the sun. I popped over to their site to pick up a new vinyl version of Sleep's Holy Mountain (on green-white swirl splash), and went ahead and grabbed sexy ass platters of Wyrd's Huldrafolk (Finish Pagan metal that totally kicks bleak ass--download "The Wicker Man" and you'll see what I'm getting at), Nachtmystium's Eulogy IV (Chicago low-fi BM in the classic Nordic tradition with the occasional injection of soaring David Gilmore leads meets demonic shred action--they cover Earth and Burzum here) and Wormwood's Starvation. I scored the last one confusing it with black metal blood-curdlers, Wormsblood, who just dropped a new CD-R on Skulls of Heaven that I need, so damn. Wormwood is some sort of weird ass pagan goth prog band from Seattle that I actually sorta dig. But the vocals, alternating from moany goth croons to tough guy screams and fem shrieks, are a bit much in their Neurosis-gets-lost-in-the-woods dark vibe. Speaking of which: New Neurosis Given to the Rising (Neurot) is fucking awesome. Another band I've been occasionally punishing myself with of late is France's Monarch and their Dead Men Tell No Tails 2CD (Crucial Blast), one of those random Myspace discoveries that just happened to pay off like an overpowering kick the shins. Down-tuned doom sludge with a strong debt to late NYC nodoom shriekers Khanate (RIP, you sick fucks). Thank God I saw Khanate live once. That's really all I can say. I can't tell if it's a guy or girl "singing" on the Monarch record, and that's a very good thing.
Otherwise, some newish things currently kicking my ass:
Akron Family Love is Simple CD (Young God)
Angels of Light We Are Him CD (Young God)
Meg Baird Dear Companion (Drag City)
Martyn Bates Migraine Inducers/Antagonistic Music 2CD (Beta-Lactam)
Black Sun Ensemble Bolt of Apollo CD (Camera Obscura)
Blues Control Blues Control (Holy Mountain)
Tom Carter & Christian Kiefer A Rather Solemn Promise (Great Pop Supplement)
Damon & Naomi Within These Walls (20/20/20)
Earth Monkey Be That Charge 2CD (Beta-Lactam
The Legendary Pink Dots Your Children Placate You From Premature Graves (ROIR)
Andrew Liles The Dying Submariner (A Concerto for Piano and Reverberation in Four Movements) CD (Beta-Lactam)
Little Claw Little Claw LP (Ypsilanti Records)
Mammatus The Coast Explodes (Holy Mountain)
The Shining Path The Shining Path (Holy Mountain)
Sic Alps Pleasures and Treasures (Animal Disguise)
Tanakh Saunders Hollow (Camera Obscura)
Wooden Shjips self released 10", in preparation for their new one on Holy Mountain
Neil Young & Crazy Horse Live at the Fillmore East (Reprise)
What else? Just watched John Carpenter's Cigarette Burns and Stuart Gordon's Dreams in the Witch-House on
DVD. These were originally made for Showtime's Masters of Horror series a couple years ago and are actually pretty fucking amazing truth be told. Carpenter's movie features Udo Kier as a sadistic film collecter, while Gordon's combines Lovecraft (of course!) and superstrings. Gordon is currently working on a Re-Aminator sequel set in The White House called House of Re-Animator starring William H. Macy as the president. YES!
Speaking of weird fiction somehow grounded in reality, I finally watched all those Heroes Season 1 episodes, and I was pretty impressed, but at the same time cannot overlook the obvious debt this series owes to comics, most obviously X-Men and Alan Moore's Watchmen, and I'm a bit annoyed that Heroes creator Tim Kring claims any similarity to Watchmen is entirely coincidental. Whatever, dude. Own up to yo shit.
That's all for now... Peace and love, my brothers and sisters.