Sunday, October 09, 2005

This week was spent revisiting some old classics and identifying with some bands that I hadn't really connected with before. Constantines play live on Wednesday, but I still have to get tickets. In the past seven days, I've indulged in some Canadian indie pop, the most brilliant amalgamation of free jazz, grindcore and dub I've ever heard, and some German experimental laptop music from last year.

Broken Social Scene is going to top all the critics polls at the end of this year. The new self-titled release is going to send scenester kids into fits of spastic rage due to the sheer poppiness of it. Just when you thought the Arcade Fire's Funeral was becoming more and more of a guilty pleasure as the minutes ticked by, another fine Canadian pop band releases another fine pop record. There's nothing wrong with songs - for every Wolf Eyes record I own, there's an equally important and interesting Guided By Voices one.

My week in music:

As previously stated, this record will blow everyone away. Feel Good Lost drew comparisons to ambient electronica and sometimes bores me to death, You Forgot in People was pretty "rock-y" and frankly: formulaic, Bee Hives was interesting, but didn't quite cut my cake - but this Broken Social Scene album delivers. Its songs are excellent, the instrumentation actually makes sense this time; along with the ever-expanding-previously-deemed-unnecessarily-large roster of musicians. A humble, self-titled album, with brilliant artwork and brilliant songs. Very impressive, already being touted as album of the year by people who either haven't heard the new Constantines album or are too afraid to rock with their balls out. But still, the complaints are few and far between - Broken Social Scene are making it okay for me to like sugary coated pop songs again. And thank god.

When I started working in a record store, the complete studio works of Painkiller was the first thing I bought. John Zorn's landmark experimental noise project blended grindcore, free jazz, dub, and ambient music into one sadistic, violent and bloody mess. Players include Bill Laswell of Last Exit and Mick Harris of Napalm Death - Execution Ground is one of the finest bridge-building albums ever recorded, an epic feat of jazz improvisation, and one of the heaviest, most extreme jam sessions ever set to analog tape. It's more than ten years old, and when I play it for people, they still don't know what to do with themselves. People don't know what to make of it. I've listened to this record every single day this past week, and I discover new things every time. It simply drowns me in wonderment. I'm shocked out how effortlessly the three guys play off of eachother, and manage to construct these incredibly ethereal blends of free jazz, grindcore and dub. It floors me, and it's incredibly hard to find.

Venice by Fennesz is giving me one big week-long chill. It is the most atmospheric, textural and comforting music I've ever heard. This, upon consideration, should have topped my lists for last year, but I just never got around to listening to the damn thing all the way through. One year later, here I am; enthralled by its magnificence and constantly searching for the new adjectives to describe the effect that it has on me. David Sylvian's guest appearance on "Transit" is exceptional - his smooth, soft voice seems to be the perfect mate for the harsh, yet beautiful noise sounds coming from Fennesz's processed guitar.

Next week in music:

Hopefully I find a way into the Constantines show so I can see them live again. The best band in the world right now, hands down. These five Canadian gentlemen are the most incredible sight to behold. So amazing, you'll go into cardiac arrest, I guarantee it.


Blogger Jessica Klarkson said...

Weekend shorts
Follow-ups, catch-ups and clearing off the desk for Columbus Day... Sunday's L.A ... Veronique du Turenne reports in the LAT Magazine on the bleak prospects for the last Santa Monica Mountains cougars .
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7:26 PM  

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