August’s EMusic Downloads

My love of Android Lust is already well documented. I’d been eagerly awaiting the release of this album (in fact, this album shoved a planned download of The Melvins off to next month). This new album isn’t quite as experimental as the earlier albums, but that makes it more approachable, and perhaps a better introductory album for those looking to sample Shikhee’s aural excursions.

It’s been six long years since Autolux’s stellar debut album but it’s hard to complain about such a long wait when the payoff is so very good. Shoegazery, but with less reliance on distortion and feedback. It’s a more melodic album than Future Perfect, but along with giving up the roar of the debut gives up the hooks, both musical and vocal. No song stands out, no chorus is memorable. At the end of the album you’re just left feeling an impression of the album. This isn’t necessarily bad - I say the same thing about Boards of Canada albums. After an hour you don’t remember what you heard but you’re left feeling like you experienced something profound.

One of my all time favourite guilty pleasure movies is a low-budget bit of trash SF from 1989, The Blood of Heroes This album, however, is not just a silly homage to what could only be charitably described as a cult classic. It’s a cross-genre masterpiece. Broadrick brings his trademark Godflesh guitar roar and the gentle shimmer of Jesu to the project, Laswell brings his dub terrorist persona, and together with vocalist Dr. Israel and electronic artists End.user and Submerged they’ve created and album of beats, and grooves that combines dub, industrial, metal, hip-hop and every other [subversive&#8221’ genre that will keep you guessing and keep you thinking. It’s absolutely my leading candidate for best album of the year.

The Deep Cut is the newest band from ex-Death In Vegas bassist and Revolver founder Mat Flint. A great album of fuzzy, droney, shoegazery guitar rock. Vocalist Emma Bailey is an absolute treasure.

Fantomas is one of Mike Patton’s myriad post-Faith No More projects, and it’s on the avant garde end of the scale. Delirium Corda is one 74 minute track, a concept track (so sayeth Wikipedia) about surgery without anaesthesia. I don’t necessarily get that from it, but it’s an electronic ambient piece that’s creepy and haunting, strongly reminiscent of Lustmord. Amazingly good.

Angry sounding dancey industrial music. It’s pretty good, but I think I’m getting just a wee bit tired of this sound.

I’ve now caught up with all of Hanzel and Gretyl’s back catalogue, at least as far as EMusic’s subset of it goes. Musically this one is the strongest yet, and their tongue in cheek humour hasn’t been diluted a bit. They get bonus points for channeling Snoop by calling a song [Heil Hizzle Mein Nizzle&#8221’. I was laughing out loud as I walked to work as I heard that song for the first time.

The last Snog album I bought was 1997’s Buy Me … I’ll Change Your Life, an electronic, industrial rumination on consumer culture. Six albums later, Snog’s change a lot since I last listened to them. The songwriting is as sharp as ever but the arrangements have changed drastically. Last of the Great Romantics is minimalist by comparison to Buy Me - drums, guitar and David Thrussel’s vocals, but it’s no less affecting. My favourite track on the album is “This World (Done Me Wrong)”, the video for which is sharp, cynical, and insightful - proving that though the music has become much gentler, the message is no less incisive.

Another of Mike Patton’s projects, where Mike channels his inner David Yow - Tomahawk is jarring blues-influenced rock that sounds much like The Jesus Lizard or perhaps even Cop Shoot Cop. There’s a strong punk influence in here too - abrupt changes in tempo and time signature, stutters and stops. Oh hey, I just looked Tomahawk up on Wikipedia (yeah, I love the Wikipedia) and guess who’s in Tomahawk and co-wrote the songs? The Jesus Lizard’s Duane Denison. Dig.

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