Scientists have determined that the Earth’s surface will not be able to support human life much longer, due to pollution and overpopulation. In 1957, Dr Carl Garstein proposed three alternative solutions. The first was a drastic reduction of the human population on Earth. The second, the construction of vast underground shelters. Alternative three?
As a reporter in Scotland this month has been the best of my life. I’ve seen the very best of my nation and the very worst, play out across the streets, and during the phenomenal amount of driving involved in covering the beginning of a nation’s future, I’ve been listening to a lot of radio, both music for this column and the general scrawl of chart music. I can say with a considerable amount of shame that Taylor Swift’s ‘Shake It Off’ somehow bypasses the gnarled, miserable part of my brain and lodges straight in the lyrics-remembering part of my brain like a wretched American harpoon. In other news, the amount of music released on the eve of a revolution explodes, we’re looking at thirty or forty bands for you to chow down, so get digging.
This month has been noteworthy for three releases from major hitters which were noteworthy, if nothing else. Scando-afro-weirdos Goat dropped Commune and it’s… dense. Inch thick butter on toast rich with thick party grooves and sultry female vocal lines. Gone are the manic midnight mantras and in are more OMlike Dead Skeletonsish kind of grooves which are less immediately satisfying than barnstormers like ‘The Sun The Moon’, but may ultimately prove to be our redemption. Electric Wizard have no interest in redemption, or anything other than burying markless vinyl in a Devon snake pit with a cow horn while the sun and Jupiter are in opposition to your menstrual cycle, and dredging up the results for your listening displeasure, Time To Die is that record, it turned a foggy Fife B road into a suburb of Silent Hill. I’ve been obsessed with Leckie Wizard since before I can really differentiate years and while their later grooves slipped into comfort zone, Dopethrone and Come My Fanatics will never lose their sting, and this new album at last is a callback to those halcyon days; a payoff for all the worrying I did over Legalise Drugs And Murder hoping it wasn’t a Sunday night one-off, and it wasn’t. It gives me great pleasure to say Electric Wizard are back, and once you get into one of these groups, there’s only a couple of ways you can get out. One is death, the other is, mental institutions. Lastly, something has happened to Earth. For as long as I’ve been aware of them they’ve been sliding down into ever more largactil-induced warm-pitcher-of-Tennants special desert rock; but their latest album erases much of that originality and formlessness and creates a more or less standard slowed down desert rock album. Some parts of it work, others don’t, but I just don’t see why Dylan Carlson is still calling his band Earth, he’s long since ceased scrabbling around in the sands.
“There are stars above you, even in the day, and they are watching. Drive on, driver.” If we’re talking driving music, the new Ur example will be Devin Vibert’s superb and peerless Glitchhikers soundtrack. Fascinating, absorbing, bizarre and fantastic as the game is, it’s nothing without its soundtrack, and the soundtrack works apart from the must as a kind of ambient post-Dead Man guitar warble that absolutely slays me. Drive on driver. The game is also available for free and it’s great.
I have also similarly become obsessed with surf covers of metal songs. Specifically a compilation of surf rock black metal covers titled True Kvlt Surf which I acquired illicitly (with the permission of the creator), there is also a fantastic free album from Killjoy And The Cutthroats featuring thrash metal songs in surf style (specifically ‘Ride The Lightning’ and ‘Hangar 18’ are highlights). You ought to serpently seek it out, play it loud, and appropriate the shit out of some culture.
Tombgrinder aren’t going to win any points for originality or intelligence, but their basement sludge grooves will satiate anyone who needs a steady drip feed of basically the same song from different artists (in which group the author includes himself). Manchester based SKÅGLÖRDS bring the dense, demented Korea; while basically just directionless Sabbathean proto-rock, it has been spinning quite a bit in my house. Fresh (and very weird) San Fran psyche this month comes from Morgan Square with When Kristofar Is Lost In The Woods which is just real nice.
I think it’s come time to finish up this column and move on to pastures new. It’s been a great voyage, and I’ve dug into music I never would have, but my professional life is becoming crowded so I must bow out. Keep sending stuff to my twitter though because I love to hear all of what you lot are listening to.
Remember, don’t eat the brown acid.
Act now, and you too can regret following me on twitter @stevendinnie