Following serial relocations, the Anglo-American husband-and-wife duo Treasure Teeth are currently based in NYC and have just released their debut single, with artwork (above) by none other than Goodiepal himself. Barbara’s cut-glass vocals are familiar from her solo work as Whiteoak, but rather than the mesmeric folk-drone of that project, here they are foregrounded by equally trance-inducing hip-hop and R&B inflections. Over a stuttering half-step beat, “Island Eye” creates an irresistibly womb-like atmosphere, with hypnotic waves of reverb and aquatic pulsations reminiscent of Aphex Twin’s “Analogue Bubblebath”. The swooning vocals weft and warp above this backing, and when the track eventually slows and dissipates, it’s as if we’ve woken from a dream that we would have liked to last longer. Our wish may be granted this summer, as the duo plan to release a full EP then.
Treasure Teeth’s limited edition “Island Eye” / “Teasha” single is available from Bandcamp
Written by Christopher Greenberg
The Spookfish is clearly a nomadic character, currently based in NYC, previously resident in Portland OR and prior to that exploring far-flung places such as Mongolia. Some of the artist’s past work has reflected these travels, but with the free download EP Knot, The Spookfish seems to have melted back into to an interior landscape. The title couldn’t be any more literal, as these tracks are apparently inspired by a “knot i saw in a wooden table,” a photograph of which is handily included as the release’s cover art. “Where I Should Go” is the EP’s most extended track, but given that it’s still only 2:11 minutes long, that should give you an idea of the sort of barely-there, fragmented wisps of sound that we’re dealing with. Over the very faintest echoes of a dub beat, The Spookfish traces woozy arcs of pastoral melody, decaying before our ears and conveying a sense of wistful melancholy all the more poignant for the music’s extreme brevity.
Written by Christopher Greenberg
Professor Genius, known best as part of a small vanguard of artists in the middle ’00s who made smart, Ital0 flavored dance music that splashed onto so many turntables in the mid aughties, has taken a turn towards the soundscape, the cinematic, and the epic with his release of Hassan. Though the album and song titles reference historical and mythical accounts of the Hashshashin and their founder Hassan-i Sabbah and some tracks draw heavily on Arabic and Persian influences, the double vinyl LP paints its own science fictional world, full of its own intrigues. As an album, Hassan has a sprawling feel to it, so the inclusion of remixes by Steve Moore (see above), Steve Summers, and Marcos Cabral provides some very welcome perspective. Moore’s reinterpretation of “Assassins” strips away much of the original’s gauzey textures, pushing dancefloor ready synth sequences to the forefront, even as it laces the track with its own complex mystique.
Hassan is now available from the movers and shakers at Long Island Electrical Systems (LIES)
Written by Luke Carrell
Amazing Births is bona fide favorite Mark McGuire and drone king Julian Gulyas’ attempt to spread the good word that bright, gently picked guitar arrangements and micro-modulating synth need not be enemies. Clocking in at 11 minutes, “Eclipsed by the Younger Moon” is a blissful exploration that lends itself to cinematic flights of imagination and transcendental meditation, making your brain waves a little more delta shaped. While the melodic guitars call to mind the gentler work of Reilly or Wong, the synths are flitting between the stereo channels; preoccupied with creating a dynamic context for themselves. Don’t let the dissonant patches, hints of binaural beats, and lack of traditional percussion intimidate you: this could be your smooth AM Gold gateway to drone music. –Luke Carrell
The Younger Moon LP is now available from Cylindrical Habitat Modules
Arrington de Dionysio’s Malaikat dan Singa is a beguiling mutation of the same outlandish yet somehow coherent take on pan-culturalism and exploratory post punk songwriting that has made his work with Old Time Relijun so iconic. Dionysio purrs, bays, growls, and throat sings his way through the evocative, primeval terrains of Suara Naga, while using the steady Dub Narcotic Studio-patented guitar grooves we all know and love as a palate for the deeply affective, extreme melodic variations that make the album such a fresh listen. And yes, he’s singing in Indonesian, which he learned specifically for this project. Has his Indonesian improved since Malaikat dan Singa’s self-titled premier? Inquiring minds want to know.
Notable for its pitting of pulsing bass guitar against bass clarinet and some unexpectedly catchy moments, “Aku di Penjara” (translation: I’m in Jail) has a structure that recalls the minimalism and sudden flourishes of hardcore rap. Put this on some good speakers, turn if up loud, and let it shake you around until you find your happy/scary place.
Suara Naga is now available from K records
Written by Luke Carrell
Prismatic overlays. Gritty VHS distortion. Vivid washes of adjusted color. Feverish streams of associative imagery. These are a few of our favorite things and just so happen to play the starring roles in Sean Patrick’s enticing visual accompaniment to Jonas Reinhardt’s “Smokey Jotus.” The San Francisco trio’s high energy synth psychedelia is particularly vigorous here, shoving the drums to the front of the mix and letting their melodies run uninhibited in a silky space of their own definition. Sunny day headphone candy abounds.
Jonas Reinhardt’s Music For The Tactile Dome will be available soon from Not Not Fun. In the meantime, refresh your memory with this lovely post from last month and stream two other tracks on Soundcloud. Additional eye-friendly from Sean Patrick is also available on his Cargo Collective page
Written by Luke Carrell
Between this awe-inspiring Mane Mane video by Aaron Katsnelson and that Eleanoora Rosenbloom thing that Altered Zones posted a while back, I’m beginning to think that “skinnyscreen” is the new widescreen. This isn’t the first time we’ve been wowed by Katsnelson’s work; he’s also made some stunning videos with the likes of Magic Mountain and John Maus, plus some great mixes for AZ as one half of the unstoppable duo known as Weird Magic. “Twinkle Sr” is as bizarre as it is mesmerizing; don’t be surprised if you become completely entranced by the kaleidoscopic sea of echoing heads, dancing to the the ebb and flow of Mane Mane’s groove. Press “full screen” and get wet.
Stream and buy the new Mane2Mane, mastered by this week’s zoned in artist Matthewdavid, from Friendship Bracelent‘s UUUTAPES, also available for digital download on Boomkat. Be sure to check out other Mane Mane videos by Miki Revereza and Matt Weiner of Peace Age and Featureless Ghost
Written by Ric Leichtung
It all started with the layered prisms in the San Francisco band’s last video for “Sugar”; the latest video, ”Breathless,” features blown-out kaleidoscopes of VHS glitch that’s superimposed onto the silhouettes of Young Prisms. Shot by Andrew Creighton, the material was brought back to Denver to director by Trevor Peterson, of Woodsman, where he shot and embedded extra imagery. The result echoes and amplifies the music’s ingrained psychedelia, as if the video’s visuals have resided within the sounds all along.
Friends For Now is available now from Kanine Records
Written by Coco Zoabi
In his most recent effort Calcium, released this week, Arc Light has eventually left the path of blurry lo-fi pop reminiscent of early Ariel Pink, in favor of an overall cleaner, self-prescribed “mid-fi” tone. While his reverb-heavy vocals on the album’s first single “Baaz Fuuz” remain distant and vague, the drum machine loops and the layered analog synth patterns that characterize Arc Light’s psych pop are now crystal clear, nicely putting the whole thing into an 80s-informed cold wave direction.
You can buy Calcium and all previous efforts via Arc Light’s Bandcamp
We first heard about Type Records alums The Alps (not to be confused with Drag City’s Sic Alps) when Kenny Bloggins sat down to chat with Alexis Georgopoulos to talk about Arp. The San Francisco band, made up of Georgopoulos, Jefre Cantu-Ledesma (Tarantel), and Scott Hewicker (Troll) will release their fifth LP, Easy Action, with Mexican Summer at the end of March. Mixing equal parts guitar and electronics, The Alps create a sunny mélange of folk pluckings and wide washes of noise that, like a brilliant beam of light, could break through even the thickest and darkest clouds.The Alps: “For Isabel”