Monthly Archives: May 2009

Sunn O))) – Monoliths & Dimensions (Southern Lord, 2009)


…it’s called Monoliths & Dimensions.

Nick: ho ho

4 songs in 54 minutes.

long songs…


I’m sure the lyrics are significant but I can’t hear them, it’s just a rumble.

all it’s missing is a horror film to go along with it.

because it’s not music, it’s a soundtrack.

again, it’s somebody who is either trying to have everybody on or is taking himself too seriously.

doesn’t scare me!

might scare an 11 year old in the dark in his bedroom…

though it’s quite tiring to listen to.

obviously based on droning aeroplanes.

how much longer did you say this is going to last?

ehm, hold on…..another 20 minutes or so.

ok, I don’t know if I’ll be able to hold out.

actually it’s 30 minutes, I did my maths wrong.

not surprising, with that in your ears, your whole life could go wrong.

this is phony, pretentious, terrible terrible stuff.

it’s actually a great relief when it stops.

has he got a day job?

yeah he works in a creche.

does he?


well I was about to say he doesn’t seem in any way dangerous.

he sounds like a little pussycat with a tiny mickey.


so he tries to compensate by making this ‘scary’ ‘masculine’ ‘dark’ rubbish.

you’d only have to walk up to him and say BOO!

it’s a little bit Darth Vader-y too isn’t it?

to me it depicts a sad lack of…. everything

musicality, intelligence, sensitivity, creativity mainly creativity.

you name it, it lacks it.

I’m sad to say whoever made this doesn’t have a creative bone their body.

you made it to the end.

not willingly, that is one of the worst attempts at…..being original and all that….

absolute crap!

it’s just…..nothing.

You know Sunn O))). Even if you’ve never heard them you know them. They’re the guys who wear cloaks and have beards and play low and slow in front of 870 amps. Some of their songs are ridiculously, unintentionally silly (like the first 3 here) and others are strangely, massively beautiful (like the last one here).


Akron / Family – Set ‘Em Wild, Set ‘Em Free (Dead Oceans, 2009)


Nick: Yeah, I like this.

it’s musical, it’s definitely music.

it’s strange, it’s something that you instantly like….and then it grows on you.

I like it more and more with every song.

the other thing that is very nice about them is that they constantly surprise, maybe they don’t surprise you anymore but they surprise me, every time I think I have a handle on them they bring something new to the table.

I really think they’re very good.

A band I was in a few years ago supported Akron / Family. Toward the end of our set, one of the singers goes ”I just wanna say a big thank you to Acorn Family…”.

Shuta Hasunuma – Pop Ooga (Western Vinyl, 2009)


Shuta Hasunuma?

Nick: has he? can I have one?

yeah I’m really not sure how to pronounce this one.

where’s he from?

I…. don’t know, I know nothing, hold on.

I was about to say ‘he’ is from Tokyo, but that could be a woman in the picture.

nope it’s a man.

well it doesn’t sound Japanese at all, sounds South American if you ask me, which you probably don’t.

ehm, the whole point of this blog is asking you, so of course I do.

Latin rhythms certainly.

very….unobtrusive, it’s sort of music that you can decide to listen to or just let it wash over you, at a sort of a distance.

and strangely enough, I hate to use the word…


haha, no, this is worse, it’s pleasant.

despite the fast rhythm, it’s quite relaxing.

bit sort of playful.

‘we’re making music here to relax, please don’t take it seriously’



are words that come to mind.

like all this kind of music, it becomes wallpaper after a while.

nice wallpaper.

it doesn’t penetrate past the first layer of your brain.

makes no impression.

is it even of a genre?

it could be played in lifts or supermarkets, it’s not much further than musak.

it also sounds a bit like, a kid’s first keyboard? and you could press one button and it would play a whole load of stuff, kid’s could pretend to be great piano players.

fine for ten minutes, it’s just turning to quite serious crap now.

I’d love to know, does he make money doing this?

cause if he does, I reckon I should go into music.

cause I can do this better, with more imagination.

sounds like it’s coming out of a music box, that you’d buy on your holidays as a souvenir.

it’s times like these you wish computers had never been invented.

I don’t wanna say The Books go balearic but…

Body Count – S/T (Sire / Warner Bros, 1992)


I have a feeling I’m gonna regret this.


oh….just wait and see.

ok what is it?

Body Count, another one from my childhood.

when was this done?


wow, 17 years ago.


I’d say back then it was pretty exciting.

even now it still has a lot of energy.

the only problem I can see is that the lyrics are written purely to offend, rather than to communicate anything.

I can only hear motherfucker so many times before I turn off.

it’s too easy.

I don’t know if it’s the right word, but the music is very ‘clean’.

there’s nothing superfluous there.

are you regretting it?

not completely, it’s pretty funny.

I think it’s actually quite good.

I just like the way they don’t add any of that silly sound effects stuff for no reason.

this is just good, basic, music.

{Track 14 – Evil Dick} I have my head in my hands.

now this is kind of pathetic isn’t it?

{Ice-T:”when evil dick gets his way it sounds a little something like this” cue what seems like 15 minutes of sex noises and thrash metal}


ok it’s gotten to the point where it could easily be seen as a joke now.

Ugh. It’s funny how when this came out, the focus was all on ‘Cop Killa‘ and the whole ‘black guys fucking shit up / this is what things are really like’ vibe, when now what stands out is the hyper-ridiculousness of the less confrontational songs. Ice-T’s encounter with an evil woman in ‘Voodoo‘ (”Aaaaagh My eyes! BITCH!”), the aforementioned ‘Evil Dick‘ (he likes warm, wet places) and the seriously deranged murder fantasy of ‘Momma’s Gotta Die Tonight’ are all pant-shittingly hilarious and stupid and shit and awful and actually kinda fun.



We started a facebook group!


we don’t really know, lot’s of blogs have one.

what do you hope to achieve?

again, not sure. maybe it could be a nice place for fans of the blog to have a chat, request albums, organize medieval battle recreations, that kinda thing.


The Bastard Rain – Of Stolen Birds (Drunken Lust, 2009)


Nick: R-a-i-n? or r-e-i….

falls from the sky.


{few minutes later}

what are they called again?

something rain?


not rebel rain.

what do you think they should be called?

the persistent rain.

it’s the bastard rain.

oh yes.

not into melody are they?

this is just my initial reaction but I think they’re trying too hard to sound significant.

listen to his voice

{Nick does an impression – deep, booming, way over the top}


is this more than one person?


three. ok

I bet they all have long curly hair, they wear old, long leather jackets, as if they’re pioneers.

‘we are poets’

and I would say the person who writes this stuff, hasn’t got much of a sense of humour.

actually I have a better name for them.

the ponderous rain. that’s how it comes across to me, ponderous.

if they were here, I’d tell them to lighten up a bit.

cause it is really music to be played at funerals isn’t it?

severely depressive.

and there’s no relief either, it just goes on and on.

maybe it’s an analogy for life or something.

life has much brighter moments than this.

maybe it’s an analogy for an incurable disease.

thank god life has brighter moments than this.

this weighs you down, slow oppressive clouds bearing down.

I’m afraid that anybody who actually likes this is suicidal.

I like it, heh.

it’s pretty atrocious. I hate the whole attitude of it.

Tupelo, the evening redness in the west, mud, death, all that kinda stuff. But in a good way.

Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti – Grandes Exitos Greatest Hits (Self Released, 2009)


Nick: hahaha, could they not think of a longer title?

I’m sure it’s deliberate but to me it sounds like the recording is very bad.

muffled, they could be playing in a cardboard box.

and because of that it sounds like it’s not the real thing, like it’s a rehearsal.

and if that’s their intention………then their intention is wrong!

if you have a very primitive sound, primitive structures, then I could understand the recording.

but this is pretty sophisticated stuff.

there’s a clash.

I think the clash is why a lot of people like him.

I’m always worried about people trying to be something they’re not.

if your’e using old instruments and trying to imitate Bach then I can understand recreating something.

they’re recreating bad music from 20 years ago, and it’s just as bad.

youtube motion?

immune to emotion.

the other thing I find about this music, it may sound strange but it has no atmosphere, it’s grey.

is it positive? negative? is it bright?

I can’t answer that, it’s nothing.

no character.

I’m not sure I can describe this in terms of emotion.

and maybe that’s why it’s popular, if it is at all.

this is the opposite of yesterday’s album, the more I hear of it the more I dislike it.

and it’s all over the place, nothing unites all the songs.

it’s quiet chaos.

I’d love to talk to him, is he someone with no ideas?

is that why it’s so random? or is there actually any thought behind it?

well you can go talk to him tonight in Whelans if you want.

he wouldn’t want to talk to me.

it’s like he’s constantly painting, till everything is grey, no shapes to see, no colour.

I actually hate it!

we were watching the Eurovision, last night, Ireland didn’t get through, the only thing I can still remember is Moldova, because their song was traditional. Everyone else was trying to do pop songs.

is it a skit?

it sounds like he takes a piece of music and says, look at how silly this is.

a talent that does not know where to go.

Collecting his most POP! moments in one (very) long collection, Grandes Exitos Greatest Hits will more than likely be on sale at tonights gig in Whelans. I won’t see you there.


Super Extra Bonus Party – Night Horses (Self Released, 2009)


ok this is going to be the first time I listen to this as well, which isn’t normal practice…

Nick: it’s not

…but my brain is……..I just can’t really think of what else to do today.

and it’s by who again?

Super Extra Bonus Party

wow, what a terrible name.

their last album won the Choice Music Prize.

which is…..?

well, it awards the most innovative and forward thinking Irish album of a certain year, rather than caring about sales or anything like that.


{Track 4 – Thin Air feat. Mr Lif}

is that called orchestral rap?

probably not.

it’s quite imaginative but despite that, it doesn’t manage to become interesting.

do you know what I mean?

a lot of variation, a lot of……ehm.

it just doesn’t become compelling does it?

I don’t know if they want if to become compelling or not though.

who wouldn’t want their music to be compelling?

well some people just want to create an atmosphere don’t they?

point taken.

{Track 6 – Comets feat. Heathers}

oh this is something new.

that one was very good.

the girls voices really bring a whole new dimension to it.

because also, they ehm…..

{Track 7 – Eamonn feat. May Kay}

this is a different girl now?


well this is better as well, there’s more structure when the girls are involved.

{Track 8 -Do Incio Ao Fim feat. Rodrigo Teles}

it’s the old problem isn’t it?

they repeat something ad nauseum and I still can’t understand it.

sowetto shark?

it’s the way he started?

it’s significant isn’t it?

what is?

the fact they’d repeat it throughout yet no one can understand it.

I’m going back on what I said, it is interesting.

{Track 9 -Tea With Lord Haw Haw feat. Captain Moonlight & White Noise}

super human master race?

yeah, they’re massive Nazi’s, did I not say that?

ARE THEY!?!?!?!

no, I’m kidding.

oh haha ok, thank god.

well they could be.

the only thing it doesn’t do, I think, is it doesn’t hang together as an album.

it’s like someone assembled all his favorite songs onto one CD.

they don’t all come from the same part of the forest, as they say.

I’ve never heard anyone except you say that.

you’ve never heard that?!?

it’s not my fault that you’re terribly uneducated.

if I *was* terribly uneducated it *would* be your fault.

hahaha good point, well no, I could have sent you to a very good school and you could’ve just not paid any attention.

actually that’s exactly what did happen!

haha maybe you could ask our visitors if they know the phrase?

who? oh the people who read the site?

well, you just did.

I think they should’ve been more discerning, some of this, especially the beginning is quite boring.

I’d like to see them live, do they play, have you seen them?

yep, I saw them at Hard Working Class Heroes, the sound was really bad so I left after a few minutes, seemed to be having a lot of fun though.

I’m not sure if the latter half of the album is better or if I just had to get used to them.

Gonna agree with Nick here, some of it’s pretty bleh, other bits, especially the track with Heathers, are really great but I’d say you’d be hard pressed to find someone outside of the band who thinks every track is aces.

They’re having a launch party this Friday in Andrew’s Lane, full details on their website.

Bill Wells & Maher Shalal Hash Baz – Gok (Geographic, 2009)


We’ve done Maher Shalal Hash Baz before but this time it’s them and Scottish pianist Bill Wells.

Nick: have we?

yep, the record’s called Gok.


well it opens kind of nice but gloomy.

Helen: it’s a deathmarch.

yes I was just about to say, funeral march-y.

this reminds me of the stuff, well some of the stuff…..he worked as an arranger with Miles Davis?

Gill Evans?

YES! very good, reminds me of Gill Evans.

I was thinking more Vince Guaraldi, but drunk.

I don’t know him.

the guy from the Peanuts soundtrack, Charlie Brown?

when I open my Peanuts books, I don’t get a soundtrack.

I could play you bits from Sketches of Spain that sound like this.

like, I couldn’t ehm…..I couldn’t listen to this for a long time.

the last time we did these guys you said;this is one of the only things you’ve played me recently that I would happily listen to again. extremely likeable.”

ah! yeah well I probably wouldn’t listen to it for hours.

{Track 9 -Time Takes Me So Back}

is she singing a combination of English and French?

I have no idea.

sounds like it.

the only thing I don’t like about it, is the lack of tempos changes, and the tempo seems to be draggy, slow to the point of draggy.

{Track 14 -Banned Announcement}

see? it’s nice to have something jaunty like that.

is that someone whistling?

I was having a pretty shitty day on Saturday, nothing going right. I was looking forward to heading into RSAG in Whelans, that was the light at the end of the shitsaturdaytunnel, but then my friends lamed out on me, too tired, too broke, too busy yadda yadda yadda. Oh boy was I mad! So mad I just lay motionless on my bed for half an hour, staring out the window at the moon. Yep, pretty mad alright.

But then I got up and got out, walked to Tesco with this record in my ears for the first time, smile growing larger by the second. I bought some beer and skipped home, marveling at all the boring things I walk by everyday.