Tuesday, June 29, 2010

The All Golden - Velikovsky b/w This Guitar's Gone To Heaven

Another pop single, this time by The All Golden, a band I admit I have never even heard of. There's something about this single that I can't get over, although more so the fuzzy, poppy A-side than the B-side, the latter of which is a pretty standard acoustic pop tune (not necessarily a bad thing of course.) And evidently, according to the bio on their website, I am not the only one who thinks so, with NME apparently giving Velikovsky a "rave review." What apparently started out as a little two person recording project became a band a short time after this single was released. I think that the vocals could have been mixed in a little better, but other than that this is a well-made rock-driven pop single that I still put on occasionally.

The All Golden - Velikovsky b/w This Guitar's Gone To Heaven Mediafire

Monday, June 28, 2010

Dude Japan - Simple Living (2010)

I know I haven't been posting too much, but I'm hoping to change that in the upcoming weeks. I have a few things up my sleeve...

Here we go, the latest offering from Long Island, NY's Dude Japan, a four-piece pop band on Rok Lok Records. For anyone who hasn't heard their past releases, which includes a split with Weed Hounds, this is a really exciting treat and a definite improvement over previous endeavors. I say improvement because, personally, I wasn't too crazy about their Teenage Summer EP. I like it, and it's not bad at all, so don't get me wrong... but it just lacked a certain cohesiveness that seems to be present on this latest offering. Whether they found a more comfortable niche to reside in or just tinkered with their sound a bit since then, or these songs are just better written - whatever they've done, it's working, because Simple Living is a much more calculated, satisfying release and, I'd like to think, a sign of things to come. Or maybe it's just all in my head, and the real reason I didn't dig Teenage Summer as much is because I've only ever heard it on my sub par tape deck. That's probably it, really.

If you are so inclined, there are definite Further and (maybe) even Polvo or Raymond Brake vibes, especially in the beginning riffs on "The Seattle Freeze (Has Come To NY)," which is as feel good as it is despondent. The EP also includes a worthy Tiger Trap cover. All in all, these are some fantastic, feel-good indie pop songs; all quality stuff as can be excepted from this band.

I suppose I should also mention that Weed Hounds just released a new limited edition 7" that you can order here. I am not a shill, I swear.

Dude Japan - Simple Living Mediafire
Dude Japan - Simple Living Buy it

Tree Fort Angst - Buzzing With Beauty & Wonder E.P.

Originally a solo project, Tree Fort Angst became a three-piece in 1993 and released Buzzing With Beauty & Wonder, a three-song pop EP. It's a bit of a grower admittedly - the vocalist leaves something to be desired in some spots, although nothing you can hold against him. The B-side's acoustic tune is full of melancholy and wraps up an otherwise malleable EP pretty well.

Tree Fort Angst - Buzzing With Beauty & Wonder E.P. Mediafire

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Tonka - Calling Waffle House Home

Before the birth of Assfactor 4, half of its members made a pop-punk oriented quartet called Tonka. This record, Calling Waffle House Home, contains four super fast, emo-influenced pop-punk tunes. The similarity between this record and Sometimes I Suck is pretty obvious - both bands have a very similar sound, though Assfactor 4 went down a more hardcore road. This is likely a familiar record to any Assfactor 4 fan, but just in case it's a mystery to anyone else, check it out.

Tonka - Calling Waffle House Home Mediafire

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Carnal Knowledge - Demo (2007)

Reaching a bit farther back in time for this one. I picked this six-song demo up at Gilman about two or three years ago. I want to say it was a Pinhead Gunpowder show, but I can't be sure; however, I am currently in the process of having vivid flashbacks of patch jackets, underage drinking, and run-ins with multiple ex-girlfriends, so I have a feeling I'm not far off. In any case, this particular band, Carnal Knowledge, opened the show and blew the prepubescent crowd away with contemporary riot grrrl-worship hardcore from New York. This is definitely some angry, effective stuff, with lyrics rife with feminist politics and hatred for sexism and patriarchy. Dual vocals, too - always a plus in my book, especially when they're as well done and complimentary as they are on these recordings. I remember one of the vocalists sheepishly introducing the band and being met with brilliant enthusiasm, evidently unexpected given her frightened reaction and demeanor. This tape was a self-released, DIY effort recorded on an 8-track by a person or entity known as "Sweet Tooth." I don't know how many were made, but there were two, if not more, colored J-cards to choose from. This band is apparently still active, and for the curious their MySpace profile can be found below.

Carnal Knowledge - Demo
Carnal Knowledge - MySpace

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Hedia - To Quiet, Cause To Rest Or Sleep (2009)

I picked this tape up when The Fertile Crescent passed through my town about two years ago, a story I've previously divulged. Hedia is the solo project of one of that band's members, Bryce Hample. Woozy, drone laden tape music with piano, tape loops, trumpet, guitars, and french horn. This was released by featherspines some time in 2009 I believe. One hundred of these tapes were made and it is out of print as far as I know.

Hedia - To Quiet, Cause To Rest Or Sleep

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Megapost #1: Seam

I'm excited! I've been meaning to make this post for a while, but I never had the time for it. I'm happy to be sharing with you four early EPs by one of my favorite bands, Sooyoung Park's brainchild, Seam. What may be a familiar name to North Carolina indie rock aficionados as well as major fans of Codeine, Bedhead and other fellow slowcore giants may not be so to others (although don't let these comparisons fool you - they did a fantastic job of tiptoeing the slowcore line and reigning in a league of their own). Seam never enjoyed the popularity of the aforementioned bands however, and thus they are often overlooked by folks perusing the early Homestead and Touch & Go catalogs. It's a shame, really, given their talent, and their stupendous sophomore full-length The Problem With Me on Touch & Go. The only EP I'm missing is the Hey Latasha 7", recordings that I regretfully admit I haven't even heard. But it will soon stop evading me some day, I'm sure... same goes for their LPs, minus The Problem With Me..

Seam - Days of Thunder 7"
Somehow the eponymous track was encoded in a lower quality than intended. Click here for a higher quality rip of that track. Sorry about that!

Their first EP is a straight up slowcore gem, tinged with a seemingly permanent melancholy heaviness found in Days of Thunder, which dissipates temporarily on the B-side with Grain, then finally kicks back in with mellower vibes with Which Way To Go?. Probably the best place to start.

Seam - Granny 9X 7" Mediafire

...and if not, this is the best place to start. Another great example of Seam's slowcore influence (Granny 9X) as well as their versatility (Look Back in Anger, a Television Personalities cover). Sooyoung's lingering regret and nostalgia shines through in his voice and his lyrics ("I threw my bike in the river / watched it sink into the night"). Distorted, loud, high-treble goodness - probably one of my favorite songs by them. On the B-side, they cover "Look Back in Anger" by Television Personalities, a version that I must admit I prefer over the original. Is that blasphemous?

Seam - Kernel 7" (Summershine Records Edition)

A little note about this particular EP. This version I've uploaded is the Australian version on Summershine Records, a little known label from down under. This includes the two songs found on the American version as well as an extra song on the B-side entitled "Feather". I chose to rip this one for that reason.

Seam - Sukiyaki 7" Mediafire
Mirror Mediafire

Their final single, limited to and numbered out of 1000, has two covers to finish off their discography. "Sukiyaki" is a popular Japanese song originally written by Rokusuke Ei and made popular by Kyu Sakamoto, a Japanese singer. The B-side is "Heroes" by David Bowie.

Once I get a hold of the missing EP and the rest of their LPs, I will probably share them as well.

And if you haven't heard this band yet, why not?

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Memorize - Demo (re-up)

This was shared previously, but someone requested that I rip the actual tape if I could. I finally got around to doing that, so here it is. The version of "Wave" on the tape is different from the one provided on MySpace/the previous entry. Also, there is a song called "Polar" that is exclusive to the physical tape. I tried as best as I could with my sub par equipment. Enjoy!

Memorize - Demo Mediafire

Loma Prieta - Life/Less LP (2010)

Loma Prieta were kind enough to sell test pressings of their newest LP, "Life/Less," to the general public three weeks before its proper release. Needless to say, the record fantastic; it's much harder and more developed than anything else they've put out. It's great to see this band growing and advancing instead of taking a step backwards like some of their peers. I am not at all disappointed with this record, and we're talking about screamo in 2010. Loma Prieta is probably the only Bay Area screamo band that I still enjoy (incidentally, this is the only time that I'll be posting screamo on this blog.)

Here it is if you'd like to hear it early. If you like this record (and you will), please buy it the second it comes out. Go to their upcoming shows and buy some of their merch. Send them money through the post if you're a shut in like me. Lastly, take a cold shower and wash this off your conscience like I am about to.

Loma Prieta - Life/Less 12" Mediafire

Some people have said that the B-side tracks are quieter than the A-side tracks. If you want to hear them louder, click here for a link to another/better rip that isn't mine. And if you don't like vinyl rips, then buy yourself a copy. Problem solved.