Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Permanent Records Update 9.2.14

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LP - Total Control - Typical System - $14.99 - BUYbuy - LISTEN listen

FUUUUUUUUUUUCCCCCCCK YES! FINALLY we have the new Total Control album in our sweaty mitts & life can begin anew! "Typical System" is the name of this jammer & Iron Lung (once again) released it - check out what they have to say before we wax poetic:

"Finally, a new deep cut from Melbourne’s visceral post-punk band Total Control. Typical System, their second LP, was written, recorded, created over the past two years and is set for US/Worldwide release via Iron Lung Records on June 24th and self-release in Australia/New Zealand on June 20th.
Total Control emerged from Australia’s dynamic punk scene in ’08, releasing a succession of 7”s that developed from an aggressive post-punk band sound to studio forays into electronic forms from minimal wave to house. Their debut LP, Henge Beat, was commended as one of the few records released in 2011 that evaded the ease of classification and competent tribute act status of most modern bands.

Subsequently, they have released three very different records: a split 12” with Thee Oh Sees, a 7” single on Sub Pop and a house remix 12”. Typical System develops on the incongruent demands of their debut LP and ensuing releases, a further development on their continually evolving sound."

"Henge Beat" practically DOMINATED our turntables in 2011 (and 2012 fer chrissakes) - we were hard-pressed to find a more thrilling combo of aggressive post-punk nihilism & cool electro-hum, so let us be perfectly clear; "Typical System" might be THE album of 2014. We know, we know - but TRUST US. It RULES. All the elements that made the debut so massive are still here, but streamlined & better. Frontman Dan Stewart's lyrics cut to the quick - abstract commentaries on society & consumerism that somehow seem more specific than they maybe are? Starting of with the icy goth-stepper "Glass" which sounds like Tubeway Army stuck in a K-hole with Cabaret Voltaire (which might have ACTUALLY happened in real life at some point), "Typical System" pulses & sways from punkier moments ("Systematic Fuck") to new-wave (Flesh War") to the EPIC closer "Safety Net" which is the amalgam of both. "Typical System" may not have the hammer over the head impact of "Henge Beat". but it's more like a hot knife. You don't feel the shank until it's too late & your clothes are covered in your own blood. This album is a KEEPER & seems destined to stay stuck to our turntables just as much - if not MORE - than "Henge Beat". This one gets our absolute HIGHEST RECOMMENDATION, so grab this one fast!

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LP - Jack Ruby - Jack Ruby Volume 2 -  $17.99 - BUYbuy - LISTEN listen

Volume Two of the celebrated archival release of the unheard Jack Ruby recordings!! Released by the connoisseurs at Feeding Tube Records, let's load up & read on:

"When Don Fleming was doing the initial transfers of the tapes we'd gotten retrieved from Randy Cohen's barn, every evening seemed to bring a new surprise. But nothing was a bigger jawdropper than the material which makes up the second LP of our Jack Ruby archival series. The central core of the album is the 16 & a 1/2 minute track, "Destroy/Lost," recorded at the band's rehearsal space in January '74. Robin Hall vocalizes and Boris plays electric viola, but the bulk of the piece is screaming analog synth weirdness from Randy Cohen's Serge synthesizer. According to Robin, the track was recorded in hopes that it might be pared down to a single. Hard to imagine how the hell it might've been done (or in what universe), but it is a masterpiece of long-format insanity -- with Boris and Robin providing a context for the massive gallumping of the Serge. Additional players appear on some of the shorter tracks -- new music/free jazz saxophonist, Pete van Riper, on "Lithium Serenade"; Boris's electric viola on "Hydrogen Lullaby"; Chris Gray's guitar on "Mandible Mambo"; Rich Gold's Serge joins Boris' strings on "Ghost Note." The rest is the product of Randy's whacked-out compositional notions and his mastery of the Serge's patch-cords. Some of the material was recorded pre-Jack Ruby at Cal Arts (where Randy and Boris first met). The rest was from a performance in New York in early '74. Heard as a whole, it is a bizarrely shaped piece of the pre-punk/free-form puzzle that was Jack Ruby. Buckle up. It's going to be a bumpy ride." --Byron Coley; Includes download card. Edition of 600." - Feeding Tube Records

Well, we certainly couldn't ask for a higher recommend than Byron Coley! While Volume One of the Jack Ruby story consisted of a few proper studio (and demo) recordings, Volume Two is chock full of full-on experimental mind expanding skronk! The maniacal rumblings of the band's Serge synthesizer are in full force, carving out sheet after sheet of music concréte, undercut only by the mutant rippling of alien guitar. This shit is bananas - hard to believe it was made almost 40 years ago! If you dug the first volume, then this is a no-brainer but if you're a fan of NYC no-wave weirdos gettin' REALLY weird then by all means grip this ASAP. Act fast, true believers, 'cuz this is limited to 600 copies! RECOMMENDED!

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LP - Shit And Shine - Powder Horn - Import 2xLP - $25.99 - BUYbuy - LISTEN listen

Diagonal drops another blast of Shit And Shine magic on us with this mind splitting double platter "Powder Horn" and they have the twisted tale to tell:

"The next release on Diagonal is the latest album from Texas-based demolition artist Craig Clouse aka Shit & Shine. Titled Powder Horn, it follows-up Clouse's 2013 Diagonal debut 12", which channeled his shape-shifting sound into sharp shocks of mangled club music. On this new album, his first full-length since 2012's Jream Baby Jream, Clouse voyages still deeper down his own sonic wormhole. Its raucous slabs of deviant funk, wiry disco and burnt-out acid are sculpted to soundtrack strung-out dancefloors and their seedy early-hours aftermath, yet they still bear crucial traces of Shit & Shine's history in noise rock. Drums bound, crash and detonate to drive the music forward in fits and starts, their sound veering from the chest-busting thud of a techno kick to the hollowed-out clatter of a live punk band. Writhing acid lines do battle with taut, spidery guitar motifs, wrenching the momentum abruptly sideways. "Hiss" is bare-chested post-punk, strutting across the stage, caked with sweat and fizzing with static interference. Deeper into the night, "Acid Minor" wrenches up the gear to explode into full-bore acid techno, with Clouse repeatedly hammering the brakes and triggering space itself to distort around you. This provocative yet playful approach has long been a defining characteristic of Clouse's music. Over the past decade he's gained a reputation for Shit & Shine's remarkable live shows -- mesmerizing blasts of rhythmic noise featuring multiple drummers -- as well as a string of albums exploring starker noise rock and industrial-infused sounds. His recent shift towards more club-centered music, then, makes sense. Both Powder Horn and his previous Diagonal EP further hone his fascination with the energizing effects of rhythm on the mind and body, while retaining the unpredictable and confrontational nature that's always made Shit & Shine such a wild proposition." - Diagonal

New Shit And Shine records are always a welcome thing here at P-Rex HQ.  And this latest installment finds S and S flying further into their distinctly freaky forays of alien funk, destructo dub, ectoplasmic r 'n' b and noise collaged psychedelic hot steppers.  Shit And Shine lay out the hypnotic weirdness across four sides making for quite the heady adventure of splendidly strange sonics.  Supremely Recommended.

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7in - Pen Test - Biology - $6.99 - BUYbuy - LISTEN listen

Moniker Records is unleashing upon the unsuspecting (and hopefully prepared) world the killer debut 7 inch from krautrock / synth explorers Pen Test!   Read on for the official statement-

"The exploitation of ecological systems to affect biological systems funded by military-industrial-media systems are abstracted into cascading, overlapping sequences, and fixed-note arpeggiators, expressing a sense of triumph in what appears to be mastery over the natural and its subjugation.  The result, seemingly existent synergistic order, is only an illusion induced the by human fallacy to withdraw a sense of pattern and order in independent sequences. The same can be applied to our sense of rhythm. Biology was an extraction of those principles to induce a sense of engineering where the use is discovered during or at the end of the process. Creation of a place where rigidness and chance dictate the event through the forcing of the accidental.

The Pen Test is an understanding between Bryan Hitchcock and Patrick Scott-Walsh. An agreed upon reality they cooperate in the ongoing construction of. Point of origin is difficult to discern, but initial development occurred in Athens, GA. Further additions occurred in Minneapolis, MN. Their phone numbers both start with the (715) designation exclusive serving Northern Wisconsin until 2010 when the (534) area code was added to supplement the growth cellular telephony." - Moniker Records

One spin through their self released "Interstate Cassette" tape was all is took for us to get hooked, and now Moniker has done us all a solid by pressing some more of their mind warping / synthetic pop experimentation on wax where it belongs!!!  Part minimal synth wizardry a la Colin Potter, Robert Turman, Klaus Schulze, et al, part krautrock meets new wave crossover (Kraftwerk, La Dusseldorf, late 70s era Can, Depeche Mode), Pen Test distort and twist what you think you know about electro, psych, dance and experimental music.  Cuz for these two epic, earworming tracks, those genres collapse into one, synths warble, beats slowly move your feet, loops cascade over you and faster than you know it you'll be flipping the record over and over again.   Fans of electronic classics from Harald Grosskopf to Craig Leon and like-minded current acts Umberto, Bitchin Bajas, and Stacian need some "Biology" now.  HUGELY RECOMMENDED!!!!!!

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LP - Schematics For A Blank Stare - Acid Rain - $11.99 - BUYbuy - LISTEN listen

We scored a stack of this boss gatefold LP directly from Schematics For A Blank Stare.  It's on Audible Conundrum Records outta Boca Raton, FL and it is chock full of 60's tinged instrumental jams featuring heaping loads of Fender Rhodes and wah-wah'd fuzz guitar backed by a swinging rhythm section.  This is all 100% analog and the warm grooves throughout prove this potion is potent indeed.  We're hearing hints of Manfred Mann Chapter Three, Brian Auger and The Trinity, War, Colosseum, Mandrill, David Axelrod, Vanilla Fudge and the Meters.  You know, the kind of grooves perfect for DJing and/or sampling. Oh, by the way this is from 2012 but you'd never guess given the choice production work and absolutely stellar chops these guys are showcasing! Funky backing rhythms support scorching guitar leads and thrilling psychedelic keyboard flourishes to make up an album of some seriously deep fried psych-funk.  Super Recommended.

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LP - Schematics For A Blank Stare - Kiss Of Death - $8.99 - BUYbuy - LISTEN listen

After blowing our minds with their "Acid Rain" LP, Schematics For A Blank Stare return with "Kiss Of Death" also out on Audible Conundrum Records.  And it is another installment of sleek slithering analog bliss with glossy synthesizer passages, fat bottom bass grooves, fuzz guitar excursions and Fender Rhodes and Wurlitzer head spinners.  A funky beat lays the foundation throughout while various Moogs and assorted organs groan out soulful jam after soulful jam.  We compared their first record "Acid Rain" to acts like Manfred Mann Chapter Three, Brian Auger and The Trinity, Mandrill and the Meters and "Kiss of Death" continues on with these tried and true vibes for sure.  "Kiss of Death" is another amazing example of modern jams that sound like they are from another era.  More killer analog jams from start to finish here.  Super Recommended.

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LP - Leisure Birds - Tetrahedron - $13.99 - BUYbuy - LISTEN listen

Moon Glyph and Totally Gross National Product teamed up to release the new album from Minneapolis' finest purveyors of kraut damaged psych rock, Leisure Birds.  And just you wait til you get yer ears on "Tetrahedron"!!!!!!!

"Leisure Birds third album, Tetrahedron, continues their spaced-out journey through the cosmos. With machine-like rhythm and pulsing synths, Tetrahedron seems to live in a parallel existence: somewhere between reality and the other side —Co-released with Totally Gross National Product (TGNP32)" - Moon Glyph Records

YES somewhere between reality and the other side is exactly where we want to be!  Leisure Birds new affair latches onto the experimental motorik pulses and droning synth scapes from Neu, Harmonia and Tangerine Dream whilst pinning them to a more conventional yet in-the-groove, improvisational back drop of guitar / bass /drums.  So that layers of hazy analogue sound swoon back and forth both from the kosmische realms of the keys and the haunting and propulsive effects laden guitars.  But this is far from some rerun of space rock / shoegaze / psych ideas.  Leisure Birds sculpt and build their songs in such a meditative / trance inducing way, "Tetrahedron" is more like Agitation Free or Can jamming with Eno, or Klaus Schulze joining the Velvets after John Cale quit.  Leisure Birds bring a more guitar-oriented approach to the kosmische music we can't get enough and reinvigorate the current psychedelic scene in a electronic way that hasn't been done frequently (or well) enough since the early heyday of Sky and Brain Records.  And man do they do it right.  File them right next to other go-to mind expanders like Camera, Eat Lights Become Lights and Cave.  SO YEAH IN THE RECOMMENDED STACK THAT SITS NEXT TO YER TURNABLE!   ESSENTIAL!   Grab one before they're gone!

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LP - King Gizzard And The Lizard Wizard - Float Along - Fill Your Lungs / Oddments -  $22.99 - BUYbuy - LISTEN listen

We scored a batch of this monster double LP by this Aussie psych act King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard.  Not to be confused with Count Quizard and the Scissored Blizzard.  The Flightless Records who released this have the full story here:

"King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard crank up the fuzzbox and set the Memory Man delay on infinity, assembling a cosmic force field that draws their sonic creations of the recent past into one unified, throbbing whole. Housed in a gatefold jacket for special release in the USA, this compilation features the truly intergalactic Float Along – Fill Your Lungs (dateline September 2013) together with its sister album Oddments (dateline Match 2014). The Melbourne, Australia, seven-piece just finished their maiden North American tour, including a run of club dates along with appearances at Austin Psych Fest, Canadian Music Week and a slot at Northside Festival alongside Thee Oh Sees, Mac Demarco, Omar Souleyman and more. The remainder of King Gizzard’s American vacation saw them holed up in Sky Lodge in the Catskills for a month, recording what will be their sixth LP (tentatively scheduled for early 2015 release). They have also just recorded their fifth LP at Daptone in Brooklyn, due out at the end of 2014. The band return to Australia for the rest of the summer before heading back Stateside in October to open a White Fence tour, and then a European tour in November, including a slot at the Iceland Airwaves Festival. In short, there is no slowing this band down. Float along and fill your ears."

KG and the LW start things out with the blistering 15+ minute epic acid scorcher Head on/Pill before spiraling into some Stones-y psych swaggerers.  This deluxe package supplies you with both the Float Along-Fill Your Lungs album and the Oddments album all in one place!  If you dig the trippy vibes of the Flaming Lips, Night Beats, Ty Segall and the like then grab this tube clearing double platter right now.  You're gettin' hours of fried out, reverb drenched psych rock splendor from this seven member strong army of down under heads, so puff, puff, pass this on to all yer amigos pronto!

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7in - Damrod - Once Again b/w Twelve Hour Man - Original 1975 Stock - $19.99 - BUYbuy - LISTEN listen

Rare Private Press hard rock from the mid seventies featuring some sick guitar leads and mystical organ riffs in a damaged Blue Oyster Cult / Deep Purple / Uriah Heep kind of way.  And oh yeah they named themselves after a minor character from the Lord Of The Rings!  Fans of Acid Archives obscurities and Bonehead Crunchin' / Warfaring Stranger ragin' RnR from the murky corners of the US of A definitely need some Damrod stat!  RECOMMENDED!

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7in - Lance Romance (aka Kim Fowley) - California Sunshine b/w Hollywood Nites - $9.99 - BUYbuy - LISTEN listen

Glam tinged RnR from Kim Fowley dedicated to Rodney Bingenheimer from 1974 on Now Records.  Two songs about trashy California living from Mr. Fowley?  Fuck yes count us in!!!!!  And the A side has never been comped before.  So that makes this one essential!!!

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Tape - Greg Ashley - Death Of A Ladies Man - $4.99 - BUYbuy - LISTEN listen

HOO BABY we're stoked beyond belief to see another Greg Ashley solo record comin' our way! Gris Gris were (and remain) one of our faves o'er at the shop and Greg's one talented mofo! Ashley throws another curveball at us with this fairly reverent cover of Leonard Cohen's album "Death Of A Ladies' Man"! This is the sophomore release from Guitars and Bongos Records, so let's hear their eulogy for Ashley's take on 'Death of a Ladies' Man':

"GREG ASHLEY’s 4th album under his own name, his first since 2009’s Requiem Mass (Birdman), signals yet another change in direction for this multi-instrumentalist / producer / arranger / singer / songwriter / bandleader. Death of a Ladies' Man is a reverential song-for-song treatment of Leonard Cohen’s least ‘reverential’ album: the 1977 Phil Spector-produced album of the same name. Greg’s cover photo replaces actual women with two mannequins, but in almost every other way Greg’s stripped down arrangements with a basic bar band lineup give the original animal more human warmth, making the album more accessible than it’s ever been behind that bloated fortress Phil built. Ultimately, Ashley’s Death of a Ladies' Man pays tribute to the songwriting team of Cohen/Spector. Greg’s rock and roll background informs his Death of a Ladies' Man, but the tenderness, and the mid-life crisis evident in Cohen’s lyrics is highlighted, and conveys the meaning of the songs in ways even Cohen might appreciate. Greg also brings the sensibility he honed in the Oakland bar circuit, and his country-tinged ‘One Thin Heroine/ Misery Again’ single (Mexican Summer), to make ‘Fingerprints’ a much more convincing country rocker than it does in Spector’s version.”—Chris Stroffolino, from the liner notes."

Cover albums are a tricky business and can go horribly wrong in a heartbeat, but Ashley is so-well acquainted with Cohen's work and his world that this could conceivably be mistaken for an Ashley record on it's own! Seriously, SO MUCH new life is breathed into these tunes, we MIGHT actually prefer it over Cohen's original! Much of the pathos and pain glossed over by the smoke and (cocaine) mirrors of Phil Spector's production is brought to the forefront by Ashley's own sensitive, no-nonsense recording technique. Ashley plays much of the record himself, assisted by a host of able-bodied West Coast guest-players from both the R'n'R/Garage rock and Jazz worlds (including The Wrong Words' Josh Miller and Kimberly Morrison a.k.a. "The Duchess" from The Duchess and The Duke!) A killer tribute to a killer album and an appetizing teaser to tide us over until Ashley's next solo album next year on Trouble In Mind! Is this worth it? YOU BET IT IS. Grab a snifter of cognac, unbutton the top three buttons of your shirt and throw this one on to ease away the pain of existence! RECOMMENDED!