Amy Cook – The Sky Observer’s Guide

Amy Cook – The Sky Observer’s Guide / 2007 Root House / 10 Tracks / http//www.amycook.com / http://rroothouserecords.com /

“Coming Home (The Eclipse)” starts off in a slow style, the guitar being pretty much the only thing that bolsters Cook’s vocals. The vocals of Cook are nothing special, coming forth as somewhat poppy, somewhat rocky. The anemic flow of “Coming Home” means that the only thing individuals can really get behind is the dreamy interplay between the vocals and instrumentation at times. The track is a good introduction to Cook but does not give individuals much of a reason to keep a focus on eir. I’m sure individuals can still get behind Cook, but that is if “The Answer” is sufficiently exciting. “The Answer” has a more vocal focus to it than “Coming Home”, but the track sticks in the same slower style and influences that started out the disc. Continue reading “Amy Cook – The Sky Observer’s Guide”

Drawing Voices – S/T

Drawing Voices – S/T / 2007 Hydra Head / 6 Tracks / http://www.hydrahead.com /

For those not in the know, Drawing Voices is the culmination of forces including artist Craig Dongoski and Isis’ Aaron Turner. So, typical Hydra Head-types of individuals join forces to craft a six-song album. “Being Born Broken” is a short introduction to Drawing Voices, and there is more atmospheric sounds present to the track than anything. It is an ambient sound approach that Drawing Voices takes on this early track, and the only thing that is different than this being purely ambient noise is that at points, the arrangements include an industrial, almost Aphex Twin like sound. The track dovetails nicely with the much longer “Mask”, the disc’s second song. Continue reading “Drawing Voices – S/T”

Alice Donut – Fuzz

Alice Donut – Fuzz / 2007 Howler / 12 Tracks / http://www.alicedonut.com / http://www.howlerrecords.com /

I had known of Alice Donut for quite a few years, and their cover of “War Pigs” is one of my favorite covers of all times. However, I did not know what their sounded like beyond that. “Madonna’s Bombing Sarajevo” is the first track on the CD, and it blends together the strung out sounds of “Deliverance”-era Corrosion of Conformity with Jane’s Addiction. There are hints of metal present during this track as well, which will give individuals a great introduction to the diverse style of Alice Donut. Continue reading “Alice Donut – Fuzz”

Khlyst – Chaos is my Name

Khlyst – Chaos is my Name / 2007 Hydra Head / 8 Tracks / http://www.plotkinworks.com/Khlyst/KhlystMain.html /

I must admit, I am not completely behind the work of Khlyst at the onset of this disc. I mean, I like noise in my music, but fucking around on a guitar and just screaming out without any rhyme or reason isn’t that impressive to me. The band does start to become more coherent as the track rolls on, with different elements throwing it at whatever times they feel like. “Chaos Is My Name” is a perfect title for this album, as it shows that Khlyst work through chaos to try to provide some order. When the overall sound is leading toward something, as is the case with the atmospheric opening to “II”, the band succeeds. When there is nothing in the way of structure, and individuals have little idea what the band is trying to attempt with the track, the prospects for success decrease considerably. Continue reading “Khlyst – Chaos is my Name”

The Hidden Hand – The Resurrection of Whiskey Foote

The Hidden Hand – The Resurrection of Whiskey Foote / 2007 Southern Lord / 10 Tracks / http://www.thehiddenhand.com / http://www.southernlord.com /

God, I love grunge. I love bands that revel in sounding like they’ve just had sex with their Corrosion of Conformity, Helmet, and Morbid Angel albums. “Purple Neon Dream” is the first track on “The Resurrection of Whiskey Foote”, and it shows that the band loves crafting some  of the most intricate and most thought out sludge that has ever graced an oil byproduct. The tracks are oftentimes under four minutes long, and yet they feel like they are ten minute opuses. Continue reading “The Hidden Hand – The Resurrection of Whiskey Foote”

Dead Town Revival – Hasta La Muerte

Dead Town Revival – Hasta La Muerte / 2007 Sinister Muse / 11 Tracks / http://www.deadtownrevival.com /

Before receiving “Hasta La Muerte”, I never had heard of Dead Town Revival. The band plays a brand of rock that is very influenced by punk music. The first track of the disc is “Waco”, and what really distinguishes the act from the rest of the bands releasing CDs now has to be the energetic tempo and distinctive vocals present during the disc. Couple that with a set of guitars that during “Waco” have a decidedly Offspring-like sound, and one has a solid opening. However catchy Dead Town Revival were doing “Waco”, they increase their catchiness with “Time”. Continue reading “Dead Town Revival – Hasta La Muerte”

Shshsh Shark Attack – S/T

Shshsh Shark Attack – S/T /  2006 Self / 8 Tracks / http://www.shshshsharkattack.com / 

I guess I should not be surprised, but Shshsh Shark Attack play a brand of surf music that is linked to the more chaotic sound of an act like Men’s Recovery Project and to also the goth music of the late eighties and early nineties. Their first track on their self-titled album is “Burmuda Triangle” (yes, misspelled), and it showcases this style. The band seems to struggle with a problem of repetition from the onset of this album, as the song is about three and a half minutes long while the band (if they are lucky) has two minutes of material present. The second track on the disc is “Oh my God, oh my God, I Can’t Believe I’m Alive”, and this provides listeners with a second possible sound by Shshsh Shark Attack. Continue reading “Shshsh Shark Attack – S/T”

DeVotchKa signs with Anti Records for Euro Release

DeVotchKa, has signed an exclusive deal with ANTI RECORDS for the European release of their much-praised album How It Ends.

 

DeVotchKa are four musicians who have quietly become one of the most celebrated bands making music today. They make a disparate, yet articulate union of Eastern European, Southwestern, South American, and American roots music, both punk and folk. Continue reading “DeVotchKa signs with Anti Records for Euro Release”