Thursday, 26 July 2007

July Vice Reviews



Pretty much the same as the last one. The best thing they have done is still that ‘Mr On Your On Fire Mr’ song off the first record. Maybe Berlin bums them out or something but they just don’t seem to be enjoying it all that much anymore.

Bad Brains
Build A Nation
Megaforce Records


Reunions don’t work. When will punk bands get that? You can’t be angry at the world like you were when you were 19 after the mid-life spread has hit and you have a mortgage and stuff. Just go read Hamilton and get depressed or something. This sounds like a faded version of the glorious ROIR tape in that it oscillates between attempts at blasting punk and those funky reggae stabs but has none of the horrible ‘Quickness’ era metal bits. HR still sounds pretty nuts though.

Bang Gang
Bang Gang Presents


Like a big 2 disc hipster version of a Ministry Of Sound compilation, Modular gives you a bunch of electro-indie-house tracks for ‘out’ and ‘in’. Will be on repeat up and down the Kingsland Road right about now.

Voice Of The Seven Woods
The Far Golden Peak Part One
Blackest Rainbow Records


There are only 333 of these in the world. You should really try and get one though because it’s a single 25 minute track that makes you feel like you are suspended weightless in a bottomless pool of virgins. It will put all your other free-improv-avant-folk-drone CDR’s to shame.

Jonny Trunk Presents…
Now We Are Ten
Trunk Records


Jonny Trunk may be one of the last true mavericks in what is pretty much the most boring industry in the world ever right now. Trunk is the label that goes to a whole load of trouble re-releasing things like ‘The Wickerman’ and ‘Dawn Of The Dead’ soundtracks as well as 12” spoken word records by obscure 70’s porn stars. This retrospective comes with some nice liner notes that include thanks to Vice editor Andy Capper for giving Trunk’s reissue of The Clangers a 10/10 Album Of The Week review in the NME.

Grave Temple
The Holy Down
Southern Lord


Southern Lord was kind of coasting on autopilot for a while but this thunders them back to ‘White 1’ era greatness. These three tracks, weighing in at just over an hour, were recorded live in war torn Israel last year. The band is made up by O’Malley, Oren Ambarchi and Mayhem vocalist Attila Csihar so you can sort of guess what it sounds like: shrieks and drones galore.



Last time I checked Earache was a Death Metal label. Whatever. They have now put out the three best Thrash records in ages. Out of the Evile, Municipal Waste thing and this I’ll probably plump for this because they are from Liverpool and the singer is an 8 foot tall guy who likes to drop kick fake kids in the pit like he did at the Old Blue Last when they played with Pulling Teeth.

City Of Echoes
Hydra Head


More like City of depressingly boring AOR post-rock. You can almost hear the music research departments on all those Planet Earth nature documentaries thundering over the horizon to license every tack. What happened guys? Australasia must have been such a towering idyl of perfection that they shot all their creative load in one go.

A Hat


Wow, after the depression that set in listening to the Pelican record this pretty much made my day and reminded me why I like atmospheric, instrumental stuff. It’s sort of like how I imagine running as fast as you can on your own through some snowy field in the Alps might feel.

Tiny Masters Of Today
Bang Bang Boom Cake
Mute Irregulars


For a little minute I was going to sit on the fence with this one but after two and a half seconds you just have to kind of fall in love with the wide-eyed innocence of it all. The guy from the Blues Explosion, Karen O and Gibby Haynes from the Butthole Surfers couldn’t help it either. They are all here. Come join the fuzz party. Way better than Smoosh.

Patton Oswalt
Werewolves & Lollipops
Sub Pop


It has been said before but Patton is still probably the closest, funniest thing that we have to Bill Hicks. Not just in terms of how is voice is sort of whiny and he does those funny microphone things but also in the way he rails against things like G Rated filth, pedantry and the jilted alternate hell that 2007 has become. The KFC sketch is worth it alone: failure piled in a sadness bowl.

Video Hippos
Unbeats The Leash


What is going on in Baltimore right now? Its like the whole town has been hit by the goodness branch or something. Maybe Dan Deacon is some high priest and all these Future Shock guys are his good time disciples.

The Great Koonaklaster Speaks
Table Of The Elements


Usually tribute albums are pretty much the worst things ever and should only live in motorway service discount bins next to Roy ‘Chubby’ Brown audio tapes. John Fahey however managed to single handedly influence a whole school of guitar players so this one is ok. All the faces are here: Sir Richard Bishop, Jack Rose, No Neck. You know the drill.
Friend Or Foe


Like Deerhunter if they were happy. Or the Shins if they were into looping sounds and hadn’t turned shitty after album number two. Craig Thomson did the cover which is why its pretty amazing.

The Angels Of Light
We Are Him
Young God


I would have given this top marks on sight anyway but then I listened to it and wanted to give it 20. How is it everyone else grows up and gets awful but Gira just keeps getting better?

Oli N Clive
Excuse Me
Trial & Error 7”


This sounds like the theme tune for the politest, nicest guy ever as he strolls down a country lane in a little village where everyone is friends and they have the best nights ever drinking cider till dawn and playing traditional songs in jug bands and stuff like that. Its probably the exact opposite of that village where Alex James and Jeremy Clarkson pretend to be farmers.

Turbo Fruits
Ecstatic Peace!


This one sounds like the guy from the Kings Of Leon fronting the Blues Explosion. It’s actually the kid from Be Your Own Pet fronting his two mates but it still sounds lithe, limber and spiked with a fair bit of goodtime southern soaked menace.

The Train Chronicles
Romancing The Bottle 7”
Real Gold


Good times down on the farm from within the walls of the city. Picks, strums, melodies and deft turns of phrase. Martin comes on like the Hackney Langhorn Slim and we are all the better for having him around.

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