April 27, 2012
As I seem to be writing about live events again, and I just happen to have been to one in my very own village, at my very good friend Dave Charleston’s bookshop, it would seem churlishly remiss of me to ignore it — not to mention hypocritical, given my vocal public stance on localism… Since The Open Road opened it’s been host to some splendid events, and I really should have been doing my bit to big up my homey Dave before; still, no time like the present. Adrian May’s been doing what he does for a goodly while, but this was the first I’d heard of it; such a lack of international notoriety shouldn’t be taken to correlate in any way with a performer’s quality however…
April 26, 2012
This track, this EP, is a remix in one continuous utterance of the Hanetration EP Tenth Oar which I reviewed in my last roundup of short releases. Tenth Oar was divided into four tracks, while the Barren Waste EP I reviewed in the same roundup was called A unified idea split into meaningless pieces, which may explain why they stitched this into a continuum. The piece evinces the same sort of tonal continuity as the source from which it is constructed, and its sounds are recognisably the sounds of Hanetration’s release, but it is very much its own thing, with very much the sound of Barren Waste …
April 17, 2012
When two artists share a split release, there’s usually an immediately apparent reason for it, a close stylistic correspondence, or a specific creative contrast within the context of a broader similarity. Punk and hardcore bands often release splits together, as do sludge and stoner metal acts. So when two halves of a split release seem, on the face of it, to pursue radically divergent artistic agendas, it seems an invitation to consider each in the light of the other. The established practice of the split release almost compels the listener to read the two sets of sounds striking their cochlea as equivalent in some way …
April 13, 2012
Da Waffle House Boys are all about loyalty; don’t even think about suggesting patronising some other fast food franchise, and definitely don’t even mention IHOP, motherfucker. The beats on True Facts are smooth and irresistibly funky, and the flows that they float are a lazy, infectious slick on their surface, giving the lie to any impression you might get from the deeply cheeked tongues of these lyricists that this music is principally satire or pastiche. No, this shit is funny, and it’s self-deprecating, and it pokes holes in all of rap’s clichés, but it’s hip-hop to the core, and it’s as head-nodding as pretty much anything I can remember hearing.
April 6, 2012
Punk didn’t come out of nowhere. Of course there’s a powerful myth in which it did, one subscribed to by its fans and detractors alike, but by the time it hit in its different ways, with its different relationships to popular culture and politics, on both sides of the Atlantic, its sounds and practices had been incubated in petri-dishes as diverse as Detroit garage and British situationist rockers The Deviants. I’m not trying to say it didn’t involve originality and stylistic innovation, just that it didn’t arrive fully formed out of the clear blue sky, and that novelty was never as big a part of what was good about it as has often been supposed.