LOSS – DESPOND – Profound Lore

Imagine its the final day of your life, a life wasted.

This is the soundtrack.

This band reigns from Nashville, TN. Their LP, “Despond” is released on the label Profound Lore, which is known for housing other amazing releases from the likes of WORM OUROBOROS, a crushingly beautiful band that blends post punk guitars with delay and interestingly placed drums under haunting female vocals. You can also purchase the highly recommended album “The Obsidian Planes” by appropriately named, WOLVHAMMER there, an album that without pretense fuses all kinds of the underground music into a hatefully passionate hammer that nails you into your grave….

This is the kind of music that is really convincing in its emotional quality, but also the instrumentation is perfect… The vocals growl and brood over defeating minor chords and soaring harmonies… the drums and bass also mix well under and around them. Its great… I won’t go too much into detail with frilly words and descriptions… Take it upon yourself to try out this release, this is a great accomplishment of musicianship and poetry, especially if you’re a miserable fuck from time to time.

Preview the song “Cut Up, Depressed and Alone” here.

Buy the album at the Profound Lore website linked above..

JDL

Photos: Edgar Allen Poe House and Museum Benefit Show

all images in this post by nathan jurgenson

The house where Poe lived and wrote many of his stories is in trouble. When the city of Baltimore threatened to cut funding to the Poe House Museum, musicians inspired by the writer took action. There was a benefit show last weekend at the Velvet Lounge in Washington, D.C. Two local bands–Lions and Tigers and Whales as well as Lenorable–captured Poe’s spirit: LTW’s chaotic horror and Lenorable’s dark suspense were the perfect musical embodiment of the brilliant short stories that made Poe so famously influential.

I snapped some photos of the two bands and caught up with Ian and Lisa of Lenorable.

“The city makes millions off of a football team named after the author’s work, but wants to balance its budget by cutting that part of their city’s history?” -Ian, of Lenorable

“E.A. Poe remains to this day the greatest influence in my passion for the macabre, for he exposed the human spirit — in only a few pages at a time — as more terrifying than any horrid other-worldly creature we could imagine. He’s convinced me, as well as notable authors in the horror genre, that the short story is perhaps the most effective medium for telling a suspenseful horror tale that leaves the writer craving more thrills by way of betrayal, brutality and murder.” -Lisa, from Lenorable

“Baltimore’s plan to defund the place where he and his family lived and he wrote represents our country’s disjointed relationship with Poe, and many artists in general.”

“His legacy lives on here and around the world, yet he is still dismissed to an extent, just as he was while living.” -Lisa

LTW – TOTAL GARBAGE review

Fotis Patikas from Take your shot was nice enough to sit down and type out how he feels about the new LTW 7 inch – TOTAL GARBAGE. Take your shot has been doing obnoxiously excellent reviews of hardcore and metal since 2004. We love Greece. Chirp Chirp.
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Record Review: LTW “Total Garbage” 7″
Cricket Cemetery is a US label that specializes in discordant, scorching hardcore punk that is definitely a step ahead of today’s standards. The label is releasing one crucial 7″ after the other, attacking the world with beautifully incomprehensible hardcore noise that goes unmatched in the current HC/punk (and even metal) scenes. This is our first Cricket Cemetery review, for the band LTW.

The phantom HC outfit which goes under the name of LTW is a perfect example of the label’s dilapidated take on hardcore, as their Total Garbage 7″ brings the noise like it aint no thing. LTW deliver three relentless hardcore blasts of rabid drumming, loud as fuck basslines, demented barked vocals and a production sound that is dirtier than CBGB’s toilet.

What is really going on here is a demolition and reorganization of hardcore’s bare essentials: short punk riifs, explosive layers of distortion and crazy breakneck rhythms. This ultra-sped Black Flag bastard of a son is combined with tons of feedback, well placed psychedelic breaks and some silent parts that indeed leave you wandering “what the fuck?” For sure, this would go down better with fans of powerviolence, fastcore, grind etc compared to the typical hardcore fan.

I guess Cricket Cemetary reinvents the hardcore of a new generation and, quite possibly, this is what the hipsters will soon be listening to (hopefully not). In either case, my ears hurt!
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The LTW – TOTAL GARBAGE 7 INCH will be out early November on cricket cemetery. Limited to 150 copies with hand screened covers. LTW plays at the red palace October 26 in DC with Beasts of no nation & the mostly dead. Check that shit out, it’s going to be a rager.

http://takeyourshotfanzine.blogspot.com/2011/10/record-review-ltw-total-carbage-7.html
http://takeyourshotfanzine.blogspot.com

By Way of Introductions…

I’m Ian Graham, I make noises and play guitar in Lenorable.

I’ll be writing things here, and posting photos, and other things you do on blogs.

Today I’ll introduce you to my band and leave it at that.

Subject to Change: Interview with Alec MacKaye of The Faith

Like many, my introduction to The Faith was the legendary split with Void. Of course everyone today seems to talk about how amazing Void’s side is (and it is), but a few years ago I found myself playing The Faith side just as much. Songs like “You’re X’d” and “Face to Face” not only stand up with the best of DC Hardcore, but with Hardcore as a whole. When revisiting The Faith’s catalog one tends to forget how intense Alec MacKaye’s vocals were, which is what really set them apart from any of their HarDCore contemporaries. Instead of  just the normal brash screaming and pushing everything all in one verse, Alec had a way of making these minute blast songs almost melodic without compromising or losing any intensity.

This past week Dischord re-issued Subject to Change on vinyl (re mastered and with demos), we’ll have that review up tomorrow, for now here is an interview I did with Alec MacKaye of The Faith last week. We not only do we talk about the re-issue, but what the early shows were like, recording the demos, and how the Faith/Void split came to be.

Faith – Aware 

When The Faith started did you view The Faith picking up where the Untouchables left off?

No- if anything, Faith was S.O.A. continuing. When Henry left to join Black Flag, he suggested that I start playing with Michael and Ivor. But when we started playing together, we knew we were going to be different than our previous bands. Ivor had only done one show with S.O.A. Michael had some songs that hadn’t gotten sorted out, so those, along a couple of S.O.A. songs with new lyrics were what we started with. But really, we started pretty fresh. People learn and change quickly at that age. I knew Chris Bald from Wilson High School and brought him in to see if it could work and something gelled, as they say.

How did the idea of finally issuing the demos come about?

Ian came up with it. He was thinking of ways to get some of the old stuff remastered and back out and when it came to Faith/Void split, well it was hard to figure how to pull that apart. He hit on the idea of getting the demos out instead…

What are some of the things you remember most about recording that first demo?

Mostly the anxiety of being in the studio. We didn’t know how much time would really need to mix after getting the tracks down… We were really happy to be at Don’s though. It was when he had his studio in his basement. The vocals booth was in the laundry room, the control room was next to the furnace, the instruments were set up in his daughter’s play room, with dolls and a chest full of dress up clothes… Don was and is a masterful, calm and inspiring person.

The Faith added a second guitarist for Subject to Change, how did that change the dynamic in terms of song writing? Was song writing easier?

Well the dynamic changed – and the joy increased. It was so cool having Eddie in the band and it helped the sound stay solid on stage, as well as added a lot of depth and strength. Guitar parts that were hard to pull off live, were suddenly attainable for both Eddie and Michael. Song writing changed, too. Eddie brought a lot to the band. For me, the other impact was having watch out for yet another guitar swinging for my head. Eddie nailed me good at a 930 show and still have a scar on the top of my head from it.

Faith – In the Black 

Subject to Change seems really focused, I’ve always enjoyed a song like Unititled which was just a well executed hardcore song, followed by the almost stooges-ish Subject to Change. Was in purposely done to make Subject to change almost more melodic than the Void split?

We weren’t purposely trying to be different from ourselves – we are just growing and changing. Read the title of the record again! We also spent a bit more time mixing Subject To Change. As much as we liked doing the split, we thought we could do better almost as soon as it was out.

Your vocals were always what I thought were the most interesting about The Faith, they weren’t the typical “hardcore” vocals, and it seems bands like Die Kreuzen would borrow from them almost. They seemed melodic in a sense, would you say this is what helped push the songs in different directions on Subject to Change?

Thanks for that. I actually don’t know what to say to say about my voice. I was just doing the best I could with what I had to work with. I would say that by the time we recorded Subject To Change, we had played and rehearsed a lot more – we had grown into the songs as well as gotten more in tune with each other. More confident even in allowing “mistakes” to occur (as opposed to when we were younger and trying to nail things tight). And we had Eddie in the mix which was huge for us.

In the American Hardcore book it said you sang so hard you would hyperventilate. Is this true? That must have freaked people out.

I suppose its true — but I don’t recall anyone freaking out. I always finished our sets as far as I know.

Keep in mind, the shows were often wild all over. Some of the shows were unbearably hot, too. Imagine an overcrowded church basement with all the windows and doors shut to keep the noise from bringing the cops… I remember watching a kid go into a full seizure in front of me on the steps at the Wilson Center. He just stiffened up and planked, face firs,t hand at his sides, onto the steps. I never did that.

Why did The Faith break up? Was it odd to have an EP come out and not be in that band anymore?

Being in the Faith was a bit like harnessing fireworks. After a while we just got so we didn’t want to do that anymore. I know we were proud of the way Subject To Change turned out and really wanted it released. It was worrisome, because in general, it didn’t make sense to put out a record if the band was no longer around to do shows and sell records– especially if there were other bands to put out. I am glad Subject To Change was pressed then, and I am really happy to see it getting re-released now! It looks so cool with a red sleeve and still sounds great!

Who’s idea was it to do the split with Void? Was it always meant to be a split? 

Pretty sure that was Ian’s idea, too. I think it was just that neither band had enough material recorded to warrant a whole album, back then we always tried to fit as much music as mechanically possible onto albums. Void and Faith were definitely into each other’s bands but our approaches to music were so different that there there isn’t much point in comparing the two sides… though people always do. Its like comparing red vs. blue; The two things have their particular jobs to do. They are never close enough to compare, only to contrast and to compliment– and that’s the whole idea. I suppose it could be interesting to attempt to verbalize the ways that blue is different from red …

Looking back ’79-’83 do you feel that hardcore and especially the harDCore scene is romanticized at all? Do you enjoy or read the books and movies that have been made on hardcore in recent years? Do you feel there are some bands these books and movies have glossed over that they should have included?

— I wouldn’t say the scene is romanticized too much, in general. Some people do have astonishing, sometimes curious recollections, but I think that is bound to happen. And that can be fun to hear. As long as there are other voices to bring some balance (and discerning people to look for them and listen to them) some modicum of truth will be settled on.

I always read books about punk history and I always assume that some portion of it is bullshit. Anyone trying to contain a bunch of complicated, incongrous information and assemble a readable/watchable narrative for a book or an article or a movie is bound to cut out things that impede flow, eat up minutes, or interfere with the set-up of who is good and/or bad in the story and what was important, etc.

Trenchmouth were an amazing band to see. I wish they had made it into a studio! All there is is some cool rehearsal tapes on Scott Wingo’s web page. I would like people to listen to the two Limp Records samplers to hear the music that came just before hardcore, to get a sense of some of what we were listening to.  

Subject to Change (Plus first demo) is out now on Dischord Records. Buy it here

Rediscover Friday

We are at another Friday, this week it’s been all about Jazz for me. I used to spend a lot of my time in my late teens early 20s trying to find every BYG/ESP/Impulse etc record I could afford. Needless to say that’s partly why I was broke most of the time. What’s really interesting is that when I first started listening Jazz I decided (stupidly) to not give Bop/Hard Bop a chance. I thought to my ears it just sounded like “Grampa Jazz”, a few years ago it finally just hit me, maybe it was the early 60s Blue Note records I tried to collect, who knows.

Sonny Red – Nadia

Sonny Red did a killer one off LP with Blue Note. Hard Bop is one of those things that took me time to really enjoy, not sure why. Roy Brooks is on fire here, no crazy fills, just keeping the beat along until he goes into this crazy solo which for me, makes the song brilliant.

Art Brooks – side 1

It looks like Night Caller by Art Brooks is a private press LP. It really does sound like a lost ESP release or something. What makes this LP stand out is its almost “drone” atmosphere to it.  Not really quite sure  much else about this record though

Sunny Murray – Black Art

Sunny’s Time Now was one of the first LP’s I had listened to after being obsessed with Albert Ayler for the longest time. This record is in my top ten Jazz LPs of all time if I had to make one. What made this interesting was going from the almost spiritual political leanings of say Sun Ra or Ayler to this. Here Murray goes for the throat instead of sugar coating anything.

Duke Pearson – Sudel

Another Hard Bop record. This I believe came out in 1966, it’s pretty well executed Hard Bop stuff. The impressive thing about this song specifically is Joe Henderson’s playing. His solo is spot on and doesn’t seem too agressive with the notes.

Ornette Coleman – Doughnuts

Ornette isn’t playing to agressive here, but that’s what I love about this cut. Also David Izenzon  really pushes this song to be great. Just completely adding certain notes and a vibe to this version that is just awesome to hear.

Monday Power Pop Mix

It’s another Monday morning and my Ravens lost, so I need a good pick me up. First band that always comes to my mind  when thinking of Power Pop is the terribly underrated Superdrag. It’s a shame that they might only be known for their Buzz Bin hit “Sucked Out” cause as their debut LP, Regretfully Yours proved, Superdrag was a mix between My Bloody Valentine, Husker Du, and The Beach Boys. Later albums dove into more straight ahead heavy Power Pop as well as some weird Psych experiments as well.

Spiltsville, from Baltimore, also never got their due. I’m not sure if there was ever a place for them in Charm City, which sucks because their songs are extremely well written. I saw these guys I think when I was 14 or something at a local showcase at Merriwether. Of course every other band sucked but these guys. I picked up Repeater, partly because I found out they were on the same label as Shonen Knife or something. A few years later they did a tribute LP of sorts in the style of The Beach Boys Pet Sounds and The Beatles Revolver, which pretty much worked, though it was a little cheese ball at times.

The Shivvers from Milwaukee were a band from 1979-82 and should have probably been the biggest band in the world. Though I guess like the press release for the collection CD they put out a few years back said, if they were from NYC they would have been huge.  Love the vocals, which to me is what makes them special beyond the solid and catchy song writing. It’s a bit of the pretenders, it is a bit of the Raspberries, but it all rules.

The Riff Doctors with “Turn Me On” add a little bit of twang to your Power Pop or whatever. Here is a killer demo from this band, not sure if they did anything more than this. I guess North Carolina didn’t have much of a Power Pop scene.

I love Charlotte Hatherley, pretty much every LP she’s done has been Power Pop bliss. She used to play guitar for Ash, thought it seems she wanted to venture out on her own a bit, and with the LPs she’s recorded i’m glad she did. She does a good job at combining XTC, Chicago, Guided By Voices, and even Marnie Stern. “Kim Wilde” is from her first LP which is much more straight forward Power Pop than her last two LPs. You can hear a bit of the Ash influence in this one.

Jellyfish were one of those bands where their ambitions might have gotten the best of them, or at least when their last LP, Splitmilk, came out in 1993. Listening to “Joining A Fan Club” they seem to verge on channeling Queen or something. I’m not gonna complain though, as it’s something like that which separates them from the more normal Power Pop bands listed above.