Thursday, May 28, 2015


In the middle of May, I had the opportunity to see Tel Aviv's Vaadat Charigim support Froth on their Los Angeles tour date (more on this later). The show's lively opening act, Winter, was unexpectedly grabbing, and though well-fitting among a nostalgic shoegaze lineup, the group's 24-year old Brazilian frontwoman, Samira Winter, was unusually, well, happy, considering the typical romantic or introverted qualities generally offered by the genre. 

Winter is awfully reminiscent of the Sundays in the most wonderful way; their leader is never not smiling -- maybe she's high? Maybe she's had a near-death experience and is merely grateful? Whatever her deal may be, Samira Winter appears to love life and it comes out in her persistent smile. Truly, the girl never stops smiling while she plays.

So this positively elated band, led by Samira Winter, put out a record in March, and lyrically it's like a Best Coast record, told with a hint of co-dependence ["I thought I knew better/And stray from your tricks/You use and abuse me/Why can't I resist?/You're my drug/Cause you're my drug," from "Pretender"], or maybe just the desire for real friendship [refer to one of many ambiguous songs in "Flower Tattoo": "Say, say you love me/Say you're my friend/Just stay no going"]. 

But then, there're these happy-go-lucky options, like "Crazy" ["You make me feel funny/Shivers in my body/Hanging out with you/What about some ice cream?/Walking down the street we'll scream and scream/I don't care about what other people think"]. Winter is this perfectly childlike, childish, youthful, innocent manifestation of honest love, whoever might be on its receiving end, and it's all so very joyous in spite of the longing in its stories.

Anyhow, come see them when they play this lengthy shindig in Los Angeles, come July. A lovely lineup all around, really!

A video palindrome that addresses abortion

This new song and video from Till Lindemann, 52, father of at least two, frontman for Rammstein, is an excellent mens' rights complement to a quick read of Elfriede Jelinek's Women as Lovers.

Denmark's Communions have a new, self-titled EP out on June 1, and "Summer's Oath" is a dreamy swirl of post-punk and synths that bring to mind too many '80s and '80s-inspired bands to list off (a list which obviously includes the Cure). Visit last year's Cobblestones EP here.

More from the Communions EP:

Remember Vells? No? Toronto's Grounders have a lazy sort of sound (god, is dreamy in right now?), and they remind an awful lot of that quiet Seattle project. The following is off their full-length debut.

None of them had any success, most are (unjustly) obscure but every one of them has inspired me

Excellent post-punk compilation out from Optimo Music; a double-LP set for release on July 6.

Optimo Music release the compilation “Now That’s What I Call DIY! (Cult Classics from the Post-Punk Era 1978-82) in early July.

A1. Tesco Bombers – Break The Ice At Parties
A2. Sara Goes Pop – Sexy Terrorist
A3. People In Control – When It’s War
A4. Nancy Sesay & The Melodaires – C’est Fab

B1. The Distributors – TV Me
B2. Dorothy – Softness
B3. Thomas Leer – Private Plane
B4. Visitors – Electric Heat

C1. The Murphy Federation – Fed Up Skank
C2. The Distributors – Never Never
C3. The Cro-tones – Tea Machine Dub
C4. Fatal Microbes – Violence Grows

D1. The Spunky Onions – How I Lost My Virginity
D2. The Fakes – Look Out
D3. The 012 – Meltdown Situation
D4. The Prats – Disco Pope

This is a compilation of 16 UK 7" singles recorded between 1978 and 1982, compiled by JD Twitch, that showcases the DIY spirit of those times.

"If Punk was the nuclear detonation, the fallout that came after was where a lot of the most interesting music of that era was made. People who would never have thought to release a record before realised it was something they could do, and the end result was a DIY explosion. I've always loved music that doesn't try to fit in a particular genre, that is anti-canonical and doesn't care what else is going on in music at that time, that takes risks and is full of imagination and ideas that may or may not make any logical sense but that resulted in something unique, that ignores conventions about how a record SHOULD be produced and that was created simply because its creators felt the urge to express themselves and share the results with some other people. This compilation compiles 16 tracks that fulfil all those criteria. None of them had any success, most are (unjustly) obscure but every one of them has inspired me and would be in my ultimate 7" singles box." – JD Twitch.

This release has been a real labour of love involving tracing long-lost artists to far-flung corners of the globe, persuading them that the modern world needs to hear the music they made several decades ago, tracking down lost masters, lovingly restoring 7"s in the case of those where the masters were lost and then conceiving an elaborate package with detailed sleeve notes to house the double album package.

The 2 x LP vinyl edition comes in a super deluxe package combining a double-sided black and white four x 12" panel sleeve, hand-folded into an LP sleeve with a colour insert containing colour photos of all the sleeves all inserted in a bespoke pvc wallet. The four x 12" panel sleeve contains sleeve notes and detailed overviews of each individual track by JD Twitch, and an introduction by New York's DIY expert Dan Selzer. Due to the huge amount of work involved putting the sleeve together, it will only ever exist in an edition of 500 copies. Should there be a repress it will come in a more conventional sleeve.

Release date is July 6th. Distribution by Kompakt.

Digital version contains 13 tracks.

Friday, May 22, 2015

Celebrating Memorial Day

Annique Monet's Phantom Letters comes after her departure from hippie-dippie Topanga bullshit band Worthless and is available in a limited batch of 100 cassettes with handmade art. It's quirky. Like, Soko-quirky. Except she didn't come from France; she came from Florida.

Erase Errata have returned and made their first recordings in nearly a decade, and they sound exactly as they once did! Happily so. Hannah Lew, bass player for the fabulous Grass Widow, directed the video above. The members of Erase Errata just gave a fabulous interview in Rookie, in which they explain their six-year hiatus and discuss the meaning of "Don't Sit/Lie." Perhaps some nice musician out there will coax Grass Widow out of hiding and direct a video for them?