Category Archives: New Music

News: New Gorillaz Album and Blur Documentary

If all goes according to plan, 2010 will belong to Damon Albarn. He almost conquered 2009 with the newly-reunited Blur taking the UK by storm, and playing several high quality live shows. And he helped to curate and score a unique opera based upon Chinese folklore, entitled Monkey: Journey To The West. But, if it sells as well as the previous album, the newly announced Gorillaz LP should bring him back into everyone’s mind on a global level. So, without further fanboy-ish gushing, let’s get down to the details.

The new Gorillaz album is entitled Plastic Beach and is set for release on March 9, 2010. I remember reading an interview, in which Albarn stated that this is his most pop record to date. And after listening to the leaked single, Stylo, it sounds like he wasn’t kidding (featured below). The single is a completely new approach to the Gorillaz format. And aside from the Mos Def and Bobby Womack cues, it still manages to retain their unique sound. I’ve had to give it a couple of spins, due to the initial shock I received the first time, and it is certainly growing on me. The 16 track LP features some amazing guests like Snoop Dogg (?), LOU REED (!), De La Soul, and MICK JONES & PAUL SIMONON of THE CLASH(!!!!!!!!!).

And on a final note, the Blur documentary No Distance Left To Run, is coming to DVD in early February. It has been well received in the UK, and the trailer still manages to give me goosebumps (featured below). The DVD will come with a second disc of the band’s Hyde Park performance from last year, and the footage shows why Blur are one of the top UK bands of the past 2 decades.

-Chase

Climate Control: The Next Massive Attack LP

I should probably disclose my relationship with Massive Attack. I discovered them as a companion to the mass amounts of Portishead I was listening to my freshman year of college. And a year later, they were the sole soundtrack to my life while I was engaging in “less than desirable” behavior. Once I shed my extreme debauchery skin, I found that Massive Attack may just be too dangerous to listen to. So, I shelved them for about 3 years, fearing relapse. Since then, I’ve found that I can dip my toes back into the troubled waters that are Massive Attack.

All that time, I was awaiting another album from the Britons ( at one time reduced to a single Briton). In 2006, I was teased with the single “False Flags,” thinking an album announcement was just around the corner. Instead, I got utter silence, and the trip-hop voices in my head began to demand satisfaction. Fast forward to 2009, and I’m teased yet again with the release of another proper LP. While the group now says “spring 2010,” they did deliver upon us the Splitting the Atom EP, which has raised more questions than answered.

The EP only puts forth two new songs, alongside two remixes. It’s safe to say, that Massive Attack are still able to produce that “sexy, slow crawl” trip-hop sound. “Pray For Rain” is a curious number featuring the vocals of TV On The Radio’s Tunde Adebimpe. The song is built around a strong, off-time drum beat, and features and excellent breakdown in the middle. It’s a definite slow burn, building up tension over it’s 6 minutes, before fading out at the end. It’s nothing really revolutionary for the genre. Actually, it sounds like it came off the stellar 1995 album Maxinquaye, by former Massive Attack collaborator, Tricky. Which, may not be new, is still a sound I’d love to welcome back into my life.

The title track, “Splitting The Atom,” is probably a better preview of what Massive Attack’s fifth LP will sound like. It’s shows us a Massive Attack that still builds a good atmosphere, but fails to really offer up any stand out moments. It’s a song that seems like it’s building up to a great pay off, only to simply end.

I’m still not willing to say that I’m disappointed with Splitting The Atom. However, it doesn’t exactly put my mind at ease. With the return of original member Mushroom, I still have hopes that a memorable Massive Attack LP is on the way. I’m just worried that they’re only shooting for middle rung material these days. But if 2010 passes us by, sans Massive Attack release, I’m probably just going to have to quiet those trip-hop ghosts and accept that Massive Attack just couldn’t survive in the new millennia.

-Chase

New Music: Burial & Flying Lotus “Untitled”

Burial is hiding under the cap

Burial is hiding under the cap

Many moons ago a track popped up on the Flying Lotus MySpace page.  Then it vanished.  Well it’s time to get re-excited because it has popped up on a mysterious website called “YouTube”…and it is a confirmed collaboration between Burial and Flying Lotus.

It’s an understated track but it’s still a pretty interesting beating of the minds.  Hopefully this is a sign of more to come.  The music video is kind of lame tho (guffaw).

The untitled track uses elements of Dimlite’s “Ravemond’s Young Problems” (which has a pretty badazz video featuring some hawt female bench-pressin’, Tom Cruise, Johnny Depp, and a Smurf):

There’s also a snippet of V.I.C.’s “Get Silly”.  Forget a rubber band cuz you can’t put a rubber band around a milli-an:

Chris Piercy

New Music: Astro

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I actually can’t tell  you too much about this band because I am not fluent in Spanish.  What I do know is that they are apparently based in Santiago, Chile, a beautiful and modern capital situated below the gaze of the Andes Mountains and Chilean Coastal Range.  I also know that America is a very fat country and Chile is a very skinny country.  At least geographically speaking.  Oh, and Astro make really fun music.

The band have a six-song digital EP that you can purchase on their MySpace page.  I guess you could call this Chilewave, if you wanted to be an idiot.

MP3s (Available for free on Last.fm):

Maestro Distorsion

Hongo Atomic

Chris Piercy

New Releases: October 13

Do you still buy records/compact discs/mini-discs/cassingles?  Or do you seek out “alternate media sources” due to “space constraints” and/or a “bitch ass economy”?  Well, whatever.  Here are some of the more note-worthy releases coming to a “retail store”/”online outlet” near you:

Broadcast and the Focus Group Investigate Witch Cults of the Radio Age (Warp)

A collaborative mini-album sure to go well with yr herbal supplements.

The Flaming Lips Embryonic (Warner Bros.)

Some fratastic mellows are certain to be harshed by The Lips’ shift back to their more noisy, experimental side.  For the rest of us, we shall rejoice that one of America’s greatest musical treasures is freaky again.  Don’t worry, dudes, I’m sure there will still be room for the confetti.

Lightning Bolt Earthly Delights (Load)

It’s hard to believe that it’s been four years since these noise barons released their last full-length blitzkrieg.  Put on yr Mexican wrestling mask and put ear plugs in yr pussy (cat).  It’s about to get loud.

Neon Indian Psychic Chasms (Lefse)

(*Note: This is a fan-made video)

If you aren’t psyched about this, then your bulb has already burnt out.   Get to the old people’s home, McCain!

Small Black Small Black (CassClub)

The kids have created this brand new genre called “lo-fi”.  Don’t tell Lou Barlow or he might go back in time and destroy all of his Sebadoh cassettes.  But get this: sometimes the kids are alright.

REISSUES:

Godflesh Pure/Cold World (Earache)

After Napalm Death but before Jesu, Justin Broadrick was the leader of this pack of equally noisy miserablists.  They ripped skin off of faces and put them on other confused faces.  Then they punched those faces until they cried.

The Raincoats The Raincoats (KillRockStars)

In 1979, The Raincoats released their debut album.  It was a post-punk classic.  It’s being reissued on vinyl.  Get.  It.  Now.

Chris Piercy

New Music: Duck Sauce “aNYway”

Hyping videos that A Culture of Me posted three days ago is the digital age’s equivalent of givin’ a shout-out to Columbus in 2009.  Which we wouldn’t do, because Columbus was a total dick.  However, if you actually have a life outside of internet culture hunting/gathering, maybe you’ll be excited to see (for the first time!) this way-funky video by Duck Sauce:

Duck Sauce makes me think of Rick Dees cookin’ up some haute cuisine.  In reality, it’s a collaboration between A-Trak and Armand Van Helden.  An EP is supposed to be out before the end of the year.

Chris Piercy

New Music: Death Knelly “DJ Lover”

Our dear friend Chase Jackson, a.k.a. Death Knelly, has posted a video for his brand new song “DJ Lover”.  Before anyone wants to start genre-branding, I’d like to throw out “kitchen-core”.  Only because that name came to me as I was typing that sentence.  AND since my brain is so awesome I post exactly what it gives me.  ANNNNDDDD because everyone loves kitchens.   Anywayz…this is maybe Death Knelly’s catchiest song yet.

The song samples Bumble Bee Unlimited’s “Lady Bug”, a classic disco jam from 1978.  For bonus credit, here’s a fan-made video of that tune:

Check out Death Knelly’s Myspace for more hott traxxx.

Chris Piercy

New Releases: Raekwon, Yo La Tengo, and Jay-Z

Dear Wizard Readers, we’re going to start a new format this week.

Well, we’re going to try it out for a while, and if you guys like it, we’ll keep it. But if I start getting flaming bags of dog poo or naked pictures of Ron Paul in my inbox….I’m shuttin’ it down, real quick!

Anyway, so instead of the standard reviews, we’re going to post the note-worthy releases for the week, and open it all for discussion. And if you guys want us to expand a blurb into a review, I’d be happy to oblige.

So, chime in and let us know! (Links included)

September 8, 2009

RAEKWON: ONLY BUILT FOR CUBAN LINX 2
Finally, it’s here! This is long awaited follow-up to Rae’s superb 1995 cut. Drug-dealing, ripping off dealers, scratchin’ and survivin’, and a heart-felt tribute to ODB makes this a hip-hop record worth talking about. Everyone is on their game on the mic (Rae, Method Man, Ghostface Killah) and on the boards (RZA, J Dilla). Feel like hip-hop has been in the gutter for the past few years? Well, grab your gat and your stash (vicariously of course) and let Raekwon restore your faith.

YO LA TENGO- POPULAR SONGS
The indie paragons return with their latest LP. “Popular Songs” flexes the bands creative muscles, following up their excellent 2006 release, “I’m Not Afraid Of You, And I Will Beat Your Ass.” The trio keep things fresh for the albums 12 tracks, that closes with on epic note. Though at 15 minutes, you may not listen to it all that often. It’s an album that’s a perfect to ring in the fall.

JAY-Z: THE BLUEPRINT 3
The international rap mogul continues his un-retirement with another strong cut. The HOVA spends most of this record rapping about current music trends, haters, money, and…well, whatever the fuck he wants. Kanye runs the boards for most of the record, so his synth-heavy beats sets the tone for the album. “The Blueprint 3” features some really strong cuts, but it may leave fans hoping for a true “The Blueprint” old-school hip-hop grind passing on most of it. (It drops on the 9th now, in order to combat an internet leak)

Well, that wraps up a busy week and ends the August music drought (save the excellent electo-R&B debut album by UK’s The XX)

Please contribute below and let us know what you think!

-Chase

Killin’ It: Neon Indian – “Terminally Chill” and “Deadbeat Summer”

I was recently telling Chris how badly I wish we could take credit for “breaking” Neon Indian in the blogosphere — after all, we were beating the hype drum nearly five months before P4k  inducted “Deadbeat Summer” into the bastion of Best New Music — but alas, we at Silence in Architecture are all too aware of our insignificance in the sea of white noise that is, ahem, “online music criticism.”

Delusions of self importance aside, the truth is that Alan Palomo’s new project (yes, the veil of anonymity has been officially lifted) would have been wildly successful in any capacity. Psychic Chasms, Neon Indian’s debut LP which is due out on Lefse Records in October, is not simply one of the best releases of 2009; it’s the kind of long player that feels comfortable in its own skin while boasting a creative restlessness that rewards frequent, repeated listens.

If you’ve been following the tracks that have been trickling down the wire these past few months, odds are that you — like us — have been helpless in your inability to stop jamming them. If you’re among those unlucky virgin ears, check out these gems below and have a better summer for it.  The dude from Grizzly Bear is daggin’ on it, and we think you should too:

Terminally Chill” (mp3)

Deadbeat Summer” (mp3)

[Neon Indian’s official MySpace page]

[Lefse Records]

Jezy

New Music: Stream the New Wilco Album!

Yeah, you read that correctly. Wilco has put their new album, in its entirety, on their website!

How ’bout that for a shot in the arm!

Wilco “(The Album)” is due out on June 30. I’ve given it a few spins today, and I’m glad it’s here in time for the summer!

…Oh wait, you want a link?

Wilco “(The Album)”

-Chase