Crow’s Nest 33: 052222
How ‘bout that everything though
… and welcome to the 33rd issue of Crow’s Nest. As always, thank you for opening and reading, I hope you find something within you enjoy. This one should be shorter than last—I’ve been busy and stressed with work, the social life outside of concerts has been solid lately, I’m still in thrall to Hypnose—which has affected my perception of recorded music recently. Not necessarily slim pickings but not too much has stuck with me as of late. It happens.
Americans: the Postal Service has a third set of free COVID rapid tests they’ll deliver to you, 8 this time. While I hope my recent bout lessens my risk for a while, I feel better with that stack in my bathroom. Second COVID boosters have been approved for those 50+ too now, tell your folks.
Permanent Vacation have been adding their back catalog to Bandcamp at the slow, steady pace of an IV drip, but slipped in this new remix package recently. The opening track (and my highlight) sees Rebolledo start with an amapiano groove before transforming into something like DJ Koze dropping a banger on PAN. The other 2 tracks don’t slouch either, this a solid grab bag for introducing new names into your rotation.
While they weren’t really active in the years prior to the announcement, the breakup of Canadian post-punk group Ought still stung. The simultaneous announcement of Cola, featuring members Tim Darcy and Ben Stidworthy alongside with U.S. Girls/The Weather Station drummer Evan Cartright, helped cushion the blow, and their debut Deep In View is out now on Fire Talk. Ought 2.0 this is not, though Darcy’s narcotic voice and existential musings continue here. There’s a bit of an alt-country, twang-y influence present, as though the members have spent some time listening to forgotten outsider songwriters. The textures and palette lean a bit sepia too. It’s a bit off-kilter for a guitar-bass-drums setup, and I imagine this’ll be quite a grower of a record for me over the coming weeks and months as I spend more time with it.
I’ve been infatuated with Spread Joy since seeing them kill an opening set at Sleeping Village last fall. Their second album in as many years, the group has a wire-sharp, hardcore-inflected take on post-punk that comes across as sunny and dada compared to their contemporaries. (Yes, I am deliberately avoiding using that a-word here.) Frontwoman Briana Hernandez, in addition to her eye for visual design on the record sleeves and merch, brings a theatrical, infectious energy to the audio which breaks through the tendency for high-pitched vocals to come across as grating. Gang of Four on uppers in a Caribbean studio, or a synthesis of Rachel Aggs’ Shopping and Sacred Paws projects come to mind. While I am usually a fan of longer live performance times, half hour sets and LPs that fit on 1 side of wax serve them well.
The only article I’ve read recently that I feel like passing on is this at NPR from Grayson Haver Currin on Matt Pike of Sleep and High on Fire’s indulgence of conspiracy theories from David Icke for songwriting material. It’s a very nuanced look at Pike, an attempt to tease out what he truly believes, and what it means to be a fan when controversy like this rears its head. It leaves it to you to draw your own conclusion. For what it’s worth I’m not a metalhead and will probably avoid his work moving forward.
Here’s an archival discovery worth disseminating widely. Laddio Bolocko were a noise/drone rock band in NYC around the turn of the millennium who were, evidently, a flash in the pan: they burned brightly and quickly before disappearing into the night. Osees’s John Dwyer, whose putting out of this box set on his Castle Face Records should be enough of a marker of its quality weirdness, supplies the ‘you had to be there’ awe of them; I’m sure seeing the quartet whip through minimal assaults ‘Nurser’ and ‘Dangler’ live with no advanced knowledge would be like the time when I saw DMBQ at the Hideout on a whim. Comparisons to Swedish progg groups and This Heat especially feel apt, per the Quietus’s explication of this reissue’s liner notes; hopefully this reissue provides inspiration and guidance to those looking to get weird and intense with their work.
Post-punk, perceptually, may be reinvigorated in the UK and Midwest, and it appears the wave is catching on outside the Anglosphere. Berlin outfit ROUGE—interesting to see the generic mononym trend in the genre is universal—hand off the lead to the bass guitar for this quick-running, high-energy tape. Automatic running at Flasher’s higher-energy moments on Constant Image is a good descriptor of the slower points here.
The producer Steffi has been on my radar for a bit—mostly for the occasional commentary on dance music and her contribution to Air Texture a few years ago—but I only came across her klakson label a couple releases back. Italian producer D_Roots is the latest release here, a set of high-energy electro cuts with some woozy textures thrown in. The D stands for dub here, evidently.
2022 has found Animal Collective re-energized and, potentially, poised for a second strong run comparable to their 2000s streak. On top of touring Time Skiffs, curating a good chunk of this year’s Le Guess Who?, and another record ready to go, member Panda Bear found time to produce this record for Portuguese artist Maria Reis. The result is a genre-hopping, indie-centric collection that leans on a confessional mode. It’s definitely not techno like my usual favorites from the country, but you’d be foolish to skip spinning this.
PETBRICK, the project of former Sepultura drummer Iggor Cavalera and genre-hopper Wayne Adams, put out this noisy, percussive dance track and accompanying remixes a couple days ago. After a couple listens the Surgeon remix is probably my favorite, and evidently more will come soon from this quality pairing.
And that’s issue 33 for you. If you’re here reading this, as always, thank you for doing so, I appreciate it and hope you found something within you enjoy. Until next time.