25 Aug 2010

ON THE DECKS # 15 - Catching Up...

Catching up is a thing that I try to avoid. Even though there were 5 weeks last month…somehow time flew by without me being able to get my installment of On The Decks done. This is not due to the lack of amazing sounds that I’ve been listening to but due to some WH project deadlines. So, here we are almost at the end of August and I’m finally getting my shit together!

Over the next few months…basically from the middle of September through the middle of December I will be a busy bee with White Hills touring the US, Europe and putting together our next album.. Seeing that I might be absent around these parts until the new year, I’ve decided to come up with a list of tasty bits to tickle your ears until then…enjoy!

HIGH WOLF – Animal Totem (Not Not Fun NNF158-CS)

Debut cassette only release by this one man band from France. Amazing use of loops and layering that create ambience of the highest order. Mind altering to say the least…the perfect music for a proper mental flossing.


WOVEN HAND – The Threshingfloor (Sounds Familyre)

Eerie, reflective, contemplative, and down right inspiring. Woven Hand has once again created and album that is beautiful and haunting at the same time. More acoustic than the last record, Ten Stones, but rocking none the less. Tracks like His Rest, Behind Your Breathe, and Raise Her Hands are some of the best David Eugene Edwards has penned to date. I can’t recommend this release enough.


DA CAPTAIN TRIPS – S/T (self released)

I was given this demo on a recent trip to Italy by my friend and drummer of the band Sappah. Riff heavy thundering jams is what Da Captain Trips is all about. This is some heavy ass Prog…not the Prog of flutes and wanky organ solos…but downright guitar driven Prog. The track Down These Grey Clouds reminds me a bit of High Tide. Excellent musicianship all around…these guys really know how to burn down a tight jam!


MARK McGUIRE – Tidings/Amethyst Waves (Weird Forest Records)

Mark is a member of the fantastic group Emeralds. On this album we find Mark exploring the stratosphere alone. Ethereal echo guitar passages reminiscent of Manuel Gottsching and Gunter Schickert mixed with lush synth and a bit of down right noise provide an engaging listen from beginning to end. Highly recommended for all space travelers.


STEEL POLE BATHTUB – Unlistenable (Permanent Records)

Recorded in 1996 but not released until 2002 and thankfully once again in 2010 by the people at Permanent Records, Unlistenable was declined for release by the band’s then label London Records, pronouncing these recordings as “unlistenable”. The funny thing is these recordings just might be the most listenable tracks they ever recorded. For those not familiar with the SPB, they were a noise rock band from San Francisco during the 90’s that were, like many others, swept up by a major label during the Indie Rock feeding freenzy that preceeded Nirvana. The difference with SPB was they never sacrificed their vision in the process. This was a band ahead of their time and this is proven by how fresh Unlistenable sounds today. Any fan of the Melvins should track this LP down. This is a relic that should be relished today.


TERMINAL LOVERS – As Eyes Burn Clean (Public Guilt)

After the release of Drama Pit and Loan (which still gets regular spins at WH central) I wondered how they could top that record. Then they released 2 Cdr’s Release Valve Rattle and Basement Tapes Vol. 2 that saw the raw energy of DP&L taken to the outter reaches of experimentation. Then I anxiously awaited the release of As Eyes Burn Clean which just happens to be a perfect mix of hard edged guitar driven rock and experimentation. Concise and to the point. This album is immediate and a great listen from beginning to end. It is time this band gets the noteriety they deserve. The world needs more rock bands like the Terminal Lovers!


Dave W (White Hills)