11 Oct 2019

Rocket bands appear in '50 Essential ‘Psych’ Albums 2013-2019 by Fragmented Flaneur.'


Nice to see:

Anthroprophh
Centrum
Gnod
Hills
Julie's Haircut
Kuro
Teeth of the Sea 

...in this rundown of 50 Essential ‘Psych’ Albums 2013-2019 by Fragmented Flaneur.

See the full 50 here: Fragmented Flaneur

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10 Oct 2019

The Utopia Strong remix Snapped Ankles 'Rechargeable' track

Recently The Utopia Strong were asked to remix Snapped Ankles track 'Rechargeable', Check out Steve Davis an Co plucking stems off from the bands Rechargeable tree. 

Here is their satanic deconstruction:
 
Bandcamp
Stream


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Backseat Mafia review Julie's Haircut live in Manchester

Backseat Mafia review Julie's Haircut live in Manchester:

Julie’s Haircut are an Italian neo-psychedelic offering who have been around for more years than they would care to admit now, having initially formed back in 1994. Their recent allegiance has been to UK based label Rocket Recordings, who today have released their latest offering, their ninth studio album no less, In The Silence Electric.

Tonight they grace one of Manchester’s finest underground, independent venues, The Peer Hat, a setting that is perfect for them. They open with ‘Gathering Light’, probably their most recognised track from 2017’s Invocation and Ritual Dance of My Demon Twin which sprung them to public attention in the UK. With its slow build that intensifies throughout as layers are added, it’s the perfect track to start things off. This is closely followed by ‘The Fire Sermon’ from the same album and the two make an intoxicating atmosphere, laden with intrigue that sets the mood for the rest of the set.....

....Julie’s Haircut have delivered something really special here tonight, in a venue that has suited their sound perfectly. The quality of the songs on the new album shows their development as a band and if they keep putting out performances like that, they’ll soon be playing to much larger crowds.


Read the full review: Backseat Mafia 

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Julie's Haircut interview 'In The Silence Electric' Sleeve Artist Annegret Soltau




With the release of the Julie's Haircut album 'In The Silence Electric' out last week, we are delighted to share a short interview with the amazing German artist Annegret Soltau, who's 1975/76 work 'Selbst (self)' features throughout the sleeve. We are huge fans of her amazing work so was delighted when the bands Nicola Caleffi managed to asked Annegret a few questions.

Here statement about the work:

Annegret
Soltau
Selbst (self) 1975-76
photo overstitchings
Self 1975-76


"These are my first projects using thread in the context of photography. Using gray silk thread, I overstitched self-portraits and created a filigree of threads over my own face. 

I started with a photograph taken during a performance piece, and stitched over the thread in the photo using real thread. The reverse side shows the traces of the work on the front side as a spontaneous haptic drawing, an unconscious by-product of the main piece."

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Nicola Caleffi 
The Selbst series from 1975-76 is one of your early, and most powerful, work. Can you describe the genesis of it?
 

Annegret Soltau  
As a starting point for these photo-stitches, I took photographs of the documentation of my performance “Self” from 1975, in which I wrapped my head with black yarn. I sewed these self-portraits with gray silk thread.

Nicola Caleffi

The series comprises about 30 pictures of yourself with different grades of binding on your own head and body and etching on the printed photos. What is the relationship between the real wiring on the skin, mouth, eyes and hair and the subsequent sewing that you made on the printed work?
 

Annegret Soltau
The photographed thread served as a direction for my over-sewing. From the sensory organs of my eyes and mouth I let the threads flow over my face, extending my eyelashes into new formations that cover my face like a mask. There is a dialogue, an exhange, between the photographed thread of the performance and the real thread, they form a unity in the face, but also an irritation.

Nicola Caleffi
Your work, and Selbst in particular, seems to be constantly balanced between freedom and oppression, even self-coercion, just as, in its peculiar form, Julie's Haircut's music, in its never resolved relationship between looseness and restraint. Do you see art as a form of liberation of the self?
 

Annegret Soltau
For me, these representations are ambivalent. On the one hand they show through the fine threads a sensual touch on the skin, on the other hand also a constriction through the lacing over mouth and eyes up to the blindness and lack of communication. The liberation can only be done by oneself.

Nicola Caleffi
What is the role of art and the artist today? Do you see any difference between today and the past, in terms of artistic freedom?

Annegret Soltau
As an artist I do not play any role, I work authentically by “incorporating” myself and my body into my art. That's how I see myself and my work: as a symbiosis of life and art. During my studies in the 60s and 70s, we fought againts the traditional forms of society, it was a break from given expectations. Awareness is what we need now if we do not want to lose the achievements of our generation.


For further reading: Annegret Soltau
  
Julie's Haircut album 'In The Silence Electric' is out now on LP/CD/DL Available worldwide on Rocket Recordings: 

In The Silence Electric

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9 Oct 2019

GIGsoup review Julie's Haircut live in Chester

GIGsoup review Julie's Haircut live in Chester, they say:
 

Fairly well known in their home country of Italy, the Sassuolo-formed Julie’s Haircut have been releasing music for the best part of 25 years now. However, many here in the UK probably only encountered them after the release of 2017’s Invocation And Ritual Dance Of My Demon Twin on Rocket Recordings, arguably Britain’s best psychedelic label.

During their first decade together they performed a mix of garage and indie rock, but collaborations with the likes of Damo Suzuki, Sonic Boom and then Philip Corner inspired more experimentation. Since then they’ve evolved to become one of Europe’s top psychedelic krautrock bands, also incorporating elements of prog, post rock and jazz into their sound.

On the eve of the release of their ninth full length album In The Silence Electric, the Northern Italian outfit stopped by The Live Rooms in Chester for their first ever performance in the city. It was part of a seven date UK tour that also included dates in Leicester and Newcastle before they headed back for a tour of their homeland.....

.......Despite missing the trippy sax of Laura Agnusdei on a few tracks, it was a fantastic performance from a band who have been at their creative peak in recent years. They will certainly have gone back to Northern Italy with many more fans than they had when they arrived here and will always be welcome to stop by Chester when they embark on any future UK tours.
 

Read the full review here: GIGsoup Music

(Photo & review by Daniel Kirby)
 

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Simone Maries spins Julie's Haircut on Soho Radio

Amazing DJ & Primal Scream bass player Simone Maries was kind enough to play some Julie's Haircut on her Soho Radio show.

check it out here:  Simone Maries Naked Lunch 

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Sentireascoltare review Julie's Haircut 'In The Silence Electric'

Sentireascoltare review Julie's Haircut 'In The Silence Electric'

This is what they had to say (rough translation):
 

Julie's Haircut continues on the path taken by more than a few records, and certified by the landing on Rocket, a label that seems to have capitalised the best Italian underground more fixed with psychedelia "material" and detonating, for the previous 'Invocation And Ritual Dance Of My Demon' Twin.

In 'In The Silence Electric' the situation does not change; the composition is always a unique flow that expands like a river delta to incorporate motorik, acid psychedelia, kraut portions, nuances of free jazz, sensations from an imaginary soundtrack and an idea of ​​compositional freedom that is increasingly present.

We were talking about the route, however, given that by moving back to Our Secret Ceremony, the cosmic dimension - both latently kosmische and more specifically cosmic, spatial, lost in the immensity of the universe - has gradually become a constituent part of the Julie's sound to which it is from which are then sprouted leaves and branches always of the same material formed.

The mega trip of Darlings Of The Sun, for example, with its ethno-space expanses, or the polyrhythmic one of Pharoah's Dance, no men omen in terms of size and references, but also the stasis of In Return and even the Sorcerer's hypnotic motorik suicide style tells of an infinite regeneration, of a musical blob in continuous definition that feeds on elements and inputs always from the same "humus" generated, but from time to time rethought, reworked, redefined.

Nothing new under the sun of the psych more or less ethno, more or less cosmic, more or less kraut, but a survey conducted with balance and parsimony, attention and ability towards a sound world that is increasingly personal and internalized by the sextet.

It is no coincidence that they speak of "sound of psychic liberation from the shackles of oppression and of the everyday" in the press and it is no coincidence that the artwork of the German avant-garde artist Annegret Soltau was chosen for the cover image,

self-empowered and self-liberated by a kind of live mummification intended to reflect on communication, on its deprivation, on its reacquisition; which is easily ascribable to so much music, presumably new and actually mummified on itself.

Read the full review here: Sentireascoltare


(The above artwork is part of the Julie's Haircut album packaging & by wonderful Annegret Soltau)
 

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8 Oct 2019

PETBRICK reveal video for new single featuring Mixhell's Laima Leyton 




PETBRICK - the duo comprising Wayne Adams (Big Lad/Death Pedals/Johnny Broke) and Iggor Cavalera (Sepultura/Soulwax/Mixhell), are releasing their debut album 'I' via Rocket on 25 October and you can watch the video to their latest single, 'Coming', featuring the vocal talents of Mixhell's Laima Leyton above.

Preorder  'I' on ltd editin vinyl and CD here: Bandcamp

And for USA and Canadian fans, the PETBRICK album is being released via the great Closed Casket Activities label.

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The video for 'Coming' is made by the multi-award winning Brazilian director, writer, producer and editor Dante Vescio. The theme of the video is a direct response to the current fascist let government in Brazil (represented by the pig in the video) and the fightback that is needed to quash this regime. A concept that can be related to throughout the world right now.

PETBRICK's forthcoming album 'I' is packed with electronic experimentation, hardcore attitude, dystopian dread and in-the-red dementia. These all collide and collude to form a uniquely invigorating assault that mixes the intensity of Ministry and the synapse-shredding mischief of Aphex Twin yet lodged firmly in the here and now.

The duo are taking the PETBRICK noise around the country and can be seen playing at:

28 Oct / UK / Huddersfield / The Parish
29 Oct / UK / Sheffield / Record Junkee
30 Oct / UK / Manchester / Soup Kitchen
31 Oct / UK / Bristol / Exchange
01 Nov / UK / Cardiff / Clwb Ifor Bach
02 Nov / UK / London / Shacklewell Arms
06 Nov / CZ / Prague / Underdogs
08 Nov / BE / Antwerp / Het Bos    
09 Nov / NL / Utrecht  / Le Guess Who? Festival  





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Music Traks review Julie's Haircut 'In The Silence Electric'

JULIE'S HAIRCUT TRACK FOR TRACK 

It starts from Anticipation of the Night, a very electric but nocturnal (obvious) and more walked than a run track, which somehow brings to mind the atmospheres of the American alternative, like Yo La Tengo. 

Emerald Kiss abandons the magical atmosphere of the previous song to immerse itself in a much less rarefied air. Indeed there are particles of rock, not even too micro, and heavily charged skies. 

But if the tension then drops a bit at a certain point, Until the Lights Go Out thinks to make it go up immediately, with some dark wave aftertaste in the path. 

Return to the hypnotic and nocturnal with Lord Help Me Find The Way, which travels in concentric circles. 

The alternation of rhythms continues with the fast and very accelerated Sorcerer, already presented as a single. Not that this is skimped on the hypnotic / psychedelic side, indeed. 

More evocative are the climates of Darlings of the Sun, electronic but also very insinuating, with desert drums ready to offer their own rhythms. But there is not always the sun. 

And in fact here comes In Return, journey into darkness, with echoes and reverberations and distant voices and threats that flutter. 

The Pharaoh Dreams of the drums: in Pharaoh's Dream there are tribal percussions. 

The lock returns to the magic and the ambiguous, with the meandering For the Seven Lakes

Julie's Haircut is a truly remarkable disc, which produces nine tracks characterized by conceptual and sound compactness, cloaked in enchanting charm. The band is mature and can now literally do whatever it wants.

Read the full piece: Musictraks

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Fuzzy Sun reviews Julie's Haircut's In the Silence Electric


They say:

Julie’s Haircut is an Italian band that has been around for quite some time. They have been giving us fuzz and psych since the beginning. Now it is time for their new album that is called ‘In The Silence Electric’.

I’ve been following the band for a while now and have listened to most of their music. Their new album got me hooked, the fuzz, psych and trance on this album is more intense, the tracks have more dept and its very, and I mean very, hypnotic.

‘Until The Lights go out’ is by far my favourite track and this is the band at their best. A bass line so good the water runs out of my mouth, vocals yearn and morn over the fuzz. A track of epic hypnotic proportions.

‘In the Silence Electric’ is in part an experimental album and in part an psychedelic and highly hypnotic rock album and together this is a complete success.

See the piece here: Fuzzy Sun

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Poster for PETBRICK Bristol show


Info and tickets here: Gravy Train

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GNOD residency on Noods Radio


GNOD have announced a three month (bi monthly) residency on Noods Radio, playing rare and unreleased GNOD and Tesla tracks and jams. They say:

Paddy Shine delves into the Gnod and Tesla tapes archives to mix up a sonic soup of old, new and unreleased material especially for Noods Radio. Old, new , borrowed, blue. Got No Obvious Direction.

First episode is 16 October from 1-2pm.

Tune in here: Noods

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7 Oct 2019

Rumour Magazine interviews Julies Haircut


They say:

In the electric silence of Julie's Haircut is enclosed a world made of a thousand suggestions. Musical, visual, artistic suggestions at 360 degrees, curiosity, spirituality, travel, physics and metaphysics. In The Silence Electric is the title of the band's new album, the eighth, the ninth if we consider (and we must consider it) the soundtrack Music From The Last Command, a double that actually makes this their second album of the year. A record that comes from a process of "osmosis" with music: "We welcomed the unexpected, leaving the songs to guide us to their final form, rather than trying to force them towards a precise direction", explains Luca Giovanardi, from which we did tell about what this process consists of: and from the answers, in the same way that a disc by Julie's Haircut comes out, a free conversation was born, one could say jazz, that goes from studio improvisations to Jungian psychology and psychomagia by Alan Moore, from pragmatic observations on how difficult it is to make a certain type of music in Italy to speculation about the time of St. Augustine. Take the time to read it all. And to listen to the album.

Let's talk about the record, in particular I was intrigued by this description: "made through a unique osmosis process". What does it mean?

"Well let's say that sometimes press releases are written by people, in this case an English writer, who interpret in their own way what we might have said during an interview, then the problem is that we have to do interviews and look for to make the exegesis of what we wanted to say (laughs). Such as? A particular process of osmosis ... moreover in this case it is a translation from English, however I think that what he wanted to say is that as far as we are concerned, but it has been like this for some years now, the production of our records is done through a process that is not exactly what is followed for the overwhelming majority of the record productions, in the sense that we very rarely enter the studio with a precise and clear idea of ​​everything there is to do, with a pattern... 

Read the rest here: Rumour

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5 Oct 2019

The Utopia Strong presents Morning Special Effects Live Experience


The Utopia Strong have announced a new show at Colours in Hoxton London for Brooklyn Brewery and Baba Yaga's Hut, the info reads:

The Brooklyn Brewery, Colours and Baba Yaga’s Hut proudly present: 

“Special Effects Live Experience"

THE UTOPIA STRONG
https://theutopiastrong.bandcamp.com/

A psychedelic sound deserves a psychedelic experience!! So we’ve invited the The Utopia Strong to help us turn the conventional music time slot on its head and take us on a 90’s Warp excursion before you all head off to work (or wherever you go) at 9am in the morning!!

This one off live experience at the new COLOURS venue in Hoxton will be a FREE SHOW and will be performed under The Colour Trap – a captivating LED ceiling installation by Burning Man lighting sculptor Christopher Schardt. 

Brooklyn Brewery will be on hand to provide all ticket holders with a NYC style bagel and a cold pint of the brand new alcohol free Special Effects beer (so you’ll all be able to start the day right)!!

DOORS 8AM - SHOW TIME - 9AM
FREE SHOW – TICKETS AVAILABLE 11/10 @ 12PM here: DICE

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NEOLYD reviews The Utopia Strong and Julie's Haircut's albums


They say:

The Utopia Strong
Meet a snooker legend, an ambient electronic musician and a psychedelic rocker at the bar: what sounds like the beginning of an old man joke, is rather the terabe, astonishingly everyday startup story of Utopia Strong .

Steve Davis, Michael J. York (Coil, Teleplasmiste) and Kavus Torabi (Gong, Cardiacs, Knifeworld) hung out together at the Glastonbury Festival in 2017, discovered their common musical preferences and formed a band whose debut albumnow rooted in between the Proto-Ambient of the Seventy and the Frickelbeats of the Nineties. The result sounds surprisingly little herbaceous rehearsal room, but rather after the cooldown of a relaxed rave, on which all have a good taste in music. Sounds and atmosphere surround the listener in part like the favorite blanket, from which one knows exactly how the familiar texture on the skin feels. Sometimes, however, you are suddenly in some underground club on the dance floor, around it flickering lights and bodies.

This field of tension makes "The Utopia Strong" too bulky to hear it by the way. Instead, concentration and attention are required, but they are well invested here because of the wealth of ideas and bandwidth.

See here: NEOLYD

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Julie's Haircut
Oh, what a lovely noise, what a balm for the ears. (Previously, the reviewer went through the fifteen-minute radio hell while showering - including "Wind of Change"). And occasionally two minutes are enough to stay forever. Even if the remaining songs on "In The Silence Electric", already the ninth album of the Italian psychedelic combo Julie's Haircut , would be total garbage, it would still be "Emerald Kiss". Come to stay - monolithic, scary, unfathomable. Crushed perfection.

The noise consists - explicitly and superficially - of a kind of guitar noise, which is contrasted with a subtly solitary lead guitar, with a subsequent saxophone improvisation from five minutes. The perfect symbiosis of the early Moon Duo and Complicated Universal Cum (especially "Before F After C"), the solo project Frederik Valentins.

The following "Until The Lights Go Out" - as if that was not enough of the good - reminds in its dynamics - regarding rhythm and repetition - strongly of "The Rip" by Portishead. Also this EBMige / moogige bass running, which makes the song sound somehow driven ... also "The Rip", but still (and especially because of) an excellent piece of music history. Welcome to the "herbaceous" Noise Canon! The other seven songs are certainly no less noteworthy, no question, but sometimes just enough two songs to inspire completely. Unconditional listening recommendation!

See here: NEOLYD

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Concrete Islands and NARC reviews Julie's Haircut's 'In The Silence Electric'



They say:

Julie’s Haircut harness avant-rock experimentation and channel intoxicating psychedelic grooves fuelled by a kosmische engine on In the Silence Electric


There’s a particular kind of thrill about hearing new material from a band who are unknown to you but have an already storied career. Such was my experience encountering Julie’s Haircut. Hailing from northern Italy, the band have been putting out material since the late nineties, but it took Andrew Weatherall playing two of the tracks from In the Silence Electric on his NTS Radio show in 2019 to open the door for me. The polyrhythmic dream-into-nightmare of the African-steeped “Pharaoh’s Dream” hit me like a psychedelic depth charge when Weatherall dropped it. Something like a sonic appropriation of The Sheltering Sky by Paul Bowles or The Passenger by Michelangelo Antonioni, with the primacy of another culture subsuming the not-wary-enough interloper. Weatherall ended the show on “Sorceror”, an intoxicating man-machine howl and propulsive groove somewhere along the lines of Roy Orbison making the dirtiest kosmische musik possible. In other words, two tracks in and I was hooked.

Read the rest: Concrete Islands

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Italian metaphysical electric noise band Julie’s Haircut have produced a real gem of controlled power and strange beauty. Spiritualized-esque, it’s a driven mix of staccato drones, sax wails, psyched out guitar and whispered reverb menace.


The V(elvet) U(nderground) dials are full on at key points in the music, even extending to the avant-garde artist’s sleeve work by Annegret Soltau, which the band state as their inspiration, claiming “…a liberation from the shackles of oppression and of the everyday”. Opening track Anticipation Of The Night is an elevating buzz of hypnotic intensity which clearly indicates the path taken through the rest of the album, drifting purposefully from tenebrous mysterious hearts of darkness to screaming noise-flooded fields.

See the piece here: NARC

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4 Oct 2019

Released Today Julie's Haircut 'In the Silence Electric'



+++++RELEASE DAY+++++
Hitting the shops worldwide today is the brand new album from Julie's Haircut 'In the Silence Electric'.

In The Silence Electric is available on CD, Vinyl and digitally. With a sleeve by the wonderful artist Annegret Soltau, there are 3 different ltd vinyl versions, the special 'White/Clear colour-in-colour vinyl' version, an 'indie shop' exclusive on 'Pink vinyl' and another ltd shop version on 'Green vinyl.
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“Band hitting a blistering career peak”  Trebuchet
“Sonically speaking, this is pretty thrilling stuff”  The Quietus
“This is a crowning achievement”  Raven Sings The Blues
“Drips with magnetic seduction”  Get Into This
“Head straight to the dance floor on a wave of fuzzed out glory”  Echoes & Dust
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Listen here: Bandcamp / Stream
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Press Release:
“In a self-experiment, I drew my face with black thread. The first to be affected were the eyes and mouth, because I could not see or speak – communication was destroyed... The details of my face seemed to be gone and, at the same time, frozen. It was similar to the act of mummification. I reached for the scissors and freed myself.”
These are the words of Annegret Soltau, the German avant-garde feminist artist, whose work graces the cover of Julie’s Haircut’s transcendent new album. It’s a piece that maintains as much of its power and relevance today as in the time of its inception 40 years ago, yet forms a curious parallel with a record that is nothing if not the sound of psychic liberation from the shackles of oppression and of the everyday.
‘In The Silence Electric’, the latest record from a band with a long history of sonic otherworldliness, is notable for its deft balance between hypnotic radiance and extrasensory intensity, between beatific calm and palpable anger. Yet it’s also a record which has arrived through a strange process of osmosis from a band confident enough to let subconscious and metaphysical aspects steer them in the appropriate directions.
The result was nonetheless also informed by a recent live soundtrack project the band embarked upon in tandem with Josef Von Sterberg’s 1928 classic ‘The Last Command’, as well as recent visits by the band’s Andrea Rovacchi to Mozambique, where he was subsumed by the local music and culture, bringing back a finger piano which makes its presence felt amidst the polyrhythms and primal scream therapy of ‘Pharaoh’s Dream’.
For all the nature of its divings, the result is a collection of supremely confident and cohesive ditties that sees the deep-end diabolism and mantric intensity of their Rocket debut, 2017’s ‘Invocation And Ritual Dance Of My Demon Twin’ expanded into a righteous fury and incandescent splendour. Whether it’s the heavy-lidded rapture of ‘Lord Help Me Find The Way’ (like Spiritualized transposed to 1970s Berlin), the menacing dream-state of ‘In Return’ or the Suicide-damaged psychic assault that is ‘Sorcerer’, all is subsumed by a bold singularity of intent, amidst a colourful firestorm of electronic monomania, jazz-tinged atonality and indelibly memorable vocal hooks.
“Even when we write about very dreamlike situations, or metaphors, we always address very real, concrete aspects and problems of our life” says the band’s Luca Giovanardi. “There is a lot of the classic dualism between sex and death on this record. Sometimes it’s more dark and gritty (“In Return”), sometimes it’s more elevating (“Anticipation of the Night”).”
“There’s a theme springing from the title of the record and the photos of Annegret Soltau that deliver some sense of helplessness, suffocation, difficulty in communication” notes Luca. Yet for all this - and paradoxically enough - ‘In The Silence Electric’ is both this mysterious and rebellious band’s most adventurous and most direct record to date - not to mention an ever more compelling transmission from renowned experts in altered states.
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The stunning artwork is by artist Annegret Soltau
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2 Oct 2019

Raven Sings The Blues reviews Julie's Haircut's In The Silence Electric


They say:

Italian psych collective Julie’s Haircut have been operating under that name since the late ‘90s, but their sound is still evolving, rooted in the boundless cosmic expanse of psychedelia and the darkened recesses of the polyrhythmic groove. The band has collaborated with Sonic Boom and backed up Damo Suzuki, so they were bringing a fairly heavy resume to the table already when they jumped onto UK psych enclave Rocket Recordings’ roster last year. Their second LP for the label pushes their sound further into the recesses of rhythm-wracked psychedelic divination. In The Silence Electric pulsates with a seething intensity boiling beneath the skin. The band just barely contains the tension on tracks like “Emerald Kiss” or “Sorcerer“. When they do let the pulse lie, the album only feels like its pulled into the eerie call before a storm. “Lord Help Me Find The Way” emulsifies their groove into the kind of nebulous humid float that wraps the best Spiritualized tracks.


There’s something elemental about the record. It has a heartbeat hum, that the listener is either chasing down or being pursued by at any moment. Their vocals waft in on vapors that permeate ever inch of the brain, weaving between layers of gray matter while the rhythms work the body. There’s an air of incantation, a ceremonial throb to the record, especially on tracks like “Sorcerer” which embodies their mystic turbulence and spiritual calm. They lace the record with sax, but not in stabbing, bent harmonic hues (at least not until an explosion of violence in “Pharoah’s Dream”), rather it enters as another layer of creeping ambience slicing through the swirling sage. For a veteran band with almost 25 years under their belt, they’ve never sounded more bracing, or more alive. This is a crowning achievement in their catalog.

Read the piece here: RSTB

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Fred Perry interview and exclusive playlist with The Utopia Strong


They say:

Name, where are you from?
Steve Davis - Romford, Essex.
Kavus Torabi - Tehran, currently residing in Hackney.
Michael J York - Bromborough, Wirral, currently residing in the Vale of Avalon.

Describe your style in three words?
SD: Medical Grade Music.
KT: Not for everyone.
MJY: Third Eye Bath.

What’s the best gig you’ve ever been to?
SD: Magma - Chalk Farm Roundhouse 1974. A moment of true musical enlightenment that took me down a path that I am eternally thankful for.
KT: Sonic Youth at The Forum in London on the Washing Machine tour in 1995. It was the final gig of a three-day residency, the sound was terrific and the set was as if the band had consulted with me previously, everything I wanted to hear was in there. The entire performance was utterly transcendental, but a particularly ecstatic rendition of their psychedelic masterpiece, The Diamond Sea, has stayed with me ever since.
MJY: Magma - Cafe OTO 2016. My first Magma show and they played their masterwork MDK as though it had only been composed yesterday and yet at the same time had existed since the before the dawn of time.

If you could be on the line up with any two bands in history?
SD: 1 - Support band for a This Heat gig, a band so far ahead of their time they are still being discovered by music heads, who are subsequently scratching their skulls and wondering where the band had been all their lives. 2 - Support band for an Alice Coltrane gig. A bona fide psychedelic master.

KT: I could imagine our group, The Utopia Strong, playing at the UFO club between Soft Machine and The Pink Floyd in 1967...

Read the rest here: Fred Perry

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The Progressive Aspect reviews and interviews The Utopia Strong


They say:

Before and after underground DJ pairing Steve Davis and Kavus Torabi got the pixies bopping at Glastonbury 2017, they hung out with friend and musical colleague Michael J. York, who lived in the town, and the idea of a band was born after a few jam sessions. Having been introduced to the transcendent world of the modular synth by Teeth Of The Sea’s Mike Bourne a year earlier, Steve was by then tentatively exploring the limitless possibilities of this enabling instrument. As a fellow non-musician, I wish I had the time to do something similar, as Steve’s journey to a degree of competence sounds like a fantastic trip. As Steve says “…The instrument has the ability to create whatever your imagination can deal with”.


Back to the first jam sessions in Glastonbury a couple of years ago. The trio played back their three hours-worth of improvisations and found that it was good. The band name arose from the blue yonder, and “…reflects the fact that… the music felt pretty euphoric and otherworldly. It was very psychedelic but also strangely wonky”. “Wonky” is one of my favourite words, and if that’s what this music is, then that’s a good start...

Read the rest here: Progressive Aspect 

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1 Oct 2019

Gnoomes add more dates to their up-and-coming tour


Gnoomes have added some more shows to their up-and-coming tour with still more to be added:

10 Oct / RU / Cheboksary / SK Bar
11 Oct / RU / Nizhniny Novgorod / Black XO
12 Oct / RU / Moscow / Bumfabrika
13 Oct / RU / Smolensk / Aeblehaven
14 Oct / BY / Minsk / Graffiti Bar
18 Oct / NL / Rotterdam / Left of the Dial Festival
22 Oct / NL / Eindhoven / DDW Music Festival
23 Nov / BE / Liege / KulturA
25 Nov / IT / Ravenna  / Moog Bar
26 Nov / IT / Padova / UltraSuono c/o Grind House Club
27 Nov / IT / Milano / Spazio Ligera
28 Nov / IT / Pescara / Scumm
29 Nov / IT / Jesi / Mancave
30 Nov / IT / Savona / Raindogs House
06 Dec / LV / Riga / Depo

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Echoes and Dust reviews Julie's Haircut's In The Silence Electric


They say:

Ushered in on a trickling of glistening crescendos, and droned out surges, the new Julie’s Haircut album, In The Silence Electric, wastes no time in setting out the atmospheric journey that you are about to take. Never a band to rely simply on generic psych tropes, they have slowly evolved into a dynamic beast which is just as happy to explore minimalist gothic trance sounds, as it is to head straight to the dance floor on a wave of fuzzed out glory. It’s Euro-psych, but not willing to stay put within any conventional sounds. It does come with some proviso’s though, as we will see.

The potency of their sound can be heard as the sound shifts from that bleak, anticipatory opening track (hell, its even called ‘Anticipation Of The Night’), into the straight ahead garage rock stomper, all coloured with krautrock rhythms, and repeated vocals of ‘Emerald Kiss’. It’s a song with intent, and one which aims to take no prisoners. It could be turgid, but in these hands it’s just so good. Julie’s Haircut are coming of age, and about time too...

Read the rest here: E&D

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The Utopia Strong and Julie's Haircut makes Get into This's Albums of the Month

They say:


The Utopia Strong: The Utopia Strong

This is a convincing debut effort from The Utopia Strong, the recently formed trio of Kavus Torabi (formerly of Gong, Knifeworld), Michael J. York (Coil, Guapo) and Steve Davis (yes, the former Snooker World Champion turned modular synth nerd).

It’s a thoroughly modern psychedelic record, occasionally a little reminiscent of Rocket Recordings’ label mates Teeth of the Sea, but comparisons seem unfair for such an assured first offering that largely treads its own path.

The tracks are the product of a series of improvised sessions, which is evident on a first listen, but it’s also clear that those sessions have been tastefully edited and supplemented with additional layers. Though the record is instantly appealing on a first spin, attentive listeners will still hear new things after multiple plays. In short, it’s a grower...

Read the rest here: GIT

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Julie’s Haircut: In The Silence Electric

Italian collective Julie’s Haircut burst on to our stereo more than two years ago with Invocation And Ritual Dance Of My Demon Twin, their seventh album and first for Rocket Recordings.

A slow-burning, yet explosive package there was much decipher with the labyrinthine layers of chaotic Krautrock, jazzy time signatures and volcanic Stooges-aping riffage.

Such is their musical scope, it is hardly a surprise they’ve remained largely off many people’s radars yet their set at the 2017 edition of Liverpool International Festival of Psychedelia cemented them, for this writer, in the top tier of Europe’s most innovative bands.

What marks them out from their contemporaries is they manage to hone their sound – rarely making noise for noise sake – and imbue their music with oodles of melody and enough saxophone freak-outs when necessary...

Read the rest here: GIT

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The Quietus reviews Julie's Haircut's 'In the Silence Electric'


They say:

The ninth album by Italian psych rockers Julie's Haircut deserves to be played loud, finds Sean Kitching

First of all, it would be difficult, nay impossible, not to begin with this band’s name. What’s in a name, you may ask? In the case of Julie’s Haircut, the next logical question for most music fans would most likely be: what on earth where they thinking? Closely followed by: and why do they persist in using it? The answer, it seems, is lost in time. For Julie’s Haircut, originally formed in Sassuolo, in northern Italy, have been active for the past two decades, and are, I am reliably informed, relatively well known in their country of origin. In The Silence Electric, is their ninth album overall, and their second for the excellent Rocket Recordings imprint. Whilst it could certainly be argued that when the content is as good as this, the words on the label matter less, it’s still hard to imagine Mercury Rev ever making it had they been called ‘Grasshopper’s Bangs’, or Spacemen 3 ever ‘Walkin’ With Jesus’ had they been called ‘Jason’s Fringe’. Thankfully though, the music contained within is very good indeed, recalling in parts both of those bands – and in the case of Mercury Rev, hearkening back to their messy, sonically overloaded early period, especially their psychedelically epic second release, Boces.

This kind of indie psych-rock territory is a particularly well mined area, but here Julie’s Haircut mostly manage to negotiate the fine line between being a band of that genre and being themselves, without straying into the shallow waters of similitude that many bands of their ilk end up inhabiting. That The Silence Electric accomplishes this mainly in terms of form rather than content, shouldn’t represent cause for alarm, as sonically speaking, this is pretty thrilling stuff...

Read the rest here: The Quietus

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