The Pen Test - Interstate LP - Order Here
The mental and physical setting of travel under duress, induced by sleep-deprivation, lack of stimuli, sense of isolation, delusion of grandeur, and destabilized neuro-chemistry. Physically taking place on the I-90 West leaving Billings, MT (or I-XX anywhere). Unlit roads lacking reflective shoulder and center-line markings, unable to discern if the oncoming semi traffic is emerging over hill in your lane, combating the intrusion of gentle theta-wave micro-sleep cycling.
An examination of the decline of car culture in American civic religion and the lose of its romanticism. We no longer act as operators but as a continuation of the machine...the levels of separation are blurred or irrelevant and the resulting master-slave relationship we submit to unwillingly or in totalitarian zen-like acceptance: The Eisenhower Interstate system as a force of self-annihilation, seeking to take without malevolence, duty, or permission.
Inspired by Kraftwerk's Autobahn as both document a theoretic trip on limited access roads, invulnerable to limitation of speed and stoppage. While Autobahn induces a sense of wistful imagination, Interstate is the folding over and collapse of playful and lightly-contemplative thoughts into the purview of delusion. The interstate may act as a facilitator of leisure its demesne includes the erosion of one's self. A chiseler or cleanser, amoral and of supernatural stature (and capability), the Eroder (Interstate) espouses itself with the act of seizure.
Recorded in Olympia, WA at Dub Narcotic Studio under the supervision and capabilities of Ben Hargett (of K Records, The Evergreen State College), mastered by Mikey Young (of Total Control, Eddy Current Suppression Ring), and championed by Bryan Hitchcock and Patrick Scott-Walsh.
Kraus - Interior Castle CS - Order Here
NZ’s iconoclastic Kraus—hailed as a ‘national treasure’ by the New Zealand Listener
—has always been an intrepid explorer of sonic scenery, and Interior Castle finds him on
the move again, following up his acclaimed Supreme Commander LP (2013) with another
highly adventurous outing. Borrowing recklessly from various epochs—stone-age drums
meet futurist synths; slot-machine electronics are layered, perversely, over what sounds like
a plucked lute; warbling flutes vie with blown-out guitar—his time-traveling brand of exotica
stomps playfully through medieval set-pieces and b-movie locales, conjuring mindscapes and
dreamworlds at once familiar and strange. While much of the current Kiwi crop tends toward
loud and gnarly, Kraus’ inquisitive approach has more in common with mavericks like Arthur
Lyman and Joe Meek. A founding member of onetime space-punk legends the Futurians,
Kraus continues to broadcast sublime, singular weirdness from his corner of the southern
Stacian / Gel Set - Voorhees 12in - Order Here
Laura Callier and Dania Luck will tempt with ethereal vocals
and blissful pop, but their lure works best for the dancefloor
on their aggressive electronic split. Gel Set and Stacian combine
forces for the first time on their Moniker Records 12", translating
eternal, lucid longing into catchy synth riffs and repetitive oblivion.
That tempting sound: it's so easy to call this outer space, or
otherworldly, but these grooves are better on earth. Stacian sets the
tone with immediacy and urgency. This synth cadet is refueling,
tarnished and returning to battle. Fragile layers shine through relentless
beats. Gel Set veils this urgency with the inviting fallout, stripping
Stacian's layers to core beats and synth excursions. Yet, those vocals
tempt, again and again, luring listeners with a simple urge: dance.
If you're tempted to dismiss synth pop as space-age posturing, Stacian
and Gel Set answer with a left turn back to earth. Here, their beautiful
language translates into an electronic fantasy: Keep spinning this, keep
The Pen Test - Biology 7in - Order Here
The exploitation of ecological systems to affect biological
systems funded by military-industrial-media systems are
abstracted into cascading, overlapping sequences, and
fixed-note arpeggiators, expressing a sense of triumph in
what appears to be mastery over the natural and its subjugation.
The result, seemingly existent synergistic order, is only an
illusion induced the by human fallacy to withdraw a sense
of pattern and order in independent sequences. The same can
be applied to our sense of rhythm. Biology was an extraction
of those principles to induce a sense of engineering where the
use is discovered during or at the end of the process. Creation
of a place where rigidness and chance dictate the event through
the forcing of the accidental.
The Pen Test is an understanding between Bryan Hitchcock and
Patrick Scott-Walsh. An agreed upon reality they cooperate in the
ongoing construction of. Point of origin is difficult to discern, but
initial development occurred in Athens, GA. Further additions
occurred in Minneapolis, MN. Their phone numbers both start with
the (715) designation exclusive serving Northern Wisconsin until
2010 when the (534) area code was added to supplement the growth
ONO - Diegesis LP/CS - Order Here
Rarer than a phoenix is the band whose ‘comeback’ is more vital than its original incarnation. But ONO’s second coming has lasted longer and turned far more heads than their early-80s configuration ever did, and this harrowing LP shows a band at the height of its visionary powers. Their legendary ‘gospel-noise’ has never sounded so furiously focused, from the loping, industrial thwonk of Travis Wax Madonna to the corroded funk of Spare, reminiscent of Public Enemy’s Bomb Squad productions. P. Michael’s warped beats remain the adhesive, binding the band’s maximalist, gestural noisemaking—guttural bass, swooping guitar feedback, delirious chanting—while travis, more high-priest than frontman, dons his ritual white gown and presides over the sonic feast.
But as always with ONO, the music is scarcely half the story. ONOMATOPOEIA BEFORE MUSIC was the band’s founding principle, and this conflation of language and noise has always been deeply, if not explicitly, political; Diegesis is their most aggressive, most militant document yet, digging unflinchingly at the unhealed wounds of the Body politic. BLACKPOWER.MOVE is a growling, onomatopoetic invocation of the MOVE bombing of 1985—one of the darkest and most shameful chapters in recent American history, in which the city of Philadelphia dropped a bomb on its own people, killing eleven men, women and children and allowing the resulting fires to destroy hundreds of homes. Language fails in the face of such insane tragedy; hence the screams, the sirens, the echoes of barking dogs and machine-gun fire, a dystopic soundscape held together by P. Michael’s squawking, insistent bass riff. More punishing still is the nightmarish CQCQCQ, part of travis’ ongoing, “savagely personal” explorations (as DJPTSD) of the profound traumas he experienced as a radio operator aboard the USS America in the late 60s. The final cut, a swelling, funereal rendition of Jimi Hendrix’ Burning of the Midnight Lamp, seems to offer a glimmer of redemption, but the album’s dark clouds never quite lift; an unsettling crackle remains in the air. Unquestionably a Major Statement from these untiring Chicago giants, Diegesis is a defining record that demands and rewards in equal proportion.
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Upcoming Releases for 2014-2015
Jimmy Whispers - Summer In Pain LP/CS
ONO - Spooks LP/CS
The Pen Test - Interstate LP
Kraus - Interior Castle CS
The Pen Test - Biology 7in
Stacian / Gel Set - Voorhees 12in split
ONO - Diegesis LP/CS
Lazy - Obsession LP/CS
Rollin Hunt - The Phoney LP/CD
Hecks - Trust and Order 7in
Kraus - Supreme Commander LP
ONO - Albino LP
Stacian - Songs for Cadets LP/CD
Lazy - Party City 7in
Hot & Cold - Border Area LP
Dan Melchior - Ghost in the Supermarket RSD 12" (Sold Out)
Yva Las Vegass - I was born in a place of sunshine and the smell of ripe mangoes LP/CD
Jealousy - Viles LP
Stacian - Pul EP
Rollin Hunt - Criminal 7in
Trailblazer - Gut Reaction 7in
John Bellows - Clean Your Clock LP