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Archive for April, 2009

diskant rewind: Asking For Trouble #6

Posted: April 7th, 2009, by Marceline Smith

(Originally posted July 2002)

Asking For Trouble by Marceline Smith

Token Trail of Dead record of the month is a tiny wee five inch vinyl single for promotional use only. It’s the size of a normal cd and only has about one inch of grooved vinyl. Awwww. Unsurprising then, that they’ve chosen two of their shortest songs for this; the riotrock Homage and the gentle brooding Relative Ways Segue. This would be a cute little promotional idea if it wasn’t for the fact that most record players won’t play them!! A concept only a major label would think up – promotional records you can’t actually listen to. Way to go Interscope…

So onto the real stuff. Since I haven’t actually bought any records in the last month I’m actually going to listen to some of the stuff I’ve been sent recently. Oh no, real work!

But then it’s not really work when you get given stuff by good bands for free. So let’s start with Fighting Red Adair who went down a storm at the diskant 020202 gig and have been kicking up a racket in the venues of Glasgow rather a lot lately. Aural Exciter [SSB] is their first release and has a massive seven tracks which is their entire set surely. FRA are part quirky, part straight -the song structure is odd enough to keep things interesting and tuneful enough to appeal across the board with a generalised american ROCK style. Muckraker opens up with some searing metallic guitars and you know they’re badmouthing you when they mutter under their breath. They know it too so they drop the disguise and go full on metal screamout crazy. The instrumental Gatekeeper has a slowly swaggering bassline with chipped guitars and an impressive show of don’t give a fuck eyebrow raising confidence. Killing Line of the Just has a nice line in dual hollering and menacing bassline and Mega-Meat is just mental, managing to fit in about four different tunes, some sinister mutterings and some head battering backup. Nice graphic art style sleeve too. Out soon so get queuing.

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Death Sentence: Panda! – Insects Awaken (CD, Upset The Rhythm)

Posted: April 4th, 2009, by Justin Snow

I gotta get this right out there, and I know I’m not alone in this. Punctuation in a band name is mostly intolerable. There are a few exceptions both with specific punctuation (commas, hyphens) and specific bands (Godspeed You! Black Emperor is probably the only one I really have no problem with, although why they moved the exclamation point from the end to the middle is beyond me). And for some reason, I never seem to enjoy the music these grammar obsessed bands create. I don’t think I’m being petty and shallow but then again, it’s hard to tell.

Death Sentence: Panda! already has, let’s count ’em, two strikes against them but I’m doing my best to look past that and focus only on the music. Thankfully, that’s a pretty easy task with these guys. They take a generally overdone genre like noise punk and add their own skronky artness to it. Like a slightly mellower Melt Banana with horns. Or They Shoot Horses Don’t They if they took lessons from Lightning Bolt. This is in your face and impossible to ignore. It’s loud as hell and somehow only coming from 3 people.

There’s all sorts of weird stuff going on like flutes and Glockenspiels, disgusting, growling guitars and crazy ass drums, and, of course, a female singer. The songs are super short and super catchy. They don’t always have a chorus or even lyrics but there’s there no shortage of hooks on Insects Awaken. You’ll have songs like the 22 second “Progress” running loops in your head the instant you hear it.

I feel like Insects Awaken is probably objectively better than how much I specifically like it. Which is saying a lot because I am really fucking into this record. I just think that the horns (which I generally am not a fan of) and the punctuation thing are making me hold back a little bit. If that’s the case, then even those who are in the same boat as me will really like Death Sentence: Panda! And for those of you that aren’t as superficial as I am, Insects Awaken is your new favorite record.

Death Sentence: Panda!
Upset The Rhythm

diskant rewind: Asking For Trouble #5

Posted: April 3rd, 2009, by Marceline Smith

(Originally posted May 2002)

Asking For Trouble by Marceline Smith

The real reason this month’s issue of the diskant ZINE was delayed is of course because the deadline was three days before the new Trail of Dead single was released and I didn’t know how else to start my column.

So, Trail of Dead, they’re fantastic live and to equal this their records would have to jump off your turntable and run riot around your room before kicking over your stereo, stealing your whisky and fighting with some dustbunnies on the carpet. That makes Another Morning Stoner [the Interscope Corporation of America] a bit of a letdown really as it does none of these things even after I taunted it and offered it high quality drugs. Yeah, actually, I haven’t even bought it yet. I’ve tried two record stores so far and neither had it. Nice sleeve though eh?

Okay, I’ve got it now, both formats, chart return shop etc. So let’s slip the walnut coloured vinyl on to my stereo. Another Morning Stoner is still such a good ‘just woke up’ song, the woozy guitars tripping over themselves and Conrad sounding just a little disorientated. Aw. The b-sides are all Peel session songs spread over the formats so the 7″ gets Homage sounding oddly clean and sparky. Where’s the dirt, man? S’weird. Buy this for the FREE POSTER though of our boys looking like teen girl poster pinups. Oh Yes. The CD version is a fancy interactive thing – oooooh. Golly, you can watch the video [which is an ace collage of stuff from the Astoria, Peel Session, Columbia Hotel and arty places in Paris] and it has hilarious desktop wallpaper. The session songs on here are much better – Baudelaire being almost better for the clear vocals and Richter Scale Madness sounding awesome. Big loud guitars, hollering, whooping, thumping drums and one of their best songs ever. Kill! Kill! etc. “Did we pass the audition?”, asks Neil [probably] after? hahaha. I mean, yes.

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