Friday, May 29, 2009

Vialka - Succès Planétaire International, review in dieshellsuit

I’ve been avoiding starting this review for a couple of days now. Not because this is a bad record, because it’s not, but more that I’m not sure how to approach reviewing it. Vialka have got me stumped. My frame of reference for this style of music is pretty limited and I hate to fall back on lazy journalism techniques, but the best way I can describe Vialka is like Gogol Bordello meets Battles. There’s a hint of Fugazi in there as well. Let me try again. Vialka are a two piece gypsy folk punk band from France. Succès Planétaire International is their sixth album. Their motto for this record was “more rock, less talk.” Most bands could do with taking their advice.

The first thing that you hear on Succès Planétaire International is what can only be described as a folk waltz riff being played by a tuba. This is the first thing that confused me. I don’t think I’ve ever heard a tuba being used on record. I guess there’s a first time for everything. The next thing that threw me was the drums and guitar. This is where the motto of “more rock, less talk’ comes into play. The drummer scatters around her snare drum and hi hat recalling the precise, syncopated style of Battles’ John Stainer, whilst the guitar plays a descending riff that wouldn’t sound out of place on a Fugazi record. Over the course of six minutes, Vialka twist and turn their way through four different time signatures, numerous stops and starts and at least three different musical styles. As odd as it is to compare a folk band to Battles, it’s not that far off the mark. ‘Good Riddance’ again showcases Vialka’s tendency towards intricate rhythms, with both guitar and drums showcasing restrained yet complex riffs, fusing both folk music and math rock seamlessly. Like a cross between Battles and Gogol Bordello.

World music is often seen as a dirty word, a genre with slight returns at best. On Succès Planétaire International, Vialka have proven not only that world music shouldn’t always be disregarded, but that you can produce interesting and thought provoking records under its umbrella, without sounding like one of those terrible bands that always get booked for Later With Jools Holland. Just remember: “more rock, less talk.”

by David Pott-Negrine.

Rice Corpse Review in Sound Projector

Australian Lucas Abela is a larger-than-life performer and entrepreneur who has gained notoriety over the years for his uncomfortable live shows and the ultra-bizarre record label which he runs. Performing under his Justice Yeldham alias in the group Rice Corpse, he improvises on the new CD Mrs Rice (DUAL PLOVER 666) by playing amplified sheets of glass, probably using his mouth and his hands in alarming and unexpected ways, alongside an impromptu rhythm section he happened to pick up in China during a recent tour in that country. What a musical find that turned out to be. Pianist Li Zenghui bashes the keys to generate a demented misinterpretation of the records of Cecil Taylor, or John Cale's piano work on the first Velvets LP, while drummer Yang Yang from local band Mafeisan shows us exactly why he's earned his reputation as the "craziest exponent" of percussion in the Beijing area. A thrilling record results. With this added accompaniment, I feel that Abela's inchoate and formless noise has finally found a framework that gives it some real body and resonant presence, increasing its impact one-hundredfold. Needless to say with all that glass around, the sense of implied violence and bloodshed is never far away. - Ed Pinsent, the sound projector.

Thursday, May 28, 2009


SO the stories are all true, we have been in negotiations with the legendary japanese beatboxer dokaka to release his new album human interface outside of japan. For those of you who have been living under a rock thats buried far far underground dokaka is the king of multi genre beatboxing having covered versions of everything from slayer to miles davis to computer game themes through his own inimitable multi tracked beatbox style. He also appeared on bjorks medulla album amongst other things. Due for release sometime in the next couple of months pre orders available soon.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Naked on the Vague - Chitty Chat review on Mess and Noise

Although not a dualplover release thought i'ld post up this great review to naked on the vagues latest single chitty chat on the australian music focussed mess and noise site.

Chitty Chat
Naked on the Vague
Chitty Chat
2 Track, 7inch (2009, Sacred Bones)

It’s not every band that you can swear by. To the contrary, forming a partisan relationship with a band – really barracking for them, believing in them – seems a rare treat nowadays, given our unprecedented access to music. The middle of the road is a mutant form of pest that requires tireless persistence to evade, but there are still bands – among whom Naked on the Vague are peers – who deserve close scrutiny, personal footnotes, pencil-case scrawlings and tireless, vitriolic debates with naysayers. You can and should lose friends over this band.

Lucy Phelan and Matthew Hopkins sound legitimately scary together. ‘Chitty Chat’ is a caustic, barely-conceived pop song gushing at its split seams with filthy, sourceless noise. The relentlessly quick and artificial percussion sounds as if it continues ad infinitum somewhere in a vacuum – existing on a frequency this duo only occasionally happen upon. Once found, they endeavour to sully it as brutally and efficiently as possible.

Phelan’s caterwauling is haunted by the oozing, reverberated baritone of Hopkins, and together they are sexless and malevolent. There is a primal energy here that sounds channelled, unreined, as if it’s pouring forth and exhausting its intermediaries. Indeed, where shit bands sound like they’ve drafted their songs to within an inch of the “Chicken Tonight” theme, fucking amazing bands like NOTV cheat their way through instinct, buckling to the pressures of the moment. ‘Chitty Chat’ has been rendered in different forms live but the documented version here could hardly be considered “official”, because the strict dogma of rendition means diddly squat where true art is involved.

It’s a shame that tradition and craft appears the predominant occupation of the mainstream indie scene. Here is a band where investment of belief is imperative and endlessly rewarding. Every young person with a cross to bear should hear, and believe in, this music. Some folk will fork out for the pretty looking artefact, play it once or twice and slot it in among their other collectible 7” singles – of course, the way NOTV disseminate their music appeals to collectors, trainspotters, dilettantes. Here’s a challenge though: play Chitty Chat over and over again, cherish it like you would the classics, and that’s exactly what it will become. Because that’s what it sounds like to me.

by Shaun Prescott

Monday, May 25, 2009

Mess and Noise - Review, Rice Corpse

For a lot of noise musicians, showmanship is often limited to a mild flailing of the body while they hover over an array of equipment and leads. Sydney’s Lucas Abela opts instead for cutting his face to pieces with treated plate glass – breathing, sighing and yelling into the mic’ed up glass until it breaks into shards, often taking portions of his face with it. Under the name Justice Yeldham, Abela has brutalised a few households worth of window pane for years now, but his recorded material has rarely excited attention among the uninitiated masses, who generally appreciate the spectacle first and the sonics second, if at all.

Rice屎Corpse is Abela’s improvised collaboration with two Chinese artists – Yang Yang of Mafeisan on drums and saxophonist-cum-pianist Li Zenghui. For anyone fascinated by Abela’s means but intimidated by its end, Mrs Rice is an accessible place to start. It’s noise rock, and while no less compromising in execution the presence of a rhythmic and melodic backbone breathes a welcoming “rock” dynamic into Abela’s mulched, overdriven glasswork. His foreign sonic vocabulary is translated here into a musical language most listeners can decipher.

When playing off the two-piece ensemble, which switches between foreboding menace and full throttle freak out, Abela’s vocals are given the opportunity to display a surprising myriad of range – whether it be the eerie wavering foghorn drones halfway through ‘Stamp on My Balls’, the subtle static malfunction of ‘Desktop Frog’, or the garish rhythmic hopscotch showcased during ‘Peking Duck’. Abela responds deftly to Zenghui’s keys, which often heave violently out of sparse melodic noodling into hammer-happy free jazz expressiveness. Yang Yang’s eagerness to give his whole kit a solid thrashing at every given opportunity means Rice屎Corpse rarely climb out of their rigid soft/loud MO, but the jarring transitions rarely prove predictable or tiring.

Which seems somewhat integral to Mrs Rice anyway. It’s a joyously gratuitous album, equally hilarious and punishing, maniacal and narcoleptic. Maximum volume is recommended to appreciate the catharsis at the heart of Rice屎Corpse, especially for those likely to glaze over the more challenging aspects of the record. Don’t be mislead: this is still a rough-as-guts ride, but hopefully Mrs Rice is evidence enough to sceptics that Justice Yeldham is much more than just a bloodstained showman.

by Shaun Prescott

Friday, May 22, 2009

slobbersville evidence

This video of the slaughterin' slobberville rendition of 'Face the Music' recorded during our recent tour at the Donaufestival, Krems Austria will little to explain what actually happened, the easiest explanation is that Kevin Blechdom wanted to explore a new way of presenting mulitple acts on tour rather than my turn your turn her turn their turn and instead bound together, Kevin Blechdom, Blevin Blectum, Blectum from Blechdom, Ching Chong Song, Irene Moon, Christopher Fleeger, Ironing, Elisabeth King, Justice Yeldham and others who joined in for a show or part of the tour.

What came from this was a revelationary two hour show + sometimes 5 encores (if we ever tour again you must insist on the 5th encore, just keep clapping while we drink water backstage, you wont be disapointed) that was the more inspired and debouched collection of artists who spanned from alt country songs to ear splitting noise and everything in-between all in one act!

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Purple Duck - Duckside of the Moon, Cyclic Defrost Review

We first heard Purple Duck whoring himself with the evil and wrong rap stylings of Suicidal Rap Orgy, and somehow we knew he deserved better. On his debut solo album he’s thrown everything but the kitchen sink at it, and most of it sticks. But then it slides off at funny angles and it’s impossible not to laugh maniacally then be charmed by the insanity and creative dexterity of the duck-man. It feels like a comedy album, with a couple of skits such as Cunt Dracula, who is a nasty insensitive piece of work (even for a vampire) and Sex Falcon which is about a falcon that terrifies townsfolk by penetrating them and then dropping them off a mountain two hours away. Yes I know it’s juvenile but it doesn’t stop it being funny. And it’s part of the charm of Purple Duck who uses hip hop, funk, house, indie folk, blues and electro pop to get his light humorous messages across. Despite his dexterity it’s impossible to dislodge the notion that he’s taking the piss out of the listener, possibly because the humor tends to overcompensate the soul of the music. That is except for When a Women Cries where the Duck adopts a Flaming Lips vocal style though almost seems to ruin the emotional sincerity by adding a catchy electro groove. Then there’s Bored, where The Duck describes how bored he is, demonstrating a remarkable ability to creatively curse and an almost implausible vocal dexterity. Duckside of the Moon is the antidote to the polished production and vacant content of most current day albums, and as a result should be encouraged.

Bob Baker Fish