The Chicago Reader
C64 on opaque red cassette with handmade artwork. Order Paypal: [spectiveaudio] at [gmail] dot [com]. Suggested $7 ppd donation for tape and artwork, $5 ppd otherwise. International shipping negotiable / please email.
October 5 Update:
Copies are available in Chicago at Permanent Records and
Reckless Records locations!
Permanent Records is at 1914 W. Chicago in Ukranian Village, off Damen bus and Chicago bus, as well as walking distance from the Damen Blue Line.
Reckless Records are at 3126 N. Broadway (Broadway bus, Belmont bus, Belmont Brown/Red L), 1532 N. Milwaukee (Milwaukee bus, Damen bus, Damen Blue Line), and 26 E. Madison (Madison/Wabash L, Dearborn (Blue) subway, State subway (Red), and tons of Loop buses!)
As always, please do support your local record stores!
Copies are also available online at Discogs.
All bands on the compilation should have copies soon, too.
This one is going to blow your mind -- 'Spective proudly announces an intracontinental psychedelic battle, with Atlanta bands on one side and Chicago bands on the other.
A1: Sovus Radio "I Am Temper"
A2: Soft Opening "Untitled"
A3: The N.E.C. "Death Training Video (Excerpt)"
A4: All The Saints "Closer/Owner"
A5: Brainworlds "Hypergnosis"
A6: The Sunny Muffdivers "TORN08ATL"
With the help of Cyrus Shahmir of The N.E.C. / Sunny Muffdivers, the Atlanta side features cuts from those two projects, as well as songs by All The Saints, Sovus Radio, Soft Opening, and Brainworlds. The side spans the entire spectrum of insane, unfettered rhythmic noise, refined psych pop, ambient soundscapes, and almost everything in between. It's everything you'd come to expect from Atlanta, represented well in recent years by the popular Deerhunter / Louts Plaza / Atlas Sound constellation, as well as The Black Lips, among others: loud, nuanced, refined, bratty, driving, spacious, it just doesn't stop.
Sovus Radio starts things off with a driving paisley psych tune, full of sunshine and modulated vocal lines that are matched by instrumental riffs and a rolling snare. Depending on who you ask in Atlanta, Sovus Radio are the inspiration or impetus for several contemporary Atlanta groups, and the group has numerous recordings of their soulful, dynamic psychedelia that will hopefully see the light of day.
Soft Opening follows with an raving sequence working around a blistering, tremolo guitar and a workhorse rhythm section. Nearly incomprehensible vocals fight through deep reverb as the song builds intensity through its meandering kick-ins. Also available from the group is their self-titled LP (Humdinger; After Science / Family Night / Sex Cow, 2011).
Taking a hard left turn, The N.E.C. offer their entry for the compilation, a blast of pure noise that showcases the most extreme aspect of their musical approach. Blown out recording/sound levels color this track, creating booming drums and instrumental sounds more extreme than feedback. A layered, effected collection of pop songs, drones, and jams is forthcoming from the group (Pineapple, Pretty Ambitious). Along with their B-sides cassette on 'Spective (CS1), the group also has a set of releases available on Double Phantom / [ove:evo] (most recently, Is, 2010).
You probably remember them from their debut LP, Fire On Corridor X (Touch and Go; Killer Pimp, 2008), full of hazy and nuanced dirges and anthems. All The Saints adequately frame the heavier side of Atlanta's psych spectrum, and they continue their thoughtful, metallic, shimmering riff-rock with their contribution to the A-side. I can safely say that they were one of the bands that kicked my love of dark, layered psychedelia into motion, and as far as I can see, their follow-up LP remains forthcoming. You can also find an All The Saints track on a split single with These Arms Are Snakes (Touch and Go, 2009).
After a succinct showcase of song-oriented psych, displaying a range of ambient, noisy, and bright structures, Brainworld and The Sunny Muffdivers close the side with extended repetitive instrumental segments.
Brainworlds are no strangers to the world of experimental cassette releases, and their entry here is an extended, swelling ambient composition that intensifies over minimal electronic rhythms. The group has a set of live releases, as well as a handful of tapes that are named in numerical order. Sonic Meditations released ... and ..... in 2010 and 2011 (also on CDR), and Hooker Vision released .... in 2010.
'Spective sludge instrumentalists The Sunny Muffdivers return to the world of insanely repetitive, captivating noise with their side-closing track. No lies in the title -- this one was actually recorded during a tornado! Feedback squalls and random noises appear at times, but this one is mainly driven by one distorted, pulsing passage. Also available from the group is their All Half Evil cassette ('Spective CS4), which is yet another blissful instrumental endurance test.
B1: Implodes "Reverser"
B2: The Great Society Mind Destroyers "Space Station On Fire"
B3: Rabble Rabble "You"
B4: The Leavitt Ours "Ripped"
B5: Killer Moon "The Dark Rift"
From repetitive kraut jams to expansive progressive themes to frantic burners, Chicago features an eclectic gang of bands that might not best be described as a scene, but a heavy immersion in the tradition of mind-manifestation, with the obvious repercussions following those spiritual notes. Like the Atlanta side, this one only scratches the surface of the city's psychedelic talents.
Chicago's side opens with a new entry from Implodes, which might surprise some fans of the group's Kranky LP, Black Earth. No stranger to ambient leanings, the group fully indulges their potential for working intense, unfolding passages. Hypnotic drumming, swelling, infinitely decayed guitars, and rich bass found this song, holding things over before a sweeping lead guitar line takes over. Just as heavy as the best moments on their LP, but with more space to breathe. Previous releases include their 2009 self-titled PlusTapes cassette.
Following the atmospheric opener, The Great Society Mind Destroyers rave up in cosmic proportions, leaning heavily on their penchant for winding guitars and a driving, relentless rhythm section. Reminiscent of a speedy ride through the future or a distant galaxy, the group works their steady rave up to its boiling point, only to reveal an unsettling, distant instrumental twist to close the song. Also available from the group is their 2011 cassette Spirit Smoke (Sloow Tapes; LP forthcoming), a split 7" with Dark Fog (Galactic Zoo, 2010), and a split release with Rabble Rabble (Commune, 2009).
Rabble Rabble keeps the pace with a killer acid blues take. Rowdy vocals mimic guitar lines throughout the first half and the drums take over the tempo to lead a fast-paced outro. Self-described flower-punk, Rabble Rabble's track is an uncompromising counterpart to the group's previous releases, including their most recent single, "Why Not" (2011) and their 2010 LP Bangover (Commune). Other releases include a 2009 PlusTapes entry (Jailbait and a set of releases on Commune Records.
The Leavitt Ours crawl through a layer of hiss to work through an experimental pop entry driven by low-range synth bass, eclectic drums, and instrumental trade-offs. Smoky vocals take over as the song intensifies, culminating in a loose, repetitive jam to close the track. Also available from 'Spective is the 2011 cassette Return (CS6), and the group previously released an improvised instrumental cassette on Notice (Movement, 2010).
If I can be honest, Killer Moon close this compilation because there simply was nothing to follow their brutal statement of acid doom. Heavily low-tuned bass and guitar riffs open the song alongside energetic drum parts that return the riffage. Intense, rapid lead lines eventually give way to a brief calming interlude, only to have the group return to form to send the compilation off in style. Truly a power trio, the instrumental group has a forthcoming LP, Tunnel Vision.