Various Artists – Mutazione: Italian Electronic & New Wave Underground 1980 – 1988 (Strut/ Fuse)

Mutazione

“Whilst most are keen to mine Italian disco, perhaps prog or even old Giallo and horror movie soundtracks, Strut uncovers a vibrant underground electronic music culture where no one outside (and possibly inside) Italy realised there was one.”

Read the review at Cyclic Defrost.

http://www.cyclicdefrost.com/blog/2013/07/various-artists-mutazione-italian-electronic-new-wave-underground-1980-1988-strut-fuse/

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Rodion G. A – The Lost Tapes (Strut/ Fuse)

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If you didn’t know the back-story, the genre, the label or any other contextual information and just put Rodion G.A on – then it’s possible that your head might very well explode.

The music of Romanian producer Rodion Rosca, is both that good and that confounding, drawing influence from everything from prog, to komische to no wave music, more than likely without having heard any of the above. His sounds don’t so much redefine music, as consume and bastardise it into his own unique style.

In a retro futurist twist Rodion was making these sounds from behind the iron curtain, between 1978 and 1983. Whilst he used early synths, electric guitar, a bunch of self made pedals and primitive drum machines, his main compositional tools were reel-to-reel tape machines. There’s a real shrillness to some of the synth work here, and the percussion is stark and metronomic. Yet there’s something here that’s much more than the sum of its parts, a certain experimental inquisitiveness, where you get the sense that Rodion and his band were making it up as they went along – and loving it.

Not just raw, the music is dark, and the electronics are noisy, strange and psychedelic, at times feeling barely in control. This may be the reason that Rodion G.A only ever had two of their more rock orientated singles released, despite receiving both radio play and touring relentlessly. This is the bands lost material and it could’ve easily been made yesterday. It’s quite diverse, with everything from vocals to piano appearing between the flanged out electrics.  It maintains a kind of militant minimalness, yet this primitive noisy electro pop music is endlessly engaging, demonstrating that just because the path wasn’t travelled, it doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be on it.

Etran Finitawa – The Sahara Sessions (Tugboat/ Fuse)

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“There’s something in the texture of the guitar, the desert twang, the repetitive riffs and sparse percussion that connotes not only a sense of wide open space but also struggle.”

Full review at:

http://themusic.com.au/reviews/album/2013/06/19/etran-finatawa-the-sahara-sessions-bob-baker-fish/

 

 

Jello Biafra & The Guantanamo School of Medicine – White People & The Damage Done (Alternative Tentacles/ Fuse)

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“It doesn’t feel like it, but since the demise of the Dead Kennedys, US punk icon Jello Biafra has made a lot of music. Mostly by stealing other peoples’ bands, like DOA, Mojo Nixon, Melvins and of course, Ministry with Lard. And throughout it all he’s maintained an ongoing, at times amusing, at times paranoid, at others disquieting diatribe against corporate and state control.”

Full review at:

http://themusic.com.au/reviews/album/2013/05/28/jello-biafra-the-guantanamo-school-of-medicine-white-people-and-the-damage-done-bob-baker-fish/

 

 

Melvins – Everybody Loves Sausages (Ipacec/ Fuse)

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“Ever wanted to stab a rock band? It’s possible that track two of the Melvins 20th studio album could drive you to that kind of violence. It’s a covers album, demonstrating the unpredictable band’s diverse range of influences, and come to think of it, being possibly the least commercial covers album you could imagine, it probably explains some things.”

Full review at:

http://themusic.com.au/reviews/album/2013/05/07/melvins-everybody-loves-sausages-bob-baker-fish/

Om – Advaitic Songs (Drag City/ Fuse) review in www.themusic.com.au

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“Is devotional doom a genre? Can metal and Sufism coexist in the same work? Is it possible to achieve enlightenment through drones and elongated bass riffs?”

I asked many more ridiculous questions in my review of the album late last year in Streetpress Australia.

http://themusic.com.au/reviews/album/2012/11/13/om-advaitic-songs-bob-baker-fish/

They’re touring Australia in May.

Tue May 7 – Jive, Adelaide
Wed May 8 – The Hi-Fi, Brisbane
Thu May 9 – Annandale Hotel, Sydney
Fri May 10 – The Hi-Fi, Melbourne
Sat May 11 – Rosemount Hotel, Perth