The XLR8R Office Top Ten Album Picks, August 27
Wooden Shjips S/T Holy Mountain
We rarely get to give the Holy Mountain bros dap, but the San Francisco-based label has just given birth to one triumphant piece of prog-history. Wooden Shijps figured out that organs, Alice Cooper-esque vocals, and lo-fi guitar fuzz are the recipe for one legitimate stoner soundtrack. Grass will be fired up to this on the immediate tip.
DJ Ayres & Nick Catchdubs Superfriends DJ Ayres Catchdubs
What started as a monthly at SF’s Milk Bar has finally come full circle with a stellar mix from the party’s founders: The Rub’s DJ Ayres and Fool’s Gold Records’ Nick Catchdubs. The rough theme here is dance rock (Devo, The Gossip, Depeche Mode, Zongamin), and the selections are keen, unexpected, and tightly cut. Stomp your feet.
Boddicker Big Lionhearted and the Gallant Man Banter
Big Lionhearted sounds like a Modest Mouse of yesteryear: communal, sloppily taut, and most of all head-bobbingly inventive and emotional. These simple little indie rock tracks carry a big punch. Give 21-year-old Caleb Boddicker his due.
Para One Epiphanie Naïve/Ryko
Over a year after it’s European Institubes release, Para One’s debut LP finally reaches US soil with a domestic price tag. Tracks like “Dundun-dun” and “Midnight Swim” are still hipster dance staples and Epiphanie is still better than most current electro-house. Take that, blogs.
Elektrons Get Up 12” Wall of Sound
This 12” is all about the Herve remix. The pulsing, rollercoaster synthlines are the epitome of a perfect peak-time dance track–it will either make you throw your hands in the air in ecstatic, sweat-soaked revelerie, or it will make you run to the bathroom and vomit. Either way, the Dubsided sound has destroyed you once again.
Muscles Guns Babes Lemonade Modular
The latest release from camp Modular is another synth-punk-funk tour de hip. Melbourne-based Muscles certainly shares a few of the tendencies of labelmates The Presets–unaffected, glam-punk vocals layered with techno 4/4’s and synth stabs, but the poppy melodies make this debut work. If this genre is still going anywhere, Muscles is the first in line.
Clipd Beaks Hoarse Lords Lovepump United
The whole ’90s noise-punk sound is pretty tired, but Clipd Beaks is one of the few bands around that gives the wavering genre hope. Hoarse Lords sounds like it was recorded in somebody's basement, then sent for a proper mastering from anyone of the producers working with The Birthday Party. If you like dirty, heavy bass lines and effected guitar wanking, this thrashy record was made for you.
Komputer Synthetik Mute
Not unlike Kraftwerk, these spelling bee failures own up to analog majesty. Filtered synths, weird noises, and whispered, robo-vocals usually equate to a cliché, but not in the case of this decade-old duo. Between Synthetik and Alan Vega’s Station, Mute is prepping for its place in the rad releases of 2007 hall of fame.
Various Eskimo Volume V: The Glimmers Eskimo
Fo the fifth installment of its mix series, Eskimo wrangled up Belgian leftfielders The Glimmers to compile a percussive masterpiece. Featuring unpredictable funk artistry from Venus Gang, Tussle, Primal Scream, and others, this collection drops at a time when disco-esque mixes are nearly exhausted. It's got nothing on Optimo's mix, but Volume V still kills it.
Shitmat Grooverider Planet Mu
Whenever a press release indicates that an album has anything to do with "hard jungle" or "mashcore," Managing Editor Ken Taylor usually tosses it to the promo wolves. It may be the gnarly cleavage on the cover or the track title "Beastiality," but either way, it's still here. Shitmat, you are the lone breakcore survivor.
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