Wednesday, August 21, 2013

MUSIC REVIEWS: Tyranny is Tyranny

Let it Come from Whom it May (Phratry)

Tyranny is Tyranny is a noise rock band that is, in their words: "Proudly based in Madison WI, the epicenter of class struggle." Tyranny is Tyranny keep the sound of Midwestern noise bands alive and well into the new century with a little post-hardcore help along the way.  Let it Come from Whom it May is a seven track album with heavy riffs, dark lyrics and a fair bit of screaming. It delivers  an outlet for ever present angst and anger, but the band is not afraid to get melodic when the song and mood dictates. They're left wingers for sure, and they deliver their message in an extreme medium which is a good change from the more hippie vibe a liberal college town like the Mad City can give off (East Side, I’m talking to you). If you needed further proof of their politics, the band takes its name from chapter four of Howard Zinn's eye-opening and rage inspiring book, A People's History of the United States. You see, Tyranny Is Tyranny want to bring down the walls of capitalism through decibels, brick by brick. That could take awhile, but I think I can here some crumbling. [Tyranny is Tyranny]

Thursday, August 15, 2013

MUSIC REVIEW: Landmarks, Public House Digital 7"

Public House Digital 7”’
If I am to believe what I read, the Landmarks band is a part of a larger collective known as Public House Sound Recordings which was formed by recording engineer, Dave Vettraino. This digital seven inch, while not measured in inches, covers a lot of musical space starting with the arcing jam of "Overflow". At its best the song aspires to the near perfection of Deerhunter’s "Nothing Ever Happened." At its worst it's just a damn fine tune with a driving bass line, Rhodes piano and swirling and clashing guitar lines seasoned lightly with minimal vocals. “Cuscutta” is slower and trancier with meandering vocals, another steady bass line and hints of xylophone and a not so subtle guitar with effects pedals at play. RepresentChris Auman
REMINDER: Never, ever take a critics word for anything. Download the song for free from the Landmarks Bandcamp page.

ZINE REVIEW: Les CarNets de Rastapoloulos #9

Les CarNets de Rastapoloulos #9
This is issue #9 of Robert Gauvinov's Les CarNets de Rastapoloulos zine and the second installment of the pen pal theme. I have not seen the first one, but the back story is that when Robert was a teenager in Canada in the 1980s, he signed up to become a pen pal through a Communist youth magazine. Quicker than you can say Glasnost and Perestroika, Robert had dozens of pen pals from behind the Iron Curtain. In this issue of the zine, Rob reprints some of these letters with updates from the people who wrote them. This is a pretty fascinating concept and my only complaint is that this zine merely whets my appetite for more. I’d love to find out more about these people who grew up under Communist rule: what were their lives like then? And now? What sort of future did they see for themselves then and what do they see now? More, more, more. I'm greedy. More.

Les CarNets de Rastapoloulos is a photocopied zine, laid out by hand. It's 14 pages. For more info, and to get free copy, check out Robert Gauvinov's page at We Make ZinesChris Auman

VIDEO: King Tuff, "Sun Medallion"

VIDEO: RocketNumberNine, "Lope"