29 July 2011
BS 2000 is the name of a musical side project of Beastie Boys' Adam "Adrock" Horovitz and Amery "AWOL" Smith also with tracks featuring Janay North. In 1997, BS 2000 released their vinyl-only self-titled debut. BS 2000 later released a limited-edition vinyl/CD, Buddy, in 2000 and Simply Mortified on vinyl and CD in 2001.
by Steve Huey
Barry Black was not a man, but the name of a largely instrumental side project for Archers of Loaf frontman Eric Bachmann. In contrast to the Archers' angular, noisy indie rock, Barry Black was an eclectic, ramshackle faux-jazz chamber group, put across by inventive arrangements that suggested Bachmann's untapped talent for writing film scores. Bachmann had been a saxophone performance major at Appalachian State University before transferring to the University of North Carolina and switching to English. At UNC, in 1991, he co-founded the Archers of Loaf, who became college-radio darlings two years later with the release of their debut album, Icky Mettle. Meanwhile, Bachmann started Barry Black along with producer (and roommate) Caleb Southern, treating it as an informal home-recording project involving various other musicians and scenesters from around the Archers' home base of Chapel Hill. The sessions were loose and spontaneous, involving strings, brass, and found-sound percussion; for his part, Bachmann played a variety of instruments, including guitar, saxophone, organ, Moog, banjo, clarinet, and drums. Notable contributors included Chapel Hill's own Ben Folds on piano, plus local club owner Frank Heath on vocals, percussionist Chris Wabich, fiddler Bill Hicks (Red Clay Ramblers), and trumpet-playing brothers Chris and Jim Clodfelter (of Geezer Lake). Drawing from jazz, folk, pop, world music, and modern classical, these recordings were released by the Archers' label, Alias, in 1995 as the album Barry Black, on the heels of the Archers' sophomore effort, Vee Vee. Barry Black received generally positive reviews for its odd combinations of sounds and off-the-cuff charm, and Bachmann kept the project going in between Archers commitments. A second Barry Black album, the more instrumental Tragic Animal Stories, appeared in 1997. The Archers of Loaf disbanded the following year, and Bachmann started a new group called Crooked Fingers; hoping to get actual film-scoring work, he also retired the Barry Black name as an outlet for his instrumental music, and reverted to his own. The move paid off with his first solo album, 2002's Short Careers, a score for the indie film Ball of Wax.
by Jason Ankeny
Singer/songwriter Lois Maffeo long reigned as one of the most respected voices in American indie pop -- a key proponent of the Pacific Northwest's love rock scene, her spare, lo-fi sound and steadfast adherence to an underground ethos blazed a trail for the countless female acts to emerge in her wake. A native of Phoenix, AZ, Maffeo began attending Evergreen State College in Olympia, WA, in 1981, initially becoming a fixture of the city's thriving music scene as a result of her grrrl-centric radio show Your Dream Girl on local station KAOS. After picking up the guitar, in 1987 she formed the short-lived Cradle Robbers with future Spinane Rebecca Gates before joining drummer Pat Maley in the duo Courtney Love, issuing three acclaimed singles before disbanding. Maffeo then relocated to Washington, D.C., where she began playing simply as Lois or sometimes even "the Lois" -- in short, a band made up of herself and whatever backing musicians were available. One early collaborator was Bratmobile drummer Molly Neuman, who regularly accompanied Maffeo live as well as on her first two solo LPs, 1992's lovely Butterfly Kiss and its 1993 follow-up, Strumpet. After issuing the live cassette Low Rider a year later, she toured with drummer Amy Farina, who returned for the Ian MacKaye-produced EP Shy Town; for the full-length Bet the Sky, Maffeo was joined by ex-Tiger Trap drummer Heather Dunn, who remained on board for 1996's Snapshot Radio as well as its full-length follow-up, Infinity Plus. She teamed with Fugazi drummer Brendan Canty for 2000's The Union Themes.
by Steve Huey
Known for their extended, mind-altering jams, Portland, Oregon's King Black Acid was originally the moniker of Hitting Birth leader Daniel Riddle's solo home-taping project. As he became more interested in exploring musical avenues other than Hitting Birth's tribal/industrial percussive grooves, he put down his bass, picked up a guitar, and recruited roommate Melinda DiCillo (keyboards), Roger Campos (guitar), Nathan Jorg (bass), ex-Wiper Scott Adamo (drums), and part-timer Joseph Trump (drums; also of Pigface and Elliott Sharp's Carbon). In contrast to Hitting Birth, King Black Acid pursued the sort of spacy, neo-psychedelic indie guitar rock typified by bands like Mercury Rev and My Bloody Valentine, with a bit of blues-rock influence in their chord progressions. King Black Acid's debut recording appeared in 1995 on Cavity Search; titled Womb Star Session, it captured the band's epic sound on full display in concert. Sunlit appeared in 1996, and Royal Subjects followed it the next year. After a three year break, King Black Acid resurfaced in fall 2000 to issue Loves a Love Song.
by Alex Henderson
Known for quirky, abstract, and eccentric songs, Philadelphia alternative rockers Huffamoose have enjoyed a small but enthusiastic cult following since the early '90s. The uncompromising band was formed in 1992 when singer Craig Elkins joined forces with guitarist Kevin Hanson, bassist Jim Stager, and drummer Erik Johnson (who was replaced by Chuck Treece in the late '90s). The rockers, all of whom had been music majors at Philly's Temple University, recorded their self-titled debut album for the 7 label in 1993. By 1997, Huffamoose was signed to Interscope; unfortunately, they weren't there for very long. Although 1997's We've Been Had Again (Huffamoose's second album) received its share of favorable coverage, Interscope ended up dropping the band. After that experience, the Philadelphians were feeling fed up with the music business, and for awhile it looked like Huffamoose might break up for good. But they decided to keep plugging away, and in 1999, Huffamoose signed with Shanachie. I Wanna Be Your Pants, the band's third album, came out in 2000.
by Michael Sutton
After the dissolution of Flesh for Lulu, founding members Nick Marsh (vocals) and Rocco Barker (guitars) decided to reunite in 1995 with a new appellation and a louder, rawer sound. Joined by Dave Blair (bass) and Al Fletcher (drums), Marsh and Barker formed Gigantic in London, England. The band was originally called the Infidels, but they abandoned the name when they discovered a Canadian disco outfit had already taken it. The group almost struck a deal with Hollywood Records and when it didn't materialize, they signed with Columbia. Gigantic recorded its only album, Disenchanted, in Los Angeles with producer Tim Palmer, who had previously worked with the Mighty Lemon Drops, the Mission U.K., and Tin Machine. The album was released in 1996 and while it found success overseas, label apathy stifled its chances of charting in America. The title track received scant airplay on alternative radio. Gigantic toured the U.S. with the Goo Goo Dolls and Bush to promote the album, but the exposure did little to help it and the label dropped the band. Gigantic broke up in 1998. In 1999, Barker joined the techno act the Space Police. A year later, Marsh and Barker returned as Flesh for Lulu.
by Stephen CramerFormed in the mid-'90s, New York's Gapeseed was guitarist Ed Feldman, drummer Peter Gordon, and bassist Mike Knowlton. With Feldman and Knowlton also on vocals, the trio's dissonant and noisy sound experiments were featured on two discs on California's Silver Girl Records, while garnering attention on the college radio charts. The band first released the Flanzer EP in 1993, and 1994 saw the band's full-length debut, Lo Cell, on Silver Girl. The band's reputation soon led to new opportunities, as producer Bob Weston was tapped to record the follow-up, 1996's Project 64. Poem Rocket's Sandra Gardner also sang guest vocals on the disc, as the band continued to intrigue and amaze its mostly underground, indie rock audience. That disc featured 11 uniquely structured tracks, featuring frantic overtones and wild sonic experiments. Soon after the disc's release, the group disbande
draw comparisons with recent Steve Roach and Robert Rich, Fang's music is truly separate, and one which asserts the
composer's wide-ranging knowledge of non-Western instruments."
"esoteric...revealing a depth all too uncommon in the field of electronic music...A truly fascinating and mysterious album
that reveals itself over several listens, pockets of music that awaken on different levels of consciousness. Excellent
Download link removed by request.
by John Bush
San Diego's Fluf play good-hearted punk-pop in the vein of Sugar and Dinosaur Jr. Guitarist/vocalist O. and bassist Josh Higgins had played in Olivelawn, but formed fluf in 1992 with a new drummer, Miles Gillett. The trio recorded a slew of seven-inch singles (collected on 1995's The Classic Years), but finally released a debut album on Headhunter/Cargo in mid-1993. The album confusingly had separate titles for each format (CD, cassette and vinyl), but is popularly known as Mangravy. Second album Home Improvements appeared early the following year, as did Compact Disc Is Weak. Waikiki followed in 1997, and a year later the group returned with Road Rage. I Know I'm Somebody followed in fall 2000.
by Heather Phares
Flop formed in 1989 when vocalist and guitarist Rusty Willoughby and drummer Nate Johnson left the group Pure Joy and joined up with guitarist Bill Campbell from Chemistry Set and bassist Paul Schurr from the Seers of Bavaria. After releasing a terrifically melodic, driving punk-pop album, Flop and the Revenge of the Mopsqueezer, on Frontier Records, the group was signed to Epic Records and produced an equally catchy major label debut in Whenever You're Ready. Apparently, Epic was not ready for Flop, and dropped the band shortly after their tour supporting the record. Now back with Frontier, Flop's sound has an extra edge to it, making the band's brand of dry-witted, intelligent pop that much more intruiging.
by Jason Ankeny
Drain was the ambient techno alias of King Coffey, better known as the drummer of the Butthole Surfers. Born in 1964, Coffey joined the Butthole Surfers in 1983, and began Drain in 1992 with the LP Pick Up Heaven, which -- despite the presence of samples and drum machines -- explored more traditional guitar-rock ground. However, with the project's second effort, 1996's Offspeed and In There (released on the indie label Trance Syndicate, a company owned and operated by Coffey in his native Austin, Texas), Drain took the plunge into experimental dance music, fusing hip-hop and trance beats with an eclectic collage of samples and influences.
2. Jify Trip - Nothing Artificial
3. Mellowdramatic Wallflowers - Phone Call #27
4. Groove Pilots - Scars
5. Jacob Fred Jazz Odyssey - MTV Get Off The Air, Pt. 2
6. N.O.T.A. - No Chance
7. Billy Joe Winghead - Snakes Eyes
8. Frustrated Housewives - New World
9. Wasteland - Please
10. Jenny Labow - Captured
11. Royal Crush - All I Ever Wanted
12. Cabbage - Bob Jr.
13. Good - Murder Sexy
14. Pit Bulls On Crack - Sore Throat Lozenges
15. Bunnies of Doom - Judas
16. Sybil's Machine - Heart Attack
17. Outside In - 13th Floor
18. The Elliot Morrison Project - Roadkill Heaven
19. The Nixons - Sister (Acoustic)
28 July 2011
by Mike DaRonco
Hailing out of the rainy days of London, England, Elevate bring out the grimmer aspects of indie-noise in comparison to the likes of early Sonic Youth and Girls Against Boys. Formed in 1993, an immediate signing to local label Flowershop soon followed with the release of their debut full-length "Bronzee" in 1994 and 1996's "The Architect." A US distribution deal soon came thanks to Mammoth Records, who released 1997's "Interior" EP. The next year saw the release of "All I Need (Is Love) and "Next Life Platoon."
27 July 2011
23 July 2011
22 July 2011
21 July 2011
From Trouser Press:
Let's Pet (No. 6) 1995
With far too many modern bands falling on the wrong side of Spinal Tap's "clever/stupid" demarcation, it's easy to mistake "uncategorizable" as a subgenre of the latter. Vegetarian Meat, the peripatetic basement-recording duo of Manish Kalvakota (guitar and drums) and Alex McAulay (everything else), doesn't help matters by hopping genre fences at random (not to mention an apparent aversion to playing live). But the quirky, slightly new wavey pop on the duo's lone longplayer does display some admirable influences: Brian Wilson, Half Japanese and the whole New Zealand school of shambling popsters. Vegetarian Meat's offbeat tuneage charts the ups'n'downs of lurve, with the songs' protagonist frequently being on the receiving end of flagellation (sometimes self-inflicted). Loser or not, songwriter McAulay works his charm by matching the musical arrangements to the lyrical ambiance—a fuzzy wash of guitars to accompany a whiny mood in "Pet," metallic, punkish power chords for a nastier temperament in "Silver and Gold," etc. In an optimistic moment, he soars with a rockist verve that recalls mid-period Who ("One Way Down"); waxing whimsical in "Trip," he channels vintage psychedelia and gives a passing nod to British folkies of the '60s. In a nutshell, no two songs on Let's Pet are alike, and the record would seem to signal the emergence of a talent worth citing in the same breath as Guided by Voices, the Grifters and Lou Barlow.[Fred Mills]