Monday, March 19, 2012

Turn My Headphones Up!!!!! Tumbling Tumbleweed Edition

Did you know there's a ghost town right here in Portland? Well, technically Oregon City, but close enough for a haunting. Almost feels like a ghost town in this blog. Let's fix that!

  ANTON SWORD- "Here Comes The Hurricane" Between his frickin' sweet name and evil-mirror-universe-goatee, I am entirely convinced that Anton Sword is some sort of old-school supervillain. His music even reflects that. Very slick and accessible. Not like that hack Dr. Steel, who is essentially a douche in a labcoat yelling about dolls and shit. My one qualm is that Sword's bio (which should be read in its glorious entirety) is almost like a how-to on how-not-to describe what genre you are. Or aren't. Here Comes The Hurricane comes out May 1st. Recommended.

  RURAL GHOSTS- eponymous EP
While not exactly reinventing the wheel, the literally-minded "other Portland" group Rural Ghosts put out great sparse spooky folk. And they're selling their EP on Etsy! How cute! You know my pet peeves, though, loyal readers. TAKE THIRTY SECONDS AND NAME YOUR DAMN EP.

  TRACERS- "Alphajerk"
Per the TRACERS bio: "attempts to soundtrack a Portland city stroll while on LSD at midnight, or a drive thru the redwoods at dawn. Heavily influenced by psychedelia, rainy days, the St. Vista Bridge, cross-country drives, and the passage of time. Artistic influences include: Kenneth Noland, Mark Rothko, Ravel, Kurt Vonnegut, War on Drugs, Panda Bear, and Hoxie, Kansas." What? As much as this made me want to not like them, the Alphajerk EP is a trippy swirly mess is probably the best Sonic Youth release we're going to get now that SY is just a Fender ad.

  THESE CURIOUS THOUGHTS- "Let's See What 2moro Brings" Now, you probably know that I have a weakness for long-distance musical affairs. Finneyerkes, Charlotte & Magon, Coeur Machant... it's just a great idea. These Curious Thoughts certainly fulfill the promise of that idea. They have a good sound which is compared to REM, but I feel veers in a darker, more psychedelic direction. Great execution, and I hope their new status as an actual factual live band doesn't cut short the mystery. Oh, and PS: Spell out "tomorrow" in the title, assholes.

  GHOST TOY CASTLE- "String the Clouds"
Now, intolerant jackass that I am, I was going to pitch this submission because the title of the email made a pune or play on words with "crap." Which I specifically warned everyone not to do, yes? Then GTC won me back over with their proclamation that they were "probably one of the top 20, or even 30, ghost-related bands in Portland." They almost lost me again with their mention of Flaming Lips and Smashing Pumpkins in their influences, but GTC's general positive attitude led me to actually listen to their music, and that turned out to be a good thing.

  ONSLAUGHT SIX- "Termina"
Why not. Hearkening back to a good ol' Fear Factory industrial metal sound, Onslaught Six proclaims that their new album contains “Twelve punches to the face—for real this time.” Oh shit! Apparently they're giant nerds, too, as the album drew inspiration from the Ben Drowned meme and Neon Genesis Evangelion. Heh, alright.

  AKONABABONA- "my friends it gets dark"
These are the facts as we know them: Jake is 18. He lives in Salem. He named his band as a joke. He records music in his bedroom on shit equipment. Now for some speculation: Jake feels that he is alone in the world, and that his ideas come from some dark unique place of originality. Well, you're not alone, and you're not unique. What you are, Okanabanana, is pretty damn good at what you do, and there is absotutely nothing wrong with that. Best of luck, sir.

 That's it for today. I'll be cutting a swath through ye olde slushe pile and putting up some more reviews soon. Don't forget to support the Patron Haint indiegogo campaign, in its last day of funding! With all this talk of ghosts, you know you want to help me make a haunted album!!!