I woke up from my Mondrian daydream to the unfettered sound of teenage lust/confusion wrapped in sweet screeching distorted guitars. Fuck yes, listening to this mesmerizing shit just brings us way back to when our younger, more impressionable selves first fell irreversibly in love with The Jesus and Mary Chain and their brand of combustible, abrasive yet melodic pop music. Something about their raw, unruly noise that romanticizes rebellion, the sonic equivalent of Bruce Davidson’s 1959 Brooklyn Gang photography project. And when the Reid brothers start to play “You Trip Me Up” or any of the other spindly classics from Psychocandy (1985), I’ll probably celebrate by having a cardiac arrest while the white light/white heat splits the darkened room. - Keith.
mp3: The Jesus and Mary Chain – You Trip Me Up
The Jesus and Mary Chain perform live in Singapore on May 26 at the Esplanade Concert Hall, 7.30pm. More details at 4 Imaginary Boys. And yes, we’ll be there.
Are you supposed to dance to this? The underlying house beat and disco vibe seem to suggest so, but there are enough twists and turns and other various disruptions here to stop you in your tracks. From radical pitch changes to relentless deconstructive sampling, Ital’s Daniel Martin-McCormick appears bent on both hosting the party and ruining it, in the process digging up the question of whether electronic music is meant for the dancefloor or bedroom. The answer in “First Wave” is probably neither, since the tried formulas of said genres are borrowed but neither replicated nor fully taken apart. Instead they are fascinatingly reappropriated, with the repetitive structures of house music channeled towards sonic exploration within a most meditative, hypnotic framework; in other words, perfect for both study and play. - Dan.
mp3: Ital – First Wave
Ital’s Hive Mind is out now on Planet Mu.
SINGAPORE: I’m Waking Up To…
Winterhalter – Squirrel Land
Don’t take the music of Winterhalter too seriously. It’s great if you can name all the references in any given song, but doing so seems counterintuitive to what’s intended by Shaun Soh, the brains behind the project. Performing sporadic shows within Singapore’s shores, Winterhalter is a sort of myth, but recordings of the music are available if you ask nicely, just like we have. So go on, have a listen. A real treat would be the four-track EP, I Am Worthy of God’s Love, released as an entire song on Soundcloud. - Brian.
To download all 35 songs in one file click here. MAP is published on the 15th of every month, featuring a showcase of music handpicked by bloggers from all over the world.
“I can see you but my eyes are not allowed to cry“. Julia Holter first borrowed these words from Euripides’ ancient Greek tragedy Hippolytus for her 2011 album, accordingly titled Tragedy. At the heart of that album lay the stunning “Goddess Eyes”, in which the nearly 2,500 year-old line is processed ruthlessly through a vocoder, its cold beauty presented in tension with Holter’s untouched delivery of the counterbalancing line “but in your dying you are dear to me“, thereby completing the dramatic effect of Artemis’ words cast upon the death of Hippolytus at the hands of the vengeful Aphrodite. A further twist though is offered this year upon the realisation that Holter had in fact been working on another album concurrently, only to be released last month. Contrastingly titled Ekstasis after the Greek root for ecstasy, the album summons an exuberance that only upon hindsight was hidden but ever looming in its predecessor. That unleashed freedom yields a further, fuller development of “Goddess Eyes”, with the track’s several lines stretched out and overlapping each other in a beautiful tangled mess. With Holster’s willingness to experiment, there’s room too for playful deconstruction, stunning moments of relative quiet, and even a dramatic breakdown at the end where the lightest tinkling of the piano carries valiantly, and blissfully, the weight of those words. - Dan.
mp3: Julia Holter – Goddess Eyes II
Tragedy is out on Leaving Records, while Ekstasis is on RVNG Intl.