Snuggies. Get into it.

Little Vic. New York rapper, makes you feel like old style hip-hop is still worth it especially now that Kanye is aping Gary Numan. Dope beat, nice flow and something about that sample that's just hyped enough.

It's My Turn

These are electronic instruments made and performed by Simon Blackmore, Antony Hall and Steve Symons, Manchester based sound artists/sculptors, instrument building woodworkers calling themselves the Owl Project. Generally called the iLog, they make different ones with a variety of functions; tone and beat generators, voice samplers, AM detector (this one is called iLog Photo-Synthesis because it converts sunlight into sound), and effects and feedback modules. Pretty cute and has a slick enough design although it sounds like there's a fair number of glitches in the engineering. Some of the videos on their website show they're actually not bad for music making either. Instrument companies should be developing ideas like this and selling them for absurd prices. I suppose it wouldn't be a particularly 'green' instrument for its use of materials, even though conservation, or at least conscientiousness, must be in the conceptual backdrop of the whole project.

Also I'm posting a couple tracks off the new Black Milk album just because it's crack shit.

Losing Out (feat. Royce Da 5'9')

Holding It Down

This is a track from John Zorn's record that came out last spring only I just found out about it now. It's a exotic pop oriented record leaning towards surf, lounge, santa style latin rock, and lou reed simplicity. Marc Ribot's meaty exactitude rules throughout, and only on a few occasions do we get the skronk and squeal we're used to from Zorn's sax. It's ├╝ber-pleasing and has to be a bit tongue in cheek as if it was a record made for TV show licensing in the 60's. But that's fairly reassuring. Mow Mow, the track I have posted, has a drooping melody that just seems to cycle back on itself. A loose brushy beat, some B3, vibes, a lazy night on the beach. It's harder than it looks to pull this off.

Mow Mow

Tussle is a dub/dance band out of San Francisco. Their new record is called Cream Cuts on Smalltown Supersound. Kind of Can/Cluster-ish Krautrock, not much changes throughout the song but the beats are hard and true, there's ample and woody bass, and some found sound thrown in for experimentalist cred. By the way, what in hell does 'experimental rock' mean anyway? Are they conducting rock experiments? Is it just a futuristic way of saying that it's not your average rock? Let's drop this term experimental for all bands who aren't actually trying to use experimental procedures (i.e. testing phenomena in a controlled setting without commitment to the particular outcome) and are merely confused about what to call themselves. Anyway, Meh Teh the last track on the record hits the sweet spot and sticks to it. When was the last time the last track on a record was the best one?

Meh Teh

Richard Prince at Gagosian.

Ridiculously good Richard Prince collages that I scooped from the NY Times round up of galleries in the city today. The two that I am posting are my favorites but the gagosian site has a bunch of nice big shots here.  It seems like a big flesh fest at first and they're arresting in not a particularly polite way.  Prostrated, highly endowed pinups with facial features blotted or masked, rastafaris with guitars thrust upon them awkwardly, bodies cramped together, floating awkwardly in space or lopped off at the stomach and half in the frame.  They're clearly a kind of updating of 'Demoiselles', or Gauguin's exoticized Tahitian women, but he's smirking too hard to eat the charge of colonialism. In the gallery shots, you can see how big and badass they are. Plus there's a 1987 Buick Grand National with a bunch of photos of biker chicks pasted on to it (someone asked me at the Martin Kippenberger show at MoCA why it seems like every contemporary art show he sees has a car in it. I'm pretty sure it's Richard Prince's fault).  It's all a bit vicious for sure, the cut outs, the aggressively haphazardous composition, the burlesque.  But it's also hot, punishing, and real.  

For those who haven't found out yet about Alexyss Tylor, she hosts a youtube/blog show called vagina power. It's unreal. This is the clip that Camron used in his track Bottom. Somehow I actually think this woman is a good feminist.

This clip is also absolutely hilarious and the world needs it.

New track I've been working on tentatively called "man/fantom". This is a first draft...
A couple new text pieces. The first two are a pair. The second is hypothetical/biographical.

Nice to see Little Joy's bar in Echo Park getting rep'd on Strokes drummer Fabrizio Moretti's new band of the same name's first record (self titled).  He's out there with his equally attractive gf,  LA native and waifish Nico copycat Binki Shapiro (Binki?  Really, LA, really?) and guitarist Rodrigo Amarante of Los Hermanos (as if we should have heard of them by now).  It's as confectionery as Strokes records were but in a lot of the right ways.  Much of the Strokes signature is there, Fab's vocals are laced with the same filters Julian Casablancas used, as if crunched up and fed through a old radio.  The drums are a basic as it gets, melodies come as easy as a day on the beach or last call on a slow night with lyrics that ape Buddy Holly earnestness.  But unlike the Strokes here there's a bit more than a little south american/caribbean influence, nothing easily placable, bit of bossa nova, bit of Tootsish reggae. I suppose I'm also supposed to mention that the guy who produced Devendra's last record produced this, so maybe that accounts for the elusive globe pandering.  Don't expect anything more than posturing (one of their songs  is called "How to Hang a Warhol"), but you'd be hard pressed to find anyone better at it than Strokes alums.  Confession:  I actually really hope I run into them at Little Joy's sometime, cause I'd, like, smoke cigarettes near them.
another text piece today -

Jib Kidder is a mashup artist from SF who released his first record at the end of September on Portland based States Rights.  It's an accumulation of a widely divergent map of interests for this guy;  gamelan, mannie fresh beats, found sounds, herbie hancock, mainstream hits of many decades (much like the conspicuous consumption of greg gillis) folk, club rap, who knows what else.  But unlike girl talk he makes everything feel more roomy, more off the cuff, funnier, quirkier, more personal.  And without losing the sense of cultural commentary, for my money this shit is way deeper in the pocket as a hip-hop/dance record.  Notwithstanding this, and though I've never seen what his shows are like (if they exist yet), it would be hard for me to imagine this turning into the sweaty freakfest that girl talk shows get their cred from.  It's no where near as hyped and maybe a bit too interesting.  But for what it's worth it's still nice to have another original voice in the mashup scene not just trying to make club bangers, or the next mia vs. the muppets band vs. tiny tim vs. martha stewart record.  'cause i've heard too many of those already.  

*Windowdipper is of particular note for being the fattest record ever to sample the functional noises of the Windows platform.

Nice poems in the NYTimes today about the election here's my favorite one. It's by August Kleinzahler.  It's called 'When the Fog'

When the fog burnt off this morning
Outsize JumboTron screens were hanging off the clouds,
Scores of them, huge, acres and acres of screen,
Images trembling,
Pixels the size of wagon wheels, damaged, flickering
Off and on, red, blue and green;
Faces, flags, county fairs — like pointillist cartoons,
Melting away, reconstituting,
A continuously mutating liquid crystal montage:

The old warrior’s frozen grin,
The popped, saffron Star Trek collar,
Critter lipstick,
Kawasaki 704 eyeglasses,
Disembodied, like the Cheshire Cat’s smile,
And there, the golden one, the adored, in silhouette,
Drinking it in behind bulletproof glass;
Crowds, crowds in hats, t-shirts, delirious,
With drumsticks and banners —
Galvanically us,
Us whom we’ve been waiting for,
All of it smearing into vibrating puddles of color,
Then dissolving, like jet exhaust, into the air.

While outside the streets were empty.
Who is to say where everyone has gone?
Only the occasional sound truck, its barked entreaties
Too garbled to make out.
Then quiet.
Two scrub jays making a racket in the honey locust.
Sky darkening as weather gathers off the coast.
Quiet as an abandoned summer playhouse.

Just found out about this LA based artist named Steve Roden whose does painting, drawing, sculpture, film/video, sound installation, and performance.  His work itself is pretty interesting (particularly for its relation to and use of music notation and graphic scoring, but for me it's fresh to be able to check out all the images that he's looking at before he works, or lets sit in the backdrop of his studio.  He posts them regularly on his blog which is listed on my links as airform archives.  But even better is his flickr page which has just an awesome accumulation of strange photography, diagrams, paintings etc.  

The bottom image is a sort of score derived from diagrams of constellations and the actual star names themselves.  For some of these scores you place them under the strings of a zither (an eastern european string instrument that looks like a dulcimer or an autoharp) and use the speaker/star forms as guide to pluck each string.  For others he arranged audio clips of harmonica notes in a sequencer according to the speaker/star forms so the sound becomes somehow a reflection of the form of the constellation...well's a metaphor ok?