Last Projects gallery and curators Reversible Eye have come together to present Excesstential Style 2.0 a wearable art / performance art exhibit featuring artists Karim Shuquem (Los Angeles) and Jonathan Johnson (Hamburg, Germany).Excessential Style 2.0 has been curated by Reversible Eye to showcase jewelry artist Jonathan Johnson’s new line of “Seven Deadly Sins” themed jackets created with Italian actress, singer, model, and director Asia Argento. In addition, Jonathan will be showing a jacket created with the Tom of Finland estate as well as jewelry created with actress, model, dominatrix Snow Mercy.
Karim Shuquem, who performs in groups The Phantom Limbs, the BoyScouts of Annihilation, and Loto Ball and has been described by Jello Biafra as “one of the most talented and demented front-creatures in all of underground rock”, has a history of finding unusual ways to worm himself bodily into questions of the human condition, agency, ability, and fate. His latest work is a series of “Crime Jackets” utilizing jail suicide / casualty imagery and punk/metal decoration.
On the one year anniversary of her critically-acclaimed, masterful debut full-length,
M, Danish black metal artist MYRKUR unveils a captivating live recording from the historic Emanuel Vigeland Mausoleum in Oslo, Norway. Aptly titled Mausoleum, the album features beautifully dramatic and stripped-down acoustic reinventions of seven songs from M plus one brand new song and a Bathory cover; all with the accompaniment of the storied Norwegian Girls Choir.
Captured in a cold, dimly-lit tomb covered in morbid frescos that depict the circle of human life from conception til death, Mausoleum is an incredible showcase of MYRKUR’s sublime yet haunting voice in a truly chilling, unrivaled atmosphere.
Alienist includes two original tracks: the haunting yet emotional “I’m Looking For You”; an epic, multi-layered, metaphysical exploration in the form of a conversation between Genesis and “Lucifer”, who is in hiding after his failed rebellion is over, and the title track “Alienist”which is a delightful fusion of dance grooves harking back to PTV’s Acid House days and the group’s current love of heavy psychedelic rock.
On a European tour in 2009, Genesis proposed the band perform the classic “Maggot Brain” by Funkadelic as a musical interlude. After the tour, the band went into the studio to give a try at a recorded interpretation of the song. The result was astounding and the band set forth on a series of 12″ records, yearly interpreting a rock classic and then offering a new song on the B side. Mostly chosen by drummer and co-producer Edley ODowd, songs have previously included “Silver Machine” by Hawkwind, “Mother Sky” by Can and “Dropout Boogie” by Captain Beefheart.
Omaha’s electronic pop trio Icky Blossoms are excited to share their virtual reality video for their song “Phantasmagoria” today via AV Club. Created by 2DArray, the music video is a full virtual reality experience. Watch it on your phone to explore every corner of the animation on YouTube. (It’s also available for download on the Oculus Rift.) The song can be found on Icky Blossoms’ album Mask, out now via Saddle Creek.
BRONCHO’s new album Double Vanity — out next week — is now available to stream in advance. SPIN premiered the advance stream, calling it “perfection refracted” and stating, “The hooks are still there, buried under hairpin-bent notes and a blanket of reverb that would make anyone but the Jesus & Mary Chain blush.” Double Vanity is out June 10 on Dine Alone Records and is available for pre-order here.
BRONCHO is currently on a North American headlining tour. All dates below.
Brooklyn-based rock collective The New Apollos have released their debut EP In The Shade. The collection is the first of three EPs that the trio plan on releasing the summer. Popdust recently premieredIn The Shade and described it as a “a mesmerizing drink of psychedelic rock, airy moods and garage-pop.” The set is the perfect kick-off to summer and will certainly be on many beach playlists – give the set a listen here.
The quixotic world of Magical Creatures is one of whispered private fairy tales from otherworldly lovers, deified by filled-in blanks and an ever-present spectral haze that softens edges and dulls the will. Much like the lotus eaters of The Iliad, Magical Creatures lull us almost supernaturally on their debut full length Wishing Machine with a myriad of guitars both flowery and direct, subtle electronic percussion that adds fluidity to each track, and airy, enchanting vocals done justice through artful production.
You can almost hear a prom night lament in the longing doo-wop allusions of “Enchant Me Baby” with its saccharine vocals and gently reassuring guitar melancholy. The distinct bravery of teenage naivete and romantic innocence perfumes lyrics about “plucking roses” and the all important question almost posed as a challenge “Would you give your life for love?” Magical Creatures inducts us into their dream with a moonlit serenade in which they’re already drunk on honey wine spiked with stardust. You can almost hear the maturation of teenage vulnerability in the cool laze of the guitars as vocals that could belong to dream girlfriends or maternal ghosts enfold us. A beat shimmering and shining with tambourine sparkle punctuates the aloof charm of “Twilight Soul” which at times recounts the painfully wasted beauty of Love and Rockets. However, the science fiction warbling of what sounds like a theremin underneath it all gives us a window into another romantic world and the track ultimately captures the sonic equivalent of an expansive sky ripening, bursting, and bleeding burning oranges, pinks, and deep violets that make kisses taste sweeter.
Magical Creatures often express a vulnerability in their music like the awkwardness of a young Dorian Gray who hasn’t quite realized how damned attractive he looks. “Birds of Paradise” artfully displays this vulnerability in its guitar strum while vocals carry an energy at once exotic and resigned, like an elegant caged bird that is the last of its kind and actually understands this. The psychedelic shoegaze nod and tastefully subtle programmed beats that give the track motion also lend a clean, refreshing quality of mellow pop modernism.
Plenty of Wishing Machine’s tracks could easily stand alone as strong singles just as they fit snugly into their place on the album. “Spiral Castle” spins a neo-psychedelic fairytale with sunny happy ending guitar lines and avian vocals softened by the purity of their plumage while the chiming psych pop of “Violet Eyes” insulates with fuzzy fullness that simultaneously sounds simple and spaceous in its haziness, further expanded by breathy vocals. “Carnival of Wolves” amplifies Magical Creatures’ charisma with colorful stained glass guitar effects and light doo-wop vocal punctuation while “Satellite City” captures the electrical optimism of new romance through a shared synchronous female and male vocal line over rolling guitar and softly rollicking percussion.
These moments of radio friendly pop perfection are equally matched by Wishing Machine’s more reflective moments. On the stellar “Bounty Hunter”, vocal passion is made clearer against a spacey backdrop of distorted decaying guitar, quickly opening up into an anti-gravity flow of sonic comets, burning tails weaving in and out and gently fading into a greater wall of sound with vocals like love letters broadcast into dead space and left to echo between the asteroids forever. Ornate and intricate guitar swoons into dreaminess on “Helicopter Blues” before culminating into an aural revolution that perfectly soundtrack a new determination in the vocals without compromising their soft allure. “Puella” offers something darker than the rest of Wishing Machine’s tracks, with a foreboding sense of eeriness in its atmosphere and skeletal electronic beat.
With Wishing Machine, Magical Creatures have created a soundtrack to reluctant goodbyes in twilit parking lots, teenage tales of nearly requited love, and imaginary worlds juxtaposed over the universal world that we all share. Each track finds the guitar plugging directly into the heart, vocals as soothing and intangible as gently shifting clouds of cool mist, and a refreshing lack of cynicism that really earns the term dreampop. The only danger of falling into such a dream is never wanting to wake up.
Today, Methyl Ethel have released the official music video for their single “Twilight Driving” in celebration of the global release of their debut album Oh Inhuman Spectacle.
Hailing from the remote fringes of Perth, Western Australia, linchpin Jake Webb started Methyl Ethel in 2013 as a way of getting his bedroom recordings out in the public domain. Like 4AD peers Grimes and Bradford Cox (Deerhunter, Atlas Sound), Oh Inhuman Spectacle was crafted in isolation where Webb wrote, played and recorded everything, with fellow Perth residents Thom Stewart (bass) and Chris Wright (drums) recruited to bring the songs to life on stage.
Interview Magazine recently caught up with the band to discuss their album, influences, touring and more. You can read the full interview right here.
Methyl Ethel are currently playing a run of dates and festivals across the UK and Europe. The band will make their way back to the US in August to play Outside Lands in San Francisco and The Underground Music Showcase in Denver. A full rundown of dates can be found below.