• Best of 2007 so Far

    9 Jul 2007, 08:16 by AtacamaRain

    Yeah, Small list for me, only 30 lps and 5 other, either this year sucks or im not looking hard enough,

    anywho, its all ranked, not super specifically, give or take a few places up or down on the lower ranked albums, its not all set in stone, but this is what im liking the most so far.

    Artist - Album - [Genre]

    1.Big Business - Here Come The Waterworks [Sludge/Stoner/Heavy]
    2.Melt-Banana - Bambi’s Dilemma [Noisecore whatever]
    3.Bongripper - Hippie Killer [Stoner]
    4.Clouds - Legendary Demo [Sludge]
    5.Enoch Ardon - 12” - [Emo-Violence]
    6.Magrudergrind - Rehashed - [Grind/Powerviolence]
    7.Architects - Ruin - [Hardcore/Metalcore]
    8.Do Make Say Think - You, You’re A History In Rust [Post-Rock]
    9.Explosions in the Sky - All of a Sudden I Miss Everyone [Post-Rock]
    10.Humanasaur - Monster Savior Song - [Sludge]
    11.Minus the Bear - Planet of Ice [Indie Rock]
    12.Circa Survive - On Letting Go - [Indie/Rock]
    13.Zozobra - Harmonic Tremors [Sludge]
    14.Pig Destroyer - Phantom Limb - [Grind]
    15.Black Elk - Black Elk [Alternative/Hardcore/Punk/Stuff]
    16.What We Feel - Last War - [Hardcore]
    17.Crippled Black Phoenix - A Love Of Shared Disasters [Folk-Rock/Post-Rock]
    18.Alcest - Souvenirs d’un autre Morte [Black Metal/Post-Rock/Shoegaze]
    19.Lifetime - Lifetime - [Hardcore]
    20.Mithras - Behind the Shadows Lie Madness [Death Metal]
    21.Grails - Burning Off Impurities [Post-Rock]
    22.Dälek - Abandoned Language [Hip-Hop]
    23.Pelican - City of Echoes [Post-Rock]
    24.Graf Orlock - Destination Time Tommorrow [Grind]
    25.Kronos - The Hellenic Terror [Death]
    26.Hey Colossus - Project: Death - [Sludge/Stoner]
    27.Lesbian - Power Hor [Experimental Black Metal/Post-Rock/Psyche]
    28.Minsk - The Ritual Fires of Abandonment
    29.Wicked Pussy From The Wild West - Pandemonium! - [Digi/Noise Grind]
    30.Neurosis - Given To The Rising [Sludge]

    1.Baroness & Unpersons - A Grey Sigh in a Flower Husk (Split) - [Sludge & Hardcore]
    2.Rosetta & Balboa - Project Mercury - [Sludge & Sludge/Hardcore]
    3.Extreme Noise Terror & Driller Killer Split EP [Grind]
    4.Ceremony - Sacred People 7” [Hardcore/Powerviolence]
    5.Pope Benedict - Three Song EP 2007 [Grind]
  • Konono no. 1

    29 Apr 2007, 04:42 by barewires

    The Congolese band Konono No. 1, aka Konono N°1, aka Konono Nr. 1, came through town Friday and I reluctantly went to the show. I say reluctantly, because I was not, and still am not a big fan of their album Congotronics. To me the songs lacked variety. Yes the sound was interesting for five minutes, but not for forty minutes.

    For those that haven't heard of this band, basically it's three persussionists, three likembe players, and a dancer. Oh, and the congo drummer was also quite fond of his police whistle, blowing huge streams of spit out of that thing. The likembe is also called a thumb piano. It's normally a very quiet instrument, consisting of short pieces of metal mounted on a small wooden voice box which acts as a resonator. Konono no 1 uses likembes with electronic pickups which run through large speakers to produce a very large sound a bit like a fuzzy guitar crossed with a bell. Or something kind of like that.

    I'm happy to say that the live experience was dramatically different. The songs still lacked variety. But, what wasn't apparent (at least to me) was that these guys are groove monsters. Actually, I've realized that all of the bands that I once categorized in the groove monster bin should have been filed in the junior groove monster bin. Sorry, former groove monsters.

    African bands in general don't seem to overdrive their instruments. These guys seemed to play with all of the amps turned up as far as possible. The singer might as well have been singing through a megaphone. The likembe players seemed to divide things up into high, mid, and bass. The bass was quite loud like techno music almost, but the high parts reminded me of the filagree of central African guitarists like Franco, but more wacked, with maybe even a Jimi Hendrix thing although this was more of a stretch.

    The first song, which was I think the first song on Congotronics went on for at least thirty minutes. Quite possibly longer. I was down close to the stage and it was loud and pummeling. It was almost too much, and the crowd was annoying me. Afterwards I went and got a beer, and stood a bit farther back on the other side of the stage, which was less loud and had a better view.

    It's interesting as I look through's similar artists. Suprisingly, or maybe unsuprisingly, noise terrorists Excepter and Black Dice are two of the top similar artists. After the show, my closest reference point in terms of the rhythmic assault was actually German band Einstürzende Neubauten. I guess that it makes some sense, Konono no 1 seems to eschew melody in favor of repeated pounding rhythyms that seem to be popular in the post-rock, post-punk scene. Just pound the hell outta that shit. To wrap things up, I would see Konono no 1 again. But make sure that you aren't going to be at some outdoor festival where the sound is going to dissipate away.