Earthless announces March 2018 North American tour dates.

Clear up your calendar for March 2018, because stoner metal giants Earthless will be touring North America.  They’re also bringing legendary psychedelic band Kikagaku Moyo and psych-rockers Jjuujjuu with them.  This is a great triple bill, so don’t miss it.  I’m sure tickets will sell fast once they’re available.  I plan to see them at their Chicago stop in late March 2018 at the Empty Bottle.  I saw them there last year and it was a great show.

Keep your mind open.

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Oh Sees – Orc

John Dwyer is one of the busiest guys in rock.  He has so many variations of his band Thee Oh Sees that it can be difficult to keep track of them all.  One of the latest, which he’s just calling Oh Sees, has put out a fine record of psychedelic art-punk called Orc.

The album opens with the crazy, frantic “The Static God” – which appears to be a song about the whirlwind nature of battlefield combat.  Dwyer’s guitar is all over the place, but the chorus’ vocal hook has a wonderful pop twinge to it.  “Nite Expo” has 1980’s video game synths leading it before Dwyer’s guitar kicks open the door and catches you by surprise.  “Animated Violence” hits as hard as any metal track you’ve heard all year, both in the instrumentation (i.e., buzzsaw guitars and thunderous drums) and vocals and lyrics (revealing Dwyer’s love of Motorhead).

The longest track on the record (at 8:10), “Keys to the Castle,” is (on its surface, at least) about a bloody siege in a medieval fantasy kingdom.  I’m sure it’s probably a metaphor about how we’re actually destroying ourselves in these castles of loneliness and disconnection we’ve built thanks to the internet, but maybe I’m overreaching and should just enough the fun freak-out of a tune that it is (especially when the violin and organ creep into it).

“Jettison,” with its early Mick Ronson-like guitar work, is one of the grooviest songs about death in a long while (“Who likes sugar in their coffin?  The underground is twice as nice.”).  “Cadaver Dog” encourages the generation behind Dwyer to be leaders and not followers and be self-reliant instead of clinging to potentially deadly illusions.  “Drowned Beast” is a fuzzy salute to deepwater beast warriors who slay and eat everything in sight.  Three fun instrumentals, “Paranoise,” “Cooling Tower,” and “Raw Optics” are included.  The first has some subtle synths that might make you paranoid, the second is something you’d hear drifting out of a Mothers of Invention studio session, and the third (which closes the album) is a snappy blast of post-punk with a drum solo to boot.

Orc is a quirky, wild record, but you’d expect no less from Mr. Dwyer.  He excels at making quirky, wild rock that can melt your face one moment and intrigue you the next.

Keep your mind open.

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Ty Segall’s new album, “Freedom’s Goblin,” due January 26th.

Ty Segall Announces New Album, Freedom’s Goblin,
Out January 26th via Drag City, and North American TourWatch Ty and the Freedom Band Debut “Fanny Dog,”
New Song Off Freedom’s Goblin, on CONAN Last Night
http://teamcoco.com/video/ty-segall-12-04-17?playlist=featured-videos 

Listen to New Single, “Every 1’s a Winner” (Hot Chocolate Cover)
https://tysegall.bandcamp.com/album/freedoms-goblin

[Freedom’s Goblin album art]

Freedom’s Goblin is the new Ty Segall album: 19 tracks strong, filling four sides of vinyl nonstop, with an unrestricted sense of coming together to make an album. Out January 26th via Drag City with a North American tour to follow, it wants you to get your head straight – but first, the process will make your head spin! On any given side, we’re tracking five or six full-blown personalities, unconcerned with convention or continuity.

The songs came in the flow of the year: days of vomit and days of ecstasy and escape too, and days between. The rulebook’s been tossed, but Freedom’s Goblin is thick with deep songwriting resources, be it stomper, weeper, ballad, screamer, banger or funker-upper, all diverted into new Tydentities in the name of love and loathing. Whether chilling at home or on tour with the Freedom Band, tracks were cut at five studios in LA, Chicago and Memphis, engineered by Steve Albini, F. Bermudez, Lawrence “Boo” Mitchell and of course, Ty himself. The goal was getting free: embracing any approach necessary to communicate new heights and depths, seeking new places for the fuzz to land among octaving harmonies, dancefloor grooves, synths, saxes and horns, jams, post-Nicky-Hopkins r’n’b electric piano vibes, children-of-the-corn psycho-rebellions, old country waltzes and down-by-the-river shuffles. Basically, the free-est bunch of pop songs Ty’s ever put on tape – free to love or to be alone; to be pretty or pretty ugly; free to turn the other cheek or to turn up the volume. And of course, free to make just about any kind of song that’ll free people when they hear it – because we’re ALL Goblins and we ALL want our Freedom!

This feeling comes alive in “Every 1’s a Winner,” the sixth Freedom’s Goblin pre-release share (a record for Drag City!), including last night’s sneak peek, big band debut of “Fanny Dog” on CONAN. “Every 1’s a winner, baby that’s the truth” – truly, a much-needed message for our times! As in, the kind of message we don’t expect anyone anywhere saying anytime soon. Ty Segall is naturally delivering this message specially to a special someone of his own, the kind to whom makin’ love is such a thrill – but you too are free to be special to someone also, so long as you realize that with such freedom comes great responsibility.  Ty covers Hot Chocolate here as if he’d been funkin’ since he electric slid out the cradle, guiding “Every 1’s a Winner” into a high-flying, hard-driving expression made of his own kind of ecstatic soul. The sound of 2018 (and 2017!) will be much improved by its presence, and everything else on the forthcoming Freedom’s Goblin. So turn it up, and get down.

[“Every 1’s a Winner” single art]
“Alta” – https://tysegall.bandcamp.com/track/alta
“Meaning” https://tysegall.bandcamp.com/track/meaning
“My Lady’s On Fire” https://tysegall.bandcamp.com/track/my-ladys-on-fire
“The Main Pretender” https://tysegall.bandcamp.com/track/the-main-pretenderFreedom’s Goblin Track List:
1. Fanny Dog
2. Rain
3. Every 1’s a Winner
4. Despoiler Of Cadaver
5. When Mommy Kills You
6. My Lady’s on Fire
7. Alta
8. Meaning
9. Cry Cry Cry
10. Shoot You Up
11. You Say All the Nice Things
12. The Last Waltz
13. She
14. Prison
15. Talkin 3
16. The Main Pretender
17. I’m Free
18. 5 Ft. Tall
19. And Goodnight

Pre-order Freedom’s Goblin
http://www.dragcity.com/products/freedoms-goblin

Ty Segall Tour Dates:
Sat. Dec. 9 – Mexico City, MX @ Hipnosis Festival
Fri. Dec. 15 – Los Angeles, CA @ Teragram Ballroom [solo acoustic set] *
Sat. Dec. 16 – Los Angeles, CA @ Teragram Ballroom [solo acoustic set]  *
Sun. Dec. 17 – San Francisco, CA @ The Chapel [solo acoustic set] #
Mon. Dec. 18 – San Francisco, CA @ The Chapel [solo acoustic set] #
Wed. Jan. 24 – Solana Beach, CA @ Belly Up Tavern
Fri. Jan. 26 – Los Angeles, CA @ Teragram Ballroom
Sat. Jan. 27 – Los Angeles, CA @ Teragram Ballroom
Sun. Jan. 28 – Los Angeles, CA @ Teragram Ballroom
Thu. Feb. 1 – San Francisco, CA @ Bill Graham Civic Auditorium ^
Tue. Apr. 3 – Las Vegas, NV @ The Bunkhouse Saloon
Thu. Apr. 5 – Denver, CO @ Ogden Theatre
Fri. Apr. 6 – Rapid City, SD @ URSA MAJOR
Sat. Apr. 7 – Minneapolis, MN @ First Avenue
Sun. Apr. 8 – Chicago, IL @ Riviera
Tue. Apr. 10 – Detroit, MI @ Majestic Theater
Wed. Apr. 11 – Toronto, ON @ Danforth Theater
Fri. Apr. 13 – Brooklyn, NY @ Brooklyn Steel
Sat. Apr. 14 – Port Chester, NY @ The Capitol Theatre
Sun. Apr. 15 – Philadelphia, PA @ Trocadero Theater
Tue. Apr. 17 – Raleigh, NC @ Lincoln Theatre
Wed. Apr. 18 – Atlanta, GA @ Variety Playhouse
Fri. Apr. 20 – Birmingham, AL @ Saturn
Sat. Apr. 21 – Pensacola, FL @ Vinyl Music Hall
Sun. Apr. 22 – New Orleans, LA @ One Eyed Jack’s
Thu. Apr. 26 – Austin, TX @ Stubb’s Outdoor (Levitation 2018)
Fri. Apr. 27 – Austin, TX @ Barracuda (part of Levitation)
Sun. April 29 – Flagstaff, AZ @ Orpheum Theatre

* = with OCS, Shannon Lay, all proceeds go to LA Kitchen
# = with OCS, Shannon Lay, all proceeds go to SF Homeless Coalition
^ = with Queens Of The Stone Age

Download hi-res press images and album art –
www.pitchperfectpr.com/ty-segall/

[Photo Credit: Denée Segall]

Partner announce tour dates for 2018.

Partner_L-R_Josée-Caron_Lucy-Niles_photoby_Colin-Medley

PARTNER Announce 2018 Touring Plans

Tour Dates:
(current 2017)
December 08 – El Club, Detroit MI*
December 09 – The Drake, Toronto ON*
December 10 – Le Belmont, Montreal QC*
December 11 – Great Scott, Allston MA*
December 14 – Elsewhere, Brooklyn NY*
December 15 – U Street Music Hall, Washington DC*
December 16 – First Unitarian Church, Philadelphia PA*

ANNOUNCING

2018
January 17 – The Slice, Lethbridge AB^
January 18 – Revival, Regina SK (Winterruption)^
January 19 – Amigos, Saskatoon SK (Winterruption)^
January 20 – The Rec Room, Edmonton AB^
January 21 – Big Winter Classic, Calgary AB^

January 25 – MOTR, Cincinnati OH
January 26 – Empty Bottle, Chicago IL
January 27 – Founders Brewery, Grand Rapids MI

February 02 – This Ain’t Hollywood, Hamilton ON

March 13 – 17 – SXSW, Austin TX

May 11 – Focus Wales, Wrexham UK
May 17-19 –  The Great Escape, Brighton UK

*w/ Shamir    ^w/ Duchess Says
**More dates to be announced soon

For any interview requests or phoners contact – mar@maronmusic.com

Ahead of their joint Canadian Prairie Winter tour, Partner team up with Montrealers Duchess Says to curate a Spotify Winter playlist to get you in the mood, shared by Exclaim here.

————————

RIYL – Weezer, AC/DC, The Breeders, Ween, Beavis & Butthead

Debut album In Search of Lost Time mixed by Grammy award winner Chris Shaw (Weezer, Public Enemy, Sum 41).

Partner is the “mature” effort of two best friends named Josée Caron and Lucy Niles. Borne of their bizarre and fortuitous friendship, Partner confidently harnesses the infinite power of Rock to explore a variety of niche yet strangely universal themes. Self described as post-classic-rock.

The two met while attending Mount Allison University in small town Sackville, New Brunswick, on Canada’s East Coast. The duo played in numerous Sackville bands together over their University years (Yellowteeth, The Mouthbreathers and the aptly named hardcore band Go Get Fucked). Around late 2014 the idea of Partner came to fruition.

Influenced by acts as varied as Melissa Etheridge, Ween, kd lang, and Prince, Partner delivers a refreshing and vital twist on a classic, prompting you to re-think what you thought was possible in Rock.

Partner relocated to Windsor ON at the beginning of 2016. After a freakishly productive year of writing, recording, and touring, Partner have released their debut to the world, titled In Search of Lost Time (September 08, 2017). Their enthusiastic and action-packed live set has led to them being named the “best new band in Canada” in the Globe and Mail.

Partner is genre-defying and terrifying: part musical act, part teenage diary, and 100% queer.

Partner Links
Website: http://www.partnerband.com
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/officiallypartners
Bandcamp: https://partnerband.bandcamp.com/
Record Label: http://youvechangedrecords.com/portfolio/partner/
Twitter: http://twitter.com/partner_band
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/partnerband

Keep your mind open.

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Olden Yolk debuts first trippy single – “Takes One to Know One”

Introducing Olden Yolk;
Debut Self-Titled Album Out February 23rd On Trouble In Mind

Watch The Video For Lead Single “Takes One To Know One”
https://youtu.be/wQDz8ErJvPc


[Photo by Daniel Dorsa]
Olden Yolk, the New York-based group led by songwriters, vocalists, and multi-instrumentalists Shane Butler (of Quilt) and Caity Shaffer, are pleased to announce their self-titled debut album coming out February 23rd on Trouble In Mind. Along with today’s announcement, Olden Yolk are sharing lead single “Takes One To Know One” with an accompanying video debuted via Stereogum.

“‘Takes One to Know One’ is a play on the phrase typically meant to assign blame through commonality,” explain Butler and Shaffer. “Its use in the song is closer to an acceptance of our collective situation rather than a belittlement of it. It was written in our hometown of New York City–an iconic place whose icons (monuments, buildings, public art) are continually morphing and breaking down, shifting whatever former meaning had once been assigned to them.”

They continue, “Some moments hit right when you feel like the ‘writing’s on the door.’ The song, written during an especially jarring year of disillusionment, explores the process of finding solace in passing visages–a stranger’s smile on the subway or the beauty of haphazard graffiti on a brick-laden wall. The song cycles around a group chant at the choruses. It’s instrumentation is highly inspired by the percussion style of Jaki Liebezeit (of the German group CAN), a favorite of ours.”

Olden Yolk is a group whose penchant for dystopian folk, abstract poeticism, and motorik rhythms have enveloped them in a sound uniquely of-the-moment yet simultaneously time-tested. The interlaced vocals of Butler and Shaffer are found guiding each composition on their enlivening self-titled debut. The project was initially conceived in 2012 by Butler as an outlet for one-off songs and visual art while touring and releasing albums with the band Quilt (Mexican Summer). Following the release of a split-record with Weyes Blood in 2014, Olden Yolk became a collaborative entity.

Their debut full-length ruminates on questions surrounding love, self-doubt, and locating autonomy amidst burgeoning unrest. Wrought with hazy melancholy and halcyon joy, Butler and Shaffer’s lilting vocals play off one another through a devotional dialogue, taking form in haunting choral melodies and candid rock n’ roll. These songs are ecstatic odes to the life of the city; to the subway platforms, kiosks, and monuments which enliven and encompass our collectivity, elevating into an urban-psychedelia.

On the album, Butler and Shaffer are joined by drummer Dan Drohan (Tei Shi, Uni Ika Ai) and guitarist Jesse DeFrancesco who round out the studio sessions and live-band. Drohan’s deep passion for jazz, hip-hop, and experimental percussion come to fore while Defrancesco’s minimal yet powerful guitar ambiences are heard swelling in the peripheries of each song. The album was recorded at Gary’s Electric in NYC by Jarvis Taveniere (Woods) with co-production, electronics, and mixing by Jon Nellen (Ginla, Terrible Records). Other guests, such as multi-instrumentalist John Andrews (Quilt, Woods, The Yawns) and violinist Jake Falby (Mutual Benefit, Julie Byrne), add to the mercurial nature of the record, creating a landscape tinged with beatific songwriting and transgressive underpinnings.

Olden Yolk will play a full band record release show at Union Pool in NYC on February 24th along with special guests to be announced. John Andrews & The Yawns will open.

Olden Yolk Tracklist:
1. Verdant
2. Cut To The Quick
3. Gamblers On A Dime
4. Vital Sign
5. Aria
6. Common Ground
7. Hen’s Teeth
8. Esprit De Corps
9. After Us
10. Takes One To Know One

Olden Yolk
artwork

The Orwells release two new “lost” tracks from “Terrible Human Beings.”

THE ORWELLS SHARE TWO NEW SONGS FROM
TERRIBLE HUMAN BEINGS SESSIONS

CATCH THEM ON TOUR WITH THE PIXIES NOW

Today, The Orwells share 2 previously unheard songs, “Vanilla” and “What’s So Entertaining.” Both were recorded during the Terrible Human Beings sessions with producer Jim Abbiss (Arctic Monkeys, Adele). Terrible Human Beings is out now on Canvasback Music.

The Orwells just wrapped a European tour supporting Weezer and have embarked on a US tour supporting The Pixies through Dec. 13th.

LISTEN TO “VANILLA” AND “WHAT’S SO ENTERTAINING”
https://CanvasbackMusic.lnk.to/thbbsidesPR

YOUTUBE:
“Vanilla” – https://youtu.be/ynVUDrZdadw
“What’s So Entertaining?” – https://youtu.be/8fNdwmqYhFE

THE ORWELLS TOUR DATES:
Fri. Dec. 1 – Portland, OR @ Roseland Theater w/ Pixies
Sun. Dec. 3 – Seattle, WA @ The Paramount w/ Pixies
Mon. Dec. 4 – Vancouver, BC @ Queen Elizabeth Theatre w/ Pixies
Wed. Dec. 6 – Berkeley, CA @ Cornerstone w/ Pixies
Fri. Dec. 8 – Napa, CA @ Uptown Theatre Napa w/ Pixies
Sat. Dec. 9 – Napa, CA @ Uptown Theatre Napa w/ Pixies
Mon. Dec. 11 – Santa Cruz, CA @ The Catalyst w/ Pixies
Tue. Dec. 12 – San Luis Obispo, CA @ The Fremont Theater w/ Pixies
Wed. Dec. 13 – Los Angeles, CA @ Hollywood Palladium w/ Pixies

PRAISE FOR THE ORWELLS AND TERRIBLE HUMAN BEINGS

“The group has returned with a new fully-realized sound and aesthetic on their follow-up Terrible Human Beings” – Noisey 

“Helmed by the magnetic presence of singer Mario Cuomo, the quintet confronted realities associated with adulthood in songs scarred by darkness, uncertainty and vengeance.” – Chicago Tribune

“The group has elevated their songwriting ambition.” – Popmatters

Stream/Purchase Terrible Human Beings:
https://atlantic.lnk.to/TerribleHumanBeingsAW

Live: Gary Numan and Me Not You – Chicago, IL – November 29, 2017

I hadn’t seen electro / industrial legend Gary Numan live for many years.  His new album, Savage, is getting rave reviews and debuted as high as #2 in the U.K.  His live shows are loud, dazzling, and impressive affairs, and his November 29th show at Chicago’s Thalia Hall was no exception.

Opening for him were the Brooklyn quartet Me Not You, who put on a nice set of shoegaze and synth-rock.  I’d like to hear more of their material.  Unfortunately, I missed part of their set due to getting a phone call from work that I had to take.

Me Not You

Numan and his four-man band came out and immediately kicked down the back wall with a blast of industrial rock on “Ghost Nation” – the lead track from the new record.  Upon hearing it, I immediately thought, “Yeah, I need to get this record.”

“Ghost Nation”

Although he’s not much for nostalgia, Numan delivered a great version of “Metal” right afterwards.  He had the crowd in his hand by this point, and it was only the second song.  Other solid cuts from the new record were “Bed of Thorns,” “Mercy,” “Pray for the Pain You Serve,” “My Name Is Ruin,” and “When the World Comes Apart.”

Gary Numan might be a Green Lantern. It wouldn’t surprise me at all, really.

“Down in the Park,” of course, remains one of the best electro-goth songs ever, and Numan’s path down more industrial roads puts a new spin on a lot of his classic material.  He has the bass brought up on “Cars” to make it almost a metal track, for example.  “Love Hurt Bleed,” from his Splinter album, is a new highlight to his show.  It’s everything Trent Reznor owes Numan in one song.

Perhaps Mr. Numan is actually a herald of Galactus. I’d believe that, too.
“Cars”

He performed “M.E.” and “Are Friends Electric?” for an encore.  Both were stunning, especially “Are Friend Electric?” – which is the greatest song Phillip K. Dick never wrote.

“Are Friends Electric?”

This was easily one of the best performances I’ve seen all year.  The crowd was a fun mix of aging hipsters like yours truly, young industrial fans, old punks, metal heads, and goths.  I know this makes me sound old, but it was great to see people younger than I having a great time at the show.  It ensures me that Numan’s music will continue through new generations of fans.  Don’t miss this tour if it gets close to you.

Thanks to the lucky lady who scored this set list for letting me take a photo of it.

Keep your mind open.

[Don’t forget to subscribe before you go.]

Ty Segall releases another single, and it’s one of the best of 2018.

LISTEN TO TY SEGALL’S NEW SINGLE, “THE MAIN PRETENDER”

Bang, bang, blammo! Ty Segall can’t stop pumping out the songs – and if your problem is that he’s got too many songs for you to hear, lucky you with your cute little problem! As Ty switches gears from rock to punk to pop music and then elsewhere, a wealth of great songs and singing and music is coming down fast; later we’ll have time to think about it. For now, ponder this new one: “The Main Pretender” aims to cull the herd by focusing its sights on a greatest common multiple of our society – people who just can’t see the forest for the head up their ass! Driven by an acidulous alto sax lick and a roiling bass line, “The Main Pretender” bounces like rubber and sticks like glue, exploding into a middle-eight-chorus progression that there’s no coming back from – and so there’s no need to even try. Mikal Cronin‘s saxophone, so urbane and sophisticated on the previous “My Lady’s On Fire,” here reaches for notes that were never wrote (perhaps a suggestion to pretenders everywhere to get free and reach for something outside of themselves instead!), setting the stage for a burning guitars-and-saxes-and-vocs climax. The production, with rough edges not only intact but deployed for maximum positive impact, is a marvel, forcing “The Main Pretender” into our frontal lobes, where it just won’t quit. They never do!
Ty Segall Tour Dates:
Sat. Dec. 9 – Mexico City, MX @ Hipnosis Festival
Fri. Dec. 15 – Los Angeles, CA @ Teragram Ballroom [solo acoustic set] *
Sat. Dec. 16 – Los Angeles, CA @ Teragram Ballroom [solo acoustic set]  *
Sun. Dec. 17 – San Francisco, CA @ The Chapel [solo acoustic set] #
Mon. Dec. 18 – San Francisco, CA @ The Chapel [solo acoustic set] #
Fri. Jan. 26 – Los Angeles, CA @ Teragram Ballroom
Thu. Feb. 1 – San Francisco, CA @ Bill Graham Civic Auditorium ^
Thu. April 26 – Austin, TX @ Levitation 2018

* = with OCS, Shannon Lay, all proceeds go to LA Kitchen
# = with OCS, Shannon Lay
^ = with Queens Of The Stone Age

Partner – In Search of Lost Time

In Search of Lost Time isn’t the first music released by Canadian rock outfit Partner. They’ve released multiple excellent singles (i.e., “The Ellen Page” and “Personal Weekend”), and founding members Josee Caron (vocals and lead guitar) Lucy Niles (vocals and rhythm guitar), and Kevin Brasier (bass) already had Canadian indie rock scene credentials with their former bands Mouthbreathers and Go Get Fucked (possibly the best band name ever).  So it isn’t surprising that their first full-length record is witty, full of hooks, and one of the best pop-punk albums I’ve heard in a long while.

“Everybody Knows” starts the album with squealing, heavy guitar riffs and brings in a favorite subject of Partner’s – the goofy things that happen when one is high.  Caron sings about freaking out in the grocery store while in a euphoric quest for chips.  Niles sings about getting high while waiting for a friend and then realizing she can’t hide the fact that she “sparked another one” while waiting on the friend’s porch.  Oh yeah, Caron’s guitar solo on this will leave you stunned.

Niles’ guitar on “Comfort Zone” (a song about the joys of slacking) reminds me of Television riffs.  “Gross Secret,” with its sharp guitar work and dual vocals from Caron and Niles, reminds me of Sleater-Kinney if Sleater-Kinney would relax a bit now and then.  “Angels from Ontario” is about a perfect pop-punk love song you’ll ever hear.  The hooks and beat are instantly infectious and it bursts with enough energy to fill an opera house.

Caron reveals her love of shows like Judge Judy and The Maury Povich Show on “Daytime TV.”  Niles sings about the dangers of snooping in your roommate’s room on “Sex Object.”  “Ambassador to Ecstasy” is a solid rocker about trying to woo a hot girl and the possible complications that can come with such an endeavor.

“Play the Field” is a fun song about having a crush on a hot female athlete and contains what might be my favorite lyric of 2017 from Lucy Niles – “…to see you in your sports bra, though, just might change my life.”  “You Don’t Have to Say Thank You” is, without question, the sexiest song on the record as Caron tells her lover she doesn’t have to thank her for an amazing night since “your pleasure is my delight.”  Zowie!  As if that weren’t enough to sell you on it, wait until you hear the wall-flattening guitars and drums (from Toronto indie rock drumming legend Simone TB).

“Creature in the Sun,” a song about the joys of mindfulness, might be my favorite cut on the record.  It’s somewhere between new wave, post-punk, pop-punk, and spaghetti western music.  I guarantee that if you hear this on the radio or in a wrecka stow, you will instantly stop and think, “Who is this?”  The 1990’s alt-rock vibe is heavy on “Remember This,” which isn’t surprising when you consider the album was mixed by Chris Shaw who has worked with Weezer and Ween (among many others).

The closer, “Woman of Dreams,” has Caron and Niles pining for a lovely lady but realizing the best they can do about it (for now, at least) is write a song about her.  It reminds me of Fountains of Wayne‘s harder tracks with its punchy hooks and clever lyrics.

I haven’t even mentioned the sketches, which include various goofy telephone conversations with photographers, Caron’s father, and others.  I’ll let you discover those on your own.

This is one of those albums that will reveal new stuff to you every time you hear it – a drum fill, a wicked guitar lick, a funny lyric, etc.  I don’t know if Partner will get back the time they’re searching for, but they didn’t waste any making this record.  It won’t waste your time either.

Keep your mind open.

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Rewind Review: Diagonal – self-titled (2016)

Chicago-based psych / shoegaze rockers Diagonal play an intriguing mix of both genres.  Their self-titled album, currently only available on cassette or digital download, starts with a meditative, almost ambient, nearly instrumental song called “Aura.”  I listened to this on a frosty northern Indiana morning as the sun rose over harvested corn fields.  It was perfect.

“Wide Eyed” teases you with a bit of drone sludge before breaking into a heavy shoegaze riff.  “Inside Your Mind” is so steeped in psychedelic tea that you can pretty much see rear projection oils when you hear it.  “Where to Go” ups the fuzz and races by you almost before you realize it’s happening (and I love the trippy fade-out).

“Waterloo” is another rocker that puts in enough reverb to almost make it a weird dream that eventually turns into a crazy psychedelic nightmare.  “Come Down” reminds me of early Black Angels material with its distorted yet somehow crisp guitars and lyrics lost in layers of reverb.  The album ends with “Cave” – a loud, wild, feverish freak-out that swirls around you like a tornado full of broken, dead trees and shattered houses.

It’s a solid release, and Diagonal is definitely a band to watch and hear.  They have the chops to be serious players in the psych-rock game.

Keep your mind open.

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