Long Story Short : Dark Sines, Ivan The Tolerable, Concrete Island, Myrna

Hello all. It’s been a minute since I’ve posted one of these ‘Long Story Short’ posts where I cover an album in a paragraph or two. Gotta be honest, there’s just so much coming my way it’s hard to keep up. That’s not necessarily a bad thing. In fact, I’d say that’s a good thing when folks are creating at a high volume. Artists are inspired to create, so that’s a pretty great thing. The bad thing is that I can’t really keep up with the volume. Between this digital world of writing and the analog world of working, living, and experiencing, sometimes Papa just don’t have the time to listen to the 20 or so records hitting my mainframe on the weekly.

I’m not saying don’t send me your album or your record label’s latest release. Please, keep sending them. I’m just saying be patient and I’ll get to it eventually. I’ll try to post more of these. More bang for the buck, as they say. And I can get the word out on a few more albums, too.

Okay, so here we go.

Dark Sines : The Cenote Expedition

You can always count on Phil Dodd’s Waxing Crescent Records to offer up something completely unique and of its own. One of the more recent releases is Dark Sines’ The Cenote Expedition. Dark Sines is Appalachian experimental artist Taylor Proffitt, and The Cenote Expedition is a heady and heavy sound world that deals with mental illness and healing. Drones and dissonance paint this 9-song long player and act as a step into a hurt mind, looking for answers when none show themselves.

If you’re familiar with Waxing Crescent Records then this album will make sense. Similar work from Kuma, Camp of Wolves, and Polypores have made their way into ears, and Dark Sines locks into that mysterious sound world where drones, dissonance, and ambient textures build a real visceral experience.

Ivan The Tolerable : The Continuous Katherine Mortenhoe

Ivan The Tolerable returns to the Library of the Occult fold with The Continuous Katherine Mortenhoe, an acid-burnt psychedelic jazz journey based on the novel by D.G. Compton. Ivan The Tolerable, aka Oli Heff, gives us a living, breathing record that goes from hazy noise and woozy vibes to almost early 70s jazz in the vein of exploratory works by Freddie Hubbard and McCoy Tyner.

Heff has a knack for walking the line between musical worlds; offering up tasteful, almost intellectual heft and sonic experimentation that borders on late 60s freakouts. Both are offered up in kind with The Continuous Katherine Mortenhoe. Another deep dive LP from the great Ivan The Tolerable.

The Heartwood Institute and Hawksmoor : Concrete Island(Vinyl Remaster)

The 2020 release Concrete Island by Jonathan Sharpe (The Heartwood Institute) and James McKeown (Hawksmoor) was an absolute highlight in a year of desolation and dystopia come to life. Fitting that an album based on the JG Ballard dystopian noir novel would come out in such desolate times, but hey, if the shoe fits!

Originally released by Spun Out Of Control as a cassette/digital only release, this immense and Krautrock-heavy album gets the vinyl treatment, remastered by Antony Ryan and includes bonus track “Maitland” not included on the original cassette release. Concrete Island is an absolute steely, Motorik-driven classic that was born to be spun on a platter next to Kraftwerk, Tubeway Army, and PiL. Any of those names get your Spidey senses tingling, then get this slab of post-punk hot wax preordered.

Myrna : Vanishing Point

The Brooklyn-based trio Myrna make music that makes you melancholy, but the good kind of melancholy. Their kind of indie rock locks into the wistful nostalgia of bands like Real Estate, Smithereens, Shy Boys, and even Adrian Belew’s excellent power pop band The Bears.

Their latest album, the lean and vocal-heavy Vanishing Point, uses 80s-heavy drum programming and jangly guitar lines to paint a picture of an overcast walk through city streets. The pop sensibilities shine through on ten hook-laden songs that beg for mixtape selection, while the intricate arrangements and guitar muscle makes these track more than just simple pop songs.

What do you think? Let me know

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