Greetings everyone. I’ve been a little under the weather the last week. One of those late spring/early summer head colds that began as allergies and evolved into something “more”. I’m on the mend, but taking it easy this weekend so I can get back to my daily walks and not feeling like complete garbage.
One thing about taking it easy is that I’ve got time to sit and catch up on some great releases that work, life, and the building existential dread gets in the way of. I used to pride myself on being on top of new albums hitting. But lately I’ve found it hard to properly divvy up my time in the day. I used to write quite a bit early in the morning, like 4 am. That seems to be my brain’s prime time for thinking, but my body has said the hell with that and sleep as late as you can. Hoping to get back to that as that’s primo writing time, baby. I get through more music that way.
Anyways, that’s that.
Today I’m going over some recent releases from labels like Waxing Crescent, See Blue Audio, DiN, and a couple self-released gems I think you will definitely dig. Okay, let’s get started.
Teeth Of Glass : Death Smiles At The Crystal Grave
As if you couldn’t tell from the classic album title, Patrick R. Park’s Teeth Of Glass project’s newest release(via Waxing Crescent Records) is an homage to classic giallo films. Death Smiles At The Crystal Grave is a tension-filled electro panic attack of an album that gives us all the great sonic goodies we love about a giallo score; wonky electronics, tinkling piano lines that sound like blood running down a eggshell-white wall, and enough mleodrama to make Mario Bava purr like a kitty.
This 7-track opus narrates a story through music that according to the album synopsis which states “A wealthy invalid accused of a series of murders apparently escapes from the police, and is subsequently found dead in a river. A model is attacked by a shadowy figure, because she is presumed to know something about the disappearance. The crime turns out to have been a hoax calculated by her mother to drive her insane.”
Like most Giallo films it’s best not to think too hard about what you’re seeing on the screen and just enjoy the visceral delights. Teeth Of Glass have an album’s worth of visceral delights for your ears, so hit play, lock in, and get lost for a bit.
Cat Temper : Cat Out Of Hell
Mike Langlie, aka Cat Temper, is back once again with another cat-adjacent, feline-referencing record of synthwave goodness, this time with Cat Out Of Hell. 10 tracks of “synth-metal”-sounding songs, locking into both 80s electro pop as well as that decade’s penchant for pop metal. Guitar riffage combined with a healthy dose of chugging grooves gives it a vibe that’s part Janet Jackson “Black Cat” meets Rammstein with a touch of Friday night neon mall vibes.
Cat Temper continues to make those most of its nine lives. Simply put? Purrfect.
Polypores : Hyperincandescent
Stephen J Buckley returns with his modular synth excursions as Polypores, this time on Ian Boddy’s DiN label. Hyperincandescent is two album side tracks that explore all the sides of modular synth excursions. From crackling chaos to ethereal calm to bubbling pings and pangs that sound like bells chiming from outer space, Polypores’ Hyperincandescent shows the majestic beauty and strange frequencies that Buckley wrangles from the universe and circuits.
Night Sky Pulse : Superlunar Lounge
Brussels-based producer John Sellekaers’ musical project Night Sky Pulse emanates mystery and a robotic pulse on his latest album Superlunar Lounge, out now on See Blue Audio. Subtle percussive rhythms and melody-driven tracks give off an ethereal feel. At times ambient, and at times almost psychedelic in delivery, Night Sky Pulse’s Superlunar Lounge always puts melody first which gives us something to connect to and a heart at the center of this mysterious and eclectic set of songs.
Sermons By The Devil : Dope Fiend
Tom Hall returns yet again for another round of buzzing electronic tomes built to expand your mind a bit. With his latest release as Sermons By The Devil, Hall indeed wants you to feel you’re being transported. Dope Fiend(out 6/19) locks into the parallels of mind-altering drugs and music, and how when combined can make music all the more a journey.
This isn’t an endorsement to drop some acid and see where band practice may lead, but more of the idea of music being that drug that pulls you from the everyday grind. The buzzing synths and funky rhythms on Dope Fiend are indeed transportive, locking into an almost street vibe(Mr Eff’s Eyes Down comes to mind). Of course if you’re familiar with the sonic world of Sermons By The Devil you’ll feel right at home here.
boycalledcrow : Wizard’s Castle
Yet another stunning release via Waxing Crescent Records, this time from Chester-based sound artist Carl M Knott (Wonderful Beasts, Spacelab). Here Knott performs under the alias boycalledcrow, and Wizard’s Castle feels like a fever dream of an album. Glitchy, bright, and moments of sonic mania, it’s somewhere between some ethereal videogame score and avante classical music. It’s a really hard one to put a label on. There’s moments of quiet restraint, while other times it sounds like circuits devouring themselves in a black hole. It’s the kind of album that needs to be experienced.
Okay, now go out into the void and grab yourself some new tunes.