субота, 29 липня 2017 р.

Bil Sabab Power Hour: ...И Друг Мой Грузовик - Ганда

The song is titled Ganda and it was performed by the band ...И Друг Мой Грузовик (...and my friend the truck). It is intense nonsensical roundabout with exteme bouts of aggression in the interim. It is boiling with mysterious unease. Its lyrics are one of the best examples of utilizing dada sensibilities in the strict form of a relatively straightforward rock song. It instantly reminds of Hugo Ball's Karawane and Talking Heads' I Zimbra - but it takes the matters further. It boils and ejects heat. It circles around the listener and makes you feel threatened by the unknown hidden in the song.

The video is also quite curious. It tells a story of a two men sitting in a basement - looking at the closed box. The box is tied with ropes and is definitely intimidating. The two are clearly unnerved by its presence. It is fair to say they're very scared, even terrified by it. Then the third man comes in and sits down nearby - also looking at the box. And so they look at the box and they look at each other. They feel a bit lost. Something wicked this way comes. Then the third man snaps and goes straight to the box, cuts the ropes with a knife and opens it. What he sees is so disgusting and horrible to him that he falls away unconscious. The end.

It is fun to listen to that song outside context. Because that way - the mystery doubles and it seems to be even better. But since this text is in english and none of you probably ever heard of this band - here's a quick primer:

...И Друг Мой Грузовик - were one of the more fascinating ukrainian bands of its time. Coming from former Dnipropetrovsk (currently simply Dnipro) - they started out in the 1997 as Я и Друг Мой Грузовик (Me and my friend the truck), released two albums under that name and then their original drummer quit and they dropped "I" from the name and that was it. They went on with different drummers, somewhat upgrading their sound with more distortion and loops, casually slipped into a spin-off outfit once and then in 2012 they broke up because "boredom, etc; probably...but it's OK". There is not much actually to say about the band.

They were an oddballs of ukrainian rock. They combined pretentiously thoughtful lyrics with bouncing pounding sound. Their music neatly whirled into extravagant post-punk niche with elaborate fills of bossa nova and nu metal.

The band had a gimmick - no guitar player because reasons. That was a good idea in theory but in reality it wasn't a big deal. Their bass player was like an octopus - doing all the heavy lifting with a spark but it wasn't all that remarkable. Most of the time it was typical alternative rock with a bit different flavor. The singer was doing something that can be described as "trying to accomplish singing duties" (meh). The drummer was doing the job - obviously obliviously drumming.

Overall, their sound was unusual - but not that much. For the most of the time - it was even comfortable, maybe even too much. It lacked the edge. It was uneven. They were simply enjoying themselves playing out all those things. Which was irritating most of the time because were usually going nowhere for a better half of forever. But they had few fun songs. Such as aforementioned Ganda.

Their other song of notice was extremely catchy manic-depressive anthem "Wheels". It was featured on their first album and it is brilliant dum-dum from start to finish. Over the course of the song the singer was mumbling in all manners "MY COLORFUL WHEELS, WHERE ARE YOU TAKING ME?" and then in the end it morphed into endless "MY COLORFUL WHEELS ARE TAKING ME HOME". The music around him was jumping, bouncing, rolling, sliding. It is really groovy. Watch this video:

четвер, 27 липня 2017 р.

Bil Sabab Power Hour: Mass Estinction Event - Angry Music for Jazz Orchestra

Seven rollercoasting minutes of intense sounds. Complete unmitigated chaos. Now that's what i call music! It rings "Yeah!". The best thing i've heard this month.

If you want to know why you haven't heard this magnificent piece of music yet, then here's a theory - nobody mentioned it anywhere. For sure - it was released on July 11th which is not long ago - but a simple google search shows approximately nothing. No outside mentions. As if no one cared to give it proper exposure. Disgusting! It is not fair.

How I happened to hear it? I heard it because I'm following Youtube-channel of the composer of the piece Adam Neely. And even then it happened almost by accident - i was doing my stuff and videos were playing on the background and then came turn of Academic Dubstep Sheet Music video and weird combination of sounds caught my attention - dubstep drops and brass orchestra. I took a look at the description and there was a link to a Bandcamp of the band Mass Extinction Event. And there it was - Angry Music for Jazz Orchestra. And it is magnificent.


Stylistically - it is a combination of dance music and proper jazz fusion blow-offs. It constantly ups the tensions and the moment you start to realize what is going on it turns about face and moves in an opposite directions. Here's my overly expressive impressionistic description of what is happening in this composition:

It starts with an avalanche swell that grows up to the point it reminds me a bubble.
Which then falls from the staircase and tumbles down like bouncy bag wooden teeth and metal plates. After that the sirens are going around - drawing zigzags.
And the whole thing goes down - deep down.
Then - but only for a moment it drops you a little of Kurt Weill sleazy cabaret vamp-stomp.
And then again - it goes forward "with a purposeful grimace and terrible sound"
- against very aggressive torrents of air - tearing itself up to the bones - falling apart,
disintegrating into ashes, mixing with dust - laying down into the gutter - playing dead mush.
It is cloudy and a bit foggy.
But then earth crumbles and hot lava spurts from the cracks
- so high it hits the clouds and it is quite Quixotic as the clouds seem to be uninvolved.
The lava drops are cooling down - eventually getting petrified as they fall.
And so it rains with stones.
The thumps come with the whisting sounds - it is overwhelming and causes disorientation combined with fainting.
There are dust clouds all around - nothing's visible.
Clock's ticking.
And everything starts to sink - getting sucked into the sinkhole.
The sound of the flow is terrifying.
After that - jazz band plays a bit to be danced by two invisible men. Brass is one, sax is two.
Their swishes hang around and stick in compele darkness.
And then it is over.


When music evokes something like this - it is right. That's why we're perceving works of art - to move beyond and make it new. Thanks Adam.

I feel great relief. Gonna take a nap right now. Want to imagine all this again and detect all the permutations. 

понеділок, 24 липня 2017 р.

Bil Sabab Power Hour: The KLF & Extreme Noise Terror - Black Room Demo

In 1992 Bill Drummond and Jimmy Cauty were so fed up with music business they were unable even to poke fun at it as they were doing for the last four years.

As a severance with shades of deliverance they performed a brand new version of their superhit 3 A.M. Eternal with crust punk outfit Extreme Noise Terror at Brit Awards. It was dissonant with everything else on the ceremony and sure caught a lot of attention causing many-many think-pieces to roll for a couple of weeks. In the end of performance Bill Drummond fired machine gun blanks at the audience while it was announced through the speakers that "The KLF had left the music industry". What a nice way to go...

Around the same time they were trying to record The Black Room - a follow-up to their hit album The White Room. While the latter was all gleeful tongue-in-cheek stadium house pop, the former was to be much darker and heavier. Just like the White Room, The Black Room had went through several iterations, first being hard techno, then more of aggro-industrial flavor (as Cauty put it in 1990 "electro turbo metal") and finally it morphed into a full-blown collaboration with Extreme Noise Terror.

But after all it went nowhere - the album was never finished. Drummond and Cauty were too exhausted to go on. Honestly, there was no point in going on - the more things changed the more they stay the same. It wasn't like music industry was changing because of them. And since all their attempts to make difference to make difference were proven to be ultimately futile - there was no other reasonable solution other than to quit.

You can still hear the glimpses of what they were up to on singles "America: What time is love?", "Grim Up North" and "3 A.M. Eternal (The KLF vs Extreme Noise Terror: TOTP version)" (and also in some backwards way in the form "What Time is Love Techno Gate Mix"). In interviews the band was namedropping a lot of things to tease the imagination and cause a feast of pondering - Milton backed by Megadeth (something like this) was the most inspired.

But not much else aside of it. Imagining how finished The Black Room would've sounded like is a fun futile task. There is rather colorful recollection from Mark Stent which fits the sounds: "There was such a raw power to it. It was so different from anything anyone else had ever heard." That's all you need to know.

Later the bootlegs of the rough demos came through and now they're available online. According to then Extreme Noise Terror bass player Mark Bailey - these recordings were made at band rehearsals in Ipswich in 1991. Bear in mind this is just a work in progress, a sketch of what should've come. 

Overall - these demoes definitely leave a decent impression. It is a collection of hard, pounding, bulky stompers. Mood pieces for rather pissed if you like. 

I'm Fucked is a fine introduction to the cycle. It is an ordinary fast-paced, mosh-inducing punk cut. It sets the right tone and after a short intro it jumps right in the middle and drag the listener over the nondescript poorly lit, abundantly decorated hall. Also - it definitely should be your next ringtone. 

Deep Shit is one of two occassions when the record sounds more than merely a sketch. This track got intricate structure. Intro beats to the dust and then black hole opens and sucks everything inside itself. And then it all inside gurgling, bouncing as it if it was vacuum cleaner capsule where another black hole opens and sucks everything inside. And then press flattens the scene and there is some liquid leaking - running away through the hard-edged dazzle camouflaged debris. Then it happens upon a big scary dude and they start fighting. Ferrociously. The  It evokes some Platinum Games imagery. 

Bite It Harder resembles early Circle Jerks and Germs stuff. It should be noted that hardcore punk sounds really weird without vocals. Typical "chorus - verse - chorus - verse - interlude - solo - chorus - verse" structure feels empty without singing but leaves a lot of space to imagine what is going on. Which sound depiction of romanticized escape attempt into the big nowhere.

Thirty-Eight is muzak for industrial people - pounding, meat mincing abstract brawler. It sounds vague but menacing. It is also oddly well-tempered. It goes somewhere for a while, then stops and realizes it goes nowhere, then thinks "so what?" and goes again like nothing happened, then gets second thought, stops for a moment again, thinks "bollocks!" and goes again and so on. It is just foir minutes long but it is so monotone it feels like forever. And since the riff is good and the groove is right - it's a nice pastime. I've listened to it on the loop nine times and then hummed along for a week. 

The Black Room resembles all the best moments from Bad Brains song mashed together. It is structured like an ordinary song but lack of vocals make it rather off-putting roundabout.

Fuck the Election starts off with playful starts and stops. Structurally it is like taking a journey through the stairs. It ascends up the stairs. Then walks to the next staircase. Crosses the line, drummers gets a rolling fill and then it all repeats.  

Turn Up the Strobe is second more or less fully formed song on the record. It is slow-burn, brooding, bone cruncher. It is a sonic beatdown. It leaves the subject of obstruction a bloody pulp.  Guitar lashes its riffs over ears. Rhythm section thrusts forwards like a steamroller, breaking through the thick layers of nil. It sounds very intimidating. 

There is one thing that occured in my head while listening - as it is (vocal-less) it seems to be like a soundtrack for the video game. Some non-existant Super Mario / Sonic the Hedgehog clone. In terms of dynamics it makes sense. There is a title screen, level exploration, puzzle solving, cut scenes, boss battles, bonus rounds. 

I guess what KLF intended to do was to monkey Whitehouse, carve a smile on the surface and add some less apparent Helmet groove. But since it was never finalized - we're left with these weird scraps and imagination. 

(i'm waiting for someone to mash these tracks with some GG Allin vocals.)

субота, 22 липня 2017 р.

Zur-En-Arrh Transmission 11: color song

I was listening to "KLF - America What Time is Love" because reasons. And there is this part near the end where Glenn Hughes shouts out the names of the cities. And so I thought "definitely should try this one 'cause list songs are fun! sorta...maybe...probably...eh...whatever...". But since i'm a secret Joe Cocker fan (i.e. got no mic) - lets WITH A LITTLE HELP OF MY FRIENDS the hell out of this thing.

I hear this thing as an anthem-like mindfuck with a little bit of good old Popul Vuh "Train Through Time" groove. And some Kluster numbing drones. But thats just a foundation.

середа, 19 липня 2017 р.

Hard hitting existential random generated comic

Cyanide and Happiness is one of the most hideous webcomics in existence. Just because it has Random Comic Generator. Because with its little help you can make your own stuff and if you have the right idea - it can go into the realms of bizarre and wonderful. 

Just because. Reasons, etc.

Take for example the comic you can see at the beginning of the post. It is nothing special but still quite relatable. Because sometimes - all over the sudden - something like that happens. And it feels rather awkward afterwards. 

I don't really want to talk about that any more.

неділя, 16 липня 2017 р.

Bil Sabab Power Hour: Four Navajo Songs

What do you know about overly creative pointlessness if you haven't seen notation of the folk songs. Such things are amongst most bizarre out there. It is a nice example of justified simulacra. It is it but not exactly and not quite. Firm roots in the real thing are present - but it is definitely not the thing.  A sober compromise between fuzzy smooth distortion and stern oblivion. Still better than some vague recollections in general terms and color commentary. 

Notation seems to be reasonable as a form of documentation for the folk songs - it captures the melody and makes it possible to be performed by the outsiders. But that makes it a source of infinite distortions and misplacements.  

Below are four Navajo Songs from the collection of Geoffrey O'Hara. I have no idea how they've sounded like originally - but i see the notes and i can imagine something based on them. And i guess it is not exactly how it should have sounded like. I can only misinterpret it. But misinterpretation can be extremely effective creative practice if intensions are to go beyond into the unexpected and rather useless.

Take a look at the songs:

пʼятниця, 14 липня 2017 р.

Fun Coincidental Playlist

It's not like I'm really trying hard to make up something like this. It just happens. I was in the midst of a cooking session - doing omelette and listening to Betty Davis on Youtube.
And then came turn of her song "In The Meantime" and it all flushed out in a wormhole of the songs with the same titles. I didn't even noticed it until the Helmet song started because the style shifted so drastically. Later that day i was looking for one link in the browsing history and only then i realized that i've listened to four songs with identical titles in a row. Which is stupid.

Here's how it goes:

середа, 12 липня 2017 р.

The Apprehension Engine

I guess this is the thing I would like to get. The Apprehension Engine is a string instrument designed to make spooky, nightmarish sounds. Something you should definitely have if you want to make some dope dark ambient.

Here's a showcase of its functioning:

неділя, 9 липня 2017 р.

Bil Sabab Power Hour: Dan Severn Entrance Theme

Dan Severn is the man who needs no introduction. World-renowned technical wrestler, multiple champion, one of the earliest UFC icons. He's the kind of guy whose work never stops to impress. Even when it is definitely not good - you can feel the man's intensity. I have a soft spot for his infamous second encounter with Ken Shamrock at UFC 9 which is known as Dance in Detroit. It is bad from the fight point of view - but as a piece of performance art - there is something enigmatic boiling. It is like unintentional Fluxus. Anyway...

Severn's run at WWF was one big missed opportunity. He was never properly booked, his character was on the wrong side, third bout with Shamrock never happened, etc. But one thing WWF got right - it was his entrance theme. It gives you clear understand of what kind of man is walking towards the ring.

It is menacing. And that is all you need to know.

пʼятниця, 7 липня 2017 р.

Bil Sabab Power Hour: The Cult - The Witch

I love The Cult. Probably my favorite band. Ian Astbury and Billy Duffy had made some of the best rock music and yet most of their output is left somewhat obscure. And it seems mindboggling to me that this band doesn't get the credit they deserve. And there is a lot to chew.

The Cult is incredibly flexible band. They went through numerous stylistic changes and it never seemed to be forced - their sound naturally evolved. You can hear glimpses of what to come on each of their album. They went from goth rock greasers to post-punk outfit to hard rock hustlers to cock rock hellraisers to alt-rock zealots - and every time they manage to deliver something special. It is true - they are consistently great (even their lesser albums contain great songs).

субота, 1 липня 2017 р.

My Favorite Things: InspiroBot as a tool for Fluxus Scores

Inspirobot is a thing of the moment. And it is easy to see why - it offers a quick fix. And then gets disposed indefinitely. That's how it works these days. Sometimes it is well-deserved. Other times it is not. Because if you use a thing long enough - it will exhaust its bag of tricks and start trying to keep up with the demand by desperate bizarre. And that's where the things get really interesting.

I've been using InspiroBot daily for the five days - and over time bad pun and strange word choice morphed into legitimately interesting stuff. I've noticed that some results can be combined and that makes them look like some sort of a Fluxus score (which is always a good thing).

Zur-En-Arrh Transmission

то є або Z або N.