Monday 8 July 2013


Still here good people, just been quiet, working out how life works now, and you know what? I think I might just have the hang of it. Sick, but no no sicker, and considering what I've got, that's as good as it gets, so that's good enough for me.

I will be writing more again now, both here and on Twitter, just needed a break from the whole blogging thing to get away from the idea of writing about being sick and well, it's such an integral part of my life now I don't really feel the urge to bang on about it.

Anyways, fuck all this, hope y're all good out there, and I'm actually going to catch up on all yr writing (you know who you are) and, I should imagine, roundly take the piss with the comments. In the meantime, I'm going to listen to Tony Oxley's Four Compositions For Sextet (which is a hell of a lot less dry and academic than it sounds) and Andrew Hill's un-fucking-touchable Compulsion!!!!!*. Oh yeah, it's a free jazz Monday, no doubt 'bout that.

And, this is important, if you like sludge, old AmRep or just good old-fashioned low end filth, go and buy a copy of the new Palehorse album, Harm Starts Here (Candlelight) immediately, it's exceedingly toothsome and your ears will thank you.

*Yep, it really does have five exclamation marks in the title. It was the 60s.

Saturday 6 April 2013

Buenas Tardes

Sorry for not blogging. I'm actually doing pretty damn good, physically and emotionally, at the mo', just haven't really been able to finish anything I've written yet. Which is why I haven't been here in a while. But there will be ranting, and soon. Fucking loads of it. Anyway, see you all soon.

Saturday 9 February 2013

Todavía Aquí

Small(ish) post to preface a soon to arrive big post. Yes, I'm really fucking sick, but between my innate refusal to give in to shit and the drugs & chemo*, I actually feel pretty damn good. No nausea, no tiredness, and not nearly as much existential brain-wringing as you might expect. But, this shit fucking situation means one thing, that, aside from getting on with life, I'm not going to be working for a living, which means one thing, that for the first time in my life I can throw myself into music without the distraction of a physically and intellectually taxing job. If I'm not playing, I'm thinking, imagining, moulding sound in my head all the time, and given that I could barely lift a guitar a couple or so weeks ago, that ain't fucking bad. So yeah, I'm ill, very ill, but I'm also me, a stubborn, bloody-minded motherfucker who will not lie down and take it. I can't not fight, and I will not let this beat me down psychologically, and music is intrinsic to that fight. So this year is going to be loud, hard but really fucking loud. Stay tuned.

*yes, I have cancer, and a nasty fucker of one at that, and that's as far as I want to discuss it, publicly anyway, email me if you like, in fact do, please**, but I am not going to let this blog turn into an illness diary. Sometimes I'll be be good, as at the mo' and at others I won't be so good, and you'll know by the tone of the ranting which one it is...

**DrWommm (at) outlook dot com or my normal addy if you already have it.

Wednesday 2 January 2013


On a positive note though, and one that'll ring out pretty fucking loudly when I'm better, is that I've finally found a rhythm section that should be, in the immortal words of Donald 'Duck' Dunn, "strong enough to turn goat's piss into gasoline". Dunno what this group's going to be called yet, but I do know what it'll sound like. Fucking nasty and deeply psychedelic. So that's just one thing of many I've got to look forward to. It might take a little while to get there, seeing as I can barely lift some of my guitars when I'm feeling really shitty, but I'm too fucking stubborn to let illness grind me down. So, whatever it fucking takes, sometime in the near future I will be better, and I will be able to make a fucking beautiful racket, and I'll have my fucking life back.

Saturday 22 December 2012

La Langosta

What I said below about not posting until next year. I think the opposite's going to happen. This is probably not a surprise to my lovely regulars, but there you go. The last couple of weeks have been, shall we say, a little fucking stressful. In the same way that nuclear weapons make quite a loud noise. I feel like warmed-through shit, as I have for the last couple of months. Thing is, I know why now. It has nothing to do with the old Guillain-Barre shit, or any previous illness, and unless the docs hadn't been looking at something entirely unrelated through an ultrasound, I'd probably still be none the fucking wiser, and that in and of itself is fucking frightening. Yes, I know I haven't spelt out what it is, and I'm not sure I'm ready to just yet*. This is new to me, and it's bloody scary, and I'm still finding it somewhat freaky just thinking about being in this position and I don't know how to deal with this fucker yet. Fortunately, although this is probably more dangerous than GB, it's treatable and its progression is completely known, and I will get better, so there's a lot less of the genuinely terrifying staring into the fucking abyss whilst playing cards with Death in a game whose rules you don't know that came with GB's initial stages.

So there you go. Right now the morphine and it's cousins are keeping the pain at bay, and my friends are, in the main, being pretty fantastic. I'm not going to say anymore today, mainly because I don't want to upset myself, but you can guarantee I'll go off like a supercritical reactor in the next few days

*If you want to email me, I'll happily tell you all about it, I just can't do it publicly yet, simply because I'm still in a state of shock.

Saturday 15 December 2012

Medidas temporal

Hi everyone, just wanted to apologise for the lack of updates. I've been seriously ill for the last few weeks, probably will be for a couple more at the very least, and haven't really been in the mood for writing extended posts. Soon as I'm better, I'll be back, but right now, I simply don't have the fucking energy. Have a seriously magic xmas, or winter celebration of yr choice, and I'll see you all in the new year.

(You may have noticed I've edited this post slightly and, shockingly for me, removed an expletive. This is 'cos it sounded like I was being sarcastic, and I genuinely do want everyone to have a brilliant christmas, I know I can be a misanthropic bastard at times, but I'm not that much of a wanker, I promise)

Thursday 22 November 2012

Vete A La Mierde

Vatican Shadow. Really? You genuinely think this is good? Please. I mean, you have heard The Crackdown right? Cabaret Voltaire? Yeah, them, after Chris Watson left and they went shit. Seriously people, paramilitary uniforms and muggy, static filled military music, beats that a ham-fisted pig could render funkier, and dated, childish "shock" tactics allied to self-consciously retro 80s synth revivalism and a return to the completely outmoded industrial tactics of the 70s/80s. Do us all a favour and fuck off. Unless you actually want to be a third-rate Muslimgauze for the early 21st century, in which case you've succeeded in your quest by releasing (and then expensively rereleasing on vinyl when the original cassette edition has sold out) every fucking single insignificant fart you've committed to tape. You are not releasing samizdat bulletins of defiance from behind a totalitarian wall, you are a middle-class American with a relatively comfortable life who owns a record label, a distro, and a shop, who is doing nothing but preaching to the fucking industrial choir.

More soon...

Sunday 28 October 2012

Capaz De Producir Insensibilidad O Pérdida Completa Del Sentido

Hello lovely people. I know I haven't been around much lately. Sorry 'bout that. Not been very fucking well, to the extent that I've been suffering the worst fucking pain since I was in hospital several years ago. I'm halfway through several articles/rants on all sorts of things, but they're gonna have to wait a bit for me to finish, not to mention that I'm halfway through a fucking paper, because neither oxycodone nor morphine sulphate are particularly conducive to maintaining a coherent thought-train. Or remaining upright. Don't worry, I'm alright, it just hurts like a motherfucker. Hopefully I'll be off the heavy-duty shit in the next few days, and normal service can be restored once more.

Friday 19 October 2012

El Arándano

Myrrh - Myrrh (Soft Abuse)
Sarin Smoke - Vent (Mie Music)
Cut Hands - Black Mamba (Susan Lawly)
Laurie Spiegel - Expanding World (Unseen Worlds)
Juju & Jordash - Techno Primitivism (Dekmantel)
Gato Barbieri - In Search Of The Mystery (ESP-Disk)
Birch Cooper - I Was A Teacher (Digitalis)
Matt Carlson - All Moments (NNA Tapes)
Matt Carlson - Particle Language (Draft)
Outer Space - II (Blast First Petite)
Detroit Escalator Co. - Excerpts (Peacefrog)
C. C. Hennix - Chora(s)san Time-Court Mirage (Important)
Marion Brown - Geechee Recollctions/Sweet Earth Flying (Impulse!)
Ricardo Villalobos - Dependant & Happy (Perlon)
Pharoah Sanders - In The Beginning (ESP-Disk)
Henry Flynt - Ascent To The Sun (Recorded)
Infinity Window - Artificial Midnight (Arbor)
Plastic Crimewave Sound - Flashing Open (Eclipse)
Rara In Haiti - Street Music Of Haiti (Soul Jazz)
Ben Nash/Magic Lantern - Split (Blackest Rainbow)

Wednesday 26 September 2012

La Nueva Edad

There's a lot of wibble in the air these days. We're in the midst of a veritable glut of synth music these days, and let's face it, most of it's either crap or sounds like it's fucking 1973, and in some incurable cases, both. Other that that, an awful lot of it is just so terribly fucking boring*. As ever though, buried deep in the shit are a few nuggets of electronic gold.

Like Matt Carlson's All Moments LP (NNA Tapes), or Akashic Record (Spectrum Spools) and II (Blast First Petite) by Outer Space, created by musicians who actually realise that starting the arpeggiator on yr modular and mucking about with the knobs just doesn't fucking cut it anymore (and frankly, was probably getting a bit fucking boring by the mid 70s). Synthesizers are amazing things, capable of generating genuinely new tonalities and modes of expression in the hands of a skilled user, but also well able to just act as sonic signifiers for lazy hipsters record collections and their urge to display their "knowledge" to other, similarly limited dickheads.

I'm not saying that every single sound and idea has to be new and unheard, but I do find it somewhat amusing that instruments designed to break free of traditional performance and timbral modes are now so often being used to recreate their own past, especially as so much of the synth/electronic music of the 60s and 70s that's been reissued in the last few years perversely manages to sound more modern and certainly more daring than it's modern incarnations, and not just because the old stuff was the frontier then. There's both an edge and a sense of playfulness to much earlier synth/electronic music, elements sorely fucking lacking these days, a fidgety restlessness born of genuine experimentation and the knowledge that an experiment can fail which I'm just not hearing nearly as much as I'd fucking like to.

But no, so comfy and safe has this world become we've even seen the rehabilitation of new age music. Let me repeat and expand on that, with added expletives; the rehabilitation of new fucking age music, the single most irredeemably fucking self-satisfied, up-it's-own-arsehole quasi-spiritual ooh-aren't-the-natives-in-touch-with-nature-on-like-a-totally-other-level tinkly floaty crap that only the sort of cunt who takes DMT and thinks they have genuinely communed with an astral intelligence could make, and only the sort of fucknut who thinks that orgone energy can cure cancer and make it rain would listen to. Fucking hell people, really? Torpid fucking musical cotton wool as a soporific for the world's rough edges and rose-tinted arpeggios from a non-existent past are not what I fucking want to hear from "the instrument of the future" in two thousand and fucking twelve.

And it doesn't have to be like this. Like I said earlier, there's some beautiful stuff out there, and the albums I mentioned earlier are examples of that. I purposely chose them to highlight, because they aren't free of the presence of earlier musics, but neither do they slavishly adhere to previous templates, the synthesis of the past, the ubiquitous influences of Kosmische music and 60s tape music and whatnot are still there, but they don't constitute the whole, they exist as echoes, recontextualized in an unexpected fashion and embedded in a contemporary framework, allied to genuinely original compositional and sonic ideas. Outer Space's II is a case in point; it's liberally smothered in Mellotron, an instrument which screams loon pants and wizard hats louder than almost any other, but because the person playing it actually has a functioning, creative brain, it drags that archaic beast of an instrument kicking and screaming into the present. I have no problem with history, I just don't necessarily want to fucking live in it...

*That Steve Hauschlidt LP on Kranky manages to combine all three of these traits. I have heard Edgar Froese's Aqua you know. Please try harder. Or maybe not bother. Don't even get me started on Dolphins Into The Future. Even the fucking name annoys me.

Monday 17 September 2012


Take one part Parson Sound/International Harvester style slo-mo mong rock, one part prime, blown-out UK psych/noise dirge (think pre-Carved Into Roses Skullflower) and stir in the ecstatic string work of Agathe Max or Henry Flynt, and you have the rough makings of my record of the year (so far): Myrrh, by Myrrh (Soft Abuse).

It really is a fucking beauty. An electric viola and drums duo whose crawling feedback mantras don't so much ascend into the sky as burn a fucking hole through the planet. This record presses more of my buttons than anything I've heard in a fucking age. Blues sodden modal viola riffs, plucked and bowed, slowly rotate round a granite-hard core of saturated drum thud (courtesy of Andie Mazorol), the like of which I've only previously encountered when Stuart Dennison was still a fulltime member of Skullflower, each beat landing like the foot of a very stoned elephant, raising huge clouds of tape dust that coats every surface in volcanic ash before Jackie Beckley kicks in the feedback afterburner and cuts the viola loose with a high and lonesome chainsaw wail, a screaming, roaring, beautiful wall of scorched earth fuzz that sends shivers up my fucking spine every single time I hear it. This is psychedelic mountain music people, and I urge you to seek it out. In the meantime, there's a couple of tasters here to be going on with...

Tuesday 28 August 2012

Dårlig Og Ugudelige Mennesker

Ok, one more, and this is such a fucking killer version, and I'm particularly fond of the high-pitched whine which runs through this clip. You may not agree...

El Túnel De Dulce

Talking of riffs, people really don't fucking write 'em like this anymore do they?

Sorry, I'm having a bit of an early 90s evening.


I know the vocals are fucking crap, but I'm really not joking about Blues From The Red Sun. If more so-called stoner rock sounded like this instead of their later albums we'd have all had a much fucking better time. Ignore the fucknut on vocals and just wallow in the riffs...

Yeah, I know, John Garcia is a massive git, but, what a fucking band. Here's some more, in the marvellous form of Allen's Wrench and Mondo Generator, two songs which are pretty fucking hard to argue with.

See, good innit? Next time I might tell you how I ended up with a lovely new double-barrelled surname...

Borracho Y Colocado Y Contento

Now there's doom, there's Doom, and there's DOOOOOM. In the latter category, in the select company of Sleep, Warhorse, Ufomammut and early Electric Wizard, there's a band which way too fucking few people seem to have heard. Possibly because they're Dutch, and Holland doesn't really get a look in musically, even in Metalworld, but probably because they have the worst name I've come across in fucking years: Toner Low. Yes, they named themselves after a warning light/message on a photocopier. Now I've spent the better part of the last twenty years stoned, and I'd have thought that was a shit name for a band even if I was more fucking twatted than I am at the moment, which is very*.

Seriously tho, Toner Low fucking kill, their last two albums are simply fucking awesome, properly psychedelic mucky doom with a side order of foolish samples (see also Ufomammut) and (latterly) some properly Hawkwind style wibble. Hard to argue with that combination really, especially when it's allied with some serious songwriting/arranging nous. Of all the doom that's passed through my head in the past fifteen years or so, their last couple of LPs are up there with Sleep's Holy Mountain and Come My Fanatics in the stoned, heavy and simply fucking wonderful stakes. The last one, II, is a particularly juicy slab of earfood, four songs all hovering around the 15/20 minute mark, but with not a note, a noise wasted.

But it's a track from the self-titled LP I'm going to leave you with, the excellently named opening track; Evil Machinery On The Rise, featuring Ripley's waldo**, and the best entrance of a fantastically fucking loud bass I've heard for fucking years. Oh, and Dalek vocals.

Now that is the fucking shit. It's what Kyuss might've sounded like circa Blues For The Red Sun***if they hadn't had that fucking twat on vocals and even less regard for their record label.

*I'm listening to Motorhead at the moment, specifically 1916, a seriously fucking underrated LP in my opinion, but one which, even if it was complete shit, should reside forever in the pantheon of rock genius just for Lemmy's opening line on I'm So Bad (Baby I Don't Care); "I make love to mountain lions". Now that's fucking class. You may have noticed this footnote has fuck all to do with the main text. Oh well.

**Aliens, when Ripley's in the robotic exoskeleton kicking the crap out of the alien. All the mechanical samples are from that scene. Yes, I'm a fucking nerd sometimes. What of it?

***Don't knock it, that album fucking rocks. Sounds like a bluesier Fudge Tunnel with a Can fetish in its best moments, admittedly John Garcia is singing on it, but there's not as much of his macho caterwauling, and the lyrics aren't quite as laughably fucking juvenile as on the next two albums. Put it this way, BFTRS had almost as much of an influence on Boris and Green Machine as Earth and the Melvins did. Make of that what you will.