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Slipped Discs May 2010

Discs you may have missed | by John Noyd

Band Of Horses

May - three little letters open up endless possibilities. From BAND OF HORSES’ highly anticipated “Infinite Arms” to guitar wizard SEAN SMITH’s textural wonderland, “Eternal,” and Russian electro-acoustic mastermind GULTSKRA ARTIKLER’s spaciously glacial, “Galaktika” spring brings big pictures into focus, carrying a multitude of sumptuous musical triumphs to honor the month named after a fertility goddess. Opting for all-encompassing titles, our May choices encapsulate, tackling absolutes in one giant gulp.

Slipped Discs appears every month in print in Maximum Ink music magazine, this months reviews are:

Minus the Bear - Omni

Minus the Bear

Record Label: Dangerbird
Review published: April 2010

Vivid slivers of slithering ribbons tie smooth syncopated grooves into brisk, crisp knots as shimmering electronic funk carve tightly wrought jazz-rock into super-cool, cross-pollinating gravy. “Omni,” spins and sparks, igniting space-age playfulness as MTB prances over edgy pinnacles, casting magic spells against dance-floor lust and prog-rock cockiness. The Bear play Chicago’s Lollapalooza early August.

Tracey Thorn - Love and It’s Opposite

Tracey Thorn

Love and It’s Opposite
Record Label: Merge
Review published: April 2010

Frank romance soars and self-reflection pours beautifully forth as the Everything But the Girl singer flings herself into melodic meditations, precious hesitations and heady anticipation. Evoking wistful memories between tender metaphors and thoughtful asides, “Love,” turns personal curses into universal mercies as life’s common compromises prove uncommon fodder for Thorn’s trans-formative songwriting.

Kim Salmon and the Surrealists - Grand Unifying Theory

Kim Salmon and the Surrealists

Grand Unifying Theory
Record Label: Low Transit Industries
Review published: April 2010

Explosive blues hallucinations rut and rupture as off-kilter cataclysms pass like squealing wheelies through Kim’s wild-eyed wango tango. Kim and the Surrealist’s first effort in thirteen years, “Grand,” shows no signs of age, lambasting and exonerating with madcap flashbacks and beastly thunder; improvised rampages coasting over fantasy anarchy.

Blunt Mechanic - World Record

Blunt Mechanic

World Record
Record Label: Barsuk
Review published: April 2010

Pearls wrapped in raucous romps and splintered soliloquies, Kind of Like Spitting’s Ben Barnett’s perceptive meta-conscious songs blast, slash and busk, plucking ragged realizations from personal observations and dressing them in lo-fi riffs and full-blown garage band trips. “World,” swirls; brandishing guile while collapsing from overloaded amps, slacker-crashing gallops and jagged, electric, alt-folk journalism.

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Flying Lotus - Cosmogramma

Flying Lotus

Record Label: Warp
Review published: April 2010

Hard-wired, narcoleptic kaleidoscopes; FL’s latest fractured trajectories spill into a barrage of schizoid collage, found sounds and re-mastered plastic. New age waves waft past acrobatic spasms, subtle puzzles melt trampled samples against unfettered fantasies while quirky flirtations glow, surface and evaporate. Riptide runs catapult sleepless beats, sweeping free jazz leaps as, “Cosmogramma,” builds into sweet cyber-jambalaya.

The New Pornographers - Together

The New Pornographers

Record Label: Matador
Review published: April 2010

Not deviating from their sterling template of sharp, power-pop hooks and posh, la-di-da lyrics, “Together,” proves one can never get too much of a good thing. Uncannily catchy pomp with panache, anthemic sentiments and pithy wit, Canada’s boldly literate misfits visit Milwaukee’s Pabst June 12th, swinging back around Aug 4th to sell-out Madison’s Orpheum.

Final Thoughts

Grandiose titles continue as the big picture yield big gestures. Existential country-punk architects SIN ROPAS’ divinely desolate, slow-cooked, beat-boxed, “Holy Broken,” span countless visions while action-packed pop encyclopedists BROKEN SOCIAL SCENE broker outspoken hopes in the chameleonic, “Forgiveness Rock Record.”  Lastly, Texas psycho-blues legend, former Thirteenth Floor Elevator leader ROKY ERIKSON teams up with cerebral indie-rockers OKKERVIL RIVER for the truly moving testimony energizing, “True Love Casts out all Evil.”

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