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Brew City Sludge - April 2009

by Lane Klozier
Milwaukee's Canyonsofstatic - photo by josef pheiffer

Klozier here.

In the world of eclectic pursuit there are a lot of bands that reside under the radar. Usually, this is due to the fact that so much music is dedicated to getting hips to shake in 4/4 time. Nothing wrong with that, but, eventually one needs to seek an alternative to music fit to shag by. One such Milwaukee band offers this up with genius. Canyonsofstatic is ambient at it’s best. Guitar, synth, percussion and keys combine for a textured layering of sound that defies the norm while maintaining accessibility at all points. Their latest release The Disappearance is a clear view of experimental music. This is not noise, or the banging of blunt objects for the sake of a statement like so much that infiltrates the genre; but music that is both soothing and invigorating. Tracks such as Blinding Cold, Casket Black crescendo from a whisper to a scream with intricate beats that are smoothed over with fluid bass lines and soaring unpretentious guitar solos. The anthem like 1:17 shows the raw power the band is capable of with a lush gushing of mayhem. Stand out track Are We Still the Good Guys gives the listener ample opportunity to insert his own story with villains or heroes of their own making. Whether driving, creating, (or yes, even shagging), Canyonstatic offers up the soundtrack you need. Head over to Rush-Mor Records and get a copy or head down to Chicago April 5 to check them out live when they perform at the Hideout with another great Milwaukee alternative act Collections of Colonies of Bees.

As long as we’re talking “off the beaten path”, a Milwaukee act indeed worthy of mention is Endless Blue. With roots deeply steeped in trip hop, this two piece band takes everything that is urban and injects a jazzy, raw flavor that is incredibly delicious. Vocalist Laura Hillman shows a wonderful duplicity with a style straight out of the 1940’s St. Louis lounge scene ramped up to the current day with an underlying edge. Just when you’re thinking “this is so lo-fi”, Guitarist/keyboard man Nick Mitchell kicks it up a notch creating a sound that is at times completely radio friendly. You will not, however, hear this stuff on the major airwaves since corporate radio is more interested in selling happy meals to innocent children. So, check them out on CD Baby or at their site for a taste of something fresh.

Speaking of art rock…it seems that our boys The Danglers at back at it again. Appearing here and there around town, the band continues to shock and amaze. Dave Gelting, Jason Loveall and John Sparrow are three of the finest musicians this area has ever produced. Their style is completely their own and difficult to write about…after all…how many different ways can you say “HOLY SHIT THAT”S UNBELIEVABLE”! If you have yet to witness this truly unique and explosive band, keep your eyes open for the next show (I can highly recommend Maximum Ink’s listing calendar).
That’s all for now my Darlings.

Remember: If you go to a KISS concert with a laser pointer, Paul Stanley is liable to kick your ass.

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