Showing posts from February, 2011

Amplifier - Fractal EP

Recorded at night after toiling all day during the marathon Octopus sessions, this free EP has been given away as thankyou for the buyers of their sprawling opus, although anyone can download it from Bandcamp.

All the pieces here are totally improvised, and works as a fine insight into their songwriting process. Executive builds from solar static to end akin to the noise from inside a barrel of psychedelicised hornets. On it's heels The Chase starts with some nice fingerpicking across a chord cycle, Fractal has a simple motif that threatens to explode into riff carnage at any time, but doesn't, and slows down to a Seven By Seven style groove - you can almost hear Bob Calvert intoning Michael Moorcock! Final piece Solaris has a suitably reflective feel, single note picking through a chorus pedal over a laid back beat.

I often wonder why label Amplifier as Space Rock, well their pigeonholing is more than justified with this fine piece of inter-galactical noodlin…

Ann Magnuson - Pretty Songs & Ugly Stories

Bongwater’s The Power Of Pussy was an impulse buy from my local, now sadly long gone, independent record store nearly 20 years ago, and it remains in my all time top ten albums to this day. Ann Magnuson was the lyricist and singer with Bongwater, and she’s come a long way and it’s been a long time since the days of Chicken Pussy but this is still essentially the same Ann Magnuson who gave the world all those strange songs and monologues from another planet all that time ago. Although probably as well if not better known as an actress, it's her gorgeously subversive music that's always appealed to me.

In this, a self released slab of subversive pop, Ann tells us where it’s at in the here and now – well in 2006 anyway. The album opens with the seemingly innocent Falling For An Actor, there’s the perfect pop song Disassociation replete with cooing girlie chorus, and marvellous stuff it is too. By now we know that all the barbed wit of yore is still there but bubbling just under t…