December 3, 2011

Playlist Week of 12-03-11

Circus Devils - Capsized!

* Dowland: Complete Lute Works, Vol.1 (O’Dette) (Harmonia Mundi CD)
* Dowland: Complete Lute Works, Vol.2 (O’Dette) (Harmonia Mundi CD)
* Veracini: Sonatas (Holloway/Mortensen/ter Linden) (ECM CD)
* Leclair: Sonatas (Holloway/Mortensen/ter Linden) (ECM CD)
* Cage: Sonatas & Interludes For Prepared Piano (Vandré) (Mode CD)
* Feldman: The Viola In My Life (Konstantynowicz/Cikada Ensemble/NRO/Eggen) (ECM CD)
* Feldman: Morton Feldman (Tudor, et al.) (Editions RZ CD)
* Cecil Taylor Quartet: Looking Ahead! (Contemporary/Fantasy CD)
* Sun Ra & His Arkestra: Live At Montreux (Inner City 2CD)
* Sun Ra & His Arkestra: Chateauvallon, France 8-24-76 (AUD 2CDR)
* Ronnie Boykins: The Will Come, Is Now (ESP-Disk’ CD)
* Scanner & The Postmodern Jazz Quartet: Blink Of An Eye (Thirsty Ear CD)
* Myra Melford’s Be Bread: The Image Of Your Body (Cryptogramophone CD)
* Myra Melford’s Be Bread: The Whole Tree Gone (Firehouse 12 CD)
* Kris Davis/Ingrid Laubrock/Tyshawn Sorey: Paradoxical Frog (Clean Feed CD)
* Sylvie Courvoisier/Mark Feldman/Erik Friedlander: Abaton (ECM 2CD)
* Sylvie Courvoisier: Lonelyville (Intakt CD)
* Mephista: Black Narcissus (Tzadik CD)
* Mephista: Entomological Reflections (Tzadik CD)
* DJ Spooky: Optometry (Thirsty Ear CD)
* Grateful Dead: Lyceum Theatre, London, England 5/23/72 (GDP/Rhino 3CD)
* Grateful Dead: Lyceum Theatre, London, England 5/24/72 (GDP/Rhino 3CD)
* Frank Zappa: Civilization Phaze III (d.1) (Barking Pumpkin 2CD)
* Pink Floyd: The Dark Side Of The Moon (Experience Edition) (d.1) (Pinkfloyd/EMI CD)
* Yes: The Yes Album (Atlantic/Mobile Fidelity CD)
* The Cure: Seventeen Seconds (Fiction/Rhino CD)†/‡
* The Cure: Faith (Fiction/Rhino CD)†/‡
* Yo La Tengo: And Then Nothing Turned Itself Inside-Out (Matador CD)
* Yo La Tengo: Today Is The Day! (Matador CDEP)
* Guided By Voices: “We Won’t Apologize […]”/”The Unsinkable Fats Domino” (Matador 7”)
* Guided By Voices: “Doughnut For A Snowman” (Fire 7”EP)
* Circus Devils: Mother Skinny (Happy Jack Rock Records LP)
* Circus Devils: Capsized! (Happy Jack Rock Records LP)
* Buckethead: Giant Robot (CyberOctave CD)†/‡
* Bill Laswell: Broken Vessels (soundtrack) (Velvel/Koch CD)†
* Cobra Strike: The 13th Scroll (Ion CD)†/‡
* Mastodon: Leviathan (Relapse CD)†(‡)
* Mastodon: Blood Mountain (Reprise CD)†(‡)
* Mastodon: Crack The Skye (Reprise CD)



The ninth(!) Circus Devils LP, Capsized!, came out just in time for Halloween and, as usual, it’s taken a while to grow on me. It starts out like most any Circus Devils record, with a dreamy instrumental (“To England the Tigers”) followed by the title track, a noisy, industrial thumper with processed vocals. Here we go! But then we get two of the creamiest of pop songs ever, right in a row: the bouncy “Cyclopean Runways,” and “Legendary Breakfast Codes,” a blissed-out ballad. Huh? Well, don’t worry. Capsized!, like every other Circus Devils record, explores the weirder, more experimental side of Robert Pollard’s musical psyche and as the album progresses, those themes of agitated noise and soft rock comfort are developed into a loosely coherent song cycle about (among other things) getting falling down drunk (i.e. “Capsized!”). Amidst the proggy metal, pure pop pleasure and trippy atmospherics there are several moments that are deeply disturbing. “Vampire Playing A Red Piano,” a spoken word piece, is downright creepy while the vertiginous “Double Vission” features a shockingly realistic sound of someone (Pollard?) vomiting violently. Good grief! Later, on “Plate of Scales,” when he boozily sings about wanting to throw up, you believe him! If all this sounds slightly sick, well it is—and it might be the best Circus Devils album yet! But at the same time, it is a little bit worrying. Pollard is a notorious drinker and it is hard not to draw certain conclusions from all this. Then again, you cannot say that drinking interferes with his productivity! Heck, this is Pollard’s sixth album of 2011! Moreover, Capsized! might be the Circus Devils’ most creative and profoundly affecting album yet—but it’s not going to appeal to teetotalers or prudes. You can download a FREE MP3 of "Cyclopean Runways" here.


Speaking of Pollard’s productivity, two seven-inch vinyl-only singles from the forthcoming Guided By Voices reunion album have recently been released: Matador has the double-A sided “We Won’t Apologize For The Human Race”/”The Unsinkable Fats Domino” while the British label, Fire gets “Doughnut For A Snowman” with four B-sides. The so-called “classic” lineup of GBV tries to revive the glory days with a return to a primitive, lo-fi recording technique and group collaboration and it seems to work OK but, in any event, it’s nice to see these guys get a victory lap. Let’s Go Eat The Factory comes out on January 1 followed by another seven-inch (“Chocolate Boy”/”As The Girls Sing Downing”) on January 17. Not surprisingly, the first records of 2012 will be by Robert Pollard, a record collector’s dream. Check out a FREE download of "The Unsinkable Fats Domino" here.


Sam said...

Thanks for the link to all the Pollard MP3s. At some point I'll go there and listen to all of those--lotta stuff!

Here are my lists for last week:

Playlist 2011-12-05:

*John Cage: 2007-09-28: Milano Musica Festival, Event 8 (Cage/Donatoni/Cardew/Rzewski/Castaldi) CDR
*Ad Hoc Quartet: 2011-11-26 Pyramid Atlantic
*Bix Beiderbecke: Bix Restored Volume 4: June 1928-September 1930 (disc 3)
*Anthony Braxton Small Ensemble: 2009-04-30 Echo Echo Mirror House Music world premiere, Wesleyan, set 2
*Sylvie Courvoisier/Mary Halvorson/Ikue Mori: 2010-07-24 Whitney Museum of Modern Art (CDR)
*Sun Ra: The Eternal Myth Revealed, Vol. 1 (discs 6-10)
*Sun Ra: Interplanetary Melodies
*Sun Ra: Second Stop Is Jupiter
*Various artists: More Music (CDR compilation)
*Boris with Michio Kurihara: Rainbow
*Tamar Davis: Milk and Honey
*Bob Dylan: Theme Time Radio Hour No. 34: Christmas & New Years (CDR) disc 1
*Egg: Egg
*Grateful Dead: 1967-11-11 Shrine, LA (CDR)
*Grateful Dead: 1973-06-10 RFK Stadium, DC (CDR) "Dark Star"
*Grateful Dead: 1973-06-24 Portland, OR (CDR) "Dark Star"
*Grateful Dead: Dick's Picks 19 (1973-10-19 Oklahoma City) "Dark Star > Mind Left Body Jam"
*Grateful Dead: 1973-11-11 Winterland (CDR) "Dark Star"
*Grateful Dead: Dick's Picks 14 (1973-12-02 Boston) disc 4
*Jimi Hendrix Experience: An Evening with the Jimi Hendrix Experience (1969-02-24 Royal Albert Hall, London)
*Prince: The Undertaker (boot CDR)
*Prince: N.E.W.S.
*Rachel's: The Sea and the Bells
*Tad Thaddock: Christmas Balls
*Brian Wilson: Sweet Insanity

Reading List 2011-12-05:

*Borges, Jorge Luis. Selected Poems, 1923-1967 (finished)
*Arabian Nights: Tales of 1001 Nights (transl. Malcolm C. Lyons) Vol. 2 (in progress)
*Bate, Jonathan. The Genius of Shakespeare (in progress)
*Bradbury, Ray: Bradbury Stories (in progress)
*Bride of Dark and Stormy, compiled by Scott Rice (in progress)
*Esslemont, Ian C. Stonewielder (in progress)

chris_dmt said...

optometry is a cracking listen