Archiv für Juli 2009

ben butler and mousepad, joe germlin, gay against you, joemus and bean butler

the good thing about berlin is that geniuses can die here in complete anonymity. and there were many, are probably some, and some just live here without many people taking any note. this seems to foreigners of utmost attraction, for maybe they do not know how to explain this phenomenon. on the one hand it is of course a humble and normal gesture of politeness not to intrude anyone and putting an interest in other peoples lives about the own, having become otherwise quite rare these days, on the other hand to have no interest but in oneself, has more than anything become the plague of our times. and that mediocracy never understood and therefore never liked people with more abilities is the sad story of human history. but I lost my point, and a ridiculous blog is surely not the place to go more into common reflections. and ignorance can be simply a not-knowing-yet-about: so, simply, quickly, check out joe howe. he is one those people with some reputation, that not many really know here about, or a few might know some of his projects, but not that behind the different disguises and band names hides the same young man, but many probably not at all (that is the reason why I write this here). he has moved to berlin a while ago, has played a few shows, when he supported acts as sbach and mahjongg, and did a few headline shows with his new funk-nerdcore project BEN BUTLER AND MOUSEPAD. like on july 3rd in a small venue, where he played new songs, that really sounded promising as well again.

I discovered him twice, first with BEN BUTLER AND MOUSEPAD, when looking for new music to put on decks, second with GAY AGAINST YOU, until I released it was basically the same, and one half was here and ready to play! so, he did, and you should go, and watch it the next time. he knows what he does, he does it well and he does it with fun, and that is fun to see. I hope he will get more known slowly, and not move away for having no money, in a city whose musical scene he currently massively enriches. joe seems to like it here though for the while and uses his hide-out to work on new albums. I do not know how he does, but he is an hyperactive kid, and he just does it, and everything he has his finger on is good! currently he released a new album under one of his other synonyms JOE GERMLIN: „trashr“. you can listen to and download the whole album for a donation here.

the new album by GAY AGAINST YOU „righteous signals, sour dudes“ (upset the rthythm records and adaadat records) is going to be released now. the title song and „wall wizards“, what I have heard so far, are so great! so stay curious for the whole album. he also produced last year an album with momus as JOEMUS, with whom he recently played in berlin. more BEN BUTLER AND MOUSEPAD gigs hopefully coming as well, the project where he lately joined with GTUK, another local act, that I discovered last year only and was quite happy about to hear his crazy grindcore nintendo, and separately from joe, but common minds sometimes get together…

listen here to the title song righteous signals, sour dudes from the up-coming album of GVSY

as BEAN BUTLER, joe had also last week been dj-ing for lazer crystal. you find his mixtapes for free download here. also check out his remixes.

all those community pages suck, but sometimes they are partly useful, and you find many free downloads by BEN and JOE and GVSY on last fm, like this one here.

lazer crystal part 2


lazer crystal, live at bang bang club in berlin on july14th 2009

another fantastic show. if I did not had to work, I could have enjoyed the show a bit more. it was a dancy thing in the end, and a very sweaty one for the drummer. lazer crystal are indeed more an indie band than mahjongg, more a traditional three piece, with a stronger focus on a main singer (the biggest difference to mahjongg), but with a good deal of inventive sounds, even if of course new wave influence cannot be missed out, and they have studied their early 80s and late 70s well, this synthie-pop though experiments too much with the computer and has too much punk-like lack of any vanity, but much beat driven energy to be anything but boring mainstream or simple copy. here we go with mahjongg again, but in lazer crystal jean-michel jarre or roxy music seem to have had more to say, although disco, tribal, house and kraut elements cannot be denied either. unfortunately I still don‘t have a record, because when I had the time, the merch table was gone again already. I don‘t know what bands sometimes do, that people cannot hear their music (the band went for an interview to motor fm, thanks to the station!, but no one brought a playable version of the new single, but my two downloads did it in the end), but finally my myspace player works again, (now that I downloaded an older flash player maybe), and I have quite fallen in love with the latest single „hot pink bmx“. I have no idea why it reminds me of ca plane pour moi, kraftwerk-like, repetitive chords swirl on top and end in distorted sounds, and all is swung in a swift punk techno pace. „bad indian“ is a nice piece as well, in genuine indian dance style, also one of the former singles. I wish I could upload, but- listen on myspace.

it was lazer crystals last show on the tour. but I hope they will come back and you can catch them somewhere they play again.
(thanks to doorboy and dj, and the rest for attending. I always appreciate this. sorry to the club when we made longer than planned, and thanks.)

mahjongg are still on tour through europe. catch them live! also check the drummer’s, josh johannpeter, other projects, if you can. he is not only lending his talent to mahjongg and lazer crystal, but also played beside others for two other musicians I love: bobby conn and matthew friedberger, one half of the fiery furnaces. I had no idea of how demanded he was already when I saw him first play, but genius cannot disguise itself for long.

mahjongg, „tell the police the truth“, from „kontpab“ 2008, k records

the fiery furnaces, „single again“, from „single“ 2004, rough trade records

bobby conn, „we come in peace“, from „the homeland“ 2004, thrill jockey records

Câlin

things always happen by accident, but they were planned by fate anyhow. a fate you were maybe looking for. there were once two people sharing a similar taste in music and decided to finally play bands that no one has heard of yet, that only could be found on blogs, if even, or just on myspace, or were about to have their first encounter with a broader audience, or were not pushed enough and neglected – and supporting these by making them heard by smaller audiences, and if it was just from record. so d‘or started out of the same aspects as poplars and rocks, without having to look for venues, but just going somewhere and press play. djing can be boring, if the music is not good anyway, but djing ping pong style is in any case more entertaining (never mind the customer). I played last year metronomy „my heart rate rapid“ (ok, they are known and they are not really what I love, but the song is nice. and good can be found everywhere), and was quite taken by the answer. „who is that?“, „me“, „no way!“. that was the first time I heard of CÂLIN. and I guess I lost the battle, when „Money Poney“ was played.

this year Câlin have released their first EP „Sûrement pas de la harpe“. four crazy electronicy pieces of which every single one is completely different, but yet you can tell it makes a whole. no matter if it is more distorted synth disco, experimental post punk whim, or cheesy chansonette with an ironic undertone. there is some element of musical fun in what Câlin are doing, which makes the whole project so likeable. they play and try and don‘t care much. and what comes out is quite smart.

the ep is released on L‘AMICALE UNDERGROUND, a collective of people in grenoble. you can purchase the album, or have it as free download from their site. enjoy!

„money poney“

they have just finished their first bigger tour with lazer crystal, and will also support them on the last show in berlin, presented by poplars and rocks.

lazer crystal

poplars and rocks is going to present LAZER CRYSTAL. read more about them at home. I have never seen them live so far, so I cannot say much about their shows. but the critics are what I expect: lazer crystal is a side project of the live very amazing band MAHJONGG from chicago. in mahjongg new wave electronic are mingled with crazy beats. layers of synth sounds opening up new spheres of perceptions, whereas the drums keep your feet on the ground, restlessy whipping through every song. through breaks and changes, catching up on a theme again, and never getting boring. although their line up has lately changed, and the electronic aspect got a bit stronger, they are still more a band that rocks than hides too much behind the mathematical perfection of their laptops. the first album „kontpab“ was released on k records here one of the older songs I love, get the picture:

lazer crystal, the band around programmer mikale degraff, are around for a few years, but stayed so far in the shadow of the busier mahjongg project, with using more keyboards, sometimes a bit quiter than mahjongg, but often resembling of the sound of the other formation. maybe also due to the amazing drummer, josh johannpeter, who plays in both bands, and adds something to the music that makes it live so worth hearing. well, definitely so for mahjongg!

there is not much music to be found by lazer crystal on the net yet. go to their page, or purchase their current single „hot pink bmx“ on hbsp-2x records

„la rouche“

„lipp service“

stig noise sound system

once in the centre, then on the margins, and that sometimes for the better – liverpool comes back from time to time to give proof that it still exists, throwing up real good bands and new musical trends, even if it had been old ones. but they are the ones normally heard of. less heard of is the new stuff that is going on. being to much out of the centre of attention, but for its own sake, and good things have come out of there… stig noise sound system are one of them. and they belong in the spot light! HERE we go! I don‘t really have the time to write much about them and I might have done so before somewhere else, if not other people have. but it is all about the music: so listen! their latest ep „wonk step“ with four fantastic songs (when chit became chat/ bassbins at 4am/ attack, attack, attack, attack, attack/ lou reed called twice today already) was released as a split cd on class a audio records, a collective of people with outstanding good taste, who also do beside very likable compilations regular parties with bands they and I love, like gay against you, jason forrest, duracell and many more, and many more worth checking out. now stig noise have put a song online for free download: hearts of gold/ gobs of shite

here it is:

it’s a masterpiece! it seems so simple, and it is just perfect. and it is hard to describe why, when I lack the proper ability of a language that is not mine, and when language often generally fails to describe music. but both, the way the sound is set together, as well as the chords on top, are just a delight to hear. I could listen to it on an endless rotation. it is happy, and yet sad; it is timeless and endless as life itself. it might be heavy or grim, but never not to be able to jump lightly along to it, it always goes on … the soundtrack of life. and it could be for a great film, I have not heard of yet, but which I would like to see.

definitely catch this band live, when they play somewhere near by. they are also lovely people, so go and say hi and listen. loving things is great and loving the right stuff, is even better! poplars and rocks had them lately for a show in berlin, and the day after they gave a brilliant live set at fusion festival, with an minute long encore of improvised noise excellence. more on their myspace.

Stig Noise – Fusion Festival June 2009