27 February 2014

Glaze of Cathexis - 2013 - The 2013 EPs

Here's a handy compilation of last year's non-album bits of psychedelic rocking from Glaze of Cathexis.  A Lotus Pond in Winter takes a path through stratospheric echoes of shoegazing, while Journey to the Center has a more retro blues, rock n' roll, and 70's rockin' flavor, and The Gates of Ra heads straight for the surf rock.  You can read a bit more about them at the embedded links above.

If you've heard this stuff before, I've added a bit of bonus material as well.  There are a couple mono, instrumental mixes of the surfier tracks from I Often Dream of the Apocalypse that stretch out that particular vibe a bit.  You'll also hear a clutch of six cover tunes.  My daughter only wants to listen to the Beatles and the Beach Boys, which is cool, but I needed to trick her into listening to something I recorded, and thus we have the rest of the bonus tracks.

For those of you who may want to hear some new stuff,  I've got just under twenty tunes recorded for the next Glaze album.  Once we've got the finishing mixing and mastering touches and have chosen the best of the lot, we'll get that out to you.  For now, listen to this, yo:

Glaze of Cathexis - 2013 - The 2013 EPs

Thanks for reading the blog!  You've found the amazing stash of Glaze music that remains free!  As should really be the case for most of the music on this blog, if you find yourself really digging it please make a purchase!  The original EPs are over at Bandcamp in higher quality downloads.  It's only a dang $2 a pop!!

A Lotus Pond In Winter EP
Journey to the Center EP
The Gates of Ra EP

17 February 2014

Yeehaw!!! It's Cowboy Schluss' EP Roundup

I should probably note that this photo is almost ten years old - I don't have the hat anymore.  But I will mention that this is the awesome-cheap, gold sparkle ghetto Gretch (read: Silvertone) that I used to record Glaze of Cathexis' "Tokyo Rainbow Bridge" - y'know, if anyone cares.  That's not why we're here, though!  Although I'm a lazy bastard about it, I do get around to scouring the music that folks send to my gmail, and here are a few recent EPs that caught my fancy:

Plastic Man - 2013 - Plastic Man EP
Quality: 4 out of 5
Trip-O-Meter: 4 out of 5

This trio hails from what must be the sleazier part of Italy.  They do the whole whimsical pop 1967 Syd Barrett pretty well.  But a fair amount of folks can do that.  What got my attention is that it sounds the Floyd if they had replaced Syd with Johnny Rotten after his fatal November 1966 car accident (yes, I'm mixing up my facts, conspiracy theories, and frontmen).  They take some fine 60's vibin' songwriting straight through the scum factory.  Or maybe it's like the Soft Boys if Robyn Hitchcock was a real muthaf**ka - that, with better production.  Do I really have to talk about tracks here?  There are four and they're all pretty good.


Prana Crafter - 2014 - Mountain Throne
Quality: 3.75 out of 5
Trip-O-Meter: 4.25 out 5

There's probably a touch too much Neil Young guitar wailing and sad bastard music warbling (could do without the vocal on "Crowd of Amethyst"). to quite fit the bill, but this could, like, 80% of the way function as a soundtrack for Jack Kerouac's "Desolation Angels."  They're from Washington, you can see the snowy mountain for yourself, and the thing sounds like it was recorded in a log cabin full of echo.  Or replace Kerouac in his firewatch post with Johnny Depp's character from "Dead Man."  That should about fit the bill. I think they found just the rough-hewn place to stop recording, complete with weird tape hiss and stuff being dropped in the studio (living room?).


USSA Pleasure Dome - 2014 - Dead Medium
Quality: 3.75 out of 5
Trip-O-Meter: 4.25 out of 5

I went to university in Athens, Georgia and spend countless midnight hours having my hearing destroyed at the fabulous 40 Watt.  This post-rock EP gave me distinct flashbacks of getting dragged out to see Polvo by my dormmates (not that there's anything wrong with Polvo - I just didn't know them at the time).  Oh, but it's not just post-rock.  There's a fine blast of shoegazing gracing the opening "Dreampool Ecstacy" while "Surround the Center" skirts the interstellar space dust that Voyager is currently plowing through.  They probably could've stretched out the Om-ful title track to 15 minutes (it's actually two-and-a-half) and made a full LP out of this thing.  I don't know, maybe that would've been lazy.


13 February 2014

Country Joe and the Fish - 1967 - Electric Music For the Body and Soul

Quality: 4.5 out of 5
Trip-O-Meter: 4 out of 5

This one was not particularly obscure in its time, but this is a band that has perhaps unjustly drifted towards the edges of obscurity in the time since.  Although Country Joe McDonald is still notorious for his "F-I-S-H" chant at Woodstock, I rarely come across any discussions of this absolutely fantastic debut album.  You can take the mid-60's Beatles, Americanize them with the Byrds and the Buffalo Springfield (should that be Canadianize?), and then throw them directly into the psychedelic eye of San Francisco armed with jug band sensibilities.  With absolutely stellar songwriting and execution, this easily stands up with any of any of the other Summer of Love luminaries.  I grew up with this LP in the family record collection, and to this day when I hear the term 'psychedelic rock,' this album cover is usually the first thing that pops to mind.

Everything on this disc is pretty good.  Those first two tracks, "Flying High" and "Not So Sweet Martha Lorraine" drag you right on in as rough-edged, yet poppy confections that have San Francisco scene written all over them.  You get the full psychedelic lightshow, ballroom blast on the seven minute long "Section 43."  My father told me on multiple occasions that he had wanted "Porpoise Mouth" played at his wedding (it wasn't), but I could never tell if he was joking or not.  "Superbird" serves up another top-notch, full-tilt shuffle, while "Grace" ends the album by taking us to the ghostly outer atmosphere of Height Ashbury-laced folk rock.

I imagine quite of few of those reading this are already completely down with this recording, but I'm guessing that this'll be new for some of you.  This is one of those psychedelic uber-
classics along the lines of "Surrealistic Pillow" or "Buffalo Springfield" again, but I have the impression that it's gotten a little lost in the wilderness.  I could be wrong, but this is prime, key rock to groove along with.