Greg AndersonO))) on 6 Music

After watching Bowie’s Last Five Years documentary on Saturday night, what could lift the late-night mood a notch above a re-opened Low?

Ermmm….death metal and midnight hardcore curated by a robed dronehead? Well, that was the tonic for anyone who fell into Stuart Maconie’s Freakier Zone Saturday night, aka zero-hundred hours SunnO)))day morning, because the Southern Lord Greg Anderson pulled together an hour’s mandatory cross-genre listening, much like his grimm-brother Stephen O’Malley did a year or so back on a Freakzone sit-in.

Tune in and you too can laugh along with Mortician, get blasted by Bolzer’s epic death metal and then feel the brutal burn of Anderson’s re-connector with the underground, His Hero is Gone OMG (band) rage, for sure – though as you’d expect, it’s not all hardcore death mongery in these here 60 minutes: Erik B and Rakim, Ice Cube, John Carpenter and Big | Brave all figure as well.

As do Asschapel (what????)

Anyway, CHECK THE GREG ANDERSON HOUR RIGHT NOW before it effs off forever. ’tis time very well spended.

And if you need further on-air lo-frequency shake action, bugger me if the stupendous Sunn O)) & Boris collaboration ain’t the featured album on the Sunday night F-zone – worship at THAT Altar, ‘specially the disintegration tremor-fest that is Etna. H-u-g-e. Elsewhere in the same ‘zone there’s Wayne Coyne, Godspeed, Miles and long-form Floyd (Embryo, BBC session version)…. not a bad Sunday, right?

boris, worriedaboutsatan

REWIND FEBRUARY: drone returns, electronica reigns

If you haven’t seen the cover of Wire magazine this month, go find it and try not to bladder yourself with excitement: BORIS ARE BACK. New album Gensho is due out in March on Relapse Records, but as ever you gotta ask, which Boris is gonna show? Skullfuck droneheads, aero-bounce popsters or garage-psych heavyweights?

Well, given that Gensho is a joint release with noiselord Merzbow means we can (probably) rule out pop’npsyche and head straight for the drone, all 2CDs/4LPs of it. Re-cooked Boris tracks on album 1, new Merzbow tracks on album 2, specially made so you can play them side by side for full Gensho. The phenomenon. Yeah, sounds bigger than big so better start getting in shape for that one – must clear the house first. Absolutego should do it.

But it’s not all amplifier worship and electrified volume that gets us through, is it? Ryley Walker fired up the Bullingdon this month – see previous post – and the new Melt Yourself Down single Dot to Dot is DEFINITELY worth a go, whatever kind of heavy Afro-contemporary jazz thing it is that they do.

Also:

worriedaboutsatan

Are you?

Don’t be. This northern duo’s guitarless electronic beats and twilight ambience make for some frosted post-winter listening, both dark and light. As with Melt Yourself Down, I don’t have the references for this kind of stuff but it’s doing the job right now, offering some sort of Way following the post-Bowie disorientation that’s made a lot of rock make not a lot of sense. Anyway, check The Woods and Even Temper over on bandcamp and make your own minds about satan’s fret boys.Tom Ragsdale, who is one half of worriedaboutsatan, has had his solo stuff played by Mary Anne Hobbs on 6Music as well of late.

Finally, despite major new albums by rock heavyweights like Cult of Luna and Iggy Pop/Josh Homme on the way, it’ll be a youthful oldie stealing the metal press in March surely, because that’s when the raging progthrash meisterwork  Master of Puppets hits 30. SHIT!!! Peace Sells and Reign in Blood also reach three-zero in the next few months.

1986. Nice vintage.

’til next time: BATTERY

BORIS / CHOUKOKU NO NIWA – More Echoes, Touching Air Landscape

One of the bestest buzzes when you’re raiding the racks of your favourite/local record shop is when you see something you didn’t know existed by one of your fave bands.

Cue More Echoes Touching Sir Landscape, spotted and then seized from the pre-loved (used) section in Oxford’s Truck Store.

Boris? THE Boris? Slug metal, psych drone, garage fuzz overlords from Japan?

Oh yeah. It’s them alright. The initial 1999 release date clues us in as to how they’re gonna reveal themselves on this split CD – I predict sloth and goo – and sure enough, Kanau Part I is 14 minutes of droning thrum that’s not so much a build up as a slow down: an adjuster. Part I slows the world so your clock runs to Boris time.

When Part II begins, it’s heavy as only Boris can be. Ludicrous. When a snaking colossus of a bass line announces the band’s arrival proper, they’ve got you – again. Coz when you’re up against such sheer fucking ENORMITY, what can you do but grin and give in?

The rest of Part II is Atsuo-dominated as his speed bash leaves all doom ‘n chug way back, pulling us fast through spacegun-zap psychedelia and classic riffage. Kanau might not be Feedbacker singular or Sun Baked Snow Cave extreme – it’s too up, too rock-out for that – but it IS Boris, breaking out of the pure-slow-heavy and well worth adding to your stash.

But while Boris are the big name draw here, Choukoku no Niwa are the big find.

Who?

Exactly. I have no idea and, tempting though it is to give in to the google god and revel in right-now certainty instead of savouring a little mystery, that’s the way it’ll stay. At least til we’re done here*.

So what do we get? 24 minutes of fluid long-form rock, that’s what. Tom toms and congas, rolling rhythms and a circular bass-riff – like Primal Scream’s Exterminator but with more sway, less menace – bring a thickened-up Can to mind while on-off guitars flow, moan and wail but never shriek. There’s no Acid Mothers frazzle or Mainliner blowout here. Groove – immersive and endless – is king.

 

BORIS/CHOUKOKU NO NIWA – More Echoes, Touching Air Landscape

Inoxia Records, 1999 (reissued 2006)

Choukoku no Niwa – Fukurou (24.07)

Boris – Kanau Part I and Part II (26.08)

 

*I looked. Briefly. But nothing useful came up …