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While Lost At Sea endeavors to write about a great deal of the music it receives, there are hundreds of releases that slip through the cracks - things too strange, too transient or (yes) too bad to earn a full review. EPs, CD singles and 7" records are particularly hard to deal with because there are so many of them - and they are so small - that they often get lost in the shuffle. This sometimes means that deserving music released in non-album form is not reaching the people who might enjoy it most.
In an attempt to rectify this situation and to save give some of this music its due, Lost At Sea occasionally dredges through the bins of EPs and singles to weed out a select few for comment.
Khanate - Capture & Release (Hydra Head Records)
I'm going to blast this from a hidden boom box outside my front door on Halloween and keep all of the candy for myself. This is music for seriously fucked up people.
The Exit (Wind Up Records)
I put this on while I flipped through the Vice Magazine photo issue. It wasn't long before I realized I had forgotten about the music while looking at pictures of boobies. Page after page, I couldn't stop wondering if this is what passes for art these days. The CD played through a couple of times, enough for me to catch bits and pieces of up-tempo indie rock. Mostly I just wondered if Vice will print anything by any dude with a camera in New York.
A four piece out of Fresno, or as I've heard a native call it, Fresyes, that occasionally sound like regional heroes Pavement. What is it about the Central Valley that makes bands sound like they are bored while playing music? Probably the 110 degree summers and lack of anything to do. The music's pretty good and the band gets bonus points for packaging their CD in a cool little sack thing that I'm pretty sure my roommate has stolen and stuffed with weed.
Demander - Demander (Triplicate Records)
I demand a band that rocks. I demand that said band feature two girls. I demand that this band be from New York. I demand an EP full of promising rock music. If I was this band I would demand a review written by a competent writer.
The Bangkok Five - 10 The Hard Way (Aeronaut Records)
I put off listening to this one forever because from the cover I was sure it was either some bad techno or house crap. I know you shouldn't judge a book by its cover, but Jesus, if you're trying to sell records don't make yours look like it was mass-produced for club giveaways on Avenida Revolucion in Tijuana. Instead, it's LA garage rocky stuff. Whatever. I would be fucking shocked if these guys don't wear ripped jeans, do a ton of blow, and spend forty-five minutes making their hair look "messed to perfection."
Espers - The Weed Tree (Locust Music)
A covers album that is pretty in the weirdest way. It's like the band's style came a few centuries late, too delicate and sensitive to fit into today's musical canon. It makes me think not of music coming out of a stereo, but of a song sung for a restless child in a dim, candle lit room or a sweet serenade sung low under the breath while in bed with a lover. It's endearingly eccentric.
Moonbabies - War on Sound (Hidden Agenda Records)
It feels like fall. The temperature has cooled, the day has taken on an autumnal glow, and it's starting to get dark earlier. I bet in places outside of California the leaves are starting to change colors. It saddens me that summer is over and now all I have to look forward to is the dreariness of winter. Moonbabies are going to try their best to cheer me up, but unfortunately it's not going to happen. Electronicy, harmonious pop music just kind of pisses me off when I'm in a mood like this.
The Pope - The Jazzman Cometh (CDB Records)
I'm always excited when I put a CD in and the total running time to number of tracks ratio is around two to one. It's almost a guarantee that the music is not going to fuck around. Unfortunately, The Pope doesn't quite lacerate my brain like I hoped they would. Utilizing bass, drums, and some extremely distorted vocals, they sound like a slightly tamer version of some of those crazy fuckers on Load records. It's not terrible, but I'd rather put on Wonderful Rainbow and make up my own words.
New Electric - New Electric (The Perpetual Motion Machine)
Instrumental music that surprisingly goes easy on the emotion and puts a little more rock in the monitors. Sure, I still wanted to cry while I listened to it, but that had more to do with Kelly Monaco's recent loss to that whore J. Peterman in Dancing With The Stars than with the actual music. New Electric manages to keep the listener interested by switching up styles and not sticking to a formula. At times songs sound like they would benefit from the addition of a singer but I'm sure he would eventually become full of himself after having praise heaped upon him by the British Press, start dating a controlling super model, pick up her four-thousand-dollar-a-day coke habit, quit the band to start his own solo project, and eventually find himself penniless, offering handjobs to truckers outside a gas station in Bakersfield.
An aspiring global adventurer who cut his teeth on the sandy beaches and dirty bitches of Southern California, Kevin Alfoldy now spends his non-vacation days in Brooklyn, New York, where he occasionally finds the time to rub the crust out of his eyes long enough to contribute reviews and feature articles for LAS. A longtime staff member, Kevin also captains the tattered, often half-sunk raft of EPmd, our irregular column of EP reviews.
See other articles by Kevin Alfoldy.
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