Tuesday, September 30, 2008

October/November issue of PSF is now online

In the latest issue of Perfect Sound Forever, you'll find (among other things):

Punk author & zinester
"... a musician, a photographer, a writer, a philosopher, a documenter, a muckraker, and an all around pioneer on so many levels. Sharon has worked with many talented people over the years. She made history in the first all-female DC punk band, Chalk Circle, and for confronting Maximum Rock ’n Roll Magazine for its sexist ways. Since 1989, she has been publishing her zine, Interrobang?! She also co-published the seminal punk book, Banned in DC. Since that time, she has continued to impress us with her unique artistic projects and collaborations"

Great DJ gone too soon
"With glassy eyes peering out from beneath a perpetually low fitted cap, James Yancey confined himself to his home studio, much as Da Vinci confined Mona Lisa within the murky mountain backdrop that frames her figure. Just what was going on behind those eyes, nobody will ever really know. Close friend and Slum Village emcee Elzhi cites Yancey's constant preoccupation with production as the force behind his hushed character."

Arty pop as freak folk
"If you've been living in a vacuum, you may not have heard of The Dodos (singer/songwriter/guitarist Meric Long, drummer Logan Kroeber, Joe Haener on xylophone), a powerhouse folk band out of San Francisco. The blissfully tipsy crowd eagerly anticipated The Dodos performance while the band was setting up on stage. The first vibrations of Kroeber’s pounding drum ignited the set that ended much too soon. Long skillfully strummed, plucked, and picked his guitar, bringing life to 'Fools,' followed by 'Ashley, Jodi, Red and Purple'... from the recently released second album Visiter."

Scouring for 78rpm treasures
"India is a sound enthusiast's heaven. On a recent trip to Tamil Nadu and Mumbai in Southern India, I recorded constantly, both maddened by and in love with the barrage of noise. Traffic sounds in Indian cities and towns reach near maddening decibel levels. Everyone drives with their horn... The sense of personal space (both physical and aural) is very different than what we are used to in the West. It is a very crowded country. Parades seem to explode in crowded alleyways with fireworks and drums and horns."

R&B piano by a Lit prof
"Tom Lucas carved out his small, vital, piece of music lore in the 1970's with the album Red Letter Day. Recorded in 1975 and released in a very limited run several years later, the record has become a coveted piece of cult ephemera, selling for an ungodly amount on eBay, and finally being reissued in 2004, without Lucas' knowledge or permission. Radioactive's unauthorized re-release might have been an injurious insult to Lucas' art and livelihood; instead it has become the catalyst for a revival of Lucas' career as a vital songwriter and musician."

Puerto Rican son of a drum
"A proper measure of a devout musician might be his influence and contribution to the growth and development of his national culture and musical heritage. If the influence of this musician went far beyond his native shores and had an international effect, and his contributions spawned a renaissance which revitalized an entire movement, this is the substance of legend. Such is the case of Puerto Rican master percussionist Angel 'Cachete' Maldonado."

Return of garage/surfs legends
"A prank effectively gutted Mike and the Ravens, the hottest rock n' roll dance band burning up the North Country circuit in '62. No big deal to the judge. The trio scored 48 hours in the hoosegow with a choice - military or school. That or serve out the rest of their 60 day sentence. So school it was, laying the foundation for law careers for Steven Blodgett, Peter Young, and Brian Lyford, all three determined to stay on the right side of the law, ya know, just in case they gotta sweeten the sounds in Vermont's Green Mountains one more time."

South African conceptual art
"The band often seems as much an idea, or even an ideal, as a band. How else do you explain the fact that the members still meet on an almost weekly basis, privately in what is termed 'rehearsal' by David Master (their vocalist and their elemental force) to make what is consistently among the most provocative, uncompromising and intriguing rock music in their country with almost no hope that it will be heard very much more widely than within the confines of that rehearsal room?"

Blissful Komische music
"Like Robert Fripp, the only stable member in every incarnation of King Crimson, Florian Fricke was the central and guiding figure of Popol Vuh for their entire recording career. Fricke started to make music when he was 11, and when he was 15, he went to the Frieburg Music College; studying grand piano, composition and conducting, but by 19, he was happy to be free of the constant practice that school demanded. In the interim, he worked as a film and music reviewer and a maker of short films. This is where he met director Werner Herzog. Fricke traveled extensively, with the encountering of other cultures and religions being very important to him, even though Fricke himself didn't claim to prefer any one religion over another."

Part of the neo-psych revolution
"Something has been going on for the past eight years. It is the musical revolution that the Brian Jonestown Massacre front man Anton Newcombe is famous for talking about. In 2000, a Neo-Psychedelic scene with half a dozen bands was birthed in Silverlake, California. The Quarter After was one of those pioneer bands that was turned on from the start and continues today to turn on others."

70 years of krautrock anarchism
"In the middle of the sixties, Conrad Schnitzler became something like the leading figure of experimental rock-music in West-Berlin. As a founding-member of both Kluster and Tangerine Dream, he was a maverick at breaking the traditions of Rock music. He calls himself an amateur who is basically an artist; someone who produces 'Sounds.'"

Soviet folk genius?
"Perhaps Regina's strange vocal style developed from this anxiety about 'crude' songwriting and from her love of sound and language. Regina 'stretches words... into epic solos, then crams long sentences into her mouth and spits them out in a few exuberant bars,' as Josh Tyrangiel described it. She also incorporates sounds, such as hiccups, hisses, pops, and gurgles. 'The hiccup sounds,' she says, 'were like discovering I had a tambourine in my throat.'"

70's jazz joint remembered
"In 1975, at 315 Bowery, Hilly Kristol was opening up C.B.G.B. to the advance guard of New York rock. But just up the street, Brooklyn native Paul Pines had been running a successful jazz club called The Tin Palace for five years, offering much-needed exposure to American artists ranging from bop vocalist Eddie Jefferson to AACM stalwarts Roscoe Mitchell and Kalaparusha Maurice McIntyre. An aspiring writer and poet as well as a jazz fan, Pines traveled to San Francisco to meet the Beats, then returned to New York to take up residence in the East Village."

The vinyl bangwagon arrives
"The headlines are coming fast and furious. Once upon a time, my editor would email these articles to me maybe two or three times a year. These days, it seems as if I get a link sent to me every few days. The difference is that these articles are no longer coming from local newspapers or obscure music magazines, but major players like the Los Angeles Times, Newsweek and the Wall Street Journal."


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