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New Music Releases – January 2009: Pt. 1
Talking about all the new music releases coming out this January! Compiled with help from RateYourMusic.
 
 
Cactus’s: Tropical Terror EP (Beat Crazy)

Cactus’s are a three piece Nashville act who describe themselves as Tropical Punk. I’m not entirely sure what that means, though their Tropical Terror EP has done me well as of late. The EP opens with the screams and murderous guitar of “Where Is My Skeleton,” then relaxes on the trauma a bit for “Daddy,” displaying stair-stepping guitar lines while forshadowing the remaining work. Throughout, an intense menage of chugging riffs, spastic moods, and enough color to make it worthwhile. – Parasites and Sycophants


High On Fire: Live at the Contamination Fest (Relapse)

This set captures the fearsome Bay Area trio laying absolute waste to the City of Brotherly Love with a set dominated by multiple metallic battering rams sourced from their second and arguably best studio album, Surrounded by Thieves, including all-timers “Nemesis,” “Razorhoof,” and the always apropos “Hung, Drawn & Quartered. – AllMusic


John Peel: John Peel’s Dandelion Records (DVD) (Ozit/ Cargo UK)
Dandelion Records was a British record label started in 1969 by John Peel as a way to get the music he liked onto record. Peel was a “sort of artistic director” (Margrave p. 135) with no financial involvement, allowing him to play Dandelion artists on his BBC show, while business matters were handled by his manager and long-time friend Clive Selwood and Selwood’s wife, Shurley. Both the label and its sister publishing company, Biscuit, were named after Peel’s hamsters. – John Peel Wiki


The Gourds: Haymaker! (Yep Roc)
The Gourds new LP,Haymaker (Yep Roc) should’ve come out a few weeks ago, that way, it could’ve landed on my Top 10 for 2008. I guess it will just have to wait. Pretty gutsy statement for such an early offering of 2009, huh? In an era where most “Country Rock” consists of Rock that is mysteriously and dubiously packaged as Country, it is an absolute joy to hear a Country record that rocks, but can never be mistaken for anything but a sincere and forthright, down-home effort. – Twangville


Darren Hayman & The Secondary Modern – Pram Town (Track & Field / Wohnzimmer / Acuarela Discos)
Essex Arms is the second in Darren Hayman’s proposed trilogy of records about Essex. 2009’s Pram Town got the ball rolling with its depiction of the hopes and frustrations embodied in the ‘new town’ of Harlow. Pram Town was a fine record, its songs brought to life by the sound of a home-grown folk-orchestra. However, it did raise some interesting questions about the relationship of Hayman’s narrator to the lives of his characters. – The Quietus


Jimi Tenor & Kabu Kabu – 4th Dimension (Puu)
Finland’s Jimi Tenor, a musician, composer and arranger known to constantly reinvent himself, has finished work on his latest album 4th Dimension, which is set for release in early 2009.
On 4th Dimension, Jimi Tenor continues his exploration of Afrobeat music. The album also sees him reunite with Kabu Kabu, a group of West African musicians based in Germany, who debuted on Tenor’s 2007 album Joystone. – Bleep


Atom™ – Liedgut (Raster-Noton)
Experimental electronic albums exploring tonality, ambience, and found sound crackle are not exactly new things in the world, but Atom TM‘s elegant presentation of Liedgut, fake high literature packaging and all, gives a good sense of what the album aims for. – – AllMusic


When Mine Eyes Blacken – S/T (Self Mutilation)
When Mine Eyes Blacken, a one-man effort of its mastermind, the mysterious Mort, to bring a sense of poetry to the nothingness of life and the beauty in death, is one of those projects worth more than most of dsbm bands, if not nearly all of them, and it beautifully creates a picture of solace after years of suffering and sorrow through its 48 minute runtime. – Encyclopedia Metallum


Algol – Follow the Cepheid Light (NULLL Records)

Ambient/drone project originally from Siberia, now based in the UK.


Natural Snow Buildings – Daughter of Darkness (Blackest Rainbow)
Primarily consisting of side-long compositions with the band’s signature layered instrumental reach towards sublimity, the project has the power and length to take up your whole afternoon and evening. Such a feat deserves celebration, and nothing affords the respect this achievement accords then creating vinyl and CD versions, so it can be heard more widely. This is music that becomes an ongoing part of your life, the sonic equivalent of a Russian novel or a season of The Wire. – Grapefruit

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