The Phoenix Orchestra, Ben Hedquist, The Fifth Alliance, Dropping Stuff, Forgotten Bottom, and New Age Doom

phoenix orchestra ben hedquist fifth alliance dropping stuff forgotten bottom new age doom

G. Calvin Weston & the Phoenix Orchestra – Dust and Ash (577)

Dust and Ash is a surprising album. First of all, it goes straight into a Zeuhlish upbeat tempo filled with odd harmonies and distinctive string whims. Then, it settles, still upbeat, into passages providing colourful modulations and a wide palette of emotions. The Phoenix Orchestra lends Weston its range of timbre and expression, while he, in return, provides a steady, groovy, vicious drum beat. The whole album is stellar, a trip you won’t forget!


Ben Hedquist – The Mists of Uncertainty

Polyrhythmic and filled with odd times and … Read more

The Central, Organic Noises, INUS, Mouthbreathr™, Ḥashshāshīn, and Naked Eye Ensemble

central organic noises inus mouthbreathr hashshashin naked eye ensemble

The Central – Van Dyke Browne’s Crystal

Wisconsin-based mathcore group The Central has been a longtime favourite of mine. Just look at my past reviews of Discovery of a Rat and Sick and Dying for proof. Well, out of the blue and without warning, the duo just put out a new EP, and it’s as good as anything they’ve done before! If you want crunchy off-time riffs with a healthy dose of weird, look no further!


Organic Noises – Organic Noises (Lynx Music)

Some of you might recall—but I doubt it—of a band named Relocator, birthed out of the … Read more

Monthly Recommendations: July 2019

monthly recommendations july 2019

Joliette – Luz devora (Penelope)

Mexican mathcore act Joliette have always been cool. Today, it’s because they’ve recently released Luz devora, a massive hourlong overdriven math rock adventure. This awkward description is also why I reluctantly call them “mathcore”. They do not sound like your Car Bomb or your Dillinger Escape Plan. They’re more like a heavy math rock band with some hardcore influences. Never mind the taxonomic squabbles, try out Joliette and figure out for yourselves!

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Liquid Quintet – Bouquet (Sirulita)

Sirulita Records never disappoint, when it comes to free improvisation. The last of these … Read more

Christopher Cerrone, Bureau Berlin, Dialect Trio, Sloth Racket, Season of Sadness, and Trigger

christopher cerrone bureau berlin dialect trio sloth racket season of sadness trigger

Christopher Cerrone – The Pieces that Fall to Earth (New Amsterdam)

Brooklyn composer Christopher Cerrone just released his newest album, a collection of three compositions split into a total of eighteen tracks, adding up to about forty-five minutes of material. The whole thing was recorded by Los Angeles-based Wild Up ensemble. Cerrone’s compositions offer an emotional and contemporary vision, which is perfectly executed by the Wild Up team. New Amsterdam Records keep on bringing stellar works to the table, and Christopher Cerrone is one of the most recent examples of this!


Bureau Berlin – Earthbound Akupunkture

Bureau Berlin is a … Read more

Michael Gordon, Eight Carl, John Zorn, Daxma, TISM, and Charlie Kirchen Quartet

michael gordon eight carl john zorn daxma tism charlie kirchen quartet

Michael Gordon & Deborah Artman – Acquanetta (Cantaloupe Music)

Acquanetta is a short hour-long opera written by composer Michael Gordon. This piece takes its inspiration from horror movies of the forties, telling the tale of an actress that rose to fame before vanishing from the scene. The composition is far from traditional, for an operatic work. Instead, Michael’s score feels at the same time very contemporary and much like a movie soundtrack. Needless to say, this studio-recorded version of the piece is of the highest calibre, thanks to the Bang on a Can Opera Ensemble and the invaluable vocal … Read more