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October 29, 2004

Jerking about and half staggering

Picked up a snazzy compilation called Dosage from the Merck label recently that features a bunch of weird IDMness. I think I would question the "D" part of IDM most of the time, but by the same token, I kind of get a kick out of imagining people jerking about and half staggering as they try to interpret stuff like this on the dance floor.

Suki Takahashi - The Public School

Some people's only exposure to Bomb The Bass is via the Kruder & Dorfmeister remix of their track, "Bug Powder Dust". In truth, not only are other versions of that track a bit more booty-kicking, but their catalog is worth seeking out on its own. Here's a track that came on the station the other night, probably my favorite from their album Clear.

Bomb The Bass (featuring Sinéad O'Connor & Benjamin Zephaniah) - Empire

Every now and then, I just have to put this song on and dance my happy little ass off. From the soundtrack to Latcho Drom.

Uncredited musicians - Tchavolo Swing

These and other fine, fine tracks can be heard on Comfort Radio. See you next week.

Posted by Scotto at 09:00 AM | Comments (0)

October 28, 2004

Is the water ready?

Every now and then, I remember to check and see if Wendy & Lisa have put out another album since 1998's Girl Bros. Sadly, the answer is no. At least we'll always have that album, sob. When they originally released it, they released it as Girl Bros. (Prince's nickname for the pair), which may not have been the wisest move from a marketing perspective. That's the kind of thing His Purple Majesty could get away with, maybe, but not his oft-overlooked sidekicks.

Wendy & Lisa - Reaching One
Wendy & Lisa - All Nite
Wendy & Lisa - I've Got No Strings / Worth Your Weight In Cold

Posted by Scotto at 09:00 AM | Comments (0)

October 27, 2004

It's "research"

Collide is doing that dark, gothy trip hop thing ("goth hop"!), but for some reason, the singer just sounds so much more sultry than similar acts. Maybe I just don't listen to enough industrial pop music; maybe they all sound this sexy. I got curious and downloaded one of their videos, and quickly realized there was virtually no way I could explain watching her writhe around as "work-related", so. More freebies from the band here.

Collide - So Long, from the album Some Kind of Strange
Collide - Razor Sharp, from the album Chasing The Ghost

Posted by Scotto at 09:00 AM | Comments (0)

October 26, 2004

I don't even like chicken soup

I have no tangible evidence that anyone on the Dawg Ranch is actually reading this blog on a regular basis, but today's entries strike me as right up that crowd's alley, so to speak. Stew is the front man for The Negro Problem; both of these tracks share a loopy, light-hearted quality, but the approach on each is from completely different directions. "Man In A Dress" is retro, as in "old 78rpm" retro; "Lime Green Sweater" has a down home, "screwing around on the piano in the living room with, uh, several very talented back up singers" kind of feel.

Stew - Man In A Dress, from the album Guest Host
The Negro Problem - Lime Green Sweater, from the album Welcome Black

In other news, John Peel passed away today. Peel was a great light in the world of radio; certainly Comfort Radio carries on in his tradition.

Posted by Scotto at 09:00 AM | Comments (0)

October 25, 2004

Well?

Scandinavian technopop, anyone?

Sorten Muld - Roselil Rose
Sorten Muld - Vølven
Sorten Muld - Ramund

From the album III.

Posted by Scotto at 09:00 AM | Comments (1)

October 22, 2004

A strangely isolated place

I first heard Ulrich Schnauss on a fantastic compilation that Yara dubbed for me years ago, and promptly set about to purchase everything I could find by the man. Coe compared him to Boards of Canada, and when I mentioned that to Sleepy, he replied, "Yeah, except he's a lot fucking better than Boards of Canada." So, you know, expert opinions and stuff.

Ulrich tends toward a very ethereal sound, infused with strong rhythms and haunting moods. Every time you think you've figured out "Between Us And Them", it evolves and gets better; "On My Own" introduces a weirdly effective vocal to the mix; "Wherever You Are" is quite possibly one of the most supremely uplifting tracks I can think of.

Ulrich Schnauss - Between Us And Them, from the album Far Away Trains Passing By
Ulrich Schnauss - On My Own, from the album A Strangely Isolated Place
Ulrich Schnauss - Wherever You Are, from the compilation Blue Skied An' Clear

These and other fine, fine tracks can be heard on Comfort Radio. See you next week.

Posted by Scotto at 09:00 AM | Comments (0)

October 21, 2004

Coming soon to a theatre near you

TV On The Radio and The Faint are playing at the Showbox on November 6th. I happen to be busy that night, but if you find yourself bored in Seattle that night looking for something to do, maybe checking these folks out would do the trick.

TV On The Radio get called "art rock" a lot, and I've seen them get compared to Peter Gabriel as well (probably the "Shock The Monkey" Gabriel, not the "In Your Eyes" one) - creative arrangements, rich production, subtle experimentation, good song-writing. I think "art rock" is a uselessly snooty label, but hey, if that's what the kids are calling it, who am I to argue. From the album Desperate Youth, Bloodthirsty Babes.

TV On The Radio - The Wrong Way
TV On The Radio - Dreams

The Faint make what I call dance punk, but that's just because I'm too ignorant to know what they actually call it. There's a new wavey kind of feel to it, but it's electro and edgy enough that I can dig it. A review on Amazon compares them to both Duran Duran and Daft Punk, so clearly ymmv here.

The Faint - Southern Belles In London Sing, from the album Wet From Birth
The Faint - Agenda Suicide, from the album Danse Macabre

Posted by Scotto at 09:00 AM | Comments (0)

October 20, 2004

An ode to robots

A treat for Laura, who turned me on to Rasputina: music (for robots) recently posted a radio performance that puts a nice gothic spin on a classic rock tune. It's all so clear now that CCR was meant to be played on cello and violin.

Rasputina - Bad Moon Rising

Actually, I spent two days diving into a huge pile of backlogged music (for robots) material, and another excellent find was these two tracks. "Diamond City" is a creepy slice of carnival-music-gone-haywire; "Micro Ocean" turns around and delivers a nice crunchy take on bleepy bloopy. From the album Without A Bark.

Enik - Diamond City
Enik - Micro Ocean

I'm a big fan of music (for robots). I follow at least forty blogs, feeds and sites as part of curating Comfort Radio, and quite a few can be "work" to listen to - I find a few gems, but the return on investment isn't so high. With music (for robots), however, the hit rate is pretty damn good, and even the stuff they put up that isn't right for Comfort Radio is often worth a listen.

Posted by Scotto at 09:00 AM | Comments (0)

October 19, 2004

It's on my list

I first heard DJ Muggs on his collaboration with Tricky, Juxtapose. In particular, this song has always struck me as particularly badass.

Tricky with DJ Muggs and Grease - Hot Like A Sauna (Metal Mix)

Of course, were I less woefully ignorant about vast expanses of music, I would have known sooner that Muggs came to prominence as a member of Cypress Hill. Someday I promise I will listen to Cypress Hill; it's on my list, right after "get a fucking clue". In the meantime, recently I discovered a solo album by Muggs, and what do you know, that's some trip hoppy goodness.

Muggs - Morta
Muggs - Tears
Muggs - Far Away

Posted by Scotto at 09:00 AM | Comments (1)

October 18, 2004

Deep, murky blah blah and densely orchestrated yadda yadda

I was going to just write something like "Hey this is pretty keen" but then I went to the Substractif label web site, which notes, "Polmo Polpo ... blends deep, murky techno with rich layers of feedback and densely orchestrated melodies. Heavily layered cello and lap steel guitar combine to create a world of shadowy songs drenched in echo and immersed in the throbbing pulse of 'dance music'." Which, as we all know, is marketing-speak for "Hey this is pretty keen". It's one of Coe's finds; I think she was tracking down any/everything that seemed related to A Silver Mt. Zion, but I could be misremembering the trail there. From the album Science of Breath.

Polmo Polpo - Acqua
Polmo Polpo - Rottura
Polmo Polpo - Riva

UPDATE: Bad links now fixed. Thanks Coe!

Posted by Scotto at 09:00 AM | Comments (2)

October 15, 2004

I just thought it was magic

Slightly crunchy, slightly experimental, but still quite melodic techno from the netlabel Monotonik. Pound for pound (yes, I measure music by weight), Monotonik consistently has some of the yummiest netlabel releases around. From the Amoral Mayor Earwig EP.

Beak - How A Hot Air Balloon Works
Beak - I Saw Two Of Me

I recognize there's a diversity of opinion about the merits of Tori Amos, and she's hardly an artist who needs any more publicity. But this song came on the station recently and reminded me of how close she got to really turning her image inside out and taking a turn for the Kid A. Subsequent albums marked a return to a less experimental, more radio-friendly sound, but at least we'll always have this scopolamine-soaked ode to the psychotropic plants of the world. From the album To Venus And Back.

Tori Amos - Datura

These and other fine, fine tracks can be heard on Comfort Radio. See you next week.

Posted by Scotto at 09:00 AM | Comments (1)

October 14, 2004

Headed toward the moon

The netlabel Thinner brings us today's yum. The first track here is a quiet little nugget of ambient dub; the second track puts a little spin on the formula, sneaking a hint of cosmic lounge into the mix. I imagined myself alone in a passenger spacecraft headed toward the moon, getting extremely high, and having this on the headphones. What's really weird is that right after writing that last sentence, I popped open the ID3 info and found that these tracks are part of an album called Cassini Pieces. Coincidence... OR IS IT?????

Mikkel Metal - Solko
Mikkel Metal - Pheno (krill.minima Remix)

Posted by Scotto at 09:00 AM | Comments (0)

October 13, 2004

Return of bleepy bloopy

More in the bleepy bloopy category. (What, "bleepy bloopy" is not descriptive enough for you? OK, it's "blooptronica".) Sleepy's been suggesting this to Coe for a while now, but I don't know if she ever got around to listening to it, so here's a sample. From the album Come Here When You Sleepwalk.

Clue To Kalo - Within Reach Of My Own Arms
Clue To Kalo - This Is Over By Inches
Clue To Kalo - We'll Live Free (In NYC)

Posted by Scotto at 09:00 AM | Comments (1)

October 12, 2004

Danny the Dog

Sleepy turned me on to the score for a new film called Danny The Dog - said instrumental wonder was composed and performed by none other than Massive Attack. The rip that I got had the entire album jammed into one mammoth MP3, but because I wuv you all, I chopped a couple tracks out of the rip for your listening enjoyment. I have no idea what the track names are; you'll just have to sue me, I guess. [Note: Please do not sue me.]

These tracks demonstrate yet again the simple, unadulterated fact that Massive Attack rules the musical universe with an iron fist.

Massive Attack - Danny the Dog excerpt 1
Massive Attack - Danny the Dog excerpt 2

Posted by Scotto at 08:54 AM | Comments (0)

October 11, 2004

Ever-snazztastic

Just got hold of a 2003 collection of remixes from the ever-snazztastic Amon Tobin, which includes this nifty ditty:

Amon Tobin - Verbal (Boom Bip Remix)

This reminded me that I recently harvested some Boom Bip from (somewhere), also of the snazziness. This track unfolds slowly, gently, and simply. Then, right at the end, Eddie Van Halen does a big solo. (Note: Eddie Van Halen does not actually do a big solo.) From the album Seed to Sun on Lex Records, who also put out Prince Po and Danger Mouse rekkids.

Boom Bip - Awaiting An Accident

And as long as we're in the vicinity of a topic, here's something else you should hear. The very idea of the song title warms that little chunk of rock currently masquerading as my heart. From the album Blow.

Foetus - Cirhhosis of the Brain (Amon Tobin mix)

Posted by Scotto at 09:00 AM | Comments (0)

October 08, 2004

Make it so

More goodness courtesy of Mystery & Misery, this time a few really quirky, melodic, techno-rock tracks that manage to surprise. Plus, what a cool frickin' name for a band! From the band's out of print demo, 100,000 subtle times, which is all available for download.

namelessnumberheadman - the more it stays the same
namelessnumberheadman - douglas rossback's indecision

Former lead singer of a very obscure band called Suddenly Tammy! released a solo single on the netlabel Comfort Stand. Current writer of a very obscure blog called Comfort Music had an actual emotional reaction. Awwww.

Beth Sorrentino - Beautiful Day

Klepshimi first turned me on to The Kleptones, "geniuses of our time" as they put it. They've got two albums, Yoshimi Battles The Hip Hop Robots and A Night At The Hip Hopera up on their web site, as well as an EP, Never Trust Originality, that features this outstanding track. If you're a Queen fan, you'll absolutely want to dig into A Night At The Hip Hopera, but for the rest of you, this track is a great indicator of the kind of genius at play with this band. While their albums are quite mash-up/sampletastic, the musicality of this track will definitely stick with you.

The Kleptones - Maybe Another Here

These and other fine, fine tracks can be heard on Comfort Radio. See you next week.

Posted by Scotto at 09:00 AM | Comments (3)

October 07, 2004

No, I hadn't noticed

Another special guest episode of Comfort Music, brought to you by Coe, who writes:

"The first time I heard The Beta Band, I was blown away. Then they started sounding like everyone else, or everyone else started sounding like them. They just came out with Heroes to Zeros, and I'm not blown away, but it's a pretty good album. 'Lion Thief' is the best track - inventive like their old stuff. 'Easy' just appeals. The rest is a solid indie-rock set."

The Beta Band - Lion Thief
The Beta Band - Easy

"In other news, didja ever notice the strange parallel between the beginnings of 'Drippy' from the Pi soundtrack and 'Under the Bridge' from Triplets of Belleville? I think it's a sign of a deep connection between the two movies. But there's no dog in Pi."

Banco de Gaia - Drippy
Ben Charest - Under The Bridge

Posted by Scotto at 09:00 AM | Comments (0)

October 06, 2004

The future's so bright

8bitrecs released this unexpected gem, which I guess you'd have to call "indie-tronica" for lack of a better term. It put me in a wistful, optimistic mood. The whole EP is included here.

The Forest Wilds - Oyyindku
The Forest Wilds - Dekstner
The Forest Wilds - Bamlamo

A similarly flavored release from 8bitrecs is this little morsel of IDM. This kind of stuff really makes sifting eleventy billion netlabel releases seem worthwhile for a brief shining moment.

Tigrics - 112 packhunters

Posted by Scotto at 09:00 AM | Comments (0)

October 05, 2004

I'm sorry, have we met?

These nicely creepy ambient tracks were unearthed recently by Sleepy. They remind me of Undark's first album, which - hey, isn't Undark ever gonna put out another frellin' album?? Until that happy day arrives, however, please to enjoy these tracks in the meantime.

Node - Terminus (Express)
Node - Terminus (Calling At All Stops)

Actually, it occurs to me you may not all be aware of Undark, so here's a sampler. For a long time, Pearl + Umbra was my first or second choice for ketamine music. Now, of course, I have SWORN OFF THAT STUFF, so I never listen to that album anymore, but I still have fond memories... well, I have fragments that might be the remainder of what's left of my memories, but. Look, leave me alone.

Undark - Stone's Eggs, from Strange Familiar
Undark - Canyon Split Asunder, from Pearl + Umbra

Posted by Scotto at 09:00 AM | Comments (2)

October 04, 2004

Bullseye!

Ninja Tune briefly made a small pile of freebies available (sadly, the link is now dead), and by gum, I just think they're outstanding. There was such an excellent range of goodness available for that brief, shining moment that it was hard to choose just four to post here, but then I simply closed my eyes and threw darts at my monitor, and voila! Another post on Comfort Music! (Thanks to The Suburbs for the tip.)

Chris Bowden - Crockers & Killers (Palmskin Remix), from the Crockers & Killers 12" single
Pest - Slap On Tap, from the album Necessary Measures
RJD2 - True Confessions, from the compilation Urban Renewal Program
Homelife - Wobbly Jack, from the Flying Wonders/Wobbly Jack EP

In other news, my acappella group, Bliss Potential, made its public debut last Friday night, performing two songs at a local cabaret, Spin the Bottle. Unfortunately, [insert several very plausible excuses here], so I have taken steps to ensure no one ever hears those recordings. However, to give just a small taste of what we were attempting, here's a recording from one of our final rehearsals before the show.

Bliss Potential - Porpoise Song (rehearsal take)

Posted by Scotto at 09:00 AM | Comments (0)

October 01, 2004

To hell with everyone

Fat Planet dug up this lush, epic slice of hindi-infused downtempo from a site called Iuma - basically a Download.com for other countries. The title suggests it's some kind of mash-up, but their Iuma artist page offers no insight.

Digital Raga - BHOOT vs TOSCA

Scissorkick posted this track by Home Video. The guy's voice is reminiscent of Thom Yorke, but the band's sound is kind of a weird mix of Air and Massive Attack. "It's like Revenge of the Nerds meets Apocalpyse Now - with cheerleaders!" Anyway, yeah. From the Citizen EP.

Home Video - We

donewaiting turned me on to The All Golden, and pointed out that most of the band's first album, A Long Good Friday, is available on the band's web site. They're kinda like Wilco, kinda not. (I is a talented writer!) This song struck me as particularly haunting and uplifting at the same time, always a favored combination with me.

The All Golden - The Water Is Rising

POP77 posted this gorgeous bit of downtempo pop from one of the various Chillout 2002 albums, which I'm sure I'd heard before, but you know, all that chillout stuff kind of blurs together in a foggy, coming-down-now kind of haze after a while. This particular track is like Krispy Kreme doughnuts to me - smothered in sugary optimism while containing very little of real substance. Or maybe I'm just too much of a cynic to take lyrics like these too seriously - either way, it sure is purty.

Ivy - Edge Of The Ocean [duotone mix]

And finally, as a matter of general principle, I must recommend the following track from the Paws Across The World compilation.

end - to hell with everyone (new york)

These and other fine, fine tracks can be heard on Comfort Radio. See you next week.

Posted by Scotto at 09:00 AM | Comments (0)