Abe Vigoda – Animal Ghosts 7″

a: Animal Ghosts
b: All Night and Day
Purchase right from Post Present Medium (PPM)

This is one of those things that you hear for the first time, and think to yourself “this is going to blow up.” I’ve always fancied myself with a talent for spotting bands that are going to eventually be huge, for example when I was in grade 6, I was into MC Hammer before anyone else in my grade 6 class room; I was listening to Blink before the 182; now with I am using this talent (my only talent of note) and I am telling you that this band is going to be huge.

The reasons are many;

1. Abe Vigoda are awesome.

2. They take a pre-existing (but tired) genre that everyone knows and loves (in this case, that mix of new wave fashioned pop-punk, with just the right amount of the “e” word thrown in, you will recognize the sound as soon as you hear it) and makes it relevent by being just different enough to seperate themselves from a glutted music market

3. They are uber prolific… check out the discography on their myspace page:

2007 inch 7″ – Post Present Medium
Siked Psych: NNF Gold – Not Not Fun
40 Bands in 80 Minutes – Sounds Are Active
Kid City – olFactory Records
Split 7″ w/ Child Pornography. – Oms-b
Split Cassingle w/ Hot Girls Cool Guys – Not Not Fun
Sea & Sea Music Factory – Not Not Fun
7″ – Silencio Recordings
Sky Route/Star Roof – Not Not Fun + Post Present Medium
Under 21: Los Angeles! – olFactory Records
Treasure Tropics split 7″ – Not Not Fun
Love Means Never Having to Say Yr Sorry/Sorry – Not Not Fun

4. See #1.

5. They are a key band in a scene that is also blowing up – they are part of that LA scene (alongside bands like Mika Mika, No Age, Silver Daggers).

The 7″ here is really good, and you should order one. Seriously.

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Mutators – Paper Words 7″

a1: Paper Words
a2: Little Liar
b: Glass
Available directly from Broadway to Boundary
mutators.jpg

Broadway to Boundary are going to be a label to watch. This Mutators 7″ kind of comes out of nowhere, and the upcoming lineup features a Shearing Pinx 7″ in January and a Sex Negatives 7″ in December. It is nice to see Vancouver producing a scene like this, and it doesn’t hurt to have a local label to distribute it beyond the rockies.

I am going to agree with Jason’s assessment here; this is pretty damn good, but I can see some people absolutely hating the music. Too abrasive, too challenging, too fucking harsh. You have this band completely thrashing out, but with that element of drone that a lot of these West Coasters are going for.

On top of that, you have this woman absolutely screeching into the mic, getting that “screeching into the mic” distortion that we all know and love. Remember when the screamo sound went somewhat mainstream a couple of years ago? Especially in Canada, when Alexisonfire and Billy Talent blew up? That was nice screaming; this, on the other hand, will hurt your feelings.

The Mutators 7″ comes in blue vinyl and is limited to 300 copies.

Temperatures – S/T 7″

a: Too Hot to Handle
b: Too Cold to Hold
4th Harmonic Records
Cheapest at Smallfish Records

I ordered this on a whim a month or so ago, after reading Thurston Moore’s guest list thing on Pitchfork, calling UK act Temperatures his favourite new band. Intrigued I hunted this down and then forgot all about it until it arrived yesterday.

Musically, this is experimental noise at its finest. Really off the wall, and after a few listens, I am starting to pull it all together in my head, but the effect of the noise and the randomness is really jarring at first. Of limited appeal to most music fans, but for those who are looking for a nice detour into the noise genre, this is a great place to find that.

The sleeve is amazing – one one side you get this glittery snowflake, and on the other, it looks as if the band heated up an element and individually burned each sleeve. I am a sucker for that kind of DIY treatment, and combined with the ultra-low release number (219 copies), this is a winner for me.

Fucked Up – David Christmas 7″ (December 15)

a: David Christmas
b: Stars on 45

I ran across this on Pitchfork this morning, and it is still blowing my mind. Toronto band Fucked Up is releasing a charity single to benefit the Toronto Food Bank and George Herman House, a transitional housing program for women living with mental health issues.

The A-Side is from their upcoming album The Chemistry of Common Life. The b-side (and this is the mind blowing part) is a “Do They Know It’s Christmas” type deal that features:

  • Nelly Furtado
  • LCD Soundsystem’s James Murphy
  • Black Lips’ Cole Alexander
  • Matt Sweeney
  • The Faint’s Jacob Thiele
  • Jay Reatard
  • the Horrors’ Faris Rotter
  • Rites of Spring’s Mike Fellows (!!)
  • Chromeo’s Dave One
  • Shenae Grimes of “Degrassi: The Next Generation”
  • AFI’s Davey Havok
  • What’s Your Rupture? label guy Kevin Peterson
  • Panthers’/Orchid’s Jayson Green
  • Poison Idea’s Jerry A.
  • Terror’s Scott Vogel
  • Attack in Black’s Dan Romano
  • Face to Face’s Trever Keith

According to Fucked Up’s blog, this is limited to 1000 copies, and while it is initially available only at the benefit show, it will be available online after the show. As they put it:

So don’t worry if you are some asshole from Omaha that needs a copy of the 7″ so you can sell it on eBay (“this record has never been played”), you will be able to obtain one.

Indeed.

LES BOF! – Un Disque Maxi! 7”

a1: Boule De Cristal
a2: J’ai Perdu Mon Mojo
b1: Chante
b2: C’est Fini
Preview tracks at their Myspace

Of all of the new 7″ released this week in North America, this was the one that intrigued me the most. A four piece band from Scotland playing 60’s era French garage-rock? Yes please! This 7″ includes Cover versions of Them’s “I Can Only Give You Everything” and Naomi Neville‘s “Fortune Teller.” I mean, if you are going to do retro garage, you have to do it properly, no? This appears to be the real deal, and I can’t wait for it to land on my doorstep.

Purchase in North America from Scratch Records.

Live Blogging: Stories, Texts and Technoscience (4)

Verran: Science and an African Logic

1. Explaining away what is meant to be explained: Verran pushes you towards: “What is to be explained?” (Dorothy’s “What is the problematic?”) – who has what sort of problem? Starting with the problem explains away the interesting part, instead of eventually getting to the problem. This means rethinking both ontology (now understood as political) and politics (not a matter of intervention, but clarification). Problematic is limiting because we can move too quickly that which should be kept open. In the best ANT studies, it is not a strict beginning.

2. Literalizing: numbers are a conceptual organization, but we treat them as a natural kind. The history of numbers is taking embodied rituals. Once the literalizing is done, those things are there? “We do things with numbers, but numbers are things with us” – “numbers are familiars that seem to do us as we do them.” Goes to the Thomas theorem – we create the reality, but it becomes real in its consequences. It then is able to change in various ways in the course of doing us.

204-205 – once in existence, the numbers systems take on a life of their own. Meanings become black boxes – at that point, the grammar becomes part of the system.

Ontological Politics: sorting out what counts as “differences.” What counts as “X” when “X” counts? What does count? ANT politically does not want to put anyone in a “hero role” positions (direct lineage of “Science as a vocation” – lets acknowledge). Multiple versions are all not equal as “what counts” – multiplicity. ANT always wants an honest game that understands what the rules are, who is doing what.

Reflexivity: 4 pages from the end: “Would I act any differently?” – and she says “not really.” A curious example of a knowing actor. Even in the ANT study (236) “letting these little rituals happen as they would… trust teachers, and to trust myself to know what was successful.” The knowing teacher, the bottom line: trust the people who are actually out there doing the out there work. So then, what was the book about? The work was about western ways of knowing. The theory needed a knowing subject – trust embodied certainty?

Where the observing writer – who is the reader, and what is that reader supposed to be concerned with? \

How much do you watch the world / how much do you let it be? How much is it doing Warhol and just setting up the camera and documenting? As soon as you start publishing something, it becomes part of the picture.

The book ends up being about bodies, and repeated enactments of bodies, and the possibilities of language, and how our categories are repeated things we do over and over again, give a name to, and then reify the name. The name does a thing (it does us/as we do it).

Ordered/Ordering Micro-worlds: what is the ordered/ordering micro-world? Something is happening / is ordered (the people have resources they are expected to deploy, say a diagnosis) /is ordering (a teaching scene – doing ordering that will perpetuate). The scene could be otherwise (say, an other diagnosis) (the deconstruction of the category). Recognizing the inadequacy.

Foundationalism (p. 210): foundationalism (learning to see through the confusing surface p. 165). The expert gaze is supposed to see through to something else with expertise. The “murky surface” – claims to explain all possible worlds must be refused (relativity). Yet, that doesn’t mean that it isn’t safe to get in an airplane. It’s built within specifications that work in this world, good enough to get from here to there (modest version of social science – middle range). The idea of some ultimate theory is a foundationalist pipe dream (another authority bid). Live in a world of modest claims.

Findings: “the report has me “finding” the order” – another version of literalizing.

218: Think of certainty (method as it is taught): downward flow / legitimizing / (also 144 – translations). Method is a way of legitimizing various claims by having a cognative authority. All about claims making. Which winners/which losers?

Constitution of certain categories: who are the winners and who are the losers? Who comes off better or worse?

Magic Arm – Outdoor Games 10″

a1. Outdoor Games
a2. People Need Order
a3. I Want You You Want Me
b1. D.A.Q
b2. You Should Know
b3. Move Out

Out of all of the formats that I am covering here, it is the 10″ that captures my heart like none other. There is something so clever looking about them… Yet it is so hard to find 10″ records, let alone any that are worth purchasing. Here is one worth your time and money.

I picked up this EP after hearing the band Grizzly Bear rave about it a few months ago, and I flipped out after hearing the first song “Outdoor Games.” In fact, I am going to do the same for you before we go any further – go to their Myspace page – listen to the first song that is going to load, then come back.

Ok?

You can see why Grizzly Bear is all about this guy, one Marc Rigelsford out of Manchester. Some of these songs have that same lush, organic feel to it that Grizzly Bear dish out, complete with that same sense of longing and heartsick dread. In other parts of this EP, the sound is somewhat akin to something you might hear on a Chad VanGaalen record – playful, yet simple electronic beats, the use of toy keys (I definitely hear a Casio SK-1 in the song D.A.Q. (Don’t Ask Questions).

You can get this right from the Switchflicker’s ordering page (it will be coming from the UK, so be prepared).