(Moniker - MNKR010) LP $16.00
Transcendent noise-making now in its fourth decade, an unholy bitches’ brew of discordant snarl, avant-garde R&B, gospel-heavy blackness, queer sensibility and extravagant, performance-art theatrics (they once played a concert at Navy Pier in which singer Travis was dragged through the audience in a steel cage, naked but for a jockstrap). Re-emerging in the late ’00s with vehemence and an expansive, multi-generational lineup, P. Michael’s ground-swelling bass and nasty, insectoid beats are the glue that binds the sprawl while Travis carries echoes of punk prophets like Patti Smith, Iggy Pop and Gil Scott-Heron. Highlights include the sick, Beefheart groove of “Veil,” and a cover of “All Tomorrow’s Parties” -- a wall-of-sound sprouting weeds and flowers in its cracks.
(Moniker) LP $16.00
Visionary gospel noise has never sounded so furiously focused, from the loping, industrial thwonk of “Travis Wax Madonna” to the corroded funk of “Spare,” reminiscent of Public Enemy’s Bomb Squad productions. P. Michael’s warped beats bind the band’s guttural bass, swooping guitar feedback, and the delirious chanting of Travis, more high-priest than frontman. Diegesis is their most aggressive, most militant document yet, digging unflinchingly at the unhealed wounds of the body politic. The dystopic soundscape “Blackpower.Move,” with its screams, sirens, echoes of barking dogs and machine-gun fire, is a growling, onomatopoetic invocation of the dark and shameful MOVE bombing of 1985. Then there’s the nightmarish “CQCQCQ,” part of Travis’ ongoing “savagely personal” explorations of the profound traumas he experienced as a radio operator aboard the USS America in the late ’60s. The final cut is a swelling, funereal cover of Jimi Hendrix’s “Burning of the Midnight Lamp.”
(Priority Male) LP $16.00
Originally released by Thermidor in 1986, the second LP by this legendary experimental group from Chicago’s southside experiments with atmospherics and sparser compositions. Travis belts out gospel-tinged Beefhart-ian sermons over post-Gristle clatter, filtering traditional hymns through afterwar points-of-view, remnants of post-modern abstract punk, and Western world queer counterculture. Ono’s theatrical attributes shine heavily and give noticeable nods to Pere Ubu while also scrambling their influences beyond recognition. Remastered from original tapes. 150-gram vinyl. Listen to the whole album here: http://youtu.be/Gr1U5l7pZXg?list=PLWW3-uofVJsWpEEuvpJ-vNvWB8-F-fVsF
Machines That Kill People
(Priority Male) LP $16.50
Priority Male’s reissue of the Chicago trio’s debut album (Thermidor 1983) revisits their unique mixture of love pulsations from the deep end of odd, no-wave guitar collage clatter, churning and clanging repetition, exuberant freak-flag-flying, and powerful quasi-sermonizing cautiously and passionately delivered by legendary frontman Travis. 150g vinyl. Hand-screened jackets. Poster insert.