Excess Death Cult Time

(Minimum Table Stacks) LP $20.00 (Out-of-stock)

COMING JUNE 2. Scuzzed-out ’80s UK DIY-style post-punk rattle on the ebut LP by this Phoenix, AZ five-piece.


Fifth Dementia

(Butte County Free Music Society - BuFMS113) CDR $8.00

There’s nothing technically inaccurate about saying the Bren’t Lewiis Ensemble releases albums, though behind the scenes they are thought of as “escorted from the building.” A few just escape. Their second disc of 2023 arrives much like the contents of a piñata stuffed with Streptococcus pyogenes and exotic succulents. As the opening track shuffles into view wearing nothing but a bathrobe and slippers on the wrong feet makes clear, Fifth Dementia is glued together with preparations for the end. In the BLE’s vision of The Big Not-Any-More, the past wobbles toward oblivion and wipes its feet on the welcome mat, while the adhesives-slathered future rises up in an infinite tidal wave of impending collapse, leaving the present as a ventriloquist act called Lil Tired And Captain Defeated. On “Nearly Drowned by The Anti-Merm,” Lala Lu’s cut-up reading of the lyrics to Yoko Ono’s “What Did I Do?” — recorded as a memento mori for the late Tom Smith of To Live And Shave In L.A. — slithers between tossed scrape salads, snow-blowers, noxious Star Trek hippies, and an animatronics-damaged “A Mighty Fortress.” Tom Chimpson and Jimmy The Baptist stage their retirement-home magic show with the surreally tense “Sterno The Magnificent Spotted Bone Gambler,” seemingly for the benefit of an audience of sedative-abusing rabbits. It’s a beautifully perplexing mix of resinated guitar, epicurean wheedle that disfigures itself just above the horizon line, and disembodied clunks and clacks that ping the pong of all but the absolutely hairless. The 24-minute “Sous Vide Meat Glue Experiment” is the soundtrack to the Ensemble’s video of the same name that premiered in August 2021 as part of the UK TUSK Festival’s online concert series. To create this gargantuan cut-up, The City Councilman began by mashing together home-made footage of various recording sessions and boosts from the public and corporate domains, and then, without revealing the final sequence, shared the unassembled effects-heavy fragments with Lucian Tielens, Gnarlos, and their fellow mutants, who nevertheless assembled with pinpoint accuracy a nightmare-triggered quilt of voices (their own as well as those appropriated from thrift store cassettes, children’s records, and YouTube videos), electronics and noises plucked from years of recording sessions, sound effects records, vintage radio shows, and home-made documentation of strangers losing it on public transportation. Listen for the tinkle of cat toys on “Answer Correctly And I’ll Send You Wicker Furniture On Your Birthday” — that’s Lacie Pound saying no-no-no with tiny bells woven into his glorious winter beard, silhouetted against a Musiclandria sunrise featuring The Affable Chap on electronic sputters and The Viper on squawk fiddle. The album closes with “Looks / Isn’t Shoe Needle,” inspired in equal measure by ancient cave paintings of primitive-lobed skull jockeys and the inevitable all-consuming deep-fakes that await us all 24/7. This 57-minute cocktail (two parts premature geriatrics, one part second childhood, a splash of MK Ultra) radiates an age-inappropriate vibe on par with Dr. Zachary Smith taking over a quinceñera while dressed in an off-brand foam carrot suit.


Down, Willow

(Siltbreeze) LP $16.00

Paul Bonnet and Nathan Roche’s third long-player for Siltbreeze hones in with a top gloss of new and proto-experimental, post-punk, recitation vibe. This fusion of The Fall’s Grotesque and Morton Subotnick’s Sidewinder into a sole entity yields lots of sparks, flash fires, smoke of all colors and bickering, but from this vantage, what a light show! There’s even some shredding on here that sounds like they may have lit this fucker with Martin Kippenberger’s copy of Guitar Hero.