Saturday, September 5, 2020

Going (Band)Camping: Edition 4

Bandcamp keeps giving me neat music (both newer and sometimes less-recent) to listen to and write about, so we've arrived at my fourth edition of this segment. I guess by the 4th time you do something its less of a lark and more of a habit, so I guess I habitually enjoy finding jams to listen to in the garden of plenty that is Bandcamp. Let's review some music that has no exact thematic link beyond being on the site that treats music artists right!

R.E. Seraphin--Tiny Shapes
I like alternative rock and what folk are calling, "Post-punk," nowadays, so I enjoyed, "Tiny Shapes," by R.E. Seraphin. Tracks such as, "Today Will Be Kind," and, "Fortuna," really capture a listener's attention and there isn't really a stinker on the whole LP. I basically at least liked everything I heard and a few tracks quite pop. It is definitely worth trying, "Tiny Shapes," should its style sound appealing to you. Get a digital copy or cassette here.
4 out of 5 stars.

Marko Bruiser--From Another Time
A nice dose of punk with a hefty lo-fi feel, "From Another Time," is at first solid-but-relatively-unremarkable. Then the last track on this EP, "Crazy," comes on and it is killer. Equal amounts melancholy, harsh, vulnerable, and just plain catchy, this song (with no relation to the same-named one by Gnarls Barkley, in case you wondered) is a fantastic closer and takes this EP from simply being good to me finding it quite phenomenal. I'd say you should listen to, "Crazy," for sure, but the whole EP is worth your time and makes for a great lead-up to the stellar closing track. Check it out here.
4.5 out of 5 stars.

Beans--Team BreakUP
I've been listening to the music of Beans on-and-off now for nearly two decades, with his 2003 album, "Tomorrow Right Now," being my first exposure to him separate from the group he started-out with, The Anti-Pop Consortium. Since then I've listened to Beans at various points in time. I don't follow him closely, but anytime I wonder what he's been up to there is usually some new stuff. Hence, when I saw a tape of, "Team BreakUP," for preorder, I jumped on the opportunity. I've gotta be honest though, I was kind of disappointed.

"Team BreakUP," is more Beans doing strange sonic experiments than it is him doing any kind of rapping. That's a shame as when he does share some thoughts, he really does an amazing job, like on, "$4," which touches upon themes of racism, police brutality, and commercialism. Sadly, that's a diamond in the rough on an LP that mostly is strange bursts of horns, record scratches, sound effects, echoing voice effects, and the like. It's a listenable bummer, but a bummer nonetheless.
2.5 out of 5 stars.

An assortment of weird audio experiments and songs recorded from 2006-2019, "SECRET BODIES OF WORK," announces itself loudly and abrasively with its all-caps title. The album itself reflects this feeling as it is a scary, sick, twisted, screeching beast...that at times can actually be pretty listenable too. While I found myself thrown a lot of the time by the pieces that were more experiments in noise when things actually turned into an interesting song ("Robotic Lithgow," for example) I was pleased. Not an album for most people, and a lot of the time not even the kind of album for me, but admittedly attention-grabbing. People who are into this style of techno-heavy rockin' rage will love it, even if I'm a bit more cavalier.
3 out of 5 stars.

Brat Pitt--First One

Notice it is, "Brat," Pitt, not the actor who is known as Brad--just in case you thought he was making intriguing-sounding indie rock now. I was impressed by how the genres covered could shift with each track. My two favorites are back-to-back and take the album from sounding a bit like alt-country ("Stockholm,") to synth-heavy psychedelic pop ("Wallow") all while continuously entertaining. The only track of the five that didn't really grab me was, "(Still) Can't Fly," but the rest were all very enjoyable. A solid little LP for sure. Give it a listen and buy your copy here.
4 out of 5 stars.

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