Review: Bonnie “Prince” Billy – “BPB Mix Tape Vol. 5”

Any musician who’s released 25 studio LPs (did I count that right?) must bear a treasure trove of outtakes and demos, amirite? But Will Oldham always has been more than just prolific, just a man who has, y’know, a lot of songs. Since 1993 – the year he released the epic, Slint-assisted Depression blues of…

Profile: Descendants of Crom III (2019)

Shy Kennedy’s Pittsburgh-bred metal band Horehound is releasing a new EP this month. But you shouldn’t expect to catch a preview of that material live at the much-anticipated Descendants of Crom festival, which Kennedy lovingly curates. Horehound, you see, played at the festival in 2018. “I have a rule: no band gets to play two…

Review: Mudhoney – “Morning In America” EP

The Mudhoney of Digital Garbage, a ferocious and oddly chiseled kind of beast, returns on a new odds-and-ends EP that reflects on the narratives of the band’s previous work. The aptly titled Morning In America EP might reference Reagan, but this seven-track outing, available via Sub Pop this Friday, is firmly rooted in Trump’s America,…

Review: Mike Patton and Jean-Claude Vannier – “Corpse Flower”

I first heard vocal shape-shifter Mike Patton collaborate with John Erik Kaada, the Norwegian composer, back in 2004. It was, even in the light of a performer known for not being able to sit still creatively, a departure, and, yes yes, especially for someone who cut his teeth on the alt-rock of Faith No More…

Review: Warish – “Down In Flames”

The year is 1988 and the place is some dive bar outside Seattle. Or maybe it’s not – but it could be. The guitar-driven trio Warish – whose Down In Flames LP, its full-length debut, is being released Friday via Riding Easy – elicits the punky thrills of grunge at its headiest, calling to mind…

Review: Kal Marks – “Let The Shit House Burn Down”

Now, I’m not always prone to deflect a kind remark when something better comes along, but, listen listen, follow my logic here. At the end of the month, Exploding In Sound Records will release the new, five-song pseudo-EP by Massachusetts art-noise trio Kal Marks. And, by all accounts, it’s a fine record, even at times…

Review: Trvss – “Absence”

Holy shit, man. How a rock band sounds so vicious, yet so calculated and razor-sharp precise on a record, never mind a debut LP, is beyond me. In short: the Pittsburgh band trvss (pronunciation, Webster?) has exceeded even lofty expectations with Absence, a 10-track corker it released on cassette and digital formats this summer, offering…

Review: Dw. Dunphy (as No-Fi Dead Horse) – “Limb From Limb”

There always was a kind of glowing charm to Dw. Dunphy’s lo-fi days. Take “Jupiter In Retrograde,” originally released, without much fanfare, back in 1997, practically another lifetime ago. The song is driven by a fairly innocuous, canned electronic backbeat, but Dunphy fleshes it out, gives a real sense of sweat and toil and heartbeat,…

Profile: Damon Che (2019)

At the time, everybody in Pittsburgh knew Damon Che. But few really knew him. Che, who now lives an uneventful life in the Amish countryside 15 miles southwest of Punxatawney, Pa., was the octopus-armed drummer for Pittsburgh-bred experimental rock pioneers Don Caballero, a singular percussive force in indie-rock circles. But even Che himself talks about…