Review: Meeting With Hans – “Genius Loci”

Multi-instrumentalist Tomas Svoboda is clearly out to toy with listeners’ expectations of recording fidelity. The Czech musician’s third LP as Meeting With Hans – titled Genius Loci, available now on Bandcamp as a digital-only recording – is deceptively lo-fi, offering tracks that cut between occasionally gray recordings of Mogwai-tinged, post-rock anthems and unusually crisp, even…

Review: Picastro – “Exit”

Liz Hysen’s reliably dissonant acoustic guitar might ground her as Picastro, but her work on six strings, however interesting it might be, is only the sparest introduction to this highly collaborative project. On Exit – Picastro’s new LP and its first in five years, out now via Sleeping Giant Glossolalia – Hysen’s guitar work remains…

Review: Old Game – “Lunatics”

Lunatics, the excellent new four-song EP from Pittsburgh-based quartet Old Game, out June 22, starts with the thump-thump-thump of bass guitar and drums in enveloping and snarling syncopation. But, it’s not until the rousing chorus, after the glassy guitars that eventually come fall prey to a wall of crunching thunder, that the theme of the…

Review: Tenchio – “Bedroom Chaos of The Inner Noodle”

Manuel Tenchio, who often just goes by the nom-de-guerre Tenchio, is a Uruguayan teenage guitar whiz who plays a kind of mutant math-thrash with reckless abandon. And if his second self-released record — Bedroom Chaos of The Inner Noodle, out recently on Bandcamp – is any indication, he’s either keeping heavily over-caffeinated or battling hefty…

Review: Big Weather – “The Lightest Darkness”

Well, turns out climate change – for those rational people who agree with the science behind it – might not be all bad, after all. Big Weather, the latest effort from musician/composer/drummer Ryan Rumery, posits itself as an experiental response to “ever-intensifying natural phenomena.” The Colorado-based outfit’s new record, The Lightest Darkness, is an interesting point…

Review: Altar Boy – S/T

Pittsburgh label Crafted Sounds recently Tweeted out the following in response to a request to drink PBR with members of Altar Boy, a group of post-something Pittsburghers releasing their debut EP Friday on said label: “Altar Boy does not have a Twitter but they got a tighttttt EP coming out.” Tighttttt? Now, that’s an understatement….

Review: Ampline – “Passion Relapse”

If you like your underground rock jagged and rugged and raw, you’d best tune in for Ampline’s Passion Relapse. Out last week on Sofaburn Records – sometimes you plan to review a record “on time” and sometimes you get the flu, y’know? –the new LP from this guitar-driven Ohio trio is vintage Ampline: dirgy and…

REVIEW: Watter – “History of the Future”

Watter – a Louisville post-rock band that’s high in promise due to its parentage, if nothing else – simply fails to deliver on the oft-disjointed but occasionally ambitious History of the Future, its sophomore full-length, out today on Temporary Residence. It’s not that there are not great moments on the record. It’s just that their…

PROFILE: King G and The J Krew

Twenty five years ago today, the beat was born. It was the sound of young adults from Louisville – a sprawling collection of collaborators, most of them close friends since childhood – surging with ideas, and busting out with a declaration that they intended to live an unfiltered, untethered life of art and music. It…

REVIEW: Radon Chong – “I Keep On Talking To You”

Captain Beefheart devotees, rejoice! Shape-shifter Don van Vliet might be deceased but his spirit – and that of his ever-evolving Magic Band – is alive and well in Pittsburgh. Local band Radon Chong channel the Captain with passionate precision, vibrant originality, and colorful flare on its nine-song debut, the mind bogglingly good I Keep On…