Review: El Ten Eleven – “Tautology I”

The first chapter in El Ten Eleven‘s new three-part musical journey seems to be written entirely in the third person and drained of all impulse for narrative twists. Kristian Dunn, the duo’s very adept guitar and bass player, said he wanted Tautology I to “represent what my teenage years were like, when I was full of testosterone and…

Profile: Same (2020)

Playing guitar in an indie-rock band in 2020 requires some genre knowledge and a lot of muscle memory, that ability to reproduce the fingers shifting between chords and sentiments without conscious thought.  Jake Stern, who plays guitar and keys and provides backing vocals in the placid Pittsburgh band Same, knows the instinct to rely on…

Review: Magnetic Ghost – “Pixels”

There are many spots where one can enter Pixels, the new LP from Magnetic Ghost, the nom de guerre of Minneapolis multi-instrumentalist Andy Larson. I like to begin with the second track, “Joshua Tree at Sunset”. The piece starts amidst a buzzing drone, and the swells wax vaguely synthetic, backed by the whirring of gears and the…

Review: Raphael Weinroth-Browne – “Worlds Within”

Reconsideration, at least in this writer’s case, has been very kind to Raphael Weinroth-Browne. I was introduced last year to the Canadian cellist and post-classical composer by way of Worlds Within, the new 10-track song-cycle he plans to self-release on CD and digital platforms Jan. 24. At first blush, Weinroth-Browne’s modus operandi mimicked, at least…

Review: Le Petite Mort – “Disco”

The name of the song is “A Piano In The Basement” and, though it closes the 13-track record, it’s the best point where you can enter Disco, the new LP from German trio Le Petite Mort (Little Death) now out on digital devices and vinyl via Cold Press. The song starts with glassy, post-rock guitars…

Review: Paranoid Void – “02”

Wow! Just wow. The new Paranoid Void EP – which hides behind the dubiously simple title of 02, out online this week – will knock you right off your feet and out of yr winter blues. This is, without rival, the best math-rock of 2019; in a year where Ian Williams and BATTLES released a…

Review: Wet Fruit – S/T

The songs just skitter away in a delightful pop of Roman candles on Wet Fruit’s self-titled, debut LP, out last week on digital and cassette via Seattle’s Halfshell Records, each composition uniquely frenetic and painted with minute detail to texture and tone. But to write off the ascending Portland quartet as some incantation of art-rock…

Review: Monotrope – “Immutable Future”

Monotrope’s new record is a wondrously dense thatch of black thorns and I love it for that. In case you’re just joining the show, the quartet, which should be storied by now, features a Touch and Go Records alumnus (who also happens to play in Bellini), a Pittsburgher and two members of Unraze. And, if…