Author: Mort Kilgore

Void Of Realms
Sounds From The Lysergic Sun
Dungeon Recordings
Street: 09.30.14

Void Of Realms = Eat Static + Space Time Continuum

Get out your glow sticks and kandi bracelets—’90s rave culture never ended. Who said The Orb and other chillout music was dead? Sounds From The Lysergic Sun is complete with tripped-out LSD samples from old ’60s films and subterranean synths emitting dub before they put in the step. It has some good, deep bass, and this music would probably create a good soundscape atmosphere if you were on ‘shrooms. It also sounds spooky enough that if you’re not in the right mind, it might put you on a bad trip. Remember, kids: Set and setting is paramount. –Mort Kilgore 

Photos:
Problems That Fix Themselves 
Which is Worse 
Already Dead Tapes 
Street: 11.11.14 
Problems That Fix Themselves = Sigur Rós + David Lynch + Goldie 

This album comes from a record label that boasts specializing in small editions. Limited to 300, this recording starts out with the first three songs having a nice auricular instrumental aura. Side A wraps up with the only vocal track and reminds me of an Icelandic version of “In Heaven” from the Eraserhead soundtrack. Flipping the record, I felt that something went horribly wrong. Suddenly, I was listing to some bad, ’90s-sounding, jungle drum/ drum-n-bass crap that had nothing to do with the sonic vibe on the rest of the LP. It redeems itself by going back to organ-infused ambient noise. If they’re asking Which Is Worse? I say side B. –Mort Kilgore 

Photos:
Portion Control
I Staggered Mentally
Dark Entries
Street: 02.24
Portion Control = Cabaret Voltaire + Skinny Puppy
 
Some music sounds good in the background—this is best straight-up in your face and turned up loud. This reissue from 1982 was originally released on In Phaze Records, a label probably best known for putting out some of The Legendary Pink Dots’ early material. In fact, the Dots put out a split cassette with Portion Control back in 1983 called Pre Release. I Staggered Mentally is the sound I wish “Industrial” music had stayed with, instead of falling into the guitar-driven noise popularly heard with bands like NIN and Ministry. An original copy of this LP would probably set you back at least $65, so this album is a welcome release for people that like hard, drum-machine, synthesizer-driven music. –Mort Kilgore
Photos:
Van Kaye + Ignit
A Slight Delay
Dark Entries
Street: 02.24
Van Kaye + Ignit = Crash Course in Science + Nina Hagen
 
This duo’s music would have fit right in at Some Bizzare Records or in the film Liquid Sky. A Slight Delay is full of everything good about synth punk/no wave from the ’80s. It has now been re-released by the label Dark Entries on a double 12” LP set, and is a compilation of different releases that Van Kaye + Ignit self-released in the early ‘80s. Both members, Ed Van Kasteren and Ignatine Bekken, go back and forth with their vocals, which keeps the sound fresh and alive throughout the mix with old analog keyboards and electronic drums. For those that need a nostalgic blast to the past, this is the perfect record to listen to from a lost, bygone era. –Mort Kilgore 
Photos:
The Soft Moon 
Deeper 
Captured Tracks
Street: 03.31
The Soft Moon = The KVB + Tropic Of Cancer
 
It is early in the year, but I already know that this is a major contender for my favorite album of 2015! Deeper is treading on new ground; the songs still sound like Soft Moon but are a bit more experimental with a broader range of sounds than the standard Joy Division–type bass and instrumentation associated with the project. This recording is more vocal-heavy than previous efforts, and Luis Vasquez singing on “Wasting” kind of sounds like Tears for Fears, but that’s not really a bad thing. It was a good move for Vasquez to take advantage of his voice and expand the sound for this record. Deeper is superb and highly recommended. (Urban: 04.22) –Mort Kilgore
Photos:

Damien Dubrovnik
Vegas Fountain
Alter
Street: 03.30
Damien Dubrovnik = Wolf Eyes + Whitehouse

Listening back on Damien Dubrovnik’s discography, their earlier recordings seem to be about dense, distorted synthesizers and wall-of-sound nuances. Conversely, Vegas Fountain is more about frequencies and knocks. Some of the sounds are so high-pitched and ear-bleeding that I’m sure only a dog could appreciate the full spectrum of pin-piercing audio. Most of the album sounds like you’re stuck between shortwave radio stations, which tend to be the result of a lot of experimental noise. The song “Interior 1: Upper Lip” sounds a lot like Throbbing Gristle’s Persuasion. But I guess whenever you play the same bass note continuously throughout a song, you’re going to get that effect. Nothing worth trying to sue over, there are only 12 notes to choose from. This album is perfect for that off-season haunted house you have been thinking of creating in your basement cellar. –Mort Kilgore

Photos:

Boan
Mentiras
Holodeck
Street: 06.09
Boan = Book Of Love + ADULT.

I really enjoyed this album on first listen. Boan have captured a way to make electronica seem new but retro. They have a full, dynamic sound, and found a way to warm up the coldness often associated with synth music. The first track, “Babylon,” is an ode to the scarlet woman and her sacred relationship with the number seven. Track 2, “Freaksnake,” reminds me of Soft Cell’s “Baby Doll” and is a stomping track. Some of the songs are sung in Spanish, which keeps things sounding fresh. The most disappointing thing to me is that there are only five tracks and that Mentiras is really a mini-album. On the upside, it’s available on limited clear or black vinyl and limited cassette. Recommended! 
–Mort Kilgore 

Photos:
Prurient
Frozen Niagara Falls
Profound Lore 
Street: 05.12
Prurient = Goblin + Warning

Unlike a lot of projects putting out what has been labeled as noise, Prurient takes you on a journey. Frozen Niagara Falls starts like a Dario Argento horror soundtrack if you fed the audio through a guitar distortion pedal. It then jumps tracks into a throbbing industrial head bang. This is not where the variety ends. Released on two discs with 16 tracks between them and song lengths ranging from .32 seconds to over 11 minutes, there are some good, dark dancecore moments, and others that are quite ambient and musical. Sole Prurient member Dominick Fernow has a huge discography of work going back 20 years with hundreds of releases. Prurient is just one of many aliases including December Magic, Rainforest Spiritual Enslavement and Tortured Hooker. Fernow is a master of his craft, creating enjoyable sound—or, I mean, noise. –Mort Kilgore 

Photos:
Hoops – A Whiff of Spirits

Hoops – A Whiff of Spirits

 

Hoops
A Whiff of Spirits

Chthonic Records
Street: 04.06
Hoops = The Tape Beatles + Brion Gysin

One of the reasons I enjoy cut-up, experimental-collage sound recordings is the total disregard of the legalities of using samples. Hoops are no exception with this digital and cassette release. One of my favorite illegal samples is in the track “We Say These Things in the Name of Jesus Christ,” which has a hee-haw, ho-down moment with Alabama’s “Mountain Music.” This recoding also comprises lots of other noises and field-recording-type sounds. I prefer the cut-up experimentation stuff to the long sound-loop tracks, but I think that they would be better pressed as lock grooves on a 7”, allowing the listener to manipulate and interact. You can download A Whiff of Spirits for free, or if you contact the project, they will give you a cassette—just pay postage. Do yourself a favor and check it out. –Mort Kilgore

The Kat’s Jamas
We

Self Released
Street: 07.09.15
The Kat’s Jamas = Danny Elfman + Wendy Carlos + Acid House

The vision that comes to my mind when listening to The Kat’s Jamas is an Area 51 atmosphere, acid house D.J. spinning Anton Lavey records, laced with the sounds of Beethoven‘s newest creation. A Frankenstein automaton monster, programmed to pound out electrical harpsichords for a new line of Atari occult themed game cartridges. That’s probably the best way I can describe what I hear when listening to We. The Kat’s Jamas is fun and spooky. Worth checking out! –Mort Kilgore