Moose, Octopus and the Importance of Performance

Local bands and small-scale acts suffer from an incredible number of disadvantages. Whether an excuse or a justification, the exploitation suffered by musicians is often just a matter of fact the trade. Limitations in sound, opportunities and various other components which create a better atmosphere for the performance are a given for bands working on a low budget, but the two main components which can’t be deprived from the artists are songwriting ability and stage performance. Recent performances from local bands Moose and Octopus perfectly reflect my thoughts and criticisms with small-scale bands and, in addition to a summary of the events, I wish to emphasise how these criticisms apply to many other smaller bands and how they undermine the quality of performances in general. 

Moose

 

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(Image poached from their Facebook page)

 

First on the chopping block are Moose, a self-described Groove Metal band from Wales. A more than competent band in their own right, the band display more than enough compositional ability with their recent EP, Courage, Enlightened & Doubt. The music seems to pay large homage to Alternative Metal bands of the late nineties and noughties and blends this influence nicely with clear influence from heavier bands of the same era and some more recent. Though a varied influence does benefit the larger product as a whole, this variety does work to undermine the consistency and add unneeded contrast to tracks such as Obstinate, which seems a little torn between inspirations. Various aspects of the music show great understanding and appreciation for the flow of the songs and I’m more than satisfied with the level of the production, particularly regarding the drums. I feel the music would benefit from a more exaggerated vocal distortion to better capitalise on the clear Lamb of God influence but this isn’t a deal-breaker by any stretch of the word. The EP boast a respectable 19 minutes and five tracks of great sounding and interesting music.

 

Where Moose ultimately let me down was with their live performance. Talk to me about amazing live performance and I will always mention Robbie Williams at the Etihad last year. Obviously, you’d expect a better performance when so much money is being thrown around, but very little of this is owed to the funding behind the performance – I credit this incredible event to the absolutely masterful level of effort and commitment to the performance and visual aspects of the event. A great performance transcends the limitations of a musical performance and shapes the event into a phenomenal and heartfelt experience. I feel a gig should either serve as a conduit to a series of emotions and thoughts presented by the act or a riveting and engaging form of entertainment with the use of music. This performance had neither. To refer to my previous point, I don’t credit these aspects to funding, but to the lack of charisma and effort on behalf of the band or artist. Though aspects relating to the sound of the music were more than satisfactory for the performance and the instrumental and vocal performances were as good as I’d hope to see, there seemed little to no effort to engage the audience or even retain the support of the previous performers. The atmosphere fell flat between songs as silences emerged and a lack of on-stage movement made for a fairly dull visual show and served as an incredible hindrance to the potential of the band, with on-stage movement and atmosphere being fundamental to the flow of a loud Metal band. My almost total lack of interest in the show prevents me from recommending seeing the band live, but the music itself is a fantastic investment for any Metal fans and I would highly recommend listening to their EP.

 

Octopus

 

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(With no artwork available, this octopus will have to do)

 

Next in queue are Octopus, another local Manchester-based band currently in study at the British and Irish Modern Music Institute. In contrast to the aforementioned Moose, Octopus incorporate various influences from a number of genres to form what they refer to as “Tentacle Rock” but I respectfully refer to as Indie Pop/Rock. Another perfectly serviceable band with obvious creative potential, Octopus suffer from many issues with performance and, with no online content or released music, I find it harder to find to gain a true appreciation for their efforts and music. 

 

A major advantage, and potentially one of the best aspects of the event, was with the venue itself. Hosted at Night People, the band benefited from a superior sound, atmosphere and visual display – elements enjoyed by the fantastic Thea Brooks and Hover Bored, the support acts for the night. With four pints down, I had hoped for a fantastic show from a group of great guys but was sadly left underwhelmed. Though the music handled variety with an intelligent and thoughtful mentality, the performance lacked a well-planned flow and seemed to end on something of a low point. This lack of flow can be attributed to many things, the obvious in this case being technical issues which brought the event to a standstill for what felt at least ten minutes, but I feel a larger problem was the lack of comfort between songs and on the stage in general. Like Moose, the members performed with a clear proficiency in their playing and what little movement they used made for a far more interesting visual show, but I don’t really feel confident that they worked anywhere towards their potential. Octopus find themselves in the awkward position where I can’t provide a typical “yay or nay” as their lack of an online presence makes for a totally inaccessible band and the inability to hear or even follow the band. The performance leaves me struggling too because they just didn’t let me see what they were really capable of. I find myself in the position of being unimpressed but convinced they possess more potential than was on display that night.  

 

Fucking performance, dude.

 

With so much competition already, I can’t stress enough how important it is to perform both to the best of your ability and in a way that engages or entertains an audience. The stage in no place for discomfort, silences and awkwardness – it’s the setting for an incredible experience to emerge for bands and audiences alike. When you take to the stage you become something different and something far greater. When you take to the stage you become responsible for how every person in the room feels by controlling the energy and setting an example of how everybody should interpret the event. Pray tell me, dear readers, what energy is a performer going to create if they don’t give it their every effort? Obviously there is only so much you can do, but it’s the job of the performer to commit to perfecting everything they can and carrying through a true display of effort and conviction.

 

Bands may piss and moan, but there is only so much they can blame a lack of support from an audience and there is only so far people are responsible for failing to attend concerts. We live in a more isolated state than ever and people will prefer the warm comfort of home to that of a band that doesn’t truly work to engage them, and you can’t blame them! Consider your image, contemplate your movement and, above all, be interesting! Above all else, a band is providing a service and a product when they enter the stage and there should be no feeling of entitlement from any performer – especially from a small scale, local band.

 

There are two things I expect from any band I go to see; an incredible on-stage performance and well-written songs. Nailing this will win all the love I can offer and believe me, it makes my job a LOT more pleasant. We all just want to be impressed and if a band manages that they will succeed hugely.

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Finola – Live Review

Rare is it that I am taken aback by the strenuous and remarkable ethic of another, particularly from a smaller-scale artist. Finola’s EP Release Gig was an absolute masterclass in commitment, consideration and effort with the starring lady encapsulating the highest standards of work a musician can adhere to. Great music worked in tangent with an absolutely incredible energy to create one of the best events I have ever witnessed of this scale in the great city of Manchester. Of course, the event and performances suffered much of the same troubles as others of a similar budget but I feel most negative aspects stand outweighed by the incredible level of humanity behind the performances and management.

Possessing a range of acts, the measure of diversity was more than noticeable. Most bands worked hard to maintain a consistent level of competency and entertainment but I can’t help feeling the event seemed to serve the grandiose and powerful performance of Finola above all other performers. This is obviously a benefit to the main star, but one might consider this a hindrance to the overall event when one considers the imbalance of entertainment. Whilst not feeling totally bored, it was difficult to retain my interest for a fair amount of the time, though I hear this comes part-and-parcel with the thrilling and exciting life as a music journalist. It comes without a doubt in my mind that the highlight of the night was the absolutely breathtaking commitment from Finola, though this seemed to upstage every other aspect of the event and even some of the other performances.

 

I am often exposed to the seemingly undying genre that is Pop-Country and I can proudly declare that Finola is the first to present it with such an air of respectability and has drawn a deep appreciation from me. Her most recent EP, Waterworks, displays the true depth and heart of country legends such as Dolly Parton to the point where I wouldn’t be surprised to find her involved in the composition. This depth and heart is so often overlooked by many. Whilst there exists a large inspiration from more contemporary acts, I feel this was a tasteful decision and it allows for better accessibility to a larger demographic. Acts like Taylor Swift are truly wasted on on an 80’s pop fanatic like me and it sings Finola’s praises even more for the fact I found such enjoyment in something I would ordinarily loathe and avoid.

The EP itself consists only of four tracks which works as slight detriment as the songs are enjoyable to the point where you genuinely want to hear more. The choice of tracks is well-considered and they all seem very strong which has peaked my curiosity for a further full-album release. With constant exposure to smaller-scale bands, I am so often exposed to unrefined and incomplete work but Finola’s excess work in the studio has truly paid off, granting the release a sense of professionalism and class which earns a measure of respect far more considerable than that of most other bands of this scale.

My largest issue comes with my lack of personal interest in the genre itself, however. I can’t help feeling that I just don’t find the music particularly interesting. Perhaps the genre is wasted on one who only adheres to the geniousness of Magic.fm, but I find the music fairly basic and uninteresting. Whilst understanding the concept of an “accessible pop approach” I find it lacking in instrumental and dynamic complexity. I hear a lot of influence which almost makes me really like the music, but there remains an immovable barrier I can’t bypass. The Aerosmith-esque guitar-work sings gentle sparks of nostalgia to me, but I feel this just isn’t enough to fully engage me.

In spite of most of my doubts and general lack of interest, I can see the quality of the work and it resembles a level of proficiency most bands should adhere to. This could serve as a strong entry point for many to access the Country-Pop genre and many followers of the movement will likely see this as a glorious example of the style. She has won a huge respect from me but, due to personal taste, I can’t count myself as overly interested in the music. Nevertheless, she deserves even more than the incredible support she received at this wonderfully heartfelt EP Release gig and I rest assured that her ability and ethic will earn her the recognition she really deserves. Finola earns incredible praise for encouraging such a level of love and consideration from a heart as cold as my own.

Gathering of Strangers – Gathering of Strangers (EP Review)

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(Photo credit – Jessica Holt)

After long last, I have finally been impressed by a musical release by a band from the British and Irish Institute of Modern Music! Too often am I exposed to acts trying to capitalise from the success of their influences in shameless tributes to Mancunian indie legends and pointless imitation of other existing acts – a trend which leaves me horrifically bitter and in a seemingly endless pursuit of something original and interesting. Despite relentless flattering towards this band, I felt as a cow might as she awaits the final bolt in the head until the moment this glorious act eased forwards with majesty and grace to release me from the confounds of my miserable existence. At long last, I’m faced with something with heart, variety and imagination and I am all the overjoyed for it.

Gathering of strangers are difficult to characterise, drawing influence from a seemingly endless source and including a glorious contribution from a wide range of instrumentation and effects, my personal favourite addition being the versatile and often bold input from keyboardist, Callum Witts. The instrumental composition never falls below a very high bar throughout the entire EP, with everything working within its rhythmical and tonal range to truly optimise the ability of every musician whilst providing relevant atmosphere and space to truly support the heartfelt and emotionally devastating voice of frontman, Conor Rabone.

The contrast in tones between tracks shows a wonderful appreciation and respect for dynamics and the most evident display of this exists in the bass guitar in opening track Something in the Water where the tone varies between a heavily driven and punchy tone and a balanced and spaceful tone which works into a slightly overdriven voice towards the end of the song, this working in tandem with the wonderfully creative guitar work and brazen sound of the keys combines to create a truly wonderful dynamic and remarkable climax to a truly epic track.

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(Live photo from Gathering of Strangers Facebook page)

Criticisms are difficult to find with this EP, with most aspects working far above the level I would expect from this scale. The most outstanding negative point I can make being in regards to the use of harmonica in War and how I feel it seems out of place with the tone of the song, I understand this may be an artistic decision, but I find it too distracting from the rest of the song and feel it draws too far in timbre from the rest of the EP – this issue with timbre also extends towards the keyboard in the earlier sections of the same track to a smaller extent, though this is easily redeemed by the beautifully smooth and tasteful use of keyboard in the following track, Lies. Another aspect I would like to hear is a more extensive use of a darker bass tone in some of the more haunting sections to help capture a more emotionally desolate feel which may better accommodate the deep and profound vocal style of Rabone.

The EP is very well balanced and versatile and the structure of the tracks is absolutely flawless. Though lacking in structural complexity, there exists an incredible flow between every track and this flow which extends to the entire compilation of tracks. The songs scream from a personal part of your own buried past and lead you through events long forgotten through use of such personable and relatable lyrics and the use of atmosphere truly benefits this experience. There is so much to appreciate about this musical release and the reputation the band has amongst the few I respect indicates a body of work which could appeal to anybody.

Flights of fancy aren’t in my style when discussing music and I’m never one to over-compliment something, but Gathering of Strangers demonstrate a level of musical mastery which should serve an inspiration to other fledgling bands. The band show true vision, creativity and professionalism and deserve the utmost of respect and admiration and I feel we all owe it to ourselves and the smaller-scale music scene to support this incredible act and help launch them into the success they clearly deserve. If ever there was a time to care for a score let it be now: the EP scores five stars, 10/10, 176 golden cocks out of 176 golden cocks – I don’t care, just listen to it!

Don’t be a Dick (unless you’ve earned the right to be)

I return once more, dear fans! With so much of my time committed to writing reviews for Indie Rocks, various pursuits of fitness and trying to carry Plymouth Argyle to the Premiership in FIFA 17, it has been hard to find the time to write (or rant) about the shit I usually chat about but I am glad to announce that whilst lost deep in the process of brainstorming my mind for more albums to slander I was struck by a wondrous inspiration!

“I write so much about why albums are shit, but I don’t ever delve into real human issues… I don’t EVER write about the matters which actually apply to us! Why not?”

So down I sat upon my plump caboose wondering “what interests me regarding human issues and the music industry?” I could write about political influence in music but many a writer has taken many a toot on that horn. The corrupt and money-fuelled nature of the music industry, though lacking in originality, haunts my mind – but why delve into this when everybody has just learned to live with this? This will be a brief rant on the immature mentality of those who demand more than they’ve earned – the ones who feel many a size too big for their boots.

A fair place to begin this rant seems to be with money. We all want physical return for the work we do – we slave at our crafts, spending countless nights with fingers at keyboards, eyes glued to musical charts and tablature and senses brutalised by enough noise and garbage to forge some true semblance of individuality and in the ongoing quest towards improvement we often lose track of why we fell in love with the craft. A mentality overwhelms us – the belief that our crafts demand recompense and recognition for the measureless efforts we have committed to! We can all relate, but what many don’t realise is just how wrong that is.

Talent does deserve recognition, but before it demands this it needs to be better refined and developed into something of higher quality. This talent, as refined as a closed environment allows, it a great foundation, but before one demands the right to depend on this talent, one must remember that value is often determined by its reputation and generally how influential you have proven to be. A guitarist cannot lock herself inside a house and commit to true guitar mastery and demand financial reward upon leaving – she must learn, adapt, progress and challenge herself against the progress of others. She shouldn’t leave the house and instantly demand £15 for a guitar solo – she needs to earn her place in the world against a sea of competition. She will try, fail and persevere until she breaks through that wall and all see her for the incredible measure of talent she really is – but ability and experience are just two things to consider, and don’t even begin to explain the importance of respect and understanding.

Imagine, for a moment, that you’re hosting a small gathering of friends and the night is starting off just fine – your closest of friends are there, Frank’s crashed out over a balloon and it’s all good times! An hour in and Dan arrives! Calls of “Hey, Dan!” and “MY HOME-BOY!!” bellow through the room and the room is excited to see him – when seconds later he is followed in by a guy with an air of over-entitled pretentiousness. The vibes around him are negative, and following five minutes of total silence on his part he proceeds to take a can of Dark Fruits from your unguarded crate – the absolute fucking cheek!!

Why does this anger you so? It’s a social occasion, everybody is drinking and you’d have happily shared if he asked – but you’re still mad! It’s because he hasn’t earned the right to that cool, refreshing delicacy. He hasn’t worked towards positive relations with you and he hasn’t proven himself worthy of having one so what right does he have to take it? None. We live in a system where, for the most part, we are rewarded for our contributions and are respected for our own commitment this system – we do not live in a system which rewards you for your ego.

I often take issue with how we exist under the uncaring fist of Capitalism, a system designed to draw profit from every drop of blood and sweat you can offer – and there is a lot to hate, but one can’t deny that it does encourage better products as a result. The competition forces you to be the very best you can be and the system forces you to produce the highest quality work possible, the absolute minimum encouragement being to improve your work ethic.

Regardless of individual opinion, it cannot be denied that the key behind success is an incredible work ethic. It’s your mentality and willingness to progress, adapt and respect your field and community as a professional. 

I honestly believe that anything has the ability to achieve success, regardless of how extravagant or unlikely it seems – but it takes more than commitment to your technical ability or the exuberance of your ideas; it takes a remarkable level of respect, professionalism and patience. Forget about financial gain for a while, take your time and never presume to demand more than you may be worthy of – as fine as your footwear appears, when you stroll the world in boots too small you will always just look like a twat.

Automaton – Jamiroquai (album review)

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(official album artwork from the Automaton album)

And so I return! With an abnormally long absence from writing, I return to write about one of my more anticipated albums of the year and my closest connection to contemporary Pop Music (read into that as you like), Automaton by Jamiroquai! I imagine that Jamiroquai isn’t a name that stands in high regard to most, but as a die-hard fan of anything cheesy and funky, it appeals heavily to me and I am happy to declare that this album flies the same banner as all of their preceding albums – with beats and grooves teasing my adoration for the genre.

To detriment of my dear neighbours, I have decided to review this album at 12:30am and, regardless of social decency, I can’t help but to crank it up and feel the groove as intended by mister Jay Kay. Jamiroquai have long held a place in the hearts of people who respect and love the Funk and Disco genres and they have produced a great many songs which have brought influence in many areas of the Pop scene – with tracks such as Little L and Cosmic Girl still considered classics, despite their diminishing audience.

Discussing this band has always been a bit difficult for me on the basis that they cater perfectly to me as a musician and an individual and few others. Though I love many styles of music, I naturally gravitate towards Funk and cheesy 80’s Pop music – and I can’t expect this niche to appeal to many in the current musical world we live in. I would gladly give a recommendation to this because, in spite of the flaws the album may have to some, it strikes a chord in my heart and I just love it unconditionally. My recommendation would be as shallow as “Do you like Funk, 80’s music and/or a heavy snare sound? If yes then yes!”

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(more album artwork from the Automaton album)

If I were to criticise the album, and I am going to, I would say that much of the album is fairly difficult to connect to on a personal basis, but I feel like it’s not supposed to be a personal experience – it’s supposed to be a groove you flow to and something completely inoffensive that anybody can enjoy. A fan and newcomer alike may claim that the album does little to establish its own voice and do anything fresh, but a fan of the band might instantly protest this in claims that the band never aimed for complexity and depth, with only a handful of songs coming close to communicating a deeper and more thoughtful perspective.

Despite my history with the music, I would totally understand if somebody accused the music of being fairly flat and lacking in humanity, but I would never declare this a reason to dismiss the album. In my eyes, this music represents a different period of society and art in general – a time where we didn’t have to bow to any of the expectations of art that modern society and culture encourages. Maybe I share the opinions of out-of-touch pre-millennials, but I believe we live in a world where all media is monetised and everything is made with the purpose of being sold – when we watch a movie it is being written in the most simplistic and dumb way possible, and contemporary music seems more like some kind of cheap candy than anything else – with each Pop hit being the most blatant off-the-shelf object a song can be. Where older music can be simple, nothing of a previous era feels as much of a product as what is shovelled to us today.

What I mean with that rant is that music of previous musical generations had more heart to it and far more ideas than our current mainstream pop culture allows, and though one might come to such a conclusion when listening to the Automaton album, I believe that the instrumentation and feel of the album does much to imply a more caring and thoughtful approach. The album draws heavy influence from the synth feel of a different era and I would say the album should be commended for not losing sight of what the music was always supposed to be.

My final word in this review would be that it isn’t as worthwhile as their previous albums as a listening experience, but nobody should go out of their way to avoid this album. I can’t sing the praises of Funk Odyssey enough and their entire discography holds a great number of classics, and the character behind albums like Space Cowboy makes for a fantastic investment for one with an interest in Funk and Fusion music – but for those more demanding of complexity and a stronger message I wouldn’t recommend this, I would divert you to OK Computer, like everybody else with a snobby mentality and unchecked ego.

To Pimp A Butterfly – Kendrick Lamar (shameless fangirling)

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(album artwork for the To Pimp A Butterfly album)

Yeah this album didn’t come out this year, but I’m sat in my room now just grooving to the sly and sleazy feel of the To Pimp A Butterfly album and I just wanted the chance to run my mouth about how much I love this album. I have a very long list of albums I should be looking at, but after the travesty that was Tony Conrad I felt like I had earned the chance to write about something that I actually know I enjoy. I have a request to review the Automaton album by Jamiroquai (which I am very excited about) but right now I am more interested in rambling about something I couldn’t stop blowing if Lamar himself asked me to stop.

Where do I even start with this? Well a brief overview, I suppose! Kendrick Lamar is a shining star amongst many right now, as far as I know he has only been in the mainstream eye for a couple of years now and his reputation is doing nothing but grow. The music itself is just a joy to describe, or it is in this album at least: the album combines various aspects of Jazz and Fusion with a smooth and sexy modern R&B vibe to incredible effect. Like Thundercat, my previous musical obsession of this year, it’s more or less a Best Of from all Soul, Jazz and Hip-Hop through the years – a glorious exhibit showcased in a beautiful, state-of-the-art casing.

There is so much to sing about with this album. With ideas and variety and a mass combination of genres, it really does scream colour in a way nothing of its kind does – the only thing coming close being the aforementioned Thundercat, who actually appeared on this album. One seductive bass groove and creativity behind lyrical content is normally enough to make me like a track, but when you use these aspects in conjunction with Parliamentstyle bass imaging and soulful vocal harmonies? Well you have me swimming in the palm of your hands! Lamar performs this frequently throughout the album, the only times I’m not creaming over that glorious Funk being the times I explode violently over the incredible incorporation of Jazz. Serious, the saxophone in tracks like Alright will burn through you.

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(image sourced from the official Kendrick Lamar Facebook page)

Thinking of Alright also brings up the point of the rhythm and the way instruments are suddenly cut out. It’s pure mastery. The way he uses the silence between certain notes, does so much to force the impact of a returning drum beat or bass line and does so much to accent the incredible flow to Lamar’s rapping. Rap and Hip-Hop have always been inspiring genres for me and I respect the rhythmic quality to so many great rappers, but one thing that sets Lamar aside is the way he raps throughout the entire album – incorporating his voice and using it as one would use a percussive instrument to drive the entire ensemble. The creative genius extends to how it benefits the melodies of the harmonies and lead lines by retaining a monotone, freeing space for the phenomenal backing vocals and soundscaping to really soar and experiment to glorious result.

The mentality behind this album feels amazing. Lamar himself feeling less like the star of the show and more of a part of a larger product, making use of the incredible skill, experience and imagination of the incredible musicians he involves. The whole album possesses a wonderful tongue-in-cheek vibe with some parts sounding outright silly, but in a way that enables nothing but pure enjoyment, as evident in For Free? – Interlude and the intro to Wesley’s Theory, however, it seems to resolve in a deeper and more meaningful concept of unity amongst black people in a way that riveted me, held me and wouldn’t let me go until I truly understood the intensity to it.

My only issue with the album is nothing to do with the music itself, but society’s view on appropriation – the amount of times I want to rap along with the album almost seems to ruin the experience when I remember that my own ethnicity allows me little chance to relate to the lyrical content and, regardless of any opinion of appropriation, there is no justification for a geeky white Cornishman to drop the “N-Bomb”.

Regardless, this album is easily one of my favourite discoveries of the year, to the point where I’m saving my first listen and sub-sequent review of the DAMN. album until my birthday. With a combination of great-feeling music and some deeper, heavier concepts in places, this album has so much heart and music like this should be cherished and celebrated. With that I cannot give it a higher recommendation – listen to it, feel it and just fall in love with it.

And did I really make it through this entire review without explosively ejaculating over George Clinton’s phenomenal character, feel and skill? Of course not.

Ten Years Alive On The Infinite Plain – Tony Conrad (album review + angry rant)

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(official cover art for the album, infinitely superior to any part of the piece)

I throw the term “Shit-muncher” around a lot, and it doesn’t necessarily act as indication of a terrible band. In spite of my love of the Rumours album by Fleetwood Mac (one of my favourite albums of all time), I consider them as pretentious hippy bullshit and it falls into the realms of shit-muncher material. This one-track album by Tony Conrad is the perfect antithesis of acceptable shit-munch, being a ridiculous eighty-eight minutes of repetitive drone.  An enormous letdown for me, given as it received a gleaming five stars from Mojo Magazine in their most recent publication. With a description painting the release as a gloriously artistic and other-worldly spectacle, I went in with eager anticipation, expecting a true display of musical ingenuity. Oh how fucking wrong I was…

Firstly, as a disclaimer, I will admit that I have no other knowledge of Tony Conrad and have had no exposure to any of his previous work and, as far as I know, he could be entitled to the phenomenal reputation he has. I also want to clarify that I have no personal grievance with the man and, as he passed in April of last year, I will say nothing to insult his name – I serve only to bring an outsider perspective on the travesty that is this “musical” release.

When I say this is an eighty-eight minute drone fest I am being totally honest with you. Seriously, find it on Spotify and just skip through to random intervals of the track – or better yet, suffer the bullshit I faced by listening through the entire piece! I understand the purpose and creation of a soundscape, I have made many in my time as a musician. I also understand the nature of art and how it primarily serves to invoke a feeling or a story in the mind of the listener and, though I completely respect the artistic message to this, I feel any soundscape should possess something accessible or some form of genuine musicianship for it to be considered music. This piece is music in the loosest possible definition of the word as, technically, it is orchestrated sound – but the most pathetic, pretentious form of it imaginable.

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(don’t let the image fool you, professional and cool as he looks, the “music” is terrible)

With no exaggeration, I claim this as the worst “musical” endeavour I have ever experienced in my life. With bands I detest such as All Time Low being dreadful in their own right, there can be no dispute that they create music with the intention of appealing to somebody or some particular niche, this abomination does nothing but serve the pretentious ego of the creator. A word I heard it described as was “hypnotic” and I guess I can agree, in the same way I consider being repeatedly beaten over the head to be hypnotic, with the only means of enjoying it being means of Stockholm Syndrome, being generally sick in the head or so desperate to be respected as an individual that you will blindly ignore what is a dreadful and insulting piece of shit.

This approach to music genuinely revolts me and the lack of respect for the subject angers me to my very core. Music is a craft that opens one to the the world, reflects the beauty and wonder in all things, gives purpose to people and gives inspiration and identity and when a person releases a turd like this under the title of music it brutally undermines the integrity of musicians and art everywhere. This piece is the perfect example of a description I used to define some of my previous work – “the musical equivalent of throwing shit at a wall and calling it art” and, though I never claim to be exceptional in any respect, I can compare this to my body of work and consider myself a fucking genius.

This approach to orchestrating sound is an absolute disgrace to the musical arts and should be shunned by all. It shows blatant disrespect and almost mockery to what is probably the most incredible and pure thing ever devised by humans and pisses over everything musicians have spent thousands of years making and experimenting with. With a creation which invokes nothing but disgust and indignation, I will proudly announce to the world that this is the worst thing I have ever listened to in my life and maybe even the rest of my days to come.