Friday, February 11, 2011

Features :: Weaponize Your Stereo Today :: Not Not Fun Records

I just wanted to shine a light on a couple of new releases from Not Not Fun Records (and see how they felt for a change).

This happy couple started out as a simple tape and CD-R label and evolved steadily into vinyl and other media, building on its current catalog of well over 200 releases and counting. Based on the last couple of NNF purchases that I've been zoning out to at home, you're not going to be able to ignore their future releases.

I haven't stopped flipping this first one tonight, and while I'm no pothead (all ahm sayin iz whiskey's for winners), it has got me to thinking fondly on the times when my old roommates would beckon me into their brooding pits so that I could hold the last clean plate under their light switch wall plates while they scraped the dark dust of pot residue off with a razor blade, motes drifting all around us as a reminder of the lost hours, weekends we spent holed up watching Cronenberg films frame-by-frame. I'm calling it: this is my favorite album (to date) of 2011. Slide that tape into my abdomen, friend. As my flesh receptively parts for your hand alone, you'll see therein lies the gateway to another dimension.

Peaking Lights

From NNF's album description:
'Sometimes it feels so simple: two of our favorite people in one of our favorite bands release one of our favorite records of all time. 2009’s Imaginary Falcons was its own genius slushpile of tape-hissy drift-dub haze anthems, no question, but 936 takes every facet of the Peaking Lights mighty diamond and shines it to fluorescent perfection. The songwriting is insane; “All The Sun That Shines,” “Amazing & Wonderful,” “Tiger Eyes (Laid Back),” etc, all seep into yr mindstream and float there like melodic gold dust. Indra Dunis’ silky soul-jazz keys and tranced vocals have never sounded so exquisite, and Aaron Coyes busts out the best bass/drum loops and sneaky dub guitar of his musical lifetime. Recorded by Luke Tweedy at Flat Black Studios in Iowa City (where both the NNF Wet Hair LPs were tracked) and mastered in Berlin, 936 retains the cool crate-digger grit of their earlier highlights, but within a much more vivid spectrum of sound. Could not be more jazzed and honored to unveil this total groove-wave classic. Black vinyl LPs in jackets with vintage art by the band. Edition of 600.'

Psychic Reality
Vibrant New Age

Describing last year's split LP with LA Vampires (NNF label leader's band):
'A unique marriage of the "heavy and beautiful," Psychic Reality is actually the musical presence of just one woman: Leyna Noel Tilbor. The Bay Area musician describes her sound as alternately "crumbling," "melodic," "roaring," and "fragile" -- to throw out just a few adjectives. Although Psychic Reality has toured the country from coast to coast, this will be her SXSW debut. Her new album, a split LP with LA Vampires on the Not Not Fun label, was released in February.'

I'll add to that earlier Peaking Lights review that this band brings the thumping post-reggae rhythm to the front of the classroom and plants it on the teacher's desk for everyone to deal with like it was a dead mass of unknown mammalian genetics brought in fresh from the playground (too far?).  And Psychic Reality has got this vibe that's still trying to work itself out. While there's energy in abundance, I feel a lot of it gets spent on the beats per minute when there are simpler, more elegant methods for driving up the momentum. I almost wish the names of the bands were switched to better fit their respective sounds. But I'm a fan of both and would be a wooden-toothed liar if I said otherwise, whatever the fuck that means.

Peaking Lights :: "All the Sun that Shines"

Psychic Reality :: "Fruit"

Peaking Lights :: Tiger Eyes (Laid Back)

Psychic Reality :: Elle Elle Beat

Watch your distributor of choice for these upcoming releases, because this is a god damned democracy, man, and you can buy your sounds from whatever piece-of-shit, back alley doctor you choose:

Dylan Ettinger Lion of Judah 7" (NNF224)
Wet Hair Radiant Lines 7" + art book (NNF225)

1 comment:

  1. The Peaking Lights at least sounds to me like King Tubby produced a monstrous love child with Mamas/Papas' "California Dreaming", and then sent it off to be mixed and mastered by Trentemoller...