I was on a serious The Cure binge about a month ago. I’ve loved the album Disintegration since first listening to it way, way back in the early 90’s. Disintegration is an album I come back to time and again. This month I found myself cycling through most of the bands discography, landing on, and purchasing Bloodflowers. I find some of The Cure’s music cheezy, some of it dated, and often can’t help picturing Robert Smith as ambling about in an agitated state, wearing a tattered Kimono, with a Chesterfield hanging from his swollen lips. All that aside, I feel the music is honest and vulnerable and it strikes a chord with me. I have a special place in my heart for cheezy tunes as well.
Wye Oak released Cut All the Wires: 2009–2011 which I picked up over at Bandcamp. This has been in heavy rotation throughout the month as well. For me, this period of time represents Wye Oak at their best. Their albums of late have veered in a direction that is unappealing to me. While these songs may no longer resonate with Jenn Wasner, they do connect with a part of me. There are some very beautiful demo’s and songs on this album.
Came across Darto a couple of years ago at the local library when I found Human Giving. That album is odd, kind of arty, a pastiche of music and styles. It wasn’t something that put a musical bug in my ear but was unique enough that I listened to the album from time to time. I happened to venture into their (sadly limited) discography this month and landed on a couple earlier releases that I find myself listening to over and over. Fuzzy, noisy, grinding – music I can easily get lost in.
Puscifer / A Perfect Circle
Yes, I’ve added two completely different bands to the same section. Consider it a Maynard James Keenan grouping. I’ve had mixed feelings about both of these bands. While on the one hand I thought A Perfect Circle’s first album, Mer de Noms, was an incredible collection of music, their subsequent albums have dwindled in impact. Puscifer felt like more of a joke band than anything and I gave them little attention after listening to “V” is for Vagina.
That being said I ventured out and spent some hours cycling through both bands discography’s and did come away with a greater appreciation for Puscifer. While I’ll never call myself a huge fan of the band, there were at least an album worth of tracks from all of their albums that I thought were pretty damn good.
I had also previously written off A Perfect Circle’s latest album, Eat the Elephant, and while I think it is their weakest release to date, I did come away with a number of tracks that put a bug in my ear. The title track is a sweet, moving piece that I was continually hitting repeat on (and has a cool video to go with it).
While making my way through APC’s discography I came across an acoustic version of Orestes that I haven’t heard in many, many years. To hear it again was like a homecoming of sorts. A beautiful rendition of a beautiful song.
My all-time favorite band. With the recent release of Kid A Mnesia I found myself cycling through hundreds of Radiohead songs in my collection. While I have Kid A and Amnesiac, the release of previously unreleased tracks was obviously of interest. One notable favorite from the collection is the True Love Waits version they released, Pulk/Pull (True Love Waits Version). This was such a cool combination of track pieces and sounds any Radiohead fan is already familiar with. And what Radiohead fan doesn’t love the song True Love Waits to begin with?
I’ve been on a pretty deep death metal dive the past few months as well, re-connecting with old school death metal in a way I never thought I would at this age. One band of note that I’ve been revisiting with much gusto, enough to pick up the original album again, is Deicide. What can you say? The lyrics, like all death metal, are laughably extreme to the point of being b-rated, but it’s the energy and crunch and adrenaline producing lift that catches me every time.
Continuing with the heavy stuff and wrapping this up, is Dying Fetus. I came across this band on a death metal playlist that Pandora spit out. They’ve been around for awhile but I had never heard them before this past week. While I’m still digging into their discography, the heaviness, and vocal back-and-forth of the guitarist’s has caught my attention. For some reason the music provides the perfect background while designing websites. Their music videos are also unbelievably violent and not for the faint of heart. As I told a friend this week, “They sure didn’t make videos like this when we were younger”.