Said the Gramophone - image by Matthew Feyld
by Jeff

Empty streets at dawn

Nennen - "Villeray"

I always waited to see the quiet bands. They were usually slotted right at the end of marathon all-ages matinees. Some of the crowd would have gone by the time they set up, so there was room for me to sprawl out on the floor, exhausted. When they started playing, someone at the back would turn off a few of the overhead lights and the quality of the room would change.

In the half-empty space we listened closely to the whispered vocals and the slow-building music. Playing out of small amps, with brushes on drums, this music was like a cool shower after the lightning storms of the loud bands. And a stillness would grow in the space. When the set ended, a whisper falling into silence, we moved slower. We spoke softly as we left the darkened room and stepped into the evening light.

Nennen's new LP Two Mountains carries the same feelings as the quiet bands of my youth. The songs on this record are slow, intentional, and their power builds over time. This is music that rewards careful listening in the dark.


(Untitled photo by Gregory Crewdson)

by Sean
Mario 3

TW Walsh - "Shallow Water". This song begins, literally, with the sound of fumbling. Something is happening, some shifting of gestures, some slipping of fabrics, as the melody begins. Rising chords and falling vocals, old synths or new software, everything wet and dry at the same time. What is happening to those drums? Are they breaking or being made? It is as if Walsh is singing hopefully of defeats. Singing of defeats, defeat after defeat, inevitable defeats - and yet in a hopeful way. As if the obvious ending is in fact a twist. As if there's a cheat at the last second, sometimes you haven't noticed yet, some way that fumbling isn't fumbling. Is it something the monks know? Or the fisher-people? Is it something the musicians have found, turning dying instants into ever afters?



by Emma

Basia Bulat - "Infamous"
Basia Bulat - "The Garden"

No matter how loud they are, Basia Bulat's songs never feel loud enough to me. I used to think this was some fault in the recording, some technical thing I didn't have the words for and had no grounds to complain about, until the first time I saw her play a show; the first time I watched her voice move across an enormous, shifting crowd like weather, saw it still everyone, enormously, like it was nothing at all. Once that happened, I realized that what I wanted wasn't louder, not exactly - it was that I wanted to wrap the sound of around me; to reel it, clear and ringing, across my nervous system, get as close as possible to the angle at which it struck me, impossibly so. To move inside it, move it with me, like a mood.

[Buy Good Advice]

by Mitz
(Photo Source)

Neu! - "Negativland"

Good afternoon, everyone. I think people are freaking out of facebook emoticon thingy today but please calm down and if you are a real slim shady, please sit down.

So I was walking home the other night and I was listening to Neu! First a couple of seconds of this song just scare me every time.

It just sounds like snowplow machine is chasing me and running me over. I don't know where you live but here in Montreal, Snowplower will run you over. They are top of food-chain of sidewalk. They drive that thing so fast and they run over as many bicycles as possible and run you over. Kidding! I'm sure most of them are nice snow plowers. I just don't want to offend them because they will run me over.

Anyways, when I listen to this song, I have to look back to make sure I don't get shredded into pieces and bloods everywhere on white snow and my hand still holding vape and my ass still farting in snow for the last time. Pigeons will eat my body parts and they fly away but as soon as they are flying over condos, pigeons start shitting on condos and they all die. People from condos come outside and they freak out. Some of them would say, "What is happening!?" and another person say same thing. Maybe, Hollywood will make a B-movie called, "Happening" and all the main casts are white.

This is Mitz Takahashi reporting, back to you, Mutsumi.

by Jeff
a white-haried women sitting at a table, smiling

Poison Girls - "Crisis"
Poison Girls - "Persons Unknown"

Vi Subversa's voice is a vicious but versatile instrument. On the Poison Girls' debut 1979 album Hex she conveys anguish, anger, exhaustion, and gleeful mischief.

Throughout the record, Subversa skewers the hypocrisies of Britain in its first year under Margaret Thatcher. "Jump Mama Jump" slags off the nuclear family, showing how the unending work of motherhood keeps women trapped (and includes a recording of a vicious child cursing out their mother). "Under the Doctor" confronts the horrors of mental illness head on, criticizing the indifference of the medical establishment. The sound of boots marching in lockstep at the beginning of "Crisis" ties the military state to the domestic sphere. Over pounding bass and spidery guitars, Subversa's lyrics brought the war home, connecting it to domestic abuse and consumerism. The repetitive chorus "Normal, normal / Crisis, crisis," cuts right to the uncertainty at the heart of everyday life.

On the seven minute long single "Persons Unknown," released by Crass Records in 1980, Subversa's voice is less anguished, but calm and clear-sighted. In one epic verse she presents a panoramic view of England at the end of the 1970s including "Accountants in nylon shirts," "anarchists and dissidents," "smokers with heart disease, cleaners of the lavatories." After offering a long list of social types, members of various classes, professions, religious and political affiliations, Subversa equalizes them all, singing "Flesh and blood is who we are." All difference is superficial, Subversa told us. All we ever are is what was given to us by our mothers: flesh and blood.

Vi Subversa (born Frances Sokolov) passed away last week at the age of 80. She was over 40 and a mother of two when she started her band in 1979, possessing a voice that refused to be silenced, the voice of a woman who had seen enough and wasn't going to take any shit. Her voice was sharp and fierce, unable to tell a lie. You can see an amazing video of her singing "Old Tart" last year in Brighton here. Rest in power.


(image source unknown)

by Sean

Cannon Bros - "Fall Down". Why are you in such a hurry? What are you in such a hurry to do? Sometimes you fall down so fast there's no chance to catch yourself. A song can snag your heart like a barbed arrow, a fish-hook on a lure. One barb and you're down. One tune, two voices, an unfettered pronouncement of drums. 99 seconds.


by Mitz
(Photo Source) Pelada - "Ten Cuidado(Jock Club Remix)" [Free Download Directly from them]

"Dance Dance Revolution will not be televised." Me, 2015