Tag: experimental rock

New Video: Boris Shares a Feral Ripper

Formed back in 1992, Japanese, experimental heavy rock outfit Boris ((ボリス, Borisu) — core members Takeshi (vocals, bass, guitar), Wata (vocals, guitar, keys, accordion and echo) Atsuo (vocals, drums, percussion and electronics) and Mucho (drums) — settled on their current lineup in 1996. Since then, the members of Boris have tirelessly explored their own genre-defying take on heavy music.

In an effort to sublimate the negative energy surrounding everyone in 2020, Boris wrote and recorded NO, one of the most extreme albums of their widely celebrated and lengthy career. The band self-released the album during the heigh of pandemic-related lockdowns, desiring to get the album out as quickly as possible. But interestingly enough, they intentionally titled NO‘s closing track “Interlude,” while planning the album’s follow-up. 

Released earlier this year through Sacred Bones Records W saw the band crafting material that stylistically ranged from noise to New Age, continuing their long-held reputation for dynamic and sonically adventurous work. But the work is held together by a melodic deliberation through each song that helps the band accomplish their ultimate goal with the album — eliciting deep sensation.

NO and W were conceived to weave together to form NOW, a pair of releases that respond to each other: The band follows their hardest album with an effort that’s sensuous, lush and thundering. The result is a continuous circle of harshness and healing that seems more relevant — and necessary — now than ever. 

Throughout their history, the member of Boris have been remarkably prolific. Their second album of the year, the 10-track Heavy Rocks (2022) is slated for an August 12, 2022 release through Relapse Records. The album, which is another installment of their Heavy Rocks series sees Boris channeling 70s proto-metal and glam rock through their own unique lens.

“The world has changed over the last two years. Everyone’s thinking is simpler and pragmatic. Now, it is easier for everyone to grasp what is important to each of us,” the members of Boris say of the new album.

“We leave it to the future and pass it on. The soul of rock music is constantly evolving. A soul that transcends words and meaning to reach you – instinct, intuition, and fangs.

This is the heavy rock of Boris now.

As we land on our 30th anniversary, Boris continues to evolve, accelerating the latest and universal.

Boris does not lead anyone anywhere.

We just keep showing this attitude.”

Heavy Rocks‘ first single, album opening “She Is Burning” is a mosh-pit friendly, power chord-driven ripper that effortlessly meshes glam rock, punk and proto-metal in a way that kicks ass and takes names — while subtly hinting at early Soundgarden and Thin Lizzy.

Fittingly, the accompanying video which features dancing by Snatch, has the band dressed up as though they walked out of 1974 and the dancer performing in front of enormous flames. And holy shit, does it kick so much fucking ass!

New Video: Yoo Doo Right Shares Brooding Instrumental “The Failure of Tired, Stiff Friends”

Deriving their name from one of Can‘s best known — and perhaps most covered — songs, Montreal-based outfit Yoo Doo Right — Justin Cober (guitar, synths, vocals), Charles Masson (bass) and John Talbot (drums, percussion) — have developed an improvisational-based approach that features elements of krautrock, shoegaze, post-rock and psych rock that the band has described as “a car crash in slow motion.” 

Since their formation, You Doo Right have become a highly in-demand live act that has toured across North America, including making a run of the festival circuit with stops at LevitationM for MontrealSled IslandPop Montreal and New Colossus Festival earlier this year. Back in 2018, the Montreal-based experimental outfit was the main support act for Acid Mothers Temple‘s North American tour — and as a result, they’ve shared stages with the likes of DIIV, A Place to Bury StrangersWooden ShjipsKikagkiu MoyoFACS, Frigs, and Jessica Moss and several others. 

Yoo Doo Right’s highly-anticipated sophomore album A Murmur, Boundless To The East is slated for a June 10, 2022 through Mothland. After premiering the album’s material for hometown fans at Société des arts technologiques de Montréal, the band knew that there was only one way to record the album — live off-the-floor at Hotel2Tango. The band recruited acclaimed producer Radwan Ghazi Moumneh to assist them in crafting their vision.

Last month, I wrote about  A Murmur, Boundless To The East‘s first single, the epic “Feet Together, Face Up, On The Front Lawn,” a brooding mix of malevolence and uncanny beauty. The album’s second single, the instrumental track “The Failure of Stiff, Tired Friends” is centered around arpeggiated synths, twinkling keys, a relentless bass line serving as a silky bed for a Ennio Morricone-like guitar theme. Much like its predecessor, “The Failure of Stiff, Tired Friends” is a brooding and uneasy track that evokes lonely late night walks from the bar or a party in which you’re lost in your thoughts.

Directed and animated by Jared Karnas, follows a bored and lonely guy at a packed party. The night has stretched on, and he has spent a significant portion of the night, peeling the sticker off a beer bottle. He leaves the party and walks through the night streets of Montreal — to me, the video seems set in the Williamsburg-like Plateau Mont-Royal section — lost in his own brooding thoughts, barely noticing the couples in love or a sweet pup.

“The mood from this piece by Yoo Doo Right brings out a feeling I’m well accustomed to, which comes when we walk alone in the city, either very late at night, or very early in the morning,” Jared Karnas explains. “This moment of twilight that comes with sadness and loneliness, as we head back home after an evening that drew on. Time stops, we encounter people along the way, we hear the birds sing, yet we are lost in our thoughts, detached from our surroundings. It is this moment afloat that I set out to illustrate in this video.” 

New Video: Yoo Doo Right Shares Mind-Bending and Epic “Feet Together, Face Up, On The Front Lawn”

Deriving their name from one of Can‘s best known — and perhaps most covered — songs, Montreal-based Yoo Doo Right — Justin Cober (guitar, synths, vocals), Charles Masson (bass) and John Talbot (drums, percussion) — have developed an improvisational-based approach that features elements of krautrock, shoegaze, post-rock and psych rock that the band has described as “a car crash in slow motion.” 

Since their formation, You Doo Right have become a highly in-demand live act that has toured across North America, including making a run of the festival circuit with stops at LevitationM for MontrealSled IslandPop Montreal and New Colossus Festival earlier this year. Back in 2018, the Montreal-based experimental outfit was the main support act for Acid Mothers Temple‘s North American tour that year — and as a result, they’ve shared stages with the likes of DIIV, A Place to Bury StrangersWooden ShjipsKikagkiu MoyoFACS, Frigs, and Jessica Moss and several others. 

Their full-length debut, last year’s Don’t Think You Can Escape Your Purpose featured the slow-burning exercise in restraint and unresolved tension, album title track Don’t Think You Can Escape Your Purpose,” and the forceful and trippy motorik groove-driven “Presto Presto, Bella’s Dream.

Yoo Doo Right’s highly-anticipated sophomore album A Murmur, Boundless To The East is slated for a June 10, 2022 through Mothland. After premiering the album’s material for hometown fans at Société des arts technologiques de Montréal, the band knew that there was only one way to record the album — live off-the-floor at Hotel2Tango. The band recruited acclaimed producer Radwan Ghazi Moumneh to assist them in crafting their vision.

A Murmur, Boundless To The East‘s first single, the epic “Feet Together, Face Up, On The Front Lawn,” features a lengthy introductory section featuring oceanic guitar feedback paired with thunderous drumming before morphing into a brief krautrock section featuring oscillating synths, driving rhythms and glistening guitars paired with punchily delivered vocals. The song ends with a lengthy coda of oceanic guitar feedback and thunderous drumming.
The end result manages to be a brooding mix of malevolence and uncanny beauty.

Mackenzie Reid Rostad created an accompanying short film shot with thermal cameras, which gives the entire proceeding a spectral vibe. “We knew we wanted to explore a narrative or continuity with the film and in the end, this happened to be that of enclosure. It’s both a product and a process of something that itself has no end,” Reid explains. “The track’s title and those for the rest of the album really echo this general desire to transcend this something as manifest in the proliferating enclosures of the visible (fences, power lines, highways, etc.) and non-visible (frontiers, thresholds) world. The entire video was shot with a thermal camera and beyond the materiality of the image (light/heat and visible/non-visible), its very existence is a fragment of the latter, as this kind of technology has been developed and heavily deployed in the service of private property and national frontiers. These are the kinds of things I’m thinking about when listening to Yoo Doo Right anyhow and again this something, of which enclosure is an aspect, is a process. I started with this somewhere in the back of my mind and the music pulled this process out of everything that followed.”

New Video: Lyon’s Ashinoa Shares Tribal and Hallucinogenic “Koalibi”

Lyon, France-based experimental synth act Ashinoa quickly exploded into the national and international scene with the release of their full-length debut, 2019’s Sinie Sinie, an effort that saw the French synth outfit establishing a minimalist krautrock sound and approach.

The Lyon-based synth act supported their full-length debut with tours across their native France opening for JOVM mainstays METZ and Flamingods, Warrmduscher, Bo NingenKikagaku Moyo and others.

Ashinoa’s sophomore album L’Orée is slated for a March 25, 2022 release through Fuzz Club. The album reportedly sees the building upon the minimalist krautorck of their debut while taking the listener on a psychedelic journey through the wilderness through shape-shifting electronics.

Primarily centered around a largely synthesizer-driven soundscape, L’Orée‘s material sees the members of Ashinoa exploring a much more natural, organic sound than their previously released work, a sound that at times is percussive and dance floor friendly and other times hypnotic and expansive — and largely inspired by the environment it was written and recorded in. Recorded in a house, tucked away in the French countryside, which bordered on a surrounding forest, the band recalls that the album sessions were spent soaking up their immediate surroundings with a number of collaborators coming in and out to play on the record: 

“The house we recorded the album in was kind of in the middle of nowhere, surrounded by Douglas Pine trees. From this proximity to the forest, we wanted to take our soundscapes to a place we’ve never been before,” the members of the French-based experimental act explain. “Before we were surrounded by concrete, and then far from it. We were looking for a new listening place, to discover new intriguing sounds. We had laid down the basis of the album and then musician friends that would visit us at the time were invited to participate in the making of the album, each one of them bringing a touch of their own.”

So far i’ve written about two previously released singles:

  • Disguised by Orbit,” a L’eclair and Mildlife-like bop centered around cosmic grooves, old school boom bap and Brit Pop swagger
  • Feu De Joie,” which features some scorching psych rock riffage, twinkling synths and an oscillating beat in a jazz fusion meets psych rock-like jam

L’Orée‘s third and latest single “Koalibi” is a percussive track centered around syncopated polyrhythm, oscillating electronics, a trippy motorik groove and jungle noises — specifically birds and animals calling to each other. Koalibi” is one-part tribal house, one-part acid house one-part psych pop — and entirely danceable.

“’Koalibi’ sounds like the jungle, with animals screaming and birds flying up in all directions. It’s a ritual movement. It’s dancing,” the band says of L’Orée‘s third single.

Animated by Morgane Botella, the accompanying visual for “Koalibi” fittingly features jungle-like imagery with various wild creatures flying, crawling, swimming and climbing through the jungle, as humanoid figures float by on boats. The humanoid figures travel to a mystical spot, where they trip out and dance throughout the night in their boats — as the wind blows through the reeds and grasses.

New Audio: Lyon, France’s Ashinoa Shares Slow-Burning and Trippy “Feu De Joie”

 Lyon, France-based experimental synth act Ashinoa quickly exploded into the national and international scene with the release of their full-length debut, 2019’s Sinie Sinie, an effort that saw the Lyon-based act establishing a minimalist krautrock approach.

Ashinoa supported Sinie Sinie with tours across France opening for JOVM mainstays METZ and Flamingods,Warrmduscher, Bo NingenKikagaku Moyo and others. The rising French act’s sophomore album L’Orée is slated for a March 25, 2022 release through Fuzz Club, and the album reportedly sees the band building upon the minimalist karutrock of their debut while taking the listener on a journey through the wilderness through shape-shifting, psychedelic electronics. 

While primarily centered around a largely synthesizer-driven soundscape, L’Orée‘s material sees the members of Ashinoa exploring a much more natural, organic sound than their previously released work, a sound that at times is percussive and dance floor friendly and other times hypnotic and expansive — and largely inspired by the environment it was written and recorded in. Recorded in a house, tucked away in the French countryside, which bordered on a surrounding forest, the band recalls that the album sessions were spent soaking up their immediate surroundings with a number of collaborators coming in and out to play on the record: 

“The house we recorded the album in was kind of in the middle of nowhere, surrounded by Douglas Pine trees. From this proximity to the forest, we wanted to take our soundscapes to a place we’ve never been before,” the members of the French-based experimental act explain. “Before we were surrounded by concrete, and then far from it. We were looking for a new listening place, to discover new intriguing sounds. We had laid down the basis of the album and then musician friends that would visit us at the time were invited to participate in the making of the album, each one of them bringing a touch of their own.”

Late month, I wrote about “Disguised by Orbit,” a L’eclair and Mildlife-like bop centered around cosmic grooves, old school boom bap and Brit Pop swagger. “Feu De Joie,” L’Orée‘s second and latest single, derives its name for the French term for bonfire. Interestingly, “Feu De Joie” is centered around some scorching psych rock riffage, twinkling synths paired with an oscillating beat — and may arguably be the most jazz fusion meets psych rock leaning track on the album.

“The main theme was inspired by the Hispanic composer Manuel de Falla and his ‘El amor Brujo’ work. This track condenses the idea that we had for the album. It signals a change between universes.”

Lyric Video: Athenian Artist Theodore Shares Expansive, Shoegazer-like “Frame of Reference”

Initially schooled in piano and traditional Greek folk music, before heading to London to study Music Composition, the critically applauded Athens, Greece-based singer/songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and composer, Theodore frequently meshes classically inspired compositions, electronic production and rock arrangements to create a cinematic sound and approach that nods at psych rock, prog rock and experimental rock. And in some way, it shouldn’t be surprising that the critically applauded Athenian artist has publicly cited Sigur RosRadioheadPink FloydManos HadjidakisVangelis PapathanasiouNils FrahmThe NationalOlafur Arnalds and Max Richter as being major influences on his work and sound. 

The Athens-based artist performed his sophomore album It Is But It’s Not at London’s Abbey Road Studio 2 and the live footage of that session amassed over two million YouTube views. Building upon a rapidly growing profile, Theodore and his backing band played sets across the global festival circuit, including Reeperhbahn FestivalEurosonic NooderslagRelease Festival, New Colossus and  SXSW.

Adding to a growing profile, he also opened for Sigur Ros and DIIV, and has received praise from a number of major outlets including Clash MagazineMusic WeekTsugiFGUK, Gaffa and Szene, as well as airplay from BBC Radio 6 Music’s Lauren Laverne.

As a composer, Theodore has written the scores for Matina Megla’s Windo and Vladan Nikolic’s Bourek. He was also commissioned to write a new, live score for Buster Keaton’s classic silent comedy The Cameraman, which was performed by the acclaimed Greek artist and his band during a screening at the Temple of Zeus. (Seriously, how cool is that?)

Theodore’s third album, 2018’s Inner Dynamics thematically found the Greek artist looking inward to examine the dichotomies — and dualities — of his identity to seek new, creative potential. “On It Is But It’s Not, I tried to explore how the opposite elements in the universe interact, how they fight and how without the one you can’t have the other.” Theodore says, adding, “For Inner Dynamics, I was trying to express my urge to connect the conscious and subconscious part of myself so I can be creative. It’s an understanding that humans are not just one thing, and they shouldn’t try to hide certain elements of their personality because society likes to put labels of who we are. It’s the different sides of my self that makes who I am.” 

The Athens-based singer/songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and composer’s fourth album, The Voyage is slated for a March 13, 2022 release through United We Fly. The Voyage is a concept album that takes the listener on a journey through space while examining and reflection on human evolution.

The album’s latest single “Frame of Reference” is a slow-burning and expansive song that begins with a lengthy introduction featuring atmospheric synths and slowly builds up into a massive, orchestral swelling with swirling, shoegazer-like guitars and increasingly forceful drumming. The two distinct sections are held together by Theodore’s yearning vocals.

“Frame of Reference” is inspired by a dream Theodore had in which he was looking back on how charmingly blue Earth was, as he was floating away in outer space. The song as he explains is about how the things we don’t really appreciate in our daily lives can often appear beautiful from a distant point of view.

Fittingly, “Frame Of Reference” is accompanied by a space imagery themed, official lyric video, which helps set the overall mood for the Athenian artist’s forthcoming album.

“This lyric video is a space journey. From Earth to the planets of our solar system, to distant galaxies and interstellar transitions,” Danai Nielsen, the video’s director explains in press notes. “It follows the emotion and intensity of the song, trying to communicate and engage the emotion that Theodore conveys musically into moving images. It has a strong element of nostalgia and exploration. We are moving away from the Earth, our safe base and home, without a clear destination. We are just floating in this infinitely beautiful space.”

New Video: Lyon, France’s Ashinoa Releases A Trippy Visual For Mind-Bending “Disguised in Orbit”

With the release of their full-length debut, 2019’s Sinie Sinie, the Lyon, France-based experimental synth act Ashinoa quickly exploded into the national and international scene: Sinie Sinie saw the French act establishing a minimalist krautrock approach.

The members of the Lyon-based act supported the album with tours around France opening for JOVM mainstays METZ and Flamingods, Warrmduscher, Bo Ningen, Kikagaku Moyo and others. Ashinoa’s forthcoming sophomore album L’Orée is slated for a March 25, 2022 release through Fuzz Club, and the album reportedly sees the band building upon the minimalist karutrock of their debut while taking the listener on a journey through the wilderness through shape-shifting, psychedelic electronics.

Although centered around a largely synthesizer-driven soundscape, L’Orée‘s material sees the members of Ashinoa exploring a much more natural, organic sound than their previously released work, a sound that at times is percussive and dance floor friendly and other times hypnotic and expansive — thanks in part to the environment it was written and recorded in. Recorded in a house, tucked away in the French countryside, which bordered on a surrounding forest, the band recalls that the album sessions were spent soaking up their immediate surroundings with a number of collaborators coming in and out to play on the record:

“The house we recorded the album in was kind of in the middle of nowhere, surrounded by Douglas Pine trees. From this proximity to the forest, we wanted to take our soundscapes to a place we’ve never been before,” the members of the French-based experimental act explain. “Before we were surrounded by concrete, and then far from it. We were looking for a new listening place, to discover new intriguing sounds. We had laid down the basis of the album and then musician friends that would visit us at the time were invited to participate in the making of the album, each one of them bringing a touch of their own.”

L’Orée‘s first single “Disguised by Orbit” is banger centered a trance-inducing, trippy groove, polyrhythmic breakbeats and undulating synths. The end result — to my ears — is a slick synthesis of L’eclair and Mildlife-like cosmic grooves, old school boom bap and Brit Pop swagger.

“This song feels like those beautiful night skies,” the members of Ashinoa explain. “You’re feeling tipsy, a bit high maybe. When the colours surrounding you aren’t really what they seem. Everything sparkles like crazy as if everything was disguised.”

Directed by Jeremy Labarre and Matteo Fabri, the recently released video for “Disguised by Orbit” follows a mutton chop wearing man as she angrily walks through a damp European downtown before encountering a gorgeous robe that encourages him to strut, vamp and dance through town. We also see a woman in the same rob, dancing in the desert.