On their new album Empros, Chicago-based trio Russian Circles makes a convincing case for instrumental post-[insert genre]. “309,” Empros‘ opener, hits harder than anything the band has done before, due in equal part to the guitar tone (fits right in with the cover’s pervasive reds, for all you synesthetes out there) and the rhythm section’s locked-in chemistry. Emrpos is available now on Sargent House. You can also stream/buy it off Russian Circles’ Bandcamp page.
Om has been around since 2003, when it was formed by Al Cisneros (bass and vocals) and Chris Hakius (drums). Their 2009 album, God is Good, is the band’s fourth overall and its first with Emil Amos on drums after Hakius’s departure in 2008. Amos, the man behind Holy Sons and the drummer in the similarly pre-exotic post-rocking act Grails, brings a new nuance to Om’s repetitive, Tibetan take on whatever it is they are taking on–the spirit, historiography, sacred texts, death, prayer, and so forth.
They have a new album coming out in 2012, so put that in your day planner. This one is out now, on Drag City. Oh, and it’s produced by Steve Albini.
|palimpsests of swelter beneath a new temperate regime|
My general conception of great nineties guitar-based alternative music is indelibly centralized around Polvo, a band formed in 1990 in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. Polvo’s earliest recordings consist of fairly unabashed, aggressive, mathy post-punk (check out 1993’s Today’s Active Lifestyles for a sprawling distortional romp), while its output in later years saw the band cross-fade its former ideas with approaches more proggy and Eastern-tinged before its break-up in 1998.
This specific track is the closer off of the band’s excellent In Prism, the 2009 reunion album, which I was hesitant to approach. Turns out that that fear was unfounded, since this plays not so much as a backward-glancing money-grabber as a series of long-churning ideas pensively pressed. The album, produced by the great Brian Paulson, is out on Merge Records.
This Sunday (TOMORROW) Duluth, Minnesota’s LOW are playing at Colorado College’s Armstrong Theater, thanks to KRCC. Tickets are $10 with a student ID at the Worner Desk in the Worner Center. Doors open at 6:30 and the show starts at 7:00.
Check out the band’s website to get a sense of their sound, if you haven’t yet had the pleasure.
Low’s latest album–their ninth–was released by Sub Pop in April. As with all their previous efforts, C’mon is a slow-burner, revealing itself in time to be a careful study in restraint and a critical examination of us, here, today.
Be sure to check them out on Sunday, September 25th at Colorado College’s Armstrong Theater at 7pm. Check out KRCC’s website for more details.