Premiere: Hayden Pedigo - “Stray” feat. Danny Paul Grody

The latest LP from Seattle’s killer Debacle Records comes courtesy of Amarillo, TX guitarist Hayden Pedigo. Five Steps veers between two sides of Pedigo’s musical spectrum: crisp, beautiful acoustic numbers that build upon his low-key debut album, and tripped out, blasted experimentation on the other (the side-long “Dream Theory Parts One-Four”). You’ll just have to wait to hear the rest, but for now you can grab a glass of whiskey, sit out on the porch, and let “Stray” soundtrack these fleeting sunny summer afternoons. It’s a gorgeous tune that gives a good indication of what to expect from the first half of the record; however, there should be further hints at the darkness to come from the album’s second half, so keep an eye out for more details from Debacle in anticipation of Five Steps’ October 28 release date.

• Hayden Pedigo:
• Debacle Records:

Watch: Ahnnu - “goooochi st00pid”

How relevant is a two year old remix of a five year old song? Considering the circumstances, pretty relevant. GodsConnect knows what’s up. Timing is everything, or some other cliche about time. And even if the video/track wasn’t presently pertinent, at least Ahnnu tore that loop a new one. Celebrate that!

Check out the rest of GodsConnect’s work. Like maybe this gem, or even re-peep C’s shout out (“Knx does lyrics??” What a troll!!) from earlier this month.

• Gucci Mane:
• Ahnnu:
• GodsConnect:

♫ Listen: Oren Ambarchi & Eli Keszler - “ALPS I” [extract]

Ominous. A sign of things ahead. A preparation, as it were, of something disturbing. Always pushing ahead with the main act, always trying to go forward where going forward seems impossible. There’s a darkness ahead, isn’t there?

But what is that darkness of? What stands before us? What can we not see that implores us forward into something meaningless that we can’t understand? What are we to prepare for, if we cannot accept what is happening? The impossible becomes a useless ideal, for we cannot grasp it within ourselves, waiting forever for the right moment to assert our being over the void rather than within it. We refuse darkness because it is wrong. And yet by refusing it…

We dance around the audio of being, rather than accept the noise that bombards us. That is the power of a perception filter: the noise becomes so intense that you just try to find something to hang on to, enough to ignore a lot of what passes by. But some do not have this. They have to endure every noise and sight like a thousand swords that merely prick instead of impale. A hindrance and a lot of bleeding, but no release.

When you can only do then is hear ahead, what is beyond. Knowing that something is ahead, yet unable to discern or see what it could mean.

Noise lords Oren Ambarchi & Eli Keszler are came out a new LP entitled ALPS in edition of 500 on Dancing Wayang Records and you’re invited to feel their velocity. Listen to “ALPS I” [excerpt] streaming below:

• Oren Ambarchi:
• Eli Keszler:
• Dancing Wayang Records:

Tiny Mix Tapes Hopscotch day party lineup finalized, featuring Rene Hell, Lee Noble, Tokyo Hands, Secret Boyfriend, Giant Claw

BREAKING: you have less than one week to fine-tune and stress test your inner ear’s rotational accelerometer. Tiny Mix Tapes (hi), DiggUpTapes, Apothecary, and Lonerider Brewing Company have now finalized all details of the previously announced September 4 Hopscotch day party — ORIENTATION IN SPACE V — and we will be on-site to document and laugh at anyone’s vertigo-induced puking.

The event is free and open to the public, taking place at both Kings Barcade and Neptune’s Parlour in downtown Raleigh. After you’re done ooooohing and aaaahing at the lineup and set times, be sure to RSVP at this Facebook event page.

Kings Barcade:
04:00 PM Rene Hell
03:00 PM Heads on Sticks
02:00 PM Lee Noble
01:00 PM Secret Boyfriend

Neptune’s Parlour:
05:45 PM Tokyo Hands
05:00 PM Nick James
03:30 PM Aldi
02:45 PM Giant Claw
02:00 PM Paciens Trine x Chris Pantry
01:30 PM Goblin Mold
12:45 PM Drag Sounds

Hope to see you all there, it should be a lot of fun! In the meantime, get to know each and every performer by sampling their sounds below.

Film Review: The Trip To Italy (Dir. Michael Winterbottom)

The Trip To Italy
Dir. Michael Winterbottom

[IFC Films; 2014]

by Robert Ham


Michael Winterbottom has been something of a grinder in the film industry over the past two decades. In that time, he has cranked out an impressive body of work, knocking out at least one movie a year, each one shifting in size and scope as he’s moved forward with his career. He can follow up a scrappy drama about two Pakistanis trying to emigrate to the UK with a large scale science fiction work and then a bedroom drama that required the actors onscreen to actually have sex with each other.

With projects in development all the time, you start to understand why he would turn around and work on something like The Trip and its recently released follow up The Trip To Italy. It is the cinematic equivalent of a vacation for Winterbottom. All he has to do is spent a few weeks in some beautiful countryside that practically films itself, set up a space for a couple of comedic geniuses to banter over a delicious meal, and let the cameras roll.

That relaxed feeling that pervades the work only helps to emphasize and highlight the unease of what is unfurling in front of the cameras between actor/comedians Steve Coogan and Rob Brydon, especially on their journey through Italy. The overarching theme of this particular Trip is male friendship and how strangely loving and discomfortingly competitive it can often be.

As much fun as it is to watch the two trade impressions of Michael Caine and the various James Bonds, there’s a gamesmanship apparent in each scene. Each one wants to outsmart and outperform the other. Or in Coogan’s case, it is simply to get his frenemy to admit in some small or large way that his own career has been the superior one. It never quite gets to that point, as Brydon is too busy taking himself down a peg while also ribbing Coogan for his vanity and standoffish attitude.

Trip To Italy also goes surprisingly and subtly deep on the male species, particularly the English version. A subplot involving Coogan trying to make a connection with his teenage son is lovely and a little heartbreaking as his British demeanor keeps him from offering up any real affection towards the young man. An inability to express emotions fully comes out in Brydon’s side story. On the trip, he tries and fails to connect in any way with his wife, which feeds his decision to have a fling with a much-younger English expat. And the only person that he opens up to onscreen is his editor (Claire Keelan, reprising her role from the first series/film).

Maybe then Winterbottom’s decision to simply set up a couple of cameras and let them roll was the smartest one he could have made. Why bother trying to add even more weight to this Trip when all the drama is being felt in every eye roll, cutting remark, and pained expression coming from Coogan and Brydon?

♫ Listen: Katrina Stonehart - “A2”

Like softly running a branch along a chain link fence while staring through its diamonds to see the perfectly sectioned off images comprising a quiet pond on the other side, Drew Gibson’s Katrina Stonehart project has always had a wandering curiosity about it. Nowhere to be. The noise from the fence ringing out and seemingly sputtering into silence as the soundwaves reach the end of perception. A glancing upward to see where it has all gone. Without these limitations in hearing, everything would be noise. The transitions in song buried underneath the weight predecession. The dropping of the needle. Swells and silence simply adding texture to the overall body of sound. A drop in the pond, submerged to find its place among the rock bed keeping the water from being absorbed into the Earth.

There lies the unmarked “A2”. The water’s warm surface splitting as each voice makes an attempt at the sky, only to descend the moment they reach the apex. Floating motionless in the comfort of the swell of sound underneath, one can see how the pond maintains an overall structure, regardless of the unformed nature of its water.

“A2” is the first movement from Katrina Stonehart’s debut LP, out November 4 on Brooklyn’s Fire Talk Records. The whole release is limited to 100 copies, so pre-order now, or forever hold your peace.

• Katrina Stonehart:
• Fire Talk Records:

Unsound Poland announces fourth batch of performers: Nurse with Wound, Lee Gamble, SOPHIE, Evian Christ, and more

When does a dream become a nightmare? When does it become another dream within that first dream like some sorta dream-like cake product with a tasty nighttime filling? When does it become a dream-themed festival in Krakow, Poland? I only know the answer to that last one: October 12 through October 19, and they’re calling it the Unsound Festival. To be fair though, the first two were sort of non-sequitur, but believe me, if I knew the answers, I wouldn’t hold out on you.

Anyhow, since I can tell by the cut of your jib that you’re an avid reader of this here news section, I’m willing to bet you’re already well-acquainted with the idea of a seriously well-curated festival going down in Krakow between October 12 and October 19. You’re probably even a little cynical about it by now: “Oh, yeah, I know what’s up, Swans will be there, Craig Leon, M.E.S.H., Amnesia Scanner, and Pharmakon. Can’t you tell me anything new?” Why, yes, indeed I can! You see, a fourth round of artists has recently been announced, including Nurse with Wound, Evian Christ, SOPHIE, Lee Gamble, and more! You can read all about the new additions in gory detail right here. And, though weekly and long weekend passes are totally sold out, individual tickets went on sale today. Peep the schedule and purchase tickets on the other end of this clickable blue text.

• Unsound:

Film Review: Down River (Dir. Benjamin Ratner)

Down River
Dir. Benjamin Ratner

[Gossamer Creative, Haven Films; 2014]

by K.M. McFarland


Late in the game in Down River — around the time that all the plot complication cards have been played and all seems lost and happiness entirely unattainable for a group of Vancouverites — there’s a string of three consecutive emotional beats that illustrates how frustratingly formulaic moments lead the film’s good intentions astray. An aging woman, the default den mother to three younger women living in the same apartment building, encounters each surrogate daughter as they enter her apartment and gives them a pep talk. But it’s not just a comforting exchange, it’s the speech each of them needs, one after another after another. It’s the kind of sequence a satire of “get your life together” films would employ to demonstrate just how often these cathartic moments show up. And yet, it’s played totally straight, as if every person in crisis reaches that point and turns to the same person at the same exact time.

The second independent feature written and directed by Canadian actor Benjamin Ratner, Down River spreads the adulthood malaise of films like The Lifeguard or Girl Most Likely over an ensemble of female characters. Pearl (Helen Shaver, perhaps most notably the voice of Littlefoot’s mother in The Land Before Time) is a 60-year-old divorced woman living alone and coping with news of a grave illness. But she stands strong to support the other three younger women who frequently lean on her for guidance: Aki (Jennifer Spence, of SyFy’s Continuum) an introverted painter; Fawn (Gabrielle Miller, of Canadian series Corner Gas) a devoutly religious actress deliberating on committing to a long-term relationship or taking a big part in a new television series in New Zealand; and Harper (Colleen Rennison), a bisexual singer who has trouble containing her emotions with friends, bandmates, and lovers.

There are countless films about groups of lost men and women sorting out their lives in early adulthood, or going through a midlife crisis, or coping with mortality. As such, it’s incumbent upon each new entry in the rapidly expanding subgenre to justify why it deserves a bit of territory. Down River unfortunately can’t offer anything new to ruminate on — only a few slightly memorable scenes between predicable character arcs.

Most of the women only get sketches of backstory. Aki talks with her distant father at a golf course about her choice of profession, and the topic of conversation shifts to her dead mother. Harper has a sort-of boyfriend who supports her, but still harbors feelings for an ex-girlfriend who recently reappeared. Fawn’s fiance was previously married, and she’s been struggling as an actress for a long time. Meanwhile, Pearl chugs along, suffering the burden of guiding the younglings along as she rues missed opportunities with an ex-husband and fails to reconnect with her daughter.

It’s a strange duality that each woman’s story is both underdeveloped and yet so predictably familiar. Aki’s struggles as a painter lead her to the question of pursuing artistic passion over a comfortable career, and whether she should compromise her reputation in order to have a shot at success at a painter. Fawn’s arc, particularly what she goes through in order to land the role that could actually launch her career, is the most intriguing, until it’s anchored back to the age old crossroad of a woman choosing between her work and starting a family. And Harper, well, she mostly just lives in a tenuous fantasy world where she can do all the drugs she wants, be mean to whoever she wants, use people like Kleenex, and still have everything given to her so she can keep trying to make it as a singer. There is perhaps a TV movie’s worth of depth somewhere in each story of the four main women in Down River — though Harper’s shrill and infuriating spiral only reinforces the worst aspects of the modern wandering underemployed generation.

Down River raises more intriguing questions than it has time to explore or answer. In trying to tell four stories — about three aspiring artists and one woman who regrets not fully giving over to her artistic passions — the film ends up not fully providing a picture of any of them.

Premiere: Future Ape Tapes - “Man With The Eagle Eye”

Hooker Vision, set and ready for September, slid Future Ape Tapes’ video for “Man With The Eagle Eye” through the cracks of some decayed wood from a cracker style porch just in time for their upcoming cassette Pyramirrormid, which is as fun to say as it is to try and imagine.

Label co-founders Grant and Rachel Evans saw an opportunity to celebrate the recent release of their solo albums by building a cradle out of Alpha Piscium and Lacerations cassettes, and filling it with three brand new tapes; #blessed.

Original bandmates, Donald Whitehead and Thomas Valadez, and a rotating cast of local musicians have keep Future Ape Tapes evolving for near a decade. Fuck The Future was 2006’s collage of tape-based samples; Temples kept the good mood food; Figure Eights and Reincarnations»» honed in on zoned out; 2014 is where we are, Pyramirrormid is the culmination. The video and first look, directed by ultra-homeboy Michael Lauden – their new percussionist and doesn’t appear on the tape – mirrors and distorts layers of analog and digital and a geocentric wrap-around that is Pyramirrormid. Future Ape Tapes are one part premeditated adrenalin two parts a primal vein for what the collapse of man entails and it’s going to be rad.

Cop one of the one hundred pro-dubbed tapes off Hooked Vision September 3 and flip through Future Ape Tapes’ extensive bandcamp and check the other two upcoming Hooker Vision releases: Quiet Evenings and Abyssal Farmers.

• Future Ape Tapes:
• Future Ape Tapes:
• Hooker Vision:

The Body and Sandworm team up for split LP on Thrill Jockey and joint tour

Prepare to be crushed by sludgy, dark metal: Current genre heavy-hitters The Body and the Providence, Rhode Island duo Sandworm are releasing a split LP on Thrill Jockey on October 21. The split will contain one side-long track from The Body called “The Manic Fire,” while Sandworm’s side will contain a handful of tracks, including “Desert Warfare” (listen below) and “Only Tears.”

Ben Eberle, one half of Sandworm, has apparently seen The Body live more than 100 times within the Providence area, and has contributed vocals to previous The Body albums Christs, Redeemers and I Shall Die Here. Pat Reilly, the other member of Sandworm, worked at the same pizza joint as The Body drummer Lee Buford. Yum, making black metal connections over pepperoni!

The Body must really enjoy collaborations, because they’re fresh off their tour and collaborative EP with Thou. They’ll continue to tour — some dates with Sandworm, some without — throughout the fall.

The Body + Sandworm tour dates:

09.23.14 - New York City, NY - The Acheron *
09.26.14 - Columbus, OH - The Summit *
09.27.14 - Grand Rapids, MI - The Bunker *
09.28.14 - Chicago, IL - Emporium *
09.30.14 - Minneapolis, MN - The Rat Hole *
10.03.14 - Seattle, WA - Highline
10.04.14 - Vancouver, BC - The Astoria
10.05.14 - Portland, OR - Slabtown
10.07.14 - Oakland, CA - Night Light
10.08.14 - San Francisco, CA - El Rio
10.09.14 - Fresno, CA - Love Captive
10.13.14 - Los Angeles, CA - 5 Star Bar
10.14.14 - Las Vegas, NV - Cheyenne Saloon
10.15.14 - San Bernandino, CA - Black Flame
10.16.14 - San Diego, CA - Che Cafe
10.17.14 - Phoenix, AZ - 51 West
10.18.14 - Tucson, AZ - Southwest Terror Fest ^
10.19.14 - Albuquerque, NM - Burt’s Tiki Lounge
10.20.14 - Denver, CO - Mutiny Info Cafe
10.21.14 - Salt Lake City, UT - Shred Shed ^
10.22.14 - Boise, ID - Crazy Horse ^
10.23.14 - Austin, TX - The Boneyard *
10.25.14 - New Orleans, LA - Community Records Block Party *
10.27.14 - Greensboro, NC - Fantasy U.L. *
10.28.14 - Philly, PA - Mill Creek Tavern *

* Sandworm only
^ The Body only

• The Body:
• Sandworm:
• Thrill Jockey:

Tiny Mix Tapes is an online music and film magazine with news, reviews, features, and hot replica watches.