Sonic Reducer: Tommy Planets, Ancient Lunatic, Sword Horse/Witch Hat

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This album has a psychedelic pop sensibility that for sure has roots in studio-culture experimentation. This attachment comes out as screwed-up and screwed-down melodies that echo, run backwards, reverberate, glitch and stutter though a chaotic but still sentimentally held world that the instruments playing say is full of wonder. By the time you get to chillax on track number three, “Busy Crying,” you are going to dig this album. Its jazzy yet Beatles-esque-cum Flaming Lips eating Vince Staples for breakfast interjections, its refusal to to be lumped into hip-hop universe and its outright devotion to form and melody (despite its occasional use of autotune) make for unusually evocative summertime prelunch, post-bong listening. Favorite track: “You Don’t Wanna Die Tonight.”

Ancient Lunatic Ancient Lunatic (Self-released)

Listening to raw lo-fi garage rock made by three people in a dilapidated building with absolutely no natural reverb can be dang challenging, but this is a super-decent record, brought to life by authentic instrumentation, spaced-out lyrics about time and the night and insistent guitar playing that relentlessly pushes the musical narrative forward. I got sorta bummed out because I don’t like the drum mix. But I will be damned if I have to tell the drummer to lay off the cymbals. That’s the only flaw I can come up with on an EP that features sick licks, extended heavy rock jams with fuzzy guitar y todo and a casual mastery of sound that is equally soaked in blues rock and gasoline. Favorite track: “Walk With Us.”

Sword Horse/ Witch Hat Sword Horse/Witch Hat Live Split Tape (Self-released)

Three tracks to bind you to the darkness, three tracks to trace your descent into the abyss. Three tracks to rock out timelessly to when the sun finally stops in the sky. Those are just three phrases that might describe this mournfully blackened, droning, full-of-feedback amplifier worship session. With no sense of melody. brutal rhythmics and a propensity for uncovering the most sinister subtones available to the human ear, this EP split by local doomsters Sword Horse makes awesome advances toward defining the void in anticipation of the doom that awaits us all. It should be played loud, like life should be lived. You can listen to this music, but you can also feel it deep in the Earth and smell it coming like forever’s loamy life, if you get my drift. Favorite track: “Ingest” by Sword Horse.

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