Thee Showcase [#8.2]: The Otters and Les Baton Rouge!

1886079149-1We continually march on, even though we’re not in a band. It’s time, once again, for Thee Showcase. Letting you know about some new music and what we think about it. This time we’re up for The Otters, whom are a duo from San Diego. I don’t think they’re active anymore, but I found their only song “Nowhere At All” from their coming album (now on hold) “LP I“. This song is everything you’d want your own band to be, I think. Everything from the emotional intro, shyly moving along with the artsy vocals. Indie rock couldn’t possibly be better when combined with art punk and surf punk. Every detail on the song is interesting in its own aspect, as it contributes a lot to the wholehearted vision of the song at hand. The different nuances are in essence what makes this band great, or at least their song that they’ve premiered. In the beginning, you can also sense some of the odder post-punk, if you turn back the clock to the 80’s once again. What also feels out of shape, is the fact that they heed to every little detail. Not many bands do this, not many bands seem to catch every detail perfectly. However, everything in the song might not be intact, as the synthesizer reminds me a lot about other things than a great song or band. Sometimes it isn’t tight either, but I’ll leave that for now. The different changes in structures are superb and it sounds inviting enough, it also reminds you a lot of the calmer indie pop/rock acts that can convey a range of emotions through a little sphere in one song. All I can hear in my mind right now is: “I don’t want you, I don’t need you…“, but to be fair; I really need you now. The song “Nowhere At All” from their supposed future album “LP I” is what’s featured here, which is a shame – since I wanted some nuances to compare with. However, you should donate some cash or download it for free from their bandcamp down below.

1529479584-1I can figure out why this band is one of the most influential ones. Where are they influential? In Portugal, where the band, which goes by the name of Les Baton Rouge, is from. They’re currently at bay with a new album titled “Canal Express“, which is a blend of new-wave and more alternative rock. It feels like much of their music revolves around suspense, because you don’t know what’s going to happen next. I don’t sense as much art rock as I sense alternative rock in the mix, with some subtle new-wave influences that can be found here and there. Everything about them is concrete, there are fastened structures that make listening even more bearable. Nothing is sloppy, everything is calculated and on point when you listen to it. The vocals reminds you a lot of older punk bands, when it comes to the sheer energy and volatile expression. A little bit of it also reminds you a lot of an eccentric Siouxsie, even though she’s been referenced a million times when it comes to bands of this caliber, you’d have to say it again. High-pitched yells, metamorphosing melodies and rhythms – as you move through one of their passages. Sometimes the landscape of music can be a little bit stale, when it goes with the same pair of drums you’ve heard a song before, but it mellows out when you realize that there’s only four songs. At times the music feels adaptable, as it changes around in the overlaying structure, rather in the fundamentals. Especially when it comes to the quirky, and sometimes sinister, riffing that goes on in the overtly noticeable sound-scape. Pay attention to those changes, because I know you will. It can change in any minute, but you will not anticipate it, therefore you can surely call it “suspiria” – like the band itself does. Interesting music that stands on its own feet, doesn’t mind to sway the conventions a bit and tries hard to do something worthwhile. Featuring the four songs “Carburator“, “Punch Timeline“, “Abrasive Humdrum” and “So Much For Evolution“. Their digital version of the release is live since the 1st of March and their 15-year celebratory CD will be released at their gig in Lisbon on Musicbox on the 23rd of March.

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Thee Showcase [#8.1]: The Tragedy We Live In and Bombardier!

1553268848-1These tragedies just keep on coming. No, it’s not really those tragedies, but in Thee Showcase you will know which one. Opening for this edition is The Tragedy We Live In from Belgium, which is one of the longer names being featured here and also one of the more emotional ones, musically. Later this year they’re releasing their first self-titled album “The Tragedy We Live In“. Some doom here, a little bit noise there and a whole lot of post-rock. It begins by heightening the expectations, with an equally as long introduction. The suspense is given in an early stage, with a lot of focus on the instrumentation doing the job. Well, it’s because most of the music is totally instrumental, if you don’t count sampling as a sign of breaking the instrumentality. Most of it focuses on giving the calm and acoustic passages some kind of opposition, like two polar opposites fighting between each others. Good and evil, evil and good. Suddenly, it can embark on a noise-driven post-rock journey which smashes everything in its wake. Until a clearance is given for it to slow down, whatever that could be, then prancing along with the calm and ambient-oriented acoustic nerve of themselves. It also seems like each sampling is properly cut up and cut out for each song, which isn’t just a random sampling, like in the song Wahnsinn which is driven (in the beginning) by a shouting Alex Jones. There seems to be a thematic order, concerning these samples, or at least something that can be organized. However, both the sincerity of the acoustic passages and the externalized energy of the post-rock mayhem at hand, gives nothing else to ask for. It is enough to instill a certain form of peace or a certain form of havoc, whenever and wherever you can hear it. That’s how I like it to be, if it doesn’t cover everything, I will not be happy. Songs range from “The Tragedy We Live In” to “Soultaker” and it will be released in two weeks on vinyl. It also seems to be a total D.I.Y-endeavor.

1559499263-1Now, for something completely different. This is a guy going solo, or yeah, he’s been solo since 1998 – under different names. He goes by the name of Bombardier and is currently up to something sinister. His latest mission is a track that goes by the name of “Vice“, which is not an album, I understand. But I had to do this anyway since it’s a pretty great track. The industrialist nature of it, the clashing and sinister environment revolving around it, the booming bass drum that simply cannot prevent itself from getting into your brain. It’s oriented in its own landscape, so the focus in it is very atmospheric. Even though it might not enter the sphere of industrial as a whole, it’s certainly got some layers that would hint of this putrid influence. Also, the overlaying framework of electro meeting techno is enough to even get the most hesitant to grab his headphones and start listening. Slowly pacing, endless macing. It feels like the predator is catching his prey in a labyrinth of some sort, with mechanisms that are located throughout it. There’s a race against time and you need to be quick to even understand what to do. While the crushingly heavy synthesizers race past you and give you a hard time, as the bass drum in the shape of a hammer, jams itself into the sound-scape. Everything here is about force, everything is aggressive and there’s no way out of it. It’s an experience to listen to and it belongs to the gritty environments of other genres, but holds itself confined within techno and electro for the most parts. Only track featured is the track “Vice” which was released on the 24th of February, by Bombardier himself.