TOTAL VERMIN

DIV SOUND SUNSHINE

Saturday, 16 March 2013

New Releases March 2013

Four new cassettes.  Two pounds and fifty pence each, plus postage.  Scroll down further for new(ish) non-vermin wares.




Total Vermin #79:  Wasteroids Bazookass C75

The latest progeny of Joincey's on-off relationship with reality is a big old 16-lber of a baby, constructed from the variously jettisoned and disgorged limbs and organs of popular music's grotesque battalions.  Mummy Joincey's voice, rich with the vapours of gin and fag, whispers, croaks and croons lullabies, fables, diatribes, etc. to his ugly wee man, and documents these precious moments for your edification.  Behold, and take instruction wisely.

Posset Joe sez:

"Photographer, musician, blogger and beat-juggler Joincey serves up another classic tape on Total Vermin.  This collection dares to be beautiful, with the peachy, fuzzed-out bliss you get as the hot Stoke-on-Trent sun beats down on your closed eyelids.  A mixture of songs and pieces and, for the archivist in us all, side B presents a selection of backing tracks and sketches that add a helpful footnote to the swooning.  There are some pure pop genius moments here:  Example #1; warm AM radio loops that gently shift and turn in on themselves to reveal Wet Wet Wet... ‘is it wrong baby?’  Example #2 the Coldplay sampling that honestly sounds like the sort of off-kilter loop the RZA drops on the Wu-Tang buddies for shits & giggles.  But I’m getting ahead of myself, these are just the ‘unfinished ideas for the sequel’...side one opens with some beats and moaning into clear-blue sky guitar fingering; all foamy cascades, waterfall consciousness and Gnostic glossolalia.  ‘Hummum-fuzz’ is a nursery rhyme for children of The Culture while ‘The Albatross’ is a hymn to the blunted AR Kane generation (stumbling bass, euphoric loops and dreamlike sighs) which should end up on an advert for perfume or something.  Robert Wyatt’s wino moan is coupled with slowed-down frog croaks and time-stretched mud pool bubbles.  A lover’s whispers turns into a furious curse in your wax-clogged ear...paranoid?  Repetition and pop-culture signifiers are all warped and tested; measured up for sparkle and then giving a good seeing-to through a lo-fi hiss to keep things sub-underground.  It might the image of Beatle Paul that’s dredging this up but I’ve heard tell of some unreleased post-fab four efforts from Macca that effortlessly bridge the gap between improv chops and popstar solo album weirdness.  So until the erect-thumbed Scouse needs another couple of million I think we can count Joincey as the 5th one and this Wasteroid as an Apple platter that didn’t.  Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah!"



Total Vermin #80:  Jointhee and thee Acrid Lactations - "Toe" C43

Album of real songs - 7 on each side - words by Joincey, arrangements by Susan and me.  Joincey takes most of the lead vocals, while the Ac Lac team kicks up a variety of ruckuses with dictaphone, horns, voices, percussion, strings, keys.  Recorded in the home on the south side of Glasgow on successive Joincey visits in December '12 and January '13.  I believe that this is the first Total Vermin release to include a lyric sheet.

Posset Joe:

"Sindre Bjerga look-a-like Joincey adds a set of spiritualist hymns over the fruity babble created by backing band The Acrid Lactations.  Like when Chuck Berry hires the local pub band to back him; Joincey (in full pompadour effect) sets off the Acrid Lactations and lets them play what they want as long as it’s chugga-chugga backing.  By now, all readers must be familiar with the no-audience underground no-chord trick.  Open the brain and let the magic drip from fingers and tonsils; tin can rattle, full throated mouth-jazz, semi-improv rustling, Dictaphone tape strangle and pre-jazz hornings.  But such a slippery beast as this makes reference points a challenge.  Saying that, there is an element of folk reinvention going on here.  I doubt Joincey’s words saw the inside of Cecil Sharp House but there is little to separate this from such backwoods yodel and holla you’d expect on the Folkways label; Jim Nollman’s duets with Coyotes being the obvious place to start. "





Total Vermin #81:  Posset - The Glistening Fist C25

Civil servant, journalist, dandy, Joe Murray opens his journal and licks his nib.  The pages are hidden from your view by his majestic frame.  He reaches for the absinthe, but finding the bottle empty, politely excuses himself.  Listening for the creak that will mark his return from the cellar, you hasten to glimpse that diary in search of some clue to the soul of this most enigmatic behemoth, only to find that every page is filled with strange hieroglyphs.  You reach for another volume, but find the same.  As you frantically flick through the pages you feel a cold breeze rush through the thin cotton of your shirt.  Quickly, you turn round.  Big Joe is standing at the door, watching you.  And laughing. 

Luckily for we asemics and lesser intellects, Joe also keeps a record of his affairs in the international language of magnetic tape.  Here is the glimpse at those pages you so desired - every detail of his thoughts, dreams and essential functions expressed through the play and pause of his enchanted dictaphones.



Total Vermin #82:  Poormouth s/t C33

This is the first solo album by Ben Knight of Towering Breaker, Helhesten, Marvo Men, etc., taking the form of two extended binaural narratives.  An orchestra of household items backs the first tale, sighs, conspiratorial whispers, playground chants.  Multiple voices (all the author's) version the story of the second, a singular kitchen sink realist tale, heard through the refracting indeterminacy of aeroplanes.

Posset Joe:

"A totally unclassifiable sing-song, stream of consciousness, dream-like encounter with Poormouth.  Blimey!  This is truly odd.  Not so much the sounds but the intention...what makes a man sit down with a scrap of paper (and what I think is a Young One’s quote) a few bits and pieces and crackle on in this Jackanory style?  Not sure if i can figure that one but I’m so glad that the Poormouth did.  At times I’m taken back to the no-audience underground classic ‘Lake’ by Richard Youngs & Simon Wickham Smith.  Lake’s otherness, calmness, space and reconstruction of everyday sounds fits perfectly with Poormouth’s world of tin foil scrunch and estuary speech.  The bell solo on side one tinkles like a thousand silver blades of grass on a frosty morning and divides the non-story ramble delivered in naive bursts of chatter.  The subtle swish of traffic creates a wash of hush to stabilise the spoken patterns.  Side two is a vocal piece that gently layers speech in a delightfully mitten-fingered way.  The slight speech slips on the, ‘th...’ & ‘ph...’ sounds, adds a gorgeous richness, depth and character to the insect themed ramble.  Like the way Alvin Lucier’s, ‘I am sitting in a room’ would be nothing without the stutter.  A genius fadeout to traffic noise, spare cough and water gulp is a breather...held for just a second too long and then the babble starts up again.  The everyday psychedelic doesn’t need phasers & wah-wah.  Just two or three texts read aloud, together, creating a dense web of ‘muuh’.  Brilliant."

Non-Vermin 

A couple of bits hitherto unlisted...



Winebox18: Solo Guitar Volume II 3 x C21 £15

Jon has sold out of these before I even listed my copies, whoops.  I don't have many, so act fast if you've missed out thus far.  Postage might be a bit pricy, but it is a beautiful thing, and worth the outlay.  JC's text below.

 "Second volume of six sides of loosely defined solo guitar recordings (following the first one from 2009), this one featuring Fliss Horrocks, Bridget Hayden, Core of the Coalman, Plum Slate, Harappian Night Recordings and Irma Vep. Styles run from heavy sliding blues through phased cyclical picking to late night raga and scattered otherworldly tweaking.

Boxed edition of 74 copies started out as a door, a good one too. The cassettes contained within come wrapped in fabric to prevent them shunting out the ends of the box in transit; feel free to discard this on arrival. "




Singing Knives (no cat):  Acrid Lactations - "Aura Mirror Come Fickle, Anachronous Law and Manner" C44 £3

New studio (sitting room) album from the Ac Lac duo.  Each piece recorded in two takes, using stereo microphone attached to turntable.  Pro-dubbed!  Singing Knives got Posset Joe to write their description.  Reprinted below:

"It’s two jammy cosmonauts that make up las lactancias acre; Susan Fitzpatrick & Stuart Arnot, direct from jazzhole central - Glasgow.  Making the swinging singing scene for a few years this couple of McWitches & Claypoles engage in the bad touch just for you.

And so it begins ... Hot pipes get browned off with mouth-gas like the world’s tootingest brass band for starters, leading directly into a Capuchin Heimlich situation with soft brown dates shooting slowly out twin glossy throats. The groans of a rust-encrusted seal playing a brine-swollen concertina are coupled with blustery backwards blowing raising a fair old foamy sea spiral.

The world of field recordings shouldn’t go without mention as parts of this (17 mins in on side one) sound like a secret taping of The Art Ensemble of Chicago clocking off, changing into baggy pants and dialling out for pizza.  Hot Potato Daddio!  Side two takes the recording deeper underground with a bassier offering of cloven coven dealings accompanied by dappy percussion from the sort of teapot you find in cheap seaside B&Bs.  Then it all gets more knotted and complex.  A very male noise, usually reserved for the solitary cubicle, squirts around a more repetitive pattern of pre-speech mouthings that sound strangely like Kraftwerk without electricity.  Bringing on a series of wet sips and slappings the jazz blowing continues like an overheated dog, all raspy panting and jowly shudder - stand well clear or get flecked with meaty spit! But the lactations are not just about the sounds man ... any joker can make armpit farts and crack eggy noise-guffs.  It’s about the placement, the balance and the context.  No wild ‘skeeve’ or ‘fasss’ or ‘vooom’ is introduced without careful planning and consideration.  If you ever watched Planet of the Apes (the ‘70’s original not the re-make doofus) you’ll be prepared for this parallel universe sound of ram’s horns, discordant organs, burning charcoal and lashings of mouth-cavity reverb.  But who is responsible for bursting this particular acrid boil all over you?  Why, it’s the Singing Knives Records Company of course.  Vibrating with pleasure they are launching this particular disc to you with accuracy and love."

Sunday, 21 October 2012

New Releases October 2012

Hello again... a big new batch is finally complete.  These are available for £2.50 each, plus postage.  Please email any orders to smearcampaign@hotmail.com...




Total Vermin #63:  Vampire Blues, "Epistemological Relativism and the Missionary's Position" C42

Vampire Blues is a duo of Jons Collin (Whole Voyald, Serfs) and Marshall (Hunter Gracchus, Roman Nose) on guitar and harmonium respectively.  One side of the cassette is electric, the other acoustic.  Each side is aglow with a transcendental fervour that augurs a non-theistic, or at least non-partisan, sublimation.  Take me to the water!

Joe Posset has reviewed some of these releases in his 2012 review.  I recommend that you check it out on his myspace blog - here

"Side one is heavy on the underwater guitar wrestling with a drowning harmonium. Big splashy chords give way to spiralled soloing, all salty and churning. Side two wrenches the asthmatic harmonium to the fore, coughing and hawking with keys slapping nosily like some thick tongued county cousin. For such a simple set up: two blokes, two instruments, strings vs leathery lungs, it somehow manages to sound like a Hell's Angel/Incredible String Band soundclash where things get seriously shroomy. In fact there's a whooshing rush across both sides of the tape like some oceanic loved-up house track circa 1998. Where's the Vicks Geezer?"


Total Vermin #64:  Bolide, "Jazz Gulag" C53

Early cuts (2008) from Brighton beatnik collective.  Solzhenitsyn never told us about the forced consumption of the BYG catalogue, so perhaps Bolide were sent elsewhere... wherever they were or were not (jazz asylum?) this is a heavy and wild document of the stay.  Rugged and raggedy jams for fans of the devilish glint in the horn-player's eye.




Total Vermin #65:  Core of the Coalman, "Stain" C59


Jorge Boehringer,  American in Europe, has carved this monolith of a cassette, this conundrum, from materials unknown.  A loop, possibly wrought from his viola, morphs imperceptibly.  A mere nodding of one's head induces psycho-acoustic paranoia, the resultant catatonic sway exacerbates the feeling... play loud enough for an end to balance and hand-eye coordination.  The black spots increase in size and we capsize.

Extra-special covers on this one, individually marbled by Susan Fitzpatrick.  See more of her art here.

Rob Midwich has written a review of this, and some other releases on his excellent blog, which can be found here

"Jorge keeps it simple: a full hour (in two halves) of slowly evolving variations on a fuzzed-up viola loop.  What at first seems like a Tony Conrad-ish endurance test took a few minutes to pop my bubble of mental resistance (soap-film thin at the best of times) then mind freed, my arse did follow.  I was soon dancing naked on the driveway of Midwich Mansions.  This tape is hard, lovely."


Total Vermin #66:  Fordell Research Unit, "The True Meaning of Red" C32

On the subject of monoliths, witness the standing stones of Oxgangs, here silhouetted against the hydroponic Midlothian sun.  Five pillars of drone, stacked like silos against the new dawn.  Witness the terrible majesty in which they prevail, fashioned not by anonymous or ancient hand, but by Fordell Research Unit, man and portent.

Midwich review:

"Fordell Research Unit is flavour of the month round here and The True Meaning of Red is a late contender for tape of the year in the hotly contested ‘droning fuzz roar’ section.  Five short to mid-length tracks, all beautifully balanced, all sharing the delicious alchemy of a poached egg coagulating in fiercely boiling water.  The whole thing invokes a feeling that we are rarely treated to: total, magisterial, soul-cleansing satisfaction.  A must buy."



Total Vermin #67:  Acrid Lactations, "Crude Paintings on Porcelain" C37


Acrid Lactations, for those behind the times, is a duo of me and Susan Fitzpatrick.  This cassette was recorded in the poky shower room of our old flat in Trafford, in the summer of 2011.  Improvisations with mandolin, percussion, dictaphone, stylophone, jarring cuts, shifts of focus, and the fittings.

Midwich review:

"Possibly the most lo-fi of these productions, it was apparently recorded in a shower room and, as the occasional sound of running water proves, the fixtures and fittings were pressed into service.  Side A is rumbling, popping improv percussion using whatever implements and instruments they could drag in whilst still being able to close the door.  It sounds like Paul Hession trapped in a cupboard and trying to alert the search party.  This is augmented with some unplaceable trilling and circuit-bent stylophone stylings and finishes with Susan and Stuart hallucinating the trumping horns and jangling cowbells of a procession of tiny Swiss goat-herds as they march across the linoleum.  Side B starts in a contemplative fashion before the goat-herds return in buoyant mood having eaten some mouldy bread and interesting looking mushrooms in the meantime.  The second half has a more ominous feel as a foot-long giant bee starts banging its head against the shower room window.  I dig it."



Total Vermin #68:  "The Presidential Cow Is Bound to the Maypole" by the Acrid Lactations C36


The second AL in this batch was recorded the month after CPoP, in the (slightly) more spacious surrounds of our then sitting room.  The majority is more airy than the bathroom tape, with whistles and voices prominent in the palette.  Ends, though, with a claustrophobic sampler, stylophone and scrabble jaunt through the bowels of 70s AOR. 

Posset review:

"This tape pretty much takes every gob-punk cliché and bombs them back to year zero. Very fucking warped skronk and double girl on boy skronk are the order of the day. Things seem to be in both real time and then manipulated via bad-electronics at random, making for a discombobulating listen. Moaning and groaning is fighting with pinched throat gurgles, drawn out mouth drones stray to the fore with a more high pitched keening just at the edge of my (admittedly damaged) hearing. Regular instruments are jettisoned as being bourgeois in favour of the more democratic domestic rattles of: bird-pipes, concrete sacs being dragged, ice chinks in a glass of Dandelion & Burdock, ripped cardboard, amplified plastic bags, violently bubbled milk and yogurt pots etc. Helium high screes march over tape loops of 'vurrrum-raaaam' with indistinct clumsy DJ scratching like Grandmaster Flash's first session on him moms hi-fi slipping a 'high on crack' sample against falling down the stairs drum machine. There's a bluesy quality to some of this...god know how that got into here...and then, just before you can dismiss this as aimless fucking about I'm reminded this is just a fag paper away from James Tenny's classic tape piece 'Blue Suede' from 1961. The Lactations know their history man! For today and today only this tape has the distinction of being the exact end point of what music is and what it can achieve. Awright!"



Total Vermin #69:  Lovely Honkey, "Set Sail for the Moral Highground" C33


Lovely Honkey is the solo project of Luke Poot, of Very Rich Lexicon, Hard Pan, Chastity Potatoe, Phil Minton's gang of toughs, etc.  This cassette, recorded before his flit from Yorkshire East to South, is lo-fidelity remedial sound poetry of the choicest order.  I just listened to a bit that sounded like a pig pushing weights with a scotch egg in its gob.

Posset review:

"More tape fuckery from Total Vermin. More goof-off gurning from the one and only Luke Poot. A debauched bag of grunt and feeble electronic chuff that lurches about like some jellied up yoof. Shanks of grumbled fuff are launched left, right and centre; throaty squeals, lumpen clutter notes, brassy farts etc to make a totally incomprehensible mess. There are track titles but for me this is a two sided jobbie...you got to hold your nose then dive into each gaseous, rumbling side. There are some extreme vocal mouth explosions that made me fear for Luke's sinus, so raw were the jagged snot-curses. Heavy furniture is lifted, dropped and dashed aside with tinfoil sticks and metallic bats wings. Man...this is a guilty, dirty release that's brown nudging at the coveted tape of the year slot."



Total Vermin #70:  Lovely Mr Honkey and the Acrid Lactations Jubilee Chorus "Sing the Futile Tapestry" C49


Wherein Susan, Luke and I powwow and browse on subjects irrelevant and construct the decade-abandoned building site of a bankrupt 'developer' in the playground of the progeny of our social betters.  Companion release, Acrid Lactations Meet the Lovely Honkey Uptown, "Lovely Honkey and the Acrid Lactations Bumrush the Temples of Mammon" CDR available on Poot Records.  I have a few copies of this, too, in A4 sleeves.  Let me know if you'd like one; you can have it at Vermin price.

Posset review:

"Gas mask and smothered gunnering chaff. Rankle whitts and stained-voice choir. Cluckering and fenkle ball bearing rattle all knotted together with occasional 'veep' of feedback and dithering 'whoaar'. On paper there is not really much between this and the academic, arts funded improv cluttering up Wire magazine CD giveaways. However, where this kind of cluttered kitchen-sink improv kicks the arse of the sound artist/performance gloop we are all meant to revere is in intention, richness and imagination. With no sound or technique off limits all becomes possible. With no commission to fill or brief to satisfy the collective hive mind can crack off blobs of salty jism easy like with no fear of comeback. This little cassette reaches some pretty dark places: a mung moaning turns into Yamataka Eye style fatlip bristle. Munching mic action takes on Nuremburg tones. As the tape spools on this gets more witchy as Puffin squeaks all take off together 'caw, caw, caw' to rub up against mournful ram horn pipes. And most importantly it's all done without the bland pesto of avant improv – reverb. This is delivered straight to the ear as nature intended. Another great tape on the peerless Total Vermin."


Total Vermin #71:  Hard Pan and Hobo Sonn, "Soup Electric and Roll" C26

Ian Murphy, Pascal Nichols, Luke Poot and I got together for good times one afternoon.  Sampler, tape, voice and synthesizer latticework pie-eyes the flies, collapses into sighs, and a tiny bongo shadow-boxing its electrical nemesis.  

Midwich review:

"Soup Electric and Roll is by Hard Pann and Hobo Sonn which unpacks as Stuart, Pascal Nichols and Luke Poot who are joined for this recording by Ian Murphy.  Side A is all stomping, knocking electronics with subtleties bobbing to the surface, side B is a sublime, too-wide-eyed choir of Nurse With Wound-ish unvocalizations.  Compelling late night listening or discombobulating walkman contents for the commute."



Total Vermin #72:  Smear Campaign, "Love in an Heroic Vernacular" C36


Coda of sorts to the Rapunzel trilogy, comprising dense electronic textures, drum machines, sampling, re-sampling and the first use of trumpet on a Smear Campaign release in a long, long time. 

Midwich review:

"A band name like that might lead you to expect power electronics or harsh noise but not a bit of it.  Instead you get in-between-train-carriages whistling wind, queasily arrhythmic percussion, clouds of robot starlings, skittering electronics and mournful trumpet.  At one point the entire mix is dropped down a well.  It’s like the alien funk of 1970s Miles filtered through ectoplasmic gel and played at half-speed.  Terrific."



Total Vermin #73:  Cabbage Rosette w/Phil Minton, "Ran out of Breath Licking Elegy Nipple?  Cough and Fall to Bits?  Tight Chest as Achievement?" CD-R


Cabbage Rosette is the duo of Luke Poot and me.  For this live performance in August 2011, we were joined partway through by Phil Minton.  The electronic furniture defers slowly to naked larynges, like traffic grinding to a halt to watch ducks fighting.

Posset review:

"Balls out skronk from Messers Poot & Vermin abetted by Mr 'jazzface' Minton on swelling tubes. Over-blown kitchen electronics huff each and every cough and splutter so the inward sigh becomes symphonic, the lip smack a thunderbolt. Squeaky doors or plastic tape cover are rattled to destruction (screeechhh, scraaaaaw) and the only recognisable 'instrument'; a phat keyboard, blebs in dopey chimes, once, twice then not at all. Sounds are fairly poured over each over with abandon and mixed up with a hot spoon. There's little structure or reason to this making it all the more fun and engaging. The frenzied jerk and Tourette's tick keep the energy up. You can almost picture them, shoulders up to earholes, spazzing out on spittle warp. Things get more crimped towards the end when what sounds like some remedial turntable abuse plays up against mouth babble and the whole thing ends in a conference of gurgles and wet-fart lippings. 13 mins in total...the perfect length."



Total Vermin #74:  Tube O' Mould, "Bags and Bags of Golden Rats" CD-R


The first released jam from the duo of Rhian Thompson (CKDH, Hockyfrilla) on strings, percussion and electronics and me on drums, trumpet and electronics.  Jorge Boehringer has his hands on a copy.  Here's what he said about it:

"it is pretty much like being in the belly of a giant buzzing fly with an Indonesian percussion orchestra practicing inside of a sheet metal building that the fly is circling around in trying to figure out what to do next.  Its not about escape, its not panicked, really.  Maybe its about roller derby, it kind of has that vibe too.  I have no idea what these instruments are but there are some electronic sounds, and I think some sticks.  After a certain point its like Albert Ayler comes on by for a visit and they tie him up in the kitchen.  Breakfast music."


The above quote was taken from Jorge's tour diary, to be found here.  It's very entertaining, and I recommend you check it out.  He reviews some older TV material too.



Total Vermin #75:  Inverted Bulb, We Are an Inverted Bulb CD-R

Pascal Nichols came to visit Glasgow.  While he was here we recorded some percussion duets, documented here.  Now, anyone who has heard Pascal play knows that he is a mean percussionist.  I am not, but our high-technique/low-technique combo works pretty well.  Sounds weird, nice and open.  Hopefully we'll do some more soon.

Posset review:

"A bold and confident start with one of my favourite sounds: a ruler twanged against a desk. Nestled up against groaning rub or shallow tuba blowing the air turns fizzy with red-cheeked effort. A polite and respectful percussion workout follows, chopsticks and eggshaker taking the foreground for a while until we get lost in crisp and fresh badda-bing. Old drums crop up again on the second track. With a total lack of technique antique military drums are pitter-pattered while cutlery and cups get a rocking. Butter knife (or one of those flexi-tone things) solos up amid the rumble for a while with slapstick effect. This has a Moondog feel to it as rhythms are picked up played with and set down carefully to one side as another takes over. As it is a Total Vermin disc I'd be surprised if Stuart Arnot isn't involved in this effort and that makes the jazz feel all the more Dixie."


Total Vermin #76:  Human Combustion Engine V, "Bible Whistle" C55

For those not in the know, Human Combustion Engine is the analogue electronics duo of Phil Todd and Mel O'Dubhslaine from Ashtray Navigations.  Very difficult to pigeonhole these massive jams.  They seem to reference many corners of synthesizer music across the ages, in the construction of something wholly new, and other.

Rob Midwich wrote a bit about this tape on his blog, reprinted below:

"Human Combustion Engine V – Bible Whistle, is a one-lengthy-track-per-side cassette on the surprisingly-lovely-given-the-name Total Vermin.  The cover features the enormously be-conked, perma-grinning plaster face of Mr. Noseybonk – a nightmare-inducing mime from 80s children’s television series Jigsaw.  Perhaps the less said about him the better.

Anyway, this be the fifth outing of Phil and Mel’s synth duo incarnation (hence the ‘V’).  As you might expect given the instrumentation, there are tangerine passages but it isn’t overly krautish nor does it feel at all like pastiche, or even homage for that matter.  If you want layers of low-end robo-dystopian rumble or epic synth washes then you can find ‘em – especially on side two’s ‘The Importance of Whistle Boards’ – but there is also plenty of agile tweakery going on which pushes things forward in an angular and involving fashion.  Let’s examine, for example, the opening to side one’s ‘Holiday Bible Week’ which begins in a spacey manner but this isn’t 2001: A Space Odyssey spacey, more knitted-out-of-pink-wool Oliver Postgate spacey.  As the atmosphere surrounding the trilling and warbling darkens the new genre of electro-doom-clanger is birthed before our very ears."


Total Vermin #77:  Acrid Lactations, "The Dazzling Quad of Roughmuscle" C60

A patchwork of sections from four gigs - in Manchester in August 2011, in Sheffield in January 2012 duo, and as a trio with Luke Poot, as a trio with Ben Knight (Towering Breaker, Helhesten) in Glasgow, February 2012, and trio with Sami Pekkola (Taco Bells, Mohel), Edinburgh in June 2012.  



Total Vermin #78:  Taco Bells, "Turku Solar Jazz Live 2007 (Tattis Niko ja Orko)" C30


Released to coincide with their recent UK tour, this tape comprises a quartet performance from a few years back.  Line up is Sami Pekkola, Tero Kempainnen, Jaakko Tolvi and Pekko Kappi.  Live and unabridged, raw and wild.  Most of these have already gone, so act quickly!

Reissue:-


Total Vermin #18:  Ashtray Navigations, "The Nighttime is the Right Time" CD-R

Having sold out within weeks on its original release back in 2009, it's good to be able to reissue this fantastic piece of the Ashtray continuum.  Here's what I said about it back then:

"You should need no introduction to Ashtray Navigations. Phil Todd has been sailing this beautiful vessel since the early 90s. However, I for one have never heard an Ashtray release as HARD as this. Seriously tough stuff. The night time is the right time to listen... if you want to wake up having suffered complete mental collapse. You do?"

Still holds true.        

Monday, 26 March 2012

Pre-Update Update> Bits

The next Total Vermin batch, including releases from Vampire Blues, Bolide, Fordell Research Unit, Core of the Coalman, Acrid Lactations, Lovely Honkey, Hard Pan and Hobo Sonn, Smear Campaign, Pascal Nichols and Stuart Arnot, a reissue of the Ashtray Navigations disc, and maybe a couple of extra things, will be with us some time in April. Meanwhile, here are a few things from other labels that are available now.

Smear Campaign - "Rapunzel, Let Down Your Guard" pifho015 C35 £4



The first part of the Rapunzel trilogy. I shall now quote PIFHO's blog, a quote which includes a quote from this blog:
First part of the "Rapunzel" trilogy (apparently "there is an intricate concept and a narrative arc, but for the moment let's leave it at 'Futuro-Mediaevalism'"), the third of which, "Rapunzel Let Down My Tyres" is already available on SC's excellent Total Vermin label - http://totalvermin.blogspot.com/ - and the second, "...Mother", is forthcoming on Beartown records - http://www.beartownrecords.com/.

Side 1 here is an emotional rollercoaster, long-since abandoned to vandalism and rust, which has been coaxed by feral youths into one final journey along the only remaining section of track between foreboding and despair, while side 2 features, among other things, what appears to be a thoroughly researched historical re-enactment of the infamous drum machine mutiny of 1986 at Roland Corporation headquarters.


Side A
1. Cadaver Palaver
2. "The Gag! The Gag!"
3. Archimedes' Mirror Self-Tan
Side B
1. Act 2: Snivelling Pissabed Enters
2. Conduit Locknuts, Loops and Nipples
3. Disco, Bald and Chain'd
4. A Warning to the Gable-Ended


The Piped-In From Head Office blog also has a wee listen-before-you-buy of the tape's weakest track. Enjoy!

Various "Winners Don't Shiver" (#2) pifho016 cdr £4

Thoroughly good compilation of which I have a few copies, thanks to tracks by The Gamecock and Acrid Lactations being included...



I'm too lazy to review the contents myself, but Graham isn't:

They are loved, loathed, feared, despised and even worshipped; human beings whose appearances and natures often conspire to defy that very description. We call them freaks. We have exhibited them, exploited them, applauded them, laughed at them and, sometimes, shut them far away from the world...

Nackt Insecten “Dead Good Song”
The Gamecock “The Gila Myth Made Flesh”
Andrew Perry “The Mistake”
Acrid Lactations “Confess! Hapless Monkling”
Boom Edan “Hey Come Here”
Tripping Landlocked Infidels “With Spleen in Pocket”
Helhesten “Blue Steel Burned Off”
Hobo Sonn “Hydro-electric”
C.A.G. “Man Daby Vestibule for Pre Kluxen Serenade”
Johnny Scarr “Circular Hillage”
Bad Orb “Monobassatron”
CK Dexter Haven “Sightless Insects Chew Barnacled Rope”
Ananas Pyramidalis “Lytchett Lipshit”
Solipstink “Bogey Nights”
Kunstlusk “Everyone in Norway Loves This Climbing Mouse”

Well, maybe a bit too lazy.

The Gamecock - In the Slippery Grip of an Homunculus' Hand cassette (Cthirty-something, I think) Golden Lab Records ROWF21 £4



Here's a description of The Gamecock by my cohort in that band, Nick Mitchell:

Duo of Stuart Arnot (Smear Campaign; Plum Slate) and Nick Mitchell (Beach Fuzz; A Wake). They play a kind of arrhythmic, un-danceable funk of high-end frequencies and low-end drum machines, fed through a wah-wah and rammed forcefully into the listener’s cerebral cortex. Pitch-shifted casio crap and unadorned Roland Juno shimmer are melded to form what is at once both sweet and listenable and yet still, somehow, horribly repellant. Sitting somewhere uncomfortably, painfully and way away from the hypnogogic pop bandwagon, where the drum machines have bronchitis and the synthesizers sneeze, they are brutally loud, joyfully all-consuming and epic in their prolongation of the crescendo.
I warn any Wagner or Godspeed You Black Emperor! or Mogwai fans that may have stumbled across this quaint little corner while shopping for nazi memorabilia or eyeliner or tracksuits or whatever that there are NO CRESCENDI in The Gamecock. Don't fall for Mr Mitchell's wee joke. If there were, we'd be releasing this stuff on 220g vinyl or DVD-A or something. Probably should read something like this:
...epic in their post-production employment of amounts of compression that would make the folk who make advertising jingles for local radio blush.
That may be something of an exaggeration, but it the prevarication may have prevented me from having to offer up a genuine alternative description of the material herein. I seem to remember thinking that it is, perhaps, The Gamecock's best tape.

POST-SCRIPT

Feeling inadequate after the above evasion of duty, I have had a listen to 'In the Slippery...' and will now share my thoughts. Contrary to my previous claims, two of the five tracks include crescendi, and indeed, diminuendi. The first side is completely danceable. I would dance to it, and have done so, just now. It's like a hybrid of industrial music and house, without the ludicrous posturing of the former or the lasciviousness of the latter. The second side has some danceability, and some more reflective passages. There is little evidence of keyboard play on this cassette; mostly we just work the drum-machines, often with quite some ferocity. If you were me, and I was you, I'd buy this tape.

Followers