Come Monday night, things are about to get pretty effing loud north of Chinatown. Portland,...
Published: 07/11/2013 | 0 Comments Posted
Perennially plucky Brit-rock underdogs/serially self-reinventing Stones fetishists Primal Scream seem to average one truly killer album every 10 years. If the ambitious More Light (Ignition) isn’t an unequivocal jaw-dropper on the level of Screamadelica or XTRMNTR, it’s still enough to satisfy as this decade’s allotment; echoing both of those landmarks (the former, most blatantly/gleefully, on rapturous finale “It’s Alright, It’s OK”) amidst a back-catalog-blenderizing, psych/blues/punk/gospel/orchestral/acid-funk melting pot of ecstatic, full-throttle jams. Spring for the deluxe edition if you can — even the bonus tracks kick.
—K. Ross Hoffman
The four tracks on Whirr’s new Around (Graveface) — the shortest of which pushes six minutes — feel like different tangents within the same dream. The lush male-female harmonies and sprawling guitar hooks recall the melancholic drone of original shoegazers Slowdive and My Bloody Valentine. Whether it’s a nod to Smashing Pumpkins’ sof-ter side (“Swoon”) or the heartfelt resonance of opener “Drain,” the hyp-notic rhythms connect one song to the next.
Danish electro-art-pop outfit When Saints Go Machine approach their third album as if determined to out-weird themselves, bookending Infinity Pool (!K7) with an incongruous Killer Mike feature and 80 out-of-nowhere seconds of trebly break-beat rave. In between comes a maze of meandering melody and textural abstraction that only occasionally approaches the sublimity of 2011’s curiously elegant Konkylie. But there’s real beauty underneath all that woozy circuitry — and, bizarrely, hooks too.
—K. Ross Hoffman
“Pussy is a devious word … the best translation is deranged vaginas.” That’s the kind of fundamentalist orthodoxy Moscow rockers/activists Pussy Riot are up against. What gives animus to their subversive feminism and punk ethos is the union between Russia’s patriarchs, temporal and spiritual. In the HBO doc A Punk Prayer, the trial and its forgone conviction prove to be the band’s greatest performance — a show of contempt, irony, courage and humanity. And Putin hovers invisibly over the proceedings, achieving what all authoritarian power desires: to be present in every conversation, every mind, every room.