Saturday, April 29, 2006


From Jazziz, May 2006 issue:

Long Hidden: The Olmec Series
(AUM Fidelity)
This is a multifaceted disc, unusual for Parker, who tends to record using his working bands rather than assemble musicians for a studio date. There are solo bass pieces, tracks for unaccompanied doson n'goni (an eight-stringed African instrument that sounds like a slightly out-of-tune guitar plucked by his thickly calloused fingers) and several cuts featuring a full band playing a mixture of free jazz and merengue. This "Olmec Group" features Todd Nicholson on bass (freeing Parker up to play the doson n'goni), Dave Sewelson on alto and baritone saxes, Omar Payano on congo and guiro, Gabriel Nunez on timbale and bongos, Luis Ramirez on accordion, and Isaiah Parker on alto sax. Sewelson takes a terrific, scorchingly free solo on "El Puente Seco," as the band churns and wheezes behind him. It's a totally unexpected combination - merengue groove and free shriek - but under Parker's able direction, it works beautifully.

The title piece is divided into three sections, each a solo for doson n'goni. These run out of order throughout the album: Part Two, only 45 seconds long, is track two, Part Three is track five, and Part One is track 10. Parker reprises a few favorite songs, taking the spiritual "There Is A Balm In Gilead" as a bass solo to open the disc and reworking "Compassion Seizes Bed-Stuy," originally recorded by his In Order To Survive quartet, in the disc's second half. The final track, "In Case Of Accident," is a similarly vintage live recording of a 14-minute bass solo, originally released on cassette through Parker's own label, Centering Music. It provides a long-winded but intermittently thrilling coda to this surprising and masterful disc.

Friday, April 28, 2006


I have a fan!

------ Forwarded Message
From: [redacted]
Date: Fri, 28 Apr 2006 05:09:36 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: to who wrote the hank III review

Are you serious with the Hank III review?? The new time you think about writing a review of a band/style you obviously know nothing about you should go back to jacking off...(insert hip emo band of the week here) to keep your hands busy away from a pen,pencil,keyboard,crayon or whatever it is you use to write your jerkass reviews.

The review in question:

Straight To Hell
Hank III, who divides his time between honky-tonkin’ and thrashing with Superjoint Ritual, hasn’t put out a country record in three years. It’s too bad he’s only written three genuinely good songs in the interval – “The Pills I Took,” “My Drinkin’ Problem” and “Angel Of Sin.” The other ten tracks on the first disc of this 2CD set are rants about how much he hates pop country, festivals of name-dropping (he drinks with David Allan Coe, listens to George Jones and thinks Kid Rock is a poseur – impressed?) and cartoonishly clichéd drunken-hillbilly pseudo-anthems that veer close to minstrelsy. His psychobillyish strum ‘n’ twang is occasionally improved by some psychedelic production tricks, reminiscent of Butthole Surfer pals the Bad Livers. Disc 2, a 40-minute sound collage with occasional songs, wallows in such excesses. At this rate, he’s the GG Allin of country, and no matter who your grandfather was, that’s disappointing.

I admit it - when I saw that e-mail in my box, I kinda hoped it was from ol' Hank III himself. I'm a bit shocked his fans read Alternative Press, too...

Thursday, April 27, 2006


I don't love Hammerfall, but I watched a shitload of curling this past Winter Olympics (it was practically all they showed). So enjoy...Hammerfall vs. the Swedish Olympic Curling Team.


Here are the two CD reviews I have in the May 06 issue of The Wire, the one with the icily lovely AGF on the cover. (I also have a lengthy Invisible Jukebox with William Parker in the issue, but I'm not reprinting that whole thing here.) May these guide you well on your next trip to the wrecka stow.

Battle Kommand
A photo of a drum kit and a guitar is prominent in Leviathan’s half of this CD’s booklet. Being a one-man Black Metal outfit means proving or at least asserting that you played ‘real’ instruments at some point during the recording process. Laptops are not Metal. And indeed, part way through the first Leviathan track here, “Odious Convulsions (They Are Not Worthy Of His Name),” a bass is heard, dominating the mix in almost post-punk fashion, a gesture quite shocking in Black Metal, which usually prides itself on a hissy, treble-soaked sound. The drums still sound programmed, though, photographic evidence be damned. At one point, the guitar gets slightly out of phase with the blast beats, creating a whop-whop effect like a helicopter and a pavement saw in competition. The vocals are typically indecipherable, and no lyrics are provided. The confident newcomer Sapthuran, who offers three tracks here, plays acoustic guitar, but also incorporates the sound of wind through trees (presumably at midnight, in a long dead forest) along with the usual blast beats and inhuman growling and screeching. With Black Metal, small differences are everything. An acoustic guitar or a Big Black bass break keeps the diehards coming back for more. Count me in.

Shot X Shot
High Two
Shot X Shot’s two saxophonists, Dan Scofield (alto) and Bryan Rogers (tenor), interact with grace and consideration, never grappling at centre stage like John Coltrane and Pharoah Sanders (to whom they’re inaccurately compared in the booklet) or Borbetomagus’s Jim Sauter and Don Dietrich (to whom they’re somewhat more accurately not compared). If anything, Shot X Shot recall the New York group Test, whose music, gentle and introspective, belies the amount of time its creators spend playing in crowded subway stations. The group’s debut, recorded in a Philadelphia church, documents a battle between the participants and their environment. Natural reverberation is the fifth instrument – delicate horn duets shimmer away into Ambient haze, as Dan Capecchi’s drums thump and rattle and bassist Matt Engle struggles manfully to make an impact.
Things begin slowly, with Capecchi eliciting sounds very much like feedback from his cymbals, before the horns come in – Rogers droning, Scofield playing slow, beautiful sequences of notes that seem only tenuously connected. But each sound chosen is indisputably right. From that moment on, the five tracks are more similar than different. All stride purposefully beyond the ten minute mark, but stop shy of becoming the 15 or 30 minute blowouts credulous audiences continue to endure from older free jazz groups, like parents sitting indulgently through school talent shows. And all leave an impression, upon completion, of being neither solipsistic nor beholden to cliché – a small miracle, these days. This calmly assured debut bodes well for the future of all involved.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006


Last week I bought Chuck Berry's Gold, which is the Anthology from 2000 with new cover art and liner notes. It's got 50 tracks spread across two discs, and all but a handful are ass-rapingly great. I hadn't heard Berry in years and had forgotten how scorching his guitar playing is. On "Carol" and particularly on "Roll Over Beethoven," he sounds like Marc Ribot half the time - startling to realize that Billy Zoom, while consciously aping Berry on X's "Johny Hit And Run Paulene," was actually playing cleaner than the man himself! Plus, the rhythm section speeds up and slows down and lurches in and out of the groove - basically, just like a real band interacting in real time. Shocking, that. These are some of the most punk rock songs you'll ever hear in your goddamn life, and if you're too young or too historically ignorant to have spent time seriously wallowing in the classic Berry singles, or even if you're just looking to re-acquaint yourself after years away, like me (I owned The Great Twenty-Eight years ago, but it went out the door in a particularly misguided purge), you oughta do it right away.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006


I sent the review below to Chuck Eddy on spec. He rejected it because the album was already assigned - as it turned out, Christgau was covering it in his new Consumer Guide.

I'm Not Dead
Pink's politics are pure American populism: instinctive and sometimes clumsy, she sings from her gut, fist-pumping choruses salvaging almost-there verses. On a hidden bonus track, she duets with her dad on a song he wrote, that she grew up singing at Vietnam veterans' rallies. That gesture almost makes the fucking Indigo Girls' presence on the embarrassingly earnest "Dear Mr. President" forgivable. "Stupid Girls" is a better critique of Hilton, Lohan et al. than perfect-is-the-enemy-of-the-good feminist critics have been willing to acknowledge. The album version's even better, full of things you can't say on the radio. "Pretty will you fuck me girl/Silly I'm so lucky girl/Pull my hair I'll suck it girl," she spits before the final chorus. The non-"issue" songs "'Cuz I Can," "Leave Me Alone (I'm Lonely)" and "U + Ur Hand" are decent, distracting similarities to Lita Ford's "Kiss Me Deadly" and her own "Humble Neighborhoods" aside. But the strummed guitars and VH1-friendly midtempo ballads dominating I'm Not Dead feel like a repudiation of, or a retreat from, 2003's ballsy, brilliant flop, Try This. While Ashlee Simpson and Kelly Clarkson are taking Pink's old style to the bank, she's turning herself into a slightly edgier Michelle Branch.

I've listened to I'm Not Dead a few more times since writing that, and I like it a little better now. I still hate "Dear Mr. President," though, and I wish I could escape the feeling that Christgau's giving her extra points for it, rather than thumbs-upping the whole album, because he just gets so damn happy when a pop singer's politics agree with his own. (Note that he shouts out the song, but ignores the presence of the Indigo Girls, who he loathes maybe even as much as I do.) Anyway, it's a good record. The songs rock a little harder than I thought they did on my first few clearly-not-close-enough listens, and I'm glad the review didn't make print. And I really hope she tours the US this year.


I saw Ghostface Killah at the Nokia Theater on Saturday night. (So did at least two guys from the Voice, apparently.) I say two because I also ran into Robert Christgau there. He was wandering around looking old and befuddled, going down the wrong hallway before heading toward the performance area. I walked over and said hi, gave him my card. He said he recognized my name, I said I'd written some stuff for the paper. He asked me how many people I thought the Nokia held, and we both guessed about 1500. Then he headed inside, and I stayed where I was for a little while longer. This was during the openers' sets - maybe M1, maybe Papoose (who I'd never heard of before the night and don't much care if I never hear again - he sounded just like Trife to me, but there's already one Trife and he's good enough at what he does that he doesn't need replacing). I stayed outside for DJ Premier's set, too, which turned out to be kind of a bummer since that meant missing Jeru the Damaja, who I would have liked to see redeem himself. I saw him open for Tricky 10 years ago at Irving Plaza, and he was lame that night.

The whole show was kinda disappointing, in fact. Ghostface had about 19 hypemen onstage (the Theodore Unit, minus Cappadonna, plus a shitload of hangers-on) and they seemed to me to be stepping on his lines in a very annoying way. But the crowd seemed to be going berserk for everything, so maybe I'm just no longer the target audience for live hip-hop. (Was I ever?) But like the headline above says, I bought a T-shirt. And I'm glad I was there; there were moments, particularly during Slick Rick's set and when Ghostface launched into some of the Supreme Clientele cuts, that were genuinely thrilling. I think if I'd paid for a ticket I might have been more disappointed than I was, though.

Thursday, April 20, 2006


Effective tomorrow, Chuck Eddy is no longer the music editor of the Village Voice. He's being succeeded by Rob Harvilla, of the East Bay Express. I have a few thoughts about this.

When I first began pitching reviews to Chuck (before I realized that Chuck was much more likely to run things I simply wrote and sent him, on spec), I was very nervous about my prospects, for two reasons that didn't quite match up. On the one hand, I thought I wasn't well-known enough to write for the Voice. Even though I wasn't intimately familiar with the work of a lot of the reviewers there, I figured they had to be "somebodies" within the rockcrit world I still viewed myself as standing on the fringes of. (I still kinda see myself that way, if only because there are pockets of rockcritland that are so damn incestuous that 90 percent of the scribbling community probably feels that way, looking at those folks running around in their tiny, backslapping/blogrolling circle.) On the other hand, I really, really hated about 80 percent of what was being published in the Voice music section, and I thought that was Chuck's fault. Most of the reviews were smarmy nonsense, packed full of puns and in-jokes and references that only hardcore indie-rock nerds would a) give a shit about and/or b) find funny. A lot of them were gimmicky, written as fake diary entries or open letters to the artist or fake diary entries supposedly by the artist or imaginary get the idea. Wanky bullshit. And I figured that Chuck wanted it that way. In fact, I figured wanky bullshit was the Voice house style, since I mostly knew Chuck as a guy who claimed to like metal but then lionized the worst things about it, or called things metal that to my ear definitely, even defiantly, were not metal, like Teena Marie. So I was afraid that if I did manage to get a piece picked for publication, it would be "edited" until it read like all the crap I was reading, and hating, and hoping to provide some kind of sensible, this-album-sounds-like-this-and-is-worth-buying counterpoint to.

Well, Chuck turned out to be one of the best editors I've ever written for, with the guy who edited my Miles Davis book only slightly nudging ahead of him in my heart, because I have more attached to the book than to the 200 words I wrote about Grave's Back From The Grave (my first-ever Voice credit). What Chuck's deal was/is, for the benefit of whoever gets edited by him wherever he lands, is this: he makes you the best writer you can be. If you're a smarmy indie-rock jagoff, he will polish your phrases and paragraphs, word by word if necessary, until you're the best smarmy indie-rock jagoff you can be. He will give you extra rope with which to hang yourself, but it's all up to you, ultimately.

I became a better writer because I knew what I was writing would reach Chuck Eddy's eyes before it reached those of the Voice readership (which included a shitload of my fellow rock critics, and probably will continue to include them, no matter how much some of them may be claiming they won't look at the paper under Rob Harvilla). I still didn't like most of the other pieces he ran. I thought his refusal to acknowledge real-world considerations like album release dates, commercial success or lack thereof, or local hooks (is a band coming to town, can consumers actually purchase the music in question in local stores, etc.) hurt the paper, even while I benefited from said refusal. But ultimately, he did way more good than harm. And yeah, his ouster does kinda mark the end of an era, because Harvilla, despite his own merits as a writer and editor, will not be permitted to be that freewheeling even if he wants to (and I kinda doubt he does). I don't think Chuck leaving the Voice is any kind of death-of-music-criticism moment, as a bunch of melodramatic blogger/critics (and, yeah, personal friends of Chuck's) would have it. Dorks who wanna gas on about the thing they downloaded last night have message boards and blogs to do it on. And the dorks who wanna read that stuff will find it (they're mostly all blogrolling each other already anyway).

(I published 11 reviews in the Voice during Chuck's tenure - if you feel like reading them all, you can click here.)

Monday, April 17, 2006


My book got reviewed by Charles Waring in the current issue of MOJO (Elvis cover). It's a tiny blurb in the "Shelf Life" box - this is the complete text:

If the jazz police had their way Philip Freeman would probably get arrested for heresy. He makes several provocative assertions in this engagingly written new tome, which focuses on Miles' controversial electric period. Freeman claims that the trumpeter's music post-1968 was superior to his earlier work, even dismissing Miles' collaborations with Gil Evans ("those albums are overrated, Sketches Of Spain aside"). Although the author's revisionist evangelism occasionally jars, this is one of the best books yet on Miles' electric explorations.

But he gave it four stars, so that's good.

Saturday, April 15, 2006


The Wire doesn't post any of its contents online, so for the benefit of readers who can't find the April issue (in which my book is quite favorably reviewed by Edwin Pouncey, by the way), here are the three reviews of mine they published.

Fuck The Universe
Southern Lord
The great irony of Black Metal is that its screwfaced embrace of utter nihilism can inspire such a rush of raw joy in the listener. The Swedish outfit Craft have released two albums, and Fuck The Universe is their announced farewell gesture, a final hanging-up of the spikes. It begins, as does so much Black Metal, with a headlong sprint, guitars buzzing like circuits on fire and drums thumping emphatically. Like their compatriots Marduk, Craft leaven their chosen genre’s hilariously goading Satanism (like most other forms of rock ’n’ roll rebellion, it always seems aimed at an imaginary prude) with a dose of pure blackheartedness that feels equally put-on, but somehow not quite as transparently attention-seeking. “Thorns In The Planet’s Side” and “Earth A Raging Blaze” don’t quite redline the hate-o-meter the way Marduk’s “Fistfucking God’s Planet” does, but really, what could? Sometimes, a more general approach is the way to go. Hence Fuck The Universe. Lyrics aside, though, Craft’s strength is their combination of Death Metal’s repetitive crunch with Black Metal’s primitive buzz ’n’ howl, creating a speeding steamroller of sound reminiscent of the genre’s forefathers, Venom. They’ll be missed.

Beautiful Existence
Clean Feed
Absence makes the ear grow fonder. This disc finds Joe Morris picking up the guitar after three solid years of diddling around with the upright bass. Sure, he’s become more than proficient at the bigger instrument, but he must know what his listeners have been waiting to hear from him, and whether he actually cares or not, he delivers in spades. His fleet, ultra-clean lines jet through the air, notes stabbing like a zillion tiny darts, while longtime partner Timo Shanko on bass throbs away Jimmy Garrison-like behind him and drummer Luther Gray keeps the cymbals gently crashing, the rhythm as much implied as swung.
The added element here is alto saxophonist Jim Hobbs, who also plays with Shanko in The Fully Celebrated Orchestra. Hobbs is a talented player who only gives in to clichéd Ornette-isms once, on “Some Good.” Otherwise, he’s got his own ideas and deploys them judiciously, whether the underlying mood is bluesy and droning (“Knew Something”) or screeching and hectic (the almost overblown opening cut “Smear Spring”).
Even at his quietest, though, Hobbs threatens to overwhelm the proceedings simply because Morris seems intent on becoming one with the rhythm section. His cleanliness of tone and fleetness of line frequently permit the bass and drums to dominate, until it hardly feels like it’s his session anymore. Perhaps it’s a deliberate strategy to encourage careful listening. If so, he should inform his bandmates of what he’s doing, before he’s unwittingly drowned out of his own discography.

Four Guitars Live At Luxx
One of those surnames is bound to ring fewer bells than the others. Carlos Giffoni is a composer and improvisor. He is also the organizer of New York’s No Fun Fest, but he has only one solo CD, last year’s Welcome Home (also on Important), to his credit. Here, he’s heard onstage at a defunct Brooklyn space with two Sonic Youths and Nels Cline, who, it seems, has played with half the planet.
Moore and Ranaldo obviously have each other thoroughly figured out after nearly 30 years of professional alliance, and Cline is equally comfortable with jazz chords and oddly self-effacing bursts of feedback and skronk. The comparatively anonymous Giffoni is among friends who seem to consider him an equal.
Relative marquee value hardly matters, though. This is the sort of audio snapshot, free of any meaning deeper than ‘this happened,’ that renders improvised music irrelevant to the vast majority of listeners. The single 40 minute piece on offer is ultimately opaque; no matter how predisposed audience members might be to considering this sort of thing a fine evening out, it’s not really about them. While the music is the work of men who’ve spent their entire professional careers subverting earlier expectations of electric guitars and their players, a whole other set of expectations are met by releases of this type.

Thursday, April 13, 2006


He said, and then posted the link.

The journalism rules are more important to me than many of my message-board-raised peers. This makes me the fuddy-duddy, the reactionary. (That, and my insistence that writing about music be about the goddamn music.) Anyhow, I suggest ignoring the link above. But if you must indulge little Nicky in his wanky bullshit, don't tell me. Because I will respect you a lot less if I know.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006


I have recently modified my facial hair in a small but decisive way. I've had a goatee for years - about 15 years, in fact. At some point about a half-dozen years ago, maybe a little less, I grew an accompanying mustache. I believe this combination is called a "Vandyke." Well, a month or two ago, I decided that with the warm weather coming soon (yeah, right - it just arrived this week) it was time for another change. So I shaved out the middle part of the goatee, leaving me with a mustache that goes clear down to my chin. Apparently, this look is known as the "Hetfield."

Yes, it's a look probably most familiar to frequent viewers of COPS. And for a week or two, I didn't see anybody else sporting it on the streets of Manhattan. But in the last couple of days, I've seen quite a few Hetfields on my way to and from work. This probably surprises me more than it should - metal's back, after all, and the Hetfield is the most metal of all facial-hair options. (Those long-ass braided/dyed/beaded goatees that came post-grunge were just horrifying, and I'm glad they're mostly gone - the only prominent headbanger still sporting one is the bassist from System Of A Down, and his fashion sense is not to be trusted, since his race, the Armenians, gave the world the tracksuit-and-dress-shoes combo.) So I feel like my Hetfield makes me part of something larger than myself. Which is one of the great things about the brotherhood of metal. Plus, my wife digs it. So I guess it's here to stay, for awhile anyhow.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006


I wrote about the new Pentagram 2CD set (which could easily have been a single disc, but never mind) in the Voice this week.

Saturday, April 08, 2006


Awhile ago, I wrote this review of Falkenbach's Heralding The Fireblade, which is a really great Viking metal album though not as good as Korpiklaani's ass-rapingly great Tales Along This Road, which I just got the other week. In the interval, though, The Wire changed reviews editors - David Stubbs left, and was replaced by Nick Cain, who used to edit the online zine Opprobrium (was there ever a print version? I think there might have been). Anyway, he chose not to run the Falkenbach review. So here 'tis.

Heralding The Fireblade

Falkenbach is essentially a one-man show; vocalist Vratyas Vakyas recruits instrumentalists as necessary to realize his vision of a Metal-rooted music that will offer fitting tribute to Viking culture and values. Four of the eight tracks have English-language titles (“Heathen Foray,” “Of Forests Unknown,” “Roman Land” and “Heralder”), and all have an epic sweep. Over the course of the three releases preceding this one, Falkenbach’s sound has changed substantially, from an initial Black Metal primitivism to a more folk- and classical-tinged sound with stirring keyboard fanfares and even some choruses with which one could quite happily hoist a horn of mead and chant along. It’s still very much Metal, of course; the guitars are heavy and the drums thunder like they’re meant to inspire banks of rowers to ever-greater feats of exertion. Tempos occasionally get up to Death Metal speed, but for the most part Vakyas is more interested in grandiosity than wild headbanging. For similar reasons, clean vocals are dominant – Black Metal screeches don’t make an appearance until the fourth track, “Roman Land.” There’s also a dramatic appearance by a woman (!) at the climax of “Skirnir” that nearly makes the album worth owning all by itself. Viking Metal cannily avoids overt embrace of the fascism Black Metal frequently fetishizes, choosing to celebrate manly paganism instead. Where white-faced Black Metallers lurk in caves and forests, sword-swinging Viking Metal bands stride forth in sunlight, as bearded heroes. Falkenbach’s music, like the best of the genre, is proudly extroverted, fist-pumping stuff.

Friday, April 07, 2006


Remember that statue of Britney Spears giving birth? Remember how you could only see a front and/or side view of it in the publicity shots? Well, here's what you've been, uh, "missing."

Thursday, April 06, 2006


The new Ghostface album has so many lines on it that will make you wanna shake a random stranger passing by and scream "Listen to this fucking shit!" that I could fill the whole front page of this blog with 'em. But I think the two that are destroying my world with the most vigor right now are both from "The Champ":

"He's a bulldozer! With a wreckin' ball attached!"

"Niggas want me dead but they scared to step to me/Rippin' out they guts like a hysterectomy"

Go buy Fishscale right now. Come back and read the rest of this entry later.

Other things that are kicking my ass, to a much lesser degree:

First, the new Boris album Pink. (Pink should have called her new album Boris. Missed opportunity there. Oh, well.) Boris have bored me in the past; I tried to like Amplifier Worship and Absolutego and their Merzbow collab Sun Baked Snow Cave because all the right people worshipped them and I wanted to be down wit it, but they were just pastiche artists like too many Japanese performers, grabbing random riffs from the Seventies Hard Rock bag and making sure they had just the right amps and guitars and pedals and haircuts. This became even more clear when I saw them live at the Knitting Factory. They wanted to be Grand Funk Railroad so fucking bad that night, and simply weren't. I bailed about half an hour in. My buddy swears they got better after I left, but he said that about the Mars Volta, too, and the first two hours of that show were possibly the greatest live rock experience I've ever had, top five easy, so I know he's lying because if they had actually gotten better after what I saw, he would have dissolved into pink goo and been unable to report back to me. But anyway, Pink is a really good album. The first track is beautiful almost shoegazery psych-doom, then the majority of those after it are ultra-fuzzed but also skull-powderingly heavy garage-rock stomp-attacks. Everything you've always read that they are, they actually became this time. It'll be out soon on Southern Lord - it's currently available, with no extra tracks, as a pricey import. Hold out.

I'm also digging Rodrigo y Gabriela. They're a pair of Mexican acoustic guitarists who play what sounds like flamenco influenced by Yngwie Malmsteen, and the latter comparison is probably more accurate than the former; inside the CD, they swear they're not flamenco players. They cover Metallica's "Orion" and Led Zeppelin's "Stairway To Heaven" on their new CD, but their originals will make you wanna peel off your skin and jump into the nearest stucco wall.

Dub Trio remind me of Blind Idiot God; their new album New Heavy has big riffs, nice cymbal/hi-hat work during the dubby bass breaks, and vocals by Mike Patton on the weakest cut.

Nuru Kane is a guitarist from Dakar who plays music that's somewhere between the North African desert and Junior Kimbrough's trance blues. His album Sigil (Riverboat) is fucking gorgeous. Etran Finatawa do something similar, with a little more Tinariwen to 'em; they're just okay.

I bought the Bug's latest thing, the 2CD set Killing Sound, credited to Razor X Productions. If you wish dancehall sounded like someone setting off a shape charge in your transverse colon while a belt-sander gently caresses your ears, this is your album. The first disc is crazed singles featuring deejays like Daddy Freddy, Warrior Queen, Mexican and a bunch of others; the second disc is dub versions. The louder you play it, the more your neighbors will gnash their teeth and dream of setting their dogs on you in your sleep. Especially if they like "regular" dancehall.