Some of my favorite albums of late have been internet give-aways, the perfect music-distribution route for weirdos who don't make the kind of trendy cookie-cutter sounds the labels are looking for. Such as:
YOU ARE NOT STEALING RECORDS
Were it not for the 'net, how else would I know about the strange/outsider music underground of Portugal? There is abundance of goodies here, and from what I've heard so far, none of it sucks, and everything's been at least worthwhile, and at best wonderful.
Stealing Orchestra is the band that started this 'net label. "We are using: sampling, guitars, accordeon, drums, flute, oboé, marimba vibraphone xylophone, cello percussion, piano, theremin and a lot of keyboards like church organ or hammond." Start with:
- "For Me 'Formidable," from their "É Português? Não Gosto!" album, in which traditional Portuguese polkas and waltzes are transformed into a spazz-tronic circus.
- From their "Bu!" album, "É Contra Mim Que Luto ," and "Catarse" especially when the exotica sample comes in @ 1:oo.
- G.G. Allin's Dick, also Portuguese, play a cartoonishly crazed polka-tempo electronica on their "King of the Road" album; might be my fave YANSR release so far; "Monocycle From Hell" is a tune that has wormed it's way into my head, popping out at odd times.
- Slipper are a British band featuring ex-Loop Guru members that draws inspiration from '50/'60s exotica, but filtered thru a modern sensibility. Check "Nuke Bug," in which a thick dub bass line is crawling with insect sounds; kinda like those tropical bird call-festooned Martin Denny records, but more creepy. "Lobsters" features a Peter Gunn-ish guitar riff, Miles-esque horns, and weird nightmarish noises.
- The Prostitutes play '60s-style garage rock and surf instros with maximum fuzz and energy; compared to the eccentric eclecticism of other YANSR acts, there's nothing too original here, but these Portuguese punks are plenty fun.
- Duo Inmortales play Residential one-minute-long songs with text-to-speech robots on vocals. Pick hit: "My First Nazi Girl."
- Vincent Bergeron's first two tracks annoyed me with it's modern-classical atonalities and Bergeron's nerdy voice singing in French. Then, either I got used to it, or the classical-chamber-group-chopped-up-in-a-sampler sounds sunk in, and I found songs like "L'Art du Déssaroi" to be pretty damn cool.
- Luis Antero's 17-minute long "Sinfonia Amphibia" consists of nothing but field recordings of some very loud uncredited Portuguese critters, presumably amphibians. I like to play this at the same time as other musics, such as the minor-key shoegazey sounds of worriedaboutsatan.