On Names of North End Women the new collaborative lp by former Sonic Youth guitarist Lee Ranaldo and Spanish producer/composer Raül Refree, the duo condense electronic pulses, shifting rhythms, tape loops, and far out (and frequently lusty) poetry into a beguiling collage. “I think the idea of going forward is to try to venture into more different places,” Ranaldo says, “rather than fall back into familiar sound-worlds from the past.”
McCraven is a musician, composer and bandleader, but he is also highly regarded for his “chopping” or remixing and re-imagining production skills. We’re New Again, his reconfiguration of the late-career classic Gil Scott Heron album I’m New Here, will be one of 2020’s top recordings, putting a fresh spin on moving meditations on family, personal history and black identity. We talked to him about that project, the process of remixing and the way he and Heron find links between many different kinds of music.
“It was important to keep everything in context,” Tiersen said in a phone interview with Aquarium Drunkard. “It was really important for me to have [the songs] back and to have them…in the environment they belong.” This sentiment lays at the heart of the sessions for Portrait. How, at 25 years on, can you create a grand unified theory of your body of work? In Tiersen’s case it involved revisiting a wide variety of songs, reinterpreting them alongside new material, in order to create just what the title implies: a portrait.
As the release of the new Destroyer album approaches, Dan Bejar spoke to us about recording in isolation, the principal role of John Collins, songwriting inspirations, the end of the world, and the influence of futurism on Destroyer’s thirteenth album…
For their latest, All Or Nothing, Shopping worked with producer Nick Sylvester to amp up the hedonism and beef up their often skeletal songs. In this interview we talked about the band’s new sleeker, synth-augmented sound, the balance of individual autonomy and group voice and why nobody in Shopping wants to be compared to your standard “starter-pack” of post-punk bands.
Michael Gira lived a thousand lives before Swans. He grew up in Los Angeles during the 1960s with absent parents. He was constantly snagged by the cops for misdemeanors, eventually winding up in Germany with […]
In May, post-punk legends The Raincoats announced a handful of shows across the UK and a performance at Le Guess Who? to celebrate the 40th anniversary of their seminal self-titled debut album. A couple of hours after […]
Though largely instrumental, “A Son” wrestles with the concept of home, the influence of the past and the frightening shifts in American culture and discourse. Nelson spoke to Aquarium Drunkard about his new album, the music and events that shaped it and the challenges of removing clutter from already serene and uncrowded sounds.
Jaimie Branch has been playing the trumpet since the age of nine, working the possibilities of her instrument to recreate the music that lives in her head. Her latest album Fly Or Die II: Bird Dogs of Paradise delivers challenge and experiment in the context of irresistible swing …
Catching up with AD, Stuart Staples shed some light on the process behind this new record, the importance of looking forward, why he doesn’t like his music in TV shows, the music he comes from, and more …
On Devendra Banhart’s Ma, the singer/songwriter settles into an easy stroll, singing in English, Portuguese, and Spanish, referencing Carole King and Haruomi Hosono, and focusing on maternal love and beauty. “I still turn to art to make a very lonely situation suddenly much more manageable and agreeable or a very beautiful situation even more ecstatic, even more beautiful.”
High Weirdness is author Erik Davis’ most heroic effort yet: a more than 400-page immersion into the lives of Terence McKenna, Philip K. Dick, and Robert Anton Wilson, figureheads of American weirdness. With these three serving as a psychic trinity to orbit, Davis is free to address the shifts in consciousness that occurred on the American West Coast in the 1970s: “I’m interested in the drift of the counterculture.”
The son of folklorist Fred C. Fussell, Jake Xerxes Fussell spent his youth documenting the sound and feel of blues singers and indigenous fiddlers. The younger Fussell carries on curatorial work with Out of Sight, his latest lp. AD caught up with him to explore how the scope of traditional music is not limited by region or provenance.
“There’s a part of me that feels like music is about form and experimentation and learning and working with materials, and then there’s another part of me that knows that music’s just got to be this intuitive, continuous sort of spirit work.”
On its debut album, Phantom Rhythm, guitar and bass duo Gong Gong Gong draw on the buzzy rock ‘n’ roll bedrock of Bo Diddley and the mesmerizing solos of West African desert blues, twisting up music traditions like Henry Flynt and 75 Dollar Bill, expanding into vast and enveloping territories that sound like a desert rave after sundown.