Sunday, September 30, 2012

Olde Growth / Ty Segall / Oh Sees / Bongripper / GBV / Sparkmarker

Olde Growth - s/t: Bass/Vocals and Drums duo playing stoner/doom with a bit of a hardcore edge.  Super gnarly fuzz bass tones abound on this record and the strong songwriting is bolstered by an impressive range of vocal approaches from a deathy growl to a sugar-sweet melodic tenor. This kind of setup is right up my alley so it was easy for me to dig this band.  Having said that, my criticism of this record would be that some of the songs seem to overstay their welcome a little.  

 The cover art is pretty rad as well both sides have this forest carcass theme screen printed on rough cardboard.  Check out this Youtube clip where someone has overlaid scenes from the animated Lord of The Rings on Olde Growth's epic trilogy Cry of the Nazgul / The Second Darkness / To The Black Gate.

Ty Segall - The Hill / Mother Lemonade 7": As a response / follow up to Boss' excellent Ty Segall and Oh Sees post las week I thought I'd throw up something from each of those artists that has just been released.  Both Ty and Thee Oh Sees have been pretty prolific over the past few years so there's usually something new or coming at any given time.  Ty Segall just released this single and it's more of the same no-nonsense fuzzy, hook-laden garage rock that he's been spewing out for years.  The A-side ("The Hill") contains vocals from Brigid Dawson of Thee Oh Sees and the B-Side ("Mother Lemonade") features guitar from Mike Donovon of Sic Alps, another SF garage rock outfit.   

Check out Mother Lemonade:

Thee Oh Sees - Putrifiers II EP: Somewhat confusingly labeled as and EP since this record is a 33 1/3 full length as far as I can tell.  Another stellar bunch of super hooky garage tracks drenched in echo effect.  I feel that this record is quite a bit sunnier and poppier than Carrion Crawler.   Dig the man-face/dog-face cover art.

Here's Hang a Picture:

Bongripper - Sex Tape / Snuff Film 7": The mighty Bongripper.  Thanks Boss for setting me straight on these guys.  They have become something of a guiding light for me.  Awesome 7" from one of my favourite Stoner/Doom bands.  Crushing.  Also comes with a neat little patch.  Ain't that cute?

Check out their bandcamp page to listen to/order this beaut' and while you're there also check out a new, as yet unmastered track, "Fisting".

Guided By Voices - Universal Truths and Cycles: I fucking love this band.  Although I feel that Boss at least will find them a bit too sugary and poppy to suit his pumpin' iron in the garage sessions, these guys have been pumping out perfect pop songs since the '80s.  The main songwriter, Robert Pollard, seems to be able write hooks in his sleep.  Their catalog is enormous and frankly can be spotty at times but there is usually at least a couple amazing pop songs on each disc.  This record from 2003 is not their most recent nor propably their best (maybe Bee Thousand or Under the Bushes, Under The Stars are the best).  However, for whateever reason, I've had this one spinning a lot this week and I can't get it off my mind.

Give Everywhere with Helicopter a try.  And, Boss, approach with an open mind, GBV took a fews years to grow on me but once they did they grew like an uncontrollable fungal infection.

Vancouver '90s Hardcore Retrospective Part 1 - Sparkmarker

Sparkmarker was a (post) hardcore band from up here in Vancouver that existed from 1990 to 1997 and had a major, major impact on Vancouver's hardcore scene during that period.  They just reunited for a one time show a couple of days ago and it was fuckin' brilliant.  It really took me back to my youth when I ate this kind of shit up.  So...since Boss has provided the opportunity via this blog, I thought I would do a little mini-series of sorts highlighting some of my favourite bands from the harcore scene in the Vancouver area during the 1990s.  I'll start with Sparkmarker both because of thier recent show and because it is probably difficult to overstate their importance in Vancouver harcore.  There was a pretty significant Dischord influence on most of the bands in this scene in the day and Sparkmarker was no exception although I alsways thought they also brought a welcome bit of Jesus Lizrd into the mix.  I've selected a few live clips because there isn't really much good quality rips on Youtube so I apologize for the quality.  There is a picture of the cover of each of the 7"s that the songs performed come from.

Here's Sparkmarker playing Character One (from the Scallen 7") at the reunion show:

Here's Speaking of Heroes Also from the Scallen 7":

And finally, some lo-fi footage of a personal fav of mine from the So Long 7", here's Kansas:



  1. Yeah! Sweet recs, Kris! Olde Growth is love at first listen! I'm downloading that album as we speak. Gonna have it pumping straight into my brain on the flight home while I slay some homework. Stoked!

    Also, totally agreed on GBV. I saw them twice live in the late 90's and on top of pop hook mastery, they are great and uber consistant performers.

  2. Yes!! I have a raging hard-on for Bongripper. Gross, but true. I hadn't yet listened to "Fisting," but I'm doing so now, and I'm ultradelighted to hear blast beats in there. Wow! I'm staying late at work, so I'll take advantage of the relatively quick internet here and work my way through some of the other stuff. But I just love Bongripper so much. This must be noted.

  3. You know that place where you're on a plane or train or bus and you're not quite asleep, but you can't really claim conscious-ness either? I had a weird experience listening to that BONGRIPPER 7" where the riffs shaped the landscape in my dream-state...and also there were wolves. They've been sitting on that for awhile now, hopefully it culminates into a new album soon.

    The Olde Growth is pretty good too. Matching the LOTR video with the tunes is on another level of dork... I approve.

    That Ty S stuff almost has a Marc Bolan flavor to it, which is awesome cuz T-Rex rules. I wonder if Ty considers himself a dandy in the underworld?

    Haven't had a chance to dig into the hardcore stuff or the GBV yet, but I will.

  4. Uhh...just a heads-up:

    Bongripper's "Great Barrier Reefer" is now being re-printed. Get on it!


  5. KM,

    GBV's "Everywhere with Helicopter" is pretty good. I could see them growing...kinda reminded me of some of the more refined/poppier stuff that I used to listen to on Lookout! records samplers as a youth. Not bad. Not bad.

    Really digging some of the more angular riffs/bits from Sparkmarker. Can definitely see your Jesus-Lizard connection.