Posts Tagged ‘King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard’

One of the most advantageous aspects of our involvement in this site is our access and exposure to the world class music at a time before those bands hit it big. When it comes to King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard, we were there at day one of this Australian bands beginnings, including seeing their first U.K. shows., The King Gizzard shows we saw in 2015 corresponded to the new music that would eventually become their major label debut and breakthrough album, 2016’s Nonagon Infinity . But it was in 2017 when The Gizz took their career to the next level, accomplishing a feat that will likely never be repeated , the release of five quality albums in one calendar year.

Its been over a year since I last saw them last live in concert and while much has changed, King Gizzard are still very much the same band. Recorded by the NY Taper at three shows at Brooklyn Steel which were very much fan-friendly affairs with the band playing a very democratic selection of material. The show recorded was the middle night of the three and fortunately contained an homage to the “old days”, a long “Head On / Pill” segue that contained long bits of three older numbers and a few other teases. It was the Gizz’s acknowledgement of how important those early days were for the band’s career.

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They’re one of the only bands releasing new music (almost five albums to be exact this year, including Polygondwanaland, with several tracks released in the last several months). “Sketches of Brunswick East” has already made most Top 50 best albums lists of 2017. We could be done here, but we’re not.

After singles “All Is Known,” “Beginner’s Luck” and “Greenhouse Heat Death,” the band have released “The Last Oasis.” Since we only remember things in short spurts here on the internet, “All Is Known” is every guitar riff ever used in rock ‘n’ roll, “Beginner’s Luck” is a smooth, cheeky gambling crooner, “Greenhouse Heat Death” is psych-meets-goth death inside of a greenhouse (this is literally what the song is about) and “The Last Oasis” is low-key and lovely, even upbeat at times, proving that you can lead a horse to water but you cannot make him drink the optical illusion.

The latest, greatest psych-rock band to come out of Australia. What is it with this country and it’s never-ending production line of mind-bending rock ‘n’ roll?

Post-set buzz: is this Tame Impala? Pffft. Music for daytrippers.

Their Best song: The whole set feels like a single, very long, very weird song, but if we had to pick a highlight it would probably be Hot Water, if only for frontman Stu Mackenzie’s jazz flute exertions.  Frankly, they look like last night’s high hasn’t worn off yet. Which is exactly as it should be.

The crowd is pretty respectable, especially given the time of day, but there’s a significant drop-off from Pussy Riot’s in-conversation appearance just before them. In twelve months’ time, If all goes well, you imagine a reasonably prominent slot on the John Peel tent is within their grasp. But the Park stage – located way out on the fringes and populated with people who look like they’ve been doing the same drugs as them – feels like this band’s spiritual home.
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King Gizzard have announced plans to release their fourth studio album Polygondwanaland, and it will be free to download later this week.

“This album is Free,” wrote the band announced. “Free as in, free. Free to download and if you wish, free to make copies. Make tapes, make CD’s, make records.” “If u wanna make cassettes I don’t really know what you would do,” say the band. “Be creative. We did it once but it sounded really shit. Maybe try the WAVs idano. Ever wanted to start your own record label? GO for it! Employ your mates, press wax, pack boxes.”

Along with the new record and studio advice, the band have shared new song ‘Crumbling Castle’:

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By their very nature, King Gizzard have always appeared to value loose spontaneity over the close approach of the craftsman. Since emerging from Melbourne in 2010, this seven-headed psych-rock monster have released seven diverse albums, each capturing quick-fire bursts of inspiration, and thrilling in their imperfections and impulsiveness.

On I’m In Your Mind Fuzz, their garage-punk breakthrough from late 2014, they managed to create half a concept album about mind control, before losing concentration and filling Side Two with slower, disjointed songs recorded at a different studio. As their notoriety grew, their restless, relentless muse last year spawned two albums exploring different tangents of their scattershot sound – Quarters was a laidback, semi-improvised effort with four tracks each lasting exactly 10 minutes and 10 seconds (it bizarrely bagged a Best Jazz Album nomination at the ARIAs), while autumn’s Papier Mâché Dream Balloon consisted of uncustomary pastoral, acoustic rambles.

Yet we now learn that these two albums were merely stopgaps, recorded while singer and guitarist Stu Mackenzie and his six cohorts secretly toiled on a project that would finish what they attempted with I’m In Your Mind Fuzz – a bona fide concept album, unified in sound and vision. While the last decade has undoubtedly been a fertile time for the kind of underground rock that takes inspiration from garage, punk, prog and psychedelia, Ty Segall, Thee Oh Sees and their ilk have so far attempted little on this scale.

Although it was tracked in four days at the all-analogue Daptone House Of Soul in Brooklyn, New York, Nonagon Infinity was meticulously planned beforehand, then the subsequent recordings were subjected to endless tinkering back in Australia. The need for this work becomes clear when the album is heard – each song on Nonagon segues into the next, while the end of the final track, “Road Train”, can even be looped straight back to careen headlong, Möbius strip-style, into the opening song, “Robot Stop”, their beats matched and primed. What’s more, various melodies, riffs and refrains pop up repeatedly throughout the album, making it more akin to a 41-minute suite than nine separate songs.

On first listen, Nonagon is a hard-driving, exhausting beast; powered by two drummers, “Road Train” edges into Motörhead hard-rock, while “Big Fig Wasp” continues King Gizzard’s adoration for Thee Oh Sees, mixing a motorik beat with Mackenzie’s echoed whoops and demonic guitars (chief Oh See John Dwyer fittingly released I’m In Your Mind Fuzz on his Castle Face label in the US). The seven-minute “Evil Death Roll” harks back to the manic momentum of Hawkwind’s Space Ritual version of “Master Of The Universe”, with distorted organ and super-wah’d guitars adding to the onslaught. There are few simple thrills here, as beats are dropped and riffs gallop along in unwieldy time signatures – “Gamma Knife” might be the most driving song ever conceived in 6/8, while “Nonagon infinity opens the door” is an earworm in 7/8 time. Though Mackenzie barks out vague orders on “Robot Stop” – “Loosen up/Time to jump/Fuck shit up/Don’t forget about it” – his lyrics are often unintelligible through the fuzz, with Hammer horror images of “corpses”, “pitchforks” and a “final hearing” breaking through the haze.

With repeated listens, however, what first seems like an oppressively flat landscape – giant steppes, perhaps – gradually reveals relief, and a lot more nuance that rewards repeated immersion. Subtler elements begin to peek out from the hard-driving tempos: the electric saz solo on “Robot Stop”; the synth storm swelling up in “Big Fig Wasp” that seems to mimic said insect’s mighty buzzing; the middle of “Invisible Face” that echoes the cool-jazz labyrinths of Quarters opener “The River”; the sections on “Wah Wah” that nod to the acoustic reveries of Papier Mâché…. The entirety of the punning “Mr Beat” is five minutes of relative respite, its clowning keyboards and falsetto reminiscent of Unknown Mortal Orchestra. Elsewhere, fidelities shift between (and even within) songs, with Mackenzie deliberately moving microphones around between takes to get more sonic variation.

As King Gizzard’s frontman tells Uncut, making Nonagon Infinity was a gruelling experience compared to the relatively breezy gestation of their previous work, and yet this prolonged concentration has resulted in by far King Gizzard’s most cohesive record to date – a hyper-detailed punk opera that few of their peers have matched for intensity, ambition or sheer derangement. It’s no accident that the end of the album links up to the start: those who listen may find it difficult to get off this particular Möbius strip.

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Robert Plant  –  Carry Fire

Robert Plant releases Carry Fire, his 11th solo album on Nonesuch Records. The self-produced album is Plant’s first since since 2014’s Lullaby and…The Ceaseless Roar. As with that record, Robert is accompanied here by The Sensational Space Shifters, along with some guests, such as Chrissie Hyde and Seth Lakeman.

CD – The CD packaging is deluxe thick card with a beautiful satin finish and is accompanied with a 12-page booklet featuring lyrics.

2LP – Double 140 Gram Vinyl with side four etched. The vinyl packaging is thick card Gatefold with a beautiful satin finish and is accompanied with a 4-page booklet featuring lyrics.

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King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizzard – Sketches Of Brunswick East

Sketches Of Brunswick East is King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard 3rd album of five in 2017 and a collaboration with LA’s Mild High Club. Just when you think you have King Gizzard and The Lizard Wizard sussed they throw a curveball – in the wake of two albums released in 2017 already, including most recently the dystopian end-times concept album Murder Of The Universe, which tackled in no uncertain terms the rise of robots and the downfall of mankind, comes Sketches Of Brunswick Eastan entirely altered beast. Australia’s finest and most productive rock band have done this before, of course: while the world was still reeling from their 2014 breakthrough psych-punk masterpiece I’m In Your Mind Fuzz (2014) they casually released 2015’s expectation-confounding Paper Mache Dream Balloon (2015), a pastoral, sun-drenched acid-folk album. Sketches Of Brunswick East is a collaboration between King Gizzard and Mild High Club, the Los Angeles based tripster troupe signed to Stones Throw Records and led by Alex Brettin – the two bands formed a strong friendship touring together throughout the USA, Europe, and Australia. Recorded at the band’s own Flightless HQ in East Brunswick, Melbourne Australia earlier this year and mixed at Stones Throw studios in L.A. it’s the third of five projected albums to be released in 2017.

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The Barr Brothers  –  Queens of The Breakers

All versions come with a bonus 5 Track CD of demos. Queens of the Breakers is The Barr Brothers’ finest work yet, a collection of 11 hypnotically fluid songs that speak to the raw, elemental power of reflection, forgiveness, loss, and growing up. The record finds the band, featuring brothers Brad (guitar) and Andrew Barr (drums), and Sarah Pagé (harp), further on their thrilling path of exploring the outer limits of folk, blues, rock and Americana made north of the American border.

LP – Black Vinyl with Download.

LP+ – Gatefold Jacket with embossed titles with 2 pockets open. Translucent Light Blue Single Vinyl hosted in dust sleeves. Limited Edition including 12’’x24’’ Exclusive Folded Poster. MP3 download included.

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Lomelda  –  Thx

Hannah Read has written and performed as Lomelda for most of her musical life. The project has been her outlet from the slow, shaggy days in her east Texas hometown of Silsbee, through moves to Waco and Austin, and into her wandering present. Her music is textural and spacious. Her words are suggestive snapshots of loosely knitted observations, depicting quiet moments between friends and lovers and half-remembered celestial occurrences. In her songs, the memory of the past and glimpses of future stretch out on either side of you, and the present is unsteady and always shifting.

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Courtney Barnett and Kurt Vile  –  Lotta Sea Lice

A conversation between friends, documented in raw, unvarnished song form, brimming with personal history, crackling with energy and shot through with humour – this is the collaborative album of Courtney Barnett and Kurt Vile.Two of the most acclaimed and gifted song writers of our generation Lotta Sea Lice also sees them roping in friends such as Dirty Three, Stella from Warpaint and Mick Harvey to create a body of work that sounds organic and candid. Their shared chemistry is immediately apparent in the breathtaking jam of opener and first single Over Everything, while Continental Breakfast showcases a more melodic side as the two harmonise over finger-picked acoustic guitars. The two pay homage to 90’s cult heroes Belly with a gorgeous cover of their classic Untogether and even celebrate their mutual respect by covering each other’s music later in the album. This is an intimate glimpse into the shared musical world of Courtney Barnett and Kurt Vile.

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HMLTD  –  Satan, Luella and I / Kinkaku-ji

HMLTD have emerged over the last twelve months and established themselves as the most thrilling and vital new band in years. Music, fashion and art collide to create an assault on the senses, their highly-individual pop a whirlwind of creativity and ideas. Satan, Luella and I is the latest instalment, following the singles To The Door and Stained. It’s a six minute kaleidoscopic, rapturous musical joyride. Flamboyant and freewheeling, the band’s imaginations have created a musical world that envelops the listener. The track is backed by live favourite Kinkaku-ji. Natural born performers, their live shows are already a vital experience as they turn each room they play into their own, blurring the lines between concert and exhibition, and between performers and audience.

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Josienne Clarke and Ben Walker The Birds EP

Rough Trade Records release The Birds EP as a very limited edition 12” – 650 copies worldwide. The Birds is a suite of six songs that explore the themes of migration and departure. These are songs of autumn and shorter days, of flying south and the first feelings of early winter. It is deliberately dark and melancholic and ever so slightly sinister in places. In contrast to the full band-sound so exquisitely captured on their 2016 album Overnight, Josienne and Ben chose to record in a minimalist way using only instruments that they could play in Ben’s basement home studio. It also allowed Ben the opportunity to experiment with Moog and drum machine rendering the songs with a subtle electronic text.

The Who, Tommy  – Live at the Royal Albert Hall

In spring 2017, in support of the Teenage Cancer Trust, The Who played the classic Tommy in full, plus an encore set of seven greatest hits at London’s historic Royal Albert Hall.  This release includes every song from the 24-track studio album performed live, including Side Four’s “Welcome”.  Available in a variety of physical formats plus digital video and audio.

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King Crimson – Official Bootleg: Live in Chicago, June 28th, 2017

Two CD set, taken from the band’s most recent US tour. Media-book presentation with 24 pages booklet featuring photography by Tony Levin & David Singleton. Sleeve Notes by Robert Fripp & David Singleton. Featuring many iconic King Crimson pieces performed live by this line-up for the first time – some being played live for the first time ever, including: Islands, The Lizard Suite, The Errors, Fallen Angel, Cirkus & more.. “If we are looking for a KC live (show); Chicago was exceptional” – Robert Fripp “One of our best” – Tony Levi.

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The Replacements –  For Sale – Live at Maxwell’s 1986

Super limited copies with promo stuff – Postcards, Matches, Cut out figures and posters. In February 1986, The Replacements performed a classic live show at Maxwell’s in Hoboken, NJ. Until now, that pristine recording of the legendary performance has only been available in low-quality bootleg form. Even so, Pitchfork has called the show “a fiery, focused set that would make a true believer out of any skeptic.” For Sale: Live At Maxwell’s 1986 finally make its commercial debut as a double-LP. This marks the first live album by the band to see an official release on this format. The show at Maxwell’s would prove to be one of the last great performances by the four original members of the Replacements, a much beloved line-up including Bob Stinson on guitar, before his departure from the band in 1986. The songs they played spanned the band’s entire history while giving prominence to new material from Tim, including Bastards Of Young, Left Of The Dial and Kiss Me On The Bus. Mixed in were favourites like I Will Dare from Let It Be (1984) and Color Me Impressed from Hootenanny (1983). The original 24-track master tapes of the show sat in the Warner Music vaults until being given a proper mix in 2007, but it would still be another decade before the concert would get its official release. Mehr writes in the album’s liner notes: “Now, a decade later, and more than 30 years after the original concert, Replacements For Sale finally offers high-fidelity proof of the peculiar alchemy and unadulterated majesty of one of rock and roll’s greatest bands.”

2CD – Gatefold Softpack with Booklet.

2LP – Double 140 Gram Vinyl housed in Gatefold Sleeve.

Various Artists  – Woody Guthrie, The Tribute Concerts

There’s no shortage of celebrations for the legendary folk troubadour, but few as star-studded as the landmark concerts held in 1968 at New York’s Carnegie Hall and then in 1970 at the Hollywood Bowl.  These remarkable affairs saw Guthrie collectively saluted by such luminaries as The Band, Bob Dylan, Odetta, Joan Baez, Jack Elliott, Arlo Guthrie, Country Joe McDonald, Richie Havens, Tom Paxton, and Pete Seeger.  Bear Family has boxed up these amazing pieces of history as a lavish 3-CD box set that’s not to be missed!

 

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King Gizzard’s very own resident art mastermind Jason Galea has outdone himself with this one. Having already been responsible for a bunch of the best music videos in the country over the past years, he and the band have made the best pencil-on-paper animated clip since ‘Take On Me’ was blaring out of stereos.

Seriously, the constantly-morphing visuals and soothing strains of ‘Countdown’ could be on a loop for an hour and we’d still be watching, entranced, as abstract images assemble and disassemble themselves before our eyes, and it might just be the best clip they’ve ever made – although that’s a big call, considering everything else they’ve put out.

The track is of course taken from their latest LP Sketches of Brunswick East, King Gizzard’s collab with Mild High Club and their third album of four they’re releasing this year, which hit #4 on the ARIA charts after Flying Microtonal Banana and Murder of the Universe peaked at #2 and #3 respectively.

Of course, with the record out, the King Gizzard boys are gearing up for their upcoming Gizzfest tour, having announced a massive lineup for their hometown city of Melbourne,

Sketches Of Brunswick East is a collaboration with Mild High Club frontman Alexander Brettin.

“[Mild High Club] came over and played Gizzfest with us in December and [Alex] just stayed at my house for a few weeks. We were sending each other these really rough, vague ideas before that…usually just a chord progression or a melody.” McKenzie told Triple J that while Brettin was staying with them they worked on about 15 recordings. McKenzie explained in an interview last month how this process led to the title of the album: “Alex from Mild High Club, they came over and played Gizzfest in December, and ended up just staying at my house for a few weeks. We had really, really vague ideas before we started, a handful of iPhone voice memos to each other, which we ended up calling sketches. Mostly they were just a chord progression or some melodic part with a chord thing underneath it. It was just simple stuff. They really were just jump off points, and when we finally got together, we sort of fleshed these songs out together.”

This week on McKenzie said the worked on the album almost every day Brettin was staying with them in December 2016. He previously described the sessions noting the casual manner the material developed. “A lot of the time Alex and I sitting on the couch in my living room with two unplugged electric guitars, just sort of noodling, until we kind of felt like we were somewhere. Going to the studio just like, I don’t know, whoever was around, usually there were four or five of us and we would just get together and kind of try and make these little sort of doodly things into songs, which is probably not that uncommon of a way to try and make music, but there is a certain pressure that was there when you know that Alex or you know that the person that you are working with isn’t going to be there for very long.
We were just making these bizarre recordings that weren’t songs by any stretch, though some of them felt like they were more songs than others, and there were a lot of pieces of music that were like, “okay that’s something, but what is it?” And it took a long time, up until now really, to feel like… We’ve been kind of going back and forth, sending each other overdubs and recording vocals and flushing out these songs and just getting all the sort of disparate… a lot of them were, at the time, improvised somewhat jazz-inspired pieces of music, and try to make them into what felt like a record or a cohesive thing that was worthy of being a record, and I think we got there in the end, but it took a long time.”

Since the December 2016 sessions Gizz and Brettin “spent up until a month ago going back and forward, changing them, cutting things out… [and] finished the record that way.”
“I wasn’t sure if this was going to take another year, or if we needed to get together again and work on this a little more, but I think what we came up with is really interesting and it’s funny to me, maybe not to anyone else, but it’s funny to me that when I listen to the record it actually kind of does sound like in between Mild High Club and King Gizzard, so I’m not sure if that was just always what was going to happen, but it’s funny that that was kind of the end result, to me at least.”

McKenzie described the material as “interesting, chilled, jazzy, loose improvised pieces.” it’s a lot more relaxed than Murder of the Universe obviously, and there are more sort of individual songs, but a lot of the songs segue to other pieces of music and there are a lot of interlinking things and there is some fun instrumentation on the record.
Alex and I were saying to each other when we were making this record because Alex has been working on another Mild High Club record as well and we just kept saying to each other, ‘This is the record where we just do weird stuff. This is the record where we just do anything, Let’s just make some weird music, it’s fine. Don’t worry about it. It’s just a strange record. It just is it’s own thing, let us stretch our limbs and just see what happens. We have three weeks, let’s make some bizarre music,’ and funny enough it didn’t end up that bizarre, but it’s something.”

The title of the album is a nod to Sketches of Spain, Miles Davis​’ classic 1960 collaborative LP with Gil Evans. A Heavenly Recordings first revealed Sketches Of Brunswick East is “a jazz-based, improv- leaning collection entitled Sketches Of Brunswick East, whose name alludes to both Miles Davis’ Sketches Of Spain, the notion of sketches as outlines for ideas and all- round sketchy behaviour.”

Stu Mackenzie explained, “it’s jazzy, it’s definitely not a jazz improvisation album. As much as I’d like it to be a jazz improvisation album, I think that would be fairly flattering. There is improvisation on this record. It’s a weird record, it’s all over the place, and the nature of it being collaboration and the nature of the way we made, caused it to be a certain thing.”

As for the two albums to follow Sketches Of Brunswick East and complete Gizzard’s ambition of five studio releases in 2017, at last update Stu admitted they’re “sort of distant at the moment, but we’ll see. We’ve got a little bit of time at home, so I think we’ll do it. But who knows.” Note the aforementioned Heavenly Recordings April press statement that revealed Sketches of Brunswick East’s album title and jazz inspirations also confirmed “two more albums will follow that in 2017.

Tracklist

  1. Sketches Of Brunswick East I
  2. Countdown
  3. D-Day
  4. Tereta
  5. Cities, Planes, Migraines
  6. The Spider And Me
  7. Sketches Of Brunswick East II
  8. Dusk To Dawn On Lygon Street
  9. The Book
  10. A Journey To
  11. Rolling Stoned
  12. You Can Be Your Silhouette
  13. Sketches Of Brunswick East III

Note the tenth track’s title is incomplete. It appears to be a “A Journey To” somewhere, but the writing of the end of the line is illegible.

King Gizzard drummer Eric Moore (founder of the band’s Flightless​ Records) that the LP is now released and it will be issued though he stopped short of announcing a release date. “We’re just gonna drop it at any point,” Moore said. “It’s just coming out, straight up.” Rumor has its release will be a random day within the next two weeks. the title of the album is Sketches Of Brunswick East. Aside from being released on Heavenly Recordings in the United Kingdom, it’s expected on ATO Records in the United States and Moore’s Flightless Records in Australia.

Setlist:
Rattlesnake
Doom City
Nuclear Fusion
Sleep Drifter
Alter Me I
Altered Beast II
Alter Me II
Altered Beast III
Robot Stop
(with snippet of ‘Master of the Universe’ by Hawkwind)
Gamma Knife
People-Vultures
The Lord of Lightning
Cellophane
The River

A concept album to end all concept albums, King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard’s new album “Murder Of The Universe” is a face-melting musical assault concerned with the downfall of man and the death of the planet. Their tenth album in five dizzying years, it hinges on three distinct chapters throughout which snippets of their breakthrough records I’m In Your Mind Fuzz and Nonagon Infinitye merge in ghostly shadow – and it’s available for human consumption now.

“a batshit, brilliant new album” – New York Observer
“A decidedly dark reflection of today’s angst and insanity. There is a bright side however: given its harrowing descriptions of terror and upheaval, it makes the real world seem tame by comparison.” –Paste