Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Summary Judgments, Volume 5

As you might guess to be the case, sometimes I can tell I'm not going to like an album before I finish it. Other times, I just don't want to review the album, because I can't find anything I want to say about it or whatever. I have that luxury, but I don't want to completely ignore some of these releases either.

Those that didn't get the full treatment are collected here. As always, I mention how far I made it into the album before giving up on it.

Sofy Major: Idolize (2013)
(the whole thing, several times)

What the hell is noise rock, anyway? I liked (but didn't understand) Korperschwache, but I can't figure out what it has in common with Årabrot and Sofy Major. I also can't figure out why people make music like Årabrot and Sofy Major. I listened to this several times, and I just wanted them to stop doing what they were doing and just sound more like Baroness.

Jussi Lehtisalo: The Complete Solo Works (2013)
(5 out of 6 songs)

Jussi Lehtisalo is a Finnish musician who's been involved in a number of projects with an eclectic range (notably the excellent Arkhamin Kirjasto), and the founder of the equally eclectic Ektro Records. His collected solo works (two albums), likewise, incorporate a lot of eclectic influences from folk to metal and beyond. But overall it's just too ambient for my taste, so I'm moving on.

Weeping, Kneeling: Effigies (2013)
(6 out of 10 songs)

What they call "atmospheric black metal" is sometimes code for "this is the only kind of black metal I'm capable of making by myself." Weeping, Kneeling is somewhere between that and "black metal soundtrack," with heavy debts to John Carpenter and Nobuo Uematsu in varying places. I'd really like to hear it as a soundtrack to something, but it's exceedingly rare that I listen to soundtracks for their own sake.

Joel Aukusti Peksujeff: Joel Aukusti Peksujeff (2011)
(5 out of 17 songs)

The artsit here was kind enough to give me a heads-up on his Finnish brand of dark Americana-esque music. It is interesting, with a strong resemblance to Tom Waits at his most carnival-like. These weird-ass vocals are just killing it for me, though. He’s no Tom Waits.

Kowloon Walled City: Container Ships (2012)
(the whole thing, several times)

The only complaint I've managed to put into words about the latest from Kowloon Walled City is that the vocals are in a metalcore kind of style. That's not such a bad thing. There's really nothing wrong with their brand of sludge metal, either. "Cornerstone" has a nice riff, in fact. I just can't, for the life of me, find anything interesting to say about Container Ships.

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