Andrew Earles

I will not abuse my powers…

Posted in Uncategorized by Andrew Earles on January 27, 2011

…of future-sight. It’s just one of those little attributes that comes standard on the 30-something, low-to-medium profile freelance (untethered) music writer model. The other examples of standard equipment – insecurity, perpetual state of terror, the uncanny ability to fuck up like an 18-year-old, semi-steady work somehow becoming MORE elusive AFTER the publication of one’s first book, the forgotten vacation of general security, slow unraveling of life….well, I don’t have much use for those (but they have a lot of uses for me), but this seeing-into-the-future beezwax? I can dance with this one! How about some releases? Ok…albums by the following artists will materialize in 2011:

Biohazard

iwrestledabearonce

Take a look at this photo of the latter:

Sure, that’s some low-hanging fruit, but I’ve never professed originality re: my targets and these dipshits make me a little bit ill. At least in the case of the males in this band, they are the type that are always loud. In public. They want everyone to know what they’re into, what they find funny, how funny they are, etc. Overcompensation on every level. No thanks. Here, look at another photo:

At first, you were all “Why is Earles going after such an obvious source of idiocy?” but now you’re getting somewhat riled up. You hate them.

Here’s some (very) recent writing (as it appears on the Dusted Magazine and Still Single sites) that I put out there. For you. Thank me now or thank me later.

Directorsound – Before the March 7” EP (Tona Serenad)

Understated fairground melancholy, not unlike some of the more drug-smashed passages on The Thinking Fellers’ Mother of All Saints – the stuff that wasn’t “Feller Filler” but wasn’t quite fully realized, either. That’s not entirely fair to this record, actually, as this is very beautiful and organic instrumental … pop? Could be skiffle, with its lack of modern reference points, but I don’t normally take to anything resembling skiffle, or any pre-Vietnam War music at all, truthfully. This is a chunk out of Two Years Today, the latest full length by multi-instrumentalist Nicholas Palmer, who last popped up seven years ago on Geographic/Domino with Redemptive Strikes. It’s a very human-sounding effort, very catchy if not altogether beautiful, and quite scarce at 300 hand-numbered copies, so if you’re interested, hop to it! (http://www.tonaserenad.com) (Andrew Earles)

Dylan Ettinger & the Heat – “Smokin’” b/w “Miami Heat (The Stakeout)” 7” (Not Not Fun)

Sleeve has clipart pics of a Strat and in the foreground, a Keytar-type of strap-on synth. The background is very “Tron”-ish. The band is a duo of drums and effects-buried saxophone. The visuals on the back are of an ‘80s-looking rack stereo system, a faded-in image of an ‘80s-looking lady that one might find adorning the walls of an old-lady salon, and the background is a vague appropriation of the ocean. Check out those song titles. This shit is not funny, and it is beyond played-out, putting it in an untouchable zone (forever, hopefully). What’s this got to do with how the record sounds? Well, a lack of imagination this dire is bound to bleed into the music, or subtract from the music, to be correct. Right? Hard to say when the music is form-challenged, ambient half-skronk indistinguishable from bales of ‘90s noise records made by 400-lb vagina-repellents who have probably killed another human by this point. Hey, someone had to fill the weeping void. NOT! (http://www.notnotfun.com)
(Andrew Earles)

Guitaro – Futura Black LP (We Made Records)

Originally a CD-R scattered around in tiny numbers during the last decade’s earlier years, Future Black is the ultimate latter-wave shoegaze interpretation and must be heard by more people. We Made Records is a brand new label run by a fellow named Vince who used to do Manifold Records (K.K. Null, Final, D.J. Spooky, etc) in the ‘90s and up through Y2K. Even in this privacy-is-golden era, you try doing all of this out of Memphis, TN, and you’ll staring at the void whether you want to or not. Guitaro is/was essentially a Canadian studio wizard named Mark Weibe and his buddies, and the difference between this and 98% of “Comments Section” Shoegaze is substantial. For one, this doesn’t exist in contrast to logic. New, young bands should not sound identical to Ride, MBV, etc, but they do. New, young bands even sink lower by sounding identical to Spacemen 3 and JAMC, implying a 100% lack of topically adding signature elements within their respective soundspaces. Most are seemingly unaware they are peddling warmed-up leftovers long past the toss-date. Guitaro could have gotten away with this in 2001, but we’re not dealing with idiotic art-college assholes, so there was a natural instinct to be wary of history and shoot for furthering the style rather than picking it clean. The first track sounds like Hidden Hand doing shoegaze with a guest vocalist. Thick, heavy, riff-oriented and pushed by a hooky groove, that one is clearly sequenced first for a reason. So is the first track on side 2 (there is no CD release of this), a mannered take on Slowdive, if Slowdive was ever all it was cracked up to be (it wasn’t). Lots of acoustic-to-noise-and-back-to-acoustic action on here, just like golden-era Boo Radleys. If this doesn’t sell out of its first pressing of 600 (on 180 gr w/ DL card) within a year, I should just give the fuck up. (http://wemaderecords.com)
(Andrew Earles)

Lords of Falconry – s/t LP (Holy Mountain)

Attempting to get the blown-out scorch-psych thing right has become the hobby of far too many cred enthusiasts. Sure, Monoshock was amazing and that first Comets on Fire LP was the tits, and no, I’d never heard anything recorded THAT hot … ten odd years ago. Wish I could say the same today. What I can say is that Lords of Falconry provide a needed vacation away from all of that dumbass “face-melting” nonsense. They take the aforementioned blueprint but are far too restless and therefore mix it up just right. Bombastic pop, Motorhead, authentic-sounding late-‘60s prog, and the usually-absent attribute of songwriting when it comes to the distorto-wah, pin-the-meters, full-attack stuff … if you indulge in one more example of this approach, make it these guys. (http://www.holymountain.com)
(Andrew Earles)

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Flattery will get you linked & other news…

Posted in Uncategorized by Andrew Earles on January 22, 2011

“As a critic for publications across the mainstream/independent spectrum (everything from Spin to Still Single), Andrew Earles is slowly emerging as a major voice in contemporary rock journalism (check out his excellent commemoration of Jay Reatard).”

That appeared HERE. Florida has always been in my corner.

Other news:

I will be promoting and signing my book at the 2011 SXSW Conference in Austin, TX. Perhaps you’ve heard of it. It will more than likely be in “book store” section of the convention center on Friday, March 18th, 2011, and I will more than likely be accompanied by Grant Hart. He was Husker Du’s drummer/co-founder/co-songwriter and Husker Du figures prominently in the book I am promoting. A week and one day later (Saturday March 26th @ 1:00pm) I will be appearing for a signing/Q&A event at Memphis’ Davis Kidd Booksellers.

 ORDER MY BOOK!

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I’ve never, ever been called this…

Posted in Uncategorized by Andrew Earles on January 19, 2011

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My Jay Reatard piece on Pitchfork

Posted in Uncategorized by Andrew Earles on January 14, 2011

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