Thursday, December 16, 2010
Nothing To Do With Anything
I've finally finished transcribing the interviews I've done for this new essay. But like exercising, writing is something that becomes infinitely harder once you're out of practice. So I'm sitting here with the intention of starting my essay. But I've come across my friend, Chad Alva, on Twitter. And he's posted his top albums of the year, most of which I've never heard. And now I'm fucking off and posting my top 10, because of course I think they're better, because of course I like the music I like. And this has nothing to do with the adult industry, or writing, or anything else other than sharing my musical taste. But if you like any of it, and you think you have a suggestion for me, please leave a little comment like:
"Download this album because it elicits a taste in music far superior to yours"
In no particular order:
Dangers - Messy, Isn't it?
I first saw this band open up for Narrows in a small, all-ages club in Los Angeles. The crowd response gave proof that hardcore is still alive and well. And upon first listen to this album, I found a new, favorite contemporary hardcore act. Dangers are probably the angriest and most relevant band in the genre today.
Captain Ahab - The End of Irony
I first heard about this band while still in film school. One of the members acted in a short film I recorded sound for. We got to talking and he told me about this electronic "band" he danced in. When I attended my first Captain Ahab show, I discovered he wasn't lying. There is a laptop, there is a vocalist, there is a dancer, and they are all amazing. Plus, you can't help but dance to a chorus, chanting, "I don't have a dick!"
Watain - Lawless Darkness
Watain is the first black metal band I think I've ever seen that appears to take devil worship seriously. While I admit this is kind of ridiculous, it's also kind of awesome. Aside from smelling like a slaughter house when I left their show at The Whiskey, I couldn't help but respect a band that's willing to play in the midst of rotting animal carcass every night. Hail Watain! Oh, and this album slays. "Malfeitor" is my favorite track, both brutal and melodic, unrelenting; yes, this is black metal in its purest form.
Agalloch - Marrow of the Spirit
Listen to the epic, 17:34 track, "Black Lake Nidstang." If you can get to the end and come away unaffected, I commend your stoicism. This is the peak of that new brand of black metal that embraces the ambience and melodies of amplified Nordic folk music. The fast tempos, the distortion, the high-pitched screams; they're all still here. They just act as an accent instead of a driving force. This album is beautiful amidst even its most ferocious passages.
Deftones - Diamond Eyes
The fact that a nu-metal band I worshiped in 7th grade can still be relevant over ten years later just goes to show how talented the Deftones are. Either you like this band or you don't. But if you do, you'll give this album a listen.
Doomriders - Darkness Come Alive (maybe 2009?)
Hard hitting, chunky, metally hardcore. And it's catchy. This band just rocks. I don't know what else to say.
Die Antwoord - $O$
The weirdest band to completely blow up in 2010. Anyone who's been a part of internet culture in the past year has seen the videos. They're completely fucking mindblowing. Die Antwoord seems to bring everyone together with their tight hooks, verbal skills, and that sort of innate fascination with watching a trainwreck. Maybe this is common fair for South Africa. But for the rest of the world, we remain mesmerized. $O$ is still on my playlist to this day.
Burzum - Belus
I know the controversy surrounding Burzum. But forget the church burnings, forget the psychopathic fascism, forget the posturing, Varg Vikernes still nearly birthed black metal. Now, he's out of prison and still making amazing music. These songs are both repetitive and dynamic, a contradiction, much like Vikernes himself. If you're into black metal, it's hard to pass this up.
Adrian St John - West
Adrian is a friend of mine. We took a writing class together about a year ago. It was there she shared the alt-country persona she had been working on since she was just a child. I've never been one to listen to much country. But this album seems to have universal appeal. I wish her all the success in the world. She deserves it.
Daughters - Daughters
I used to hate this band. Their songs were short, spastic bursts of annoying, experimental metal. Then their self titled album came out. Something clicked. Song structure prevailed. They became aggressive in a tangible way. Then they pretty much broke up. So who knows if we'll ever get another chance to hear some new Daughters. Get it while it's hot.