Growlers/Thee Ludds - Split 12”
This Growlers/Thee Ludds split 12” is yet another release from Palmist Records. The record label has already put out 5 releases in such a short time and the Growlers/Thee Ludds split marks their 6th. The album artwork that is attached to all Palmist releases has become a trademark and this time around, we’re graced with a light brown cover. Both Growlers and Thee Ludds are bands that are hard to pin down with Growlers being described as “goth surf” and Thee Ludds as “astral punk” which proves for two very distinctive halves of the split.
Growlers are an LA based band that channel old psych rock inspiration into a new age gothic spirit with song names such as ‘Graveyard’s Full’ and ‘Sea Lion Goth Blues’, the latter aptly describing their eclectic music which also incorporates 60s blues elements. It proves for quite relaxing listening despite lyrics like “I wonder if I get killed/I wonder who’ll bring roses to my grave” which features on ‘Sea Lion Goth Blues’. Growlers’ music reminds me of a mix between Deerhunter and White Stripes if Jack White didn’t have such a loud yappy voice and turned the volume down a bit.
It comes as no surprise to me that Growlers are from LA, as they share similar aesthetics to fellow LA band Ariel Pink’s Haunted graffiti, their lyrics also deriving straight from the past, making you a bit confused that they’re a current band, when they’ve so brilliantly recreated past sounds and made them their own. Their half of the split sounds like it could’ve been on the Ghost World soundtrack, and that is by no means a bad thing.
Things take a turn for the lo-fi on Thee Ludds’ half of the split with a more scuzz infested guttural punk rooted offering. Their garage rock punk is headache inducing with fuzzy guitars and reverb disguised vocals. ‘Feeding Time’ wastes none of your time by thrashing around straight away with shouty vocals and a ridiculously up-tempo guitar riff, definitely something to wake you up on those difficult mornings. Thee Ludds are definitely not for the faint hearted.
You can see similarities between the two bands though as ‘Jagged Prowl’ has a psych rock guitar riff and they’ve both strived for a unique production style. Their distinctive past influences manage to sound refreshing instead of pastiche which makes them bands to pay attention to. Another triumphant release for Palmist.
Opener ‘Psychic Mesa’ pretty much sets a precedent for the aesthetic of predictably titled Brooklyn based band Total Slacker, a 90s style stop-n-start guitar riff dripping in scuzz that accompanies whiney tinned vocals. Following the idiosyncrasies of 2010’s biggest slacker rock success, Wavves, Total Slacker are as lazy as they come. [read more]
Artist: tUnE-yArDs Release: BiRd-BrAiNs Out: 16th November On: 4AD Buy: Rough Trade More Info: Myspace It's annoying isn't it? The spelling thing? Yeah, I thought so too! Given that, I was all set to really dislike this record. Was actually looking forward to slating it to bits if truth be told. Even more annoyingly is that in BiRd-BrAiNs, tUnE-yArDs have a really quite enjoyable record. Lo-fi is a term that's often banded about to try and pigeonhole a lot of acts that are trying f... [read more]
FatCat record’s Brighton based sister label, Palmist are a beacon of principle in a sea of compromisers. They cling to vinyl in a digital world and they work with artists they love not those from whom they could make a quick buck. They’re made the way independent labels used to be made. After the idiosyncratic coupling of US Girls and Slim Twig their latest split 12” is a more complimentary affair. [read more]
An album which sounds like various cuttings from a garage floor, held together with staples. Looking at the staples, you see that they’ve been been put in a few times, before they’ve finally stuck. There are holes around the edges where previous staple attempts have failed, but looking at the staples in place now, they look solid, they look good. [read more]