Music Banter

Go Back   Music Banter > The MB Reader > Album Reviews
Register Blogging Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read
Welcome to Music Banter Forum! Make sure to register - it's free and very quick! You have to register before you can post and participate in our discussions with over 70,000 other registered members. After you create your free account, you will be able to customize many options, you will have the full access to over 1,100,000 posts.

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 05-30-2010, 12:29 PM   #11 (permalink)
air quote
 
Engine's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: pollen & mold
Posts: 3,050
Default Rema-Rema and Il Duce singles (1985)



In between the early EPs and the later LPs, Big Black made some music that was released as 7” singles. Rema-Rema is a cover of the the song Rema-Rema by the band Rema-Rema who released one EP on the 4AD label in 1980. Big Black’s early sound was easily comparable to that of the early 4AD bands with its menacing atmospheric nature. Here’s proof that Albini was into that stuff. The song was released by a zine called Forced Exposure as a one-sided 7”.

This formula makes the song appear to be a novelty and perhaps that’s how the band viewed it but it is, in a way, a more thoughtful approach to music than Big Black had shown on the previous releases. It has the usual relentless beat courtesy of their machine and a plodding, heavy bassline but the guitars break out of old patterns as they now need to create a melody.

Big Black’s typical method of finding a riff or a phrase, locking onto it and repeating it over and over to match the never-changing beat is still here. But in this case the guitars open up a little bit to honor the original song, creating a trebly, poppy melody to overlay the darkness. Another improvement is the way Albini uses his voice. He still uses that throaty slight growl but he seems to be doing it in his natural register a little more. The voice is deep in the mix and blends in with all the other fuzz, becoming just another instrument which is what Albini always intended. He also has to spit out some squeaky falsetto yelps and moans which would become a typical feature of ‘noise rock’ from that time. Overall, Rema-Rema is a fun song which is not a word that usually comes to mind when describing Big Black. Maybe it would be a nice accompaniment to beach volleyball or roller skating.

Rema-Rema



Il Duce is another 7” single, this one featuring a song on both sides. The title track doesn’t break any boundaries for the band: it’s got repetitive drums, bass that you might call funky and wild guitar stabs varying between thick noise and thin tones. Albini’s voice is up front again and sounds as if he’s singing through gritted teeth about the joys of fascism in the voice of Il Duce himself, Benito Mussolini.

The b-side is a song called Big Money and it also appears on the upcoming Atomizer LP. This is a pretty refined song for Big Black. It’s got drum beats that change here and there. The guitars and bass work together to form a short, laconic, uneventful song that just sort of chugs ahead to the end. The voice is buried in effects that blend it well with the rest of the instruments. I’m not sure why this song was chosen for the single as it’s not a very exciting example of the band. It does, however, give a clue to the many bands that will come later and play math rock that is kinda heavy and kinda atmospheric but not much of either.
__________________
Like an arrow,
I was only passing through.
Engine is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-03-2011, 02:24 AM   #12 (permalink)
air quote
 
Engine's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: pollen & mold
Posts: 3,050
Default Shellac - 1000 Hurts (2000)

Okay, I named this thread with the word “chronology” but I’m diverging now. I don’t feel like reviewing all of the albums in order so fuck it.

Here is a review of one of my favorite Albini albums and one of my favorite albums of all time by anybody: 1000 Hurts by Shellac.



Tracklist:
1. Prayer To God
2. Squirrel Song
3. Mama Gina
4. QRJ
5. Ghosts
6. Song Against Itself
7. Canaveral
8. New Number Order
9. Shoe Song
10. Watch Song

This is music for angry scorned grownups and this review is quite a chronological leap from Albini’s material that I have reviewed thus far. I apologize that I’ve skipped ahead but I’m only a little bit sorry because this is well worth a listen for anybody who has experienced excruciating emotional pain in an adult-like fashion.

Also, if you bought into any of the sensations that is now underhandedly marketed to an audience of naïve, nostalgic children (young lovers of 1990s Thrill Jockey, Touch and Go, Matador, etc.) then I hope you will set aside any self-important delusions of maturity that you may be harboring (you are forgiven if you are. I have them too) and just listen to this record with the open mind of a 20-something year old who likes good music and is sad and angry.

By now, you’ve certainly felt pain and Shellac knows this. 1000 Hurts is a celebration not unlike a Tibetan Buddhist funeral where the deceased is openly set upon a mountaintop and relinquished to the appetites of hungry scavenger birds. Listen to 1000 Hurts in the same way that you’d peacefully watch your dead loved ones be eaten by ravens and vultures.

I’m not going to bother going track by track, even though I’d like to, because I want you to listen to this goddamned record and form your own opinions about each song. They’re all good so go for it, don’t be lazy. They’re not only good but they’re subtly emotional and each one stands on its own merit and messages abound.

You may like some and not others. You may like them all in different ways. If you don’t like them then wait a decade or so, experience some life, re-listen and repeat. If you don’t like them after you’ve experienced real heartbreaks and the accompanying righteous anger then you probably have no soul and shouldn’t bother re-listening.

But I presume that tragedy and loss will befall the majority if not all of the music-loving public, and that they’ll feel the appropriately devastating emotions when it does. When you feel the particular pain of which I speak (you’ll know it when you do) is when you should listen to 1000 Hurts. Again and again.

Enjoy this bitterly

__________________
Like an arrow,
I was only passing through.
Engine is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-03-2011, 02:55 AM   #13 (permalink)
Account Disabled
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 526
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Engine View Post
Okay, I named this thread with the word “chronology” but I’m diverging now. I don’t feel like reviewing all of the albums in order so fuck it.

Here is a review of one of my favorite Albini albums and one of my favorite albums of all time by anybody: 1000 Hurts by Shellac.



Tracklist:
1. Prayer To God
2. Squirrel Song
3. Mama Gina
4. QRJ
5. Ghosts
6. Song Against Itself
7. Canaveral
8. New Number Order
9. Shoe Song
10. Watch Song

This is music for angry scorned grownups and this review is quite a chronological leap from Albini’s material that I have reviewed thus far. I apologize that I’ve skipped ahead but I’m only a little bit sorry because this is well worth a listen for anybody who has experienced excruciating emotional pain in an adult-like fashion.

Also, if you bought into any of the sensations that is now underhandedly marketed to an audience of naïve, nostalgic children (young lovers of 1990s Thrill Jockey, Touch and Go, Matador, etc.) then I hope you will set aside any self-important delusions of maturity that you may be harboring (you are forgiven if you are. I have them too) and just listen to this record with the open mind of a 20-something year old who likes good music and is sad and angry.

By now, you’ve certainly felt pain and Shellac knows this. 1000 Hurts is a celebration not unlike a Tibetan Buddhist funeral where the deceased is openly set upon a mountaintop and relinquished to the appetites of hungry scavenger birds. Listen to 1000 Hurts in the same way that you’d peacefully watch your dead loved ones be eaten by ravens and vultures.

I’m not going to bother going track by track, even though I’d like to, because I want you to listen to this goddamned record and form your own opinions about each song. They’re all good so go for it, don’t be lazy. They’re not only good but they’re subtly emotional and each one stands on its own merit and messages abound.

You may like some and not others. You may like them all in different ways. If you don’t like them then wait a decade or so, experience some life, re-listen and repeat. If you don’t like them after you’ve experienced real heartbreaks and the accompanying righteous anger then you probably have no soul and shouldn’t bother re-listening.

But I presume that tragedy and loss will befall the majority if not all of the music-loving public, and that they’ll feel the appropriately devastating emotions when it does. When you feel the particular pain of which I speak (you’ll know it when you do) is when you should listen to 1000 Hurts. Again and again.

Enjoy this bitterly


God I love this. Just spent the last 3 hours trolling around for music unsuccessfully and was losing hope till I found this. Thanks

How the heck do you get a guitar sound so perfect

Last edited by Odyshape; 12-03-2011 at 03:18 AM.
Odyshape is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-07-2012, 03:49 AM   #14 (permalink)
I sleep in your hat
 
Stephen's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Melbourne, Vic. Aus.
Posts: 1,670
Default

Just to bump another of your threads Engine, I'd love to see some sort of chart depicting all the bands Albini had anything to do with. I reckon that would be quite some chart.
Stephen is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Similar Threads



© 2003-2019 Advameg, Inc.

SEO by vBSEO 3.5.2 ©2010, Crawlability, Inc.