Jarvis joins the JAMs? Yes, it’s been a wild and woolly (and altogether not grim) few days up north as Jimmy Cauty and Bill Drummond have ceased their silence regarding The KLF, The Justified Ancients of Mu Mu, and all things fnordian with a three day event in Liverpool. There have been books stampings, oddball ritual funeral/rebirth processions, and, yes, none other than Jarvis Cocker lending his vocal talents to the back catalog. It’s impossible to overstate the influence and import of The KLF, albeit more for their art-terrorist capers insofar as post-industrial music is concerned. There’d likely be none of 3Teeth’s Operation Mindfuck aesthetic without the duo, and innumerable acts have drawn influence from their media-jamming bricolage tactics. Their return looks to be just as gnostically occluded as any of their previous work, and as all RAW aficionados know, claims to total knowledge should be met with absolute suspicion, but this sick, strange future feels just a bit more right with them back in it. Pyramid blaster tattoos for all, but here are some new tracks in the meantime.
Finally, new music from those Icelandic wonders Legend! We weren’t shy about how much we loved their debut record in 2012, and the five year wait for new tunes has been interminable. Taking a moment to do some light analysis of new song “Captive”, we’ve noted that the addition of guitars and some more organic drum sounds push the song in a more rock direction, without sacrificing the moody synthwork that made us like them in the first place. We’re keen to hear more, certainly, but this’ll hold us down ’til we get our mitts on the LP.
Ari Mason, “Sleight Of Hand”
After the darkwave house of mirrors of Creatures, LA’s Ari Mason is heading in a very different direction, with a forthcoming album of renaissance motets. In the interim, she’s released an EP of existing B-sides and rarities as a crowdfunding perk, with a new tune thrown in to boot. “Sleight of Hand” is a poppy slow-burn from the perspective of the oft-maligned “other woman” which likely won’t be musically similar to the forthcoming record, but might hold some thematic unity if Ari tosses in any bawdy madrigals.
New stuff from the still recently reactivated and newly road-ready legends in Pankow. The component parts of a straightforward EBM banger are on the table, but they’ve been chopped, restitched and stretched into a manner more in keeping with just how screwball Pankow’s approach has always been. With North American tour dates just around the corner, this single’s a nice warm-up. New LP Never Trust A White Man still to come later this year!
Terminal Gods, “Sleep Machine”
Another strong single from Leeds gawth rockers Terminal Gods. That roving bassline and twinkly keys set this one apart from many of the straight up bangers they’ve graced us with in the past, but fits nicely into the nu-retro goth rock niche they’ve been carving out for themselves. A quick perusal of new record Meridian would seem to indicate that there are more than a few wrinkles have been added to their sound, check back soon for a full report.
Oil Thief, “Phobos”
A very cool new track from Oil Thief, who folks might remember from the excellent Obsolescence & Monality LP a couple years back. This is runs a bit more spacey and ambient than that record, but there’s still plenty of scraping dread leaking through the cracks of the drum. As of this writing, a handful of copies of a characteristically ultra-limited cassette release from Chondritic are still available, but likely not for long.
Markus Midnight, “Your Devil”
Here’s one from an Edmonton act we’ve heard tell of, but hadn’t actually heard ’til right this moment. Markus Midnight does classic darkwave, complete with guzzy guitars, stiff drums and opaque synths, all served up drenched with reverb. It’s not a sound that we associate with Canadian acts (to wit, these tracks will be released by Brazil’s Wave Records) but absolutely the sort of thing we’re happy to have as part of the rich mosaic of new dark and spooky Canadian music.