Wednesday, January 23, 2019

PEOPLE Affiliates Liam O'Brien & Cole Quamme Let Loose OQ's Paradice 1 EP, Prep Release Show & "Video Album" (Company Brewing)

Late last month, I received a mysterious cold-sent email from a man named Liam O'Brien simply titled "Hi From Wisconsin." I've since learned O'Brien has previously played and released music with Holy Sheboygan!, Moon Ruin, and his namesake, Liam O'Brien's Faithless Followers. For his latest endeavor, Liam has joined forces with fellow Wisconsinite and multi-instrumentalist Cole Quamme ("qua-mee") of The Fatty Acids; "OQ is Liam O'Brien & Cole Quamme in collaboration with an array of Midwestern, US-based contributors," reads their "short" press release. While amidst the earliest stages of recording in 2016, Cole Quamme reached out to his fellow Milwaukee Folk/Bluegrass peers to see what they could, potentially, do with his unique style of "Bubu"-leaning beats. Quamme was, eventually, connected with Liam O'Brien, who morphed his inter-locking rhythms into full-fledged compositions based on Celtic melodies influenced by his family's native Ireland. Liam & Cole, eventually, brought their songs out of Liam's attic studio and into Silver City, and up-start Milwaukee-based studio run by The Fatty Acids' frontman, Josh Evert.

Long-time Bon Iver collaborator Mike Noyce assisted in fleshing out OQ's songs with fresh ideas, mixes, and performances from Milwaukee's finest. OQ's Paradice 1 EP was mixed at Bon Iver's oft-used April Base Studios in Eau Claire, Wisconsin by Mike Noyce, Liam O'Brien, and Josh Evert. OQ premiered their first collaborative single, "Lifestyle," on Bon Iver mastermind Justin Vernon's newly-launched digital streaming platform/collective, PEOPLE (@37d03d) with The National's Aaron & Bryce Dessner. In addition to OQ, PEOPLE's current "projects" roster features Justin Vernon & Aaron Dessner's own Big Red Machine, Har Mar Superstar, Marijuana Deathsquads, Machinegum featuring The Strokes' Fabrizio Moretti, Mouse On Mars, Poliça, and Eighth Blackbird with Bonnie "Prince" Billy & Bryce Dessner, amongst other talented acts. OQ's Paradice 1 EP has a very unique Tribal/Bubu-leaning sound reminiscent of both Vampire Weekend and Dirty Projectors' early work, as well as Tinariwen, Paul Simon & Ladysmith Black Mambazo's critically-acclaimed Graceland, and Mumford & Sons' Johannesburg EP recorded with Baaba Maal, The Very Best & Beatenberg.

Although, OQ has been officially labelled as a "duo" consisting of Liam O'Brien & Cole Quamme, their Paradice 1 EP features contributions from a who's-who of talented Milwaukee-based musicians including Alex Heaton, Josh Evert, Ivan Eisenberg, Treccy Marquardt-Thomas, D'Amato Werlein, Caley Conway, Dana Elyse Smith, Mike Noyce, Derek De Vinney, Steven Strupp, Carmen Quinliven, Sarah Shay, John Larkin, Ian Olvera, Alex Scott, Ms. Lotus Fankh, and Hesper Juhnke. OQ's Paradice 1 EP is now available on Bandcamp, Soundcloud, and Spotify, as well as other like-minded digital streaming services. OQ will be holding an EP Release Show—dualling as their debut performance—at Company Brewing in Milwaukee this Saturday, January 26, 2019 from 10-2:00am. NO/NO & Ruth B8r Gingsburg will be on the bill, as well, along with a special presentation of Cole Quamme's Paradice 1 EP companion "video album," which you can, also, now conveniently view within this very feature, if you aren't able to make it to the EP Release Show.

":::::: hearkening a distant past
✷        ·
˚ * .
*   * ⋆   .
·    ⋆     ˚ ˚    ✦
⋆ ·   *
⋆ ✧    ·   ✧ ✵
heralding in the coming of a not-so-distant future ::::::::"

Monday, January 21, 2019

Drew Scott Returns with earlytwothousands Feat. Snoop Dogg, 50 Cent, Juelz Santana, Clipse, Ghostface Killah, T.I. Lil' Wayne & JAY-Z Remixes

Baltimore-based producer and beat-maker Drew Scott had quite a big year in 2018: first and foremost, he got married to his long-time partner and frequent collaborator, Pale Spring. Congrats to Drew & Emily! Musically, Drew unleashed CRITTER from his "Basement" Pop alter-ego, Giddeon Gallows, as well as remixes from Butch Dawson, HI$TO, and Infinity Knives. Now, Drew Scott has effectively returned with his first proper release of 2019—something I've been hearing about for a while now—earlytwothousands; just as it sounds, is an 8-track collection of early 2000's Hip-Hop remixes "featuring" Snoop Dogg, 50 Cent, Juelz Santana, Clipse & Pharrell, Ghostface Killah, T.I. Lil' Wayne, and JAY-Z. "It was just something I've been wanting to do. I was a teenager when these songs came out, which was around the same time I first started making beats," Drew Scott told The Witzard, via email.

"It was fun to come back full-circle and pay homage. Many of the beats were already made, I just had to find the right acapellas to fit the vibes. It's good practice and I always enjoy digging for new samples," Scott explained. earlytwothousands features such early 2000's chart-toppers as Snoop Dogg's "Sensual Seduction," Clipse & Pharrell's "Mr. Me Too," Ghostface Killah's "Run," and Lil' Wayne's "Hustler Musik," as well as a few other bangers. It's an interesting glimpse back at early 2000's Hip-Hop/Rap heard through the lens of Drew Scott's unique brand of "Basement" Pop. earlytwothousands is now available to stream or download on Drew Scott's Bandcamp page, along with Giddeon Gallows' CRITTER and 2017's critically-acclaimed ILL VESSEL. Above, you'll also, find Drew Scott's 2017's installment of Baltimore FLIPS. video series featuring local artists.

Friday, January 18, 2019

The Witzard Premiere: 80HRTZ's Dead Kennedys "California Über Alles" Remix Feat. Scratches from Shortrock (@80HRTZ & @Shortrock_1200s)

Dead Kennedys were a controversial San Francisco, California-based Punk/Hardcore, who were originally active from 1978-86; within said 8-year span, Dead Kennedys self-released four albums and an EP on their own independent record label, Alternative Tentacles. Dead Kennedys critically-acclaimed and widely praised releases include Fresh Fruit for Rotting Vegetables, In God We Trust, Inc. EP, Plastic Surgery Disasters, Frankenchrist, and finally, 1986's Bedtime for Democracy. Dead Kennedys abruptly disbanded—arguably, at the height of their "fame"—in December of 1986, prior to their career-spanning 1987 compilation, Give Me Convenience OR Give Me Death. However, following a 15-year period of inactivity, Dead Kennedys re-formed in 2001 following a number of legal disputes, royalties lawsuits, and disputes between members. Unlike the recently re-formed Original Misfits with Glenn Danzig, this is, unfortunately, not the original incarnation of Dead Kennedys. As of 2019, Dead Kennedys' current line-up includes long-time guitarist East Bay Ray, drummer D.H. Peligro, and bassist Klaus Flouride, as well as their latest frontman, Ron "Skip" Greer. It appears as though Dead Kennedys' original frontman and co-founder Jello Biafra currently has no immediate plans to reunite with his former bandmates; since DK's initial 1986 split, Biafra has either recorded music or shared the stage with everyone from Eazy-E/N.W.A. affiliate The D.O.C. to The Melvins and has self-released multiple spoken word albums.

Last year, we, here at The Witzard, proudly premiered 80HRTZ's remix of The Misfits' "ASTRO ZOMBIES" Feat. DJ Halo right before Halloween. If you ask us, it was a great success and since then, 80HRTZ and I have been toying with the idea of debuting additional Punk/Hip-Hop remixes right here on our platform. So, without further ado, the next installment in 80HRTZ's Punk/Hardcore remix series is, obviously, Dead Kennedys' 1979 Alternative Tentacles 7-inch single, "California Über Alles." I can personally remember first hearing "California Über Alles" on Give Me Convenience OR Give Me Death around, maybe, 15-16 during my earliest exposure to Punk Rock through the lens of early 2000's Pop-Punk. However, I'll readily admit, Jello Biafra's frantic jittery delivery on "California Über Alles" is still deeply chilling and a bit unsettling, to this day! Oddly enough, both 80HRTZ & Shortrock grew up listening to Dead Kennedys/Jello Biafra, as well. Thematically, 80HRTZ's "California Über Alles" Remix is similar to our previously premiered "ASTRO ZOMBIES" Remix: a Hip-Hop-leaning remix of an old school Punk/Hardcore stand-out. Although, this time around, he has recruited Shortrock. A self-proclaimed "turntablist/scratch musician," Shortrock has released records with Aaron Romero & Vic Grimes, BRZOWSKI, Chino XL, Guilty Simpson, k-the-i??? Keith Murray, Pastense, Uncommon Nasa, and countless others. Shortrock currently serves as the in-house DJ for Uncommon Records, Strange Media, empty space collective, and Icy Palms Records. The Witzard proudly presents 80HRTZ's Dead Kennedys "California Über Alles" Remix Feat. Shortrock?!!!??! Below, you'll see 80HRTZ & Shortrock have both provided additional commentary on their personal relationships to Dead Kennedys.

"When I was 10, I started skateboarding. That's how I was introduced to Punk Rock. When I was in the 6th grade, my friends and I wanted to start a Punk Rock band after hearing Dead Kennedys' Give Me Convenience OR Give Me Death. We were too young to truly comprehend the lyrics, but we tried to emulate Jello [Biafra] when we wrote songs. We had a toy drum set, a Casio keyboard, and a Hitachi boombox radio, which served as our PA [system], as well as had this weird feature that picked up some strange radio frequencies that sounded crazy. So, we incorporated that into our songs. I think, we had three songs. If I look hard enough, I think, I might still have a lyric sheet somewhere... but that's how far back my love for DK goes. When I decided to do The Misfits Remix, I discovered the "California Über Alles" acapella track and immediately decided I was going to take it on, as well. It was a much trickier task with the tempo change in the middle, but it was super-fun to make!"

- 80HRTZ (@80HRTZ)

"So, when I was 9-years-old, I got my first skate shop sponsor and everyone else who was sponsored by the shop was 16 to, like, 21. I was a straight-up Hip-Hop kid and would always have my boombox, if I was at a park or no pig spot. Always bumping Public Enemey, 3rd Bass, Boogie Down [Productions], etc. So, one day at one of the shops safe spots, one of the kids, who was much older, wanted to listen to "his music" and put in a tape. And even at nine, I was a pissed off "F**k The World" kid due to crazy sh*t that happened and then, I started listening. I heard a high pitch chorus ranting "KILL THE POOR!" and was instantly intrigued. So, as summer passed, these older Punk kids I skated with were partying, drinking, shooting dope, and playing Dead Kennedys... I was hooked! It was music I didn't know existed that gave me the same feel of the social awareness of the Hip-Hop I was listening to! Fast-forward to 2006: I'm 25 and already a established turntablist doing SXSW's Mush Records Showcase with k-the-i??? and Bigg Jus (Company Flow.)

So, before k-the-i??? and myself flew to Austin, we made a few demos for specific artists that we knew were gonna be there. Long story short, running from our showcase to anticon's to Def Jux's, I got to the Alternative Tentacles showcase... it was over! But I spotted Jello Biafra shaking hands and whatnot, so I went to talk to him explaining how I became a fan and why I was there and gave him our demo, where I used cuts from his spoken word records. He bugged out and said, "I haven't heard anyone use my records since Ice-T [Afrika Islam] used one!" So, we had all our info in these demos and he thanked me and went on our ways. So, like six months later, he called and left a message on answering machine, which my sister Deleted after I heard it. He said he really enjoyed it and our conversation at SXSW, but he was really busy with many projects coming out. So, I never got to call him back and pretty soon after, my solo 45 came out... sooooo, yeah, that's the most I've ever f***in' typed... and thanks to 80HRTZ, I got to pay tribute and had a dope time doing it... ENJOY, MUTHAHF***AHS!!!"

- Shortrock (@shortrock1200)

Thursday, January 17, 2019

Baltimore Grindcore Behemoths Constituents Unleash "GRIND NO DIE" Feat. 10 Recordings In Just 7 Minutes & Jumbled (100% DIY GRINDCORE)

A couple years ago, we did a feature on Baltimore-based Grindcore band Constituents AKA CNSTS' 2017 DEMO cassette and digital release here at The Witzard. However, over the course of the past year and a half, CNSTS have morphed from a 4-piece to a 3-piece now consisting of vocalist josé, guitarist/bassist clint. and drummer zap. Just yesterday, Constituents "quietly" returned, which is ironic, with their second proper digital release simply entitled GRIND NO DIE. It's a blistering 7-minute mix of Grindcore, Powerviolence, and Metal, which consists of 9 "micro-songs." It also, contains an "INTRO," as well as numerous interlude "skits" created by Baltimore beat-maker and friend of The Witzard, Jumbled AKA John Bachman. East Coast Grindcore die-hards and Hip-Hop heads will well know, however, that this isn't exactly Jumbled & clint. AKA salk.'s first time appearing on record together... far from it, actually! Jumbled & salk. have been part of numerous short-lived and now-defunct Grindcore projects together including Kerum, SxOxW/Deceiver, Tarpit (md), HKMF's, Hello Kitty Mother F**kers, and Napalm Def, as well as some of salk.'s solo material and various recordings with Dwell. Napalm Def, actually, produced beats for "Heavier Bombing" from Magrudergrind's acclaimed 2009 self-titled album with additional mixing and scratches from Dwell. Now, Jumbled has done something very similar, producing the beats for the "INTRO" and interlude "skits" for Constituents' GRIND NO DIE, all of which have an underlying Hip-Hop feel, as well.

"WE PUT UP THE RECORDING WE DID BACK IN SEPTEMBER ON BANDCAMP. 9 SONGS AND AN "INTRO" IN 7 MINUTES. ONE TRACK. F**K THE WORLD. 100% DIY GRINDCORE," Constituents posted on their Facebook page yesterday afternoon. GRIND NO DIE contains 9 unmastered raw recordings from a larger recording session with John "JZA" Burton at C.H.U.D. Central in Philly, five of which will soon be mastered and re-released on cassette/digital as 100% DIY GRINDCORE. Both GRIND NO DIE & 100% DIY GRINDCORE will, also, soon be released on limited edition cassette available at local shows or directly from clint. josé & zap. GRIND NO DIE is a fast, frantic, and frenzied trip through CNSTS' Jumbled-assisted trip through their mind-melting blend of Grindcore, Powerviolence, Hip-Hop, and Metal. Honestly, I would recommend it for anyone, much like myself, who's fairly new to the Grindcore genre. It's also, RIYL: Hip-Hop, Punk/Hardcore, Napalm Death/Napalm Def, or Magrudergrind. Constituents will be playing at clint.'s Birthday Show AKA "ROTTEN TONAL ANGER 42" at Baltimore's The Sidebar on Saturday, February 2, 2019. clint.'s Birthday Show bill also, includes sets from Durian, Johnstomper AKA Ben Is The Bastard, JSAKABITB, Kept In Line (VA), Needle (DC), UllNevaNo & Jumbled, and Uncle Buck "+MORE TBA!" Additional details are available on the clint.'s Birthday Show Facebook Events page.

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

ialive Returns with Psych-Rap Album DON'T DO NOTHING & Pens Beat-maker Bedrock #24 for The Witzard (Cold Rhymes Records)

"It's hard to pinpoint the moment I wanted to become a producer. I do remember contemplating at a young age the elements of Hip-Hop, wondering where I fit in. My older brother wrote [graffiti]. My other brother's friends were DJ's and emcees. To 12-year-old me, it was logical to take a craft up in one of these cornerstones. I, actually, wanted to break, but having no actual training available to me, that didn't last long.

Around this time, I recognized my affinity for beats and beat-making. The part that interested me the most was seeing people come up with something from nothing. You didn't need to know how to play an instrument. The process intrigued and excited me. The rapping was cool, but what moved me the most was the music. I could get down with an average emcee, so as long as the sh*t he was rhyming on was tight; vice-versa, if a fire emcee had wack beats, it felt wasted to me."

Four Albums of Note (Honorable Mentions)

1. De La Soul - 3 Feet High & Rising (1989)
2. A Tribe Called Quest - Midnight Marauders (1993)
3. Gang Starr - Moment of Truth (1998)
4. The Roots - Things Fall Apart (1999)

"De La Soul dropped 3 Feet High in '89, when I was only 3-years-old, but it's timelessness carried through to 1996 when I was 10-years-old. There were records I really liked, but it wasn't until I heard this record that I could claim something as MINE. It was different from everything else I had heard in my life. It was silly, fun, the messages were great, and it knocked. I was a Native Tongues kid from that point on."

"A record I would continue to return to throughout my youth was A Tribe Called Quest's Midnight Marauders. To me, it's a perfect album and it's perfect production is only matched by it's meticulous song-writing. It had thought-provoking insight matched with grooving vibes fit to hold a 9th grade party down at the crib. If I had control of the CD player, "Steve Biko (Stir It Up)" was the first jam going on."

"When Moment of Truth dropped, Gang Starr was a household name in my home and to me this record was their masterpiece. Guru cemented his place as the street smart older cousin everyone needed and Preemo was in top-production form. This still is what I match beats to when I want things to knock, punch, and bang the way East Coast drums should."

"As I was forming an opinion on Rap music the way every good backpacker kid heading into high school was, at the time, Philadelphia’s heralded champs of Hip-Hop, my beloved Roots Crew would drop Things Fall Apart. This album had it all! It was sonically engaging, thoughtfully arranged, and Black Thought was doing what he does best. With assists from early Dilla, ?uestlove was taking leaps with production."

These four albums would create a backbone for my production style in the years to come and continue to inspire me today...

I. Cannibal Ox - The Cold Vein (2001)

"This is, actually, my favorite album of all time. I don't think it gets much better than this. El-P's bizarre, bugged out grittiness served a perfect backdrop for Vast [Aire]'s poetic take on life's struggles and Vordul [Mega]'s unique stream-of-consciousness/free-associating rhymes. The beats are a mix of thumping NY grit and beautiful synth-scapes. It's Psychedelic in it's approach by presenting familiar themes, while pushing experimentation with synths and wild samples.

The moments of beauty are much more powerful, when poking their head from dusty drums and odd musings. The production is strong enough to be able to carry a 20+ bar verse without getting stale. There is contrast in the weird and beautiful and in the light and dark. This record showed me that you could layer as much or as little as you want and by manipulating things, you could achieve something completely new. It's quest to be individual while working with sourced material is something I've adapted and never let go of."

II. Brand New - The Devil & God Are Raging Inside of Me AKA "TDAGARIOM" (2006)

"During high school, I had discoveries; musical discoveries outside of Hip-Hop. New friends shared Punk, Rock, and Metal with me. If, like me, you were in HS during the early aughts, you were exposed to "Pop-Punk." A term that's problematic, yet has stuck, and I was all the way in.

Bands like Alkaline Trio & Saves The Day were my go-to. Enter: Brand New. It took me a few years to appreciate the band and it, actually, wasn't until I was in college that my appreciation would cement. 2006's TDAGARIOM was what I imagine reading Beowulf in The Middle Ages was like. This was an epic!

For the record: f**k Jesse Lacey! I can't fully back the dude with what has surfaced in recent years. That being said, I can't take back the effect that this album has had on me, my creative process, and how I work on music.

What resonated with me with this album was it's ability to cover so much ground. It has soft subtleties and crashing, booming depths. Musically, it is an emotional roller coaster. They had pivoted from the whiny stylings of Pop-Punk into a more mature blend of heavy Art Rock. The guitar tones are ripe with fuzz, distortion, and echo. The melodies are heart-breaking and catchy. The song structure felt new to me.

I'm not well-versed in music theory or any formal education at all, but I learn by copying. Rap's stagnant 16-8-16 formula had grown stale to me extremely fast and I was feeling a new approach to writing songs. Building from quiet tones to crashing crescendos and bursting back into soft choruses had me all Jazzed up and experimenting alone in my room. This record, also, is the catalyst for me wanting to sing choruses. An ode to this record can be found on my 2015 release, Awake In The Snakehole. The song is called "VS Myself" and it’s a clear delineation of me being inspired by the track "Limousine."'

III. Morgan Delt - Psychic Death Hole AKA "PDH" (2012-14)

"I think, a common sensibility beat-makers have when digging is the search for unique and interesting sounds. You may hear some bizarre chime among a basic piano solo, a fuzzed out guitar sparkle, or a strange voice. Essentially, something out of the ordinary to spark a creative loop.

In 2012, fate brought me to Morgan Delt's Bandcamp page and his album, Psychic Death Hole, brought me to the edge. I have yet to hear something so dense and otherworldly that still retains focus and balance. It sounds like it came out of the acid-dripped San Franciscan 60's, yet it, also, sounds like it fell off of an alien spaceship.

Some things can't be re-created and the beauty of recording is capturing these moments. The moments captured on PDH are f***ing stupendous, tremendous and bugged the f**k out. Listen to "Barbarian Kings" and tell me you don't want to hijack the stupid Jeep Wrangler your rich white neighbor cleans every f***ing day and crash the sh*t for fun. It's a certified neck-snapper. These sounds were new and I wanted to be able to make things like this."

IV. Mos Def, Unknown Mortal Orchestra, The Beatles & The Kinks (1960-present)

"These days, the way I make beats is a reflection of what I'm writing and the process is simultaneous and intertwined. It's become less about beats with rhymes and more about crafting songs. I find inspiration in well-written songs. I think, Mos Def (AKA Yasiin Bey) was an amazing emcee and could easily pivot from rapper to song-writer. Stylistically, I find myself aligning with Mos' approach towards writing, in terms of not being pigeon-holed."

"Unknown Mortal Orchestra's Ruban Nielson has a great ability to write catchy melodies that walk the line of familiar and fresh that I'm so fond of. I'm often checking dude's music for inspiration, especially, his older more Breakbeat-oriented stuff. I could, also, say the band Grizzly Bear serves a similar purpose for me."

"I've always been a fan of The Beatles, but the past few years, I have been really appreciating the production techniques on songs I've heard a million times. The Beatles were on the cutting edge of British Psych. The way they flipped any type of sound and/or instrument they wanted is tight. George Martin, their long-time producer and engineer, actually, used some samples in Sgt. Pepper's."

"Other than that, it's basically, The Kinks. When you got The Davies Brothers writing whatever they fancy and Mick Avory's swinging drums, you can't lose. "Skeletons" off of my new album, DON'T DO NOTHING, is definitely a dollop of Kinks oozing through."

Last Friday, January 11, 2019, Philly-based Rap singer, song-writer, and producer ialive returned with his third proper solo studio effort, DON'T DO NOTHING. It was released on Height Keech's extremely dope label, Cold Rhymes Records, produced, recorded & mixed by ialive himself at "The Green Gem" in Philly, and mastered by C$ BURNS. DON'T DO NOTHING is the quasi-follow-up to one of our personal favorite albums of 2017, Height-produced TIMEWAVE ZERO, which was also, released on Cold Rhymes. Both albums posses an interesting vaguely spaced out, Psych-Rap type of feel with influence coming from, as ialive mentioned above, everyone from Yasiin Bey FKA Mos Def to The Beatles and Unknown Mortal Orchestra to The Kinks. ialive's previous full-length releases include 2012's The Age of Reason and 2015's Awake In The Snakehole, as well as The Jelly EP... and a slew of other Bandcamp-exclusive releases worthy of your times and dimes!

In addition to TIMEWAVE ZERO with Height Keech, ialive has also, issued collaborative releases with Darko The Super as The Hell Hole Store and Cody Cody Jones FKA Stillborn Identity as Four to The Floor. The Hell Hole Store are currently gearing up to let loose their third full-length, Three The Hard Way, as well as another separate ialive solo release with Cincinnati-based Grasshopper Juice Records. Earlier this year, ialive & Darko The Super, actually, appeared together in Homeboy Sandman & Edan's "#NeverUseTheInternetAgain" music video from their collaborative EP, Humble Pi. Boot & Saddle will be hosting an Album Release Show & Birthday Party for ialive on his actual birthday, Monday, February 18, 2019 from 7-11:00pm. ialive will be performing select cuts from DON'T DO NOTHING, along with appearances throughout the evening from Cat & Kat of Amanda X, Height Keech, and Andrew Milicia with additional details listed on Boot & Saddle's Facebook Events page.

Curse ov Dialect Emcee & Producer Raceless Re-emerges with Il Beliegha E.P. As "The Maltese Well Monster" (Soundcloud self-released)

Curse ov Dialect emcee and producer Raceless FKA Raceless The Prophet AKA Il-Belligha AKA The Filfla Lizard has added yet another nom de plume to his ever-growing cast of characters: The Maltese Well Monster. Legend has it, said Maltese Well Monster/Il-Belliegha—a pivotal part of centuries-old Maltese folklore—was supposedly, "a monster that lives in well and could pull in children who looked into them." Raceless himself, however, tells the story a bit something like this: "The Maltese Well Monster was born after a trip to Malta from Curse ov Dialect member Raceless, [whose] father is from this background... the myths of Malta run very deep into a well... some instrumental tracks that conjure these images and some vocal tracks with a Gollum-like rapping voice from the monster... heavy sampology from obscure sources." Just overnight, Raceless made a couple minor edits to The Maltese Well Monster's Il Beliegha EP, swiftly removing one of its original five tracks and adding two more, making it a full-fledged 6-track EP. Still, a largely instrumental EP, Raceless AKA The Maltese Well Monster has, actually, risen from the depths of his well to deliver menacing rhymes on two choice cuts: "Gargoyle of Gold" and newly-added "Labyrinths of Limestone."

Not entirely unlike Curse ov Dialect's extremely Experimental brand of Dadaist-leaning Hip-Hop, Raceless employs a number of truly unique techniques throughout The Maltese Well Monster's Il Beleigha EP; this including thematic sampling from obscure sources, eerie backmasking, devilishly revered vocals, an appearance from "a 1960's Italian crooner/wanna-be Dean Martin," Wu-Tang Clan-like production tactics, a couple expertly rapped neck-snapping verses, and much, much more. Raceless The Prophet has been a part of Melbourne, Australia-based "Psychedelic/Dadaist Hip-Hop crew" Curse ov Dialect since their 1994 inception, as well as releasing projects with seemingly short-lived groups, DIARY DAY 1 (@DIARYDAY1) and Pompo's Paw with Ai Yamamoto. Raceless' first proper solo effort, The Internal meddler EP, was released under Curse ov Dialect's group banner in January of 2012 and features ceschi, Shunda K. (Yo! Majesty,) Kaigen, Danielsan (Koolism,) and Vile Vortices, as well as fellow members of Curse ov Dialect. Raceless' Il Beliegha EP is currently available to stream on his newly-minted Maltese Well Monster Soundcloud page... but, I think, it's fairly safe to say, this isn't the last we'll be hearing from The Maltese Well Monster!

Sunday, January 13, 2019

Jumbled Returns with PADRE Beat Tape Created In Honor of His Daughter & Teases "untitled." ORSULAK Demo (Harford & Reckord Tapes)

It's been an exciting year and a half for John Bachman AKA Baltimore-based beat-maker Jumbled and his wife, Rachel. One day, The Bachmans got a call about potentially, adopting a little girl, so they immediately drove to Upstate New York and their lives, as they knew it, instantly changed forever. Upon their return back home to Baltimore with baby Lucy (LB) just a few short weeks later, Jumbled happily moved his records and equipment from Lucy's new bedroom and into the home's guestroom. Thus, entering his aptly-named "Green Room" phase, which chronologically, started with YOU BEST NOT MISS EP with DC emcee, Lace Berriez from late last year. Padre consists of a barrage of beats Jumbled has painstakingly created and fine-tuned within the last 12 months or so in The "Green Room." Its content were primarily recorded during the early morning hours before LB would wake up or on the rare occasion Mrs. Bachman would go out and Jumbled didn't have a pile of students' papers to grade for school.

Jumbled says his basic "formula" for Padre was fairly simple: "catchy samples pulled from vinyl [laid] over a Breakbeat and bassline added for depth." Padre's beats flow together effortlessly and are all connected through the stand-up Comedy routines/sound clips "discussing various challenges and triumphs that come from being a father." Rather than simply labeling Padre's two 15-minute Sides A/B, Jumbled has alternatively labelled them as the "L-side" and "B-side" in honor of his daughter, of course. Padre is currently available to stream on Jumbled's Bandcamp and it appears as though, cassette tapes will be coming soon, as well. John Bachman's Bandcamp page additionally specifies that some of the beats contained within Padre will likely be re-used on a variety of upcoming projects. Jumbled is, also, currently working on a mysterious project called ORSULAK with his Soft Peaks bandmate, Eben Dennis. As an added listening bonus, ORSULAK's "untitled." demo is now streaming below with a Joe Orsulak-indebted logo created by clint. Nichols (@rat_eyed_blues) AKA salk. of Dwell & salk.