Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Wretched Worst, "Dog Shit Deserver"

I'm chained to the floor. I remember being a raw-looking dusklover, hanging my head in the sun, watching it fall. Now it's all gone. All the light. All of it. I only feel trapped in the dark, Frightened. Something keeps trying to talk to me beyond the tribal drums, but I can't understand what they say. I can't tell if it's because my ears are shattered and killed, or if it's because they can't speak without their voice become a wail of slowed angry distortion. At this point, I don't care anymore. Wretched Worst has already desecrated me in the past. It's happening again. I'm not desensitized to it; I just don't fight.

Eventually they stop their tease and attack. I'm detached, allow the shit to just happen. The bombardment is flailing discourse of drums, bass, guitar, voice, landed in puddles of noised barrages. You can only really take it and keep taking. It started with a slither and inorganically tongued past deep red inks and paints spilled on the floor to ultimately flop into an elemental prick that pushes and forces up and through your skin until it's ripped and torn.

That's just the first song. "Fucked in Hell."

The title track doesn't take you into any happier places. A sallow distant dying animalistic moan surrounded by cursory static winds is eventually permeated by a pounding hammerfist death rattle. This is filled with a growing warm swamp of electronic anxiety that builds that the return of the voice? Surrounding you, threatening you, growling saliva and guts on your shoulder? But you can't struggle with that whispered shout in your ear, shaking your brainwaves until they crumble down your spine like terrified soot. You can't run. You're too scared. Fuck it. Just end it all, please. This is distressed ghastliness.

I love this band. Please play in Louisville soon.

Dog Shit Deserver was released in 2010. It has been re-released this month by Nurse Etiquette.

Friday, June 7, 2013

The Bottom Sop - "Outlaws Like Us"

FULL DISCLOSURE: DERRICK WADE MANLEY IS MY BROTHER. Read at your own risk and attitudes towards the ethics that supposedly exist amongst music blogs in 2013.  

This is jukebox dance music, swarmed by polished cowboy boots and holding hands late night with domestic beers and tucked-in buttoned-up shirts. There's a brashness in the two-step boogie acknowledgement of swing in the moonshine drunkenness that will occur. There's definitely a lake nearby. The wranglers are itching between oars or fisticuffs. Either way, it'll be a summertime.

Outlaws Like Us is the second release from Louisville outlaw honky-tonk outfit The Bottom Sop, led by songwriter-guitarist-singer Derrick Wade Manley. While this band started with roots in the realms of country music inspired by 1960s and 1970s duets and standards by such teamed artists as Loretta and Conway, George and Tammy, Porter and Dolly, mixing elements of singer-songwriter material with trucker country, this CD presses that seed and and follows the groundwork into the 70s and 80s, presenting a faster-paced, more upbeat sound. It also cements Derrick and Lindsey Anderson as a country vocal duo that deserves attention.

This is a record that shoots whiskey and thinks of Red-Headed Stranger, swinging into a faster-paced 21st century production, but with the same teeth. Much like Willie Nelson's album, Outlaws remain the theme throughout. With songs like "Fast Love," Derrick heads into a quick-paced pop song, much like his heroes did during the 70s of Nashville's Music City reign. "Wakin Up Country" hearkens back to grandma cookin and a life I've really barely ever known captured in a nice chorused Waylon pace. The thing is, this is the most mature thing I've ever heard Derrick write, and I've heard his songs since I was, I don't know, six years old?

I have to applaud new bassist Matt Thomasson and steel guitar player John Fauver's additions to this group. And Kenneth Allday's leads are always right on. Both Derrick and Lindsey lead the album out strongly. I'll give it up: The title song is the best thing they've ever done. Nice job, gang.

The Bottom Sop is playing their CD release party at the Highlands Tap Room Grill on Sat Jun 8.

Monday, June 3, 2013

JT Dockery's "DESPAIR"

From Hell this came. 

And that's the Genius of JT Dockery: Is this a story about an alien chicken dinner that attacks and eats you back? A severity of outsider that walks in Eraserhead solitude. But not even that, because you can try to reach for some grounded theme in narrative or feeling. Dockery doesn't write or draw or plot like that. You can try to relate the darknesses to your own life here, but that's the trick; it's so personal, you actually can't. You can relate to the fact that it's honesty spermed straight onto paper. You can relate because there's a shared blather amongst all of us stuck on this thing about how lonely and fucked we are; you can relate that way, certainly. But it's not some interpretation of the landlords of life taking a shit on you in some easily recognizable way. This is Dockery's very personal captures of life; we as readers can only relate to the honesty. Not the actual situations; these are too personal. More than most artists peak to express. That takes too much courage to go full into your mind and present it. I'm saying, Dockery's one of those ones that does.

Reading this is like listening to a 70s Springsteen or Prine or Tom Waits album; each song tears in with equal fervor as the last. Each story is the next track on Thin Lizzy's "Jailbreak" or Cooper's "Love it to Death." I know these drugs; I know these times. This is a document of frowning at the sound of the morning birds and arguing about White Lion and Lovecraft, seriously. These are real times transcribed through not broad strokes, like most art approaches, but through pinstripes of detail. Those specific 1,000 cigarette butt seconds that mount and hurt and are necessasry to express. And that's what Todd does. Country roads take me home, I'm a street walkin' cheetah with a heart full of napalm.

"With or without the CUTE FACTOR, the roots of the heart run deep."

This he says, running through crosshatching gayly, cheeking his fractious neck left and biting hosed-foot in mouth. This is an ode to Escapes. Bourbon. Legs. But a TV Eye on the evils of the world, so broadcasted and mingled in a mixolydian church mode of perfect notes that spreads it through drawn soul on paper in fucking back and white. A crash course for the Ravers.

His visual translation of Stephen Crane's "The Black Riders" is the most intense Romantic opera I've ever read. It's a black metal album bourne of Kris Kristofferson hurts and the Truth about the lack of truth expressed.  It's a splay of heart. This is Lynott's "The Cowboy Song" in ink. There's a dive into total fucking isolation, but it's whizzed in the Understanding of the Human Nature.

"THISEATSITSELF" seems like a troubadour of rained woe as a body becomes full of screaming mouths. And yes, there is a penis that bites, but no more than the rest of the skin. In fact, spoiler alert, it only really consumes the eye, and that's a fucking statement if there ever was one. This is a scary knife, a scary fork.

The book is book-ended with Julia Gfrorer's staggered swords, black and white, scattered and cold over dark pages. It ends with Chris Wright's story of "Samelcar," a search for Truths in archaic Mystery.

There is peace in this chaos, and there is chaos in all peace. "The blackest of blacks, if not often, will eventually reveal light," JT proclaims in the prologue. So does despair. Oh, I mean, so does "Despair." It seems to be Dockery's darkest book, yet it bleeds the most optimism. This is a Book of Proclamation. It is a Sentence boasted in Skin, Bourbon and That Feel felt when low but born anew in the dark fires.

And, it is asked: "What then?"

JT Dockery's DESPAIR, Vol.1  is released like rats by Institute 193. Go here to purchase