Archive for June 2, 2013

Squeegeed Clean/Distant Trains split single (self-released 2012, 7″ vinyl)

A couple years ago I reviewed two CDs by Squeegeed Clean, an Australian Avant-Jazz inspired Psychedelia-in-Space combo led by the duo of Funkmeister G and D.J. Urinal Cake, a couple of rascals whose exploits I’ve been following since I started receiving submissions in the early Aural Innovations days by their band Vocabularinist. Their latest is a 7″ split single with Distant Trains, a solo project, and apparently only the latest of many, from Des Moines, IA based Chuck Hoffman. The single is available on clear vinyl in an edition of only 50.

The Squeegeed Clean side consists of one 4 minute track, Not the normal pigs, but the zombie pigs from down below. How’s that for a title? This is raw edged psychedelic free-jazz with blaring horns, tribal percussion and weird effects, like the results of a Sun Ra master class for creative hometapers. To get a more detailed description of what these guys are about, CLICK HERE to read my review of their first two full length CDs.

The Distant Trains side consists of 3 tracks, adding up to nearly 5 minutes. Hoffman starts off by taking an old time educational film voice sample and backing it with grungy metal guitar and drums. This is followed by completely whacky cartoonish music, like John Zorn dropping acid and scoring new music for old Hanna-Barbera toons. Hoffman seems to do another 180 degree turn, transitioning to a stoned, noisy metal dirge, only to launch right back into the freaked out cartoon music. Lots of fun in less than 5 minutes!

To hear the single and get ordering information, visit the Squeegeed Clean Bandcamp site at:
Visit the Squeegeed Clean Facebook page at
Visit the Chuck Hoffman at and on Facebook at

Reviewed by Jerry Kranitz

Quttinirpaaq – “No Visitors” (Rural Isolation Project 2013, RIP001, LP)

Quttinirpaaq are an Austin, TX based noise/drone/sludge-psych combo led by Matt Turner, the band being named after a Canadian national park.

Side 1 of this vinyl LP opens with a 1.5 minute blistering noise-sludge dirge that brings to mind Keiji Haino playing guitar with Throbbing Gristle. Malvert follows, starting off as a menacing but cool grooving industrial dance-floor rocker with periodic bouts of spacey electronic freakiness. Ex-Batts laces itself with more sludge. I like the combination of drugged stoner vibe, chaotic noise, and vocals that sound like early Chrome meets The Residents gone totally noise-fucked. After a brief interlude of space electronics Quttinirpaaq launch into a cover of George Brigman’s DMT. I’d never heard of Brigman but a little Googling revealed him to be a musician from Baltimore who released a self-financed LP called Jungle Rot in 1975. So off to YouTube I went to hear DMT and darned if George Brigman wasn’t an unsung contemporary of Chrome, fitting well into the punk-industrial with a spaced out psychedelic edge mold. Quttinirpaaq’s take on DMT is a heavy rocking slab of ear-slitting acid drenched psychedelia, industrial horror-show and Chrome. Bad Ronald follows, being a rhythmic bit of off-kilter noise, samples and effects collage that would make for some avant-garde dance fun. And Becombs is a short, noise-laden stoner psych blast that wraps up side 1.

Side 2 consists of three longer tracks, starting with the nearly 8 minute Lohlands. If you like noisy, here’s-yer-brain-on-drugs, but totally rockin’ industrial psychedelia, then you’ll dig this for sure. I really like the use of effects on this track. Les Rallizes Denudes is a band that’s referenced in the promo sheet and I’d say that the raw, chaotic, but passionate power of the Les Rallizes Denudes music I’ve heard is very much in evidence here. Golden Needles lays down a rhythmic, danceable, industrial groove, accompanied by a steady wave of static that functions like an irritating drone, plus warbling Poltergeist voices and other freaky effects. Finally, Horsehead Bookends starts off as a meandering experimental noise, drone, guitar feedback, and effects exploration, but then near the 3 minute mark launches into the heaviest space-noise-sludge assault of the entire set. Keiji Haino quit Throbbing Grislte and joined Sunn O))).

In summary, there’s quite a bit of variety on No Visitors, and while it’s aggressive music to be sure, it’s far more accessible than a lot of the relentlessly dense sludge-fests I’ve heard. If you like your psychedelia on the noisy side, dig Chrome and Les Rallizes Denudes, or my early Chrome meets The Residents analogy resonated with you, check out Quttinirpaaq. Note that the LP comes in an edition of 300 copies pressed on 180 gram dark red vinyl.

The LP can be purchased through the Quyttinirpaaq Bandcamp site at:
Like most Bandcamp sites it includes a download and the music is available to stream on the page.

Reviewed by Jerry Kranitz

HydroElectric – “Space Dirt” (CatseySoup Records 2012, CD)

HydroElectric are a Massachusetts based quartet that play guitar driven hard rock with a space rocking edge. The band consists of Monte Newman on guitar and vocals, Rikk Desgres on bass and vocals, Paul Picard on drums, and Paul Eggleston on keyboards. Yup, that’s right, Paul Eggleston from Architectural Metaphor.

Turn To Gray sets the tone for the album with chunky guitars, vocals and pounding drums, but also shooting star space synths. It’s good heavy rock with a space rock injection, and I like how even though it’s a tightly composed 4 minute song the band stretch out into instrumental passages and guitar soloing. Cut Me Down opens with keyboard atmospherics before launching into a 70s styled hard rock song that strikes me as a cross between Monster Magnet and early Blue Oyster Cult, plus organ and more space synths. Sleepwalking and What You Deserve are two more 70s styled rockers that I enjoyed. The pace slows on Heroic Dose, though the intensity level remains high, with haunting organ and some of most kick ass guitar soloing of the set. Edge Of The World is the longest song of the set at 7.5 minutes. It opens with JFK’s speech talking of the nation’s commitment to landing a man on the moon. The music is slowly grooving, with strumming acoustic guitar and atmospheric keyboards. After a couple minutes heavily fuzzed guitar briefly kicks in, and soon after the music develops into a spaced out jamming song with a stoner vibe. Very nice. And speaking of stoner vibe, Put You Away picks up where Edge Of The World left off, before launching into a Monster Magnet styled rocker with the addition of Paul jamming hard on organ, plus another stinger of a guitar solo. Doctor Who, not surprisingly, given the title, is keyboard dominated, sounding very much like an old time sci-fi TV show theme, though it’s all still heavy rocking. And War Inside My Head closes the CD with what is probably the most metallic song of the set.

Without the keys and synths, Space Dirt would be a damn good but fairly straightforward hard rock album. But with the keys and synths we get something far more interesting. The bad news is that HydroElectric disbanded late last year. However, their web site is still active and the CD is available.

For more information you can visit the HydroElectric web site at:

Reviewed by Jerry Kranitz