Music/Program Director Brian Turner calls 'em as he sees 'em.

!!! !!! (GSL)
This outfit's monicker is pronounced "Chick-Chick-Chick", or any three syllables you choose to utter in unison and the imperitive nature of their name is well earned. Fans of the "To Hell With Poverty" groove of Gang of Four, minimal funk of the early 1980's 99 Records clan, agitated punk scrabble of the Pop Group, or people who just like to dance, dammit, will go for this disc in a big way.

NEW PORNOGRAPHERS Mass Romantic (Mint)
A pop-rock hit here at FMU that seems to be going over in a big way. This band has harmonies Brian Wilson would love, and crunchy riff hooks that Cheap Trick would kill for, but what makes the NP's different than the millions of other bands out there doing that is a great song craft and an excellent assortment of folks involved. Neko Case's couple contributions on vocals seem to be getting all the airplay, but there are equally great tunes on here, and the group is made up of members of Zumpano, Superconductor and Destroyer (whose last disc was an amazing injection intro indie rock's draggin' ass). Really flawless, much more excellent than they tend to indicate in the liner notes (which makes it seem like it was just a project recorded here n' there).

MICRANOTS Obelisk Movements (Subverse)
A definite potential for hiphop record of the year along with the Ropeladder 12 disc for me. The duo of MC I Self Divine Universal and DJ Kool Akiem Allah Universal toss a melodic and intelligent blend of forceful rhymes and laid back loops and jazzy beats amidst slinky basslines. Really appealing, I think, to just about everyone.

VARIOUS Osiedle Pielne Rymow Czyli Hip-Hop Jak Okiem Siegnac (Machina)
A disc full of bonafide Polish gangsta rap, from that country's answer to Mojo Magazine. No idea what's happening here, my mom's still translating the sleeve notes for us.

NECRO I Need Drugs (Psycho-Logical)
Needless to say, one should not be forwarding THIS disc to their mom. Necro is a New Yorker and associate of Ill Bill from Non-Phixion who's eclipsed just about everyone in sheer "holy cow" factor in terms of taking rap to its most sexist and violent heights. Seriously, Eminem looks like Leo Sayer compared to this twisted bastard. Is it a joke? Is he serious? He has some pretty imaginative rhymes ("appendix" & "Jimi Hendrix") and one of two playable songs on the radio is a cover of LL Cool J's "I Need Love" redesignated as "I Need Drugs" (the video of which stars his junkie uncle who shoots up throughout, for real). Hmm, maybe "KIDS" was pretty close to a documentary afterall if this guy is making the scene?

THE MONKS Let's Start a Beat (Varese Sarabande)
What you may know is that 60s-Beat-Punk GI's-in Germany the Monks have been already dear to the hearts of many FMU staffers and listeners through the years, but unless you were at Cavestomp last year or heard first hand, their live reunion some 30 years down the line was one of the most amazing shows of the year; described by former Forced Exposure co-editor Byron Coley as one of the top 5 shows he'd ever seen, as great as 76-era Ramones at CB's. Well, I wasn't at CB's, but I was at Cavestomp, and the Monks were damaged and brutal for a buncha seniors, and it's now out on this CD (with video enhancement added on too, you HAVE to hear "Shut Up"). All the distorted organ glory, primitive bashing, tribal insanity was completely unexpected (I was always a fan of the live 60s video that's been going around more than their actual LP, but this KILLS). Wow.

A project of industrial & ambient sound experimentalist John Sellekaers, this disc is an excellent document of trippy scapes littered with down-tempo beats, drifting blues slide and jews harp, all washing into a nice place indeed.

The official kickoff to the Screamers revival (whose "Hurt" is the B side of this excellent 7"). From Olympia WA comes this study in what 1980 was all about to the West Coast. Dark basslines, a fem vox wailing from hell, punky mimimalism, all around good stuff.

Other old/new Bins lists | WFMU Main Page