audiObelisk Transmission 031

Posted in Podcasts on October 28th, 2013 by JJ Koczan

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There was a point during the making of this podcast when I stepped back for a second realized, “This is getting really heavy.” It kind of happened out of the blue, but it definitely happened, and though the thought occurred to me to maybe pull it back and get into some more rocking stuff in the second hour again, I decided instead to just run with it and have fun and go as all-out ridiculously heavy as I could think of. That’s when we get to Beast in the Field‘s 22-minute “Oncoming Avalanche.” I know I’ve had them in before, but if you’re going all out in 2013 releases, that’s where you’re gonna end up.

Plus, I figured there’s plenty of rocking stuff up front, starting with At Devil Dirt and the subsequent riff pushers in the first hour, and the whole thing rounds out with the psych-hypnosis of The Cosmic Dead, so though it’s far out by the conclusion, it does manage to come back from the ultra-weighted tones somewhat. Screw it. I was having a good time stringing together heavy songs. The bottom line of this whole thing is for it to be fun, and I was having fun, so there you go.

I hope you have fun with it too. Once again, we come in just under two hours with a slew of newer cuts and some stuff from earlier this year that maybe got missed along the way. Considering there’s so much pummel, it flows pretty well.

First Hour:
At Devil Dirt, “Don’t See You Around” from Plan B: Sin Revolucion No Hay Evolucion (2013)
Pigs, “Elo Kiddies” from Gaffe (2013)
Mutoid Man, “Scavengers” from Helium Head (2013)
Viper Fever, “Summer Time” from Super Heavy Garage EP (2013)
Sons of Huns, “I’m Your Dad” from Banishment Ritual (2013)
Blackout, “Seven” from We Are Here (2013)
Horisont, “Backstreet” from Time Warriors (2013)
Old Man Wizard, “If Only” from Unfavorable (2013)
Mother Susurrus, “Anagnorisis” from Maahaavaa (2013)
Coma Wall, “You are My Death” from Wood and Wire Split (2013)
Mollusk, “Hollowed” from Colony of Machines (2013)
Sea of Bones, “Failure of Light” from The Earth Wants us Dead (2013)

Second Hour:
Corrections House, “Dirt Poor and Mentally Ill” from Last City Zero (2013)
Rosetta, “Myo/The Miraculous” from The Anasthete (2013)
Beast in the Field, “Oncoming Avalanche” from The Sacred Above, the Sacred Below (2013)
The Cosmic Dead, “Djamba” from The Cosmic Dead/Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Split (2013)

Total running time: 1:59:29

Thank you for listening.

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Live Review: Totimoshi and Pigs in Brooklyn, NY, 08.20.11

Posted in Reviews on August 23rd, 2011 by JJ Koczan

A much-needed dinner with The Patient Mrs. meant getting to the Saint Vitus bar after both Fashion Week and Bezoar played, which left Pigs and Totimoshi still to come on the bill for my second night in Brooklyn. This time, I rolled into the place like an expert, my awkwardly large camera bag on my shoulder, and set up shop at the bar for a homebrew before Pigs went on.

My positive first impressions the night before were confirmed when the bartender, instead of pretending to have never seen me before after a moment of recognition (as is the custom in the city), asked me, “Weren’t you here last night?” I said I was and a pleasant conversation ensued. Imagine human interaction. Very cool.

When Pigs got going, I made my way past Totimoshi‘s merch — in my mind saying, “I don’t need to buy the record right now,” as if it wasn’t inevitable — through the curtain and into the back room to watch their set. The trio is made up of guitarist/vocalist Dave Curran (Unsane, Players Club), drummer Jim Paradise (Players Club) and bassist/vocalist Andrew Schneider (Slughog, also producer for The Brought Low and countless others in and around NYC and beyond); all three Brooklyn locals. The sound was probably what you’d expect if you ever heard Players Club, resting on the spectrum between that band’s riffier, somewhat melodic take and Unsane‘s flat-out noise aggression.

They’ve been around for a bit, but it was my first time seeing them (quite a weekend of firsts I had), and I was eager to do so. The occasional interplay between Curran and Schneider on vocals did a lot to offset the visceral screams from the former alone, and Paradise proved to be yet third in the line of excellent drummers I saw this weekend at Saint Vitus — I’d soon add Chris Fugitt from Totimoshi to complete the list — and though the changes in approach between the songs were subtle, I got a sense of them just from hearing the songs live once through, which makes me suspect the material comes across even more diverse on record. As all three members of Pigs (plus Unsane‘s Chris Spencer, who was also at the show) are behind Coextinction Recordings, the avenue for hearing recorded versions seems obvious.

Last time I saw Totimoshi was circa 2008 at the now-kaput basement Club Midway in Manhattan. Like Pearls and Brass the night before, they’re a band I’ve been a fan of for years on top of years who’ve been largely underappreciated by those outside a limited critical circle. Unlike Pearls and Brass, though, Totimoshi never stopped. I did wind up buying a copy of Avenger, the new album, before they went on, and regretted it not for one moment after their set got going, as it’s where most of what they played was taken from.

Set-wise, they went no further back than 2006’s Ladrón — “Viva Zapata” and “The Dance of Snakes” were highlights — and of the newer cuts, “Mainline” proved the most immediately recognizable. As a special surprise, they included a cover of the Hendrix classic “Are You Experienced?” that set the song’s original swagger against Totimoshi‘s desert-inflected tonality. Guitarist/vocalist Anthony “Tonymoshi” Aguilar (no one calls him that that I know of, but being a fan of portmanteau, I’m trying to start the trend) convincingly delivered both the lines and blissed out leads of that song and of Avenger closer “Waning Divine,” cutting the song somewhat short at the end, but still giving enough of an impression for the crowd to get a sense of what Mastodon‘s Brent Hinds contributes to the album.

Bassist Meg Castellanos and aforementioned drummer Fugitt both contributed vocals to “The Fool” — the latter through a headset microphone that made him look a little bit like a motivational speaker — which proved even catchier in person than on disc. The body of Castellanos‘ Rickenbacker was roughly the size of her own torso, but she wielded it expertly nonetheless, her tone melding with Aguilar‘s own and her stage presence complementing his sometimes frenetic or spastic energy with a kind of subdued confidence as the trio plowed through the instrumental “Calling all Curs.”

For his part, Fugitt looked like a consummate professional. The drumming gloves might have helped, but in watching him play (and as I say, I’d already had a dose of killer drumming to compare), it’s not that he lacked conviction, but that he looked like you could have put any style of music in front of him and he’d have been able to play it just as well. I don’t know his history in terms of projects he’s been involved in, but it wouldn’t surprise me at all if he’s done session work. His style was creative and his playing so solid that it seemed like he’d have no trouble sitting down with anyone’s song, know it front to back in five minutes and play it with the abandon of a kid in the garage who thinks no one’s around.

As the third in the three-piece with founders Aguilar and Castellanos, he was more than good company to keep. Totimoshi‘s set seemed short (they cut the title track from Ladrón from their written setlist), but was wholly satisfying anyway, and for the second night in a row, I felt happy to have made the trip into Brooklyn. I don’t know when I’ll get back to Saint Vitus — I was a little tempted to show up on Sunday, just for the hell of it — but whenever it is, I’ll be glad to be there.

A couple extra Totimoshi pics after the jump.

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