Tag Archives: Alternative

DIRTY BEACHES Badlands

7 Jun

DIRTY BEACHES; BANDLANDS REVIEW

Bandlands, as the album title implies, doesn’t disappoint in portraying a somewhat David Lynch-esque inspired landscape of nihilistic dystopia, with the blurred faces of Martin Sheen and Cissy Spacek never too for in the background, or indeed Denis Hopper inhaling his…well, you get the picture.

But to simply relate the music made by Alex Zhung Hai, AKA Dirty Beaches to a few snapshot recollections of various cinematic flicks would be wholly unjust, because it’s not merely the images stirred which draws the attention but the feelings that are awoken alongside them, and it is this which (although musically it’s nothing new but indeed quite familiar) attracts us again and again to this particular mode of escapism entertainment. 

Badlands would certainly not sit out-of-place as the solitary remaining vinyl of a post-apocalyptic wasteland, perpetually repeating itself in this vast backdrop where the only other remainder is the howling wind of eternal lament.   The tracks ‘True Blue’, ‘Lord knows best’, or even ‘Black nylon’ perhaps convey this most accurately.  The rather short album holds a slightly antique sound quality, giving an impression that it’s just been dug up from beneath the earth with Zhung Hai’s Orbison sounding voice gently nursing the music.

As with a lot of his earlier work, the issue with Dirty Beaches is the uncanny resemblance to Suicide which at times may be difficult to distinguish by the not too familiar listener.  His cover of ‘Horses’ could easily pass, or be mistaken for an Alan Vega et al endeavour, and also ‘Sweet 17, except we discover more of a Rock ‘a’ Billy surf approach tinged by ‘The Cramps.  On the whole it’s a thoroughly commendable record endorsing a largely under-appreciated genre which Zhung Hai taps with obvious sincerety and affection, but it’s unfortunately nothing new to wail about.

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Track of the Day: 19.01.11

19 Jan

Phoenix – ‘Lisztomania’

It’s as contagious as it is sublime. The opening track to Versaille alternative outfit Phoenix’s cracker ‘Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix’ is just what we need to shake those January cobwebs away once again. That’s right, it’s a ‘Fuck January’ day today. And boy does it feel good.

Ok, so if you are already a fan or one of those people that remember songs from adverts or trailers then you’re already bound to be all over this shit. This particular knee-slapper, toe-tapper has been doing the rounds for a while now. But it’s just so frickin’ GREAT!!!

We don’t care….if you’ve heard it too much…if you think it’s played out…if you’d rather listen to depressing stuff right now, “cos that’s the space I’m in…man”…if you simply don’t care for french rock…or if your an idiot. We love this. Get over it and, more importantly, get on it!

We love this so much and think it’s sooo upbeat it should be played after ALL news bulletins…just to remind everybody to lighten the fuck up.

And here’s Joan with the weather.