Thing of the Day 

Blue Sausage Infant, Sound Of The Mountain, Royal Bangs, The Tea Club and Dreaming In Stereo

April 18th 2011

Thing of the Day today is from BLUE SAUSAGE INFANT, with a whole lot of independent and self released albums and such worthy of a mention this fine sunny Monday morning… Albums from THE SOUND OF THE MOUNTAIN, ROYAL BANGS, THE TEA CLUB and DREAMING IN STEREO

Blue Sausage InfantBLUE SAUSAGE INFANT – Flight of The Solstice Queens (Zero Moon) - A forward moving, rapidly flowing cocktail of rather organic electronic space rock, earthy kraut groove and colourful synth artistry. Flight of The Solstice Queens comes augmented with strange cut-up detail, rather psychedelic sound-bites and tales of a man in a giant rabbit suit roaming around such places as Washington DC late at night. More sonic escapism and layered drone and a “reckless thirst for improvisation”.  Says here in this accompanying piece of paper that “BSI’s singular motive is to conjure trance stated by any means necessary”. We’re told Chester Hawkings has been working under the name Blue Sausage Infant since 1986 and that this is his “fourteenth handmade release” – well, this one doesn’t look or feel too handmade, coming Blue Sausage Infant rabbitas it does in plush looking regulation factory produced CD packaging with that crystal clear production and highly professional outlook, but we do get his drift and it does have that handmade spirit birthed of creative DIY attitude.  Flight of The Solstice Queens is sometimes smooth, sometimes headrushing, a rather busy rather feral flow of “freakout” music, not sure why anyone would want to hate salamanders, and just what is going through the minds operating all these circuit control, but hey, if you’re up for a bit of electronic kraut flavoured fizz and buzz then this is a rather fine flow of an album.  

Flight of The Solstice Queens is out now, more from  

And those also worthy of mention today:

Sound Of The MountainTHE SOUND OF THE MOUNTAIN – The Child Of Stereo In Mono (Stressed Sumo) – From Russellville, Arkansas, USA, come a self-styled “progressive instrumental post-rock trance” outfit - not sure about the trance element, this sounds pretty busy and not really that trance-like. Busy atmospheres, busy guitar instrumentals that, for most of the time, are heading along the same lines as so many post-rock instrumental bands.. The Sound of the Mountain aren’t really mathy, they do have those progressive atmospheres liked by people who enjoy those Japan, Porcupine Tree flavours of the 80’s and 90’s - never quite as obvious as that may lead you to think though and this is very much a post-rock guitar sound rather than a purely neo-prog one.   The Sound of the Mountain are a pleasant enough listen, with lean meaty instrumentals, a forceful rhythm section, nice enough tunes, nothing that radically different to the many instrumental guitar bands out there right now, more of those ‘expansive landscapes’ lending a ‘soundtrack-esque feel’, touch of shoegaze 80’s atmosphere, touch of detail in the layers, little repetitive at times, a little too much like most of the others to really excite, decent enough though, and well worth a passing ear.

Out in the UK on Stressed Sumo, today April 18th  

Royal BangsROYAL BANGS – Flux Outside (Glassnote) – Royal Bangs sound like a lot of very contemporary North American alt.rock things: their bright flow of constantly enjoyable energy, their tingly tunes, their (poly)rhythms… A more than healthy serving of Animal Collective flavourings, an alt.pop touch of Hella here and there, a lot of things that are currently coming out on indie alt.rock North America.  Royal Bangs do it all very very well - clever sound, lots going on in here, yet they never sound cluttered or forced though. A busy dense mixture that somehow has space to breathe, their refined sound and breezy songs flow in a smart (not too smart) way.   There’s no musical revolution here, nothing you haven’t heard quite a few times already, but they do do their thing very very well and Flux Outside is an intelligently enjoyable album, a sound full of tingling detail, full of depth. Clever songs that never need to show off or prove how smart they are, just enjoyably bright North American currentness – or

Flux Outside is released on May 16th in Europe

The Tea ClubTHE TEA CLUB – Rabbit (self-release) - Ambitiously melodic neo-prog epicness from the North American band who are really going for it this time. The Tea Club are from Philadelphia, New Jersey, they’re not afraid to nail their colours firmly to their mast and fly directly in to the face of fashion. Most of the time they’re in that melodic area that bands like Pendragon, Jadis, Pallas and such occupied in the days before they all got too fat, while some of the darker, more ethereal passages push towards early Rush territory in a rather positive manner. The Tea Club have ambitiously built of the foundations of 2008’s General Winter's Secret Museum. There’s moments of genuinely rewarding proper prog rock in here along with their neo-melodicness and the somewhat slick delivery. A lot of consideration gone in to those lyrics, some genuinely intelligent, emotional, passionate, and creative moments here, He Is Like a Spider opens like Genesis’ Ripples before it evolves in a way of its own, elsewhere they touch on the vocal delivery of Mars Volta or classic tune-making of Camel. Rabbit is excellent in terms of progressive melodicness and the clean-cut side of neo-prog conventions, Rabbit is also an album that isn’t afraid to adventure a little now and again, take a little risk or two, real progression if you know what I mean -

Rabbit is out now…

Dreaming In StereoDREAMING IN STEREO – 2 (Forward Motion) – Relaxed sunny Beatles-flavoured, easy on the ear, lush, full-bodied pop rock that sometimes touches on R.E.M or maybe the Electric Light Orchestra, on bits of later Beach Boys, touches of Todd Rundgren… All very mellow, relaxed, almost easy listening and all very pleasantly nice should you be in the mood.  Dreaming In Stereo are from Miami, they sound like they spend a lot of time in the easy street sunlight, sounds like life treats them well, nothing tough happening here… Little too mellow and laid back for these ears, kind of nice, they talk of progressive rock in their press releases, they’re probably the least experimental least progressive thing you’ll ever hear, kind of harmlessly nice Seventies flavoured American pop rock if you’re in that sunny day taking it easy kind of mood though -

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