Week in Pop: Lord Tang v. Window Twins, Nocando, Quelle Chris, unhappybirthday

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Presenting you pop the globe over, from the main stagers to the new former-unknowns.

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Sjimon Gompers | October 5, 2012

An unhappybirthday to you. (via Crash Symbols), cover photo courtesy of Denderah Krikorian

An unhappybirthday to you. (via Crash Symbols), cover photo courtesy of Denderah Krikorian

All kinds of fun stuff happening with your pop heroes. First there is Andrew W.K. scheduled to send a million-volts via keyboard through magician David Blaine in a metal suit this Sunday, October 7 on Pier 54 in NYC, Rod Stewart's ho-hum confessions of getting bored of sex in his 20s, the Blur reunion shows no sign of slowing, and we learned that J. Mascis could have been the fourth member of Nirvana if he wanted to be. While we let all that digest, we begin with this week's pop survey in no particular order.

We begin your pop rundown with first the latest dispatches from our friends at cassette preservationist society and forward pop thinkers, Crash Symbols:

Introduce yourselves to the new German new-wave trio out of Wismar, unhappybirthday. The secret weapon here is to take the most infectious elements of effective pop song constructions and channel them through a self-treated glooms-day machine that spits out any digitizations as analogue fodder. What these three men provide is the new standard of tragic opera that presents Goethe-ian characters being denied by the objects of desire like “Molly”, the trials of “Pyramiden”, the brilliant pop intrusion of “Invasion” and the electronic hum of “Anorak”. Get your tape from Crash Symbols and preview now.

Lord Tang, aka Dominic Cramp has been messing with the Window Twins' new single “Thunder and Lightning” by providing you with not just one, but two remixes: the “Blessed Be Remix” and the “Crushed Cloud Remix”. Prepare yourself as the collaborative brainchild of Jon Bernson and Tim Cohen gets taken further into altered zones through Tang's usage of a loose dub foundation for his following sound carvings. We begin by dissecting “Blessed Be” which finds a structure like a phazed out analogue dub remix replete with horns and far off vocal samples that could be mistaken for muted horns.

Next is “Thunder and Lightning Lord Tang's Crushed Cloud Remix”, and like the cloud reference alludes it is the spaciest of the two new mixes. Again horns play a part along with phazers, while the sound of strings and re-sequenced sample stems create the feeling like discovering a clandestine rocket silo. Look for the new Window Twins album Wish October 16 on cassette from Crash Symbols and vinyl from Volar Records.

LA's Nocando shared with us his new mixtape cut, “AOB (All Over a Bitch) RMX” after a typhoon left him stranded in Japan spilling cautionary rhymes of the hidden costs of blind seduction. There is even a strange psychological exploration of the male psyche of why men do what they do on account of attempting to appease the unappeasable. From changing cell phone numbers, high blood pressure, Facebook account deletions to joining The Church of Scientology; Nocando shows you the real end result of the world's best intentions. Here is how Mr. McCall broke it down for us verse for verse:

“The second verse about my homie rob was written. The last was freestyled, and the first was written in my head. Yeah man, when it's all done we just have to get another girl or just be alone for a minute or be a player until you get sucked back into a relationship and the cycle repeats.”

Twerps' new single “Work it Out” is out from both Chapter Music and Underwater Peoples digital wise while a physical vinyl copy is rumored to drop October 23. With a view of the band's living room performance shot by Petersham with direction and editing from Pat Telfer, the band will fill you full of that guitar induced feeling of there is nothing in the world that you cannot achieve or do. You can indeed work it out. Thank you Twerps.

We have been counting the days until this release, but we present you the Thizzler.com, SMKA and C-4 Belts album Darkest Before Dawn (A Bay Area Compilation) to start your weekend off Bay Area styles.

In case you missed the memo, Eluvium's Matthew Cooper is Martin Eden and brings the world another synthetic symphony with “Short Cut”. Here drum machines rattle in time against each other while keyboards turn spindle wheels to create audio silk. Martin Eden's album Dedicated Function drops October 9 on Lefse.

Uptown XO, card carrying member of the Diamond District delivers the mixtape The Color Grey to your doorstep. Get ready for some big beat productionfrom AB, Kid Daytona, Tranquill, and other guests. Clap your hands and dive into some of the best slappers you are going to hear all weekend.

Late to the Jernalism party we present you with chill atmospheric traps and vocals that billow like thick smoke exhalations in slow motion like on the following cut, “Temptation”.

Jens Lekman's latest single, “Become Someone Else's” gets directed by Marcus Söderlund. I Know What Love Isn't is out now on Secretly Canadian.

Next up is the latest from Born Gold, who sonically create a sky-borne ride with “Sky Bicycle” off their forthcoming album Little Sleepwalker October 23 with pre-orders available now from their label, Audraglint.

Generationals okayed a listen to their new single “Sale City” full of their minimalist post-punk values that are threatened to be consumed by their excellence in keyboard selection. In short, Generationals are a synth-pop remixers dream. Their Lucky Numbers EP is out now.

Wooden Wand brings their new single “Southern Colorado Song” to the campground picnic table taken off the forthcoming album Blood Oaths Of The New Blues, out January 8 in the States and January 7 in Europe via Fire Records. Much can be said and close read about the songwriting, but things get mystic right around when James Jackson Toth sings, “Sometimes nowhere seems the only place to go,” as the backup female vocals flow like pale curtains fanning softly in the breeze like ghosts imagined by the Brontë sisters. You can pre-order the follow up to last year's Briarwood LP, as it promises more tales of modern day desperados on the dusty trail.

Fatima Al Qadiri shocks and awes with “Ghost Raid” crashing the virtual modern warfare mother boards with soundscapes of experiences echoing a chaotic early 90s childhood in Kuwait. Here she presents that tumult through the cinescopic mode of video game soundtracks from that aforementioned decade. The track takes it's title from the “The Ghost” F-117A Nighthawk stealth fighter and the upcoming EP's name is inspired by the Electronic Arts console game, Desert Strike: Return to the Gulf that Fatima played after the Operation Desert Storm aftermath. Further more, “Ghost Raid” even harkens back to those 90s CD ROM MechWarrior types of polygonal based PC games that made use of the soundcard of the time to show off both MIDI sequenced and WAV effects samples; games that are now not unlike the un-manned drone approach to current day quagmires. Fatima' Al Qadiri's Desert Strike EP comes out October 23 on Fade to Mind.

AXIS:SOVA dropped Mike Bingaman blue bathed visuas for their lo-tek echo-fuzzer “Raising Hell” off of their new album Weight Of A Color LP available now from Kill Shaman Records.

Janka Nabay & the Bubu Gang released the video for their song “Eh Mane Ah”, or 'Take This Advise' with conscious words and some support from Janka's friend Nana Ghana. Director Jon Casey captures the action at the Getty in LA that looks like way I always to party from now on whenever I visit J. Paul's poolside palatial estate and trust. Janka & friends' album En Yay Sah is out now from Luaka Bop.

Zig Zags released their 7″ this with with “Monster Wizard” with the B-side “Turbo Hit” from Tubesteak Tuesday Records. Having dropped the Mexican Summer single “Scavenger” and collaborated recently with Iggy Pop for Light in the Attic; jams like “Monster” channel the Osterberg-Iguana via the similar drones that Spaceman-Sonic Boom channelled via “Revolution” off of Playing With Fire.

J*DaVeY's Jack Davey introduces her solo project L0-F! with a listen to the first of 3 EPs, Side A. Taking a detour from rhythm and blues experimentalism Davey has been recording gritty guitar electrics in between her duties as a mom and taking on all elements of recording and production from home. What you hear is the beginning of a new exciting series of lo-tech recordings that present new grounds from the LA artist and should inspire everyone to invest in a Tascam 4-track and create a solo side of their own.

We also have Jack Davey's video for “Howl at the Moon” directed by Devin Joplin.

Move over modern and post-modern lovers, because Nashville's Majestico just released the Love Is God 7″ EP care of the good people at Jeffery Drag Records. This is the dude's night out single for bros to whine about existential issues of relationships and religion while sharing a comfort in the lonely lyrics of the Reed/Richman sort, harnessed through some of that good ol' DIY, Tennessee punk.

OFWGKTA duo Hodgy Beats and Left Brain are about to release their new Mellowhype album Numbers next week on Odd Future Records and today share the track “Grill” where the two spell out their shared moniker as if you don't already know by now.

London indie poppers Childhood dropped a listen to their first single “Blue Velvet”. The single drops on 7″ November 17 in limited quantities from House Anxiety Records sounding like a response to the States' fascination with the 90s, 80s decades of indie UKdream pop fashions.

Vallejo's Moe Green has been stirring things up from V-twon since his release of Rocky Maivia: Non-Title Match, the Lionheart EP, the Free Water EP and today we bring you the mixed up Lionheart II. Get ready for a round of appearances from Erk Tha Jerk, Tanya Morgan, DJ Toure, Fly Commons, Insightful and Moe Green shared this following quip on the second round from the Lionhearted one himself. 'The K.I.M' remix is one of my favorites, because it showcases maybe the three best verses you've heard so far this year, it's me and two of my talented friends, just giving you us in raw form. It's called Lionheart II because it is continuing from where I left off with my music, it's grabbing the baton from the last one to finish the race.” Download it here, and listen now.

We also have a new Girls Names single called “The New Life” straight off the streets of Belfast. The group has been in seclusion after expanding to a quartet and are offering this upcoming jangle-scuzz and electric bass slapping single on 7″ with a JD Twitch Optimo remix on the B-side from Slumberland Records / Tough Love, November 13.

Ohio's MHz Legacy brings “Spaceship” featuring our boy Danny Brown off of their upcoming self-titled album. On this tribute to founding member Camu Tao,, you hear him featured on the first verse and hook with this bit of surreality, “You don't know how to drive a spaceship, you don't know how to fly a car.” Following the rarities compilation Table Scraps, get ready for the first MHz Legacy disc in years coming October 30 from Man Bites Dogs Records with appearances from Blu, Danny Brown, Atmosphere's Slug, ILL BILL, Illmind, Marco Polo, Oh No, Slaine, Stu Bangas,with Harry Fraud joining RJD2 on production.

If you are like us you have been counting down the days, minutes and seconds up until October 23 when Black Moth Super Rainbow releases their new record Cobra Juicy from Rad Cult. To hold you over and create some excitement for furthered electrified adventures, we welcome you to take on their synthetic “Gangs in the Garden”.

We got your boy Quelle Chris, Detroit's rising MC/producer has been readying an upcoming album for 2013 on Mello Music Group slated for an early/mid 2013 release. Today's featured track “Rat Shit” is the B-side to his upcoming MMG 7″ series stirring up excitement since “Shotgun & Sleek Rifle” was praised by critics and featured collaborations from Danny Brown, Roc Marciano and others.

You heard them, e-mail accordingly. Rock out to their new single “Exile on Broadway” here.

Stu Bangas & Vanderslice dropped the R.M.L. directed video for “The Realest” featuring Ill BIll and Slaine dropping some grimey tales from the critically acclaimed album Diggaz With Attitude out now from Man Bites Dog Records.

I can thank Sic Alps' Mike Donovan for turning me on to Times New Viking some years back and have been grateful ever since. Their new single “Sleep-In” creates the excitement of discovering the joys of indie music via the medium of tapes and vinyl when you learned that cassettes and wax were more than baby boomer good ol' day nostalgia. This is the sound of independence now and you can here more from TNV's Over & Over EP coming October 15 on limited edition 12″ and digital from Wichita Recordings.

West coast alt-Americana indie janglers Jemez Mountain released their EP Hey-Mez and provided this following listen to help us cope with the days getting shorter as the chore lists grow longer. The group was gathered together from Sacared of Chaka's bassist Dameon Lee Waggoner, guitarist Ian Moore, former Shin Dave Hernandez, Little Cuts' Drew Church, and Chasers' Steven Barci, all brought together to give a southwest sound that somehow sounds younger than yesterday.

The new Moon Duo album Circles is out now on Sacred Bones, so we invite you to get your body harmony and wave trance together in holy matrimony with this freaky new yoga trend that soccer moms are sure to discover by early 2013. Catch the Duo tonight, October 5 at the Knitting Factory in NYC.

We have another guitar shining single from Mac DeMarco with “Ode to Viceroy” from the upcoming album 2 expected to arrive into our lives and hearts October 16 from the one and only Captured Tracks.

Also get a listen to Star Slinger's remix of Little Dragon's “Sunshine” certain to clear a cloud or two on your Friday.

Then get a listen to Star Slinger's production on the new Cities Aviv rap track “G A L L E R Y G U R L Z”. Think of it as Manchester meets Memphis and look for the Slinger December 5 Glasslands, Brooklyn.

Southern Shores new single “New Love” gets the remix connection from Beat Connection.The Shores Jamie Townsend and Ben Dalton get their keyboard precision tricked out in vintage house music attitude and attire, creating the sound of a great night out at a club night that specializes in like minded rhythms away from the permutations of anything with 'step' as a signifying descriptor. Southern Shores New World EP is out now on 12″ and digital from Cascine.

Keeping the beats continuing, catch this stream of Nate Brenner (tUnE-yArDs, Beep!), aka Naytronix's forthcoming Dirty Glow before it gets released next week, October 9 from Plug Research.

A.Chal is a coast to coast producer with an EP on the way called Ballroom Riots dropping November 6. Step into this trapped out groover of darkness with the Tyler Diamond and Chal directed video for “Roses on Your Silhouette”.

Ceremony is dropping this 'tour only' split 7″ with Titus Andronicus from Matador Records in late October. Get up and get wild with a listen to the amped up action with “Everything Burns” from the Bay Area group here.

Buke & Gase are prepping their album General Dome for release January 29 from Brassland and bring us another audio taste with “Hiccup” which simulates a songful variation of punctuated hiccups on the chorus.

Fresh from Bad Panda Records is Jauge with the warm spring ambient cut “Be Free” that sounds like it could perform excorcisms by audio.

Pussy Riot's Masha, Nadia and Katja are awaiting a sentence appeal this October 10 from the Moscow City Court and as a show of solidarity J.D. Samson and MEN released this track “Let Them Out or Let Me In” in global protest against the Russian punk rock trio's draconian incarceration. Imagine how you would have felt if G.W. locked up Le Tigre back in the day.

Rone lifts the clouds with the crackly self-made atmospheres of “Parade” from his upcoming album Tohu Bohu due November 5 from InFine. Catch the video directed by Filip Piskorzynski here.

Then after a light beer round with old man Minardi, he suggested a revisitation to the Ty Segall incident on WGN's morning show. Get ready to start chanting, “Chicago! Chicago! Chicago! Chicago!” while the local newscasters attempt to match Ty's shouts.

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