Discover more from White Crate
Be bewildered by the melodic, hypnotic trance of Bill Orcutt's techno punk "counting" trilogy
Plus acidic skate beats by Odd Nosdam, chill lake vibes by Almost Barely, Glenn Donaldson's unofficial OST to the Inner Richmond, and deadpan trap by DÆMON
Going to Outside Lands?
Enjoy the fog, stay safe :)
— White Crate
MELODIC HYPNOTIC TRANCE
Bill Orcutt is a mysterious artist—our previous review hailed him as an “experimental guitar wizard”—so suffice to say his performance at Thee Stork Club this past Sunday, which featured a performance of A Mechanical Joey, left me bewildered. The second album in his “counting” trilogy, the techno-punk piece was created with Orcutt’s own Cracked computer music software, and features Joey Ramone’s voice counting from 1 to 6, cut into pieces and infinitely arranged in a staggering sonic array. It’s a heady mix of the mathematical atonal dissonance of Steve Reich or Phillip Glass mixed with the technicolor electronic mayhem of Dan Deacon.
That performance led me to the latest installment of the “counting” series out on his label Fake Estates, The Anxiety of Symmetry, from this past May. Trading out the leather jacket for something more angelic, Anxiety takes the concept into more melodic territory with six samples of female voices singing the number of the corresponding note value in the first six pitches of a major scale. The effect leaves the listener in an hypnotic trance, weaving in and out of noise and into harmony. I hope there will be more in this series, because Orcutt always keeps us guessing.
— Elliot Engel
ACIDIC SKATE BEATS
One of my favorite local beatmakers and tone heads, Odd Nosdam (aka David P. Madson) recently dropped a remaster of one of his more beautiful records, the soundtrack for T.I.M.E. (aka This Is My Element), a skateboarding video from 2007. The music is dreamy, grimy, richly melodic, and psychedelic, like hanging at an East Bay skate park on acid in the late afternoon.
If you’re unfamiliar, Madson’s a co-founder of the legendary LA-based indie hip hop label Anticon and producer for cLOUDDEAD. He is seemingly tight with Boards of Canada, as his sound influenced Campfire Headphase and vice versa. BoC remixed both cLOUDDEAD’s “Dead Dogs Two” (one of my favorite songs of all time and a must-hear, completely unique love letter to Oakland) and Odd Nosdam’s gorgeous track “Sisters.” There is a clear musical kinship between these artists and I like to think they were hanging out in Alameda when Boards of Canada snapped the cover photo for Tomorrow’s Harvest.
— Mark Fleschler
CHILL LAKE VIBES
Glitchy twittery crickets give way to looped jazz piano, delicate sweeps of synths, and a marching beat on “untitled_8”, a short new instrumental track from SF producer Almost Barely. And if you missed it like we did: Check out their latest full-length album CANDY, which dropped in June. Wavy breaks, indie rock stylings, and even a little straight up pop punk, the album stretches beyond the bounds of your typical beat tape. There’s still plenty of summer left in the Bay, so spin these sugar sweet, feel-good jams for that next drive up to the river or chill times by the lake.
— Ronny Kerr
INNER RICHMOND OST
“This was intended as a soundtrack for a stroll around my neighborhood, the Inner Richmond of San Francisco, or just some background for whatever you feel like doing.” — Glenn Donaldson
Like that strange, variable mix of fog and sunshine that makes its home there, Inner Richmond is a new album from Glenn Donaldson’s project The Reds, Pinks & Purples that constantly wavers between optimism and melancholy. Made up of five instrumental tracks, it is not the first time Donaldson has dedicated music to this place: There’s also Mountain Lake Park, and in fact most of the group’s release artwork showcases the colorful, simple beauty of the neighborhood’s gardens and architecture. The 8-plus-minute long “Evening at Land’s End” works as a companion piece to the title track from last year’s Summer at Land’s End. It’s slow and seemingly simple but deep with feeling, perhaps like the network of trails at the city’s end, leading nowhere but to some peace.
— Ronny Kerr
DEADPAN TRAP FANTASY
“Woke up one day start rapping, it’s not that easy.”
A little over two years after The Game, Oakland rapper DÆMON rejoins Zurich producers Modulaw and Xzavier Stone (plus Brodinski and Jæce) for its sequel The Game II. Described as a “conversation with Detroit and Bay Area rap styles,” the new album shines a black light on DÆMON’s gritty, sometimes goofy bars always delivered ruthlessly deadpan. The production style is as bass-heavy and dance-inspired as the first album, possibly best exemplified by the track “Globetrotter,” which would work as well at the underground party as a deep headphone trip. Rich trap fantasy worth more than one listen.
— Ronny Kerr
Our top show recommendations for the coming week:
[fest] Outside Lands ft. La Doña, King Isis, No Vacation, Geographer, Sour Widows, Fake Fruit — August 11-13 at Golden Gate Park
[jazz] San Jose Jazz Summer Fest — August 11-13 in downtown San Jose
[rock] The First Church of the Sacred Silversexual — August 11-12 at the Great American Music Hall
[club] Equiss B2B Bored Lord, Tomu DJ, Ritchrd, Soba — August 11 at Underground SF
[experimental] Tugboyz (record release), Cel Genesis — August 11 at DM organizer
[club] Chulita Vinyl Club ft. DJ Gitana 415, DJ Mare.E.Fresh — August 12 at Public Works
[rock] Mammatus, Fantasy — August 12 at the Chapel
[rock] Patti Smith, Bob Mould — August 13 at Stern Grove
[rock] Peña, Cigarbox Man, Aaron Space and His Terrestrial Underlings — August 16 at Bottom of the Hill
[blues] Strange Cities, Fake Your Own Death — August 17 at Kilowatt
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