Spring in Music: Records not to be missed

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The last few weeks brought two important musical releases. The first one comes from the prolific guitarist and pioneer of the NYC new-wave scene, Thurston Moore, a legend in his own right. The other one is the work of Mudhoney, the phenomenal progenitors of grunge fronted by Mark Arm.


Having announced hiatus of Sonic Youth in the late 2011 and since then acting mainly as a solo artist, a few months ago Moore started a new musical endeavour called Chelsea Light Moving. Besides the charismatic leader, the band comprises John Moloney, a Boston-based drummer best known as a member of a psychedelic group Sunburned Hand of the Man, guitarist Keith Wood of the same background and bassist Samara Lubelski. The quartet, whose name originates from the removal company established in the late 60s New York by the minimalist composer Philip Glass, entered the studio as soon as the project started taking shape, and already in the early March put their first, self-titled record out.

The results are brilliant, to say the least. The band weaves diverse artistic influences into their musical tapestry, creating a dense and utterly engaging sonic tale. From the start until the very end the album is a real feast for the ears, offering such treats as the swingy Sleeping Where I Fall, the drony, metal-inspired Alighted  and the climactic Burroughs, a piece dedicated to the iconic author of the counter-cultural novels Junkie and Naked Lunch. In short, the first Chelsea record is an absolute must in the collection of every self-respecting fan of the alternative American scene. It is worth mentioning too that Thurston&Co. are now preparing for the European summer tour. So, if the prospect of a refined sensual assault performed with musical instruments sends a delightful shiver down your spine, grab your tickets as soon as possible, as surely they won’t last long. Tour details available here.




vanishing point_mudhoney


The other newie worth of recognition is the ninth studio record by Mudhoney titled Vanishing Point. Released after a nearly 5-years-long break, the album marks the 25th anniversary of the band’s existence, as well as of the legendary record label Sub Pop to which Mudhoney have been signed for most part of their career. Although passage of time is the main theme of Mark Arm’s self-ironic lyrics, judging by the level of energy demonstrated on the album, the band members haven’t aged at all. The 10 new songs sound nearly as youthful and spirited as the old hits and a hint of lyrical self-consciousness only adds to their value. I Like it Small, What to Do with the Neutral, Chardonnay and I Don’t Remember You, to name just a few, are absolute gems of song-writing and the ultimate proof that healthy distance to their own work and position in the music industry is the key to Mudhoney’s longevity. More on the band’s battle with time and other demons can be read in the excellent interview by Eric Spitznagel from MTV Hive.



Mudhoney will be touring Europe from 21st of May to 10th of June (details here), so it seems that, at least in musical terms, this summer should not disappoint.

© Anna Bajor-Ciciliati, 2013. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Anna Bajor-Ciciliati with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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