Body music

 Wax tablet
By PORTLAND PHOENIX MUSIC STAFF  |  August 30, 2013

waxtabs_otherbones_main
Other Bones
 

The big production electro-pop band Other Bones put out a sparkly live EP this week: Live at the State Theatre, a recording of part of their set at the “State of the State” show on July 12th. It sounds pristine, no small feat considering their particular stamp of retro-futurist complexity. “Centerfold” unfurls as a quasi-dubsteppy lurcher before singer Loretta Allen sends it soaring into the chorus. “In/Out/Over” is a skitteringly melodic R&B track, and on “Feels Like Home,” probably the danciest, the band vacillate between slinky guitar lines and stomping synth blasts before Allen plays out the rave-up chorus. Quite well recorded by Jim Begley and the State Theatre co., the 4-song EP by this dynamic and ambitious young band is not dismissible. It is also free; see theotherbones.bandcamp.com.

Fine examples of dark ambient drone electronics are hard to come by around here, so it’s with a wincing pleasure that we discovered Scrotal Tear’s new one this week, a lengthy, breath-bated trip through blackened recesses and remote sonic terrain. First order of business listening to Self-Castration Manual, Volume One is to get past the name: this is not thrash or metal, and it is rarely harsh. Some of these tracks are super cinematic, like the tortured anticipation driving “Approaching the Cabin,” or the near-serene glitchiness of “We Know Your Name Now.” Others, like “Misogynous Androgynous,” are borderline maddening, like listening to Godflesh with a very exaggerated noise gate. These tracks reportedly span the last 15 years, and one of their practitioners, Remy Brecht, recently turned these formulations into a live yoga soundtrack, performed at SPACE Gallery a few weeks ago. Unlike its namesake, the music of Scrotal Tear is actually appropriate for many life situations. Visit scrotaltear.bandcamp.com or remybrecht.bandcamp.com for more.

Isn’t it time you got Real Kind? We’re talking about the scruffy folk project of — well, we don’t know the name, but some lady songwriter with a real adventurous heart on her sleeve. On Hard Red Winter, a 10-song album released digitally last May, Real Kind shows herself to be a singer-songwriter with a true poet’s heart, writing songs that peer into the window of bold decisions and anxious intimacies. Several captivating waves of honesty and inspiration, medium-grade sentimentality, and few maudlin moments. Seek it at realkind.bandcamp.com.

  Topics: New England Music News , Other Bones
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