Wow, it’s so hot. I ran this morning early, but still had to cross the road to stay in the shade, because the sunny side was like an oven you could bake cookies in…I am still faintly brown on top, but a little runny in the middle (and this is making me hungry).
Okay, so last week was a HUGE week in terms of my writing actually seeing the light of day, with two interviews turning up at PopMatters, three reviews at Dusted and two at Venus. I know I’ll hit a dry spell soon and I should save stuff so I don’t have to do those ridiculous, “here’s what I listened to twice over the weekend, and liked but have no idea what to say about, so why not just check out the MP3” posts. But I can’t resist. Here are two new reviews from Venus.
The Harvey Girls I’ve Been Watching a Lot of Horror Movies Lately
The Harvey Girls (neither named Harvey and only one a girl) have been making eclectic electropop since the early ‘00s, splicing dreamy psychedelia to scratchy folk-hip-hop beats. The married couple, Melissa Rodenbeek and Hiram Lucke, has a penchant for sprightly melodies and shadowy subject matter. Resolutely odd—in a charming way—the pair might remind you of Beck on a soft, pastel-tinged bender or Mercury Rev after getting a cheap beat box for Christmas.
Peg Simone Secrets From the Storm
Peg Simone is one hell of a blues guitar player. Her fourth album, The Deeper You Get (self-released), was an eerie mesh of whispered secrets, spectral slides, and detuned dissonance. A stunning conflation of Delta heat and No Wave cool, it reminded you at once of Jimmy Page and Sonic Youth. It caught the ear of rebel heavyweights including songwriter Reid Paley, Pixies frontman Black Francis, and perhaps most importantly, ex-Swans drummer Jonathan Kane. Kane tapped Simone for guitar duties in his current project, the critically-acclaimed, blues-based experiment February, incorporating her hypnotic slides into his already monumental drones. All this history is important because Simone’s latest album, Secrets from the Storm, builds on it and the partnerships she’s developed since The Deeper You Get. Kane plays with her, most mesmerizingly in the heavy-rhythmed “Mirst & Avel,” and his wife, poet Holly Anderson, contributes hallucinatory lyrics to three of the songs, matching Simone’s unworldly guitar textures with fever dream narratives of death and intoxication.