TRACK | Onyon – Window Shopper

5/5 golden merles

From the estranged estate of Leipzig, another entry in the perpetual golden era of post-punk in Germany. Our friends Onyon have embedded some driving beats in a cloudless convening of no wave tones, as elaborately as it needs to be under the circumstance, with instrumentation direct and effective, including only the muck immediately necessary to instigate life.

For an emergent phenomenon particularly the tape is notably consistent, arriving frustratingly fully formed. A cohesive and iridescent set of tunes, arising like a great reprieve amidst the hunting and gathering. It is not reaching in its representation of events, the quotidian enshrined in considered tribute, melded to a melody and reified with friends.

As the first tape and abiogenesis, it’s remarkably strong and to be treasured. The work has physical media out on the genuinely/reliably great law offices of U-Bac & Flennen in March of 2022 and now Trouble In Mind (Chicago) for US distribution. Cassettes $12/Digital $10.

TRACK | Mižerija – Izolacija

5/5 golden merles

Mižerija’s “Izolacija” is solid Croatian post-punk that responds with a sort of melodic revelry to the grand terror and trepidation of existence. Particularly, it is concerned with isolation, the literal/physical and myriad metaphorical forms. And the track acts as its own antidote, a celebration around form and a type of commiseration that brings the outsiders together.

The swords, ploughshares, and spears have all been hammered into hooks here. Another strong counter melody even reinforces perpetually from underneath amongst a great peripheral detailing of yelps and backing screams. This is filed under the Tom Waits quote about liking “beautiful melodies telling me terrible things.”

Speaking only from the rough google translated lyric and the perceived style and emotion, it reminds me of an excellent line from the newly elected vice president of Colombia, Francia Márquez, “We are going to move forward from resistance to power until dignity becomes something our country is accustomed to.”

The cost is arbitrary, pay what you want, as determined by your gut biome and an abiding sense of shame. Or, immortalized in wax physical form, there’s black and blue vinyl out on Doomtown Records.

TRACK | BRAK – Smashed Tape

5/5 golden merles

More lo-fi noise punk from Berlin which seems to clearly be making an era of it, “Smashed Tape” is another corroborating witness to that moment. With feedback as the fuse, frenzied and full of an apportioned insolence, it is the refreshing kind of well-tempered visceral filth that comes arranged in sequences and accompanied by drums.

The track offers a guilty plea as a celebration, the confessed breaking as deliverance. It is a modern post-punk, no-wave, noise rock assemblage, and has the texture of few ounces of name-brand bottled miasma. It falls under the category of those few precious things that as we become inured we also become enamored. We’ll be looking forward to hearing the rest of the EP when it surfaces. There’s a bonus track on the 7 euro tape, out from adagio830 August 13th.

TRACK | DADGAD – Control

5/5 golden merles

“Control” is pulsing and moderately remorseless post-egg-punk from Rome. There’s great calibration to the balanced assemblage of digi drums, weighted to within an inch of collapse, and that guitar/synth melody cloaking the percussive tremor.

There’s lots of good and uncanny foreboding to it despite the relaxed pacing and inflection. The vocals are crisp, burnt up nice, presiding from postern, behind the delicate horde amassed up front. The EP carries on like this, considered and detailed throughout, and it’s all a great relief, frankly.

There is a run of 47 tapes out from Detroit’s stellar Painters Tapes for $5 USD. You can still get it at the time of posting.

TRACK | Toe Ring – This is the End

5/5 golden merles

In 2021 Philadelphia-based Toe Ring posted two strong No Wave/ Post-Punk / Lo-Fi / EPs, Collapsed Mine // This is the End and II. Shimmering and sculpted into a small dense wonderous specters, there are four well arranged and illuminated noise pop tracks found here.

I condone this behavior. A few months later there was a tape of these combined sets put out on Spared Flesh (Also recently released C.A.T.S. 99 Ways To Fix a Broken Heart). Technically the tape was released 2022, January, so scratch a line off that rough draft of a year-end list.

But these landfillable artifacts are sold out, their forced scarcity a luxury you literally can no longer afford. How about purchasing the digital version, transferring it to your own tape deck, and printing out the cover instead? That would be a nice little project for you.