La Corde, Wet Illustrated, Tonstartssbandht

Jason Jackowiak

La Corde Record Cover, Wet Illustrated Record Cover, Tonstartssbandht Record Cover

We've got a mixed bag of new filth here on TSC this week, all of which
were generously sent to us by their respective bands and/or labels. So,
seeing as they sent us these copies for free, make sure that, if you
are interested in picking up what they're putting down, you search out
and purchase copies so they can take their act on the road, or buy more
weed, get a new bass rig or just more NES games.

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We don our darkest black turtlenecks (Archer,
anyone?) to herald the arrival of San Francisco's newest gaggle of
gloom-rockers, La Corde and their
Self-Titled EP, which has been self-released by
the band. The bi-lingual amongst you (not us, we can barely
write/speak English) will undoubtedly realize that their name is French
for 'the rope', as in the type you use for a bank heist, public hanging
or cub scout merit badge. On “Back in Salem”, minor key guitars and
trenchcoat-sporting synths give the deadpan vocals a bedrock to perch
upon as the whole thing transmutes and goes Wipers-shaped, while on the
flip, “Urban Burqua” uses a simple chord progressions and phrasing to
proves this lot could well have been released on Rough Trade circa '81
(had they been born yet, that is). These guys are definitely playing in
the same league as Hot Guts and Sex Church and we, for one, cannot wait
to see what they have up their sleeves for the next release. Get at
the band if you need one, because with only 300 hand-numbered copies in
existence, it's unlikely to be long for this world.

La Corde, “Back in Salem”

The amount of bands spilling out of S.F. is almost unparalleled
anywhere else on the planet, and as a contrast to our previous pick,
burgeoning duo Wet Illustrated sound sprung from the grand Bay Area
garage tradition on their debut outing, “Born Stoked b/w
“Flying” on Corvette City. Produced by Tim Cohen of Fresh & Only's fame, these two play a rather
straightforward brand of garage rock with just the slightest tinge of
psych bubbling beneath their 4/4 beats and tattered guitars. “Born
Stoked” is the most immediately satisfying, with a breezy riff and
carefree melodies wafting through its jangly veneer. B-Side “Flying” is
a bit more subdued, but still packs a punch with a grotty, mildly
twangy guitar lick and nicely reverbed vocals. For his part, Cohen
plays the production pretty straight, being careful not to heap too much
studio trickery atop the songs' skeletal structures. A pair of
sunshine-splattered tunes just in time for the official start of summer.
A press of 300 copies in nice glue-pocket sleeves, available from the
band as well as several local stores (aQuarius) and distros.

Wet Illustrated, “Born Stoked”

At the tail end of the parade this week we've got the confusingly
monikered Tonstartssbandht
and their Midnight Cobras 3-song EP on
Psychic Handshake.
Here we have the debut vinyl outing from this crew of Montreal/NYC
psych-destroyers who all have done time in a host of other free-rock
outfits, NADA and Totally Dad amongst them. “I'm a Welsh Souper” finds
them dwelling hip-deep in reverb and amp murk, the claustrophobic
psychedelic atmosphere making it feel as though the walls are closing in
on you, as spastic trash can (maybe literally) drumming and
FX-piledriven riffs send the whole thing caterwauling into another
dimension. Tonstartssbandht truly sound like a group that's barely
keeping it together, sonically-speaking, with a libidinous bottom end
doing its best to keep the whole show from coming unhinged as broken
guitars attempt to play Sabbath riffs only for them to end up sounding
like Lightning Bolt instead. “Electric Dragon Sword” was probably
recorded in a D&D lair with poor ventilation, posters of warlocks,
demons and the odd busty damsel vining off the walls – it's all
tantamount to getting fucked in the ass with a unicorn horn. This
shit's not going to get you laid, but you'll be the baddest motherfucker
at the hobby shop (well, maybe other than Fat Rob) for sure. Trade in
your old Magic the Gathering cards and get this slab tuite suite.

Tonstartssbandht, “Electric Dragon Sword”

Ok, we're sorry we've been out galavanting lately and tardy with the
updates. But we've been spending a bunch of time lately hovering in
front of the turntable, so you can expect us back to normal here soon. After all, we signed up for this gig to chew gum and kick ass, and we're
almost outta ass. See you at the next blowout party.

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