Saturday, February 19, 2011


Listen to Speculator. If you don't recognize the samples, you are old. It's not for everyone, sure, but if you had a childhood, not so long ago, your ears will perk up. The haze will clear from your eyes and your ears will perk up and you are a cat and you will have that feeling that you have heard that somewhere before and you are right. From those old cartoons, from those old sit-coms and tv shows and radio programs and everything. His lifestyle tape is absolutely kickin'. It's only 7 bucks and he makes them himself juuust for you. If you can't understand what a Super Shredder is or reasonably infer, you are an oldie. Not a bad thing. This tape will make you young again.

Free download from his official Angelfire: 21st century!

I've heard James Ferraro described as "the King of Drone". It could be true. It could not be true. I'm no drone-expert I can't say. What I can say is that I listened to a 14 minute drone piece by this feller and it was pretty superb. What's more, I can say that his latest album, Night Dolls with Hairspray is even better. It's not even (too) drone-y. Chock full of sick 'n' twisted jams about high school and life and girls and babes and hunks and hucksters and nerds and jocks. It's the John Hughes album Ariel Pink never released because it was too weird for him. If James Ferraro was a Breakfast Club character, he'd be the one that dies.


- xoxo Alec
(sorry I suck so much and it took a whole month to post. wowee)

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Rafael Sarmento

Hey everyone, today I'll be talking a bit about the work of Rafael "Rafa" Sarmento. I am irked by his lack of a substantial online presence, but I think there is enough to at least talk about. The most recent information I have on Rafa is from 2008, so it may be a bit outdated, but as of then, he was a self-taught illustrator from Brazil, with plans to study abroad and acquire formal training and some experience. With that in mind (and even without) I think his work is quite impressive.
Something Rafa's been doing lately is "Tradigital" pieces; art created primarily by traditional means, (in this case, graphite, acrylic, and gauche) and finished with digital effects. I am under the impression that this is a technique that's on the rise, but I really like how he's used it; the digital effects augment the traditional foundation in a variably subtle way, without becoming the focus. I think it's good that the traditional elements remain dominant because at least in the case of Rafael's work, the parts created manually have a lot of life and sensitivity in them, which I think is harder to achieve digitally. Here is some more stuff so you can get a feel for his style:
I think it is apparent from the work available on his flickr that he would benefit from a formal education. I don't really think his technique is lacking, but I feel that his creative process would benefit from the experience of art school. His pieces are not exactly homogeneous, but there is a certain similarity between them beyond their shared style, so I feel like has been somewhat limited by the kinds of subjects and style he is familiar with.
I think the fragmentation motif is a lot of fun, but a little played out. Still, I really enjoy looking at Rafa's work.

I hope you've enjoyed and thank you for reading.


Wednesday, February 2, 2011


Just finished coming off a weeklong weekend and I guess I never found the time to post. Sorry about that.
Tonstartssbandht consists of two brothers, Andy and Edwin White, who used to live in Florida but now live up in Montreal. Tonstartssbandht is a little bit like you are at a party and in a room that is not the music room, chatting to some friends/chicks/w/e, and you hear this music coming over the speakers and it sounds kind of like there are two people in the music room fighting over what music is playing and they keep skipping back and forth between two cds and one of the cd's contains fuzzed out guitar and drum rock and roll and the other has some guys who are singing weird catchy pop songs but that cd is scratched so it is even stranger than you might imagine. Oh, and the speakers are torn so everything is extra fuzzed. Tonstartssbandht is those two cds.

Check 'em out: Dick Nights and An When

Big Troubles is a sublime shoegaze band from new york/new jersey (i think) and they're signed to one of my fave labels, Olde English Spelling Bee. Think of old MBV (pre-loveless, gee whiz) and they've got those really great, heartfelt, bittersweet vocals singing simple, why-didn't-think-of-that kind of melodies soaked in and surrounded by swirly fuzzed out guitars. Their album Worry came out last year and is one of my favorites, been blasting it pretty constantly.


that's all for now