In the damaged frame of “Pub Punk” history and grimy outlines, there lays a newcomer from Australia that raises as many eyebrows as they do fists. Amyl and The Sniffers is not just another quick stain on the fabric of rock and roll, they are a new host that taps into the foundation and cuts their own line into even, while chaotic slices.
It is the attraction to the front woman, Amy Taylor who dresses in 70’s and 60’s Go Go style with large white porcelain boots and high waist jeans where she is able to stand high above the crowd through her appearance, but also on her vocal ability as well. This is not including Dec Martens on guitar, Bryce Wilson on percussion, and Gus Romer on the bass to support and stand with Taylor in a fierce, but still entertaining way. The D-I-Y way of creation and recording, to the storytelling elements of “spanking”, “Blowjobs,” “Balaclavas,” and even “Moles,” there is an awe behind Amyl and The Sniffers in a sort of overtaking wave of stunned vision. Their waves of sound come flowing in a loose-cannon, almost grindhouse fashion where the archetype of the band and of Big Attraction are breaths of fresh air in a so serious world.
That is not to say that Amyl and The Sniffers are not able to make their music sound highly enjoyable, because their energy covers most of their ability and creates an overlaying sense of passion behind their music. When the first moments of “I’m Not a Loser”, the band’s first look into the raw jump of rampant strings, the unbound percussion, and the vocal performance that grips the audience with the rough, but passionate lyrics. Taylor describes, “People look at me like I’m a hooker, but I just want to be a venue booker, I’m not a loser.” The Sniffers then join in behind Taylor to deliver, “She’s not a loser,” in these barbershop triplet of new age grace.
The love for a quick and inclusive ride is showcased on “Mole (Sniff Sniff)” where the forty-seven second fury of blitzing cymbal crashes and a guitar riff that balances on the shifting style of the Ramones. It is quick, aggressive, but still an entertaining jump through the fashionable hoops of Amyl and The Sniffers. Even as “Balaclava Lover Boogie” moves in as quickly as “Mole (Sniff Sniff)” moved out, there is still an appreciation for the instrumentalists on Big Attraction as they provide an immaculate substance and sense of transmission into the volatile energy. Taylor as a vocalist provides an additional depth to Amyl and The Sniffers, but it is Wilson, Romer, and Martens that reflect the backbone of the band.
This is evidently apparent throughout the course of Big Attraction, but is especially true on “Westgate” that has different segues and motions of ability that illustrate just how tight Amyl and The Sniffers are as a musical entity. Through the strength in sound and the continuing adaptability, there is a desire to want more with Big Attraction and to become more excited for what Amyl and The Sniffers have planned as a collective. For becoming a driving force in gutter punk rock, Amyl and The Sniffers have a bright future and while their sound might not be entirely mature, it is free and everlasting.
“Work It Out” (Beyoncé Cover) // Listen/Watch Here – Youtube
Sierra Sellers | Vocals
Allen Bell | Drums
Aidan Epstein | Bass
Caleb Lombardi | Keyboard
Roger Romero | Sax
Drew Bayura | Engineer
Hansel Romero | Mixing & Mastering
Sam Sauter | Video
If Da$H is not a name that sounds familiar with A$AP Mob, $UICIDEBOY$, Mac Miller, Earl Sweatshirt, Vince Staples, or the hundreds of other artists that Da$H has worked with or collaborated with in the past, then underground hip-hop is a new wide door for you.
Da$H came into frame with his earliest release, ChRon Burgundy where Da$H broke into the hip-hop scene and made quick work after releasing V.I.C.E.S which hosted an impressive line-up of features and solo tracks that would propel Da$H to become a popular name in magazines and online editorials. His brash but equally enthusiastic style is where his newest project, Loose Skrew falls. The rough and jagged sense of rhyming ability slices through these muddy percussive heavy beats that push Da$H and challenge him to bring his crooked smile and even more bent lines to focus.
Through Loose Skrew, Da$H brings a heightened sense of vision for his surroundings in his music and while he spends a lot of time in Los Angeles, he can still be seen in his home state of New Jersey where New York influences his booming style switch ups. Da$H is iconic in the way that his heavily tattooed outer frame becomes inter-visionary and gives Da$H a platform on the opening cut, “Abundance”. Behind the oriental strings that are graceful, Da$H soon takes a deep dive into murk-filled waters and arises reborn from the sense of violence and the almost repugnant setting. The production in hip-hop is so immaculately important but on Loose Skrew, there is a real sense of depravity as Da$H has the charisma to live without the overhyped production. While the music that gives Da$H his platform is incredibly weighted, there is not much there to weigh him down and allows him to soar highly through the conjunction.
It is a loving relationship between Da$H and the production where “As If You Ain’t Know” begins to rattle and shake the foundation. The zoning synths that then evolve into the spacious percussion as Da$H rattles off verses that describe, “Bitch was only getting borrowed, money drowning out my sorrows. Habits make me act erratic, I’m a trapper by the static, I’m addicted to the drama”. Da$H then moves to collect from his verses on “Means”, a sucker punch of electrifying thunder where 90’s hip-hop blasts into frame and becomes this sudden jump into the deep end of darkness.
“Living life like a pirate, took it, nah I ain’t buy it. Back then they ain’t mind us, been going hard since a minor. On point like a stylus, you ain’t a thug, you a stylist…It’s Mr. Top-Tier, still the nigga who the opps fear. Lying in your raps like you got squares, I would have robbed you. Twisted mind, I’m sipping Henny out the big bottle, full throttle when it’s fast lane living”. Beginning and making up the middle of verse two on the track “Means”, Da$H is in full control and does not show much remorse as he moves along like an animal through the track. Reckless, but still fashionable as he sports the “Dead Man Walking” tattoo on his chest in bold lettering to show that he is not afraid to bear all and get his hands in the dirt.
But Da$H is not all violence or take, at moments like “Komin’ Down”, Da$H sounds lost around the wall of sound that becomes claustrophobic behind the production. He describes this hell inside his mind with, “I’m chasing these bills, making thrills. And I’m popping these pills with no consequences, so you know these drugs have been my problem since”. Or on his personal track, “Unfamiliar”, Da$H describes, “All this shit I know been unfamiliar, stuck to the floor; ain’t even thinking ‘bout the ceiling bruh”.
Loose Skrew is a shadowy-lightened pathway that Da$H takes the listener through and paints quite vividly a picture of death, despair, abuse, violence, and personal hell. But, Da$H also makes an effort to show a side of humanity, and in the end that might just be what saves him from himself.
“Lou Reed is the real thing”, a 1972 radio advert read as Lou Reed was going to soon be propelled into international stardom from his David Bowie and Mick Ronson produced and arranged masterpiece, Transformer. From the cult favorites of New York’s seedy underbelly, Reed would touch new heights with his music and form a gracious, vivid, and illustrative look into the nightlife of Lou Reed’s strange, but prolific writing style.
New York was an industrial beast in the 1970’s with talent overflowing in every corner of the Five Boroughs. Reed was born in Brooklyn and reflected the raw animalistic bite that the city portrayed through his musical extension of his first mainstream success of Transformer. The album that opened with “Vicious”, a rock and cowbell heavy track that showed elements of distortion through the use of vibrating guitars and disrupting shifts. Reed brought in an added sense of the highs and lows of a cityscape, Transformer takes a similar approach and has incredibly energetic moments as “Vicious” carries on to become a tall-standing foundation for Reed to ride through the hard pounding percussion and rampaging guitars that whirl the track to its final end.
There are also the lows of Transformer that take place on “Perfect Day” where Reed becomes a virtuoso behind the gentle piano and vocals that provide the foreground of the production. While the slowing rising strings and percussion start to fade into frame, “Perfect Day” erupts into a glorious display of lovely arrangements of instrumentation that transports Reed into new territory after the frantic styling of “Vicious”.
Transformer takes on these different approaches and methods to creating multiple steps through the collection of emotional backgrounds and eventually comes full circle as Reed moves into “Hangin’ ‘Round”. Reed explains on the track’s chorus, “You keep hangin’ ‘round me, and I’m not so glad you found me. You’re still doing things that I gave up years ago…” over the colorful piano that chimes along in these quick bursts of notes. Lou Reed takes the challenge of morphing multiple styles into one single succession and through the example of how the sound changes so drastically, Reed provides context to the musical storyboard.
Even on the following “Walk On The Wild Side” where Reed describes the transgendered, drug abuse, and prostitution in a sense to describe the rare findings in New York’s eclectic streets. Reed explains, “Little Joe never once gave it away, everybody had to pay and pay. A hustle here and a hustle there, New York City is the place where they said, ‘Hey babe, take a walk on the wild side”. It is reflective of the background that Reed showcased through his lyrical style, but also in the musical background as well as he uses sullen, street sunken saxophones and an iconic bass line that has as much life as the hustling town that never sleeps.
Transformer is a progressive piece that uses a full range of instruments to compel the listener and to gravitate toward a new method of stylish, but substantial level of writing. It uses David Bowie’s legendary and adapting voice to provide the backing for Reed’s “Satellite of Love” that touches into the same territory of “Perfect Day” with a beautiful cascade of piano and gentle percussion that overshadows the true tenacity of Transformer. It is the beauty that loosens this grip and allows the listener to take a step back and appreciate Reed for his songwriting ability and the ability to string progression together into one overarching package.
Transformer is an illustrative sense of Lou Reed’s stream of musical style that touches into unknown bounds of beauty and jagged edges. And “In amidst of all the make believe-madness, the mock-depravity, and the pseudo-sexual anarchists, Lou Reed is the real thing,” and he has been since the New York established him all the way back in 1942.
Pittsburgh’s New Favorite // Listen Here – BandCamp
Featuring Bootsy Collins and Tyler, The Creator // Listen/Watch Here – Youtube
Jinsang is a pure soul, his artistry is a direct reflection of the California based hip-hop producer that shines brightly and becomes a glimmering monument in lo-fi sound. It is the playful, but jazz and vocal influenced production that propels Jinsang’s latest project, Confessions, into new territory.
Harmony and new landscapes go hand-in-hand with Jinsang as he takes samples and original style to illustrate these proclamations of sound. It is the beauty and grace of the gentle saxophones, or the simple, but detailed percussive sets that spring the movement. Especially on the introduction to Jinsang’s wonderland, “light” which features a subtle build before erupting into a full surrounding of sound. The worlds that Jinsang paints through his production are ones that rely heavily on the roots of stringed instruments and a new blend of drums that switch and shift through the sun-filled rays. Jinsang is an artist that showcases a serious talent to his beat making, there are the touches of polish where sections of the beat is cut out and then replaced with a sample or a completely different switch. Occurring specifically on “Flow On” where a break is placed inside the instrumental to then let in a simple “Yeah” or “What, what” that coincides within the soft, but passionate horns.
There are moments of sheer bliss on Confessions, and Jinsang displays his prowess to create and distribute a sense of understanding behind his tools. The ability to create and have a steady flow of memorable beats makes Confessions a project that is necessary to return to see every little detail that Jinsang provides. It feels like a new adventure each time and while the sound stays in a similar fashion, the actual feeling behind them changes frequently. They take these dives and rises through the sound, the falling action and the eventual glory that comes with the final notes that resonate over certain tracks make for an adventure that never needs an end. Without a rapper or lyricist over the instrumentals, Jinsang is set to have the spotlight completely on himself; this works out incredibly well for him.
Confessions showcases a large amount of ability from Jinsang and it is the short, but gripping “confusion” that has an almost psychedelic feel. As the percussion begins to flood into frame, along with the beauty of the dancing guitars; it becomes clear that Jinsang is a creative mastermind. The fourteen-track stroll is easy on the ears, and never overstays to become bearing on too long for an instrumental project. There are three tracks that teeters over into the three-minute mark, but feature switch-ups and transitions that fill that time effortlessly. A simple, but well-crafted mix of instrumentals featured on Confessions propel Jinsang into the most interesting side of an artist where his craft is approachable and shows a humanistic side. His sound is compelling and while entirely soft, there are moments where Jinsang can display raw emotion behind his sound.
The purity behind Jinsang is something that will always be attractive to the ears; showing a human face to the entirely instrumental sound. Confessions mixes everything there is to love about hip-hop instrumentation and displays a prowess when it comes to creating beauty from his fingers.