Dean Blunt – Black Metal

UK singer-songwriter and musical oddball Dean Blunt releases an album that’s difficult to put into words. While simple in composition and sloppy in execution, the album still manages to draw up some real feelings of isolation, melancholy, and frustration.

Ariel Pink – “Picture Me Gone”

Ariel Pink has just shared a fittingly chilling and tragic video for “Picture Me Gone,” taken from his upcoming “solo debut” pom pom. The track might just be Ariel’s most mature and moving track yet, expressing with commendable candor the anxiety and pressure that the prospect of starting a family makes him feel. The song’s also one of his most frightening, dwelling on the matters of our ultimately ephemeral existences and our fading senses of sentimentality in the modern world. But none of that’s anywhere near as disquieting as the latex Ariel mask that appears throughout the video…

pom pom is out November 18 via 4AD. If you’re still an Ariel Pink skeptic, he also did a powerful rendition of “Picture Me Gone” recently with the PS22 Chorus that you might wanna check out. Find it here:

Hartley C. White – “Let’s Play Politics”

Hey, everyone! I hope you’re in a good mood today, because I’m going to introduce you to someone very interesting: Hartley C. White. This guy is a multi-instrumentalist, martial artist, poet, and songwriter that currently resides in Queens. He records a self-coined style of music called “Who-pa-zoo-tic Music,” which seems to emphasize extremely broken rhythms. While it all seems entirely new on the surface, most music nerds will probably draw similarities between Hartley and notables names in “outsider music“: R. Stevie Moore, Wesley Willis, Tonetta, Ariel Pink.

On “Let’s Play Politics,” Hartley’s melodies are rudimentary, but there’s something strange and unique about them as well. The odd rhythmic character of the song makes every note pronounced and sticky. Despite this song’s unorthodoxy, it’s incredibly catchy. On the lyrical side of things, Hartley doesn’t say anything he doesn’t mean, making every word count in this clever satire of today’s political landscape.

This track is from a forthcoming compilation of songs dropping via OSR, and features music off Hartley’s first four albums, which were all released between 1984 and 2009. Pre-order here.

Tonetta – Red Wine

The Internet’s most NSFW outsider musician has a new album release out with the good people at Woozy Tribe. The title: Red Wine, which is aptly covered in a somewhat disturbing image of Tonetta himself adorn in a strangely fitting red dress. Like his past releases, Red Wine seems to be built out of songs from across the Tonetta catalog. There’s even a second version of the song “Drugs Drugs Drugs” on here.

A few oddly alluring ballads make it onto this release–specifically “Is There Any Meaning To Love?”–but I’m sure most ears will gravitate toward the throbbing, dance beat-backed tracks where Tonetta spills some of his filthiest lyrics. Enjoy!

Check a review for Tonetta’s 777 Vol. 1 below:

Ariel Pink and R. Stevie Moore- Klu Klux Glam

I just got turned onto this through our Facebook page, and I can’t believe I missed this. So, basically, this is a collaboration between two generations of self-recording enthusiasts. R. Stevie Moore has been releasing eccentric, homemade tracks and albums since the ’60s, and was a huge influence on the lo-fi pop, rock, and experimental music Ariel Pink would record decades later.

So, to see them both of them collaborating so publicly is a treat. They’re doing it in a big way, too. Parts of this album were released on SoundCloud last year, but it wasn’t made clear that the thirty tracks that were posted were only the tip of the iceberg–gorgeous cover, though.

This final Bandcamp version of the new collaboration holds sixty-one tracks, and varies greatly from straightforward rock tunes to some of the strangest musical ideas Moore or Pink has ever laid to tape. One track even seems to be a song from Pink’s Before Today reversed and topped with vocal snippets of this interview. Sure, there are some accessible moments here, but much of these tracks is basically oddballs being oddballs, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Every track is available for $29 on Bandcamp, but maybe hardcore fans should wait, because a double LP is rumored to be on the way. Viva la outsider music.

John Maus- We Must Become the Pitiless Censors of Ourselves

On his latest release, John Maus has brought a little more atmosphere into the fold when crafting the odd, bite-sized synth pop nuggets that fill his full-lengths. While tracks like “Believer” feel like grand bedroom rock opuses, other tracks fall by the wayside because of a lack of structure, memorability, or effort.

As a fan of R. Stevie Moore and Ariel Pink, I like this album and I see its appeals, and I think others will do the same.

If you’re digging on this LP, find it now on Upset the Rhythm.

Review: John Maus- We Must Become the Pitiless Censors of Ourselves

Video: John Maus- “Believer”