New Music

Listen: Mazurka Editions’ For Godsake Hold Your Tongue


Here’s an interesting compilation cassette from Newcastle-based tape label Mazurka Editions. This imprint has released a lot of worthy material since it was founded last year, including tapes from Teen Ax, Tailings, Mitchell Brennan, Muura and more. Strong work ethic, close attention to detail, increasingly diverse roster.

For Godsake Hold Your Tongue is a double cassette compilation affording four Australian noise artists a side each. Dotabata is Melbourne-based Carey Knight, who also runs the Cantankerous Records label. Oranj Punjabi is Fjorn Butler, who has previously released material on Altered States Tapes and Mazurka Editions, among others. Cock Safari has his own side and probably needs little introduction: he’s Michael of Grog Pappy and The Mermaids fame. Regarding Enak… I’m pretty sure it’s a member of Castings. That’s all the data I have.

I’m not gonna say too much about the actual music because I’ve only heard these samples, but I’ll track the tape down, have a listen, and then dutifully report back. The samples alone sound, let’s just say: promising. In the meantime, buy the tape here.

Features, Reviews

Scum Mecca #4

Contained here are ten reviews: nine tapes and one 7 inch singles. Scum Mecca is the name of the column, an irregular feature on Crawlspace’s schedule. This is the fourth. Cooper Bowman writes it.


Bearded Iris – Fuck. Tha Polise CS (Alberts Basement)

Bearded Iris is essentially the solo project of a single female who may or may not be called Ora Ni. The first few tracks are comprised predominantly of vocals, percussion and a few harsher, industrial-edged objects. Some of those that follow are a little less obtuse, but the sounds are decisively inept and the method of recording is a successful adoption of lo-fi austerity. ‘I Am Anne Marie’ is naively playful, even if the vocal snips are lewd, where ‘Ora Ni’ is a tribal no-wave dirge. There is a connection to Satanic Rockers/Encounter Group, with Lynton Denovan supplying drums on ‘Vagina Is Life’. The liners offer that the creator was “fucked up on laughing gas” during the tape’s composition. Three out of a potential five potatoes for unique absurdity.

Bleak – Broken & Pinned CS (Confirmation Tapes)

Bleak, the sometime solo guise of Power Waters, is in duo mode here with PWR handling guitar, tapes and electronics and MSL (Michael Liestins of Cock Safari, Mermaids, et al) contributing tapes and other assorted electronics. There is a distinctive murk, slowed down vocal snippets roll over pulsing synth tones. Hiss dominates. It largely gives the impression of machines left to their own work. Buckets of filthy mopping water close by, left dangerously near the frayed wires coming out of the socket.


Cock Safe – Sstake CS (Magik Crowbar)

A new release of oldish Cock Safari material, inexplicably presented under a different name. The A-side of Sstake is a tightly packed collage of samples (AM radio, motivational tape snatches, tweeting birds) and short pieces of recording (guitar plonking and predominantly harsh electronics). The B-side is almost all one long collision of classical radio and electronics. Next is a tape loop and didgeridoo ditty that is absolutely ridiculous followed with a final burst of seared electronics. One of the best from the Coq in quite a while, limited to 11 copies of course.


LA County Morgue – That Maggots SHD / Eat The Dead Bullock CS (Mazurka Editions)

LACM is the long-gestated solo project of Jarrod Skene, the man responsible for the art and funding of excellent Newcastle imprint, Mazurka Editions. The untitled A-side consists of what appears to be a looped guitar recording unevenly sped with encroaching feedback ducking in and out before becoming stripped to pure buzz and rhythmic crunch. The untitled B-side is much more sparse, all dusty loops that corrode as they revolve, possibly doing damage to the heads of your tape deck in the process of playback. This, the first release for LACM, is a modern benchmark of what is going on in the steel city and of the remarkably unique sounds being emitted there.


Muura –Tape CS (Organized Music From Thessaloniki) & Untitled CS (Mazurka Editions)

Two recent tapes from Matt Earle’s Muura guise. The first, Tape, is a release on a Greek imprint dating from late last year, a relative eternity in the scope of internet journalism. The first side presents a caustic wall of feedback with hidden melodies submerged underneath, or potentially the frequencies deceive the listener’s ears into believing they are there. Some tape screech makes itself clear as another component later on as the illusory swells continue. The other side involves damply rhythmic clanking, indecipherable utterances and swirls of what I can only describe as pure atmosphere.

The other release is an outstanding one on the consistently dependable Mazurka label from earlier this year. The A-side involves drummed clatter, distant vocals and guitar licks that lend a down by the bayou kinda twang to proceedings. The B-side is a dirge that is apparently a cover, however I’m assuming that this congealed blob of busted synth goop bears much resemblance to whatever influenced it, unless I’m missing something vital. It’s a leering industrial mess that incorporates sparse vocals, belted metal drum machine and even a few pretty key chords here and there. Bonza.


Soma Coma – Demo CS (Self-Released)

Soma Coma is a Melbourne hardcore band with ties to UV Race (in shared bass player, Moses) forming part of the recent punk wellspring that has also spouted other top class acts like Dribble, Gutter Gods, et al. Soma Coma take cues from Cleveland, Osaka and probably other locales that I admittedly know very little about. Vocals remind me of NY’s Crazy Spirit, but that’s just a measure of how rabidly manic they sound and is where the comparison abruptly ends. Basically this is a ripper demo and is recommended for anyone interested in music to throw bottles to. Things are looking brighter, former Pathetic Human and Australia’s best punk drummer, Bryce Sweatman, has now taken over can duties for Soma Coma. You’ve been warned.


TLAOTLON – Mad Idem! / Oudimma 7” (Vauve)

A new Tlaotlon recording is worthy cause to celebrate around Scum Mecca. Jeremy Coughbrough’s mutant electronic project is one of the brightest blips around Melbourne as I see it. ‘Mad Idem!’ is the usual cluttered maelstrom of several vying rhythms before the drop gives way to a purely single-minded, danceable vision. ‘Oudimma’ starts with accumulating midi keyboard before sirens and all sorts are added. Numerous potential directions are hinted at, but they disappear as quickly as they emerge.


Von Einem – Imagined Infractions CS (Mazurka Editions)

Von Einem is the most recent form under which Mark Groves channels his discontent at various facets of life, a role once filled by Absoluten Calfeutrail. Von Einem is much more industrial-edged, where AC was predominantly power electronics focused.  ‘Silence and Brush Fences’ starts things with brooding feedback and drum machine. The next, ‘Mummified Rather Than Dissolved’, is electric churn with unnerving, processed vocals, most likely detailing the Adelaide serial killer namesake of the project. ‘White Holden Sedan’ opens side B with another dark excavation of reverb-soaked drum machine depths. ‘Number One Beat’ is solid block of feedback where saturated noise and vocals pervade. A solid and varied release with a clear conceptual vision.


Various Artists – Rebel Sorts compilation CS (Bunyip Trax, available from World Food Books)

A new, excellently titled compilation featuring several of the forms that Christopher LG Hill materialises as, in addition to Joshua Petherick’s closely affiliated Mouving project. The Moffarfarrah track is the usual kind of vocal nonsense that can be expected, wherein Hill produces utterances that sound partly like a Sesame Street character over distortions also created by his mouth. This piece is harsher and more maximal than he usually comes across. Some electronic-sounding oscillations towards the end possibly signal a departure from purely vocal means of production.  A new alias, Urchyn, appearing here as (Asujoh (Urchyn) Sunag), is greyer than the bleakened Black Noise that appears on the Hatered Of Purity cassette. The Mouving jam is an excellent slice of cosmically processed cheap synth tones with a repetitive feedback loop running in tandem.  Petherick and Hill’s tape collage duo VDO contribute a ‘Truency Mix’ for the duration of the compilation’s B-side. This entails an initially abstract patchwork of ringing phones, rain and minimal synth samples that evoke a gritty cop drama. Chopped n’ screwed vox, synth melody loops and cartoon sound effects follow, but surprisingly the darkness remains. Some heavily blown out club rap rounds out the mix eclectically enough.

New Music

Listen: Teen Ax – New Body

teenax1Another track from ‘putrid-wave’ purveyors Teen Ax, a Sydney-based noise group with an attractively fetid pop sensibility. This is from a cassette which is apparently “coming soon”, and follows a 2012 Mazurka Editions tape released for public safety reasons in an edition of 30. This track isn’t as catchy as ‘Strictly Business’, but it conjures a similarly debased atmosphere: a windowless apartment above an outer-suburban Pizza Haven, green peeling wallpaper, the glow of a television screen at 3am. Rust in the bathroom, gutted cockroaches in the ashtrays.

It’s for this reason that Teen Ax strikes me as among the better noise groups around at the moment. It doesn’t sound like a guy in a black shirt fiddling with pedals. These guys would probably have fun playing with xNoBBQx or, further afield, Mouthus or Wolf Eyes. Strange and ugly.

Photo: Patrick Mason

Features, Reviews

Scum Mecca #2

Contained here are seven reviews: six tapes and one 7 inch flexi-disc. Scum Mecca is the name of the column, an irregular feature on Crawlspace’s schedule. This is the second. Cooper Bowman writes it. This month the column covers Cock Safari, Teen Ax, Cured Pink, Matthew Phillip Hopkins, Hyperspace Vision, Tony Irving, Pleasure Bros. and Tailings. We’ve provided audio samples and images where possible, but most of the time it wasn’t possible. Sorry.

Cock Safari / Teen Ax – Split CS (Street Muscle)

This sounds like Teen Ax and Cock Safari playing each other’s hits. Cock Safe does so live at Black Wire, in what should’ve been a Cocks With Wings set. Due to unforeseen circumstances, the audience instead copped a short barrage of contacted mic cymbal fuckery through busted amplification from the sole, glaze-eyed Cock. Sounds kinda like Teen Ax’s The Danny Sessions Sessions release in its unbridled feedback and obnoxiousness. The Tweens sound closer to their cocky counterpart, due to radio interference prodding in and out of their harsh vibes. Look at how many times it says Cock in this review, if this doesn’t offend you then the lowest-possible-grade smut in which this tape comes surrounded probably will.

(Ed – the cover art shown above is saturated with white because it’s pretty rude. See the proper version here. Not safe for anywhere.)

Cured Pink – Dudi Bumi CS (Redundancy)

Dudi Bumi comprises Andrew McLennan’s recordings while in Indonesia on some sort of artist residency malarkey last year. McLennan has enlisted the more than capable services of several local noisemakers throughout, many of whom may be involved in the Yes/No Wave collective. The first ‘piece’ begins with excessively pounding drums, an electric current of a drone underneath and occasional heavily delayed / deranged vocals. Basically this is TG’s Discipline reprised in Indonesia. The sound reverberates around the Yes/No Klub in a riotous cacophony before it de-evolves into a mess of scrape n’ shout. Much of the rest of the tape is a collaged blend, divided between more abstract vocal movements and a good amount of industrial chart-toppers. The flip starts with a genuinely fuckin’ strange organ-driven ditty, mixed with vocal sounds of what sound like I imagine being consumed feels like. This rates with the Sabbatical release from a couple of years back as one of the most consistently interesting CP listens.

Matthew Phillip Hopkins – Small Entry s/sided flexi 7” (Horizon Pages)

Small Entry is the first audio release on Melbourne vanity printing press, Horizon Pages. In what is likely his first solo release since the dissolution of the Bad Tables / Lamp Puffer nom de plume from a few years back, Hopkins crafts an opaque web of atmospherics by way of (according to the cover) tapes, keyboards, voices and feedback. The lone track here is closer to the dark void created by Hopkins in new project Half High than anything done by NOTV. There are hints of the electronic arpeggiations of Four Door, but this is an entirely murkier beast altogether. The flexi comes packaged with a broadsheet poster of Hopkins’ art and ‘digitized responses’ by the guy who does the label, so it is more of an ‘item’ than a stand-alone release per se, but still hits the spot nicely.

Hyperspace Vision – Starfire CS (Magik Crowbar)

Obviously extending on from Fabio Umberto’s love of italo, under Hyperspace Vision he makes the kinda space-disco knowledge of which is usually reserved for Europeans with impeccable hygiene habits and high Discogs seller ratings. Both tracks here are simultaneously epic, cheesy and immediately addictive. The title-track begins with an ominous synth-tone before leading into a sweaty galactic mess, replete with a subtly vocoded-sounding refrain of its title. Impressively, Starfire sounds like it could have originated from a rooted paradox of Italy, the 1970’s and the deep reaches of zeta reticuli.

Tony Irving – Vox Cyclops 21/05/11 s/sided CS (Confirmation Tapes)

On Power Waters Records, uh, Confirmation Tapes comes a new live recording from the hallowed halls of Vox Cyclops, the much-missed Newcastle record store and halfway house. This is the first I’ve heard of the (apparently) much revered English-born / Queensland-based multi-instrumentalist. Heavy feedback, ecstatically loose drumming and occasional geet dirges congeal into a mess of freeish noise. If this is you’re kinda thing, then you will dig, if you don’t then you won’t.

Pleasure Bros – Pleasure Bros CS (Self-Released)

More z-grade filth from one of the tainted minds behind Teen Ax, Tony McKee. In the T n’ A tradition, Pleasure Bros is excessively abrasive and indecently packaged. I listened to this with one of my mates slightly toasted while there happened to be an earthquake going on around us. Said mate tried to convince me the reason that I was feeling weird was due to the coarse static being issued from his tape deck, but a phone call from my childhood pal seeing if I had survived confirmed that there was another, more likely reason. The earthquake was actually pissweak, this tape isn’t though. The Pleasure Bros nearly had me convinced that music could be physically displacing and psychologically manipulative. Too bad, Tony could have made a killing selling it to the CIA.

Tailings – Untitled CS (Mazurka Editions)

Tailings is a Newcastle duo comprised of Jason Campbell and Kerry Robinson. Preceding this, Tailings had released one cassette on Campbell’s Eternal Solitude imprint, exhibiting them in a more formative juncture than the fully evolved organism on show here. Previously skirting the edges of harsh noise, this untitled cassette instead finds them comfortably situated in a smokestack spewing industrial zone. It’s easy to fetishise the decrepit, post-industry weirdness of Newcastle, but the comparison couldn’t be more satisfyingly apt here.

New Music

Listen: Mitchell Brennan – Eminent Domain

Long term readers of Crawlspace will know that we schedule our daily posts for 6am every morning. On the dot. So we offer up this new Mitchell Brennan track – from a forthcoming Mazurka Editions cassette – in the hope that at least 10,000 of our Daily Inventory (ie, you) will hear it at that bright, hopeful hour of the day. Go grab a bowl of Weet-bix and put the kettle on, stare listlessly out the window, reflect on your dreams, wonder at your life, and listen to this.

Mitchell Brennan used to play in a band called Brassskulls, one of a legion of bleak noise groups to emerge from Newcastle in the last decade. Now he’s in Melbourne, and to make up for the fact that he now festers in the city that brought us Smith Journal, his music is a lot harsher than Brassskulls’ (from memory) much quieter, ominous melee. Anyway, hurry up and listen. It’s dreamy in its own pummeling way.

Edit: looks like Soundcloud doesn’t want to embed this, so just click through on the embed below.