Listen, we all already knew that Lightning Bolt drummer Brian Chippendale was one crazy motherfucker, but he just keeps out-freaking himself with this Black Pus project. The music, which is mostly just Chippendale wailing away on larger-than-life drums, looped-to-death vocals and swarm-of-bees synths, is crazy enough all by itself. But now he has to go and add the kind of visual accompaniment that has me creeping around on all fours to find the gremlins that dosed my nightcap. Yes, I just watched this video five times in a row and I am now actually hallucinating. Either that or my socks really are full of ants. Nah, let’s assume I’m hallucinating.
Anyway, the video is for the chanty/ranty track “Hear No Evil” and you can watch it below. You can also read all about Brian’s unlikely trip to an avant-garde drumming workshop in the United Arab Emirates. Even without the peyote-punk videos, the man leads a pretty interesting life.
Bonus Pus nugget: Chippendale is taking his Black Pus show on the road in May. In case you missed ‘em the first time, you can read all the dates here.
When he’s not pummeling audiences into submission as the drummer for Lightning Bolt, Brian Chippendale is pummeling audiences into submission as the one-man wrecking crew called Black Pus. Black Pus mostly sounds like Lightning Bolt, except bassist Brian Gibson is replaced by various electronics and oscillators and other shit I don’t really claim to understand. It’s technology, people! Technology in the service of making enough noise to cause your brain to start leaking out your ears in a thick, gummy discharge.
The latest Black Pus record, All My Relations, is due out March 19th on Thrill Jockey Records and judging from lead track “1000 Years,” it’s going to be a fucking beast. It’s also apparently the first time Chippendale has recorded a full album in a regular ol’ recording studio with other dudes doing the producing and recording and whatnot. Before all you D.I.Y. punk purists start crying “sellout,” fire up “1000 Years” below and tell me it doesn’t sound like Chippendale beat that studio till it called him Daddy. (If you can’t see the Soundcloud player, click here.)
Later this spring, Chippendale’s taking his Black Pus show on the road. Here are the dates:
05-03 Boston, MA- Cambridge Elks Lounge
05-04 Buffalo, NY- Sound Lab
05-05 Cleveland, OH- Happy Dog
05-07 Chicago, IL- Empty Bottle
05-09 St.Paul, MN- Turf Club *
05-10 Omaha, NE- Slowdown
05-11 Denver, CO- Larimer Lounge
05-13 Salt Lake City, UT- Kilby Court
05-14 Boise, ID- Neurolux
05-15 Seattle, WA- Black Lodge ^
05-16 Portland, OR – Bunk Bar
05-18 San Francisco, CA- Hemlock Tavern
05-19 Oakland, CA- Lobot Gallery
05-20 Los Angeles, CA- The Smell #
05-22 San Diego, CA- Soda Bar
05-23 Tucson, AZ- Topaz Tundra
05-24 Albuquerque, NM- Small Engine
05-26 Austin, TX- Mohawk (Inside)
05-29 Atlanta, GA- The Earl
05-30 Raleigh, NC- Kings Barcade
05-31 Baltimore, MD- Golden West %
06-01 Philadelphia, PA- PhilaMOCA
06-02 Brooklyn, NY- Death By Audio
*Skoal Kodiak, Seawhores
#Foot Village, Street Buddy
To pre-order All My Relations, go to Thrill Jockey’s official website. First 100 get a Chippendale comic based on a conversation we literally heard 75 different times at South by Southwest a few years back. Click the link and you’ll see what I mean.
Monster noise duo Lightning Bolt kicked off their big U.S. tour, and to celebrate, they released a new track from their forthcoming EP, Oblivion Hunter (also the name of a forthcoming mixed drink—I’m still experimenting to get the right ratio of Jager to Everclear). It’s called “King Candy” and you can stream it below via Soundcloud. Turn it up to fuck-the-neighbors levels for maximum effect.
Lightning Bolt’s tour continues tonight in New Orleans, where they’re supposedly playing this place, and will find its way here to L.A. next week for the FYF Fest. Oblivion Hunter comes out Sept. 25th. Our calendars are marked.
Godammit. I may have to go party a bunch of fucking hipsters this September. Punk as fuck duo Lightning Bolt are playing the FYF Fest (formerly called the Fuck Yeah Festival, back when it was still cool) here in L.A. on Sept. 1st. Joining them on the bill will be Beirut, Yeasayer, Sleigh Bells and a bunch of other bands that will bring the skinny jeans crowd out in force. I hope they’re ready for Lightning Bolt drummer Brian Chippendale to melt those stupid white plastic sunglasses off their faces. (To be fair, FYF this year also features many badass bands like Refused, Hot Snakes, HEALTH and Fucked Up. But Beirut? Please beat me senseless with an accordion if I get within 100 yards of that shit.)
Everyone else in America will have the pleasure of seeing Lightning Bolt minus the $50 T-shirts and 90 degree heat of L.A. in September. (Seriously, it’s like our hottest month for some reason. While everyone else’s trees are turning ruddy colors, ours are literally bursting into flames.) Chippendale and extra-strength bassist Brian Gibson are touring their balls off for about a month. Here are the dates:
08/21 Washington DC Rock ‘n Roll Hotel
08/22 Richmond, VA Gallery 5
08/23 Raleigh, NC Kings Barcade
08/24 Atlanta, GA The Goat Farm
08/25 Birmingham, AL Bottletree
08/26 New Orleans, LA Big Top Three Ring Circus
08/27 Houston, TX Fitzgerald’s
08/28 Dallas, TX Sons of Hermann Hall
08/29 Austin, TX Emo’s East
08/30 Santa Fe, NM Sol Santa Fe *
08/31 Phoenix, AZ Trunk Space
09/01 Los Angeles, CA FYF Fest
09/03 Oakland, CA The New Parish
09/04 San Francisco, CA Rickshaw Stop
09/06 Portland, OR Hawthorne Theater / MFNW #
09/07 Vancouver, BC Fortune Sound Club
09/08 Seattle, WA Showbox at the Market %
09/10 Salt Lake City, UT Kilby Court
09/12 Denver, CO Rhinoceropolis
09/13 Omaha, NE Waiting Room
09/14 Grinnell, IA Grinnell College
09/15 Chicago, IL Empty Bottle
09/16 Detroit, MI Magic Stick
09/17 Pittsburgh, PA Lawrenceville Moose
09/18 Philadelphia, PA Union Transfer
09/19 Baltimore, MD Floristree
09/20 Brooklyn, NY 285 Kent
09/23 Boston, MA Paradise Rock Club
* = w/ Purity Ring
# = w/ Quasi, White Fang
% = w/ Fucked Up, Ceremony
Apparently they’ll also some new and old music coming soon, too: an EP of previously unreleased shit and a new digital-only album called Oblivion Hunter. Sweet title, right? I am so going to spend this weekend introducing myself at parties as, “Jake Manson, Oblivion Hunter.” Don’t say I didn’t warn you when I pass out later in your bathtub.
Let’s play this out with some live LB, shall we? I really wish I coulda been front row at one of these shows in, say, 1997. Now I’m old and fat and would probably get my ass kicked.
(Photo: J. Michelle Martin Coyne)
Well, it’s not quite as bizarre as a 24-hour song released inside an actual human skull, but it’ll have to do. The Flaming Lips are releasing a new album of collaborations on limited-edition colored vinyl on Record Store Day (April 21st) and the guest list reads like one of those blatantly bogus Coachella lineups. Among the artists lending their vocal and musical talents to The Flaming Lips and Heady Fwends: Chris Martin, Nick Cave, Yoko Ono, Erykah Badu, Bon Iver, Biz Markie, Neon Indian, Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, Jim James of My Morning Jacket, Prefuse 73, Tame Impala, Lightning Bolt, and Ke$ha. Yes, Ke$ha will appear on the same album as John Lennon’s widow and our favorite bass/drums noise-rock duo. We’ll give you a moment to bang your head on your keyboard and weep for humanity.
But wait, it gets
better worse: Wayne Coyne recently told Rolling Stone that he had so much fun working with the slutwave princess that he’s considering teaming up again on her next album. “She’s a lot of fun and crazy and open to ideas,” Coyne insisted, “and she’s creative. She’s all these things that you don’t know.”
Now, to be fair, we haven’t heard the Ke$ha/Lips/Biz Markie track “2012″ yet, so who knows? Maybe it will blow our minds. After all, we’re talking about a band that once recorded a pretty dope song about Spongebob Squarepants. So anything’s possible. But Ke$ha brings such a diverse array of suck to everything she touches, from Flo Rida hooks to Bob Dylan covers, that we are not optimistic.
As for the rest of Heady Fwends: Several tracks from it are widely available on the Interwebs, including a live version of the Neon Indian collab, “Is David Bowie Dying?”, and the Bon Iver track, “Ashes in the Air,” which is predictably the one that has the hipster blogs all atwitter. But this being Weirdest Band in the World, we must leave you with the Lightning Bolt tune, which bears the fantastic title “I’m Working at NASA on Acid” and comes with this nifty little video released last August. Bolt fans, stay with it until about the three-minute mark; things start to get interesting, trust us.
The Flaming Lips and Heady Fwends will only be available on Record Store Day (Saturday, April 21st) at select independent retailers. To find a participating store near you, visit the official RSD site. You also might want to call ahead, because not every store will be carrying it, and the ones that do have it might sell out in a hurry.
There’s also a really cool video on the Flaming Lips website showing how the multi-colored vinyl for Heady Fwends was pressed. As you can see, every single copy is unique. Wonder what these puppies will fetch on eBay in a few months?
Hi, kids. Jake here, finally delivering y’all a playlist with some balls. Also, some power tools, Tuvan throat singing and field recordings of surgical procedures. That’s how I roll.
ShareMyPlaylists is thwarting me and not recognizing half these tracks, so here’s a direct link to the full playlist on Spotify. You’ll get 20 whole tracks of skull-crushing, ear-diddling insanity:
1. Lightning Bolt, “Assassins”
2. Fantomas, “Page 28″
3. Deerhoof, “The Great Car Tomb”
4. The Locust, “Who Wants a Dose of the Clap?”
5. Nimrod, “Ripsnort”
6. Arrington de Dionyso, “Susu Naga”
7. The Residents, “Smelly Tongues”
8. Captain Beefheart, “Skeleton Makes Good”
9. White Mice, “Passsthefissst”
10. Kylie Minoise, “Corpse Sex Show Outrage!”
11. Genocide Organ, “Genocide”
12. Iwrestledabearonce, “Alaskan Flounder Basket”
13. Yip-Yip, “California Fart”
14. Justice Yeldham, “300104 Hamburg”
15. Einsturzende Neubauten, “Negativ Nein”
16. Cabaret Voltaire, “News From Nowhere”
17. Cattle Decapitation, “Gestation of Smegma”
18. Goatwhore, “Sacrament of Emptiness and Despair”
19. Otto Von Schirach, “Septic Sewer Soup”
20. Matmos, “L.A.S.I.K.”
Management not responsible for lost or damaged hearing. Happy listening!
(Photo by Sam Ashley)
If you ask me (and I know you probably didn’t but I’ll tell you anyway), the spirit of punk rock has always been about two things: 1.) keeping it simple and 2.) rocking the fuck out. By those standards, Lightning Bolt are punk as fuck.
Guitars? Who needs ‘em? Lightning Bolt get by with just a bass and a drum kit. (And it’s worth pointing out that they were doing this years before Death From Above 1979, who are awesome in their own way, but not as original, not as weird and definitely not punk as fuck.) Stage diving? Sorry, kids, there’s no stage.* Lightning Bolt prefer to set up right on the floor, with a bunch of Marshall amp stacks as their backdrop. The fans crowd around the band in a seething semi-circle that someone on YouTube aptly described as looking like “psycho-spermatozoa assaulting an epileptic ovule.”
So that’s the punk part. The weird part? That mostly comes courtesy of drummer/singer Brian Chippendale. Early on the band’s development, Chippendale solved the problem of how to be a singing drummer when you drum like you’re having a seizure in a pretty brilliant, makeshift way: He took the microphone out of a telephone receiver** and secured it to his face using a hood that looks sort of like a cross between a Mexican wrestling mask and something one of the guys from Slipknot would wear. Oh and did we mention he drums like he’s having a seizure? So yeah, watching Chippendale do his thing is pretty riveting stuff. The bassist, Brian Gibson, makes up for his more pedestrian stage presence mostly with volume. Those Marshall stacks aren’t just for show.
Lightning Bolt have made a handful of freaky music videos over the years, but the best way to experience their music is still live. (So we hear; we haven’t had the pleasure.) So here’s a clip of them rocking it live at a show in France in 2008. Vive le noise! Or something like that.
*Apparently, at some of their more recent shows, Lightning Bolt have finally started playing on stages. “Some of these shows have gotten too big and ridiculous, and that’s why we move to the stage,” Chippendale explained in an interview with The Stranger. “It’s just not fun or safe. Kids who complain when we play on the stage, I tell them sorry you missed it”—”it” being the “play on the floor” days of yore.
**Sorta like our hero, Bob Log III.