The Chiang Rai Alternative Hour #68 – Teeth Razor Sharp – 10th December 2020

The demons are attacking our integrity, the bogeyman is coming, teeth razor sharp.

This week there’s music from The Fall, Viletones, The Butthole Surfers, Frank Zappa, Psyche, Super Adventure Club, My Dad Is Dead, Dwarves, Toots and The Maytals, Moff Skellington, Red Forty, Descendents, Sun City Girls and Lucid Rivers.

Incidentals taken from the Church of the Sub Genius Hour of Slack.
Listen right here or Podbean, Stitcher, Apple, Amazon…..all those cool places I guess.

The Chiang Rai Alternative Hour #16 – 14th December 2019

Music from Ween, Magic Mushroom Band, No Babies, The Ebonettes, goat, Andy Partridge, Acanthus, Banned, Hebosagil, The Yellow Payges, Bad Brains, Daniel Striped Tiger, Martin Archer, Teenage Depression, Mudhoney and Donovan.

Gratitude Journal

I am so happy and grateful that I could do so many things yesterday and keep going even though I was so tired by the end of the evening. I kept a good attitude and wasn’t so anxious about things that I wanted to do compared with some things that I had to do.

Carsick Cars/Flavor Crystals – 19th April 2014

Cat #: 150TZM

On the flip side, Minneapolis psych-rock vets, Flavor Crystals, offer up Mirror in My Mind, a drone smeared, carefully considered, morotik ripper that mines the depths of exploratory shoegaze with aplomb, not unlike an auditory visage of one of Frederik van Eeden’s exercises in lucid dreaming. The band’s most recent full length release, a triple LP psych monster, coincidentally titled Three [Mpls. Ltd.], may well be one of the more criminally overlooked wax platters of the past couple years – self-engineered and produced by the band following a lengthy US tour in support of like-minded sonic sojourners, The Brian Jonestown Massacre, Three captures Flavor Crystals in a vulnerable, metacognitive state and the results are nothing short of staggering! 

Flavor Crystals are:
Josh Richardson
Nat Stensland
Vince Caro
Jon Menke

Special guests on this recording:
Ricky Maymi: drums, blender guitar
Stephen Lawrie: percussion, oscillations

Produced by Ricky Maymi
Recorded by Nat Stensland
Nov-Dec 2013 in Minneapolis
Mixed with Neil Weir at Old Blackberry Way
Mastered by Bruce Templeton

Copyright 2014 Flavor Crystals
ASCAP/Sterling Songs

Special thanks to Christian Fritz/mpls ltd, Nevin Domer/Genjing, Ricky and Stephen


Carsick Cars are:
Shouwang Zhang
Fan He
Heting Sun

Produced by Sonic Boom (Pete Kember) & Hamish Kilgour
Recorded by Matt Boynton
April 2013 in Vacation Island Recording Studio, NYC
Mixed by Ping Li at Busy Bee, Beijing
Mastered by Joe LaPorta at Sterling Sound

Special thanks to Nevin Domer and Ricky Maymi

Alpine Decline – Go Big Shadow City – 31st January 2014

Cat #: 156TZM

After 4 full albums in two years, Alpine Decline retreated back underground throughout 2013 to write and record their fifth full-length “Go Big Shadow City”, again with friend and co-conspirator Yang Haisong. Cataloguing experiences both lived and fictional ”Go Big Shadow City” is the sound of Beijing itself, as heard from the outside. Cigarette vapours caked onto countless km’s of 2” tape, street-level, ear-burning progress filtered through carcinogenic dust.

Alpine Decline – Night of the Long Knives – 10th October 2013

Cat #: 155TZM

One year after spiriting off to China, Alpine Decline return with their fourth album, “Night of the Long Knives”. Descending from the high altitude visions of their previous records, the duo walks us gassed out and head numb through chaos and time sickness, deep into the ruins of ancient alleyways and naked skyscrapers. This time under the expansive sonics of producer (and China punk godfather) Yang Haisong, “Night of the Long Knives” is Alpine Decline surfacing from the Beijing haze maze at the height of their powers, crafting songs with the ghost-memory quality of myths and guiding us deep into the cinematic and stereoscopic landscape of their world, real and apocryphal.

Somehow sounding both clearer and denser than their previous albums, “Night of the Long Knives” opens with “Day 213”, a broken transmission from the site of the band’s crash landing. Stepping away from the rubble, we again walk with the duo through a landscape that is equal parts fascination and horror (although never cynical, never sneering). This fourth album presents some of the bands most accessible, nearly pop moments, masterfully folded into experimentation and sonic exploration. From the deep hooks of “Drunk on Crystal Fire” to the zombie lurch of “Industrial/Domestic”, “Night of the Long Knives” is an album that proves, once again, Alpine Decline are making some of the most creative, exciting albums anywhere on the planet.

Alpine Decline – Visualizations – 9th October 2013

Cat #: 149TZM

In the Spring of 2010, their self-titled debut still cooling on the racks, Alpine Decline left the sun-stained Sierra Nevada to trek through China from the Eastern capital to the Himalaya peaks in Tibet. Returning to the studio – this time working with L.A. experimental artist M. Geddes Gengras (Robedoor, Pocahaunted, The Congos) – the duo poured all the captured spirits of their journey into “Visualizations”, a ten-track-trip that revels in their expanded visions.

Though clearly a rock album, the songs on “Visualizations” seem to emerge from a more fleshed out landscape, with the guitars and drums rising up from a mist of drones that are sometimes ghostly and sometimes the full-throated OM of the otherworld. The songwriting and melodic craftsmanship, with vocals ripped up and glued together on magnetic tape, is more fleshed out than their debut, their identity more firmly realized, from the heart-pounding “Enter the Bullet” and “CCTV” to the mournful dreams of “The Fever Subsides” and “Deeper into the Part”. “Visualizations” lets you travel with Alpine Decline through provinces of electronic waste and shadow-warped night markets, dropping you off at the final notes short of breath but exhilarated.

Alpine Decline – Disappearance – 8th October 2013

Cat #: 152TZM

Something is amiss in the world of Alpine Decline. Just months after releasing their sophomore album “Visualizations”, the band returned to M. Geddes Gengras’s Green Machines studio in East Los Angeles to record “消失/DISAPPEARANCE”. Whereas the previous album found the duo wandering through some ghost world without a map, on “消失/DISAPPEARANCE” they are in control, pulling you down by your ankles into their deep deep sleep. Opening track “The Anesthesiologist” twists radically from bone-crushing guitar and drums into a warped brain-burning seven minute dronescape. When it finally lets you get up, brush yourself off and look around, you are undeniably in uncharted territory.

Haunting melodies, vocals that flutter in the ripples of a gas leak, cryptic guitars, bleeding synthesizers, and hypnotic drumming combine into something both headphone-ready and made to make you move. This is rock music for the mythically inclined. “An Accident” and “Now You Believe in Vanishing” are radio singles for an FM that never existed, and the band fearlessly steer the ship into the polyrhythmic got-down-on-the-one bump of “The Other Side” and the strobed-out hypnosis of album closer “Frontier Religion”. By now, putting on an Alpine Decline album has become a kind of ritual passage, stepping into a space both instantly familiar and completely otherworldly, but when the tape reels stop spinning and the machines cool down, the band is nowhere to be found. Before the album hit the pressing plant, Alpine Decline themselves had disappeared, not to resurface again for almost a year in the rubble and chaos on the outskirts of Beijing. 

Alpine Decline – 7th October 2013

Cat #: 145TZM

From the opening strains of “Encounter”, the first track on Alpine Decline’s self-titled debut, the listener is guided across the chasm and into a narrative just beyond comprehension. With a more immediate and bracing sound than the albums to follow, “Alpine Decline” draws attention to the band’s ability to craft unique melodies while bloodying your nose with buzzing guitars and twenty-ton drums.

From their previous incarnations in various L.A. bands, the duo doesn’t so much rise up from the ashes, but rather smear the ashes on like war paint and go marauding into the night. From the spaghetti western kill guitar and church bells of “The Pilgrim Got Drunk” to the blissed escape of album closer “Stole Away”, Alpine Decline’s first foray is here and gone in seven tracks that lay the blueprint for the work to come.

Imported under license from Alpine Decline. We’re all in this together!