7 Inches Blog Review

Praise gets crazy. Link found here:

Marc from a band out of Chicago, Wishgift, clued me into their latest release on Contraphonic Records. I noticed a King Crimson reference in the promo material and that ancient reference was enough to push this to the top of the list last night...I had a little idea of where this would be headed, but I think given the fact that this is such an idiosyncratic genre, it's impossible to predict and that makes this one of those singles that can't help but be completely surprising.

That's exactly what this is...a complete mix of genres, obviously made by dudes who all must have a ridiculous knowledge of music, you don't get to this endpoint place by listening to anything that comes out of a radio, you have to seriously dig and be a student of everything to end up combining these pieces.

But then, Pretty Jenny, takes that ambidexterity and adds vocals with big time attitude that just sells the over the top massive grooves. It's like they are deliberately anti-repetitive melody, going for an obscene amount of changes in unharmonic tones.

If there wasn't such a thing as hardcore prog, there is now. Once they get chorus chanting chorus somewhere around the middle, it goes from audio equivalents of equations to a fist pumping hell ride.

You can hear the hours of work in a track like this, they have to be insanely precise. Damn if you can't play with a band for even a few months and you can't get the simplest chord changes right. Who is this collection of savant musicians who feel the need to challenge themselves with the most difficult material possible?...bastards.
There's a super grungy guitar effect magnifying the finger stretching they have to work on daily to pull this riff off. It's reminding me of those Mike Patton side projects that you almost have trouble relating to on a human level....how do you approach this material? It's like trying to dissect an entire side of Live at the blue note...transcribe this!

The B-Side, 'Cream Acres' settles into a thick distortion groove with a tom pattern and bassline for a few measures, you would think you'd be happy just getting all this together, but that easy melody just doesn't cut it. It takes some getting used to, this super dense playing. They've ignored the last few hundred years of song structure that dictates 'pleasurable' songs are usually created through repeating melodies (Robert Jourdain) the brain needs that repetition to get that moment of anticipation and then confirmation. When that doesn't happen...it becomes work. We both share in the suffering...and good, this isn't something to be taken so lightly played at a high school dance, while you make out in a car...this is something to blow minds at the possibility of something this thought out.

It approaches a kind of sci-fi blues at times, The John Spencer laser meltdown experience. There are thermin sounds and/or heavily cranked guitar effects that are so modulated they practically become synth sounds. There's a classic B-movie sensibility on top of the songsmanship; the attitude, the unusual sounds, a little campy, but all with a heavy, feel...maybe laser rob zombie?
It's the sort of thing that is a little disheartening to be honest. If guys like this are out there, it's pretty much game over for anyone not taking this as seriously as they are.

Check out their tracks and get the single from theirbandcamp page (please be the death of myspace already.) or Contraphonic Records:

Posted in Wishgift - Posted on Wed 19th January 2011 7.48AM No comments.

Wishgift Press Round-Up

The press gods smile down on Wishgift. Here's a Whitman's sampling:

"Mouth-shuttingly-good . . . both mesmerizing and somewhat repulsive."
-Flagpole Magazine

"The three-piece punk ensemble evokes a more angular Scared of Chaka or a greasy, proggy Hüsker Dü, with some strangely felicitous blues riffs thrown in for good measure."
-Columbia Free Times

"Brash in-your-face basement rock... "
-Gapers Block

"Proggy punk goodness."
-Timeout Chicago

"King Crimson-y angular riffs, transitional punk beats, slow spastic vocals, and enough enthusiasm to convince the unconvinced..."
-David Bernabo

Posted in Wishgift - Posted on Thu 16th December 2010 7.45PM No comments.

Son of a Gun shoots on...

The plaudits keep on coming for last year's Martin Bisi "Son of a Gun" ep. Check out the kind words from:



Now Toronto

Posted in Martin Bisi Press - Posted on Thu 2nd September 2010 6.58PM No comments.

All About Jazz review for Rosaly

More kudos for Frank Rosaly's "Milkwork" lp, this time courtesy of All About Jazz New York. As part of a larger review, write Seth Watter notes:

"Rosaly, a popular Chicago drummer, weighs in with nine open-form compositions that linger in the mind and beckon for repeated listens on this LP-only release. The ample use of electronic manipulation gives Milkwork an initial distancing effect, a distinct feeling of unfamiliarity. From the first rumbles of “Adolescents”, the mic’d drums sound smothered in t- shirts, strangely clipped. “Burnshine” filters a quiet pitter-patter through an echo device for the sensation of double-time often found in dub; on “NY Prices!” drones emerge like foghorns in the night air as traditional percussion disappears almost entirely. But listeners will be immediately drawn to the first “NY Prices”, an epic workout which builds rolling lines from the rims into a muscular, bombastic rhythm heavy on the kick drum and crashing cymbals while the snare marches along like ants on the warpath. The generous interludes of silence only further underscore Rosaly’s clever and strategic use of acoustic space."

Pick up the current issue of All About Jazz for more!

Posted in Roses for Rosaly - Posted on Mon 12th July 2010 9.19PM No comments.

Pittsburgh Loves Bisi

Martin Bisi and crew just ended a successful jaunt through the MidWest. The press folks in Pittsburgh were particularly kind.

Check out the interview with
Pittsburgh New Music Net

Posted in Martin Bisi Press - Posted on Wed 5th May 2010 8.50PM No comments.

Next Page


120 minutes
Baseball Pie
Chicago Politic
Contra Round-Up
Martin Bisi Press
Pillars & Tongues
Pronto Press
Rhythm Camp
Roses for Rosaly

7 Inches Blog Review
Wishgift Press Round-Up
Son of a Gun shoots on...
All About Jazz review for Rosaly
Pittsburgh Loves Bisi
Signal to Noise Review for MILKWORK
More love from BoingBoing.net for Pronto!
Consequence of Sound review
Broklyn Vegan loves Bisi
Glenn Kotche cites Milkwork as a Fave of the Year
Stash Dauber Review for Milkwork
Pronto's been BoingBoinged!
Talks with Martin, Part V
Talks with Martin, Episode IV
Talks with Martin, Episode III
Talks with Martin, Episode II
Talks With Martin, Episode 1
Peter Margasak writes up MILKWORK
Pronto in BLURT
Son of a Gun in Blurt