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Listed: Tyondai Braxton + Hair Police

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Dusted Features

Every Friday, Dusted Magazine publishes a series of music-related lists determined by our favorite artists. This week: Tyondai Braxton and Hair Police.

Listed: Tyondai Braxton + Hair Police

Tyondai Braxton

Connecticut native Tyondai Braxton has, for the past 9 years, been actively performing and composing, developing his own artistic vision inside a multitude of contexts from his roots in the Middletown, CT new music scene. His solo music consists of building “orchestrated loops” with voice, guitar and found objects in real time and manipulating them with guitar pedals, in essence creating a self-contained ensemble. Current groups/ recent projects include Battles featuring Ian Williams (Don Caballero/Storm and Stress), Jon Stanier (Helmet/Tomahawk) and Dave Konopka (Lynx). Braxton has received commissions from Yale University for a multimedia music/live-painting showcase as well as from Alan Good’s internationally known Goodances troop writing music to accompany his dance troop at St. Marks Theater in NYC. He has shared the stage with the likes of Thurston Moore, Jim O’Rourke, DJ Trio (Christian Marclay, DJ Olive, Toshio Kajiwara), Oval, Lightning Bolt, Les Savy Fav, and Ween. He has performed with numerous musicians/composers, including with Alan Sparhawk from Low as well as in Glenn Branca’s Hallucination City at the World Trade Center. Braxton currently resides in NYC. His latest album, a split with Brooklyn rockers Parts & Labor is called Rise Rise Rise and is out now on Narnack Records.

Hrr ssmm rrccrrdds i lk:

1. Music of Burkina Faso - This has been on constant rotation in the stereo these days. Very raw recording with makeshift percussion and inhumanly precise vocals.

2. Christian Marclay - Records - Everything Christian Marclay does is amazing. His visual art is just as stunning as his live performance and recordings. This record blew my mind when I first heard it. Compositions made from old records on 4 to 6 turntables in a very fresh way.

3. JAY-Z - Vol. 3 - Life and Times of S. Carter – No, seriously, you cannot mess with this man. "I spit that murder-murder-murderous every time a verbalist iller than Verbal Kint is or O-Dog in 'Menace'" Holy fuck.

4. Low - Trust (Kranky) - It's hard to top a catalogue that is as extensive as Low's but Trust is my favorite record that they've done. The songwriting has never been more solid and the production more than compliments their aesthetic. Terrifying.

5. Black Dice - Beaches and Canyons (DFA) - I really can relate to the music this band makes and Beaches and Canyons is still one of my favorite things to come out of NY in the recent years.

6. Stockhausen - Invisible Choir – To hear singers as trained and as well versed as this choir has doing some of the most alien not to mention difficult vocal pieces is awesome.

7. Carla Kihlstedt - Two Foot Yard - WOW........WOW. Carla, I....just.....WOW. I gotta start taking lessons again or something man, fuck.

8. Oval - Process/Commers (Thrill Jockey) - More than the fresh element of the sounds Popp has created, his actual compositions could be arranged for an orchestra and it would sound just as unique and amazing. He supercedes the novelty of just sounding cool and glitchy and has amazing compositional ideas.

9. Don Caballero - American Don (Touch and Go) – Don Caballero is one of the most important rock bands of this era. This record struck a chord with me especially, as Williams gets silly with the loopers.

10. Sonny Sharrock - Black Woman - You can feel the entire group lifting off the ground when they play. You can hear when they all start locking in and floating around.

11. Diamonda Galas - Wild Woman With Steak Knives - When I first heard this recording I just sat there in silence and didn't say a thing till it was over start to finish. Solo voice from one of the most vocally versatile people in the world. Scary as hell.

12. Stravinsky - Petrushka - You want to hate the fact that some has already said what you're trying to say and has already done it more effectively than you, more thoroughly articulate than you but you can't because you are to madly in love with the clarity of the ideas and conviction of which it is stated. I mean it's fucking Stravinsky, but still...

13. Radiohead - Ok Computer/Kid A (Capitol) - Everyone one knows why I love this band because you do too and everything I could state you already know.

14. Diving Bell - Diving Bell - There is no way you don't feel naked when you hear this. You feel absolutely naked. You feel like you're about to sneak out of your house while your family is sleeping at 3am to go start a totally new life for no reason at all.

Hair Police

Hair Police have been refining their unique brand of nasty, unearthly creep noise matched with psychotic, marathon pummel in the forgotten burg of Lexington, KY for two and a half years. Having slimmed down to a trio this past spring, Robert Beatty (electronics), Mike Connelly (guitar, tapes, vocals), and Trevor Tremaine (drums, electronics, vocals) continue to blaze through vicious, fiery jams, blurring distinctions among PE (Power Electronics and Phsyical Education), heavy psych, and black metal. Known for their brutal, endurance-testing live shows, Hair Police have toured in the past with Neon Hunk, Mammal, Monotract, and Burning Star Core. Their recorded works showcase a very different, disciplined approach. Currently available are the "Mortuary Servants" 7" (Gods of Tundra/Freedom From) and a split CD/LP with Detroit's brutal electro queen Viki (Load Records/Scratch N Sniff Entertainment). Coming soon will be a split 10" with Crystal Fantasy (Liquid Death/Hello Pussy Records). Hair Police have recently finished recording their second full-length, entitled Obedience Cuts. The future also holds releases on Hanson, Chondritic Sound, RRR, and a reissue of the Hosptial Productions cassette.

Robert Beatty's 3:
1. Caetano Veloso
- '71/Transa/Araca Azul - I can't mention one of these albums without the other two. Being exiled from Brazil really made Veloso drop all the cuter moments of his earlier Tropicalia albums and get serious (and sing in English more). These albums are not Tropicalia- this is psychedelic freakout folk rock at its best. Pure poetry set to music. Right on par with Arthur Lee and Neil Young at their peaks, but WAY more fucked up. These albums run the gamut from pure samba-folk-pop to 10-minute Krautrock percussion jams to insane vocal overdub chaos to completely scorched-earth guitar/drum freakouts. The lyrics and delivery when Caetano sings in English send chills down my spine every time I hear them. Best line: "Everybody knows that our cities were built to be destroyed". His autobiography is amazing too.

2. Khanate - This band is the definition of heavy. The darkest, slowest doooooom metal ever made with God/the Devil himself on "vokills". Feels like you've been drowning/weightless your whole life and your body will never hit the bottom/top.

3. Jerry Yester/Judy Henske - Farewell Albedaran - Stumbled upon this record floating around on the internet and been trying to find it on vinyl ever since. Amazing folk/country inflected pop with two amazing voices. Reminds me of Scott Walker or John Cale only with a girl singing most of the time. Psychedelic electronics help to push this one over the edge.

Mike Connelly's 3:
1. Morly Grey
- The Only Truth - The psych record I have always wanted. Flowing amazingly from heavy rockers to deep pysch swirl, this album is a total journey. The 17 minute title track is nothing short of perfect. This rules.

2. Prurient - Troubled Sleep - Dom has taken it to a new level. Forget watered down Whitehouse rips, THIS is the new power electronics for the Gnarly Times.

3. Burning Star Core - Brighter Summer Day - Spencer's deep violin drone matches intensity with Morbid Angel Altars of Madness, but this intensity soon washes into a total brain blanket. Complete with sick skull cover...immense.

Trevor Tremaine's 3:
1. Maxophone
- Maxophone - Every jam on this overlooked Italian Prog blasterpiece makes me feel like I did the first time I listened to "Bohemian Rhapsody" on headphones as a kid; totally overwhelmed, uplifted, chills-down-my-spine, given to fits of laughter. Maxophone make such precise, lush orchestral rock, with the obligatory weird stylistic shifts, classical instrumentation, goosebump-inducing melodies, odd rhythmic hooks, etc. Amazing record, just dubbed it for my car's tape deck.

2. Bardo Pond - On the Ellipse (ATP) - I saw the Pond play in Lexington over the summer, for the first time, and was simply enthralled. Jams this dense and soulful simply cannot be achieved by anything less than supernatural intervention. The most recent record is just as intense as the gig; like Wolf Eyes and other stoned masters, every song is simply a long, slow crescendo, climaxing in total sublime psychotic frenzy, and every time it works.

3. Neil Young - On the Beach (Reprise) - Loose, natural, soulful, genius. The songs are Neil's best batch. In fact, "See the Sky About to Rain" is the best song ever written. "Ambulance Blues," too. Fuck. This record truly 'takes you there.'

All band pick:
- Royal Paint with the Metallic Gardner from the United States Helped into an Open Field by Women and Children - To divide a top ten list evenly among the three of us, we had to find one record which we all agree fucking slammed. Mike suggested the Kites LP on Load, which has been on heavy rotation at the Compound recently (where a portion of the record was recorded). Over the winter, when Chris Kites was staying in our apartment for a week, we were discussing the uncommonly wide scope of bands such as Faust, the Boredoms, Throbbing Gristle, etc.; artists who saw "the bigger picture" and were unafraid (as well as able) to implement any number of eccentric aesthetic ideas without losing focus on the whole of a piece. That is exactly what this record exemplifies: Kites covers so much ground, from psychedelic electronic explorations to campfire folk, and en route, has created a total classic.

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