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Dinosaur Jr Biography
There is nothing quite like a Dinosaur Jr. album. The best ones are always recognizable from the first notes. And even though J tries to trip us up by smearing “Don’t Pretend You Didn’t Know” with keyboards, it’s clear from the moment he starts his vocals that this is the one and only Dinosaur Jr., long reigning kings of Amherst, Massachusetts (and anywhere else they choose to hang their toques).I Bet on Sky is the third Dinosaur Jr. album since the original trio – J Mascis, Lou Barlow and Murph – reformed in 2005. And, crazily, it marks the band’s 10th studio album since their debut on Homestead Records in 1985. Back in the ‘80s, if anyone has suggested that these guys would be performing and recording at such a high level 27 years later, they would have been laughed out of the tree fort.The trio’s early shows were so full of sonic chaos, such a weird blend of aggression and catatonia that we all assumed they would flame out fast. But the joke was on us. The trio has taken everything they’ve learned from the various projects they tackled over the years, and poured it directly into their current mix. J’s guitar approaches some of its most unhinged playing here, but there’s a sense of instrumental control that matches the sweet murk of his vocals (not that he always remembers to exercise control on stage, but that’s another milieu). This is headbobbing riff-romance at the apex. Lou’s basswork shows a lot more melodicism now as well, although his two songs on I Bet on Sky retain the jagged rhythmic edge that has so often marked his work. And Murph…well, he still pounds the drums as hard and as strong as a pro wrestler, with deceptively simple structures that manage to interweave themselves perfectly with his bandmates’ melodic explosions.
Electric Flower Group Biography
Electric Flower Group had a most unlikely of beginnings. The first time they met, Josh Garza and Imaad Wasif were strangers in an elevator in London. Garza was carrying his kick drum and Wasif had his guitar in hand. They were at the BBC Studios to film performances on “Top of the Pops,” Garza with his band Secret Machines and Wasif, an established solo artist, was appearing as a guest musician with Yeah Yeah Yeahs. Eyeing one another suspiciously, the two maintained a curious silence, until the elevator came to a screeching halt, between floors. Wasif began frantically hitting all the buttons to get the metal box moving, but the lights just flickered and the elevator remained eerily still and suspended. While waiting for the emergency operator to dispatch a technician, the two eventually set about jamming, Wasif, to ease his claustrophobia and Garza, ever-cool and stoic, to deal with the boredom, and, in his own words, to “just get this freak to calm down.”Another three years passed before the two men randomly collided again, this time on a street corner in Los Angeles. They decided to head to Wasif’s rehearsal space. In a blast of inspiration from the cosmic weirdness of it all, they wrote “Circles,” the epic track off of their debut EP. With the pounding of blood, the rumbling of thunder, and the indelicate sensations delicately rendered; its finesse lies in the grafting on such libidinous roots of the more visceral stems of Electric Flower Group.