Every Friday, Dusted Magazine publishes a series of music-related lists compiled by our favorite artists. This week: Benni Hemm Hemm and Panther.
Listed: Benni Hemm Hemm + Panther
Benni Hemm Hemm
Like most Icelandic acts that receive stateside name-checks, Benni Hemm Hemm are vaguely connected to Sigur Ros (they recorded in SR's studio), but don't let that faint association give you the wrong idea. This Morr Music 17 piece (give or take) act was once described as being "Dexy's Midnight Runners meets Beirut." Melodramatic indie/folk rock is a more general and non-referential way to describe their music, though fans of the Sufjan Stevens-Arcade Fire axis will feel right at home with these tunes. Their new record Kajak comes out in two weeks.
1. Saibou Bungaku
This is a japanese duet we played a show with in Kyoto. There's an incredible stillness in their music that I haven´t heard before. One of them plays guitar with various methods and mixes together hillbilly country technique and improvising sounding Derek Bailey guitar. It´s great – and he sings too. The other one plays cello, and in a way does the same – mixes romantic sounding themes with experimental noises. They have their own very small record label called Eimozes Records.
2. Mark Noseby
Mark is a mysterious guitar genius. His identity is not known and his acoustic take on glimmer coated hits of the 80s is heartwarming and inspiring.
3. Elvis Presley - Sun Recordings
All the songs Elvis recorded in the Sun Studio are included on this record. I have to listen to it regularly. It has a magical quality to it.
4. I Adapt
That´s an Icelandic hardcore band. They´re my favorite live act. I´ve never seen anything like it.
5. Bob Dylan
I´ve listened obsessively to Bob Dylan and read about him like a maniac for the past year. I´ve been espcially impressed with the intensely brutal production on Highway 61 Revisited. The songs and the lyrics and the performances on that album is incredible. And he´s so direct. I´m going back to New York City, I do believe I´ve had enough…
That´s an Icelandic band that released their first record last year, The lab of love. It´s a wonderful mix of acoustic guitars, harmonicas, unexplained sounds and great lyrics.
Their latest album, In Cod We Trust, is insane and the lyrics are beautiful. One of them is about someone who is staring at the sky filled with aurora borealis (or the northern lights, translated straight from Icelandic). He hears the crackling in the sky and he thinks it´s so beautiful that he wets himself, freezing himself to the ground. It´s weird poetry, but in the context of the extremely merciless sounds it becomes almost sweet. It´s beautiful.
8. Gus Gus
Right now I´m on the autobahn, driving from Vienna to Leipzig and I´m listening to Forever, Gus Gus´ brand new album. It´s the perfect album for the autobahn.
9. A Hawk and a Hacksaw
I really love this band. We played with them at a festival just outside of Berlin last summer. Their show was completely amazing. They jumped off stage and performed in front of it, with the people in a circle around them.
This book by Paul Johnson portrays a grim picture of the thinkers of the world, the people that have made history. They all have one thing in common: they´re all completely craaazy and super egocentric. I don´t know what fascinates me about that, it´s just so incredibly weird and absurd.
Charlie Salas-Humar, formerly known as The Planet The, is now known as Panther, but if you've seen him play under any name you probably remember it. His spastic, frenetic guitar playing and catchy-yet-difficult tunes never fail to leave a mark, and in the past year Panther has infiltrated MTV2 (up for Video of the Year), Spin Magazine, and modern dance academia. While touring with both Ratatat and Gossip, he has managed to polarize audiences thoroughly between the immediate super-fans and super confused gawkers. His new record, Secret Lawns, is out now on Fryk Beat Records.
1. Alexander Spence - Oar
I consistently listen to this one. This has some of the most hauntingly beautiful psych songs i have ever heard
2. Fela Ransome Kuti - Volume 1
I love the fact that he had a 70 piece band. There is so much polyrhythmic interplay between the guitars and bongos, it almost gives me an anxiety attack
3. The Replacements - Let it Be
Super sloppy arrangements, but some of the best pop songs ever
4. Wipers - Is This Real?
I always wondered why this Portland Oregon band was not more popular than they were. They were one of those legendary punk bands who could really write songs
5. Ethiopiques 13
Another record I haven't stopped listening to since its American debut. The arrangements are mind-blowing.
6. Badfinger - Straight Up
I dont give a fuck what people say, this record is so pretty and even though they are always compared to the Beatles, kicks their asses any day.
7. Black Flag - My War
If you can get past the lyrics, this record is great
8. Patty Waters - College Tour
I wish that i had made this record
9. Arthur Russell - The World of Arthur Russell
Weird avant disco.
10. Sonny Sharrock - Black Woman
One of the deepest records ever
By Dusted Magazine