• Main Attrakionz, 'Bossalinis & Fooliyones' (Young One)

    Main Attrakionz, 'Bossalinis & Fooliyones' (Young One)

    "If we could record every day, we would," the rapper Mondre M.A.N. told The Fader late last year. Since July 2011, he and his partner Squadda B have self-released 13 or so mixtapes through Bandcamp, both as solo artists and as the duo Main Attrakionz. They rap about the possibility of having fabulous, extroverted lives because it's part of their job description. But they would probably rather be holed up, high, and making more music. One song on their first so-called real album, Bossalinis & Fooliyones, is called "On Tour"; its opening line is about how great it feels to get home.As personalities, Squadda and Mondre are uniquely endearing: The latter is slightly more sheepish and introspective, the former more bombastic.

  • Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention, February 1968 / Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./WireImage

    Best Reissues of August 2012: Flatlanders, Frank Zappa, Blur, Dead C, and more

    Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention We’re Only In It for the Money (10) Zappa Records With nearly 100 albums under his belt (including about 30 green-lit by his family after his death), Frank Zappa is probably the most overexposed artist in modern history. His evangelists will tell you it’s because his genius was uncontainable. It wasn’t. We’re Only In It for the Money is proof. After letting it go out of print for several years, his estate has finally lifted their protective hands and let it back into the free market — a business-oriented irony Zappa himself hopefully would understand. Depending on your cultural vantage point, the 1968 album plays either like an innovative experiment in micro-compositional rock-based music or a series of dumb commercials — an ambiguity that crystallizes how weird late-1960s art was.


    English production duo The KLF accomplished a lot in their time, including inventing the kind of willfully dumb, massively popular stadium techno that basically turned into the Mortal Kombat theme — and then taking one million British pounds sterling of their profits and burning it on camera. The relevant album here, though, is 1990's Chill Out, an dreamy collage stitching together samples of preachers, salesmen, Elvis, and other sound-junk with gossamer synthesizers and the very occasional beat. History calls it "ambient house." History overcomplicates things. Really, It's post-sample meditation music — the sound of traveling without having to peel yourself off the couch. Back to the Centipedia glossary NEXT: Kode9


    Of the 106 artists listed in the liner notes for Panda Bear's Person Pitch, German-based electronic producer Dettinger is third. Like a lot of what Kompakt records has released over the past 15 years (particularly its Pop Ambient series), Dettinger's music walks like techno and talks like techno but couldn't really be called techno — it's too gentle and too indifferent to the dance floor. Imagine crickets and a light breeze over midtempo beats and you're partway there. If the breezy washed of Animal Collective have any real connection to techno, it's through guys like this. Back to the Centipedia glossary NEXT: Bo Diddley


    Excepter was one of the more unpredictable beasts of Brooklyn’s loose experimental music scene during the early and mid-2000s. Though never as friendly as Animal Collective, the aesthetic connection between the bands was clear: Like AC, Excepter strove to make squiggly, weird, caveman music that sounded like it was evolving out of its own muck before your ears. Their performances tended to be half-terrible, half-astonishing, and almost all improvised, but that was part of their gamble with greatness: Nobody cleared a room with as much style as they did. Avey Tare: We all kind of experienced some sort of musical progression together. Excepter was always music that was around for a while. Like the soundtrack to going out. Back to the Centipedia glossary NEXT: Eyes Without a Face

  • GAS

    Active from the middle of the '90s to the turn of the century, producer Wolfgang Voigt's Gas project was a blurry embrace between not-exactly-techno and not-exactly-ambient. Speaking in a heavy German accent at the Red Bull Music Academy in 2008, Voigt said that the aim of Gas was to combine "the idea of getting lost somewhere in the forest with no certain address...with the idea or the impression you might have when you go to dark techno clubs" — a blending of the organic and primitive with the man-made and futuristic that runs through almost everything Animal Collective has ever made, audio, visual or otherwise. Bonus: Voigt co-founded seminal minimal techno depot Kompakt, which put out one of of Panda's many singles leading up to Tomboy. Back to the Centipedia glossary NEXT: Grateful Dead


    Koray was from Turkey, a country where rock music didn't flourish until the mid-1960s, and even then was slow to get widespread acceptance — on a few occasions, Koray was even stabbed in the streets for his long hair. His music — including 1974's standout Elektronik Türküler — blended fuzzed-out American psychedelia with elements of Turkish folk and Arabesque, a Turkish take on Arabic music. In 2011, his singles and rarities were compiled by AnCo fave Sublime Frequencies, a label known for their fascinating compilations of out music from just about everywhere English isn't spoken. Back to the Centipedia glossary NEXT: Let the Right One In


    The 1973 debut of Spanish director Víctor Erice. Inside, a young girl in a small Spanish village circa 1940 goes to see a traveling film of Frankenstein, is convinced a sheep pen is the monster's home, and befriends a runaway soldier from the republican army. Later, she wanders the woods, eats a mushroom and has a vision. Her parents, like so many filmic parents, are distracted by their own sad problems. But the movie isn't a fantasy, it's a reminder of the ways in which fantasy gets tangled up in everyday life. Monsters, children, forests, mushrooms, the fragile walls separating unreal worlds from our very real feelings about them: Was this movie not actually made by Animal Collective? Avey Tare: It's a great Spanish movie. It has this dreamlike quality to it. It's super dark but really hits home in a way. Back to the Centipedia glossary NEXT: Karlheinz Stockhausen


    Like the Residents before them, '90s San Francisco art-rockers TFUL282 made claustrophobic, oddly shaped rock music that replaced psychedelia's optimism with a surrealistic sense of violence inherited from '80s post-punk. They're not averse to being friendly and fanciful (one standout is called "My Pal the Tortoise"), but even at their friendliest TFUL's music is backlit by serious unease. If you're looking for evidence of influence, revisit AC's video for "Who Could Win a Rabbit," where the tortoise beats the hare and then, in an unconventional show of bad sportsmanship, proceeds to slaughter it. Geologist: I think Stephen Malkmus or Mark Ibold from Pavement, one of those guys, was a big fan: brought them on tour, mentioned them in an interview. They were sort of, in high school, aside from Pavement, one of the bigger indie rock influences. They had a really dark sense of humor.


    In the holy trinity of Namechecked Minimalist Composers, Terry Riley has always played the west-coast hippie to Philip Glass' and Steve Reich's east-coast urbanites. Combining Indian raga with tape loops, transcendental drone and early electronics, Riley's music is precise and geometric, but always feels handmade — at one point he hooked a vacuum cleaner motor up to the bellows of an organ so the sound would never stop. All the pulsing synth grids in AC's music — especially on Merriweather Post Pavilion — can be traced back to Riley, especially 1967's A Rainbow in Curved Air. Back to the Centipedia glossary NEXT: Max Roach

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