Inspired by American rock group Sonic Youth, Krautrock and psychedelia; Dunedin, New Zealand noise-rock trio The Dead C were at the fore front of post-rock and the modern day revival of space rock.
Formed in 1987, the group, guitarist/occasional vocals Michael Morley, bassist Bruce Russell and drummer Robbie Yeats, was an anomaly on the New Zealand music scene, which at the time was dominated by jangly collegiate pop of the Flying Nun label. Their original audience was mostly international, developed chiefly by word of mouth and spread by fanzine culture… no internet back then.
Their sound is a murky, hazy, loosely structured drone rock, enveloped in a thick crust of avowedly low-fidelity guitar noise, and often warped with tape manipulations or studio treatments.
Their music would ultimately influence a board range of groups, from the ambient post-rock of Flying Saucer Attack and Labradford to the neo-psychedelia of Bardo Pond to lo-fi indie-rockers like Pavement and Sebadoh.
“Trapdoor Fucking Exit“ combines the original cassette released by Precious Metal, the separate “Helen Said This” LP on Siltbreeze and the follow-up Siltbreeze CD containing both albums under the name of the original.
Formed in 1989 by guitar playing brothers Michael and John Gibbons; who had a long time interest in free form noise, Bardo Pond was the flagship band of Philly’s “Psychedelphia” space rock movement, which also included Aspera, Asteroid No. 4 and theAzusa Plane.
Explicitly drug-inspired, their titles were filled with obscure references to psychedelics, and favored lengthy sound explorations dominated by droning guitars, thick distortion, feedback, reverb, and washes of white noise. Although partly inspired by New Zealand’s The Dead C , the group also drew inspiration from New York’s avant-garde free jazz, no wave movement and downtown Knitting Factory scene.
Bardo Pond issued its first album, “Bufo Alvarius Amen 29:15“, in early 1995; its title was taken from the scientific name for the notorious hallucinogenic toad found in the western U.S.
The Dead C – “Trapdoor Fucking Exit” (Siltbreeze, 1995)
Playing Time: 1 hour 9 minutes 29 seconds
1. Heaven (6:40)
2. Hell Is Now Love (2:14)
3. Mighty (5:37)
4. Power (4:30)
5. Bury (3:16)
6. Bury (Refutatio Omnium Haeresium) (15:39)
7. Sky (2:51)
8. Bone (2:35)
9. Krossed (6:30)
10. Calling Slowly (2:49)
11. Helen Said This (10:57)
12. Power (acoustic) (2:17)
13. Bone (acoustic) (1:45)
14. Mighty (acoustic) (1:49)
Bardo Pond – “Bufo Alvarius, Amen 29:15″ (Drunken Fish, 1994)
Playing Time: 1 hour 12 minutes 41 seconds
1. Adhesive (4:34)
2. Back Porch (4:51)
3. On a Side Street (7:24)
4. Capillary River (6:23)
5. No Time to Waste (6:58)
6. Absence (8:37)
7. Vent (4:42)
8. Amen (29:12)