Brightblack Morning Light ... WTF?

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I don't get the hype, personally. The idea is interesting enough, but I hear only one song that qualifies as a real song. The rest plays like Cro-Magnon-style drone with electric piano. Whatever the case, K Sanneh's Kraftwerk thing from his review is pretty far off base.

Who knows? Maybe I need to fall off the marijuana wagon for further inspection.

O'Connor (OConnorScribe), Monday, 3 July 2006 13:11 (fifteen years ago) link

yeah, it's kind of okay. i can see it working better by the song than as an album, and parts of it cause my teeth to grind for no real reason.

is the sanneh review online?

GOD PUNCH TO HAWKWIND (yournullfame), Monday, 3 July 2006 13:35 (fifteen years ago) link

Oh come now, that album is totally killer. The harmony singing alone is worth your time, and I'm loving the superswampy Dr. John/ Nighttripper thing going on sonically.

Drew Daniel (Drew Daniel), Monday, 3 July 2006 13:52 (fifteen years ago) link

No doubt, Drew, the album has its merits -- I like the gospel song that appears four or five tracks in and some of the jamming with the harmonies and electric piano mixed in is enjoyable. But it's by no means canonical or groundbreaking -- guess we must be really starved for something INTERESTING nowadays.

And Gris Gris way way way way way way better than this thing

O'Connor (OConnorScribe), Monday, 3 July 2006 14:15 (fifteen years ago) link

I love it. It's a swampy, miasmic summer record. I wouldn't ask much more from it.

Brooker Buckingham (Brooker B), Monday, 3 July 2006 14:27 (fifteen years ago) link

it's fine, sorta puzzled as how it merits a "wtf" - just a record, dude.

hstencil (hstencil), Monday, 3 July 2006 14:30 (fifteen years ago) link

dude, even *i* like this

marc h. (marc h.), Monday, 3 July 2006 15:07 (fifteen years ago) link

it's a wtf? for me, in a good way. some of you might find it predictable but i don't get exposed to a great deal of music like this. the fact that it's so beautifully recorded is what got my attention initially.

jed_ (jed), Monday, 3 July 2006 15:09 (fifteen years ago) link

it's pretty nice. I don't see hype for it at all actually. haven't read vvery much about it, or heard much good things. I like it in bits and pieces. but on a whole, it's kinda snoozy

kevin barking (arghargh), Monday, 3 July 2006 15:11 (fifteen years ago) link

here's the NYT piece in question

it's by no means canonical or groundbreaking -- guess we must be really starved for something INTERESTING nowadays

I haven't heard anyone say it's groundbreaking, just a lot of "hey it's a nice record." I don't see any grand claims in the Sanneh piece either. He says they're "mesmerizing" and "quietly dazzling" ....

dmr (Renard), Monday, 3 July 2006 15:42 (fifteen years ago) link

The WTF? is just an expression commenting on the publicity. I guess the fact that the Times is publishing something on the band calling the record "quietly dazzling" is enough to peak my curiosity.

O'Connor (OConnorScribe), Monday, 3 July 2006 16:07 (fifteen years ago) link

yeah go figure, publicists actually get writers to write about stuff.

hstencil (hstencil), Monday, 3 July 2006 18:32 (fifteen years ago) link

it is beautifully recorded and i've listened to it more than a handful of times which is saying something i suppose. i'm just surprised that people (writers, at least) seem to have seized on this album out the field of recent similar releases - the vetiver is album is at least as good and i'd think more approachable, the feathers album is better.

i know that the feathers album has been around on vinyl for nearly a couple years already, but i'm suprised that the recent cd release didn't garner some of this attention. it's really strong.

pm (p-m), Monday, 3 July 2006 19:07 (fifteen years ago) link

i'm loving this to pieces.

i am not a nugget (stevie), Tuesday, 4 July 2006 09:23 (fifteen years ago) link

They are to Dusty Springfield what Low are to Simon and Garfunkle--the slow, minimalist, massively groovy, weirdly impersonal version.

Pete Scholtes (Pete Scholtes), Tuesday, 4 July 2006 14:36 (fifteen years ago) link

i absolutely adore this record. their last LP 'ala.cali.tucky' is also well worth checking out - more guitar than organ and sparser instrumentation in general, but just as good IMO.

rajeev (rajeev), Tuesday, 4 July 2006 15:58 (fifteen years ago) link

anyone know the title of the non-CD, LP only bonus track? Man I hate that shit.

The record's nice. SOUNDS great, for sure.

Jesus Hitler (Roger Fidelity), Saturday, 8 July 2006 22:28 (fifteen years ago) link

I'm still kinda surprised I haven't heard anything by them, given the sonic landscapes I regularly trawl. Soonish, I figure.

Ned Raggett (Ned), Saturday, 8 July 2006 22:31 (fifteen years ago) link

It's a nice record, a very consistent vibe throughout, better than average, great sound, good singing, maybe there's a big fuss over it, but for what it is-- a superb summer chill-out record-- it's fantastic.

mcd (mcd), Saturday, 8 July 2006 23:11 (fifteen years ago) link

I have to interview these guys in a couple weeks and i'm sort of afraid. dude is supposed to be weird.

max (maxreax), Sunday, 9 July 2006 02:38 (fifteen years ago) link

you know what this is reminding me of? sandy bull's e plurbius unum, that's what.

GOD PUNCH TO HAWKWIND (yournullfame), Saturday, 22 July 2006 07:55 (fifteen years ago) link

right now my favorite bit is when the horns come in on the last part of "Star Blanket River Child"

non-CD track is called "Miwok Shapes" ... nice instrumental but I wouldn't sweat it

dmr (Renard), Saturday, 22 July 2006 12:59 (fifteen years ago) link

is this what used to be Rainywood?

kyle (akmonday), Saturday, 22 July 2006 14:23 (fifteen years ago) link

x-post yeah the instrumentation on the album is great. i love ray-bob/rabinyah/rachel hughes's rhodes.

max (maxreax), Saturday, 22 July 2006 14:48 (fifteen years ago) link

why in the hell are these guys opening for Os Mutantes on monday? i'm gonna have to arrive a bit late

Mike Hawk (jaxon), Saturday, 22 July 2006 16:35 (fifteen years ago) link

Anyone see the little feature on them in Rolling Stone recently? Sort of turned me off to the whole 'thing', but their record is pleasing... Their website is also completely insane.

trees (treesessplode), Saturday, 22 July 2006 17:49 (fifteen years ago) link

jaxon, have you heard them? i think you might like it! it's pretty soulful esp with the rhodes.

jed_ (jed), Saturday, 22 July 2006 18:04 (fifteen years ago) link

i actually haven't heard them, but everything i read on them at AMG made it sound like it was gonna be beardo slowcore. they compared them to Low. your description makes them sound a bit better.

Mike Hawk (jaxon), Saturday, 22 July 2006 22:12 (fifteen years ago) link

ah well they are fairly similar to Low (who i find soulful too at times!) but check out this mp3 from the matador site.

jed_ (jed), Saturday, 22 July 2006 22:23 (fifteen years ago) link

My only problem at this point is that they don't write real songs, so that their hippie chant shtick gets old quick ... though there is some dynamic work on the record (a few of those harmony vocals are inspired).

O'Connor (OConnorScribe), Saturday, 22 July 2006 22:35 (fifteen years ago) link

My only problem at this point is that they don't write real songs


that post actually makes me want to see them now. i love hippy chant shit. that mp3 is actually pretty rad.

Mike Hawk (jaxon), Saturday, 22 July 2006 23:46 (fifteen years ago) link

still don't know why they're opening for Os Mutantes. SHOULDN'T WE HAVE BECK OR DAVID BYRNE OR TORTOISE? LIKE FUCK!

Mike Hawk (jaxon), Saturday, 22 July 2006 23:48 (fifteen years ago) link

bought this today after downloading it and playing it a lot. it comes with cardboard prismatic eyeglasses emblazoned with pot leaves.

breakfast pants (disco stu), Sunday, 23 July 2006 00:07 (fifteen years ago) link

the glasses are actually a fitting gimmick ... and those are always fun for a few minutes, right?

O'Connor (OConnorScribe), Sunday, 23 July 2006 01:20 (fifteen years ago) link

yeah...good to see a sense of humor when the musical content tends to be rather serious. at least that's how i'm going to read the glasses. there are definitely songs on this album (that mp3 being one of my faves) and i'm enthused about the production/spareness too. i guess you could take the glasses as a metaphor for the way the bluesy 1960s harmonizing is presented in a very 2006 way. i am no expert on bluesy 1960s harmonizing either but i am familiar with stuff like cream and that's the association i get however tangential it may be. there is also some pre-motorik motorik thing going on. what else is like this album anyway?

breakfast pants (disco stu), Sunday, 23 July 2006 02:19 (fifteen years ago) link

i guess the 1960s thing is also because this music is folk that feels somehow excited by electricity and that's how i interpret a lot of psychedelia.

breakfast pants (disco stu), Sunday, 23 July 2006 02:24 (fifteen years ago) link

it's pretty good music to fall asleep to
not sure if that's a compliment or not

kevin barking (arghargh), Sunday, 23 July 2006 03:18 (fifteen years ago) link

ARTHUR: #23 July 2006 MAG (ARTHUR 023) 0.01
On the cover: "Country Life" - Who are Brightback Morning Light and how did they make one of the most beautiful albums of our time? Daniel Chamberlin catches up with the nomadic quiet-souls under a full moon in Joshua Tree.

GOD PUNCH TO HAWKWIND (yournullfame), Sunday, 23 July 2006 03:49 (fifteen years ago) link

Whoever threw out Dusty Springfield above was spot on. Their ultra-hippie presentation is a little bit grating, but the record sounds like a Memphis session band got really stoned and hit "record." I love all the percussion used; chanting aside they are musically tight.

Sean Braud1s (Sean Braudis), Sunday, 23 July 2006 04:07 (fifteen years ago) link

anyone who wants to level the criticism that they only have one trick / one groove is not really wrong but it's a good enough groove that I am happy to indulge it for the length of 1 record

there is also some pre-motorik motorik thing going on.

I thought the same thing. for something that has the trappings of "here we are around the campfire making shit up" the drumming is really locked-on.

xpost - yep, exactly

dmr (Renard), Sunday, 23 July 2006 04:14 (fifteen years ago) link

when i talked to shineywater he gave no hint that the im-part-native-american-and-i-care-abt-the-wilderness thing (in a 40-minute interview he must have said "wilderness" about 500 times) was a put-on. the dude seems to be a dorky hippie.

surprisingly/perhaps not surprisingly they band he namechecked as starting it all was my bloody valentine. and he said "rural gospel." the musicians in the band besides shineywater and hughes (elias reitz of gojogo, paz lenchantin of a perfect circle, any macleod of white magic) are all pretty accomplished and the drumming especially is tres tight. the music has deep pockets, id say its more funky than anything else.

max (maxreax), Sunday, 23 July 2006 15:14 (fifteen years ago) link

they on the cover of Arthur Mag?


kevin barking (arghargh), Sunday, 23 July 2006 15:31 (fifteen years ago) link

How is it surprising that they're on the cover of Arthur?

Mark (MarkR), Sunday, 23 July 2006 16:14 (fifteen years ago) link

I'm with everyone who thinks the music in toally incongruous with their professed nature vibe. In fact, I think the record sounds rather urban. And I also think it has some of that Spacemen 3 heroin-gospel vibe albeit in a very impressionaistic way. (However, they did talk up their love for My Bloody Valentine in their cover story for SF Weekly). I'd also say there's early-70s Floyd and some Mazzy Star dream pop in there as well. I think the new one is pretty darn catchy. It might be a cheap thrill, but it work.

QuantumNoise (Justin Farrar), Sunday, 23 July 2006 16:25 (fifteen years ago) link

id say its more funky than anything else.

funky is pushing it but it is pretty groovey.

jed_ (jed), Sunday, 23 July 2006 16:42 (fifteen years ago) link


Wow, talk about something that would have ME arriving late. Or not at all.

Ned Raggett (Ned), Sunday, 23 July 2006 16:43 (fifteen years ago) link

for real, they are the #1 most likely band to be on the cover of Arthur

dmr (Renard), Sunday, 23 July 2006 17:43 (fifteen years ago) link

I also think it has some of that Spacemen 3 heroin-gospel vibe albeit in a very impressionaistic way.

OTM, but an even more accurate comparison, perhaps: Spiritualized's "Shine a Light."

Dave Segal (Da ve Segal), Sunday, 23 July 2006 18:08 (fifteen years ago) link

Also, Brightblack's cover appearance on Arthur = least surprising news all month.
I can't wait to read it.

Dave Segal (Da ve Segal), Sunday, 23 July 2006 18:09 (fifteen years ago) link

Kevin you got some 'splainin' to do re Arthur shockah!

PS I'm gravely sleep-deprived right now so pls to forgive for confessing I don't know if anything at this precise moment can excite me more than the idea of 'campfire motorik'

Roque Strew (RoqueStrew), Sunday, 23 July 2006 18:37 (fifteen years ago) link

not as stoned though. still very deep, groovy, and mellow

marcos, Thursday, 17 July 2014 15:24 (seven years ago) link

Well, there is a dub version of that album.

Evan, Thursday, 17 July 2014 18:03 (seven years ago) link

totally! forgot about that

marcos, Thursday, 17 July 2014 18:04 (seven years ago) link

nine months pass...

it is 80 degrees and gorgeous today so the s/t album is feeling right

marcos, Thursday, 7 May 2015 13:51 (six years ago) link

lemme go over to the grateful dead thread and say the same thing about "live/dead"

marcos, Thursday, 7 May 2015 13:52 (six years ago) link

one year passes...

it's that time of year

ciderpress, Thursday, 19 May 2016 22:35 (five years ago) link


marcos, Thursday, 19 May 2016 23:21 (five years ago) link

<3 this

just sayin, Friday, 20 May 2016 00:47 (five years ago) link

Wish these guys were still together so I could force them to cover this

You say tomato, Isao Tomita (RIP) (GOTT PUNCH II HAWKWINDZ), Friday, 20 May 2016 01:24 (five years ago) link

wow can't believe it's been nearly 10 years since this record... they should do a deluxe reissue that comes with *TWO* pair of the cardboard glasses emblazoned with marijuana leaves!

bernard snowy, Friday, 20 May 2016 01:29 (five years ago) link

hahs yes

marcos, Friday, 20 May 2016 02:36 (five years ago) link

Oh my god, I forgot about those glasses.

self-clowning oven (Murgatroid), Friday, 20 May 2016 02:41 (five years ago) link

eleven months pass...

city lights
fence line

marcos, Wednesday, 26 April 2017 14:07 (four years ago) link

three months pass...

I always want to recommend La Hell Gang's "Thru Me Again" in this thread but it's really only the first two songs that have a (slightly) similar vibe. And it's definitely more rocky, especially as the album progresses into Atacama desert psych rock with a heavy Spacemen 3/Loop influence.

The Man Who Saw The Midwife (GOTT PUNCH II HAWKWINDZ), Friday, 4 August 2017 11:56 (three years ago) link

Strange synchronicity for this revive. I just yesterday bought the Brightblack S/T and Loop 'Gilded Eternity' CDs to jam in the car while driving around a very hot and wildfire hazy Seattle. Sounds like I need to check LA Hell Gang.

Yelploaf, Friday, 4 August 2017 18:11 (three years ago) link

Thanks for the La Hell Gang recommendation - three tracks in and I'm sold.

Elvis Telecom, Friday, 4 August 2017 18:33 (three years ago) link

Cool! And definitely check them out YL, it's good stuff.

The Man Who Saw The Midwife (GOTT PUNCH II HAWKWINDZ), Saturday, 5 August 2017 03:28 (three years ago) link

four months pass...

Is anybody else into the original Rainywood recordings from 2002? Not the split with Bonny Billy but the self-released self-titled album? I'm fairly sure I downloaded them on the naturalismo blog like ten years ago, but I came across the MP3's on an old HD this week. I can't find an upload of them anywhere on google, it would be cool to throw them up onto youtube. I think I might do that.

Neal Cassady, Saturday, 9 December 2017 01:16 (three years ago) link

Never heard that stuff. Was it widely released?

The Fortnightly Intruder (GOTT PUNCH II HAWKWINDZ), Saturday, 9 December 2017 06:59 (three years ago) link

it's one of the few things on my discogs want list but i've never heard it.

mizzell, Saturday, 9 December 2017 17:19 (three years ago) link

would love to hear it

marcos, Saturday, 9 December 2017 17:32 (three years ago) link


The Fortnightly Intruder (GOTT PUNCH II HAWKWINDZ), Saturday, 9 December 2017 20:10 (three years ago) link

they're easily found on slsk

Elvis Telecom, Saturday, 9 December 2017 20:18 (three years ago) link

i recall the 2006 album being a bit of a disappointment to me after a lot of listening to that one, though now the earlier stuff feels like a bit of an of-its-time new weird america artefact (not that i have anything against those) while the 2006 album still feels v distinct.

fondly remember seeing them play at an atp and shineywater getting increasingly irritated by the loud + inattentive audience, finally at the end going on a rant, except he still had reverb and delay all over his vocals, so who knows what he actually said.

Yeah you're right Elvis! I haven't been on slsk in a long time. You know what I still can't find? The 2010 split cassette with solo Nathan and Berry Shadows with Hope + Colm. I remembering 'preordering' that thing from Nathan via Myspace way back then and I'd say like a year later received a refund out of blue with a message that they oversold their stock, was very sad at the time. Have still held out to this day trying to avoid those x3 discogs costs :(

Neal Cassady, Sunday, 17 December 2017 17:31 (three years ago) link

Live at Valley Society for the Evolutionary Arts
Brightblack Morning Light - (2006-06-17) Unitarian Meetinghouse, MA

This show—the way it was recorded, who they played with, everything about it—has always been some of my favorite BBML material. Slow and moody self-titled era songs. Mariee Sioux was sitting with them on this set. Brings back a lot of memories from college listening to this thing.

Neal Cassady, Tuesday, 19 December 2017 16:43 (three years ago) link

nice, thanks. I have a live recording I made of them on tour with a trombone player, I should get that out there.

sleeve, Tuesday, 19 December 2017 16:45 (three years ago) link

Yeah man, absolutely.

The Fortnightly Intruder (GOTT PUNCH II HAWKWINDZ), Wednesday, 20 December 2017 09:41 (three years ago) link

Man this Rainywood stuff is good. I prefer BBL but it's great.

The Fortnightly Intruder (GOTT PUNCH II HAWKWINDZ), Wednesday, 20 December 2017 10:16 (three years ago) link


The Fortnightly Intruder (GOTT PUNCH II HAWKWINDZ), Wednesday, 20 December 2017 10:18 (three years ago) link

seven months pass...

I still want a dub album

Paul Reverse and the rediaRs (GOTT PUNCH II HAWKWINDZ), Thursday, 16 August 2018 22:18 (two years ago) link


she carries a torch. two torches, actually (Joan Crawford Loves Chachi), Friday, 17 August 2018 02:47 (two years ago) link

one month passes...


marcos, Tuesday, 18 September 2018 23:57 (two years ago) link

kindred spirits

marcos, Tuesday, 18 September 2018 23:57 (two years ago) link

seven months pass...

Currently blasting at the S/T cd at home and peering out at the sparkling lake with the 3D glasses on. It's BML season, friends!

Yelploaf, Thursday, 9 May 2019 17:59 (two years ago) link

seven months pass...

Hey Sleeve, I never saw your reply about your live recording. Wow, yes please—I'd love to hear that! I am on a hunt for hearing everything BBML-related. Here I will start. Last year I finally got a copy of that Nathan Shineywater/Hope Sandoval/Colm O’Ciosoig cassette and have just uploaded it to youtube.

Side A:

Side B:

Neal Cassady, Thursday, 19 December 2019 06:01 (one year ago) link

he he I have that cassette

at the time I was dissapointed it didn't sound like the album I enjoyed, but listening now sounds p cool

corrs unplugged, Thursday, 19 December 2019 08:07 (one year ago) link

My favorite BML experience was years ago I was playing the CD for a friend at the end of a long summer evening of drinking. We were sitting on the back deck, my friend was wearing the glasses that came with the CD, and he was lighting cigarettes off of a citronella candle in a metal bucket that had been going all night. In the morning light I found that he had accidentally dumped a huge mess of citronella wax all over the table, which ran through the wooden table slats and hardened all over the deck. Good times.

Mazzy Tsar (PBKR), Thursday, 19 December 2019 15:37 (one year ago) link

Neal lemme work on that, I'm pretty busy atm but will try to update here when I get my shit together

sleeve, Friday, 20 December 2019 01:51 (one year ago) link

two months pass...

ok so the song "Just One Time" by Juicy Lucy (better known as "Mary Anne" covered by Spacemen 3) really oddly reminds me of BML in some ways, especially the... what is that sound? harmonica? underblown sax? synth? and the kind of faded drumming.

Corduroy Stridulations (GOTT PUNCH II HAWKWINDZ), Monday, 24 February 2020 10:28 (one year ago) link

underblown sax, yeah

i really miss this band. no one remotely close this warmy souplesse i get from them. also, great ppl

gaudio, Monday, 24 February 2020 14:05 (one year ago) link

also, great ppl

lol what

Paul Ponzi, Monday, 24 February 2020 14:28 (one year ago) link

are they bad ppl?

akm, Monday, 24 February 2020 14:34 (one year ago) link

great fucking guys, or couple, if they're still one, more like it

gaudio, Monday, 24 February 2020 14:35 (one year ago) link

from what I've heard they have broken up and things are not going so well for Nathan

sleeve, Monday, 24 February 2020 15:14 (one year ago) link

nine months pass...

Listening to the new Deradoorian album (which is great btw -- pleasantly dark/murky production, with the rhythm section pounding out motorik beats a la Stereolab) and the deep bass groove peppered with jazzy flute on the track "Devil's Market" has me reminiscing about this band :'(

handsome boy modelling software (bernard snowy), Wednesday, 25 November 2020 18:56 (eight months ago) link

It's only a little reminiscent of BML to my ears... but it is great, thanks for posting about it.

Splack Packath (GOTT PUNCH II HAWKWINDZ), Saturday, 28 November 2020 14:46 (eight months ago) link

seven months pass...

Alright here is something that should be fairly unheard. BBML's Maida Vale session for Radio 1 back in 2006, a couple months after the first LP. This also includes two interview segments spliced between their recording session. I was determined to find this after coming across a random cell phone video of them doing a soundtrack at Maida Vale, uploaded to Youtube in 2006. Was not so easy given that BBC's archive doesn't go back that far. But luckily there's folks out there archiving random DJ sets from years and years ago, had to grab the whole set and pull out just the Brightblack segments. Anyway, it's great sounding and a fun listen.

Neal Cassady, Thursday, 22 July 2021 04:08 (one week ago) link

one of the very few bands I keep pulling to appear higher or at all in best of 00s lists. peak vibe albums.

Western® with Bacon Flavor, Thursday, 22 July 2021 06:30 (one week ago) link

This sounds great - thanks for the heads-up! I did have to skip the interviews though. Needs a warning: 'contains hippies, two of them'.

Vanishing Point (Chinaski), Thursday, 22 July 2021 07:43 (one week ago) link

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