ORGAN THING: Some going off and things with Eyeless Owl, the mighty mountains of Hammers of Misfortune, Distance in Time, oh and the latest Other Rock Show and…

A couple of things, three or maybe four actually, one that we almost missed until the cup draw reminded us, the other, Eyeless Owl, something that’s been getting a bit of attention on the Other Rock Show in recent weeks, oh and Hammers of Misfortune, we haven’t ccauftght up with them in ages…


Eyeless Owl Murmurations  (Mogul Intermissions)  – Now how gloriously uncool is this! Cool as flipping flip, they sound like some kind of rich warm blended whisky, there’s elements of Yes, there’s a hint or two of Zappa, some more than healthy Cardiacs moments, they may be from New York State but there’s all kinds of (very English) prog rock references in there.  An instrumental band, but for once you’re not needing them to have a vocalist, this is not a case of one of those math rock bands who sound like they’re rehearsing and the singer hasn’t bothered turning up yet. Actually there’s moments oh here that really are gorgeous, Rookery is beautiful – hang on, it isn’t just moments, large parts of this Eyeless Owl album are rather gorgeous (and quite a few steps on from their previous release is has to be said).

Tinfoil Firehat kicks off a little at the end, more Panixphere than Cardiacs, kind of adds an extra bit of bite at the end of it all, a little bit of attitude, hang on Tinfoil Firehat has gone full Cardiacs now, full Cardiacs without ever being anywhere near a clone, far too many Cardiacs clones around, in this case the comparison should be taken very much as a compliment. Mentioning the closing track first is a little bit like putting the cart before the horse though and that lean opening, right back at the start of the whole album, a piece called Rip or Roost, that whole first piece sets you up perfectly for an album that is, more than anything, simply a delight.

Does some of it sound a little Bagpuss? Osprey Outcry particularly, okay, Canterbury more than Bagpuss maybe? Eyeless owl look like they’re twenty-something American kids, they probably have no idea who or what Bagpuss is, we suspect  they probably do know who Caravan or Hatfield and The North are? They certainly sound like they do.

Warm, inviting, lush at times, beautiful, engaging, and never ever self-indulgent, never aloof, there’s almost an innocence to it all. Let’s be honest here, prog rock, for this is very much a prog rock album, prog rock can get awfully self indulgent, coldly so, Murmurations never does feel cold. This is a wonderful album, this is an album that opens the door and invited you in like you’re a long lost friend, this album is like a fine cup of tea and a slice or two of cake – never twee though, mentions of cups of tea and Bagpuss and Caravan might have you a little wary, no, this is lean, this is precise, this is accomplished, this is impressively good.

Find the album on Bandcamp     



Distance in Time is a solo project from David Laverno (a London-based musician with quite a healthy underground history), he’s just released a full album of what you might loosely call instrumental post rock. We’re talking big (big) guitar pieces, hints of Pink Floyd flavours, Bark Psychosis, God Machine, Rothko, Mint 400, very much a solo thing, full bodied properly formed instrumental pieces, dramatically mellow, atmospheric, laid back yet dramatically coloured. A forgetful mind dreams on is something you need to catch at the right time on the right day (or maybe the right late night), give it time and the album will reveal itself, the devil is in the detail, the warmth, the subtle movement, don’t be making the mistake of listening just once and thinking you know where he’s (slowly dramatically) going, give it the time and space it deserves, let it unfold…. Bandcamp


Now we don’t what to be making claims or casting aspersions and going off and things, but quite a few years ago, we did give Sigrid Sheie, Hammers Of Misfortune’s Organ player, a couple of Cardiacs CDs…


Hammers Of MisfortuneOvertaker – There sure is a lot of frantic going off and things here, all abound in every corner and well, we haven’t covered or heard of or from those Hammers for what seems like years. Good to find them still active, good to be able to report they’re sounding better than ever.  I could insert the story of that copy of Affectionate Friends we gave them back in the Oakland days when Marcia X (as she liked to be known back then) was part of the evolving Organ team and adventures with Everything Must Go and Ron Athey and High on Fire, most of it is a haze now and Maria was last seen hanging out with some strange cult in India, she cut herself off from everyone, before she did that she gave the band, Sigrid actually, a copy of that Cardiacs album we released here on ORG, this was back when the internet was nowhere near as much of an all encompassing word of mouth pollinating thing that it is now, and passing out CDs to spread the word about a brilliant band, Cardiacs, that back then were much loved over here and pretty much unknown in the States. Sigrid, Hammers organ player (Hammond B3,proper organ player!)  loved it and demanded more, or went on the hunt for more or we might have burnt her a whole lot more, I can’t recall ho it went now . We noticed the Cardiacs flavours seeping in with their next album, we raved about it at the time, this of course was years ago and who needs all this ancient history? We’re here for the here and now (which is where I first saw Cardiacs, opening for Here and Now, although I didn’t work it out until years later and really I saw them first at Stonehenge and that Organ glue sticking all these things together and it all gets lost in the fog and well…) enough of this, there’s a new Hammers of Misfortune album out (when I saw them, Cardiacs, at Stonehenge no one anywhere near me could tell me who they were! I never did find out, So the third time I saw Cardiacs was opening for Marillion on that infamous tour ans ah, there’s that band from Stonehenge, I know who they are at last and off to Fetcham Riverside to see them again and hey lets start a fanzine to tell people about this band and other things that no one is covering and…)           

I’m telling you all this as I listen to the Bandcamp of this latest Hammers of Misfortune album and those mighty mountains of sounds and that’s a mammoth slice of Panixsphere rushing by! The thrashier end of Cardiacs is all over this ;latest album, once again, not a clone thing, just a positively healthy flavour in there with those things Hammers blend in their own unique way and listen to that Hammond proging away underneath the thrash of it all. Cardiacs flavours yes, all done in the best of ways though, Overtaker is a massive album, those Hammers of Misfortune are sounding better than ever (they always sounded massively good, they’ve always sounded like a massive beast of a band). Overtake is full bodied, packed to the point of bursting with goodness, a more is more philosophy, not of this less nonsense here. and yes, as much as i can’t help but hear big slabs of Cardiacs flavour rushing by in the maelstrom of it all, Hammers of Misfortune sound like no one other that the band they’ve always been and it is with utmost pleasure that we reacquaint ourselves with there thrashingly progressive thing that’s somewhere beyond mere heavy metal. The start of Don’t Follow The Lights is gorgeous before they gallop off again with the kitchen sink strapped to the back of the horse, massive massive slabs of properly progressive metal (a million miles better than all that soulless muso stuff and nonsense that proclaims itself to be progressive metal).  There’s so much packed in there, they do let in that vital light and shade though, it is a storm, it almost non-stop but they do allow the colour in, they are sounding as rich as ever, Hammers of Misfortune are sounding better than ever, Hammers of Misfortune are sounding massively massively good, serious going off and things! (sw)        


And while we’re here, someone asked soemone about songs with you toy pianos in them….

Here’s where you find that Cheer Accident album…


Meanwhile have you checked out last Sunday’s Other Rock Show yet? This is what we do here on Sundays. We’re off to buy the Hammers of Misfortune album to play next week now./..


Here’s the Sunday’s before – ORGAN THING: Listen back to last Sunday’s Other Rock Show featuring music from Extra Life, the new Van Der Graaf Generator live album, Kayo Dot, Deerhoof, Zap Black and more…

Resonance is a trail-blazing, not-for-profit radio station dedicated to the arts and culture. From its launch in 2002, its award-winning programming has given voice to the vibrant diversity of London’s thriving arts and music scenes. Resonance’s pool of creatives speaks directly and expressively to an engaged and passionate audience, locally, nationally and internationally. Our 24/7 broadcast service combines its FM signal in the City with DAB digital radio coverage across Greater London.

Marina Organ presents an hour of music each week via Resonance FM, music that uses unconventional structures and ‘other’ time signatures – gathered from the worldwide undergrounds of math rock, avant prog, weird electronica and strange pop. (and yes, if you think you have soemthing that should be palyed, send it in to us here at Organ)

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Meanwhile, for a different slant on things, the evolving February Spotify Organ playlist for those who do that kind of thing. Each month we build a playlist of some of the music we’ve recently featured on these pages or on the radio show (or things Marina would never play on her show) along with a classic or two from Organ days past

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