Welcome back to Unmetal Monthly, dear eyeball havers. I will not be forcing you to consume k-pop opinions (though you should listen to the new Dreamcatcher anyway to support the reigning rock queens,) but we DO have a more upbeat selection of unmetal tunes to bop the day away this month. May the spring air fill your lungs with joy and our picks fill your heart with glee. Love y’all.

Calder Dougherty


Top of the Pops

Crispin WahBleacher Creature (instrumental hip-hop, shredgaze) 

The Atlanta based guitar/loop/vibes wizards are back with another album of blazingly hot, yet alluringly introspective tunes. For those of you who haven’t read our previous coverage of the group, let me answer the question: what the fuck is shredgaze? Imagine taking a guitar loop, hence the “shred” part of the formula, and feeding it through a bunch of effects that make it sound like a vibe resonating from some higher plane of existence where the chill is immense and the wings are extra spicy. Hence the “gaze” part of it connoting, like in most “gaze” sub-genres, a sort of flighty disconnection. Into this strange mix, Crispin Wah pour an extra dish of tripped-out hip-hop beats, completing the interaction between groove, high, and meditation.

The end result is a very elusive and alluring album, a work which feels like falling into an extremely shaggy carpet while on a shit-load of shrooms or other psychedelic drug. More than the previous release, Bleacher Creature emphasizes the kind of “loose structure” that always made Crispin Wah feel incredibly cohesive even “inside” all of this experimentation. This creates an album that is, on the surface, more accessible. But, in the interactions between structure and free-form, Bleacher Creature is also very rewarding, holding a bunch of cool contrasts, recurring ideas, and interesting musical callbacks for you to suss out and explore. So, what the fuck is shredgaze?  Guess you’ll have to listen to Bleacher Creature, won’t you? Don’t be stupid; listen to this album.

-Eden Kupermintz


Best of the Rest

Psychedelic Porn Crumpets Night Gnomes (psych pop, prog rock)

Yes, I started listening to Australia’s Psychedelic Porn Crumpets purely because I found their name funny. But I stayed for their swirling, riff-saturated brand of grungy psych pop. It’s no easy feat to take the pillars of prog rock, mix in a dash of Black Sabbath, and emerge with something fun, even lighthearted. Yet that’s exactly what the Psychedelic Porn Crumpets have managed to accomplish with their latest album. Night Gnomes careens from the hard rock riffs that dominate lead single “Lava Lamp Pisco” to the lackadaisical grunge of “Dread & Butter” to the just-sweet-enough pop swirls of “Sherbert Straws” without missing a beat or leaving listeners lost in the shuffle. Instead, the group’s signature fuzzed out guitars and vocals take us on an expansive journey that’s equal parts existential and irreverent.   

Although the Psychedelic Porn Crumpets have long broken beyond the underground indie scene that first embraced them, Night Gnomes maintains the entertaining, sprawling sound that originally built their fanbase. It’s just polished enough to showcase the band’s wide-ranging talents while still feeling like a bunch of friends jamming about life, existence, and most importantly, food. 

-Bridget Hughes 

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