Scrolling Headlines:

UMass women’s basketball handles Duquesne at home -

January 16, 2017

UMass men’s basketball’s late comeback falls short after blowing 15-point first-half lead -

January 15, 2017

UMass hockey outlasted at home against No. 6 UMass Lowell -

January 14, 2017

Hailey Leidel hits second buzzer beater of the season to give UMass women’s basketball win over Davidson -

January 13, 2017

UMass football hosts Maine at Fenway Park in 2017 -

January 12, 2017

UMass men’s basketball snaps losing streak and upsets Dayton Wednesday night at Mullins Center -

January 11, 2017

UMass women’s track and field takes second at Dartmouth Relays -

January 10, 2017

UMass hockey falls to No. 5 Boston University at Frozen Fenway -

January 8, 2017

UMass professor to make third appearance on ‘Jeopardy!’ -

January 8, 2017

UMass women’s basketball suffers brutal loss on road against Saint Joseph’s -

January 7, 2017

UMass men’s basketball drops thirds straight, falls to VCU 81-64 -

January 7, 2017

UMass men’s basketball drops tightly-contested conference matchup against George Mason Wednesday night -

January 4, 2017

Late-game defense preserves UMass women’s basketball’s win against rival Rhode Island -

January 4, 2017

AIC shuts out UMass hockey 3-0 at Mullins Center -

January 4, 2017

UMass professor to appear as contestant on ‘Jeopardy!’ Thursday night -

January 4, 2017

Penalties plague UMass hockey in Mariucci Classic championship game -

January 2, 2017

UMass men’s basketball falls in A-10 opener to St. Bonaventure and its veteran backcourt -

December 30, 2016

UMass woman’s basketball ends FIU Holiday Classic with 65-47 loss to Drexel -

December 29, 2016

UMass men’s basketball finishes non-conference schedule strong with win over Georgia State -

December 28, 2016

Brett Boeing joins UMass hockey for second half of season -

December 28, 2016

Underground music column: Khaki Blazer and Vorvaň are among this week’s most exciting underground releases

So much music is readily available that it’s just as easy to miss out on new music as it is to discover it. This regular series aims to help remedy that by recommending five superb releases in hip hop, metal, punk, indie and the avant-garde that likely flew under the radar of many. Whether you’re feeling overwhelmed by the amount of music the internet allows access to or simply looking for something new that has not been buzzed about, allow these lists to make choosing what to listen to an easier process.

L’Orange & Mr. Lif : “The Life & Death of Scenery”

Only five years into his career, L’Orange has more than proven himself as a force to be reckoned with in the hip-hop underground. Shortly after providing beats for the legendary Kool Keith on their 2015 collaborative album “Time? Astonishing!” the North Carolina-based producer has now teamed up with yet another innovative rapper, Boston’s Mr. Lif. As always, L’Orange’s dusty, suave and sparse take on boom bap and jazz-rap beats is irresistibly cool. Though “The Life & Death of Scenery” is a short listen at 22 minutes, the infectious hooks and interesting concept about a dystopian world both warrant repeated listens. Above all, it is great to hear Lif rap over the production style that suits him the most following his long break from releasing music.

Listen here:

The Well: “Pagan Science”

With the exhausting amount of contemporary doom metal artists that simply sound like Black Sabbath cover bands, the genre has lately become more stagnant than it has ever been. Thankfully, Texas band The Well is back with “Pagan Science,” a new album containing its fresh and unique take on a genre that desperately needs some fresh air. While the band’s debut album, “Samsara,” put its traditional doom metal leanings at the forefront of the songs, “Pagan Science” balances meaty and bludgeoning guitar distortion with the tight rhythms of stoner-metal. In addition, it manages to incorporate a dimension of psychedelia, while still retaining its overall heaviness.

Listen here:

Vorvaň: “Once Love Was Lost”

2016 has been a bountiful year for hardcore punk that tackles more extreme styles of music. Moscow-based quartet Vorvaň is no exception, seeking to further blur the line between punk and metal with their debut album “Once Love Was Lost.” At its core, this is a furiously political punk record, but not one that flies by at blistering speed. There are certainly grindcore aesthetics at play, but the album is much more consciously paced than your average modern hardcore punk album. Some of the longer tracks, such as the 10 minute “Celestine,” display complex and technical structures reminiscent of sludge metal and crust punk in how they alternate between rapid shredding and slowly chugging riffs.

Listen here:

Sybarite: “Waver the Absolute”

It has been an entire decade since multi-instrumentalist Xian Hawkins last released music under the moniker of Sybarite. Now, seemingly out of the blue, the genre-bending electronic artist has quietly put out an album as Sybarite entitled “Waver the Absolute.” While “Waver the Absolute” does not make any drastic changes to Sybarite’s sound, it does attempt to incorporate subtle shifts in the directions he has taken before. Like on past releases, the sound here can generally be described as folktronica, but what truly makes this album impressive is that even after putting the project on hold for 10 years, Hawkins is still as determined as ever to expand his sound into genres that do not easily meld together, such as IDM and downtempo, or post-rock and glitch.

Listen here:

Khaki Blazer: “Coca Nara Deezer”

Hailing from Ohio, avant-garde producer Khaki Blazer has been crafting incredibly dense and discordant sound collages since 2014. His most recent album, “Coca Nara Deezer,” features collages comprised of nonsensical, incoherent and near-atonal rhythms and patterns. Glitch music also plays a key role in these compositions, as the erratic and spontaneous nature of the genre is typically utilized throughout these songs as a foundation for Khaki Blazer to build his improvisations upon. As a genre, sound collage never really found a following or niche culture in the underground like other types of music, but it is quite possible that the ideas explored on “Coca Nara Deezer” have the potential to reinvigorate interest in the form.

Listen here:

Alexander Beebe can be reached at asbeebe@umass.edu.

Leave A Comment