Saturday, August 18, 2007

HUSH ARBORS “Row Life” (Fuck It Tapes)

Folked up and (color) photocopied C36 by Keith Wood’s pretty impeccable Hush Arbors identity. I’m no expert on his discog (it’s fairly broad and deep and hard to keep track of), but this strikes me as a bit more varied and electric than some of his stuff I’ve heard (like the “Under Bent Limbs” 2xCD for example). The first song, “Poppi On My Mind,” intertwines fingerpicking daydreams with really eloquent amplifier gestures, sweeping melodic feedback, and subconscious pulsing sub-beats…near the end everything coheres into a beautifully focused war of hypnotic tension and elemental desperation. One of the most powerful Hush Arbors pieces I’ve heard. The B side tracks don’t let up on the intensity much either…”Rowed On Home” devolves from an acoustic reverie into a blown-out sludge-noise dirge that sprawls on for surprisingly long. And the tape closer, “Ripped Raw,” unfurls a poppy electric guitar melody against melancholy moaning and some tonal emoting that totally tugs at the heartstrings in a blissed, bummer soundtrack sort of way. A near-flawless tape by one of the post-folk realm’s most visionary gatekeepers.