Friday, May 15, 2009

**vintage review** LADDERWOE: "Mourning The Late Jennifer" C30 (USAGOLDEXCHANGE, 2006)




Delirious, lo-fi, lilting gothic out-folk from some New Jerseans. I picked this up from a smelly guy on tour a while back and it's shifted from car tape drawer to bed room tape drawer to shoe box under a bureau and back. Housecleaning yields peculiar treasures.

New Brunswick bands liked to tour these parts a lot from 2003-2007. This project is/was related to, if not part of USAGOLDEXCHANGE, Door, and maybe even King Darves. In fact, the show I spoke of had three of the four bands just discussed playing and is the show where King Darves went folk. I got a big pile of CDr nonsense that night. I also miss the noise Darves, but I digress.

Mourning... is best at being succinct. More than 30 minutes of this would be too much. But two 15 minute slabs of eerie feedback, acoustic guitars and harrowing howls are just right. This appealed well enough to me when I was entrenched in my Neo-Folk fandom, as it does now as I'm starting to finally develop a taste for what some of my friends and I simply refer to as "hippy-drone-noise." I guess that's what I'd file Ladderwoe under. It's too weird to be anything really close to "folk," but there's still too much song structure (especially on the other Ladderwoe recording I've got) to really let this be straight up noise. In my opinion anyway, and I'm the one writing, so, yeah, this is my god damned opinion!

On here there's enough scuzz and hiss to keep anyone's inner experimentalist happy. This could have been recorded room mic style with a couple guys cuing tape players as they moaned about The Late Jennifer and plucked away on a guitar and hit some things resembling percussion. There's even parts where I hear dinner ware clinking. This reeks of a humid coffee house show in late sumer. It's as cozy as it is unnerving.