Monday, March 12, 2012

Monterey Babe Aquarium "self-titled," Smegma/Colour Bük "split," Sagan Genesis/Waxy Tomb "split" (Weird Forest Records)


Hello....wait, you know what?...I'm not going to write a big fancy introduction just because I'm new here...We'll learn plenty about each other by discussing music...I've got three new tapes from Weird Forest Records stacked on my stereo begging for review, so let's get on with the show... 

Monterey Babe Aquarium 

Rejoice zonkheads! Another addition to the bliss of sleep soundtracks has arrived...I promised myself I wouldn't ever write the phrase "hypnagogic pop," but when in Rome...Monterey Babe Aquarium's self-titled cassette is an ode to fish...not literally perhaps, but all the track titles are names of kinds of fish. My favorite piece could also be a long forgotten member of Captain Beefheart's band, "Vermiculate Spinefoot." Synth riffs dance in tidal rhythms, repetitive lines of melody inoffensively wrap troubles in bubbles and gills. This is some serious music ya'll...not really suited for parties where you and yr gaggle drink budget vino while exploring the limits of gratuitous nudity...MBA are a talented trio of nautical musicians and, according to Weird Forest, two of the Aquarium guys also play technical metal so there's that to balance all this colorful meditative keyboard music. These tracks show real eclecticism and skill so take a SWIM! Edition of 100



Smegma/Colour Bük 

Skronk - wheeze - hhhhhzzzzz. Get ready for a split where the humid air of degenerate noise punches you in the face, lovingly of course. Smegma's A-side is a live performance from 2010. Voices echo round and round while at least one member of the group castrates a saxophone or enjoys a lil S&M role play in a hall of mirrors. Exciting music for sure and scary with a joker's grin. Colour Bük's B-side is even better. I got a case of the jackhammer blues and I like it. This is the sound of picking scum from underneath long ass fingernails while playing a poorly wired off brand gee-tar. I'm kinda annoyed by the "clever" moniker - c'mon umlauts and the UK spelling? Alright. Fine. Not a big deal 'cause the sounds are just what the scuz doctor ordered. Edition of 100


Sagan Genesis/Waxy Tomb 

Conversely, Sagan Genesis is just a dumb enough joke name to make me smile. Bravo! This is my favorite of the three tapes and also the one with the fewest copies available so don't sleep on it, just getcha 'un. SG's side is KDVS experimentation (KDVS is the UC Davis free form radio station that has been fostering the scene out west for awhile now...see also MBA) and bleak synth music. It isn't hopeless music though, just music for an overcast soul. Which is perfect since I'm writing this during a thunderstorm grey Texas weekend. The composition is titled "Mollusk in Water" (again with H2O creatures! - don't worry this isn't a Ween tribute) and I can't say I know what it means, I just know I "get it." Waxy Tomb is Julia Litmer-Cleper and you home listeners wouldn't know it, but she incorporates performance art into her live show which adds a freaky layer to this miasma of sound. For all of us indoor tape jammers what really comes through on WT's side is the force of her music. Titled, '"Take One, Try All" (hormone pills),' the weight of industrial music's past gets filtered and spit out anew. All three of these cassettes will remain in rotation for some time to come at my house. Edition of 60

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