Thursday, May 29, 2014

SWEATERMEAT "Bad Boobs
(Eviction Records)


I dunno, I want to like this cassette because the music references old time rock'n'roll, surf, garage, 80ties music, and dips into a lot of genres I naturally gravitate towards. It's clear the musicians communicate very well together. While their melodies are simple, they operate as a unit valiantly. But it's just a little too self aware of its shortcomings. The members know they sing off key and have difficulty with harmony. But instead of successfully flaunting their disabilities, the plan backfires when they ironically sing a montage of very melodic children's television show theme songs ... horribly.

They do the Heathcliff theme song, the david the gnome theme song (I think?) the muppet babies theme song, the ducktales theme song, The Sailor Moon cover is terrible, there is some other nostalgic retro garbage in here. It would be cool if they did the montage well, but the drums basically don't change and the vocals are only in tune 25% of the time. It sounds like what the Velvet Underground would sound like if they just played Nintendo 64 all day instead of writing incredible rock songs and doing hard drugs.

The cassette comes with a business card with an illustration of an anime girl looking halfway between exhausted and embarrassed, as if she were drugged. Her arms surrealistically are hawk wings. there is a textile print of breasts that are watercolored in the cassette liner notes. It has a professional polish, but visually the design work overall gives off a strange, unsettling vibe.

At the beginning of the Side B the band hollers and howls through the jaggedy electrified guitar chords and Dee Dee Ramone style bass guitar on the song "Surfdick". They're just playing a couple chords, nothing fancy. But the band seems thrilled. It seems like they're still in the "honeymoon" stage of their careers, totally impressed with just about any sound that emerges from the instruments. There is a naive energy which is a byproduct of this which is attractive, but at the end of the day these are primitive and rudimentary pop structures played casually.

There are moments of promise. "those girls with the hairy arms", "Party all Night" and "Fire" are all pretty solid 8outta10 garage nuggets of fiery, punchy, punk rock energy. But there are simply not enough of these yet! And the bads are just really bad where are the goods are just kinda good. So I dunno. This Cassette gets a C+/B-. 70%. Two and a Half Stars. I bet they'd be fun to watch live with a six pack at hand. Peace Out.

Listen to them here.
https://soundcloud.com/sweatermeatmusic

Buy this cassette here:
http://evictionrecords.bandcamp.com/album/bab-boobs-by-sweatermeat

--Jack Turnbull

1 comment:

  1. you are such a nice reviewer lol havent listened to it yet but you criticized them in a very polite way, thats whats up.

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