YARROW “Cluster” C36 (Manic Static)

Chicago’s Manic Static label generally churns out quality releases by creative, noisy garage rock acts, but this time, they took a (damned fine!) chance by releasing this Yarrow (Windy City local) tape, and it’s a reel head-loller!

While still plenty noisy, per MS standards, Yarrow dials it down about 200 clicks, keeping the pace glacial and drone-centered, a-la Liz Harris, but with brighter tones (a-la Julianna Barwick/Liz Phair) and some great environmental field recordings. The tape plays like a blissfully forgettable Sunday afternoon, where no errands were piled up, and a few mellow friends dropped by, one at a time, real quick, to drop off a lazy mixtape and life-affirming hug-o-war. It’s narcoleptic bedroom folk for extreme relaxation, and it’s really great.

Also of note is the top-notch artwork, with shiny metallic sticker on the cassette shell and esoteric block print on the J-Card.


-- Jacob An Kittenplan