Seadrum/House of Sun
(Warner Music Japan)
Ask anyone who is either too cool for school, or is an import-hungry troglodyte collector, and they will tell you that the band to beat nowadays is The Boredoms. They made the big splash in the halcyon days of Shimmy-Disc with their sub-noise-belch-from-rocker-hell "Soul Discharge" and have released a not entirely known quantity of impossible to find albums that will open your lazy ears on up. If one is to chart their ascent, they started with a garage racket reproducible if Pussy Galore was fronted by baboons, into some just plain weird music on "Chocolate Synthesizer" and "Onanie Bomb Meets the Sex Pistols", where primal screams and feces-smearing regression meets the most original sonic dynamics this side of John Zorn, a frequent collaborator. eYe, the lead Boredom went on to gain further notoriety being the definition of frenzy for Zorn's "Naked City" group, whilst the guitarist Yoshimi collaborated with Princess of Kool Kim Gordon in Free Kitten.
They labored in multitudinous side bands and tiny releases until 1999 when they released the modern psychedelic masterpiece "Vision Creation Newsun." And I don't mean psychedelic like Brian Jonestown Massacre but like what Pink Floyd are purported to sound like - head opening rhythmic biorhythms from the palpitating cosmos. This new one, come 6 fucking years later, follows the same tack but elongated and distilled. "Seadrum", the first of two mammoth tracks, was recorded on the beach, where drum sets were stood up to face the tide, with the rush causing a static rumble in the bass and cymbals.
On top of that, eYe, who has transformed himself into a rather singular DJ (no mean feat) mixes in various drum and rhythm tracks, WHILE Yosihmi drags her hand up and down the keys of a piano, creating a maddening-yet-soothing-after-you-submit new Exotica, the like of which could only be produced by a frazzled army of zombie Matrin Denny's. It's almost more taxing to describe than it is to listen to all the way though. But I swear, once you get used to the taste, nothing else will satisfy the Boredom hunger. They may be the ultimate cult band in that respect.
"House of Sun" is a more somber affair, with guitars and sitars meeting in a constant solar drone, and really, there is not a whole lot more to be said. Honestly, it's not their best effort, since the Boredoms used to put all this and more into a 2 minute song, but both tracks in their 15-20 minute lengths do manage to astrally project you into their peculiar dimension if you are willing. My advice: get a copy of "Vision Creation Newsun" and become converted in the way of the Boredom before strutting down the aisle to handle the serpents with this release.
Alex V. Cook listens to everything and writes about most of it. His latest book, the snappily titled Louisiana Saturday Night: Looking for a Good Time in South Louisiana's Juke Joints, Honky-Tonks, and Dance Halls is an odyssey from the backwoods bars and small-town dives to the swampside dance halls and converted clapboard barns of a Louisiana Saturday Night. Don't leave Heathrow without it. His first book Darkness Racket and Twang is available from SideCartel. The full effect can be had at alex v cook.com
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