Saturday, May 31, 2014

Stressed out over the Bounty

Holy Cow, I've got a lot to talk about. I'm going to try to give each one their own post, though. That means skipping some stuff, and glossing over some of the finer details. I don't think there's enough of a readership that any of this matters, but I carry at least that much respect that I'll say it when I'm not doing full justice.
So, because it's most easily skipped: I've been listening to the Helms Alee/ Young Widows split. Simultaneously Sludgey and twangy I can think of no better pairing than these two.  If not for vocal differences, I'd think it was an only very slightly shuffled version of the same band. That's not to dismiss either band's talent, mind you. For post-hardcore sludge rock ( as opposed to sludge metal) there's few even close. Helms Alee starts things off with a fuzzy retro blast that reminds me of Jehu, then goes into a complex bit of deconstructionist rock, all arpeggios and suspended chords, then goes into Calexio/ shoegaze territory with an echoey twangfest that soothes me until it explodes in Melvins styled pure rock fury.
Which leads us into the monstrous math sludge of Young Widows. Now, I do dig them, a lot, but I never write about them because I feel stymied. Their thing is so tightly constructed so as to be near impenetrable. Imagine if Low had shredder credentials, but also a Jawbox fixation, then, decided they wanted to do post rock minus the world music pretensions.  Starting to see what I mean? How the hell am I supposed to untangle that? For example, the second track they have here sounds like early Misfits, meets Savory-era Jawbox, until it goes off on a Tom Verlaine styled solo, and the delay pedals kick in, giving an almost surfy sheen, then, you can start to pick out the spanish guitar inspired riff underpinning the main melodic line. What am I supposed to do with that? Transcribe the sound of my jaw hitting the floor? Bar none, some of the most sublime music you'll ever hear.

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