Fantastic reviews of both the Eye - Winterwork LP and The Flexibles 7" have appeared on Still Single (www.still-single.tumblr.com) courtesy of Bill Meyer. The Eye LP also featured on Tiny Mix Tapes a few months back. Both releases can be purchased through the site, or alternatively ordered from Volcanic Tongue (UK), Fusetron (US), Eclipse Records (US), Norman Records (UK) and Alberts Basement (Australia).
Eye – Winterwork LP from Still Single.
This free noise trio has been surfing the free noise wave for over a decade, but a paucity of recordings has kept Peter Porteous (Lapdog), Nathan Thompson (Sleep, Renderizors, Sandoz Lab Technicians), and Peter Stapleton (Sleep, Dadamah, Victor Dimisich Band, etc.) from registering outside of the South Island of New Zealand. This LP was reportedly recorded years ago and delayed by the usual record company troubles, and its release in a pressing of 250 on a Scottish label may honor a NZ underground tradition (cheers, Avalanche!), but it still feels a bit like a letter slipped under the door. When you open it, be sure your face is shielded, because its sulfurous blast will pit your face with gunpowder. And unlike your typical letter bomb, it automatically reloads and blows again every time it spins.
Eye’s music treads the same basic path as 21st century Dead C., but it walks with its own, very distinctive stride. The two guitars grind out clouds of smoking noise, but with a synchronous fit that makes it hard (and pointless) to mull over which is which. This isn’t Jerry Garcia and Bob Weir, or Keith Richards and Ronnie Wood; this is a nameless swarm rolling up your walk like a gaseous entity with lethal intent. The drums drive implacable, with none of that beat-swapping ADHD business like Robbie Yeats uses to destabilize the Dead C; whatever their target is, consider it nailed. Somewhere on side two some atmospheric bell tones float in, a momentary breather before the maelstrom pulls you under. Turntable detritus floats out of the murk near the end, like the yield of a dynamite fishing expedition, and there’s a good chance that you’re one of the carcasses. Damned fine stuff. (http://nyalirecordings.com)
The Flexibles – Cities of the Narrow Universe 7” EP from Still Single.
Richard Youngs is so prolific and ready to collaborate that it was probably never a matter of if he would make a record with his son Sorley, but when. That day came about a year ago, when the kid turned up on his pop’s so-called country record for Ba-Da-Bing! But here he’s a full-fledged member of the band, not a guest. Kids lucky enough to grow up around record players know that one of the best things you can do with a record is put your find down while it’s playing and laugh at the monster voices, and the two Youngses (plus Andrew Paine, the third Flexible) put that impulse to work throughout these three songs. On the A side, low, rubbery vocals descend into a randomly programmed rhythm maelstrom, matching mutter for thump; Papa Youngs’ untreated lead voice slings one repeated line over the fray. The two songs on the other side are fairly similar. Like so many Youngs records, it’s about as essential as a diary page. It might be barely remarkable, but if it’s yours you won’t want to tear it out. For what? The day will come when recollection will put a smile on your face. (http://nyalirecordings.com)
Eye -Winterwork LP from Tiny Mix Tapes.
Pairing nicely with my first reading ofErewhon Calling, New Zealand’s Eye are a fantastic microcosm of a never ending well of inspiration from an island nation barely 4 million strong. Even as the socioeconomic forces threaten to envelope most of us in a wet blanket of commonality, there are those in New Zealand’s noisiest recesses–as there are tribal communities and castaways deep within unexplored continental jungles and frozen tundras–that have eschewed our new formality to continue exploring the outlier and asinine.Winterwork is such an LP and thank the no wave deconstructionists of yore for such a blessed gem. Though hesitant to apply the same fundamentals and acting principles behind Eye that were at work for no wavers of a certain era, the idea that music is a continuing waterfall that needs a few barrel jumpers in its flow to cause a rethink is evident in the retro-evolution at work within the trio’s frosty distortion. The tumult of our swollen society, turns out, is heard by those in isolation as coloring. No matter how cut off by appearances, something in the magnetic field carries those vibrations. Winterwork is such an interpretation; the music of the last stop between civilization and antarctic quarantine. So now that we know the source of their power, now we must find how its harnessed. Eye is giving no discernible clues, true guardians of a noise knowledge best left to those unfazed by our power suit culture overlap. With only 250 copies in existence, however, you can bet someone will lust to turn this rarity into a commodity.