"IN THE RAT PLACE AT THE RAT TIME".
Latest one from one of the best DIY/post-punk crews in the US, if not ZE WORLD. Just doing their own thing - which, ironically, is more than can be said for pretty much everyone else in that field. Minimal, mesmerising, intuitively constructed songs - looped and loping and additive rather than, er, songy - with low-budget but imaginatively deployed electronics enjoying primacy over guitar parts that are there for percussive or textural reasons first and foremost...overall it sounds to me like the kinda subtle, sophisticated gem the early 2000s no-wave/punk-funk (sorry if you barfed, dunno what else to call it) revival COULD have thrown up if cash, coke, greed and dodgy European electro-house remixes hadn't thrown it off course; in other words, if it had happened instead of Portland in New York. Yeah there are moments on this record that feel like you could be listening to the wiser, more sensitive younger sibling of The Rapture's epochal Out Of The Races... EP (which incidentally I've just stuck that on for the first time in 15-odd years...still stands up, unlike pretty much everything it spawned...)
Stevie's vocals have the whiff of Daniel Johnston or Jad Fair about them, but less annoying than either, and his half-spoken, half-sung numbers are balanced perfectly with dreamy time-is-away keyboard instrumentals that have an almost Call Back The Giants or Pickle Factory feel, while the beautiful, violin-accented, stoned-processional of a title track is cut from the same cloth as the Raincoats' Odyshape, Officer!, early Scritti... all of the above descended, one way or another, from '70s Eno, and there can be no more explicit tribute to peak Bri than the wonderful 'Pictures Of The Moon'. A really beautiful record, historically aware but very free and contemporary-feeling, I can't recommend it enough, and like all this band's stuff it's self-released on their See My Friends label with hand-made sleeves and whatnot - these are pretty obviously gonna be highly sought-after artefacts one day. Limited copies in stock!