Thursday, August 29, 2013
Kitchen's Floor "Deadshits" on Easter Bilby Records
Matt Kennedy is one half of Kitchen's Floor from Bisbane Australia. He also seems to run (Nope Easter Bilby is Bruce-ed) Easter Bilby Records and possibly (definitely - ed) Eternal Soundcheck who are both carrying this release. The other person to appear on this single is Julia Norris who plays the drums and also sings. I bring these things up because they are the dots I connected looking around this afternoon and also seem to provide the perfect context for these guys completely doing it themselves in Australia. It could be your pointless town with no scene, but this is a story of a couple of friends, alcohol and a recording device. Nothing fancy, just getting down to the business of nailing music right in the crotch.
"Dead shits" has the jangle and lo-fi sketch of John Davis or The Yips Bonfire In A Dixie Cup that I keep going on about. I'm also a sucker for the duo setup but then they're keeping that K Rec, Beat Happening torch alive - no, more like setting a ceremonial bonfire to gods of the scene. So glad to hear this kind of sincere stuff happening today, ok so it was recorded in 2008, a few years ago then, still timely as far as I'm concerned. The back and forth of these two harmonizing between verses is pretty much perfect without much else to distract you. A jittery rhythm from an acoustic over slap and smacks of a beaten to death kit. Just two kids who may as well found these instruments 20 minutes ago and with the minimal amount of foresight cobbled together a functioning monster. It's alive! "Dishes" introduces a metallic bowl for Julia to smack around on her kit while Matt belts out a tortured more wasted distortion having something to do with things that will kill you. He's strumming a detuned nylon stringed acoustic in Beck minicassette recorder style. Julia makes sure this has the most rickety Urinals legs to stand on, making Prinzhorn Dance School sound like complex hi-fi.
The B-Side is no less honest on "Left" where they even take the vocals to that primitive place:
I was happy / I was happy / I was happy / I was happy gets drilled into skulls with a monotone delivery and stompy beat. They obviously aren't now, so you can see how the less they give you, the more you're making out of it. Julie is close up in your head this time almost whispering and might be the only example on this record of overdubbing. "Downed It" is the story of finding a submarine, and when I say story it's more like a few short sentences strung together where you better read between the lines. Like Bathysphere, it's a metaphor for severe loneliness and separation. The sound quality takes you right into this room with Matthew just barely registering the vocals as distorted. For "Ground" these thuddy drums and impossibly fast acoustic changes are what makes this kind of thing so interesting, there's no way to even break this down into pieces that make sense. Even with the bare minimum of instrumentation they manage to weave in and out of each others tempo with a tension of distortion that always seems to be just around the corner. They can't be this put together all the time, this restrained, can they?
The minimal sleeve aesthetic scared me at first, a doom/grind/metal nothingness, but the black and white snapshot of the duo in a bedroom (kitchen) egged me on. Like a real jerk I've been sitting on a full length "Live from Brisbane I got from Quemada Records months ago, so expect some words about that as well because I am completely sold on these guys. What has this been evolving into?
Easter Bilby records are distro'd at Eternal Soundcheck which is halfway around the world but for the stateside I found it over at Goner.