I'm always sad when researching a band's Facebook page only to see that they've officially called it quits. It doesn't change the music but I have to admit I'm always thinking that I might be able to catch them live. I really appreciate when a tiny record that happened to make it's way to my apartment in brooklyn compeled me out to catch a band that traveled thousands of miles to end up a bike ride away. Permanent Collection posted this a few months ago:
Well folks, that's it that's all. It's been great. We've had some good times. We've played some awesome shows. We've played some serious shit shows. We've broken lots of our shit. We've gotten shit thrown at us and bled. We've fallen into Mike's drums. We've toured. We've seen America. We've seen a slice of Canada. We've met some great people. We've met some serious weirdos. We've made a few records (a 12" EP, a tour tape, a full-length LP, a cassette version of the full length, and a 7" EP). We've accepted all things come to an end.
But it also has me thinking about the hundreds of bands that do this year after year and with little to no fanfare who maybe don't even get a chance to have closure or even ever release a single, they're just gone. I think what I'm trying to say is these are more than just records, they're a physical manifestation of all those shows and miles traveled.
On A-Side's "No Reality" has lead singer Jason, like the Zoltars, delivering his deadpan lyric not overly investing a lot of emotion but laying out the sentiment over layers of phasered delay. His vocal is that blank stare creeping you out and nailing down the chaotic haze. There's an almost bauhaus element to this sound if instead of being so minimal they were being covered by Ride. Still employing rhythms that take this into dark pop shoegaze, this back and forth keeps this contained and chorus heavy, almost swinging into jangle and then going completly huge with that swirl bearing down on everything. "Another" feels like Kam Kama if they blew out clipping along at a much quicker pace taking those layers and bending them around into pretzels of almost punk, or a mumblecore Family Curse. Maybe it's his place in the mix that makes this dark, there isn't much to get overjoyed about except these riffs and the speed it's traveling, bringing you with it. It's a weird idea to work in post punk with the densest possible arrangement, usually post punk makes use of nothing but these guys go and throw in all the kitchen sinks they could find.
B-Side's "Over and over" has a swirl of distortion fed through a chorus phaser with slightly out of tune octave shifting pedals, it's not a normal sound. Even that snarling Peter Murphy stating the facts. Like he's always pissed off and wants to let you personally now exactly what you did. When you bury everything in the murk like this it gets much darker without feeling over the top or even a joke, we all have those shitty days and it doesn't mean you have to look like a metal clown either. I'm not talking about kids who are high school, I mean adults who want to do this for a living. It could be misconstrued as hopeful but that would mean sucking you into this chorus and when it really explodes it's overwhelming and even sinister. You can handle that rolling tom beat but the wash of epic proportions is impossible to ignore and hits heavy, like Soccer Mom's most melodic moments with the signifier's of a darker pop. This is pretty frantic and they're trying to tell you something, but focused more on the melody. They knelt down at the shoegaze altar and happen to be writing on the darker side of things. If Film school was combined with Blank Dogs you'd get the opposite of goth darkness, it's just a creepy David Lynchian sort of weirdness. This is on log lady records? Of course it is. Indie jangle out of the gate on "Hanging Around" and every track seems to be playing around with those dynamics of a quieter creepy verse that gets as epic as possible when the chorus enters with thick layers. As if they can't ever be quiet or keep it down, they might be telling themselves every track "ok, this time we aren't going to go huge, we'll keep it together and stay reasonable"...and then find themselves in the upper reaches of volume again.
Nice marble swirl grey pressing in a tan, crinkled sleeve, lyric sheet with a punch out center hole. Don't let the autopsy photo throw you, on Log Lady Records.