Monday, January 19, 2015

Fax Holiday "Brang in Blood" self released

Fax Holiday isn't easily defined, they don't necessarily have a defined sound or even members that appear with regularity on their recordings so far. The seven inch is the perfect place to work out ideas that don't have to be linked together or only resulted from the current lineup. I also like that they reference Slayers album title in their own, "Brang in Blood" because I could weirdly see that showing up on a band members influences alongside '90s indie rock and alt-country references. Hard to pin down, I already don't have a clear picture of what a longer release might sound like and that's a good thing.

The reel to reel winds up on A-Side's "Blood" with a Joanna Newsome childlike feel over harpsichord from Zoe Dale before fully building up to a the thick folk rock studio ensemble sound complete with bass and unbalanced moody drum open room sound, dropping out for that live feel. The chorus seems to push these players and instruments juts beyond the safety into the red in the moment kind of way. Zoe has a preternatural Chan Marshall style texture as this picks back up into an alt-country Wilco end. Completely different from my impression of the lathe cut single these guys put out a little while back. The hidden track after this one is actually really interesting, a ducktails sounding loop of organ with a chorus effect that doubles up and a super high electric plays slow and deliberate over top of this like some kind of sorrowful outer space soundtrack. One of those moments perfect for a seven inch, a comet that passes once every thousand years.
B-Side's "Brang" stumbles in with a disjointed, off kilter rhythm in super weird timing with a jankily tuned guitar carving out it's own logic in this repeated structure. Zoe is quietly adding to this junkyard blues pop before the track expands into multiple layers of mic'd acoustics with that slow explosive tension of the 4-track demos of PJ Harvey. The chords all hit on the same down note with multiple tom's stomping this into a primal place. It quiets down just to give that unhinged chanting feel even more power when it cycles back around. The heavy power chords start bending out into a new math structure with Zoe starting to reach up into the top of her energy and range. Multiple guitars layer in to change direction to a Swirlies instrumental in the vein of that A-Side hidden track. No obvious structure to this and they seem to be working in multiple camps at once, from folk to four track bedroom rock, the perfect material that would find a home on the tiny records.

On blood red vinyl of course, from the band direct.

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