Thursday, April 3, 2008

6Majik9 - Rubber God Head (Phantom Limb Recordings CD-R)

Yet another one I haven't had an excuse to do yet, this time from scrap mavens 6Majik9. These guys have a whole slew of releases out right now, and of course I've only got one of them courtesy of the estimable Phantom Limb Recordings, run by Grant Capes of (VxPxC). I don't really know much about the group except that they're Australian, share members with Brothers of the Occult Sisterhood and Terracid, and are the minds behind the wonderful Music Your Mind Will Love You (MYMWLY) label. So basically, its a mysterious collective who release strange experimental music from the other side of the globe. Could you ask for anything more? I didn't think so.

Rubber God Head is one forty-ish minute track that somehow manages to cross all borders between No-Neck style acoustic wanderings, Eric Dolphy angularities, and Jewelled Antler woodsie vibes. I'm not sure just how many people are playing on this thing, but to my ear I hear a whole slew of instruments: saxophone, guitar, drums, bells, piano, assorted electronic noise makers, even a sampler that at one point features a baby crying (so I guess really I'm just hoping it's a sampler...). I might be wrong, but I think I even hear a cello in the mix. Could be wrong, but either way, I have no idea how many people are making this. Could be two guys, could be ten, but whoever it is they sure know how to create one killer half hour.

The piece opens quite noisily, all electronics and off-beat amateurish percussion, before quickly settling down into a more earthly, meandering vibe. The group clearly has their act together though, and never feel lost as they splash around in the mucky muck. This might be a rudderless boat, but the river's plenty full of curiosities. The unit continues its journey then entire time, never resting on any one sound for too long. At various points, guitar, piano, sax, anything takes the lead. At one point, having emerged from one of the more energetic parts of the largely patient track, a small percussion repetitions that could be some guy rapping on a table with a broken chair leg three times holds it all together. The point being that it's a pretty deep sack of tricks 6Majik9's got, and their certainly wise enough not to overuse any of them. Of course they have no problem with some good old fashioned repetition either.

When the baby's cry comes in towards the end, it at first seems a little off from the rest of the album, which could well have been played ritualistically under a full moon in some meadow--even the electronics have, to this point, managed to stay earthly and organic. Yet this baby, out of nowhere, is repeated enough that it too becomes part of the ritual, just another rhythmic motif to build off to as they slink into the night. Not quite noise, not quite folk, not quite psychedelic, not really quite anything. Just organic spacious yum-yums for your ears to drift in and out of. Limited to 90 with beautifully cosmic cover art (just check out the front and back at the same time!) and awesome spray painted CD-R.

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