Tuesday, March 30, 2010
Afternoon Penis / Eskimo King - Split (Abandon Ship Records LP)
Wowsers bowsers, this one's been resting easy for WAY too long. Came in a while back from Abandon Ship and so much of my vinyl has been tucked away in my apartment while I've been on the move that it just ain't as easily get-at-able as I'd hope for reviewing purposes. Necessarily takes a long enough sit down at the home nest, which means a moment's needed, so sorry for the delay on it. Not a moment too soon though, thar she blows.
So what is this whale of a platter? Why, it's the two members of Mouthus, legendary band who I need not discuss, splitting their efforts across two sides. Love this approach, opens things way up when it's done right, and here it's done so super right, as Nate Nelson opens things up with his "...Jack of Hearts" number. I remember seeing Nelson do his Afternoon Penis thing way back at No Fun Fest '08, which was totally bomb and way different than the presentation here, much more textural percussion exploration style stuff. Here, the dog opts for about the most feel-good little number you're likely to hear this side of Mercury. And it's still fully percussive to be sure, but the accordion takes center stage on this three chord ditty with a great vocal melody snippet about, you guessed it, the jack of hearts, thrown in to keep things moving. Side long excursion here that bristles about, adding and removing and grooving and bruising all the way home. Tough to discuss really, but suffice it to say it's so littered with Skittles it's likely to make the rainbow nauseating for a while, AKA it's a totally killer dance party glom prom go of it. Really a special zone here.
And there's a flip to boot. Brian Sullivan (the Eskimo King himself) hammers one home on his opening "Gjoa," a glitched out morsel that sways nice and easy, its smudged smearings of colorful lines gliding out and about behind pointillist poindexterous moves nestled somewhere in between Tomutonttu, Skaters, etc., but with a real comic book, dancey vibe going. Whole thing takes a turn for the jungle eventually though, heading into the ferns for a jostle in the thistle to explore the crud in the mud on "Born Again" (I think, it's tough to decipher the plot points in these chapters). No dud, for sure though. Gets bare enough even that the thing all but stops, delivering this little psych melody with nary a blitter about it, real spaced out, recuperation stuff that sounds like it's right out of the asylum, even more so when the vocals lay out their sorrowed and sullied outlooks. Tough to believe it started out so rosy, this is straight zoner loner material. Never one to stay still though, the thing yanks itself up by the collar and moves into Progsville (blackout era) without a hitch before settling into guitar splicing jammer epicness for a tad. Next stop = Amazonia again, or rather Saharan globules of oasis huddled gliders on "Dry Strike." Seriously, there are so many zones here it's tough to find that Jack of Hearts' mug in the mix, so let's call a spade a spade and just say it rules.