Showing posts with label acid punk. Show all posts
Showing posts with label acid punk. Show all posts

Thursday, November 20, 2014

video review: 'words to the blind' by savages & bo ningen

Wow, this was a welcome surprise. A little late to post it tonight, but still a great album all the same. Next up... not sure, really. Need more time for TV On The Radio, but I probably could talk about Pink Floyd soon... so stay tuned!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

album review: 'words to the blind' by savages & bo ningen

Let's talk a little about collaboration albums. Outside of hip-hop, pop, and occasionally country, it's fairly rare to see artists from two different acts work together on an official collaboration, especially when you venture towards the more indie genres. Sure, you get your supergroups or when a member of another band jumps on a song or two to provide some additional texture, but team-ups between two distinctive bands or musical acts is a hell of a lot rarer, especially over the course of an entire album - mostly because it doesn't always tend to work. It's not like a guest rapper jumping on for verses, this is the fusion of distinctive artistic styles in songwriting and instrumentation, and most often it results in both acts meeting in the middle with watered-down blends of their own unique styles, or one group completely subsuming the other.

And yet this year one of the collaboration albums that has been high on my personal radar was this one, an enigmatic single track stretched over thirty five minutes to "album" length. The first contributing group was the all-female post-punk group Savages, who you should all remember from last year dropping one of the best records of 2013 with Silence Yourself, delivering a brutally cutting message through potent and explosive instrumentation. The second group is the Japanese acid-post-punk group Bo Ningen - and I'll admit right out of the gate that I wasn't all that familiar with them, and what I did hear was a little disconcerting and not exactly to my tastes. For one, the tone of their material was a lot more spasmodic, jerky and off-kilter between melodic and dissonant intervals that didn't seem to have the coiled intensity and grit of a band like Savages.

Now it turns out they've collaborated before - lead vocalist of Savages Jehnny Beth has contributed vocals to a few Bo Ningen songs, but their most recent collaboration 'C.C.' featured a lot more messy, noisy guitar lines and a frantically overstuffed mix that didn't flatter anyone, especially Bo Ningen lead singer Taigen Kawabe with his skittering, shrieked vocals. And considering this project was a single track, I was very concerned this could prove to be a real ordeal to sit through. But then again, Savages has earned enough goodwill with me, so I steeled myself for whatever might come and listened through Words To The Blind - what did we get?