Double Leopards

Mouthus – Divisionals (Ecstatic Peace)

Mouthus came out on more of the bash and pound side of the noise equation, although always showing allegiance to the Double Leopards axis of vague hippie tendencies. Mouthus played loud and hard yet they weren’t as negative as say, Air Conditioning. Since then the band has maintained a steady stream of increasingly psychedelic albums. Divisionals is an all synth album, a far cry the loud free-style drums and guitar workouts of their earlier days. Outside of the band’s established context they manage to coax out a clearly defined aesthetic of consistency. The general recording has a lo-fi industrial tone and in some ways recalls Psychic TV’s, Themes 2, which is unexpected but works in their favor. As usual, Nate Nelson’s rhythmic sense has a language all its own, which is highlighted on this recording due to minimal arrangements and lulling looping refrains. It’s unclear exactly who is doing what here, given the instrumentation but on this album Mouthus really stake a claim for themselves in the drone cannon. With the popularity of the genre many acts have thrown their dull, half-assed, redundant attempts into the stream with only a few records worth keeping. Mouthus came out of left field and created a record that is genuinely hypnotic. The textures and rhythms constantly change in a dim dream machine Burroughs style trance. Even so, the effect isn’t overwhelming to sacrifice listen-ability. The record maintains its approach throughout and keeps coming back to my turntable no matter how many times I try to put it back on my shelf. Essential listening!

by STEVE LOWENTHAL on 3/18/2009 in Reviews | Tags: , , , , , , ,