Sep 5, 2008

NANCY SINGS--AGAIN! Scorces - I Turn Into You Dbl-LP, Not Not Fun Records 2008

If Texas weren't the reddest of the red states, overrun with belching oil tycoons and croakies-rockin off-roaders, would it still produce Roky Erickson and homicidal codeine-addicted MCs? Or is it that kind of environment that makes those cracked Texas greats so great? Ever since I heard Mayo Thompson, the Lone Star's had an asterisk affixed to it, with a footnote that reads, "There's something going on that's not quite right..." I's this dichotomy that's kept me innerested in all the eerie, dusted ooze what's been coming outta Austin and Houston, and there ain't no better example than Tom and Christina Carter of Charalambides. Christina and Heather Leigh Murray (whose LP on NNF last year grew on me like a fine patina) have been cookin along as Scorces since round the turn of the century, I reckon. Whether mixing vox with pedal steel, chord organ, or the ol 6-string, their wind-blown siren songs'll transfix you right outta your lawn chair.
And speaking of dichotomy! I Turn Into You reeks of dualism more than a pair of wound-up vipers. No hissing here, though; just a delicate longing, illuminated by thin strands of voice and strings, rising and falling like VLF sparklers. I dunno. I always get this epic art-house vibe from them. For instance, the side-long opener, "Coming To A Forgotten Part," evokes the slow, but inevitable erosion of identity between the central characters in Bergman's Persona. Shit, the whole record's wrapped in the well-worn flannel of the Bill Stafford tracks in My Own Private Idaho--another warped-mirror kinda flick. It looks like a fucked-up face, all right!
I'll admit, this ain't the sorta Texas fare that makes you wanna glug Shiner Bock and toss M-80s offa Nugent's porch, but c'est la vie. There's a whole lotta dirt and scrub out there and I'll be damned if Scorces don't make me wanna take fistfulls of mescal and whistle up a butte. Road trip!
Mail your currency to Not Not Fun, who are making up for the lop-sided Bored Fortress series RIGHT quick. Keep em comin, I say. I love being wrong.

Sep 2, 2008

NO, WAIT! IT WAS 2 IN A ROOM! U.S. Girls - S/T cassingle, Hardscrabble Amateurs 2008

I can't think of a more oddly maligned format than the cassingle. Maybe it's because the last time I saw one was on the floor of a friend's car, beneath an empty fast food sack and a crushed pack of Kools. I think it was Dee-lite. Even if it wern't, I'm sure y'all have an equally moldy example bobbing on your brainsurf.
If I was you, I'd replace it with this U.S. Girls cassingle. Helmswoman Megan Remy is tugging the thread that links forces as diverse as Jandek, The Dead C, and shortwave radio at 3am. In all these things we see the human face swimming up out of a dark and abject sea. If you dug the LP on Siltbreeze (apparently the very first material Remy recorded solo), this terse lil two-sider oughta whet you enough for one last Slip-n-Slide. Summer's over, so take your shirt off while you still can. And pick this up. It's $2ppd and I hot-footed it on the review here so's it wouldn't be a eulogy--meaning, I don't think they made a ton.
Pay thru a pal here, why don'tcha, then try n convince me that blue gouache eye peekin out from behind a feathered mask ain't haunting your bedtime. Just try it.