Having watched Fat Worm of Error completely rule Seattle last night, it hit me that Fat Worm may be the next, or I guess, current evolution of rock & roll. How they sound/are so spontaneous and yet sound so perfectly synchronized is unfathomable. Cause they do play songs, but within the structure of the songs the quintet are the freest souls for a thousand miles. It's a fantastic conundrum. Jess is wailing in her constantly changing wardrobe of home-made costumes, Donny is continually breaking every string on his bass, Tim is physically playing his guitar with a guitar pedal, Neil is busy making mongoloid faces behind the drum kit and whatever sampler/clatter mess he's got back there and Chris is just doing all the unnameable shit that Chris does. Their records are good but they don't fully capture the volume nor the absolutely possessed rock & roll attitude.
This brand new 7inch (literally, UPS delivered it to them yesterday) inches just slightly closer to capturing the live feel of a Fat Worm set. Chris described it as them being a dumb punk band that puts out 7inch singles with really bad artwork. And well, you know Fat Worm of Error is the smartest dumb punk band around so I don't have to tell you that this is good.
The a-side is "Double-Headed Baby" which I'm guessing gives you a clue to deciphering the alien blob on the front. Jess is playing an unusually pretty melody (which my girlfriend has identified as a variation on a piece of music from The NeverEnding Story) on her casio amongst all the buzz 'n junk clatter. The pleasant melody and its skronky backing are actually a really great match and the rest of the song sees the two ends trying to meet in the middle leading into this weird but awesome dirge-like first half before splitting to a groovier refrain of "double-headed baby" with excellent rubberband bass and some cowbell-laden drumming. Things get even denser as the needle rolls along with guitars flipping out into various manners of atonal attack with some sweet stereo-panned effects in there too. In the punk tradition, it's a pretty short song but, man, it's like an entire punk album packed into 2 and a half minutes; a dense, tightly coiled spring of fun and fury.
The flipside "Anglo Sox" is solid too. It throws you right into a rumbling cowbell/bass/2xGuitar prog nightmare before Jess comes in and opens up the track. The track is a big tug o' war between nothing and everything. The song gets splintered into all its separate elements and quickly krazy glued back together then splintered then put back together then... well you get the idea. Unlike the first side, this track is definitely on a closed loop veering back and forth to either extreme. It sounds like there may be a clarinet or bassoon chirping along with all the strings too but don't hold me to it. The vocal refrain of "hysterical wizards!" gets a little tiresome after being repeated ad nauseum but with Fat Worm of Error nausea always comes with the territory.
Anyway go see these guys as they travel the nation(!!) and buy this and all the tapes too. They're good.