Sunday, September 6, 2009

Joshooa and the (7/13th) Moon – Hundred Monkey Effect [Bum Tapes]/Offensive Orange – Brown Future [Bum Tapes]

There are 3 Joshs in my underground sonic lexicon, Josh Burke, Josh Lay and Josh McAbee. Josh McAbee, appearing here under a much more unwieldy moniker, was the last one I needed to hear to complete my self-created trinity.
Hundred Monkey Effect is a cool tape and I think I remember reading somewhere that McAbee mangled tapes to make his sounds which seems very possible. This tape is made up of a lot of loops of amplified something or others, it stumbles along at a quick pace sometimes working with strong rhythmic constructions and others it’s more of an unmetered crawl. The tape is a lot darker than the Sloow Tapes-ish artwork would lead you to believe.
There are 3 or 4 pieces on the first side. The first couple are thick, grimy ventures while the last has a hand percussion-esque loop, squiggly tape manipulation and brash sounds akin to bottles breaking entering at will.
The flipside is a heavy loomer. A lot more drones at work here. After two shorter pieces it settles into its muddy swamp of loops featuring loping crumbling rhythms and very strong sustained tones. There’s a skeletal melody sketched underneath which moves the melting mass along before another short piece wraps things up.
I grabbed this Brown Future tape because two guys perpetrating sonic crimes with guitar, tapes and electronics in a chilly basement seemed right up my alley. Also, I grew up in an offensively orange house. Oh, by the way, David Payne from Fossil$ is in the band.
The tape isn’t necessarily harsh but definitely rough. It kicks off forcefully rhythmic loops before backing off a bit until introducing a whining loop that gets the old tectonic plates a groanin’. The duo works in a pretty fractured way, they aren’t in sync a lot of the time but it comes out sounding like they are for some reason or maybe they are in sync and I’m too dense to see how. They still know how to spread the fizzy feral noise on thick though. Near the end of the first side the duo gets ready to cruise and does so with aplomb.
The second side sputters to a start along to a creepy recording of an autopsy report. I really like the following bit though; they get hot and heavy, wrecking speakers left and right. And then ostensibly because Offensive Orange found their WTF quotient to be at unsuitably low levels, they switch on the stereo and play their noisiness along with some metal core album. I dunno, it’s weird. As far as double O’s playing is concerned, this track is pretty slammin’. The metal jam is kept (thankfully) pretty low in the mix while the guys spew and smear static, feedback and amp innards on the walls.
Bum Tapes is a killer label and these are two perfectly fine examples of it. The Joshooa tape is all gone (only limited to 20 I think(!)) but the Offensive Orange tape is still available.

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