Thursday, September 9, 2010

Flower Man/Carl Calm - The Breslin Wayside Rotary/The Sag [DNT]

In anticipation of an upcoming Caboladies LP, DNT Records CEO Tynan Krakoff has prepared this double cassette of the two Caboladies solo projects. Flower Man and Carl Calm each contribute a succinct, twenty minute tape to the release though on slightly divergent paths.
Flower Man's tape is marked DNT053A so I'll start with that one first. Cramming in 10 pieces, Flower Man is apparently a bit of a wildman. He's all over the map here with his electronic squiggles, acoustic percussion and weirdo birdcalls on the opening title track. It's somehow frantic and mellow at the same time, don't ask me how. "Away Outdoors" could be an m83 outtake or something, a buoyant synth arpeggio recycles itself and chiming tones hammer out a melody. Very nice piece. "Yayenna Airplane" is a bunch of spacey oscillator manipulations a la Forbidden Planet. "The Quoclo Zoom" sounds like an old video game score with a marching drum machine and stressed synth tones warning of the ghosts, neon boulders and other dangers lying ahead, waiting to befall you. Wrapping up the side, "A Ripple Near the Sun" rests on a looped group of synth plinks with animal-like oscillator manipulations groaning and squealing over top.
Flipping it over "Fostered by a Latch" (ha!) burbles and rumbles to a start. It's another weird one with an array of percussive electronic noises and I think briefly a voiced couched in radio static. "Resurfacing" resembles the title track but features a number of glistening keyboards nestled uncomfortably next to each other over what I think is the same percussion loop from the first piece. "The General Effect of Science" is a collage of random electronic beeps, swoops and whirs similar to "Yayenna Airplane," do I detect a pattern here? "To Be/Wildlife" is a very nice synth number with a mellow, smooth arpeggio and a grumbling oscillator. "Seagull Pill Box" closes out the tape with more animal-like noises, like recreating an aural jungle habitat using nothing but a synthesizer. I know I'm repeating myself but this is some wild stuff, if a little underdeveloped.
Carl Calm flips the script with what is more or less an electronic/dance project. Contributing 5 tracks and one alternate mix... "Acayucan Cacique (Orchestral Mix)" flickers to a start with stuttering organ backed by almost choral keys. It's a great introduction to the tape; its rather a modest arrangement but still with an epic touch. "Crocs Time" gets the beats rattling and shaking, they tick away in a vacuum so to speak until the synthline drops and everything suddenly makes sense. The spacey arpeggiated melodies take over while the beat smashes away in the background. Mister Calm keeps piling on more keyboard melodies and subtle funk guitar stabs among other sounds. Very cool groove. Almost makes me wanna go out and buy a pair of those ugly ass Crocs shoes outta respect. "Bone Destined" takes the tape into a more abstract zone, with many, many layers crashing into each other. Although, they start communicating and making friends as the track progresses with a slowly pumping drum track, materializing along with hints of melody.
"A Royal Hole in the Sky" is built upon a series of short loops, I think from a bass or guitar. Carl does a good job jostling through and splicing the series of loops while the drum track clicks away. "Broad Jaunt" is actually not much of a jaunt. It's by far the most chilled out piece on the tape. Unfurling cosmic keyboards with scattered drum machine coming along for the glide. The tape is bookended with "Acayucan Cacique (Hype Mix)" a much more upbeat version of the track. A drum machine marches along with disembodied singing and scrappy keyboard melodies which I'm really digging. After a breakdown into a solo section of said melodies, the track comes back a little heavier before settling back into the song's main passage.
It's a cool little set as you definitely get a bit of a yin and yang vibe, Carl Calm's intricate sound structures and Flower Man's talent for concocting exotic textures. When DNT drops that Caboladies LP I'm gonna try applying this little decoder ring to see how the two members' styles fit together.
This has been sold-out for a while now, so check the distros for copies...

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