Thursday, 16 August 2012

Moon Pool & Dead Band - Human Fly

In a recent piece about a pair of albums by John Elliott's Outer Space Project, I remarked that he had been extremely prolific in releasing music under a variety of different names during the past six years. However, Nate Young who forms one half of Moon Pool & Dead Band makes this work ethic seem positively slothful by comparison. As a member of Michigan noise legends Wolf Eyes alone, his tally of releases goes well into triple figures and keeps on rising through an almost infinite number of splits and side projects.

Moon Pool & Dead Band first appeared on my radar after picking up a cassette called Overspace which was originally sold at a few live shows in 2010. They followed this up with a self released EP called Gossypol and then a self titled LP via Agitated at the end of last year. It's an unlikely pairing to be honest; Nate Young with his impeccable experimental/noise credentials and Dave Shettler, drummer in garage rock outfit The sights, but the biggest surprise for me was the music contained on that first cassette. 

And this new twelve incher on Not Not Fun is no different, Human Fly contains three tracks of wilfully smeared and squashed techno hewn from the classic Detroit template. As on previous releases, each track is a product of live improvisation without overdubs using analogue equipment and bargain basement effects. The fidelity is suitably blunted with tape hiss which makes this set almost impossible to place on a timeline stretching over the past twenty five odd years.

The title track pits a squelchy bassline and acidic bleeps against a chugging drum machine rhythm. At the six minute mark, a twanging guitar line pinched from The Cramps' classic punkabilly track Human Fly appears momentarily before fading out, only to reappear again a few minutes later during the coda. It's a ridiculous touch but it works brilliantly - Poison Ivy would be proud! The remaining two tracks; 'Jagged Orbit' and 'Cyber Rebels' follow slightly lighter but equally skewed trajectories. 

Highly recommended listening for those who like their electronics decidedly old skool and a bit lo-fi.

The 12" Vinyl can be purchased through the Piccadilly Records online shop, the digital download version is widely available although Juno is always a reliable service.

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