Music Reviews



Fat Possum

I’m going to skip the biographical details because I’m more than a little appalled that most of the press that I’ve read (gorillavsbear, SPIN, Fader) just pro forma regurgitates the press release, and I’m more than a little bemused that a platter that is this awesomely cult and opaque is being spoken of in serious tones as a “big thing for 2009” – anything to get the ad-clicks I guess. Okay, so even though the dominos are all in a row for a sickening onslaught of NME-esque “Biggest Band Since The….” hype, I’d like to make the introvert’s case for why you should dig this fucking record. Remember Crescent and their ramshackle slabs of grayscale despair and raw-nerved rage? Have you ever listened to the Velvet Underground ripping through “White Light White Heat” and thought to yourself, “Man oh man, if only the recording wasn’t so polished here?” Or as a sop to more mah-dern sensibilities do you enjoy Blank Dogs Cabaret-Voltaire-meets-Unabomber aesthetic?

Wavvves is VERRRRRRRRRRY simple T-Rexian, Buzzcock-esque pop hooks utterly submerged and suffocated by warped and bent sonics – you thought Pavement was sonically obtuse, ha! that shit was Emerson Lake and Palmer. The songs are all lessons in Wire-esque brevity, which is a great fucking idea, modal drone dreamweapon music condensed into two minute songs and all drowning in tinny reverb, echo and distortion. Caveman drumming and shimmering guitar noise clashes headlong with androgynous, distorted alien yelps and moans that sound like an interdimensional mod or a religious rite. God, I just love how every pretty song on this album is put through the fucking wringer of hiss and crackle. It makes it so much more special.

Everything here is instinctual on a level with early Cramps and Mary Chain (without sounding like it at all). These are songs to be learned and played – wrong or right. Creation for the mere sake of creation, not as a part of a big mission or scheme, just to pass the time and to keep life beautiful.

Oh, and he’s only 22? Shit. For aliens and outcasts only.

Fat Possum:

Recently on Ink 19...