KID SHIRT

Monday, November 21, 2005

MANIACS DREAM: "DIE, LEARN, NO WAY"

Been really digging this recently:



"Die, Learn, No Way" by Maniacs Dream. Their second LP, I think. A beautifully packaged vinyl, and it's on HP-Cycle. Been around for a few months, but, ah well, you know...

I've mentioned these Finnish lunatics before and I'll mention them again, no doubt. Some of the musicians also play in Avarus; some of them don't. Don't worry if this is too confusing.

MD come at this from more of a Free-Rock angle than their dreamy, boggle-eye'd, Tampere-dwelling cousins; this is more cranked-up and amped-up; an ink-splattered, impishly punky riot of basement-noise. There's some vague early Sonic Yoof/Buttholes references here as sarky guitars encircle a nervous-sounding drummer...you can almost hear him thinking: What the fuck are they doing...w-where are they...? But he bashes away at the cymbals, gamely, while they grin and gurn and make faces at him, windmilling at their geetars, trying to outshrill each other with squawky wah-wah traffic noizes...



There's no tracks on this, just two sides of vinyl...pieces of music cut in and out of each other w/ no prior warning. Nothing ever starts or ends; just random tape or Pro-Tool edits...30 seconds of early Mothers sub-concrete practice-tape tomfoolery sideslides into modulated-organ abuse and percussion skrissh, like early Faust on powerful pain-killers. Eventually, like children, tempers get a little frayed, and some fucking nasty little ear-souring random chords get created...then a bass-guitar starts bouncing around like Tigger, chased by plucked strings that go Kplyyynk! and Plkkkt-pinnng-k'ploin like a rubber grasshopper w/ teeth that's nipping at its heels until it slows down, stuck in a mushy bog of malfunctioning organs and whistles. A guitar strides onwards thru the marshland, zig-zagging, as if it has five broken spider-legs which it's using to avoid unpleasant little wet bits.

Then a bunch of over-eager teenagers turn up and play some Rawk Musik, but half of them are playing a Uriah Heep cover-version, while the others wanna be Thurston Moore. It's fucking brilliant, but the drummer sounds really scared again.

There's a great one-finger'd guitar solo over a brutish fuzz-bass motif...everyone locks into a drunken forward lunge: Rock Music for Rock Apes!

The first 5 seconds of Side Two are so ghastly and incomprehensibly fucked-up that it actually takes a moment or two to realise that, shit, it's only a guitar and a voice....there's nothing to be scared of... I love it when music frightens the fuck out of me like that.

But this is how music should sound: constantly shocking and surprising itself; mutating and making up the rules as it goes along...this LP mocks the audience and dares them to follow while it beckons w/ a skeletal finger from the entrance of a scary-looking cave...

When I first heard this, I soooo wanted to form a band, for the first time in years, just so I could make music that sounded like this...which is missing the fucking point entirely.

Meanwhile, back on Side 2, someone moans and mutters thru a cardboard tube while guitars are played like violins and violins are played for laughs. A drum-machine runs amok amidst cavernous bubbles of reverb'd noise. Then, for a giggle, they somehow squeeze a whole piano and a drum-kit into a washing-machine, and small bits of glass shatter and break, and metal objects rattles as the whole thing rotates and slowly gains speed. And then...

Ah, fuck it. Make the rest up yrself.