Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Cassette Review: Roadside Picnic "Criggion" (Masters Chemical Society)

[$10 // Edition of 60 // https://masterschemicalsociety.bandcamp.com/merch/roadside-picnic-criggion]

The first thing I need to note about this cassette which does effect this review is that as it was sent to me it had been rewound almost all the way (though not completely) to the side which has no markings on it.    I have however assumed, as I tend to do, that the side with the markings on it is Side A and as such rewound this back to the beginning of that to listen to for the first time.     So for this review the side with the writing on it is Side A and though i probably could have used the digital audio to sort this all out I still prefer my way.

SIde A begins with this hollow screeching sound that is rather sharp but doesn't last long.   It turns into the sound of drums beating  but also water dripping.    At times when I hear it all I can imagine are those big, heavy plastic barrels that street percussionists use in New York City to bang on.   (You know the ones, just google Home Depot)  And yet at other times when listening to this I can hear it more as that Phil Collins sort of percussion.   After some bottle rattling we go into what I believe to be the second movement on Side A.

There is this deep synth sound that has a Star Wars appeal to me but is also found in the opening of Lucha Underground.    It has a heavy turmoil and at times can sound as if it is trying to speak.    Through quieter moments there are also beats, not so much as drums but just as the general act of banging on things.      Of course this is all still remains primarily coupled with that big synth sound that once again has me thinking of the final scenes of "Return of the Jedi".

On the flip side we begin with strange noises that even I can't begin to identify.   It's almost like someone is digging through the trash and there is some glass clanking going on.   In that sense, it does also remind me of something that might occur behind the scenes in a bottle return room.   (Though I know bottle return rooms are not universal, just from having them in Connecticut and not in Texas)

Following a harsh static wind tunnel this takes on the dinging of a cash register.   It then turns into some sort of drone tones as well by the end and as I felt like the first side was split rather evenly into two movements this side seems to have a few different stories to tell.    What I like about this though is the overall feel to it is that of being a scavenger in a post apocalyptic time.    You don't know where your next meal will come from and your searching through what was once thought to be trash just to find something that will help you survive.

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