Monday, January 15, 2018

Music Review: Seth Chrisman & Nathan McLaughlin "Earth Tones at the Metal Show" (Full Spectrum Records)

The first thing that I can tell you about this album is that it didn't want to extract the ZIP file because the name of it was too long.   I have WinRAR somewhere on my laptop because when I search my programs it comes up, but why should I expect that to help me out?  After changing the title, it had three different songs get mad at me about how long those titles were (Track 3, 4 and 9 to be precise) so I just rolled with it and eventually got this thing to extract for me.   Some might wonder why I went through "all this trouble" when there have been times I'd say "Oh, you don't want to extract? Then I don't want to listen to you!".

I'm trying to keep up with reviews this year in the sense of reviewing more that isn't on cassette (Even though this technically does come out on cassette, but that's another story) and mainly just trying to review everything this year put out by certain labels, labels that I found interesting last year, and so Full Spectrum Records is on that list.   Granted, if Full Spectrum puts out something that I don't like I'm not going to write about it (And same goes with any label), but I have to at least listen; I have to at least try.

"Earth Tones at the Metal Show" opens with sharp hues.   There are these church organs and it becomes spatial in a Phantom of the Opera type of way.   It has the feeling of drone, but there are these starts and stops which break it up, so it can't truly be.    It's like a drone remix though so I'm digging it.   Banjos come out and then it actually takes a deeper trip into the drone.   It's somber, quiet and minimal.   The plucks of the banjo do return and then it turns into what I can only describe as the sound of barely scraping by.

Through broken strings come talking in static.    There are tracks called "High Falls" which seemingly take a dive into silence but to truly hear certain pieces of them this is best experienced through headphones.     It's ambient but it's also something like what you would expect based on the title.   I'm not saying that these two guys should go up onto a stage and perform this during a set by Slayer, but you know, you can hear some sort of metal influence in here, yet the idea of it being "Earth Tones" has its justifications just as well.

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