Monday, July 21, 2014

CASSETTE REVIEW: Bean Snack “II” (Personal Archives)

                This is my funny opening statement.  I make it either funny or seemingly clever so as to suck you into the rest of the review.  It may or may not work, but I’m told it’s what the real writers do.   I like to pretend to be a real writer sometimes, but I just can’t get the hang of alcoholism.

                (To be fair, whenever I see the name “Bean Snack”, I can never remember if it’s “snack” or “shack”, as “Bean Shack” would be a good name for a Mexican restaurant)

                We begin with ambient lasers, drum machine beats and loops.   I bet you didn’t even know that ambient lasers existed (I didn’t), but here they are, right where we left them (Alone; on the bus)   For some reason this makes me think of the song “Toxic” by Britney Spears, but that quickly fades.   Out comes the siren synth dub with audio clips and we’re once again rolling.   It’s a little bit Doctor Who now, and then there are some straight up electro loops like the 4th of July.    Is Personal Archives even capable of releasing a cassette that isn’t patriotic?

                Alongside some harmonies and industrial moving, we begin to experience Mario jumps and the synth beats that follow take us on a twisted carousel ride.   Some hints of J-Pop bring out the vocals and this sounds- at least vocally- like Coheed and Cambria for a little bit until Side A just straight up cuts off. 

                Side B still has electro loops, but there are now some moments of triumphant guitar rock added in for good measure.  It’s vocals plus urgent synth and at least on a mainstream level reminds me of The Killers because I’m Mr. Brightside.   Spoken word over free form jazz interrupts and then transitions to something between Nine Inch Nails and Peter Frampton.   Before it’s all said and done we have some Prodigy beats and then Charlie Brown piano and when did you ever expect to see those two names together?

                What an awesome cassette and I made it through the entire review without talking about burritos.  (Dammit!)

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