Achtung! Achtung! Escape in progress from high security wing of Luftstalag Post Rock....
Achtung! Achtung! Escape in progress from high security wing of Luftstalag Post Rock. Subversive jazz elements identified, possibly armed with outlawed melodies and primitive sonic weaponry! ACHTUNG!
Surely this cannot be allowed. Post-rock musos of northern European extraction indulging in Can-style jamming sessions involving complicated time signatures, we-are-weird names like ‘Morgenmuffel’ and ‘Defribillator’ ([a]Stereolab[/a]’s lawyers, are you reading this?), space-rock kitsch zoundz and techno arse bleeps, but not being completely terrible, amazingly having hooks, the odd tune, and not going on for 20 minutes per song? Sell out!
Once you’ve got over the above, though, and the herculean task of identifying the swings from 17/8 time to 15/26 you start to notice the warped rhyme and reason lurking within this deliberately unholy mess.
The key is invariably unchained melodic bass lines, offset against grating organic dischord and syncopated rhythms (no, I don’t have any more than a rough idea what that means either), which dare to have a visceral rather than cerebral impact, ie, it’s not just an intellectual exercise. Witness the warped grooves of ‘8 Beef Critter’ and ‘Sun Always Shines In Space’, and you’ll swear they’re even funky.
OK, so the likes of ‘Happy Hour’ is pure muzak, stylised and sterile as listening to Formica. But for the most part this is post-rock that isn’t post-rock, because its virtues are essentially traditional.