Friday, September 25, 2020

Cassette Review //
Mezzanine Swimmers
"Kneelin' on a Knife"
(Already Dead Tapes)


$7 //
Edition of 125 //

"Kneelin' on a Knife" starts off with a song of the same name.  It's got these drum machine beats with upbeat rock sounds which make me feel like it is a little bit garage and a little bit trippy, somewhere between Daniel Johnston and Flaming Lips, to speak in generalities.   It gets a little bit sharp now as we just ride that fuzzy wave.    

We go into this groove now, which almost feels like a disco, and then we're slowly trying to warp into another sound as well.  It's so weird because we have this almost completely different song trying to break through behind this loop in front of it.    Eventually, after listening to the song for a bit, it can feel as if these two sounds have blended together but the way that they are presented- with this loop being the loudest part and the vocals so far hidden back- it makes it seem like they are two different songs at times.

Everything feels spooky now as beats come through like a knocking.  Intergalactic tones come through to give it that "The Phantom Planet" type of alien vibe.   It has this way of echoing as well, not just within the vocals but with the way that the bass goes.   Then it begins to feel like these alien tones are really keys or perhaps even a guitar and that brings me back to the idea of this being on those garage rock lines.

On the flip side we open up with beats and the way the tones whirr through make it feel like this song is haunted.   I feel like vocals can be heard faintly in the background, like trapped souls, but this cassette has also conditioned me thus far to hear the vocals being behind every other sound so it might just be my ears playing tricks.  

We come into the next song a bit louder, a messy game of pinball with these start and stop beats.   The vocals are distorted and hidden back there behind the banging and the way this one just feels trippy.   The guitar just floats through these notes and in some ways it makes me think about what Green Day might sound like if they were a more experimental band.   This gets pretty heavy at the end- more bass and distortion just consumes the song.    As we drift off into this distorted sea it feels like it is the only way to go out- wandering and not yet coming home.  








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