Cassette Review //
Bad Trips
"From Beyond"
(Solid Melts)

$7 //

Edition of 20 // //

This cassette from Bad Trips begins with these ominous sounds which fade in and out like an organ with lasers just blasting through them.   I hear what sounds like footsteps and it feels as if we are running.   I imagine a video game version of a 1970's sci-fi film with an added measure of horror and this is something I'd be interested in seeing as an accompanying visual.  This is intense.  It's suspense.  It's the type of music you listen to while sitting on the edge of your seat.  Tones cut through now like a helicopter and I just think about how much this feels like one of those suspenseful scary films like "The Fog".   

You might be trying to escape, but it might not happen.  Beeps and bloops, frequency changes, this has all the makings of someone not trying to fight back and win but rather just survive.  It can be somewhat like "The Purge" in that sense where it's not always kill or be killed but sometimes you just gotta make it through the night.   A beeping now comes in like an alarm and I feel like our location has been given away and whatever terror lurks within this music is about to find us.   Synths just become electric like a force field is around us and I think, at least for now, we are safe.  

All of the synths, all of the lasers and frequencies- everything about this song just becomes dumped into a sea of distortion.  It floats through for a bit.  Shots fired into space.   The calm now, after the storm, and I hear a bird which I can never tell if it is at the end of this first side or just always following me by my side.

On the flip side we open up with this slow drive like "Pole Position" or "Knight Rider" and it's just that perfect driving vibe.  Static bursts come in now.  A door is open.   There are back and forth synth-like tones, that constant drive fading to the background and then this banging feeling like we're in a boiler room being held captive while distorted blasts come in and make me feel like the situation is getting worse- like the color scheme goes from black and white to red.   Beeps take on frequencies like droids now and the distortion is getting heavier.  It still feels like we're in that opening scene of "Saw" though.

A bass line comes through now, like a dreamy song of the 1960's rock n roll era.   Guitar chords strum along while the distortion hits the same as on the song before this.   It feels like we could have that Buddy Holly or Elvis Presley "Blue Hawaii" vibe going on, but the way the static cuts through just makes it sound different as well.  There was a time- and I know people might find this hard to believe- when radios used antennae which would basically cause static when it got windy or other weather happened.   This static though isn't distorting the music of the bass and guitar- it does need to be noted that it is standing on its own with them.

We twist and turn through this twee-pop type of bass line and it still feels like we're on another planet during one of those 1970's sci-fi films but this time maybe we have Elvis Presley there instead.  It's kind of funny that (as far as I know) for all of his singing and acting we never really got an Elvis Presley sci-fi film, like "Elvis Conquers The Martians" or whatever.  That would have been a huge hit I think.  I wonder why they never did that.  I wonder why they just waited until he was older to sneak him into "Home Alone".   Why not sneak him into "Independence Day" or something?

The bass line just sort of fades out at the end of this cassette and it's crazy how much it can make me think of a band like Porno For Pyros rather than what the rest of the song might suggest it should be filed under.  But there is a calm to this, by the end, and I hope that even if the first side left you feeling terrified, the second helped to calm your nerves a bit.  "From Beyond" is just such a great representation though of how you can't have one without the other- how can you know how to relax if you've never been scared?