Cassette Review // Powerviolet / TLVS "HSAL #65 - "Powerviolet/TLVS"" (Harding Street Assembly Lab)


For those following along here and familiar with TLVS now, this is a nice split cassette because you get to hear both songs from them and from Powerviolet, who might be new to you.  Powerviolet starts things off on the first side with big electronic beats.  This has synth in it and it just feels like something you would dance to, a little bit like Orange Peel Mystic.   There is a nice drive and it's just banging.

Big beats open up the second Powerviolet song.  There are elements of New Order in here and as the first song was instrumental this one has some muted vocals within the electronica.  By the third song, "Object Impermanence In A Hospital Bed", you can feel it begin to move like an industrial song but it also has some pretty blissed out tones within as well.   Big, distorted blast beats end that song.

"Got Through" is a song which starts off with those sci-fi type of synth notes.  It's chaotic and a little bit of video game sounding.  Drum machines come in before the end of this first side.  I hear what sounds like those blink 182 bass lines and then the synths come in as well.  It's pretty and it just feels like floating away on a small boat in a large ocean, but in a good way.  Somehow it reminds me of a lullaby.

TLVS takes over on the flip side.  Steady rhythm drumming begins things with a sort of ambient drone.  Sharp tones come through in a way of song and then it becomes this big driving march.   We get into a breakdown with cymbal crashes and this all begins to remind me of post rock, as TLVS tends to do.  Big, distorted guitar riffs cut through and then we're back into that melodic post rock vibe.

There is almost a country rambling part when the first TLVS song comes to an end.  Big distortion takes us right into "The Shrine Of The Infant Jesus Of Prague" and there are such lovely guitar structures within here.   You can feel the FNL and then faster paced drumming takes us into the third song, "Honey From Every Wind".    Sweet tones come through like blissed keys and then the big guitars return as well.  Fast drums swirl as the guitars fade out and I can hear some guitars by the end which remind me of bagpipes.

What I really love about this cassette is that it's mostly instrumental and so both sides can feel similar as they explore a similar amount of energy but they seem to go about it in different ways.   Powerviolet has more of a synth-based dance rock whereas TLVS replaces that dance with a drive and the synth with the guitars.  Either way though, this cassette is fun to put on when you have a purpose- whether on a roadtrip or just trying to get chores done around the house- because it can keep you moving.  


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