Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Reviews:: Slim Twig Vernacular Violence

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Slim Twig is not going to warm the hearts of many listeners. He’s raw and unpredicatable, samples from a unique set of influences, and the job of introducing electro-billy into the mainstream is not one I’d really want to entertain. That being said – unlike one reviewer who I usually see eye to eye with – I found myself enjoying his Vernacular Violence EP and the new take on some of his classic material.

Much in the same way a certain breed gravitates to Ed Wood or George A. Romero flicks, Slim is not writing songs that are easily embraceable by the masses, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t good. Slim has always been conscious of his own style, focusing on the pomp of his hair and the darkness he'd prefer to dwell in on almost every song.

While that continues here (which makes sense as 4 of the 5 tracks were - in some form - on his debut EP), those thinking this is the same old Slim are in for a shock. The EP, which is essentially 4 quick thoughts and one long drawn out, swirling nightmare (Whiite Fantaseee) will reshape the way people will look at Mr. Slim Twig – especially those who had heard White Fantaseee in it's original form.

From the opening moments of the opener, Brothl Hunting, and the mention of snake oil salesman and harlots, Twig’s style is solidified in that b-movie, cult cool. The songs play like an actual performance, almost as if Slim hits start on his drum machine and decides to freestyle the sounds that fill the rest of the space. The yelping vocals he adds to the twisted notes that fuel Tormen bring just enough energy and intensity to the track to help you feel the pulse of his characters.

But without question, the most interesting song on the record is the full fledged vision Slim reveals on Whiite Fantaseee. Over the course of the ten-minute song the persistent keep time drum machine beat and muted guitar strums unsuccessfully try to create order amongst the chaos and terror. The ghostly strings, droning white noise of the synths and the frantic vocals slowly spiral into disarray, leaving you hanging on each and every word when the panic filled vocals return.

He reveals another wrinkle when a poppy, staccato delivery on the album closer (Gate Keeper) is nicely paired with another simple drum machine beat. The track, at the start, is almost accessible until the sonic blasts and strings that are thrown into the song push you to edge of your comfort limits. And like any art that challenges you to look inside, people are either going to love it or hate it. Personally, I’m on board and can’t wait to see what twisted sounds and textures he adds next.

Posted at 1:22 PM by ack :: 0 comments

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