Sonic Reducer: Spoon • Willow • Holy Glories

3 min read
Share ::
Well, this one makes me feel old. On Dec. 11, Spoon released a remastered, deluxe edition of their album Gimme Fiction in celebration of its 10th anniversary. In 2005 this album was a touchstone in my nascent musical taste, and I still think that “I Summon You” is a perfect song. For Spoon, it marked a transition from the straightforward rock-ness of Kill the Moonlight to the weirder and bigger sound of Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga. The reissue is being released on double-LP and double-CD, along with some extra goodies like a full-color book documenting the making of the album and a poster. The really exciting bit? Included are 12 previously unreleased demos: 10 Gimme Fiction tracks and 2 never-before-heard tracks, all of which hearken back to Spoon’s garagier sound circa A Series of Sneaks. The demo of “Was It You?” might even be better than the album version. (Robin Babb)

Willow Ardipithecus (Roc Nation Records)

On December 11, Willow Smith (daughter of Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith) pulled a Beyoncé and dropped an album without any announcement. The debut album is called Ardipithecus, and it’s as strange as you’d expect from a 15-year-old with endless resources at her disposal and a public penchant for new age, weirdo spiritual practices. That being said, it’s astonishingly unpretentious and unique—no Bieber-esque pop gems of young love here. The songs are sparse, usually just a simple electronic beat or a bass riff on which Willow (who’s doing the mononym thing now) hangs her lovely and dynamic voice. “I’m just a teenager/ but I feel angrier than a swarm of hornets” she sings on opening track “Organization & Classification,” proving that she’s a force to be reckoned with. Ardipithecus is genre-bending, exciting and a really promising debut; I’m looking forward to hearing more from her. (Robin Babb)

Holy Glories Holy Glories (Self-Released)

A super economic collection of four hard psych tunes in the vein of Hawkwind and Jonestown from some of Burque’s harder-core weirdos—formerly of CanyonLands and Terry Shiavo Dance Party—Holy Glories is free from unnecessary guitar solos and the other self-indulgent BS so often on display from purveyors of psychedelic music. Excellent production, with bass the way bass should sound, pounding drums worthy of The Church of No Sleep and practiced, far-out fuzz guitar from Mark Campagna whose childhood in the suburbs of London in the kid’s wing of a rambling old pile legitimizes his English accent—which it is said he picked up from various birds while tripping in the countryside. It’s worth repeating that Holy Glories don’t let one of these four tunes run too long and, while packed with noise and weird, this EP jams econo. (Geoffrey Plant)

1 2 3 316