Wednesday, June 8, 2011

RADIATOR REVIEWS: Micro Organs - And Her Ugly Aura [Alt Review]

And Her Ugly Aura is the debut EP of Halifax art-pop project Micro Organs. Fronted by former Meat Curtains lead Guitarist Jenny Gillespie, the songs evoke a sort of backyard black magic mysticism, anti-religious fervor and post-geometric symbolism. The first couple of tracks sound like they were recorded live off the floor with no overdubs, highlighting the energetic and lean in-studio performances. The guitars in these tracks are fairly constant crunchy power chords, The dynamism lies more in Matthieu Blanchard's drums, which are constantly changing and shifting yet always on point. As i said before these are lean recordings, there isn't a single bass track on this album. But in a way quite similar to The White Stripes, the lack of bass isn't really that big a deal. The tracks for the most part don't feel like they are missing the bass. The noise interlude 'Tincture' breaks up the EP at the middle. Whereas the first half has a live sound quality to it, the second half features a much more produced quality. There is some bold panning on "Microbes" and the track "Grass Bed" sounds more sculpted sonically, more full, more interesting from a production standpoint than the more straightforward recordings of "Crooked Hairs" and "Ne'er Do Well". "God's Song" got reworked into a guitar song having been originally a hauntingly satanic track with dark chanting and heavy organ drones as track off the Radiator Comp Vol. 2. The new direction helps to keep the album cohesive but it lacks same directness and personality of the original. In And Her Ugly Aura, Gillespie forgoes extra instruments and instrumentation making it lean almost to a fault as i feel it would have benefited greatly from more instruments, particularly more guitar. The songs here feel like they have a lot of room for the band to explore by layering different instruments and melodies over the frameworks of the songs. The lack of instrumentation leave some tracks feeling a bit spacious. The songs here are well written, the vocals are very interesting, the drums feel punchy despite having a softer, less compressed kick and snare in favor of prominent cymbals and the album itself is cohesive statement, intriguing in its own way leaving with it much room for the band to grow in any number of possible sonic directions. 7.6

reviewed by Mohamed El-Darwish RADIATOR COLLECTIVE 2011

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