AQUARIAN BLOOD: Last Nite in Paradise: LP

It took me a bit to remember that before Aquarian Blood there was Moving Finger, featuring future members of Aquarian Blood. Then I remembered that I slept on the Moving Finger 7”. Then I remembered I missed both Aquarian Blood 7”s. I’ve had to make all sorts of adult decisions with my money, and it’s put me super far behind in my record buying! I’ve seen Aquarian Blood a few times and grabbed Last Nite in Paradise when they came through my town. Live, Aquarian Blood is all intense energy, a bit psych-y but not wholly psych. And more than a little creepy and intimidating at times. I wondered how this would translate to record. The first few spins of Last Nite in Paradise had me thinking the recording was a little too lo-fi to capture all the background subtleties. This ain’t no dig, ‘cause I really dig Aquarian Blood, and I almost never prefer something regular-fi over lo-fi. It’s the creepy extra sound effects Aquarian Blood use that puts them over the top, and that stuff can be lost in lower fidelity recordings. Subsequent spins reveal new textures, all the better played louder. There are a few garage punkers (“Get Wet,” “Cold Foreign Advisor,” “Sex Is Pure/Love Is Blind”) but the more haunting songs (“Skinsuit,” Won’t Forget to Die”) add an uneasy quality that maybe make you question your moral compass for liking this record. Vocals are slurred by reverb, so it’s hard to make out all the words, but frontwoman Laurel’s delivery is powerful, in a “how does she not burst a blood vessel?” kind of way. I’m still not sure if the chorus to “Blood Chant” is “she drinks Aquarian blood” but maybe it’s better not to know. –Sal Lucci (Goner)