I just don’t get it. These guys have either a) tricked me into thinking that I’m totally stupid or b) have put out the most trying, difficult, annoying record I’ve heard in years. And I’m still not sure which one it is. You know Moss Icon, I think it’s on the B-side of the It Disappears 12”, where there’s just that one long live song? Where the singer starts out by thanking the audience for inviting the band out for spaghetti dinner and square dancing and then says that he’d like to show them some of the sights and sounds of their (Moss Icon’s) planet? You know? And the song goes on for a long time and by the end of it, at least after a couple listens, you’ve got this sneaking suspicion that the entire fucking band is just making shit up as they go along? But it’s still really good? That, yeah, they’re obviously a bunch of fucking weirdos but there’s enough emotion and energy being kicked out that the song’s actually pretty kickass? Well, Lords Of Light’s Energy LP is right up there in the weirdness level, and they also seem to be making shit up as they go, but I’m just not getting the same sense of “Holy shit,” that I’m hearing a band really pull something off. It just falls flat, like they’re just trying a bit too hard to be quirky and odd. I mean, sorry, maybe I’m just not getting it, but the vocalist does this strange David Yow/Jon Spencer yowling thing and sings with a country accent here and there, whispers way too often during the quiet, sparse parts of the songs (of which there are many), the lyrics talk about everything from AC/DC to the love of the universe, and the music itself just sort of meanders and plods along with no real momentum—these quiet, math-rock parts that don’t really go anywhere until they blow up into these three-piece grindcore parts that seem kind of wimpy. It’s just a weird fucking record. The little one-sheet thing says they’re going for a blending of powerviolence, progrock and AC/DC, and I just don’t get it at all. At first I thought it was a record put out by a bunch of hipsters meant to totally pull a fast one on “the kids”, but now I just think it’s either an album that is a) so many light years ahead of my paltry cerebral/spiritual cognitive-abilities that I will always be confused by it or b) just super, super cruddy. And like I said, I honestly yet to decide which one’s correct.
–keith (Life Is Abuse)