The first impression I had of this cd was the cover. "What the hell is this? Is this some kind of grocery store new age cd?" It was stark and straight with 60s-era National Geographic-style photos of Native Americans. It was my first time with EPI and I really wasn't sure what I was getting into. Thankfully, the first couple tracks cleared that up really quick. While it definitely feels influenced by that tribal trance vibe of Native American music we commonly hear in the US, there is also obvious contemporary ambient/noise/guitar haze/computery elements as well. Not that these guys might not have some kind of Native American connection, it's just obvious that this is most definitely not the usual tourist trap version of a Folkways release.
It's almost bluesy at times. Who is to say that blues doesn't have some sort of common drone stomp thunder ancestor? Heck if I know. It's track three and after a flute solo, we're getting rained on along side something stringy and backward slowdrunk feedback. Too peaceful to think.
"One Shade Darker" is kind of a neat skuzz groan rock howl with totally antithetical tinklings that really clash in a perfect anti-perfect sort of way. Onward and then we move into noise scrambles and suicide by elvis coming back from the dead, great crotch spirit rocking us from our deserts with a pile of huffy scum dessert trays in orbit around us and in time with [oh the end of a track].
Slider guitars tumble tangling us up on the highway as we hit the western lounge exotic raggah weed. It's grand. A real American spaghetti western with ketchup and heartburn. Bedroom cowboys. Sampled Indians. Pots. People in UFO suits. More pots.
In a somewhat overcrowded drone universe, I like this very realistic, down to the pavement scraper stuff. To be yourself in trash culture is king. "Thank you. Thank you very much." 8/10 -- Matt Perkins (27 June, 2006)