Saturday, April 07, 2007
Okay, I'm not going to lie: this song digs its nails into your brain like Bill O'Reilly beating down a Mexican. I recall seeing one of Battles' earliest gigs, at the Ipecac Records Geekshow four years ago. Opening that night at Irving Plaza, Battles were clearly a more beat-oriented descendent of Don Caballero's post-Frippian rock fractalism. They had all the right pieces of a sumbitch of a puzzle - they just hadn't quite figured out how to put them together yet. They splayed themselves on the altar of Potential Energy that night.
...And four years later, here they ride a Mongol horde of a geometric bounce straight into the pleasure centers of the brain.
Yet, whilst everyone loses it over their impending debut full-length, I can't help but think that this music had a clear antecedent: the lamentedly late, unbelievably great Laddio Bolocko. They're not identical, granted: Battles deliver their music with machinist immaculacy, while there's an feral musk to Laddio Bolocko that lends them a certain kind of menace. But the carpet-bombing rhythms, lacerating fretwork, and transcendental devotion to repetition do bear a striking resemblence, wouldn't you agree?
Well, take a listen for yourself...
Laddio Bolocko - "Goat Lips" (from The Strange Warmings of)