Sunday, January 25, 2009
heavily mindfucked and doomed to a grim fate
This is a band that i can never get sick of discovering new songs by or videos of, because they're just the most stylish, adept motherfuckers on the planet and they know it. when i get lost in this it feels like i'm in deep space, my skin is on fire in the vacuum of space, i'm slowly spinning around the edge of a black hole moments before my existence is crushed into nothingness, the universe as i know it ceases to exist and i'm dropped out the other side of consciousness as an irreparable vegetable, so incapable of explaining what just happened to me that i'm committed for life to be a ward of the state, jabbering about "sonny bono memorial parkway" and "buffalo chips" to whatever civil servant or lithium zombie happens to pass earshot, heavily mindfucked and doomed to a grim fate.
jruss pointed out the other day that four yawning man songs--including "paseo lindo," the song in david markey's 90s space broadcast burning palms (jennifer's coffee table), which was the first thing that led me to this band in the first place--are available on an ep from 2005 that floats around on ye olde soulseek called paseo lindo.
i finally got it and it is Awesome.
on first listen, in fact, i'd say that the only real problem with paseo lindo is there's not enough of it! in fact, knowing how prolific these dudes are/were and how righteous this particular set of songs is, you become almost insulted once you're hooked, can't believe this shit is only 12 minutes long when it's clear there's hours of material out there, you just gotta get some more, you're sitting on your hands wondering when the fuck that 30-song compilation is ever going to Really come out...but who knows at what sort of pace the obscure machinations of old stoners' musical/pseudobusinessventures truly function? how can you even ponder this kind of shit? just put it on repeat!
this little ep is just as Epically Sonic as the other yawning man 4-songer, pothead, but ultimately because of much different reasons, chiefly due to its songs being more concise distillings of the jazz/surf side of yawning man than that disc overall, but also due to the incredibly spontaneous nature of the live recordings and how sharply defined an image of a constantly evolving group of musicians this remarkably short release depicts, not in spite of their lo-fidelity origins but rather in unabashed celebration of them--that's what pushes paseo lindo fully into focus as a searing, 12 minute blast of pure desert dusk vibe, corroded tape head and speaker cable that demands to be played at neighbor-annihilating volume for as long as you can legally get away with.
the first song, "paseo lindo," births fully-grown from a four count, a perfectly dizzy, fuzzed gary arce guitar lull entwines with lazy bass chording and steady, stuttering sixteenths on the hi-hat all the way into uptempo breaks that come on like the manson family frying the banana splits alive and ebb out into an intricately picked solo that sounds like a dobro fucking itself through a hollow-bodied wormhole. the first time i heard this song i was deep in third-eye hypnosis and it made me a True Believer in this band, i don't know what else i can possibly say about it.
the middle two songs ("crack harder dry" and "fine of papa chile") are both under three minutes long and ride much surfier, simplistic backbeats than a lot of the more modern yawning man stuff does which comes off at moments as almost double nickels-worship, but more of a fury of pointed reverb and twang. both songs also flirt heavily with a bit of double-picked deltones-style maneuvering, ultimately meet deep, heavily jazzy fake-out endings, cut out on real traditional slam-door surf endings.
the last song, "catamaran," i already had, it has really tape rubby Epic vocals that border on cheesy but after many listens i have realized fucking rule, not just because kyuss covered this song much later (so it's cool to see a fixed point in History where one desert monster spawns another,) but because the lyrics are almost certainly about flying above storm clouds while tripping on LSD, which indubitably both a.) rules! and b.) if you are reading this, makes total sense at this point.
YAWNING MAN - PASEO LINDO EP
BY MICHAEL E. RAF-MAN