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LITERATURE

 » Full Dark, No Stars - Stephen King's new novella questions mankind's ability to trust others.
[02.21.2011 by Bridget Doyle]

MUSIC

 » The Top 30 Albums of 2010 - Fashionably, fabulously late, our favorite music (and believe me, there was a LOT) of 2010, the year that some have called the best year for music ever. And only some of those fools work here. Plenty of usual suspects, lots of ties and a few surprises that I won't spoil, including our unexpected #1.
[12.24.2010 by The LAS Staff]

MUSIC

 » Live: Surfer Blood/The Drums at Lincoln Hall, Chicago, IL - Remember when Weezer used to put together records that you could sing along to and rock out to? That's what Surfer Blood's show was like!
[11.04.2010 by Cory Tendering]

Music Reviews

Screaming Females - Castle Talk
»Screaming Females
Castle Talk
Don Giovanni
Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross - The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
»Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross
The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
The Null Corporation
Deerhunter - Halcyon Digest
»Deerhunter
Halcyon Digest
4AD
No Age - Everything in Between
»No Age
Everything in Between
Sub Pop
Robyn - Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
»Robyn
Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
Konichiwa
The Walkmen - Lisbon
»The Walkmen
Lisbon
Fat Possum
Chimp Beams
Menina
Concent Productions, Inc.

Rating: 8.3/10 ?


February 27, 2007
Jerome Loston is talking on a cell phone and having a conversation with his own heart. And if that's not "out there" enough for you, the MC introduces you to a "life coach" who will get you to stop dreaming of floor seats at Miami Heat games and start living the life you want, and his name is Pat Riley. Follow the teachings of this Armani-clad Shaman and everything you desire will be yours. Or if you just want to relax on the steps of a brownstone and take in the panorama of city life with Loston, that's all right too. It's your hip-hop dreamworld.

Is this an acid trip or an infomercial? Actually, it's neither. It's just "Sleep Talking," the chilled-out, atmospheric opener to Chimp Beams' second album, Menina. Comprised of the Japanese-born trio of K-Go Mizutani, Yusuke Yamamoto and Marihito, president of Concent Productions, Inc., and the mix master whose flawless artistry makes this project so fascinating, Chimp Beams is genre-mashing wizardry and proof that evolution is real, especially as it relates to electronica.

An exercise in slow-moving, hypnotic electronic dub that's a warm, tropical lagoon of vibraphones, flute, melodica, light, jazzy guitar and steady, shuffling hip-hop beats, Menina will put you into a lovely coma. Chilled out to the point where eyelids droop, Chimp Beams' transient mix melts techno, soul and funk with post-rock aesthetics and world music into a soft-toned, muted pastiche. A psychedelic jungle of echoing electric keyboards, insistent beats and softly rippling sonic ephemera, "R2~Libyus Mix" is a feast for the senses, whereas the title track slides clean-sounding acoustic guitar and cosmic whirrs over easy beats for a tranquil, natural composition that feels entirely organic.

And while the otherworldly tape manipulation, ice-cave synth, colored vibes and flute of "11217" open into a frozen Siberia of pure, cold sound, and while "One Dub" spills an amorphous, coagulated formation of soulful instrumentation and New Age effects into a multi-tonal slick, it's "Sleep Talking" that you'll want to get lost in. Loston's smooth, almost spoken delivery and surreal lyrics are your guide into a dreamscape of fluttering flute, expansive synths, melodic guitar and hypnotic beats. Comparing menstrual cycles with a DJ's spinning "turnstile," Loston glides between cosmic and urban worlds with style, humor and heart.

There are missteps. The lugubrious dub of "Brooklyn DUB" is pretty but pointless, with only very basic movements; on the other hand, "One Dub" slyly combines mind-altering drone with deft scratching, languid beat and saxophone loops and those watery vibes. Anything descended from these chimps would be happy to call themselves simian.

Reviewed by Peter Lindblad
Peter Lindblad lives in Appleton, Wis., and bleeds green and gold just like all the Packer fan nutjobs in the area. He does draw the line at wearing blocks of chedder on his head, or any other body parts for that matter, though. His professional career has taken weird twists and turns that have led him to his current position as an editor at a coin magazine. He hopes his stay there will be a short one. Before that, he worked as an associate editor at a log home magazine. To anyone that will listen, he\'ll swear that Shiner was one of the greatest rock bands to ever walk the earth. Yet he also has much love for Superchunk, Spoon, DJ Shadow, Swervedriver, Wilco, Fugazi, Jawbox, ... And You Will Know Us By The Trail Of Dead, Queens Of The Stone Age, and Modest Mouse, among others.

See other reviews by Peter Lindblad

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