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Music Reviews

Screaming Females - Castle Talk
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Castle Talk
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Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross - The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
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The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
The Null Corporation
Deerhunter - Halcyon Digest
Halcyon Digest
No Age - Everything in Between
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Everything in Between
Sub Pop
Robyn - Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
The Walkmen - Lisbon
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Fat Possum
A Problem of Alarming Dimensions
8088 Records

Rating: NR/10 ?

October 1, 2004
When the light coming from above hits the radiance from below, and you don't know where the hell that sound comes from, then you're holding A Problem of Alarming Dimensions' self-released debut in your hands. Certainly they're not torch-bearers for anything except for their music, an instrumental ensemble of sounds and sights. They may not be the most exciting post-rock outfit in many years, but they carry their own credo to where they want to preach it.

Coming from Central Arkansas, the band incorporates that hill-billy mood, and argues that they have something to say about what music should sound like today. H-Hov-Hover is that kind of studio effort that will make you wet your pants waiting for a suitable follow-up. Imagine a jam session with your favorite musicians hanging around, and you will get a glimpse of the paraphernalia assembled for this record.

A flourishing sense of melody aims at each song's private skeletal, with catchy and poignant strings built around the epicenter. Experimentation leads to an opaque overview of what to expect of the next arrangement. Who said good music should be predictable, anyway? Straight-ahead post-rock, experimental diagnosis of everyday life, instrumental ambient settlement, you name it. But face the unavoidable: A Problem of Alarming Dimensions is mathematics turned pleasant.

Their impressive soundscapes capture the impetus and a burgeoning archetype of how to craft beautiful, yet textured compositions. H-Hov-Hover was recorded at Zero Return Studios in Atlanta and in the band's garage in Conway, Arkansas. They used both analog and digital technology to put the songs together. "We Prefer Luciferian" and "Subsidies for Our Favorite Killer" may not be the most orthodox tunes in recent history, but sometimes, just sometimes, irony is the greatest of weapons. And if you pay attention, you can hear some realistic war sounds through the end of "Be Kind. Rewind".

Combining a vigorous guitar patchwork with a humming voice here and there, the album encapsulates a renowned theory of sonic mayhem, which states that harmony comes along with guttural thickness. Experience nothing more than 40 minutes packed in semi-digital synth cleansing, and feel blessed for what you hear. A Problem of Alarming Dimensions is currently on tour in support of H-Hov-Hover.

Reviewed by Helder Gomes
Currently living on the south bank of the Tagus river, in Portugal, Helder Gomes is a working class hero. He is a journalist for the local radio station Rádio Nova Anten. In his spare time, he skates and watches many odd movies. He is in love with the French nouvelle vague, and the Danish/Swedish invasion. He writes for a number of publications, on the Internet or otherwise, notably the underground Portuguese magazine Mondo Bizarre, and the Jazz Review website. He is also the news collector and a staff witer for the adorable Lost at Sea. Oh, and there is also the Coffee Breakz radio show that he tries to host every Saturday.

See other reviews by Helder Gomes



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