World’s Strongest Man - We Don’t Dig Graves With Shovels Anymore 7.3
World’s Strongest Man is political post rock. This isn’t up to the silent treatment level of Godspeed You! Black Emperor. Rather what World’s Strongest Man does is hark back to From Monument to Masses. Much of what that now-defunct band is extremely similar to World’s Strongest Man. Like that defunct band World’s Strongest Man liberally uses samples to get their point across, guiding the listener to the ultimate political statement. Without this guidance the listener may have been brought to the same place.
Traditional crescendos mark the first side, ‘Crocodile Tears Alligator Arms’. It starts out with an ‘I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take it anymore’. Alongside this relatively angry sample comes rather slow guitar work reminiscent of Tortoise’s slow builds. Indeed the interplay is one of the nicest parts of the track as the entire thing begins gaining momentum towards the end. On the second track things get a little more temperamental. Judging from the opening sample World’s Strongest Man shows what happens when such darkness it allowed to wander freely. For this final track things are far more urgent, faster tempo and more distortion.
Using samples effectively is particularly troublesome work. Thankfully with these samples World’s Strongest man is able to create a narrative. Mixed alongside shouted words it comes together creating a unified work. Every piece fits into the next. Unity is clear on this recording despite the many different forms of delivery. On message is important for this particular mixture of politics and music and World’s Strongest Man understands this perfectly.
Dominique LeJeune - WAKE EP 7.1
Dominique LeJeune is sweet stuff. WAKE EP is full of tender little moments. Her voice carries it. At its most chaotic and distorted her voice remains the center of calm of the album. Indeed it is memorable enough to count as a soul for the album. For a few songs the sound and voice melt into one single sound, hard to distinguish which came first. Dream pop is a good term for what is going on in these seven breezy tracks. Things are blurred. Rarely do they get confrontational. The songs float on by leaving a pleasant impression.
The album starts off gently with a bunch of small children chanting ‘jellyfish’ near the water. It may seem insane to start it out with such a silly beginning. However this sets the tone for most of the album. Dominique LeJeune remains committed to channeling a sort of child-like wonder with the world. ‘In Reveries’ the first ‘proper’ track shows this off nicely. And yes she does mention jellyfish in the track showing the children’s chants weren’t for nothing. ‘Penny Please’ is a delicate song. Here Dominique strips away the distorted guitar replacing them with crystal clear acoustic guitars. By far the winner of the bunch is the eclectic ‘Shoulder’. On this song Dominique veers from quiet to loud, slow to fast, and the buildup is glorious. Actually it remains one of the few songs on the entire album to offer a real sense of gigantic proportions.
Overall this is the perfect little EP to listen to as one drifts off to bed.