Lord Fyre – ‘Destruction at 2013’ [Review]

‘Destruction at 2013’ is an album which really wants to be heard.  The first by Lord Fyre (Seth Mahern of Apache Dropout, John Wilkes Booze, and the Magnetic South community), and one of the last from Emperor Jones, this set of recordings has apparently been reissued twice so far, and is fast approaching a collision with the actual date of its title, initially spit-balled over 7 years ago.  Not an indicator of its ultimate value, but I can’t say I see why the campaign to keep this record in press.  The set of seven tracks, oscillating between freak improvs and psychedelic rock fits, captures the best of its zeitgeist (think circa 2005: Religious Knives, Shackamaxon, Pelt, Sunroof!, and on), while apparently lying just off the grid in Indiana.  So outside of an undisclosed illness we’re funding, my guess goes to the ‘We did this thing and no one noticed’ credit-recoupment scheme which has historically proffered healthy dividends for understated records.  It certainly has with me, as I listened to all that stuff, but never Lord Fyre.

And as an indicator of its quality, that’s a shame: attesting to its durability, the relatively-brief disc holds its own amongst stalwarts like Human Adult Band and Warm Climate.  Starting with the 7.5 (out of 30) minutes of “Drinking Away Demons”, the disc fakes you out from go, as the slow-burner shakes and ragas its way to a frenzy of watery effects – the demons aren’t going but coming! – yet conspicuously disjointed from the proper jam “109th & Amsterdam,” which features the most boosted riff between Radio Birdman and The Hives.  Small and Siltbreezy, the track has an adorable lo-fi reservation, smartly-layered with stupid technology.  Mahern’s vocals feature the snotty posturing and self-importance which embolden the best of his lineage – Suicide, Iran, Horrid Red – but take this in hand with the total vacancies which straddle such tracks, and truly bizarre things bloom: “Vintage Violins” on its own is a Hive Mind edit, slithering silent between the record’s pops; “The Night Before” like a reading of Pavement lyrics to an empty room where someone can’t figure out where to set her guitar, still abuzz; and then the finale, the title track, jogging backwards from its initial release to a Jad Fair sort of indie nostalgia for the paternalism of the 60s, with news sampling and a dusty diorama of clattering atomic aftermath.  Where the aspiration went to rock, and where the inspiration came from to sess, that is the mystery.  That it turned out so well is the motive for the mystery.   93 copies in hand-printed sleeves with multiple paste-ons – until the next reissue!

Auris Apothecary LP

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