HELIGATOR 008: The Furr – ‘Coffin Syrup’
Driving with a suspended license in your mom’s Astrovan, windows down with the tape player at ear-bleeding level. The Furr are there. The muted thud of drums and pulsing bass line rattling asbestos from the ceiling rafters and seeping out of an unfinished, unheated basement. The Furr are there. Your older sister in a black Die Kruezen t-shirt shoplifting CD’s from Mediaplay. The Furr is her. You, alone, in your Dodge Dart, at a red light, air drumming and soloing like a maniac under the stare of a semi-disgusted sorority girl in her shiny black escalade. You make eye contact. Roll the window down. And crank it. You are the Furr. We are the Furr. The Furr is everywhere. The Furr is everyone. The rockist of all rockist tendencies seethe from this Morgantown, WV foursome who, in the vein of The Breeders, Dinosaur Jr. or Sonic Youth, make gut-punching guitar solos, ace melodies and gritty, direct-to-tape distortion crucial and inestimable contributions in the realm of basement arena-rock.
HELIGATOR 009: SPARKLING WIDE PRESSURE – ‘LIVE AT TRUMPETER’S PALACE’ EP
Looking back through my e-mail exchange with Sparkling Wide Pressure I have to shudder a bit at the sheer amount of exclamation marks I ended every sentence with. “Wow!! Thanks!!! This is great!!!!”. Every sentence had a two exclamation mark minimum. Needless to say Heligator is pretty excited to be releasing something from the Murfreesboro, Tennessee musician Frank Baugh. Live at Trumpeter’s Palace was recorded live with a few overdubs thrown in later. The result are two tracks of something akin to watching live surgery. After careful diagnoses the rest is as much as carrying out a careful plan as it is responding to changing variables, improvising your way out of unexpected jams and keeping the patient alive while not killing them is like so many spinning plates. I wouldn’t really know. I’m not a doctor. But what I do know is that listening to these tracks is watching/hearing a master work. It is a peek into the brain and heart of musician who’s approach to creating music isn’t a linear, additive process but a continual conversation between himself and the infinite possibilities of the analog/digital cave of wonders. At the end, these tracks come down to decision. Un-field tested, un-focused grouped, un-AR’d, perhaps even un-thought until their inception. The result is an EP full of intentional beauty that surprise and thrill on every new listen.