The label, Sacred Bones, is calling Destruction Unit's first full-length garage rock, and I guess there's some sort of personal connection with the late Jay Reatard. But really this is more like Bardo Pond or Heavy Hands than anything on In the Red, it's dense and messy and droning, and really, pretty good if you like this sort of thing. The band is from Arizona, so unless they hang out with Calexico or Neil Hagerty or (I guess now) Tim Rutili (no evidence of any of these artists having the slightest bit of influence, BTW), there's not much scene to constrain them. Which is always the best way to be. How do they do this?
"The set list is usually improvised, which sometimes has us all playing different songs at the same time. Writing new songs happens the same way: someone starts playing and everyone else just follows until pieces are in place. After we jam long enough, we listen back to it and cherry-pick the stuff we liked. When it all comes together, it really works—introducing elements of chance operation into rock based music." Destruction Unit guitarist Jesco Starewell Aurelius II in a recent Noisey interview.
What does it sound like?
I did a dumb thing yesterday and went to the used record store after I'd already had a pint at McNeils (world's best brew pub IMHO, located on Elliott Street in Brattleboro, opens at 2 on weekends, and 4 the rest of the week, stop by if you're ever in town)...and I bought three records out of the junkpile. (total cost $8.24)
Magazine's After the Fact (posthumous compilation, all the "hits", fun listen...I should probably have a proper Magazine album at some point, but this will do for now).
Super Furry Animals' Rings Around the World...(sort of a sentimental pick, cos Radiator was such a favorite when Sean was little, we listened to "Chupacabra" probably a million times, and anyway, it was there and I had had a beer, and why not?)
The Lucksmiths' Why Doesn't That Surprise Me? (because someone at Splendid, can't remember who, was a huge fan of the Lucksmiths, and it can take a lifetime to check out all the weird back alleys and byways that other people who love music want to send you on, but you have to keep at it. I'm really liking this, actually, smart pop that's loosely constructed enough to breathe.)
I also bought the Neko Case on Saturday, which is pretty wonderful, too, but I'm not ready to write about it yet.