Like a cross between Tool’s album artwork and the intro to the old Spider-man cartoon. Also reminiscent of a recent Clinic video (we’ll say it again: free-floating eyeballs are too creepy for words).
“Drop” is the title track from Thee Oh Sees’ upcoming full-length; it arrives on Record Store Day.
The Telescope presents: the top albums of 2013. We gathered best-of lists from staff and contributors, crunched some numbers and came up with twelve records that unanimously wowed us this year.
Has an album ever made you feel dirty? Guilty? Like your wife busted you in perv row at a strip club when you were supposed to be out buying diapers?
Not since 2 Live Crew, likely, but it’s lately been the go-to reaction when confronted with Thee Oh Sees albums—even before you hit PLAY. Take a long look at that cover, up above, and you’ll understand. Give the video a spin too; it’s from their prior record (Putrifiers II), but seems relevant here (check out two videos from Floating Coffin *here* and *here*).
Floating Coffin is rock ’n’ roll that crawled out of a gutter. It’d be a fitting soundtrack to the various stages of the narrator’s disintegration in Fight Club (“I am Jack’s Raging Bile Duct”), and it manages this downward spiral without having to resort to swearing or sex.
Thee Oh Sees’ booking agent put a scare into us, a couple of weeks ago, when she told SF Weekly that the band was going on indefinite hiatus—we’ve gotten used to them delivering 2-3 records per year. Singer/guitarist John Dwyer later provided clarification: “THE BAND IS NOT BREAKING UP. THIS IS JUST A WELL DESERVED BREAK.” He even promised a new album in early 2014, so we’ll be back on perv row in no time.
It took us a while to get to Water On Mars (it was out in March), but we’re loath to leave the red planet, now that we’ve settled in.
There’s plenty of Thee Oh Sees-style grit here, and it’s typically embedded in the sort of rock riff that’d make you groan if it wasn’t so well executed. Influences run from the obvious—Dinosaur Jr, Sebadoh—to the not-so-obvious: Stone Temple Pilots, Weezer, Sloan. Purling Hiss aren’t shy about channeling alternative rock’s formative years, and like last year’s Spiritualized album, they nail every style they tackle, from waves of ballistic noise, to pastoral strumming and trippy stoner jams (“Everybody’s steppin’ on my shoes!”).
A start-to-finish listen is definitely no chore, with this one. Check out “Mercury Retrograde” below.