Monday, August 4, 2008

Review: Eufonico Fringe "Teatro de La Crueldad"

Earlier this year I saw local band Eufonico Fringe and they were great. After their set they said they had records for sale. When I asked if I could buy one I was instructed to pick from three different colored pyramids. Inside the pyramid was the c.d. and all the track information was hand written in permanent marker on the inside. It was probably the best packaging I have ever seen for a c.d! (I picked the blue one) After listening to the record, "Teatro de la Crueldad," a few times, I have to say, it is pretty good.

Although nearly an hour long, there are but six tracks. The very long songs (the shortest being nearly five minutes and half with the longest weighing in at over eleven minutes) have almost no vocals, save for some insane laughing. While I enjoy their live show and especially the drumming, on the c.d. the drumming sounds horrible. Not the drummer, per se, but the way it is recorded and mixed. It sounds like insane (alleged) killer and legendary record producer Phil Specter's Wall of Sound circa "End of the Century" by the Ramones (they did not like it either), but done in an amateurish way. It is a problem that persists throughout the c.d. and takes away from what is otherwise a very nice sound. Again, it has nothing to do with the performance.

Now that I got all of that mean stuff that makes me feel like an ass out of the way, onto the good stuff (which is most of the record). "Dedos Ambulantes" is a meandering mix of screams, distortion and sound which invokes the audio presentation of the Joker's demented mind on the Dark Knight Soundtrack (minus the large number of musicians and orchestra). Meanwhile, "Guilhotina" is more guitar driven and sounds like more of a psychedelic, progressive rock version of the Liars. "Lamuria" and parts of "Pasar Tiempo" make use of a more experimental edge closer to that of early Pink Floyd without lyrics.

Overall, the record is a decent effort which suffers from periods of bad production. The band itself is creative and interesting both live and on a c.d. If it was not for the production I would be head over heels about "Teatro de la Crueldad," but I think with a more professional recording Eufonico Fringe has the capability to sound as scary and strange as Suicide or as cool as the Liars.

Other Cool Stuff to Check Out:

Dark Knight Original Soundtrack by Hans Zimmer and James Newton Howard (2008): The coolness that is the Dark Knight is presented in dard themes (fair enough) and straight, unmitigated weirdness.

Example Track: Why So Serious?

A Saucerful of Secrets by Pink Floyd (1968): Early Pink Floyd that is a showcase for Syd Barrett's crazy mind.

Example Track: Set the Controls for the Heart of the Sun

Suicide by Suicide (1977): As for the scariest thing I've ever listened to? This whole album is it.

Example Track: Ghost Rider

Drum's Not Dead by Liars (2006): Experimental post-punk coolness with a whole mess of noise.

Example Track: Let's Not Wrestle Mt. Heart Attack

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