Vacuum Tree Head: Thirteen!
There are some albums out there that while you can't rave about how wonderful they are, or berate the incompetence of those involved, still confuse, baffle, amuse and in places entertain. Thirteen! from Vacuum Tree Head definitely falls into that category.
Recorded between 2002 and 2009, although somehow still only clocking in at around the twenty minute mark (the longest song "Soul Tundra" is less than three minutes) Thirteen! is a gallop through what could best be describe as Frank Zappa, but a bit odder, jamming with King Crimson at their most angular, with female vocalists, diving from style to style and incorporating what I can only call some cartoon-like noises and vocal effects. Now if you haven't been scared off by now, there is a good chance that you might actually enjoy all or at least some of what Vacuum Tree Head seem to almost randomly spew out. Across the fifteen songs and in fact from second to second, the style varies from pop to rock, funk to punk, avante garde to electronica and something that sounds like automatons talking in a foreign language.
Every few songs a riff actually breaks out and from time to time a genuine musical thread tantalisingly appears, although don't hold on to the thought of actually grasping onto it for more than a few fleeting moments, but it is actually the drums of Justin Markovits and the wonderful twin female vocals from Lucy Foley and Sylvia Gordon that stops Thirteen! from completely unravelling.
Quite amazingly from such a brief collection, there are moments of greatness, moments of calamity and much confusion contained within this album, which undoubtedly makes this for adventurous listeners only and even at that, only for those in that group with a strong enough grip to really keep a hold of what is going on.
1. Tambok Pekpek
3. Neck Talkers
4. Backlit Epiphany
7. Hindi Ko Alam
9. Pachinko Che
11. Soul Tundra
12. Nights Of Horseback Salad
13. A Fistful Of Honey
14. Sophen Law
15. Naw Meng
Added: November 28th 2010
Reviewer: Steven Reid
Related Link: Vacuum Tree Head MySpace Page
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