Thursday, January 31, 2013


Machines That Kill People LP reissue
Galactic Archives/Priority Male/SOTA Chicago

My sweat glands empty & my hands start to quake whenever some writer tells me I gotta forfeit all sense of music history just to enjoy a particular record. (Next thing you know, I'll have to surrender alla my worldies & torch my passport.) I ain't gonna do it, nor should you--but I do suggest you shut off the label maker and keep yer brain quiet if'n you spin this re-ish of ONO's impressive debut. It don't need yer help in bein' any more confounding a transmission from 1983 than it already is. Just let it bleed out into the room, cast numinous strobe shadows like it wanna, and plant your ass somewhere stable. Machines that Kill People ain't powerful because it self-consciously foxtrots in the DMZ of spiritual jazz, Cold Storage-menace & no-wave. (It's so easy to slip back into, innit? --Ed.) On the contrary, this don't strike me self-conscious at all; just the byproduct of articulate folks, dialed into inner spaces for which no area code was ever listed. It ain't about mischief, either, & whatever it was tryin' to decry don't seem to have much to do with music, per se: more like religious fanaticism, reckless foreign policy and the mislaid goals of the ever-dimming counterculture. It's an arousal, an incitement of sorts. When midway thru Side B a frat rock fuzz-stomper emerges outta the hollerin' clouds, I realized it wasn't meant to seem like a fireworks display but a German air show.  It was a reminder that what came before wasn't a rumble from the wreckage, but a lugubrious moan that it's on its way. Wild, handmade riflings from a barrel pointed out again, as ONO are back in service--bigger & younger than before, & with a new one on Moniker. Catch them live if you can; the footage of them on Youtube is entrancing. Maybe we'll see their 86 LP Ennui redid next-like...? Preese?

Get it direct from Priority Male Tapes, who are shapin' up right nicely.

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