Published Mar 20, 2008Where to begin? Captain Beefheart meets Yes at a dance where the Locust opens for Fred Frith and Fantômas? This latest release of the Aleuchatistas "no prisoners manifesto is actually a re-release of their second CD. This wound up in the hands of John Zorn, who promptly offered them a release on his Tzadik label calling it "the long awaited reissue of a cult rock masterpiece. While the math frenzy still rules with heart-stopping tempo changes and jump cut compositional technique, they manage to somehow swing harder than their last effort with a looseness that stands in stark contrast to the precision. Its actually a treat to listen and marvel at how this flexibility can happen in such tightly orchestrated music. While most of such stylistically specific music, especially one with such an in-your-face attitude, would sound pretty tired after about half a CD, this one stands up to the end. The Aleuchatistas manage to expand their thematic material beyond their consistent stance through sheer musicality. This is better than caffeine and twice as tasty.
How does living in America right now affect the way you make music?
Guitarist Shane Perlowin: I think the frenzied pace of media, coupled with the sterility of the American shopping experience, makes a perfect blank canvas that begs for more experimentation. Dishevelled rhythms, broken lyricism and white noise crafted from harmony alone are obvious choices for us given our collective experience. The tragedy of American politics is still easy for Americans to either ignore or experience as a black comedy. Our music, when not naively optimistic, tends toward the latter. It is a struggle to make this music here. Touring is very expensive, radio, with a few exceptions, is like a broken record and venues that do support true freedom of expression are disappearing. However, perhaps this reality is where the edge in the music comes from.
Your music has a lot of reference points with contemporary music (punk, prog, non-idiomatic improv). Where do you place it in terms of the audiences and communities you reach best?
We dont plant our flag firmly in any one of the communities you mention. We are always surprised by who our audience are. We have found in our experiences travelling and performing that what we do transcends factions while exciting listeners of all ages and supposed musical preference. (Tzadik)