Red Krayola Soldier Talk

Twenty-eight years after its first appearance, this hard to find document of an interesting moment in the Red Krayola’s history reappears courtesy of Drag City. A truly challenging, messy work full of contradictions, Soldier Talk was recorded after the band toured Europe in the late ’70s and reflects the paranoid discomfort of the era. Joined by Pere Ubu and Lora Logic, the band explore modernist arrangements and times in often jarring combination with their earlier psychedelic sound. Occasionally, the band use conventional chord progressions that remind of continental European folk traditions and goads one along only to be met with spastic, semi-discernable ramblings. It works because with each new track the record takes a different direction. On "March No. 14” there are horns that sound at once like a police siren and a hot, dripping summertime croon. When the horns lead to a repetitive drum beat that trots behind a call and answer howl, the drone becomes infectious. Born in a turbulent time, this album deals with a morose Cold War theme that is complemented by the Red Krayola’s broken, non-cohesive avant-punk beat. The result is a frighteningly alive and bold statement that destructs and amends all at the same time. (Drag City)