Review: Faux Fur/Ghost Animal – Split

Artist: & Ghost Animal
Album: Split
Label: Scotch tapes
Year: 2010
Format: c-45

Seven tidbits of acoustic noise rock heavy in discordance and finished with a lo-fi aesthetic litter the Faux Fur side. Static is prevalent throughout the meandering tracks that are mostly quite reminiscent of pop music. If it weren’t for the off-kilter rhythm and completely discordant melody one might think this to be an album of indie-pop but weird elements sneak in everywhere. Faux Fur strikes the strings creating cringe-worthy squeals and sends his vocals through distortion that disguises his melancholy lyrics. The album is quite discomforting, in the same way as Sonic Youth is. It’s impossible to put your finger on something and yet you want to listen. You want to hear what will happen next as the tracks constantly tease you, catching you bopping your head while you try to figure out the antagonistic melody.

For noise lovers, “Constant Dances” is the one to hear. It’s a minimal experiment in sound collage recorded on what sounds like old tape-decks. It’s a twisting (and short) track. For the fans of lo-fi noise rock my favourite is “Real Fur,” a fast discordant piece with a stunning tempo shift. It reminds me of early post-punk, being super gloomy, distant and yet catchy too.

While the b side comes out of the strange mind of Ghost Animal, it sounds fairly indie-pop but there are elements of distortion and a shoegazer’s drone. The mood is incredibly dark. Acoustic guitar flirts with rumbling thunder and tortured vocals. While it’s not extreme or violent, it is certainly interesting with Ghost Animal exuding this perverted sense of pop by using loops of catchy hooks and every essential pop ingredient in a not-too-poppy way.


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