A Slap Sideways into the Sublime

Featuring : Grapefruit + Peepholes

We’re all for returns at 20JFG and friends of the family Peepholes have made many, many returns to us over the years.  Like prodigal siblings returning to our bleak and unforgiving farm to be subjected to biblical metaphors…remorselessly.

Having lapped up their last EP on Upset the Rhythm and it’s epic closer Carnivore we feel suitably prepped for the increasingly wide pendulum swings by the band, out and away from short bursts of kinetic drum/keyboard frenzy.  New mini-LP Caligula opens with another long builder, a Mayan temple of an incline up to a plateau of the breathtaking and bloody.

But it’s 3rd track Tunnels that stands out.  Synths are no longer ripped apart oscillation by oscillation as they struggle against voice and drums.  Instead they’re allowed to form the stem of Tunnels with an honest to god drum machine as accompaniment.  They drift over plains and open up blue/black vistas for Katia’s mesmeric sing/chanting to roam.  There are minor traces of early Techno floating around but these could well be the shadows of Techno’s own progenitors: the electronic minimalism of your pick of Cold-Wave bands.

And then the breakdown.  A unexpected trip into some sort of robo-exotic take on Popul Vuh; a slap sideways into the sublime before darting back to the almost EBM-step of the song proper.

Peepholes – Tunnels

Peepholes’ Caligula LP is out on November 28th on Upset the Rhythm.

Shamelessly appropriated from the consistently wonderful 50 Watts

Grapefruit, in marked contrast to Peepholes, makes it debut on these pastel pages (until a redesign trolls this archived post).

Gorgeous waves of oscillation initially come on like a time capsule of minimalism; a call and response to Spiegel and Riley — after sounding for all the world like a lost section of Vangelis’ Bladerunner score to begin with.  The soft electronic kick moves things forward almost imperceptibly: a quantum monorail to Peepholes’ night drive.

Phase Accidents becomes all about the glide: a million airbrushed geometric shapes reconfiguring themselves in slit-scan patterns, dominating the windows that constrain and constantly reconfigure your field of view.  A sort of proto-Balearic-Disco: a Chariots of the Gods to Lindstrom’s Gulfstream dreams.

Grapefruit – Phase Accidents