June 21, 2009

Exploding Head Trick, s/t cd (EEEEEEEE Records), orig. release 1989

Jane Anfinson - violin
Harry LeBlanc - keyboards
Satoshi Shinozaki - guitar
W Harper - bass
Joe Miller – drums

So far, these would be the pop stars on the EEEEEEEE roster. “Why So Much Hell” has lively complicated drumming, a super-catchy chorused and arpeggiated guitar and a pretty vocal a la Joni Mitchell (swooping and rangey) – could have stood to be mixed a bit higher to make the lyrics more comprehensible, though the wordless components of the vocal are keening and cut through. “Capsize Corsage” follows and makes us forget that, to some extent – the guitar squeals and feeds back and occasionally makes little squonky noises, and some guy is singing, a tad like a robotic Adrian Belew or maybe even those tracks by Martha and the Muffins that Mark sang on (hey, I’m Canadian!). “The Angel” continues the same pattern, complete with whammy bar attacks. “Lucky 7” returns to the land of tunefulness, complete with a somewhat eerie violin, jazzy guitar and burbling bass – it’s an instrumental – yes, it gets a bit busy, but it’s a GOOD busy. “Through No Power” returns to the female singer, who REALLY sounds like Joni here, and the melody is 80s Joni, complete with rhythmic twists and turns, clanging guitar and the nice winding violin again. “PKU” has ska hints winding through it, as well as the violin, so Camper Van Beethoven comes to mind, but devoid of country and most smart-ass tendencies – once again, no words. “The Solution” starts with gentle cymbal taps, tentative guitar, bass, keyboard and possibly violin sounds, then the female singer, and eventually a virtuoso violin attack – if you don’t like the beat on this one, be patient, because it will change. “Now I’m Grownup” combines a slightly detuned piano and organ sound with hyperactive drum rolls and a lyric about childhood/adulthood differences, and again has an off-beat/skanking component to its rhythm – it sounds like nothing so much as a highly caffeinated circus soundtrack. “Trial by Fire” brings on the sawing violin and a patient, broad piano sound, as well as the polyrhythmic drum attack (where is this drummer today?). “Take Me Home” is not the John Denver song, though it definitely has a fiddle on it and a passionate vocal. “Sneeze” finally brings on the full prog, complete with synthesizer solo, violin madness, instruments pushing in several directions at once, the assertive drums, the constantly shifting structure and, yes, some of the pomposity (just a little, though).

The notes on the website indicate this band was around from 1986 to 1993. It is just WRONG that this seems to be their only document…WRONG, I tell you…


Anonymous said...

Hello and happy new year!
Thank you for your kind words about our old work. It's been a long time since I heard any of our old stuff.

Anyhow, there is a a bit newer tracks archived by the late bassist Ward B on Myspace.
2 tracks on the bottom are 4-piece and the last reincarnation of the band. Hope you enjoy.

By the way, my name is misspelled. It's Satoshi with "t."

Thank you!

Tim E Bear said...

I'll fix that misspelling, and sorry I didn't see this before now. :(

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