Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Time of Orchids - Sarcast While (2005)

At one point holding the ridiculously commendable honor of being one of the few truly rock-rooted bands on John Zorn's Tzadik label, Time of Orchids kicked off the splendorous occasion back in 2005 with Sarcast While, their 4th release, and by golly is it a doozy!

Often described as the ideal middleman between the glistening ingenuity of Kayo Dot and the disharmonious glory of groups like Thinking Plague, I'm more inclined to describe this band, and furthermore Sarcast While, as Yes or even The Beach Boys doing industrial dream pop with a wicked shoegaze emphasis. Yeah, you read that correctly, and the music these bastards produce is even more inspired than the description suggests!

Personal highlights for me are those tracks where the group's strong suits, such as juxtaposing delirious dissonant soundscapes against the glow of the band's usually four-part vocal harmonies [three guys, one Julee Cruise of the Twin Peaks (the television series) soundtrack fame]. These tracks include the shimmering 'It Gone' and the Brian Wilson-meets-Swans feel of 'All We Ever Wish', the latter of which is worth the whole damn record all by itself! Still, a twisted mind will revel madly in some of the blacker hymns within the album ['High Enthusiast', 'Earned Over'] and probably scratch their heads more than once at the rockabilly free-jazz puree of 'Ours, Engendered' before resuming a state of revelry.

Do you love Kayo Dot but wish they were more outlandish and could sing like a certain poppy bunch of surfers from California? CEASE THY EXPLORATIONS AND REAP THINE BOON!1

Listen Here - "Everyone Is Suspended"

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