Gritty, jittery, psychotic: Somerville crew Gondoliers has crafted an album that sounds like a back-alley nervous breakdown. This LP is laced with squealing, dissonant guitar, beating drumlines, full-stops and stalls more tense than any Hitchcock thriller. “Whodini” opens the album with a Buddhist meditation gone awry: ominous groans, swelling gospel organ, and droning crackling guitar burst into an electronic freakout built on crashing jungle beats, and the momentum pushes through the entire album. The whole thing feels like a rusty pot that simmers, boils over, simmers, boils over…and it’s built on heavy punches of screaming organ, spaced-out guitars banged with a stiff fist, and bent notes so disorienting it makes you think your snot-nosed brother is fiddling with the speed control on your record-player. But the album’s true creepiness comes from the little things: the gasp and babbling that begin “Bottom Feeders”, the dial-up tritones that underlie “Little Necks”, the sudden and brief slide into harmony on “Tell A Friend”. And singer John knows this; his lyrics are eerily contemplative, almost philosophical, and his delivery shifts perfectly from demented rambling to stone-faced sighs of boredom. Gives this album a whirl – you might go crazy but you most certainly will not be disappointed.
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