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Shmat's Reviews
For more reviews, please visit Palebear which is where all future Shmat reviews will appear (as of March 2006).

Sweaty From Your Uselessness (7" single)

Got this nice 7" that's Sweaty From Your Uselessness. Ah, I just read back that last sentence. Such crude humor... But anyhow, these are 2 out-takes by Iowa's Frankenixon, released on the Bi-Fi Records label. I'd never heard of the band before. But if this little taste test is any indication of their full length then I might want to check it out. It sounds a little like Chan Marshall coming out of the closet to try some piano driven prog rock. There is definitely enough mathematica in the guitars and drums to satisfy the needs of that crowd. And yet it feels a little less distant or snobby. More accessible or something.

Helpful liner notes point out that these aren't so much songs as expansions of 30 second sound clips. Still, the nearly menacing title track (made all the more so by periodic "played telephone" noises), goes over quite well as a full song. Punctuated only occasionally by Evelyn Finch's emotional vocal stabs, the song revolves around an ominous piano riff that reminded me of a Tristeza song. "Hello? Hello?" is the B-side and is more uptempo with piano reminiscient of Ben Folds Five. I didn't like this one as much as the first, but hey it's the B-side after all right? In any case, this record was definitely a pleasant little surprise. Though, what's with the sorta incongruous picture of the asian chef on the front cover?

- review by SHORTY (6.8.04)        

Bi-Fi Records
PO Box 1327
Ames, IA 50014

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