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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).

Slomo Rabbit Kick
Hortatory Examinations (CD)

When it rains rabbits, it POURS rabbits! Look at all these lapine influenced bands, Gram Rabbit, Hem (their Rabbit Songs CD), Men In Fur, Shmat Records' own Hrududu Factory, and of course Slomo Rabbit Kick. I was a big fan Slomo's earlier "Bass Monster Lives In The Bass Forest" album and fans of that album will no doubt dig their Hortatory Examinations EP. Funny and twitchy lyrics surrounded by great indie pop with an edge is a good enough summation of their stuff. The songs on the EP do seem to ring a little less lo-fi than Bass Monster, and one wonders if that has anything to do with DCFC's Chris Walla engineering bits o' the drumming.

Jay Chilcote has one of the most recognizable voice fingerprints in indie rock that I know of; an often slow lazy drawl that speaks of days spent lounging of the sofa in old flannel, watching the History Channel (sorry, I stole that rhyme directly from their previous album). He's also a really prolific songwriter, being the main force behind The Revolutionary Hydra and The Dutch Elms. More often than not his voice gets the telephone band pass treatment and it really suits it well. Think of a ressurected Pavement minus Malkmus' insistence on being an all around brat, and with Joana Bolme singing on more of the tracks. I really like the combination of Chilcote's and Anna Lange's vocals; it adds a bit of necessary spice to the tracks.

"Two Timing" starts things off in rip roaring fashion with electronic beats and blips flitting in and out. There's something almost 80s about a few of the songs, including "Smell Casino" which reminds me of The Rentals plus Imperial Teen. "Man's Routine Is To Work and To Dream" has a bit more discordant jangle in the guitar chords, which is sort of an underrated trademark of Slomo. They certainly aren't afraid to explore other alternative key structures though they always rein it in so the song isn't lost to experimentalism. "This Long Parade" gets a little political and features lines about "shameful carpet-baggers" stretched out on jumpy drumbeats. "Psuedo-Science" mixes a sly bassline with the cliche "You know it's cynical / But you feel like you're the only one". For some reason this lyric reminds me of a Dandy Warhols song. In any case, I had the album on repeat for awhile and didn't even notice. It's really good; and hooray for rabbits!

- review by RABBIT (1.13.05)        

Kittybox Records
PO Box 30712
Seattle, WA 98113

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