The penultimate episode is here! You know how this works. I write about albums you don’t care about, and you don’t read it, and it’s all just futile anyway.
You know what I like about Sunn O))? Nothing. I just pretend to because I’m pretentious. It’s all an act. Nobody could like music like this. That’s an objectively proven fact.
That bit just there was a reference to a youtube argument I was engaged in about Steve Reich’s Four Organs. Why would I reference a pointless argument in the youtube comments of a video almost nobody in the world has watched? BECAUSE I AM PRE-TEN-SHUSS.
And pompous too. Jeez I am insufferable.
Rehearsal Demo Nov 11 2011 (2012)
(First full listen)
An international telephone conversation in 2011 AD between Greg Anderson and Stephen O’Malley:
LORD: Hey Steve!
SOMA: Hey Greg!
LORD: Let’s go on tour!
SOMA: Okay, let’s rehearse first.
LORD: Okay, sounds good.
SOMA: And we’ll record the rehearsals and release them.
SOMA: And we can do a limited pressing of 100 copies on vermilion and burnt umber flecked vinyl.
LORD: Yes! I’m into that.
SOMA: And it’ll sell for a metric merde-tonne on eBay and we won’t see any of the money.
SOMA: And then a year later we’ll dump it on Bandcamp and thus dismantle the very idea of a limited edition.
LORD: Look, Steve, whatever you want, just call me when you’re free.
SOMA: Oh wait, let’s do that twice!
LORD: Okay, whatever man, I’ve got to go…
Alright, enough of that shit already. It wasn’t that funny last time, and it’s not funny now.
I need a new gimmick. Something fresh, something the internet hasn’t seen before. I know, I’ve got it!
So, this is a presumably a recording of a rehearsal. Holy Water opens with some French voices talking, presumably added by Stephen O’Malley in Paris when mixing, but after that, it’s pretty much a slightly better recorded version of a Grimmrobes-style live record. Greg and Stevie-boy, as nobody calls him, just shut up and play their guitars, as Zappa once said, and like Arnold Schwarzenegger said to Blanche Baker in Raw Deal, you should not drink and bake. That’s why I’m advocating you follow the simple advice: If you and your friends are going to drink, make sure one of you stays sober to be the designated baker. Stay safe kids.
Okay so the second track is called Peacock Angel, which is a cool name from the central deity of the Yazidi faith. Say, you know how in Kintergarten Cop, Arnold Schwarzenegger suggests that his class play Who is Your Daddy and What Does He Do? Well, this song has nothing to do with that. Literally nothing. It’s okay. Look, what’s to say at this point? It’s satisfying enough, but some of the chord changes don’t really work in a way that’s that interesting to listen to as much as they might be to experience in a live context. It is bookended by some samples. At the end some guy screams something I don’t understand, but it’s not Attila, unfortunately, he’s not here for this record.
Power Nurse is more of this, but has a weirdly bell-like tone to it. Lots of high guitars oddly. It’s the longest track here so naturally I’ll make it the shortest paragraph.
I hope you enjoyed that, but I also hope you left enough room for my fist, because I’m going to ram it into your stomach and break your god-damn spine.
La Reh 012 (2014)
(First full listen)
Get your ass to Mars. Did you know Sunn O))) used to be called Mars? Well, they did. The more you know, eh?
La Reh is kind of a play on La Rehearsal du Sunn O))) or something, but I don’t know, I don’t speak French; but you know, if it bleeds, we can kill it, so I guess we’ll all be okay in the end huh?
Anyway, you should probably go to the bathroom before we get started. But wait, there is no bathroom!
Okay, okay, I’ll stop. But look, guys, you should know that this album is NOT THAT INTERESTING. I mean yeah, if you’re so into Sunn O))) that you could listen to Sunn O))) all day and all night, it’s fine, whatever. I used to think I was that into Sunn O))), but I’m not. If this half-assed Endurance Runn O))) has taught me anything, it’s that I can barely endure the entire oeuvre of Sunn O))), even spread out over more than a year. I guess I’m actually a relatively selective Sunn O))) fan.
That being said, I enjoyed this a lot more than the previous one. Last One / Valentine’s Day is tonally richer somehow than the first record, while also being more monotonous. I guess what I’m saying is I prefer it when Sunn O))) play fewer chords. Invisible/Sleeper seems to open with crazy French wailing and a really piercing high-pitched whine – no wait, that’s coming from the car park outside my bedroom window. Sorry. It’s hard to tell sometimes with Sunn O))).
The track is cool though, it’s just more of the first one really though. Don’t expect anything particularly ground-breaking. Just, you know, put that cookie down, now.
Next week, on the exciting conclusion of…
SERIES CANCELLED BECAUSE OF LOW RATINGS!
Nah, just kidding. About it being cancelled. The low ratings thing is 100% true.
Well, well folks, all that’s left is the mythical Sunn O))) & Ulver collaboration recorded in 2008 that was so great that they sat on it for six years before releasing it. I forget what it’s called. Terrace Trials? Terry’s Tear Aisles? Tay Estuary Ales?