Tuesday, September 02, 2008
New genre tags are fine when the goal is to attempt a fitting illustration of specific sounds, that's honest and helpful given the amount of music in the world here in 2008. Problems arise when the "no waves" and "post-rocks" get thrown around as lazy umbrella terms for any and all music that's remotely like the champion of that camp. All this blathering about results from reading up on Abe Vigoda, a band that's still very new to myself and probably most far from L.A. Without fail it seems every writer calls their sound tropical punk, which first struck me as odd, "what does tropical punk sound like?" Their myspace lists them as "alternative/tropical/punk," a self-proclamation that saves me from asking anymore where the writers' adjectives came from. So is it just a joke of a descriptor? You'd think so from a band called Abe Vigoda, but no, Abe does rock some steel drum/jangly guitar shit and Caribbean rhythm, meaning that Skeleton, their third full length and one of the summers' better albums in my books, sounds like the cream of the tropical punk crop and is a strong argument for more bands coming up with a tropunk of their own. "Post-disco thrash," "nu-garage house," just make it and give it a dumb name. That should end scene scoffing and hopefully leave seriously boring bands without a place to hide.
olFactory Records likens these noisemakers to a younger, more abrasive Talking Heads, best comparison I've come across yet, but comparisons don't do with bands like this. Have a listen, buy the album.
Abe Vigoda - Animal Ghosts
Abe Vigoda - The Garden
Abe Vigoda - Skeleton
And to wash it down, a close tropical relative in El Guincho. "Kalise" is all over my playlist. Check more from him with AW's post.
El Guincho - Kalise