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New Seefeel + Foo Fest Rocks the Block

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The fine folks at Warp have posted a new Seefeel track called “Faults” —a teaser from their new EP that will be out on September 20. The band headline a much-anticipated one-off show at London’s ICA on September 16.

Judging by the torrent of snark on Soundcloud, the new track has met with divided opinions. “Rubbish,” “Magic.” “Boring.” Even former producer (and de facto band member) Mark van Hoen weighed in to critique the watery sound: “The drums don't sound like a real kit, and the guitars don't sound right.”

Is it fair to judge one song against fourteen years of silence? Because that’s what seems to be happening here: this isn’t about the song, but about a platonic ideal of a band that exists in the past. (Seefeel 2010 consists of original members Mark Clifford and Sarah Peacock and new additions Shigeru Ishihara and E-da from the Boredoms.)

And in the now? What does "Faults" sound like? I've really fallen for it these past two weeks. Its shimmering, maze-like structure —with layers upon layers of sound snaking in and out of focus — rewards repeated listens. Sarah Peacock’s vocals still hover just this side of comprehensibility, saving them from preciousness. Like a Xerox of a Xerox of a Xerox, they’re slightly smeared around the edges — an imperfect reflection.

By contrast, the instrumentation is crisp, almost sharp. Guitars have snap and twang, which sets up a nice contrast to the glitchy percussion, which may be too cold and precise-sounding for its own good. Something eastern-sounding in the long, plucked notes — samisen? No matter. It's enthralling.

What do you think?

25 YEARS OF AS220
In other news, I can’t wait for this year’s Foo Fest. AS220’s annual block party extravaganza is always fantastic, but this year promises to be even better: it’s their 25th anniversary! Mark your calendars for Saturday, August 14 and what promises to be a smashing all-day affair!

There’s a slew of bands I want to see, but none more so than hypnotic all-girl quintet Warpaint (Castlemusic by way of White Magic) and the original 99'ers ESG! I leave you with an entrancing Warpaint song that wouldn’t be leaving my stereo (if I had one), “Billie Holiday,” from their Exquisite Corpse EP (2009).

MP3.jpgWarpaint, “Billie Holiday” (from Exquisite Corpse, 2009)

PHOTO BY ANDREA FELDMAN

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