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I just finished writing about the cosmic synth voyages of Emeralds offshoot Outer Space, so how fitting that the next thing I have to critique today is the self-titled LP of Cosmic Thoughts. Kosmische this ain't, however. This lot play a scratchy, spiky post-punk racket with sharp trebly guitars, a Joy Division-ish economy and quite a New Yorky sounding downstroke-heavy intensity that in places is making me think of Parquet Courts.
The recording is a little lo-fi but in more of a budget-priced way than a self-sabotaging one, and it works with their spindly post-punk aesthetic, with simple chiming guitar hooks ringing out over a tight, focused rhythm section and often a simple droning organ melody. They manage to fit quite a lot of variety in here though...while about half the tracks do stick to that urgent bark'n'thrum aesthetic, 'Test Dream' is a driving krautrock near-instrumental (except some gang "la-la-la"s) full of eagerly strummed Chatham-esque guitar, pounding repeato-rhythms and a measured sense of pace and melody that brings to mind 'Here Come The Warm Jets', 'Old Scratch' which closes the A side gives us a gentle organ drone break amidst the buffetting indie rock storm, while hypnotic closer 'Apollo' has more than a touch of Cold Pumas about it.
One thing this is reminding me a lot of (although it must be coincidence) is the debut album by Montreal's Ought which came out a week or two ago. Good old-fashioned indie rock with ideas and personality and tunes. Very good.
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