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Got a split 7" of Dutch weirdness here. Confusingly the two sides play at different speeds. I've never understood why people do that. I mean, presumably the 45rpm side will sound marginally better, but they really don't think about people like me with Pro-Ject turntables who have to lift the platter off every time they want to change speed. Anyway, the Zea side has a crazy bit of experimental pop ...

7" £5.99 MR 9 / PB 005

Split 7" on Makkum Records / de Platenbakkerij.

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REVIEWS

Exploding Head Syndrome / Solo Electric Clavichord by Zea / Oscar Jan Hoogland
1 review. Write a review for us »
8/10 Mike Staff review, 07 March 2014

Got a split 7" of Dutch weirdness here. Confusingly the two sides play at different speeds. I've never understood why people do that. I mean, presumably the 45rpm side will sound marginally better, but they really don't think about people like me with Pro-Ject turntables who have to lift the platter off every time they want to change speed.

Anyway, the Zea side has a crazy bit of experimental pop called 'My Exploding Head', which takes a scattershot drum loop and a simple bumping bassline and pairs it with simple one-note keyboard melodies which are mirrored in a quirky vocal line about the singer's exploding head. The drum weirdness develops satisfyingly as the song lollops along and there's some understated guitar which is nice and crunchy and gives it a slight post-punk feel. Very charming and odd, hard to think of anybody it really sounds like.

I've now changed the speed and flipped the record and I'm listening to the even odder sounds of Oscar Jan Hoogland's 'Electric Clavichord', performed solo on (you guessed it) electric clavichord. This is a freeform soundscape of harsh electronic twangs and insectoid buzzes featuring some dramatic volume changes, grating percussive chatter and fevered metallic drones. It's an awkward and confrontational improvisation full of interesting sounds but much more in the challenging avant-noise field than Zea's much poppier contribution.

The main things connecting the two sides is that they're both weird and Dutch (and reading the sleeve notes I discover that Zea used to be Oscar's teacher, which is quite sweet).



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