There are flaws everywhere, the most striking one right this moment is the screeching noise my keyboard makes when I slide it across my desk. But some flaws are beautiful, and Permanent Fatal Error is one of them. Their new Deaf Sun / Deaf Blues is a lush, hazy soundscape oozing of melancholy. Ain't nothing wrong with that, except that there's only 100 copies!
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- Deaf Sun / Deaf Blues by Permanent Fatal Error
8/10 Robin Staff review, 03 March 2015
"We're playing rock with acoustic guitars", reads the packet for 'Deaf Sun/Deaf Blues'. True, rockers, true: Permanent Fatal Error make folk rock strides for the bulk of their new EP, striking rather than strumming and articulating themselves with all of their arsenal at once -- you know those scenes in fantasy films where everyone fires their arrows at once and you wonder how that’s not totally deadly? That, but with folk arrangements. These five songs are arranged around acoustic guitars, dramatic lyrical treatises and a bit of Elephant Six inspired trickery, when the cosmos up above gets its way.
It’s amazing how versatile a sound this band can conjure in just five small examples: it starts with “Sing A Song”, which is strummed so hard it almost sounds psychedelically moved -- a little Love, perhaps -- but ultimately is just a loud, exuberant folk ditty. The band round in on a more homogenous, circular playing style for “Giulo’s Song”, which will resonate with fans of Jessica Pratt’s closed off folk songs and Jim Guthrie’s bizarrely wound-up and decoratively twee tunes. And then there’s “Solar Penguin”, which marries unmoveable organ sounds with cathartically exhaled harmonies and that cherished school-time instrument, the xylophone. If that’s not an adoring rip of The Olivia Tremor Control, then what exactly is it? It doesn’t matter; it’s lovely. In each of their chosen folk fashion styles, Permanent Fatal Error rock the sadness and jubilation -- the very essence of their timeworn influences.
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