Tout Croche is two gentlemen from Huddersfield dealing in tactile droning and noise, running the gamut from pretty and immersive, to scuzzy and ramshackle. Opener Dead or Fade Away puts a spanner straight in the works with a garagey punked-up number recalling something like Tyvek, or an early, wild Sebadoh. It makes for a intriguing trip - and a limited one, at 300 wax copies on The Silent Howl.
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Why did the feedback cross the road? I don’t know, it just did, okay? Tout Croche are here to unapologetically not answer any of your questions RE: noise and formlessness, opting to improvise all of their pieces on the spot for a smattering of free form that ranges between the total abstract and the actually kind of catchy. ‘Super Silent’ -- as it is cheekily titled, like a very on-the-nose improv in-joke -- is propulsive enough to get things started, and bizarre enough to not get them finished.
About that start, then: Tout Croche begin with all the energy of vagabond punks, tearing into their instruments like they’re unwrapping instruments at Christmas, strumming guitars, playing keys and growling like the Misfits with futurist intentions. They even manage to coalesce on a vocal harmony, which is impressive, before the song falls into a feedback vortex and paves the way for the appropriately titled “Tobacco Haze”, a squealing track of random acoustic percussion and noisy oscillations.
Things rarely return to the clarity of “Dead or Fade Away”, but they traverse into a million different avenues: there's the kraut ambient of “Your Kitty Eats”, with little nuggets of found sound percussion, or the French folk sea ballad of “Super Silent Gypsy”. Look out for the nine minute doomathon “Hey Hey, My My”, which takes Neil Young’s classic and slows it down to the pace of a nightmare you can’t escape. With these guys, rock and roll will die, but at the ripe old age of a hundred and twenty two.
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