Whilst Preoccupations have taken the pounding post punk side of Women and run with it, other Women member Patrick Flegel has charted a more splintered DIY path but one which showcases a stunning ability to carve brilliant melodies out of the ether. Cindy Lee has a talent for falling-apart-at-the-seams lo-fi, shards of noise welded onto exquisite ballads.
LP £16.99 MDR015
LP on Maple Death + fancy insert! Patrick Flegel from Women!.
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- Malenkost by Cindy Lee
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One of the positive things emerging out of Women's untimely split is that we've managed to get two pretty decent bands out of it. We know all about the Viet Cong/Preoccupations axis but less well known is the idiosyncratic path pursued by Women leader Pat Flegel. Thanks to Maple Death however these lo-fi but inspired recordings are starting to see vinyl pressings that should see them reaching the homes of adventurous listeners.
While Flegel continues to explore the noise side of Women that was more evident on their debut self titled album, he also veers into supreme lo-fi pop and otherworldly gender blurring examples of eerie girl group pop. 'Always Lovers' is the sort of sweet ballad that may turn up somewhere on a David Lynch film, truly exotic and seemingly beamed down from outer space. Mostly when Flegel makes a racket it's enjoyable - particularly on opener 'No Worth, No Cost'. There are moments however where the album hits patterns of rackety self indulgence. Luckily these are tempered by brilliant pop moments like 'A Message From the Aching Sky' - a slab of Deerhunter-in-a-tin-can lo-fi.
Let's not beat about the bush - the album is hard work. Getting Flegel to tighten his vision is going to be a pretty difficult task. 'Melenkost' is unapologetically wilful, occasionally brilliantly inspired but a world a way from the controlled aggression of Preoccupations. Flegel is however a singular artist and I await his next missive with interest.
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