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Folk Implosion
Dare To Be Surprised
The Communion Label

Yet another attempt by the hobby-project Folk Implosion, a duo with Lou Barlow and John Davis playing and doing everything. Or is this now more than just a hobby for the two of them? These guys are incredibly productive when it comes to writing songs, and releasing records(or tapes) in all kinds of formats and of varied content. Lou with his group Sebadoh (do they still excist as a band?), or under the banner of Sentridoh, or simply Lou Barlow & Friends, or Lou &...Got it? (Lou Barlow also was responsible for the soundtrack of Larry Clark's movie Kids two years ago.) Lots/most/all of it being home-recordings, pure lo-fi- american-underground style. Of John Davis former escapades I don't know much. He has recorded and released two solo-albums, I think, and he's sort-of a minimalist-songwriter-soulmate of Lou. (I also read somewhere that he was briefly in Palace Music.)

Well, I dared to, and I was a bit surprised, as well. Not that I think this is a brilliant album. But it's quite good, and really charming. It seems like they've gotten more structure and sanity to their compositions. It isn't that anarchist like, say, their 12(!)-song-7''-EP from 95, with almost no songs lasting more than a minute. This is their second album, and though I haven't heard their first full-lenght-record, Take A Look Inside.., I think they have moved a step up from the basement. The sound picture is cleaned up a bit, and I guess they must have spent some time arranging the songs. Well, don't get me wrong here, we're still in lo-fi-land. But this isn't as annoying as some of the works of the lo-fi-cians over the last couple of years, I think, due to the "fashion" crappy have been turned into.

Some of the songs on this album reminds me of Wire (of England), and what they sounded like when they reunited forces some ten years ago. I sense much of the same spirit and the way of presenting a mixture of experimental surrealism alongside catchy melodies. Now and then Lou Barlow shows (as he does in Sebadoh) glimpses of his genius, and together with John Davis we see a perfect partnership. Enjoyable company! As they tell in the song That's The Trick:

"Writing my novel with a stick in the sand,
waiting for the wave to come wash it all away".

Make sure to experience the Folk Implosion before that happens.

Copyright © 1997 Håvard Oppøyen e-mail address

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