Saturday, October 20, 2012

Music: R. Stevie Moore "Advertising Agency of Fucking" lathe cut

I have the sneaking suspension that this piece of transparent polyurethane is eating up my phono needle. Is that a thing? Even if it's not, I'll be the thousandth person to say it: (most) lathe cuts sound like shit. I may not review mp3s, but I'll definitely enjoy listening to them over cheap-cut vinyl alternatives like this all day.

OK, enough bitching...

The songs represented on this abomination of a medium-sample are pure RSM Classics, as in, are absolutely brilliant pop (/punk, to be addressed below,) tunes that don't require the listener to submerge her/his self in R. Stevie's singular world of absurd puns, Beatles-worship, self-congratulation, and, uh, general quasi-genius, to appreciate.

"Advertising Agency of Fucking" on the A side finds RSM working his lyrical forte: sexual politics. It's melodically engaging in the way that British canonical acts like The Kinks and XTC are. Major key jumping all over the place, but focused, convinced of its own arrangement and full of forward momentum.

The B side is a brilliant post-punk-aping tune with a slinking, dissonant bass line and a deceptively important piano part: hammered chords, Reggae-syncopated during the chorus, but used only as punctuation during the verses. And lyrically it's R.'s second-best consistent theme: meta-style questioning the relevance of his own art.

So, don't buy this piece. (Ed. note: you can't buy it. Limited to preorders amounting to 76 physical copies; the one in my possession is #24.)

Do download RSM's "Poached Punk" comp. on bandcamp. The two sides of this record are tracks one and two, and there's a bunch of other great shit. And your payment goes directly to the artist. And it'll sound way, way better.

If you're the collector type, and a RSM fan, I recommend PIAPTK's "Javascript" lathe cut (onto a glass mirror.) Same label, maybe slightly better sound quality than this one, but it's a mirror, and it looks pretty cool spinning on yr deck.

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