Thursday, December 6, 2007

CD review: Savath and Savalas "Golden Pollen"

Golden Pollen
Savath and Savalas
Anti Records
Available Now

It was but a couple of weeks ago that I received an advance copy Savath and Savalas’ newest album Golden Pollen in the mail. Now that’s cause enough for celebration; on top of that, however, I had been thinking to myself that morning, “Damn, I wish I had something to listen to that combined chopped-up bossa nova jazz with Argentina freak-folk, topped off with just a dollop of Sigur Ros.”

Serendipitous, no?

But that’s just what Savath and Savalas, the more organically instrumented alter-ego of Prefuse 73 mastermind Scott Herren, is: a chill Frankenstein’s monster, blissfully setting a tropicalia hallucination against brilliant dreamscapes.

Golden Pollen is best taken in as a single complete track (though not in the sense of Sleep’s Jerusalem), as songs tumble slowly and purposefully into one another, evoking one moment a natural orchestra in “Concreto,” and the next a slow-motion apocalypse in “Estrella de Dos Caras.” Little flourishes like a seven-second electronic loop or a sudden crash of digitized electric guitar serve as party crashers to the poem, as they disrupt the disc’s overall stillness and serenity.

Music nerds will most likely revert back to headphone-dissection of Prefuse 73 tracks. Though a bit more accessible than its electro-cousin, Golden Pollen holds true to the roots of that avant-garde experimentation while simultaneously giving us more of a glimpse of Herren’s personal self than we have heretofore been granted. Masterful, to the last crest of ambience.

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