Matmos takes on civil war music -- the English and American civil wars. 19th century Americana, jigs and reels from medieval England, computerized voices, old folk songs, drum/fife marching tunes and weird electronic blips -- all get included in this miasma of traditional and electronic music. Among the instruments you may or may not recognize are banjo, bagpipes, sewer pipe, bassoon, emergency alarm system, blood, tuba, and broken glass. Based around military marching music, the symmetrical drum beats get deconstructed and augmented by digital sounds so that at times it seems the blips and bagpipes were meant to go together. So do they succeed in their quest? -- do they win the battle? -- do they unite the traditional and the electronic? That is a fine, fine question.
1. starts with grating hurdy-gurdy, morphs into dreamy melody with bagpipes
2. electronic military beats + hurdy-gurdy in a medieval reel, civil-war-esque military drums at end
3. military drums taken over by electronic blippy fireworks, voice samples and ambient electronic melodies, then resolves to acoustic folk song
4. dreamy pop song becomes lots of weird blips then free jazzy towards end -- great!
5. slow dreamy shuffle beat -- noodling guitar, piano, -- good
6. mix of traditional and and electronic drums at beginning then, nickelodeon version of "stars and stripes forever" with lots of electronic intrusions -- then "stars and stripes forever" by a military band -- great!
7. music from a rabbit pelt! -- much more electronica-esque than rest of album
8. Starts with sample of MC Schmidt's heartbeat, then medieval strings
9. slow, country-influenced slide guitar, piano, violin