The longest songs ever by M-B – a mere 10 songs in a bit over a half-hour – but damned if by doing away with the short-sharp-shock gimmick M-B haven’t just built a more powerful beast; packing more energy into the longer songs, giving themselves some space to work with tempo shifts, chord-changes, bless ‘em, and ever more absurdly abstract lyrics spewed forth at the speed of a super-typist or an auctioneer. Of course, the recruitment of drummer Dave Witte has done wonders for the speedXpower product and really challenged the rest of the band to keep up with him.
1. Spaceship flying back and forth in your skull
2. Guitar squall turns into badass bass pounding, a martial drumbeat, more squealing guitar wanking, and then all fucking hell breaks loose at double time; fall back to slow churn and another wanky guitar solo later in the song only increases the pleasure before the second breaking of the hell loose; If this doesn’t boil your moshing fluids and make you crank the volume to 11, you’re already dead
3. Spaceships flying, drums pounding, and Yasuko reciting for about 30 seconds, at which time, the group bursts into a 250 BPM cyclone of heavy noise; I love how the vox are still clear even at this speed; I love more the chiming guitar in mid-song as it descends again into maelstrom (sorry about the meteorological metaphors – you have to hear the track!)
4. Fast and yet a bit melodic, but not compelling
5. Fuck yeah … back into the wailing siren school of guitar, and oh shit, does Ms. Rika wield a fierce bass riff!; a couple of cool changes on this track raise it to better-than-the-sum status
6. Pretty catchy (by M-B standards … you won’t be humming this on your way to pick flowers in the meadow); the space alien toy vocal effects in the middle are freaky and funny until the entirely serious speed-and-power-chords mood is revived
7. Short riff-happy guitar respites in between the full-on charge of the rhythm section
8. Frightening effect of being surrounded obtained through vocals jumping from side to side, reverb-laden guitar, and general heavy noise on all sides
9. Bouncing bubblegum pop song … almost … really!; ultra-catchy vox over an almost normal tempo … only the guitar is slippery and there’s that ultra-speed bit that almost seems just a gratuitous reminder that you’re listening to Melt-Banana, not The Chills or something
10. Starts with 20 seconds of silence, then continues with the exit of the opening track’s spaceship from the building … after not a few circumnavigations of your brain … post-spaceship exit, a shimmering glob of psychedelic guitar noise similar to Hanadensha’s stoner anthems reverberates … ten minutes – a Melt-Banana song that lasts ten minutes!
Oh shit, I’m deaf from listening to this on headphones! … OK, I’ll play it again but louder this time!