=========== corey orbison, your name is poison: reviews ===========

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cripes – heavy HUGGY BEAR vibes coming off this one, brainchild of the folks behind bristol's local kid label/ promoter/ collective type gang. and that's HUGGY BEAR as they actually sounded too, not as revisionist riot grrrl/ indie-pop historians might like to remember them sounding. "file under no wave sissy hardcore" says the sticker, and, whilst i'm sure they'll make a happy addition to my no wave sissy hardcore collection, i fear the corey orbison are verging more on "file under indescribable" to be honest. it may be thirty years since no wave, since HALF JAPANESE and the DEAD C, even a couple of years since MAGIK MARKERS brought the idea of improvising non-musicians rocking out to the indie masses, but it's hard to overstate the extent to which this is still a genuinely brave and challenging record for its makers to put out. recorded live-in-studio with hear-a-pin-drop clarity, the corey orbison refuse to hide behind scuzz, distortion or mystique, instead bringing the performers' every strike, lunge, shriek and fumble to us loud and clear with the unassailable confidence of politically motivated free expression.

what results is certainly quite something, recalling nothing so much as MARS's systematic dehumanisation of rock music on their section of no new york. like those tracks, everything that happens on this disc is so utterly wrong, it becomes alien and disorientating. the girl's voice is so high-pitched it doesn't sound natural at either speed, so pure guesswork leads me to conclude 45. the drums are particularly wrecked also, random tom hits going off rather like a recording of a kid shooting a pellet gun, leaving only the bass to thump out rudimentary time. guitar moves are pure ARTO LINDSEY/ TEENAGE JESUS, but less showy and lacking in explicit violence, instead working out a free improv-inspired vocabulary of abstract scrape n' clang. one side features no less than [four] songs, all arbitrarily exploding into being and collapsing back into silence in a matter of seconds, before they can be caught in even the swiftest butterfly net, whilst the other side is given over to a single freeform freakout that seems determined to outstay its welcome. why? because.

to characterise this record as formless however would be grossly misleading. there's a solid structure behind everything here, with voluminous lyrics reproduced on the insert to back it up, and if the songs have a tendency to begin with a burst of unrepeatable shred, it's not long before they crystallise into recognisably livid grrrl-punk war-chants, directly in the tradition of early SLEATER KINNEY, GOD IS MY CO-PILOT and yes, HUGGY BEAR. what we've got here is a fiery combo of ideological commitment, rage, refusal, stifled utopianism and a full spectrum frustration so inexpressible it can only be given voice be kicking music's internal logic squarely in the head. but what we've also got here is, perhaps, some kinda huge sense of fun? i think i can just see it. as they put it on their myspace: "our style of music is the short and the sharp and the stop and the start. make a mess. break a heart. stick the rules. punk rock is for the wimps." this here punk rock wimp is uncertain whether to worship or run away.

(ben | stereo sanctity)

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bref, tout ça me donne l'occasion de mentionner plusieurs groupes dont je veux vous parler depuis des lustres. d’abord les corey o's. bon là, ça va pas être facile hein. françois m'a raconté qu'un jour, il se promenait près du cube à bristol avec un ami et ils ont entendu des cris tellement dingues que son ami a cru que quelqu'un se faisait agresser. en fait, c’était les corey o's qui enregistraient leur album au cube. voilà, les corey o’s, c'est un peu comme marcher sur la queue de ton chat. Le minou fait ce cri un peu chelou qui exprime une certaine douleur, mais en même temps c'est tellement bizarre que ça en devient génial. une basse, une guitare, une batterie, 3 indie kids vegan pur sang, des morceaux en moyenne d'une minute, des pochettes écrites a la machine à écrire = meilleur groupe du monde.

there are several groups i've wanted to talk about for ages. first, the corey o's. that won't be easy, huh. françois told me that one day he was walking near the cube in bristol with a friend and they heard screams so crazy that his friend thought that someone was being attacked. in fact, it was the corey o's recording their [7"] at the cube. [the sound] is like treading on your cat's tail. the kitty gives a little cry that expresses some pain, but at the same time it's so weird that it becomes cool. bass, guitar, drums. three vegan indie kids, songs an average of one minute long, inserts written on a typewriter = best band in the world.

(cécile | black candy music)

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i think i saw these girls years ago during ladyfest brighton, and they were one of my favourite bands of the weekend. i always like stuff where it sounds like the band is in the midst of figuring out how to play everything. it starts out pretty straightforward and quickly gets weirder with lots of guitar-destroying squiggles and sounds and slightly off-time tribal drums. all three of them seem to just chime in whenever they feel like it. it’s almost like if INFLATABLE BOY CLAMS was slightly less weird and a little more straightforward. and from england. definitely on the goofier, weirder arty side of post punk. awesome.

(marissa magic | maximumrocknroll #307 | dec 2008 | it was also in layla gibbon’s december top ten)

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london three-piece drawing from the agit-punk, riot grrrl and k records pools of scritch-scratch-scream. tribal drumming, scratchy guitars, dancey basslines, shrill grrrl vox. four short ones on the a-side ... at their best they sound like an even less proficient SLITS and at their worst they sound like a bunch of fashion students who started a band playing in the common room at their art school ... yeah. it's mostly the latter. the b-side is pure art-wank. "i cut things up" it's called. yeah, we get it, you're confident women. and you're angry. we're sorry. cheers! scum stats: 350 on white vinyl in a nicely put together package though.

(rich kroneiss | terminal boredom)

how strange, you say "art-wank" like it's a bad thing. nice to end on a sexist note, though. cheers!

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corey orbison have sent us a lovingly packaged white vinyl 7" and to begin with it's ... a load of discordant anti-rock, like SONIC YOUTH's jarring one-note overspill before it staggers into life as a rumbling no-wave street ruffian, complete with incoherent female lyrics spat out with nihilistic banshee-like glee. it's like the girl from LIFE WITHOUT BUILDINGS having ect. it's rough and compelling, jerky and uncompromising. truly diy, if you dig the SLITS & RAINCOATS & agit-punk then this screeing, wonky delightful dirge of spastic rhythms will surely grap you by the collar and spit in your face. kids these days eh ... and there's about 5 tracks or summat! buggered if i can tell where they begin or end!! ace.

(norman records)

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despite the somewhat stupid name, this is a really cool trio from england! 5 tracks of shrieky and spastic no-wave noise-punk. reminiscent of SLITS, Y-PANTS, RAINCOATS and some of those bands on the once great and now defunct SLAMPT UNDERGROUND label!

(x-mist)