Early this fall, I was backstage at Webster Hall in New York City interviewing the members of Celebration just days before their fabulous second album The Modern Tribe was set to drop. I asked singer Katrina Ford if the album’s title came from the extended musical family and collaborations with friends that include TV on the Radio, Liars, Yeah Yeah Yeah’s, etc. “That’s it” she replied. For those who own records from said groups, you would be wise to take them all out and listen to them one after another from beginning to end. As Celebration will attest, it’s each one of their creative knacks that influences one another artistically and inspires them to push their sound further and further into a free wheeling and exotic terrain of jubilance, harmony and rabid psychedelic tendencies. Now, we must all prep our ears of the recent members of the tribe. I give you Dragons of Zynth.
While having weathered endless comparisons to TV on the Radio, DOZ are quite possibly like nothing you’ve heard before, and their debut long player Coronation Thieves is probably amongst the most relevant of all the experimental based rock albums that you’ll hear in 2007.
With none other than TVOTR’s David Sitek in the producer’s chair adding his hazy production, Coronation Thieves melts and illuminates with the glare of a burning patch of lame, seeping into their furors of primal punk rock that bares its teeth with hideous dub disgorges. Toss in some early Bowie jazz trimmings and globs upon globs of oozing noise and singer Aku (who along with his twin brother and band mate Akwetey were classically trained since the age of 5 and studied with legendary saxophonist/flutist Yusef Lateef) is ready to screech his protracted vocals.
“Get Off” is a milky heap of seesawing bubbly lounge funk and shows in Aku’s vocals that if he were any kind of dragon, it would most certainly be a raptor as his soulful croon tries earnestly to stay smooth but he just can’t help but add in some mutant lizard bluster alongside with the music’s instrumental and colorful brand of soothing savagery.
Name any of the pioneering noise rocks bands, be it the Boredoms, Scratch Acid or Merzbow, and DOZ would be love at first sight with any of their devoted legions of fans. But as far as the chill side of things go, this band has a bright future ahead of them, thanks in part to their techniques of taking loud and jagged shards of sonic buckshot, extracting the pulp as to remold the flying and piercing fragments as the composures of the vividly enticing clouds that float atop Coronation Thieves.
Fishbone – Give a Monkey a Brain and He’ll Swear He’s the Center of the Universe
Bad Brains – Quickness
Butthole Surfers – Rembrandt Pussyhorse