“Its like if rap were invented in the 1930’s” ~Branson Reese
Some Beans And An Octupus, can probably be found living amongst the chaotic consortium of sounds that make up Adam Butler’s (a.k.a. Vert) new album. Butler uses a collection of old and new sounds that burst, standing bass, aleatoric sound bytes, and slamming piano chords that fart out of a big-horned gramophone that it sounds like this album was ideally meant to be played on.
The high speed rhyming-rambles of Butler have a sort of implied musical quality to them, alluring because they balance on the line between music and words. They give a connotation of music more than being defined, playing with a listener’s expectations. This feeling remains for most of the album, but deals with sounds and music instead of words, phonemes pieced together to give the impression of a musical morpheme packaged with a definition, but when sounded out, it is calamity of sounds clacking together in rapid enough succession that is pleasing enough to be music.
Butler has done something almost metaphysical with his music by putting the listener in suspicious state, paranoid about what’s coming into his ears because it is not quite like music heard before, but pretty close. Still, does `pretty close’ do it? Can this coincidence of noise be really taken for the same thing that composers make, music? Maybe it shouldn’t be worried about, because after, it sounds cool. Maybe coincidence was too strong a word. There are patterns, definitely. There’s some kind of composition going on here, an organization of feral sounds into a grand trick like a Barnum Circus animal act. The animals are organisms on their own though. They can break from the organization of the trick, ceasing to balance the giant ball on their nose with great precision, and instead tear it to confetti shreds. What does Butler do then? What do we do then? It doesn’t seem to happen, but if it does, the chimps don’t go ape shit (ed: pun intended?), but stay in the center ring and exhibit their animal ferocity in plain spectator view of the audience.
“But did you also realize that the signal and the noise are just two different frames of mind…but did you also realize that the signal and the noise have become inextricably entwined” ~ Adam Butler
It is not all so vague though. There are some tracks that take their time, not being so action-packed as the acts filled with wild animals. These are confident displays of mastery, stretching sounds slow and incredible like the legs of a contortionist. On Some Beans And An Octopus, nothing tends to be mundane, if we were properly forewarned with the title.
The Streets – Original Pirate Material
Beck – Odelay
Jason Forrest – Shamelessly Exciting