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  The Wild Animals In My Life
  Flesh World

Iron Lung Records

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Flesh World is another band to ride the current trend of "let's pick a band name that reviewers will be hesitant to Google while at work". I'm not certain that the phrase "flesh world" would be frowned upon by Corporate IT Security, but i can also see that it would be a good name for a pornography site. So, best to wait until i am not at work to look up anything about this band, which to be honest is a little bit of a hassle.

And i when i do look online i discover that there are three bands with this same name: one in France, one in Poland, and one in San Francisco.

Although i am curious as to the French bands excellently titled Reptilian Sisterhood LP, it is the bay area band that made The Wild Animals In My Life, which is the ostensible subject of this review.

So, Flesh World, in this case at least, is a 4-piece post-punk band from San Francisco. If you like that old, dark, post-punk sound with crisp guitars, moody beats, and dispassionate vocals then this is for you. This quartet actually does a great job with that old 1980s sound. I grew up with this stuff, and i really like what Flesh World are doing.

The record starts off with guitars grinding in To Lose Me. Vocalist Jess Scott's voice is echoed all to hell and back and the song grinds along under the weight of a lot of distortion, the guitars a fuzzy haze and the rhythm sort of implied by the flow in the overall distortion and the steady click of a hi-hat. Intense.

On Just To Tear Me Down Jess Scott and her co-guitarist Scott Moore chime along, channeling the work of Felt, something i am determined to track down wherever it hides.

The title track has a catchy, swaying beat, but it is here that the vocals seem their oddest. That is, Scott sings in a sort of clipped way, the words clear yet the sounds slightly off. To be honest, it reminds me of that German new wave stuff that surfaced every once in a while in the 1980s -- it sounds like Scott is singing through an accent. Maybe she is German -- nothing i can find online confirms or denies that. Either way, it is just a little odd, but perfectly in keeping with the genre. The song itself is pretty nice and catchy.

Shaved Head has a really steady droning beat that drives along as a guitar picks a fun little melody and Scott sings, bored, in the background. Poolside Boys is a great tune. The drumming is a steady flat tapping and the guitars whirr up from simmer to parboil as Scott's voice wails away. This is a feverish song, delirium taking you on a whirring dance, and after all post- punk was all about the dance.

It's back to the breakneck pace for Strawberry Bomber, a lo fi sort of old punk tune, just all forward thrusted rhythm and distorted guitars. Her accent shows up here again. Her voice is also really odd on Your Love Is Like A House, where "like" is drawn out to "l-AIII-ke" with a different vowel sound. This is a decent song with the drums all over the place.

And finally the record ends with Here In The Dark which, at over 6 minutes, is an opus for this band. The song starts as a catchy little thing, the guitar playing a happy riff and a fun little drum beat, but it builds in intensity until the guitars are grinding furiously and the drums beating out an angry thud. The record ends with a good, old-fashioned post-punk noise freakout. Awesome.

I am impressed and think that fans of New Wave and Post-Punk will want to track this down. Quality stuff.

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