Album Review

Billy Bao – “Buildings From Bilbao” – [Burka for Everybody]

Thurston Hunger   2/1/2013   12-inch, A Library

How on earth did Billy Bao/Mattin ever find a
blender strong enough and gigantic enough to
fit in a whole band, a ton of electronics, and
a few rugged city blocks from Bilbao along with
radios tuned into Nigerian-flavored hip hop.
Billy Bao may be a lot of things, and a prankster
among them, but this release is no joke, nor is
its homage via song titles to the Stooges’ “Fun
House.” There are moments of raw rock to match
the original here, but it all gets sliced by the
blending, blinding blades of Billy Bao’s production
such that you might get a several seconds of sine wave
searing, a sax spun around in a cyclone, a police
siren, an arcing short circuit, some guy in a keyboard
store in a mall, and plenty of pregnant pauses and
prostitutes, all amidst some relentless and
dirty rock and roll. Well and slow-mo, spun-up hip
hop on “2010”, altered to its DNA and R&B roots.
Jump cuts to commercials (“There are no limits” and
“Expanding your world”)…got that right! Did I hear the
sounds of people digging out of or is it into the rubble?
I am confused, but happy. Audio excitement a plenty,
bristling with feedback and frenzied emotions.
A social experiment…or a sonic one? Either way
it’s a freaked out Fun House with room for me
and especially YOU!

-Thurston Hunger

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