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Victrola – “Maritime Tatami/Game of Despair” – [Dark Entries]

Thurston Hunger   3/5/2014   12-inch, A Library

Behold the drowning man – swims to the dance floor on side A –
washing up on banks of keys and just a killer beat that slides
away from the rhythm of the vocals. The vocals sputtered out,
flat and focused, sort of tugging their way through the more
effervescent music. That contrast makes this a unique dance single
(yep extended play 12″, Dark Entries rolling back not just the
catalog but the packaging too. Kudos!). Lyrics, smuggled into
English, deciphered from a Japanese maritime madman and sung
through clenched teeth. Tenzione! B-side, despite being titled
“Game of Despair” is the more chipper number, well if you are happy
in a fog wave like me. Phlanged guitar ripples over perky electro
percusccion and semi-sweetened synth. The lyrics capture a
Penelope who decides not to wait for Odysseus. That B-side has
a mild hypnotic draw, but the A-side is like finding a lost
“This Heat” track at the discotheque. Victrola were Antonio
Eze Cuscina and Carlo Smeriglio, working in Messina/Sicily in
1983.

-Thurston Hunger

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