The JangleBox

Indie, Noise, Shoegaze… Music

Posse: Soft Opening (Beating a Dead Horse, 2014)

El Indie-Rock de Posse encuentra en este su segundo trabajo un acomodo en las fórmulas más a medio tiempo tipo Pavement-Yo la Tengo de sus etapas más maduras. Digo ésto porque según parece, a algunos los guitarrazos “mal entendidos” les suenan a falta de madurez y a salidas de tono. Lo cierto es que personalmente, considero que Soft Opening es un buen disco, evidentemente (la huella de Yo la Tengo por fuerza tendría que dejar una semilla brillante). Pero lo cierto es que también me pueden sonar a Galaxie 500, a sonidos neoyorquinos vía Lou Reed y a otras historias de los noventa. Un disco aprovechable pero al que no le hallo la brillantez que en ciertos medios le otorgan.

“Posse describe their sound as “delay pedals and 27 years of disappointment”, which may not be factually correct; you hear a lot more of the latter than the former, and the second line of opener “Interesting Thing No. 2” is “You turned 25, so many things you haven’t tried.” It’s theoretically sound all the same, since Soft Opening’s self-deprecation is a big part of its appeal. For all of its invocations of 80s and 90s A-listers, Soft Opening is an of-the-moment record in the way it aligns with the sort of sitcoms that dominate the viewing habits of people Posse’s age: the actors involved are presented as friends, yet they don’t really seem to like each other all that much.
In the case of Soft Opening, nearly every song is a subtly hilarious metacommentary on some sort of communication breakdown. Maxim sings, “I know you’re gonna talk through this and not care,” and you can easily visualize the shoulder shrug, the eye-rolling, the internal defeat she anticipates with this interaction. With every repetition, it cuts deeper and deeper as an insult: you are someone who simply can’t handle sitting in silence with their own feelings. A song later on “Shut Up”, a drunk and bored Wittmann-Todd fantasizes about a time when he’s going to work up the nerve to tell someone to shut their yap, even if it’s himself: “I’m gonna watch you go outside now/ And make a stupid face/ And shut up.”
And yet, none of this venting comes off as mean-spirited. In fact, most of Soft Openingunwinds with the casual bonhomie of three post-work beers over darts; the deleterious effects are minimal compared to the necessary release and bonding. And hell, if Posse seem to have a strange enjoyment for each other’s company in spite of it all, well, it’s because the outside world doesn’t have that much more to offer. “Cassandra B.” relates a date between overeducated, underfunded Seattlites as they down too much vodka, go to an “intelligent rap” show (“A bald white guy/ With a mumu onstage”) and lie about reading Willa Cather books that were bought at college and promptly shelved. As with every dryly hysterical line on Soft Opening, there’s never any “pitchiness”; it’s never trying to be any more droll and absurd than life itself.
Despite the litany of disappointments, misunderstandings, and aimlessness befalling the narrators in these songs, Soft Opening is a record of oddly stoic presence. For one thing, the austere sonics and plainspoken lyrics ensure that nothing gets glossed overso it’s a tough record to tune out. But also, Posse sound exactly like the band they want to be—you don’t sense any musical ambition unmet, any word misplaced. It’s a modest record done confidently, enough to end with a six-minute guitar workout based around the lyric that perfectly encapsulates Soft Opening’s comforting sadness, its satisfied misanthropy: “Don’t touch me/ I’m in my zone.” (Pitchfork)

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30 octubre, 2014 Posted by | Posse | Deja un comentario


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