14 May 2010

I bought this on Amazon for less than a pack of cigarettes

Royal Trux - Twin Infinitives (Drag City 1990)
Back in February, the first Royal Trux album was reviewed in this space. After it was posted, Gary left a comment asking why there was no mention of Stephen Malkmus in the article since we think it's a fact that SM listens to Royal Trux, and since it is definitely a fact that this is a website that enjoys everything even remotely related to Pavement and mentions them at every opportunity presented. At the time, the thought never really crossed my mind. I was more enamored with the fact that the album could possibly be unlistenable. I ended up getting sucked into that record pretty hardcore, so much so that it warranted the purchasing of the follow-up effort, Twin Infinitives. Now with this piece of music, Pavement was one of many bands that I thought of while listening. It wasn't necessarily because of the way it sounded, but rather I began to develop the feeling that the kind of people who dig on this record are the same people who are members in really rad bands (i.e. Pavement).
When I put this record on, my CD player says it has four tracks. There are actually fifteen songs, but they're clumped together. There are moments of silence in between while at other times there is extreme noise. It borders on music more often than not, and in the end turns out to be quite the ear exercise. One can't help but think that the group's heroin usage played a factor in making this album. It sounds like it was made on a tape recorder in a Brownstone somewhere with two participants who have a soaring sensation in their blood and are trying to make music. The instruments are there along with a microphone and amps, and for 63 minutes they do their thing.
To many this record probably is unlistenable, but I find it entirely too enthralling to press the stop button. The noise that comes out of my speakers is unbelievably freeing, calling to mind that edge of the cliff feeling. It's becoming my zen music. I dig it for what it is. Things are fucked up sometimes, and on those days this is the album to play. It won't really make any sense of anything, but it's an alternative. An escape.
I wouldn't necessarily recommend this record, but rather I would want to play it randomly for someone so that I could see their reaction. This album is somewhat of an adventure. There are peaks and valleys, but if you stay the course then it's pretty awesome. With that being said, hearing the third album is quickly becoming necessary.

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