Wednesday, 29 June 2011
REVIEW: Hotel Wrecking City Traders & Gary Arce - LP
Hotel Wrecking City Traders & Gary Arce
Melbourne based instrumental brother-duo Hotel Wrecking City Traders team up with Gary Arce of Yawning Man on this huge monolithic two-track slab of improv noise rock. Yawning Man were one of the bands first making forays deep into the Desert Rock scene along with Kyuss, Brant Bjork, Karma To Burn and then some; a wealth of gnarly experience from which Arce draws on, setting his guitars down over the top of the tapes sent to him with a cool and studied sense of purpose as the two HWCT brothers (Ben Matthews on drums, Toby on guitar) work off each other building up the tracks. Toby also laid down bass parts to further define the flow of the tracks, but the initial darker guitar and drum are taped live together. The pair have a subtle and powerful way of playing off each other, locking into dense grooves and allowing each other space - a great canvas for Arce to add his extra detail on to.
The first track slowly builds up from feathery psychedelic skeins of loose interplay that solidifies into into howling motorik juggernaut. There's a big dose of Pelican and Isis buried into this, a patient focus on developing textural elements within the improvised frameworks slowly ratcheting up the tension and pressure letting it steam out again fiercely but not quite through the kinds of huge riffs HWCT have played with before. The two tracks don't quite cut as loose and free or offer up as devastatingly hedonistic grooves of molten rock as tracks off the Black Yolk ep from 2008 did - Go check out Lakeshore Strangler and Pagoda immediately after this and buy that album up too - but it's an almost incomparable form of rock music they are playing here. Mastered by James Plotkin, the master of conjuring a sharper resolution of depth and space out of dark music, this is a record of intricate feeling, teasing out themes as the tracks progress, a Mogwai influenced sense of using repetition to create scale. The lighter guitar of Acre is contrasted by the dirty crunch and aggressive sawing of Toby but the restraint with which Toby plays is what makes the combination a success.
The record is limited to 300 copies on a lush deep blue wax 12" including a t-shirt with tidy teardrop logo. Order your copy HERE