Brooklyn Cotton Candy Carnies Cheap-Shrill the Wealthies


Techno fiends cursed Brooklyn’s Excepter for advertising Self Destruction as their “house” record—they couldn’t dance to it, boo-hoo. Really, Self Destruction is the neo-no-wavers’ fun-house record: cheap shrills from cotton candy carnies, the kind who put shit in the pants of America’s wealthy. Side A moans and drones like their three earlier sets, but set to broken gear grinds and sawdust kid stutter, Excepter sound like toddlers humming overtones along with mall bells, or rock-star dads with the lawn mower. This is magic-eye minimalism, broad strokes of sound pushing ears past the rote squiggles to the straight lines behind them. As if to spite themselves, though, or to actualize the LP title, Excepter spend side B playing side A to the fat-skinny mirror—ugly, anemic stuff.

Less house but more fun, the band’s latest Sunbomber EP works that pop-through-bongwater angle everyone’s wanted them to do forever now. Applaud the new guy maybe, porkchopped noisemaker Jon Nicholson: “One More Try” swishes out like a dot-matrix version of Bloc Party’s “Banquet”; the low-end riff on “Bridge Traffic” plays brack James Brown’s “Payback”; “Dawn Patrol” reggaetóns New Order, or the opposite. Kind, too, of lead man John Fell Ryan to share his mumbling prophetic rants, a live staple, with the record-buying public. Though maybe I’m just a mark.

Excepter play Sin-é January 29.

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