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Demo reviews #1: Trader, Zebedy, Damir Bojanic, Of Eden

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Adam Walton Adam Walton | 14:46 UK time, Tuesday, 24 November 2009

Here's my first round-up of a few of the many demos to have come my way in recent weeks. Feel free to comment on the music, and read on if you've always wondered what Zappa disco breakcore sounds like.

Trader - Mi Amour

Trader have been propagating melodic seeds all over their hometown of Wrexham since 2006. They're fresh-faced youngsters who'd get asked for ID in most of the pensioners' watering holes I frequent. No surprises, then, that this track - Mi Amour - is resplendent in its wide-eyed, childish wonder.

It's a fine, anthemic tune that that refracts the brighter rays of Flaming Lips and Mercury Rev into something stirring and timeless.

It reminds me of Roy Orbison's In Dreams, too, in that it eschews a predictable verse / chorus structure in favour of throwing as many shapes into the air as possible.

It maybe a little too eager to please or impress. But I prefer that kind of eagerness over faux insouciance disguising a barren imagination any day of the week.

I don't know about love, but me like this a lot.


Zebedy - Existing

Being in a band isn't all about getting 'famous'. This is an adage that will need to be writ large in luminous 50ft letters as the X Factor generation matures. Believe me, the time bomb that's been primed by Cowell and co is going to explode mediocrity and false expectations all over our cosmic ray-proof jumpsuits in the waterworld of the future.

Zebedy won't care. Neither will they, between then and now, attain any kind of recognition beyond their mates and the guitar shops of the North Wales coast. This is the kind of music made by people who frequent those guitar shops, own Stevie Vai albums and think that the aforementioned is a better guitarist than, say, Future Of The Left's Andrew Falkous.

'Existing' is a teetering pile of riffs and pub rock virtuosity that would be half-interesting if it weren't all gaffer-taped to some of the least cogent lyrics I've ever heard. The whole thing amounts to a roaring storm of nothing of any consequence.

But - and here is the point - it sounds like they're making music purely for the enjoyment of making music. And not for 'the judges'. More power to them for that, at least.


Damir Bojanic - 96th & West

I imagine that Zebedy would like to think of themselves as progressive. But - truth be told - there is more invention and progressiveness in this three and half minute 'demo' from Klaus Kinski's Damir Bojanic than Zebedy could contain without their brains melting all over pointy headstocks.

This is Zappa disco breakcore, with elements of the incidental music from the 6 Million Dollar Man genetically grafted to The Fatback Band on an out of control demonic treadmill.

I have no idea what kind of mind could dream this up. That's what makes it so intriguing.


Of Eden - Water In My Hands

Initially, Wrexham's Of Eden appear to have been constructed entirely out of headphone fill from a Chris Isaak recording session. There is more reverb-laden space here than in the Sci Fi section of your local Blockbuster but, importantly, there is also a human spirit in there... deep in there... drawing us inexorably towards the heart of the song, in the same way that that distress signal draws The Nostromo towards the face-hugging, stomach tearing aliens in Alien.

Of Eden don't want to use us to ween their young on. Their intentions, like their music, are more mysterious and compelling.

This recalls Spiritualized, early Verve with the storms of guitar stripped out, or less obliquely and with more poetry in their hearts, The Horrors.

It's very good indeed. Very very very good, in fact. Shhh! now, while I listen to it again.



Please send .mp3's for review / airplay on my radio show to themysterytour@gmail.com. Include a short, factual biography and a contact number, please.



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