Vanishing Hour Revival
Genre: gettin' thrifty
I am really digging this Goodwill-esque
C26, which comes hand-decorated in a cubist wraparound case, upon which is
attached a picture of a dandelion and an Australian postage stamp.
And beyond that, the cassette itself is covered in glittery stickers
of butterflies and a chicken drumstick, titillating both the
eight-year-old aspiring lepidopterist and the ravenous,
Hanna-Barbera-esque caveman inside of me!
Now there's a bit of confusion about
the track listing here, which I don't want to delineate too
tortuously, but to my best understanding there are 4 tracks on side
A and 5 on track B – the opposite of what the liner notes attest to
– and hence I'm going to naively assume that track 5 on A is
actually track 1 on B.
The defining moments on this curious artifact are strewn throughout
its twenty-six minute duration,
the first one coming in the slow, ebbing loveliness of opening drone
track “Common Berries," a lonely and mournful passage which evokes
images of decaying silent film strips. Also blissful is
the pretty guitar-and-keyboard twinkling of “A Bittersweet
Occupation,” which sparkles like the score to some delicate
mumblecore love scene or a slow-motion
wander through the quiet city
at night; it is endearingly quaint, and adorned with vague touches of
melody – though also
almost criminally short.
In addition to the aforementioned
tidbits, I adore “A Solid Light to Hide Behind,"
whose pensively gentle post-rock guitar strokes convey acceptance,
resolution, and even weariness.
Its moving wistfulness is vaguely reminiscent
of the peaceful melodies found on work by
L'altra and Windsor for the Derby, though of
course this brandishes a more lo-fi spirit. Also worthy of brief note is the
terrific Tangerine Dream film score melodrama of very-eighties
“Chasing Tales,” which
turned out to be a black horse favourite of mine. Meanwhile, the rest of the tape maintains
curious, piecemeal thrift-store sound, as on such disparate elements
as the faint toy-pop of “Candy Wallpaper” and intergalactic “Vapor Memory,”
the latter of which conjures up the impossible
scenario of sound waves bouncing off planets in space.
I couldn't tell you a thing about
Machete USA, as this seems to be the only artifact
around that bears its name. However, a brief sojourn with this twenty-six
minute treat has won me over to the act's vague,
mysterious ways. Whoever
you are, Machete USA, I like what you've done
[Vitals: 9 tracks, distributed by