steering clear of the mainstream
since 2001

june 2010

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info opinion

Bran Flakes

"Bounces!" CD

Happi Tyme Records

Genres: tape collage, found sound, plunderphonics

Happi Tyme
Box 21104
Seattle, WA 98111

Sep 23 - 29 2002

So you like Negativland but they're too political. And People Like Us is fine and all, but she keeps going on those long stretches of vocal sample conversations. Or maybe you're just looking for something new on the tape collage scene. Well, either way, The Bran Flakes are here to make you smile and giggle, as they've packed on whole loads of thrift store sounds to this album, snatching samples from just about everywhere you can imagine.

It's pretty safe to say that if you enjoyed It's Hard To Find A Friend, Bounces! will satisfy your Bran cravings. As with Friend, the Flakes have loaded this album with tongue-in-cheek humour. For example, the title track lays an aerobic vocal instructor's voice ("Bounces, bounce two, stretch two") over the bassline to "Another One Bites The Dust". Then there's "Ding Dong Dub", a happy 60-ish kitsch piece that adds a whole new dimension to the old "Ding Dong Bell" nursery rhyme. It's the first time I've heard the classic song being put in such a context. Another favourite is "Mr. Snuggles", a track that places a love song about someone (or something) named Mr. Snuggles over a deliberately off-key background. This produces an eerie, yet giggle-inducing, atmosphere.

There's a lot to love in Bounces! and not much to hate. While a few of the tracks may not be to everyone's liking, anyone with a pulse should find themselves laughing along to this album. Even when you think it's going for a long, "serious" instrumental session, the Flakes will throw in a well-timed soundbit about panties and get you hooting all over again.

All in all, Bounces! is a surprisingly catchy trip to the world of kitsch, schmaltz, and oddly familiar melodies. This album has secured The Bran Flakes a place in the world of Negativland and People Like Us, and proves itself to be easily one of the year's most hilarious records.


Matt Shimmer

[Vitals: 71 min 33 sec; 17 tracks; distributed by Aquarius; released 2002]