steering clear of the mainstream
since 2001

june 2010

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info opinion

Fred Wines

"Pure - Low-Fi In The Laundry Room Pt. 4" CDR

Low-Fi / HandMade Records

Genres: lo-fi, hometaper, pop

e-mail the artist

Feb 10 - 16 2003

I've lost the sheet now, but if I can remember correctly, Fred Wines was not very complementary about his own music.  I recall him calling his guitar parts "derivative" and making some sort of derogatory remark about his vocals.  As a result, I was interested to see what he was complaining about.

From what I can dig up from his website, Fred is a hometaper (think MJB and Don Campau) who has released a whole number of homemade CDRs, including several parts to his Low-Fi In The Laundry Room series.  This is the fourth part, and it certainly is an interesting affair.  The songs are all very personal tunes, just tracks that Fred recorded onto tape in his laundry room for fun.

Most of the songs are just simple ideas that Fred wanted to record in musical form.  "Plastic Heroes," for example, is a simple electric guitar and voice tune that poses Wine's spoken vocals over a simple, repeated rhythm guitar riff - an ode to talk rock, perhaps?  "Pride & Faith," meanwhile, is a particularly catchy tune with simple guitar and drum machine instrumentation, and Wines' vocals and guitar solos in the foreground.  Apparently Fred just woke up one day with it in his head.  Interesting.  Another infectious little tune is "Spin Me 'Round," which also was written very spontaneously - as Fred himself puts it: "This one just appeared, fully formed, as fast as I could write it down."

So is this really as bad as Fred would like to think?  Well, that depends on who you are.  While most people probably won't get what Wines is trying to accomplish, hometaper enthusiasts and cassette traders will totally dig the album's unique, personal style.  It's a niche thing, baby.


Fun Fact: There are actually seven volumes of the Low-Fi In The Laundry Room series out now (with more to come)!  Low-Fi In The Laundry Room Pt. 5 is apparently a collection of songs by other people, including tracks by everyone from Buddy Holly to The Ramones to Led Zeppelin.  Now that I'd like to hear!

Matt Shimmer

[Vitals: 10 songs, distributed by the artist, released 2002]