steering clear of the mainstream
since 2001

june 2010

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info opinion


"Sycophantic Elephant Suffering Buffet" CD


Genres: electronic, rock, experimental

November 2006

Recorded in 2002 and chronicling Hypnotuba's journey to find his true self, this one certainly paints an interesting picture of its creator's psyche. Hypnotuba is a one-man recording act with a sense for the bizarre and eclectic. Yes, this record is a journey, and a very strange and often quite enjoyable one at that - but it certainly isn't for anyone. Sounding something like a rock opera from another planet, this electronic-heavy wonder needs to be taken all at once to be fully appreciated. No hit singles, no skipping tracks - just start it from the top and see what you can make out of it. The keyboards are what gives this record the melodic element that keeps it interesting, though the heavy atmospherics hold it in a good spot. Styles range from ambient ("Fifteen Flowers, Twelve Sunbeams") to funked cybergrind ("Owh! Ghe tuw wha jii fnh") to Captain Beefheart-esque weirdness ("Chocolate Muhlow Snap Crunch Wraps") to hard rock anthemics ("Please Pass The Cream Cheese"). And that's simply a fraction of stylistic cross-section on this disc, which throws more curveballs than a triple-A vet. Thanks to Hypnotuba's sense of humour and fun, though, things avoid any forays into tedium, and this seemingly disjointed album comes almost frighteningly cohesive. In short, Sycophantic Elephant is the perfect little secret - not everyone's bag, but worth looking out for nonetheless.


Matt Shimmer

[Vitals: 12 tracks, 38:53, distributed by cafepress, released 2006]