WHOOP-Szo – Qallunaat/Odemin :: Album Review

When: 14/01/2014
Where: Out Of Sound Records
Like/Love: LIKE
Over the years (from Elusive Little Comments to Exploding Head Syndrome) we have had a knack for posting some weird shit, most notably from Canada. Canada’s had a bit of a resurgence in the music industry with a whole bunch of indie and underground labels becoming the birthing pool for a lot of strange material. This is a sentence where I give a shoutout to Tree Machine Records for providing us with the most “normal” music out of the Canadian bunch. Out Of Sound Records and PERDU have been responsible for giving us many underground acts which flourish in the most disjointed and messed up areas of music, as if they live in the hole of an ancient amplifier that’s done nothing but gather dust and feedback over the years. Bands such as WTCHS have become one of our personal favourites over the ELC/EHS years, and now Out Of Sound Records look set to continue their knack for finding similar bands with Qallunaat/Odemin, the new album/tape by WHOOP-Szo.
Recorded in the Arctic and released on tape screen printed by Inuit Youth, Qallunaatis a great example of taking lo-fi to the extreme while keeping it somewhat cohesive and enjoyable. There’s a marching drumbeat that seems to stumble and fall about at random points, the odd jangle of acoustic guitar which is coherent at the strangest of moments, all of which is encompassed by this bizarre jingle of piano keys that sound straight out of Nightmare On Elm Street or something. It’s enough for a grown man to tear his balls out, but then realise it’s fucking awesome.
Odeminis six minutes more of the same, though the vocals are drawn out alongside the winding instrumentation to give off a much less polished finish and more of a refined detour towards insanity. The strangest moments of Pink Floyd are pretty much the foundations for this track, which surprisingly create a fantastic space for some heavily distorted guitar riffs to come in and tear things up. It’s a vast but interesting listen which ends on the sounds of a foreign man wishing you a good morning before a hoard of trumpets close the song with a hearty blow. It’s great.
With WTCHS planning to release an album in April, and now WHOOP-Szo on our radar, this could be a great year for Out Of Sound and the other indie/underground labels. This extreme lo-fi niche consistently comes out with good stuff, so 2014 could easily be filled with more.
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