Saturday, May 14, 2011

Review: Breatherholes - Give It to U (Self-released, 2011)

            With the tape wrapped in trick cardboard and words „Jakub, here’s the tape. Enjoy – lew” being scribbled on it and a black & white xeroxed cover adorned with random blue and pink marker doodles being actually GLUED to the tape (with silicon), and as the insert informs, the music “recorded in an RV in a driveway in Austin, tx in the third month of the 11th year of the 21st century”, Breatherholes’ Give It to U is almost a dictionary definition of terms “DIY” and “hand-made”.
The sounds on the tape is no less DIY than the packaging – a lo-fi, somewhat psychedelic, urban singer-songwriter collection. Sparse, almost cold in its simplicity, yet warm with melodies and lyrics. Despite the makeshift packaging, Lew took the effort to collect on the lyrics in the insert – cool points to him (even though some parts of the lyrics are mysteriously crossed out – last minute decision to drop fragments of the lyrics while recording the songs or an aesthetic?). The addition of the lyrics is very useful, because it might be hard (at first at least) to get through the delayed lyrics. Despite the limited instrumentarium and recording space, the tracks sound exceptionally spacious and well-arranged, bells and primitive drums intertwine with acoustic guitar noodlings, creating catchy hooks.
Lew recorded a simple, joyful and highly enjoyable album, which fuses the outsider music leanings with lo-fi indie pop and urban folk aesthetic. It seems that Lew does not care about money at all, creating music for the fun of it, not the cash. He’s okay with the Internet, putting his music on both cassettes and in the form of free digital downloads. He wants no conflict, no grudges. To quote one of his songs, “let’s be alright with each other”.

Give It to U can be downloaded for free from Lew's website.

float together by noothhing

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