Friday, June 8, 2012

Cassette Review: Shivering Window-Inner-Exo

A long time ago there existed a band by the name of BYODeath. They were a fun shit-fi band that put out a speedy, six song ten minute cassette on Bridgetown Records that I enjoyed quite a bit. Then, as mysteriously as they had appeared, they vanished, never releasing more material again. However, that has changed with the emergence of Shivering Window and their debut Inner-Exo.

Shivering Window is the project of Matthew Gray, the former front man and mastermind of BYODeath. With his new moniker Gray has started crafting something even more minimalist and lo-fi than his last project, demos to a band that sounded like it was still making demos. Inner-Exo is mostly just Gray with his guitar, banging out fuzzed chords and distorted vocals to a giant, empty space. But even with their simplicity, Shivering Windows is able to add subtle substance to all of its songs. A sparse and distant drum machine helps to bring a small, industrial tone to all the songs, propelling them further than what their original structure could have allowed. The band also seems to have a small control over fuzz and harsh noise, which the band applies casually to something like opener "I Wanna Never Ever" to give it an even more distant and bleak quality to it.

All this in effect helps to highlight the eeriness of Shivering Window's music. From the cover art to the semi-abstract noise through out the album to the tittles like "Pretty Creepers" and "Blue House, Grey House, Yellow House, Red House" something is askew in the world of Shivering Windows. At times it feels like (if you can strain your ear hard enough to hear it) some commentary on suburban life, like a music version of a Twin Peaks episode. Still, despite how off everything is within Shivering Windows, there are still some excellent hooks and lo-fi gems to be found under all the muck and spook. And it's this balance, between eerie atmosphere and post Guided by Voices indie rock nuggets that makes Inner-Exo such a intriguing and perfect little cassette.

(mp3) Shivering Windows-Pretty Creepers
(mp3) Shivering Windows-Blue House, Grey House, Yellow House, Red House


Shivering Window's Soundcloud
Buy Inner-Exo here, from Juniper Tree Songs

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