I didn't hear about last night's tragedy outside the Mohawk until after I was home and ready for bed. For as grand a celebration as the Buffalo Lounge was yesterday, the news put a serious damper on the day's events — and it will surely do the same for every day after.
This is my first South by Southwest, so some rookie mistakes are to be expected on Day 1. There were a few instances, however, in which I definitely should have known better. Like, you know, sunscreen.
Nearly six years ago, an Oklahoma City duo by the name of Tympanic
Frenzy sent my eardrums into just that with a terrific, if oddly
punctuated electronica album in Cerebral Funktion .. in Process …
Henry McMinn, one-half of that twosome, is now back as Tele Mori, and backed by a full band. Not only does that added help grant depth and a richer sound to his programmed melodies, but the resulting disc, Sounds from a Broken Music Box, is more accomplished.
Whereas a good chunk of Funktion’s tracks sported no words, Tele Mori’s debut is vocal-driven, with one exception: “Novembers Ending,” a number that gradually builds to an explosion of beauty.
While not entirely losing the industrial leanings of his former act, McMinn’s work here is better prepared for mass-audience consumption. A good point of comparison is post-Play Moby, where rock met electronics and turned out to like each other after all, or perhaps Team Sleep, the more melodic side project of Deftones’ Chino Moreno.
Sway to the woozy closer “Broken and Free.” Live vicariously through Taylor Fallis’ relentless drumming on “Looking Through Glass Blocks.” Relax with “Listening While I Sleep,” the closet thing this Box has to a ballad. Whatever you do, just listen. —Rod Lott