It's been a while, hasn't it?
Lansing-Dreiden – Two Extremes
It's taken how long? Twenty years? But an American band has finally embraced New Pop wholesale. Lansing-Dreiden is, well, I'll let them describe themselves:
The Rosebuds — Shake Our Tree
The album this is taken from was recorded in Carrboro, and as such is already known to a few people who read this blog. The Rosebuds' core is Ivan Howard and Kelly Crisp, a couple who started the band just a week after getting married. And, well, there's really not a lot more to say about this; it's just a fun song that would have sounded right at home over here during the 1994-1996 era of Britpop. When played live, it gets a lovely call-and-response section, but you'll just have to imagine that.
Lansing-Dreiden is a multi-media company founded in Miami, FL and is currently based in New York. Its output includes artwork in the form of drawings, collages, sculpture and video, as well as the production of music recordings and Death Notice, a free newspaper containing fictional stories and images. All Lansing-Dreiden projects are fragmentary, mere stones in a path whose end lies in a space where the very definition of "path" paths.Yes, so they've got the incredibly pretentious pose down pat. They even have a separate group simply to perform their works live. Thankfully, the songs on their new album The Dividing Island don't collapse into a Sigue Sigue Sputnik-level disaster, instead sounding like a lost Trevor Horn sideproject from 1983, coupled with Paul Morley's scribbed manifestos (and while we're on the subject of Mr. Morley: while I appreciate that the Joy Division/Manchester scene is important and well worth revisiting, I'd love a ZTT retrospective piece focusing on what exactly he did during those years as a pop svengali rather than another look back at Factory. Don't get me wrong, I love the Factory era, but there's other stuff to talk about sometimes! Besides, we all want to hear the story about how he came to be in The Look Of Love promo). Having said all that, it's not quite as shiny and glossy as a proper Horn production; songs often jerk at right angles instead of being slimline pop works. And their closest relation probably isn't ABC, Dollar, Frankie, or even The Art of Noise; it's Disco Inferno, the greatest forgotten British band of the 1990s. So download Two Extremes and see how many different Horn pieces you can pick out!