Spoozys - Astral Astronaut
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Spoozys
Astral Astronaut

I know I've said it before, but many Japanese artists are just plain wacky. You've got Buffalo Daughter, Cibo Matto, Cornelius, Pizzicato Five, and many other bands. While all of them have their serious moments, those moments are fleeting and the groups mentioned above are mainly known for their quirks. And that's all find and good, because the Spoozys (name aside even) continue in that fine tradition of strange music coming from Japan.

While they're not the weirdest group out there in terms of noise or experimentation, they do throw a lot of different things in the mixing pot. They're sort of a rock band, but they have BPMs listed on the back of their album and they throw breakbeats and all kinds of electronic wanderings into the release. Not only that, but they have two-part male/female vocals that make them sound surprisingly like a hyped-up, futuristic version of the B-52s.

The album blasts right out of the gates with the album-titled track and some rather kinetic breakbeats and guitars. The two singers ping-pong their vocals off one another sometimes, while at other points start shouting out together like they want to start a happy riot. The second track bounds off in nearly the same way after a quick burst of electronic noise. The track is even thicker, though, as the group lays down a chunkier guitar riff sample and harder beats underneath all those vocals that will take awhile to decipher (but that doesn't mean you won't try to sing along with them).

Fortunately, the group changes things up at least slightly after awhile, and the futuristic surf-rock sounds of "Tiny Head Creatures," the slower hip-hop inspired beats of the instrumental "AI (Artificial Intelligence)," and the hyped-up disco-punk sounds of the aptly titled "Super Discoman 2." Overall, the album is a pretty fun affair, and your music cheese level will have to be pretty high to endure the whole thing (similar to a mood needed to listen to an entire Pizzicato Five release). They probably ate way too much sugar before creating this music, and it would probably serve you best if you were sugar-rushing while listening to it.

rating: 610
Aaron Coleman 2003-06-19 00:00:00