Two Ton Boa


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It was almost seven years between the first Two Ton Boa record, a five-song self-titled EP of brooding indie rock, and their full-length debut, and it seems that singer/songwriter and bassist Sherry Fraser has had a lot to think about in the time that's passed. The result, Parasiticide, is a visceral, aggressive, volatile album about sex, gender roles, deceit, hypocrisy, and anger, hard-hitting and almost raw. The music is driving and sometimes spastic, but still very melodic and clean, Fraser's voice even sweet at times, everything together like a kind of extra-intense Dresden Dolls, dramatics and cabaret included. Gone are the slower, softer songs of the EP, and arrived are the pounding, acerbic basslines, the sneering vocals, the feeling as if everything is on the brink of self-destruction, much of this thanks to the fact that John Congleton produced, mixed, and engineered the entire record, and whose influence in the studio is heard very clearly (especially in the great, dark opener, "Cash Machine," with its alternating rhythms and varied percussion, and which could easily be found on one of the Paper Chase's albums). Congleton's brand of fractured indie rock fits Fraser's style nicely, highlighting the interesting parts of her anger and observations, and the songs that are a little more straightforward and less mangled come across as more bitter and a little more boring. "Ms. Fix It," for example, while not bad, just kind of sounds like a Hole ripoff, and is not particularly interesting, especially in comparison to what else Two Ton Boa can do. "Favorite Bloody Patient" frankly explores the irony of cosmetic surgery and "Herarchy" tells about the cruelty of girls, playground chants and all ("Misfit, misfit, got no sense/Sitting like a chicken on a chainlink fence"). There is innuendo, there are allusions, but Fraser is still pretty explicit about what she thinks, not afraid to state what she really feels instead of hiding it behind metaphor. It's in-your-face, aggressive music, creepy and dark and very strangely satisfying.

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