Moreland Audio

Turbogold

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When guitarists Ben Davis and Gary Flom were performing their unique brand of instrumental math-rock with drummer Scott Robbins, they called themselves the Purkinje Shift and were known for wearing suits and playing their live sets straight through, with no breaks between songs. Now that Robbins has been replaced by drummer Adam Overton on Turbogold, the band is calling itself Moreland Audio and still plying a strangely compelling variant on the hard-rocking mathematics theme. You'll know within about two minutes whether you're going to like this album: the dynamic level is stuck at a pretty consistent forte setting, and the guitar-guitar-drums instrumentation guarantees that there won't be much in the way of dramatic textural shifts either. But if you listen to the details, and especially if you listen more than once, you'll start to catch some pretty cool subtleties at work beneath the immediate surface -- notice the finely crafted King Crimson-meets-Meat Puppets counterpoint going on throughout "Today's Higher Revving Engines" (a top nominee for Instrumental Song Title of the Year) or the slow development and gradual chaos of "I Grind Myself Up." But you do have to listen pretty hard before all that stuff becomes apparent. The question is whether you want to work that hard.

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