sabato 19 giugno 2010

Joy Zipper "American Whip"

Adorabili, visionari, intensi Joy Zipper. Da amare insomma. (2003 Mercury)

With a real feel for summery pop and garage rock, Joy Zipper could easily slip into tight leathers and come on like The Raveonettes. Just as easily though, their way with spacey atmospherics could see them mutate into a several-headed Orb. American Whip, held up for over a year due to record company complications, sees them land somewhere between the two.
Opening with the warped instrumental "Sunstroke" (as blitzed and stumbling as its name implies), it moves into the breezy, ethereal pop of "Christmas Song", then the driving, scuzzy "Baby You Should Know". It's an impressive start, and it gets better. "Out of the Sun" rides on a garage riff, with vocals flying in from different angles and distances. "Dosed and Became Invisible" is hazy and innovative, while "Alzheimers", as its title suggests, drifts almost psychedelically in fuzzy dementia. Indeed, only the meandering instrumental "VSX" fails to command attention.
Variously produced by the band, David Holmes and My Bloody Valentine's Kevin Shields, American Whip will certainly not go careering up the charts, but it is conclusive proof that Joy Zipper are one of the finest indie outfits to spring from the East Coast in recent years. (Dominic Wills -

When I was little I arbitrarily liked the Beach Boys. I admired "Good Vibrations" but wasn't sure why. I'd never heard Pet Sounds, and when I finally did, I just couldn't "get it." So it's telling that it took several listens for me to warm up to Joy Zipper's music. Originally slated for release in '03 before being shelved due to the usual label politicking, and then released internationally last year, the Long Island-based couple's sophomore effort, American Whip, is finally getting a stateside release in '05. The duo's stylish, baroque pop can be traced back to myriads of influences, but it's the psychedelic samples, live strings, sun-soaked harmonies, and crisscrossing vocal parts that are most prominent, recalling the Byrds and, yes, the Beach Boys' seminal 1966 album. Of course, other, more modern influences can be found in American Whip's rush of static-y guitars (My Bloody Valentine) and quiet electronic drones (David Holmes, who co-produced four tracks here, and Air). And speaking of Air, Joy Zipper's "33x" could have been Lux Lisbon's theme song in The Virgin Suicides—like much of the album, the song questions death and the meaning of physical life in particular: "Pulled back my skin and found a mannequin/If I'm straight like a line then I am dying" (they go on to use the word "mannequin" again on the very next track, "Out Of The Sun," this time as an adjective). It's this juxtaposition of probing, melancholy lyrics and sprightly background music that makes American Whip so entrancing. Dip your toes beneath the glistening atmospheres of tracks like "Valley Stream" and "In The Never Ending Search For A Suitable Enemy" and you'll find songs about madness, drugs, mental deterioration, and death. Brian Wilson should be proud. (Sal Cinquemani -

- Sunstroke
- Christmas Song
- Baby You Should Know
- 33x
- Out Of The Sun
- Drugs
- Dosed And Became Invisible
- Alzheimers
- Ron
- In The Never Ending Search For A Suitable Enemy
- Valley Stream


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