Saturday, March 26, 2005

Tibi Lubin: I Don't See You As A Dead Girl (Rev-Ola CD 2004)

There's a post-punk revival going on, apparently. Bands like Franz Ferdinand and Interpol are digging into the early-80s sounds of Factory, Postcard and Rough Trade. (When I saw FF on the Grammys, I thought for sure that it was the only time we'd hear Josef K-influenced music on that gaudy awards show.) Most of these revivalists seem to be aiming straight for the dancefloor, melding stiff disco rhythms to choppy guitars the way they think Gang of Four might have. Meanwhile, a band like Tibi Lubin stands on the edge of the party, finding its voice in quieter influences like Marine Girls and Young Marble Giants. Their first and so far only album, I Don't See You As A Dead Girl, came out on Rev-Ola in 2004. A quick internet search finds almost no reviews. That's just wrong, and proof that "the music you missed" can come from any era.

I Don't See You As A Dead Girl is mostly the work of Glaswegian songwriter Katie Stewart (though she's since added two more people to the lineup). Most of these 10 songs are just guitar, cheap drum machine and vocals; we only hear a bass guitar now and then. Songs like "Calling Hettie Jones" and "Miss Myopia" start off shambly, almost Shaggs-like, the guitar and voice playing flashlight tag before melding together into heart-stopping melody. Stewart's voice is high and often confused, sounding very much like the Marine Girls' Alice Fox. Producer Joe Foster (TVPs, Slaughter Joe) describes it as "the sound of a girl going insane," which isn't completely true but a good starting point. The whole album is powerful in its subtlety; two run-throughs and you're hooked for months, not wanting to listen to anything else. -Mike Appelstein

No comments: