REVIEWS | FEATURES | DEPARTMENTS | BOOMBOX | PODCAST | MISC
SEARCH:
splendid > reviews > 2/18/2003
Cargo Cult
Cargo Cult
Strange Men Bearing Gifts
Touch and Go


Format Reviewed: CD

Soundclip: "Pimp Posse"

Buy me now
Indie label Touch and Go has cracked open the vaults to re-release this platter of new wave punk from erstwhile Austin, Texas act Cargo Cult. It is unlikely that there is much public clamoring for the reissue; fortunately, it is a pretty solid effort. Recorded in early 1986, the record careens through Bad Brains-style hardcore ("Misfortune Cookie") and fare that exhibits influences including Agent Orange ("Mayday" sounds a heck of a lot like AO's "Everything Turns Grey") and Gang of Four. Notably, Cargo Cult included former and future members of the Big Boys, Jesus Lizard and Tomahawk.

The more straightforward material ("Okie Crude", "Waiting for Butterflies") fails to capture much attention, as the styles exhibited have since been co-opted by thousands of other bands (or so it often seems). However, darker numbers, like album closer "Mekong Delta Blues", "Underworld" and "Pimp Posse", recall the interesting clash of musical styles typical of music of the era. "Pimp Posse" in particular stands out as a potent amalgamation of tribal beats, ghostly feedback, spectral vocals and oppressive atmosphere. Unfortunately, such exciting material has to share time with other compositions that, though flawlessly executed, are only mildly compelling (such as the aforementioned "Waiting for Butterflies"). Listeners interested in revisiting a period of time in which alternative music was experiencing interesting growing pains will enjoy Strange Men Bearing Gifts. Others will probably scratch their heads and wonder why Touch and Go felt so strongly about the material as to re-release it.



REVIEWS:

12/31/2005:
Ladytron

Brian Cherney

Tomas Korber

UHF

The Rude Staircase

Dian Diaz

12/30/2005:
Helloween

PTI

The Crimes of Ambition

Karl Blau

Rosetta

Gary Noland

12/29/2005:
Tommy and The Terrors

Blacklisted

Bound Stems

Gary Noland

Carlo Actis Dato and Baldo Martinez

Quatuor Bozzoni

12/28/2005:
The Positions

Comet Gain

Breadfoot featuring Anna Phoebe

Secret Mommy

The Advantage

For a Decade of Sin: 11 Years of Bloodshot Records

12/27/2005:
The Slow Poisoner

Alan Sondheim & Ritual All 770

Davenport

Beaumont

Five Corners Jazz Quintet

Cameron McGill

Drunk With Joy

12/26/2005:
10 Ft. Ganja Plant

The Hospitals

Ross Beach

Big Star

The Goslings

Lair of the Minotaur

Koji Asano



Splendid looks great in Firefox. See for yourself.
Get Firefox!


FEATURES:
Grizzly Bear's Ed Droste probably didn't even know that he'd be the subject of Jennifer Kelly's final Splendid interview... but he is!



DEPARTMENTS:
That Damn List Thing
& - The World Beyond Your Stereo
Bookshelf
Pointless Questions
File Under
Pointless Questions
& - The World Beyond Your Stereo


ARCHIVE:
Read reviews from the last 30, 60, 90 or 120 days, or search our review archive.

It's back! Splendid's daily e-mail update will keep you up to date on our latest reviews and articles. Subscribe now!
Your e-mail address:    
REVIEWS | FEATURES | DEPARTMENTS | BOOMBOX | PODCAST | MISC
SEARCH:
All content ©1996 - 2011 Splendid WebMedia. Content may not be reproduced without the publisher's permission.