Three Records We Slept On in 2011
An Excerpt From 2012 Mid-Year Review
By Nathan G. O'Brien on Scene Point Blank
Brown Sugar takes cues from both the past and present—sponging The Germs and Black Flag as much as contemporary hardcore’s boundary-bending tendencies ala Nö Pöwer or Raw Nerve—while lacing it with their own unique weirdness. They start with some mysterious-guy underpinnings, add a little saxophone buffoonery, sprinkle it with DIY cut-n-past imagery, and make it a vinyl-only release. The end result is Sings of Birds and Racism; the pluperfect amalgamation of fast art punk.
Based out of Seattle, WA and featuring current and former members of a slew of other PNW notables like Murder City Devils, Pretty Girls Make Graves, Modest Mouse, Cold Lake, Mongrel Blood, Rabbit Ears and others, TOLSATD has quietly been creating some of the best wierdo-art-punk-noise for close to a decade now. Whether it be cassettes, CDs or various vinyl formats, they have already amassed an extensive catalog of music, spread accross a number of different indie labels . Last year's Some Of Us Are In This Together is their latest, and most varied to date. Where their early work came off like experimental home recordings, the new record plays like the perfect culmination the band's yearly progression. They have structured marvelous, albeit boundary-less, songs. The dual vocal approach of Spencer Moody and Andrea Zollo recalls both the anger and angst of their old hardcore band Area 51 as well their eclectic arty and dance-informed features on fellow band member Dann Gallucci's A Gun Called Tension record. The whole thing plays like a vagabond experience—it's poectic, emotive and incredibly alluring.