What is peculiar about the avant rock music machine that Kitchens And Bathrooms create is that has a 3rd person narrative quality to it. That is, their approach is so set back (but not necessarily impersonal) that it actually makes the listener objectively pay attention to that fact that the melodies and textures they construct eventually make up a concept that is known as 'music', sort of making them the next step past 'post-rock' (or is it post-post rock?) This debut album takes various sonic cogs and wires from such obvious inspirations like Hum, Mogwai, Chore, Don Caballero and Slint along with a heavy dose of psychedelic chromatics. Add in a total disregard for formula as well as sparse, abstract and concealed vocals and in turn the end result is a highly subjective listening experience. These dynamic alterations of sound were "analogically" captured to tape by producer/engineer/musician Dan Achen, co- owner of Catherine North Studios in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. A relatively new facility, the studio is a beautifully renovated church designed for open-concept same-room recording, a place that is a playground for phasing and a gym to practice room mic'ing techniques. At times, the drums sound as if they exist in AM radio wavelengths while the bass hums and rumbles like thunder from miles away. Perhaps the character of the studio itself additionally added something subconsciously spiritual in feel and sound, thus making it even more the ideal place to have been recorded at because listening to this album is very much like experiencing a multi-dimensional late-night day dream. (k&b, 41 Goulding Ave., Hamilton, ON, L9C 5L5, Canada. www.k-bathrooms.com)

Tape Op is a bi-monthly magazine devoted to the art of record making.

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