Autistic Daughters – Uneasy Flowers (Kranky/Inertia)


Autistic Daughters veer from the long-winded and verbose leanings of post-rock on their second fully fledged work, Uneasy Flowers, instead issuing a laconic light that vigilantly alludes to and cloaks the recesses of their psychological swamp. Tightly-knit (rock) song structures are fed by residues of the avant-garde: Werner Dafeldecker offers distressed microtones and flecks of incidental color, which convey a subtle, unobtrustive delicacy while heightening the pensiveness and aged melancholia of the atmosphere; meanwhile, Martin Brandlmayr’s uncluttered percusive commentary and creative interventions are judicious as ever; and the intricate, knuckle-popping thrash of Dean Roberts’ guitar is a consistently compelling presence.

The Necks’ Chris Abrahams and Brandlmayr’s Erstwhile fraternizer Martin Siewart also lend their respective voices to these taut, airy, and clever sketches. In general, their contributions are well attuned to the groups performance dynamic and immersion in a particular character of sound. “The Richest Woman In The World” features light piano brushwork from the former, which glides along the shifting suspended chords of Roberts, contributing to the feeling of time passing languidly, steeped in regret, as his tender, strained vocals – now more pronounced than ever – follow a dream-like logic, forecasting some strange doom. Otherwise the group moves easily and effectively from slow drift to chattering urgency. With the playing and formation of the pieces being as crisp, clean, and unhinged as they are, further repetition and augmentation would have only provided greater depth. As it is, a stylistic signature is pressed well into the skin of this rough-hewn recording.

Max Schaefer


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