I've always been surprised that the band Phish gets such hate from hipsters. I mean, they're totally DIY, they're exquisite musicians, they're weird and quirky. It's a common case of musicians being judged by their fan base (who can be quite lovely people, actually).
For anyone that loves intricate harmonies, shuffling breakbeats, shredding lead guitars, and mystic, poetic lyrics, but are ashamed to proclaim their love of jam bands, this short debut blast Surreal Deal from Lowell, MA's Perfect Inversion is just the ticket.
The main point of comparison between Perfect Inversion and Vermon't Phinest is the honeyed tenor of Nick Ver Voort, which bears a striking similarity to the Phish's drummer, Jon Fishman, and the chairman of the boards, Page McConnell, laid over a bedrock of funky breakbeats.
Surreal Deal also brings to mind the underwater masterpiece of Ween's The Mollusk with its quavering sub-aquatic keys and a proliferation of phase and flange on the guitars. For anyone who loves the epic, beautiful moments of both Phish and Ween, but are turned off by the satirical, tongue-in-cheek lyrical moments, this one's for you.
Don't think for a moment this is merely some slack key, East Coast jam band-lite, as both Nick Ver Voort and Nick St. Pierre are both avowed computer music geeks, and the guitar psychedelia is punctuated by moments of synthetic surrealism like on "Too Late" with its growling, square wave 8-bit synth and Aphex Twin beats, which bring to mind 2000s indie rock, blending rock 'n roll with electronics, painting in day glo hues.
Perfect Inversion keeps it short and sweet with a scant four tracks that features excellent musicianship, songwriting, arrangements and sound design. For anyone that likes guitar rock and synthesizers, techno and jam bands, world music and weird cassettes, there is something for you here.
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