Matmos – Plastic Anniversary

matmosThere are two ways to listen to this motherfucker.

The first way to listen to this album is without knowing how’s it made: These beats are ADHD speed-addicted LSD trips in stereo. It’s all honks, beeps, clicks, snaps, rumbles, twangs, screeches, kapows, and ba-lama-lams. They have a kind of optimistic dance vibe that doesn’t just put a smile on a face, it industrially staples it to your forehead. This degree of optimism, no matter how you look at it, is inherently fucked and sour. It stretches its smile so far the muscles spasm. It’s sick sounding. It’s so tongue-and-cheek it bites a hole through its own face to reveal back molars seated behind a pasted-on clown smile. These beats are composed of hypercrisp and unique sounds. I can’t help but make a comparison to the sultan of the warble and waves, the glitch-king himself, Aphex Twin. The melodies on this motherfucker are strange and slightly off pitch. They have a kind of dissonance that hits a certain sweet spot between off pitch and oh-fuck-ya.

The second way to listen to this album is knowing how the sausage is made: Matmos, made of the duo Drew Daniel and M.C. Schmidt, are sample junkies. They sample everything. Their audio clips often have some sort of theme. On their ’01 album, A Chance To Cut Is A Chance To Cure, it was plastic surgery equipment. That’s right, they grabbed a bunch of shit used to tuck those nips and enlarge those dicks and made music out of those motherfuckers. On Ultimate Care II in ’16, they recorded all the sounds they could make from a single washing machine. They plucked, broke, twisted, shattered, hit, hurled, blew, and snorked (yes snorked) everything they could find to produce these strange sounds. On this album? It’s all about that plastic. Outside of the song “Interior with Billiard Balls and Synthetic Fat”, it’s not obvious what that plastic device is. There’s even a video on how they produce some of these sounds.

Why plastic? Because there’s 8.3 billion tons of plastic produced since the ’50s. How about the Great Pacific garbage patch (80,000 metric tons) and the North Atlantic garbage patch (hundreds of kilometres in diameter) just floating around like giant ocean turds? I could go on, but I don’t get sexually satisfied by feeling better than other people so I won’t. And it’s not like you don’t know this shit already. We all fucking know this. We don’t want to be reminded. It’s depressing. And people respond to this grand type of information laden with fucktons of guilt by, eventually, ignoring these facts. People gotta live. It’s almost like there needs to be more optimistic ways to remind people to use less plastic. I don’t know. Maybe it could even be a fucking album.



 

 

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