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NO AGE – Weirdo Rippers (Fat Cat)

Posted: June 11th, 2007, by Pascal Ansell

Another fantastic release from the Fat Cat label! No Age are an L.A. noise-rock two-piece, steeped in the city’s art/skate/punk scene. Having had their names teased at from all (including Wire Magazine), the double team of Dean Spunt and Randy Randall were picked up by Fat Cat after the label’s ears came to rightly acknowledge their delectable noise. The result is ‘Weirdo Rippers’, a collection of lovely messy tunes previously heard on various underground vinyl releases.

The album could not have a more fitting title: for me it perfectly encapsulates the album’s jumbled assortment of wonderfully messy pieces. You can revel in the breakneck punk sprawl of ‘Boy Void’ or get a spacey vibe in the warped distortion of ‘I Wanna Sleep’. ‘Everybody’s Down’ is a contradictory message – it is remarkably upbeat for its title. It contains a triumphant vocal strain, resounding more pleasingly than if actually hitting the correct notes.

A good duo album defies the issue of a minimal line-up. ‘Weirdo Rippers’ achieves this by full use of peculiar effects and massive head-rattling fuzz. The album’s power is in its apparent free-form abundance of beautiful noise, much like Black Dice’s ‘Beaches and Canyons’ LP. It is cunningly well-structured without being contrived: after x bars of flowing feedback, in comes a terrific rock-out sequence. The album offers a distinctive feel-good scattiness, displayed in the Animal Collective drum snaps and floor tom thumps in ‘Neck Escaper’ or the Joey Ramone hollering on ‘Dead Plane’.

The album’s coda, ‘Escarpment’ takes off where ‘Weirdo Rippers’ began: waves of mushy static ebb and flow whilst the ear is grounded by pleasant chimes. Yet another testament to Fat Cat’s excellent discrimination and the power of the duo.

Pascal Ansell


Pascal Ansell

Pascal is a fearsome, hungry giant trapped in the body of a hyperactive boy. On a mission to waste no more than 14 seconds per day, he bounds from activity to activity like a deer being chased by a cheetah. Follow him now, as in ten year's time he'll be a leading voice in something or other. He's also writing down every word you say in a small book so watch out!


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