Last Updated on Tuesday, 19 June 2007 19:07
Artist: Nurse with Wound
CD Title: She and me Fall Together in Free Death
Label: Beta-Lacam Ring Records
Reviewer: Matthew Johnson
This CD reissue of a limited-edition vinyl album has a little of everything that makes Nurse With Wound great. It opens with “She and Me Fall Together Like Free Death,” a fifteen-minute drone rock long epic, with vocal mutterings panning across the stereo channels and spaced out guitar effects worming their way between steady drumbeats. Never has Nurse With Wound’s Stephen Stapleton made a clearer declaration of his love for the psychedelic “Krautrock” of German bands like Can, Neu, and Sand. This release also shows off the requisite sick humor with “Gusset Typing,” an explicit sexual tour-de-force of a spoken word piece that happens to be delivered entirely in an eerie, high-pitched Munchkin voice. Found sound makes an appearance on “Chicken Concret,” a collage piece layered with tweets, mutterings, and the titular chickens. By far the most fascinating thing, though, is Stapleton’s take on the traditional “Black Is the Color of My True Love’s Hair.” It has its experimental moments, like chimes and a little girl talking in the background, but by and large it’s a straightforward rendition, with Stapleton singing over slowly droning electric guitar strums. This is weird – all of Nurse With Wound’s material is – but it’s especially weird in that it comes really, really close to being regular music, with the requisite studio toying offset by a standard verse-chorus-verse structure. The CD version of this album also features a couple of remixes – a “Phosphorus Mix” of the first track rearranges some of the mutterings and effects, while “Chicken Korma” submerges the poultry noises in layers of reverb – but the real reason to own this is that curiosity of curiosities, Stephen Stapleton singing an actual honest-to-god song.
Rumor has it that the next Nurse With Wound release is going to be a hip-hop record, so Stapleton presumably plans to continue blowing the minds of his long-time fans, but until that happens, check out the latest news at www.brainwashed.com/nww