Sunday, October 25, 2009

I recently bought some records - by Oneida

There are three of them. And the first one, Rated O is a triple album. That has to some extent made engaging with it a bit difficult, but I can confirm that it is forward thinking. It is also, after last year's Preteen Weaponry, the second in a trilogy of records that will herald a new age in the history of the world. What is odd about this one is the dance-music direction this record takes on some of the tracks. The opener, 'Brownout in Lagos'. sounds like it should be appearing on some Warp drill 'n' bass compilation. This is a great record, but I reckon that if you were new to the music of Oneida then maybe Preteen Weaponry would be the one to go for, if only because it is more manageably sized and thus easier to digest.

I bought two other records (by Oneida) at the Oneida concert. One of these is the wonderfully titled Come On Everybody Let's Rock. It is early Oneida, from 2000, before Each One Teach One (the album with 'Sheets of Easter'). It is a bit more based on normal songs than the full-on tunes they would later become famous for. The inner sleeve does however feature a great photograph of one of the band in the nip, his charms on full display.

The Wedding, meanwhile is more recent, from 2005. I listened to this before checking the date, and was surprised that it was so recent. The first couple of tracks do not sound like the Oneida we now know and love, but almost like some kind of lamer sub-Mercury Rev outfit. However, the last bloc of songs, beginning with 'Heavenly Choir' are ones of great power, tunes that will, I think, find their way into the ranks of any Oneida-lovers list of the best songs by Oneida.

Listening to these a bit more, I think The Wedding is the better of the two old ones. Come On Everybody Let's Rock is enjoyable enough, but it is with the later tracks on The Wedding that the Oneida we know and love now is more clearly starting to emerge. Even the beginning songs on The Wedding sound more promising when I return to them.

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