Schwervon – Quick Frozen Small Yellow Cracker

Schwervon
Quick Frozen Small Yellow Cracker

Schwervon is something of a side project for Major Matt of Major Matt Mason USA and Nan Turner of the girl-band Bionic Finger. Featuring just Matt on electric guitar – a noticeable change from his acoustic and more mellow solo project – and Nan on drums, these songs do have a bare-bones feel to them. But with both musicians sharing vocal duties and harmonizing in a kind of anti-harmonic way, you’re not going to miss additional instruments or heavy-duty recording budgets.

The best thing about Schwervon is that these two artists don’t take themselves too seriously. The songs are kind of sly and humorous, and the combination of guitar and drums give the songs a kind of garage-rock feel that works for the duo.

Nan’s vocals and the kind of garage-rock guitar sounds lend some of these songs a grrrl-rock feel, reminiscent of Sleater-Kinney, such as on “American Girl,” when she belts out, “at my very best, I can act my worst” and Matt’s vocals come in more restrained, the voice of reason here, at least until the screaming starts. The guitars come in thick and heavy during the chorus of “Eyesore,” and the chugging guitars, even on the quieter, unusual “Twin Donut,” gives the song a fuzzier, more grungy feel that turns into a sweeter, poppier song. And the title track finishes things off with the real dance around and sing-along rocker of the bunch.

On the quieter tracks, usually the ones on which Matt’s vocals take the lead, the songs have a more lo-fi pop sounds, like on “Dinner,” which is, apparently, all about making said meal. “Breaking In,” a quieter and more serious track, features both singers trading off and harmonizing, and with a crashing and intense chorus, this is one of the better tracks, despite the fact that it’s a more serious twist on things. But it’s “Springtime” that really shows off the band’s ability. A slower track that features the best harmonizing between the two, the guitar is crisp, the beat steady, and the song has a kind of intensity that the other songs make up for with wit.

It’s nice to hear Major Matt Mason trading acoustic for electric guitar and lending his style of wit and playful pop to a more grungy, electric sound. While Schwervon still feels like a side project, these songs are very good in their own right. Combining equal elements of lo-fi pop and garage grrrl-rock, Schwervon give you the chance to rock out and sing along to some rather silly songs.