AIDS Wolf – The Lovvers LP

AIDS Wolf
The Lovvers LP

Okay, so the band has trendy written all over it. Hailing from Canada with lupine-related band name, AIDS Wolf has been one of the most hyped groups in recent memory. The Lovvers LP was even produced by Arlen Thompson of prestigous 2005 year-end list-toppers Wolf Parade, who also hail from Canada. Are you starting to see the connection? AIDS Wolf’s members even have neat little names for themselves such as Special Deluxe, Hiroshima Thunder, Barbarian Destroyer, and Him the Maji. The band’s music is some kind of divisive noise, either alienating the casual listener or drawing in those with a curious ear for all things noisy and highly abrasive. I plant myself squarely in the camp of the latter. After months of speculation by numerous critics, I can firmly say that The Lovvers LP does not disappoint. Although some might argue that the brevity of the pieces included here prohibit them from attaining the kind of momentum that one might expect, I find that by limiting the scope of the songs through time constraints it allows the group to be that much more highly focused and efficient.

AIDS Wolf comes off like some bastard hybrid of early-80s New York no-wave ala DNA and Sonic Youth meets the more abrasive modern skree of Melt Banana and Ex-Models. “We Multiply” even incorporates sections of blast-beats. “Spit Tastes Like Metal” offers up a clattering junk-heap of scrappy guitars and loose, clanging percussion. Special Deluxe’s vocals are wisely buried in the mix at just the right volume. Instead of coming off like some kind of overblown Karen O or Lydia Lunch, her voice is the perfect foil to the jagged noise. “We Multiply” and “Panty Mind” tear it up like some kind of out-of-this-world noise crack that make you want to just hit the repeat button over and over. What with the entire thing clocking in at just over 25 minutes, AIDS Wolf didn’t make it too hard to listen to the whole full-length multiple times. In fact, the only track on here that might try listeners’ patience is “Some Sexual Drawings,” an 11-plus-minute track of screechy hiss, tumbling percussion, and rambling vocals.

To top it all off, Chloe Lum (Special Deluxe) and Yannick Desranleau (???) of AIDS Wolf also make up the screen-print/rock poster design team Seripop. It would seem that everything about AIDS Wolf is some highly pre-planned construct to come off as super cool. As of the writing of this review, every single critical examination of this record has come off as some smug shithead response to put the band in its place for trying to have some fun. I dare you to peruse some of the other online zines and just look at the rhetoric spouted over the scant minutes found on AIDS Wolf’s The Lovvers LP, then I dare you to listen to the record itself and not enjoy it. I would venture a guess that these same people would have also scowled at records by groups like The Locust, Daughters, and Wolf Eyes, when those groups began their careers, for having the sense to incorporate a little schtick into their performance. Oh no, it’s apparently okay for novices like Animal Collective to bang on their instruments and be hailed as “brilliant” and “childlike” but if some noise group applies the same technique, we call it boring and predictable. Forget the hype and bullshit surrounding this band, The Lovvers LP offers up some catchy shards of broken no-wave and pummels you into submission.