Spectres – “Stealed Scene” b/w Lorelle Meets The Obsolete – “The Sky Of All Places”

Spectres

Spectres – “Stealed Scene” b/w Lorelle Meets The Obsolete – “The Sky Of All Places”

As part of a concerted campaign of protest against the misaligned mechanics of Record Store Day – as outlined in full on the Record Store Day Is Dying website – comes a split seven inch co-released by Sonic Cathedral and Howling Owl Records, featuring Bristol’s Spectres and Guadalajara’s Lorelle Meets The Obsolete covering each other’s noise-soaked wares.  Issued at the rate of one copy a day for a whole year – via both labels’ websites, independent stores across the globe, gigs, record markets, graveyards and other routes still being mapped out – this 7” is being incrementally distributed as a conjoined situationist art project and elaborate treasure hunt.

So far, so fun; but are the actual contents pressed into its white vinyl grooves – and wrapped in a sleeve indebted to Sonic Youth and Mudhoney’s much-loved shared 1988 Sub Pop single – merit all the fuss?  Thankfully, it’s a yes.  Like the best agitprop moments of Gang Of Four and Fugazi, the music is a good as the message.

Naturally, the Spectres’ side is the biggest draw from a band still basking in the afterglow of the recent and justifiably acclaimed Dying long-player.  Remoulding Lorelle Meets The Obsolete’s “Sealed Scene” (renamed as “Stealed Scene” in the process) to fit their own expansive sonic visioning, gives us one of Spectres’ finest six or so minutes to date.  With a thuggish motorik rhythm bed, heavy whip-lashings of sculpted guitar contortions and hazed-out ghoulish vocals, the fearless foursome imagine Kevin Shields remixing a great lost outtake from Sonic Youth’s Bad Moon Rising whilst possessed by the spirit of departed Neu! drummer Klaus Dinger.

Spectres RSD open

Perhaps inevitably Lorelle Meets The Obsolete’s flipside take on Spectres’ “The Sky Of All Places” is less immediately intoxicating but its slow-scorched charms envelope the senses with equally admirable intent nevertheless.  After opening with a drum-free fuzz-coated introduction, reminiscent of the most minimalistic wares of Spacemen 3, the Mexican psyche-gaze duo melt down and refashion Spectres’ sky-scraping original as a murky subterranean prowler that finds an alluring missing-link between Bardo Pond and a John Carpenter film score.

The effort of tracking down a copy of a record that may paradoxically become less rare but more in demand between now and Record Store Day 2016 might prove to be a herculean challenge for some but it’s unquestionably worth the thrill of a convoluted chase.

Howling Owl / Sonic Cathedral