Exposé Online banner

Ahleuchatistas — On the Culture Industry
(Angura Sound Ang-001, 2003, CD)

Ahleuchatistas — The Same and the Other
(Noreaster Failed Industries (NFI) NFI-07, 2004, CD)

by Jon Davis, Published 2005-09-01

On the Culture Industry Cover artThe Same and the Other Cover artOf all the genre labels ever devised, math rock has to be one of the most annoying. It’s an insult both to rock and to math, and seems to me borne of two mistaken beliefs. First, that math is inherently complicated (which can certainly be said of advanced mathematics, but the whole idea of math is to simplify things, reduce them to their most basic form); and second, that rock music cannot be complicated. So if music seems to be based on rock, but is more complicated than “Blue Suede Shoes” it is somehow equated with mathematics. Ahleuchatistas are a case in point. They have been tagged with the math rock label because their music, though they are only a trio, is pretty complex stuff; but while “math” implies a certain analytical detachment, their music is comes off as rough and visceral in spite of all the twists and turns the arrangements take. Shane Perlowin (guitar), Derek Poteat (bass), and Sean Dali (drums) function like a bizarre clockwork machine, with all the parts meshing together precisely as they turn and hum. You can’t be sure exactly what the machine is doing, but it is a thing of beauty to watch in action. Like many of the other post-rock bands (the ones that don’t tend towards ambient or chamber-like sounds), all three take full advantage of the sound-production capabilities of their instruments, both within and outside accepted bounds. A minimum of electronic modification is applied (only a bit of distortion), and both of these releases sound very much live in the studio. How these three can keep straight all the seemingly unrelated bits that make up each of their compositions is beyond me. They seem so haphazard at first listen, but all come together into an amazing contraption. Both CDs are excellent, and quite similar in sound, but I’d give the edge to the second for having a wider range of moods. Ahleuchatistas have signed with Cuneiform, with a new release expected early next year, which should give them the wider exposure they deserve.

Filed under: New releases, Issue 32, 2003 releases, 2004 releases

Related artist(s): Ahleuchatistas

Latest news

2017-11-16
Celebrate 10 Years of Fruits de Mer – As a special celebration for a decade of cool vinyl releases, our friends at Fruits de Mer records have prepared a limited edition reissue of an album by the first band ever to appear on the label: Schizo Fun Addict. The band is known for unusual release strag » Read more

2017-11-02
Mega Dodo Presents New Charity Album – Our friends at Mega Dodo have put together a lovely compilation of their artists performing new arrangements of nursery rhymes, and all the profits from sales of the album will benefit Save the Children. It features a number of artists we've covered. » Read more

2017-10-18
Phil Miller RIP – Sad word reaches us today of the passing of another of the great musicians of the Canterbury Scene — guitarist Phil Miller. His distinctive sound added greatly to Matching Mole, Hatfield and the North, and National Health, and he also contributed to albums by Caravan, Dave Stewart & Barbara Gaskin, and many others. He was 68. » Read more

2017-10-13
Moonjune to Distribute Tony Levin's Back Catalog – It has been announced that Moonjune will now handle distribution for Tony Levin's catalog of releases. These great albums will now be a bit easier to get hold of, so check out the site and see what you're missing. The veteran of King Crimson and Stick Men worked with a host of great players on these albums, and we've reviewed most of them over the course of the years. » Read more

2017-09-26
Bandcamp Shines Light on Niches We Like – Bandcamp has developed into one of the best places to discover new music, and even a lot of old music is showing up there. In addition, their staff has been producing periodic articles spotlighting some interesting stylistic areas. On 20 September, they published one called "The New Face of Prog Rock" which bears checking out. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Alquimia - Forever – Alquimia, beginning with her album Coatlique — Goddess of the Earth back in the early 90s established herself as the premier female voice in the ambient/experimental field. A series of...  (2008) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues