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

2020-02-18
Jon Christensen RIP – Word reaches us today of the passing of Norwegian drummer Jon Christensen, a musician whose sensitive playing did much to help define the atmospheric sound of ECM jazz recordings. His work with Jan Garbarek, Bobo Stenson, Terje Rypdal, and many more was sensitive and varied, adapting to a wide variety of styles while maintaining a distinct identity of its own. Christensen was 76. » Read more

2020-01-21
Gong Announces UK Tour for 2020 – Having spent the last few years touring the world, including dates in Japan with psych legend Steve Hillage, multiple headline European tours and festivals, America’s Cruise to the Edge festival, a South America headline tour, and a headline performance at Tomorrow Festival in China, the band have won the hearts of both traditional and modern Gong fanbases. During this live journey, Gong has delved further into the truly psychedelic, exploratory, and mind-expanding side of the music. » Read more

2020-01-15
Carlos Alvarado RIP – Carlos Alvarado, pioneering composer, multi-instrumentalist and pioneer of progressive rock and electronic experimental music in Mexico, passed away January 14th, 2020 at age 68 after a two year battle with cancer.  » Read more

2020-01-12
Wolfgang Dauner RIP – Pianist Wolfgang Dauner, one of the pioneers of both European free jazz and jazz rock, has died at the age of 84. With his own groups and with the United Jazz+Rock Ensemble, his playing and compositions were a prominent presence in European jazz from the mid-60s until just recently. » Read more

2020-01-12
Michael Allison RIP – Michael Allison, who since 1997 has been recording as Darshan Ambient, passed away on January 9th after a long and brave battle with cancer. He has been at at the forefront of the new ambient/electronic music scene, with over eighteen releases to his credit. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Tony Levin - Waters of Eden – Over the last half dozen years, King Crimson bassist Tony Levin has produced a small but impressive body of work on his own Papa Bear Records, including World Diary (1995), a collection of...  (2001) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues