Exposé Online banner

Human Ottoman — Rampage
((Not on label) no#, 2019, CD / LP / DL)

by Jon Davis, Published 2019-12-01

Rampage Cover art

With their third release, this Portland, Oregon band stays true to their past while not repeating themselves. In the time since Farang (2015), founding members Susan Lucia (drums) and Grayson Fiske (electric vibraphone) have a new cellist on board in Julian Kosanovic and have added a bassist, David Robert Burrows. The original style, which they call “polyrhythmic rock” has undergone some mutation, with more emphasis on groove and texture and less on frantic energy. The added heft in the low end shows on tracks like “100K Laser Cats,” with its slowly building bass line, which is handled at times by different combinations of fuzzed-out vibes, cello, bass, and synth. All manner of craziness takes place above and around the bass line, including weird noises from both cello and vibes, crunchy tremolos, and more. The vibes function as surrogate keyboards, the cello as surrogate guitar, and both are subjected to all manner of electronic modification and distortion. When vocals are present, they tend to be somewhat understated, either as repeated chants or snaky melodies with effects on them. “Drug Anthem” is a good example of the band’s shifted emphasis. It’s got a slow, relentless pulse with a somewhat droning bass line that is clean for what might be called verses, and then hits the fuzz for the “choruses.” Lucia’s drum pattern is subtle and tricky during the quieter sections, with lots of ghosted snare hits providing hints at a double-time that never quite appears. The cello supplies some uncharacteristically undistorted lines, and the vocals are trippy enough to justify the title. All of the qualities that made Farang so special are here on Rampage, just presented in a different way that shows a band exploring its distinctive musical territory.


Filed under: New releases, 2019 releases

Related artist(s): Human Ottoman

More info
http://humanottoman.com/store

Latest news

2020-07-06
Ennio Morricone RIP – Famed composer Ennio Morricone has died at the age of 91. The creator of scores for more than 500 movies, some of his works have become the most recognizable sounds in the history of cinema. His soundtracks for Sergio Leone's Westerns made from 1964 to 1971, are iconic landmarks in film music, but he also composed for dramas, comedies, and other genres. He won the Academy Award for Best Original Score in 2016 for The Hateful Eight. » Read more

2020-06-14
Keith Tippett RIP – One of the giants of British jazz has left us. Keith Graham Tippetts, known professionally as Keith Tippett, died today at the age of 72. His work from the late 60s into the 70s and beyond includes some of the greatest jazz produced in the UK, and stands as an impressive oevre to this day. » Read more

2020-05-15
Phil May of The Pretty Things RIP – We were saddened to learn that Phil May, lead singer and founding member of The Pretty Things, has died at the age of 75. The band's 1968 album S.F. Sorrow is one of the enduring classics of the psychedelic era, and the group existed in various forms until finally retiring in 2018. » Read more

2020-05-14
Jorge Santana RIP – Jorge Santana, noted guitarist, leader of the band Malo and brother to Carlos Santana, died on May 14 at the age of 68. Jorge and Carlos worked together on a number of occasions, though Jorge's career was centered around Malo, solo work, and with Fania All-Stars. » Read more

2020-05-06
Florian Schneider RIP – Florian Schneider, one of the founders of the pioneering electronic group Kraftwerk, has died at the age of 73. Co-founder Ralf Hütter announced that his bandmate had passed away from cancer after a brief illness. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Tangle Edge - Eulogy – If one doesn't count all the bootlegs of this that have been floating around for the last few years, then it's really not a reissue - as it's never been legitimately available before. This is Tangle...  (1994) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues