Exposé Online banner

Magnet Animals — Butterfly Killer
(RareNoise RNR063, 2016, CD)

by Jon Davis, Published 2016-11-22

Butterfly Killer Cover art

It seems no matter how many times I listen to Butterfly Killer, it never seems to make sense as an album. The music is very scattered somehow, with elements that seem to be working at odds to each other. But in the end I’ve come to see this as a strength rather than a weakness — it’s certainly a sign of creativity, that Magnet Animals have hit upon something truly their own. The group consists of guitarist Todd Clouser, whom we’ve covered before, along with Mexico City drummer Jorge Servin and two musicians who have worked in John Zorn’s New York sphere, Eyal Maoz (guitar) and Shanir Ezra Blumenkranz (bass). This is a far cry from the soulful jazz of Todd Clouser’s A Love Electric recordings, more in the realm of rock with some artsy, avant touches and a jazzy feel. There are some great rock riffs, as on the opener “Headphone Gurls,” which almost sounds like something Jimi Hendrix would have come up with, and lots of headscratching weirdness, often centered around Clouser’s vocals, which are mostly spoken and almost sound like spliced-together samples rather than something he did live. Several of the tracks feature multiple spoken parts that are out of sync with each other, like a chorus that can’t quite coordinate its efforts. At times, I’m reminded of the weirder parts of Axis: Bold as Love or Electric Ladyland. The guitar work is marginally blues-based, with frequent use of atypical effects, moving beyond typical distortion, chorus, and phase into ring modulators and the like. The two guitarists are not generally playing typical lead / rhythm roles, instead playing variations of the lead riff. Butterfly Killer is something of an anomaly in modern music, and worth investigating for adventurous listeners.


Filed under: New releases, 2016 releases

Related artist(s): Todd Clouser, Magnet Animals

Latest news

2019-08-20
Alex's Hand Seeks Spa Treatment – American / European band Alex's Hand has a new album in the works called Hungarian Spa, which looks to be their biggest and best yet, featuring a large roster of guest musicians. They're seeking funding to take the project on the road, and are looking for help from the crowd of wisdom. » Read more

2019-06-05
Legendary Co-Founder of The 13th Floor Elevators Passes Away at Age 71 – Sadly, Roky Erickson passed away on May 31, 2019. Known as the father of psychedelic music and co-founder of the ground breaking 13th Floor Elevators, Roky had a profound influence on music from the 60s to today. Plagued by his own personal demons, Roky had a difficult life and is now free of these burdens. » Read more

2019-04-24
Help MoonJune Bring Great Music to Life – Like many music lovers around the world, we’ve been thrilled and amazed to hear the recordings that have been released by MoonJune from sessions at La Casa Murada in Spain. Such label stalwarts as Mark Wingfield, Markus Reuter, Asaf Sirkis, Tony Levin, Dusan Jevtovic, Vasil Hadzimanov, and many more have gathered in various combinations at the studio to produce some of the most creative music in recent years. Now, label head Leonardo Pavkovic is offering a compilation, La Casa Murada - MoonJune Sessions, Volume One, as a fundraiser for upcoming sessions. » Read more

2019-04-10
The Pineapple Thief to Tour North America – November and December of 2019 will see The Pineapple Thief bringing their music to Canada, Mexico, and the US, and famed drummer Gavin Harrison will be on board. The band has been touring extensively in Europe, but North America will be new territory for them. » Read more

2019-03-25
Scott Walker RIP – Noel Scott Engel, better known as Scott Walker, was one of the most intriguing and enigmatic musical figures in the second half of the 20th Century. His strange career started with The Walker Brothers, an American pop group that featured no one named Walker and no brothers. After moving to England in 1965, they had a series of hit singles. Scott's solo work started with Scott in 1967. Starting in the 80s, his work took an increasingly avant-garde turn. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Änglagård - Gånglåt från Knapptibble – The long-awaited new Änglagård single has finally hit the shelves as part of the latest Ptolemaic Terrascope magazine. In each issue (a grass-roots psychedelic/underground offering published in the...  (1994) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues