Michael Yonkers Band CD review [Sub Pop]



Music Reviews
Michael Yonkers Band CD review [Sub Pop]
By
Jul 22, 2003, 04:22

MICHAEL YONKERS BAND Microminiature Love CD

Michael Yonkers' Microminiature Love starts out very much in the Pebbles meets American Song Poem Anthology zone. The music is ungainly cod pop-psychedelia and the lyrics are worse: well meaning, aiming for socio-political astuteness but basically graceless and kinda embarrassing. And as the album proceeds the wordage does not improve; they may well be earnest and authentic expressions of Yonkers' thought and feelings but they're just badly done, awkward, jejune. It doesn't help that he has the singing voice of a filing clerk: not pretty, or fierce, or expert or unique. Nondescript, fumbling.

BUT then you hit upon track two and the guitar playing rockets off into other artistic galaxies all together. It's chiming and resonant and vast and power-droning in the best possible ways. It pretty much utterly presages the sound Glenn Branca would create and Sonic Youth would brilliantly exploit about 10 years before the fact. But, recorded and set for release in '68 Microminiature Love was never released until 2003 and outside of St. Paul, MN, Yonkers was not even a weird rumor. So this is a case of parallel evolution, and a mighty freaky one at that.

If you ever wondered what Branca might've sounded like in a teen garage band or if he'd already figured out his maximum minimalism guitar army sound, here lay your most obvious response. A curious artifact which lovers of this particular instrumental vocabulary will no doubt love. [Sub Pop]

-Howard Wuelfing

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