The

Mick

Sinclair

Archive

New Math

May

1982

Sounds

album review

 
 
NEW MATH

They Walk Among You

TELL ME, just what is this sinister black magic potion that has been dropped in the West Coast water supply recently?

New Math (and what sort of Christening is that for a rabid coven of blood thirsty sacrifice seekers?) deliver a music made up of up-front drums that hammer with an unhurried but certain precision through electrifying! guitars and bass, all mashing together into a gargantuan wall of cruching rythmic strength. Floating arund the mix for frills and tasty decoration comes an organ with a tone like a sustained cat miaow.

In a similar manner to the way Down Under psychedelicists The Church cleverly regurgiatate a Byrdisan jangle without reviving or creating a pastiche, so New Math retread the treasures of the Thirteenth Floor Elevators but rocket the lift through the umpteen storeys to arrive at a present-day clout of acid-rock, stern enough to jolt the sturdiest nervous system.

The grim (but lovable!) odes gathered herein are penned (with a blood-dipped quill, no doubt, and and inspiration stemming from mind full of squirming worms and a voracious appetite for fiendish things) by Gary Trainor but delivered semi-deadpan, nasal-macabre style by Kevin Patrick.

His utterings on the title track are assisted by the rising mouth tones of swamp creatures and when he invites you to his 'Garden of Delight' it's no stroll around the lawn with a quick prune of the roses... "Jet black berries I do digest, the body's transparent so come to my bed..."

But I have two questions. Firstly, the closing song, 'American Survival' is an MC5ish guitar-spurred gallop across US fiscal disorders and fine, solid stuff, but why is it included in this set where it is clearly misplaced? Secondly, why is 'taking the 'P' out of psychedelic' scratched into the run-out groove?

Is the joke on me or are New Math really the Monstrous New Minstrals of Slime Rock?

 

mick sinclair

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To read many more articles and reviews (over 140,000 words-worth!) written by Mick Sinclair, buy Adjusting the Stars: Music journalism from post-punk London