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S.C.O.A.M. & Pregnant Spore - Circle The Excess [Teen Action Records - 2011]

"Circle The Excess" is a collaboration tape between the two American acts S.C.O.A.M. and Pregnant Spore. While I've listened to and sometimes appreciated a good number of Pregnant Spore and related project's releases I never heard about S.C.O.A.M. I like the fact that the acronym apparently doesn't stand for anything that makes
sense though.

This tape contains nine tracks, all reasonably short and well thought out. While being nothing massively surprising, the quality of sound shows that these guys went beyond the unfortunate "killer basement jammz dude!" American attitude and carefully picked only the material that interested them from whatever number of recording sessions they did. This is clearly a mail collaboration since the States are big and wide and the two acts live pretty far apart, but still it's a good selection work! Pulsating, buzzing and sputtering synths and circuit bent toys merge with light distorted microphone wanking in a quasi-soft but effective mix.

"Circle The Excess" indeed doesn't feature any excess, and all the tracks are somehow quite restrained and mellow, almost relaxing even if cranked at maximum volume. The distortion is never pushed too far and microphone feedback is almost absent, while the quality of contact
mic crunch and hiss is excellent and consistent.

The structure of the nine pieces doesn't seem to change much for the whole forty minutes of the set, but the tape never feels boring, as there's always enough stuff going on to keep the listener's attention awake. Both S.C.O.A.M. and Pregnant Spore definitely know what they're doing
and I didn't find any major flaw in this collaboration, but still i'm not 100 % satisfied about their noise. It feels right and it's executed really well, but I think that something is missing. Just that little something that makes me  fistpump and scream like an idiot and makes my harsh noise fanboy heart run faster. I guess their sounds just didn't strike the right chords.

In conclusion "Circle The Excess" is a successful collaboration that probably even deserved a wider edition. It's not completely my cup of tea but I recommend it to fans of psychedelic noise and noisy circuit bending anyway. I'll be first in line whenever these guys decide to
get together again. The tape is limited to mere 50 copies but I think  it's still available from the label and in some American distribution lists.

Rating: 3 out of 5Rating: 3 out of 5Rating: 3 out of 5Rating: 3 out of 5Rating: 3 out of 5

Nicola Vinciguerra
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