AS MERCENARIAS : “THE BEGINNING OF THE END OF THE WORLD” CD......
As mentioned in an earlier review of the recent Brazilian early 80s post-punk comp "The Sexual Life of the Savages"
, if you'd have told me there were some happening Brazilian bands from that era whose records I'd want to give multiple non-cultural relativism-driven spins to, I'd have said no way. I'd still
say that, save for one - AS MERCENARIAS
. This Soul Jazz retrospective takes in virtually all of this all-female no wave/funk impact unit's 1982-85 recordings in one fell swoop, and by & large, it's a great thing. There are moments of pure out-and-out scorch
on this thing, like "Panico" and "Policia", the latter of which is a blistering 70-second piledriver that could have been performed by ERASE ERRATA
twenty years later. Other, slower numbers recall minimalist UK touchstones like the POP GROUP
, THE SLITS
and PUBLIC IMAGE LTD
., and all full of aggro, spat vocals and a general tone bordering on tension and paranoia. The chops are first-rate -- everything is mixed real, real well & when the bands's done with one fear-provoking shouter or another, it cuts off like that
- boom, over. Later in the CD there are moments of deep, Banshees-like watery guitar warbling and longer song lengths (like over 3 minutes!
) and these are just OK. I'm just glad to have another rock record from South America in the mix for the first time in years -- that AGUATURBIA
record was looking pretty forlorn waiting for a tropically hot, southern hemisphere neighbor to join in the storage shed.