Psychedelic Horseshit and Times New Viking at Eyedrum. Thursday, March 20, 2008.
From the days of Pere Ubu and Devo on through Brainiac and Guided By Voice, middle Ohio has long been a fertile breeding ground for skewed hybrids of art-damaged punk and pop sounds. Two trios from Columbus, OH passed through town last night to uphold the Buckeye state’s tradition. After opening sets from Atlanta acts Tree Creature and Gold Painted Nails, as well as Sydney, Australia-based duo Naked On the Vague, Psychedelic Horseshit played a ramshackle set with drums and keyboards balanced on paint-splattered buckets.
On record, both Psychedelic Horseshit and Times New Viking shroud their respectively lobbed songwriting in a haze of lo-fi fuzz. At Eyedrum the noise factor was as equalizer that served as a booster for both bands secretly catchy melodies.
Most notable was the transformation that came over TNV. The group’s recently released third full-length (and first for Matador Records), titled Rip It Off, sounds like it was recorded on a boom box. But when played live, the scratchy fidelity of each song melts away to reveal a wealth of rapid fire drumming and immediately catchy hooks.
The album is by no means a hard sell, but live the songs are propulsive, fun and much more compelling.
(Top photo: Psychedelic Horseshit L to R drummer Rich Johnston (left) & Matt Whitehurst (right). Bottom photo: Times New Viking singer-keyboardist Beth Murphy & drummer-singer Adam Elliott).