Windmill – Puddle City Racing Lights

January 01, 1970

(Friendly
Fire)

 

www.friendlyfirerecordings.com

 

 

 

There’s
a doomed romanticism running across these songs, as if Matthew Thomas Dillon
(aka Windmill) was the only living organism left in a dead-white plastic universe.
He is, not surprisingly, upset about this, his nervy, piccolo-sharp voice
raised in anguished protest of fluorescent lights, airport departure lounges
and plasticine earplugs. His voice is so razory, so unusual (though Wayne Coyne
is obviously a reference point) that it cuts through lush arrangements of piano
and strings and bangs right up against the limits of song.

 

Not
that there aren’t some great songs here. “Tokyo Moon”, up first and shockingly
good, could be the desperate ode to loneliness that Arcade Fire never had the
guts to make. “Asthmatic,” later on, prickles with piano and swells with
massive harmonies. It has the sheeny exuberance of an Evangelicals cut. These
tracks show that Dillon is best when he marshals all the elements of pop – big
choruses, group vocals, steady triumphant rhythms – into his angsty, alienated
compositions. “Jump out, jump in, jump out of your skin,” he exhorts in the
drum-banging, anthemic “Plastic Pre-Flight Seats,” the voice frayed with
feeling, the melody arching towards catharsis, and if you listen hard enough,
you almost do.

 

Standout Tracks: “Tokyo Moon”, “Asthmatic” “Plastic Pre Flight
Seats” JENNIFER KELLY

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