Mi Ami – Watersports

January 01, 1970





This San Francisco
trio features two members of Dischord darlings Black Eyes, and with that
pedigree in tow there is, as you might expect, a good amount of that band’s
dance-punk leanings on this debut. But Mi Ami is as much about noise as groove,
and Watersports works best when it
contrasts Daniel Martin-McCormick’s trebly guitar lines with the dubby bass
patterns of Jacob Long (the other Black Eyes alum) and Damon Palermo’s polyrhythmic
percussion. The result is something like dance floor No Wave, or Afro-beat free
noise, or avant-Trenchtown. “New Guitar” sounds as advertised, syncopated and
funky, while the spastic leads and free jazz beats of “Echonoecho” find succor
in deep dub. And when the trio stretches out – especially on the nine-minute
“White Wife” — the groove goes trance. Where the nails hit the chalkboard is
Martin-McCormick’s falsetto bleat-squeak and banshee howl – neither is designed
for narrative nuance (or comprehension) and thus more sideshow than instrument.


“White Wife,” “Freed From Sin” JOHN SCHACHT




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