CE Schneider Topical
Antifree [LP; OSR]

I don’t think Zach Phillips has ever sent me a tape/LP I didn’t like, and that’s hewing to a dizzying release schedule that hearkens back to the days of the Mamas and Papas more than four-year-interval bands like ___head. CE Schneider Topical’s Antifree is another shot across the bow of the mainstream music world, so damn cute and cuddly it could sing your kids to sleep (some of you have kids right?) as effectively as it loosens your brainstem during private listens. And I should have known: Phillips is involved in this delightful mess, engineering and probably doing a bunch of other schhhhtuff for which he’s not crediting himself. Typical. What’s not typical is the appeal of Schneider’s pipes, a whole world away from Phillips’ days in Blanche Blanche Blanche (I miss typing that) in style and tone, yet original/urgent enough to demand a similar level of attention. She reminds me of the where-is-she-lately Ashley Erikkson in that there’s an element of twee cutesy-poo to it all, albeit to a completely acceptable degree. I’m willing to be woo’d, it just needs to feel real, and Antifree is real as it gets, FOOL. “Exit All Seasons” trucks in tiny tabletop sounds that barely register no matter how loud you turn up the stereo, yet its lovely vocals right all wrongs. Who am I kidding though, it’s all about “Look At What Happened”; this is where CE Schneider Topical shift into a higher gear and don’t look back. It’s a deceptively complex song, employing chords that hit the ear as familiar, traditional even, so why is my belly telling me Phillips is toying around with something back there (OK OK, he admitted to me personally he’s toying around with something back there; alternate tunings or some shizzz.)? Yeah, it’s a trip you should take asap, and let us not forget: OSR is killing itself at the end of the year after a fun run that included a complete separation from the internet. If Antifree is any indication it’s going to be a hell of a farewell round in the 20-one-SIK. I’ll be listening and relaying you all I learn, as always.

Links: OSR


Cerberus seeks to document the spate of home recorders and backyard labels pressing limited-run LPs, 7-inches, cassettes, and objet d’art with unique packaging and unknown sound. We love everything about the overlooked or unappreciated. If you feel you fit such a category, email us here.

Most Read