Scorces L’or et L’argent CDR

[Wholly Other; 2003]

Rating: 4/5

Styles: drone rock, ambient rock, psychedelic folk/rock, New Weird America
Others: Charalambides, Flying Saucer Attack, Fürsaxa, Double Leopards

Simply by looking at a painting, I’ve always had the ability to tell whether a woman or man did the work.  Obviously this observation is not factual evidence, but there are subtle differences in the way women and men translate life into art.  Over time, the same concept has basically rung true for me when it comes to music.  However, in the case of Scorces latest experiment, I find myself being completely wrong in my views.  Who knows, maybe I’ve just had to reevaluate my observations. 

Scorces is the duo of two Charalambides members, Christina Carter and Heather Murray.  If you’re familiar with Charalambides, you know that their label, Wholly Other, is synonymous with some of today’s finer steel guitar/drone/psychedelic folk works.  L’or et L’argent (meaning The Silver and Gold) is no different, and is an album that breaks all classification.  It’s one of the most mind-expanding opus’ I think I’ve ever heard, and it simultaneously shatters my thoughts on the “woman vs. man” concept.

There are only three tracks here, but they all amount to about seventy minutes of music.  With that amount of time, and the immense psychedelic sounds this album pours into your head, songs this long really begin to take hold of your psyche and twist it into misshapen knots.  All three songs are experiments in laptop steel and electric guitar that seem to stretch on forever.  Imagine, if you will, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas taken to the next level, and you’d almost be at a point where you could begin to comprehend this album.  I find it awe-inspiring to think that these two could sit there for this long creating this music without losing their mind.  I had almost lost my mind about halfway through the last song due to the intensity of its psychedelic effects.

Although L’or et L’argent is very hard to listen to at times, there are many moments of sheer beauty scattered about.  It’s an album that truly defies everything I’ve heard, while still sounding very familiar.  While still on the cusp of becoming noticed by the independent music scene, these two young ladies from Texas are part of a movement that will surely be overlooked by many.  However, for the jaded music listeners, who are always looking for something new, look no further than this Texas duo.  The Wholly Other label, in general, is cranking out some of the most exciting music to come out of the Lone Star state in many, many years.  Most of the current releases (as with this one) are on home made CDR’s and add to the DIY aesthetic that is becoming so popular these days.  

1. Lumiere et Obscurite
2. Impuslif et Raisonnable
3. Inspiration et Action