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ni. - ni CD (album) cover





4.05 | 6 ratings

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siLLy puPPy
4 stars The 2nd eponymously titled EP by ni (emphatically NOT capitalized) came out two years after the debut and continues their frenetic avant-prog zaniness and takes it to new levels. While the first EP established the freaks from the Rhône-Alpes region of France as a seriously dangerous proggy noise band that is sure to please all connoisseurs of complex yumminess, this second EP takes all those elements and adds a heightened sense of daring experimentation with vocals and more stylized compositions that break free from the all-bombast-all-the-time mostly present on EP #1. While there is over-the-top bombast in ample doses throughout this slightly longer offering that hosts an additional track over the debut, this one too has more placid, even hypnotic segments that spring up when least expected.

While the funk guitar plays a role as on the debut, it doesn't dominate quite as much with more metal sounding riffs cranking out as well as pure avant-prog angularities and Ruins-esque type heavy zeuhl madness. The vocals take on various shades including blood- curdling screams to more smooth utterances as well as playful "dolphin chirps". As far as i can tell, the lyrics are totally nonsensicle. Somewhere between the two self-titled releases i do believe that ni (emphatically NOT capitalized) discovered the zany wacky world of fellow countrymen PoiL as they begin to delve into some of the same silliness that those guys are known for. It is a welcome advancement as it makes the musical approach much more diverse than on the debut which i already found exhilaratingly exciting.

EP #2 is also graced with psycho-grooves which would be perfect for a totally schizoid dance floor as it's quite rhythmic albeit in odd time signature bundles that somehow form musical chains of noise that simultaneously straddle the angular otherworldly adventurism of avant-prog while coalescing into digestible punk infused chunks that crank out as pockets of rhythm. As with the debut, #2 is chock full of nerdy math rock start / stop staccato riffs as well as the sudden breaks into bizarre meanderings into psychedelia or just plain experimental weirdness. ni (emphatically NOT capitalized) display a firm sense of command of their carefully calculated journey into the quantum level of musical creation and seem to have birdlike honing talents to navigate in unison like a swarm of locusts. As with the debut, this one teeters on the tightrope act of complete noisy chaos and accessible grooves. Recommended.

siLLy puPPy | 4/5 |


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