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Freefall - EP

Chapterhouse

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Album Review

Though the band may have shared management with Spacemen 3 — the two key members of which are thanked on the sleeve — Chapterhouse from the beginning wasn't interested in doing just psych drone. Thus the fantastic opener "Falling Down," in a slightly different version from the one that turned up on Whirlpool, with heavy wah-wah smack and swirling, sweet vocals underscored by a punchy (but not quite as electronic and crisp) funk rhythm. It probably got tagged as 'baggy' at the time; from a distance it just sounds like a slightly messy but still fine fusion of influences, wrapping up in a brief but frazzled jam. The remaining three tracks are a touch more conventionally murky neo-garage freakouts, notable for having the lyrics barely audible and quite softly sung — yet still distinct enough to interpret — even while the music cranks up. "Inside of Me" has a near Sonic Youth level rush of noise to recommend it, while "Sixteen Years" shifts between chiming sweetness and aggressive feedback snarls.

Biography

Formed: 1987 in Reading, England

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '90s, '00s

Five rail-thin longhairs from Reading, England, Chapterhouse was first linked to the space rock likes of Spacemen 3 and Loop — the connection with the former being inextricable during the band's youngest months, thanks in part to vocal support from Sonic Boom. Early on, the two bands also shared the same management and gigged together. As the years transpired, Chapterhouse would eventually be identified as a shoegaze band, thrown in with the so-called "Scene That Celebrates Itself," as alternately...
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