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Shit And Shine
229-2299 Girls Against Shit! Toby Cook , August 17th, 2009 10:06

Go home. Go home now — and tune your radio to static. Now do the same thing with the TV. If you have a blender, stick a frozen chicken in it and start that up too. Hell, while you’re in the kitchen, lie on the floor and monotonously and incessantly beat yourself over the head with a chopping board whilst sporadically slamming various pots, pans and root vegetables against the wall . . . now close your eyes. Imagine you’re in a glider with Merzbow and Earth — heading straight towards a pylon — and, if you’re still conscious, the barely lucid aura rapidly engulfing you will be somewhere close to the jarring and unhinged noise-scapes of Shit and Shine.

The brain child of Todd impresario Craig Clouse, Shit And Shine have been churning out hulking sonic spasms of unrelenting, loosely structured noise since 2004’s limited edition LP You’re Lucky To Have Friend Like Us, steadily building momentum through a series of seemingly non-coherent releases, and semi-comprehensible live performances — frequently featuring no more than guitars, oh, and about ten drummers.

Don’t let the fact that SAS is essentially a Todd side project fool you, though — if you were expecting anything resembling the latter’s Southern rock-imbued, riff-heavy sludge then, frankly, don’t. The only thing these two have in common is the truly apocalyptic volume and ingurgitating listening experience.

From the nine-minute, mono-riff nausea of opener ‘Have You Really Thought About Your Presentation?’, through the minimal, death-rattle sampling electro of ‘Shit No!’, over the garage rock played backwards – by screaming, piss soaked ne’er-do-wells, hammered on special brew – of ‘Kolchak The Night Stalker’, right to the hauntingly lo-fi drone of ‘People Like You... REALLY!’, SAS expectorate wave after wave of uncomfortable, yet engrossing pandemonium. To accurately describe the full on, aural harassment that is 229-2299 Girls Against Shit, is a tall ask; with it, SAS have created something truly vital, and dare it be said a work of near genius.

Whereas Q reading, drive-time listening types will wax lyrical about the current crop of mockney oiks and their oh so relevant prose on ‘modern life’ and true-to-life tales of blah-blah-blah..., SAS have crafted a real exploration of what it is to be alive; brutal, uncomfortable, often vial and deranged – Clouse and his cohorts have amassed seventeen tracks that simply throw so much noise and disturbance at the listener that any semblance of hope is cast asunder, leaving only an unnerving and debilitating sense of contradictory tranquillity. Calm and chaotic, serene and schizophrenic, quite literally the shit... and shine.

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