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Preeteen Weaponry Ben Myers , August 4th, 2008 11:57

Oneida - Preteen Weaponry

I love concept albums, me. I love the pretentiousness of it all. I love the fact that the artist has displayed evidence of an attention span beyond three minutes - but I also love the fact that few people beyond the bands know what the hell it at all means. I love the fact that most indie kids confuse concept albums with prog rock and always mention Genesis. And I love the fact that the artwork is often awful.

Preteen Weaponry by Brooklyn behemoths and latter day scene-leaders of sorts Oneida is more than a concept album – it is one work within many. In fact, it is the first of a triptych of works entitled Thank Your Parents, the second of which promises to be a triple album, while this, the first instalment, comes in three musical parts and claims to “lay bare the band’s colossal vision of a new age in music”.

Confused? Shut up and pass that spliff, knob-head. None of the above actually matters.

What matters, is that this is a very good stand-alone record, one in which the stripped-down mantras of Future Days-era Can permeate the ice-cold drones of Suicide. If that sounds retrogressive on paper (or screen), then at least Oneida have the good grace to borrow from the best. The very best.

The first song (they’re all title-less) then is a post-rock percussive overload reminiscent of Battles; it lasts about three weeks and still doesn’t feel long enough. The second track is like the soundtrack to a film sequence on an early 1980s Betamax video nasty in which a blacked-our car cruises Manhattan at 3am before, inevitably, some innocent wide-eyed urban debutante gets it in the face with a powertool down a trash-strewn back alley with only the rats and a piss-flecked sleeping tramp as a witness, and it leaves you feeling a little tainted, a little squalid for watching/hearing it. This song lasts about three months. And so it goes….

Aurally-speaking the third and final track is like being trapped in an oil drum that’s been locked away in a safe on a sunken submarine that hit a massive reef made out of micro-chips and scart leads. It’s about three years in length, is 173% better than anything Radiohead have ever released and is suitably amazing.

If that is the concept, then I’m all for it.