The Family Curse
BY JOSH RUFFIN
The Family Curse
Release date: Nov. 3
AUGUSTA, GA - Dude…The Family Curse are f***ed up. This is the kind of shit that happens when you take a CD-R mix of Melt Banana, the nasty side of Godflesh, pre-David Yow Qui, and the long-lost Captain Beefheart-composed soundtrack to Tron, dip it in a mixture of government-engineered cocaine and Pixie Stix, then jam the disc into an iBook and run the whole thing through the Unreal III gaming engine. Their singer sounds like Joanna Newsom and Julie Christmas head-butting it out for territory, ram-style. Your local record store has a backroom “acid trip” section, subdivided into “good trip” and “bad trip;” this album is in both. If the Crank series ever makes it past a fifth installment, this is what you’ll hear in your head, sprinting after you down into the very moss-ringed sphincter of madness itself. And I, um…you know, I think it’s awesome?
Actually, that only applies to about 90% of White Medicine; “Teen Challenge,” “Laughing My Way to the Bank,” and “Like Lightning” are all schizoid gutchecks of electro-laced noise-punk from somewhere outside our solar system, sent here to invade your brain and make you do all manner of regrettable things while wearing nothing more than pink sneakers and a smile. It’s the curveballs, though, the other 10%, that make the album worth buying instead of downloading; the 13-minute “Back in the Water” is less a song than an experience, with a massive god-stomp of a bassline segueing into free-form dronescapes, all while MGN Tweed rants and yowls like she’s upset about getting into heaven. Later on, “Exodus from Birds in the Night” is striking in its soft touch, invoking a field recording of hippies from the eighth dimension.
Never has a band sounded like they’re having so much fun while simultaneously reaping a hundred different whirlwinds. What a beautiful massacre.