steering clear of the mainstream
since 2001

june 2010

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info opinion


"Scared of Ferret" CD


Genre: experimental rock, experimental

Portland, OR

November 2009

A strange record, this. Based on Scared of Ferret's sinister-looking cover, I was expecting black metal or even noise. What I got, instead, was a free and whimsical experimental rock record, spanning through influences as disparate as jazz, psych, videogame music, and, yes, noise. It's a rambling, disjointed trip, certainly, but also an inviting and intrepidly original one.

The essential element on Scared of Ferret is, appropriately, mood. The tribal, Diamanda Galas-inspired sinister majesty of "Rintin Fire" articulates Moodring's M.O. succinctly - although the band's formula changes from track to track (here it is haunting female vocals, a hypnotic rhythm, and amorphous gasps of feedback), the consistent approach is to craft entrancing musical soundscapes whose form is secondary to the overall atmosphere evoked. Burned-out psych groove "Colin Wilson," which elicits memories of Ash Ra Tempel in its acid-drenched mesmerism, is among the record's best efforts at conjuring up pure, sweltering feeling. Equally sublime "Into the Doom" takes an altogether different approach, matching an almost 8-bit synth bit with clarinet swooning and Mae Starr's unmistakeable crooning. It's an inspired, even awesome track - one of several on Scared of Ferret, which, disjointed as it may be, teems with indescribable wonder.

moodring's myspace


Matt Shimmer

[Vitals: 11 tracks, distributed by the label, released 2009]