Ted Tyro - Slow Country/Strong Woman
(Sea Speak Recordings 2016)
Ted Tyro is perhaps Kentucky's most underappreciatedly weird fuzz-rock outfit, occupying musical territory that borders both the blown-out beach blanket riffage of Jovontaes and Ma Turner's ectoplasmic drone-folk tapestries. Though their sole official EP release, Quick Oats, presents the band as a Louisvillian twang-pop triad swaddled in wiry Mac Demarco melodies, Tyro takes its most compelling form as a set of four spookily intimate solo home demos recorded to a Tascam 4-track machine. "Slow Country" is the coziest of the demo tape quartet, its bassy drum machine kicks plodding against the listener's eardrums like half-hearted punches cushioned by a pair of foam Hulk gloves. Whispery vocals and spectral strands of bendy lead guitar barely push their way through this oppressive wall of percussion, much to the effect of Heavenly Beat's early Captured Tracks material. B-side "Strong Woman" is dipped in a funky smooth-jazz glaze, refracted against tape hiss. It reminds me as much of R. Stevie Moore as it does the soundtrack of The Political Machine, a United States general presidential election simulator I bought from Target back in 2008. Slow Country is aggressively muted: a swimming pool filled with Floam, K-Mart muzak played at a dangerous decibel level.