Review: Toon Town - "The Great Dissolve"

Toon Town - The Great Dissolve
(Self-Released 2016)

One might expect a band named after Disney's now-defunct MMORPG venture from the mid-aughts to fall more in line with the polygonal, artificially flavored bubblegum bass of PC Music, but such presumptions will be instantly obliterated upon streaming Cincinnati psych punk duo Toon Town's debut EP release, The Great Dissolve. Despite Midwestern origins, Toon Town funnels muscled Texas blues riffs through a garage rock sieve that lends much of its waterlogged warble to Thee Oh Sees. 

At the top of the order, "I Don't Wanna Lose" emerges from its ominous dust cloud as a single serpentine riff that writhes with increasing violence, a jittery snare shuffle in tow. This dehydrated tension quickly comes to a head, erupting into Byzantine tangle of arid riffage and basement-show blast beats. The tune adopts the form of a Gothic outlaw country tune, splattering a sanguine canvas with the sickly forms of Bela Lugosi and a sun-like moon. 

The country-fried couplet that follows "I Don't Wanna Lose" scales back the aggression to conjure a more desolate atmosphere. The record's title track is filled with angular, yet ethereal guitaristry: the residual stain of regret left behind by the crepuscular murder scene that opens the EP. "Cha Cha to the Moon" leaves things unresolved - its eerie dissonance serves as a dangling intermission, a sinister sunrise that promises a new day's worth of sweltering DIY punk.