!!!

Myth Takes | Warp
By MATT ASHARE  |  May 8, 2007
3.0 3.0 Stars
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PROMISES KEPT !!! maintain the post-punk dance groove on Myth Takes.

It’s been about a decade since singer Nic Offer left the punk rock of the Yah Mos behind for electronic dance grooves and deep-bass funk in what came to be known as !!! (i.e., chk chk chk, as in the ticking sound of a programmed beat). It may have taken four albums for Offer and his cohort to perfect their mix of rhythms, melodies, and nervous poetry, but it all came together on 2004’s Louden Up Now. Myth Takes may mark the band’s transition from the more rock-oriented Touch and Go to the electronica label Warp, but it delivers on the promise of Louden Up, with infectious beats and a kitchen-sink approach that has minor-key guitar arpeggios rubbing up against spooked synths in “Myth Takes,” with its allusions to New York as a place where “nothing’s been the same since the chain of events” and wry advice like “Should have known the world was cold/Next time you’ll pack a sweater.” Clamorous trash-can beats propel the kind of herky-jerky rhythm that’d please James White’s Contortions in the dystopic “All of My Heroes Are Weirdos,” and Offer raps about a cold sexual encounter for five-plus minutes of pounding drums, chk-chk-chk guitars, and noisy synths in “Must Be the Moon.” And the band — especially bassist Justin van der Volgen — keep it up for a full eight minutes of menacing, if abstract, dance-floor grooves in “Bend Over Beethoven.” A horn section, falsetto leads, and female backing vocals come together for some full-on disco in “Break in Case of Anything,” but !!! can’t leave it at that: eerie dub breaks intrude as if to remind everyone that this is avant-funk, not just the plain kind.

!!! + Holy Fuck | Paradise, 967 Comm Ave, Boston | May 15 | 617.931.2000
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