Signer The New Face of Smiling
Vinyl LP Details
- Released: September 10, 2004
- Originally Released: 2004
The Wire - p.70"Smith creates a kind of disharmonious beauty, but his music is less of an oceanic sprawl and more a series of ominous tremors and small explosions."
- 1.Low Light Sleep
- 2.Hurricane or Sunshine?
- 3.I Was Dressed as the Ant, You Dressed as a Beehive
- 4.Machines at Low Tide
- 5.Frozen Cut Grass
- 6.You're Killing Us Helen
- 7.That Sinking Feeling as Key Metal Hits Thigh Flesh
- 8.Komputa Ga Bukowarera
- 9.Overwhelming Power of Friendship
- 10.Your Ears Across the Fences
The third album by New Zealand's Bevan Smith under his Signer nom de electronique continues the artful blending of folkish acoustic guitars, glitchy electronic beats, and slightly mournful minor-key indie pop tunes that have been Smith's raison d'ˆtre all along. This time, Smith has slightly rounded the edges of his electronics, adding judicious amounts of reverb and phasing to soften the occasionally harsh sounds; on tracks like "Komputa Ga Bukowarera," the results sound rather like My Bloody Valentine's guitar-centric soundscapes updated for the laptop generation. It's a blend that works more often than not, whether on tracks as blissed-out as the dreamy opener "Low Light Sleep" or as moody and on-edge as "You're Killing Us Helen," which features a skirling violin part and deliberately lo-fi rhythm box that recalls Smith's fellow Kiwi experimentalists Alastair Galbraith and Chris Knox. Those comparisons are key; despite Smith's surface similarities to the likes of Flying Saucer Attack or Greg Davis, Signer is very much in the long tradition of New Zealand eccentrics. ~ Stewart Mason