Top 20 Releases of 2017: No.11 – jailbird Y – Sex Trip EP

jailbird y - sex trip ep

7-inch vinyl, Pexpox, 2017

Jailbird Y had a rough year in 2017, with the release of this EP of explosive noise-rock coinciding with the entire band quitting, leaving vocalist Anndoe to reconstruct the band anew from the ground up with each successive gig. This chaos in the band’s internal life can perhaps be viewed from afar as simply an extrusion into physical space of the hyperactive, swirling insanity of their music. In that sense, one has to admire their dedication to their art.

The Sex Trip EP consists of just two main songs, with the one-minute noise instrumental Chinboru rounding the vinyl EP out the three tracks in total. As squalls of machine noise overlaid with what sound like the the warbling oscillations of a 1960s sci-fi movie teleporter go, the instrumental is very much of a piece with the hyperactive, loosely hardcore-influenced junk of Jailbird Y’s typically playful songwriting.

Playful is the right word too, because in contrast to the posturing machismo and earnestness of much hardcore and hardcore-influenced music, Jailbird Y can be deliciously camp at times. The vocals on Goemon come across like tortured, demonic chipmunks, but when they bring the noise, it lands like a metric tonne of sheet metal. Love Letter, meanwhile, opens like a Teutonic nightmare, the stamping boots of a conquering robot army, before lurching into gear in a frenzied flurry of screams, twisted guitars and dubby effects.

The download retails, rather confusingly, for ¥100,000 on their Bandcamp, or ¥1000 for the vinyl. The EP also includes download-only remixes of Love Letter and Goemon by Shinji Masuko from DMBQ. Remixes are usually a pointless addition at best, but Masuko clearly gets what makes the original songs tick and takes them in his own, Love Letter From Berder Kingdom drawing out and expanding on the song’s dubby elements, and Goemon Had Formed a band in 2000s remaining true to the song’s – and the band’s – chaotic heart.

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