Escape-ism – The Lost Record – album review

Escape-ism – The Lost Record

Merge Records

LP / DL / CD

Out Now

In the release notes about The Lost Record by Johnny Sincere ‘When Escape-ism—nom de guerre of mythic rock ’n’ roll provocateur / theorist / revolutionary Ian Svenonius (performer, author, filmmaker, etc.)—announced the imminent release of its second long-player, The Lost Record, it shook the foundations of the hermetic swamp / tundra known as “underground music.” Fighting Boredom couldn’t leave a record with that description unlistened to, so here’s what we thought.

Somewhere in an urban decaying concrete jungle there is a rubbish strewn alleyway with a small metal plated door hidden amongst the flotsam of the city. Inside, past the perpetually frowning doorman there is a small room full of the coolest, lost people you have ever seen, on the tiny stage in the corner in front of silver foil strips dangling to the ground plays Escape-ism. One man in a crumpled suit and tie behind a keyboard. Playing the Lost Record.

With possibly the best PR blurb in the world ever, Escape-ism present their second album. Lost records are the albums that were initially despised, then got rid of, then found again and in hindsight critically acclaimed. Escape-ism have decided to circumvent this lengthy process and declare this album as a lost record as it is released as it is unmistakably a masterpiece. 

This is minimal in the extreme, it’s one guy and his keyboard, the guy in question being Ian Svenonius, member of Nation of Ulysses, The Make-Up, Weird War and XYZ. All the beats and noises come from the one instrument and it’s cool as. The music is simple, beats, fuzzy notes and static, occasional hand claps embellish it but in the main it’s a man standing in front of a keyboard. This coupled with the vocal makes it the sleaziest record I’ve heard for years.
It’s stripped so far back that it’s hardly there at all. The vocals are stories that resonate and as you can clearly hear every word you are entranced by it. It drips sweat and sleaze, confidence and self assurance. It flits musically from a Suicide backdrop to as close to Soft Cell at their dirtiest they could get. It’s a cool record. It’ll get to you. A minimal sleaze dripping treat.

 Escape-ism have a Bandcamp page and are on Facebook.

All words by Adrian Bloxham.

Adrian Bloxham

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