Track by Track is a segment where we interview artists to dig a little deeper and take us inside the tracks of their latest releases. We caught up with Alex Patching of Aborted Tortoise and Ghoulies, who walks us through his new oddball punk solo venture Pleasants and its four-track demo tape.
Alex Patching, an insanely prolific musician of the buzzing Perth underground scene, returned in October with his new bedroom recording project, Pleasants. Best known from essential Perth punk lineups like Aborted Tortoise, Ghoulies, Dennis Cometti, and Paranoias, Patching's latest venture melds Midwestern sped-up cassette punk with some of the sharpest, catchiest power pop you'll hear all year — in just four tracks too!
The opener "Takeout Dinner" riles up a gloriously demented garage punk style that many of the Coneheads-worship bedroom punks have been trying to master for years. "Interwebs (Sex, Drugs 'n' Theft)" swarms forward with its cleverly tight, maxed out guitar riffage and cheapo lo-fi synths. "Rubix Cube" zips by with its hooky power pop and '77-punk propulsion that pairs a frantic Buzzcocks-style jitter with a brief, yet rip-roaring chorus punchline — here, Patching swaps out the weirdo band tee with a suit coat and Flamin' Groovies pin. And the lightning-fast closer "Poke You in the Eye" kicks out a charging melody with its buzzsaw guitar storms.
This is undoubtedly an essential for the cassette shelve of a certain nature and we were lucky to catch up with Patching through email to dive into the stories and inspirations beneath the new tape.
Alex Patching: Originally wanted this to be called "Microwave Dinners" as an ode to my failings in the kitchen. I barely cook as it is, but I've spent much of the last year commuting between the city and country with little time and desire to cook for myself so it's been a blur of drive through food and shitty takeaway meals. "Microwave Dinners" had too many syllables anyways so "Takeout Dinner" it is.
"Interwebs (Sex, Drugs 'n' Theft)"
AP: This one's about all the wild and dodgy shit you'd come across on the internet during the unregulated and wild days of the mid-late 2000s. Everyone was sending each other fucked up videos via Bluetooth, we were up all night playing Runescape, and Facebook and Myspace were just getting popular. No one had any idea how to behave and school, at least in my case, was years behind the technology and had no idea what the fuck was going on.
AP: A clever little analogy for a problem you got to work through, except there's no resolution because I've never managed to figure out how those fuckin things work.
"Poke You In The Eye"
AP: Pretty self-explanatory really. Just a song about the petty annoyances people put you through in life. Nothing serious enough to warrant severe action, you just gotta give em a prod and let them know you're pissed. No real reason I'd choose to poke someone in the eye though, it's just a really funny visual.
Pleasants' debut demo tape is out now through Loopy Scoop Tapes. Stream it below and purchase a copy of the tape here.