Movie Club: Black Flamingos – album review


Black flamingo

Self published


Release November 27

The concept of the “black swan theory” used to support Karl. R. Poppers’ theory of falsification refers to the improbable, the surprising; the event which has enormous consequences, named so for the scarcity of black swans themselves. If a black swan can wield this kind of metaphorical power, then what about the much more exotic black flamingo? Captured only once on video, it is certainly a creature of great mysticism and magic. So, it’s the perfect title for the debut album of the perfectly cinematic Venice Beach duo Movie Club, a group that isn’t afraid to break free from constraints and instead focus on building their mysticism.

Comprised of drummer Jessamyn Violet and guitarist Vince Cuneo, the three EPs they’ve released over the past two years have certainly attracted them an underground audience, but it’s this debut album that has the potential to draw them to an audience. wider. Not that this really seems to be the point; For Movie Club, daring and experimentation count far more than any kind of commercial reach. “There aren’t many slots left these days”, explains Violette, “I felt lucky to be in a project that isn’t afraid to do something different with all of its might. We want to include everyone, and instrumental music breaks all boundaries. “

Well, there’s no denying that they succeed. As the name suggests, they are moviegoers who love to explore the visual (hence the German expressionist magic of the title song video), but what they can conjure up only through sound is impressive. Opening onto the Grinding Phantasm, it builds itself and sets the scene like the start of any movie. drawing the listener to wonder what the next reel offers – which turns out to be the swirling and captivating Starcatcher. Without words to explain anything, the listener is left to construct their own image through the soundscapes, and the result is captivating. Listening in the dark, I witnessed an opening scene of moving through a giallo-lit bar, fingertips lightly touching surfaces drifting through the long-viewed crowd, before later tracks set off. go back to the aforementioned mention of German Expressionism, but others may see / hear something different.

There are certainly consistency in the patterns built into this record – circular saw guitars, cinematic string notes, looping riffs – but the changes of pace are reminiscent of the twists and turns of any intriguing film. Whether it’s going deep into the most original rock traditions (Minehunter) or slowing things down to a romantic wooziness (Bermuda Rainbow), like a road trip through a David Lynch film, with Movie Club, you never really know where you’re going to end up.

Culminating with the brash Devils Sea, this album is daring, unwavering and achieves all of its goals of running wild and without borders. There is also an impressive supporting cast. But it is the vision of the leads that makes this record an exceptional niche. Orson Welles once said that a movie is a sliver of dreams, and this pair of moviegoers did a tremendous job creating an intense dream landscape through audio alone.

Black Flamingo will be released on vinyl and on all streaming services on November 27.

You can find more at Movie Club on their website, Facebook and Instagram


All of Amy Britton’s words. Learn more about its archives here.

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