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Harnk
01-18-2005, 10:40 AM
this man has no business making money on his opinions (yes, I understand the meaning of 'opinion')





s/t
Cloud Recordings, 2001
rating: 2.5/5
reviewer: mr p


Okay, I admit that I'm not a huge Elephant 6 fan. The only album I deem truly brilliant from their catalog is Neutral Milk Hotel's In the Aeroplane Over the Sea, which has yet to be challenged. The rest of their catalog is mediocre at best.

So what does E6 have to show for 2001? Well, there was the disappointing Major Organ & the Adding Machine release, which I forgot about until writing this review, and Circulatory System. Though, not nearly as bad as Major Organ, this self-titled debut is certainly not brilliant by any means.

Circulatory System is the evil twin brother of Olivia Tremor Control -- minus Robert Schneider and Bill Doss (The Sunshine Fix). Fronted by William Cullen Hart, Circulatory System take Olivia Tremor Control's basic structure and dip it in a darker, moodier fluid. The same catchy melodies and trippy music coat pretty much every song, resulting in a repetitious and somewhat boring ordeal.

Most E6 releases are plagued with insipid experimentation. So one positive difference between Circulatory System and Olivia Tremor Control is that the taped-loops and other fucked-up farting is no longer here. There may be an occasional blip or two, but for the most part, the weird-noises-just-to-have-weird-noises are used tastefully, or not at all. I mean, I enjoy the occasional flatulence every now and again; but just like in real life, the surprise is lost when it occurs so often, and what's essentially left is the smell.

Though, I have to admit that it's not easy to come up with catchy hooks using the same formula, but somehow Circulatory System's melodies-- by their standards-- are surprisingly fresh. And their transitions between the vocal sections and instrumental sections are unique and always unexpected. Although it may take some time before distinguishing song from song, there are a good batch of smart and interesting tunes.

But one element that bugs me about their songwriting is that The Beatles immediately spring to mind. Maybe it's the simple pop melodies? Maybe Hart's nasal-y vocals? The guitar tone? The harps? The production? The same bouncy tempo? Maybe all of the above, but each song sounds like a blend between "Being for the Benefit of Mr. Kite" and "Blue Jay Way" shaking hands with "Within You, Without You." And with 20+ songs, would it hurt to change the tempo and dynamics a little?

No matter how you slice it, Circulatory System comes off as a darker Olivia Tremor Control; and while Dusk at Cubist Castle and Black Foliage have treated E6 fans nicely (including myself), the formula has been spread a little thin. Circulatory System is not a horrible album. It just doesn't have enough variation or any type of distinguishing feature. On one hand, this can be viewed positively because you will have a consistent and flowing album; yet on the other hand, it can result in a very boring album -- especially if you've already been deflowered by an E6 band/member/collective.

Salman
01-18-2005, 12:35 PM
What magazine or blog is this from?
I'd like to read some other reviews of this "Mr. P". He is funny.

Harnk
01-18-2005, 12:43 PM
Tiny Mixtapes

nice man washing
01-18-2005, 03:01 PM
An interesting, but ultimately misguided, perspective.

nice man washing
01-18-2005, 03:02 PM
Bottom line here is that he is the only person I've come across who doesn't love the album. Even my friends who aren't really into new music love it to bits.

friend
01-18-2005, 03:55 PM
he's actually a really nice guy, pretty open minded. i do disagree with his opinion on that album though.

topdownjimmy
01-18-2005, 05:53 PM
...and he doesn't make any money running tinymixtapes. But yes, I disagree with him too.

BigBlackSmoke
01-18-2005, 08:04 PM
i thought the part where he said robert scneider was in otc was funny

nice man washing
01-18-2005, 10:28 PM
The Tiny Mix Tapes site is excellent though. I particularly like their list of random good CDs from 2004.

nice man washing
01-19-2005, 07:36 PM
Are you kidding?! You haven't got Circulatory System?! Get it NOW!

From where I'm sitting it's one of the finest albums ever made.

coleslaw
01-19-2005, 08:43 PM
From where I'm sitting it's one of the finest albums ever made.



agreed.

topdownjimmy
01-20-2005, 07:38 AM
Originally posted by nice man washing
Are you kidding?! You haven't got Circulatory System?! Get it NOW!

From where I'm sitting it's one of the finest albums ever made.

I prefer it to anything OTC's done. Second-best E6 album, in my opinion.

ihavenoface
01-23-2005, 12:58 PM
heres how I go, I consider circulatory system basically an arm of OTC. SO on my favorites from OTC I go Black foliage, Circulatory System, then dusk and singles, cause Circulatory system is great, but nothing can truly beat black foliage ever...

braintostem
01-29-2005, 10:53 AM
i saw this review. i could't believe my eyes.

Nikki
07-25-2005, 05:16 AM
yeah i was a bit surprised by this review, I do enjoy tiny mixtapes though i have read many reveiws on there. Some i agree with and some i don't, but thats just how it goes...


Originally posted by ihavenoface
Circulatory system is great, but nothing can truly beat black foliage ever...
agreed.

nice man washing
07-25-2005, 05:38 PM
As far as I can gather you're into post-punk at the moment William? You must get the Wilderness album - it's excellent.

hypecity
07-25-2005, 05:41 PM
http://www.blacktable.com/images/0412pics/jesus/28000.jpg

[Edited on 3-22-0606 by hypecity]

Harnk
07-26-2005, 08:29 PM
Originally posted by Half-Handed
I still think Major Organ blows.

Now there is a fresh thought

E6NeverComesToLancaster
08-01-2005, 09:08 PM
i enjoy major organ

Tuff Ghost
08-16-2005, 06:56 PM
ehhh I don't agree with him, he was really harsh, but I don't think that circ system is nearly as good as either of OTC's albums. OTC was a lot more layered. Also if you've been listening to OTC since the release of Cubist Castle you'd understand what I'm saying, those albums were fucking amazing and still are. If you've just bought them all recently (dusk foliage and circ system) than you probably don't have enough perspective to see what people were expecting from teh s/t circ sys.

Don't get me wrong the c/t circulatory system album is fine, it's just not one of the best.

[Edited on 8-17-2005 by Tuff Ghost]

Tuff Ghost
08-16-2005, 06:56 PM
ehhh I don't agree with him, he was really harsh, but I don't think that circ system is nearly as good as either of OTC's albums. OTC was a lot more layered. Also if you've been listening to OTC since the release of Cubist Castle you'd understand what I'm saying, those albums were fucking amazing and still are. If you've just bought them all recently (dusk foliage and circ system) than you probably don't have enough perspective to see what people were expecting from teh s/t circ sys.

Don't get me wrong the c/t circulatory system album is fine, it's just not one of the best.

[Edited on 8-17-2005 by Tuff Ghost]

Harnk
08-16-2005, 08:09 PM
Originally posted by Tuff Ghost
Also if you've been listening to OTC since the release of Cubist Castle you'd understand what I'm saying, those albums were fucking amazing and still are. If you've just bought them all recently (dusk foliage and circ system) than you probably don't have enough perspective to see what people were expecting from teh s/t circ sys.

[Edited on 8-17-2005 by Tuff Ghost]

Not that I'm going to do it or anything, but I would really like to piss all over your lips. You are a tomato hamper and your words embarass strangers.

Harnk
08-16-2005, 08:09 PM
Originally posted by Tuff Ghost
Also if you've been listening to OTC since the release of Cubist Castle you'd understand what I'm saying, those albums were fucking amazing and still are. If you've just bought them all recently (dusk foliage and circ system) than you probably don't have enough perspective to see what people were expecting from teh s/t circ sys.

[Edited on 8-17-2005 by Tuff Ghost]

Not that I'm going to do it or anything, but I would really like to piss all over your lips. You are a tomato hamper and your words embarass strangers.

hypecity
08-16-2005, 08:13 PM
http://www.blacktable.com/images/0412pics/jesus/28000.jpg

[Edited on 3-23-2006 by hypecity]

hypecity
08-16-2005, 08:13 PM
http://www.blacktable.com/images/0412pics/jesus/28000.jpg

[Edited on 3-23-2006 by hypecity]

The_new_improved_Kirk
08-21-2005, 09:16 PM
Originally posted by Half-Handed
He's entitled to his opinion and I think he writes well. I don't know whether he's right or not because I don't have the Circulatory System. Ironically his review is more likely to make me buy the record as it seems it's got less sonic guff than Black Foliage.

can i make you a noise mixtape?;)

The_new_improved_Kirk
08-21-2005, 09:16 PM
Originally posted by Half-Handed
He's entitled to his opinion and I think he writes well. I don't know whether he's right or not because I don't have the Circulatory System. Ironically his review is more likely to make me buy the record as it seems it's got less sonic guff than Black Foliage.

can i make you a noise mixtape?;)

The_new_improved_Kirk
08-28-2005, 08:59 PM
Your loss. :cool::cool::cool::cool:, four will do this time around.