Monday, July 02, 2012

Returning to the Mission of Burma

Some bands get famous long after they have gone. Some bands get famous then go away, come back and get more interesting. Then there is MISSION OF BURMA, who were interesting, got famous after they broke up and then got back together to make great new music.

Coming from Boston in the the late 70's, Mission of Burma blasted onto the punk scene with distorted greatness that ushered in the post-punk, more experimental era of underground music. they had a minor hit with "That's When I Reach For My Revolver" and released one brilliant ep and one epic album before calling it a day. But a funny thing happened on the road to oblivion. Late 90's artists as diverse and NIRVANA and MOBY started name dropping these guys as influences. Voila! the band was reborn.

Rather than trade on their limited cache as Alt Rock godfathers, the foursome strarted recording new records in 2002 and have now unleashed their latest "Unsound" on the world. Mission of Burma sounds are not for everyone, if you have any sort of pop sensitivity then stay the hell away from this. But if you like the sound of bands living on the edge between rock and chaos, then snap this record up quick.

Whether it is the clattering noise collection of "This is Hi-Fi" or the dark bass heavy mediation of "Semi-Pseudo-Soft Of-Plan" the Burmas have clear idea of how to incite emotion in their music. When they do settle for some melody, as in the almost hooky "Second Television", it is almost shocking. This set of songs doesn't have the polish of the other post punk legends WIRE, but does have similar vitriol. It's as if the band is trying to set all the neophytes straight about how to create experimental music. BLOC PARTY aspired to this sound on their first couple of records before succumbing to their dance instincts, which is a shame. Most bands wish they could construct music this edgy, such as the anthemic "Part the Sea", but don't have the guts. MISSION OF BURMA don't care about selling records, they have already established themselves as one of the best bands few people have heard of. Take the risk, get the record, and revel in the madness.

Dust-Devil can be downloaded for free via Soundcloud.

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