February 8, 2007

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Big Sir, Und Die Scheibe Andert Sichimmer
Gold Standard Laboratories, 2007

There’s a degree of hipness to this album, but comparing Big Sir to Zero 7 (the CMJ critic actually did) is like saying a super-gritty episode of CSI could last a few rounds with Reservoir Dogs. The second collab between Mars Volta bassist Juan Alderete de la Pena (aka John Alderete, which constitutes another reason to avoid Mars Volta) and Air singer Lisa Papineau, irreverently-German-album-title is a school-cafeteria slop of trip-hop, techno and pseudo-prog, the meat of it made from Papineau’s poor-girl’s version of Sarah McLachlan. “The Freeways of My Mind” rumbles along somewhat decently, almost up to Massive Attack snuff regardless of the fact that Sarah’s voice wouldn’t work on such things, although Papineau’s Sarah-yodels do get along well with the sun-baked, spidery bass arpeggios of “Rejoice the Rig” (get ya sucky song titles heeah!). Crummy sax runs appear every time the band seems to have ceased committing malpractice, adding to the Air-like uselessness of the record as a whole. Some good (but certainly not mandatory) downloads, otherwise USDA-certified mallard dung. C+Eric W. Saeger