Akron/Family – Love Is Simple 2xLP
For those of you who have seen my simpering, slavishly devotional blurbs and press releases in the past re Akron/Family, wherein I make ridiculous claims about them (which I happen to believe!), it should come as no surprise to you now when I reiterate they are one of the best bands on the planet. I don’t recall seeing such fantastic live shows ever, except maybe Pere Ubu at the Whisky in LA circa 1978 or Pink Floyd circa Umma Gumma era 1968/9.
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Take those unrelated reference points and mix in The Beatles, Chicago Art Ensemble, Credence Clearwater Revival, The Grateful Dead, The Hollies, The Butthole Surfers, Led Zeppelin, and you might get a notion – probably not. Best thing is to see them live and listen to their recordings, and I’ll shut up. Anyway, this record comes the closest to bridging the gap between the chaos, rock action, tribal bongo-banging and sentimental sing-alongs of their live shows and the necessarily more cerebral, or at least worked-over and layered process of recording in the studio (where they excel by the way, being patient and obsessive techno nerds as well as rampaging apes on demand).
So, there’s some beautiful songs and harmonies on this album, and also some wild and weird jams, all in the service of their chosen Deity, or Nothingness, or LOVE, or whatever it is they’re on about. I enjoy the music, and I hope you do too…