Thursday, February 09, 2006

Prefuse 73 / Security Screenings / Rating: 6.9

First things first: Herren insists that this is not an "actual" album. I have no idea what this means, but critical preemptions aside, Security Screenings is a marked improvement over last year's directionless Surrounded by Silence, which missed its mark of collaborative opus

Oh how the mighty have fallen, One word Extinguisher earned Prefuse 73 a 9.1 rating and he’s been throwing sixes and a seven ever since.

PFM writer Peter Macia was onto something; a record that comes with a tag line this specific:

Prefuse states: “It’s a collection of songs based on reactions to certain things that happened through the course of doing press, touring, and recording for the past year or so. It's not a follow up to Surrounded By Silence, but merely a transition between the last album and what's to come, the next one is to be completely different all together.” And "God bless airport security in America and the countries that are a part of the "Coalition of the Willing."

leads any curious mind to wander. How exactly does Security Screenings reflect this theme? I am tempted to poll local airport security but I suspect a southern version of “Go Fuck” would follow shortly there after and come to think of it I don’t even think our airport has any flights at all this late hour.

With a theme this cryptic (okay... actually invisible if it weren't for the surreal interview clips) a new genre of instrumental music has been born: crypt-hop.

I could go on....

Big bottomed glitch?

Lap Hop?

Music this complex, owning so many threads of influence is an easy target for music schmucks like me looking to be clever. Nothing I could say is going to properly articulate how dense yet clean sliced Security Screenings actually is.

I haven’t loved much Scott Herren has done post One Word Extinguisher and still nothing tops the live Prefuse shows I saw with Amon Tobin in 2002 and Beans back in 2003. After multiple failed Prefuse releases and flimsy alter ego projects I had lost all hope but for a certified non follow up release (the press release really does allude to this) Security Screenings has brought me back into the Prefuse 73 fold again.

These tracks are Prefuse flashcards, brief ( around 3 minutes long) but to the point samples of some of his best spellbinding beat making and breaking.

Pitchfork gave a cruel review and one star rating to Security Screenings' single song “Mud in Your Mouth” and while it isn’t the best track of the release, it certain isn’t worthy of that bitch smack it was given.

I don’t mind the radio dial turning Far East flavored R2D2 bleeps, bounces and bending but clearly Tom B felt otherwise.

If flashcards are used to maintain and sharpen skills it’s best to look at Security Screening cd as a textured knife sharpener and in theory the next Prefuse 73 full length could be honed into a seriously dangerous weapon. A PFM 6.9 rating isn’t shameful but I believe a medium flame 7 would be closer to the point.


On a personal note: It’s hard not to be a jealous of a record collector (Scott) who actually uses and recycles out the riches from his seriously magnificent library of wax. Herren Ginsu-s (remember those never a dull blade knives???) samples out of vinyl that otherwise collects dust and remains untouched in my house.