The Class of 73 Bells
Prefuse 73: 'Preparations' The Album, Out October 15th 2007
Prefuse is back. Did he go anywhere? Yes and no. Of course he kept up his schedule of crowd-rocking from Moscow to Mexico City, but most importantly he went back into the studio - by himself this time (and with his one-man orchestra.) Crafting a water-tight set of masterfully composed inimitable tracks, with melodies that evoke the halcyonic spirit of 'One Word Extinguisher', Guillermo Scott Herren has fused and contorted the classic Prefuse 73 sounds that first hit you (kicks, snares, murky textures, samples, screaming, etc.), with experimentation in classical composition and live instrumentation to create some deliciously psychedelic results.
Through working on 'Preparations' in quick succession after 'Savath.' it also makes sense that 'Preparations' is indebted to his unique identity, giving those kaleidoscopic beats a root.
Whilst Preparations is definitively a solo-thinking Prefuse 73 album, there are still collaborations to be heard. The first features New York wall-of-psych band 'School Of Seven Bells', fronted by twin sisters Claudia & Alejandra Deheza. Introduced by Benjamin 'Secret Machines' Curtis, also part of 'School.', they manage to create the same air of allure and impending danger as the Sirens of Lorelei.
Their turn with Guillermo is a centrepiece of the album; 'Class of 73 Bells' swirls with undeniable melodies grounded by Prefuse's stereo-rattling low-end. Speaking of low-end, if you've been to a Battles gig in the last couple of years, you will have heard the punishing kick drum of John Stanier, a professor from the Helmet and Tomahawk schools of rock. On 'Red Smoking' the front-and-centre Battles drummer offers a barrage of James Brown-meets-Boris percussion, which Prefuse proceeds to slice and edit at breakneck pace, adding samples at will.
Of course, 'School Of Seven Bells' is not the first band Prefuse 73 has sniffed out from the dynamic New York alternative music scene. By our own admission 'Warp's finest A&R man', he is also responsible with hooking Warp up with such fine acts as Battles and new signing, LA beats producer Flying Lotus. It makes sense, for making the different kinds of music he does and using all sorts of ideas, it inevitably puts him in the company of many different types of people.
Norman: The Moderate Rise and Tragic Fall of a New York Fixer