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Monday, March 9, 2009

Animal Hospital - Memory (2009)

Genre :
Electronica, Ambient, Post-rock, Experimental

Tracklist :

1. Memory
2. Good Times
3. His Belly Burst
4. 2nd Anniversary
5. And Ever...
6. A Safe Place
7. Nostalgia

Animal Hospital is Kevin Micka's one-man musical recording/performance entity. Formed at the tail-end of Micka's time with Boston band The Common Cold, Animal Hospital slowly began to take on a life of its own in 2004. A self-titled debut CD by Animal Hospital was released on Boston's Mister Records that year and displayed Micka's ability as a composer and engineer in communicating his creative expression. Since then, Kevin has consistently toured the United States and completed one 3 week European tour throughout France, Spain, Portugal, and Switzerland. Within the last 4 years Micka has continued writing and releasing several additional tracks on various compilations around the world. Animal Hospital has won followers from all corners of the music world, earning himself spots on tours with bands as diverse as Beirut, Neptune, and the tech-grind metal group The Great Redneck Hope (not to mention a recurring role as bumper music on Boston's NPR station).

During performances, Micka buries himself in a pile of electronics-shelves of effects, mixing consoles, amps and delay units-while patiently constructing a layered nest of loops consisting of live drum beats, guitar chords, scrapes, chucks, chimes, and melodies resulting in anything from more conventional songs to meticulously crafted ambient movements on to full on improvisation.

Long a hidden treasure in Boston recording circles as a freelance recording engineer (for diverse projects such as Neptune, Helms, and Harry and the Potters) and a trusted electronics fix-it man, Micka has approached Animal Hospital over the last four years in the nooks and crannies of his schedule. Over the past year and a half, Kevin has been able to devote more time than ever to writing and recording and it has yielded two new albums' worth of music - a digital release in January 2009 from the Chicago label - Mutable Sound titled Good or Plenty, Streets and Avenues and a CD release in March 2009 from the New York/Boston label - Barge Recordings titled Memory.

Both new albums were recorded in locations across the U.S. - starting in the bay area, on to an abandoned bank in Wellsburg, WV and concluding in various locations in the Boston Area and Cape Cod. All the material was then mixed at Machines with Magnets in Pawtucket, RI and The Blast Zone in Roxbury, MA and mastered in South Boston at Old Colony. Each album moves at the knowing pace of an exploratory mind and settles comfortably into strange habitats with a sure-footed traveler.

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