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Sunday, December 6, 2009

Tristeza - Fate Unfolds (2009)

Genre : Post-rock, Psychedelic

Tracklist :

1. Castellon
2. Floripa
4. Celestians
5. Hazed
6. Manitas
7. Mr. Beat/Street Tax
8. Tension Futura
9. Camco
10. The Punch

From the surreal opening to the feverish end, Fate Unfolds captivates with a tonal palette that is both broad and gripping. Indie kings of the southwest, Tristeza, have been at it for slightly over a decade. Their latest full-length delivers without a drop of disappointment. Fate Unfolds is drenched with the seemingly long lost art of crafting an album that plays as one solid piece. I could pick several ’singles’ that I hear on this record, but to do anything but drop the needle and park it does a huge disservice to the artistry and arrangement of this record as a whole. Herein are huge washes of guitars and synths, layered with drums dubbing back and forth from programmed to acoustic with ease and a backbeat that is anything but ‘indie rock’.

Instrumental bands get a bad rap. It’s mostly because of the Canadian melodramatics that ruined it for everybody in the late nineties. If I didn’t know this record was slated for a release in just a couple months, I don’t know that I could have accurately pinpointed a time period on the recording of these songs. While several production elements hint at a 70s dub feel, there is a mature tension, and raw rock element that is an emergent sound for Tristeza. It’s almost like certain elements invoke the image of Lee Perry slapping hi-fives to Steve Albini behind the mixing console.

Tristeza are also helping spearhead a trend that is integral to the survival and validity of independent music. There will be no US compact disc release of this album. Better Looking Records will distribute the digital format of Fate Unfolds, and Wildlife Vinyl will be pressing the vinyl.

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