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ENON:: Grass Geysers … Carbon Clouds (Album Review)

In the four years since Enon’s last studio album, the band has issued a thrilling b-sides and rarities album, logged hours helping out friends Les Savy Fav and Love As Laughter, done commercial work for the Sundance channel and built its own studio. So it’s not surprising that Grass Geysers was born out of an impulsive, needy and brief energy. While Enon has previously been guilty of betraying its most energetic moments with a tendency to fall into loping, aimless slow-burners, Grass Geysers never stops freaking out. Whether blistering through the Ramones-like “Those Who Don’t Blink,” slinking out the grimy back-and-forth of “Mr. Ratatatatat” or crafting loungey psychedelia fit to soundtrack that eerie Leonard Nimoy-hosted show In Search Of…, the band manages to harness the immediacy of being a three-piece without sacrificing sonic depth or complexity. Each track offers thick layers of simply sweet hooks, space-race organ or skronky rave-up guitar, buttressed by deep, slinking bass lines and urged onward by frenetic drumming. John Schmersal and Toko Yasuda trade and share lead vocals, his desperate near-falsetto feeling unhinged while her sexy cooing stabilizes things. Lyrically, Schmersal is as loopy as ever, melding sci-fi nightmares with ambivalent lamentations of love lost or innocence swiped.