Longmont Potion Castle: 20 (D.U. Records, 2023)

February 4, 2023 at 12:37 pm | Posted in Reviews | Leave a comment

Longmont Potion Castle: 20

Sometimes when LPC calls someone, they seem to think he’s talking about someone they know, and there’s a spark of recognition, which leads into a more engaged conversation. This happens early on during the newest LPC album, when he mentions someone named Crazy Face and makes up the very fake-sounding name Ralphred, and the other guy thinks he’s talking about his neighbor, Glen. Those parts are pretty cool. He actually manages to convince someone that he’s talking to his own son at one point, and only gives vague answers, acting surprised when the other guy relays the “wait for it” news that the person he just talked to has a monkey and wants to move in soon. Any of the parts when he makes the person on the other line laugh are always good fun. I will always love the incomprehensible jargon calls; “Pig Metal” is a prime example of that, where he just rattles off a stream of technical terms about metallurgy and confounds the person on the other end. The call when he says his name is “Freaky Bucky” and goes on about an “orb within an orb” and then plays on his “new banjo” is a hoot. In one of the most surreal LPC calls ever, he tries to convince a bunch of people that he’s about to setting off some holograms down the street, so they should stay inside their homes for a few hours, and there’s a chance that the holograms might travel through windows, but they can’t walk through walls or doors. Other types of LPC calls are best in moderation, and they’re more abundant on his recent albums. The ones when he connects a tree of businesses to each other, none of whom have any clue why they’re talking to each other, and he edits out his own voice and just leaves his reactions, those can be amazing sometimes, but can also wear out their welcome after a while. He has a whole bunch of people talking to each other about someone claiming their cigars have exploded, and somehow they find themselves talking to beer distributors in other states. There’s also a LOT of times on this album where he talks to someone and then patches in a crotchety old Jewish man that’s appeared on lots of other LPC albums before, but seems to turn up on most of these calls. He pretty much says the same thing every call (i.e. screaming that the other person is a criminal and full of shit, shit, shit!!!!!) except the one when he’s connected with cops who appear to be investigating the problem, in which case the bootlicker is patient, cooperative and respectful. “Clashettes” is a little different, though. It’s a medley of older-sounding LPS calls strung together with tape rewinding sounds. None of them sound familiar to me, so maybe they’re outtakes or unreleased calls. The way the rewinding sounds occur, and the title of the track itself, made me think he was going to try to mash the calls together and do something weirder with them, but it sounds pretty interesting the same. “Aardvark”, however, is pretty much a redux of the bookstore calls on the last album or two, it could very well just be additional material from the same series of calls. Also, I’m both amused and terribly annoyed by the guy on “Normal Jarvis” who repeatedly asks “what’s your real name?”, not realizing how dopey he sounds. Like a lot of LPC albums, especially the more recent ones, this one might require some judicious editing on the part of the listener, but there’s some incredible, mind-expanding stuff on here when he’s at his most inspired.


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