Eddie the Rat | Once Around The Butterfly Bush | Edgetone Records

Dan Ake – Lobro, Spike, 2×6 | Ronnie Camaro – bass, vocals | Peter J. Martin – piano, cajon (left foot), bass drum (right foot), vocals, Balinese gangsa, Long- Boy, Proto | Molly Tascone – vocals, recorder, glockenspiel, steel drum, triangle

Composed by Peter J. Martin & performed by Eddie the Rat. Mixed by Jon Meyer and PJM. Mastered by Andy Scott/Studio 401. Recording, art, graphics, etc…. by PJM (c) & (P) Eddie the Rat 2006

Tracklist: 1. Anamnesis #1 (6:14) 2. Mu (Unask The Question) (6:12) 3. Dim (3:35) 4. There’s No Such Place As Outer Space (3:47) 5. I Spy A Human Inside of You (6:09) 6. Chasing The Sim (5:28) 7. Shortcut (4:57) 8. Once Around The Butterfly Bush (6:12) 9. Anamnesis #2 (10:36)

Once Around The Butterfly Bush

is music made of wood, wind, and wire. A carefully honed composition using simultaneous tempos in any given song, it switches focus between melody/rhythm and figure/ground until they become blurred. This song cycle incorporates a blend of traditional and homemade instruments, and layers musical styles on top of each other until style becomes irrelevant. “Once Around The Butterfly Bush” is a collage of pre-composed melodic and rhythmic lines that fit together (over and under and in between) like a puzzle piece.

Eddie the Rat

is the pseudonym for composer and multi-instrumentalist, Peter J. Martin aka Pete Rat, and the avant-(something) conglomeration of musicians and artists who help execute his compositions. Eddie the Rat music is “head music for your feet.” It has been called “sexy avant-garde.” Inspired by Indonesian gamelan, American & European folk, and modern 12-tone music, Eddie the Rat tries to bridge the gap between ritual, roots, and concert music. But please feel free to dance.

Ladders that reach up to the stratosphere of tempos weren’t possible until Eddie the Rat fell upon the indie scene…intriguing and awe-inspiring… – J. Sin, Editors Pick Smother Magazine

Think of it all as avant-garde music for waltzing, perhaps, or art-damaged folk music by way of hallucinogenic drugs. The lock-step rhythmic interplay is what makes it work; the unusual vocal harmonies and unexpected dynamic shifts are what keep it interesting. For such an out-there ensemble, you’d be surprised how accessible it all is. Sun Ra would approve. – RKF, Dead Angel

This unit defies any strict semblance of categorization, and that’s a good thing these days. Listening to Once Around The Butterfly Bush might be akin to experiencing an organic high that fools the mind’s eye with a barrage of unusual sounds and implementations. The band’s methodology is unlike any other—a strangely appealing endeavor, for sure. – Glenn Astarita, All About Jazz

There is this warm band of solidarity and unison that captures me, finally breaking the last resistance built up by music I heard in the past. – Fred Wheeler, Tokafi

Once around the butterfly bush” is indeed a pseudo-Partchian structure, at times sounding like a strange kind of operetta, wholly based on the superimposition of polyrhythms and whose Indonesian influence and bastard minimalist complexion evolves until, in certain circumstances, we’re treated to complex arrangements recalling entities like early 5 UU’s and Motor Totemist Guild. – Ricci Massimo, Touching Extremes

Angular rhythms, strange harmonies, and weird subject matter make this release on the edge of things and out of the ordinary. A good solution to sonic boredom if you’re willing to give it a chance. – John Gore, Chain DLK

This is an exciting album, wild in parts, and simple in others. It has a genuine “otherness” that cannot be faked. In parts, I found myself reminded of Einsturzende Neubauten and the Art Bears– but I would be remiss to leave you thinking of this as a derivative album in any way. – DaveX, Startling Moniker

Once Around the Butterfly Bush from Eddie the Rat is sort of like the world’s greatest collection of noises, tinkering, and spelunkering…charming piano lines amidst the bombastic persussive arrangements…interesting female vocal amidst the shifting rhythmic patterns…Eddie the Rat certainly put the “avant” back in avant-garde. – Pete Pardo, Sea of Tranquility

Altered upbeat enchanting chimes sound with a ‘Spires That In The Sunset Rise’ meets the Residents and take some psychotropics feel. – Justin Outlier, KFJC Radio

The music has a distinct hook to it that can be traced back to rock music, and also the vocals show their love of post-punk but especially the rhythm part owes a lot of Gamelan music. It makes a highly interesting combination and Eddie The Rat explores the various possibilities this offers very well. – Jos Smolders, Earlabs

 

CD version (incl. shipment cost world-wide)

€ 16.00
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3 thoughts on “Eddie the Rat | Once Around The Butterfly Bush | Edgetone Records

  1. This San Francisco-based unit proves that rock music is free-game and is not exclusive to high-volume antics and memorably melodic hooks. With odd instrumentation and influences that seemingly span legendary Canterbury prog-band Henry Cow and renegade composer John Cage, the music is partly schizoid but structured.

    The ensemble morphs minimalism with elements of grunge rock with variable flows consisting of tinker bell-like maneuvers and synchronous percussion movements. Some of these works communicate notions of the macabre firmed-up by Ronnie Camaro’s fat bass lines and the occasional conveyance of angst. Yet the overall weirdness of this band’s line of attack provides the endearing qualities.

    The group renders quirky and quaint passages, but occasionally turns up the heat via thumping rhythmic structures, where notions of an avant-garde tribal dance come to mind. In various spots, they build themes against fractured ostinatos. And on the title track a flute-like sound appears atop a barrage of what appears to sound like a consortium of Jews harps—although none of the band members are credited with using either instrument.

    This unit defies any strict semblance of categorization, and that’s a good thing these days. Listening to Once Around The Butterfly Bush might be akin to experiencing an organic high that fools the mind’s eye with a barrage of unusual sounds and implementations. The band’s methodology is unlike any other—a strangely appealing endeavor, for sure.

  2. It’s cold out here tonight, in San Francisco. Slowly but unstoppable a white wall of fog is creeping through the night, covering the uphill streets, and I’m walking close to narrow buildings. My face is moist, my hair is moist, my clothes are, too. In the distance, a police cars’ siren is whaling somewhere and then fading away into the endlessness. My steps sound comforting on the pavement, but my sight is blinded more and more. Neon signs get watery and seem to drift away. Did I loose my way? I’m not so sure anymore. Somewhere in this area there must be the place I’m looking for. The fog is getting more dense every minute. And then… sounds of steps behind me, or to the left? I quicken my own pace. Something small and grey rushes across my path. Seems like an animal? A rat? I keep on going, faster and faster, while the steps behind me seem to get closer. And then I hear it, strange sounds. Seems like a glockenspiel and a bass guitar, growing louder and now, accompanied by an even stranger rhythm, produced by instruments I can’t quite define. Finally, I see the unimposing building these sounds are emerging from, and I hasten to reach the entrance.

    Inside, the big room is filled with people and smoke and a mystical music, that emerges from the back of the room. The musicians can hardly be seen, like ghosts in a background of obscurity. The atmosphere is relaxed and it seems, as if all these people know each other. Gestures of intimacy. I walk to the bar and order a drink. And then I find a place somewhere at the side, but with a good view onto the stage.

    Yes, I did find my place. Eddie the Rat is performing, and I’m ready to relax and enjoy. And while the drink warms me up from insight, my mind is soon captivated by the music I’m subjected to. The band plays ‘Once Around The Butterfly Bush’, an album they recorded last year, in 2006, and while I’m getting settled strange sounds start to attract my attention, almost sucking me up into that butterfly bush while I still don’t know what to make of what I hear.

    Rhythm seems to be the carrying theme, rhythm not produced by a usual drum set, but by rather untypical objects like steel drums, oil drums, a bass drum and many other. And, not to forget, the bass guitar, which almost always carries this rhythm on its broad and mighty shoulders. But something is unusual about this rhythm. It’s not just there for producing the pure beat, but it clearly contains melodic elements. There is something very quiet about this music, and yet, it creeps up on you like the mist on the streets of San Francisco. Then eclectic voices, expanded like a chewing gum and almost in harmony with its disharmony. A glockenspiel comes in, harmless and innocent, followed by a recorder, and then what sounds like a musical box.

    Good gracious, what to make of this? I look at the people surrounding me, and I see something in their faces that seems like an inner connection to what they hear. There is this warm band of solidarity and unison that captures me, finally breaking the last resistance built up by music I heard in the past. Finally, I can let myself being carried away on the underground waves of these sounds, my fear for the unknown being washed away by the rolling insecurities of these intriguing sounds. And once the mind is opened up, all these playful tunes, sometimes almost childish of nature, then again almost powerful, capture my very sentiments of pure experience. And I become part of the crowd, part of the family of peaceful individuals that melt together to a single unit of enjoying and celebrating people, all captivated by the butterfly bush.

    Eddie the Rat is Peter J. Martin, Dan Ake, Ronnie Camaro and Molly Tascone. Allow yourself a journey once around the butterfly bush. You may learn something about your inner self.

  3. So… who wants to hear an album filled with homemade instruments, oddball circular rhythms, and a guy who plays drums with his feet while his hands give a piano a workout? As your prize for answering, “Meeeeeeeee!” I will now tell you all about “Once Around the Butterfly Bush,” the latest Edgetone Records release from Eddie the Rat.

    First off, lets get this whole foot/hands thing out of the way, because its very cool. I have to admit, my inital once-over of the liner notes totally missed this startling bit of information, so I was really curious– the recording didn’t sound as if there was much in the way of overdubbing, but there were obviously a few too many instruments for a quartet. While digging on the unique, circular phrases and out-of-kilter rhythms, I envisioned a very busy room with performers hurrying about, dropping one instrument to pick up another. It was a fun idea, something like a deleted scene from an avant-garde version of “Help!”

    Anyways, yeah. I was totally wrong, but luckily, reality was equally cool. Peter Martin, the original sole member of “The Rat” (for short, why not?) plays piano with his hands, cajon with the left foot, and bass drum with the right. And before you get on my case about not having seen the large photo inside the album CLEARLY SHOWING this, allow me to feign temporary blindness due to the SUPER-AMAZING homemade instrument on stage left– some sort of upright box with perpendicular rows of giant nails– which has to be the “Spike” listed in the credits. This thing is incredible to see, so be careful, or you may become temporarily blind as well.

    This is an exciting album, wild in parts, and simple in others. It has a genuine “otherness” that cannot be faked. In parts, I found myself reminded of Einsturzende Neubauten and the Art Bears– but I would be remiss to leave you thinking of this as a derivative album in any way.

    Of course, I truly hope you’ll get yourself over to Edgetone Records and find a copy for yourself. But if its a few days until payday, you might also tide yourself over with a couple free Eddie the Rat albums (“Lip-Synching at Zero Gavity“, and “Drop Me Off in Denpasar“) from Comfort Stand Recordings. If that’s not further evidence of a cool band, I don’t know what is.

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