Oneida Preteen Weaponry(Jagjaguwar/Brah) Buy it from Insound
One can only wonder what Oneida’s implication was when entitling their latest album Preteen Weaponry. In that fledgling era prior to even teen angst, I recall jumping on trampolines, eating five-cent candies, and doing backdrops whilst ‘shooting’ at enemy aircraft – fecundating nourishment for the far more dampening years ahead.
But this record reminisces in something far, far away from sugar-coated sweets being the arsenal of imagination. With only three tracks that all clock in over ten minutes, it reeks of a near pessimistic maturity. With ill-tempered drums, drudgy reverb and extreme pedal dependency, the record’s drugged-out space jam prolifia sounds like it’s head-hunting to be an epoch. The intensity of its stylistic approach leaves it feeling nothing short of a musical dissertation as it side-steps melodies, bridges and verses from the get-go.
While Oneida’s past discography has defined their competence in moving between an array of musical styles, this record departs from most of them. The psych-pop charms that made their last two albums,The Wedding and Happy New Year, great are left for a be-all, end-all anthemic roar. The thunder-esque reverb that crashes out of Part One, makes you think, okay, okay - the tornado’s coming for the drive-in, and we’re all fucked. Part Two is eleven minutes of drum and drone that could elegantly escort an orc to the battlefield, and Part Three signs off the album with a ten minute ode to kraut. The whole shabang lines right up with the cover sticker that announces the album (in combination with the two records marked to succeed it) as that “which will lay the band’s colossal vision of a new age in music.” Noted.
When you’ve been making acclaimed records for ten years and have started your own sub-label off Jagjaguwar, this is the kind of ballsy record you can ride like a magic carpet with your beaming reputation in your backpocket. The unfortunate thing is its faith in what it considers to be profound is really just robustly cohesive recycled ideas.24 August, 2008 - 09:07 — Tara Campbell