Duh (Thread Pull Records)
Reviewed by Raoul Hernandez, Fri., Nov. 30, 2012
Foreign MothersDuh (Thread Pull Records)
Foreign Mothers' XX chromosomes propagate the crucial DNA of Austin's feminine punk and post-punk past. In spirit, Lynn Keller, Terri Lord, and decades of local women flex their grit and yell Duh. Pleasingly post-clang, bristling with ire and irony, rhythmically aggressive, the local trio's debut LP grooves a bruising beat deep down in its petroleum conductor of raw sound. Stephanie Mueller's vocal tremor on "Love Song for Bill Paxton" summons both Sleater-Kinney and John Lydon, grounded by a vinyl-tastic separation of guitar, bass, and drums that routinely upshifts in tempo and underscores alienation ("Like Our Parents Had"). Ax mistress Kana Harris, who writes the most, plays clean, clear, simple melodic leads, notably on side two opener "Plan B (Dead Inside)," a bitter romantic spite sounding uncannily like post-punk's early Eighties. Jungle strut and stomp on the succeeding "Orphan Crocodile," cymbals trebly by the high-stickin' Christina Lough feeding into a bass epidural and sewing needle guitar, defines Duh's relentlessness. These ladies mean it, so much so that the epithet of "Possessive/Plural" comes off as downright thrilling. Closer "But Now" drones and bursts unconvincingly, but, as cut by Mike Vasquez at Sweatbox Studios before he uprooted to the Pacific Northwest, herein spins one bad Mother.