Reviewed by Audra Schroeder, Fri., Aug. 12, 2005
Somebody as Anybody (Australian Cattle God)
From the opening notes of "Station ID," you can tell Austin's Attack Formation was running long before the gate sprung open. A pulp-noirish sample plays as "formation" is repeated over and over; this dive-bombs into the choppy "Pearl Snaps," which punctures the eardrum with singer Ben Webster's ferocious screams. From there, the momentum stays fast and tight, like an ashtray thrown across a bar during a fight. "Russian (Glacier Song)" recalls the thump and jerk of Swell Maps, slowly building to a cacophonous jumble of jackhammer bass and shrieking guitars. "Go to Ten" thrashes and "I'm Buried Alive" bleats and beeps like a song from Blade Runner. "High Noon" is electro-doom, and "Running Fire Thru Yr. Mind" is a dreamy roundabout declaring, "We're standing up, and we're not leaving." The revolving door, instrument-switching approach to AF's live show is precisely what makes Somebody as Anybody such a beautiful, trench-digging manifesto; they call themselves an "organ(eye)zation," an anti-establishment cadre of sorts, an umbrella for dystopic sound and vision. A band but not a band. There is the crux: Attack Formation is everywhere and nowhere, rocking your face off while subliminally giving your mind a colonic.