Jad & Nao
Half Monster (Misc. Music)
Reviewed by Audra Schroeder, Fri., April 11, 2008
Jad & NaoHalf Monster (Misc. Music)
Recorded 10 years ago, Half Monster yields a whopping 45 songs, and coming from Manor's Jad Fair, they couldn't be anything except the disc's title. Joined by Japanese noise artist Naofumi Ishimaru, the Half Japanese co-founder has assembled a jigsaw puzzle of sounds, with the typical fodder: "Frankenchrist," "Godzilla Invades Mars," "Snake Had Legs." A cover of "Roll Over Beethoven" is rendered barely recognizable in Ishimaru's hands, though strangely charming. Appearances from Half Japanese collaborators Mark Jickling and Gilles Rieder give Half Monster its pop edge, Fair staying true to his themes of love and food as well. Also true to the title, the ear-ringing influence of Ishimaru adds a rougher finish, many tracks veering between drone and stream of consciousness under a bubble of twitch and crawl. As individual cuts, there isn't one that stands out; rather, Half Monster is a whole listening experience, cultural exchange between left and right brain.