Sunday, 9 November 2014

Review // Ariel Pink- 'Pom Pom'

When he isn't being super-creepy, Ariel Pink also makes music! Catch me giving his non-Haunted Graffitti release 'Pom Pom' the lowest-score across the board in October's Crack, over here!
Review // Ariel Pink- 'Pom Pom'
Concerted oddball to the last, Ariel Pink’s first solo-titled venture, the double-stacked Pom Pom, sees his well-worn formula finally run out of steam. 17 tracks, 69 minutes, but scant substance it feels like the work of a man out of time. Multiple voices emanate from Pink’s role as the album’s central protagonist, slipping between characters, actively seeking to retain his creative enigma. Kim Fowley is invited along to add a playful touch on 'Plastic Raincoats In The Pig Parade', its zany "oh yeah!"s painting a Moldy Peaches shade to their storytelling, rather than the psychprankster reference points they musically reach to. 'Jell-o' jingles as if an advertorial for the sugary US staple: “Everyone eats white bread/ That’s why they’re all dead” Ariel regurgitates, uber-speed babbles jumping in between verses. 'White Freckles' fires out with riffs so fast and shrewd they sound straight off the credit sequence of Miami Vice. “She got them at the tanning salon” he spectates into a slow-tuned, strut-worthy groove, while on 'Lipstick' he flatly breathes out to ask “Where are the girls?”.
'Not Enough Violence' also trickles into the outlandish and squirmingly uncomfortable, his vocal almost inaudible, apart from the avowal of “Penetration time tonight.” -you hope it’s all in jest, but then you awkwardly realise it’s not. The unbearably wacky 'Dinosaur Carebear' revels in its dippy carnivalesque skittery, while lead track 'Put Your Number In My Phone' opts for the flipside, soft-rock division of Pom Pom, standing out as a minor joy amongst the befuddled, juvenile, borderline-patronising rest. Flashback-worthy 'One Summer Night' and 'Exile On Frog Street' musically resound as if worthy of cult indie-pop classics, but come bathed amongst the creepy – allthemore pointed in the context of Mr. Pink’s own creep-like tendencies – and lukewarm. But Pom Pom’s fun and romance is drained by a conceited stretch of triviality and a growing realisation that, even if you are in on the joke, it’s just not that funny anymore.

Words by Yours Truly X