Onetwothree Onetwothree LP

Although they didn’t actually start a band together until 2018, Madlaina Peer, Sara Schär, and Klaudia Schifferle of ONETWOTHREE initially crossed paths as participants in Switzerland’s late ’70s/early ’80s punk scene—Klaudia played bass in KLEENEX/LILIPUT, Sara fronted TNT as a teenager and later joined the KICK on bass and vocals, and Madlaina was a member of NOKNOWS (with whom I’m completely unfamiliar; they seem to have never recorded). Onetwothree is a celebration of rhythm and the negative spaces created within it, primarily structured around the interplay of minimalist, elliptical bass grooves (from all three women!) and sung/chanted lyrics parsed into almost haiku-like phrases, with modest support from a drum machine that never really breaks out of the most basic “demo” setting and sparing strikes of guitar and keys that weave in only as necessary. Sleazy mutant disco synth pushes against the ESG-like hypnotic bass throb of “Give Paw” and lands right at the feet of early solo LIZZY MERCIER DESCLOUX, while the even more austere bass/vocals brutalism of tracks like “Adventure” or “Buy Buy Buy” (with its “buy this and this and this and that” incantation) is basically a dead ringer for SNEAKS. ONETWOTHREE could have easily just rebooted the classic Swiss wave of TNT or KLEENEX and offered up, like, “Hedi’s Head Pt. II,” and the femme/art-punk heads of today would have lost their collective minds over it, so the fact that they chose to honor the joyfully anarchic and liberatory spirit of their musical pasts in such a radically deconstructed context—even if it doesn’t quite reach the same giddy highs—is really the punkest move they could have made. (Madlaina Peer passed away at the very end of 2021, shortly after the release of this LP; rest in power.)