Chalk Neophobia LP
For listeners with experimental tastes and open minds, there is something for everyone from this Houston solo project. Sounding like a perfect mixtape of obscured beauty, warm found sounds, music concrète, knotty indie rock, and imploding disco karaoke beats, CHALK gently strolls across genre lines in a way that makes you question genre distinctions in the first place. The album opens with gorgeous gamelan rhythms played over sound collages that sound like SUN CITY GIRLS or Aaron Dilloway at their most introspective. “What is Tot Cannot” features meditative guitar, chiptunes, and tape decay that seamlessly flows into “Sambe Death Now,” a goth exploration with sampled (I think?) operatic vocals. “Slackjaw” and “Root by Root” are twisty, swirling indie rock jams that evoke UNWOUND. Often unironically beautiful, occasionally confounding (“Pig Song” is an odd children’s rhyme sung over junk electronics), accept this as an expert mix of sounds from carefully curated influences.