Self Improvement Visible Damage cassette

The whereabouts of Su Tissue following the demise of SUBURBAN LAWNS have been a source of continued speculation, but after listening to this debut from Long Beach’s SELF IMPROVEMENT, one could convincingly run with the theory that Su decamped to the UK for a spell before finding her way back to the LAWNS’ hometown, where she started the band up again under a new name and with a new accent—English expat vocalist Jett Witchalls largely sticks to a Tissue-adjacent (but considerably less art school quirky) deadpan speak/sing, only allowing her austere facade to slip into more animated squirms and squeals when the band’s wound-up wiggly world rhythms hit fever pitch. ”Ashes” circles in an ominous, bass-centered loop with near-whispered voice-over narration for a steady two minutes, before abruptly shifting into a frantic finish line dash of shrieks and “I can’t believe it’s not Northwest Indiana” robo new wave writhing, and the nervous tick of the title track sounds like ’80s weirdo staple “Janitor” if it had been written by Hardcore-era DEVO, with Jett’s blank emotion chants spiking into the briefest of melting-down shouts without ever losing control. I think Su would approve (wherever she is).