Reviews for Triclops! "CAFETERIA BRUTALIA" e.p.
Buzz, March 29th, 2007 by Kim Owens
Finally, a rock band that reminds me of why I loose so much sleep listening, reading about, researching, and seeing music while also loathing the contrived, formulated pre-teen pop that seems to be everywhere we turn these days. Maybelline eye shadow and Gap fashion spreads does not a rock ‘n’ roll band make. And sometimes I don’t want to listen to music that appeals to both an 11 year-old and an 80 year-old in one sitting.
Triclops!, on the other hand, burns under the skin, bringing back those days of when you’re fifteen again—pissed off about who the hell knows what, but full of energy and overwhelming defiance.
I got to experience those feelings again when I checked out the “four mean old fuckers” at Emo’s Jr. at SXSW who were birthed from other S.F. Bay Area bands, including Bottles and Skulls, Victim’s Family, Fleshies and Lower Forty-Eight.
Put it this way, it was the closest I had gotten to getting a fat lip since I can’t remember when. Johnny (lead singer) is, simply put, a mad man when he puts a mic in his hand. And his frenetic presence is infective, causing his audience to react in the same way, as I experienced when trying to shoot the show and not dodging a flying foot fast enough.
Triclops! has been on tour in support of their recent EP, Cafeteria Brutalia, released on Sick Room Records and home to AM Syndicate, Hella, and Che Arthur.
The meaning behind the “Mi Plisboy” must be an insider joke or over my head, but it doesn’t matter, could cause a riot in a funeral home. And it would be one hell of a fun funeral.
The way the band switches gears on “Jewels of Oakland,” from nuclear blast to long walks on the beach, and back again is what keeps your ears glued to the speakers.
The exasperating sound of exhaustion flows from Johnny as he falls into a psychedelic poetic rant midway through “Bug Bomb,” slithering from the depths of a smoky, beer stained pub, replete with layers of concert posters from years gone by.
“And now mosquitoes are florescent blue and riddled with diseases that they don’t have names for yet/Keep on taking those antibiotics…Things decompose faster here…I heard/Put nature to the test with a bug bomb/It’s not good enough/Nature wants to kill you.”
It’s over 10 minutes of all out fury, as if Jim Morrison got pissed off about the state of the music today and took over the body of young Johnny to perform his exorcism.
Triclops! joins a number of bands getting a buzz for their brand of roots based punk. Keep an eye out on their touring schedule. You will not be sorry. Just make sure to avoid the flying shoe in your face.
January, 2007 by Josh Hogan
Where to begin, and what can be said about the album, Cafeteria Brutalia?
Let me start with the basics: The band is called Triclops!. They are a San Francisco 4-piece, and they were formed in late 2004 from the ashes of such Bay area bands as Bottles and Skulls, Victim's Family, Fleshies and Lower Forty-Eight.
That was the easy part! The difficult part now lies within explaining their music... All I know is for the last 25 minutes my aural senses were violated, defiled and debauched to extremes seldom spoke about but always enjoyed; kind of like the feeling of waking up after a week long binge on LSD and Mexican beer with no specific memories of what happened but knowing that you had one hell of a time.
Triclops! is a band which is not easy to dissect, and they are the first to admit they try to make music as uncomfortable as possible for themselves and others. Sounds come at you like darts from every direction at every conceivable speed and time. The guitar playing of Christian Beaulieu is a collage of sonic extremes, playing everything from surf rock to atmospheric dissonance in complete union with the drumming of Phil Becker. This duo is rounded out with the addition of Larry Boothroyd whose bass lines vary from self-sustaining open notes to spastic, driving rhythms. The last piece of this incredibly unique puzzle is John Geek whose vocal work deserves special mention. Drawing from influences that range from the likes of Jello Biafra (Dead Kennedys) to Mike Patton (Faith No More), he competitively holds up his end of the 'unique/crazy' contract that would likely be required to play in this band.
Of the four songs I'd have to say the opener "Mi Plisboy" is my favorite track, beginning with rock and roll thunder ala surf rock style and plunging into the depths of space rock for the latter half of the song. The second song "Jewel of Oakland" is a juxtaposition of aggression and circus insanity. The EP's heavy hitter comes on track three, as "Bug Bomb" is a ten minute song which visits every conceivable realm of the entity known as Triclops! At over ten minutes long the song meanders here and there but eventually ends even stronger than it started. "Salton" is the album's shortest song and being a bit more streamlined then the other tracks it serves it purpose as the closer to Cafeteria Brutalia
Ultimately the music heard on this disk is aural equivalent of trying to dissect the meaning of life on a head full of narcotics. Yet, at the end of the 25 minutes all I could say was, "Please sir, may I have another?" And I did, over and over and over again. In fact, four straight listens and after all of this I still want another fix. Triclops! is a band worth watching...and most certainly deserves your attention.
January, 2007 by
Four songs of punishment that may make your earlobes swell. Features ex-members of Fleshies and Bottles and Skulls. This is just a sample but “Jewel Of Oakland” left me wanting more. Short but sweet, as some jerk-off used to say. I can’t believe I like a release from Sickroom. Is an asteroid plummeting towards Earth that I don’t know about? –Sean Koepenick (Sickroom)
January, 2007 by Ryan Cooper
Jane's Addiction headlined the first Lollapalooza and Jesus Lizard was on the mainstage five years later, but to my knowledge, the two never actually toured together, and the thought of the two bands jamming together would, to most, be a completely foreign concept.
But that's what Triclops! sounds like.
Triclops! manages to pack a lot into the space of a four-song ep (although the songs are quite long, and the ep runs about 30 minutes). They're not afraid to throw all kinds of time and sound transitions at you, and they're not concerned with how you'll take it.
So you end up with tracks like the 10-minute "Bug Bomb", a song that forces frantic sloppy angry punk down your until you're gasping for air, and then supplies relief with big, majestic guitar-lines a la a Jane's Addiction tracks like "Mountain Song." Johnny Geek's vocals even sound like an unholy amalgam of Perry Ferrell and David Yow.
The ep's prolific time changes never sound contrived in that horrific math rock way, where a band changes speed because that's what they feel they are supposed to do. The songs change up their speed because that's really what needs to happen. These are not just punk rock songs, these are genuine compositions from genuine musicians.
February, 2007 (8.4/10)
by Jerry Kranitz
"Mi Plisboy" starts off as a hard rocking thrash number with math rock sophistication and a wee bit of acid rock. But about halfway through it takes on a metal edge, before coming into a hard-psych meets indie rock landing. Lots of interesting twists and turns in this six minute tune and Triclops! manage to make it work seamlessly. "Jewel of Oakland" is a relentless thrash tune, chugging along like a freight train, throwing punk, prog, psychedelia and metal into a blender and spitting out the brain crushing results. The epic track on the EP is the nearly 11 minute "Bug Bomb". The guitars and thrash elements on this track remind me a lot of Finnish rockers Circle's earliest albums. Totally in-yer-face and the assault is ruthless. Yet there's a prog like sensibility to the composition and thematic shifts. "Bug Bomb" rocks and thrashes, but there's also some dark and gloomy acid-psych-metal segments that, for these guys anyway, are relatively atmospheric, but also some killer demonic hard-psych bits that turn on a dime into frenzied thrash… and then back again. The EP ends with "Salton", another cool thrash rocker.
Wow, these guys are ALL over the place. My head was spinning. And it really works well. It's tough to pigeonhole Triclop!, and that's what makes them so exciting. Damn good musicians, TIGHT band, total destruction of any sense of genre and musical style, and ass kicking edge-of-your-seat thematic transitions throughout their songs. Recommended.
by Jerry Kranitz
February, 2007 by The GRB
I was excited to find out that Triclops features Johnny from the Fleshies on vocals. In late 2003, the Fleshies made their only Virginia Beach appearance opening for the Candy Snatchers. While some locals might hold the Candy Snatchers on some bar-punk pedestal, the Fleshies stole the show that night with their crazed circus-like killing spree brand of punk rock. Johnny climbed on pool tables, dining tables, headbutted lightbulbs, kicked glasses over, and pissed off the staff. Too bad the room was nearly empty. The Fleshies deserve their own article of accolades, but it seems they’ve been inactive as of late and Johnny is now making a home for himself in the San Francisco-based Triclops.
As soon as you press play, you are immediately hit with riffs that come at you like knives, baseball bats, and flamethrowers. Now imagine yourself on a beat up beach cruiser bicycle riding through a land where no one gives a fuck anymore. This might be the soundtrack for futile attemps to avoid any potential damage. It’s that crazy. The production seems to have done some wonders, because I couldn’t imagine this band sounding thin elsewhere. The sound is full and it really highlights the talent that’s within this band. Vocally, I am reminded of Sam McPheeters(Born Against) and David Yow(Jesus Lizard). Hell, there’s even some later period Born Against styled vibes coming out of this E.P. and they even move at a hectic Nation of Ulysses pace. While there are some moments of angular, semi-mathy garage rock going on here that fans of Drive Like Jehu could appreciate, there are times when the band will take a slow lurching break during the songs. Oddly enough, I get reminded of Jane’s Addiction, in the same way that they would be able to slow down, get a little elegant, while still managing to be heavy and brooding. For example, refer to 3:10 into “Mi Plisboy,” and it’s like taking a slow-motion incense fueled drive off of a cliff.
These guys do not waste any second of going beyond the typical three minute-song formats. “Bug Bomb” is a ten-minute plus song and it manages to stay innovative throughout the whole composition. Also, don’t get me started on the Black Sabbath meets a freak-out noisy-jazzy-punky-psychedelic free form jam band vibe that I get on “Jewel of Oakland.” It’s a track that truly rocks.
I feel that this might be a punkier alternative for kids who find the hipster-oriented mathy/progressive/garage rock genre to be a bit elitist and devoid of any fun. The music certainly does not conjure up images of coke-snortin’ shaggy haired swaying zombies, that’s for sure.
or Less ,
by Jason M.
Whatever weird Twilight Zone-type place these guys are stuck in, we all should want in. Now. Hitting you with the force of an angry cop's tazer, this four-song EP of wild noise rock is a real treat. Vocalist Johnny screams, coos, woo-hoos and generally freaks out on the chaotic-then-sweet "Mi Plisboy," the 10 minute "Bug Bomb," and "Jewel of Oakland," which is littered with vocal effects. Compared to the other three tracks, "Salton" is fairly normal, but no less inventive or tasty. In the end, ears will be ringing. Oh, and that exclamation point? Totally necessary.