Nonsense Goes Mudslide
"Nonesense Goes Mudslide, the first solo outing from Holopaw drummer Michael Johnson, is heavy with a kind of accidental grace that simply can't be manually inspired. Packed with peculiar, homemade twists and charmingly bewildered lyrics, the album is a wildly spontaneous and nicely composed platter of sound. Holopaw's self-titled debut was so soft and organic it almost felt edible; the band's yawning pedal steel, swampy electronics, and brisk acoustic strums established a crooked kind of Americana, something imminently more complex than the fetishized, backwards-country yelping of their contemporaries. Nonsense Goes Mudslide opts for a slightly less nostalgic turn, though, pairing Johnson's pert, friendly vocals with quirky electronics and fragile percussion, eschewing earnest acoustic laments in favor of perverse ideological lessons. Still, despite the obvious departures, there's a looseness to the record that mimics, however inadvertently, Holopaw's cowed, scrappy elegance: Each of Johnson's disparate components are laced tightly together, yet Nonsense still continually threatens to collapse on itself, as if any moment could bring the inevitable release of cymbals suddenly popping off their stands and rolling around the room, microphones spontaneously dissembling, and synthesizers shooting open, angular bits of black and white plastic rocketing in every direction." -- Amanda Petrusich.