Mas Fiestas Con el Grupo Vision Fortune


Pressed on 180-gram vinyl; includes download code. Limited to 300 copies. Brothers Alexander and Austin Peru first met Andres Cuatroquesos in a small boys' boarding school in Menen, Belgium. Although their battering strobe light that features in their crushing live show isn't literally in your front room as you listen to the record, it's certainly there in spirit as the band expertly guide you through eight tracks of hulking riffs, drawn-out drones, ethereal vocals, and cyclical drum patterns. Like great experimentalists such as This Heat, Swans, and Liars before them, Vision Fortune are constantly moving forward. Mas Fiestas con el Grupo Vision Fortune is an album borne out of desperate economic uncertainty, loosely based on John Kay's infamous "Parable of the Ox" -- itself a thinly veiled allegory for unbridled capitalism. The album represents the tragic life and death of the aforementioned ox, whose weight is solely determined by the aggregated "wisdom of the crowd." The music contained within embodies both the self-interested nature of hysterical spectators, and the agonizing sense of culpability following the animal's eventual demise. "XXII" perfectly encapsulates the emotional strain found in Kay's observation -- the constant push and pull of electronic interference and rhythmic tension in direct juxtaposition with the misplaced market opportunism of "XX." Similar frictions are found in the creaking repetition of "XVII" -- two mismatched guitars compete for attention over its seven-and-a-half minutes, like a couple of bitter attendees quarrelling at a country fair. Meanwhile, the glacial, consumerist meditation of "XVI" is the first of several pieces seeking to replicate the sullen ambience of small-town apathy and greed. "XIV," perhaps one of the most immediate of tracks on the album, brings to mind the inevitable pitfalls of animal husbandry -- the creature itself growing gaunt and sick before the owner's eyes, slowly morphing into an altogether different beast. The album concludes with the elegiac paean to solitude, "XIII" -- an empty market, scraps of uneaten vegetables blowing through a muddy town center, its main attraction nowhere to be found.