SLEEPYTIME GORILLA MUSEUM "In Glorious Times" The End

Friday, June 1, 2007

SLEEPYTIME GORILLA MUSEUM"In Glorious Times"The End

ALTHOUGH THEIR SAVAGERY is merely conceptual, the death-metal outbursts that open Sleepytime Gorilla Museum's "In Glorious Times" might drive even the band's fans to the exit. Yet anyone who endures the hectoring, growling "Helpless Corpses Enactment" will discover that this San Francisco Bay area quintet has diverse interests. The band's fourth album recalls both early and late King Crimson, Mr. Bungle's insouciant chaos and, when violinist Carla Kihlstedt sings, Bjork's fairyland lullabies. Plus, of course, Frank Zappa, who's implicated in all forms of herky-jerky art-rock.

Such titles as "Ossuary" and "The Putrid Refrain" suggest that singer-guitarist Nils Frykdahl and his cohorts spend their spare time at the local cemetery. In fact, the Museum is packed with sundry exhibits, not all of them grotesque. "The Only Dance," for example, takes some of its lyrics from poet Wallace Stevens and includes passages that are actually pretty.

Just to ensure that no one gets too comfortable, however, the band's eclectic compositions are hitched to shifting time signatures. Even at its most serene, Sleepytime Gorilla Museum's music always means to be jarring.

-- Mark Jenkins

Appearing Tuesday at the Black Cat with Stinking Lizaveta.

Listen to an audio clip of Sleepytime Gorilla Museum


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