There’s something awfully odd about coming across an artist who you would guess is very new and finding out they have a 23-song album sitting there, waiting to be downloaded. Internet age, bedroom recording, all the tools needed blah blah blah – it would be easy to explain away, but (and this is taking into account that I know nothing of the artist beyond the songs he’s posted and am most definitely jumping to a conclusion) there’s something just brilliant about finding a treasure trove of tracks from someone you’d expect to be announcing themselves with the customary single track Soundcloud placeholder or somesuch (in fact, the artist in question’s Soundcloud appears to have another 10 tracks not on the album).
Sean Armstrong is who I’m referring to, whose Generation Scum is available, for free, now, on the Bandcamp page of youthful, dickpunching Glasgow funpunknoise band PAWS’ new label CATH Records (and will seemingly be out as a cassette release in March). It reminds me most of those Atlas Sound Bedroom Databank releases from 2010 (and holy shit that was nearly two years ago and I am getting old) in that it flits from idea to idea, sometimes literally cutting out mid-thought, without ever choosing to settle into one mode. That’s not to say there isn’t cohesion – there’s a sense of slyly grinning melancholy that hangs over everything, making even the most out-there experimental parts sound part of a greater whole (stand up ‘Hawaiian Shirt Club’, which sounds like the nightmares of Peter Serafinowicz as he composed the music for Look Around You (which, by the way, is now 10 years old oh god I’m so very old)) and the more straightforward, somewhat folky songs feel just that little bit twisted out of shape.
It would be disingenuous of me to suggest standout tracks here, because you really should go and listen to the whole thing (and I will be choosing the tracks I accompany the post with based on Soundcloud availability and strength of waveform shape) so what I will say is that Generation Scum is not only exciting for the sheer prolific and wideranging talent it represents, but the fact that it shows an artist who’s not quite ready to commit to a style and, quite obviously, doesn’t give a shit about that fact. Go listen.
Sean Armstrong – Greasers
Sean Armstrong – Hello Shadow