Three Imaginary Girls

Seattle's Indie-Pop Press – Music Reviews, Film Reviews, and Big Fun

The world needs bands that push the boundaries of art and experience, of technique and progress, of melody and noise, of all the building blocks of the musical matrix. The world needs bands like Ruins to drive things forward and inspire diversion from the comfortable norm.

Ruins have been traveling on this terrain with like minds like the Boredoms since 1985. They've carved their own ground in the free jazz/noise collective that thrives in Japan, combining the absurdities of Frank Zappa, the progressive 70's rock signatures of bands like Rush and Yes, and a healthy nod to the eccentricities of Can and Magma. They fuse elements of all these artists into a fresh, inspiring format that covers an area so wide it's unbelievable that it's coming from a drum and bass duo.

Although they are flawless at what they do, they suffer from the simple by-product of their art form: because of the complex nature of their work, they tend to alienate themselves from the broader spectrum of musical listeners.

Art in many cases appeals to a very specific type of individual, and music at its most extreme cases is no different from any other art form in this respect. This particular release, Vrressto, was originally released over seven years ago (Skin Graft had the insight to put out a remix of this colossal technical monument) and its effect has begun to trickle into the more common musical cornerstones presented by bands like Fantomas and U.S. Maple.

Listening to this album is a heavily intellectual experience, requiring patience and focus. It's a definite advance in technique from their earlier releases and its treasures are difficult to unlock. However, like with anything that takes time to achieve, recognizing the achievement and appreciating the results make the experience only that much sweeter.