[sic] Magazine

Thee Oh Sees – An Odd Entrances

Released way back this past August, A Weird Exits was the inimitable John Dwyer’s fifteenth studio album since 2003. Evidently thinking that LP unfinished business, however, An Odd Entrances – a cosmic and playful patchwork – was recorded in the same sessions as that record and now comes hot on its heels with many a track title distorted from its sister. With a trademark side-A full of pogo-ing garage-psych and a more reflective, synth-driven flip, A Weird Exits managed to split Dwyer’s disparate fondness for grooves neatly down the middle. And, despite the continued presence of dual drummers Ryan Moutinho and Dan Rincon, An Odd Entrances picks up largely where that side-B left off, burrowing into the weirdest and most beautiful parts of Dwyer’s mind simultaneously, an often uncomfortable physical manifestation of the artwork’s literal ear-worm.

Electronic instrumental “Jammed Exit”, for example, is the obvious companion of “Jammed Intro”, squelchy industrionics battling it out, on this occasion, with meandering flute solos and stupefied synths. The rest of the running order is just as confusing. At its midpoint, brief and freaky 60s-style jangles are allowed to bleed into more lengthy instrumental oscillations. Sure, like here, Dwyer might make you work for it from time to time, but you do at least get paid off in spades with moments like “The Poem”, a relaxing psych pastoral that soothes via melancholy mellotron, finger-picked guitar and orchestral cello. It’s as far from Thee Oh Sees of your mind as “The Axis”, a teary rock ‘n’ roll love song, was when closing out A Weird Exits.

Bringing down the curtain this time are all eight minutes of the kinda-neat kraut jammer “Nervous Tech (Nah John)”, an overlong improv with lashings of wah, repetitive bassline drone and heavily distorted guitar parts. From this mind-blowing cut alone, it’s clear that nobody’s telling Dwyer no at the moment and, for a man like him, that’s exactly the way it should be. While he works all of his indulgences out of his system though, you will have to take the rough with the smooth.

Best track: “The Poem”

~An Odd Entrances is released 25th November 2016 via Castle Face. Early copies of the coloured vinyl come with a free flexi featuring a bonus track too. The band also plans on donating half of their profits from the first pressing to Elizabeth House, a charity in Pasadena that specifically helps homeless women with children.~