Record Reviews

Heavy Syrup

So what the fuck’s a ?denuder?? Wikipedia says it’s ?any device used to separate a gas from an aerosol,? while my phone’s word predict wants to write ?denuded?, which according to means ?to make naked or bare; strip.? In the case of Brisbane’s Greg Boring, either description feels apt, even if – no, especially because — I don’t really know how.

The mode of trying to figure out the meaning of drunk-at-karaoke-again opener ?Denuder? – through the internet, an android phone – seems appropriate. Making bizarre connections above reason because the WWW says so feels like a fair response to the stoned anti-energy of a sound that, if it were a photo, would be blurry at best. To add another unrelated metaphorical dimension to a seven-track record of aimless wanderings – some long, some brisk – Heavy Syrup dribbles out a track listing by a band where everything is indistinguishable and no one has a name. Apparently they’re actually Joel Stern, Sarah Byrne, Eon Phyre and Andrew McLellan from something Queenland-y like [Sky Needle](/releases/2001057) and [Kitchen’s Floor](/releases/2000555), but the idea of the individual is overrated, not to mention outdated. Because we did away with the silly notions of absolute truths a while back, didn’t we Virginia?

It’s hard to tell if the vocals, moaned over squeaking and electronically scrambled wind instruments, are from a boy or girl, man or woman (not that there’s much of a distinction these days) or whether it’s coming from several people or one (not that it really matters). Because before you know it, you’re not listening to ?Denuder? and it’s completely different song (?Fine Find Fined?) featuring three words that sound the same but have different meanings and nevertheless make you wonder what the relation is between the lumbering spasm of those clocks, fuzzes and pops and the swaying blowout of a beloved palindrome, ?Huh?.

The obvious answer is there is none, and it might seem rather pointless but you’re still drawn to the drowsy rhythms as poor ?Alvin? starts talking jibberish to an insistent monophonic synth line that would drive you crazy if there wasn’t a reverberant bass line for distraction. If a vegetable could have a soundtrack, it would sound something like [Heavy Syrup]( a five-year-old bashing out repetitive chords on a keyboard by virtue of locking the elbows and forgetting how to move, while a slightly older but equally clumsy sibling tries to hold it together, failing miserably.

The Citizen Kane of consciously shitty backyard punk bands, Greg Boring is a self-constructed enigma who limp-wristedly nudges at his instruments while a half-dead stoner moans about nothing in particular over a combined rhythm that spontaneously unites and finds a flow despite its best efforts not to. It makes [Connan Mockasin]( sound grown up and [Fabulous Diamonds](/releases/2001095) seem slick, in the same way that my phone tells me what I want to say and the internet is my brain. That’s where you realise no idea is your own, your interactions are an accident and Greg Boring is as mundane as it is utterly enjoyable.