Review Summary: A lesson in externalization.
It seems to be an endemic part of human nature that people always find themselves unable to let go of certain things. We constantly dwell on past events and conversations, essentially exacerbating such issues and failing to arrive at any sort of closure in our minds. The late, great Kurt Vonnegut had a pretty strong opinion on this notion, which he expressed in his 1985 novel, Galapagos
. In this fantastic but often overlooked fictional piece, Vonnegut calls into question the apparent worth of the evolutionized human brain, constructing a rather realistic tale in which people's incessantly functioning/thinking minds cause all sorts of undue issues and eventually lead to nuclear world war and humankind's demise.
Pregnant With The Senior Class
seems to be a fairly obvious result of such excessive brooding. I'd imagine that Sonny Kay, frontman of the now-defunct Angel Hair, must have internalized for many many years to generate all the angst and irritation found on the record. Some individuals choose to drink and/or smoke away their frustrations - others take to beating their spouse or taking a shotgun into work - fortunately for us, however, dear Sonny spent his well-ripened anger in a more prolific way, channeling a generation of disappointment and disgust into forty-something minutes of beautiful verbal carnage.
Angel hair rely not so much on lyrical shock value, as a band such as hardcore troupe Dangers
might do, but rather focus their energy into a sloppy amalgam of spasmodic desperation and poetic poignancy. Kay's peripatetic songwriting remains shifty and unbounded throughout the record, allowing the listener to make out only certain patches of his verbalized discontent. It's as cathartic as it is catastrophic, and only further amplified by a background soundtrack that could cause a deaf man to wince. Massively dissonant guitar lines build and lurch and creak and crumble atop a wounded but relentless drum set. Angel Hair's musicianship is murderously gleeful - it not only shrieks and whines of a tortured past but also celebrates an under-appreciated woefulness about which only the world's most pitied creatures can know. "Our parts are for fucking as much as their parts are for piss!
" While admitting its inevitable imprisonment to human nature, PWTSC
so much as defecates on its own moral imperfections. The album is a thoroughly livid construction - a diatribe besieging the unmistakably boorish and shallow ways of humanity.
After eighteen searing tracks, only a few of which exceed three minutes in length, Angel Hair have made their point, and perhaps have made it too well. For as the shit-storm begins to settle, it seems as if the album's harm-inflicting ways have even taken a toll on itself. Beautifully destructive, Pregnant With The Senior Class
renders the band as run-down as Vonnegut's human race, victim to its own disastrous power. It is, indeed, a form of externalization at its finest, both as anguished as intricate as Sonny Kay himself, and perhaps a direct cause of the band's demise only a year later. "Forget romance and twelve packs and birth control pills, you've got guts to be sick to.
" So if your stomach is feeling woozy, go ahead and purge its contents into someone's toilet… but if it's your thoughts that have got you feeling ill, give this record a spin. You might find a reason or two or fifty to work out some of those issues.