Butthole Surfers
Rembrandt Pussyhorse


4.0
excellent

Review

by Sean H. CONTRIBUTOR (115 Reviews)
December 15th, 2018 | 10 replies


Release Date: 1986 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Chapter 3: “You Are Lucky If You Escape With a Scream”

As we have seen thus far, the Surfers’ early releases were marred with production limbo due to the circumstances that surrounded them, but none were arguably as affected as one Rembrandt Pussyhorse. Recorded not too shortly after the release of Psychic… Powerless…, the record was planned to be released on the very label that has been dicking the group around for quite a long time, Alternative Tentacles. As you can very well guess, AT yet again strung the band along before ultimately telling them to get lost. But now, with noise rock label Touch and Go, Pussyhorse, originally titled Rembrandt Pussy Horse, was finally released with a new song selection and a new recording mix.

As opposed to the jump in styles from the self titled to Psychic… Powerless…, the past LP and this one was eased by a stylistically bridging EP, but I would still say that this record defied expectations yet again for the group. Pussyhorse is quite the anomaly for the group as a whole, due to the much less intense and more experimental-psych approach. Gone are the abrasive, pounding noise punk anthems of yesterday, now the songs prioritize a dazed, nightmarish vibe. “Sea Ferring,” “Whirling Hall Of Knives,” and “American Women” (a loose adaptation of The Guess Who original), are all fine examples of the new direction. Pounding percussion and distorted, spiraling leads are in the front of the mix, accompanying the often slurred or distorted vocals. The more subdued bass is still very vital to the band’s structure, as that’s where much of the reverberating low end resides. Rembrandt also features piano work, which takes center-stage in the endlessly catchy “Creep In The Cellar” and the off-puttingly foreboding ”Strangers Die Everyday.”

I guess the best way to describe the songwriting here would be “aimless,” in a sense. While I’d usually save that descriptor as a negative point, a track like the previously mentioned “Sea Ferring” flows like a impromptu tale from a drunken sailor, with the emphasis and passion of someone who's lost everything but the beer in their stomach and the tale they are yarning before you - whether you asked for it or not. In a similar manner, “Mark Says Alright” and “Perry” tend to stumble to and fro, with loose band cooperation (it's there, just more fluid than before) and a borderline improvisational composition.

It’s a stand-out record in the group’s discography as it is much closer to a surrealist psych record than anything “abrasive” or “noisey.” It’s approach to exploration manifests itself in separate sonic manipulations like “Waiting For Jimmy To Kick” and “In The Cellar” (a sort of book end that messes with the “Creep In The Cellar” tape) as opposed to the record as a whole. In a weird way, Rembrandt Pussyhorse is the black sheep of their 80’s discog do to how much less off-putting it is. All things considered, this one flirts much more with droning melodies than anything else in this time period. It’s maybe not as cathartic as the records before, but it's definitely a trip in its own way.



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user ratings (125)
Chart.
3.8
excellent
other reviews of this album
Zmev (4)
Second release from unclassifiable band adds element of creepiness and fun effects to already cracke...


Comments:Add a Comment 
Bloon
Contributing Reviewer
December 15th 2018


2745 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Thanks to granitenotebook for looking at this with new eyes and helping me out.

Stream: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QUeTy3qUvmE

Chapter 3...

Previous Review: https://www.sputnikmusic.com/review/78553/Butthole-Surfers-Cream-Corn-From-the-Socket-of-Davis

Next Review: https://www.sputnikmusic.com/review/78712/Butthole-Surfers-Locust-Abortion-Technician

Digging: Fetid - Steeping Corporeal Mess

Bloon
Contributing Reviewer
December 15th 2018


2745 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

im sorry to hear that



parksungjoon
December 15th 2018


9571 Comments


legend has it that this very album inspired that one guy to create that anatomically correct horse pussies mod for skyrim

Bloon
Contributing Reviewer
December 15th 2018


2745 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Bless up

parksungjoon
December 15th 2018


9571 Comments


gamers rise up

ArsMoriendi
December 16th 2018


26507 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Correction: American Woman is by The Guess Who, not The Who



Otherwise, nice review



Also Perry's one of my faves because the lyrics are just so off the wall

Digging: Funkadelic - America Eats Its Young

Bloon
Contributing Reviewer
December 16th 2018


2745 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

thanks, im a doofy idiot and let that slip past me

Dissonant
December 16th 2018


358 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Always nice to see some love for the buttholes. Great review 👍

Bloon
Contributing Reviewer
December 16th 2018


2745 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Thanks man

ArsMoriendi
May 4th 2019


26507 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

American Woman is 10x better than the original and 50x better than the Lenny Kravtiz versions



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