Travis Von Sydow is Ancient Crux
Ryan Beal is Norse Horse
4 tracks / Split
Side A - Ancient Crux
Side B - Norse Horse
Written, arranged, and recorded by Travis and Ryan,
live contributions by Tyler Haran (Twin Lion) and Sam Woodson (No paws).
Art by ICINORI.
cover sleeve with flap - on white cardboard - 300 gsm
Side A - Ancient crux
1- Benevolent Void
2- I pushed out my hands
Side B - Norse horse
3- Meat whale
Out August 2010.
7 INCH BLOG
"Just got a couple of overseas releases all the way from France courtesy La Station Radar. I first heard of these guys after reviewing that Terror Bird co-release with Atelier Ciseaux. Looks like they've been out for a while releasing cassettes from Dirty Beaches and split LP's with Jeans Wilder...so I was looking forward to hearing how these two sides on this one would fit into that story. First of all ...the sleeve by icinori is great, it folds out into another giant illustration printed on the reverse, once you pry it out of the mylar. They took great liberties with the ancient/norse theme both bands names lend themselves to. Tiny knights and chain mail fighting in a psychedelic landscape of exploding color boxes and pieces of a solar system. The Ancient Crux side is Travis from Murrieta, CA masterminding a very Fresh & Onlys slightly surf sound on two laid back tracks. "Benevolent Void", the first one, might even nod to huge echo surf lines like Ty Segall, but it's when it all gets massive distortion at the end of this one it really gets going. I like the barely delivered vocals, just hinting at melody, buried in robotic plate reverb. Like F&O, it's a solid stress free tune, the melody being front and center, whatever direction he's going, and it's sticking.
In "Pushed out of my hands" Ancient takes a few decades steps back into almost a 50's slow picking ballad, the strained ballad vocals here even follow along in the garage sweetness "...then I pushed out my hands / the blood gushed out gradually" ???? and something is a little off. It's a sincere un-relateable sentiment in the form of this harmless crooner. I love the dirty sloppy massive reverb solo right in the middle of this one firmly placing it in 2010, and sustaining the mystery. Norse Horse, also from CA on the reverse side starts things out with "Meat Whale", a slide electric woodblock-y meandering ride with lots of layers of vocals....sounding like a real chorus of vocalists at times. It's a sea lullaby rocking back and forth on the water, hypnotizing and bizarre in it's Animal Collective drum circle complexity. "Shoodikids" then changes direction and lands on the island adding layers of tropicalia with a Hawaiian slide guitar this time. Sort of a looped sample Ducktails meets Black Dice direction...monstrously slowed down vocals, shimmery electric, cowbell, shakers.....it's definitely completely unique, it has a clear direction that isn't ever obvious and remains completely re-playable. Great split from two bands united by geography that weirdly end up on this label far far away from home. The kind of single that just makes me want to hear more of both... even after hearing a couple songs each, I'm only more interested.... I know this is only the tip of the iceberg. Hand-numbered and only 300...Get it direct from La Station Radar, email first to work out postage or check the usual distro's...I bet Fusetron or SS would be able to add this to an import order."
TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 28, 2010 , By Jason
La Station Radar pumps out two more installments of liquid gold. Back in the summer of 2009, early on, we felt the need to qualify Norse Horse's full length album Secret Geographies in the class of "that most ephemeral of accolades, the perfect summer album..." Meanwhile, Jeans Wilder seems to cameo on half the labeled profiles on this website. Not much more to say about these two new La Station Radar 7-inches- one a split between Norse Horse and Ancien Crux and the other hogged by Jeans Wilder on both sides. I am especially hypnotized by the Norse Horse track "Shooodikids" but the meloncholic wavves rolling off the tongue of Jean Wilder's "Simpler Times" are no less intoxicating. We should note that this isn't the first time we'd heard "Shooodikids"; that happened when we heard La Station Radar's massive summer compilation, which we dubbed the finest release of June 2010. It's just the first time we could fetishize the supple guitar tropics with the whirring sensation of needle gliding on vinyl at 45 rotations per minute, and that, apparently, makes all the difference. Go here to order the full effect.
September, 27, 2010 By Jeremy Krinsley
This number from California’s Norse Horse seems way too sun-baked and lackadaisical for a title like “Meat Whale”, but who knows? Every time I think I have it figured out, Ryan Beal throws in a new monkey-wrench. What begins with a dubby bongo loop blossoms into a swirling pop fantasia when the guitar and vocals and bass kick in. Whether there’s one person singing here or a raft full of crooners is your guess as well as mine; either way, with all the twists and turns and subtle harmonic changes we hear on this one, the “lost at sea” metaphor feels pretty apt. The blistering guitar swell at the three minute mark surprises us like a port city rising up in the distance. Or is it the sudden recognition that we kind of enjoy this sensation of endless floating?
September 2010, By Emilie Friedlander
Another excellent 7" from La Station Radar, this new release pairs Californian acts Ancient Crux and Norse Horse for some fine homemade pop fun. While Ancient Crux traverse Pixies-esque alt. rock terrain on 'Benevolent Void' (one of their two contributions to this release) Norse Horse prove to be a far stranger prospect, slinking their way through the clippety-clop Western melancholy of 'Meat Whale' and then delving into the tropical exotica of 'Shooodikids', which sounds like Ducktails' Matthew Mondanile going on his summer holidays.
La Station Radar records have uploaded the split release from Ancient Crux and Norse Horse, and it sounds pretty damn good.
The label have put together killer pairings such as Ela Orleans/Dirty Beaches....
22 June 2011 by The 405