Pittsburgh’s experimental Ongoing Box label recently released The Watershed, a new album by Doctor Matt (the sophisti-pop pseudonym of Matt Aelmore from Watererer, How Things Are Made, and many other ventures).
The album comes with the following description: “The Watershed is Love and redemption in the inevitability of climate change. AI drum programming makes sophistipop out of cyber sex? Horns.” The Watershed‘s music is just as off-kilter as its tagline, featuring hothouse instrumental textures and goofily apocalyptic lyrics delivered in a quivering falsetto. The title track slithers its way around a drum part that sounds like a gated snare, a triangle, and a manhole cover got tossed in a slowly tumbling washing machine, as softcore slap bass gurgles and sweaty guitars noodle overtop. Aelmore sing-whispers surreal come-ons (at least they sound like come-ons), including, “I am permitted to use this device in 40 states to clean the pipes,” and, “I still got a sense of smell/A window box that’s full of snails/There’s no roses where we’re going.” It’s like that scene in the The Big Lebowski where Karl Hungus comes to fix the cable, except he ends up replacing it with eco-friendly insulated wires and lets a bunch of small critters loose in the process.