Release Date: Mar 12, 2012
Record label: Sub Pop
Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock, Alternative Pop/Rock, Punk Blues
Thanks be to Sub Pop. The label has assembled a box set of four 1980s albums recorded for Australia's Aberrant label by the Sydney, Australia trio feedtime in their definitive lineup: Rick (guitar, almost always played with a slide), Al (bass), and Tom (drums) -- no last names. Using the word "original" would be inaccurate; there were two unrecorded incarnations before this.
Australia's feedtime seemed as averse to fame as they were to capital letters. The band's original lineup decided to hang it up in 1989 rather than embark on an overseas tour, leaving behind four internationally acclaimed full-lengths after their roughly decade-long existence. Deserving of more than just a post-punk-era footnote, feedtime's loud, lurching, and abrasive music sounds well ahead of its time, meeting at a spiritual midpoint between The Stooges and Big Black.
If you want to sum feedtime up in a catchphrase, check out a track toward the end of their 1988 all-covers LP Cooper-S. After steamrolling their stamp onto tunes by the Beach Boys, Slade, and the Rolling Stones, the Australian trio attacks the Ramones' "Loudmouth"-- and it actually sounds like the Ramones! Well, if the Ramones were woozy from too much sludgy guitar and sledgehammer bass. Feedtime stretch the original melody with muscular low-end, chugging along like a freight truck fighting gravity.
Push your head inside an amplifier. Imagine Wire’s lyrical minimalism and compression of song structure, crossed with an Australian underground’s mutation of blues into punk. These four CDs collect the four Feedtime records on Aberrant Records, plus the expected odds and ends. In the latter half of the 1980s, I purchased their self-titled debut, Shovel, and Suction.
As proved locally at Beerland in April, feedtime remains a minimalist post-punk trio obsessed with two-cylinder motors and gasoline. Three men from Sydney, Australia, going by first names only, polarized initial audiences with a repetitious beat-down of crude drumming and scraping distortion. Their efforts were single-minded: one riff, one chord, one sentiment – sludged in motor oil and growled over.