Ezekiel Honig vs. Nicholas Sauser: The Road to Victory

Nicholas Sauser/Ben Parris: Macrofun Vol. 5

New material by Nicholas Sauser (one-half of Socks and Sandals), Ben Parris, and label head Ezekiel Honig continues the Microcosm story and enhances its distinctive catalogue.

The Road to Victory sports four tracks with Sauser and Honig contributing originals plus remixes of each other's tunes. Sauser treats “Goca Chino” like a playground for vocal acrobatics with some of the distorted samplings decipherable (“what you wanna do?”) and others better broached as pure sound. Throughout the song, voices and noises merrily bob and weave over an insistent bleepy and slashing groove. In his 'Farmer You' mix, Honig slows the tempo to a dusky crawl and warms the cut by a crackling fire, the mix serenaded by muffled piano drones creeping in from some other room. On the B side, Honig brings his trademark shuffle to “Going Sailing” but, instead of breezily gliding over the water's surface, the tune slowly descends to cavernous murk leagues below where foggy tones surface amidst clicking organisms and muffled emissions. Rounding out the EP, Sauser reanimates the tune in a 'Tahitian Rainslide' mix, imbuing it with a country swing that twangs, twitches, and writhes. The Road to Victory's material is as unusual as its cover illustration of a taxi-riding walrus is amusing.

The fifth installment in Microcosm's ongoing Macrofun series is predictably strong with foundsounders Sauser and Parris trading 10-inch jibes. Up first is the wild “Slaughterhouse Joe” where all manner of squished and squashed distortion peppers its heavy bass bump. Using his voice as a primary sound source, Sauser smothers the pulse with a squelchy hailstorm of heavily processed squabble and screech. In Parris's less boisterous but still compelling “Vampire X Ray Eyeballs,” wiry bass tones and slapping snares bring the funk while a bubbly mix of bursts, clatter, scrapes, and groans slams and collides. Over too quickly, the distinctive and danceable disc makes for another solid addition to the series.

May 2006