Bonnie Jones — Vines (2006, EMR)
If video arcades could talk, this is what they’d yell after being thrown into a body of water with a cinder block tied to their feet. Baltimore’s Bonnie Jones has a real winner with 2006’s Vines. The three song release is erratic and noisy, but also an exercise in restraint, making it a more intriguing listen than releases which consists of unrelenting attacks on the sonic spectrum. The opener, “Body 1” comes in wide and harsh, before the 8-bit birds sing over top of your second-hand Atari 2600 eating shit while lightning blitzes the TV it’s plugged into. Hold on to your hat. Tape hiss and digital delay whispers lead the listener into the 10 minute post-everything dance tune, “Body 2.” Jones brilliantly manages to score the curious relief one feels post-emesis using only microphones and delay pedals. One feels a fleeting sense of ease which quickly sours and next thing you know, you’re unsettled and feeling green again. Only Vines doesn’t return you to the languors of the grippe, it squeaks and screams in your ear in a way that is unsettling, but too good to turn away from. “Body 3” is perhaps the most interesting track with its endless soft vibrations underneath shrill (but not painful) swirls of feedback. The repetitiveness is captivating and takes the listener on a journey outside of town on an cold but clear day. You have been driving a while, the road’s reeled you in — traffic light. The stop shakes you from the daydream. The track and so too the album ends in an abrupt, but in no way anti-climactic fashion. All in all, a great release from the mighty Bonnie Jones, I just wish it was longer.