1992 Melody Maker Review Wiseblood PTTM & Steroid Mazimus Quilombo



A FEW years back, Jim Thirlwell was asked by an intrepid Maker reporter to describe his relationship to the rest of humanity. Quick as a flash the man known variously as Foetus and Clint Ruin replied “Leave me alone and get the f*** out of my way!” Since moving from Melbourne in 1979, Thirlwell has attempted to translate that worldview into noise, accumulating his sordid obsessions in a series of releases that defined aural assault terrorism through the last decade as acutely as anyone.

These latest releases might be viewed as a substantial withdrawal from the painful excesses of 1988’s Thaw. On the release of that bewildering slab of intensity, Thirlwell remarked that he was living on the rim of insanity and felt that a number of significant changes needed to be made if he was to continue to function as a human being. Since that time, he has left the Some Bizarre stable in less than chummy circumstances and radically refashioned his objectives during a lengthy hibernation period.

Of these two new releases, PTTM is perhaps closest to previous monstrosities like 1984’s Nail and 1987’s “Yank’Em Crank’Em Don’t Stick Around To Thank’Em”¹. Joined by ex-Swan Roli Mosiman, Thirlwell manouevres through familiar diseased terrain, using a somewhat different canvas to shade his typically rancorous concerns. From the manic post-jazz of the title track, through the misshapen blues of “Hey Bop A Ree Bop”, to the psycho-rumble of “Stop Trying To Tie Me”, the scenery might have shifted but the standpoint remains largely the same. On the charmingly titled “Grease Nipples”, he even manages to arrange some kind of miraculous marriage between John Barry’s “Love Among The Ruins” and Beefheart’s “Trout Mask Replica”.

Marginally less absorbing is the Steroid Maximus release which hawks up a mixed bag of unwilling instrumentals which veer between the pseudo-classical and the intensely deranged. “Quilombo” might be an imaginary soundtrack for a movie too salacious to be made. Unless, that is, we’re talking about the kind of filth hidden beneath Paul Lester’s mattress.

¹ No idea what they’re talking about here, as this was never released due to the master tapes being stolen…

Source: MELODY MAKER 11 Jan 1992

By: Jon Wilde

Original text including (most) mis-spellings left intact.

Thanks to Villene for transcription.