KUTE Radio’s Pick of the week



RafterMusic For Total ChickensAsthmatic Kitty RecordsFour out of five stars

You can always expect great things from L.A. experimental music. The most recent example goes by the name of Rafter and comes to a listening audience near you, thanks to the folks at Asthmatic Kitty, a record label that isn’t too shy to put out unusual music.

Rafter can best be described as electro-pop-experimental-folk music—pretty concise, huh? Needless to say, it’s hard to pigeonhole. But that doesn’t stop Rafter from making some exceptional noises. There are instances when you hear elements of Nobukazu Takemura’s classical compositions, as well as his more blippy electronic forays into space.

An example of the former is the album’s closer, aptly titled “Ending.” Also, try the song “Inspirational.” Even Merzbow can be heard just a bit in the beginning moments of the song “Unassailable,” but it changes to a slightly more accessible percussive number a la Deerhoof. Other songs that take the idea of pop-noise to the next level include “Encouragement,” “Boy” and “Monsters.”

Despite the album’s name, Music For Total Chickens, it takes a keen ear and a brave heart to delve into this sonic maelstrom. But for those courageous souls who venture into the unknown, a great treasure awaits.

You can hear this album and other indie and underground gems by tuning into KUTE student radio at www.kute.org.