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Eric Copeland – Waco Taco Combo album review

Eric Copeland released his third solo album on Escho Records entitled Waco Taco Combo. Escho made a limited edition pressing of 500 vinyl copies in May of this year. It is the follow-up to 2009’s Alien in a Garbage Dump. Waco Taco can be seen as a continuation of the extraterrestrial sounds found on Alien, yet the new work has more of a twisted dance music bend. Copeland is best known for being one third of Black Dice and for collaborating with Animal Collective member Avey Tare, both experimental noise bands who flirt with ideas of pop. He spent six weeks in Copenhagen recording the album and was subsequently influenced by the culture.

Waco Taco moves through many weird musical scenes. First on the album is “Land of Foot.” It is sweet in the beginning with chime-like effects, but soon becomes a mutant song with random samples and unexpected key changes. The second track, “Beatlemania,” opens to an audience clapping. Then come in the pulsating noises accompanied by varied rhythms and multilayered melodies.

Track three, “Krankendudel,” simply sounds deranged. However, it ends in a rather conventional lo-fi guitar fronted section. Number four is “Warbug” which appears to be created from the effect of several robots shutting all of their systems off and on repeatedly. The fifth song is really crunchy and includes pieced in intergalactic noise.

Finally we come to the magnum opus of Waco Taco. The last track is titled “Spangled” and covers about seventeen and a half minutes. It is actually very good, surprisingly enough. It starts off loud and strong with club banger electro beats. Next, enters a series of weird breakdowns and then another turn of direction with strangely mangled vocal parts. Totally schizoid in composition, this song manages to keep the listener engaged by acting as a car radio being constantly switched from station to station. “Spangled” closes with a trancelike measure, a bit of extra noise, and that’s it.

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