Tristan Bechet and Christopher Pravdica, veterans of New York's Flux Information Society, one of the city's seminal techno bands, regrouped as Services to mix a little more rock in with all of the computers. Using a cut-and-paste editing technique clearly imitative of Zappa, the pair piece together tape loops and heavy metal riffs with both disdain and affection. This impartial rearrangement of borrowed material, all set against start-stop machine gun beats, actually enhances the appeal. Danceable in a violent kind of way, cuts like "Element of Danger" and "Alive" come across like a bizarre mutation of Soft Cell and Ministry. The edits are so harsh and random that each cut threatens to break apart with only an unvarying thump holding things together. "Take me back to the cemetery where I am buried/At once!" barks Bechet on the sinister "Cemetery" while co-conspirator Pravdica makes the menacing bursts of noise somehow sound funky. Many of Bechet's best lines are contemptuous commands or sneering put-downs--check out the vitriolic bile of "Figure it Out" and "Expensive Shit" for a real taste of uppity, uptown chutzpah. Extreme and rewarding, Services make music that celebrates the artistic value of unpleasantness.
Get the Music Newsletter
Keep your thumb on the local music scene with music features, additional online music listings and show picks. We'll also send special ticket offers and music promotions available only to our Music Newsletter subscribers.