Societal collapse, melting ice caps, the inevitable growth and decay of meaningfully distinct subgenres…
Just as the laws of entropy ensure the eventual heat death of the universe, so they ensure that the terms associated with any new scene will inevitably be assimilated into the mainstream, stripped of context and specificity to the point of abject meaninglessness.
While this was true for terms like “bedroom pop” long before artists had no choice but to stay inside and make their pop in their bedrooms, it bears mentioning in light of Cape Town duo Banana Brains’ release of BANANA BRAINS live @ the HIT HOUSE. While impossible to describe without reference to a handful of well-worn lo-fi tropes and the psychedelic inclinations shared by their contemporaries, the pair’s performance sits in the eye of a storm of disruption – of their lives as musicians, and of the generic boundaries that inform their work.
Recorded live at home during lockdown, the three videos feature Colin and Angela von Cock performing their songs with suitably warm yet deadpan introspection. Fittingly, the heavily-distorted lyrics mull over feelings of paranoia, isolation and disconnection, and amid the layers of guitar loops and drum patterns, they paint an almost sunny picture of their circumstances.
“We liked the idea of having the blank white wall behind us as a canvas to experiment and project shadows, and to also then superimpose the lyrics for added impact, seeing as they tended to mirror the general feelings and headspace of the times.”Angela von Cock
With a bright and contemplative touch, Banana Brains turn obscurity and decay into a comforting blanket of homemade sound.
Watch the YouTube playlist of BANANA BRAINS live @ the HIT HOUSE below. Make it full screen, sit back and enjoy: