The cello-punks of Lung team up with the “big weird rock music” stylings of Conan Neutron and the Secret Friends to unleash a killer split release that showcases each band in all their glory and even allows a little crossing of the streams and collaboration between the two. Basically, if you’re a fan of both these bands, you’re going to love this album. They each bring their “A” game and deliver a quality split that is packed to the brim with killer tunes.
For those not in the know, Lung are a cello and drum duo. Vocalist/cello player Kate Wakefield is a classically trained opera singer and cellist. She plays her cello through a bunch of distortion pedals and big amps, while drummer Daisy Caplan beats the crap out of their drums. It’s a sound that is ethereal, but also down, dirty, and heavy, like early grunge. They know how to use the quiet/louder dynamic to its full potential. It’s quite the musical stew.
Conan Neutron And The Secret Friends are underground impressario Conan Neutron on guitar and vocals, backed by the rhythm section of Dale Crover (Melvins) on drums and Tony Ash (ex-Coliseum) on bass. They take classic rock and bend it to their own twisted goals. Basically, it’s noisy power-pop that is ultra-catchy and rocks. They’re bringing rock back into the underground. Plus, his lyrics are sly commentaries on living in the our messed-up, modern world.
Lung kicks off the split with “Fucked Up Baby,” which starts out ethereal, right before the distortion and drums kick in to bring it to rocking climax. “Kingpin” is a lurching, loud stomper of a tune, while their cover of Two Ton Boa’s “Cash Machine” alternates between the heavy and the heady. They do an ace cover of the Conan Neutron song, “The Impossible Task.” “Pastor” is a Lung original that manages to mine the quiet/loud dynamic to great effect. Their final song on the split, “Anyone Else,” is a collab with Conan Neutron that merges both bands sounds into one cohesive whole.
The Conan Neutron side opens with the wild-eyed rock, of “Wild Antics” and then follows it up with “Crybullies,” a catchy tune about some of the worst people on social media. In fact, all of their originals are catchy. After a few spins, the songs wormed their way into my brain, so I would start singing them over the course of my day, wherever I went. (Help me!)
“Fridging” is a duet with Kate from Lun on which her classically trained pipes are used to great effect, while they get a little blown out grunge sounding on their cover of Lung’s “I’m Nervous.” Their side ends with two more slices of “small scale arena rock for smart alecks and malcontents” in “Criminal Hypnosis” and “We Were Wolves.”
This is one killer split release. Both bands are at the top of their game for the duration of their sides. Plus, the collabs and covers are killer, too. I came into this release knowing Conan Neutron and not being too familiar with Lung, but left with a new appreciation for CN and a new favorite band in Lung.
It could do the same for you.
Buy Adult Prom here.