Agitated Atmosphere: Thee Open Sex - Thee Open Sex

Agitated Atmosphere, Album Reviews
01/18/2013
Justin Spicer

As major labels continue to exist behind the times, artists and labels with little capital and lesser reputations are producing some of the most innovative, interesting, and inspiring music. Whether it’s creating a new niche in digital technology or looking to once obsolete formats, Agitated Atmosphere hopes to pull back the curtain on a wealth of sights and sound from Indiana’s Thee Open Sex.

I remember my first time. It was like my first sexual experience. Thee Open Sex is no misnomer; I was weak, tired and excited. Blood flowed to all parts and yet none. I happened to be standing beside Haley Fohr (better known as Circuit Des Yeux) who was championing the band before a note had been struck. It was a tiny shack and there in the midst of an inaugural CATARACTS crowd I lost my virginity. An exhibitionist unfurled.

More than a year later we stand in front of Thee Open Sex’s self-titled LP, the tireless work of the band with Fohr behind the boards. The wait for a “proper” album has been a long time coming (the band’s cassette output only a noisy teaser). Thee Open Sex has no issue shifting between genre and expectations, known meditative drone, harsh noise and acid-dipped freak outs. This LP combines them all into an accessible but none the less experimental practice.

Thee Open Sex shares members of Apache Dropout and that outfit’s classic garage blasts find a home here, as it usually does on many Magnetic South recordings. Rachel Weidner’s best Grace Slick-cum-Iggy Pop propels the psychedelic din to euphoric levels with “Walkin’ the Dog.” Follow-up “Gimme Away” invites the current Apache Dropout rat rod fixation into the mix. “Live Dead” comes closest to my first time with the band; without the reverberations of a backyard garage to shackle the sound, the song begins to envelope neighborhood blocks with uncontrollable lust. Though the moaned ecstasy of Pocahaunted first springs to mind, the guitar army keeps the song away from the mystical and firmly planted in the sanitarium.

It’s my first time with the band all over again. It may not be as rowdy and communal, the raucous, careless abandon that comes with a band that is having fun yet making relevant, progressive music. I officially give myself away to Thee Open Sex... if they’ll have me.

Justin Spicer is a freelance journalist whose work can be viewed at his website. You can also find him on Twitter.

Related News & Reviews

Agitated Atmosphere Album Reviews

Agitated Atmosphere: Toy Love - Live at the Gluepot

As major labels continue to exist behind the times, artists and labels with little capital and lesser reputations are producing some of the most innovative, interesting, and inspiring music. Whether it’s creating a new niche in digital technology or looking to once obsolete formats, Agitated Atmo...


Read More
Album Reviews

Album Review: New Order - Lost Sirens

For New Order fans, it has been a long, bitter wait for Lost Sirens. In the almost eight years since the release of Waiting for the Siren's Call, much animosity has plagued the band's ability (or desire) to release any new material or tour together. And really, these are no trivial bickerings - f...


Read More
Album Reviews

Album Review: Christopher Owens - Lysandre

Christopher Owens took us all by surprise last year when he randomly announced that he was leaving his own band, Girls. Girls started back in 2007 with Owens and Chet JR White, but they really got off the ground and running in the last couple years with 2009's very popular Album and 2011's pitch ...


Read More
Agitated Atmosphere Album Reviews

Agitated Atmosphere: Various Artists - Time to Go: The Southern Psychedelic Movement 1981-86

As major labels continue to exist behind the times, artists and labels with little capital and lesser reputations are producing some of the most innovative, interesting, and inspiring music. Whether it’s creating a new niche in digital technology or looking to once obsolete formats, Agitated Atmo...


Read More
Click anywhere to return to the site