More PUNK than Post
Erase Errata is an all-girl trio that hails from the neon paint-splattered punk scene of San Francisco. Lost Weekend marks the group’s first emergence from the East Bay’s murky depths in almost a decade, capping off a four year-long hiatus and standing as their first ever self-released album. Within the seven tracks, listeners will find far fewer moments of the dissonant, Captain Beefheart-inspired avant-gardia that defined Erase Errata’s days as a quartet, but the band’s bombastic punk side is still intact and more prominent than ever.
There’s a three-front war being waged, and opener “History of Handclaps” is the battle ground. Scratchy textures and jagged bass lines that unfold like musical Jacob’s Ladders emulate the early post-punk style of groups like The Fall and Gang of Four and collide with the ranks of clanging snare drums and the atmospheric buzz of a lo-fi alternative rock aesthetic. Their sound is all wrapped up in the modern, almost post-hardcore production and engineering sensibilities that carried through earlier Errata releases like At Crystal Palace.
Even though they’re playing (wo)man down offense, Erase Errata sound surprisingly full for a three-piece, deftly leaping over the very musical valley into which a vast swath of Joy Division fanboy groups are regrettably cast, with nary a final half-hearted lamentation as they fall into the void of irrelevance. The feedback-laced stomp of “Watch Your Language” stumbles down the line between the trebly, spider-y guitar tone of early 80’s post punk and the punchy, beefed-up crunch of turn of the century garage rock like The Kills and Yeah Yeah Yeahs, but Erase Errata’s dissonant, lurching chords set them apart their art rock contemporaries. Frontwoman Jenny Holston’s vocals have been pared down to a soothing croon compared to the frantic-yet-hypnotic howl heard on songs from past releases like “Go To Sleep!” and “One Minute.”
“Don’t Sit, Lie” is a microcosm of Lost Weekend because of its structure; the song is (for the most part) fairly even-keeled power pop framed by convex structural lunacy on one side and no-frills Pixies-style alternative rock on the other. The music of Lost Weekend stays interesting enough throughout, despite the songs evening out around the record’s half way point. Like it’s intellectual predecessors This Nation’s Saving Grace an Entertainment!, Lost Weekend tumbles past the listener in a blur, but doesn’t feel overly short despite its paltry seven tracks. Erase Errata’s sonic bombasts have been reigned in but even still, these three chicks have more balls than their post-punk-influenced contemporaries.