Music News


Most electronic music makers fall into one of two broad categories: They're either interested in making art or making people dance. However, San Francisco's Tussle, appearing with Pictureplane and Analog Space DJs, frequently straddles these classifications. "Transparent C," a key track from Cream Cuts, the group's latest disc for the Smalltown Supersound imprint, illustrates this point. The odd array of sonic elements that open the song cohere after a minute or so, serving as color for some exuberant thump-thump. But instead of doing it to death, as most club mavens would, group founders Jonathan Holland and Nathan Burazer, supplemented by Warren Huegel and Tomonori Yasuda, bring the proceedings to an abrupt halt not once but twice, with the concluding passages dominated by whooshing poltergeist noises later joined by a snare drum that's more marching band than disco dynamo. The rest of Tussle's hustles vacillate between the propulsive and the unpredictable, too — art for art's sake, dancing for dancing's sake.

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Michael Roberts has written for Westword since October 1990, serving stints as music editor and media columnist. He currently covers everything from breaking news and politics to sports and stories that defy categorization.
Contact: Michael Roberts