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Mp3: “Sit Shiva,” by Judas Bear

Judas Bear is another of Thane Matcek’s many aliases, and the title of this song, which I originally thought had something to do with Hinduism, in fact refers to the Jewish period of bereavement after the death of a close relative.

Matcek has always been a wildly inconsistent artist. Previous of his bands – All Transistor, Sad Like Crazy, an eponymous project – were full of Alpine peaks and arid valleys.

And this song is almost as uneven as one of his records. I don’t care much for the metronomic guitar of the first few droning bars, but I really dig the warm bass and howling freak-out that begins about 40 seconds in. (And is repeated later.) I like that there are some dynamics in here. On the other hand, some of his vocals bear an unfortunate coincidental resemblance to those of Justin Furstenfeld. Grade 80.6. (I docked a couple points for poor sound quality.) – John Nova Lomax

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