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Review: 'Fountain Square Don't Care Vol. I'


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Various Artists
Fountain Square Don't Care Vol. I
GloryHole Records/Hermetic Tapes

The morning after the Vibes/GloryHole Record Store Day showcase, I listened to the GloryHole sampler cassette, FSDC (Fountain Square Don't Care) Volume I. This is probably the best compilation of local music come around in about, well, forever. FSDC Vol. I kills any doubt that Fountain Square is the nerve center of indie rock in this city.

This collection neatly sums up the Cataract scene. The soaring psych-rock of Crys and Learner Dancer sits side by side with the sunshine drug trips of The Kemps and Vacation Club. Bands like Ancient Slang, Marmoset and Bad Magick fill in the rest of the story with assorted yummy weirdness.

The Crys' Jacob Gardner takes his bad six-string Hofner and scatty yowling and jumps out of the gate with the frenzied swampy psychedelic goodness of "Sun Shake."

The fractured pop of Marmoset's "Last of the Weed" and the wiggy "Secret Dream #13" from Bad Magick pace the first side. It ends with the awesome "Sam's Song" by The Kemps, who look like every drug-addicted teensdream and sound like Syd Barrett and Jason Pierce joining Brian Wilson in the kiddy pool. With its soaring harmonies and filthy undercurrent, this could be a future "Coolest Song in the World" on Little Stevens' Underground Garage.

Vacation Club starts off Side Two with the breathless "Forest Babe" that defines the FSDC sound. It is the sound that is born from boredom, despair and the ghosts of Margot, We Are Hex and America Owns the Moon. It's the sound of an America all hopped up on weed and beer, trying to make the next great Velvets record.

Though Moose is no longer involved, Tone Beemer still is, and thus Ancient Slang is still a force to be reckoned with. "Once You've Groan" is a noisy mini-masterpiece that is making me want more. Learner Dancer closes out things proper with a fun and grooving "Go Witchin'."

Fountain Square may not care. But GloryHole Records does and if it can make us listen to and care about goddamn good local music, who cares?


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